Sunday, February 11, 2007

The National Post: Doubting Thomas

The National Post has a piece, that essentially argues the environmental movement is akin to a religion. Drawing on bad historical analogies, it as though a passion for the planet is relegated to some irrational belief system. It is quite unusual for one media outlet to go after another so overtly, but this comment is striking:
It is there in the pious propaganda of media outlets like the, Toronto Star, which on Jan. 28 made the completely implausible claim that, “The debate about greenhouse gas emissions appears to be over.”

The debate over human activity causing global warming is over, some question of degree and scope, but the thesis confirmed, except for the rouge scientists that groups like the Fraser Institute and The National Post prop up in a mischevious way. I find it hilarious, that the Post takes a shot at the Star, at the same time it is running a LONG series entitled Climate Change: The Deniers, which essentially scours the globe looking for any fringe view to cast doubt. There is an irony is using the word propaganda to attack The Toronto Star.

Anyways, according to the religion hypothesis, this man is a now a saint:

And, what of this man, with the greenish beard:


knb said...

It is quite unusual for one media outlet to go after another so overtly

Steve, with respect, that is how the National Post was born...that was it's intent.

If you are so inclined, click here, go to the right menu and get the audio of episode 4.

Steve V said...

"Steve, with respect, that is how the National Post was born...that was it's intent."

Knb, fair enough. I should have said "most" :) Thanks for the link.

knb said...

No apologies my friend. I just think it's about time we all woke up.

The media is driving me crazy at the moment and that link, well I was happy to hear it.

lance said...

"The debate over human activity causing global warming is over, some question of degree and scope, but the thesis confirmed,..."

Umm, what? So now it's the Law of Global Warming? Give your un-scientific head a shake.

This isn't some childhood silliness on English, "the exception proves the rule" crap. Look at what you wrote, "The debate is over, the thesis proven."

Let me guess, arts major?

The debate is hardly over and not even the UN is prepared to say the thesis is proven, the best they can do is 'very likely'.

Get a secular grip already. Faith is a wonderful thing but it still needs to be understood.


Anonymous said...

The Post deserves to be commended for telling it like it is, the movement is quick to silence its enemies - a sure sign that something is wrong with the global warming crowd.

rockfish said...

Yes, soon as they get that photo of Big Oil co. executives, you know the one where they are wearing the clothes and stars of the holocaust, then we'll all be able to bask in the NaPo's illustrious search for truth.
Oh and by the way the day that Harpor gets his majority, their stock will skyrocket, they'll lie again about their readership numbers and Leonard will do his daily waterskiing in the raw to celebrate. Can you say shrinkage?

wayward son said...

"The Post deserves to be commended for telling it like it is, the movement is quick to silence its enemies - a sure sign that something is wrong with the global warming crowd."

Wow that is rich. How many of the 10 climate deniers that the Post spotlighted were completely misrepresented by writer Lawrence Solomon? At least 3 and counting.

In his first article Solomon claimed that Dr. Edward Wegman (a statistician) was a "Denier" because he challenged some of statistics used for the infamous mann hockey stick. But that does not mean that Wegman is a denier, his position of concern about man made climate change is well established.
Here is a comparison of Mann's conclusions in 1999 (the original hockey stick) on the left and the NAS' (chaired by Wegman) more recent conclusions on the right. In my mind Wegman's are even more worrisome.

In the second article Richard S.Tol's is displayed as a "Denier." Funny then that Tol has stated repeatedly that climate change IS occuring, IS caused by man, and efforts must me made to lessen its effects. Tol is not a scientist, he is an economist and he co-authored the book "Climate, Change and Risk" which goes for about $550 these days and is not skeptical of climate change in the least, but tries to make rational arguments for what is cost-effective to be done, and what is not. He was critical of some of the finding of the Stern report, but that does not make him a skeptic, far from it.

In his recent paper (late 2006) "Why Worry About Climate Change?" in which he explains why we should be very worried. His conclusion includes "This paper reviews what is known and what is not known about the economic impacts of climate chnage. What is known suggests that climate change is a problem that requires serious efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions."

wayward son said...

Well this is getting too long so I will just move to my favority two:

Part VII where Solomon soiled the name of scientist Nigel Weiss by saying that Weiss believes we are headed for a deep freeze. Weiss was so upset about being completely misrepresented in the post that he immediately had a press release explaining his long known views. The Post printed none of it, but this source did:

And part IX on global warming on mars using the esteemed Habibullo Abdussamatov. The Winnipeg FreePress by an large reprinted that "story" yesterday. I sent them a letter to the editor:

Frozen or baked? Warming on Mars linked to sun, not SUVs

The spread of disinformation during the internet age is unstoppable. So I knew this was coming. First in the blogosphere, then the Financial Post, then to the pages of the Winnipeg Free Press. “Global Warming on Mars”. It doesn’t matter that it isn’t true. It doesn’t matter that responsible journalists seem unwilling to question the controversies that they put to paper. Disinformation will continue to be spread.

Why is it that no other scientists are talking about this? Why is it that scientist “Habibullo Abdussamotov” garners a grand total of one google hit (this article) when most climate scientists would have tens of thousands? The world’s most renowned scientist on solar activity, Dr. Sami Solanki has stated that greenhouse gases are the cause of current global warming as solar activity has been constant for the past 20 – 30 years. The six years of decreasing mass at the southern (but not northern) polar cap on Mars have coincided with the Sun reaching a solar minimum. Both of which ensure that any changes on Mars are due to internal factors. What possible internal factors could there be on a planet with no life? Plenty. Dust storms, which can last for years, ravage the planet which alone can change the temperature of the red planet by several degrees and Mars has been found to be far more active than the earth with the topography changing faster than scientists had anticipated. Both of which can lead to regional instability of temperatures. Also Mars doesn’t follow the same orbital pattern around the Sun that the Earth does and the actual temperature measurements taken since the Viking missions actually show that Mars is cooler now then it was in the 70s. So to say, as Abdussamotov does, that the warming “can only be a straight-line consequence of the effect of the one same factor” is incredibly irresponsible and unscientific.

The media’s role in spreading the views of the few crack-pot scientists is a disservice to their readers, especially when there are thousands of knowledgeable scientists who could inform readers of the climate reality they yearn to know about. Perhaps we should listen more to the thousands of scientists explaining the causes of the melting occurring at both poles of our own planet then one scientist explaining his views of the cause of melting at one pole on Mars.

Steve V said...

"Let me guess, arts major?"

I recall studying the greenhouse effect in 1989 (it was debatable then), as well as scientific theory 1990. It is almost impossible for the scientific community to use the term 100% when speaking of predictability.

Lance, you used a quote where I PURPOSELY said there is debate over SCOPE and DEGREE. There is no real debate over humans contributing to a rise in GHG's, even dinosaurs like Harper and Bush now admit the "science". If you want to waste your time chasing ghosts, go for it, the real debate has moved beyond such silliness.

No one is silencing the doubters, but nor should they be given such a high profile to prop up silliness. For every denier paper, I can find hundreds of counter-papers. You do the math, and then tell me who mis-representing the true "debate". The train has left, you stragglers can sit in denial. Enjoy the delusion.

wayword son

Amen brother! ;)

Miles Lunn said...

I think deniers should be heard, but we should also counter-act them and put them on the spot. When put on the spot they will usually lose.

You are right you can never predict the future with 100% certainty, but what science confirms is that humans have been causing global warming up until now and if we continue to live the same lifestyles as we to do today, this is what will happen. Now if we make changes, then that is a different story. Also something like a famine may kill off a large portion of the world's population as nature's way of correcting things, but this would be a terrible thing to happen.

And off course if you really want to go off into the deep end, you could say the world will be struck by a comet creating a major cooling, much like what happened 65 million years ago when the Dinosaurs died off.

The point is the science is about as close to being a 100% without actually being a 100%.