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Ed Driscoll

As if ‘Hide the Decline’ Never Enters the Debate

February 16th, 2011 - 10:10 am

Back in 2007, we first highlighted the essay that ran in Editor and Publisher, old media’s house organ titled, “Climate Change: Get Over Objectivity, Newspapers.” Of course, as we’ve seen in the years since, there isn’t much objectivity left for old media to get over.

Evidently the Politico has taken their advice, as Mark Hertsgaard, who identifies himself on camera as working for that increasingly left-leaning and formerly JournoList-affiliated Website badgers Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-OK). As Inhofe’s YouTube page notes, “Global warming alarmists led by Mark Hertsgaard attempted to ambush Senator Inhofe following a hearing this morning. See for yourself who ended up winning the argument.”

But simply by being online, Hertsgaard has lost part of the argument. Take a look at Hertsgaard’s latest essay at the Politico:

Will it take the Republican Party as long to accept modern science as it took the Roman Catholic Church? The church waited 359 years to admit Galileo was right — the earth does move around the sun. Not until 1992 did the Vatican officially withdraw its condemnation of the man Albert Einstein called the father of modern science.

Today, even children know that the earth revolves around the sun. But that idea was heresy to the 17th-century church. When Galileo would not abandon his views, the Inquisition put him on trial in 1633. He was forced to recant under penalty of death, then lived under house arrest for the rest of his life.

But now who’s being geocentric, Kay?

At the Tatler, Bryan Preston adds:

Unpack that a bit and you have fallacious appeals to authority, followed by ad hominem attacks and insults. That’s not science, though having worked around more than a few scientists in my time, it’s unfortunately not uncommon behavior for scientists to engage in. Hertsgaard never deals honestly with the ClimateGate emails, which provide extremely strong evidence that the scientists at the heart of the debate were and still are cooking the books. It’s as if “hide the decline” never entered the debate. It’s as if none of the pile of information showing real and widespread fraud done in the name of global warming alarmism never happened at all.

That’s what I call living in denial.

Here’s Hertsgaard’s ambush interview with Inhofe:

YouTube Preview Image

But if Hertsgaard is serious about his language and his eco-apocalypticism, to paraphrase Instapundit, I’d be more likely to believe there’s a crisis when he starts to act like there’s a crisis. That means setting an example and getting off the Internet, to cut down on electricity and air-conditioned server room use. Hertsgaard is based in San Francisco; how did he get to DC? Think of the polar bears, man! And additionally, to borrow from Ann Althouse, the following rules should be observed by journalists who take global warming seriously:

3. Free time should be spent sitting or lying still without using electricity. Don’t run the television or music playing device. Reading, done by sunlight is the best way to pass free time. After dark, why not have a pleasant conversation with friends or family? Word games or board games should replace sports or video games.

4. Get up at sunrise. Don’t waste the natural light. Try never to turn on the electric lights in your house or workplace. Put compact fluorescent bulbs in all your light fixtures. The glow is so ugly that it will reduce the temptation to turn them on.

5. Restrict your use of transportation. Do not assume that walking or biking is less productive of carbon emissions than using a highly efficient small car. Do not go anywhere you don’t have to go. When there is no food in the house to make dinner, instead of hopping in the car to go to the grocery store or a restaurant, take it as a cue to fast. As noted above, your weight should be at the low end of normal, and opportunities to reach or stay there should be greeted with a happy spirit.

Also, the iPod that Hertsgaard carries in his ambush interview with Inhofe is right out as well, given its use of the Internet and petroleum-based byproducts to manufacture it. And note the obligatory use of children as human shields. Nothing like telling a young girl that her future is completely hosed. Near the end of the video, Hertsgaard “salutes” Inhofe for having plenty of children and grandkids — but doesn’t that contradict the global warming alarmists’ fear that large families cause global warming?

But then, what doesn’t.

In contrast to Hertsgaard, this is a man who takes his climate change and the transportation requirements it imposes upon on hairshirt true believers seriously.

Meanwhile, back on planet earth, Tim Blair notes:

The European Union’s energy commissioner Gunter Oettinger points out something so basic and true that it routinely eludes our political-environmental superiors:

We need industry in Europe, we need industry in the U.K., and industry means CO2 emissions.

Of course, to our greener pals the premise of that argument – “we need industry” – is false.

Just ask the JournoList’s favorite president.

Related: “Today, six years ago, the Kyoto Protocols, intended to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, came into force. I’ll bet dollars to donuts that no country has followed its commitment. That’s good, but also a cautionary tale about the validity of international agreements built on unicorns and pixie dust.”

Update: It gets better: “CANCELED: HOT—Mark Hertsgaard in Conversation with NASA’s James Hansen — Due to snow storms in New York City, this event has been canceled.  Please check back again for a new date and time.”

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