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August 14th 2017 print

Tony Thomas

Inconvenient Truths for a Gore Groupie

The literary editor of The Australian's weekend Review section is a gifted journalist, but it seems he couldn't grasp a single key element about Al Gore and climate profiteers if a polar bear fell on him. In an effort to foil an otherwise decent newspaper's promotion of piffle, here's a remedial primer

typing underwater IIWollongong University senior lecturer in journalism Dr David Blackall lamented in a recent journal article  about the ignorance and bias of  journalists reporting on the global warming scare. The Australian is the country’s most rigorous newspaper by far when it comes to climate reporting, its environment reporter, Graham Lloyd, doing a masterful job in covering even-handedly  the controversies.

So how and why does The Australian elsewhere make itself a laughing stock as an advocate of climate ignorance? There’s more than enough climate drivel  being daily pumped out by the Fairfax press and ABC.[1] So why does The Australian allow itself to sink to the level of addled and withering former broadsheets and the national broadcaster’s taxpayer-funded alarmist collective?

The media’s handling of climate stories is hardly a trivial issue. Britain’s leading alarmist, Lord Stern, is calling for $US90 trillion spending to cut CO2 emissions. In the Third World, the lives of countless millions of peasants will remain nasty, unhealthy and short as we deny them the life-giving benefits of cheap, coal-fired power. In Australia, as Liberal MHR Craig Kelly correctly points out, some among the elderly poor will die from the cold because they can’t afford to pay their power bills.

Turn now to the most recent Weekend Australian and its arty insert Review section.

Suppose a section editor at the News Corp publication wrote that Hitler invaded Poland in 1959, D-Day took place in June, 1964, and Hitler hanged himself in his bunker in 1965. Surely someone, whether a junior sub or a top-level manager, would notice at proof stage and prevent such gross ignorance being published? No such supervision occurred last Saturday, when an equivalent howler on climate made it into print.

The matter was  under the by-line of Stephen Romei, literary editor, who only a fortnight earlier was encouraging his book reviewer Claire Corbett to froth that

“for the average person in the affluent West, soft drinks pose a far deadlier threat than terrorists.”

This time it was Romei himself who bent a shoulder to the wheel of ignorance in his review of Al Gore’s latest scare film, An Inconvenient Sequel, writes in his second paragraph, “Perhaps this film will, like its 1986 predecessor, An Inconvenient Truth, be a slow-burner. Made for $US15 million, that film made $US50m, won an Oscar and delivered Gore the Nobel Peace Prize…”

As anyone even slightly acquainted with the climate debate would know, Gore’s first film was not released in 1986 but 20 years later, in 2006.  A typo on the date would be forgivable, but date typos don’t involve three wrong digits out of four. Note also that, within a single  sentence, he peddles a second error. No-one “delivered” to Gore “the Nobel Peace Prize”. That 2007 award was shared 50:50 between Gore and the IPCC as an institution.

That mistake is not a hanging offence – shared winners of (genuine) Nobel Prizes typically ignore the “shared” element.[2] But in context, Romei is writing like a Gore fan-boy who can’t be bothered googling the facts.

Romei is actually proud of his ignorance of the climate debate. “I’m not going to pretend to know how right or wrong Gore is about climate change,” he writes. So why is he  reviewing the film rather than giving the  job, ideally, to a pair of expert reviewers with opposing viewpoints? Immediately, in self-contradiction, Romei then announces that Gore’s new film is “not a polemic, not a rant, not dominated by political dogma or personal anger.”

A conscientious reviewer would at least have revisited Gore’s 2006 Inconvenient Truth, which was indeed a polemic, a rant, and dominated by political dogma, not to mention its progenitor’s commercial interests and profit making imperatives.  Look up the judgement of Burton J. in the UK High Court. His Worship noted nine significant errors, including Gore’s utter nonsense that Pacific Island populations had been evacuated to NZ to escape their drowning isles. Because UK school education must eschew political propaganda (our Australian school system offers no such safeguards), the judge ordered the film not be shown to UK children without the teacher first alerting them to the film’s mistakes and its “partisan political views” of a “one-sided” nature.

Gore’s snake-oil ethics were such that he never re-edited to correct the film’s errors or issued his own errata. Australian teachers have continued to screen its error-laden propaganda to their captive audiences of millions of Australian children.

Romei ignores Gore’s  hypocrisy in telling the hoi polloi to cut their emissions while the failed presidential contender’s Nashville mansion – one of three –  uses as much electricity to heat its pool, as six normal houses in total. This palace in total consumes 21 times the energy of a normal US home. Solar panels account for only 6% of the power used. Gore has also made hundreds of millions with his   Big Green energy trading and through the 2013 sale of his “Current TV” channel to the Qataris’ Al Jazeera, who paid for it with their carbon-steeped oil revenues.

As for whether An Inconvenient Sequel is a rant, I haven’t seen it but I have watched the trailer (“This is climate  change,” Gore lies about random storms).  I also sat through and recorded his 75-minute Melbourne lecture last July 13, publishing a 6000-word transcript to alert the global community to Gore’s fake claims and phony science. To Gore, any and all wild weather is “climate change” happening before our very  eyes,  notwithstanding that the IPCC itself, and numerous recent studies, have found that extreme weather damage is on a falling trend.[3]  Gore is ignorant, a liar or both.

But Romei lacks the energy or smarts to run a check on the readily available studies that refute Gore’s claims. Romei writes:

It’s at ground – and sea and sky – level that a disturbing thriller movie unfolds. We see devastating  natural disasters, including Typhoon Haiyan in The Philippines in 2013, which killed more than 6000 people, and unusual weather events such as ‘rain bombs’ and flooding  in US states such as Florida. Australia wades in, too, with widespread flooding in Victoria[4]…Gore believes such wild weather is due to, or exacerbated by, climate change.

Gore  also suckers Romei in to the fairytale about Georgetown, Texas, as poster-city for supposedly 100% renewable energy.  Georgetown draws its electricity from the Texas grid  powered by 44% natural gas, 29% coal, 12% nuclear and a mere 16% renewables.

By now the public – Romei excepted – is cynical about Gore’s perpetual wolf-crying. Romei is perplexed that the cinema he attended  was “near-empty”. Again, if he’d done any homework, he’d know that the film bombed in its US opening, ranking  15th on its first US week,  or a mere $US5000 per screen.

Getting back to Romei’s initial howler about Gore’s “1986” first film, one has to wonder what Romei believes went on in climate between 1986 and Gore’s 2007 award of half a Nobel Peace Prize. Maybe, like Einstein and Stephen Hawking,  Romei has found mathematical warps in space-time. But let me do him a favour with the actual climate time-line for the modern period. Romei and his fellow climate-media kids  can pin the timeline to their office cubicle partitions as a handy reference.

January 1975: Because the scientific consensus of that era feared a  global cooling phase, PM Gough Whitlam demanded a report from the Australian Academy of Science on the potential cooling threat to Australian agricultural output.  The Academy – which at that time, but not now, avoided political activism – reported in 1976 that climate changed so slowly (over many centuries) that there was really nothing to worry about.[5]

June 23, 1988: the global warming scare was launched in testimony to a US Senate committee by James Hansen of NASA.[6] To make the congressional session more  dramatic, Hansen’s Democrat ally, Senator Tim Wirth, scheduled the hearing on a day forecast to be the hottest in Washington that summer. In addition, Wirth sabotaged the air-conditioning the previous night to ensure the TV cameras could show everyone sweating in the heat.

1988: Maurice Strong, executive director of the UN Environmental Program, helped get the IPCC set up as a combination of UNEP and the World Meteorological Organisation. Strong also organised the Rio Earth Summit of 1992, which woke up the West’s politicians to a new, feel-virtuous campaign involving vast potential tax inflows.[7] In 2007, while investigating corruption in the Iraq Food for Oil program, the FBI came across a cheque to Strong for $US998,000 by a corrupt  South Korean business man via a Jordanian bank. Strong hastened to the first plane for Beijing, China having no extradition formalities with the US, and lived there until his death in 2015 at 86, the cheque still unexplained.

1999: To make its warming story stick, the IPCC needed to show that 20th-century warming was ‘unprecedented’, but the Medieval Warming Period (when Greenland grew grapes) was a fly in the IPCC ointment. A then-youthful scientist, Michael Mann, constructed a 1000-year temperature record using proxies such as tree rings. This graph, the infamously inaccurate ‘hockey stick’, erased both the Medieval Warming and the Little Ice Age (1550-1850) that followed.

The IPCC featured the Mann chart seven times in its 2001 report, the graph becoming for a while the virtual logo and icon of the organisation. But Mann refused all requests to make his data and algorithms public for verification. In the IPCC’s 2007 report, the hitherto famous ‘hockey stick’ was downgraded to one mention of its controversial nature. In 2017 Mann was still hiding his data, even in defiance of a Canadian court ruling last July that it be provided to defendants in a libel suit Mann himself had  initiated. In Washington, where another libel suit against columnist Mark Steyn has been bogged down down for years, he has been no less coy about revealing the secrets of his climate modelling.

2004: In response to requests for his original data, Professor Phil Jones of the University of East Anglia, co-creator and custodian of the HADCRUT global surface temperature record replied with the classic line, “Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it?” After also advising colleagues to unlawfully delete official emails subject to Freedom of Information requests, Jones later confessed that his raw data no longer existed because he hadn’t stored and backed up the originals.[8]

2007: The IPCC Fourth Report was published claiming warming would melt the Himalayan glaciers by 2035 and deprive billions on the sub-continent of fresh water. The claim was based on a chat between a supposed glacier expert, Syen Hasnain, and a magazine reporter. The relevant page of the IPCC report now contains no less than nine “erratas”, even conceding dud arithmetic. When a genuine glacier scientist, Vijay Raina, challenged the 2035 claim, notiong that melting would actually take many centuries, IPCC chair and dirty old man Rajendra Pachauri derided him for ‘voodoo science’. Pachauri then appointed Syed Hasnain, the original source of the eroneous 2035 claim, to his think-tank and secured millions of dollars in grants to study the faked melting-glacier crisis.

2009: The release of the Climategate emails showed top members of the climate-alarm industry conspiring to keep dissenting science out of the peer-reviewed literature, even boasting of getting a journal editor sacked for publishing such papers. While they publicly denied significant flaws in their warming narrative, they admitted in private that the flaws were real. They boasted of their shoddy practices, such as “using Mike’s (Mann’s) Nature trick… to hide the decline” (i.e. concealing inconvenient results generated by their tree-ring  temperature proxy series).

2010: Unwilling to further endorse the IPCC’s credibility, the InterAcademy Council (the executive composed of 11 national science bodies) ordered an audit of the IPCC.  It urged Pachauri to quit but he refused. The audit found “significant shortcomings in each [i.e. every] major step of IPCC’s assessment process”.

The audit results were swept under the rug by the Australian Academy of Science, notwithstanding that its then-president Kurt Lambeck, was a prominent member of the international audit.[9]

November 14, 2010: Ottmar Edenhofer, then a top-level co-chair of IPCC Working Group 111, is quoted by the Zuricher Zeitung:

Climate policy has almost nothing to do anymore with environmental protection, says the German economist and IPCC official Ottmar Edenhofer. The next world climate summit in Cancun is actually an economy summit during which the distribution of the world’s resources will be negotiated.”

February 3, 2015: Christiana Figueres, then executive secretary of the UN body governing the IPCC, announces,

This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the industrial revolution.

Presumably, Figueres has some sort of socialist or world-government model in mind.

February 24, 2015: IPCC chair (2002-2015) Pachauri, 74, quits abruptly on being charged by New Delhi police with multiple counts of sexual stalking and harassment involving a 29-year-old female employee. Pachauri denies guilt, initially claiming that hundreds of smutty texts to the fixation of his frustrated affections were written by a hacker who somehow took over his emails, text-messaging  and WhatsApp accounts. The case has been winding its way through Indian court  procedures ever since. He had claimed in 2010 that his IPCC chair work was honorary and that all his incidental TERI think-tank earnings went to TERI, not to his own pocket. But he told a court  hearing this month that the charges had destroyed his personal earning capacity as a climate guru, which had previously run at $US376,000  a year.

1998-early 2017: The establishment fought to deny any “hiatus” or pause in global  temperatures was occurring, and retrospectively “adjusted” various past temperature series to create the look and feel, if not the substance, of ongoing warming. They also adduced more than 60 explanations for the failure of their models to replicate actual temperatures. Their rearguard action collapsed a month ago with the publication of a paper by Ben Santer, Michael Mann and other leaders of the orthodoxy,  “Causes of differences in model and satellite tropospheric warming rate”.[10]

2017: Because the narrative of sharply rising global temperatures has failed, alarmists scientists have switched their narrative to “extreme weather” and its alleged hazards. This new story flies in the face of the IPCC’s own SREX special report of 2012 on extreme weather, which conceded that warming could well reduce extremes, rather than increase them. Further, it would be 20-30 years before any climate effects on extreme weather would even be detectable against natural climate variability.[11] The 2013 IPCC report broadly endorsed those findings.

Alarmist scientist Dr Andy Pitman is now claiming that post-2011 research has made the 2013 IPCC findings obsolete.[12] The definitive work on extreme-weather insurance losses is by Dr Roger Pielke Jr., showing a halving of disaster costs as a percent of GDP in the past 27 years. If Pitman wants to claim that Pielke’s work has been rebutted, he should put up or shut up.

If I may conclude with some advice for The Australian:

1/ Ensure your reporters covering climate have some background and expertise in the subject, and a willingness to fact-check purportedly scientific claims

2/ Ensure the climate copy of  loose cannons like Stephen Romei is vetted against howlers such as last week’s issue, and

3/ When the likes of Romei write that they have no idea about distinguishing climate facts from fictions, believe them.

Tony Thomas’ book of essays, That’s Debatable – 60 Years in Print, is available here

 


[1] The ABC Science Show on June 24, to be fair, ran a reasonable debate between warmist and sceptic scientists, after years of suppressing  sceptic views

[2] Our Nobel-winning astronomer Brian Schmidt, for example, shared the 2011 Nobel for Physics with two other scientists.

[3] After normalization to account for more sizeable assets at risk in coastal zones, for example.

[4] Romei seems to believe Victoria never had floods before 1940

[5]We conclude that there is no evidence that the world is now on the brink of a major climatic change. There is ample evidence that the world’s climate has changed widely during the geological past, and while there is every expectation that it will continue to change in the future, the time scale of these changes is in the range of thousands to hundreds of thousands of years rather than decades or centuries.”

It cannot be too strongly emphasised that year-to-year variability is an inherent feature of global and regional climates and that…large fluctuations leading to severe droughts and floods are bound to occur from time to time.” (My emphasis)

[6] Hansen later compared coal freight trains to trains carrying victims to  extermination camps.

[7] As Strong said at Rio, “It is clear that current lifestyles and consumption patterns of the affluent middle class— involving high meat intake, consumption of large amounts frozen and convenience foods, use of fossil fuels, appliances, home and work place air-conditioning, and suburbanhousing — are not sustainable.”

[8] Only Jones’ ‘adjusted’ data remained

[9] The Academy gave the damning audit results no publicity at the time but made a glib mention of them in its annual report seven months later,  “The report released on 30 August 2010 concluded that the process employed by the IPCC had been successful overall but recommended a range of reforms particularly in relation to management structures to strengthen procedures.”

[10] “We conclude that model overestimation of tropospheric warming in the early twenty-first century is partly due to systematic deficiencies in some of the post-2000 external forcings used in the model simulations.”

  1. From the SREX: For the next twenty to thirty years, man-made warming effects on climate extremes will be swamped by natural climate variability;
  2. the man-made warming may even be beneficial by reducing the number of extreme events; and
  3. neither IPCC models nor emissions forecasting are good enough to forecast extreme weather events up to the end of the 21st century.

[12] Pitman :  “…a lot of that work that has come out since 2013 has clearly established that heatwaves are getting longer, more intense and more frequent. Rainfall is becoming more extreme, and there is ongoing research looking at whether tropical cyclones, for example, are intensifying.”

Comments [46]

  1. Keith Kennelly says:

    Hey Ian, where are you?

    Still got those doubts Jody?

    • Jody says:

      Yes, I still have doubts but the recent weather has shown me how hot its getting and it’s way too early for summer!! Put that to one side; I take no notice of hysterics. The Left and its hand-wringing, bleeding hearts, emotion and catastophizing NEVER moves me; in fact, quite the opposite. That scientists have aligned themselves with these people is concerning to me and this was never an effective way to win and argument or to convince people. It’s cheap. The world over we have seen others try to manipulate the people through emotion on a range of issues; I remain unmoved.

      This is my bottom line: I rely upon that same professional group – scientists – to guide me on a healthy way to live, to improve infant mortality, keep vast swathes of the population alive for longer and with better health outcomes, etc. etc. It would be sheer stupidity to ignore scientists because you don’t like the message they’re sending, but I remain convinced their message would be simplified through persistent logic and a willingness to stay the course – rather than labelling those who are not immediately convinced of being ignorant bigots. For now, quite a lot of the data seems contradictory. I’ll defer my judgment to another day.

  2. Tezza says:

    Magisterial time line, Tony. Very useful and amusing. I had forgotten Saint Gough’s query to the Australian Academy of Sciences in 1975.

  3. Davidovich says:

    We live in a post-fact, post-truth world now and this excellent article, showing the devious and dishonest behviour of the alarmists and useful idiots such as RomeI, will fall on deaf ears amongst our present bunch of politicians who could learn a lot from it.

  4. Bill Martin says:

    Reading this article, particularly the timeline of all those howling lies, inaccuracies and failed predictions, makes one’s head spin. Makes one wonder in bewilderment about how is it possible that some otherwise seemingly rational, intelligent people keep on swallowing this unadulterated tosh. That All Gore is simply an influential con artist is simple enough to understand, as is the motivation of lots of others with their snouts in the trough of public funds but what of all those useful idiots with nothing to gain from this despicable, cruel hoax?

  5. pgang says:

    Tony it’s been editorial policy at TA for a long time to give global warming alarmism the ‘benefit of the doubt’, as an editorial once put it. Brain death in print. It’s one of the main reasons I stopped subscribing. If the chief editors’ intent is to remain deliberately ignorant and conveniently non-discerning over such an important PC issue, then I figured that must be reflected throughout its reporting in general. Which has proven correct.

  6. pgang says:

    Other reasons I stopped subscribing:

    - It was getting boring with limited actual news and windbag opinionising
    - They kept jacking the price up
    - The website portal is garbage, especially with its constant refreshing back to the top

  7. Patrick McCauley says:

    Romei pushes all the Lefty Writers Festivals and its conversations from ‘appropriation’ to ‘gender Theory’ too. The poetry is unashamedly lefty in toto and quite often unintelligible or written in code. In fact the whole of what the Oz calls Australian ‘Culture’ in the Review is unashamedly left wing. Perhaps thats because Australian literature IS left wing … or not …. Romei is one of the gatekeepers of our dominant left wing literature … but he’s such a nice guy they can’t sack him. Anyway the ABC gets away with this sort of stuff all the time.

  8. Tony Thomas says:

    Dennis Ambler has pointed me to some juicy details about exIPCC Pachauri’s double-talk about his personal earnings, which I mention in the story as having been, on his say-so, $US376,000:
    “A KPMG report into his financial relationship with The Energy and Resources Institute concluded: “No evidence was found that indicated personal fiduciary benefits accruing to Dr Pachauri from his various advisory roles that would have led to a conflict of interest.”
    32
    The Financial Times also carried the story:
    “The review found these were all paid to Mr Pachauri’s non-profit organisation TERI (The Energy and Resources Institute), which commissioned KPMG.”
    Whilst there is a tremendous disparity between the very poor and the very rich in India, a top CEO such as Pachauri could be expected to be in the $500,000 to $1M bracket, a point he has made himself in several defensive newspaper interviews recently, as in this interview for the UK Independent (Saturday, 27 March 2010), where is he is described as an Indian scientist.
    “My salary is something that you would find laughable,” he said (later revealing it was $45,000 dollars per annum). “I have never bothered about money. I come from a family of academics.
    “I could be earning a lot, I could be earning a million dollars a year if I wanted, but whatever little I get, which is nowhere near a million dollars, goes to my institute which is a charitable institution not owned by anybody. Any minor surpluses we generate, we use for doing work in rural areas, making sure the poorest of the poor get lighting by using solar lanterns.”
    Dr Pachauri said a “forensic audit” of the money he made from advising organisations on climate change, carried out by the auditors KPMG, had shown that it all went into his Indian energy institute, TERI.

  9. Ian MacDougall says:

    In the Third World, the lives of countless millions of peasants will remain nasty, unhealthy and short as we deny them the life-giving benefits of cheap, coal-fired power.

    Likewise if the glaciers which feed the rivers from which they draw their supplies of fresh water continue to melt away at their present rate. See https://climate.nasa.gov/climate_resources/4/

    Gore also suckers Romei in to the fairytale about Georgetown, Texas, as poster-city for supposedly 100% renewable energy. Georgetown draws its electricity from the Texas grid powered by 44% natural gas, 29% coal, 12% nuclear and a mere 16% renewables.

    If Al Gore was the hypocrite as Thomas here suggests that he is, and even if he was moonlighting as a cat burglar and had a string of paternity suits against him, that would not invalidate his central proposition, which is that the CO2 being emitted from industrial and other smokestacks is warming the atmosphere; because CO2 molecules are each electronically so arranged that they absorb photons of radiant heat, giving any sample of the gas the heat-trapping properties first described by the prominent Swedish chemist Svante Arrhenius over 100 years ago.

    I find it rather remarkable that in this considered and well-crafted contribution to the Denialist Canon, Tony Thomas completely ignores Arrhenius’ work, or Gore’s reliance on same, instead diverting himself down a variety of side roads and back alleys.

    Science proceeds from empirical fact, established by observation of Nature. In this, it differs by 180 degrees from Theology, which starts from usually ancient texts claiming supernatural origin and authority, and which state a variety of untestable propositions that their saintly authors chose to believe: because they wanted to believe those propositions to be as solidly founded in reality as any.

    Tony Thomas starts from the (religious) proposition that anthropogenic global warming (AGW) is inherently fraudulent, and his work here stands in a long established line of attacks on climatology and the sciences (physics, chemistry) that underpin it.

    Thomas’ credo has yet to be proven, here or anywhere else. He can hope to get away with this antiscientific rant because the heating of the atmosphere and oceans is such a slow and gradual process, analogous to continental drift. But just because its speed is slow, it does not mean it is not happening. Numerous studies show that the continents are slowly moving, and isostatic processes such as the uplift of mountain ranges are actually occurring, despite appearances to the contrary. (Australia is slowly drifting towards the Eurasian landmass at about the rate that a fingernail grows.)

    Likewise, laboratory experiments have confirmed time and again that Arrhenius was right. If they had not, the Koch Brothers, the coal barons, their legions of media shills and no doubt the likes of Tony Thomas would never let us hear the end of it.

  10. en passant says:

    The Resident Troll could not resist. Just the usual mantra, but no answers to the ideal global average temperature, or the ideal concentration of CO2 (mainly sourced from farting cattle) the the MacBot seeks. We don’t know where we are going, but we must destroy our wealth and well-being to get there, wherever it is …

    How AMORAL is it for the Klimate Kon Kultists (the KKK) and their useful idiots to expend $Bn’s on shadow-boxing the ‘climate’ when there are so many real scientific projects that could be funded with this money? People who never answer the key questions, ad hom others and own farting cattle are sae blind they willnae see.

    • Jody says:

      If the Australian people want to make this country uncompetitive – for whatever reason – then you need to understand you live in a democracy and that name-calling won’t make one iota of difference to that outcome. Might I suggest a move to another country, like New Zealand, which has no such problems. That is a nation where there will be growth and development. You’ve been told.

      • en passant says:

        Jody,
        Thank you for the advice – which I have taken: I sold or closed my businesses in Oz and moved to another country. Is Oz better off for this? Oz is now less my assets, my productive labour, the employment of people and my taxes.

        As for the name-calling: how about the following;
        ‘Denialist Canon, Tony Thomas’
        ‘Tony Thomas starts from the (religious) proposition that anthropogenic global warming (AGW) is inherently fraudulent, ….’
        ‘… the Koch Brothers, the coal barons, their legions of media shills and no doubt the likes of Tony Thomas …’

        Yes, ad hominens galore from our resident Omm! Omm! troll (who called me a racist, and then doubled down on his mistake when it was pointed out to him that my wife of 42 years is ASIAN.

        Trolls like Ian MacBot never let reality burst their fantasy bubble – and they never answer the key questions.
        They cannot, because any measurable numbers would provide a target that could be analysed.

        As for yourself: what would it rake to convince you that the KKK is all just a big lie, probably the biggest ever in science (dwarfing alchemy, eugenics, astrology, etc) As it stands it is a ‘grant-funded’ form of organised crime.

        • Jody says:

          Again, hurling insults (no matter who is doing it) isn’t argument.

          And your comment about having taken your business offshore is noted, but I’m saying Australians don’t care – otherwise they wouldn’t have the policies they do have. My point is that there will come and time and they’ll look around and say, “hey, where did all the economy go; let’s hike up taxes for those remaining because we all need to have a standard of living which YOU NEED TO SUPPORT”.

    • pgang says:

      Come on mate, don’t you get it yet? MacDougall is a NIMBY. He doesn’t care about the earth’s climate, not really. At least, no further than the weather over his rural property.

      He is a ‘Shut the Gate’ land owner who doesn’t want to share the nation’s resources with anybody else, particularly not miners who provide massive public revenue and large numbers of well paid jobs and build local support industries. These arguments are all just a distraction to avert attention from the mere pittance of a contribution from his land use.

      He’s found, like so many other NIMBYs such as Allan Jones, that the best way to keep nation builders away from your little patch of low productivity land is to bat on about environmental disasters of which the mining industry is, of course, the great demon incarnate. It’s worked will for them so far thanks to their useful idiots implanted in the fourth estate.

      That’s all this is. A little guy giving Australia the finger while he hordes our natural resources.

      • Jody says:

        Very personal attack which has nothing to do with the argument, IMO. You are playing the man rather than the ball.

        • pgang says:

          Rubbish. There is a motive behind such incessant and single minded raving, and MacDougall makes it quite clear as to the source of that motive in his consistent name-calling of the coal industry. It is especially clear once you’ve had experience of being the target of such name calling.

          You are effectively saying that it is not possible to criticise somebody’s motives, and that is a trite argument. Beyond that, if he was prepared to answer to his critics, which he never does, it might be possible to detect some sincerity in his arguments. That is why en passant refers to him as a troll, which he is. He doesn’t engage with other respondents here when he is criticised on fact. That also begs the question of his motivation, which he makes clear in his continual abuse of the mining industry and its proponents. That, Jody, is playing the man.

          • Jody says:

            Really, I’m getting rather bored with mud-slinging and accusations which pass for ‘debate’ or ‘discussion’. And I did not say it was not possible to criticize somebody’s motives; I was drawing attention to the ad hom, which is such a feature of this site.

      • Ian MacDougall says:

        MacDougall is a NIMBY. He doesn’t care about the earth’s climate, not really. At least, no further than the weather over his rural property….

        Is that right?
        If you farm well, and don’t flog the land, it increases in soil fertility and water-holding capacity as the years go by; and should last as good as forever. As is the case with our property, and as far as expert consultants we have called in can tell.
        There is mining, and there is fossil carbon extraction. Both leave holes in the ground as problems for future generations. But coal mining presents additional problems. It (a) rules out alternative use, such as in plastics, chemicals etc and (b) increases the atmospheric CO2 load. In the short term this might have certain benefits such as stimulating plant growth, if we ignore issues like climate change. But it also forces the miners involved, such as yourself (?) to become denialists of mainstream scientific opinion.
        So like many of our neighbours, we are getting away from grid power as fast as we can and switching to PV for water pumping and everything else, including domestic power.

        Best way to go. Money where our mouth is.

  11. Doubting Thomas says:

    Jody, en passant’s criticism of Mr MacDougall’s “contributions” to this forum are perfectly valid. He behaves like a troll and deserves to be treated as one.

    • Ian MacDougall says:

      Doubting Thomas:
      The functional definition of a ‘troll’ around here appears to be ‘anyone who does not give 100% endorsement to any statement made by any of the select few who write the threadstarters.’ In other words, of The Party Line.
      I notice also that the abusers, in their comments critical of me, are seriously reluctant to take issue with any of the substance of what I have written (my ‘”contributions”‘ as you call them, carefully wrapped up as they are by you in sanitary scare quotes.) Instead of a robust discussion, we have name calling.
      You might as well be yelling “nyaa, nyaa, nyaa, nyaa” like a kid from some street gang in some full-on exchange of abuse with members of a rival gang.
      So, Doubting Thomas: what should I be saying as “contributions” that would cause you to remove the scare quotes? Eh?
      Meanwhile and in this I wear the title awarded me with pride: particularly in the light of some of the antiscientific knuckle-walkers around here who in their wisdom reckon I deserve it. Those distinguished contributors are clearly bereft of anything more reasoned to offer in their place.
      Finally, I would draw your attention to Quadrant’s mission statement, which you will find at https://quadrant.org.au/: particularly the part that reads

      Quadrant is uncompromisingly in favour of freedom of thought and expression. While insisting on civilised discourse, it opposes any political, academic or religious tendency that wants to suppress freedom of speech. It does not support diversity for diversity’s sake nor does it mindlessly endorse tolerance of all viewpoints, especially those that do not return the compliment. Rather, it understands tolerance to mean the willingness to listen to unpopular or unorthodox views that are well argued, while in practice taking tolerance to mean the willingness to live and let live, which is so typical of Australian life.

      • Doubting Thomas says:

        When you finally get past your CO2 fixation and give some recognition to the indisputable fact that there is sufficient uncertainty in both the “science” of global warming and about the professional ethics of some of the most influential participants on the alarmist side of the debate, you might have something constructive to offer. Absent that, you will remain just a crashing bore.

      • en passant says:

        “I notice also that the abusers, in their comments critical of me, are seriously reluctant to take issue with any of the substance of what I have written”

        OK, I will take issue with the fact you cannot answer two extremely simple questions that are fundamental to your case:
        1. What is the ideal average global temperature you seek? and
        2. What is the ideal average global concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere that you seek?

        Two easy questions, the answer to which will crush all your critics. Of course, even with the help of your Archangel friend and methane producing cattle, I KNOW you cannot answer, but will avoid the questions and troll on.

        How many people died today of curable diseases because money was spent on the KKK rather than medical science? How many children have died or gone blind because the Green NGO’s oppose the introduction of ‘Golden Rice’. Now there are some diversions I have helpfully given you so you can avoid the KEY questions.

    • Jody says:

      He represents an entire demographic in this country, so it’s useless trying to portray one man as ‘the enemy’. That never wins an argument. People need to understand that increased energy costs will not exist in tandem with increased wages (except in the public service, which is free from these kinds of capricious economic movements). In short, if you want to mount an argument why not try discussing the impact on the Australian workforce of rising energy costs and the decline in standards of living which are a consequence of that. The people haven’t yet realized that their wages won’t be moving because business has to cop the increased costs of energy. For my winemaking son that increase is $44,000 this last financial year. As he says, this is the additional employee I was going to hire. Certainly there’s no room for wages increases and there will not be as long as energy costs skyrocket. It will soon dawn on the people and that’s when they need to look at alternate places to live, like New Zealand.

  12. Keith Kennelly says:

    What you are saying Jody, is if we don’t accept the lies of the warmist elites as spouted by the Troll and we call him out on that then you think we should go away.

    Yep that’s tolerance … elitist style.

    None of us has been able to vote on the money being spent in on research by castrapharians. None of us choose a labor pm to lead the liberal party up the catastrafarian pathway.

    Go away! No that’s not an argument. That’s arrogant know all elitist bs.

  13. Keith Kennelly says:

    Jody in your simple way you miss the obvious.

    Clever Australian business people are doing business in NZ and other business laces which are competitive, without having to move there.

    Only losers are those trapped with assets in Australia.

    Geez you are pretty nieve.

  14. ianl says:

    Then don’t read it, that’s all !! Stop taking up bandwidth on this if it annoys you. But cease the tedious, nanny state finger wagging, thank you.

    On this topic, you don’t know what you’re talking about. You’re entitled to your “feelings” of course, but not credibility.

    When faced with real questions, such as “why is 0.8C in 150 years scary ?”, or Antarctic (and NZ) glaciers are gaining ice (and they are, along with about 50% 0f the Himalayan glaciers), the trollster has persistently avoided the real issues engendered by the lukewarm position (see Richard Lindzen as an example) and run abuse instead. This list is endless. Just review the trollster’s comments over the last 18 months. Perhaps the most offensive assumption he persists with is that AGW is caused *only* by hydrocarbon use and large-scale land use (ie. farming) has no contribution … review Pielke Jr’s IPCC peer contributions on this.

    You defend this because you are not knowledgeable here and it suits your “feelings”. Yes, the majority of the population is just as clueless and highlighting that won’t change it. So what ? I’ve been aware of that for over 30 years. On this topic, neither the trollster nor you are anything other than superficial and tedious, so mostly I do ignore you. However, presenting some forced choice between a South Aus-style life or emigrating to NZ is just silly.

    [BTW, NZ is geologically unstable - I've done many projects there but I have no desire to live permanently on top of a live super-volcano or a massive, live tectonic fault zone].

    • Jody says:

      It is a fact that those over 60 are the most resistant to the idea of AGW and it boldly shows right here. No such thing as an open mind then.

      • Doubting Thomas says:

        Jody, I’ve been following this farce very closely since Climategate. It was the rancid Al Gore’s hysterical “An Inconvenient Truth” that initially got my attention, and my suspension of disbelief was shattered by the joint award of the Nobel Peace Prize to him and the IPCC. I have shelf-metres of books on the subject, and subscribe to, and/or regularly visit many of the leading climate blogs. No credible scientists or scientific organisations behave as the leading actors in this farce have been comprehensively documented as having behaved throughout. Whatever the real truth of the climate change debate will turn out to be at the end of this century, it is highly unlikely be anything like the outcome being forecast by the hysterical alarmists.

      • en passant says:

        Jody,
        You claim you were a teacher, but that the professional standards have declined. Ain’t that the truth! Maybe that is why those of us over 60, who had a better education than the current propaganda can see through the con, but the brain-washed young cannot – yet. From my family history:

        “I attended xx Primary School and had an excellent role model and teacher in Miss Rrr Www. She was one of that old-style breed of school teacher who gave up everything else in life for her profession. She inspired me to learn (no mean feat) and provided just enough discipline and guidance without turning off her unruly and sometimes recalcitrant pupils.
        I completed my secondary education at Wxxx Senior School where I had a mixed relationship with the teachers. The ones I respected got the best out of me, the ones I did not I resisted – and it affected my results.
        I read a lot (including all 12-volumes of an encyclopaedia called “The Pictorial Knowledge”, a 600-page adult book on Palaeontology and everything I could find on the ‘golden age’ of Greece and history. I watched documentary movies about foreign lands and dreamed of travel and adventure. It would have been easy to slip class culture, but I wanted more. The problem was: how to get it? The answer was: Australia.”

        That was the Oz I once knew, but it is no longer the Oz of today. Surely it is Karma that your son is experiencing “The Green Dream” of crippling energy costs, fostered (in a small way) by your KKK beliefs? I now drink excellent Chilean wine at half the price of Oz wine. The shape of the Oz future?

        • Jody says:

          Thanks for the heads up on karma being responsible for my 41y/o son’s hiked energy costs. But it is the Australian people to whom you should draw your attention because they are going to be UNEMPLOYED at rates not seen since the 1930s. And thanks for the complimentary moniker as a KKK member. Yep, that’s intelligent debate right there.

          It sounds like your Chilean wine is cheaper than what’s good for you.

          • en passant says:

            Jody,
            Is your comment that “your Chilean wine is cheaper than what’s good for you.” based on racism, ignorance or economics? South African, Chilean & South Australian wines are on a par for quality, but not price.

            You apparently cannot join the dots between the mad Oz renewable energy policies and why your son will soon lose everything and have to sell out to the Chinese for whatever he can get. Not a racist comment, but an economic fact.

            Now what s the evidence that would persuade you that the KKK has conned you and that CC (in the direction of warm rather tan cold) is not dangerous, but beneficial? Can YOU answer the two questions MacBot cannot as to the ideal average global temperature and the ideal concentration of CO2?

            If you can list five benefits of doubled CO2 and a 2C increase in temperature I will list ten detrimental effects. That will show we have open minds.

  15. Ian MacDougall says:

    ‘ianl’:

    When faced with real questions, such as “why is 0.8C in 150 years scary ?”, or Antarctic (and NZ) glaciers are gaining ice (and they are, along with about 50% 0f the Himalayan glaciers), the trollster [presumablyreferring to me -IM] has persistently avoided the real issues engendered by the lukewarm position (see Richard Lindzen as an example) and run abuse instead.

    In the light of all that, and given that I have been a participant in this site’s discussions for at least the last 3 years, could you provide A LINK to just one example of such “abuse”?
    NB: disagreement with the received consensus does not count. Cannot possibly, otherwise we would have had no progress at all in science and philosophy generally. But if I have been rude, that of course would count.

    • en passant says:

      MacBot,
      You called me a ‘racist’ for pointing out that we had to import engineers to work on a complex project because the Cameroon education system produced people unable to do the maths we required.
      Is tat abuse?

      • en passant says:

        MacBot,
        Is calling TT and ‘Denier Canon’ (as in holocaust-denier), abuse?

        You are in such denial that you seem to have no memory of what you write from blog to blog – which is why you just repeat your last post and never answer the key questions.

  16. Ian MacDougall says:

    Readers and students of advanced AGW denialism (or should that be advanced students of AGW denialism?) may be interested in following the link below, which will take them directly to the exchange between Eyn Pyssant (blogging here as en passant) and myself over which Eyn has been fuming (as in blowing steam and smoke rings out of his ears) since November 20th 2016.

    https://quadrant.org.au/opinion/qed/2016/11/derailing-marrakech-express/#comment-20276

    • en passant says:

      MacBot,
      “Is calling TT and ‘Denier Canon’ (as in holocaust-denier), abuse?

      You are in such denial that you seem to have no memory of what you write from blog to blog – which is why you just repeat your last post and never answer the key questions.”

      Your last post (and let us all pray that it is your last post) just proved my point: marching ever onwards to we know not where, and never answering any questions. And you wonder why you are thought of as a despicable troll.

      Jody,
      Was calling TT a Denier Canon abuse or fair comment? Your answer will define you, and so will no answer at all.