Doomed Planet

Delingpole mania hits Perth

This means war – and you’re the Viet Cong

James Delingpole began his tour of Australia in Perth last night, launching his book Killing The Earth to Save It (known in the UK as Watermelons, e.g. green on the outside, red on the inside; Connor Court are publishing it here). For those of you not familiar with Delingpole and his oeuvre, he is the man who launched ‘Climategate’ onto the blogosphere – even though he didn’t think of the term himself; the man who did that was sitting in the back row of the room at the Royal Perth Yacht Club, and introduced himself by his handle of ‘Bulldust’, which went down a treat. (That’s the nice thing about book launches; you don’t just get to see the man you’ve been reading in the Spectator and the Daily Telegraph, but you get to see other people as well, who you knew only as ‘Bulldust’.)

Delingpole is small but perfectly formed; he is droll, quirky, deadpan – and deadly serious. He spoke briefly about the book, kicking off with the infamous exploding-child videos in the 10:10 campaign launched in the UK around a year ago (made by Richard Curtis and featuring a cast of green luvvies a mile long.) But it was when he opened the floor up to questions that we really saw him in his element. Delingpole is excellent on the spot and on his feet; we covered a huge range of concerns, from Agenda 21 and the increasing loss of private property rights to government regulation, to the massively-subsidised ‘eco-crucifixes’ known as wind farms, which destroy natural wildlife to an extent that Evil Big Oil can only dream about.

How is the Green movement ‘watermelonish’? Because it uses tactics of social engineering that were pioneered by socialism over a hundred years ago and refined throughout a century of totalitarianism. You take an innocuous term like ‘sustainability’ and make sure that what you mean by ‘sustainable’ is completely different from everyone else’s idea, and you thus happily recruit people who would in fact be diametrically opposed to you if they had the faintest idea what you were really talking about. You infiltrate and eventually control what Delingpole calls the ‘heavy weaponry’ of the cultural wars: the schools, the universities, the media, the publishing companies. Eventually, as one of his questioners put it, you oversee the pathologising of ‘denialism’, so that those who disagree with the prevailing wisdom are marginalised and branded as mentally unstable.

Delingpole has been on the receiving end of this personally, including the invocation of the loathed UK Press Complaints Commission against him – but unlike Andrew Bolt, Delingpole actually won his case. As he said himself, when the flak hits you, it means you’re over the target. He sees the use of the internet as one of the few really powerful weapons in the hands of the people he calls the ‘Viet Cong’ That would be people like me, and probably you, if you’ve read this far. The greening of politics is now intersecting ever more powerfully with the issue of freedom of speech and the right to private property, and it is a war in which we are all involved.

Nor does Delingpole have any naive ideas that an incoming Liberal government will roll back all of the crippling regulatory agencies and bogus legislation that is threatening these basic freedoms. In the UK, he sees David Cameron making a ‘pig’s ear’ of Conservatism; he counsels a cautious approach to conservative political parties, as they have not recently proven themselves real champions of small government. The advance of big government by stealth is one of the real problems he sees at work, but on the bright side, he also sees a small but significant paradigm shift in the UK. Whereas some years ago he was the sole freak at dinner parties, Delingpole now finds that he is less alone. May his supporters and readers increase and multiply, subduing the earth.

PS: Declaration of conflict of interest: I told him l liked his Spectator television column, and he grinned and said, ‘Ah, in that case, you get your book signed "with love"’. And he did, too.

James Delingpole tour details are in What’s On 

Buy James Delingpole’s Killing the Earth to Save It (post free) here…

See Quadrant on Bulldust (in 2010)

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