The Four Hoarse Men of the Apocalypse: The Hoody, the Diplomat, the Biologist and the Millionaire

There have been a lot of calls following the IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report – sometimes veiled, sometimes open –  for clmate sceptics to be banned or ignored. The LA Times has actually instituted such a policy on its letters page, to general approval.

There’s also been a change in tone in the voices of those attacking the BBC and others for “giving a voice” to sceptics. Here are three voices typical of the new tone of menace in the air; they speak of “enemies” and of anger. And to finish on a more upbeat note, the voice of a millionaire in his war room drooling over the trillions to be made.

Some signs of the times:

1) John Ashton, “top climate diplomat”, was in the Guardian criticising the BBC for “betraying its values by giving Professor Carter this climate platform” asking How can letting a geologist appear as a legitimate climate scientist to ridicule the IPCC report be in the public interest?”

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/01/bbc-betrayed-values-carter-scorn-ipcc

Ashton gave the final talk at a recent two day event at the Royal Society  “Reality and its enemies: climate change and its implications for the contract between science”.

We don’t (yet) know what he said. All his other many speeches get posted at

http://www.e3g.org/people/john-ashton

I await with impatience this one, to find out who are the “enemies of reality”.

2) Greenpeace knows who the enemy is. Us. Donna Laframboise at

http://nofrakkingconsensus.com/2013/10/24/greenpeaces-menacing-angry-kid/

shows a Greenpeace ad with a juvenile hoody facing the camera and threatening: “Either you’re for my future – or you’re against it, a friend – or you’re an enemy. I may just be a kid today, but tomorrow will be different. This is the last time I’ll be talking to you adults. You’ve had your chance to fix this problem, now we have ours. We won’t be cute.”

3) Pierre Gosselin at

http://notrickszone.com/2013/10/24/irish-times-david-robert-grimes-foams-at-the-keyboard-mounting-frustration-now-on-the-verge-of-anger/#comment-824442

points us to an article by David Robert Grimes at

http://www.irishtimes.com/news/environment/climate-change-is-real-ignore-the-denialists-1.1570833#.Umixkcs08Fg.twitter

the subheading of which is It’s time to get angry with so-called ‘sceptics’ – before it’s too late”. His named sceptics are Delingpole, David Rose of the Mail, and Australian PM Tony Abbott – hardly a representative sample, but still…

Grimes, who is a postdoctoral researcher in radiation biology at Oxford University, ends his diatribe thus:

“There is no debate and zero ambiguity; climate change is real and it’s about time we got angry when denialists attempt to equivocate the unequivocal. Climate denialists are pushing a scientific fallacy on a global scale. Unchallenged they risk taking us all down with them.”

He has a blog at

http://www.davidrobertgrimes.com/

Under “About the author” he says:

“Born in the back of a van somewhere in the 22nd century due to an accident with a time machine and a contraceptive, David is actually his own grandfather …In real-life he is a doctor of medical physics, and a postdoctoral researcher in radiation biology at Oxford University with a host of other odd interests… He is a fan of referring to himself in the third person.”

[We all have our foibles, but fantasising about makng love to your grandmother … Mind you, it makes sense of the constant  demand to think of the grandchildren. In David’s case it means “think of me” or rather, in his grammar, “think of Him”.]

Finally, 4) stewgreen, in a comment at Bishop Hill on a discussion about Christine Figueres, pointed us to an extraordinary  organisation presided by her brother, ex-president of Costa Rica

http://www.carbonwarroom.com/

[“War room” conjures up visions of grainy photos of chaps with moustaches pointing to large wallcharts under the gaze of a cigar-chomping chief in a boilersuit. Very patriotic-sounding, but not particularly risky. Not like “carbon front line” or “carbon trenches”.]

The website is basically a Richard Branson photo album, a facebook page for millionaires to swap hints about how to cream off a bit more from the great carbon scam –  financed by Virgin and the Dutch National Lottery, among many others.

The heart of this steaming pile of nonsense seems to be a thing called Creating Climate Wealth which is decribed as:

 “a global convening mechanism designed for entrepreneurs, innovators, capital providers, industry leaders and experts in order to identify profitable opportunities that clmate change offers across diverse industry sectors”.

[In other words, it’s an invitation to the already stinking rich to get down and roll in it in the hope that a bit more of it will stick to them.]

Or as they put it:

“Our vision is a world where over $1trillion invested in climate change solutions is an annual occurrence, not a historic milestone. In this world, market barriers will not exist in any sector where profitable carbon reduction solutions exist; and entrepreneurs who are passionate about preserving our planet’s resources are simultaneously tapping in to the economic opportunity of our generation. There is no Planet B.”

The latest article on their website is

SMART ISLAND ECONOMIES REPORT: Smart Growth Pathways for Aruba Released By Carbon War Room | October 24, 2013

As part of the partnership between the Carbon War Room and the Government of Aruba, Carbon War Room President Jose Maria Figueres has officially released the roadmap for how the Government of Aruba can build a low-carbon future. The roadmap, captured in Smart Growth Pathways: Building a Green Platform for Sustainable Aruba, was presented to the Prime Minister at a press conference on Friday October 11 in Oranjestaad, Aruba

[Aruba is a constituent country of the Kingdom of the Netherlands, a 20 mile-long island in the Caribbean with a population of 100,000.]

Warroom’s first video about Aruba, published 20th June 2012

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lQng2YW-DLg

said this:

“The Government of Aruba and the Carbon War Room (CWR), the global entrepreneur initiative founded by Sir Richard Branson and a group of entrepreneurs, announced a partnership to transition the island to 100% renewable energy today during the UN’s Rio+20 talks. The partnership would make Aruba the world’s first sustainable energy economy, with the Carbon War Room and New America Foundation working to both devise and implement an integrated strategy for the economy-wide transition — a world first, if successful…

“’I am thrilled that the Carbon War Room can help make a difference for Aruba and its people. Aruba can set a wonderful example for other Island Nations to prove that they CAN get rid of fossil fuels, protect their wonderful natural resources and still grow their economy — brilliant! –.’ Sir Richard Branson, Founder of the Carbon War Room.”

And there were comments! (This is no zombie blog):

Niels Fiebi: “That´s the Way! Auf diesem Weg? kann man 100% Transformation unserer fossilen Gesellschaften für alle überall dezentral und demokratisch erreichen … That Rocks!”

Kai Bickle Nygard: “Richard Branson = Greatest Social Entrepreneur on the planet? today? Perhaps. What an incredible organization, vision and project.”

Jorgen Welsink: “The BEST Ever, this is a SUPERB initiative in progress.

Incredible Organization,? AWESOME vision love it!

Their latest video on Aruba Save Our Beautiful Islands – Switch to Wind, Solar (MUSIC BY POOLSIDE)”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F0zhCxpareo

got a comment two weeks ago by Sandrohin:  “Strange that you allow Aruba to join. They’re known for little respect for nature. Century old trees and green areas are bulldozered away,. The latest ‘raping of nature’ happened just behind the Ritz Carlton this week, A hotel that was opposed by the actual government but once they took over, the first thing they did was signing all permits to destroy the last habitat of birds, crabs and other creatures, Their political campaign jammed traffic for weeks and carbon emission was the way to go.”

What a killjoy. You can’t make a trillion dollar omelette without breaking a few birds’ eggs.

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5 Responses to The Four Hoarse Men of the Apocalypse: The Hoody, the Diplomat, the Biologist and the Millionaire

  1. johanna says:

    They’re getting shriller and nastier Down Under as well – adjusting to the change of government seems to be very traumatic for them.

    Bernard Keane, writing at the Crikey website, just said:

    “In a world governed by Rudds and Abbotts and Hunts, in which a functional carbon pricing scheme will actually be removed and replaced with a nonsensical scheme even the creators of which know is a joke, our youth are entitled to wonder whether, in the absence of genuine political action, they should take some direct action of their own. Action to shut down the loaders and ports that export coal. Action to shut down coal-fired power plants. Actions to shut down the electricity-greedy industries we prop up, like aluminium smelting. Such action will be expensive, and damaging, and inequitable, and dangerous….” (h/t Andrew Bolt)

    He is inciting young people to break the law, damage private property, and potentially get a criminal record.

    Strangely, Bernard himself is isn’t offering to provide any mature leadership on the frontlines. In the best old tradition, he wants the young to be the cannon fodder for achieving his objectives.

  2. Foxgoose says:

    On the censorship front – I see that the Graun readers’ letter editor is elegantly maneuvering towards censorship. He won’t permit outright denial of the warming scriptures – but he may stretch a point and allow the occasional letter to point out that “the rate of (temp) increase has plateaued”.

    http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2013/oct/27/publishing-letters-climate-change-deniers?CMP=twt_fd

    I really can’t think of a modern precedent where a serious newspaper has elected to decide what should be regarded as true or false in scientific enquiry.

    Will it be unacceptable at some point to query the existence of the Higgs boson or suggest the existence of a new particle.

    I wonder what his views on dark matter are – maybe they’ll need an editorial conference for that one.

  3. Foxgoose
    Here’s the letter I have ready to post to the Graun readers’ letter editor tomorrow morning, as soon as the post office opens. (Because of course, there is no question of the comment appearing at CommentisFree.)
    To Chris Elliott, Guardian Readers’ Editor
    I’d dearly like to reply to your article on publishing letters from climate deniers, but of course I can’t, having been banned from CiF, like many others. Here’s the post I would have liked to place at ComentisFree, but can’t:
    You quote Paul Thornton, letters editor of the LA Times as saying: “’There’s no sign humans have caused climate change’ is not stating an opinion, it’s asserting a factual inaccuracy.”
    This statement by Mr Thornton asserts a factual inaccuracy. It is extremely difficult to identify anything in the IPCC reports or elsewhere that can be called a ‘sign that humans have caused climate change’. All they say is that they’re 95% sure that humans have. If they could identify incontrovertible signs, they’d be 100% sure, wouldn’t they?
    I’m surprised you published it. The LA Times wouldn’t.
    (PS: Do you have any figures on how many commenters have been first moderated, then banned, for disagreeing with your environmental journalists?
    PPS: It’s entirely irrelevant, but CP Scott was my great great uncle.)

    Stewgreen at BishopHill Unthreaded has had the excellent idea of creating a parallel blog where those banned by the Graun could comment.

  4. stewgreen says:

    Geoff mate slow down & steady on otherwise you’ll trip up and make mistakes “Christine Figueres, pointed us to an extraordinary organisation presided by her brother, ex-president of Guatemala ”
    Guatemala ? Her family have been presidents of COSTA RICA (although like a lot of top people at the top of taxpayer funded bodies (& NGOs, UN etc.) they seem to live in Nepotism City)

  5. stewgreen
    Thanks. Corrected

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