The high priests of global warming have lost their prestige. They’re still chanting the same old mantras. But no one’s listening, no one cares, writes James Delingpole
Something extraordinary is happening in the great Climate Wars. I had a taste of it just the other day on an LBC talk show. The producer had only booked me in for a ten-minute slot, in case the listeners weren’t interested in my boring new book about that tediously hackneyed subject Man Made Global Warming. But the switchboards were jammed and the station ended up keeping me in for a full hour to reply to all the calls.
There was one big problem though: “We can hardly find ANYONE who disagrees with you,” whispered the show’s host, Julia Hartley-Brewer. This was true. By the end, things had got so desperate that I found myself accidentally picking fights with callers who were on my side. An easy mistake to make for someone on my (sceptical) side of the debate: we card-carrying Satanic “deniers” are so used to being vilified at every turn it really feels kind of weird suddenly to be in tune with the popular mood.
And I’m not the only one to have noticed. A climate sceptical blogger called Pointman has written a superb post on the subject(which is well worth reading in full). The enemy – that’s the alarmists who’ve been making most of the running in the last two decades – is in serious disarray. As Pointman puts it: “All reason has fled. There’s a real feeling of April 1945, Berlin, der Fuhrerbunker and its mad occupants, barking unrealistic orders down phones and moving long ago destroyed units around on maps, as if it really meant something.”
It’s a good point and an accurate analogy. The kind of analogy, unfortunately, which will undoubtedly have the usual greenie/lefty suspects wheeling out their favourite Godwin’s Law defence: ie if you ever mention the Nazis it invalidates you argument because, er, it does because someone called Godwin made a “law” saying it does…..
Yup, I’m weariedly familiar with the Godwin’s law weasel-out. Just as I’m familiar with: the “Appeal to Authority” (eg “the Royal Society/the National Academy of Sciences says”; “98 per cent of the world’s climate scientists agree…..”); the crude ad hom: (“James Delingpole is a C***”; “James Delingpole is in the pay of Big Koch”, etc); the straw man (“How can you deny climate change is happening when four of the ten hottest years happened this decade?”). The Warmists use them all the time.
What all these tricks have in common is this: they’re not arguments; they don’t address any of the points we sceptics (or “realists” as we prefer to term ourselves) painstakingly make in article after article, blog after blog; they’re simply rhetorical tropes designed to confuse, obfuscate, distract, wear down, bruise, irritate, hurt, clog up the comments section and give the illusion of moral and intellectual victory. Above all, though, their purpose is to distract from what you might call the climate alarmists’ Polar Bear In The Room: the world stopped warming in 1998, even as CO2 emissions continued to rise; not only that but none of the computer modelers’ doomsday “projections” of runaway climate catastrophe have been even closely matched by observed real world data.
Or, if you prefer to hear this truth served up with world-weary scientific uber-authority, here’s MIT atmospheric physicist Professor Richard Lindzen addressing the House of Commons in February: “Perhaps we should stop accepting the term ‘skeptic’ because ‘skepticism’ implies doubts about a plausible proposition. Current global warming alarm hardly represents a plausible proposition. Twenty years of repetition and escalation of claims does not make it more plausible. Quite the contrary, the failure to improve the cause over 20 years makes the case even less plausible, as does the evidence from Climategate and other instances of overt cheating.”