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Global Warming? Journalism? Don't Make Me Laugh!

By Alan Caruba

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

As a very young man, fresh out of college and the army in the mid-1960s, I found myself employed as a rookie reporter on a weekly newspaper in New Jersey. I had never taken a course in journalism in my life, but I could write. The managing editor of the newspaper group that serviced a number of communities taught me all I ever needed to know about journalism. He taught me to be skeptical of everything and everyone.

Not distrustful. Skeptical. People will tell you the truth they believe or want you to believe. They may be wrong. Or they may be deceitful. There's a difference. However, when error and deceit combine, there is a purpose, an agenda, and it exists, as often as not, to acquire wealth and power despite the harm it will leave in its wake.

At the heart of what is wrong with journalism today is that legions of journalists will stand shoulder to shoulder for the sole purpose of deriding any "global warming skeptic" rather than wonder for a second how the "news" of a coming Ice Age in the 1970s became the "news" of Global Warming in the 1980s.

I am reminded of this daily as I read newspapers and news magazines in which various reporters blithely and deliberately inform the reader that all questions regarding the existence of global warming have been answered, that the science is beyond doubt, and that the cause is the production of greenhouse gases, largely from industry, transportation, and other human activities.

This is not merely an error. It is a complete deception the journalists have joined. They have ceased to be skeptical. They want you to stop being skeptical despite all evidence to the contrary.

"Global Warming, as we think we know it, doesn't exist," says Dr. Timothy Ball. He has Ph.D. in climatology, having earned his degree from the University of London, England, and taught for many years at the University of Winnipeg. A Google search of his name turns up a plethora of posts attacking him, always a sure sign that the Greens feel threatened by an outspoken scientist. The quote below explains why:

"Believe it or not, Global Warming is not due to human contribution of Carbon Dioxide (CO2). This in fact is the greatest deception in the history of science."

Dr. Ball is hardly alone in his views. Dr. Richard Lindzen, an atmospheric physicist and a professor of meteorology at MIT, as well as a member of the National Academy of Science, has said of Global Warming that, "the consensus was reached before the research had even begun."

Increasingly, not just climate scientists, but people in leadership positions around the world have joined in rebuking the Global Warming hoax. Czech President Vaclav Klaus is only the most recent, joining Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper who, in 2006, received a letter from sixty prominent scientists expressing opposition to the theory of Global Warming. The list is growing as other scientists in France, Denmark and around the world speak up.

There is something quite horrible about the complete failure of America's journalists to even acknowledge there might be something terribly wrong about the theory of Global Warming. So far the published science that purports to support the theory has been severely challenged and even disproved to the point of having deliberately falsified data.

Too many journalists have remained steadfast to this greatest hoax of our times, publishing the most astonishing nonsense about the North Pole melting or all the polar bears disappearing. Anything can be attributed to Global Warming, but the premise of a rapidly warming Earth is baseless. The Earth warmed barely one degree Fahrenheit from 1850 to 1950 and there is no evidence of further warming.

Anyone who challenges the "truth" of the global warming charlatans is demonized and compared to Holocaust deniers. Others are routinely accused of being in the pay of corporate interests. My own background as a public relations counselor has been cited as "proof" that I cannot be trusted. However, in nine years of writing a weekly commentary, my credibility would be in shreds if my facts were wrong.

Is this new generation of journalists indifferent to the truth? Do they arrive at their job imbued with a mission to save the world? Do they believe that inconvenient facts can and should be ignored? This is not journalism. It is advocacy. The former belongs in the news columns, the latter on the editorial and opinion pages.

For the week leading up to and following the recent release of the United Nations climate report summary, the front pages of America's newspapers proclaimed that Global Warming was real, millions would die from starvation, and the fresh water resources of the world would go dry by 2080.

The final report is not due out for months and, like previous reports, what "science" is cited to support this balderdash will be thoroughly encumbered with words like "could", "may", "might", "is believed", or "is predicted." These are mushy words that scientists abhor. They want proof.

The final report will actually be altered to reflect the initial summary. That is not science. It is propaganda.

We look to journalists to present facts as accurately and dispassionately as possible. When they tell you the Earth is doomed, look for an alternative source of information.

Editor's Note: Caruba is a longtime member of the Society of Professional Journalists, the American Society of Journalists and Authors, and the National Association of Science writers.

Alan's new book, "Right Answers: Separating Fact from Fantasy" has been published by Merril Press.