Some of you may remember that I weighed in on Michael Mann’s defamation suit against Mark Steyn and the NRO. Well, Phil Plait has just weighed in.
To get the basics out of the way: yes, man made global warming is real and a problem (though not what our cretinized media pretend), and, yes, I have had quite a few rows with the political right on this subject, and yes, to accuse someone of scientific dishonesty without good evidence is utterly revolting, and no, I do not believe that Mann was dishonest in his formulation of the original hockey stick, though it has long since been overhauled, even if he does have a delusional tendency to insist that he won the Nobel Prize when he didn’t (to get a little ahead of myself, Plait says that Mann has “no such history” of “hyperbolic or distorted claims” – just what the heck is claiming to be a Nobel laureate when you aren’t one exactly?) – and his vile habit of trying to engage in political racketeering to torpedo entire journals for publishing a single paper that disagrees with him.
Now here is why it isn’t that simple. There is a reason that people go berserk at climate science in the way that they do not at astrobiology or geomorpology. That is because climate science has allowed sound science to be yoked to the most corrupt and wicked politics. Plait says that these attacks are “mean-spirited and vitriolic”.
Question: when Greenpeace ran ads advocating that those who disgreed with them be lavishly killed, was that “mean spirited and vitriolic”?
When James Lovelock called for the suspension of democracy, was that “mean spirited and vitriolic”?
When James Hansen called for ‘Chinese leadership‘, was that “mean spirited and vitriolic”?
When the Rainforest Action Network wanted the world bank to prevent coal power, was that “mean spirited and vitriolic”?
When Friends of the Earth brag that they have blocked the building of three hundred hydroelectric power plants, was that “mean spirited and vitriolic”?
When Greenpace blocks power plants in the developing world, is that “mean spirited and vitriolic”?
Hell, since warming politics is just a subset of Green politics, when GM food in the developing world is blocked by Green groups, leading to the deaths of maybe eight million children, is that “mean spirited and vitriolic”?
Well, in that last case, definitely not. It was, rather, a grostesque crime that should see its advocates in the dock in the Hague.
My point is as follows: Plait is calling for a rational discussion, but a fundamental requirement for rational discussion is that all parties foreswear the use of force. The greens do not do this. They do not seek rational agreement, but the power of the political gun. They want power, the absolute power over life and death (as Sue Blackmoore – a self proclaimed ‘skeptic’ – does).
Faced with that, it is no surprise that Mark Steyn and tens of millions like him refuse to recognise any no moral obligation to answer them with reason and observe the standards of decorum that requires, but to instead fight back with everything to hand as one would against a deadly enemy.
And I use the term ‘deadly’ advisedly. The greens have no chance whatsoever of enforcing their demented vision on the developed world. What they are capable of and have already done, is get a lot of the poorest of the world killed.
I do wish Dr Plait would get that point.