Apparently, the Arizona Republic cannot discuss the work of globaloney skeptic Robert Balling of Arizona State University without constantly pointing out that his "peers" think he is an idiot that has been bought off by "industries." The paper cannot write a story about his career without constantly suggesting that he is a "fringe" scientist and that he is "criticized" by those who imagine global warming is the biggest threat humanity faces today.
What's more, the Republic finds his personal life filled with "surprising contradictions" because this climatologist has a green lifestyle, as if any global warming critic must automatically believe in poisoning our waters and polluting our skies. Apparently the Az Republic thinks it's impossible that a man can be interested in safeguarding the environment but also believe that global warming is a sham. And, even worse, the Az Republic seems aghast that Rush Limbaugh has quoted from the man's work.
In "Outspoken ASU prof draws ire", Az Republic writer Corinne Purtill just doesn't get Robert Balling. He seems such a mystery to her that one can imagine that she feels he should be placed in a zoo where all can come view him as the odd creature he surely must be. In short, clipped sentences sure to be written so even the dumbest of Arizonans can follow her tale, Purtill tells us the odd story of a man who "attended the premiere of Al Gore's global-warming documentary, An Inconvenient Truth" and who "bikes to work and eats organic food," but who is hated by environmentalists. Why do they hate him?
Balling, 54, has spoken and written extensively against the widely held scientific view that the documented rise in global temperatures is the result of human activity and that serious consequences will result.
HERESY, I tell you! Balling also informs Purtill that he believes that "even if humans are warming the planet by causing the buildup of greenhouse gases... the doomsday scenarios forecast by many climate scientists may never happen." Oh, he's digging his grave with the Az Republic, now! But, she assures us, it isn't so bad for the good professor, because he is awash with money from "industries with a stake in debunking the large body of research that supports a link between human activity and global warming." Even more outrageous, Rush Limbaugh found his work of interest.
Talk-show host Rush Limbaugh began quoting the book. Sales took off. An invitation to address the directors of a coal company followed.
The NERVE! Purtill seems confused by our friend, Mr. Balling, however.
Despite his notoriety as a hero of the skeptic crowd, Balling's research and lifestyle contain some surprising contradictions. He's a registered independent and lives a lifestyle that the hardiest environmental activist would recognize as green.
But, we can ignore his green lifestyle because he is "on the fringe" and is "criticized" by global warming believers whose research she never once questions might be as influenced by the money they get from forces interested in providing support for global warming as she so carefully pointed out could be true for Balling's work funded by those eeeevil "industries." All in all, this report in the Arizona Republic is condescending to both the reader and Robert Balling and represents the sort of treatment reserved for the strange and unusual instead of an attempt to inform the public of a dissenting view.