Thomas Friedman of the New York Times dismissed the ClimateGate scandal during an interview on Thursday’s Situation Room on CNN, labeling it “nonsense” and an “idiot debate.” Anchor Wolf Blitzer only pressed Friedman slightly when he repeated his call for a “price on carbon that would trigger mass innovation in green technology,” meaning a large surtax on fossil fuels.
Blitzer raised ClimateGate during the second half of his interview with Friedman: “Let’s talk about ‘Hot, Flat and Crowded’ and global warming; this conference that’s under way in Copenhagen right now. The release of these e-mails, what’s called ‘ClimateGate,’ how much damage does that do to those who say man does have this significant role in global warming and this whole debate takes a new twist as a result of that?”
The New York Times columnist immediately played the “denier” card, and pointed to his favorite country, China, as an example of a society that wasn’t paying any attention to the scandal:
Showing the sense of humor millions of Americans fell in love with last year, former Alaska Governor Sarah Palin said Thursday that critics of her previous day's op-ed in the Washington Post "kind of got all wee-weed up about it and wanted to call me and others deniers."
Palin, chatting with conservative talk radio host Laura Ingraham, was obviously poking fun at something President Obama said over the summer: "There's something about August going into September where everybody in Washington gets all wee-weed up."
According to Palin, who might have been referring to derogatory comments from folks like MSNBC's Chris Matthews, Andrea Mitchell, and Keith Olbermann, such was the reaction to her published views on global warming and the United Nations climate change conference currently taking place in Copenhagen (YouTube audio embedded below the fold courtesy our friend Story Balloon, partial transcript):
[See update below.] Good Morning America weatherman and global warming alarmist Sam Champion asserted on Twitter that ClimateGate is "not reportable as such." This analyst queried him on the site about why the morning show has completely ignored hacked E-mails showing that some climate scientists are faking data on global warming.
On Wednesday, Champion Tweeted back: "i kno what u refer to! there is quite a controversy surrounding the veracity of that stolen info...not reportable as such." [Grammar original to post.] Not reportable as such? Whether or not one likes the story, the scientists are not disputing that the hacked e-mails are real. And considering that one of the individuals accused of altering data also contributed to a UN panel on climate change, how is this story "not reportable?"
In an earlier response on Twitter, Champion seemed confused about whether his program had covered the subject: "hey scott..thot i did...we follow all climate stories...arnd the world..ev day...and report fact based claims."
"Having given her sleight of hand stamp of approval to the birthers, Sarah Palin is now moving on to an almost equally popular far right mythology, climate change denial."
So began MSNBC's Keith Olbermann in his number one story on Wednesday's "Countdown."
"Getting her facts wrong and misrepresenting her record as governor of Alaska, again, not enough for Palin`s latest foray into opinion piece, this one for 'The Washington Post,'" said Olbermann. "So she went into full-on denial, climate change is all political mode."
The "Countdown" host then brought on the Nation's Chris Hayes who claimed that people who don't believe in manmade global warming are like folks who "argue that 9/11 was an inside job" (video embedded below the fold courtesy our friend Story Balloon, partial transcript with commentary):
Chris Wallace, host of "Fox News Sunday" is the latest in a long line of observers to note the essentially religious fervor of those who believe man is responsible for global warming, and the blind faith with which they cling to the science behind it.
Wallace, appearing on the Fox Business Network's Dec. 10 "Imus in the Morning" program to discuss the President's European trip with stops in Oslo and Copenhagen, said the religious conviction is evident in the way climate change alarmists treat those who challenge the theory.
"The President's going to Copenhagen - so he's flying all over the world leaving a Sasquatch-like carbon footprint," host Don Imus said. "So what's that all about?"
ABC and CBS discounted the scientific relevance of the admissions and obfuscations displayed in the ClimateGate e-mails, but on Wednesday night they finally devoted full stories to the controversy and quoted the “most-damning” of the e-mails, the ones referring to a “trick” to “hide the decline” in a temperature measurement and in which a scientist fretted “we can't account for the lack of warming at the moment, and it is a travesty that we can't.”
The two networks, however, painted the “stolen” e-mails not as laudatory whistle-blowing, but as an unwanted impediment to the left's global warming agenda. “Just as the world seems finally poised to do something about global warming, an inconvenient scandal,” ABC's David Wright began in playing off the title of Al Gore's movie. He despaired that “as the controversy heats up, the consensus about making the tough choices to curb carbon emissions threatens to crumble.”
On CBS, Wyatt Andrews relayed how “to many Republicans, ClimateGate proves that global warming is a deception,” before he countered: “But if that's true, it's a fraud adopted by most of the world's leading scientists, along with NASA, the U.N., the American Medical Association, and the National Academies of Science of 32 countries, including the United States. To most of them, ClimateGate is a sideshow compared to one overwhelming fact:” Viewers then were treated to this declaration from the scientist with the “hide the decline” boast: “The last decade is the warmest decade on record.”
Nobel Laureate Al Gore Wednesday called former Alaska governor Sarah Palin a "global warming denier."
Speaking with MSNBC's Andrea Mitchell, Gore also repeated his false claim about ClimateGate e-mail messages obtained from Britain's Climatic Research Unit: "the most recent one is like ten years ago."
As Andrew Bolt reported Wednesday at Australia's Herald Sun, the most recent e-mail message obtained from CRU was sent less than a month ago on November 12.
Unfortunately, much like his appearance on CNN earlier in the day, Gore was playing fast and loose with the facts.
Sadly, his MSNBC interviewer was similarly disinterested in challenging the former Vice President about his mistatements, and also never once asked him about his own financial interests in this matter (video embedded below the fold with partial transcript):
"Without trustworthy science and with so much at stake, Americans should be wary about what comes out of this politicized conference," Palin wrote. "The president should boycott Copenhagen."
The op-ed, specifically that paragraph, drew the ire of some prominent lefties, including The Daily Beast's Editor in Chief Tina Brown and Time magazine political columnist Joe Klein. Brown said Palin's call on Obama to boycott was "grandstanding" without basis on MSNBC's Dec. 9 broadcast of "Morning Joe."
Al Gore warned CNN viewers Wednesday about imminent planetary doom at the hands of his favorite bogeyman global warming just seconds before Kiran Chetry reported the "monster storm paralyzing travel in more than a dozen states" with "winter still two weeks away."
On "American Morning" to discuss issues surrounding the United Nations climate change conference taking place in Copenhagen, the former Vice President said, "All the mountain glaciers all over the world are melting, many of them at a greatly accelerated rate, threatening drinking water supplies."
Shortly after this ominous forecast, Chetry told viewers, "Winter still two weeks away, but snow plows are out from the plains to the Northeast. A monster storm paralyzing travel in more than a dozen states."
The Global Warmingist in Chief also downplayed the significance of the growing ClimateGate scandal as e-mail messages "from ten years ago out of context" that "the noise machine of the climate deniers" are blowing "out of proportion" to "fool some people into thinking they have substance" (videos in two parts embedded below the fold courtesy our friends at Story Balloon with full transcript):
CBS and NBC on Tuesday nightly eagerly pounced on the latest UN pronouncement about a warming world, without any regard for ClimateGate disclosures about manipulation of past data and without mentioning, as the AP noted, “the United States and Canada experienced cooler conditions than average.” CBS anchor Katie Couric announced: “At the world climate conference in Copenhagen today, scientists said this decade is on track to become the warmest since records were first kept back in 1850.”
NBC anchor Brian Williams touted “a big headline from that climate meeting going on in Copenhagen. The United Nations weather experts reported today this decade is on track to become the warmest since it started keeping records back in 1850. And 2009, they say, could rank among the top five warmest years ever.” He proceeded to set up a piece about Peru: “Anne Thompson shows us a place where they say the climate crisis is right there for all the world to see, in the form of glaciers melting and threatening the supply of fresh water.”
CNN made a real, day-long effort on Monday to address the climate-change debate as a debate, giving skeptics of manmade climate change a series of chances to match the leftist view, especially during its evening programming. CNN is also the only U.S. TV news outlet so far to send an anchor to the Climate Research Unit at the center of the ClimateGate controversy.
International correspondent Phil Black’s interview of Lord Christopher Monckton, a prominent skeptic of the theory of manmade global warming, ran four minutes into the 6 pm Eastern hour. The “passionate skeptic on climate change,” as Black referred to him, traveled to Copenhagen for the UN’s climate change summit, and is one of the few skeptics of the theory of manmade climate change in attendance. The CNN correspondent actually compared belief in the theory to a religion at the beginning of his report: “Copenhagen’s Bella Conference Center has become an international temple for thousands of true believers, people who have no doubt the planet is warming and humankind is to blame. But there are a few people here who do not believe.”
“Facing a clock some say has ticked down to zero, today 192 nations came together to take on a potential global catastrophe,” a dire ABC reporter Bob Woodruff ominously intoned from Copenhagen on Monday’s World News with “Saving the Planet?” on screen.
Those attending the conference on climate change “where an official said today the clock has ticked down to zero and it's time to act,” NBC anchor Brian Williams warned, “say it's so late in the game, so much damage has been done, they fear they can already see how this ends.” Anne Thompson then declared: “This is about life or death -- 192 countries are here in Copenhagen to cut the carbon emissions changing the climate and threatening the very existence of some nations and their people.”
Echoing that theme, CBS’s Mark Phillips stood in water up to his neck and then became completely submerged to illustrate the feared impact of rising sea levels: “The Maldives have become the canary in the global warming coal mine.”
NBC and ABC raised “ClimateGate” in passing – without actually using the term – only to dismiss the revelations. “The man who leads the U.N. panel that blames human activity for climate change said the science is broad and consistent,” Thompson reassured NBC viewers. Woodruff applied the “denier” pejorative as he asserted “climate change deniers say these e-mails are proof humans aren't causing global warming,” but “U.S. officials say the evidence proves otherwise.”
New York Times Public Editor Clark Hoyt took on the controversy over the "ClimateGate" emails leaked from the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia in Britain: "Stolen E-Mail, Stoking the Climate Debate." The text box: "Some say The Times has played down an important story."
Predictably, Hoyt did not agree. Though his Sunday Week in Review column gave critics room to make points, the paper's public editor readily signed on to the possibly corrupted conventional wisdom that the science of global warming is settled and that the emails showing sciences behaving badly, while "a story," is not a "three-alarm story."
Never mind that the United Nations relied heavily on CRU's dubious, discredited data, most infamously the famous "hockey stick" graph showing drastically rising modern-day temperatures, to back up its alarmist claims about the dangers of human-caused climate change. Hoyt also ignored evidence that the scientists destroyed their raw data and were actively working to block Freedom of Information requests.
Near the end of the 2PM ET hour on MSNBC, anchor Contessa Brewer discussed the ClimateGate scandal only to claim there was no scandal in the emails that seemed to show climate scientists manipulating global warming data: “I mean is someone using differences in semantics to try and play up a controversy that’s not really there?”
Brewer spoke with Politico reporter Erica Lovely about the emails in which scientists referred to a “trick” to conceal evidence that contradicted predicted warming trends. Brewer explained: “...there’s a Penn State scientist Michael Mann....He says the word ‘trick’ doesn’t actually refer to any kind of deception, but to a very well-known accepted data technique.” Lovely saw nothing improper in concealing data: “They wanted to keep it out of some of the international reports that the United Nations would be looking at, you know, just to – to move the global talks forward.”
After Brewer suggested the use of the word “trick” as “just semantics,” Lovely agreed: “Sure....They’ll use language that maybe to us would look like, you know, something fishy is going on. But to them this is just everyday speak.” Lovely again defended their actions: “...they’ve been working so many decades trying to get some traction on the global warming science that they really can’t afford to have much detracting science get out.”
Some climate alarmists are so invested in their beliefs and corresponding policy preferences that even a joke at their expense is grounds for disownment. New York Times reporter Andrew Revkin saw this trend first-hand when he cracked a joke about Copenhagen prostitutes, and was threatened with a "cutoff" by one of the world's leading alarmists.
"My lord. Copenhagen prostitutes push back on warnings about their services & offer free sex for cop15? http://j.mp/cop15sex". So read a tweet from Revkin, which he published on the Times's Dot Earth blog. The University of Illinois's Michael Schlesinger sent a furious email to Revkin, calling his "unbelievable and unacceptable" joke "gutter reportage."
But an even more serious crime on Revkin's part was his audacity in relaying the words of others that criticize the close relationships between climate scientists and liberal advocacy groups:
Monday’s American Morning on CNN covered the ClimateGate scandal extensively, but slanted towards those who deny that the exposed e-mails amount to much. Anchor John Roberts let the interim director of the Climate Research Unit at the center of the controversy give his talking points without question. Out of the four segments on the scandal, two featured skeptics of the theory of manmade climate change.
Roberts, reporting live from the University of East Anglia, home to the CRU, led the 6 am Eastern hour with a preview of the program’s ClimateGate coverage: “I am in Norwich, England at the University of East Anglia and behind me here, this cylindrical building, is the Climatic Research Unit which finds itself at the epicenter of what’s being called ‘ClimateGate.’ Four thousand e-mails and documents were hacked out of the Climatic Research Unit’s server system...Some of those e-mails were looked at by skeptics, and are now being used to cast doubt on all of the science surrounding global warming. Skeptics claiming that some scientists were manipulating data to further their cause.”
"Well, NBC, ABC and CBS finally got around to reporting on ClimateGate" but it "wasn’t worth the wait," Media Research Center President and NewsBusters Publisher Brent Bozell said in a statement today. [Click here for the full press release]
"NBC and ABC’s reports were so biased, they left their audiences as ill-informed afterwards as they were before. And CBS came about as close to blacking out their own coverage as possible," Bozell added, referring to how the network reported the story on a program blacked out in much of the country in favor of college football.
ABC finally reported on ClimateGate on Sunday. But they provided no specifics from the reams of emails and data from East Anglia University that caused the scandal, and concluded their report with the flatly incorrect assertion: “The science is solid, according to a vast majority of researchers, with hotter temperatures, melting glaciers, and rising sea level providing the proof.”
On Sunday, during the 6:00 p.m. hour and again during the 7:00 p.m. hour, CNN NewsRoom, hosted by Don Lemon, ran a report by correspondent Mary Snow on ClimateGate -- which was somewhat more balanced than the piece aired on November 25 -- though this report similarly did not quote any of the emails that suggest manipulation of data on global warming by scientists at the UK's University of East Anglia. But both times after Snow's report aired, Lemon followed up by talking with a guest or reporter who disputed the credibility of ClimateGate, without interviewing any global warming skeptics.
After Snow’s report aired during the 6:00 p.m. hour, Howard Gould of Equator International opined that "I don't see any importance" in the emails, and later asserted: "I think people are making a big deal out of nothing. I think it's the climate debunkers that are out there, it's their last ray of hope, and they're trying to cling on to something. But it's really, you know, I think it's a bit of a joke."
More than two weeks after ClimateGate broke, ABC's World News finally got around to mentioning it on Sunday evening, but not to explore how the e-mails discredited leading scientists who insist mankind is causing global warming as, instead, ABC declared “the science is solid” and NBC assured viewers “the evidence is overwhelming that man is behind climate change.”
ABC reporter Clayton Sandell merely included, in a larger story about the Copenhagen conference, how “global warming naysayers are claiming that e-mails stolen from” East Anglia University “show climate scientists discussing how to fudge results to promote the idea that humans are altering the planet.” After failing to inform viewers of any specifics the e-mails revealed, Sandell, who didn't utter a syllable about them on Sunday's Good Morning America, concluded his World News piece:
The science is solid, according to a vast majority of researchers, with hotter temperatures, melting glaciers, and rising sea level providing the proof.
Over on the NBC Nightly News, following a shoddy Friday night story, Anne Thompson checked in from Copenhagen with a story on “cautious optimism that a political agreement can be reached on reducing carbon dioxide emissions,” before she repeated the usual hysteria about how “the Greenland ice sheet...is melting at an ever faster pace.” Only at the very end did Thompson raise “this scandal called ClimateGate,” offering the most-benign explanation of how “essentially, in those e-mails, some climate scientists seem to be suggesting that perhaps they're massaging the data.” But, she countered in citing the UN's Yvo de Boer:
When you look at the overall science and the fact that science from around the world has been reviewed by scientists around the world -- 2,500 by the UN -- he says the evidence is overwhelming that man is behind climate change.
British newspapers reported Sunday that the e-mail messages involved in the growing ClimateGate scandal may have been leaked to the world by the Russian secret service.
The alleged motive is to undermine any calls for carbon dioxide emissions cuts out of the upcoming climate change conference in Copenhagen:
Russia – one of the world’s largest producers and users of oil and gas – has a vested interest in opposing sweeping new agreements to cut emissions, which will be discussed by world leaders in Copenhagen tomorrow.
CBS on Saturday finally covered the growing ClimateGate scandal, but did so when its "Evening News" program was going to be preempted by college football in most of the country.
With the SEC Championship game between the universities of Florida and Alabama starting at 4PM EST, few would see CBS's report on this controversy unless they read an article at the network's website.
There, the video of the segment was available with the surprising caption "Climate Change a Hoax?"
According to LexisNexis, anchor Jeff Glor teased the story before a commercial break, "Just ahead on tonight`s CBS EVENING NEWS -- did some scientists fudge the numbers to make climate change look worse than it is."
After the break, Glor introduced correspondent Kimberly Dozier who offered a surprisingly detailed report on the scandal (video embedded below the fold with transcript):
ABC’s Good Morning America maintained its blackout on ClimateGate this weekend, even as Sunday’s show carried a preview of this week’s climate summit in Copenhagen, Denmark. Reporter Clayton Sandell showcased two scientists, both of whom argued that the U.S. was failing to do enough to combat global warming, and seemed distressed that public faith in the claims of a human-caused catastrophe are on the decline in spite of “growing scientific evidence.”
Despite growing scientific evidence that humans are to blame for warming the planet — rising sea level, melting glaciers, more intense droughts — polls show the number of Americans who believe global warming is happening is at its lowest point in 12 years.
It should be noted that the Washington Post/ABC News poll Sandell cited was conducted between November 12 and 15, before the revelations of e-mails from Britain’s Climatic Research Unit which suggest conniving among left-wing scientists to manipulate data and silence critics.
America's media might not think the growing ClimateGate scandal is important, but Britain's Met Office believes it's serious enough to re-examine 160 years of temperature data:
The new analysis of the data will take three years, meaning that the Met Office will not be able to state with absolute confidence the extent of the warming trend until the end of 2012.
For those unfamiliar, the Met Office is England's national weather service.
Maybe this revelation will convince our global warming-obsessed press that information in the e-mail messages obtained from the University of East Anglia's Climatic Research Unit is actually newsworthy.
The Climatic Research Unit at the heart of the ClimateGate scandal sought funds from Shell Oil in the year 2000.
Other e-mail messages obtained from the University of East Anglia's computers also showed officials at the school's CRU solicited support from ExxonMobil and BP Amoco, although the nature of this support was not identified.
As climate alarmists and their media minions love to claim that global warming skeptics are all paid shills of Big Oil, it makes one wonder how the press will report these startling revelations discovered by Anthony Watts Friday:
A professor at the university in the middle of the ClimateGate scandal called global warming skeptic Marc Morano "an a**hole" on live television Friday.
This marvelously came moments after Andrew Watson, a professor at the University of East Anglia, told the BBC host moderating the discussion that the controversy surrounding e-mail messages obtained from his school's computers is "a real setback not because there's anything wrong with the science, but because the character assassination and the temperature of the debate which you can just see from our colleague in America is just obsuring the important issue."
Less than ten seconds after making this sanctimonious, holier than thou statement, Watson said as the interview came to a close, "What an a**hole" (video embedded below the fold):
The Washington Post put ClimateGate on the front page, top left in Saturday’s edition. It’s also the top story at washingtonpost.com. The headline is "In e-mails, science of warming is hot debate." The website summary: "E-mails stolen from British research center show climate-change leaders noting flaws in their own data and seemingly scheming to muzzle critics."
Wow. The story is breaking. Here’s paragraph two of the David Fahrenthold and Juliet Eilperin story:
Now it has mushroomed into what is being called "Climate-gate," a scandal that has done what many slide shows and public-service ads could not: focus public attention on the science of a warming planet.
Except now, much of that attention is focused on the science's flaws. Leaked just before international climate talks begin in Copenhagen -- the culmination of years of work by scientists to raise alarms about greenhouse-gas emissions -- the e-mails have cast those scientists in a political light and given new energy to others who think the issue of climate change is all overblown.
The e-mails don't say that: They don't provide proof that human-caused climate change is a lie or a swindle.
Normally, it's news when a leading politician in a country hosting a summit expresses harsh dissent against that summit's agenda -- or at least it is when a leftist is the dissenter.
But I doubt that what Thor Pedersen, Speaker of the Danish Parliament, has to say about the upcoming COP15 Climate Summit will get much if any play in U.S. network newscasts or in the nation's establishment media publications of record.
Two weeks after the scandal broke, NBC Nightly News on Friday night became the first broadcast network morning or evening news program to inform viewers about “ClimateGate,” but only in the most cursory manner as correspondent Anne Thompson, a long-time ally of the environmental left, despaired the e-mails may end up “giving politicians from coal and oil-producing states another reason to delay taking action to reduce emissions. The government's leading scientist told Congress there is no time to lose.”
Anchor Brian Williams had teased: “ClimateGate, they're calling it. A new scandal over global warming and it's burning up the Internet. Have the books been cooked on climate change?” But neither Williams nor Thompson ever again used the “ClimateGate” term as Thompson's story assured viewers the threat remains while she saw -- not a major scientific scandal -- but merely how “those who doubt that manmade greenhouse gases are changing the climate say” the e-mails “show climate scientists massaging data and suppressing studies by those who disagree.”
Thompson, who in 2007 declared “the scientific debate is no longer over society's role in global warming. It is now a matter of degrees,” allowed soundbites from a Republican Congressman and Patrick Michaels of the Cato Institute, but countered with how “25 leading U.S. scientists accused climate change opponents of misrepresenting the e-mails' significance” and, after a clip of left-wing activist Michael Oppenheimer, she fretted over how, as quoted above, the e-mails will “delay” vital action. Thompson concluded with NOAA's administrator: “Climate change is not a theory. It is a documented set of observations about the world.”