To give you an idea of the kind of hysterical predictions the global warming crowd have made in recent years, the United Nations in 2005 actually forecast that by the end of the previous decade, there would be 50 million environmental refugees around the world as a result of climate change.
In a live stand-up via satellite from the U.S. Capitol shortly after 11 a.m. EDT today, MSNBC's Luke Russert insisted that Senate Democrats were holding up approval of spending bills to fund the federal government through the rest of the fiscal year because they were pro-environment and for "women's health," the latter of course being code for the controversial issue of federal funding for Planned Parenthood.
"Two very partisan political issues are essentially what is holding up whether or not there will be a government shutdown," Russert told anchor Thomas Roberts (emphasis mine):
In an interview with Congressman Mike Pence on Friday, MSNBC anchor Contessa Brewer slammed a Republican proposal to cut federal funding for Planned Parenthood and the Environmental Protection Agency: "...what it does not respect are women's rights, what it does not respect is the environment. Is it going to undermine potential success here if you force social issues on to the budget table?"
Brewer opened the 12PM ET hour segment with the Indiana Republican by blaming the Tea Party for the budget stalemate on Capitol Hill: "At issue, freshman Republicans, many with Tea Party support, who insist on slashing at least $61 billion. They also want to cut funding for Planned Parenthood, National Public Radio, and the Environmental Protection Agency. Social goals. Democrats are not on board."
Only ABC’s World News on Thursday investigated whether the Obama administration is “playing favorites” with investments related to a prominent fund-raiser for the Democratic President.
Reporter Brian Ross looked at investor Steve Westly and whether White House connections and fund-raising played a part: “Four companies tied to Westly have secured over a half billion dollars in loans and grants. And the White House has since had him appointed to a special advisory board for the Secretary of Energy.”
NBC and CBS have yet to cover this story and a report by the Government Accounting Office that “found officials were favoring some companies and disadvantaging others.” Ross explained, “Westly, in fact, boasts of his connections to the Obama administration. His website says his investment company is uniquely positioned to take advantage of the billions in government loans.”
Update: A representative of Steve Westly called to inform us that he has no connection with Solyndra, the solar power company mentioned by ABC in the Brian Ross piece (and featured in a clip of Barack Obama). An online version of Ross’ piece does not make the implication.
On Wednesday's All Things Considered, NPR's Ari Shapiro acted as a stenographer for the Obama administration's energy proposals. Shapiro played four clips from the President's recent speech on the issue, and another from a sympathetic environmentalist. Even the lone clip from an oil industry representative came from someone who "supports the move to invest in biofuels and clean energy."
At the beginning of his report, the correspondent noted that "the White House described this event as a pivot away from speeches about Libya and Japan. But President Obama acknowledged that those crises make it important to talk about energy now." After playing his first clip from the chief executive, who stated that "the situation in the Middle East implicates our energy security," Shapiro stayed within the perspective set by the Democrat: "America's past is strewn with moments when a global crisis has driven up the price of gas or scared people about the risks of nuclear energy."
Filling in for Martin Bashir on his eponymous program on Thursday, MSNBC's Richard Lui treated viewers to an alarmist environmentalist's take on news of trace amounts of radioactive iodine being detected in milk from cows in two West Coast states. It's believed the radiation is linked to the failed Fukushima Daiichi plant in Japan.
After noting that the Environmental Protection Agency has said the levels are "far below an amount that would be considered dangerous," Lui introduced Damon Moglen of Friends of the Earth (FOE), asking him "What do you think of what we're hearing right now with milk being affected?"
The FOE climate and energy project director jumped straight in with his talking points:
On the March 25 CBS Early Show, co-host Chris Wragge apparently merged his nuclear terms by warning viewers of leaks of "uranium and plutanium" at the Fukushima power plant in Japan. Neither he nor co-host Erica Hill ever corrected the error.
After two years of practicing unrepentant contempt for science, jobs, law and truth, why should Interior Secretary Ken Salazar's words mean anything anymore? While President Obama promotes offshore drilling overseas thousands of miles away in Brazil, Salazar now promises to revitalize America's oil and gas industry. It's like Jack "Dr. Death" Kevorkian promoting himself as a lifesaving CPR specialist.
This week, Salazar announced that the administration has just approved the first deepwater oil and gas exploration plan since last spring's BP/Deepwater Horizon oil spill. Mind you: This is not a granting of permits, but a green light for Shell Offshore to seek drilling permits for three new exploratory wells off the Louisiana coast. Shell first submitted and received approval for its original exploration plan in 1985 — 26 red tape-wrapped years ago.
New York Times reporter Elisabeth Rosenthal has found another unlikely environmental menace: Cats, an invasive species that disturbs the natural order, like kudzu. That’s the takeaway from Monday’s report on the grave danger felines present to birds: “Tweety Was Right: Cats Are a Bird’s No. 1 Enemy.”
While public attention has focused on wind turbines as a menace to birds, a new study shows that a far greater threat may be posed by a more familiar antagonist: the pet house cat.
A new study in The Journal of Ornithology on the mortality of baby gray catbirds in the Washington suburbs found that cats were the No. 1 killer in the area, by a large margin.
Nearly 80 percent of the birds were killed by predators, and cats were responsible for 47 percent of those deaths, according to the researchers, from the Smithsonian Institution and Towson University in Maryland. Death rates were particularly high in neighborhoods with large cat populations.
Mr. Marra won’t make friends among cat-lovers with thoughts like these:
The massive earthquake and tsunami that rocked Japan on March 11 claimed many lives and knocked the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear plant offline reviving decades-old fears as well as liberal media bias about nuclear power.
The news media have promoted anti-nuclear positions since the Three Mile Island accident in 1979, although that incident did not injure or kill anyone and no long-term health impacts have been proven. At that time though, the frightening network coverage was "eerily similar" to the fictional Hollywood account of a nuclear disaster in a film released just days earlier: "The China Syndrome."
Three Mile Island was no "China Syndrome," yet some press outlets specifically sent reporters who had seen the film to cover the Harrisburg, Pa. nuclear accident, according to a PBS program aired in 1999.
The promises of pie-in-the-sky liberal environmentalists that we can convert to "clean" energy sources and stimulate our economy are based on dubious environmental and economic assumptions, fantastic notions about alternative energy, and a disturbing acceptance of the tyrannies inherent in command-control economies.
It would be bad enough if President Obama and his Democratic allies were pushing budget-busting green energy solutions during an economic boom and times of a manageable national debt. But it's inconceivable that they would do so under the current dire fiscal circumstances.
An 8.9 magnitude earthquake hit Japan March 11 and the ensuing Tsunami wave delivered a devastating blow to the people, resources and economy of the U.S. ally. At this writing, a nuclear power plant there is on the verge of meltdown. As can be expected, it took a few days for the world and the American media to comprehend the complexity and gravity of the situation.
But two things were very predictable in the aftermath of a natural disaster. First, Americans have responded generously, having rallied financial, physical, emotional and spiritual support for the Japanese. Second, the network news refuses to recognize the impact that churches, faith-based groups and small non-profits have in the recovery effort.
I’ve given New York Times environmental reporter Elisabeth Rosenthal some grief for her ever-expanding damage list of events and patterns caused by global warming, so I’ll give her some credit for her Sunday Week in Review piece on the NIMBY phenomenon among liberal environmentalists: “Green Development? Not in My (Liberal) Backyard.”
Though Rosenthal doesn’t question the environmental necessity behind bike lanes and windmills, it’s refreshing to see a Times story on political hypocrisy that targets the left instead of the right.
Park Slope, Brooklyn. Cape Cod, Mass. Berkeley, Calif. Three famously progressive places, right? The yin to the Tea Party yang. But just try putting a bike lane or some wind turbines in their lines of sight. And the karma can get very different.
On his eponymous program today, MSNBC anchor Martin Bashir interviewed a liberal environmental activist aiming to scare viewers into believing that nuclear energy poses an imminent threat to the safety of the United States.
Bashir allowed a spokesman for Friends of the Earth, a left-wing environmental group, to declare nuclear facilities in California dangerous and unsafe, but neglected to report that the nuclear industry claims it has protocols in place to ensure safety.
"The fact of the matter is that what's happening in Japan could certainly have happened here," predicted David Moglan, director of the Climate and Energy Project for Friends of the Earth.
"For the sake of a cleaner planet, should Americans wear dirtier clothes?"
So comically began a New York Times article on the front page of the Gray Lady's Science section Tuesday ironically titled "When Energy Efficiency Sullies the Environment" (photo courtesy Viktor Koen):
Philip Elliott at the Obama White House's state-compliant wire service reports, and distorts (bolds are mine):
Barbour says Obama cheers for higher gas prices
Mississippi Gov. Haley Barbour, a potential presidential contender, accused the Obama administration Wednesday of favoring a run-up in gas prices to prod consumers to buy more fuel-efficient cars.
Barbour cited 2008 comments from Steven Chu, now President Barack Obama's energy secretary, that a gradual increase in gasoline taxes could coax consumers into dumping their gas-guzzlers and finding homes closer to where they work.
Ralph Nader said Tuesday conservative talk radio hosts Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity are part of a well-organized counter-scientific ignorance movement designed to prevent people from believing in the theory of manmade global warming.
Sadly, this was said to a bunch of impressionable students at the College of New Jersey (video follows with transcript and commentary):
What do oil refineries and rental cars have in common? They will probably kill you, at least according to ABC's Brian Ross.
Ross is either bored with his job or just doesn't seem to care about frightening his viewers with exaggerated reports. But either way, ABC's chief investigative correspondent is breathing new life into the term yellow journalism.
Those who are familiar with Ross's work might notice an emerging pattern of sensationalism. The latest case studies concern oil refineries in Texas, which Ross's colleague described as the "toxic threat next door," and rental cars, which Ross himself cautioned are like "a consumer's version of Russian roulette."
When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail.
Over the last decade, New York Times columnist Tom Friedman has written on the costs of the Iraq war, the federal deficit, the threat of global warming, and the uprisings in the Arab world. In Friedman’s view, all these problems have one simple solution: A $1-a-gallon hike in the gas tax.
In his Wednesday column, “If Not Now, When?” Friedman pushed the tax as having some tenuous connection to pushing democratic values in the Middle East:
On Thursday, Louisiana Federal District Court Judge Martin Feldman found that the Obama Interior Department was in contempt of his ruling that the offshore oil drilling moratorium, imposed by the administration in 2010, was unconstitutional. After Feldman struck down the initial drilling ban, the Interior Department simply established a second ban that was virtually identical.
While the story was reported on Thursday by wire services like the Associated Press and picked up by frequently cited internet news sites like Politico, the television media, including ABC, NBC, CBS, and CNN, all ignored the story.
Speaking to physicist Michio Kaku on Wednesday's CBS Early Show, co-host Chris Wragge fretted over the recent series of severe winter storms and wondered: "...nine storms in seven weeks, why is this happening?...a lot of people want to talk about global warming and thinking that that may actually come into play here. Is that accurate? Is that having an effect on what's going on?"
Dr. Kaku agreed with the suggestion: "Yes. It seems to violate common sense, but as the Earth begins to heat up, that means more moist air in the Caribbean and the Gulf of Mexico on average. Which creates more precipitation, and eventually more snow." Wragge followed up: "Is this going to continue?" Kaku argued: "...on average, temperatures are going to rise. Remember, last year was the hottest year ever recorded in the history of science, next to 2005, since 1880. So the Earth is heating up. We can debate exactly what's driving it. But, hey, get used to it. We're going to have more energy sloshing around the Earth, more extremes, and swings."
ABC reporter Bob Woodruff has helped raise money for a liberal environmental advocacy group while reporting on environmental issues for ABC, in direct violation of the network's ethics politcies, according to our friends at Big Journalism (who picked up on an investigation by the Enterprise Report).
Woodruff even reported on the group he helped raise funds for - Robert F. Kennedy Jr.'s Waterkeeper Alliance - and dubbed one of its advisory board members one of the "six people helping to save our planet," all without disclosing his financial ties to the group.
ABC acknowledged that Woodruff's actions violate its ethics policies, according to the Enterprise Report, and insisted that it will take "appropriate disciplinary action," but neglected to elaborate any further.
Time magazine's Brian Walsh couldn't write up a story on the need for more electricity in developing countries without shoe-horning in a dire warning about climate change.
In a January 31st story entitled "Building a Country by Switching on the Lights," Walsh initially warned readers that in addition to the problems of fighting malaria and improving infrastructure that there was "a blind spot that does more than almost anything to keep the poor poor: they don't have electric power" but he then gravely added: "At the same time, the reality of climate change means that even the developing world needs to look for cleaner sources of energy because Western-style growth driven by fossil fuels could lead to catastrophe."
At the top of the 7:30AM ET half hour on Monday's CBS Early Show, co-host Chris Wragge happily proclaimed: "After 130 years, [Thomas] Edison's invention is basically being phased out....The government is replacing the incandescent bulb with a much more energy efficient light."
Wragge portrayed the government ban as a new "choice" for consumers: "Consumers will now have a choice of two different kinds of bulbs, the CFL and LED and we're going to tell you the difference and which one is better for you, which one's going to be a little more cost effective." Co-host Erica Hill lamented: "It's a tough transition....It's hard to let go." Wragge reassured her: "Well, we're going to hopefully make that process a little easier for you." Hill concluded: "It's been a good run, Thomas Edison."
On Friday’s World News on ABC, correspondent Linsey Davis filed a one-sided report in which she cited the views of climate scientists who blame the recent cold temperatures and high amounts of snowfall on global warming. After recounting the recent extreme weather around the country, Davis continued:
If this winter seems especially brutal, scientists say you're right. ABC News contacted 10 climate scientists to ask their take, if an extreme winter like the one we're having is the way of the future. The consensus? Global warming is playing a role by shifting weather patterns in unpredictable ways. Many say the forecast for the future calls for record-breaking precipitation and extreme temperatures year round. And that means winters with more snow.
The ABC correspondent concluded the report by noting the unusually cold temperatures in Boston:
In his report on the escalating dispute between the State of Texas and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, one thing you cannot accuse Ramit Plushnick-Masti of the Associated Press of being is a master of understatement. He claims that "Both sides and conservation groups agree the battle has put the health of Texas residents and the environment at risk."
Really? The only problem is that the AP reporter never found anyone who is currently on the Texas side of the dispute who is saying anything remotely resembling that.
Here are the opening paragraphs of Plushnick-Masti's prose, followed by a much later paragraph representing the closest the writer gets to naming someone on the Texas side to worry about the alleged "risk" (bold is mine):
The total inability of the far-left Fox News haters to conjure up any real controversy about the cable channel demonstrates just how reasonable and measured Fox's coverage generally is.
The latest Fox "scandal": DC bureau chief Bill Sammon told staff to refrain from pronouncing one side of the climate change debate unequivocally correct. That's right, Sammon's insistence that Fox not make definitive judgments on contentious political issues is a sign of Fox's unethical journalistic practices, the Fox haters bizarrely claim.
The occasion for the latest bout of anti-FNC bloviating was the leak of an email from Sammon, sent during the height of the so-called Climategate scandal. It read: