Scientist Mocks Vanity Fair’s ‘Green Issue’ as ‘Thinly Disguised Tabloid Propaganda’

If Dr. Roy Spencer was an anthropogenic global warming believer, he’d probably be a household name given his superior credentials as a former Senior Scientist for Climate Studies at NASA.

Sadly, due to his position on this controversial issue, Spencer is part of a growing list of skeptical scientists across the globe that the media ignore as they advance the existence of a consensus concerning climate change that is anything but.

With that in mind, Dr. Spencer wrote an article for National Review Tuesday that was highly critical of the media’s arrogant, one-sided view of global warming. Particularly in the cross-hairs was Vanity Fair, whose recent “Green Issue” has been the subject of previous disfavorable reports by NewsBusters here and here.

Spencer marvelously began (emphasis added throughout):

Pulitzer Prize-potential pontificating is never more appropriate than in a journalistic exposé of heartless, power-hungry villains oppressing powerless victims and raping the Earth. And Vanity Fair’s 2007 Green Issue oozes with righteous indignation toward all those evil executive-branch politicians and big businesses which exploit the earth for power and profit.  

Spencer continued:

There is all this shouting from the Left about how we must “do something” about global warming. As Bert once told Ernie on Sesame Street, “It’s easy to have ideas, but it’s not so easy to make them work.” So what, exactly, should we do to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions by enough to have a measurable impact on global temperatures in, say, the next 30 years? The standard cries of “George Bush is destroying the planet!” or “Big Oil is trying to silence its critics!” are not the most useful responses.

One gets the idea that solving the global-warming problem doesn’t actually depend upon real physical solutions — like developing a sufficiently clean technology capable of supplying a substantial portion of humanity’s increasing need for energy — but on good intentions and extreme disdain for big business and Republicans. Or maybe I’ve just missed the praise for the billions of dollars we are already investing in energy research.

Spencer then addressed a truly inconvenient truth that virtually all of the believers – maybe especially the Global Warmingest-in-Chief, soon-to-be-Dr. Al Gore – refuse to recognize and publicize as they pound the table about the dire consequence of inaction:

The fact is, almost all of today’s popularized solutions to global warming would do little more than allow us to congratulate each other for “doing something.” Actually doing something substantive about global warming would be neither easy nor cheap. As is always the case, wealth diverted to making the environment cleaner is no longer available for other purposes. Access to abundant, inexpensive energy has enabled prosperity, good health, longevity, comfort, and convenience. Even if the 1° F warming over the last century is entirely due to mankind — a scientific claim which I find dubious — has that been such a terrible price to pay for our prosperity? How much prosperity are you willing to give up in order to prevent some (likely unmeasurable) portion of future global warming? Everyone considers himself an environmentalist until he gets the bill.

And, his truth got even harsher:

As much as it may seem that pollution is caused exclusively by cigar-chomping executives too selfish to prevent it, the blame must be spread more widely than that. Take V.F., for instance: unless the magazine’s journalists live in a world where physical laws have been repealed, they are constantly burning fuel. They sit at desks made of wood or from materials dug out of the ground, and they tap-tap-tap at computer keyboards which are powered by burning coal or decaying radioactive material. The energy consumption of corporations is caused not only, or even primarily, by the greedy executives, but by millions of willing employees, investors, and customers.

The glaring hypocrisy of the global-warming crowd would be more amusing if it weren’t so serious. We heap our pious contempt on big polluters when we’re the ones who are driving this pollution. We could simply stop our consuming, of course — though that’s certainly not what Al Gore and his ilk do: They simply purchase forgiveness in the form of carbon credits, thus avoiding the inconvenience of actually reducing their fossil-fuel use.

Spencer built to a fabulous crescendo:

When environmentalists demonstrate their willingness to forsake the many benefits of modern technological progress, I’ll take them seriously.

I have to wonder how much the writers for Vanity Fair actually know about potential real solutions to the global-warming problem. When you live in a world without physical cause and effect, where the benefits of modern life are self-existent and where pollution is nothing more than a bad choice someone else has made, maybe all you need are good intentions and creative-writing skills.

And wonderfully concluded: 

Only in a country as technologically advanced, yet as scientifically and economically illiterate, as the United States do we find such mindless hypocrisy masquerading as “environmental awareness” and “eco-justice.” Devoting column inches to an environmental version of Dante’s Hell containing, among others, George W. Bush might help sell more copies of Vanity Fair, but it is not much more than thinly disguised tabloid propaganda.

Bravo, Doctor. Bravo.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.