With a houseful of teenagers having a sleepover, plus two little boys doing the same (accidentally double booked), and a nasty head cold, the obvious thing to do was to slam the bedroom door on the lot of ’em– Ginger tea in hand, ignoring the various thumps, Muuuuummmm!!s, and muffled screams from the other side of the door– and watch the ABC special: The Great Global Warming Swindle, with a panel discussion afterward, audience free-for-all and grilling of Martin Durkin by Tony Jones.
Sorry about that sentence – it’s the cold.
The GGWS was entertaining enough– I mean, I thought the Sex Pistols/Malcolm McLaren reference in the title was pretty random, but apparently, not so! It was all part of the same Thatcherite cultural melange. Who’d have thought that way back then, Maggie Thatcher, because of her disaffection with both coal suppliers and coal unions, decided to make a case for nuclear power by inventing a thing called global warming? and that she gave out enough cash to get practically the whole scientific establishment onside, to this very day?! Diabolical! I forget which one of Durkin’s creatures came out with that explanation – obviously, one of the handful of scientists with enough integrity to resist Maggie and her limitless cash handouts.
While the video itself was toe-curlingly awful, I was really looking forward to the discussion afterward, which I knew would be hugely entertaining. I wasn’t disappointed. Half the audience were genu-wine, frothing, barking wingnuts of the type seldom seen in the flesh. Some highlights:
Tony Jones relentlessly slicing, dicing and julienning Martin Durkin in the after-show interview, and serving his arse up to him lightly dressed with a nice vinaigrette. Durkin was as pathetic as he was in a recent Michael Duffy (Counterpoint) interview, where he was allowed a free-form whine about the terrible treatment of his documentary by Teh Leftist media, while Duffy clucked sympathetically. Jones allowed him no such escape. Really, it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.
The guy in the audience with a Breughel-looking beanie, who began by saying: “I’ve studied astrophysics…
(Me: Oh, that sounds impressive, maybe he’s just a scruffy but brilliant undergraduate)
“and classical music”…
(Me: Oh dear, that sounds irrelevant, probably a crank after all)
“…with Lyndon La Rouche!”)
The two anti-environmentalist women in the audience, who I think were LaRouchies as well, who both appeared to be prepped with talking points to try to trap scientists on the panel into saying they wanted to kill all humans in the service of the environment. Global warming = eugenics. Oh, can’t you see it, people?
Arm-waving Audience guy, who spluttered something about “Carbon 14!!!!” No, none of the people commenting on it the next day understood it, either.
Ray Evans of the Lavoisier group, looking like an old Western District grazier with a furry white beard, club tie and tweeds, the dear old thing, looking increasingly miserable while taking a right pounding from the charmingly geeky Professor David Karoly. A bit like having his leg chewed off, slowly, by a terribly friendly whippet.
Michael Duffy (how did MD ever get onto a panel of “climate change experts”?) looking increasingly sulky and petulant outside the comfort zone of Counterpoint, where he can just shake his head about the monstrous dishonesty of THE LEFT and his guests will echo that and so on until they have a cup of tea and a biscuit. This time he was forced to listen to a detailed account of the many falsifications in the GGWS, instead of sitting inside the echo chamber. At one point, he waved a book –by who I don’t know– about the supposed profit motive behind environmentalism. Of course, the book would have been written without a thought for the profit motive. Sheer desperation.
Phil at LP has kindly put up a YouTube of the merriment. There is another discussion thread here. If you’re after a more serious wrap-up, don’t go past John Quiggin.
My question is: when do we all get our cheques from the Baroness Thatcher?
[Update:] Tim Sterne’s classic takedown.
Crossposted at Road to Surfdom