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"Listener" scores own-goal, ensures public attention is called to its misbehaviour - Dave's Ramblings [entries|archive|friends|userinfo]
Daveosaurus

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"Listener" scores own-goal, ensures public attention is called to its misbehaviour [Apr. 19th, 2008|10:46 am]
Daveosaurus
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[Current Location |Invercargill]
[mood |coldcold]

I've always been sceptical of global warming, for one very simple reason: My part of the globe isn't getting any warmer. Unfortunately there's very little in the way of rational scepticism in the whole global warming debate; most views are either "Oh no, we're all going to die unless we give up anything vaguely reminiscent of civilisation and all go back up into the trees" or "Global warming is all an evil pinko-commie-lesbian-Frenchie-Muslim-Jewish-government con and anyone who believes in it should be shot".

(New Zealand has its own example of the latter: the Climate Science Coalition. Despite its name, it does not appear to contain any climate scientists; the closest it ever had to scientific credibility was when its numbers included the (now late) Augie Auer: auto-cue reader, meteorologist and a good communicator. However, it is (or was, at least when it first came to prominence) headed by architect and failed town planner Owen McShane, and its numbers also include failed human being Roger Dewhurst (caution: link contains offensive material.))

The international global-warming-denier movement managed to get themselves in the news on the local blogsphere (or is it blogosphere? I can never remember) over the last week over an article I first read about here: that a columnist for the Listener (a not particularly glossy magazine that was, when I was young, bought by practically all families who owned a television set due to its having a monopoly on the advance publication of television programme schedules) had been sacked after various global-warming-denier groups demanded his removal for having a written outlining their close ties to businesses with a major interest in shutting down debate about global warming.

Then, as I first noticed here on Poneke (a media weblog, the authorship of which is a secret closely guarded from... anyone who has been living in a cave for the last ten years or so, or has never ventured onto the nz.* newsgroups), the Listener had got onto its lawyers, and instructed them to send the blog a nastygram; this resulted in the article as it is now visible here. Which, even for the Listener, is spectacularly stupid: there is nothing so certain to get a subject repeated all over the internet than to try to suppress it.

But the best comment on the whole debacle is from Tim Lambert here on Deltoid:
When you use lawyers to suppress people's views it kind of undercuts your claims that you didn't suppress Hansford's views.
linkReply

Comments:
[User Picture]From: dovil
2008-04-19 12:25 am (UTC)
I was scrolling through friendsoffriends and saw this so I hope you don't mind me leaping into your journal and it's always nice to come across a fellow Invercargillian (is that a word? It is now).

I think there is some rational debate going on about global warming but it tends to be going on in scientific circles where the public doesn't see it, simply because if it's not sensationalist then it's not going to sell copy. It's a pity to hear about the Listener going in this direction - I had liked their coverage before but I did wonder if there would be a change after the previous Editor left.

It might not be getting noticably warmer here but the glaciers are shrinking. So unfair.
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[User Picture]From: southerndave
2008-04-19 10:43 am (UTC)
No worries... normally I leave comments open on anything public. I get to meet interesting people that way. Most of what I talk about is fannish stuff, more or less: comics, science fiction, etc.; plus a bit about music. Currently I've been doing archive trawls through a bunch of interesting web comics (although, as I have an IHUG Vodaphone connection, things are happening v-e-r-y s-l-o-w-l-y, if they even happen at all). Most of my friends on LJ are overseas (many in America) so there's probably not much of interest to the general Invercargill public here.

I usually use the word "Invercargillite", there's at least one more of us on LJ (plus an ex-Invercargillite now domiciled farther north).

I've always been a bit of a sceptic about global warming... but some other so-called "sceptics" can't honestly be called that. Being a sceptic involves looking at things with an open mind and asking awkward questions. Not sticking fingers in ears and saying "I can't hear you, everything's lovely here".
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[User Picture]From: d_h
2008-04-19 12:34 am (UTC)
I've been watching this one unfold. It certainly gives the appearance of behind the scenes influence on the debate (aka playing the man not the ball).
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[User Picture]From: southerndave
2008-04-19 10:35 am (UTC)
Anyone would have thought from that John Key "wages drop" business from the start of the year that now the Internet is such a pervasive medium, that the last thing to do, if you want to weather an embarrassing story, would be to set the lawyers onto the reporter to try to get them to change their story...
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[User Picture]From: d_h
2008-04-19 01:37 am (UTC)
p.s.

You wrote: My part of the globe isn't getting any warmer.

see the graphs at http://www.niwa.cri.nz/ncc/clivar/pastclimate#nzat
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[User Picture]From: southerndave
2008-04-19 10:32 am (UTC)
Interesting graph... the only thing about it I'd take issue with is that I think the "smoothed time series" line which peaks in about 1971 is a bit understated. Although if you look at only the last quarter of the graph - i.e. that part which falls within my lifetime, more or less - it honestly looks quite flat.
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[User Picture]From: aeb
2008-04-19 02:43 am (UTC)
I wish I knew where those graphs I saw about temperature change around the globe in recent decades. I remember that the southern hemisphere wasn't warming as much as more northern climes. More specifically, Australia had relatively little climate change, while Europe was quite severe. That much I remember. {small smile}

Anne Elizabeth Baldwin
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[User Picture]From: southerndave
2008-04-19 10:46 am (UTC)
My parents were over in Britain late summer / early autumn 1997 and it was warmer over there than my mother remembered.

The graph d_h links to in the comment above yours is interesting... the graph as a whole does show a warming trend, but if you cut off the years before I was born it seems much flatter.
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[User Picture]From: aeb
2008-04-19 08:29 pm (UTC)
Yeah; I've heard that Britain is warming up. Europe is worse, tho. My friends in Germany are really feeling the change, even tho they've lived there the whole time, so they've mostly acclimated. {smile}

I notice. I think your area got warmer by maybe half a degree Celsius in your lifetime. That's really not much of a change. {Smile}

I live in another are that isn't changing much. I really don't feel the difference; I only notice it by more subtle clues. Snow on the mountains doesn't happen that often, and rarely sticks as long as I remember from my childhood. The weather-folks on the TV mention record breaking highs once in a while... but I can't remember the last time I heard of a record-breaking low. {smile}

Anne Elizabeth Baldwin

P.S. Lets try this as an in-line reply, instead of a free-standing comment. {Smile, wink}

A.E.B.
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