By: Brent Parrish
There are some interesting historical parallels eerily reminiscent of the current “climate change” narrative pushed so zealously by the globalists and radical leftists of the world (see video above). And I will delve deeper into those historical parallels shortly. But first it might help to set the stage by looking at what is going on now, and then comparing it to what has happened in the past.
When it comes to “climate change” (formerly known as “global warming”), the promoters and purveyors of the climate change narrative who insist mankind is solely responsible for all catastrophic climate events that have occurred during the Industrial Age smugly assert that the “science is settled.” No debate is allowed. Recently, the head of Obama’s EPA, Gina McCarthy stated, “Don’t debate climate change any longer.” Dissenters, skeptics and contrarians who question the validity and reliability of the data put forth to “prove” catastrophic anthropogenic global warming (CAGW) as the undeniable truth are branded “deniers,” and worse, by the climate inquisition.
Scientists who find themselves at odds with CAGW votaries are often refused grants and research money; they are denied publication in scientific journals; they are run out of academia; they are regularly discredited and mocked, regardless of their credentials or body of work. A number of top scientists have been demoted or fired from universities and scientific institutions because the empirical results of their research does not support the politically correct worldview, as it relates to climate and the environment.
Here’s just a brief list of some highly qualified scientists who have felt the wrath of the climate inquisition:
- Murry Salby
- Bob Carter
- Lennart Bengtsson
- David Legates
- George Taylor
- Caleb Rossiter
- Bjorn Lomborg
- Henk Tennekes
- Askel Winn-Nielsen
- Alfonso Sutera
- Anonio Speranza
Not only are respected climate scientists incurring the wrath of the climate inquisitors, but even public figures like best-selling author Mark Steyn—who had the unmitigated gall to call Penn State Professor Michael E. Mann’s infamous “Hockey Stick” graph fraudulent—are finding themselves being sued by the likes of Michael Mann. According to the video above, Michael Mann is suing everybody and their brother, with a little help and assistance from the Climate Science Legal Defense Fund.
Dr. Michael E. Mann’s Hockey Stick graph alleges that starting around the turn of the 20th Century (cf. Industrial Age) an exponential increase in the global mean average temperature was going to lead to a global climate disaster of unimaginable proportions, unless trillions of dollars were spent in an attempt to thwart certain calamity.
The “hockey stick” metaphor refers to how the trendline in Mann’s graph shows temperature fluctuations over the past 1,000 years remaining fairly steady until around the year 1900. And then the rise in temperature increases dramatically from around 1961 onward—practically leaping off the chart by the end of the time scale; thus giving the appearance of a hockey stick.
There are a number of issues with the Hockey Stick graph. First, the original data used to construct the graph was withheld from other researchers and scientists. Mann’s graph relies on proxy data like tree rings, corals, ice cores and historical records to determine global mean average temperatures for the past 1,000 years … until we get to the latter part of the 20th Century. At which point, Mann, et al., remove the proxy data and replace it with temperature data. It’s worth noting, too, that the trendline (in black) ends prematurely in Mann’s graph, and is then filled in with thermometer data (in red).
Secondly, some of the people who have read the papers featuring Mann et al’s Hockey Stick graph requested to examine the original raw data. Professor Mann and crew refused to send it to them. So they filed a Freedom of Information request. The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) officer, on the advice of the scientists, would not release the information, according to Berkley Professor Richard Muller. Despite the stonewalling, the information was released, possibly by a disgruntled individual who was familiar with what was going on with the data manipulation.
One of the leaked emails read, “Let’s use Mike’s trick to hide the decline.” Michael Mann claimed it was just a reference to a “mathematical trick.” No big deal, right? What Mann didn’t address was the “hide the decline” part (see video below).
The historical data of global mean temperature averages published by Mann et al simply erases the Medieval Warming Period (MWP) and the Little Ice Age (LIA). Just does away with it. That’s a pretty cool little trick, isn’t it! By doing so, it makes it appear as if the 20th Century was one of the hottest centuries on record. Professor Richard Muller claims that the data manipulation employed to fabricate the famous Hockey Stick graph shown in Al Gore’s movie “An Inconvenient Truth” would never have survived rigorous peer-review.
Here are a few examples of adjusted historical temperature data, minus “Mike’s trick”:
Interesting that the same people who would like to “disappear” the Medieval Warming Period are wont to use medieval-echoing slurs like “deniers” to demonize those who would dare bring into question their climate change shenanigans, pseudoscience, antics and hysterics.
Let’s take a look at just a few examples of the extreme intolerance and fascistic tendencies of the science deniers and climate change charlatans.
Bjorn Lomborg, an AGW believer, is considered a heretical “climate change contrarian” by the climate change inquisitors. What is Lomborg’s “crime”? Despite his calls for a carbon tax and “the need for humanity to confront global warming,” he dared to suggest calculating a cost-benefit analysis on proposed climate change mitigation efforts. For this, he was run off the University of Western Australia campus (cf. “excommunicated”).
Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) has proposed launching a congressional investigation into whether coal and oil companies are funding “climate deniers.”
Robert F. Kennedy, Jr. penned an article last year that appeared at the Huffington Post entitled “What States’ Attorneys General Can Do About Climate Deniers.”
Freedom denier Lawrence Torcello, an assistant professor of philosophy at the Rochester Institute of Technology, would like to make “the funding of climate denial” a crime:
“The charge of criminal and moral negligence ought to extend to all activities of the climate deniers who receive funding as part of a sustained campaign to undermine the public’s understanding of scientific consensus.”
Al Gore believes “climate change deniers” should be punished, as Breitbart London reported:
Climate change deniers should be punished, Al Gore has said, adding that politicians in particular should be made to pay a price for rejecting “accepted science”. He stopped short of suggesting what that punishment might be.
Professor Richard Parncutt, a Musicologist at Graz University in Austria, went farther and issued a manifesto calling for the execution of prominent “climate change deniers,” stating that “the death penalty is an appropriate punishment for influential GW deniers.” He later retracted his manifesto after the public outcry. What is it with the “manifestos,” huh? But I digress.
There are some eerie historical parallels reflected in the caustic rhetoric of the climate alarmists and eco-fascists. One such episode reminiscent of the sort of scientific denialism we see today with the climate change zealots is that of charlatan biologist Trofim Lysenko. Under the brutal reign of Josef Stalin, Lysenko flourished. Stalin was impressed by Lysenko’s ideas and made him head of the official scientific institutions, including the Soviet Academy of Agricultural Sciences. Stalin praised Lysenko for his allegiance to Marxist-Leninist ideology, and showered him with awards.
Lysenko believed plants of the same species would not compete with one other, and advocated close-planting in the hopes of greater crop yields. These theories are demonstrably false. Naturally, Lysenko’s pseudoscience resulted in very low yields, and proved disastrous for Soviet agriculture. Lysenko and his followers believed they could train wheat to grow in extreme cold. They denied the importance of heredity. The fields of genetics and cybernetics were considered bourgeois, decadent sciences; they were prohibited by Stalin. He jailed scientists who did not comply. Lysenko was so powerful that any scientist that dared criticize him faced arrest, torture and imprisonment in the gulag. Any dissent was reported to the security forces by anyone of a whole army of secret informers employed at every place of work within the Soviet Union.
Now, consider Lysenkoism in the light (or lack thereof) of the following excerpt from an article entitled “Is misinformation about the climate criminally negligent?“:
Many scientists recognize these civic and moral obligations. Climatologist Michael Mann is a good example; Mann has recently made the case for public engagement in a powerful New York Times opinion piece: If You See Something Say Something.
Peter Ferrara further expands on the central role “political correctness” plays in Lysenkoism in his article “The Disgraceful Episode of Lysenkoism Brings Us Global Warming Theory“:
Lysenkoism was “politically correct” (a term invented by Lenin) because it was consistent with certain broader Marxist doctrines. Marxists wanted to believe that heredity had a limited role even among humans, and that human characteristics changed by living under socialism would be inherited by subsequent generations of humans. Thus would be created the selfless new Soviet man.
Lysenko was consequently embraced and lionized by the Soviet media propaganda machine. Scientists who promoted Lysenkoism with faked data and destroyed counterevidence were favored with government funding and official recognition and award. Lysenko and his followers and media acolytes responded to critics by impugning their motives, and denouncing them as bourgeois fascists resisting the advance of the new modern Marxism.
The V.I. Lenin Academy of Agricultural Sciences announced on August 7, 1948 that thenceforth Lysenkoism would be taught as the only correct theory. All Soviet scientists were required to denounce any work that contradicted Lysenkoism. Ultimately, Soviet geneticists resisting Lysenkoism were imprisoned and even executed. Lysenkoism was abandoned for the correct modern science of Mendelian genetics only as late as 1964.
Until Stalin’s death, the science of genetics was not accepted in the scientific institutions of the Soviet Union. Genetic research and computer science was set back decades, as was technology in general. Despite his ridiculous theories, Lysenko was able to hold his position of power and gain influence entirely due to his political leanings. He remained head of the Institute of Genetics from 1940 until the mid-sixties. Furthermore, despite the failure of Lysenkoism, it spread to other communist nations. Maoist China adopted Lysenko’s close-planting method, yielding the same disastrous results as it did in the Soviet Union.
Astrophysics Professor Sallie Baliunas provides yet another disturbing historical parallel to the sort of unhinged behavior and violent rhetoric we hear from the climate change fascists. She describes how superstition, magic, witchcraft, and fear of extreme weather during the 16th and 17th Century led to horrific crimes against humanity during the period known as the Little Ice Age (LIA). (At around the 11:20 min. mark in the video at top)
Around the year 1400, Medieval Europe was experiencing harsh winters, severe storms, and also extreme variability in weather patterns—meaning, there were mild winters, then very severe winters, summer heat waves, droughts, sea storms and floods. The LIA lasted around 500 years, and only abated in the 19th Century (in some places). The most severe period of the LIA lasted between AD 1515 – 1700. The calamitous weather brought about crop failures, starvation, disease, death, and social unrest.
All of this was occurring during the period of the Reformation, Counter-Reformation—and as warfare battered Europe. During one unusually severe storm event that occurred on a several hundred mile front, described as “unnatural” at the time, the superstitions of many attributed the wicked storm to the supernatural. It was well-known at the time that people could “cook weather” with the help of satan. Thus started one of Europe’s darkest chapters of mass executions and witch trials. The brutality was perfectly legal; and undertaken by educated, upper-social strata. These were institutionally legalized executions for sorcery. There were many reasons for the mass executions, but some of them were for “weather cooking.” It is estimated that about 50,000 executions took place all across Europe, and in about every European nation.
There were skeptics who stood against the butchery. But they were often accused of sorcery, in order to squash any debate. So legal philosopher Jean Bodin, in 1580, noted that witchcraft was the most terrible problem facing humankind. Bodin championed the international attack against skeptics like physician Johann Weyer, who argued that the accused sorcerers seemed to be suffering from what he thought were medical conditions. What we now might call “mood disorders.” He also thought it was theologically impossible for satan to work through such people to do his work. Weyer declared that confessions extracted by torture were immoral.
Jean Bodin then accused Johann Weyer of witchcraft. Any hint of skepticism had to be crushed, according to Bodin, and wrenched out of society. Bodin wrote in regards to Weyer: “Any country which tolerates these skeptics will be struck by plagues, famines and wars.”
Now, I’ve paraphrased the gist of Sallie Baliunas’ account of the thousands of people who were put to death and blamed for the severe weather patterns that occurred in 16th and 17th Century Europe as a result of the Little Ice Age. But Baliunas continued to point out that science is the only real way we have to explain nature. And the growth of wealth is the only successful means we have to afford prediction and preparation in order to survive extreme weather; which has always happened, and always will. But science needs special societal protection, according to Baliunas; otherwise, science will just be dialed out, and in its place will be substituted the myths that humans love to create: myths … like “weather cooking.”
Sierra Club President Aaron Mair; who, under questioning by Sen. Ted Cruz at the Senate Judiciary Subcommittee on Oversight in October, refused to acknowledge that there has been no appreciable warming for nearly 20 years; nor would Mr. Mair acknowledge satellite data that flies in the face of his alarmist claims. Instead, Mr. Mair continued to cite the thoroughly debunked “97% consensus” talking point—i.e., a majority of scientists agree mankind is primarily responsible for “climate change.” Aaron Mair claimed the climate is “cooking up.” Furthermore, when asked by Sen. Cruz whether the Sierra Club would openly admit they were wrong if empirical evidence conclusively disproved their claims, Mr. Mair continued to cite the “97% consensus” meme … over and over and over again.