August 9, 2007
Al Gore Slings Bogus Borrowed Charges
Mr. Gore went to Singapore and peddled a phony story, one he appears to have borrowed without attribution. Echoing nearly verbatim Newsweek's recent Hillaryesque hokum that there exists a vast right-wing corporate Global Warming conspiracy, the Delphic Goracle even went so far as to repeat the most brazen among the story's falsehoods - that "deniers" had offered bribe money to potential authors of articles specifically trashing a then-pending IPCC report.
Speaking Tuesday in the island nation, Gore shamelessly repeated point after nonsensical point of Senior Editor Sharon Begley's The Truth About Denial, apparently favoring credit upon neither the author nor the publication. Quite astounding, as the basis of his cerebral petty-larceny was ripped straight from the article's core contention that, in Gore's words, there lurks an organized campaign,
"[by] some of the largest carbon polluters, to create the impression that there is disagreement in the scientific community."
Gore then feigned fair use by cueing up the weary marching tune of the left-wing's own genuine Global Warming conspiracy parade (of which he is the undisputed Grand Marshall) to the Singapore forum:
"In actuality, there is very little disagreement. This is one of the strongest of scientific consensus views in the history of science."
Of course, repeatedly screaming consensus at the top of his lungs won't make the claim any less antithetical to reality. Any more than Begley's attempts to deep-fry the reputations of noted contrarian scientists will prove any less transparent than have Gore's.
But Gore droned on, "borrowing" again from the Newsweek article - this time an observation by former senator Tim Wirth (sorry Tim - no mention of you either) comparing money spent by these evil polluters to that once invested by tobacco companies:
"Some of the tobacco companies spent millions of dollars to create the appearance that there was disagreement on the science [of cigarette smoking's harmful effects]. And some of the large coal and utility companies and the largest oil company, ExxonMobil, have been involved in doing that exact same thing for the last several years."
Curiously, the alarmist-in-chief offered no more facts to support his hyperbolic accusations than did Begley. Were the former presidential candidate not such a studied man, one might even suspect that he accepted and regurgitated these new talking points based solely on their rhetorical face value.
But it was actually this purloined furtherance of the lie furthered by Begley that really hit the Gore gall ball out of the park:
"The deniers offered a bounty of $10,000 for each article disputing the [global warming is "very likely" man-made] consensus that people could crank out and get published somewhere."
Which was strikingly similar to what Begley had written just days before:
"A conservative think tank long funded by ExxonMobil, [a staffer] told [Sen. Barbara] Boxer, had offered scientists $10,000 to write articles undercutting the new report and the computer-based climate models it is based on."
Which itself was recycled hogwash lifted from a slam-piece unsuccessfully peddled by Greenpeace for months in the US late last year, and ultimately picked up only by British tabloids. In its February 2nd article, intentionally published on the same day as the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) and sensationally entitled Scientists Offered Cash to Dispute Climate Study, the Guardian was first to promote the Greenpeace deception that:
"Scientists and economists have been offered $10,000 each by a lobby group funded by one of the world's largest oil companies to undermine a major climate change report due to be published today. Letters sent by the American Enterprise Institute (AEI), an ExxonMobil-funded thinktank with close links to the Bush administration, offered the payments for articles that emphasize the shortcomings of a report from the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)."
The article included a vicious quote from Greenpeace's Ben Stewart referring to the AEI as the "Bush administration's intellectual Cosa Nostra" with nothing but "a suitcase full of cash." Not by chance, Greenpeace ran a similar piece the very same day, which called the AEI Bush's "favorite think tank" (laughably in part because Lynn Cheney is 1 of its 85 senior fellows) and its letters invitations to "attack" the UN report.
To hear tell, the great think-tank was headed for the dunk-tank.
That is, until the allegations were scrupulously proven -- much to the chagrin of all manner of greenies -- to be unmitigated gibberish.
Responding to these frivolous claims, AEI resident scholars Kenneth P. Green and F. K. Weyerhaeuser Fellow Steven F. Hayward proved each one of them to be either "false or grossly distorted." For starters, the AEI does not engage in any form of lobbying. And to imply that the honorarium offered to busy scientists for the time necessary to compile a 7,500-10,000 word analysis of several thousand pages of evolving material is "bribe" (or "bounty") money is utterly absurd.
Dispatching the bogus allegation of being "ExxonMobil-funded," the two scholars pointed out that the oil company's donations represent less than 1 percent of AEI's annual revenue.
Then AEI president Chris DeMuth adroitly eviscerated the accusations of residing either in the pocket of the administration or big oil, citing the institute's distinguished history of alternately criticizing and praising both based solely on merit, adding that:
"Our latest book on [global warming], Lee Lane's Strategic Options for Bush Administration Climate Policy, advocates a carbon tax, which I'm pretty sure ExxonMobil opposes (the book also dares to criticize some of the Bush administration's climate-change policies!)."
Yet most despicable of all were the deceitful uses of the damning words "attacking," "disputing," "undercutting," "undermin[ing]," and "emphasiz[ing] the shortcomings [of]" in the various descriptions of the organization's intent. On balance, the invitation specifically outlined the project's goal of highlighting both the "strengths and weaknesses" of AR4 and its climate models. And, contrary to Gore's claim, there was absolutely no mention at all of "disputing the consensus."
Furthermore, the invitations were sent to a broad spectrum of scientists and policymakers, with no attempt made whatsoever to avoid those with favorable opinions of the IPCC reports. In fact, one of the letters (PDF) quoted in the Guardian article was written to Professor Steve Schroeder of Texas A&M -- a known proponent of the UN Panel. As explained by DeMuth, the institute had:
"canvassed scholars with a range of views on the scientific and policy issues, with an eye to the intrinsic quality and interest of their work rather than to whether partisans might characterize them as climate change ‘skeptics' or ‘advocates.'"
In other words, the accusations leveled by Gore were blindly based on accusations leveled by Begley based on accusations leveled by an anonymous Barbara Boxer staffer based on accusations leveled by the Guardian based on fabricated and disproved accusations spoon-fed to them by Greenpeace.
Astonishingly, it was Gore himself who complained on Tuesday that,
"We live in a world where what used to be called propaganda now has a major role to play in shaping public opinion."
Nobody has ever accused Al Gore of being a self-reflective man..
Marc Sheppard is a technology consultant, software engineer, writer, and political and systems analyst. He is a regular contributor to American Thinker. He welcomes your feedback.