Dire Warnings, Part I: Democrats predict catastrophe 1970–1999

For Democrats, the sky is always falling.  Something disastrous is always around the corner.  Democrats have been saying this for so long it's sort of a joke, and they ought to have little credibility.  But somehow, each and every hollow warning is treated with utmost seriousness by the left, academia, and Hollywood.  Here is the first of a three-part series on how many of these dire warnings have been thrown out there at us, every last one of them never coming to pass:

1970s: The first Earth Day: That darn climate hasn't cooperated with previous dire predictions that humans, CO2, and fossil fuels were causing dangerous warming and the Earth started cooling unexpectedly in 1945.  Therefore, it was time to scare the public, especially the children, with new, more dangerous made up predictions based on the cooling.

We were told that billions of people would die soon because of the rapid cooling and starvation.  We were again told that we would also run out of oil.

Here are a few of the brilliant predictions from 1970:

13 Worst Predictions Made on Earth Day, 1970

"Civilization will end within 15 or 30 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind."  —Harvard biologist George Wald

"It is already too late to avoid mass starvation," —Denis Hayes, Chief organizer for Earth Day

"In a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution… by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half." —Life magazine

"By the year 2000, if present trends continue, we will be using up crude oil at such a rate… that there won't be any more crude oil. You'll drive up to the pump and say, 'Fill 'er up, buddy,' and he'll say, 'I am very sorry, there isn't any.'" —Ecologist Kenneth Watt

"The world has been chilling sharply for about twenty years. If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder in the year 2000. This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age." —Kenneth Watt

1980s: We had a cowboy, dunce, incompetent man, Ronald Reagan.  His economic policies of lower taxes were terrible and would harm the economy.

His harsh language toward the Soviet Union would cause World War III.

Results: The economy experienced almost eighteen years of continuous growth, the Soviet Union collapsed and the Berlin Wall came down without shooting a bullet.

Ronald Reagan was also essentially blamed for AIDS and doing nothing when in fact he did a lot.

Ronald Reagan's Quiet War on AIDS

His FDA accelerated the delivery of lifesaving drugs — providing a template for fighting devastating illnesses today.

1989: That damn scare of people starving from cooling was wrong also, so now it was time for the U.N. to again scare the people, especially the children, on climate change again, so we are back to warming.

As always, almost all the media repeat these dire predictions as if they were facts with no questions asked.  They are pushing an agenda instead of doing their jobs.

U.N. Predicts Disaster if Global Warming Not Checked

A senior U.N. environmental official says entire nations could be wiped off the face of the Earth by rising sea levels if the global warming trend is not reversed by the year 2000.

Coastal flooding and crop failures would create an exodus of ″eco- refugees," threatening political chaos, said Noel Brown, director of the New York office of the U.N. Environment Program, or UNEP.

He said governments have a 10-year window of opportunity to solve the greenhouse effect before it goes beyond human control.

1992: As Bill Clinton was saying how bad the economy was in 1992, the media were a major participant in these bald-faced lies.  Over 90% of the economic coverage was negative while the economy was growing very fast.  The slogan was "It's the economy, stupid."  The media got their way, and Clinton was elected.  The economy grew over 3.5% in 1992.

Media Bad-Mouths the Economy Like It Did in 1992

By election day in November 1992, George H.W. Bush's economy was on its 19th consecutive month of positive economic growth. The economy was nowhere near a recession. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, the recession began in July 1990 and ended eight months later, in March 1991 -- a full 19 months before Clinton's election. Yet, as Investor's Business Daily pointed out, in October 1992, over 90% of the economic news in newspapers was negative. The next month, Clinton won the election. And that month, only 14% of the newspapers' economic news was negative. A 1992 Gallup poll found that a majority of Americans thought we were in a recession.

How big a role did the media play in this misperception?

In the 1997 book "Lessons From the Recession: A Management and Communication Perspective," the authors write, "It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the highly negative view of economy in 1992 was due in large part to widespread misperceptions about its performance and prospects, and that unduly negative coverage on network television played some major role in forming those misperceptions." In short, the media's bad-mouthing of Bush 41's economy shaped Americans' perception of it.

1999: The big scare was Y2K. Was anything going to work when the calendar rolled over to 1/1/2000. It seems that everyone thought that Microsoft, IBM and Apple were smart enough to program their computers for a century change.

I called Y2K the welfare for computer programmers act.

I have worked for a group of banks since 1993 and in 1999, examiners from OCC, The Federal Reserve, The FDIC and state regulators were all over Y2K like pigs on slop. They were very worried that we wouldn't have power on 1/1/2000 so they lectured us about generators and battery-operated calculators. I thought we should tell them that we are always closed on New Years Day and that we had pencils.

On the night of Dec. 31, 1999, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. Cinderella was confused. Journalists were waiting anxiously to see if the lights would be on, the computers would work, gas pumps would be on and stores would be open. Would toilets flush? Then it turned midnight and Australia and New Zealand were fine, China, India, Japan and Russia were O.K. Europe and Africa were still surviving, and the Americas made it. On Jan. 1, the scare was over. We could eat.

Stay tuned for Part II, tomorrow, because the dire warnings from the left go on.

Image credit: Bailey Rae Weaver via FlickrCC BY-SA 2.0.

For Democrats, the sky is always falling.  Something disastrous is always around the corner.  Democrats have been saying this for so long it's sort of a joke, and they ought to have little credibility.  But somehow, each and every hollow warning is treated with utmost seriousness by the left, academia, and Hollywood.  Here is the first of a three-part series on how many of these dire warnings have been thrown out there at us, every last one of them never coming to pass:

1970s: The first Earth Day: That darn climate hasn't cooperated with previous dire predictions that humans, CO2, and fossil fuels were causing dangerous warming and the Earth started cooling unexpectedly in 1945.  Therefore, it was time to scare the public, especially the children, with new, more dangerous made up predictions based on the cooling.

We were told that billions of people would die soon because of the rapid cooling and starvation.  We were again told that we would also run out of oil.

Here are a few of the brilliant predictions from 1970:

13 Worst Predictions Made on Earth Day, 1970

"Civilization will end within 15 or 30 years unless immediate action is taken against problems facing mankind."  —Harvard biologist George Wald

"It is already too late to avoid mass starvation," —Denis Hayes, Chief organizer for Earth Day

"In a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution… by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half." —Life magazine

"By the year 2000, if present trends continue, we will be using up crude oil at such a rate… that there won't be any more crude oil. You'll drive up to the pump and say, 'Fill 'er up, buddy,' and he'll say, 'I am very sorry, there isn't any.'" —Ecologist Kenneth Watt

"The world has been chilling sharply for about twenty years. If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder in the year 2000. This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age." —Kenneth Watt

1980s: We had a cowboy, dunce, incompetent man, Ronald Reagan.  His economic policies of lower taxes were terrible and would harm the economy.

His harsh language toward the Soviet Union would cause World War III.

Results: The economy experienced almost eighteen years of continuous growth, the Soviet Union collapsed and the Berlin Wall came down without shooting a bullet.

Ronald Reagan was also essentially blamed for AIDS and doing nothing when in fact he did a lot.

Ronald Reagan's Quiet War on AIDS

His FDA accelerated the delivery of lifesaving drugs — providing a template for fighting devastating illnesses today.

1989: That damn scare of people starving from cooling was wrong also, so now it was time for the U.N. to again scare the people, especially the children, on climate change again, so we are back to warming.

As always, almost all the media repeat these dire predictions as if they were facts with no questions asked.  They are pushing an agenda instead of doing their jobs.

U.N. Predicts Disaster if Global Warming Not Checked

A senior U.N. environmental official says entire nations could be wiped off the face of the Earth by rising sea levels if the global warming trend is not reversed by the year 2000.

Coastal flooding and crop failures would create an exodus of ″eco- refugees," threatening political chaos, said Noel Brown, director of the New York office of the U.N. Environment Program, or UNEP.

He said governments have a 10-year window of opportunity to solve the greenhouse effect before it goes beyond human control.

1992: As Bill Clinton was saying how bad the economy was in 1992, the media were a major participant in these bald-faced lies.  Over 90% of the economic coverage was negative while the economy was growing very fast.  The slogan was "It's the economy, stupid."  The media got their way, and Clinton was elected.  The economy grew over 3.5% in 1992.

Media Bad-Mouths the Economy Like It Did in 1992

By election day in November 1992, George H.W. Bush's economy was on its 19th consecutive month of positive economic growth. The economy was nowhere near a recession. According to the National Bureau of Economic Research, the recession began in July 1990 and ended eight months later, in March 1991 -- a full 19 months before Clinton's election. Yet, as Investor's Business Daily pointed out, in October 1992, over 90% of the economic news in newspapers was negative. The next month, Clinton won the election. And that month, only 14% of the newspapers' economic news was negative. A 1992 Gallup poll found that a majority of Americans thought we were in a recession.

How big a role did the media play in this misperception?

In the 1997 book "Lessons From the Recession: A Management and Communication Perspective," the authors write, "It is difficult to avoid the conclusion that the highly negative view of economy in 1992 was due in large part to widespread misperceptions about its performance and prospects, and that unduly negative coverage on network television played some major role in forming those misperceptions." In short, the media's bad-mouthing of Bush 41's economy shaped Americans' perception of it.

1999: The big scare was Y2K. Was anything going to work when the calendar rolled over to 1/1/2000. It seems that everyone thought that Microsoft, IBM and Apple were smart enough to program their computers for a century change.

I called Y2K the welfare for computer programmers act.

I have worked for a group of banks since 1993 and in 1999, examiners from OCC, The Federal Reserve, The FDIC and state regulators were all over Y2K like pigs on slop. They were very worried that we wouldn't have power on 1/1/2000 so they lectured us about generators and battery-operated calculators. I thought we should tell them that we are always closed on New Years Day and that we had pencils.

On the night of Dec. 31, 1999, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. Cinderella was confused. Journalists were waiting anxiously to see if the lights would be on, the computers would work, gas pumps would be on and stores would be open. Would toilets flush? Then it turned midnight and Australia and New Zealand were fine, China, India, Japan and Russia were O.K. Europe and Africa were still surviving, and the Americas made it. On Jan. 1, the scare was over. We could eat.

Stay tuned for Part II, tomorrow, because the dire warnings from the left go on.

Image credit: Bailey Rae Weaver via FlickrCC BY-SA 2.0.