Accuracy in Media

CNN and ABC would have you believe the debate on global warming is over; Dr. Richard S. Lindzen of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology agrees. However, while the mainstream media shouts from the rooftop that global warming is manmade, Dr. Lindzen takes the opposite point of view: the debate is over, he says, but anthropogenic global warming (AGW) alarmists lost the argument. The science is here and it shows that humans do not affect climate in any meaningful way.

When Dr. Lindzen is asked if he is a global warming skeptic, he says he is not. “I am a global warming denier,” he corrects his questioners. The reasons for this position of his are many, and Dr. Lindzen expressed his opinion that if others did the research he has done, they would deny AGW as well.

At a recent Competitive Enterprise Institute event, Dr. Lindzen discussed one experience in particular he had with a leader in the eco-alarmist movement who said that global warming was “accelerating.” When Dr. Lindzen asked her for scientific proof of accelerating warming, this leader was unable to provide it. “To think of [global warming] as accelerating is bizarre,” Dr. Lindzen said, using multiple graphs to prove his point. While the media makes a lot of noise about shrinking polar ice caps, Dr. Lindzen’s graphs showed no such problem. Rather, ice caps grow and shrink yearly based on annual climate alone-regardless of long-term climate changes.

Dr. Lindzen professed his frustrations with the mainstream media, which constantly parrots such lines as “the dizzy heights of 1998,” which they claim is the warmest year on record. “The dizzy heights of 1998?” Dr. Lindzen asked, incredulously, at this statement. “We’re talking about one tenth of a degree!” Indeed, true scientists would be hard-pressed to claim that the “record highs” of 1998 were in any way “dizzying.”

Still, Dr. Lindzen noted, many scientists ignore reality in favor of their agendas. He told a story of one oceanographer who agreed that there is not enough data collected yet about the ocean to even run a test or model that would show if global warming were in fact, happening. Still, this oceanographer expressed his belief in global warming-despite his own statement that global warming cannot even be modeled properly at this point in scientific discovery.

“People know the science doesn’t reflect their views,” Dr. Lindzen said, adding that people will “claim anything based on authority.” What Dr. Lindzen meant here is that as soon as scientists, or politicians, have some authority that people won’t question, they will exploit that authority. The IPCC reports are nowhere near as alarmist as some people (like Al Gore) claim, but politicians can make up anything they want, attribute it to the IPCC, and people will believe it, because no one reads the full IPCC reports anyway. According to Dr. Lindzen, authority trumps science in the realm of the alleged global warming.

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