Naomi Oreskes seems to be enjoying a bit of new publicity* as the result of the “Merchants of Doubt” movie premiere (*where some review outlets allow critical comments while others do not), which is based on the 2010 book she co-authored with Erik Conway. But let’s get one thing straight, Oreskes is little more than yet another “cog in the wheel” when it comes to accusing skeptic climate scientists of being paid shills of the fossil fuel industry, enslaved just like all the other cogs to the same single source for the accusation, Ross Gelbspan. In this Part 1 blog post, I’ll re-emphasize this enslavement, and explain the necessity for subsequent posts about Oreskes at the end. [Update appears there now] Continue reading
It’s bad enough that Columbia Journalism Review article writer Robert S. Eshelman made the mistake of labeling Ross Gelbspan as a Pulitzer winner (which the CJR later deleted initially without explanation) in his May 1, 2014 piece, but when Eshelman dutifully recited an oft-repeated narrative of how Gelbspan dived into an investigation of ‘corrupt funding of skeptic climate scientists’ – the narrative itself being one plagued with highly questionable contradictions – he basically handed Gelbspan a shovel to dig a deeper credibility hole. Continue reading
Declarations that skeptic climate scientists knowingly lie about the certainty of man-caused global warming as paid shills of the fossil fuel industry appear devastating…… but dig deep into the details, and all those claims look more like a “Keystone Kops-style” farce. I’ve already covered how the endless repetitions never offer physical evidence proving a quid pro quo arrangement exists between skeptics and industry funders, they only repeat Ross Gelbspan’s 1995 paper-thin guilt-by-association narrative. But now, let’s examine how Gelbspan can’t even keep the story straight on when this so-called “corruption of skeptic scientists” was first revealed. Continue reading
The idea of man-caused global warming is especially effective because it can be pounded into practically everybody’s head via an easily memorized 3-point mantra. Global warming believers need only to counter dry recitations of skeptic science material with assertions about the numbers of ‘IPCC scientists’, declare this to be the settled consensus opinion, then claim there is leaked memo evidence proving skeptics are paid industry money to “reposition global warming as theory rather than fact” – hoodwink the public, in other words. Obviously, reporters aren’t then obligated to give fair balance to skeptics. In a nutshell, settled science, crooked skeptics, reporters may ignore skeptics, bam, bam, bam.
A timeline of where, how and when that “reposition global warming” phrase first showed up is something global warming believers would hate, since it might prompt a total loss of faith in the validity of that central accusation point. The loss could cascade into questions of whether the science actually is settled in the face of skeptics’ science-based criticisms, and people may also start to wonder about the ‘fair media balance’ idea, since they might not readily recall instances where skeptics actually received that from mainstream media reporters. Continue reading
In Al Gore’s NY Times review of Gelbspan’s 2004 “Boiling Point” book, he said “Gelbspan’s first book, ‘The Heat Is On’ (1997), remains the best, and virtually only, study of how the coal and oil industry has provided financing to a small group of contrarian scientists“. The executive director of Greenpeace said in 2009 that Gelbspan was a ‘lone voice‘ who uncovered the corrupt influences of the fossil fuel industry. But in a 1996 midyear summary of their accomplishments, Greenpeace International claimed this particular accolade for themselves….. without a solitary mention of Gelbspan. Continue reading
Since I have a small run of “Greenpeace USA née Ozone Action” blog pieces going here, and since I had some fun at Ross Gelbspan’s expense a few years ago using a line out of the old “Columbo” TV series, here’s one more “sorry to bother you, there’s just one more thing…” examination of who claims ownership over the ‘leaked industry memos’ that supposedly prove the corruption of skeptic climate scientists. Continue reading
In my prior piece about the spread of Ross Gelbspan’s accusation that skeptic climate scientists are paid by the fossil fuel industry to “reposition global warming as theory rather than fact“, I barely skimmed the surface of the sheer number of repetitions of it. The first time I threw the phrase into an internet search, a virtual ocean of sycophant repetitions could be seen, I forget how many pages it ran even without the trick of putting the phrase in quote marks. Three+ years later, I can almost count the total number of people who have every appearance of actually witnessing Gelbspan’s famous ‘leaked/secret coal industry’ memos on the fingers of two hands. Each person’s involvement in the matter is beset with crippling problems. Continue reading
My first blog piece on Gelbspan’s unexplained “Singer/Idso name switch” between the hardcover and paperback editions of his “The Heat is On” book told how his supposedly ironclad accusation had a significant problem from its inception. Now let’s see how Gelbspan’s accusation repetitions contain an odd embellishment. Continue reading
Dive into science-based criticisms of man-caused global warming or the methods used to gather and assess evidence (or lack thereof) for it, and you are soon neck-deep in very complicated analysis about why the issue appears not to be settled. The accusation that skeptic scientists are paid to lie about the issue is not hard to follow at all, basic scrutiny of it reveals inconsistencies that only lead to more problems.
Let’s start with how Ross Gelbspan’s most widely repeated accusation line initially contained a famous skeptic name, Dr S. Fred Singer, which was later swapped for a different name without a word of explanation. Continue reading