One of the tactics employed by those who labour in the service of Fox News Channel (fair and balanced my arse) is for the “news” part of the programming to talk up a story, which is then taken up by the “opinion” part to heat the story further and try and get other media outlets to pick it up. This tactic is now being used by the obedient hackery of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre.
As I previously noted, the Mail’s resident peddler of climate change denial David Rose produced an article on Sunday trying to tie the latest release of apparently stolen emails from the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit (CRU) to the Dacre press’s greatest perceived foe, the BBC. This, as I observed, contained a significant amount of fiction.
So it was no surprise that no other paper ran with the story. But Dacre clearly wants to keep the allegations on the boil, so across to the pundit at the head of the cab rank it goes, this being Melanie Phillips, who by the most fortunate of coincidences believes climate change to be, more or less, not happening, or at least not in the way that the vast majority of scientists have concluded.
Mel takes the Rose guff as data, much as Littlejohn does with Mail copy. She recycles Rose’s “one journalist said” line as authoritative, although as I pointed out, the “one journalist” was Rose himself. She tells that “A particularly egregious claim by proponents of anthropogenic global warming [Mel does big words to sound important] theory is that ‘the science is settled’”.
It would indeed be egregious if the claim had been made, but as any fule kno, the science is never settled, and so it has not. Then comes the further assertion that “scientists sceptical of AGW have been denied a voice”, when this too has not taken place, although the weight placed on the authority of the denial lobby may have lessened. But Mel has her conclusion already written.
“The leading UK research unit on global warming ... had spent £15,000 on seminars for top BBC executives in an apparent bid to block climate change sceptics from the airwaves” she thunders, the use of the word “apparent” keeping Mel and her editor the right side of defamation. But this is purest tosh, believed and peddled only by the likes of James “saviour of Western civilisation” Delingpole.
So when Mel asks “Such revelations might be thought to be a scandal of a high order, no?” the answer is indeed no. Mel, you’re still beyond barking. Rose’s story isn’t worth the newsprint that has already been wasted on it. The science is never settled, but the consensus doesn’t agree with you. Think about it, if you can open your mind for a moment.