Guest post by Robert Zimmerman
If anyone had any doubt that the global warming movement is undergoing a serious collapse, this so-called news article from Spiegel Online, entitled “Naked bodies and a new Messiah: Green groups are trying to sex up climate change,” probably lays that doubt to rest. Key quote:
Environmentalists and scientists are concerned about the massive drop in public interest in the topic over the last year. Now they are looking for new strategies to turn the tide. They’re searching for so-called “mind bombs” — highly emotional images that reduce a complex problem down to one core message.
Sadly, the article never asks the fundamental question: What do “mind bombs” have to do with facts, data, and proving your theories are correct in the real world?
The answer of course is obvious: Nothing.
Every tactic outlined in the article above is either a superficial public relations stunt or an effort to spin facts so emotionally that the general public will be mesmerized into doing whatever the global warming activists want.
The article’s author, Axel Bojanowski, describes in very enthusiastic terms a variety of tactics the environmental movement is considering in order to influence the public debate. These include:
- An emotional appeal, such as using dramatic pictures (a dying polar bear, a drowned city) to change minds.
- The search for a new Messiah to replace Al Gore.
- A new scientific language. To quote:
“The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change also wants a more careful use of language. The international body sent scientists a code of conduct concerning their interactions with journalists. Scientists should avoid using words such as “risk” and “uncertainty” in interviews, the letter read, to prevent misunderstandings — and to keep from doing the climate protection movement any further damage.” [emphasis mine]
- And finally, a new kind of journalism, where journalists become a sort of propaganda wing of the environmental movement:
Climate activists have begun directing millions in funding into training programs for environmental journalists, with the goal of encouraging what’s known as “advocacy journalism.” This type of reporting is “pretty much dead in Europe,” says Markus Lehmkuhl, a media expert at Berlin’s Free University. British science journalist Alexander Kirby warns that journalists who remain neutral on the issue could endanger the cause of climate protection, but many of his colleagues refuse to take sides.
In the case of this particular story, Bojanowski seems particularly eager to be a propagandist. For example, I find it very revealing how he describes the horrific 10:10 environmental video, where young children were blown to bloody shreds for refusing to join an environmental campaign.
One commercial in a campaign by the British-based environmental organization 10:10 showed a teacher blowing up two students who were skeptical about cutting their carbon emissions, with fountains of blood spraying the others in the class. Other 10:10 videos have the same fate befalling recalcitrant office workers and footballers. But the campaign proved a dud — it sparked massive protests and was quickly withdrawn.
It is very clear Bojanowski never saw the 10:10 video, as everything he describes took place in one commercial, not several as he implies. To understand how badly he describes this “public service” ad, it is worth watching it again:
All in all, I’m not sure what disgusts me most: the desire of environmentalists to propagandize us, irrelevant of the facts, or the unwillingness of a professional journalist to do his job and ask some basic skeptical questions. Either way, the inability of these ideologues to deal with facts and openly debate the issues face-to-face provides us a clear signal of the coming collapse of their movement.
cross-posted at behindtheblack.com