A headline I thought I’d never see

It seems that the media down under is turning on newly appointed climate change commissioner Tim Flannery and his ideas. We need a Flannery FAIL blog to keep track of all of these. Have a look:

Read the full article here

This question posed to Flannery sent me reeling for the sheer irony of the question coming from an MSM inquiry:

ABCNewswatch yesterday:

Dear Prof Flannery, Is your continued support of the Blitzkrieg theory for the extinction of Australia’s megafauna (an increasingly marginal theory lying outside the current consensus of mainstream science that claims humans were solely responsible for the extinction of Australia’s megafauna) and apparent ignorance of the overwhelming evidence supporting the long-term role played by changing climate in the decline of the megafauna, a sign that you are a climate change denier?

Wow.

h/t to Marc Hendrickx

Advertisements

74 thoughts on “A headline I thought I’d never see

  1. Flannery is also on record (in a recent interview) saying that if humans were to cease all carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels, it would take 1,000 years for there to be any impact on temperatures. Not exactly a great sales pitch for the new “carbon tax” that is meant to “save the planet”.

    Newly appointed, he has single handedly lost the propaganda war already. Looks like the media have turned against him.

  2. Not Homosapiens who caused Blitzkreig, rather a distant stronger weapon toting and more intelligent cousin of ours, Neanderthal man. Early Homosapiens didn’t have the physique or intelligence to have a major impact, only later when intelligence and weapons technology developed did he start to dominate the food chain.

  3. ABC, does your comment indicate that in fact that the sharks are now out and eating their own kind?

  4. Just goes to show that the Colonials do not have a monopoly on the lunatics. I feel for my friends down under having to put up with such incompetance.

  5. The progressive loss of local megafauna was initiated well before the accepted period of human continental colonisation. Hence, the data suggest that humans were unlikely to have played any role in the extirpation of the affected local megafauna during that interval. From Quaterary Science Review April 2011.

    Amazing if true, this would need to be confirmed, but would completely smother the human caused extinction thesis covered in his book “The Future Eaters”. That’s science folks, hang around long enough and someone will find a flaw in your argument.

  6. Of corse they may just be turning on him in order to get someone who’s able to produce a more nuanced and media-friendly message.

  7. It seems that this question of megafauna extinctions produces some kind of mysterious effect on researcher’s brains, causing them to become simpletons in their quest for an either/or answer. This argument over whether it was caused by humans or climatic changes ignores the obvious answer that it was both. Thus to use the North American example, while the climate had changed many times before the megafauna extinction did not happen until it those earlier effects were compounded by human hunting and other activities (like fire).

    To use a modern fairy tale, if polar bears were now stressed out by climate change effects, it would be much easier for humans to wipe them out.

    Here’s what that article said that allegedly dismisses the human factor:

    “The progressive loss of local megafauna was initiated well before the accepted period of human continental colonisation. Hence, the data suggest that humans were unlikely to have played any role in the extirpation of the affected local megafauna during that interval.”

    Read carefully. The loss was “initiated” before the “accepted period of human… colonization.” First, that accepted period could be wrong (as the North American story was until recently). But if we assume it is correct, all this says is that those losses (apparently) started before human arrival. In fact, when read closely this paragraph is actually quite stupid. It basically just says that humans did not play “any role in that extirpation” before they got there. Duh. Nobel Prize?

    So, while this study suggest that humans could not have played a role in the beginning of these megafauna declines, it says nothing about the final extirpation. Nothing.

    So, as much as it makes me gag to agree with Flannery on anything, I think that this headline and this article is based on a gross oversimplification which is not supported by anything. And I find it rather convenient that so many researchers have similarly jumped on the climate change cause of megafauna extinctions since climate change became such a rewarding topic.

    When will they get to New Zealand to try to spin those extinctions into some climate story? Good luck with that.

  8. Flannery was a staggering choice of the Australian Government to head up their Climate Change propaganda machine. In the past he has made outrageous predictions that have failed to happen. He constantly wanders off on a frolic of his own like again recently publicly embracing Giai and talking of climate change as a religion. Never mind the hard core sceptics its the average bloke on the street now sees him as barking mad. The growing feeling is that if Flannery is the most reliable spokesman the Government can find to explain it all to us then something stinks.

    Australians are trusting and loyal people by nature, naive even. But once they realise they have been had, as they are increasingly starting to do, they turn angry and will punish those who have let them down. Just look to two weeks ago and the NSW election.

    Flannery is one of the best allies we sceptics have.

  9. “A headline I thought I’d never see”

    Not to rain on your parade, Anthony, but Cut and Paste in the Opinion pages has a long record of bucking the MSM trend by mocking hypocrisy and lunacy of the Left and, especially, inane babble of climate alarmists. So, inevitably, Flannery is a regular target! It’s (as Simon of Australian Climate Madness says of The Daily Bayonet) “always a great read”. (Confidentially, I have a personal theory that Andrew Bolt has a hand in Cut and Paste!)

  10. Whatever killed the beasties and altered the climate at that time (48,000 years ago) it wasn’t man and it wasn’t the Ice Age as recorded in the Vostok cores. Earth would not start warming until some 36,000 years later. Neanderthals who might have been there would also have gotten equally scrooged.

  11. It has been non-PC to suggest that aboriginal groups (is that non-PC?) were not the stewards of the earth the Suzukis would like us to believe. Historical records show that the locals wiped out the indiginous species on a first-come, first-eat basis. The easier to kill, the faster they went. You do not have to follow many human invasions to see how the middens change with time, reflecting the loss of initial food sources. The Lewis and Clark groups said that in the area of natives there was little food; the best was in the contested places between tribes, like the DMZ zone between North and South Korea.

    Of course new arrivals wiped out the local megafauna. In Canada/the US you just have to look at the shrinkage of bison over a few thousand years to see what happens when a hungry and on-foot group do for dinner: big and slow go first.

  12. Next thing you know, they will be wanting humans to pay money to the closest surviving descendants of those animals.

  13. George says:
    April 11, 2011 at 1:45 pm
    Don’t rubbish our Tim (he is doing a good enough job himself as evidenced by today’s post by Andrew Bolt )

    George-

    I wasn’t able to use the URL that you provided and I’d like to read Bolt’s column. Any suggestions?

    IanM

  14. A headline here in the States may also surprise you if any carbon taxes are tried and if the price of gasoline goes any higher . The media is unusually quiet about gas prices and the cost of food. The populace will turn on the President and so will the media just as it seems they are now going against Flannery.

  15. “……the overwhelming evidence supporting the long-term role played by changing climate in the decline of the megafauna, a sign that you are a climate change denier?”

    Excellent!

    I’ve always been baffled how stone age man managed to eat so much meat in North America.

    [peer reviewed stuff]
    Blame man.
    Blame climate change.
    Blame climate and man.
    Blame ET.

  16. Doug Proctor,

    Right you are. The Lewis and Clark record is the best and most spectacular documented case of the effects of inter-tribal neutral grounds, where no one hunted. And popular mythology – and the historical revisionists called ‘Conservation Biologists’ – pretend that what they and other people saw in those unhunted areas was typical.

    And what you are describing with ‘big and slow go first’ is called ‘optimal foraging theory.’ The best documented examples of that which I know of are analyses of the midden piles around San Francisco Bay which show that when people first got there they were eating big mammals like sea lions but by the time Euros got there they were eating shellfish and anything else they could find (and the sea lions only survived on rocky islets where hunting them was extremely difficult). That is an extreme example because of the extremely high human population densities there.

  17. It’s funny how at the beginning of the 19th century wildlife in Africa was not wiped out by man. Man, afterall, came from Africa so he had plenty of time to wipe out the wildebeest, elephants and hippos and rhinos. He did not! He navigated his way to North America and Australia and decided that this was the time to wipe out the millions of megafauna. Commonsense always trumps the models.

  18. In Canada/the US you just have to look at the shrinkage of bison over a few thousand years to see what happens when a hungry and on-foot group do for dinner: big and slow go first.
    ====================================================

    Well, us of European descent did hasten the end of the free roaming bison, and thank goodness they did!!! It would give a whole new meaning to “highway hazards”.

  19. Paul Deacon said @ April 11, 2011 at 1:15 pm

    “Flannery is also on record (in a recent interview) saying that if humans were to cease all carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuels, it would take 1,000 years for there to be any impact on temperatures.”

    Fortunately, when the fossil fool Flannery ceases his carbon dioxide emissions it will take considerably less than a thousand years for him to be well and truly forgotten :-)

  20. “Tim Flannery reminds me of Indiana Jones, but with the credibility to match the flair” (Robyn Williams)

    Mmmnn – Indiana Jones? That’s a new one Tim.

    But David Bowman doesn’t quite agree about the credibility part:

    “More recently, in the attempt to exterminate megafauna such as buffaloes from regions of the Northern Territory, humans on their own – even with helicopters and guns – haven’t been able to do it. How could Aborigines, armed basically with only a spear and a boomerang?”

    But I guess if they had Indiana Jones type leather whips that might have been more effective?

    Good on ya Tim. Can some-one pls do a paint box reconstruction of Tim Flannery as Indiana Jones with felt hat and leather whip in hand? No offence. I do not like to ridicule but I do like a laugh sometimes.

    Seriously folks, do Tim’s views affect his present role as Australia’s Climate Commissioner? Make up your mind when reading about Tim’s Future Eaters here:

    http://www.abc.net.au/science/future/theses/theses.htm

    (NB. It is an ABC Science production)

  21. Further to my last comment there is the ‘naive’ argument. All bases covered!

    “The African “anomaly” is typically explained by long-term coevolution of megafauna with humans such that the prey and predator are matched evenly, thereby creating trophic equilibrium. By contrast, the extra-African megafauna are characterized as completely naive to the human predator and therefore vulnerable to overkill and the disintegration of food webs (8, 15).”
    http://www.pnas.org/content/99/23/14624.full

    Naive saber-toothed tiger anyone? ;O)

  22. Once the “sharks” (i.e. MSM) get a taste for warmist blood, they’ll suddenly realise that there’s an awful lot of very exposed soft underbellies just ripe for a nibble.

    Or to put it another way, when the MSM suddenly realise that making a mockery of global warmists sells newspaper/airtime – and they realise just how easy it is to make of mockery of this crowd – nothing is going to stop them.

  23. Flannery has also supported the idea that humans have been changing earth T since agriculture started, making hte earth warmer by releasing c02 since 10,000BC. So the great warm interglacial is human driven, apparently.

    In the book the future eaters, he also says Australia shouldnt bother about mineral resources and exploraiton, because it is a ‘one off’ that once ‘gone’ wont support Australia’s economy. In other words, like most left-leaning academics, he doesnt understand the nature and size of mineral resources, that they are cyclical and most mineral commodities cant in fact ‘run out’, one just mines slightly lower grade ore, which increases exponentially in size with successively lower grade ore. For the next 10,000 years Australia’s mineral resources will continue-we have at least 10,000 years of, for example, aluminium.

    His support of the human impact on Australia’s megafaunal extinctions is well documented, and so that has got him in trouble with the ‘climate change everything’ academics, and a taste of what skeptics of AGW put up with. Interesting to see how it pans out.

    With Flannery, the old curse of all social systems, from politics to science, applies: the more extreme one is, the more one tends to rise within a social group, and the more one then departs from science and common sense.

  24. If man was alive around 65 millions years ago Warmists would have blamed man for the extinction of the dinosaurs.

  25. A couple of points:

    1. Flannery is a moron, but he’s right about megafauna run to extinction by human hunters and their dogs and rats. Of course climate evolution may have assisted the process, especially by lowering sea levels to allow humans to colonize Australia and Tasmania so early in human prehistory in the first place.

    2. The myth that aboriginal peoples lived in perfect harmony with nature is the PC orthodoxy as the Green/Labor government ask Australians to surrender their current lifestyles for a “sustainable” one. Nothing is more sustainable then living naked in tall grass. Well, unless you start to eat all the little critters around you. So MSM attack on Tim for not towing the Noble Savage Orthodoxy is just a case of the though police regulating ideological purity within their own party.

    3. The media has given Tim Flannery’s moonbatry an amazing pass for years now. This man has some truly dangerous ideas about how to organize modern society more like ant societies to limit dissent and individual liberties. It much convenient for us to immerse ourselves into the emergent super-organism of Gaia without all the noisy debate that occurs in a democracy.

    4. This is what happens when media bias favours pseudo-scientific humbug by protecting it from exposure for years, then suddenly the moonbats rises to national prominence where their glaringly crazy POV can no longer be covered for by friendly hack media. The MSM helps create the Tim’s and Al’s and Barack’s of the world by not doing its journalistic duty and vigorously exposing their ideas to the light of day early on in their careers. Instead, the Flannery’s of the world arrive at high position with ideas that have never under gone serious scrutiny. And we wonder why so many of the left’s leaders and IDEAS totally fail.

  26. @ King of Cool April 11 4:37 pm
    “Can some-one pls do a paint box reconstruction of Tim Flannery as Indiana Jones with felt hat and leather whip in hand?” No whip, but have you seen Simon’s effort?
    http://www.australianclimatemadness.com/
    http://www.australianclimatemadness.com/2011/03/abbott-pounces-on-flannerys-flannel/

    “No offence. I do not like to ridicule but I do like a laugh sometimes.” The nutball is costing Aussie taxpayers dearly, King. He’s fair game.

    “(NB. It is an ABC Science production)” Did you mean “Warning” rather than “NB”?

  27. A new noun, the Bear suggests:

    `To Flannery’:`To speak whatever utter nonsense as will keep one popular with the left-progressive-book-buying mob.’

  28. Megafauna have a right to survive and flourish without the terrible predations of mankind. I propose that the United Nations should step in with a “Save the Megafauna” fund.

    This charity for a noble cause can raise funds from the good people of the world to create natural reserves were Megafauna such as the Mastadon and the Giant Wombat can frolic in peaceful co-existence with the rest of the natural world.

    These reserves could also be used to educate the young on how Megafauna live in a natural balance with nature – a lesson we could all learn. I’m sure that the sight of a female Mastadon giving birth in a natural setting would be quite awe inspiring – especially for the young and impressionable.

    I’m rather surprised that it has taken this long for this idea to be be raised. where’s the WWF, where’s Greenpeace, where’s PETA? If you can save a whale – surely you can save a Giant Wombat.

    We must act before the plight of the Megafauna get’s any worse, I implore you all – act now before it is too late… Save the Megafauna!

  29. “The world as we know it is doing a flip flop…
    George Monbiot’s own science bites him in the rear…..”

    One just might begin to wonder if George has been pushing global warming to aid in moving the nuclear option forward by the back door – by getting rid of coal and oil – so that people would have to turn to nuclear – once they discovered wind didn’t work. Then, after japan he had to come clean and announce where he stood on nuclear.

  30. ABC NEWS WATCH is not anti ABC. We are in fact a true friend of the organisation. The sort of true friend prepared to tell you that:
    “yes, come to think of it, your bottom does look awfully big in that skirt.”
    The sort of friend prepared to tell you: “yes, your breathe does smell rather off, perhaps you should try a mintie.”
    The sort of friend not inclined to provide an honest assessment when you ask “How do you think I went?”
    The sort of friend that, thanks to pointing out your most obvious of flaws no longer gets invited around for dinner; but one happy to know the thanks will come in the long term.

  31. ABC NEWS WATCH is not anti ABC. We are in fact a true friend of the organisation. The sort of true friend prepared to tell you that:
    “yes, come to think of it, your bottom does look awfully big in that skirt.”
    The sort of friend prepared to tell you: “yes, your breathe does smell rather off, perhaps you should try a mintie.”
    The sort of friend inclined to provide an honest assessment when you ask “How do you think I went?”
    The sort of friend that, thanks to pointing out your most obvious of flaws no longer gets invited around for dinner; but one happy to know the thanks will come in the long term.

  32. I have a Native American Ancestor- my Granma. My wife too, has a notable one-
    Pocahontas. Direct descendant. I’ve had Greenies and New Agers go all gooey over
    our native blood. As if somehow imbues us with this extra spirtual/land/connection
    Ok. they are right. My Granma:
    1. Single handed-for the most part, ran a 5,000 acre cattle ranch.
    – close to the land.
    2. Could ride ,shoot, and rope, with any man. More land connection.
    3. Devout Lutheran- there’s the spiritual, Ok?
    4. She was politically active- a Republican…
    I’ve had the above Greenies and New Agers stare blankly at that announcement.
    kind of like a Goldfish in a tank…
    I love all this unravellling.

  33. I can’t tell you how sick to death I am of reading about scientists passing themselves off as idiots. I’ve decided to embrace it for my own good health.

    Don’t be shy, guys, if you’re an idiot, flaunt it. Look where it got the Team? They’re cheerfully misguiding the economies of all the major global powers and getting paid for it.

  34. Latitude says: April 11, 2011 at 4:39 pm
    The world as we know it is doing a flip flop…
    George Monbiot’s own science bites him in the rear…..
    http://www.monbiot.com/2011/04/04/evidence-meltdown/

    The link is to a debate/discussion between Monbiot and Dr Helen Caldicott, an idol of the anti-nuke movement. I’m surprised she’s still around and pounding the drum.

    Many years ago as a charter pilot, I flew her to Iowa where she was giving a speech. We had an interesting discussion, as I had just left the Air Force where I was a B-52 pilot. She didn’t convince me, and from the article above, she wasn’t able to convince George, ether.

    Monbiot did an admirable dissection of her assertions –
    http://www.monbiot.com/2011/04/04/interrogation-of-helen-caldicotts-responses/

  35. When will they get to New Zealand to try to spin those extinctions into some climate story? Good luck with that.

    Actually climate change is a major reason for many species in NZ being on the brink. It’s too cold for them.

    The Kauri, for example, would like it much warmer. Like it used to be.

  36. Relationship management with Journalists, is reminescent of the Scorpion and the Frog story, or perhaps more akin to parental relationships with animals that eat their young.

    More of theses guys (like Flannery) will find out just how fickle Journos can be, as the AGW theorem fragments.

  37. guam says: April 12, 2011 at 12:37 am

    Relationship management with Journalists, is reminescent of the Scorpion and the Frog story, or perhaps more akin to parental relationships with animals that eat their young.

    More of theses guys (like Flannery) will find out just how fickle Journos can be, as the AGW theorem fragments.

    If you are a warmist and have been inviting in the sharks to feed by doling out handfulls of warmist propaganda for years. Don’t expect the sharks to stop coming when you run out of pro-propaganda, nor be surprised that if you don’t have anything to feed them, that they turn to the next most juicy offering in the sea.

    But to be more serious, the MSM live on a diet of natural calamity – they need the earthquakes, floods, fires, droughts, famines to sell newsprint/airtime. They also needed global warming to fill that gap between the “there’s a flood, no one died” … and the other 90% of the article which their readers wanted to read.

    The MSM need alarmists — it doesn’t matter whether they are warming alarmists, cooling alarmist, or just all-round-any-climate-will-do alarmists they are always on call to add those extra vital column inches to spice up an otherwise largely information void as the next natural disaster unfolds.

    So, what will win out? Making hay at the expense of the climate alarmists whose position is now so absurd, that even the readers of the most downbeat tabloid know it, or do they keep their pet “experts” on their pedestals ready for the next disaster?

  38. When asked about Lindzen, he admits his science is imppecable and highly valued by the climate community. Unable to fault his credentials as a scientist he opts for a political smear: “The problem with Richard Lindzen is his politics is to the right of Andrew Bolt and Genghis Khan.” This despicable coward brings disrepute to science as a whole, and Australias government should be ashamed to lend him any credence, much less appoint him to a supposedly impartial position.

  39. Wow!

    A white male is using Euro-centric science to blame the Aborigines for mass extinctions! Call out the PC police!

    On a related note, I’ve given some thought to the notion of early man causing the mega fauna extinctions. Imagine these early hunters sitting around a camp fire, knowing from experience that a broken leg or cracked ribs can be a death sentence.

    Thag suggests, “Let’s pass on hunting caribou, reindeer, elk, or any of those scrawny critters. Let’s go after one of those huge mastodons! You know, the ones big enough to injure or kill everyone in the hunting party!”

    So, early man was clever enough to extirpate the mega fauna, but so stupid they went after the most dangerous game around? The entire theory fails the “smart enough to come in from the rain” test.

  40. Randy says: April 11, 2011 at 2:09 pm
    ‘..even naive..’ I don’t think so Randy, just polite and allow everyone their voice for a bit.

    Tim Flannery’s bizarre, unscientific & globalist rant

    Marc,
    the usual quip is ‘darling, here, I really like this skirt on you. Aka your arse (fanny I believe in the US of A) looks great in this.’
    It is akin to the gals suggesting levis for their fellas.

    And
    King of Cool says: April 11, 2011 at 4:37 pm
    Na, we have real AND real fine men and women in the Oz outback. They work in the livestock, grain and and mining industry. Spare us from this pretension marketed by the ABC and the Gaia group.

    Bolivia enshrines natural world’s rights with equal status for Mother Earth
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/apr/10/bolivia-enshrines-natural-worlds-rights?INTCMP=SRCH

    And finally, The Australian nailed Monbiot’s sojourne against Caldicott. Fancy a journalist not checking out the primary source data for all those decades. And perpetuating millions to live in poverty because they lacked reliable electricity. And had to put up with intermittent solar power [experiments] on them. Cheap tourism I guess.
    Monbiot just wants the coal industry shut down, he’s using Calicott and she, he. Same mind, same argument, same sharing of a double bed.

  41. Allen Graig (of TVOntario) is in conversation with Tim Flannery April 18, 7pm at the Toronto Reference Library to talk with him about his new book “Here on Earth”. When these climate change boffins (thanks Dave Springer) show up its like a love-in where everyone listens to the guru. I wonder if Allen will be asking Flannery pants some of the tough questions:

    1. What about the non linear aspect of CO2 IR aborption, the diminishing returns? (at 390 ppm CO2 has absorbed most of the IR it can)

    2. As water vapour has a 96% share of the GHG pie and is the more forceful greenhouse gas, why is it called the greenhouse effect and not the greenhouse water vapour effect?

    3. Although many times warmer and colder than now, climate has been between the lines of natural variability since the end of the Younger Dryas over 10,000 years ago, what is the concern?

    4.Can you explain how the atmospheric heat gain from the downward radiative transfer of IR energy by the man-made CO2 molecule, whose atmospheric concentration is one per 10,000, is going to dangerously warm the planet?

    The academic conviction of dangerous man-made global warming is impressive. To think we hominids can willfully change or “save” the Earth’s climate is (IMO) typical of our conceit.

  42. Actually, John W

    The evidence is that megafauna game was truly the basis of early human culture because to bring down a single beast was far more energy efficient than say hunting ducks or rabbits. Beside many of the refinements in tool making needed to hunt small game hadn’t been developed yet, such as an accurate bow and arrow. Hunting big animals is more dangerous than hunting small game, but the rewards are huge and life for human males, in particular, was very cheap. The megafauna survived many climate shifts, the only universal correlation with their extinction is the emergence of hungry pack-hunting homo sapiens upon the scene.

  43. I think this may be a little off topic, but I think it is a sign of the times in Aus, a very bleak economic future.

    http://www.smh.com.au/business/shell-shelves-refining-at-clyde-20110412-1dbxn.html

    From the article…

    “Shell looks set to end its refining operations in NSW, labelling the Clyde refinery “no longer competitive” compared with new “mega-refineries” in Asia, which puts hundreds of jobs at risk.

    Clyde and the Gore Bay Terminal in Greenwich, Sydney, will be turned into a fuel import terminal.”

    I find it rather ironic that there is a terminal in Gore Bay.

  44. The claim that climate caused the Pleistocene extinctions is sheer nonsense, advocated only by the statistically incompetent. Everywhere homo sapiens went, the megafauna disappeared within decades or centuries (no, Neanderthals never made it to Australia or the Americas). Who wiped out the thylacines in Tasmania? The dodo in Mauritius? The elephant bird in New Zealand? These animals that had survived climate oscillations for millions of years–dozens of megafauna in North America–disappeared within centuries of the arrival of humans. The human population increases rapidly with the availability of easy game, and the game quickly disappears. It’s as simple as that. Exceptions (like Irish elk) are rare.

    I’ve never heard climate caused megafauna extinctions used as an argument against AGW before, and I find it bizarre–you lose all credibility. –AGF

  45. “his politics is to the right of Andrew Bolt and Genghis Khan.”

    The fact that the professor uses this old cliché shows how little brain power he actually has. How does he assess Genghis Khan’s political beliefs, other than by assuming that anyone who conquers and kills millions of people ruthlessly must be right-wing? Were Stalin or Pol Pot right-wing?
    Was Genghis noted for a conservative adherence to royalty, or aristocratic privilege? Nope, he encouraged promotion based on merit. Was Genghis noted for supporting an established religious hierarchy or for having intolerant, racial views? Nope, he was particularly tolerant of religious and ethnic diversity.
    What makes Andrew Bolt right-wing? He claims, correctly, to be conservative, true, but a man can be conservative yet not right-wing.
    Even if Richard Lindzen had rather right-wing political opinions, why should that invalidate any of his scientific work? We might assume, for instance, that Wernher von Braun had (for a time, at least) right-wing opinions; did that necessarily invalidate his research on rocketry?
    Of course, Prof. Flannery was merely speaking in code: for him, and for most of his supporters, “right-wing” is just another term for “evil”.

  46. University of Melbourne media release, June 8 2001:

    Australian scientists have found that humans were to blame for the extinction of Australia’s giant marsupials, reptiles and birds, the so-called ‘megafauna’. Dr Richard Roberts and Professor Tim Flannery have dated the extinction at around 46,000 years ago. “We believe that in the absence of humans, the giant marsupials would still be in Australia today.”

    I’ve only been reading WUWT for a year and a half. I had missed this from way back when or dismissed it outright at the time.

    I picture this being said in front of a large crowd at which time everyone bursts into fits of laughter and walks out, the ‘scientists’ to never be heard from again. That can be or should have been the only reaction to this.

  47. A G Foster asks, “Who wiped out the thylacines in Tasmania?”
    Well, the Aboriginal Tasmanians, during forty thousand years or so, certainly didn’t wipe out the thylacines; when Europeans came, however, with both guns and herds of sheep which looked mighty attractive to thylacines…

  48. Perry says: April 12, 2011 at 12:08 am
    Thanks for the links on Neanderthals… Confirms some of my own suspicions.

  49. Animals that were safe from stones were killed by spears. Those that were safe from spears were killed by arrows, and what arrows couldn’t reach, bullets finished off. Obviously the stupid Europeans were continuing the aboriginal trend, and it’s perfectly true that without humans and their dogs and rats, the giant marsupials would still be alive. Hunting, habitat encroachment and exotic species introduction are the true environmental catastrophes, and those who deny it make warmistas look scientific. We know humans hunted mammoths and sabretooths.

    Do you people really think the climate did something in the Holocene that it had never done before? –AGF

  50. The most ancient skeletons of humans found so far in Australia were of a robust type similar to Neanderthal man, followed by Homo sapiens an estimated 60,000y ago.

    Perhaps the earlier robust arrivals in Australia had a higher Neanderthal gene content but were swamped by Homo sapiens after they had consumed the ‘easy pickings?

    As scientists learned more about Neanderthal man, they realized he did not fit in with the consensus theory at all. Apes were supposed to get smarter as their brains gradually evolved in size from about 400 cc to modern man’s 1350 cc brain. It was difficult to explain how a Neanderthal man, with his 1740 cc brain, could fit the theory.

    Neanderthal skeletons were more often than not found in graves with hands neatly folded, surrounded by fossilized pollen. This is a pretty clear indication that they were buried with flowers in some sort of funeral ceremony. Only humans do that. Furthermore, they found tools (and possibly a musical instrument) associated with some of the Neanderthal remains. Every indication was that he was as fully human as Homo sapiens. Since then, Neanderthal has become a bit of an elephant in the room amongst paleoanthropologists!

  51. If Neanderthals had ever arrived in Australia we would expect the Aborigenes to have preserved Neanderthal genes, and they have not. Homo sapiens was on the rise before access to the south east islands had opened up, and there is no evidence for Neanderthals in SE Asia, let alone Australia. Caucasians are far more likely than native Australians to have Neanderthal genes. –AGF

  52. A G Foster says:
    April 12, 2011 at 12:41 pm
    “If Neanderthals had ever arrived in Australia we would expect the Aborigenes to have preserved Neanderthal genes, and they have not. Homo sapiens was on the rise before access to the south east islands had opened up, and there is no evidence for Neanderthals in SE Asia, let alone Australia. Caucasians are far more likely than native Australians to have Neanderthal genes. –AGF.”

    While the discovery of Lapedo’s Boy, and the more recent DNA analysis indicates that Europeans have between 1 – 4% Neanderthal genes, this does not mean that the more gracile Aborigines of African descent had to have interbred with the already incumbent more robustly built ‘Neanderthal type’. Don’t forget that Australia is a huge continent and it is quite possible that the two populations never met in any significant numbers.

    The fact that no Neanderthal types have been found in SE Asia yet does not prove they were not present, it just means that, due to the low probability of finding ancient remains, none have been found yet.

  53. Mooloo says:
    April 11, 2011 at 10:42 pm
    When will they get to New Zealand to try to spin those extinctions into some climate story? Good luck with that.

    Actually climate change is a major reason for many species in NZ being on the brink. It’s too cold for them.

    The Kauri, for example, would like it much warmer. Like it used to be.

    ———-

    I was actually referring to the extinction wave that hit there when the Mauris arrived.

  54. Not all anthroprogenic extinctions involved hunting. The introduction of the dingo (asian wolf) by the aboriginals decimated the Tasmanian devil and thylacine from the Australian mainland. More recent introductions since white settlement such as the fox, cat and cane toad have severely impacted native fauna. The increased fire regime of the aboriginals would have favoured some species and sent others to extinction.

  55. dlb

    Dingos were dogs, which helped the first people hunt, so their effects cannot be so neatly separated. The full human effect included humans, dogs, and fire.

Comments are closed.