The TV show where my character gets punched out by a climate scientist

UPDATE: The connection in Crownies to me is unmistakeable now, see update below.

Stranger than fiction shades of Ben Santer:

“Next time I see Pat Michaels at a scientific meeting, I’ll be tempted to beat the crap out of him. Very tempted.” – Dr. Ben Santer in a Climategate email

I was aware of this TV show last week as a couple of alert readers brought it to my attention, but unfortunately I couldn’t comment on it for two reasons: 1) The draconian ABC (Australia) copyright policy prevents it from being viewed in the USA, so I couldn’t see the scene or get the dialog and 2) If I commented on it, people would say I was the only one who sees the comparison, and that it was self serving. Tim Blair of the Daily Telegraph solves both problems. He transcripts the dialog and writes:

Idealistic young lawyer: “He’s a lead author for the IPCC. He’s a climatologist who put together a global temperature reconstruction going back 12,000 years!”

Legal secretary: “So he’s a geek.”

Idealistic young lawyer: “He’s been on Four Corners.”

Legal secretary: “A huge geek.”

Idealistic young lawyer: “And on Oprah.”

Legal secretary: “Slightly cool. And the alleged assault?”

Idealistic young lawyer: “He punched a climate change sceptic, James Watt. Watt runs a blog, CO2 Fraud, a bunch of anti-science crap.”

Legal secretary: “Sounds like a fun day in court. You haven’t had a win yet, have you?”

Continue viewing to see the impressive physical differences between doddery old denier and punchy professor, who must be the only climatologist in history with a $250 haircut.

Former Greens candidate Clive Hamilton loved it:

At last, the ABC has broadcast a program that accurately reflects the debate over climate science.

Yep – cool guys versus jabbering idiots who deserve a beating!

The program in question is the episode of Crownies aired last Thursday night. In it, DPP solicitor Richard Stirling (played by Hamish Michael and one of Crownies’ real stars) reluctantly has to prosecute an eminent climate scientist who allegedly punched a climate denier in the face. The denier James Watt (played with disconcerting accuracy by Richard Healy) had been harassing Professor Tim Coghburn for years, turning up at every public event to demand answers to his inane questions lifted uncritically from some denialist website.

Hamilton didn’t watch very carefully. The Watt character – possibly a dig at Anthony Watts – runs his own site. And the climatologist is Steve Coburn, not Tim Coghburn. Clive can’t even get TV credits right.

When Watt, after disrupting a public lecture, followed Coghburn out of the venue haranguing, insulting and poking him in the chest, the scientist finally lost his rag and lashed out. Who hasn’t wanted to do that?

=========================================================

Read it all here at Tim Blair’s column

What is ironic is that when I gave public lectures in Australia, the only person who disrupted them was reef scientist turned activist Ove Hoegh-Guldberg.

Strangeness abounds. I’m not sure what to make of this. At least there is some comfort, according to my friends in Australia, the Crownies TV show appears to be tanking in the ratings. In a way though, the Watt character is an everyman, representing those who have  doubts about the state of the science.

For anyone in Australia, here’s the episode, number thirteen.

Here’s the preview writeup.

=======================================================

UPDATE: I still can’t watch this show, but commenter “pwl” did, and adds some transcript. It seems unmistakeable now that I am the inspiration for the character:

From the show at about 15:20 into it.

“Was he aware that the modern temperature record was utterly corrupt? They put thermometers next to air conditioning units and on airport tarmacs.” – Fictional James Watts

“So you think a few thermometers at airports accounts for the late 20th century rise in recorded temperatures globally?” – Fake Idealistic young lawyer DPP solicitor Richard Stirling

“With El Nino thrown in, yes.” – Fictional James Watts

“And the rise in ocean temperatures, the receding glaciers, the earlier spring flowering, the earlier bird and animal migration, the collapse of arctic summer ice cover?” – Fake Idealistic young lawyer DPP solicitor Richard Stirling

“Was that in my police statement?” – Fictional James Watts

“Not really.” – Fake Idealistic young lawyer DPP solicitor Richard Stirling

“Oh, then why ask it?” – Fictional James Watts

“I’m demonstrating how upset professor may have been with your line of questioning. It goes to motive.” – Fake Idealistic young lawyer DPP solicitor Richard Stirling

“Hm.. right.” – Fictional James Watts

Oh, the professors book was being launched at the meeting where the fictional punch took place. The funny part is that the book is entitled “Boiling Frogs”.

Boiling Frogs aka Richard Stirling, fictional lawyer.

Fictional Watts.

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kim
October 4, 2011 9:20 am

No pressure.
========

October 4, 2011 9:26 am

A rewriting of history based on a distortion of the Aldrin real-life punching episode …was John Cook involved?

Ask why is it so?
October 4, 2011 9:27 am

Australia is very divided at the moment because of the impending Carbon Tax and everyone is getting on the band wagon. Your site has enormous credibility and the Warmists are getting desperate. As an Australian I hope you wont hold it against us. Sorry.

PaulH
October 4, 2011 9:30 am

Should we add “terrible television sit-coms” to that ever-growing list of miseries caused by global warming? ;->

Doug Proctor
October 4, 2011 9:32 am

Despite show events like this, Romm and Revkin, among others, say that the MSM is supportive of the skeptic side. No matter what you see in movies or on TV, the radio and in print that dismisses legitimate questions with foolishness – like the recent explanation in Science News that the last 9 year of non-warming are the result of Chinese coal aerosols, small volcanic eruptions and the removal of oceanic heat to unknown places – the warmist believers say that as a whole the MSM is against them. So is Obama and all governors, big and small, as far as I can determine.
The knee-jerk, pro-CAGW stance of the media has had me tearing my hair out for years (even as I pay to watch the latest environmental disaster movie: who doesn’t like things blowing up on the big screen?). But perhaps R & R recognize something we skeptics don’t: that all this MSM warm-mongering is nothing at all but fashionable flair of the day. To skeptics it is significant, but perhaps the depth of belief in the MSM is so minor – and the warmists know this – that it could evaporate in a minute.
The warmists need a passion-fuelled crusade. Perhaps R & R correctly recognize shows such as this as signs of a teenage crush, bound to end badly for the one in love.

October 4, 2011 9:36 am

Ask why is it so? says:
October 4, 2011 at 9:27 am
……….. Your site has enormous credibility and the Warmists are getting desperate. As an Australian I hope you wont hold it against us. Sorry.
===============================================
Ask, I can’t speak for Anthony, but we Yanks have our own burdens to bear just as you Aussies do. The palpable desperation is win, both for Anthony and skeptics in general. No one believed they’d go away without shrill protestations. For forcing the misanthropist alarmists to resort to this sort of propagandizing, I can only say, good for you all! Keep it up!

Latitude
October 4, 2011 9:37 am

At last, the ABC has broadcast a program that accurately reflects the debate over climate science.
=======================================
and at the same time, told even more people about WUWT………LOL

More Soylent Green!
October 4, 2011 9:37 am

At least on ‘Celebrity Death Match’ you might get a fair fight. I remember the one where Hillary had it out with Monica Lewinsky, but I don’t remember who won. Come to think of it, that might have ‘The View.’

Abetter Show
October 4, 2011 9:38 am

Anthony, a far better show than Crownies is ABC produced “RAKE.” A far less than orthodox barrister working in the Aussie justice system. It has gotten critical raves and is now on DIRECTV here in the States.
http://www.directv.com/DTVAPP/content/premiums/audience/rake
But congratulations on being sourced for character. You are clearly making a difference in alarmist life!!

October 4, 2011 9:39 am

The gender and race stuff is especially annoying. Old white males with Asperger tendencies?
Well, nearly all the people who are deeply interested in this issue on BOTH sides are older white male nerds. Youngsters and minorities will obediently chant the Cultist slogans that the Estabishment media feeds them, but they’re not interested.
Females are rare in these circles, but oddly enough they’re distributed exactly equally, one major participant on each side. Margaret Mead co-founded the Carbon Cult. Sallie Baliunas co-founded the scientific side. And Judith Curry is a major Lukewarmer, if not a co-founder of the species.

Mike Bryant, the plumber
October 4, 2011 9:40 am

They obviously don’t know Anthony. He would never harass anyone. The image of Anthony stalking and then poking anyone in the chest, for any reason whatsoever, is so far-fetched that it’s laughable.
Anthony’s gentle persistence is paying huge dividends in truth.
Keep it up, Anthony, they’re running scared…

October 4, 2011 9:41 am

Perhaps a warning to the warming brigade. They are getting frustrated. This was to warn them not to get violent.

October 4, 2011 9:46 am

Oh, yeah, that “James Watt” fellow.
Doesn’t he run that “James’ Up With That” website?
His rant “Up with that!” always cracks me up.
🙂

Elftone
October 4, 2011 9:48 am

Any publicity is good publicity, Anthony – take it as a compliment :). The other thing is that, under the law (wherever it may be), no amount of provocation, real or imagined, justifies violence. The “cause” has shot itself in the foot, again. Hands up who is surprised? Didn’t think so :).

Al Gore's Holy Hologram
October 4, 2011 9:53 am

No resemblance to reality anyway…just like climate models

Mike86
October 4, 2011 10:02 am

I wonder how Australian law works if that episode made you feel offended or threatend?

Alan the Brit
October 4, 2011 10:03 am

So, let me recapitulate. The “Climate Scientists”, who are cool, calm, calculating, logical, rational people (allegedly), insult us deniers, denegrate us, cast aspersions upon our sex & ancestry, call us Flat Earthers, dinosaurs, show us & our children being blown up & spattering our body parts & innerds all over our colleagues, now they show us being assaulted! Tell me once more, who has the moral high ground here, I am conffused!

Roger Longstaff
October 4, 2011 10:09 am

Make a video where you thump him backl!

Steven Kopits
October 4, 2011 10:11 am

I have to admit to being shocked that an Australian program would appear to make a thinly-veiled attempt to suggest a physical attack on a known blogger. I don’t know what Australian standards are, but in the US I would imagine the producers would be in pretty hot water. I would expect ABC corporate to issue an apology/distancing letter from this sort of thing pretty quickly.

Gravelly
October 4, 2011 10:13 am

Ah! The taxpayer funded AB stinking C at it’s best/worst! Maintaining the rage on behalf of every leftist crackpot in town. Funded by all hard working Australians, producing lies and bullshyte on a daily basis. A bloody disgrace!

JPeden
October 4, 2011 10:17 am

At last, the ABC has broadcast a program that accurately reflects the debate over climate science.
Right, Clive, as the Progressives have been incessantly trying to warn us by proclaiming that everyone else is really screwed up, their own Ids have actually taken full control and are finally freed to speak for themselves!

Ray
October 4, 2011 10:32 am

They might have bad humor but they do have interesting parades… Bikini Parades that is… Guinness World Record too…

October 4, 2011 10:38 am

James Watt was a Scottish engineer who designed and built the first reliable steam locomotive which ran on the Stockton to Darlington railway in the early 1800’s, moving coal from the mines. Somewhat ironic that the name of a major pathfinder of the industrial revolution should be given to a fictional climate denier, but bearing in mind the historical and scientific illiteracy of fringe greenies, I doubt that the allusion was intended.
REPLY: You are probably right, what with the invention of the steam engine being centric to the climate debate and all that, I’m sure you can find lots of examples where James Watt and Climate Science issues are tied together today and present them here. /sarc – Anthony

Peter Miller
October 4, 2011 10:43 am

“A bunch of anti-science crap”
The knee jerk warmist reaction to anyone who drives a truck through their ‘science’, or for that matter politely points out errors, distortions and omissions in that ‘science’.
As a tactic, it is very sound, as it provides the average warmist with a good reason not to debate with someone who would obviously confuse him with the facts.
It seems like Anthony has become the equivalent of the infidel incarnate or the great heretic to the leaders of the AGW cult.
One day, not too far in the future, when people look back and wonder why so many believed the AGW nonsense, they will wonder why so many politicians were duped by what will then be aptly described – this time correctly! – as “A bunch of anti-science crap”

Tim Clark
October 4, 2011 10:47 am

I can see it now. A new Bond movie. Good plot. Spy investigates an illegal plot to blow up the IPCC headquarters.
Who are you?
Watts,…..James Watts
Has a good ring to it.

TheGoodLocust
October 4, 2011 10:49 am

Yeah TV shows are always supporting AGW in subtle and unsubtle ways. My recent experience was with the show “Terra Nova.” I decided to give it a chance and was quite off-put by inaccurate environmentalist BS.
Apparently in the near future we un-invented the catalytic converter and CO2 levels are so high they are debilitating to human health.

Septic Matthew
October 4, 2011 10:57 am

This is television.

William Sears
October 4, 2011 10:57 am

Interesting that “James Watt” was chosen. Is this a reference to the scientist and inventor for whom the unit of power is named, or a reference to the U.S. Secretary of the Interior under Ronald Reagan. The former would be a compliment, but might undermine the attempt to picture skeptics as unscientific. The later would be considered more insulting by the environmentalists who so strongly disliked him. It is also possible that the AGW supporters do not know who either of these gentlemen are. In any case a man is defined by the quality of his enemies as much as his friends.

October 4, 2011 10:57 am

I didn’t care enough to actually watch the show.
But why did they have to jump back 65 million years?
Was it not possible to time jump back just a million years or so?
Was it not possible for them to time jump into the future?
Are they arguing that we’ve messed up the environment so much that it will never recover?

October 4, 2011 11:13 am

But who has 90 million viewers, without a penny in legally enforced financing?

DavidS
October 4, 2011 11:15 am

Anthony, are you likely to do a UK tour as you did in Australia?
REPLY: If somebody invites me, and can help cover travel costs, sure – Anthony

pwl
October 4, 2011 11:18 am

The best way to hit the climate scientists who’ve got it wrong is with the knock out paper punch! Hit them with hardened science papers! That observational data lands a considerable blow.
Always remember two things:
If your experiment needs statistics, you ought to have done a better experiment. ” – Ernest Rutherford
No theory is carved in stone. Science is merciless when it comes to testing all theories over and over, at any time, in any place. Unlike religion or politics, science is ultimately decided by experiments, done repeatedly in every form. There are no sacred cows. In science, 100 authorities count for nothing. Experiment counts for everything. ” – Michio Kaku, a professor of theoretical physics at City College of New York
Now just where are the experiments that back up the alleged CO2 Climate CAGW Doomsday Rapturists claims? That’s what I’d like to know. Without experiments to replicate how can anyone possibly test their alleged claims?

naturalclimate
October 4, 2011 11:19 am

James Watt was a bumbling interior secretary from 1981 to 1983. He was regarded as many as anti-environment, I just remember him being not very politically astute.

dak
October 4, 2011 11:21 am

@grumpyoldmanuk
James Watt was a very great Scottish engineer, but he didn’t build any steam locomotives, his were all stationary engines.
You are thinking of the Stephensons, a couple of English engineers, and not to be confused with the Stevensons, who were a family of Scottish lighthouse engineers, and one of whom invented the Stevenson Screen with which were are so familiar, in its many and varied locations.
There, I hope that’s clear.

Doug Leach
October 4, 2011 11:26 am

Don’t forget that James Watt was Ronald Reagan’s first Secretary of the Interior, and was widely reviled by environmentalists, at least here in the US. Not sure how widely he was known or remembered outside the States, including down under. Maybe a Freudian slip to conflate the two names.

William
October 4, 2011 11:28 am

I suppose if unaltered observational data does not support the extreme dangerous AGW paradigm an alternative approach would be to use a TV program to disseminate propaganda.
Some of the proposals related to the extreme AGW paradigm such as converting food to biofuels at three to five times the cost of fossil fuels and with a net increase or a less reduction in net CO2 emissions is ludicrous. The fact that large companies are cutting down virgin tropical forest to grow food to convert to biofuels is madness. The fact that the price of some basic foods has increased over 100% due to the biofuel initiative will result in malnutrition and if the program continues starvation in third world countries…. I have no appropriate word or pithy phrase to label the last consequence. If one yells fire in a crowded movie theater and organizes others to simultaneously yell fire in a movie theater, it is natural that people would over react and that there are real dangers to over reaction.
I has initially primarily concerned with the science. I believe now however I have responsibility to speak up.
I would highly recommend reading the following books each of which provides a different view point of the extreme AGW movement, of the consequences of the extreme AGW movement, and a summary of the world renown scientists who have specifically stated that observations and scientific analysis in their specialty does not support that extreme AGW will happen or that even if it did happen that the consequences will not occur.
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/7058406-the-real-global-warming-disaster
The Real Global Warming Disaster: Is the Obsession with “Climate Change” Turning Out to Be the Most Costly Scientific Blunder in History? By Christopher Booker.
http://www.amazon.com/Deniers-Renowned-Scientists-Political-Persecution/dp/0980076315
The Deniers: The World Renowned Scientists Who Stood Up Against Global Warming Hysteria, Political Persecution, and Fraud**And those who are too fearful to do so
http://www.amazon.com/Storms-My-Grandchildren-Catastrophe-Humanity/dp/1608192008
Storms of My Grandchildren: The Truth About the Coming Climate Catastrophe and Our Last Chance to Save Humanity

October 4, 2011 11:36 am

OT. Another CME this afternoon

D. Patterson
October 4, 2011 11:36 am

James Watts is…Cold Finger

October 4, 2011 11:41 am

OT. Direct Hit

More Soylent Green!
October 4, 2011 11:48 am

grumpyoldmanuk says:
October 4, 2011 at 10:38 am
James Watt was a Scottish engineer who designed and built the first reliable steam locomotive which ran on the Stockton to Darlington railway in the early 1800′s, moving coal from the mines. Somewhat ironic that the name of a major pathfinder of the industrial revolution should be given to a fictional climate denier, but bearing in mind the historical and scientific illiteracy of fringe greenies, I doubt that the allusion was intended.
REPLY: You are probably right, what with the invention of the steam engine being centric to the climate debate and all that, I’m sure you can find lots of examples where James Watt and Climate Science issues are tied together today and present them here. /sarc – Anthony

Oh, I thought they were alluding to former Secretary of the Interior James G. Watt.

CodeTech
October 4, 2011 11:49 am

TheGoodLocust:
Interesting that about catalytic converters. According to Wiki:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Catalytic_converter

A catalytic converter (colloquially, “cat” or “catcon”) is a device used to convert toxic exhaust emissions from an internal combustion engine into non-toxic substances. … which reduces carbon monoxide(CO), unburned hydrocarbons(HC), and oxides of nitrogen(NO, NO2, & N2O) to produce carbon dioxide(CO2), nitrogen(N2), and water(H2O).[1]

I’ve always said that the ideal exhaust from a car is harmless CO2 and water…
Anyway, this whole thing is a typical tactic of the left: the Morality Play. Some great examples abound, including All In The Family, and many others where the main characters exhibit undesireable behavior and are constantly punishing themselves for it.
Look at how Tina Fey almost single-handedly shaped the public’s opinion of Sarah Palin. It got to the point where the majority of people WITH an opinion don’t even realize their opinion was shaped by someone who wasn’t even the person they had the opinion about!
The original Star Trek was a thinly veiled platform for morality plays. And to think I grew up watching that stuff…

Dr. Dave
October 4, 2011 11:53 am

I’m still waiting for a pay-for-view cage match between “Fightin'” Ben Santer and “Hurricane” Joe Bastardi. Now that’s entertainment!

Dave Wendt
October 4, 2011 12:12 pm

With the ever growing demand for program content U.S. makers of broadcast and cable TV programs have pillaged the world for programs and program premises to ripoff for the American market. I’m having a hard time trying to think of one they grabbed from Australia. It could have to do with the draconian copyright protection rules Anthony mentioned but I can’t help suspecting that they made rules incredibly strict to cover the fact that even if there were no rules at all there probably wouldn’t be many people lining up to steal much of it anyway.

Rozza
October 4, 2011 12:15 pm

Sorry I stopped reading at ‘self serving’ – what did I miss?

Ken Harvey
October 4, 2011 12:15 pm

Lampooned on television. You have arrived Anthony!

Max Hugoson
October 4, 2011 12:21 pm

Slain! By the JAWBONE of an ASS! Pity.

pwl
October 4, 2011 12:24 pm

“I’m not sure what to make of this.” – Anthony Watts
Well it’s a form of fame. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, allegedly.
From the show at about 15:20 into it.
“Was he aware that the modern temperature record was utterly corrupt? They put thermometer next to air conditioning units and on airport tarmacs.” – Fictional James Watts
“So you think a few thermometers at airports accounts for the late 20th century rise in recorded temperatures globally?” – Fake Idealistic young lawyer DPP solicitor Richard Stirling
“With El Nino thrown in, yes.” – Fictional James Watts
“And the rise in ocean temperatures, the receding glaciers, the earlier spring flowering, the earlier bird and animal migration, the collapse of arctic summer ice cover?” – Fake Idealistic young lawyer DPP solicitor Richard Stirling
“Was that in my police statement?” – Fictional James Watts
“Not really.” – Fake Idealistic young lawyer DPP solicitor Richard Stirling
“Oh, then why ask it?” – Fictional James Watts
“I’m demonstrating how upset professor may have been with your line of questioning. It goes to motive.” – Fake Idealistic young lawyer DPP solicitor Richard Stirling
“Hm.. right.” – Fictional James Watts
Oh, the professors book was being launched at the meeting where the fictional punch too place. The funny part is that the book is entitled “Boiling Frogs”.
Boiling Frogs aka Richard Stirling, fictional lawyer.
Fictional Watts.

October 4, 2011 12:27 pm

While the reference to “James Watt” may indeed be Reagan’s Interior Secretary, as others have pointed out, he was probably not widely known (even in the states). And that was 30 years ago. James Watt the inventor has a tenuous connection (industrialization), but the closeness to Anthony seems to be more the point the program was trying to make. At least to this colonial’s eyes.

Dave Wendt
October 4, 2011 12:30 pm

Dr. Dave says:
October 4, 2011 at 11:53 am
I’m still waiting for a pay-for-view cage match between “Fightin’” Ben Santer and “Hurricane” Joe Bastardi. Now that’s entertainment!
Have you ever seen Joe with his shirt off? “Fightin’” Ben would end up as “Greasespot” Ben in short order.

Manfred
October 4, 2011 12:31 pm

Such complete loss of journalistic value typically has a network behind the scenes. Who are the owners of ABC ?

More Soylent Green!
October 4, 2011 12:48 pm

Manfred says:
October 4, 2011 at 12:31 pm
Such complete loss of journalistic value typically has a network behind the scenes. Who are the owners of ABC ?

Journalistic ethics don’t apply to entertain-type programming like this. See ‘The Simpons’ and ‘South Park’ for further reading.

Athelstan.
October 4, 2011 12:50 pm

ABC is government funded.
Listen Anthony, not all Aussies watch ABC and believe it, it’s like the BBC over here – full of BS merchants and government shills.
However, the truth hurts and they’re kicking back – sore losers, us and the Aussies have other words for it but this is a [realist] ‘family’ blog.

john
October 4, 2011 12:51 pm

Bill Mckibben is going to crash the Occupy Wall Street protests, which are aims at the BANKS! not global warming. This is an attempt to co-opt a very legitimate movement to further his and the banks goals. I bet Al Gore will crash the f-ing thing too and turn it into a bowel movement.
http://www.350.org/en/OWS
I am going to make a piñata in their image.

Mac the Knife
October 4, 2011 12:53 pm

Crownies is probably viewed as a science reality show, by the Aussie Greenies. Like much of their CO2 pscyence, they make it up as they go……

TheGoodLocust
October 4, 2011 12:53 pm

Wilson
Well, they “discovered” the time rift (parallel universe, in the past) so they couldn’t choose the destination. However, they ARE arguing that the environment is so bad we won’t recover.
I expect my science fiction shows not to make such horrible scientific errors. If you can’t explain it then just reverse the polarity and throw the word “quantum” in it – don’t tell me that we burned enough fossil fuels to make breathing difficult and don’t show the entire planet covered in a blanket of thick smog.

D. J. Hawkins
October 4, 2011 1:03 pm

Dr. Dave says:
October 4, 2011 at 11:53 am
I’m still waiting for a pay-for-view cage match between “Fightin’” Ben Santer and “Hurricane” Joe Bastardi. Now that’s entertainment!

The price per minute would be stunning, since I’m sure it would be over before the bell stopped vibrating. Santer wouldn’t wake up for a month!

Jean Parisot
October 4, 2011 1:08 pm

I guess punches aren’t as bad as spontaneously exploding. It is a shame that the we don’t have a visual record of the pillory and derision directed at the critics of the Piltdown Man for comparison.

Ursus Augustus
October 4, 2011 1:26 pm

I had caught bits of a few episodes of Crownies ( slang for Crown Prosecutors) and thought it the usual sort of tosh aimed at the ABC’s InnerBurban, yuppie audience but just lame rather than preaching. And then I watched a scene where the ‘idealistic young lawyer’ interviewed the skeptic ( who as victim is a witness for the prosecution) and launches into this sneering little anti skeptic line. Won’t be bothering to watch anymore. The show is just symptomatic of the sort of prissy, PC attitudes that infest the ABC but more sadly symptomatic of the utter lack of diversity in characters in ABC drama. It is just a sign of the sad surrender to eco iconography so widespread on the liberal/left side of the political divide. The dramatic equivalent of the hockey stick graph. Proof that suckers are still born every day.

Gary Swift
October 4, 2011 1:34 pm

Lampooned on television. You have arrived Anthony!
Hmmm, I can picture a spoof version where the ebil climate skeptic is named Darth Watts.
Darth Watts: Where is the climate data?
AGW Lawyer: These aren’t the data you’re looking for.
At the end of the show Darth Watts gets to blow up the planet. (ebil laugh, fade to black) Muahahaha.

October 4, 2011 1:37 pm

here is how it works.
First they tell you the debate is over. That means stop talking. When you continue to talk they will employ the following tactics: they will dehumanize you, they will ignore you, they will comapre you to criminals. the next step is they begin to engage in “virtual” violence. At Lamberts he will disemvowel commeters. Then we have “No pressure” and now we have this.
I comment on this more at length here
http://judithcurry.com/2011/10/02/wedges-reaffirmed/#comment-117783

Three
October 4, 2011 1:47 pm

Honestly, this reminds me of the youtube video where Buzz Aldrin punches a moon landing conspiracy theorist in the face after the guy calls him “a coward and a liar.”

Sadly, with the entertainment industry being more inclined to be left-wingers, it’s only natural that they’d portray the skeptic as the loon, instead of vice-versa.
OT note: Don’t insult Buzz Aldrin.

John Whitman
October 4, 2011 1:51 pm

Anthony,
You have been slimed by worse media hit-and-run artists than those minor league media hacks at the ABC; who probably just don’t know any better cause their mommies done reared them badly.
John

October 4, 2011 1:56 pm

@three – Buzz made the trip. Global warming has not occurred. It may, but that has yet to be proven. That is the difference.

Andy
October 4, 2011 1:58 pm

Why bother posting anything about it?
It’s just daft, naive, and not particularly witty.
However, it would have been great if a sketch-show had tried to send-up Joe Romm. You would have been able to hear Joe’s explosion of anger from the other side of the planet if he watched the show!

Dr. Dave
October 4, 2011 2:01 pm

Dave Wendt says:
October 4, 2011 at 12:30 pm
“Have you ever seen Joe with his shirt off? “Fightin’” Ben would end up as “Greasespot” Ben in short order.”
____________________________________________________________________
That was exactly my point. Besides…Santer and Bastardi are the same age. Pat Michaels is 5 years older than Fightin’ Ben Santer. I figure ol’ Fightin’ Ben should pick a fight with someone his own age who holds an opposing view on climate change. You gotta admit…it would be worth the money to watch it even if the event didn’t last long.

October 4, 2011 2:16 pm

From the show’s website (my emphasis):

Richard is prosecuting a case in court, this time with a good chance of winning. But he is not happy. He has to prosecute his climate scientist hero Tim Coghburn for assault, after Coghburn punched a persistent climate denialist, James Watt. Watt is an annoying gadfly and Richard detests all he stands for. And the fiasco is made worse when Richard sees Coghburn is being represented by Richard’s old, much admired law lecturer. Richard makes a stuttering start in court, and the defence QC makes Watt look unreliable and a bit of a goose. Part of Richard wants to lose because of his environmental concerns, but part of him needs a win. Richard finally cross examines Tim Coghburn and gets to reconcile his needs. He leads Tim through a series of questions as put by James Watt and his ilk, stirring Coghburn’s anger as he airs the simple rebuttals. Eventually Tim blurts out that yes, he did hit James Watt, and it felt great. Richard has his win, Tim is fined, and Watt still comes out of it looking like an idiot.

If it were England, a trip to the defamation court would have been in order.
Anyway…a filmed story that has no connection with reality and portrays the “villain” using basic, demeaning stereotypes? Where did we see that already

Sam Glurg
October 4, 2011 2:16 pm

It is available for anyone to download at isohunt.com and probably other torrent sites.

October 4, 2011 2:31 pm

john says:
October 4, 2011 at 12:51 pm
The “Occupy Wall Street” protests have no legitimate purpose, so having it hijacked by the CAGW crowd is no loss.

October 4, 2011 2:52 pm

I’ll give you a subtle hint as to where this James Watt character may have come from.
“He may have a twin brother named Anthony Delingpole”
The Delingpole half would account for the aggression?

Rosco
October 4, 2011 2:56 pm

Alan the Brit forgot those 2 great Australian journalists- one who wanted to tattoo deniers and the other that suggested gassing would be very refreshing.
Anyway, I thought the whole climate change argument was all about Watts ?

David Jones
October 4, 2011 3:20 pm

dak says:
October 4, 2011 at 11:21 am
@grumpyoldmanuk
James Watt was a very great Scottish engineer, but he didn’t build any steam locomotives, his were all stationary engines. dak says:
October 4, 2011 at 11:21 am
@grumpyoldmanuk
James Watt was a very great Scottish engineer, but he didn’t build any steam locomotives, his were all stationary engines.
You are thinking of the Stephensons, a couple of English engineers, and not to be confused with the Stevensons, who were a family of Scottish lighthouse engineers, and one of whom invented the Stevenson Screen with which were are so familiar, in its many and varied locations.
There, I hope that’s clear.
Is that semantic or pedantic?

LazyTeenager
October 4, 2011 3:30 pm

Oh, the professors book was being launched at the meeting where the fictional punch took place. The funny part is that the book is entitled “Boiling Frogs”
——–
Why is boiling frogs allusion funny to Anthony Watts?
REPLY: Because my arch-blog nemesis is Joe Romm at Climate Progress, and he writes about Boiling Frogs (along with other over the top silly claptrap memes) on a regular basis. – Anthony

dak
October 4, 2011 3:32 pm

@David Jones says:
Is that semantic or pedantic?
You choose. Either way, it’s correct

wes george
October 4, 2011 3:39 pm

Congratulation, Anthony.
The greatest badge of effectiveness that a blog could be award use to be to inspire anti-blog blogs. But you’ve up the ante. Now the greatest honour possible is to have a government-funded propaganda service create prime-time television fiction (in English no less!) based upon your work.
You’re a legend, mate!

John Whitman
October 4, 2011 4:11 pm

Anthony,
I haven’t been keeping an exact track, but of the five continents I think you have been only slimed by hit-and-run media supporting alarming AGW on three continents. Right?
Paraphrasing the rock group Meatloaf’s song,

“Now don’t be sad
‘Cause two three out of three five ain’t bad
Now don’t be sad
‘Cause two three out of three five ain’t bad”

John

Rational Debate
October 4, 2011 4:19 pm

Anthony, or anyone else who wants to watch the episode, there are a number of places you can find it on the web, such as http://watchseries.eu/serie/crownies or http://www.1channel.ch/watch-2726351-Crownies. I leave it up to each person of course to decide if they want to watch this way, and I have no idea if it makes much difference, but I use my browser with pop-ups blocked, adblock plus, and third party cookies blocked.

October 4, 2011 4:49 pm

John Whitman says:
October 4, 2011 at 4:11 pm
Anthony,
I haven’t been keeping an exact track, but of the five continents I think you have been only slimed by hit-and-run media supporting alarming AGW on three continents. Right?
==============================================================
I’m not sure there has been a poll on Antarctica, but I seem to recall a penguin issue that may not have endeared him to some of the people down there. Something about banding and population reduction……. so while the press releases may have come from a different continent……… We just can’t help but shoot the messenger. 🙂

Fergus T. Ambrose
October 4, 2011 4:59 pm

You should get a free pizza.

Paul Deacon
October 4, 2011 6:15 pm

Anthony – welcome to being famous. You will need to get used to stuff like this.
IANAL. but I suggest it may be appropriate to get some basic legal advice from an Australian lawyer on these issues. I expect the law will be fairly different to the USA.

Gail Combs
October 4, 2011 6:23 pm

William says: @ October 4, 2011 at 11:28 am
….The fact that the price of some basic foods has increased over 100% due to the biofuel initiative will result in malnutrition and if the program continues starvation in third world countries….
_______________________________________________________________________
William you might want to check out: http://www.independent.co.uk/opinion/commentators/johann-hari/johann-hari-how-goldman-gambled-on-starvation-2016088.html and http://www.globalissues.org/article/758/global-food-crisis-2008
_________
I wonder how many people will checkout WUWT out of curiosity after seeing the show and then decide to do more reading and investigating.

Bill Illis
October 4, 2011 6:35 pm

It has a science fiction feel to it.
It will be many years into the future before there will be prosecutions of Climate Scientists.
Once the current politically-correct save the planet movement wears off.
On the other hand, Michael Mann is being investigated right now by a prosecutor.

Joe Born
October 4, 2011 6:35 pm

pwl:
“’ No theory is carved in stone. Science is merciless when it comes to testing all theories over and over, at any time, in any place. Unlike religion or politics, science is ultimately decided by experiments, done repeatedly in every form. There are no sacred cows. In science, 100 authorities count for nothing. Experiment counts for everything.’ – Michio Kaku, a professor of theoretical physics at City College of New York”
Unfortunately, Kaku doesn’t walk the talk: http://wattsupwiththat.com/2011/01/27/michio-kaku-goes-cuckoo-for-global-warming-fueled-snowstorms/.

John Q. Galt
October 4, 2011 6:46 pm

I think a YouTube comparing The Lord Monkton saying “I beg your pardon” and any other hippy smashing a …
[Sorry, had to snip it. ~dbs, mod.]

Dale
October 4, 2011 6:58 pm

In terms of the legality in Australia, all Anthony has to prove is that an “average person” links the character to the real identity, and that “average person” understood it to be an insult to the real identity. To prove real identity you just need to show links between the character and the real identity, and that those links are picked up by “average person”.
Prove that, and defamation is proved.

Niall
October 4, 2011 7:38 pm

“It could have to do with the draconian copyright protection rules Anthony mentioned but I can’t help suspecting that they made rules incredibly strict to cover the fact that even if there were no rules at all there probably wouldn’t be many people lining up to steal much of it anyway.”
They just changed the rules over here a couple of weeks ago, so now we can’t even download the mp4 version of the show from the ABC site any more, we can only watch it on the computer on the small screen. I used to be able to burn a dvd & walk the 20-ish feet into my living room & watch it on the big screen.

dlb
October 4, 2011 7:42 pm

Episode 13 was easy enough to watch (not enjoy) at the “Crownies” section of the ABC Australian television website. Basically it was a young 20 something lawyer outsmarts ignoramus middle aged climate sceptic. The sceptic is so thick he has no idea he has been outwitted. Just another thinly veiled attempt at preaching the AGW doctrine.
The climate sceptic seems to be a blend of a number of personas, obviously some ideas have come from hearing about WUWT such as the incorrect placement of met. instruments. Unfortunately the ignorant character reminds me of certain Australian politicians. Fortunately the programme will have very limited appeal. Those over 50 probably won’t relate to it and basically anyone under 50 doesn’t watch the ABC unless it is something like Playschool.

October 4, 2011 7:49 pm

The chest poking is a metaphor for what reality is doing to the climatology community. They want to lash out at annoying old reality but it only causes more problems.

peter_ga
October 4, 2011 8:18 pm

Not even this would convince me to watch that show. You are indeed fortunate in the US in being unable to do so. As a show it is flat beyond belief. The writers are young things especially selected by the ABC feminist-socialist drama bureaucracy. The characters actually are not too bad. However any sort of plot twist is completely ironed out. This show is unintentionally funny, but the joke takes an hour to run.

William
October 4, 2011 8:21 pm

Hi Gal Combs,
I also hope people who watched the propaganda television show check out “Watts up with that”. When the extreme AGW movement has mostly talk it seemed harmless. I am not so sure now.
http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/sci/tech/5369284.stm
Biofuels: Green energy or grim reaper?
The grain required to fill the petrol tank of a Range Rover with ethanol is sufficient to feed one person per year. Assuming the petrol tank is refilled every two weeks, the amount of grain required would feed a hungry African village for a year Much of the fuel that Europeans use will be imported from Brazil, where the Amazon is being burned to plant more sugar and soybeans, and Southeast Asia, where oil palm plantations are destroying the rainforest habitat of orangutans and many other species.
– Meeting the 5.75% target would require, according to one authoritative study, a quarter (25%) of the EU’s arable land.
– With just 10% of the world’s sugar harvest being converted to ethanol, the price of sugar has doubled; the price of palm oil has increased 15% over the past year, with a further 25% gain expected next year.
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2011/may/20/brazil-crisis-cabinet-amazon-deforestation
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2008-04-14/biofuel-production-a-crime-against-humanity/2403402
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/apr/05/biofuels.food

Wally
October 4, 2011 8:24 pm

You could probably threaten the ABC with legal action for defamation (which is rather more easily proved in Australia than the USA, and there are few “famous person” exemptions and the like).
The ABC management are quite sensitive to that kind of thing and it might rattle them.

Andy Dawson
October 4, 2011 10:44 pm

I understand Aussie defamation law is much the same as UK, Anthony – in which case, you really should consider bringing a case.

October 4, 2011 11:21 pm

In my opinion, a member of the TEAM have sued in the US on less grounds than you have here. “Hide the Decline” YouTube comes to mind.
Here is a re-release http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1gzlv9CXEuk
1 Dec. 2009. This seems to be a copy of the original version restored to YouTube.
Hide the Decline II:
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/04/21/second-mann-spoof-video-removed/
A suit will probably not win. After all…
“It isn’t about Truth at all,
It about being Plausible….

J. Felton
October 4, 2011 11:56 pm

Wow Anthony, you must be doing something right!
Maybe it’s all the coverage of Gillard’s ridiculous Carbon Tax.
Who writes the show? Maybe you’ve defeated them in a debate somewhere, and they really weren’t happy about it.

Graeme No.3
October 5, 2011 12:05 am

I wouldn’t worry about what Clive Hamilton thinks (if indeed he does), nor what the ABC (i.e. Australian Biased Communists) say, if I were you.
Hamilton makes comments on “Climate Change” indicating that his total knowledge of the subject could be written on the head of a pin with a blunt pencil. He knows even less than our (part time but expensive) ‘Commissar for Climate Change’ Tim Flannery, if that is possible. But with the censure and censoring of Andrew Bolt I cannot say what I really think of them both, in case either feels his extremely thin skin has been irritated.
As for the ABC, even many in our Labor Party (your Democrats) think that there are too far to the left. The only consolation is that they didn’t portray you naked (but for the flag wrapped around you) and asking for sex, as they did for our Prime Minister.

Roger Knights
October 5, 2011 12:12 am

Doug Proctor says:
October 4, 2011 at 9:32 am
Despite show events like this, Romm and Revkin, among others, say that the MSM is supportive of the skeptic side.

A good counter to that would be to suggest they examine the articles listed under “climate change” and/or “global warming” in the Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature.” I haven’t done so, but I suggest that some scholar here undertake the task of reading and rating them all. They should mostly be accessible online, which would simplify the job.
This would be thread-worthy. It would shut down one of the particularly noxious warmist bleats. (I hope Anthony agrees and encourages this project.)

Roger Knights
October 5, 2011 12:15 am

PS: The Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature provides a good representative sample of MSM treatment of the topic. No one could claim any cherry-picking had been employed.

kevin
October 5, 2011 2:21 am

What you must remember is that the ABC and its film makers are funded by the Australian government which is currently a Green/Socialist coalition, so it must push the government line or it gets no funding.
Indeed, it has recently had to ban appearances by more strident critics of the Green/Socialist coalition or its policies.
This same government is currently pushing to gag the media.

Philip Bradley
October 5, 2011 3:36 am

Anthony, you should contact an Australian lawyer to see if he/she thinks you could have a case.
I didn’t watch the show, but then i haven’t watched anything produced by the ABC in at least 10 years. But reading through the above, you appear too lightly disguised to qualify as a fictional character.
In Australia you can’t put real people into fiction and defame them.
And you are clearly defamed by being portrayed as a crank who harasses people and doesn’t understand the science.

Toad of Toad Hall
October 5, 2011 4:05 am

Don’t worry about contacting an Australian lawyer.
Unless you are an aboriginal/ gay/ environmentalist you will get no joy from the courts here.
If you doubt this Google “Pat Eatock v Andrew Bolt & Anor” or go to http://www.ipa.org.au/sectors/ideas-liberty/publication/1928/82-per-cent-of-australians-think-freedom-of-speech-is-more-important-than-the-right-not-to-be-offended
…. to see how far the left nut-bags have strangled this country

ozspeaksup
October 5, 2011 4:26 am

Steven Kopits says:
October 4, 2011 at 10:11 am
I have to admit to being shocked that an Australian program would appear to make a thinly-veiled attempt to suggest a physical attack on a known blogger. I don’t know what Australian standards are, but in the US I would imagine the producers would be in pretty hot water. I would expect ABC corporate to issue an apology/distancing letter from this sort of thing pretty quickly.
================
dont hold your breath waiting.
the ABC is govt funded.and though supposed to be fair and balanced.
roflmao!
the climate issue has really exposed just how biased and controlled by PTB they are, never realised How bad it was.
the upside is that you’ve obviously annoyed them:-)
and this is how they operate, SOP.
Tall Poppies. tend to be cut down.
just surprised they didnt have a go at Jo Nova at the same time. another episode I guess?

Philip Bradley
October 5, 2011 4:58 am

The ABC’s draconian copyright rules probably stem from the fact is has a profitable business distributing DVD’s of primarily BBC programs, but including its own programs here in Oz.
My local library is full of ABC published DVDs.

BBBaz
October 5, 2011 5:23 am

Anthony the ABC is despised here in Oz as a left leaning, global warming cheer squad. They cheered Gore’s mocko-docko and tore to pieces any one who dared to mention there might be another side to the story. They outsourced the production of “Crownies” but I am sure the brief to the producers would have included a direction to include some pro AGW and anti sceptic material. This is the sort of crap Australian taxpayers are getting in return for their hard earned money.

oblongau
October 5, 2011 5:27 am

As to whether the reference to “James Watt” was meant to have a reference to the Scottish engineer, the fictional Watt says, “My ancestral namesake invented the steam engine, 1765”. (15:30 in the video)

Vince Causey
October 5, 2011 6:36 am

It would have been more believable – and therefore funny – if the plot at least bore some semlance to reality.
My suggestion to ABC is to replace James Watts with “Phil” McAleer, a documentary movie maker, who dogs the footsteps of a certain Alex Gore, well known climate activist and former politician. He turns up at every meeting Gore is speaking at, and demands answers to “vexatious” questions like “how can the polar bears be threatened if their population is increasing?” After climbing on the stage and shoving Mr Gore away from the microphone whilst the body guards cower in terror, Mr Gore finally looses his rag and punches Mr McAleer in the face.
That at least would have some (albeit tenuous) connection with reality and therefore be engaging. The ABC version is about as entertaining – much less believable – as a story that had the Queen of England going on a drunken binge through the pubs of Kensington and finally getting arrested for throwing bricks through the windows of Harrods.

Goldie
October 5, 2011 7:20 am

They say that the impersonation is the greatest flattery. Didn’t watch crownies (who does?) so I missed it. Didn’t make any impact in the (wild) west but that would be because were too busy saving the rest of the country from recession and thereby in the pockets of big mining and big oil. Still beggars shouldn’t be choosers should they Julia.

October 5, 2011 7:59 am

It is the greatest flattery Goldie. And I didn’t watch crownies too. That makes us two!

c1ue
October 5, 2011 9:11 am

Forget the defamation – if you want to hit ABC where it hurts, write a letter saying that you demand your ‘likeness rights’ or ‘right of publicity’.
It is far easier to prove that your name, image, and so forth was clearly used without your permission than it is to try and prove libel.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Personality_rights#Australia

Vince Causey
October 5, 2011 9:36 am

“It is far easier to prove that your name, image, and so forth was clearly used without your permission than it is to try and prove libel.”
Quite likely. In the UK some years ago, a telephone directory company called “118” used the image of two runners with long hair and drooping moustaches. They bore an uncanny resemblance to David Bedford. It was long before Bedford did in fact sue 118 for using his image without permission, and I believe he won. 118 still use the same image, so I guess they came to some sort of financial arrangement.

Tim Minchin
October 5, 2011 8:42 pm

Action needs an Audience (Jimmy Eat World)
I’m hypnotized by rituals
now that I am on my own
Tranquilized like an animal
All because I lost control
Are you tuning in to our conversation
Oh yea you’ll get your chance
The bigger the brighter illuminated
Control the audience
The weight of the world has dragged you down
And took with it what you’ve earned
Communications lost to the radio
Burning all your bridges down
I may never be quite satisfied but that’s the only way I know
I am over come with sympathy for your pathetic soul
Breathe in the air while you still can
Take all that you have while you still can
Sleep all night while you still can
Breathe

Sleepalot
October 8, 2011 6:23 am

Iana lawyer…
“The connection in Crownies to me is unmistakeable now”
That’s why a man who represents himself has a fool for a lawyer: it’s not how things appear to you
that matters, but how they appear to a reasonable man (and how they might appear to a Judge).
But given that,…
If the defamation is heard in England – and that’s a big “if”, then an English court will hear your complaint (it’s called “libel tourism” here). The defamation doesn’t have to heard by a lot of people. It’s enough that the show is visible in England (ie, it’s freely available on the internet –
which it appears to be http://www.abc.net.au/iview/?series=3266450#/series/3266450
four episodes are visible, but I’m on dialup – a broadbander needs to have a look (also Youtube))
and that it’s publicised in some way (eg., mentioned in the press – perhaps Facebook/Twitter is enough). (Something like this … http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/sydney-nsw/tv-burqa-plot-in-abc-tvs-new-drama-crownies-hits-raw-nerve/story-e6freuzi-1226093401176)
There are a few qualifying conditions;
you must be a “legal person” (as opposed to (say) a society) – which you are,
you must be famous (you must have fame before it can be diminished) – which you are.
English and Australian courts have a mutual enforcement of judgements agreement, so Australians are not out of reach of the English libel court.
English defamation law was designed to stop the press saying true-but-embarrassing things about the clergy and aristocracy – it’s brutal to defendants. (In theory, truth is a complete defence, but in practice defendants generally need something better than that.)
They’re rather close to being right in it, imo.

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