'State of Fear' by Michael Crichton Could Be the '1984' of Climate Alarmism

Revived today the best novel on “global warming” could be explosive.

Guest essay by Walter Donway

I guess that if I discovered “State of Fear” by Michael Crichton eleven years after its publication in 2004–reading it last summer with indescribable surprise and joy–you can tolerate a year-old review.

This book could be the 1984 of “Big Climate Alarmism.” After George Orwell took on “doublespeak,” people never listened to political rhetoric in the same way. Whatever you think of the controversial “Atlas Shrugged,” by Ayn Rand, do you think arguments for the “greed” of businessmen and the moral loftiness of statism will ever be heard the same way?

Michael Critchton was perhaps the most scientifically literate and technologically brilliant best-selling novelist of our time. It turns out he was one of the most courageous, too. Fortunately, by the time he published “State of Fear,” a pounding thriller with more than 200 scientific footnotes meticulously documenting its all-assault on Big Climate Alarmism, his reputation was unassailable. Because, when he published it, the man who had written “The Andromeda Strain,” “Congo,” “Terminal Man,” “Jurraisic Park,” and “E.T.E.R.” got few reviews and those were mostly awful. Groups of scientists wrote letters scorning the science in the book.

Crichton never flinched. The book gave him a reputation as a climate change skeptic and in 2005 he testified before a Senate committee and had a private visit with President George W. Bush to discuss the issue.

Crichton died three years later, so we can never know if his popularity and reputation would have recovered from this astonishing act of integrity and devotion to science. He did it for the American people, but, I suspect, more out lifelong respect for science, which he saw squandering its reputation on “global warming.”

The problem was that in 2004 “global warming” still had tremendous momentum, all the excitement of discovery. The work of critics had only begun; there was not then the constituency for “The State of Fear”–to support it, publicize it, promote it–that there is today. Had there been, I believe it could have transformed the debate in the public mind.

What is astounding is that back in 2004, Crichton saw it all. As I write in the review:

“Melting glaciers, icebergs calving off Antarctic glaciers, worldwide weather records, rising sea levels, satellite measurements of atmospheric warming, correlation of carbon dioxide with warming, expanding or contracting deserts: State of Fear takes them on, and many others, with the ease that Agatha Christie presents clues to a murder.

“What will stop many readers, and not once, is the question: If these are the facts, what science actually says, then how in Hell do the shibboleths of global warming keep proliferating? Crichton’s answers include: dozens or hundreds of complicated issues raised when you discuss the history and future of the whole Earth, its geology, its inhabitants, its atmosphere, and its oceans; lack of almost any adequate data on any aspect of the debate; the deadly ‘precautionary principle’ that in the absence of enough data, assume that the most catastrophic prediction might be true and prepare (that is: with the least data, take the most extreme actions); the enormous self-interest of scientists funded almost overwhelmingly by a single source (government) that already has embraced the answer; the ever-shifting timeframes (most predictions with a 10-year horizon already have been falsified by events) that keep getting longer; changes in the hypothesis (from the idea that temperature will rise over a century to ‘abrupt weather changes’ today demonstrate global warming); and on and on.

“Incredibly, it all comes into the story—usually riding on a roller coaster of action or borne by a lover’s quarrel.”

Nothing could be more hopeful, today, with with Big Climate Alarmists succeeding, at least in America, in making their views government policy, than a wide revival of this powerful antidote. Candidates of the two parties for President have diametrically opposite views and “global warming,” but the mainstream media is like a crooked umpire on the take.

I urge you to get involved. Fortunately, reading “State of Fear” is not only hugely informative and heartening, it is thrilling.

The review is here:

http://www.thesavvystreet.com/state-of-fear-gets-hotter-with-global-warming/

The book is available on Amazon here:

state-of-fear

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September 29, 2016 7:38 pm

I’ve read “State of Fear”, and the major problem is the plotline limps. I agree with the endnotes, but the basic storyline sort of gets the quasi-religious mindset of the proponents of CAGW wrong. They don’t need to stage an event, just claim whatever happened is global warming.

Uncle Gus
Reply to  Tom Halla
October 1, 2016 11:10 am

I sort of agree. I felt at the time that the research overwhelmed the storyline, and the need for a “blockbuster thriller” McGuffin (so like the alarmists’ need for global disaster!) detracted from the book’s credibility.
That said, I was impressed that the only people who seemed to get Crichton really mad on this issue were the luvvies (British for pretentious celebrity SJWs). Didn’t one of them get literally eaten alive in the book?

usurbrain
September 29, 2016 7:39 pm

Got it for the Kindle last month, could not put it down once I downloaded it. Great Book!

subtle2
Reply to  usurbrain
September 30, 2016 7:05 am

Going through some old paperbacks the other day and I’m re-reading it now.
He had the science and sources nailed down in 2004.
At the time, outstanding research.

September 29, 2016 7:41 pm

Barbara Boxer’s dissing of him in the senate hearings is her at her most disgusting .

Catcracking
Reply to  Bob Armstrong
September 29, 2016 8:33 pm

I don’t know, she has so many disgusting moments, like dressing a general down for politely calling her Ma’m.She is a sick person and represents all the wrongs and arrogant attitude from some politicians.

Reply to  Catcracking
September 29, 2016 9:00 pm

She’s one of the 8 democrats who tried to amend the Constitution’s definition of natural born citizen in 2007; pretty odd if there were no candidates who weren’t qualified to hold office based on the existing definition.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Catcracking
September 30, 2016 3:51 pm


I hope the “Airplane” guys do one on Hillary!

Reply to  Bob Armstrong
September 29, 2016 8:55 pm

I have to agree with Cat, It’s very hard to locate Boxer’s worst moment. She’s not running in the next election so our goal is to make sure she doesn’t pick her own successor. Barbara is evil. ‘Nuff said?

DonM
Reply to  Bartleby
September 30, 2016 8:07 am

The vacuum that she leaves behind will quickly siphon in other disgusting dregs. As example, see Senator Merckley .

brians356
Reply to  Bob Armstrong
September 30, 2016 1:02 pm

An economist friend, a independent G_O oil and gas industry expert in DC, once testified on C-span to Boxer’s Senate committee, in a witch hunt looking for Big Oil collusion and price fixing during a gas price spike. To a man, the parade of experts (government and academic) all said it boiled down to (drum roll!) supply and demand! No evidence of collusion. Babs Boxer (w/ a degree in economics) was not deterred. To my friend she declared “Well, I’m all *for* supply and demand, and everything. But you can’t convince me that there hasn’t been … ” . The yenta from Sheepshead Bay, Brooklyn’s finest hour.

Gunga Din
Reply to  Bob Armstrong
September 30, 2016 4:01 pm

MODS! This is what I meant to put up. I’ve no clue how the other showed up.

I hope the “Airplane” guys do one on Hillary!

Larry Hamlin
September 29, 2016 7:45 pm

I well remember reading Crichton’s “State of Fear” just after it was released. It was an excellent book which systematically and throughly destroyed climate alarmist propaganda in an incredibly interesting way. With the extensive references to scientific papers and studies to back its positions it became a research tool as well to a most enjoyable novel.

Martin C
September 29, 2016 7:59 pm

I read ‘State of Fear’ in 2008, not long after the 2007 IPCC report came out (after which I was doing my own looking into the issue, and realizing it was pretty much garbage). I was great seeing somebody like Crichton taking on the CAGW movement. And I have read a lot of books by him since.

September 29, 2016 8:02 pm

As an avid fan of Michael Crichton’s novels, I read SOF back in 2005, just after it first came out, and I couldn’t put it down. I credit that book with originally sparking my rabid skepticism of the AGW scam. I think it’s safe to say that the world has sorely missed the genius of Dr. Crichton since his passing.
If you haven’t seen this video of him shortly before his death, you should definitely check it out.

Kurt
September 29, 2016 8:09 pm

I also read the book a while back, and while I found the end notes persuasive, the plot was pretty bad.

ClimateOtter
Reply to  Kurt
September 30, 2016 1:36 am

But if someone had re-written it as a James Bond movie, I suspect the ‘plot’ (creating a Tsunami) would have sold it.

John M. Ware
Reply to  Kurt
September 30, 2016 2:33 am

On the contrary, the plot of State of Fear does exactly what it is supposed to do. I have read it at least three times now, and the sequence of events not only keeps the reader guessing, it leads on from event to event and deduction to deduction with vividness of detail. Great book!

Tom Anderson
Reply to  Kurt
September 30, 2016 10:56 am

The plot was clearly only a potboiler, a bit of action to carry the message. It’s still a great page-turner and does the job! Enough said.

Catcracking
September 29, 2016 8:14 pm

Thanks for bringing “Sate of Fear” to the forefront again. I was always a big fan of Crichton reading a few of his books.
Reading this book cemented my suspicions about Al Gore and the Global warming Mantra before I found WUWT which further gave me confidence that Climate Change/ Global Warming is extremely so exaggerated.
Thank you Michael and Anthony.for preserving my sanity.

September 29, 2016 8:34 pm

State of Fear is a great book, as are all Crichton’s books.
But you mistakenly attribute E.T. to Crichton. Perhaps you mean ER?

Walter Donway
Reply to  Michael E. Newton
September 30, 2016 7:07 am

You are right! It should be ER. I hope that the moderators might do me the favor of changing it. Also, embarassingly, there are two typos in the first paragraph I do proofread, but it really is tough to proofread your own work until you let it sit “cooling off” for a few days and I don’t have the patience.
At any rate, thanks for the catch and I those few things can be corrected.

Reply to  Walter Donway
September 30, 2016 10:28 am

Fixed typos and ET to read ER

Reply to  Walter Donway
October 1, 2016 8:04 pm

Now that we are talking about it, I just noticed you misspelled Jurassic Park. Glad I could help.

gnomish
September 29, 2016 8:42 pm

crichton wrote sci fi screenplays, essentially but State of Fear was serious.
imo, it was his best work.
it’s not neglected, either.
http://kickasstorrents.to has 21 seeders right this minute.

jeanparisot
September 29, 2016 8:46 pm

I hope he actually pulled a fade like the character in the book and is still with us drinking cocktails on some isolated island.

Mario Lento
September 29, 2016 8:47 pm

State of Fear got me interested in the subject of AGW, and then with a little research, I found WUWT. As a truth seeker, I loved the book. Without the State of Fear, I don’t know when I would have become a seeker of the truth in climate.

September 29, 2016 8:50 pm

A very good review of a pretty good book Walter. I’m very sorry Dr. Crichton died, very sorry indeed. He was one of the more enlightened scientists of our time, a person who walked away from what would have been a lucrative career in medicine to risk his reputation and fortune on educating the public. I think he deserves all the credit we can give him for that. Of course, his success as a popular writer ensured the success of his family for generations.Dr. Crichton wasn’t an idiot.
“State of Fear” is an outstanding book, I might call it his Magnum Opus. If there are still people who haven’t read it, they should do so. I own a first edition and I’m keeping in a ziplock bag full of dry nitrogen. It’s, in my opinion, that important.

September 29, 2016 8:50 pm

Crichton proves that ordinary folk are qualified to assess scientific issues…provided they have enough education to start with.

G
Reply to  fossilsage
September 30, 2016 4:56 am

He was a scientist

Mary Brown
September 29, 2016 8:52 pm

Today i read about how Chelsea Clinton flew a private jet to a clean energy conference. Reminded me of this book.

Reply to  Mary Brown
September 29, 2016 9:01 pm

Mary, if I had Chelsea’s money I’d own a T-38 and I’d be flying it all over the world.
But that’s just me 🙂

DonM
Reply to  Bartleby
September 30, 2016 8:14 am

Very likely that she has no significant monies … she has access to other peoples money, & stuff.

Reply to  Bartleby
September 30, 2016 2:31 pm

Don M…she got out of college and walked into a 900,000$ per year job at the foundation. That and her marriage into Goldman Sachs executive money makes her have something more of a “leg up” than the sons and daughters of we more plebeian type in terms of income.

West Hollywood
September 29, 2016 8:53 pm

Read ‘State of Fear’ a few years ago. I think the main reason why so many scientists and AGW supporters were attacking Crichton was because his research was so meticulous and wide ranging.
Anyone who wanted to know about global warming could use Crichton’s research as a starting point and learn a lot about the BS in the global warming industry.

stuartlarge
September 29, 2016 8:59 pm

While I am happy with the basic premise of the novel, I did not think it was one of his best, it was too melodramatic for me, and some of the action scenes were over the top.

gnomish
September 29, 2016 9:00 pm

“On March 14, 2007, Intelligence Squared held a debate in New York City titled Global Warming is Not a Crisis, moderated by Brian Lehrer. Crichton was on the for the motion side along with Richard Lindzen and Philip Stott against Gavin Schmidt, Richard Somerville, and Brenda Ekwurzel. Before the debate, the audience was largely on the against the motion side (57% vs. 30%, with 13% undecided).[72] At the end of the debate, there was a notable shift in the audience vote to prefer for the motion side (46% vs. 42%, with 12% undecided), leaving the debate with the conclusion that Crichton’s group won.[72] Schmidt later described the debate in a RealClimate blog posting, …..”
more at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Crichton

Reply to  gnomish
September 29, 2016 9:14 pm

Crichton had them all at an intellectual disadvantage; it really wasn’t a fair fight. He had the numbers and the research, his opponents had belief, faith and conviction. There was no real contest; Crichton simply kicked butt and took names. It was a slaughter.

Hivemind
September 29, 2016 9:03 pm

If you want a book that really captures the mindset of the global warmists, try “Fallen Angels” by Larry Niven, Jerry Pournelle and Michael Flynn.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fallen_Angels_%28science_fiction_novel%29
Still pushing their low-carbon, anti-technology beliefs in the midst of an ice-age. All the while blaming technology for every ill.

Mike Widseth
Reply to  Hivemind
September 29, 2016 9:54 pm

Throw another log on the fire! Heh

ozspeaksup
Reply to  Hivemind
September 30, 2016 6:46 am

and 50 degrees below by kim stanley robinson
I used to admire his work the red /green/ blue mars series
the above named 50 degrees..apart from a brief mention on the devaluation of wages to the worth of what workers produce..
was a full on idiot spiel of agw devotee-ism

Richard Patton
Reply to  Hivemind
September 30, 2016 11:40 am

That was also a good book. I’ve read both.

Uncle Gus
Reply to  Hivemind
October 1, 2016 11:14 am

Yes, I know that one. As a Niven/Pournelle fan, I wish I’d liked that book better. Not their best. (I agree about their take on the alarmist mindset, though!)

September 29, 2016 9:06 pm

I love some of Crichton’s other books even more, like Micro, which is also heavily science oriented. His plots are not the greatest, but you still have to keep reading to find out what happens! Isn’t there some controversy about his early death, too?

Keitho
Editor
Reply to  Contrarian Scientist (@MsContrarianSci)
October 1, 2016 1:43 am

I read his first book that he wrote with his brother. It was called “Dealing or The Berkeley to Boston 40 Brick Lost Bag Blues”. After that I read all of them as they were published. Climate of Fear was great and as I was involved in hydrology from the mid sixties it resonated perfectly with what I was seeing all around me.
This AGW thing is thin boys, thin as piss on a hot rock.

Admin
September 29, 2016 9:14 pm

The material is practically prophetic but the plot is wooden. Compared to Jurassic Park or Prey, not one of his best works. Still worth a read because of the focus of the story.

Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 29, 2016 9:52 pm

Having read all his novels, Agree. A good starter for some, but not where anyone should end up.

Chris Wright
Reply to  Eric Worrall
September 30, 2016 2:04 am

I read State of Fear a few years ago, just when I was becoming aware of the catastrophe that is climate science. The book’s science content was excellent. It is a great tragedy that he died so young. The world today needs people of integrity like Michael Crichton more than ever.
Having said that, I was actually disappointed by the plot, which I thought was very weak. But it’s still well worth reading.

docduke
September 29, 2016 9:14 pm

As I recall (this is a fuzzy memory), around the time he was writing this book, he went to a conference at which he discovered pharmaceutical companies intended to patent substances extracted directly from bodily fluids obtained from unknowing medical patients, without either informing the patients of this use or compensating them for what might be very profitable products. He announced that he was going to use his influence to block that process. Shortly after that he died. Conspiracy theorists believe he was murdered. I have no direct knowledge; I am passing along a rumor.

Oddsox
Reply to  docduke
September 30, 2016 2:54 pm

Look up Henrietta Lacks. I don’t recall the author

PD
September 29, 2016 9:35 pm

This book predates “State of Fear”. It envisions a world where the greens win the battle, but lose the war (if my html works).

PD
Reply to  PD
September 29, 2016 9:38 pm
gnomish
Reply to  PD
September 29, 2016 11:19 pm

thanks for the tip
i’ll grab it.

joelobryan
September 29, 2016 10:09 pm

My favorite, bestest of all-time story of Michael Crichton’s chutzpah and how he did not suffer fools is retold in Wikipedia:

In 2006, Crichton clashed with journalist Michael Crowley, a senior editor of the magazine The New Republic. In March 2006, Crowley wrote a strongly critical review of State of Fear, focusing on Crichton’s stance on global warming. In the same year, Crichton published the novel Next, which contains a minor character named “Mick Crowley”, who is a Yale graduate and a Washington, D.C.-based political columnist. The character was portrayed as a child molester with a small penis. The character does not appear elsewhere in the book. The real Crowley, also a Yale graduate, alleged that by including a similarly named character Crichton had libeled him.

PaulH
Reply to  joelobryan
September 30, 2016 11:06 am

Ouch! 🙂 I recall the old saying that one should never get in an argument with someone who buys ink by the barrel.

September 29, 2016 11:00 pm

A friend of mine in the film making business told me a story about Crichton, who was also a film director. He was relatively young at the time and I think the film was the First Great Train Robbery. The film crew were pretty unimpressed by such a young man directing and acted accordingly.
When Crichton was away for the day, the producer arranged a private screening for the whole crew of Westworld which Crichton had directed.
The next time he came on set, they practically snapped to attention.
Pointman

September 29, 2016 11:14 pm

@docduke
Curiously I’m reading the book you refer to right now. It’s called ‘Next’.
All the science is there and an unnerving read it certainly is.

Russ Wood
Reply to  duncanbinksgmailcom
September 30, 2016 6:47 am

In many ways ‘Next’ is a Sir Terry Pratchett-ish book – i,e, take a concept, and turn it up until the knob falls off! But I must add that it was his “State of Fear” that turned me away from the CAGW fear promulgated by the MSM, and his endnotes got me bouncing around the ‘skeptic’ sites on the Web – ending up here.

Brian
September 29, 2016 11:52 pm

Um … Crichton did not write “E.T.”

urederra
Reply to  Brian
September 30, 2016 1:22 am

That is that I thought, too.

Rob
September 30, 2016 12:11 am

Great, great book. Crichton really scared the hell out of the Global Warming Industry.

September 30, 2016 1:22 am

I have long recommended State of Fear as the best introduction to the warming/climate scam, especially for non-scientists such as myself.
It’s great to see this excellent book so well reviewed & praised on this fine site.
John Doran.

dudleyhorscroft
September 30, 2016 3:25 am

In addition to “State of Fear” and “Climate Change: the Facts” You may also wish to view “Climate” the Counter Consensus”. But for my money the best factual book on Climate Change/ Greenhouse and all the rest of the malarkey, is “Taxing Air: Facts and Fallacies about Climate Change”. It was written by the late Professor Robert Carter and others, and is published by Kelpie Press. ISBN: 9780646902180. Its only drawback is that it was written in 2013 to counter the then recently introduced Carbon Dioxide Tax. Apart from that, it is excellent, and we have now got rid of the so-called “Carbon Tax”!
Good for scientists and non-scientists alike.

ozspeaksup
Reply to  dudleyhorscroft
September 30, 2016 6:51 am

as of JULY 1st this yr we have the carbon tax back mate
BOTH parties agreed to allow its implementation
done on the sly naff all aussies are even aware

Griff
September 30, 2016 3:50 am

If you want a book about climate change and science -specifically about how science is done and how science and government work in the US – try ‘Green Earth’ by Kim Stanley Robinson
http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/25279447-green-earth

HocusLocus
September 30, 2016 4:12 am

I’ve been seeking actual research into his lightning attractor thingimabob and have tried to meet with several specialists in physics who were leaning in this direction, but when I arrived all I found were burnt holes into the ground.
Another disturbing take-away from “State of Fear”: the idea that corporate non-state actors who did not possess actual spy hardware such as network intercepts or taps… could, nevertheless, engage in ‘finest quality’ surveillance of Internet populations by monitoring Internet search activity.
That bit in State of Fear inspired me to write this short essay, “Information Land Mines” in 2006.
What if… you had just committed an particularly evil crime that (unavoidably) had left a few clues laying in plain sight, and wished to arrange an ‘accident’ for anyone who happened to stumble on to those clues? Say, several keywords that, if they were strung together in an Internet search would clearly indicate that someone was had noticed the clues, was zeroing in on the truth and is clearly intent on unraveling them. Easy peasy in the 21st century! All you need to do is spend a few bucks to buy a few Google ad-words and create a little honeypot on the web as a tripwire that would draw them to you.
How to prevent the laying and triggering of these ‘information land mines’?
Strive to investigate and solve egregious crimes quickly, as a coordinated effort.
Strive to prevent deep network surveillance by simply not building the infrastructure to do it.
Strive to find people with the traditional ethos of the Postman, who carries mail without opening it.
“Small, unremembered acts of privacy… are the only conceivable way to make a world that is becoming more like a dangerous city every day… more like a small town again. A better place to raise our children.”
It’s been ten years since I wrote that essay. How do we score? Not very well.

Gary Pearse
September 30, 2016 4:15 am

I read it ago and think I’ll read it over again.

Javier
September 30, 2016 4:34 am

While he was president of the Salk Institute, Joe Slater created the CBHA [Council for Biology in Human Affairs] after the board approved the program of action. The CBHA was to be the nexus of a network of individuals and organizations sharing their concerns about the consequences of the rapid progress being made in biology. Formally established in 1970, the council counted international leaders from business, finance, and politics as well as distinguished scientists and humanists among its members. Bronowski, Holley, Luria, Monod, Salk, and Slater represented the Salk Institute. Operating under the belief that forming public opinion is best done by informing it, the council had as one of its major goals identifying problems and communicating its ideas and results to public leaders. The council met regularly, either in La Jolla or New York, to identify problems, attend seminars, discuss options, and plan communications to the public and its leadership regarding new biological knowledge and its implications for human affairs. Bronowski accepted the position of director of the CBHA from 1970 to 1971, despite the fact that he had just started to write the outline of The Ascent of Man, the BBC television series and book that were to be his magnum opus.

Another unusual postdoctoral Fellow who was involved in the activities of the CBHA was Michael Crichton. In 1969 he had just earned his medical degree from Harvard and had started working in Jonas Salk’s lab. Three years earlier he had entered medical school and started writing articles and novels under pseudonyms to pay for his tuition. His first best-selling novel, The Andromeda Strain, was published the year he arrived at the Salk Institute. Published under his own name, the book made him an overnight star as an author of science-fiction medical thrillers. As both a medical doctor and a writer, Crichton successfully built a bridge between the two cultures, reflecting the fact that biologists and humanists ask similar questions about man. Well-researched science fiction engages a wide audience and inspires curiosity and excitement about the possibilities offered by scientific research and technologies. After his year at the Salk, Crichton became a full-time writer, primarily of science fiction novels, many of which have been made into movies or television shows. However, he also wrote nonfiction books. In fact, while at the Salk he gave several talks about medicine in our Speaking-on-Tuesday seminar series. Director of the CBHA and chair of the Commission on Biology in Contemporary Culture, Bronowski invited Crichton to participate in two symposia on The Entry of Biology in Contemporary Culture. At the second symposium, held in New York City, Crichton presented a lecture titled “A Contemporary Account of Human Nature.” Though Crichton’s participation in Salk Institute activities is generally unknown, Crichton is remembered fondly by some of the old-timers at the Salk Institute.
Genesis of the Salk Institute: The Epic of Its Founders
By Suzanne Bourgeois

When I went to the Salk Institute they told me about Michael Crichton being there. Although he was not a scientist, his medical training and his postdoctoral stay at the Salk with some of the greatest scientists in the biological field like Salk or Luria gave him a very good scientific background. He was perfectly capable of researching scientific issues as he demonstrated in his books.

Jan Fluitsma
September 30, 2016 4:43 am

Reading all the comments it is obvious that SOF was the introduction to CAGW for a lot of sceptics / WUWT followers, as it was for me.

September 30, 2016 5:30 am

I also read this book. But I had a different takeaway message. The message I had when I read this book is that science should only seek to find the truth. As stated at the end, scientific studies favor those whom fund them. So all funding should be anonymous and given out despite the results. The researchers should have no way of ever knowing who or what is funding them. I believe Michael Crichton used global warming to as a vehicle to deliver that message.
Did anybody bother to check the references in the book? I checked a few. Of my limited checking, I found some to be completely honest and some left out some important details. This is why I believe the book is not a commentary on global warming, but a commentary on how greedy science is today.

Ron Clutz
September 30, 2016 5:42 am

I too was awakened by Crichton and this book. Michael Crichton had two principle concerns concerning science and society, which led to his criticism of global warming. First, he warned against governments capturing science as a tool to cow the population into funding and submitting to politicians’ policies. Second, he thought scientists in many fields were far too certain and trusting of their knowledge and tools, especially computerized systems.
A tribute to his contribution.
https://rclutz.wordpress.com/2015/06/12/in-praise-of-michael-crichton/

C.E.Artus
September 30, 2016 5:48 am

SOF is far too didactic in tone to be a great book but it is an important book for all that.

ozspeaksup
September 30, 2016 6:58 am

Id had started to wake up to the scam, and state of fear completed it for me,
sad loss

September 30, 2016 7:02 am

The sad part though is that the eco-Marxists appear to be still winning, particularly in Canada and the US>

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  kenkulak
September 30, 2016 7:59 am

I have never been concerned about CAGW to the degree of my concern of “eco-Marxists” control of man’s economic systems through deceptive political means.
And Climate Change is just a deceptive politically-driven means to an end.
But Nature will prove or disprove catastrophic global warming in due time.
But of something like Brexit, how does one prove or disprove the UK has selected the right path? Now I am confident they (the majority of UK voters) have taken the best course (assuming Teresa May can muster the will and find a backbone), but that is entirely a human system. Once the UK is “out” there will be no way to compare to how they’d be if they stayed. Of course that won’t stop economists from trying, but those will be mere hypothetical comparisons.

John Harmsworth
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
September 30, 2016 1:59 pm

If the British economy manages growth, above what the major European economies (France, Germany, Italy) show, I would be satisfied that Brexit was the right move. If they manage to match, then it’s a toss up! It’s really not a high bar!

bazzer1959
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
September 30, 2016 3:10 pm

I think you’re both missing the point, and that voted for by the majority…immigration. It was never about economics, never, not once. And the economics actually don’t matter one little bit. The ‘right path’ was anything that gave us back control of our own destiny, of our own borders. What good would a thriving economy be, an economy better than any other nation on earth…if you couldn’t swing a cat in a field without hitting someone with it? It’s a tiny island, with 64 million people on it. To raise that to 74 million in just a few years is unthinkable. You could have all the money in the world, but what good will that do you if your kids can’t get into a school, if you have a 10-hour wait in A&E, or a 2-month wait to see your GP?

average joe
Reply to  kenkulak
September 30, 2016 9:55 am

Kenkulak, I disagree. Look at the political momentum of Donald Trump. This presidential election is likely the biggest, by far, battle in this war against the econuts. It might even be the final battle, if Trump wins. He will make scorched earth of these ridiculous greenie policies. I am doing everything I can to ensure he wins.

gnomish
Reply to  average joe
September 30, 2016 11:10 am
nigelf
Reply to  average joe
September 30, 2016 12:45 pm

Average joe is right, at least in the US. Canada is a little behind you and always is. We were jealous of JFK and wanted our own charismatic leader so we elected Pierre Trudeau a few years after the assassination of JFK. We were also jealous of the youthful and articulate Obama and so true to form we elected Justin Trudeau.
Maybe our next PM will be more like Trump?

Keitho
Editor
Reply to  average joe
October 1, 2016 3:39 am

I’m with you Joe. Watching the stupid nonsense being thrown at Trump by the liberal/left and their obedient media makes you realise just how scared of him they are.
The wonderful thing about democracy is that numbers matter. I am doing everything I can to get the Trump vote out. These are remarkable times indeed. To be presented with a clear choice between old and new politics such as we have is very exciting.

Mark Whitney
September 30, 2016 7:21 am

It is a book worthy of re-reading. Crichton was a master, and I don’t recall ever reading a novel with references before. RIP Dr.

September 30, 2016 8:15 am

I remember this book changed my attitude to the climate debate. In fact I wasn’t even aware there was a debate. I’d accepted everything I was told, that everything was changing and it was our fault. Afterwards I became a sceptic which I have remained. But, good heavens it was a bad book. Poor dialogue, awful charecterisations, unbelievable events. From a great author like Crichton a poor offering indeed.

stevekeohane
September 30, 2016 8:34 am

Loved Crichton’s works. Lent my copy of ‘State of Fear’ to my dentist, who loved it as well. When he tried to return the book to me, I had him pass it on to his friends.

Joel Snider
September 30, 2016 9:25 am

Well, Climategate pretty much confirmed every single allegation Crichton made in that novel. As I remember, he set out to write a scary novel about Global Warming, and studying the subject turned him into a skeptic – pretty much the road anyone who decides to (honestly) look into it travels. I remember trying to give it to a couple of eco-sympathizing friends and was dismissively told ‘he’s a science fiction writer’. Well, actually it’s ‘Doctor’ Crichton, but that’s neither here nor there – but then when Climategate broke, and I outlined every single point Crichton made had been validated, I was sent a series of rationalization stories about pseudo-investigations in a variety of Kangaroo courts, as well as reports back from Copenhagen – basically complete denial from the greenie crowd. But that’s what this kind of political atmosphere – as liberalism takes its natural course into Progressivism, militancy, and totalitarianism – does to otherwise intelligent people – it closes their minds.
Of course, then there’s the crowd where the message goes completely over their head. I gave the book to a lady-friend who, halfway through, told me she ‘really hoped Peter and Sara get together’.
Sigh.

John Harmsworth
Reply to  Joel Snider
September 30, 2016 2:02 pm

Darwin trained for the ministry.

Joel Snider
Reply to  John Harmsworth
September 30, 2016 2:35 pm

Was this reply for me? I don’t doubt you, but I don’t understand the significance.

dan no longer in CA
September 30, 2016 9:38 am

I thought Crichton’s novel was excellent. I also think his lecture at Caltech is excellent reading. Here’s a six year old link to our own WUWT report on it. Enjoy:
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/07/09/aliens-cause-global-warming-a-caltech-lecture-by-michael-crichton/

Reply to  dan no longer in CA
September 30, 2016 12:35 pm

When I was having this “discussion” with my daughter, I pointed her at that post. Kinda got her thinking for once. My stand-by line in talking about CAGW with true believers is a paraphrase from that: “A theory that can mean anything means nothing.”

September 30, 2016 10:35 am

One detail of the book which I found interesting was the statistics on malaria. Based on limited research into DDT, the UN prohibited DDT use for agriculture. The theory was that mosquitoes were becoming immune to DDT due to overuse. The effect of the ban made DDT all but impossible for poorest nations to purchase. In the first year after this regulation, worldwide malaria deaths rose from 25,000 to 1 million before the UN modified the rules to allow “limited spraying”.
This is a staggering indictment of aggressive environmental activism, but the world seems to have learned the wrong lessons. In 2005, I found these basic facts easy to confirm with data. Time Magazine or NatGeo even ran an article on the subject with a huge foldout leaf of malaria deaths with a huge spike in that year.
Now, it is almost impossible to find the confirming data. There are many “apologetic” videos and blogs which claim that these facts are distortions. However, the actual numbers are almost impossible to find. This is supposed to be the “information age”. Who has the power to restrict that information?
Now, we have regular cries about how malaria will get worse under warming. The reality is that malarial mosquitoes are migrating northward into the wealthier nations who had been able to all but eliminate malaria fifty years ago. It’s not Climate Change — after all, Washington DC was a malarial swamp in the middle of the Little Ice Age.

Joel Snider
Reply to  lorcanbonda
September 30, 2016 10:47 am

It takes an environmental activist to really maximize a Holocaust.

Joel Snider
Reply to  lorcanbonda
September 30, 2016 3:02 pm

‘Who has the power to restrict that information?’
Coordination and consolidation of search engines like Yahoo and Google – both their CEOs are big greenies and determined to control the message. It’s just that simple. It’s also the way most media outlets operate – the editorial decisions are made by a handful of people – that’s why so many stories repeat – not just the message – but exactly the same verbiage.
Controlling the message. First step to totalitarianism.

AGW is not Science
Reply to  Joel Snider
October 3, 2016 12:47 pm

Yes, another indication – the day the latest scare story about CO2 hitting the supposedly significant (not) “threshold” of 400ppm, my efforts to open up WUWT via the usual use of my search engine (Bing, in this case) yielded nothing but links to websites deriding WUWT or totally unrelated sites using the word
“watts.” Amazing. And creepy.

September 30, 2016 10:52 am

That’s the book that opened my eyes. I can’t say enough good about it!

jsuther2013
September 30, 2016 11:51 am

Many of Michael Crichton’s speeches, all available, are also well worth reading.

barry
September 30, 2016 4:10 pm

As genuine skeptics weigh the pros and cons, here is a scientific rebuttal to State of Fear.
[RealClimate is made up of “genuine skeptics”? what a WHOPPER! Two words: Mike Mann. ICYMI co-founder of RC. Your comment is one of the most dogmatically ridiculous I’ve ever seen. – Anthony]

Yirgach
Reply to  barry
October 1, 2016 8:44 am

Anthony,
I believe Barry meant the phrase “genuine skeptics” to refer to the WUWT audience…

Resourceguy
October 1, 2016 8:57 am

Thank you. Now I have many months of YouTube videos to watch and other media compilations to entertain. Already, the first speech I viewed by Dr. Crichton helped me to see the reason behind spectacular prediction failures. Just think of how many times Paul Ehrlich has been quoted and cited. It’s the same time-dependent counting exercise for the Kardashians. It’s a volumetric issue, not truth or accuracy.

October 1, 2016 9:16 pm

“How in Hell do the shibboleths of global warming keep proliferating”? asks Resourceguy. They proliferate because most of us are easily duped through application of well known fallacies in making arguments. Resourceguy provides an example of this phenomenon when he concludes that there are “prediction failures” though in this context “prediction” is polysemic and changes meaning in the midst of his argument. Thus, in concluding that there are “prediction failures” Resourceguy unwittingly applies the equivocation fallacy.

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