The New York Times remains a slave to climate alarmism even after its miserable failure in Paris on December 12, and continues to push the fossil fuels conspiracy theory. It’s regularly publishing fake news. A NYT piece that appeared on December 29, How Climate Change Deniers Rise to the Top in Google Searches, mentions me, my website DefyCCC, and WUWT, and I take this opportunity to reply. In November and December 2017, I experimented with distributing the climate realism message using advertising options on Google and some other platforms. I will report on the results of this experiment in a separate article. Apparently, some of my Google ads caught the attention of the NYT. On December 4th, a NYT reporter named Hiroko Tabuchi interviewed me for 45 minutes in preparing for the above NYT piece.
In the interview, I attempted to convince the reporter that the NYT got science wrong, that real scientists are against climate alarmism, and that other countries build coal power plants and more. The reporter was honest in telling me that the NYT piece would be about the ads, not about the climate debate (I hope NYT does not fire her for this act of honesty, unfit for its organizational culture), so I already knew what to expect. However, the piece weaves lies, half-truths, and trivial facts so seamlessly that it elevates fake news into an art form. I will comment only on some falsehoods related to me.
The only thing that surprised me in the NYT piece was how it used me to link Trump to Russia.
“Of course, people click,” said Mr. Goldstein, who said he had emigrated from Russia two decades ago and had worked in the software and power industries. “Google is the No. 1 advertising choice.”
The proliferation of climate disinformation, both online and off, has coincided with an effort to undermine measures to combat climate change. Republican leaders regularly question climate science and President Trump has called climate change a hoax.
I emigrated from the Soviet Union (not from Russia) before it dissolved in 1991, the dissolution that happened twenty-six years ago. I was born and grew up in the Ukraine, then a part of the Soviet Union. This information is present in the About page of my site. I did not tell the reporter that I “emigrated from Russia two decades ago.” Here, the New York Times has “slightly” changed times and names in order to evoke another conspiracy theory, one of a Trump-Russia collusion. The rest could have been expected. This is how the NYT linked me to the Koch brothers:
DefyCCC, the site that recently bought the “climate change” search term on Google, devotes an entire section of its site to content from WattsUpWithThat, a well-known climate denial site by the blogger Anthony Watts. Mr. Watts has received funding from the Heartland Institute, backed by the billionaire Koch brothers.
Beyond that, little is known about DefyCCC. …
The reporter ran this line (except for the last quoted sentence) by me in the interview. In fact, DefyCCC has no sections at all. It does have a menu, and links to my articles in WUWT are collected under top menu items In WattsUpWithThat and WUWT 2016. I explained that to the reporter. But the NYT still published this line, falsely insinuating that I am connected to the Koch brothers. The next sentence was supposed to cement this lie as truth: “Beyond that, little is known about DefyCCC”. This is also a typical line in the hatchet job pieces, used when it cannot find dirt on somebody. For the record, I also told her I have no information about other allegations in that paragraph. Further in the piece, the NYT made another wild insinuation about me:
He received help with his site but would not say who his backers were to protect their privacy.
In the interview, I said I have colleagues and refused to name them. Then, I told the reporter about the shooting of the UAH building as a reason to withdraw personal information. This topic was blacked out by the media, so the NYT didn’t mention it, but made up its own explanation. This is where fake news becomes an art form. In the sentence, the word help (from colleagues or coworkers) is followed by the word backers, subtly turning it into financial support. And then a quote, taken out of context, cements this impression.
Having written about my imaginary backers, the NYT failed to disclose its own. Its largest shareholder is Mexican multi-billionaire Carlos Slim, who was the world’s richest man a few years ago. Mr. Slim has significant investments in oil and natural gas in Latin America, which compete against U.S. oil, gas, and coal industries. The NYT’s attempts to damage the U.S. fossil fuels industry promote the financial interests of its largest shareholder.
I took record of the insults that the NYT hurled at me, but I will not dignify them with a response.
The NYT piece mentions WUWT and DefyCCC, but it links to neither of our sites. I understand that it doesn’t want to transfer “link equity” or encourage readers to visit them. But, when the NYT wrote about white supremacists, it linked to Stormfront with a perfect, link equity carrying link (3), although it didn’t have to, or could have used a nofollow tag that prevented transfer of link equity. When I checked in September 2017, I found that the top neo-nazi websites received most of their link equity from the leftstream media. Just a note.
I don’t want to finish this article on the NYT links to neo-nazi websites. Sorry, I mean, the links from the NYT site to neo-nazi sites. Reading the NYT is not only misinforming, but also morally degrading. The NYT published two pieces about UFOs in December 2017: 2 Navy Airmen and an Object That ‘Accelerated Like Nothing I’ve Ever Seen’ (in the section Politics) and Dad Believed in U.F.O.s. Turns Out He Wasn’t Alone (in the section News Analysis). Seems to me that the NYT is looking for its niche among tabloids.
Carlos Slim owned ~17% of class A shares of the NYT until a few months ago. But Class A shares of the NYT elect only about one third of the board. Class B shares are thought to be held by the Ochs-Sulzberger family. Father and son Ochs-Sulzberger have been the NYT publishers since 1963, so the NYT was considered independent from external financial influences. But, in the precarious financial situation into which the NYT painted itself by serving as a propaganda accessory and by false reporting — money ends up mattering more than formal voting rights. Thus, Carlos Slim probably wields or wielded much more power in the editorial room of the NYT than previously thought. To his credit, he is not a liberal. Mr. Slim also owns substantial interest in the tobacco industry around the world, which makes the NYT a sister company of Big Tobacco.
Posts about the New York Times take a good part of the fakestream media category in DefyCCC. Besides printing fake news, it was caught doing near-Orwellian re-writing of its articles to toe the party line. I have even proposed a new logo and byline for it that better reflects its new nature. It can use them free of charge under a Creative Commons license, just like other content of my website.
Addendum by Anthony:
The way the NYT article is written, it implies that WUWT has an ad campaign running in Google Adwords to attract readers. It does not, and never has. We have no advertising budget. The article also implies that WUWT is funded by the Heartland Institute. It is not and never has been. Neither WUWT nor the owner Anthony receives any payroll or regular funding from Heartland. We rely entirely upon advertisements (managed by WordPress.com and a sharing agreement) and donations from readers. In the past, Heartland helped locate a donor for a project, and Anthony has been given a $1000 honorarium and travel expenses to speak at some Heartland conferences on climate change, just like any other speaker, including pro-warming/pro-climate change scientist, Dr. Scott Denning.
Tabuchi also insinuated that WUWT and/or me is funded by the Koch Brothers; this is a laughable falsehood. They have never sent me a dime, either directly or indirectly. They don’t even know who I am and I’ve never had any contact with them or their charitable organization; it’s just a weak conspiracy theory pushed by the weak-minded who would rather take talking points from others than do their own homework.
But, the writer, one unheard of Ms. HIROKO TABUCHI never bothered to ask any questions of me. So as a journalist, she fails miserably based by relying on and writing about her own assumptions.
Is this the best the New York Times can do? Apparently so.