End Self-censorship on the Carbon Dioxide Debate

A version of this was written for and published by the BC Conservative.

The intimidation is almost beyond belief – government officials threatening fines and jail time for questioning catastrophic global warming.

In the latest round, the Competitive Enterprise Institute and Exxon have both been issued subpoenas to provide more than 10 years of their communications to prove they have not misled the public about climate change. Seventeen state Attorneys General are threatening court action against organizations that don’t share their view.

A couple of years ago James Hansen and Canada’s own David Suzuki called for jail time for politicians who disagreed with their view on global warming.

Michel Mann of Pen State University is suing columnist Mark Steyn and Tim Ball has been threatened with legal action by Andrew Weaver. Their crimes? Being openly critical of the anthropogenic global warming, AGW, thesis.

Tragically, in countries that claim to favour free speech, there are legal means available to quash criticism. Pointedly, today’s multitude of incomprehensible, non-objective regulations can be made to mean what slick legal minds choose them to mean. And the accused lose real money fighting the inquisitors.

So do we give in to the power elite? Are we, as they claim, too stupid to think for ourselves? Are only our elite leaders moral enough to do the right thing?

Or do they fear that an aware public, discovering that there is no climate catastrophe, will resist the drain on their wallets? Do the climate taxers see a threat to their cash cow? Hence, can we be made fearful of speaking out?

In 1616 the Inquisition declared heliocentrism to be formally heretical. Heliocentric books were banned and Galileo was ordered to refrain from holding, teaching or defending the heliocentric idea. Now, in 2016, the Portland School Board has passed a resolution to ban textbooks that question the severity of global warming.

And California came very close to deliberating Senate Bill 1161 with the Orwellian name, California Climate Science Truth and Accountability Act, a bill that had passed through two committees. The new crime would have been for having a disagreement with the lawmakers’ viewpoint.
This time public outrage was too great to shut down free speech, but can it last? Our lawmakers have long ago dropped the goal of fighting for the freedom of individual citizens.

Science once meant free enquiry and adherence to reality. It’s been perverted to now mean ‘parrot the party line‘ or else. If one has a strong argument, is it even desirable to block opposition? The presentation of a weak argument raises its own shortcomings. What is propaganda if it is not a mandated one-sided view?

There are in fact more scientists alive in the world than ever before. Will they rebel against this blatant censorship? But at what cost? Speaking out has adversely affected the careers of many. Judith Curry, Roger Pielke jr., Bjorn Lomborg and Murry Salby are just a few that have horror stories to tell.

Logically, CO2 can only affect climate in one of three ways: it can have no effect, it can have a minor effect, or could there be a catastrophic effect. All three can’t be right, but what is the non-scientist to believe? Is simple logic enough to prove the catastrophic view to be wrong?

And catastrophic alarmism is of course the key to the climate taxers program – facing catastrophe, we must act instantly, but outside of the catastrophic, we have time to think, to assess. It is time to look closely at the justification for alarm, that call to act without thinking.

The claim is that at a particular level, atmospheric carbon dioxide will cause a drastic increase in world temperature, tipping us into a run-away climate catastrophe and it is bunk. In the past, atmospheric levels of carbon dioxide have been far greater than today. There is overwhelming evidence CO2 is not the climate forcer that it is claimed to be. It is instead, the source of all life on this planet. An accurate account, given by Patrick Moore, can be seen here. There are many other, understandable challenges to the catastrophic view.

But the lawsuits and the intimidation shows there is a real catastrophe lurking in the climate file. It would be catastrophic for the activists were you to know the truth. Their weak argument means that intimidation will be used to stifle critics.

There’s little money to be made by telling people there is no problem, but as Al Gore has shown, much money comes to those who spread fear. Yearly, billions of your tax dollars are spent falsely combating climate change. You are being ripped off and they fear you might awaken.

The BC Conservatives would allow the debate, too long suppressed, to take place. Andrew Weaver and David Suzuki would not be given a free pass. Their inaccurate claims would be publicly challenged by other scientists like Tim Ball and Patrick Moore, two very articulate critics residing here in BC. It’s long past time to let more sensible ideas determine our energy policies.

Gary Seinen

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