Left, Media Hype Climate Threat: This Summer Is What ‘Warming Looks Like’

July 9th, 2012 1:21 PM

When is comes to the liberal news media virtually any unusual weather event gets connected to climate change or global warming: heat wave or hurricane, drought or blizzard. So it was no surprise when the media quickly connected the recent wildfires, heat wave and a Derecho that hit Washington, D.C. causing a widespread power outage to climate change.

Associated Press, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, and The Washington Post have all run stories about climate change since the start of summer on June 20. Those reports were rife with alarmist slant.

CBS “Evening News” delivered a one sided story citing climate change worriers, but no skeptics on July 3. NBC “Nightly News” cited global warming as a possible cause of the Colorado fires. But MSNBC took the cake by citing a skewed poll, consulting a spokesperson for the environmental movement, and taking shots at Mitt Romney, Newt Gingrich and the Koch brothers. MSNBC’s “Ed Show” also consulted warming alarmist Bill Nye “The Science Guy” who claimed “big hurricanes are consistent with models of climate change … The dehydration of the forest in Colorado and the forest fires are consistent with models of climate change.”

MSNBC’s Alex Wagner went all out to hype climate danger on the July 3 edition of “Now with Alex Wagner.” She began by misrepresenting a comment on twitter from former GOP presidential candidate Newt Gingrich. The tweet read: “Friend and coauthor bill forstchen notes washington-baltimore blackout mild taste of what an emp (electromagnetic pulse) attack would do.”

Wagner used this to argue that people are ignorant about climate change saying, “Is this just further evidence that Washington is completely in the dark on the severity of global warming.” She also quipped that “Newt may have been actually the victim of an electromagnetic pulse.”

She was, in fact, totally wrong. Gingrich was referring to Forstchen, whose novel “One Second After,” described how an American town might cope with the loss of electricity and all modern conveniences. It had nothing whatsoever to do with climate.

Wagner also interviewed British adventurer and climate change alarmist David Mayer de Rothschild on her show to discuss his views on the weather and general sentiment about climate change. Rothschild, an heir to the Rothschild banking fortune, was active in a left-wing campaign to target Chevron as part of the bogus claims that the firm was involved in environmental destruction in Ecuador.

Wagner welcomed him warmly saying, “although every time I see you I feel like some horrible environmental catastrophe has befallen us, and we once again return to the question of why our political class, our rulers, the ruling elite, are not more focused on environmental concerns. You would think that this, happening in Washington D.C., would spur some sort of action, or at least thinking on the subject.”

Rothschild called on Wagner and her viewers to try to make the economy a “subset of nature.”

She also criticized the efforts by politicians who were skeptical of global warming, whom she accused of being set up by the Koch brothers. “It doesn’t help that the Koch brothers, who are big players in oil and gas, are going to spend $400 million on this election trying to make sure that their guys are elected.” The Koch brothers are billionaire entrepreneurs who donate to many conservative organizations and causes and who are hated by the left.

Even with all that Wagner went a step further, claiming that a Washington Post-Stanford University poll said that said that 78% of Americans think that global warming is a serious problem. However, what the poll actually showed was that 78% of those who think that global warming is happening also think that it is a serious problem. A subtle, but key difference.

CBS “Evening News” national correspondent Chip Reid used a fig leaf of objectivity July 3, when he said no weather incident is climate change, but then relied on a lefty “expert” who said exactly the opposite. Reid reported that “No one can say whether climate change caused last Friday’s ferocious storm that left more than 4 million people without power, but [climate change advocate Kevin] Trenberth says it probably made it worse.”

Reid also played the “consensus” card, acknowledging there are people skeptical of the danger of climate change but promoting the alarmist view saying:  “a large majority of climate scientists say that climate change is real and … if they’re right that means the extreme weather is only going to get worse.”

Trenberth, according to the CBS report, is with the federally funded National Center for Atmospheric Research, and shared the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize with a group of climate activists who included Al Gore. Reid included no one from the other side of the issue.

Trenberth was one of the warmist scientists whose emails were leaked as part of the Climategate controversy. An email from Trenberth to Michael Mann, James Hansen and Michael Oppenheimer said, “The fact is that we can’t account for the lack of warming at the moment and it is a travesty that we can’t.” He and others have claimed their remarks were taken out of context.

One Washington Post columnist sounded more like lefty websites from Climate Progress to Common Dreams that were blaming global warming for the recent weather. Petula Dvorak wrote on July 6 that the American public is finally starting to notice what the “global-warming Paul Reveres have been shouting about.” To support her argument, she quoted a reader who said that the last ten years in Washington, D.C. “left an impression” that the region is approaching the “inner circle [of Dante’s inferno’] quickly.” Dvorak failed to note that the inner circle of Dante’s Hell is full of ice.

Like the media, left-wing websites rushed to connect this summer's wildfires and heat wave to climate change and some called for action. On The Huffington Post, one "climate change expert" from the liberal World Wildlife Fund called politicians to quit "napping on the fireline: wake up, smell the smoke and act on climate change." Climate Progress, the climate focused blog of Think Progress was thrilled to find Washington, D.C. NBC meteorologist Doug Kammerer talking about the heat wave and declaring: "If we did not have global warming, we wouldn't see this." Think Progress is an arm of the left-wing Center for American Progress which has gotten $7.3 million from liberal billionaire George Soros' Open Society Foundation.

Common Dreams warned “This is just the beginning,” quoting a Weather Underground meteorologist.

Other left-wing websites attacked the media, claiming there wasn’t enough climate change alarmism in reports. That was the argument Democracy Now! made in discussion of the recent weather events.

Democracy Now!, a left-wing website that is part of the Soros-funded Media Consortium,  complained that news coverage of the heat, wildfires and recent tropical storm rarely contained "two other words: global warming." In that discussion, Suzanne Goldenberg, U.S. environmental correspondent for The Guardian (U.K.), revealed her bias on the issue saying: “Absolutely, climate change is a big factor here [in Colorado fires]. We've had a 10-year-or-more drought across the West. You haven't had rain. And when you have had rain, it hasn't come at the right time or in the right quantity. Crucially, you haven't had snow. You've had really mild winters. It's that dry. And that's an effect of climate change."

But of course what was actually missing from news coverage were non-alarmist scientists like Dr. Roy Spencer, who wrote on his own website that June 2012 temperatures were actually “Not that remarkable.” He wrote, “Even if it was the worst in the last century for the Eastern U.S. (before which we can’t really say anything), there is no way to know if it was mostly human-caused or natural, anyway.”

Then he responded to potential critics saying, “‘But, Roy, the heat wave is consistent with climate model predictions!’ Yeah, well, it’s also consistent with natural weather variability. So, take your pick.”

As for the heat waves, Professor Judy Curry, said on her website, “We saw these kinds of heat waves in the 1930′s, and those were definitely not caused by greenhouse gases. Weather variability changes on multidecadal time scales, associated with the large ocean oscillations. I don’t think that what we are seeing this summer is outside the range of natural variability for the past century. In terms of heat waves, particularly in cities, urbanization can also contribute to the warming (the so-called urban heat island effect).” She told this (and more) to AP’s Seth Borenstein, but she says he chose not to include her responses in his story.

Stanley Goldenberg, a National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) meteorologist, said in 2009 that “The [climate] debate, as you also know, is masked by media censorship, bias and distortion.”

He added that, “I’ve seen gross, gross blatant censorship” by the news media. His experience is consistent with the findings of the Business and Media Institute on media coverage of climate issues. In 2008, BMI released a Special Report called Global Warming Censored that found the media agreed with Al Gore’s claimed that the “debate’s over.” Global warming proponents overwhelmingly outnumbered those with other opinions by nearly a 13-to-1 radio