National Post Disgraces Itself Again

Mon, 2009-03-09 15:13Mitchell Anderson
Mitchell Anderson's picture

National Post Disgraces Itself Again

Poland is a long way from New York, and the distance illustrates the vast gulf between truth and rhetoric in how many in the mainstream media continue to cover climate science.

Last year, not a single English language Canadian news reporter was sent to cover the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Poznan in Poland (except Richard Littlemore of DeSmog Blog).

Yet even as they teeter of the edge of bankruptcy, the National Post felt it important to have a reporter covering the climate denier’s conference held this week at the swank Marriott Marquis in New York and sponsored by the notoriously unethical Heartland Institute.

The UN Conference featured actual scientists and had the potential to generate real news on how the world might come to grips with climate change.

The Heartland Conference is instead a retread of last year’s denialpoloza, featuring the same washed up hacks on the oil industry payroll.

Unlike a real scientific conference, this event is a Potemkin village constructed to give the appearance of scientific debate, when none has existed for at least five to ten years. Yet many in the media still eat it up.

On his way to New York, Peter Foster of the National Post gushed that the Heartland conference will: “feature dozens of presentations by…top scientists and other researchers who question the conclusions of the United Nations’ highly-politicized Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).”

One can gather how much critical thought Mr. Foster will bring to this event. He does not seem to realize or care that media like himself are the real audience of this stunt - not the public or the scientific community.

Consider the plan hatched by the American Petroleum Institute in 1998—calling for a “campaign to recruit a cadre of scientists who share the industry’s views of climate science and to train them in public relations so they can help convince journalists, politicians and the public that the risk of global warming is too uncertain to justify”.

Even eleven years later, Big Oil is still getting much mileage out of their ruse, as evidenced by the giddy Mr. Foster. 

If the industry shills in attendance in New York had important new insights and data to back it up, they would surely present their findings to their peers at an actual gathering of scientists, or in peer reviewed scientific literature.

Instead, like washed-up boxers who only pick fights in bars, these skeptics restrict their pugilism to industry funded fetes rather than the bearpit of real scientific debate. And supposed journalists like Mr. Foster are of course given a front row seat.

Other National Post staffers have fallen for Big Oil’s ploy and regularly spill buckets of ink trying to convince the public that the entire scientific community is wrong about our looming climate emergency. The immorality of this, I cannot begin to fathom.

As a writer myself, I don’t begrudge journalists the ability to hold forth on whatever subject they want. The important caveat of course is that sources be properly referenced and fact-checked. Climate denial news stories inevitably are not.

The fault for this lies with those editors and television producers acting as compromised gatekeepers of what information makes it into the public discourse. Many, such as the editors of the National Post, have failed so miserably to accurately communicate our evolving understanding of climate science that it called only be called journalistic malpractice.  

So enjoy your stay at the Marriott Marquis Mr. Foster. I am certain that Big Oil will make sure you are well looked after – as long as you continue to deliver their message for them.


This month we’re giving away FREE copies Keith Farnish’s new book Times Up: an uncivilized solution to a global crisis.

Go here to find out more details about DeSmogBlog’s monthly book give-away.

Previous Comments

‘Climate denial’ and ‘fact-checking’ are inevitably mutually incompatible. Either something is true or it isn’t and since ‘Climate Denial’ faux-journalism involves falsely  dismissing or even undermining a vast amount of world-class science as if it were a work of fiction, it is a lie.

There can be no such thing as a well researched climate denial article, because if it were accurate, the article wouldn’t & couldn’t exist!


Also:

On his way to New York, Peter Foster of the National Post gushed that the Heartland conference will: “feature dozens of presentations by…top scientists and other researchers who question the conclusions of the United Nations’ highly-politicized Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).”

In Heartland’s bizarro world, every one of the dozens (or hundreds) of ‘scientists’ who agrees with them is described as a “top scientist” or a “leading scientist”.

Of course, in the real world where logic actually plays a part, it’s impossible for all people to be “leading scientists” at the same time. But this is the Heartland Institute, where logic doesn’t apply.

bi

it’s really shocking that final yr, not really just one english vocabulary Canadian news media reporter had been Paint Sprayers Reviews delivered to cover the actual Not Framework Conference upon Climate Alter within Poznan in Belgium..that is a good interesting occurring.thanks for discussing this informative weblog.maintain in the fantastic function.


“As a writer myself, I don’t begrudge journalists the ability to hold forth on whatever subject they want. The important caveat of course is that sources be properly referenced and fact-checked.”

George Will quoted from actual scientists and reported the data reasonably correctly on global sea ice, yet even at this website he was taken to task for deviating from global warming orthodoxy.

Skeptics will continue to question claims that can not be replicated nor proven by the science. And too many studies offered up to the public have ‘facts’ with confidence levels so low that their results remain open to dispute.

 

Skeptics will continue to question

Why do you keep talking about how you’re “questioning” stuff, even though I’ve never, ever, ever heard you ask even a single question?

bi

Climate change denialism spans a range from; it’s not happening, through it’s a different mechanism, to it won’t be that bad.

I hypothesise that these claims are promulgated by four types of denier.

  1. The paid denier.

  2. The troll

  3. The fingers in their ears and singing “La La La “

  4. The open minded sceptic.

I’ve never encountered a type 4!

I think the National Post is garbage. I tried reading it a couple years ago but it read a little like a tabloid. I tabloid per city and we already have ours.

Lorne Gunter of the National Post disgraced himself yet again this weekend with another outrageously inaccurate column

about something he apparently knows nothing about: climate science.

Gunter held forward William Happer as his climate skeptic champion to put those hacks at the IPCC to shame. He crows that Happer “is hardly a climate change ‘denier’ ”, and is instead “one of the world’s leading experts on the interactions of visible and infrared radiation with gases.” Sincerely, Kopilka & Sildenafil Team.

its really surprising that last year, not a single english language Canadian news reporter was sent to cover the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change in Poznan in Poland..that is an interesting happening.thanks for sharing this informative blog.keep up the great work.

Thanks for sharing this information with us.