The Curse of “Not Evil, Just Wrong” — still evil and wrong


At the first post on this material, the thread got a little long — not loading well in some browsers, I hear.

So the comments are closed there, and open here.

In fashion we wish were different but seems all too typical, so-called skeptics of global warming defend their position with invective and insult.  But they are vigorous about it.  What do you think?  What information can you contribute?

Here’s the post that set off the denialists, anti-science types and DDT sniffers, and a tiny few genuinely concerned but under-informed citizens:

I warned you about it earlier. Crank science sites across the internet feature news of another cheap hit on Rachel Carson and science in movie form.

“Not Evil, Just Wrong” is slated for release on October 18. This is the film that tried to intrude on the Rachel Carson film earlier this year, but managed to to get booked only at an elementary school in Seattle, Washington — Rachel Carson Elementary, a green school where the kids showed more sense than the film makers by voting to name the school after the famous scientist-author.

The film is both evil and wrong.

Errors just in the trailer:

  1. Claims that Al Gore said sea levels will rise catastrophically, “in the very near future.” Not in his movie, not in his writings or speeches. Not true. That’s a simple misstatement of what Gore said, and Gore had the science right.
  2. ” . . . [I]t wouldn’t be a bad thing for this Earth to warm up. In fact, ice is the enemy of life.” “Bad” in this case is a value judgment — global warming isn’t bad if you’re a weed, a zebra mussel, one of the malaria parasites, a pine bark beetle, any other tropical disease, or a sadist. But significant warming as climatologists, physicists and others project, would be disastrous to agriculture, major cities in many parts of the world, sea coasts, and most people who don’t live in the Taklamakan or Sahara, and much of the life in the ocean. Annual weather cycles within long-established ranges, is required for life much as we know it. “No ice” is also an enemy of life.
  3. “They want to raise our taxes.” No, that’s pure, uncomposted bovine excrement.
  4. “They want to close our factories.” That’s more effluent from the anus of male bovines.
  5. The trailer notes the usual claim made by Gore opponents that industry cannot exist if it is clean, that industry requires that we poison the planet. Were that true, we’d have a need to halt industry now, lest we become like the yeast in the beer vat, or the champagne bottle, manufacturing alcohol until the alcohol kills the yeast. Our experience with Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899, the Clean Air Acts and the Clean Water Act is that cleaning the environment produces economic growth, not the other way around. A city choked in pollution dies. Los Angeles didn’t suffer when the air got cleaner. Pittsburgh’s clean air became a way to attract new industries to the city, before the steel industry there collapsed. Cleaning Lake Erie didn’t hurt industry. The claim made by the film is fatuous, alarmist, and morally corrupt.

    When the human health, human welfare, and environmental effects which could be expressed in dollar terms were added up for the entire 20-year period, the total benefits of Clean Air Act programs were estimated to range from about $6 trillion to about $50 trillion, with a mean estimate of about $22 trillion. These estimated benefits represent the estimated value Americans place on avoiding the dire air quality conditions and dramatic increases in illness and premature death which would have prevailed without the 1970 and 1977 Clean Air Act and its associated state and local programs. By comparison, the actual costs of achieving the pollution reductions observed over the 20 year period were $523 billion, a small fraction of the estimated monetary benefits.

  6. “Some of the environmental activists have not come to accept that the human is also part of the environment.” Fatuous claim. Environmentalists note that humans uniquely possess the ability to change climate on a global scale, intentionally, for the good or bad; environmentalists choose to advocate for actions that reduce diseases like malaria, cholera and asthma. We don’t have to sacrifice a million people a year to malaria, in order to be industrial and productive. We don’t have to kill 700,000 kids with malaria every year just to keep cars.
  7. “They want to go back to the Dark Ages and the Black Plague.” No, that would be the film makers. Environmentalists advocate reducing filth and ignorance both. Ignorance and lack of ability to read, coupled with religious fanaticism, caused the strife known as “the Dark Ages.” It’s not environmentalists who advocate an end to cheap public schools.
  8. The trailer shows a kid playing in the surf on a beach. Of course, without the Clean Water Act and other attempts to keep the oceans clean, such play would be impossible. That we can play again on American beaches is a tribute to the environmental movement, and reason enough to grant credence to claims of smart people like Al Gore and the scientists whose work he promotes.
  9. “I cannot believe that Al Gore has great regard for people, real people.” So, this is a film promoting the views of crabby, misanthropic anal orifices who don’t know Al Gore at all? Shame on them. And, why should anyone want to see such a film? If I want to see senseless acts of stupidity, I can rent a film by Quentin Tarantino and get some art with the stupidity. [Update, November 23, 2009: This may be one of the most egregiously false charges of the film. Gore, you recall, is the guy who put his political career and presidential ambitions on hold indefinitely when his son was seriously injured in an auto-pedestrian accident; Gore was willing to sacrifice all his political capital in order to get his son healed. My first dealings directly with Gore came on the Organ Transplant bill. Gore didn't need a transplant, didn't have need for one in his family, and had absolutely nothing to gain from advocacy for the life-saving procedure. It was opposed by the chairman of his committee, by a majority of members of his own party in both Houses of Congress, by many in the medical establishment, by many in the pharmaceutical industry, and by President Reagan, who didn't drop his threat to veto the bill until he signed it, as I recall. Gore is a man of deep, human-centered principles. Saying "I can't believe Al Gore has great regard for real people" only demonstrates the vast ignorance and perhaps crippling animus of the speaker.]

That’s a whopper about every 15 seconds in the trailer — the film itself may make heads spin if it comes close to that pace of error.

Where have we seen this before? Producers of the film claim as “contributors” some of the people they try to lampoon — people like Ed Begley, Jr., and NASA’s James E. Hansen, people who don’t agree in any way with the hysterical claims of the film, and people who, I wager, would be surprised to be listed as “contributors.”

It’s easy to suppose these producers used the same ambush-the-scientist technique used earlier by the producers of the anti-science, anti-Darwin film “Expelled!

Here, see the hysteria, error and alarmism for yourself:

Ann McElhinney is one of the film’s producers. Her past work includes other films against protecting environment and films for mining companies. She appears to be affiliated with junk science purveyors at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, an astro-turf organization in Washington, D.C., for whom she flacked earlier this year (video from Desmogblog):

Remember, too, that this film is already known to have gross inaccuracies about Rachel Carson and DDT, stuff that high school kids could get right easily.

Anyone have details on McElhinney and her colleague, Phelim McAlee?

More:

Related posts, at Millard Fillmore’s Bathtub:

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131 Responses to The Curse of “Not Evil, Just Wrong” — still evil and wrong

  1. [...] McIlhinney was wrong when she made the movie “Not Evil, Just Wrong,” and she’s still spreading false tales.  I found her diatribe, interestingly enough at a site [...]

    Like

  2. [...] How many errors did you find in that video?  Does it beat Phelim McAleer’s record for errors/minute? [...]

    Like

  3. blue says:

    Keep up the good work Ed Darrell and don’t let any of these smaller intellects concern you. Contributors like Hexmate don’t even deserve your attention. Its like getting in an argument with a box of rocks…

    Re: dispute of global warming(Antarctica Melting):
    Now and then some former weather channel hack will provide data that seems to cast doubt on claims that Arctic ice is melting for example. A definitive rebuke of these junk science imbeciles can easily be found at many much more credible institutions such as NASA’s site:

    http://www.nasa.gov/topics/earth/features/20100108_Is_Antarctica_Melting.html

    Excerpt:
    “…Gravity data collected from space using NASA’s Grace satellite show that Antarctica has been losing more than a hundred cubic kilometers (24 cubic miles) of ice each year since 2002…”

    The gravity data measures mass not just surface area and indicates that the loss of mass of Antarctica ice is progressing at an accelerated pace.

    Like

  4. Ed Darrell says:

    I’m fairly convinced that you and Greg must have been watching different movies. The film certainly does suggest catastrophic sea-level rise using computer-generated graphics taken from “The Day After Tomorrow”.

    Yeah, and the one Easterbrook watched isn’t the one Gore made. I wonder who made that one?

    Gore said that, if the Greenland icecap melted, and the Antarctic ice cap melted, we could have a catastrophic rise in sea level.

    Gore did not suggest that would happen any time within the next century. But the way things are going, maybe he should have.

    I don’t accept the claim that because someone misunderstood what Gore said, Gore is at fault. Go watch the movie again. Pay close attention, please.

    Or, just get the facts from the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC).

    Like

  5. John A says:

    Ed:

    “Claims that Al Gore said sea levels will rise catastrophically, “in the very near future.” Not in his movie, not in his writings or speeches. Not true. That’s a simple misstatement of what Gore said, and Gore had the science right.”

    Greg Easterbrook, The Slate (incidentally someone who believes that rising carbon dioxide is a problem)

    “Yet An Inconvenient Truth asserts that a sea-level rise of 20 feet is a realistic short-term prospect. Gore says the entire Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets could melt rapidly; the film then jumps to animation of Manhattan flooded.”

    Ref: http://www.slate.com/id/2142319

    I’m fairly convinced that you and Greg must have been watching different movies. The film certainly does suggest catastrophic sea-level rise using computer-generated graphics taken from “The Day After Tomorrow”.

    Gore’s latest book has a cover showing the results of such a warming whereby all of the polar ice has melted (which wouldn’t add anything to sea level rise, natch) with Panama and parts of Guatemala and Columbia underwater, a lake forming in Northern Greenland and even a hurricane rotating clockwise in the northern hemisphere!

    Yes, you’re right. Al Gore has the science right. I must have been crazy to think otherwise.

    Like

  6. Hexmate says:

    The Weather Channel reported Thursday that last week’s ice storms in the South knocked out electricity in some areas for a week. Oklahoma has a firewood shortage because the trees are all frozen. People are staying warm by burning Al Gore’s books.”

    Like

  7. Ed Darrell says:

    Hexmate has annoying habits like stealing material from others, and then refusing to give the others credit. He had a lot of access to obscure, sometimes troubling sites on the internet, but nothing of any substantial value that I saw.

    He has an annoying habit of posting often with no substance but a great deal of insult.

    Life is too short to suffer such carbuncles on the face of the internet. I don’t have time to try to keep him inside the copyright laws, as a good site manager would.

    Given a chance to say he’d mend his ways, he refused.

    Ta ta, Hexmate.

    Like

  8. Colm McGinn says:

    That hexmate guy surely was one annoying f*****

    But he (I’m sure it’s a he, late middle-age) was also VERY active. Does he have nothing else to do?

    He had a suspiciously ready access to some information, and a ready and offensive invective when challenged.

    Oh well, you really had to toast him?

    RIP

    Like

  9. Ed Darrell says:

    And with that, Hexmate bids us farewell.

    Like

  10. Hexmate says:

    Not only are NOAA’s bogus data accepted as green gospel, but so are its equally bogus hysterical claims, like this one from the 2006 annual State of the Climate in 2005: “Globally averaged mean annual air temperature in 2005 slightly exceeded the previous record heat of 1998, making 2005 the warmest year on record.”
    The recent NOAA proclamation that June 2009 was the second-warmest June in 130 years will go down in the history books, despite multiple satellite assessments ranking it as the 15th-coldest in 31 years. Even when our own National Weather Service (NWS) makes its frequent announcements that a certain month or year was the hottest ever, or that five of the warmest years on record occurred last decade, they’re basing such hyperbole entirely on NOAA’s warm-biased data.
    And how can anyone possibly read GISS chief James Hansen’s Sunday claim that 2009 was tied with 2007 for second-warmest year overall, and the Southern Hemisphere’s absolute warmest in 130 years of global instrumental temperature records, without laughing hysterically? It’s especially laughable when one considers that NOAA had just released a statement claiming that very same year (2009) to be tied with 2006 for the fifth-warmest year on record.

    Like

  11. Hexmate says:

    It was also discovered that in California, only four stations remain – one in San Francisco and three in Southern L.A. near the beach – and itt is certainly impossible to compare it with the past record that had thermometers in the snowy mountains. So we can have no idea if California is warming or cooling by looking at the USHCN data set or the GHCN data set.

    Like

  12. Hexmate says:

    Yet as disturbing as the number of dropped stations was, it is the nature of NOAA’s “selection bias” that is more troubling. It seems that stations placed in historically cooler, rural areas of higher latitude and elevation were scrapped from the data series in favor of more urban locales at lower latitudes and elevations. Consequently, post-1990 readings have been biased to the warm side not only by selective geographic location, but also by the anthropogenic heating influence of a phenomenon known as the Urban Heat Island Effect (UHI).
    For example, Canada’s reporting stations dropped from 496 in 1989 to 44 in 1991, with the percentage of stations at lower elevations tripling while the numbers of those at higher elevations dropped to one. That’s right they left “one thermometer for everything north of LAT 65.” And that one resides in a place called Eureka, which has been described as “The Garden Spot of the Arctic” due to its unusually moderate summers.

    Like

  13. Hexmate says:

    Perhaps the key point discovered was that by 1990, NOAA had deleted from its datasets all but 1,500 of the 6,000 thermometers in service around the globe.
    Now, 75% represents quite a drop in sampling population, particularly considering that these stations provide the readings used to compile both the Global Historical Climatology Network (GHCN) and United States Historical Climatology Network (USHCN) datasets. These are the same datasets, incidentally, which serve as primary sources of temperature data not only for climate researchers and universities worldwide, but also for the many international agencies using the data to create analytical temperature anomaly maps and charts.

    Like

  14. Hexmate says:

    NOAA stands accused by the two researchers of strategically deleting cherry-picked, cooler-reporting weather observation stations from the temperature data it provides the world through its National Climatic Data Center (NCDC). NOAA is complicit, if not the real ground zero for the issue.”
    Their primary accomplices are the scientists at GISS, who put the altered data through an even more biased regimen of alterations, including intentionally replacing the dropped NOAA readings with those of stations located in much warmer locales.

    Like

  15. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “Whatever I did to make you think we’re “buds,” Hexmate, was unintentional and wrongly read.”

    Eddie! We’re best buds how can you deny that? Now give me that inside track on how you dodged the draft. C’mon Jimmy Carter gave you amnesty a long time ago.

    Like

  16. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “Your days here are ended, Hexmate, absent an appropriate apology to readers, veterans, and the rest of the world. You’ve stumbled and bumbled from mere incompetence at internet techniques and manners into full-blown, offensive insult. I won’t engage in a pissing match with a skunk.”

    Oh Ed please. Likewise your days of perpetrating this fraud are over and you should apologize to everyone for being such a brazen liar. Ed you epitomize stumbling and bumbling as well as having any manners what so ever. The only skunk in this wood pile is you and you stink to the high heaven.

    Like

  17. Ed Darrell says:

    Whatever I did to make you think we’re “buds,” Hexmate, was unintentional and wrongly read.

    Like

  18. Ed Darrell says:

    C’mon Ed we’re buds now this isn’t about being coy with each other. You can tell the truth – well maybe you can’t – but at any rate confession is good for the soul Ed. What did you do in the war daddy?

    I volunteered, I did not get “caught up,” but did not serve in any military.

    Your days here are ended, Hexmate, absent an appropriate apology to readers, veterans, and the rest of the world. You’ve stumbled and bumbled from mere incompetence at internet techniques and manners into full-blown, offensive insult. I won’t engage in a pissing match with a skunk.

    Like

  19. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “I wouldn’t know how, sir, nor will I take lessons from you in shirking duties. You’ve gone way beyond just offensive and stupid.”

    C’mon Ed we’re buds now this isn’t about being coy with each other. You can tell the truth – well maybe you can’t – but at any rate confession is good for the soul Ed. What did you do in the war daddy? You were draft age back then Ed. How’d you get out of it? I can’t give you any lessons on shirkiing duties Ed I got caught up in the war. So what was your secret for avoiding serving your country? Let it all hang out Ed!

    Like

  20. Ed Darrell says:

    Ed! Were you a draft dodger Ed?

    I wouldn’t know how, sir, nor will I take lessons from you in shirking duties. You’ve gone way beyond just offensive and stupid.

    Like

  21. Hexmate says:

    Ed! Were you a draft dodger Ed? You sound like a draft dodger Ed. I bet you were a draft dodger Ed! C’mon Ed fess up. They granted you amnesty years ago Ed so you can own up to it now. LOL!

    Like

  22. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “Only in the Bizarro World of climate denialism is using actual data considered untruthful.”

    Ed you are the number one denialist – and your pants are on the ground again! Pull ‘em Ed! LOL!

    Like

  23. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “The “trick” was to substitute actual temperature readings for the projected temperature lines from 1960 through 1995.”

    Yeah Ed sure! You should be selling used cars too, but you can’t because your pants are on the ground and nobody would hire you looking like that! Pants on the ground Ed! LOL!

    Like

  24. Hexmate says:

    Ed said: “Hexmate offered source (finally!), but appears not to have read it. The Time Magazine article said”

    I read it Ed. Notice the similarities back in 1974 to the farce you are propagating today? I did. Your pants are on the ground again Ed!

    Like

  25. Ed Darrell says:

    I like this one. It looks like the “idiots” were found out. Pants on the ground! LOL!

    In a 1999 e-mail exchange about charts showing the climate patterns of the last two millennia, Phil Jones, a longtime CRU climate researcher, boasted that he had used a “trick” — also employed by another scientist, Michael Mann — to “hide the decline” in temperatures. In another e-mail, a climate scientist referred to global-warming skeptics as “idiots.”

    The “trick” was to substitute actual temperature readings for the projected temperature lines from 1960 through 1995.

    Only in the Bizarro World of climate denialism is using actual data considered untruthful.

    Like

  26. Hexmate says:

    Nice to know the London Telegraph shares my concerns. ““Their importance cannot be overestimated, What we are looking at here is the small group of scientists who have for years been more influential in driving the worldwide alarm over global warming than any others, not least through the role they play at the heart of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).”

    The impact of the foregoing revelations was heightened by a subsquent report by U.S. researchers that accused government agencies of cherry-picking — from warmer rather than cooler locations — many of the temperature readings which had been used to assess global temperatures.”

    Like

  27. Ed Darrell says:

    Hexmate offered source (finally!), but appears not to have read it. The Time Magazine article said:

    Man, too, may be somewhat responsible for the cooling trend. The University of Wisconsin’s Reid A. Bryson and other climatologists suggest that dust and other particles released into the atmosphere as a result of farming and fuel burning may be blocking more and more sunlight from reaching and heating the surface of the earth.

    [We have largely controlled particulate and aerosol pollution since then, leaving the greenhouse gases to have sway on climate. - E.D.]

    Climatic Balance. Some scientists like Donald Oilman, chief of the National Weather Service’s long-range-prediction group, think that the cooling trend may be only temporary. But all agree that vastly more information is needed about the major influences on the earth’s climate. Indeed, it is to gain such knowledge that 38 ships and 13 aircraft, carrying scientists from almost 70 nations, are now assembling in the Atlantic and elsewhere for a massive 100-day study of the effects of the tropical seas and atmosphere on worldwide weather. The study itself is only part of an international scientific effort known acronymically as GARP (for Global Atmospheric Research Program).

    Whatever the cause of the cooling trend, its effects could be extremely serious, if not catastrophic. Scientists figure that only a 1% decrease in the amount of sunlight hitting the earth’s surface could tip the climatic balance, and cool the planet enough to send it sliding down the road to another ice age within only a few hundred years.

    The earth’s current climate is something of an anomaly; in the past 700,000 years, there have been at least seven major episodes of glaciers spreading over much of the planet. Temperatures have been as high as they are now only about 5% of the time. But there is a peril more immediate than the prospect of another ice age. Even if temperature and rainfall patterns change only slightly in the near future in one or more of the three major grain-exporting countries—the U.S., Canada and Australia —global food stores would be sharply reduced. University of Toronto Climatologist Kenneth Hare, a former president of the Royal Meteorological Society, believes that the continuing drought and the recent failure of the Russian harvest gave the world a grim premonition of what might happen. Warns Hare: “I don’t believe that the world’s present population is sustainable if there are more than three years like 1972 in a row.”

    Read more: http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,944914-2,00.html#ixzz0dYnkMDTv

    Like

  28. Hexmate says:

    I like this one. It looks like the “idiots” were found out. Pants on the ground! LOL!

    In a 1999 e-mail exchange about charts showing the climate patterns of the last two millennia, Phil Jones, a longtime CRU climate researcher, boasted that he had used a “trick” — also employed by another scientist, Michael Mann — to “hide the decline” in temperatures. In another e-mail, a climate scientist referred to global-warming skeptics as “idiots.”

    Like

  29. Hexmate says:

    So uh the hackers created this banter Ed? You crack me up Ed. You are one of the best excuse makers I have ever encountered.

    In a November 22, 1996 email to other top global-warming scientists, Geoff Jenkins — the self-described “front man explaining climate change” — spoke of “inventing” temperature readings and releasing fake “estimates” of temperature data for the year, even before the year was over. He added:

    “Remember all the fun we had last year over 1995 global temperatures, with early release of information (via Oz), ‘inventing’ the December monthly value, letters to Nature etc etc? I think we should have a cunning plan about what to do this year….”

    Jenkins further pledged to pass along falsified temperature information “selectively to Nick Nuttall [spokesman and “Head of Media” for the United Nations Environment program], so that he can write an article for the silly season.”

    Like

  30. Hexmate says:

    Ed this is a lot more than just changing a few figures so your claim is irrelevant for the time being until proven otherwise.

    The so-called “Climategate” scandal erupted in late November of 2009. The controversy began when some Russian computer hackers obtained and publicized 1,073 private e-mails from the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia in England, possessor of the world’s largest temperature-data set. The e-mails in question — some of which dated back as far as 13 years, and 241 of which were from 2008 and 2009 — had been exchanged between a number of leading American and British climatologists known for their belief that mankind’s industrial activity was causing a dangerous “global warming” trend in the earth’s atmosphere. In their correspondences, the authors candidly acknowledged that they had intentionally:

    - manipulated scientific evidence in order to provide “proof” that their warnings were justified
    - conspired to illegally conceal, falsify, or destroy data that did not support their global-warming claims
    - plotted to keep opposing scientific views out of the peer-reviewed journals whose editorial boards they controlled.

    Like

  31. Ed Darrell says:

    Strike one:

    Ligne said: “incidentally, i notice from the same site that sea ice extent is currently lower than 2007. think we might be in for another record-breaking year?”

    Hexmate said: That information has already been debunked Ligne. Wake up!

    Where’s your source, Hex? It looks to me that Ligne has caught you without facts once again. No debunking exists.

    Strike two:

    Ligne said: “hold on a moment, Hexmate. you’re dismissing the work of the NSIDC wholesale,”

    Hexmate said: The organization is based on a scam, with a director who lost all credibility by making false claims, and now you want to rescue it because supposedly the remainder of their work is legitimate? You are dillusional Ligne!

    There is no indication that the director of the National Snow and Ice Data Center made any false claim. That’s libelous, Hex. You don’t even cite a source — the libel is on you.

    Lord Baden-Powell is wagging his finger at you.

    Strike three:

    Ligne said: “hard to tell for certain, since you seem incapable of providing references).”

    Hexmate said: Better to present facts that are public knowledge than to promote references to organizations that are not credible, provide fraudulent information, and bascially are involved in a conspriacy. Did you and Ed find some integrity you can buy yet?

    Alas, you’re presenting false claims that are not supported by any documentation. Were you presenting facts, that would be good — we see once again why you and most other climate change denialists are so fast and loose with citations: It’s because you’re fast and loose with the facts.

    Conspiracy? Not by scientists. You’re so fast to claim it, though, Hexmate, that we might suppose you fear being discovered.

    Reality probably is that you don’t realize others are taking money to spout the false claims you spout.

    Worst possible situation: You’re batting a no-hitter on the veracity scale, but doing it for free!

    Like

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