The Telegraph does what The Guardian and Independent rarely do, and give a good deal of space for someone from the opposite side of the fence to have their say. The Canutists roll out their heavyweight in the considerable shape of Al Gore.
Gore comes up with all the usual drivel claiming that nothing less than "human civilisation" is at stake. Bang goes your credibility, Al.
Gore's article is in response to the two part work by Christopher Monckton which the Telegraph covered in the previous two weeks. He starts off by quoting an ex-colleague of his with a less than memorable quote "everyone is entitiled to their own opinion, but they arenot entitled o their own facts". No shit, sherlock.
The question is, what is a fact? Why do I ask that? Because it is vital to understand the difference between verified fact and educated guess. A fact is something that is demonstrably proven. This is something that Gore fails to understand.
The early part of the article is straight from Monbiot - so worth ignoring. It's on page two that Gore starts to distort the facts claiming that "direct observations" from the last ice age prove CO2 is at the core of recent global warming. Unless Mr Gore has recently developed the ability to time travel then is is hard to see where he got "direct observation" from the last ice age. Can he time travel? Is the Pope a Muslim?
What Gore means, of course, is that there is historical data which can be obtained which shows that the earth warmed considerably after the last ice age. Really? Who'd have thought that., eh?
Gore wheels out the "hockey stick" graph claiming that it is still relevant - despite all the evidence that has demonstrated it to be utterly dishonest and blatantly wrong. This clinging belief to something which is demonstrably false is at the heart of The Canutists cause. Without the hockey stick graph there is no case so it has to be defended at all costs. Hence, Gore rolls out some scientists to say it's accurate. Gore goes on to say ...
It also noted that the finding has "subsequently been supported by an array of evidence". So, no matter how many charts or graphs the Viscount might want to create, the basic facts remain the same. What the models have shown, unequivocally, is that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases mainly released from industrial activities are warming the planet.
Whether it is "supported" by evidence is debatable. There is a similar array of evidence that supports the belief that climate change is nothing new. In fact, we know it isn't and we know it happened long before man set foot on the earth. The smoothness of the practiced delivery of a politician is evidenced by the way that Gore briefly defends the debunked myth of the hockey stick graph before moving swiftly on to say that "the basic facts remain" And what basic facts are they? They are that "what the models have shown" ...
What the models have guessed, more like. It's true, of course, to say that the models show global warming on a massive scale and widespread catastrophy. That's what the models are supposed to show! But that isn't proof of anything. It's like pointing to the film "The Day After Tomorrow" and saying "there's your evidence! Now do you believe me, oh ye of litle faith?!"
No, Al, the models are not facts - they are fiction. They are guesswork. They are Jules Verne for techies. They are great fun, but they ar not fact based.
Now Gore starts to spin the web.
It is important to understand that there is not just one strand of evidence leading us to believe that global warming is occurring, but rather that all of the peer-reviewed evidence, from scientists around the world, points in the same direction.
Those who oppose the Canutists and Environazis are not trying to deny that global warming occurs or that climate change occurs, we're trying to point out that there is NO evidence that it is caused by man's activities. None whatsoever. Not a jot. Gore ignores this small point and moves on ...
To be sure, not all of the finest workings of the climate system are yet fully understood to the finest grain. However, all of the basics are absolutely clear. Global warming is real, human activities are causing the problem, many of the solutions are available to us now ...
See, in the previous paragraph he states that the scientific community agree that climate change is real - which they do - then in the next paragraph he asserts that it is anthropogenic - which is not what the scientific community agree at all - a ridiculous and a deliberate deceit. It's a modern political trick. Like the way Blair presents his plan for ID cards by saying that the security services agree that the threat from terrorism is real and substantial - which we all agree as there is evidence to support that - and then goes on to say that this is why we need ID cards - as if that is what the security services think and as if this will do anything to stop another 7/7 (it won't). It's the way politicians use facts to back their assertions. Deliberately deceitful.
The rest of Gore's article is about The Stern Report and not worth commenting on other than to say that it's a rather weedy effort.
At least The Telegraph has demonstrated real balance - something which we rarely see from the left leaning media of the BBC, Guardian and Independent.