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CBS Newsman Charles Osgood A Climate Skeptic? Questions Whether Quiet Sun May ‘Counteract’ Global Warming

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Washington DC: Veteran CBS newsman Charles Osgood, the host of the CBS News Sunday Morning show since 1994, has released an April 21, 2009 surprise “The Osgood File” radio report questioning man-made global warming predictions.

In the radio report, Osgood reveals that “the sun is the dimmest it’s been in nearly a century” and noted that previous quiet sun periods have “led to a mini-Ice Age here on Earth.” Osgood even admonished himself for questioning man-made warming fears by declaring “Hush, Child! You’re not even supposed to suggest that.”

Osgood asked: “Right now, global warming is a given to so many, it raises the question: Could another minimum activity period on the Sun counteract, in any way, the effects of global warming? Hush, child! You’re not even supposed to suggest that. The only thing that can change global warming is if we human beings — we Americans, especially — completely change our ways and our way of life. I’m sure you’ll be hearing more about this solar dimming business, now that the story is out. Remember, you heard it here first…”

Osgood, a long-time environmentalist with close ties to the Nature Conservancy, has not always sounded so skeptical of global warming. In a March 19, 2007 “The Osgood File”, he reported, “It may be POLITICALLY impossible to cut back fast enough on greenhouse gas emissions to do anything global warming. And if that is the case we may have to turn to geo-engineering.”

Osgood’s current willingness to question the sun’s role in the climate system, is in direct contrast to his fellow CBS News reporter Scott Pelley who chooses to exclusively report the views of the promoters of man-made climate fears. Pelley explained in 2006 that he actually “tried hard to find a respected scientist who contradicted the prevailing opinion in the scientific community, but there was no one out there who fit that description.”

Pelley also publicly compared scientists skeptical of global warming fears to Holocaust deniers. “If I do an interview with Elie Wiesel,” he asks, “am I required as a journalist to find a Holocaust denier?” Pelley said in a March 23, 2006 interview with CBS News.

Osgood is not the only mainstream media journalist who may have reconsidered their man-made global warming views recently. CNN’s Lou Dobbs apparently used to believe in man-made climate fears. In 2006, shortly after former Vice President Al Gore’s film came out, Dobbs was touting and exclusively featuring climate activists like Gavin Schmidt of Real Climate, Alan Robock and Michael Mann on his program and declared the scientific debate “over.” (See: July 12, 2006: Lou Dobbs Declares global warming “discussion is over…” Get on with solutions! )

But in 2009, Dobbs is no longer convinced the climate debate is settled and declared on January 5, 2009 that belief in global warming is ‘almost a religion’ and now regularly features climate skeptics on his program. (See: The Ice Age Cometh: Experts Warn of Global Cooling – Dobbs Show January 13, 2009 )

Most surprisingly, before he was let go from CNN, even science reporter Miles O’Brien featured Climatologist Dr. John Christy on a CNN special, examining Gore’s scientific errors.

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Full Audio of Osgood’s April 21, 2009 report available here:

Full Transcript of “The Osgood File” Radio Report as Aired on CBS Radio Network on April 21, 2009:

04/21/09 9:25 AM

A QUIET SUN DOESN’T HAPPEN OVERNIGHT.

The Osgood File. I’m Charles Osgood.

I know you’ve already got a lot to worry about as it is, but something rather odd is going on — on the Sun.

The Sun normally undergoes an 11-year cycle of activity — and last year, it was supposed to have heated up — and, at its peak, would have a tumultuous boiling atmosphere, spitting out flares and huge chunks of super-hot gas.

Instead, it hit a 50-year low in solar wind pressure, a 55-year low in radio emissions, and a 100-year low in sunspot activity. Right now, the sun is the dimmest it’s been in nearly a century.

Did you know that? It’s true. Astronomers are baffled by it, but has the press covered the story? Hardly at all. Is the government doing anything about it? No, it’s not even in the Obama budget or any Congressional earmarks.

But, sooner or later, I bet it will turn out to be our fault — yours and mine. And in Washington, where everything is political, they’ll note that it began before President Obama took office — perhaps “another example of the failed policies of the Bush Administration.”

At an upcoming meeting of astronomers in the United Kingdom, they’ll be studying new pictures of the Sun taken from space, looking for any hint that the Sun will start heating up again and acting up again, the way it’s supposed to. But there is no sign of that, so far.

In the mid-17th Century, there was a quiet spell on the Sun — known as the Maunder Minimum — which lasted 70 years, and led to a mini-Ice Age here on Earth.

Right now, global warming is a given to so many, it raises the question: Could another minimum activity period on the Sun counteract, in any way, the effects of global warming?

Hush, child! You’re not even supposed to suggest that. The only thing that can change global warming is if we human beings — we Americans, especially — completely change our ways and our way of life.

I’m sure you’ll be hearing more about this solar dimming business, now that the story is out. Remember, you heard it here first…

The Osgood File. Transcripts, podcasts, and Mp3’s of all these programs can be found at theosgoodfile.com. I’m Charles Osgood on the CBS Radio Network.

The Osgood File. April 21st, 2009.

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