About an hour and a half into Deputy Interior Secretary nominee David Bernhardt’s Thursday confirmation hearing before the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, committee member Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) asked Bernhardt whether he believes climate change represents a “serious threat that requires aggressive action?”
In response, Bernhardt commented that “we need to take the science as it comes, whatever that is.”
After Franken interjected and stated, “I believe the science is pretty decided on this,” Bernhardt added, “I personally believe that the [human] contribution [to climate change] is significant, very significant. Now, that’s different that what we do with it, and here’s where people disagree.”
“My task will be to take the science, put it in the paradigm of the administration’s policy perspective which is [that] we’re not going to sacrifice jobs for this and then look at the legal rubric and say how do we apply the law there?” Bernhardt added.
Franken called his response “incredibly short-sighted” given job opportunities in the clean energy sector, and pressed Bernhardt on the matter again, saying “the science is in.”
“Policy decisions are made,” Bernhardt responded. “This president ran on a particular perspective. That perspective won’t change to the extent that we have the discretion under the law to follow it. In some instances we might not, but those that we do, we’re absolutely going to follow the policy perspective of the president. And here’s why: That’s the way our republic works and he is the president.”
Bernhardt, an attorney at the well-connected law firm Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreckwho previously served as the Interior’s top lawyer under former President George W. Bush, also faced pointed questions on Thursday concerning potential conflicts of interest arising from Bernhardt’s connections to the firm’s current or former clients.
Vatican Bishop Confident Pope Will Change Trump’s View on Climate Change
A senior papal official is confident that Pope Francis will be able to change President Donald Trump’s views on climate change when they meet at the Vatican on May 24. “In the election campaign, he even said it was a Chinese invention to criticize America,” Argentine Bishop Marcelo Sanchez Sorondo told Italian wire service ANSA. “But this president has already changed about several things, so perhaps on this as well.”
Pope Francis dedicated his Laudato Si encyclical to climate change and called it “a problem which can no longer be left to a future generation.” Trump, a climate doubter, has criticized the pope and does not agree with the pontiff about the global phenomenon.
“They will come to an agreement, since the president claims to be a Christian, and so he will listen to him,” Sanchez Sorondo said.
Sanchez Sorondo, the chancellor of the Pontifical Academy of Sciences and the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, works closely with the pope and has been outspoken on the issue of global warming and its effect on the world’s migrant crisis. In his interview with ANSA, he called the president’s anti-climate executive orders “against science” and “against what the pope says.”
Refuting Trump’s infamous saying that climate change is a Chinese “hoax,” Sanchez Sorondo commented, “Today the Chinese are actually very collaborative as concerns the commitments they took on climate with the Paris Climate Conference.”
“Even large capitals that have thus far invested in fossil fuels are beginning to be concerned about the effects of climate change and see new investment and research opportunities to find different energy solutions that are ‘clean’ or renewable,” he said.
Over the weekend, Pope Francis said he would be “sincere” with Trump over their diametrically opposed views on subjects such as immigration and climate change.
“Even if one thinks differently, we have to be very sincere about what each one thinks,” Francis said. “Topics will emerge in our conversations. I will say what I think and he will say what he thinks. But I have never wanted to make a judgement without first listening to the person.”
“I do know how your new president now has decided to jeopardize your budget, your initiatives, as he is extremely skeptical of climate change,” Macron said in the video. “I have no doubt about climate change, and how committed we have to be regarding this issue.”
Warmist Katharine Hayhoe: Don’t call skeptics ‘deniers’ – More accurate to call them ‘climate dismissives’
NPR’s Rachel Martin had a fascinating interview on Tuesday with Katharine Hayhoe, a renowned climate scientist and evangelical Christian, in which they discussed the toxic nature of the world “climate denier”—a word that environmental reporters, including me, use all the time to describe people who don’t accept the scientific consensus that climate change is real, man-made, and dangerous. Hayhoe argued that calling people deniers is “a good way to end the conversation,” and that it’s actually more accurate to use the word “climate dismissive.”
Hayhoe’s terminology comes from the Yale Program on Climate Change Communication, which last year published a report on how Americans view the threat of global warming. It concluded that America was divided into six categories: alarmed, concerned, cautious, disengaged, doubtful, and dismissive, the latter being people “who do not believe global warming is real and are likely to believe in various conspiracy theories about the issue.”
I’ve struggled with whether to use word “denier,” especially because of the common accusation that it’s meant to invoke Holocaust deniers. That’s not accurate, as Peter Dykstra explained at Scientific American: The word refers to a type of psychological defense mechanism first conceived by Sigmund and Anna Freud, where “an unpleasant reality is ignored, and a realistic interpretation of potentially threatening events is replaced by a benign but inaccurate one.” That’s why I think of “denier” is the most accurate term for people who ignore, misrepresent, or generally discredit the field of climate science—whether it’s because they don’t like the proposed solutions, or because they just can’t accept reality.
But another compelling reason to use “denier” is that the alternative terminology is inadequate. I won’t use the word “skeptic” because it distorts the meaning of skepticism within science. Climate scientists are skeptical by profession, and yet, a vast majority of them concluded that global warming is
Bill Nye (center in bow tie) is everywhere these days, and he’s out to “save the world.” He’s a frequent talking head on CNN, FOX, NBC, PBS, etc., usually on the supposed need for draconian regulation of humanity to stave off imminent global-warming apocalypse. On April 22nd (Earth Day) he led the March for Science in Washington, D.C., an event that drew thousands and inspired hundreds of copycat marches in cities across the country and around the world. And of course, there’s his new, sensational platform, Bill Nye Saves the World, on Netflix.
Nye and Netflix, no doubt, will insist the title of the new series makes use of obvious hyperbole for over-the-top cheeky humor effect, but the episodes released thus far reveal an aging social justice warrior (SJW) and wannabe hipster with a messianic complex who is peddling an authoritarian ideology/religion under a camouflage of pseudoscience.
Bill Nye the Science Guy has transmuted into a screechy, preachy ubiquitous presence who wants to penalize you if you have more than two children, jail you if you disagree with his global-warming catastrophism, and stigmatize you if you don’t adopt his transgender views or embrace his dogmatic religion of evolution. Even many of his liberal-left comrades are expressing concern that Nye’s strident, condescending new persona is annoying and alienating, and suggest that maybe he’s not the ideal candidate to be the public face of the climate-change/environmental movement. Besides noting that he has failed miserably in television debates, many of his allies acknowledge that Saves the World substitutes ideology and pseudo-science for real science, and that the program is replete with cringe-inducing segments that are embarrassing to watch.
“Bill Nye Is Not the Right Guy to Lead the Climate Fight,” declares the title of an April 27 article critiquing the would-be savior in the New Republic. A review at Gizmodo.com entitled “Bill Nye Spends Most of His New Netflix Show Yelling at the Audience” is by Maddie Stone, a fellow climate alarmist who says “Nye and I are on the same team,” but nonetheless finds Nye’s program to be “patronizing,” “excruciating,” ”bombastic,” and “angry.” Even a generally positive review of Bill Nye Saves the World at the leftist-progressive Vox.com admits “his approach could use some refinement,” and dings him for “condescension,” “meanness,” and a “scathing and dismissive tone” taken toward those who disagree with his views.
His first New York Times column exposed the sanctimonious condescension of the self-appointed defenders of the planet. The last weekend of April delivered one of the more enjoyable spectacles of 2017. It wasn’t Donald Trump’s tent-revival rally in Pennsylvania.
Fox News reports on 7 shots fired at skeptical climate scientists’ building – ‘Animosity in the climate wars’
Watch Fox News video here: https://mediamatters.org/embed/clips/2017/05/03/53361/fnc-specialreport-20170503-johnchristyshots
Media Matters Reports (edited for accuracy): On the May 2 edition of Special Report with Bret Baier, host Bret Baier introduced a segment on the shooting as evidence that “animosity in the climate change wars is hitting new lows.” During the segment, correspondent Doug McKelway reported that Christy “got seven bullet holes in his office windows” and made reference to Christy’s skepticism of computer model climate predictions.
From the May 2 edition of Fox News’ Special Report with Bret Baier:
BRET BAIER (HOST): We are awaiting a decision from President [Donald] Trump on whether the U.S. will continue to participate in a worldwide global warming treaty that he criticized during the campaign. Correspondent Doug McKelway tells us tonight the animosity in the climate change wars is hitting new lows.
DOUG MCKELWAY: In 1991, climate skeptic John Christy got NASA’s medal for exceptional scientific achievement. Last week, he got seven bullet holes in his office windows during the March for Science weekend at the University of Alabama, Huntsville. Police think it was random. Christy thinks he was targeted. Christy measures actual earth temperatures from satellite data. He is skeptical of computer model predictions of warming and government remedies to fix it.…
In Bret Stephens’ debut column for the New York Times, the Pulitzer prize-winning author cautioned global warming activists to maybe perhaps not claim “total certainty” about the science behind their proposed policies.
Using the Clinton campaign’s reliance on data versus traditional campaigning as an example of certainty leading to a disastrous loss, he turned to topic of global warming. He said the right words to lead off (emphasis mine):
“…while the modest (0.85 degrees Celsius, or about 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit) warming of the NorthernHemisphere since 1880 is indisputable, as is the human influence on that warming…
What he added next had heads exploding:
“…much else that passes as accepted fact is really a matter of probabilities.
It should be obvious to scientists or anyone who even took a science class in school that projections of how climate change will affect us 20 years from now are just that – projections. And projections are rarely, if ever, 100 percent correct. Still, global warming activists claim absolute certainty.
Stephens quoted a Times reporter who covered climate issues, who said that while the science activists relied on was scrupulous, the “boosters” themselves weren’t – using hyperbole to effect policy changes (a fancy way of saying “scare tactics”).
“Demanding abrupt and expensive changes in public policy raises fair questions about ideological intentions. Censoriously asserting one’s moral superiority and treating skeptics as imbeciles and deplorables wins few converts.”
Nowhere did he dismiss global warming concerns or say he personally didn’t believe in it; he simply offered a strategy that might help others win people to their point of view.
Warmist Revolt! Bill Nye has become ‘cringeworthy’ – ‘He Is Not the Right Guy to Lead the Climate Fight’
BY EMILY ATKIN
April 27, 2017
Tens of thousands of people around the world rallied for rational thought on Saturday, and those who attended the main March for Science, in Washington, D.C., were treated to a lengthy program of distinguished speakers: astronauts, astronomers, neuroscientists, biologists, chemists, and other Americans who—in a truly rational society—would be famous. But only one of them was legitimately famous.
“Our numbers here today show the world that science is for all,” Bill Nye the Science Guy belted to the crowd on the National Mall. “Our lawmakers must know that science serves every one of us. Every citizen of every nation in society. Science must shape policy. Science is universal. Science brings out the best in us. With an informed, optimistic view of the future, together we can—dare I say it—save the world!”
This speech, the Washington Post declared, “was a significant moment—for science, for William Sanford Nye and for the masses who have followed him for decades, from fuzzy TV screens in their middle school classrooms to the grounds of the Washington Monument at Saturday’s March for Science.” But Nye’s inspiring words were also, perhaps, a plug for his new Netflix show: Bill Nye Saves the World.
It seems that years of political debate have made him too jaded, exasperated, strident, and partisan to be the face of the climate change fight. Worse, he’s unwittingly feeding the conservative narrative that the left’s reverence for science is all just a political performance.
A few weeks earlier, Nye was a guest on Tucker Carlson’s evening show on Fox News. It was a cringeworthy nine minutes of television.
“To what degree is climate change is caused by human activity?” Carlson asked.
A simple question, but one that gave Nye pause. “To a degree that it’s … that it’s a very serious problem in the next few decades,” he said.
“But to what degree? Is it 100 percent? Is it 73.4 percent?”
“The word degree is a word that you chose, but the speed to which climate change is happening is caused by humans.”
“But to what extent is human activity is responsible for speeding that up? Please be more precise.”
Carlson said Nye looked annoyed—and he was right. Nye then tried to change the subject, asking Carlson why he doesn’t consider climate change a problem.
Right-wing media has had a field day with Nye lately. …