Cassandra has moved. Ugo Bardi publishes now on a new site called "The Seneca Effect."

Thursday, February 13, 2020

The Decline of the West: More Evidence From Australia

Are climate scientists criminals?

There was a time, not long ago, when in the West we were proud of our scientific achievements, our rationality, our approach to knowledge. Maybe it was a little overstated, but there was something good in the Western pride and respect for science.

I don't know what happened that destroyed everything, but it happened. Scientists are rapidly becoming the laughingstock of politicians, insulted, threatened, and accused to be criminals conspiring against humankind for their personal gains.

It is clearly shown by this speech of a few days ago by Senator Malcolm Roberts of Australia. He thinks, evidently, that five minutes of low-level rhetoric by an incompetent politician are sufficient to destroy 50 years of work by thousands of competent scientists. He is not alone, unfortunately, but he is a good example of how politicians tend to create their own reality. At some moment, we will discover what the real reality is, but it may well turn out to be a very painful experience.


Note: this is the direct transcript from the record of the speech by Mr. Roberts. In the version reported by Roberts himself in his youtube channel there are some differences: in Robert's transcript there are no references on Mann having criticized Jim Molan and the mention of the names of Al Gore, Rajendra Pachauri, Gavin Schmidt. But the threats against climate scientists defined as "criminals" remained

How dare you, Michael Mann.

Last Monday, the infamous Michael Mann, fabricator of the completely discredited hockey stick temperature graph, appeared on the ABC programme "Q&A;" and teamed up with the ABC, to discredit an Australian hero, Jim Molan.

How dare you Michael Mann pretend you are scientific when you are not? How dare you Michael Mann for maligning a marvelous leader, Jim Molan, who has the courage to challenge the status quo and state a simple fact.

You come down here pretending you have evidence that carbon dioxide from human activity affects climate and needs to be cut when you have no such evidence.

How do I know?

Easy, you released papers that led to the infamous hockey stick graph, falsely fabricating high temperatures. Despite repeated requests from scientists, you refuse to hand over your data.

No evidence.

Scientifically, your claim should have been completely and immediately dismissed. The state of Virginia Attorney General asked for your data from the University of Virginia because your research was reportedly taxpayer-funded. Your University refused.

No evidence.

Didn't the court find it? Sorry, then you sued Professor Tim Ball, a real scientist, and then in court you refused to provide evidence to support your case.

No evidence.

Didn't the court find you in contempt? Regardless, your claim was dismissed, and you failed to provide any evidence. Yet Professor Ball's team provided plenty of solid statements and evidence from internationally reputable scientists.

You are the one in the climate gain scandals who wanted to hide the temperature data, decline, the temperature decline. Didn't you hide the evidence? You have sued people that dared to question you to shut them down, to stop the evidence.

You now say Senator Molan as a policymaker should ask some unnamed Australian scientists for their opinion. Name any such people with evidence proving human carbon dioxide affects climate variability.

After 21 years, you have still not released data for your hockey stick graph fabricating high temperatures, yet many people had completely debunked it. My understanding is that fraud can include the presentation of something that is not true with the intention of personal gain.

You claim you were awarded a Nobel Prize. That is false. You contributed to the UN's climate body, the IPCC, that was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize. Note, that was not for science. After the UN IPCC was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, it dropped your graph. And if that's shonky political body dropped it that really destroys, kills your credibility.

You have a record of serially misrepresenting climate, serially misrepresenting science, and serially misrepresenting humanity. The use of hydrocarbon fuels such as gas, coal, and oil has liberated humanity and saved the forest and whales that previously fueled civilization and human progress.

Your advocacy, your blind advocacy to stop their use is anti-human, anti-environment. It hurts our security and our sovereignty.

Now your host, the ABC, has been a blind supporter of an advocate for others misrepresenting climate and science, including the notorious Al Gore, Rajendra Pachauri, Gavin Schmidt, people advocating for cutting hydrocarbon fuels, have branded those who dissent from your advocacy as climate criminals.

I believe, Mr. Mann that in the very near future, it is people like you who misrepresent science and climate that the public will see as climate criminals. None of you have ever presented the empirical evidence proving human production of carbon dioxide from our use of hydrocarbon fuels, hurts our environment and future.

You're here in Australia now, so I challenge you to a public debate on climate science and on the corruption of climate science. Secondly, all you need to do is provide me with the specific location of the empirical scientific evidence, the hard validated data within a logical scientific framework that proves cause and effect, and I will retract this speech.

Mr. Mann, I need specific publication titles, specific page numbers. No entity anywhere in the world has provided this.

Now don't bother to smear me or get someone to smear me, that has no effect on me. I love it. I use it to prove that those who smear only do so because they lack hard evidence.

How dare you Michael Mann, provide the evidence.


A comment from Ugo Bardi's personal troll, Mr. Kunning Druger

"Mr. Bardi, if you hate our freedom so much, why don't you go live in Iran?"


  1. The cause of climate change isn't what concerns me.

    It is the ever expanding population of Humans with the resulting decease of Nature (outside of Humans) which concerns me.

    In the age of POL - Petroleum, Oil, and Lubricants - every former barrier to Human population explosion has been nearly removed.

    As yeast in a bottle - we reproduce - until that bottle is so full - the next reproductive cycle will burst that bottle.

    There is always a feedback loop - out of control Humanity which lives within the confined environment of Planet Earth thanks to Industrial Civilization - will be controlled by the results of using finite resources to achieve population numbers which are out of balance with what Natural Law dictates.

  2. Hi Ugo. Senator Malcolm Roberts is a very marginal political figure in Australian politics, so virtually no one takes any notice of what he says. However there are some powerful figures on the the right of politics who are also very anti-science and whose utterances are listened to — but only by those already in their camp.

    I'm trying to see through the cloudy miasma of Australian politics myself, because I live there. I'm afraid I have no great respect for the average Australian voter from any side of politics. Basically, everyone is on the side of the Good, as long as it doesn't restrict their own privileges in any way. Which means you can chant 'Yea for Greta Thunberg' at a demonstration and then go back to your life of middle-class comfort and respectability with overseas holidays, Uber Eats deliveries and craft beer.

    Our Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, is the epitome of greedy, smug, hypocrisy and casual brutality and intolerance, but he was elected by a majority of Australian voters. And you can bet if the opposition party gets in, it will be almost impossible to see any real difference in policy outcomes. Sorry! Politics in a time of decline is always going to be ugly.

    1. Yes, I am sure Mr. Roberts is a marginal figure in Australian politics. The problem is that these people have a purpose in the overall debate: they are used to push forward the Overton window, the limits of the things that can be said in public. So, he is a path creator for others to follow....

    2. Yes indeed. Roberts helps the Murdoch feature-writers and editorials to appear centricist and sensible, while also assuring his ilk of pseudoscientific opinion and their small-minded bigotry.

      I couldn't read much of his speech, they are invariably nauseating.

      Meanwhile KD Troll continues with his puerile insults. They would embarrass a school junior. Maybe he is a school junior. Or a bot.

    3. Agreed. The constant message from politicians and Murdoch acolytes is that one's lifestyle is non-negotiable.
      I tend to think Murdoch's grip on public discourse in Australia means it is he who 'elects' our politicians, the citizens have been thoroughly dumbed down to a point beyond critical thinking.

  3. That speech is terrifying in many ways. There is a reason why there is so much overlap between the extreme authoritarian right and climate deniers.

    Democracy as a system is based on the ability to have a rational argument for finding a compromise in a political discourse. That is why rational thinking, enlightenment and science is fundamentally important for a functioning democracy. This is why modern democracy calls for enlightenment and vice versa. Democratic leaders must base decisions on objective facts, otherwise they are just authoritarian dictators.

    Authoritarians need no facts, no discourse, no argument and therefore no science. Fact checking is a useless ability if following authority is what you are all about. Critical thinking is a sure way to get into trouble in an authoritarian state.

    This speech by Malcolm Roberts, as a democratic representative, is therefore quite insane. With attacking rationality, objectivity and science he is attacking also the very institution that gives him the authotrity to do so.

    In the end his kind of thinking will not only lead to terrible climate policy (bad enough), it will also end democracy and therefore the need for democratic institutions and representatives like Malcolm Roberts.

    As always, I want to stress the point, that science and politics are not seperated but so much interconnected, that they are they basically thesame thing.

  4. Fortunately, the Climate Emergency Summit is currently underway in Australia, and having a big impact. Australia has started a slow change in direction away from fossil fuels, but there is a massive fossil fuel momentum to overcome.

  5. The Senator belonged to One Nation a political party, which while may have looked like a party to bring people together was the exact opposite.
    It's policy is the exact One as in white people only.
    He used to be in the Coal Industry and after seeing Al Gore's Inconvenient Truth was apoplectic and ranted and raved about the message.
    He got elected and has joined every fringe type organisation that has a policy of FF good environmental care bad frankly.
    His credentials in science are zero.
    It is a sad commentary on society that people with zero credience get air time.

  6. >> but he is a good example of how politicians tend to create their own reality.

    Doesn't everybody create their own reality, detached from the real world? Clowns like Roberts get elected because so many people are as delusional as he is.

  7. Latest from the 8th Anniversary Celebration Week on the Doomstead Diner. :)




Ugo Bardi is a member of the Club of Rome, faculty member of the University of Florence, and the author of "Extracted" (Chelsea Green 2014), "The Seneca Effect" (Springer 2017), and Before the Collapse (Springer 2019)