Even as Copenhagen looms, broadcast news ignores e-mails suggesting warming alarmists ‘manipulated’ data, conspired to destroy information and thwarted peer reviews
By Julia Seymour
Itâ€™s been nearly two weeks since a scandal shook many peopleâ€™s faith in the scientists behind global warming alarmism. The scandal forced the University of East Anglia (UK) to divulge that it threw away raw temperature data and prompted the temporary resignation of Phil Jones of the universityâ€™s Climate Research Unit.Â
Despite that resignation and calls by a U.S. senator to investigate the matter, ABC, CBS and NBC morning and evening news programming has remained silent â€“ not mentioning a word about the scandal since it broke on Nov. 20, even as world leaders including President Barack Obama prepare to meet in Copenhagen, Denmark next week to promote a pact to reduce greenhouse gases.Â
Other news outlets, including The New York Times, Washington Post, CNN and Associated Press have deemed ClimateGate worthy of reporting, but the networks were too busy reporting on celebrity car accidents and the killer whale that ate a great white shark. Instead of airing a broadcast news segment that might inform the public about the science scandal, both ABC and CBS relegated the story to their Web sites. There was one mention of the scandal on ABCâ€™s Sunday talk show: â€œThis Week with George Stephanopoulos.â€Â
The ClimateGate scandal, as it is being called, has the hallmarks of a major news story: private emails purporting to show unethical or illegal behavior supplied by a hacker or whistleblower, high profile scientists like James Hansen and Michael Mann, and a potential conspiracy to distort science for political gain. But the networks havenâ€™t bothered with the story.Â
Patrick J. Michaels, a climatologist and BMI adviser, said Nov. 20 of the leaked e-mails and documents: â€œThis isnâ€™t a smoking gun, itâ€™s a mushroom cloud.â€Â
White House press secretary Robert Gibbs responded to a question about ClimateGate by insisting that â€œglobal warming is happeningâ€ and that for most people it isnâ€™t really a question anymore. That is the same message viewers get from the network news about climate change.Â
An examination of morning and evening news programs on ABC, CBS and NBC since Nov. 20 yielded zero mentions of the scandal, even in the Nov. 25 reports about Obama going to Copenhagen to discuss the need for emissions reductions. But during the same time period, the networks reported on pro-golfer Tiger Woodsâ€™ â€œminorâ€ car accident at least 37 times. They also found time to report on an orphaned Moose and the meal selection at the presidentâ€™s State Dinner.
ClimateGate began after someone (hacker or whistleblower) attacked servers of University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit (CRU) and made thousands of e-mailsÂ and documents public. Those e-mails appear to show a conspiracy to falsify temperature data, a willingness to destroy information rather than release it under Freedom of Information (FOI) law and the intimidation of publications willing to publish skeptical articles.