[Note: read Alex’s article below this one first. It’s shorter, funnier, and perhaps more optimistic. There’s no coordination between us here at Cliscep, so stuff like this happens. You wait days for an article then three come along at once]
The censorship continues, as a George Soros-linked group has joined forces with the mainstream media to ensure climate skeptics are silenced on YouTube. The group Avaaz, left-leaning non-profit group, published a report on January 16th on its website that claims YouTube is “profiting by broadcasting misinformation” to millions of people by giving climate denial videos too much prominence.
Independent mainstream media outlets are engaging in a politically-motivated campaign to force YouTube to demonetize and hide any video that denies climate change. Regardless of the facts or scientific evidence revealed in the videos, if one doesn’t submit to the religion of climate change, they will be silenced if Avaaz has anything to do about it.
And indeed we will be. Leaving aside the mention of Soros (did I say Soros? Naughty anti-Semitic me. But that’s not the worst of my sins. See the end of the article) let’s look at the Avaaz report, which can be found here.
The Executive Summary states:
Climate misinformation threatens the health and safety of our societies and our planet. Protecting citizens around the world from fake news designed to confuse and poison the debate about climate change must be a key priority for governments, advertisers and social media platforms
citing an editorial in Nature Communications titled “Fake news threatens a climate literate world” which in turn cites the Boykoffs and Cook. Basing a campaign against fake news on a paper by serial liar John Cook seems a perilous proceeding, but lets continue. The report’s key finding is that:
YouTube is actively promoting climate misinformation to millions of users: For the search term “global warming,” 16% of the top 100 related videos included under the up-next feature had misinformation about climate change.
Avaaz estimates that “climate misinformation videos” are receiving hundreds of millions of views thanks to the YouTube algorithm, and advertisers, including Greenpeace and WWF are unwittingly financing this misinformation, and they want YouTube to stop it.
And that’s it. The rest of the 66 page report is filled with photos, pie charts, and the same information served up a dozen different ways. The only concrete information added is a sample of four of the videos which Avaaz finds to be misleading, an account of why Avaaz thinks theyre misleading, and a statement of Alvaaz’s firm commitment to freedom of speech.
The four offending videos are the following:
1) A video from a channel “promoting judeo-Christian values .. curated by the conservative talk-radio host Dennis Prager.”
Avaaz lists three claims which they find “verifiably false or misleading”:
1) There has been no significant warming trend in the 21st century.
2) Temperatures and carbon dioxide levels do not show a strong correlation.
3) Patrick Moore is a co-founder of Greenpeace.
Accompanying the statement is a NASA/HADCRUT/NOAA/JMA graph which funnily enough demonstrates that the statement 1) is true, if you count from 1998 or about 2004. OK, it’s cherrypicking, but it’s their cherry; all you have to do is squint at the graph and see that it’s a perfectly reasonable claim.
For claim 2), of course temperatures and CO2 levels are not strongly correlated. Everyone knows that. Again, Avail’s own graph shows temperatures rising in the early part of the 20th century, when CO2 emissions were minimal, at roughly the same rate as in the last three decades.
Claim 3 is a personal dispute between Moore and the other people who founded Greenpeace. He was there at the beginning. He says he’s a co-founder and the others say he’s not. Avaaz doesn’t say what they’ve found that proves that Moore’s claim is “verifiably false.” Perhaps they should tell us. Or call their lawyers. And what for Gaia’s sake has that to do with fake news about the climate which risks to rot the minds of the young?
2) An extract from a Fox News interview with Pat Michaels.
Avaaz finds the following two claims to be misinformation:
1) 31 of 32 climate models are flawed by design to vastly over-predict warming
2) Only half of global warming might be caused by human activity, beginning in 1976
You’re familiar with the arguments for Michaels’ point 1) I imagine. Whether models are flawed by design to vastly over-predict warming, or just flawed, period, I leave to others to discuss.
Avaaz counters point 2) with a quote from Climate Feedback: “.. human activities were already causing warming in the first half of the 20th century …” without noting the piddling quantities of man-made greenhouse gases emitted prior to 1950, according to the generally accepted measurements of atmospheric CO2.
3) “Climate Change: What do Scientists Say?” by Richard Lindzen
Some of the main claims that Avaaz found to be misinformation include:
1) “There is no evidence that CO2 emissions are the dominant factor [in climate change].”
2) The IPCC acknowledged in its own 2007 report that: “the long-term prediction of future climate states is not possible.”
3) Only since the 1960s have man’s greenhouse emissions been sufficient to play a role in raising global mean temperatures.
Avaaz counters with:
On the first point, the scientific consensus is that CO2 is the main driver of climate change. This is borne out in the literature using direct measurement, historical data, and models.
Sure, that’s the scientific consensus. And Lindzen isn’t in it. So what? It’s been the consensus since some IPCC report says it is. Before that, the IPCC said CO2 was probably one of the drivers, and before that they said they didn’t know. And Avaaz’s second sentence is simply false. You can’t demonstrate that CO2 is the main driver using either direct measurement, historical data, or models. If you could, the IPCC would have told us thirty years ago and saved us a lot of bother. All you can do is have a hunch it is, up your hunch from “some” to “most” to “all” and get 97% of your colleagues to agree. Linden isn’t part of the 97% who agree. So?
On the second point, Lindzen has cherry picked a quote from the IPCC’s 2001 report and incorrectly attributed it to the 2007 report. Read in context, the original 2001 quote is far from Lindzen’s meaning.
Gaia wept. Lindzen quotes a statement from the IPCC which completely destroys the whole consensus project (while getting the date wrong) and Avaaz considers it out of order because it is “far from Lindzen’s meaning.”Who says? Lindzen’s meaning is what the IPCC says, nothing more nor less. The IPCC is free to change its collective mind if it cares to. Has it done that? Not to my knowledge. Anyone seen a report that the IPCC now considers it was wrong in thinking it couldn’t predict long-term climate states, and that now it can? Shouldn’t we discuss this?
On the third point, this report already addressed a similar claim made by Patrick Michaels. In addition, the fifth IPCC report of 2014 stated: “It is extremely likely [95 percent confidence] more than half of the observed increase in global average surface temperature from 1951 to 2010 was caused by the anthropogenic increase in greenhouse gas concentrations and other anthropogenic forcings together.”
So the objection to Linden’s “Only since the 1960s have man’s greenhouse emissions been sufficient to play a role..”is the IPCC’s statement that: “…more than half of the observed increase in global average surface temperature from 1951 to 2010 was caused by the anthropogenic increase…”Angels dancing on a pinhead anyone?
4) The Great Global Warming Swindle” Avaaz doesn’t mention the film’s director/author Martin Durkin, but simply says that the video:
… is a controversial film questioning the existence of a scientific consensus on global warming and the credibility of the IPCC. The video opens up with several different speakers claiming that CO2 is not responsible for global warming… Most of the core claims in this video were debunked immediately after it was aired by George Monbiot for The Guardian.
If the film’s main claim is to “question the existence of a scientific consensus on global warming” and they manage to interview several different speakers who make that case, then the film has established its point. There is no consensus, because the film found people who questioned it. The fact that George Monbiot doesn’t agree with them doesn’t make the film’s claim untrue.
The objections raise by Avaaz to these four videos are either false, doubtfully true or trivial. At the end of their 66 page report they insist on their commitment to democracy and free speech, yet they have produced this vast, slickly presented, copiously footnoted report in order to get YouTube to change the algorithms so that anyone who says anything not absolutely aligned to the thinking of the IPCC and the fabled 97% will – not be censored, oh no, Avaaz is against censorship – but lose their place on the sidebar recommendations and therefore their exposure and advertising revenue.
Everywhere you look in the body of article you find assertions of Avaaz’s commitment to freedom of speech. So what exactly have they got against two distinguished climate scientists and an ex-Greenpeace activist who no longer agrees with the policy of Greenpeace? Well, this for example:
YouTube is defining the information space for hundreds of millions of people every day, and malicious actors are being allowed to abuse the platform’s reach to achieve harmfulness.
Calling a couple of distinguished professors of meteorology and environmental sciences “malicious actors” is clearly defamatory. But it wouldn’t matter if Lindzen and Michaels were junior lecturers or elementary school geography teachers. Or me or you. This is a very rich and influential organisation trying to silence people it doesn’t agree with. That’s all.
I’m a visual sort of person, and I have to force myself to compose a reasoned argument in order to demonstrate what a load of fascist shite this is. My initial response is not to the argument, which occupies about a quarter of the document, but to the visual appearance of the document itself, with its photos, cool graphic design, bullet points, and logical reasoning hidden in footnotes written too small for the human eye. I download the PDF and try and extract the argument from the visual bumf. What aggravates me is not so much the reasoning, which is just some young intern copying and pasting stuff under the orders of some highly paid green suit, in the hope of one day becoming a highly paid green suit him or herself. It’s the visual feel of the thing that gives me the creeps.
On page 48 for example, there’s a bit of hortatory text:
Advertisers have a powerful role to play in collaborating with and pressuring YouTube to protect their brands and the well-being of society. And there is a growing trend of advertisers taking such actions. For example, companies have pulled their ads from YouTube after realising that they were being shown on videos where inappropriate comments were being made about children…
The Global Alliance for Responsible Media, representing the world’s biggest advertising firms, has highlighted that it is: “working towards a media environment where hate speech, bullying and disinformation is challenged.. and where everyone, especially children, are better protected from harm.”
Avaaz calls on the members of the Global Alliance for Responsible Media and the brands identified in this report to use their advertising budgets as leverage to demand that YouTube stops displaying their ads on videos that promote climate misinformation..
Three quarters of the double page spread is taken up by a photo of a bunch of climate protesters, pre-pubescent girls holding up placards reading “I’ve seen smarter cabinets at IKEA” (so they’re English) “We’re skipping our lessons to teach you one” and “Stop denying the earth is dying.”
It’s not so much the reasoning which makes me vomit, but this photo. Not the hysterical brainwashed Thunberg clones themselves, but the idea of the media-savvy woke graphic designers who saw that this was just the visual material necessary to underline the unconscious association between climate scepticism and child molesting.
Gaia how I hate these people. This is the face of fascism for the 21stcentury: not Orwell’s vision of a jackboot smashing your face for ever, but just a glossy brochure being thrust in front of you with the message: “Are you part of the climate consensus or a paedophile? ”