The Guardian newspaper has decided to change the name ‘global warming’ because it doesn’t sound scary enough.
From now on, the Guardian‘s editor-in-chief Kath Viner has ordered, ‘global warming’ is to be called ‘global heating.’
This, apparently, will more closely reflect the “scale of the climate and wildlife crises” now afflicting Mother Gaia.
Here is the memo she sent out to editorial staff:
James, surely you didn't see this coming? pic.twitter.com/nMqonsGs8a
— Chad (@StopStlknMeJake) May 17, 2019
The use of the names ‘climate science denier’ or ‘climate denier’ for ‘climate sceptic’ makes a nonsense of Ms Viner’s claim that the Guardian is trying to be more ‘scientifically precise and rooted in facts’.
For a start, it presupposes that ‘climate science’ is a field with a fixed view of how climate works – which simply isn’t true. There are lots of competing theories on what it is that drives climate. While climate alarmists insist that recent warming is primarily man-made and driven by anthropogenic CO2, many other respected scientists believe it is due to a combination of factors, ranging from solar activity to cycles in the deep ocean.
There is, in essence, no such thing is a ‘climate science denier’ because not even the most ardent sceptic denies the existence of ‘climate science’.
Even more problematic is that use of the word ‘denier’, which implicitly invokes the Holocaust – and in doing so, weirdly and irresponsibly puts ‘being sceptical about anthropogenic global warming’ in the same category as ‘denying that Hitler murdered six million Jews.’
In recent years, climate alarmists have tried to backtrack on the origins of the ‘denier’ slur by pretending that they never intended to invoke Holocaust denial.
But here is Guardian environment journalist George Monbiot writing in 2006:
Almost everywhere, climate change denial now looks as stupid and as unacceptable as Holocaust denial.
Maybe Ms Viner should pay more attention to Thomas Sowell on this subject:
The next time someone talks about “climate change deniers,” ask them to name one — and tell you just where specifically you can find their words, declaring that climates do not change. You can bet the rent money that they cannot tell you.
Why all this talk about these mythical creatures called “climate change deniers”? Because there are some meteorologists and other scientists who refuse to join the stampede toward drastic economic changes to prevent what others say will be catastrophic levels of “global warming.”
There are scientists on both sides of that issue. Presumably the issue could be debated on the basis of evidence and analysis. But this has become a political crusade, and political issues tend to be settled by political means, of which demonizing the opposition with catchwords is one.
Sowell’s point is well made – and goes to the heart of what is wrong with the Guardian‘s new lexicon for its climate change reportage.
The Guardian is tacitly admitting that this is not an argument it is capable of winning on the science or indeed the facts. Therefore, it has decided to ramp up the rhetoric instead.
There’s a name for what it’s doing and it’s not ‘journalism’.
The word – just in case Ms Viner feels like adding it to the Guardian style guide – is ‘propaganda.’