George Will Debunks Global Warming

George Will Q&A on his recent column

8 03 2009

Bill Steigerwald of the Pittsburgh Tribune Review decided to ask George Will a few questions about his recent column. I respect Steigerwald, precisely because he goes to the trouble of calling up people and asking questions directly. As many WUWT readers know, Will was recently villified for his column and for his printing of his interpretation on arctic sea ice. in particular. The excerpt below gives a window into Will’s thinking. – Anthony

Pittsburgh Tribune-Review

Will on warming: The cold facts

By Bill Steigerwald

Saturday, March 7, 2009

After George F. Will wrote a column last month questioning the faulty premises and apocalyptic predictions of global-warming alarmists, he caught holy heck from America’s “eco-pessimists.” He and his editors at The Washington Post were blasted with thousands of angry e-mails, most of which challenged Will’s assertion that global sea ice levels have not been dramatically reduced by man-made global warming, as environmentalists claim, but are essentially the same as they were in 1979. Will, who had used data from the Arctic Climate Research Center as his source, also was accused of multiple inaccuracies by The New York Times’ Andrew Revkin. Will wrote a second column defending his data and returning fire at Revkin.

All is calm now and Will is getting ready for the start of his favorite season — baseball season. I talked to him by phone on Thursday from his office in Washington.

  • Q: You have felt the righteous wrath of those who believe in man-made global warming. Are you still all there?
  • A: Oh, heavens. Yeah. The odd thing about these people is, normally when I write something that people disagree with they write letters to the editor or they write a responding op-ed piece. These people simply set out to try and get my editors to not publish my columns. Now I don’t blame them, because I think if my arguments were as shaky as theirs are, I wouldn’t want to engage in argument either.
  • Q: The big issue was about how much global sea ice there is now compared to 1979.
  • A: And that of course was a tiny portion of the column. The critics completely ignored — as again, understandably — the evidence I gave of the global cooling hysteria of 30 years ago.
  • Q: They like to pretend that there really wasn’t any hysteria back then.
  • A: Since I quoted the hysteria, it’s a little hard for them to deny it.
  • Q: What disturbs you most about this global warming consensus that seems to be pretty widespread and doesn’t seem to be eroding?
  • A: Well, I think it is eroding, in the sense that people sign on to be alarmed because it’s socially responsible … (and because it makes them feel good). But once they get to the price tag, once they are asked to do something about it, like pay trillions of dollars, they begin to re-think.

I’ve never seen anything quite like this in my now 40 years in Washington. I’ve never seen anything like the enlistment of the mainstream media in a political crusade — and this is a political crusade, because it’s about how we should be governed and how we should live; those are the great questions of politics. It is clearly for some people a surrogate religion. It’s a spiritual quest. It offers redemption. But what it also always offers, whether it is global cooling or global warming, is a rationale for the government to radically increase its supervision of our life and our choices. Whether the globe is cooling, whether it’s warming, the government’s going to be the winner and the governing class will be the winner.

Read the entire column at the Pittsburg Tribune-Review

2 Responses

  1. A lot of our problems would be solved if the government governed for the people, not just for the rich corporations. Maybe I’ll include that in my next letter to Santa, assuming the North Pole’s not just ocean at Christmas.

    McAuley’s World: roger-green-planet-solar energy: I guess we know where your money is invested, right roger. Solar is the answer – but lets not discuss the Eco costs of battery manufacture, reclamation and disposal and the huge cost and environmental damage done there.

    You make me laugh, when I want to cry – you are no different than T Boone Pickens – the Billionaire who is trying to maximize the return on the billions he invested in Compressed Natural Gas – what a fuel source for the poor. If we achieve energy independence with American Oil (California just turned down a lease worth $46 Billion Dollars in the 1st year – enough to solve the California budget deficift and cut our dependence on foreign oil by 30, which would keep $240 Billion of the $800 Billion we send overseas here at home) the cost of gasoline in this country could drop to 75 cents a gallon – Picken’s CNG will cost American’s $3.40 / gallon – paid for on the broken backs of the American workers. Your ECO Economy movement isn’t about a greener earth or renewable energy – it is about getting rich quick on the backs of American workers and the poor.

    As for the North Pole melting – I suggest you look at the Great Lakes – they are frozen over in March – Polar ice isn’t going anywhere – it never was. Just another shameless claim in a rush to grab truck fulls of cash from the Congress at taxpayer cost:

    The north pole melting? – the Global Warming Alarmists missed an ice mass larger than California and about the size of the Country of Spain (193,000 square miles) – justing sitting up in the artic. An ice mass larger than California. Given the small land mass involved in the artic, miissing an ice mass larger than the state of California is like sending a cartographer (a map maker) out to update a map of the US west of the Rocky Mountains. The cartographer returns with a map and a dire prediction – you see his map doesn’t show California – it has disappeared – the cartographer tells you the world is about to end, California you see, has fallen into the Pacific. Once you confirm that California is where it has always been – you politely let the cartographer know his services are no longer needed. There is no difference between a cartographer who misses California and someome looking for ice masses in the artic and misses one the size of the state of California – a mistake of that magnitude is simply not “accidental”. – Read the liberal Boston Globe ask – “Where is the Global Warming”

    The Ultra Green Discovery Channel states “Global Warming” is on hold and may not return for 30 years, further questioning ifd it is related to any man made events.

    John Coleman, founder of the Weather Channel, along with 31,000 Internationally recognized scientists, including 9,000 PhDs and a dozen Nobel Prize Winners, rejects the idea of man made Global Warming. Isn’t it time for open and honest intellectual scientific debate.

  2. The questions are scientific, but the UN answers are political. The global warming debate is hardly about science. It has become a cause célèbre, championed by activists, politicians and celebrities. To deny their belief that humans are the cause of global warming, is to invoke their wrath. Science is not consensus; Science is theory, observation and measurement. Science is not, “let’s all take a vote on the speed of light and see what number we get.” Science is dictated by nature’s rules. It is about money and power not saving the earth.
    The U.N. would milk the last cow in the paddock, and leave the cow’s own calf starving!

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