HH: We begin today with a special early in the week appearance by Columnist To the World, Mark Steyn. Hello, Mr. Steyn, and a happy Thanksgiving eve to you.
MS: Happy Thanksgiving to you, too, Hugh.
HH: Now will you or will Mrs. Steyn be preparing the turkey tomorrow?
MS: I won’t actually be preparing the turkey. I tend to get a bit careless. I get distracted, and it dries out a bit too quickly when I’m in charge of it. Actually, this has been quite a good year for us, though, because entirely by without planning to, we wound up winning a turkey. So we feel we’re ahead already.
HH: How did you win the turkey?
MS: Oh, it was just one of these giveaways that didn’t, that weren’t even aware that we were sort of eligible for.
HH: Well, be careful…
MS: We thought it was one of these things where you had to be born in the United States, but apparently if you’re like an undocumented immigrant, you can get it, too. So it turned out great for us.
HH: Well, let me begin with the silly story, which is Lou Dobbs running for president. What do you think, Mark Steyn?
MS: (laughing) Speaking of undocumented immigrants…
MS: I notice he has already begun saying that he’s now in favor of a massive amnesty for undocumented immigrants. So he’s already sounding a little different than he did when he was just a straightforward pundit. I don’t know how serious he is about this. I mean, I think there is some dissatisfaction out there that’s manifested itself in primaries, and it would seem unlikely to me that we could get through the next couple of years without some kind of Ross Perot type thing emerging. I’m not sure whether Lou Dobbs is the guy to fill that role, though.
HH: Well, let’s turn to the serious story of the week. I think this is potentially very serious, and that is the leaked e-mails from the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia in Eastern England. I’m quoting from CBS now, “In global warming circles, the CRU weighs outside influence. It claims the world’s largest temperature data set, and it’s work in mathematical models were incorporated into the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s 2007 report”
HH: What’s the significance of the hackers’ foray?
MS: Well, it’s very significant. My colleague, Iain Murray, put it this way. He says that the CRU is basically the Pentagon of the climate change business, and these are the Pentagon papers. And that’s basically true. It’s the clearing house for a climate change orthodoxy. So everything from Kyoto, Copenhagen, the IPCC, as you mentioned, the cap and trade monstrosity in Congress, all depends on figures that have been run through the Climate Research Unit in East Anglia. And as we now see, not so much from the e-mails, but from the actual code, the code, the computer code they’re using, it’s garbage. I quote at random. For example, this is one example of the computer code there. “Specified period over which to compute the regressions. Stop in 1960 to avoid the decline that affects tree ring density records.” So in other words, the computer code that they’re producing these numbers with is rigged and distorted, and what they want to do at Copenhagen is tax you up to the hilt to pay for this racket.
HH: Is it fair to say, Mark Steyn, that everything that the tobacco companies were ever accused of doing with data about cigarettes is now true about the CRU and its global warming data?
MS: Yeah, that’s absolutely, that is actually a good way to put it. I mean, I think this idea…they’ve corrupted the very essence of science. They’ve corrupted peer review, they’ve had editors from journals fired who disagree with them, they’ve corrupted the data. They basically are the antithesis of science. They decide the result, and then figure out how you need to set up the computer model to get the result. This is disgraceful. And if Phil Jones at East Anglia, and his colleague, Michael Mann at Penn State University over here, if they survive this scandal, then there is no reason why anybody paying even a minimal bit of attention should take climate change seriously ever again. They need, if the climate change movement is serious, it will expel Phil Jones in East Anglia, and Michael Mann from Penn State University from their ranks.
HH: Now Mark, Science Magazine has published an article noting that deleting e-mail messages in anticipation of a FOIA request in the United Kingdom is a crime, and that’s what they were doing.
MS: Yes. I mean, I think this is the interesting thing to me.
MS: I mean, their basic position, if you get a Freedom Of Information Act request, and you delete that material, you’ve committed a crime. So the British police ought to be in that building finding out what’s happened to this, finding out what’s happened to this stuff. Their position is look, we did all this research. Why should we give it away to our enemies for free? Well sorry, that’s the way it works. You’re saying, for a start, you’re getting government money. You’re getting billions and billions and billions to come up with this stuff. And what you’re doing is you’re saying that on the basis of your research, we should tax the hell out of everybody in the developed world, and make them change the way they live. And the least that those of us on the receiving end of that racket are entitled to is to be able to see the raw data on which these cockamamie graphs were based.
HH: Now the secondary effect of this, of course, is to see its impact on all of the attached vocal enthusiasts of global warming. Over at Realclimate.org, Gavin Schmidt, who’s a modeler for NASA, has written, “There’s no evidence of any worldwide conspiracy, no mention of George Soros nefariously funding climate research, no admission that global warming is a hoax, no evidence of falsifying of data, no marching orders from our socialist, communist, vegetarian overlords.” In other words, erect as many straw men as you can, and set fire to them, regardless of the damage to the climate, to obscure what has happened here, Mark Steyn.
MS: Yes, and there’s a lot of that going on. But at the same time, it’s interesting that there are a few principled lefties out there, who say that there’s no point pretending this isn’t a serious problem. George Monbiot, over at the Guardian, who loathes me and is a classic, left wing Guardian writer in Britain, says that this is serious, this is a problem, and he’s called on Phil Jones to resign. Tim Flannery, who’s the leading Australian cheerleader for this racket, was on TV, and he was saying that he conceded that there are differences between what’s happening in the world, and the computer model. He basically…what these guys all say in private in their e-mails is very interesting in this hide the decline. They say in effect that global warming stopped in 1997, and we’ve been in a cooling trend since then. Now when I said that in the newspapers a few months ago, George Soros’ chums at Media Matters jumped all over me, and said I’d made an entirely false claim. Now we see that in their private e-mails, these big climate change experts all agree on that. They’re just not prepared to tell the truth in public, and they come up with phony baloney computer models, designed to hide the truth.
HH: And so Mark, I want to close by going up to 30,000 feet, beginning with Rathergate and the attempt to steal the 2004 presidential election with fake documents, through this one. Again and again, we find the left shading, falsifying, simply inventing narratives that they need in order to advance their political agenda. At some point, does the public say I’m simply not going to trust anything those people say, in other words, to go to the credibility level that they’ve been trying to pin on the center-right for decades?
MS: Yes, I find it interesting that the somnolent, American media, the dying monodailies of American cities, have done their best to cover up this story and not to cover it. And what is interesting to me is if you look at the comment section on papers like the Boston Globe and the Houston Chronicle, the so-called environmental correspondents are all doing their ‘there’s nothing to see here’ stories, or they’re saying that the real threat is that Boston is going to be underwater, apparently, by the year 2015, or whatever. And in the comments section, readers are actually saying you idiots have missed the story here. So if you go to the Boston Globe website, or you go to the Houston Chronicle website, in effect, you’re getting more news from the comments section than you are from the environmental correspondents.
HH: Sure, it’s like the ACORN story all over again on a different favored precinct of the left.
MS: Yes, and I think this is a real crisis for, particularly for American newspapering, because they’re a more advanced case in decline than other parts of the world. But if you look at, say, this guy Andrew Revkin, who is the eco-guy at the New York Times, and is fawned on and flattered by the fellows in these e-mails who all call him Andy, and also happen to be the guy who shut down Phelim McAleer, the Irish anti-global warming guy whom you had on your show the other day, Andrew Revkin was the one who shut him down when he tried to ask Al Gore about that British court decision. This guy, this guy basically is on the side of the climate change advocates. Well, that’s for all well and good, but he should have a column on the op-ed page. We shouldn’t be pretending that this is any kind of neutral coverage of the issue.
HH: No, it’s going to turn Copenhagen into one giant morgue, although it’s going to be fun to watch them put on the biggest, brave face we’ve ever seen, Mark Steyn.
MS: Yeah, and I can only hope so, because I think what Copenhagen is really about is about erecting a global bureaucracy that has no electoral accountability to people anywhere on the planet. I mean, it sounds nuts when you talk about it like that, but if you actually read what they’re proposing at Copenhagen, they want to create a kind of embryo bureaucracy in the interest of so-called saving the planet, that will have a vast, unlimited budget, and will suck, literally, trillions out of the developed world to so-called solve this entirely artificial problem based on all this bogus data from East Anglia.
HH: Happy Thanksgiving, Mark Steyn.
End of interview.