Authoritarians unite! Join us in the tower. Torch-wielding villagers are on the hunt!
In this great column, Mark Steyn reproduces one of the e-mails that was leaked from CRU at East Anglia University. In it, the researcher Ian Harris was attempting to duplicate historical climate data and had no clue where to find it. Harris writes to a colleague:
“… It’s all synthetic from 1990 onwards. So I’m going to need conditionals in the update program to handle that…
“OH F–K THIS. It’s Sunday evening, I’ve worked all weekend, and just when I thought it was done I’m hitting yet another problem that’s based on the hopeless state of our databases. There is no uniform data integrity, it’s just a catalogue of issues that continues to grow as they’re found.”
Steyn then humorously writes:
Thus spake the Settled Scientist: “OH F–K THIS.” And on the basis of “OH F–K THIS” the world’s enlightened progressives will assemble at Copenhagen for the single greatest advance in punitive liberalism ever perpetrated on the developed world.
Punitive liberalism. Now there’s a term! A great one. And what the reaction to the CRU e-mails also proves to me is that this punitive liberalism is also possessed of a quasi-authoritarian mentality. This has hardly been so out front as it has been in the past few years because those that have pushed for the idea of “settled science” in the global warming debate, have also tried to muscle out any opposing view about the policy that should flow from the science, be it settled or not. I found this out in law school.
Amongst these Birkenstocked fascists, global carbon offsets and redistribution are preferred over regional preparedness; costly transformation to green energy is preferred to nuclear power; and lifestyle regulation and behavioral micromanagement are preferred to dealing with weather calamities at the point of impact. And, none of these alternatives are even discussed because they are simply not allowed into the conversation. The one-dimensional program has become so fanatical that “it’s now perfectly routine for leaders of the developed world to go around sounding like apocalyptic madmen of the kind that used to wander the streets wearing sandwich boards and handing out homemade pamphlets.” (Steyn)
But have no doubt global warming has always served a political purpose. Steyn says:
Some in the political class go along because it’s too much effort to resist. A few are presumably true believers. But what a lot of the rest like about “global warming” is the “global” bit: you can’t do anything about it at town or county or even national level. No, sir, we need a “global” response. Fortunately, as Herman Van Rompuy, “president” of “Europe,” puts it: “2009 is the first year of global governance.”
The sociologists of the Frankfurt School had it dead wrong, I think. The authoritarian personality is not to be found solely within the ranks of the racist, xenophobic right-wing. The left, with all its certainties, its proclivity to overrate its ideas, and its hubristic belief in its ability to regulate humanity on an incredible scale, is possessed of an authoritarianism that pervades its thinking.
Below is a video that is a perfect example of the arrogance and inability of a well-paid, well-coddled scientist to stoop so low as to even respect the argument put forward by one of the unwashed. It is between Professor Andrew Watson and Marc Morano, a leading skeptic who was a leading researcher for the U.S. Senate.
Watson’s argument is basically “shut up!” This, of course, most likely comes from the best traditions of English rhetorical training.
This heightned approach to poltical debate by the Left was explained by Andrew Klavan a few months ago in an episode of his video series: Klavan on the Culture.