It is human nature to crave power, wealth, influence, status, prestige, control, authority, respect, admiration, and for certain individuals, dominance. Having these achievements is neither a vice nor evidence of vicious behavior, but the methods of getting them can be viciously wicked. The honorable way is ambition, hard work, intelligence, and luck.
Fraud, trickery and chicanery sometimes works, or entices with the allure of an easier path to the good life. That way is usually a false promise. The work is no less hard at times, and there is always the danger of detection and ruin before the goal is reached. Or losing the fruits of the crime later, as Bernie Madoff now knows.
The claims of scientists that the earth had warmed considerably as a result of human activities, along with predictions of future doom unless those activities were drastically altered, would have been immediately greeted with skepticism if more of us understood the phenomenon of social manipulation that Eric Hoffer described in his book The True Believer—Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements, a book first published in 1951 and continuously in print since.
On mass movements Hoffer does not claim they are all identical but that they share certain essential characteristics:
All mass movements generate in their adherents a readiness to die and a proclivity for united action; all of them, irrespective of the doctrine they preach and the program they project, breed fanaticism, enthusiasm, fervent hope, hatred and intolerance; all of them are capable of releasing a powerful flow of activity in certain departments of life; all of them demand blind faith and singlehearted allegiance.
All movements, however different in doctrine and aspiration, draw their early adherents from the same types of humanity; they all appeal to the same types of mind.
The man-made global warming hysteria that has swept around the world for the last twenty some years has surely been a mass movement exceeded in size only by communism and facism. That it shares similar characteristics of these mass movements and attracts people of a similar mind is evident. Hoffer said, “The technique of a mass movement aims to infect people with a malady and then offer the movement as a cure.” The anthropegenic global warming (AGW) mass movement sought to infect the world society with the belief that humans were causing the earth to warm to levels dangerous to life as we know it, and offered the Kyoto treaty, the Copenhagen accord, and countless prescriptions for a return to the middle ages as necessary sacrifices for “saving the planet.”
All active mass movements strive, therefore, to interpose a fact-proof screen between the faithful and the realities of the world.
When some scientists and large numbers of ordinary people became skeptical of the AGW dogma, and after it became obvious that the earth was not even warming anymore, the AGW faithful quickly changed their rhetoric from “global warming” to “climate change” and argued that even severe cold in some parts of the earth as well as cooling overall were just an aspect of AGW, a very complicated process they said, which might involve some cooling as well as warming. In fact, just about everything from tornadoes, hurricanes to earthquakes were said to be caused by AGW.
Are the frustrated more easily indoctrinated that the non-frustrated? Are they more credulous? Pascal was of the opinion that “one was well-minded to understand holy writ when one hated oneself.” There is apparently some connection between dissatisfaction with oneself and a proneness to credulity. The urge to escape our real self is also an urge to escape the rational and the obvious. The refusal to see ourselves as we are develops a distaste for facts and cold logic. There is no hope for the frustrated in the actual and the possible. Salvation can come to them only from the miraculous, which seeps trough a crack in the iron wall of inexorable reality. They ask to be deceived. What Stresemann said of the Germans is true of the frustrated in general: “[They] pray not only for [their] daily bread, but also for [their] daily illusion.” The rule seems to be that those who find no difficulty in deceiving themselves are easily deceived by others. They are easily persuaded and led.
After the leaked or hacked emails from the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia (UEA) in Norwich, England, the reaction of the AGW proponents across England, Europe and America was to downplay or deny outright the facts which were apparent to anyone who was not among the faithful. The British media, especially the London Times and the Telegraph, were quick to get on the story and report the facts as they appeared to be, but the entire old media in the United States did its best to first ignore the story completely or, in those few instances where it could not, to focus more on how the emails came to be made public rather that what was contained in them.
Senator Barbara Boxer of California stated that she would not read emails that had been “illegally obtained,” although I’m sure she had no trouble with the Pentagon Papers after they were purloined in a burglary by the Berrigan brothers.
More recently Barack Obama joined other national heads of state at Copenhagen to give speeches and make declarations as if nothing had happened. The CRU emails which had been made public all over the world showed AGW scientists admitting that the data needed to be manipulated because it wasn’t coming out right, i.e., not supporting their theory. Did that make a difference at Copenhagen? No, no, those emails were ignored. Nothing to see there. Obama has made speeches since the CRU emails became public in which he has referenced AGW as if nothing has occurred to cast any doubt whatsoever upon it.
Unusually cold weather is now occurring across the globe, there is a Big Freeze in Britain, and the previous warming which had been occurring on its own appears to have ceased and been replaced by a global cooling trend in the last ten years. The AGW adherents have done their level best to pretend none of that has happened either.
Mass movements can rise and spread without belief in God, but never without belief in a devil. Usually the strength of a mass movement is proportionate to the vividness and tangibility of its devil. When Hitler was asked whether he thought the Jew must be destroyed, he answered: “No….We should have then to invent him. It is essential to have a tangible enemy, not merely an abstract one.” F.A. Voigt tells of a Japanese mission which arrived in Berlin in 1932 to study the National Socialist Movement. Voigt asked a member of the mission what he thought of the movement. He replied: “It is magnificent. I wish we could have something like it in Japan, only we can’t, because we haven’t any Jews.”
The AGW true believers enemies list is a long one. It includes the oil and gas industry, of course. The energy industry has served quite well as a devil for the believers, as it has for politicians, because everyone has to buy energy every day and everyone is sensitive to the price of it and eager to find someone to blame when they think it is too high.
The attempt to portray global warming skeptics as “deniers” on the scale of “holocaust deniers” is a quintessential attempt, albeit a failed one, to create vivid and tangible devils to bolster and strengthen the AGW movement. It is also typical of the acute emotional reaction to facts and logic that True Believers display when their pet doctrines are challenged.
The chief enemy of the AGW true believers at the moment is Steve McIntyre, a Canadian mining consultant whose analysis debunked Michael Mann’s Hockey Stick chart of 1998, and who has analysed every paper the CRU scientists have published since. Mr. McIntyre and his website, Climate Audit, seem to be driving the believers quite nuts. He is not well enough known to the public to really serve the purpose as a devil as yet but attempts will be made to change that if he continues to expose the truth about their claims.
The believers have attempted to make suitable devils out of anyone and everyone who stands to offer any evidence, facts or logic against AGW. They have done this by trying to exclude non-believing scientists from getting their articles published, and by refusing to submit their own articles for peer review.
Next: How the fraud out of the UEA is just the tip of the iceberg. It’s here in the United States as well.