Unfortunately, some misuse science. Some of their intentions, are far from benevolent. They see science as a mechanism for political power and control. There is great danger from those who would use science for political control over us.

How do they do this? They instill, and then continuously magnify, fear. Fear is the most effective instrument of totalitarian control.

Chet Richards, physicist,


Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Some things to do to help resist CAGW-scaremongering in schools

I am going to be devoting most of my time to other work for the next four months or so, and I expect to post a lot less often than I'd like to here.  In case any readers are looking for ideas on what they might do to help with the chores of getting egregious materials on climate out of schools and elsewhere, I've been compiling a little list.  Here it is, in no particular order and based on no profound analysis of the possibilities - I've just dusted down and spruced-up a 'to-do' list of my own:

(1)  Investigating 2 sites: Project Genie and Kids Club Zilla
      Shortly after I started this blog last year, I noted 3 possible projects in one of my early posts:

a) Schools Low Carbon Day: http://www.cooltheworld.co.uk/low_carbon_day.php Apparently well-intentioned initiative, but of course based on smoke and mirrors.

b) Genie: http://www.projectgenie.org.uk/ An overblown scare site based on notion that carbon (dioxide) is a genie buried in the earth, one which we are releasing to our imminent danger and disadvantage. 
[added 19 Feb 2012:  A glimpse of the approach of this odious project can still be seen in a press release from University College London in April 2010 which contains an extract of the video at the heart of their materials: http://www.ucl.ac.uk/news/news-articles/1004/10043001]
c) Zilla: http://www.kidsclubzilla.com/index.html I am not sure how current this site is. It is spooky, of unclear origin, and may be a money-making scam taking advantage of the CO2 scare.I have heard that such sites appear after major disasters are in the news. Well, the IPCC is certainly one of those.’

Of these, the first one seems to have disappeared.  I am not so sure about the other two.  Some investigation to find out more about their current state might be worthwhile.  Are they still active?  If so, what are they doing?  Do they matter much?

(2)  Organising the Pages.  I have 5 ‘pages’ on the blog which are in very poor shape. 
They could do with some organisation, and ideas for further development.  The five topics are:

Any ideas for material to include in them?  Any ideas for improving their layout, or making them more useful?

(3) Making better use of Delicious.  I have been occasionally adding links to the ClimateLessons collection on Delicious. This too needs a good tidy, and ideas for making more use of it.  My main idea when starting it was to provide convenient access to references useful when Fisking silly climate materials.  One of the key tag-words is ‘rebuttal’ (or ‘Rebuttal’, or even ‘rebutal’ – see what I mean about tidying!).

(4) Investigating the British Council climate propaganda efforts.   What are they up to?  When did it start?  Who is driving it, and why?  It seemed to die down (http://www.nature.com/news/2011/110610/full/news.2011.364.html ) but look at this report on Biased-BBC: Andrew Mitchell, Cameron's international development secretary, has announced this weekend (reported in the Sunday Times P6, so not linkable)a £90m grant for the BBC World Service Trust (WST). This, as I have written before, is a body whose main purpose is to brainwash the developing world about eco loonery, and already spends millions doing so, with projects like this:

‘The major objective of Africa Talks Climate is to identify the entry points to engage, inform and empower Africans in local, national and international conversations about climate change. To achieve this, the initiative will collate opinions and then amplify the voices of people at all levels of society. "Climate change is the defining issue of our age," said Peter Upton, Country Director for the British Council in Nigeria. "Climate in Africa is one of the most important issues that all people and governments will face. Africa will be one of the most affected regions but has done the least to contribute to the problem. ‘
(note added 14 Dec 2011:cg2 emails reveal BC zealots spending UK tax money on creating media pundits)
(note added 27 Jul 2016: nasty person uncovered high up in the British Council: https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/1501559/three-year-old-prince-george-hit-by-vile-rant-from-british-council-boss-paid-thousands-to-promote-uk/ )

(5) Review, or even Fisk a part of a website or booklet or DVD aimed at children or at teachers.  My series of posts on ‘Low Carbon Day for Schools’ works through just one paragraph on the original site in a series of 8 posts ending in this one (http://climatelessons.blogspot.com/2010/09/why-would-you-believe-this-8-of-8-and.html)


Here is an example of Fisking some particularly silly remarks on climate: http://adventuresintimetravel.com/2011/05/27/hari-watch-purple-prose-alert/

Here is an entire book Fisking another book on climate: ‘The Weather Makers Re-Examined’ by D Weston Allen (Irenic Publications, Australia).  ‘The Weather Makers’ being a book of climate alarmism by a Tim Flannery, notorious in Australia for his over-the-top forecasts of doom.

There are a great many booklets aimed at young children.  One I came across recently is ‘Why Are the Ice Caps Melting’, and there is scarcely a page of text in it without something objectionable.  Ordering one such book and doing a review of it would be good practice for anyone wanting to cut their teeth at Fisking.

(6) Investigate what is going on at Science Learning Centres, e.g. this one in the north-east of England (https://www.sciencelearningcentres.org.uk/centres/north-east/climate-change-schools-project/introduction ).  Climate seems to be dominating this science centre, presumably because that is where it has been easiest to get funding.  But what are they doing to the children?  Information about their materials and messages would be useful.  Appears to take AGW as a given, and concentrate on saving energy.  Yet energy is not in short supply, and nagging children about it seems unduly negative and destructive of their spirits.  
Note added 20 June 2012.  These centres remain active, and have a link with something called ClimateNE, with which they share this blog on a business support site: http://blog.nebusiness.co.uk/climatene/

(7) Find out more about what the UK Youth Climate Coalition might be doing in schools or elsewhere. It looks like a group of youngsters having a whale of time, tapping into funds, jetting around the world, and generally feeling like they are saving us all.  But what is it based on?  What foundation is there for this proselytising?  Have they given any deep thought to anything at all?  Does it matter much since they will either grow up or move on to another fad within a few years?  Would they benefit from therapy?

(8)Ditto for Climate Week.  What has been happening to these youngsters? Such as this one: so young, but has served on Obama’s election campaign, advised the UK government, directed academic studies, and more.  They have clearly been convinced and energised about climate change (it would be interesting to try to find out what it is that they have found most convincing by way of evidence), and are finding lots of things to do, committees to join, conferences to attend, initiatives to pursue. 

(9)Scotland seems heading into economic and intellectual swamps along Californian lines, as evidenced by the political push for carbon reduction and renewables.  The alarmists’ penchant for getting to the kids is also well underway, and would be a worthy topic of investigation.  One organisation involved is ‘Eco-schools Scotland.

(10) Take a Global View.  This site might be a place to start: http://climatechangeeducation.org/international/index.html in order to learn more about international and national activities aimed at schoolchildren.  This organisation would also bear checking in case there is anything unsatisfactory going on: http://globe.gov/about

 (11)Getting information to interested politicians, e.g. note the straight talking here in Australia: http://www.australianclimatemadness.com/2011/05/minchin-offensive-nonsense-from-known-global-warming-alarmists/  Politicians do need information for their ‘soundbites’, and some indication that there is appreciable support ‘out there’ for viewpoints contrary to that of ‘the establishment’ on climate. 

There is to be a meeting in Westminster on 30th November involving several distinguished critics of climate alarmism and/or the IPCC ('The Climate Change Act Reconsidered' starting 1pm in Westminster Palace or Portcullis House).  Can you persuade your MP to attend? 

(12)Study some aspect of climate in more detail – make it your speciality to be familiar with what the experts and others are saying about it.  Plenty to choose from: polar bears, glaciers, hurricanes, floods, droughts, etc, etc.  Get hold of data yourself and do some plots in Excel to become more familiar with it. 

There are lots of examples here using Excel, albeit by a statistician but anyone competent with spreadsheets could reproduce much of it: http://gustofhotair.blogspot.com/.  That link is for Australian temperature data – here is someone who was inspired by it to take a look at Canadian data in a similar way: http://cdnsurfacetemps.wordpress.com/2010/11/24/why-mean-temp-is-meaningless/

Informal data analysis can help stimulate ideas for further tests.  Here are more examples:  as in here:  http://reasonabledoubtclimate.wordpress.com/2011/09/04/texas-winters-hayhoe-warming-effect/

Added 28 Nov, 2011:  Here is an example of a professor of atmospheric science being fatuous.  The analysis shows how easy it can be to refute those driven by dogma and the momentum of an all-consuming 'cause': http://notalotofpeopleknowthat.wordpress.com/2011/11/27/katharine-and-the-100-year-rain-events/#more-331  

Added 07 May 2012.  Here is another example of someone deciding to 'look at the data', and as is so often the case, finding no cause for alarm.  It concerns precipitation in the San Jose area of California:

(13) Further to (12)Prepare to write to, or in, your favourite newspaper and/or post comments at its web-version.  First, of course, get a clear grasp of some aspect of climate that may come up – do not just parrot stuff from other sites, do some thinking, note-taking, and arithmetic on your own and see what views you form.  Then, and only then, start sharing them.  There are so many topics to choose from, so take care not to spread yourself too thinly. Just choosing one might be a good place to start.  There is so much interlinking and overlap amongst topics that wherever you choose to start, you will find many avenues to follow as and when you feel ready to.

(14) Review in more detail the Welsh Climate Pack mentioned here: http://climatelessons.blogspot.com/2011/09/welsh-schools-to-be-sent-scare-them.html

(15) Outreach from here.  If you find a post in this blog that you like, then draw attention to it in some site or other forum where relevant people gather.  I imagine most of my readers here are already convinced that some level of scepticism is in order about CO2 alarmism.  I think that if there is any merit in a post, it would be best drawn to the attention of those who are most relevant to it, and who are unlikely to see it otherwise.  For example, email details to any teacher you know – you don’t have to defend my ramblings, you might merely say they might be of interest or they caught your attention, and what does your contact think about it?  I think there has been very little outreach from here, and that to me is a great failing. 

(16) Find out more about what is going in your local schools.  Do they still show ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ for example?  Where in the curricula are climate change issues addressed, and how?  Do outsiders, e.g. from corporations such as Greenpeace or WWF visit any of them?  Do pupils get to hear about calmer views of climate?  What do your nearby head teachers think about how best to include climate issues?  You could extend this to finding out more about central government initiatives in this area.  I suspect they have faded away dramatically with the change of government, but I don’t know for sure.

Now not many people read this blog (1,000 to 2,000 page view per month since July), so it should not be your first choice as an outlet for any of your work if you can find others.  On the other hand, I'd be delighted if you want to make use of it.  I still harbour hopes that one day it will be useful as a source of information for anyone actively engaged with this resistance effort against the wave of frightful propaganda about climate aimed at the young.  

Added 20 Nov 2011
(17) Design or develop climate lessons which would give schoolchildren valid and balanced insights into the climate system, into meteorology, and into the various implications of either.  These are all interesting areas, and could provide material for very interesting and engaging classes, without any resort whatsoever to the cheap, immoral, and irresponsible device of scaremongering.  The more such curricula there are, the quicker the transition to better scholastic standards in this area could be.  A trickier, and more urgent, task would be to give thought to materials that could help those children already exposed to the shoddy science of alarmism and its possible manifestations just about anywhere in the curriculum.  Such materials would also be of use to adults long past their schooldays but still damaged by their climate-related experiences in them.  This website has a scattering of suggestions for '10-minute trainers' that could be used to expose alarmist nonsense - search on that topic to see at least half a dozen here. (added 6 Dev 2011 A useful compilation of of links to tutorial materials here: http://www.greenworldtrust.org.uk/Science/Debate.htm)

Note added 22 May 2012.  Page view rates on this blog have increased to around 3,000 per month according to Blogspot, with one excursion recently to 6,000 in a month. 

Note added 15 December 2012.  Re project (4) above.  A key leader of this British Council work, the David Viner of 'children won't know what snow is' fame, has been spotted as a useful resource by a consultancy which stands to gain from climate alarmism.  Here is a comment posted on the Bishop Hill blog, Unthreaded section:
'Re comment by Brent Hargreaves 98:560 AM) on David Viner's new job.
The link you provide shows that his company thinks the poor chap is a Nobel Laureate:
'David was a co-recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 for his contributions to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change between 1993-2007.
They also are under the impression that his diversion of the British Council into promoting alarm about climate around the world was a good thing:
'In 2008 David was appointed global director at The British Council where he developed a ground breaking cultural relations strategy and programme that was delivered through 250 offices in 109 countries.'
Others take a different view of such initiatives, e.g. this writer on Biased-BBC describes them thusly:
'It means oodles more bureaucratic fear-mongering projects, the goal of the greenies involved being to convert the developing world into West-hating, climate change fanatics'
But then, Viner's new employer notes that this sort of thing is very good for his business:
'Mott MacDonald’s environment manager Ian Allison said: “We are delighted to welcome David to Mott MacDonald. Sustainability and climate change are important drivers for our business. As awareness of these issues increases, the consultancy is continuing to develop its services and skills to help in strategies for adaptation, mitigation and institutional reform to respond to these challenges.'

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