Of late we’ve seen a rash of examples showing just how ugly the face of the cult of environmentalism can be. There’ve been calls for the beheading of skeptics and even a wish that their children should kill them. If you’re fresh to what’s laughably called the climate debate, you’ll probably be appalled by such extremist exhortations to do the type of sick things which would quite comfortably fit into the sort of violence porn uploaded to YouTube for wannabe Jihadis and the like to get their rocks off on. However, if you’ve been following the issue for a few years, you’ll know such repulsive and vile sentiments are far from anything new though they are of late stronger.
In previous years, there’s been suggestions that “deniers” should have the word tattooed on their forehead, the targeting and naming of their children by certain verminous types not only in the real world but in the virtual twittering world, appearances in the dead of night of masked people on their front lawns with burning torches in the traditional KKK fashion, there should be climate criminal trials à la Nuremburg and that such deniers should be gathered together in central facilities for re-education, the latter suggestion being made by a second-generation blood relative of JFK, who’d probably be appalled at any genetic connection to such a closet fascist hiding behind the skirts of the Democratic Party and totally disgracing his Irish immigrant lineage.
I suppose he’s someone who’s lived nothing but a lard-arsed privileged life, safely insulated inside a rich clan skating along on a dead man’s reputation without ever putting his ass anywhere near the everyday experience of bagging up groceries in the local supermarket just to make a minimum wage, never mind the risk of getting it shot off in the service of his country. I despise such pointless people who’re totally without any sense of decency and whose whole career is based on feeding off the memory of a better man. I really do. There’s no decency, no sense of decorum about them and without ruthlessly exploiting the familial connection, they’d be nobodies.
There are a number of things to be noticed about such visceral hate speech. I suppose for starters it’s a one way street, if only because only one side owns all the mass propaganda outlets. Once you get outside the free blogosphere and into the mainstream media, climate skeptics who speak their mind are a very small demographic and hunted down enthusiastically by an overwhelmingly yee-haw lynch mob of hang the nigga high liberals of the media in pursuit of the only minority left about whom anything can be said.
You can sense a sort of glee, a certain cathartic joy at actually having the freedom to hurl the sort of vile bigoted slurs that haven’t been publishable in a newspaper for the last half century. The good news is you can’t be punished for it. Indeed, your stock will only rise in the righteous circles you crave so badly to be a part of. Not only can you say horrible things about them, you can even get away with committing criminal offences against them, just ask Peter “identity thief” Gleick. You won’t even get charged.
It’s the new touchy-feely McCarthyite era of the twenty-first century. Just substitute Denier for Commie and it’s all very familiar. Are you now or have you ever been a denier? Let the hearings begin, but not as a committee of Congress but in the full glare of the mainstream media. The results of such a trial by media are exactly the same as those achieved by the Senator from Wisconsin. Blacklisting, deprivation of livelihood, your reputation besmirched and all of it with absolutely no mechanism to defend yourself, never mind any right of reply.
What type of person feels free to indulge in such extremist dialogue?
The most visible is what’s called the troll or cyber bully plying their anonymous trade. They’re mostly personality defectives of one type or another but more often than people might think, they’re actually paid commenters earning a living by trying to close down debate in the blogosphere, usually by inciting a screaming match. To a large extent, that worked in former years, but since the plunge in visitors to alarmist sites they’ve been obliged to move their activities to the skeptic sites, but by now most of those sites recognise them for what they are and keep them on a short leash. If they let them in, it’s just for a bit of fun. Personally, I just don’t let them through the door, though occasionally I like to do a bit of troll baiting when things are slow.
What’s important to note about the trolls, is that they are like a deniable terrorist wing of a supposedly respectable political movement. For instance, the Guardian left comments calling for the beheading of Matt Ridley up on their site for four days, while at the same time deleting other comments protesting about it. More than a few of the more virulent ones are in reality supposedly sane commenters operating under a nom de guerre.
The next demographic would be establishment figures, politicians on the make, climate scientists, troughers sucking up the monetary swill and mainstream journalists. I exclude the alarmist bloggers from this set, since they’re only read by a few devoted acolytes and definitely nobody of any consequence, simply because the content is poor, juvenile, often libellous and suitable only for consumption by the alarmingly thick. You really do have to wipe your feet and wash your hands after visiting one. A little jet set experience on a bidet wouldn’t hurt either …
To a large extent, this grouping indulges in a more subtle form of stereotyping but invariably with the “denier” word unconsciously used as a given. It’s a useful discriminant to spot them. Once they use that word, you know what you’re dealing with; a true believer. They’re the next step up, a bit more respectable than the trolls or bloggers though at times the margin can be pretty slim.
The common denominator they all share is that they’re all activists who’re quite prepared to trash the perceived integrity of whatever profession they’re supposed to be practising in order to advance the “cause”, as it’s referred to in the climategate emails. They’re quite happy to distort, deceive, spin, destroy, pervert and simply lie their heads off because they just know the end justifies any means, and that’s something so many skeptics still find hard to get their head around.
There are one or two of them who like to represent themselves as honest brokers in the middle ground, but when push comes to shove or they’re in the right company and getting their ego stroked, the old denier word soon comes creeping out of hiding.
The last and most dishonourable group would be the people who’ve taken some time to look into the issue, who know the weakness of the alarmist case, know it’s so often a perversion of science, recognise only too well the professional calibre of the people indulging in the hate speech and yet stand still on the side-lines saying nothing. As Burke said, all that’s necessary for the triumph of evil is for good men to stand idly by and do nothing. They may not be using the hate speech, but their silence condones it and therefore allows it to grow.
They are the only solution to the problem but as long as they maintain their silence and do not speak out against it, they are a part of the problem.
The last question to ask is why? Why all the hate, why all the venom? For most of them, it’s the anger phase in the death of their belief system and the skeptics are the ones they blame totally for their particular Götterdämmerung, the twilight of the gods or in this case Gaia. The skeptics reflect the sentiment of the common man, whose concerns have been placing worrying about the environment at the bottom of every poll for several years. It’s all our fault, we low creatures destroyed their dreams. Any belief in Gaia is dying because of us.
The real point about unrestricted hate speech is that it’s an enabler. When a non-stop, unrestrained stream of perverted, violent and hateful invective is allowed to be rained down on any group, eventually the words will lead to doing the deeds. We in the West allowed extremist imams to preach violence and we’re now seeing the results of allowing such “free speech”, in the form of home-grown terrorists attacking the societies they were raised in.
What I do know because I’ve seen it before is that there will be consequences from such an accepted environment of casual hate speech. Someone, somewhere, sometime will decide one of the deniers will have to be killed to protect the environment. It’s a prediction but one I feel will eventually happen as the hate speech spirals ever more violently out of control and gives someone a feeling of authorisation to do something murderous to save the planet.
On that day, one or more people will have died and some people’s invective will have to be examined in the light of that tragic event, because there will be no wiggle out using that venerable excuse of a lone demented maniac who had nothing to do with you. You’ll have made him, you’ll have made him feel righteous, you conditioned him, you wound him up, he murdered people – it’ll be on your conscience.
Is there any real chance the people actually responsible for inciting the murder will ever face a court of law for their part in it? Of course not, they’re in that long tradition ofslinking away unpunished and on with their prestigious lives to horizons anew and all is forgotten. Their skirts will be clean and no blood will rub off on their hems.
The more the hate escalates, the more certain it becomes that the sad day is slouching towards us.