Every day last week I started to write a blog past, but just couldn’t finish it.
I think it was horror.
Horror at seeing the Australian political debate turn ugly.
Horror at the way in which groups like the IPA helped create an Astroturf movement.
Horror at the ignorance, hate and lies of the “climate sceptics”.
I watched the parliamentary debate last Thursday, which made me want to weep.
More distressing was the Liberals aligning themselves with the politics of hate.
Nick Champion, the ALP member for Wakefield commented on the nature of the “No Tax” rallies:
I thought I might just focus on some of the signs that were held up at yesterday’s rally. There was ‘Science of AGW isn’t settled’—that is anthropological global warming. Another sign said ‘Carbon dioxide is not pollution, I love CO2’. There was one that said ‘Juliar…Bob Brown’s bitch’. There was a sign that said ‘Ditch the witch’. There was a sign that said ‘Great liars are also great magicians. Adolf Hitler’. Others read ‘No multiculturalism Assimilate and Integrate’; ‘What you expect from an atheist in Canberra—ain’t that right Ju-liar?’. Of course there was the old favourite ‘Pauline knew 10 years ago’ and my favourite, which was held up just behind the Leader of the Opposition, the member for Warringah’s head—just behind him as he spoke so eloquently to this audience: ‘Say no to Carbon Tax 4 UN/IMF Global Gov = Agenda 21 Genocide’.
This is the “climate sceptics”: a rag-bag group of anti-intellectuals and fringe conspiracy theorists. They have hijacked the debate. The media and conservatives have given nutters a platform to shape policy debate. It’s like givin flat Earthers the chance to design a space program.
They are filled with rage and hate, suspicious of knowledge and learning.
They would wind back the Enlightenment.
Here we are, with climate change accelerating and large segments of the population not wanting it to be true.
And what are some segments of our political and business elite doing? Aligning themselves with the forces of darkness…
I’ll be writing more this week, but I found last week dispiriting.
Now what I feel is anger.
Anger at the lies.
Anger at the willed blindness.
Most of all, anger at those who lack the courage to see the challenge climate change is, and would rather be pretend it not true.