Al Gore: If We Disagree Slightly on Climate, ‘You’re A Denier

“You must swallow whole the apocalyptic vision he presents – or else.”

You’re either with Al Gore, or you’re against Al Gore. There is no in between.

The global warming/climate change alarmist made that quite clear while on a press tour for his recent box office flop, An Inconvenient Sequel. In an interview with a British journalist at The Spectator, Gore cut the interview short the second he felt the questions weren’t going his way.

Ross Clark sat down with Gore and asked him about an associate professor of marine geology and geophysics at the Florida International University, Shimon Wdowinski, who has studied sea levels in Miami and isn’t quite convinced it’s all doom and gloom as is proposed in Gore’s films. That didn’t go over so well:

When I put all this to Al Gore and ask him whether his film would be stronger if it acknowledged the complexities of sea level rise — why it is rising in some places and not in others — I am expecting him to bat it away, saying that it doesn’t counter his central point and that there is a limit to what you can put into a film pitched at a mass audience, but his reaction surprises me. As soon as I mention Professor Wdowinski’s name, he counters: ‘Never heard of him — is he a denier?’ Then, as I continue to make the point, he starts to answer before directing it at me: ‘Are you a denier?’ When I say I am sure that climate change is a problem, but how big a one I don’t know, he jumps in: ‘You are a denier.’

Clark said Gore’s PR team swept in and rescued their “star” from questions against the approved talking points and scolded him for going off-script. So, instead of Clark writing down Gore’s answers in his piece, he was left with nothing but to ask his unanswered questions:

If you are reading this, Al, the questions I didn’t get to ask you were: you don’t like it, for good reason, when oil companies weigh in on climate change, so don’t you think you are yourself open to charges of vested interests given that you set up and are still involved in Generation Investment Management, a fund which invests heavily in green energy?

And secondly: you have described climate change as a ‘moral challenge’ which can be ‘reduced to a binary choice’. Doesn’t that remind you a bit of your nemesis, George W. Bush, saying, after the 9/11 attacks: ‘You are either with me or with the terrorists’? Doesn’t climate change present a wide range of policy choices, involving an awkward trade-off between reducing carbon emissions and economic growth?

Most people, to a greater or lesser extent, accept that carbon emissions are a problem which must be addressed. But with Al Gore there is no room for any uncertainties — you swallow whole the apocalyptic vision in his films or you are a ‘denier’. He and his ‘climate ambassadors’ whom he has trained to spread his message resemble a charismatic church whose leader must be paid constant homage. He is an obstacle to serious debate.

Who knew a climate change believer could be a denier at the same time if he doubts just one iota of Gore-speak? But it's a widespread problem.

Anthony Watts experienced something similar and wrote about it on his global warming-critical blog, Watts Up With That? Watts, a former on-air meteorologist said he was rebuffed by Chile’s environmental minister:

I’d written an op-ed for a Chilean newspaper that, among other things, quoted UN findings on how little the Paris climate treaty would achieve and argued that vast investment in green energy research and development is a better policy. Marcelo Mena proclaimed, “There is no room for your climate-denying rhetoric in Chile.”

Does Marcelo Mena translate from Spanish to “Al Gore,” or something?

Watts also points to political scientist Roger Peilke, Jr, who believes in climate change and wants a carbon tax imposed on human emissions. He was nailed by these “climate ambassadors” after his research showed that “the increasing costs from hurricane damage is not caused by storms made more intense by climate-change but by more and pricier property built in vulnerable areas.” How dare he stray from the script!

“Something odd — and dangerous — is happening when even people who accept the reality of man-made climate change are labeled ‘deniers,” Watts writes. “This intolerance for discussion is alarming.”

“Believe in climate change but wonder how bad it will be? You’re a ‘denier,’ says Gore. Believe, but argue that today’s policies aren’t the best response? You’re a denier, says Chile’s environment minister. Believe, but point out problematic findings or media reporting? There’s no room for you, say the self-appointed gatekeepers of debate.”


Photo credit: jdlasica via / CC BY