Demagogue, Meet Demagogue

James Lee, the demented guy who was killed after taking hostages at the Discovery channel headquarters, is turning into quite an illuminating inkblot in the blogosphere. Exhibit A is this headline from Anthony Watts:

When warmistas attack

Exhibit B would be the majority sentiment that flows from that post’s comment thread, of which this one was among the first few out of the box:

Are you surprised? All of the unbalanced minds are on the Alarmist side. Now watch for the reaction of Romm and Hansen and all of the other spittle-flecked lunatics. Will they have the guts to embrace his actions?

Joe Romm, for his part, rightly criticizes the warped nature of Watts’ headline (as well as the equally cringe-inducing first line from that post) and the offensive tenor of many of the commenters in that thread.

On the central figure in the tragic event,  Romm also correctly observes:

I don’t think you can tell much about this guy from his actions and writing other than the fact that he was crazy every which way.

Then Romm, being Romm, couldn’t leave well enough alone. In the next breath, he forfeits the high ground when he writes:

But you can tell a lot about the anti-science, pro-pollution blogosphere by how they react to this and whether or not they denounce Anthony Watts.

Really? Does that also apply to the (presumably pro-science, anti-pollution) liberal blogosphere, a representation of which Anthony Watts (oblivious to the odious comments from his own readers in the thread of his post), gleefully points out in the thread of this Think Progress post?

This is the thing that puzzles me about Romm. He could have simply let the Watts post speak for itself. It was a gift staring him in the face. Instead, he had to overreach and demagogue it.

So I guess we can tell a lot about Romm and Watts, too, based on how they treat this sorry episode.

134 Responses to “Demagogue, Meet Demagogue”

  1. Tim Lambert says:

    Introducing the Keith Kloor Action Figure!  We have incorporated the latest AI techniques to allow you to have a realistic conversation with the Keith Kloor Action Figure.  Just say your piece, pull the string in the back of the KKAF, and the KKAF AI will do the rest! For example:

    You: A madman attacked the Discovery Channel.

    KKAF: Joe Romm is a demagogue!

    You: Did you read the squirrely stuff James Lee had on his website?

    KKAF: Joe Romm is a slimer!

    You: Lee even talks about saving the Squirrels

    KKAF: Joe Romm is a tribalist enforcer!

    You: and poor old Daniel Quinn having his book cited by Lee as some sort of manifesto

    KKAF: Joe Romm is like Sarah Palin!

    You: And did you notice that while Lee is against babies, he is particularly against anchor babies?

    KKAF: Joe Romm exploits his daughter!

    You: What do you think of the weather this season?

    KKAF: Joe Romm is shrill!!
    The Keith Kloor Action Figure will be available in stores soon.  Batteries not included.

  2. Barry Woods says:

    As Cap and Trade recedes away, and politicians back away from any sort of climate action. I expect some of the advocacy groups to get more ‘shrill’ with catstrophic annoucements of ‘global warming’ and unfortuanetly, for some members of society it will be too much to bear, some may react like the above case, or some like this from a couple of momnths ago, suicide pact because of the fears of global warming…

    In a way much like the fears of a generation, where some people reaacting with,  not bringing children into the world with the threat of mass nuclear destrucion habging over it 1970’s 80′

    The loby groups must behave responsibly in their rhetoric.

    ie, Greenpeace’s comm’s director saying become ‘climate outlaw’s. ‘We know where you live’ statement..  (and i have seen the original, not the amended response on greenpeaces’ website)

    No doubt only empty rhetoric to encourage activists on a website.  But there can be consequences.

  3. Roddy Campbell says:

    I guess it’s a question of humour.  I thought Watts’s headline was quite funny, referential.  I don’t expect he was suggesting a serious correlation between this man’s madness and ‘belief’ set, any more than he would some right-wing anti government crazed redneck with 73 rifles.  Some of his commenters, as with TaV, and as with RC and CP, one just has to glaze over and drift past.  C’est la vie.
    Romm doesn’t have humour, and it’s almost funny that he thinks he does.
    I always measure these things on the old test – would you be happy if this man married your sister.
    A sensayuma bypass is the last straw for me.  It’s counterproductive too.
    What’s Gavin’s rating on the sensayuma index?

  4. Roddy Campbell says:

    I do think Tim Lambert has a point though, and has made it with good humour, which is even better.  It’s why I enjoy his blog even though he’s probably wrong about everything.

  5. Keith Kloor says:

    Roddy (3),

    I don’t know what motivated the headline, but playing off a violent action of a deranged man doesn’t seem to be in good taste, especially as the drama is playing out.

    Tim (1) gets props for channeling his Romm worship into a spoof of my critiques. But given Romm’s penchant for body slams of his opponents, wouldn’t he be a better choice for an action figure?

  6. Barry Woods says:

    check out Tim’s link to a survey at Deltoid. It is so blatant in it’s intentions, that it is really funny. 😉

  7. KK
    Your take on this is incomplete, and possibly quite wrong. Later.

  8. Pascvaks says:

    I have found that Watts is very levelheaded and sensitive and that his gaggle of commentors comprise a full spectrum of the good old bell curve. In all fairness to Watts, he does not incite his mob to anarchy, witch hunts, jihad, and cross burning and does a very fair job of editing the o/t extreme comments.  I myself have been ‘deleted’ on more than one occassion for being out in left field and reeking of onion and garlic.  When the mob gets too out of hand, he’s even cut off comments on an article and closed it.  In the case of Watts, he’s not the ‘problem’ –it’s his readers.
    In the case of Romm, let’s just say that Romm is Romm’s biggest problem, always has been and always will be.  The inciter of murder and mayhem at Climateprogress is NOT the visitor.  Indeed, it’s very difficult to say much of anything there that “He Who Would Think For Us All” does not approve of as complimenting his lengthy essays.

  9. SimonH says:

    I was surprised by Anthony’s headline. The opportunity to take a retrospective shot at Hansen’s support of civil disobedience was seemingly too hard to resist, but I think Anthony should have tried harder.
    Lee might just as easily have been incited by the plight of the earthworm as the parasitic nature of earthly human existence.
    All said, though, Terry Gilliam’s The Fisher King would be a good place to start, if Hansen ever wished to consider the potential ramifications of his prominence in relation to his own irresponsible incitements to civil action.

  10. John Whitman says:


    Say what you like about WUWT of course.

    Please consider that Anthony’s site is at a major intersection of climate assessment and discussion; at a significantly positioned crossroads of relevant climate commenting.  The roads that intersect his crossroads are from all the extremes.   [ Does this sound vaguely like Rome? : ) ]

    Why is it that he is positioned where he is?  I think one of the several significant reasons is that he is not at any of the extreme positions on the subject of climate science and yet allows the extremes to enter and play there at his place.  He doesn’t charge a political toll to stop by his place, nor an ideological environmentalist toll, nor a believer toll, nor a skeptical toll. 


  11. Keith Kloor says:

    John (10), sounds like you’re giving him a pass.

  12. SimonH says:

    Keith, it’s worth remembering Anthony’s reaction when his office was, he perceived, invaded by a lesser version of Lee, back in June.

    Today my life and my office was disrupted by the unannounced and uninvited presence of a person who seems to be convinced that I’m in the employ of “big oil” (I’m not) and that my opinions and the opinions of others here is so wrong, that this person must take up a crusade against me.”

    Context is everything.

  13. Keith Kloor says:

    The other thing I want to reiterate–to all those who think I’m being unfair to Joe Romm in this particular post–Tim, you listening?. (Others obviously think I’m being unfair to Anthony.)
    I think Joe got it exactly right…up until the point he took that gratuitous swipe at some generalized “anti-science, pro-pollution” blogosphere. He needs to know when to stop talking into that voice recorder, or he should get an editor.
    Shub (7), I’m looking forward to reading your defense of Anthony’s headline and post.

  14. Pascvaks says:

    Another big difference between Watts and Romm deals with attachments or ties.  Watts, as with Colide-a-scape,  has no strings.  Romm is “A Project of  Center for American Progress Action Fund”  The closer we look the more we have to deal with when comparing apples and oranges.

  15. Steve Koch says:

    I disagree with Watts’ headline and first sentence but the rest of the rather large article were literally just the facts (much more complete than the post that started this thread).  I don’t understand the use of the word warmista.  Many (most?) skeptics are luke warmists.  A more accurate title than warmista might be CAGW nut (i.e. a nut who is obsessed by CAGW) or green nut.   Lee’s belief system is relevant, he picked the Discovery Channel because he felt they betrayed the green cause.  To ignore this smacks of  “move along, nothing to see here” (i.e. a form of cover up).  Of course there are going to be some opponents of CAGW who will exploit Lee’s actions to discredit CAGW.  That is how politics is played in the USA today.
    If you believe that CO2 produced by man is literally destroying mother earth, it is so insane to act out?  Lee took hostages but did not necessarily intend to hurt them, it might just have been a publicity stunt gone horribly wrong.   Recently in England, some green activists smeared oil on a road near a site where they where demonstrating.  This could have turned out disastrously.  If you watch “Whale Wars”, you will routinely see green activists do stuff that could turn out disastrously, to attempt to provoke an over reaction by the whalers.
    It is not unusual for greens to be extreme in their rhetoric and actions.  Sooner or later there was bound to be a tragedy.  Lee had a very specific agenda (which at least Watts printed), it should be discussed, his actions should be put in context.

  16. SimonH says:

    I didn’t, and don’t, agree with Anthony’s post regarding “warmistas”. Perhaps eventually, and with hindsight, Anthony won’t remember it fondly either. It’s possible to understand a reaction without supporting it. If the net result of that is a pass, even provisionally, then so be it. I don’t perceive it as a pass. I just don’t see that an objective view necessarily has to be devoid of compassion, particularly when it seems plain to me that Anthony’s reaction was empathic of the innocent victims in the Discovery building.

  17. Mike M. says:

    Gee, I’ve been quoted!  Thanks, Keith.  I stand behind that statement 100%.  Al Gore calls for civil disobedience.  James Hansen calls for civil disobedience and calls coal trains “death trains.”  Of course, we know Romm brings the Haterade by the truckload.  These people have been telling the masses that we face extinction.  Hell on Earth.  Floods!  Droughts!  Super storms!! Higher humidity!!!
    Lee’s actions are a perfectly rational in light of such an indoctrination.  He ‘s been told again and again:  We Must Act Now!  It’s doubtful Lee had any intentions of actually killing anyone, BTW.  He just wanted to make the Big Statement.  So, in effect, this is the civil disobedience called for by the leaders of the Movement.
    I have little hope that Lee’s actions will be applauded by the Alarmists.  There is no courage in their convictions.  Its just another reason why you can’t take them seriously.

  18. Keith Kloor says:

    SimonH (16).
    An honest reaction from Anthony–one that would have given his post some context–would have been to talk about the stalker that showed up at his office last year.  And how the Lee incident hits home for him.
    He didn’t do that. Instead it appears he chose the cheap shot route to score some quick political points. And he let his readers run wild with the chum he served up (which Romm also pointed out).
    Bottom line, folks: call it like you see it; don’t make excuses for him. Those of you who want to cut Anthony some slack on his post wouldn’t be so favorably inclined if Romm’s fans were similarly rationalizing on his behalf.

  19. Keith Kloor says:

    MikeM (17):
    I don’t equate hostage taking with civil disobedience.

  20. SimonH says:

    Keith, I don’t know how to say what I said any more plainly. I didn’t, and I don’t agree with Anthony’s post and I don’t think that, ultimately, he will either. I’m cutting him no slack. But I make no apology for posturing that his wildly disproportionate reaction may have been guttural, subconscious or reflexive. I don’t pretend that shooting from the hip in a crowded space is appropriate. He should have held off while his personal reaction to events subsided, and taken more careful aim.

  21. John Whitman says:

    Keith (11) – I really don’t know what you are saying in “sounds like you’re giving him (Anthony) a pass”.

    I do not always agree with Anthony and, in fact, there isn’t anyone in the world so far with whom I always agree.  I post things at Anthony’s that I am confident he doesn’t agree with.  Yet, never a rebuke from him or a snip or etc.

    I am not sure I agree with your “sounds like you’re giving him (Anthony) a pass” statement because I really have no idea what you are trying to say.  Please just say it, whatever it is.


  22. Keith Kloor says:

    All I’m saying John, is that you seem willing to gloss over the headline and post. In your comment above, you talked about his site being an intersection for various types–which is all fine and well. I’m being unequivocably critical of his post, but you chose not to address my criticism or Anthony’s headline. You avoided it. That’s why I’m inclined to think you’re giving him a pass.
    Quick note: I gotta get some work done, so I have to force myself not to peek at this thread for a few hours. But I will dive in again in the afternoon. I look forward to reading more of your reactions later.

  23. Mike M. says:

    Neither do I, Keith.  You and I are normal people.  Most normal people do not even believe in man made warming.  Its the rhetoric of the extreme minority aimed at the weakest of their group that resulted in yesterday’s tragedy.  Words have consequences.  If you keep screaming that the world is about to end some nut will take you seriously.

  24. Lazar says:

    “it seems plain to me that Anthony’s reaction was empathic of the innocent victims in the Discovery building”
    rotfl… Watts is the guy who promoted Alexander Feht’s hate speech and under pressure distorted the contents of the claim…
    “Comment of the week” highlighted by Anthony Watts…
    “I completely understand, why Christopher Monckton felt a need to make an example of a typical reprehensible representative of modern Academia. People like Christopher Monckton make me hope again that not everything is lost yet under the Moon.

    And yet… I spent first half of my life battling liars and cockroaches in the former USSR. I would win against any individual liar or cockroach, no sweat. But year after year after year, I was getting more and more convinced that I didn’t want to die in this battle, overwhelmed by the sheer numbers of my enemies.

    So. I live in a quiet valley now, in Colorado Rockies. Grass is green, air is fresh, sky is huge. But what is this constant swish and rustle coming from the East Coast and from the Left Coast? I know this sound well! There is no escape from the battle: cockroaches are coming.”
    so Dan Olner asks Watts…
    “do you think it’s OK to compare people you don’t agree with to cockroaches? An answer involving either the word “yes” or “no” would be great.”
    Watts responds…
    “It is an apt metaphor, one that caught attention of a lot of people prior to it being elevated, and you are reading way too much into it. He sees the USSR politics and Socialism as that.”
    just in case “individual liar or cockroach”, “liars”, “sheer numbers of my enemies” wasn’t clear enough, Alexander Feht follows with…

    “the clique of government-supported human parasites that overwhelmed all the media and all public institutions, shamelessly faking and manipulating data, routinely abusing their powers and prerogatives, and wasting society’s resources, time, and livelihoods on fake quasi-religious beliefs displacing and crowding out reality-based science everywhere on the planet, it’s not a fair, balanced, and equal “debate” any more.
    YES, these people are parasites, and fully deserve to stand trial as embezzlers and fraudsters.”
    … no further comment, retraction or apology from Watts for publishing hate speech.

    … and don’t forget questioning the patriotism of his opponents.
    “I wonder if “Tamino” or Eli Rabbet bothers to fly a flag on memorial day?”

  25. Marlowe Johnson says:

    “Most normal people do not even believe in man made warming.”
    and tinfoil hats really do work right?

  26. GaryM says:

    Guess where these came from?
    1. “Glenn, if your pathetically ignorant hate-mongering ever contributes to even one incidence of anything similar, enjoy your dinner date with those who used similar tactics ““ my guess is that the food might lean toward the well-done.”
    2. “This on the heels of Limbaugh calling for climate scientists to be ‘drawn and quartered’. Truly horrific stuff.
    And people wonder why scientists, climate scientists especially, are a little touchy nowadays? Threats by phone and email (death threats even), harassment, libel, eviscerated rats left on their porches. They do not deserve this, period.”
    3. “Can someone please send a lawyer knocking on Limbaugh’s or Becks’ door. Surely they cannot incite people to commit acts of violence? There are people out there who will take them seriously, sad but true. Someone needs to hold them accountable.”
    4. “UK Guardian slams Morano for cyber-bullying and for urging violence against climate scientists”
    5. “And the winner of this year’s Josef Mengele Award for Ethical Achievement is MARC MORANO!!”

  27. AMac says:

    MikeM said at #17:
    > So, in effect, this [Lee’s hostage-taking]  is the civil disobedience called for by the leaders of the Movement.
    MikeM, it would help if you would clarify.  Do you mean:
    (1) “Movement leaders” have called for hostage taking?
    (2) You have evidence that “Movement leaders” incited hostage taking by conflating it with civil disobedience?
    (3) Those sly “Movement leaders” wouldn’t go on the record to incite violence, but you know, just know it is so?
    (4) Food fight!
    ISTM that your claim is without merit.  You should withdraw it.

  28. Lazar says:

    look there’s a giraffe over there…

  29. Tom Fuller says:

    There is a larger issue here than Anthony’s and Romm’s write-ups. There has been a concentrated media campaign to push an extreme agenda, cataloguing disastrous consequences. It’s in the papers, it’s on TV, it’s in children’s educational material, it’s in the movies.
    A lot of people are vulnerable to the messages that are communicated to them, especially when they are dramatic and repeated with slight variations for 20 years.
    If you grew up on Waterworld, maybe saw it three or four times, then did the same with The Day After Tomorrow, 2012, The Book of Eli, etc., watched ABC’s special last year, and were consuming the other media so filled with messages of despair, if you were already vulnerable, you could succumb to the impulses that drove this man to do what he did.
    That’s not the same as saying that one or all of those pushing this meme are responsible for what happened yesterday, or the murder suicide in March in Argentina. Or on a much lower level, Anthony Watts getting a hostile woman marching into his office demanding to speak with him. They are not. Joe Romm didn’t cause what happened yesterday, and neither did Al Gore.
    But they could have done a lot more to prevent it, and they know it, which is why they are immediately seizing on Anthony’s misguided blog header to deflect attention away from what happened.
    This isn’t about what Anthony put at the top of his blog post.  This is about realizing that people communicate a campaign of messages through various media because they know it will work. It worked.
    But you cannot always predict the consequences of an effective media campaign.
    Again–the people Anthony called ‘warmistas’ are not responsible for what happened Wednesday, any more than Paul Ehrlich, whose ideas were also tapped. However, the people who crafted the messages they wanted disseminated wanted to scare the general public to death.
    And messaging in the mass media works.

  30. Artifex says:

    “and tinfoil hats really do work right?”

    Obviously not. [SNIP]

    I think part of the reason this plays so well to the Watt’s crew is a sense of being smeared with the same strawman guilt by association attacks.

    The same people who have been trying to smear skeptics with memes like “They are just like creationists” are horrified and appalled that their anyone could even think about using their own tactics against them. I don’t think Lee is a fair representation of the CAGW movement, but associating him with the CAGW group is at least as fair as associating creationists with skeptics. Funny how the logic changes when the shoe is on the other foot isn’t it. Does anybody really believe if this guy had been attacking the Discovery Channel to defend his liberties against the socialist CAGW conspiracy, folks like Lambert and Romm wouldn’t have smeared the other side as being just like Lee ?

    It’s just funny that when a real whack job shows up, he sounds exactly like [SNIP]. There is one point from Lee’s manifesto that Keith should take to heart:

    A game show format contest would be in order. Perhaps also forums of leading scientists who understand and agree with the Malthus-Darwin science and the problem of human overpopulation. Do both. Do all until something WORKS and the natural world starts improving and human civilization building STOPS and is reversed! MAKE IT INTERESTING SO PEOPLE WATCH AND APPLY SOLUTIONS!!!!

    Have you considered a game show format for this blog Keith ? It’s been interesting so far, but maybe you could take it to the next level !

  31. Marlowe Johnson says:

    “But they could have done a lot more to prevent it, and they know it”
    care to elaborate Tom?

  32. Pascvaks says:

    Ref Lazar Says:
    September 2nd, 2010 at 11:26 am 

    And the blind man said, “Yes!  I thought I heard something too.”
    PS: Once we decide we dislike someone everything else is easy; except, of course, our choice of weapons.

  33. D. Robinson says:

    Personally, I didn’t like Anthony’s post and I think he sometimes  acts to quickly.  As has been pointed out however, he will post points of view or studies from both sides of the aisle (not 1 to 1 admittedly), and he will allow comments from just about anybody whether they agree or disagree.  His pov is clear in his writings and he’s impetuous, hence the post.

    Did anybody notice that Lee was also rabidly against immigration to the USA?  I find it interesting that he was influenced heavily on the AGW / Environmental side that would most likely be attributed to a liberal point of view, yet on immigration he seems to me to have been influenced more by a conservative point of view.
    Maybe for him, the loudest angriest voices resonated best?

  34. Keith Kloor says:

    D.Robinson (33), Good question about the loudest voices perhaps influencing him the most. BTW, that anti-immigration angle is one that this Think Progress post emphasized in a post referenced by Watts.

    Remember: inkblot.

  35. Lazar says:

    I agree that Joe Romm is a demagogue where he writes…
    The right wing couldn’t be happier that this nutjob has expressed environmental views.”

  36. Stu says:

    While I do think that Anthony’s initial coverage of this tragedy has been somewhat poorly handled, one should not dismiss the various strands which may have intertwined in order to elicit this ‘gut’ response from him. Simon has already given one example – Anthony’s reply to Keith also reveals something of the pressures someone in media has to deal from time to time from people with extreme views and perhaps extreme behavioral tendencies. This is a very personal post from him which obviously tweaked a raw nerve. While it is irresponsible to forget your audience, this is an honest commentary by Anthony (not an objective reporting of an event) that has come out of the moment, and which I probably expect will be followed up at a later date by a more self reflective, less emotive post.
    Lee’s actions here will also take some time to understand. Romm’s take on this may prove to be correct, that Lee was simply acting out  in a void of crazy and that there are no larger connections to be drawn. I have my doubts on that, drawing as I am able  from my own experiences of being heavily involved in environmental activism over the years and witnessing firsthand the damaging psychological effects of sustained alarmist media on both myself and other close friends. Lee’s desperation certainly was extreme, but many activists also suffer under similar emotional strains, of that I have no doubt.
    You need to understand that Anthony is also aware of this. His site has until only very recently represented the very small counter voice in an ocean of sensationalist and alarmist media that daily dishes up torrents of climate porn for whatever reasons. His role has consistently been in debunking this kind of media. Why would he do that? I imagine it is because he cares about people and understands through a great deal of personal experience the effects media can and does have in shaping human thoughts and behaviour. It’s isn’t hard to see Lee as a victim here (I agree some of the WUWT comments were less than sympathetic on this point and were dragging down the site), and while Anthony’s feelings certainly seemed to be for the hostages at the time of writing, you can maybe read between the lines to see that he also feels for Lee as a person who has been damaged by ideology.
    On this last point, I certainly have no beef with this slurring of a particular ideology, ‘warmista’ in this case- but then again, I’m not much of a fan of ideologies to begin with.

  37. Venter says:

    You had posted in WUWT asking where Hansen incited violence. There is a reply from a poster pointing out two specific incidents, about his comparing coal trains to box cars headed to crematoria, an allusion even Joe Romm found unpleasant as it conjures memories of Nazi extermination of jews in boxcars.
    Another reference form that poster was about Hansen trespassing the property of a mountaintop coal mining company in West Virginia with a bunch of protesters just a year ago, an illegal act for which he was arrested.
    Other than that Hansen was also in the news less than a year ago for supporting the Greenpeace activists acquitted of criminally damaging a coal-fired power station in Kent, on the grounds that the harm done to the planet by a new power station would far outweigh any damage they had done themselves.
    And of course, Hansen endorsed this book
    where the author Keith Farnish claims
    ” The only way to prevent global ecological collapse and thus ensure the survival of humanity is to rid the world of Industrial Civilization.”
    ” Unloading essentially means the removal of an existing burden: for instance, removing grazing domesticated animals, razing cities to the ground, blowing up dams and switching off the greenhouse gas emissions machine. The process of ecological unloading is an accumulation of many of the things I have already explained in this chapter, along with an (almost certainly necessary) element of sabotage.”
    And Hansen’s take on that book? It was as below
    ” Keith Farnish has it right: time has practically run out, and the ‘system’ is the problem. Governments are under the thumb of fossil fuel special interests ““ they will not look after our and the planet’s well-being until we force them to do so, and that is going to require enormous effort.”
    So Keith, while I agree that Anthony’s  post about warmista’s was possibly something he could have avoided and not in good taste, that was nowhere near to the kind of behaviour and activism espoused by Hansen.
    And you defended Hansen, while castigating Anthony. Sorry, I believe you don’t have a right to take the moral high ground here when you seem to condone Hansen’ s behaviour.

  38. Chris Winter says:

    Mike M (#23): How about the oft-repeated claim that any action to limit CO2 will “destroy the economy” and throw millions out of work?
    Do you not think that claim might drive “some nut” to drastic action?

  39. Pascvaks says:

    Ref – Stu Says:
    September 2nd, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    Hoohah!  Ditto!

  40. Chris Winter says:

    Pascvaks (#8) wrote:

    <i>”I have found that Watts is very levelheaded and sensitive and that his gaggle of commenters comprise a full spectrum of the good old bell curve. In all fairness to Watts, he does not incite his mob to anarchy, witch hunts, jihad, and cross burning and does a very fair job of editing the o/t extreme comments.  I myself have been “˜deleted’ on more than one occasion for being out in left field and reeking of onion and garlic.  When the mob gets too out of hand, he’s even cut off comments on an article and closed it.  In the case of Watts, he’s not the “˜problem’ ““it’s his readers.”</i>

    He’s sensitive, all right. Can it be forgotten how, when criticized in a video by Peter Sinclair (aka Greenman3610), Watts had YouTube take down the video, falsely claiming DMCA infringement?

    <i>”In the case of Romm, let’s just say that Romm is Romm’s biggest problem, always has been and always will be.  The inciter of murder and mayhem at Climateprogress is NOT the visitor.  Indeed, it’s very difficult to say much of anything there that “He Who Would Think For Us All” does not approve of as complimenting his lengthy essays.”</i>
    Incitement to murder or mayhem is usually quite easy to spot. Please be so good as to point out specific examples of Joe Romm doing such inciting.

  41. harrywr2 says:

    I actually read Watt’s post.
    He refers to his readers in the post as ‘filthy’.
    Obviously a post meant to be sarcastic. Unfortunately, not everyone read it that way.
    In any case, whacko’s tend to be drawn to apocalyptic causes, always have been.
    Blather on endlessly about the coming apocalypse as a result of X,Y or Z and watch the whacko’s become completely unhinged.
    It would be good entertainment if real people didn’t end up dead as a result.

  42. Venter says:

    Tom Fuller has made an excellent follow up post titled ” Stop the Hysteria ” at WUWT. I found it hitting the right spot in this whole debate
    P.S : Tom, I hope you don’t my putting up this link here.

  43. GaryM says:

    A crack pot attempts to hold a television network hostage, threatens to kill people, and is shot when he apparently starts to carryout his threats.  Our fair moderator notes that “the truly whackjob stuff is coming from Beck;” Wattsupwiththat posts a headline critical of “warmistas;” Think Progress makes a big deal about his “anti-immigrant” rantings; and Climate progress chimes in with how mean Anthony Watts is.
    Am I the only one who thinks that maybe it might be worth trying to analyze what really happened, and why, without playing blogosphere dodgeball?
    I don’t think this maniac can be blamed on anyone but himself.  But it is also nonsense to claim “…the fact is, like lots of crazy people, he defies category or logic.”  He doesn’t “defy category.” His radical hatred of people in general explains both his Pol Pot style environmentalism, and his vilification of immigrants.
    Is there one side in the debate that includes those who see people as an infestation on this planet?  Is there one side that actually argues as a core principle that the end justify the means?  Saul Alinsky:  “The most unethical of all means is the non-use of any means.”
    Lee Harvy Oswald was a devout communist.  Sirhan Sirhan wrote in his notebook “Communism is good, any brand of communism is good. Russian, Chinese or Nasser’s. Long live Nasser.”  Giuseppe Zangara, who tried to assassinate Roosevelt (and did kill Anton Cermak), was quoted as saying “I have the gun in my hand. I kill kings and presidents first and next all capitalists.” Oh, and John Wilkes Booth, who assassinated the first Republican president?  He was anti-immigrant too.  Anybody see a patten here?
    I will now wait patiently for someone to post a list of free market conservative assassins.

  44. Keith Kloor says:

    I was just about to mention Tom’s post, having just read it quickly. I have some things to say about it, be can’t really address it now, since I have to stay focused on a deadline today. But I’ll be taking on the thrust of Tom’s post later tonight. Meanwhile, I’ll just ask Tom why he didn’t mention the noxious anti-immigrant element to Lee’s utterings (unless I read right past it).

    Until recently, Lou Dobbs was on CNN nightly sounding the alarm about illegal immigrants. It’s been a major rhetorical plank of the GOP these last few years. Yet in your guest post, you focused on the climate change rhetoric as the main influencer of Lee in your guest post. I’d like to know if you see similar culpability in the immigrant bashing by Republican demagogues and media pundits.

  45. Venter says:

    Perhaps because Immigrant issue was only one of the 11 point manifesto raised by him? Going into two-plus pages of spittle-flickings to find his single anti-immigration rant is cherry-picking.
    Majority of his rants were environmental and related malthusian ramblings.

  46. Mike M. says:

    @Marlowe Johnson.  Rasmussen poll 7/22/2010 reveals only 34% of Americans believe in AGW.  Why do you think the most hard left administration and congress in American history couldn’t even pass a half-assed carbon tax?  Normal people do not believe it.  Period.
    @Chris Winter.  If the Obama regime somehow managed to pass a jobs-killing, economy destroying cap-n-trade system against the wishes of two thirds of the American people, than I would be first in line to advocate and participate in loud and violent civil disobedience.
    I happy to say that it looks like that day will never come.  We play two different games, Alarmists and Deniers.  Alarmists want to Save the World without actually making any effort, like convincing voters or maybe convincing someone like Tom Friedman to give up his cars and mansion.  Deniers simply have to limit the damage that Alarmists would inflict.  Our official winning lap will be taken this November.

  47. GaryM says:

    Which conservative Republicans have bashed immigrants? Admittedly they (we) bash progressive/liberal/moderate (whatever) politicians who encourage illegal immigration in hopes of securing votes (particularly coupled with banning verification of identity at polling places).  And they also  criticize employers who get away with paying substandard wages to illegal immigrants who fear being deported.
    But I don’t know a single conservative who wouldn’t admit that he/she would try to come to this country to support a family mired in one of the socialist paradises in Mexico, Central and South America, Southeast Asia, Haiti, Cuba, etc.
    I see absolutely nothing wrong with criticizing cynical politicians, and hypocritical liberals (and conservatives – think the Wall Street Journal editorial page) whose real concern is keeping their veggies cheap, their sheets ironed and their lawns tailored.  Conservatives don’t advocate “controlling the population” of immigrants.  But one can find many examples on this blog alone of those who favor the China one child policy, and other governmental “control of population.”
    “immigrant bashing by Republican demagogues and media pundits”  Isn’t that, in itself, demagoguery?
    And Lou Dobbs a Republican?  Not in years.

  48. Stu says:

    Keith says:
    “Yet in your guest post, you focused on the climate change rhetoric as the main influencer of Lee in your guest post. I’d like to know if you see similar culpability in the immigrant bashing by Republican demagogues and media pundits.”
    I guess that since it has been observed that Lee experienced his ‘awakening’ after watching Al Gore, it’s a fair focus. You could certainly argue that by not including Lee’s apparent susceptibility to right wing alarmism is a failure to talk about this issue in full- and I could certainly agree! The right is just as if not more responsible for whipping people up into dangerous frenzies as the left.  Both sides are playing the same game. I would just perhaps say that… WUWT is a climate blog, which deals with issues relating primarily to climate, the science of it and it’s communication through the various media. I would suggest that perhaps WUWT and other climate blogs are simply not an appropriate or relevant venue for a proper hashing out of this issue in its broader context?

  49. Marlowe Johnson says:

    MikeM it looks like you need to spend more on eyecare and less on the tinfoil hats.
    “Most voters (62%) continue to regard global warming as a serious issue, but that number has trended down slightly since last November when the Climategate scandal broke, raising questions about the research and methodology of many pro-global warming scientists. Thirty-four percent (34%) do NOT share the concern about global warming.”

  50. Tom Fuller says:

    I just skipped over the immigrant thing, Keith. I have a real bad blind spot about the subject.
    My wife is French and she is appalled at the anti-immigrant rhetoric that is so conveniently trotted out in all developed countries, and can be driven to tears when it happens here in the U.S.  I tell her it’s a bunch of fools who have completely forgotten the purpose of this country, but they always seem to be in the news.
    Because I am a (very) liberal Democrat, I tend to focus on the failings of those on my side–so I just look past anti-immigrant rhetoric. I probably shouldn’t have with Mr. Lee, but I just blurred past it.

  51. Barry Woods says:

    This may sound harsh….
    But isn’t this all a bit of a side show…
    Some unbalanced person latches on to  ’cause’, etc, etc..

    Similalary, recent threads about personalities.  I have no idea really who Romm, Refkin,Morano, etc, Monckton to me (whilst from UK) is just a small side show as well. They are not on anyone’s in the UK/EU ‘s radar really with respect to AGW…  Where ALL politicians are part of the IPCCconsensus.

    Immigration was ‘cherry picking’ a bit AND I’m sure Watts UP reallly regrets the headline – VERY CRASS. Pity the more unbalanced members of society, perhaps talk about how Media scares, fears may create this behviour.

    Forget about Deniars/Alarmist and talk about where the general public are, the vast majority who have never heard of any of these blogs…  Not even Watts UP, and seem to be mildly sceptical (lukewarm?) about catastrophic man made global warming…

    Not ‘side’ not a ‘game’ but real world descisions, issues and consequences.

  52. Mike M. says:

    Marlowe, does that look like the 7/22 report to you? Why, no, it’s not.  Congratulations.  You [SNIP] are back up to 40%.  52% of those who believe global warming is a problem think its caused by something besides SUV’s.  And thanks for pointing out that 34% don’t even give a crap about global warming.

    I encourage everyone to browse through the link Mr. Johnson has so kindly provided.  Yes, during the hottest year, evah!, you still can’t convince people to join your cult of CAGW.

  53. Barry Woods says:

    In the UK, one EU densiet population, immigration is a fcator in AGW..
    The goovernment signed up to massive CO2 reduction, but are equally unconcerned about adding 10 miilion people (4/5 immigration) to the countries populaition, with all the inevitable CO2 output..

    It is not a racist issue, but a factor in the AGW debate..
    For the record, my wife is of spanish origin, and my children have relatives/grandparents of english, italian, spanish, czech and venuzuealn origin…..

    I would tend to agree with 95% of Tom’s article at Watts up, I’m also sure our politics are very different, but If we are naming sides, that Tom and I are on the same side,  (that has a broad church)

  54. Keith Kloor says:

    Hey! MikeM: out of bounds. Now I have to go snip that nasty part. I hate doing that. Extra work for me.

  55. GaryM says:

    Isn’t it funny how all the Rodney Kingish, “can’t we all get along,” kumbaya, let’s have a civil discussion, rhetoric disappears when we move to more typical liberal vs. conservative type issues?
    And I’m still waiting for someone (anyone?) to post some examples of free market conservative whackjob assassins.
    Lee Harvey Oswald, Sirhan Sirhan, Giuseppe Zangara, Ted Kaczyinski, not to mention Pol Pot, Lenin, Stalin and Mao.  And now we can add James lee to the list of those who have really killed people in the name of socialism and/or environmentalism.  (I’ll leave the National Socialists out of it for now.)
    Are Rush Limbaugh, Glenn Beck and Sarah Palin really all you got?

  56. GaryM says:

    Wait, Lee didn’t actually get to kill anybody, the police apparently stopped him in the act.  My bad.

  57. FergalR says:

    Cripes Dr. Keith!
    Are you sill banging on about this?  If so then the Mr. Lee was saner than you.

  58. Michael Larkin says:

    I’m a regular over at WUWT, and this particular post of Anthony’s was not, in my opinion at least, one of his finest moments. I, like a number of others, posted to say that this was just a case of a probably mentally disturbed person who would likely have gone postal about something else had it not been environmental issues. We can’t claim in any sense that Lee was representative of the typical CAGW adherent. There are disturbed individuals who ally themselves on both sides of issues like this.
    However, it’s not quite symmetrical when one side in particular enjoys so much “establishment” approval. And, what Anthony sometimes does – for better or worse – is provide opportunities for a certain section of his readership to vent – and yes, maybe to allow himself to unleash them as his own way of venting.
    We’re all human, and sometimes we don’t manage to keep a level head. But as has been pointed out, WUWT is, on the whole, a tolerant place. You can say pretty much what you want, pro or con, provided you keep it on-topic and reasonably civil. You’re as likely to be snipped for transgression of these rules whichever side you’re on.
    My impression of CP is its sheer earnest monotony, like a convention of old-time preachers firing one another up about the evils of wine, women and song. Humourless, self-righteous and deeply depressing. I have yet to find a sceptical site that packs so much venom.
    There’s a certain amount of anger on both sides of the fence. When exhibited, it’s not an edifying spectacle, and that comes across more than any underlying substantive argument. It’s a question of how much and how often; I get turned off by it from either side.
    I’ve mentioned humour. Unfortunately, not everyone takes this seriously! :-). Where you have humour on both sides, it’s usually a sign that a debate is genuine and has the potential to be productive. I’m not talking about mockery or scorn, but the kind of humour that arises when people can appreciate their own fallibility.
    It’s been my frequent observation that those who are over-earnest are usually such because they aren’t that sure of themselves (I myself make no claims to having always been immune). If they were, they’d be more at ease with their own uncertainties; but uncertainty is the only certainty in life. Psychologically speaking, I think that this is a natural seed bed for the development of humour, and a pretty reliable sign of genuine openness to another guy’s POV. That’s why I think humour is such a serious issue: it allows us to learn new stuff, rub along together, and evolve.
    Keep an eye on WUWT. I think Anthony does sometimes poke fun at himself. But Joe? Nah. He’s a Grand Ayatollah with a great long beard and fire in his eye: the stuff of children’s nightmares. When I remember that, I can smile.

  59. Lazar says:

    I agree with Tom Fuller that attempting to drive the public through fear and hysteria is dangerous and counterproductive… these issues need to be thought through calmly and rationally.

  60. FergalR says:

    Well, I’m mightily impressed at yet another entry into this unprecedented conclave of clairvoyant, time travelling psychiatrists.  Alas my skills are in other areas.  Please forgive any disturbance I might have caused in your circle-jerk.
    See you in the future.

  61. Lazar says:

    The demagoguery issue is not about Lee’s motivations… it’s about Watts generalizing from the actions of an individual to the category ‘warmistas’… and from the fate of other individuals to the lives of ‘WUWT readers’
    Suppose a mentally ill individual had taken Biblical concepts of original sin and apocalypse, and a preacher’s exhortations for ‘soldiers of Christ’ to ‘fight evil’, as inspiration for a rampage against what s/he considers an ungodly organization. Then an unrelated atheist group had described his/her actions as ‘When Christians attack’ and published “Well, you filthy atheists, see what happens when we don’t acquiesce [to Christianity]?” Few people would have problems describing that as demagoguery and most would be appalled at the cheap politicization of an isolated event…
    Most ‘warmistas’ I know are primarily concerned about maintaining human welfare and civilization in the face of a rapidly changing climate. Most also make a link between the welfare of the environment and human welfare and the beauty of human existence.
    Keith Kloor is entirely correct in describing both Anthony Watts’ and Joe Romm’s behaviour as demagoguery… Joe Romm in generalizing from Watts’ actions to the categories ‘skeptics’ and the ‘right wing’.

  62. FergalR says:

    Thank you for visiting me here in the future with your parable about James Lee being “mentally ill”

  63. If a mad person has warmist ideas, he has the excuse of being mad.

    What do you do when a sane person has warmist ideas?

  64. PDA says:

    What on earth is your point? Yesterday you were saying “Crazy is crazy, and afflicts people of every political affiliation” and today you seem hell bent on dragging this thread into whether there are more liberal assassins than conservative ones. Make an argument, or let it go.
    You pick ideological fights here all the time. To suddenly put on airs (“Isn’t it funny how all the Rodney Kingish, “can’t we all get along,” kumbaya, let’s have a civil discussion, rhetoric disappears”) when people respond in kind is more than a bit lame, frankly.
    But while I’m here: if the ‘left’ is stuck with Lee Harvey Oswald, Sirhan Sirhan, Giuseppe Zangara and John Wilkes Fricking Booth along with Stalin and Mao, then you guys get Scott Roeder, John Salvi, Timothy McVeigh, Terry Nichols, and yeah, Hitler. You don’t get to give him back, sorry.

  65. GaryM says:

    I’m sorry, which of those were free market conservatives?
    I initially wrote a comment about Lee, anticipating the attempts to blame various liberals for his acts.  That is nonsense, and I said so.  Joe Romm is no more personally responsible for Lee than I am.
    The ideology of socialism, on the other hand, the very concept of central planning by the state, the concentration of massive power in the hands of a small self-styled elite, is another matter all together.   Exalting the collective over the individual makes possible the most horrific acts, without the need for insanity.
    The people I mentioned all killed in the name of some form of socialism and/or environmentalism.  I did not include John Hinkley who shot Reaganor Dan White who killed Milk and Moscone, for example, because their politics were irrelevant to their acts.
    And remember, mainstream American leftists for decades defended the actions of Lenin and Stalin.  Castro and Che Guevara are still rock stars on the left in this country.  And we have advisers to the president now who still praise Mao.
    Roeder and Salvi killed abortionists.  I will concede that their conduct was in furtherance of a traditional conservative value.  It was, however, antithetical to the faith they claimed to hold.  Nor would I consider them any more insane than those leftists on my own list.
    McVeigh’s and Nichols’ stated purpose on the other hand was revenge for the government’s actions at Waco, having nothing to do with economics or politics, other than lunatic paranoia.  And finally Hitler – if you think National Socialism was about free markets, read Mein Kampf.  I mean really read it, not the cliff notes version.  I won’t waste my time arguing with you on that.
    Are there those who hold conservative beliefs, who go off the rails and kill?  Absolutely.  Are there similarly leftists whose rampages are unrelated to their politics? Absolutely.  But I pointed out those “who have really killed people in the name of socialism and/or environmentalism.”
    You have to be nuts to kill in the name of free market conservatism (leaving out just war theory, a different topic all together).  But history is filled with those who killed in the name of socialism/environmentalism.  And as I noted above, some of them are still celebrated.
    I ask again, who are the free market conservatives who have killed people in the name of their politics?  Who are the “right wing” mass murders who appear on conservative t-shirts these days?
    As I finish this post, I see Willard’s post.  OK, that’s one…

  66. Steve Bloom says:

    Re #18:  Stalker, Keith?  You’re funny.

    Let’s see, a woman in her late 50s, a Harvard PhD chemist who uses a mouse for an on-line avatar, shows up at Watts’ office (in a location quite accessible to the public), asks a Watts employee to speak to him and is allowed to (IIRC with Watts coming out of a rear area to do so).  After a brief interaction, he asks her to leave and she does so, although continuing to repeat her (unanswered) questions on the way out (the basis for the charge of disruption, I assume).  All of this takes place in the presence of at least one and probably several Watts employees.  She doesn’t return.  IIRC she made several phone and/or email inquiries to Watts prior to the visit, which went unanswered. 

    In Watts’ post decribing this incident, he neglects to mention the part about it being a professional woman of a certain age, as the implication of utter harmlessness would have ruined the flavor.  But yeah, other than all of that it’s exactly like the Lee incident.  Gotta love that eye for a narrative, Keith!

    As for the reasonableness of her suspicions about Big Oil funding, all Watts has to do to refute them is produce an audit of his finances just like Pachauri did.  Until then, others can assume that the Koch brothers and their ilk know how to feed and care for their grassroots.

    Oh, speaking of stalking, at least the on-line variety, IMHO Watts’ nasty little habit of using commenters’ email addresses (provided in confidence) to out them on the blog kind of qualifies.

  67. SimonH says:

    One to concede, I think, Gary! 😉
    Nod of the head to Tom for his post over at WUWT. Good call.

  68. GaryM says:

    I conceded an hour before you posted, but the comment is still in moderation.

  69. willard says:

    Spot the pattern between this thread and this:

    > On the Muslim deception, Limbaugh has sprinkled lie dust all over the place. “Obama says he’s a Christian, but where’s the evidence?” he said on Aug. 19. He has repeatedly called the president “imam Obama,” and said, “I’m just throwing things out there, folks, because people are questioning his Christianity.”

    > You see how he works. He drops in suggestions, hints, notes that “people are questioning” things. The design is to make Obama un-American. Then he says it’s a tweak, a provocation. He says this as a preemptive way to keep the press from calling him out. And it works; long profiles of Limbaugh have largely gone easy on him.


  70. Dear Steve Bloom
    Pachauri produced no audit of his finances for public consumption.

  71. GaryM says:

    I guess Limbaugh is on topic because the subject of this post is demagogues, and the vast majority here being liberal, I assume he fits the bill.  That being said, if I want to know what Rush Limbaugh thinks, I will go to the New York Times just as readily as I will go to Hamas to find out what Benjamin Netanyahu thinks.
    I’ve heard Limbaugh’s riff on the Obama Muslim issue, which was based on his responding to MSM stories about why there are doubts about Obama’s religion.  He took pleasure in noting that it was Ka-daffy of Libya who first called Obama a Muslim.
    By the way, the poll in the article cited by Willard, that points to Limbaugh’s August 19 show as the part of the cause of the poll results? That poll was taken July 21 – August 5.  It also contains this interesting point, amazingly missed by the sleuths at the NYT.  “When asked how they learned about Obama’s religion in an open-ended question, 60% of those who say Obama is a Muslim cite the media. Among specific media sources, television (at 16%) is mentioned most frequently.  About one-in-ten (11%) of those who say Obama is a Muslim say they learned of this through Obama’s own words and behavior. ”  (And Limbaugh ain’t on TV.)
    The New York Times, all the news that’s fit to make up.  Just ask Joe Romm.  (Dang, something both sides can agree on.)

  72. willard says:

    > By the way, the poll in the article cited by Willard, that points to Limbaugh’s August 19 show as the part of the cause of the poll results?   That poll was taken July 21 ““ August 5.
    Here is Limbaugh, vintage 2008:

    See how it works. Dropping in suggestions, hints, notes that the August 19 is the only one relevant.
    > Among specific media sources, television (at 16%) is mentioned most frequently.
    The above article stated two sources in the media: “no surprise here “” the usual suspects.”  The first was Limbaugh.  The second, according to Egan, is Fox News.
    See how it works. Dropping in suggestions, hints, notes that Limbaugh was the only sources in the media and that the television was forgotten.

  73. Steve Bloom says:

    FYI, Shub, the audit report is e.g. here on the Guardian site.  That took 30 seconds to find, BTW.  Google is my friend, and could be yours as well.

  74. GaryM says:

    See how it works?  I quoted the article correctly, and then not only quoted, but  linked to the poll the article claimed to be relying on.  The poll directly contradicts the claim in the article.
    The article says what it says.  The poll says something different.  Don’t blame me.
    As for your link to the Limbaugh cite, thanks for making my point.  For those not interested in going into the devil’s den themselves, what he said was:  “Now, while I was gone, ladies and gentlemen, a couple interesting things happened.  The Washington Times reporting on Sunday that The Messiah, the Lord Barack Obama, the Most Merciful, was in St. Louis, when he was outlining his Christianity, but accidentally said “my Muslim faith.” “The three words, immediately corrected, were during an exchange with George Stephanopoulos.” …Now, you know, slip of the tongue, Barry Obama, president.  However, something more hilarious than even that.  Steve Gilbert at yesterday sent out a story: “Moammar Khadafy says Barack Obama is a Muslim,” and there’s video of this.
    And was his point to imply Obama was a Muslim?  “You know, if I were Obama, I’d get hold of these blogs. I’d call up all these people like Khadafy.  I’d call every one of my supporters and say, “Would you shut up until after the election?  I don’t need this kind of stuff!” Not just the Khadafies of the world, the Jeremiah Wrights, his kook fringe blog people. His biggest problem (aside from himself) is his supporters, who they are and what they say, but I don’t think it bothers him.  ”
    Not a point really worth debating.  I just thought I would torture some of the cognoscenti here with nails on the chalkboard – words from the devil incarnate.

  75. Keith Kloor says:

    GaryM (76):

    I wish I knew the demographic of readers you thought you were talking to here, because I sure don’t what the political and ideological makeup is. You seem to think you’re the lone consevative wolf in a liberal sheep den. Best as I can tell, that’s far from accurate. I’m pretty sure I got a mixed bag showing up here, which is fine by me.

    At any rate, you’re getting OT with all this back and forth on Limbaugh. Oh, and I don’t think he’s the devil; just a very talented political entertainer. I’m sure liberals wish they had one of their own to rally their faithful.

  76. Keith Kloor says:

    So I’ve been catching up on the related comment threads over at WUWT (Anthony’s original post and Tom Fuller’s guest post). Let me make one observation: echo chamber.

    Some of you here (John Whitman, you still around?) point to WUWT as a tolerant intersection where all the extremes meet. Well, I’m only seeing one side of that spectrum represented in the comment threads. In that regard, WUWT shares another similarity with Climate Progress.

  77. ojohnson says:

    Calling the madman Lee a “warmista” is cherrypicking of data. In his weird manifesto he mentions global warming, along with pollution etc, in one of his eleven demands. “Find solutions for Global Warming, Automotive pollution, International Trade, factory pollution, and the whole blasted human economy. ”

    In six out of eleven demands, he rants about population control. He concludes “You MUST KNOW the human population is behind all the pollution and problems in the world, and YET you encourage the exact opposite instead of discouraging human growth and procreation.”

    Obviously a crazy guy, but not particularly a crazy warmist.

  78. GaryM says:

    The demographic of the readers I was talking to would be the persons I addressed my comments to,  such as Willard, PDA and yourself lately.  My more general comments about liberalism were, not surprisingly, directed to the liberals who read and comment here.
    My comment (56) was directly in response to your “whackjob” and “immigrant bashing Republican demagogue” comments.  Sometimes your own “tolerance of extremes” extends only to the extremes of the liberal spectrum.  So I guess you were my target demographic for that post.
    As for thinking I am the lone conservative wolf?  I’m not sure where you got that idea.  There are certainly others who post conservative ideas and arguments here; the normal tone of this blog is one of the reasons I enjoy reading it and commenting.  I have made comments in the past about being a token conservative around here, but that is what is known as self deprecating humor.
    And I agree Limbaugh was off topic.  I didn’t bring him up,  I was just responding to Willard.  I also thought he was off topic on the other thread where, when discussing the Lee incident, you wrote “There’s angry rhetoric all over the web, radio and tv, from the Right & left (though the truly whackjob stuff seems to emanate from Beck these days”“he’s giving El Rushbo a run for his money).”
    Is “El Rushbo” on topic when we are showing we are right thinking liberals, but off topic when someone points out he is being deliberately misrepresented?

  79. Barry Woods says:

    “In six out of eleven demands, he rants about population control. He concludes “You MUST KNOW the human population is behind all the pollution and problems in the world, and YET you encourage the exact opposite instead of discouraging human growth and procreation.”

    Yet this is the more extreme GREEN agenda of some people..

    Ie humans are killing the planet with their CO2 emmisions…
    Very many eco groups wantthe pouplation control (not for political reason) but beacsue those nasty humans are killingthe planet..

    So projected increase in world population, become a very core part of CAGW. less humans, less CO2.

    So, imho, 6 of the demands regarding population, are because of the fact that he is a CAGW  alarmist.

    It would be nice to get back to issues, rather than personalities, other bloggersthough.

  80. OJohnson, here are some cherries for you.
    “I am not going to rest easy until I have articulated in every possible forum the need to bring about major structural changes in economic growth and development. That’s the real issue. Climate change is just a part of it.”
    -R K Pachauri
    “We have been so drunk with this desire to produce and consume more and more whatever the cost to the environment that we’re on a totally unsustainable path,”
    – R K Pachauri
    “Do all until something WORKS and the natural world starts improving and human civilization building STOPS and is reversed! MAKE IT INTERESTING SO PEOPLE WATCH AND APPLY SOLUTIONS!!!!”
    – James Lee
    If you want to see the black helicopters fly, just wait until climate changes enough to make the situation dire.
    -Eli Rabett
    When food starts to seriously run out, when mass work conscription is needed to build sea defenses, when hordes of desperate, hungry people start moving, that’s when governments are going to start seriously clamping down on people. And I’m not talking about some conspiracy on the part of government”“in a real and ongoing emergency, governments will have to use emergency powers, or there will be no government. Or governed.
    -Some other warmist
    Kieth, since I’ve had to *explain* myself before:
    Madness, insanity, delusional violent paranoid schizophrenia  – whatever you want to call it, has different components. James Lee’s thought content was intact, and undisturbed, and matches many warmists and overpopulationists.
    Lee’s madness, however, lay in his losing “contact with reality“, in that he thought he could take hostages to make his demands and the situation, in his mind, had reached such a state. This is where he departs from the rest of us, the supposedly sane. Mad violent people and sane people can have same ideas – this does not discredit the sane.
    Lee is Global Warming’s Travis Bickle.

  81. Mike M. says:

    As a final note, it appears that the University of Maryland has already categorized this as green terrorism…


  82. willard says:

    > I quoted the article correctly and then not only quoted, but  linked to the poll the article claimed to be relying on.
    No.  You made it imply something that was not there.
    >   The poll directly contradicts the claim in the article.
    No, since the claim you think is in the article is in your mind.
    >  Not a point really worth debating.
    On that we can agree – that there is no contradiction between the op-ed and the poll is as unteresting as it is obvious.   See how it is easy to seem to quote correctly.
    Your thread is being used as a blame game.  You’re letting people saying things like:
    >  (H)istory is filled with those who killed in the name of socialism/environmentalism.
    And this is one of the most articulated one of its kind: there are many more.  At best this leads to historical food fights, based on caricatures of political ideologies.  At worse, it leads to hate speech.  This cannot lead to a rational debate.
    Limbaugh is very good at this kind of coat racking.  Here he goes against Muslims:

    Please note that I never said that Limbaugh engaged in hate speech.  I simply said that this kind of debate could lead to hate speech.  And I simply provided a link where the author said that Limbaugh were engaging in hate speech.  I am not endorsing this author’s thesis, to the effect that Limbaugh is engaging in hate speech.  I would never say that Limbaugh is engaging in hate speech.
    See how it works?  So easy to do.  The best way to learn how to do that is to listen to Limbaugh.

  83. Keith Kloor says:

    Willard, a few people on the thread have done as you say, which given the topic of the post, I thought was interesting to let through. It appears that some of them found there way here through WUWT, since I had a back and forth with Anthony Watts yesterday on his original post.
    On a related note, I see that Joe Romm did another post basically doing a round-up of the blame game taking place in the right wing media. Interestingly, as Romm notes, neither Michelle Malkin or Glen Beck hopped on that bandwagon. Maybe they’re smart enough to recognize that tarring of a group or class of people cuts both ways, and that the next maniac (as you pointed out in the link to that article upthread) could be citing Limbaugh or Hannity as an inspiration.

  84. willard says:

    I think that this post echoes **Media Matters**:

    In my humble opinion, it’s more constructive to report blame games and show how they work and how easy it is to do.  Blaming blame games is a bit self-defeating.  Shaming blame games gets us to the usual rhetorical divide.  The usual game emerges, where some blame, some shame.
    And everybody else comment, as bleacher coaches do.

  85. Marlowe Johnson says:

    glad you pointed out the ridiculous equivalence re Anna Haynes Steve…she hardly qualifies as a ‘stalker’…

  86. Steve Koch says:

    Are there any conclusions that both left and right, CAGWers and skeptics alike can agree on?  Below, I propose a few conclusions that might be included in a consensus.
    Warmista is not a good name for those who believe in CAGW.  Many, many skeptics realize that man generates a certain amount of heat.  You cannot pump and burn millions of barrels of oil without generating heat and CO2 (which has thermal mass).  Without a doubt man has generated heat that would not otherwise be in the atmosphere.  The question is not whether man has generated heat, the question is whether the impact of that heat generated by man causes catastrophic consequences.  Alarmist or CAGWist would be a more accurate term for CAGW proponents than warmist, imo.
    Leaders should not condone any act that violates the law.  The law defines a bright, shiny line that is not to be crossed.  Once you condone breaking the law, it is a slippery slope before your most fanatical followers with the worst judgement will make bad decisions about breaking the law to make a political point.
    The green movement has been especially guilty of breaking the law and taking risky actions to make political points.  The more you break the law, the more you act in a risky fashion, the higher the probability of a disaster.   Greens need to condemn this strategy of lawlessness and physical provocation employed by some green activists.
    Tom Fuller made a great point about calming the hysterics.  Leaders need to be very careful to not generate hysterics with inflated or unproven claims.
    We all also need to not talk or hope in public that harm should come to our political enemies.  These violent fantasies make it easier for a fanatic like Lee to cross the line.  Let’s not pretend that most humans are incapable of insane actions.

  87. GaryM says:

    Wait, Limbaugh is on topic again?  No, just long enough for another stem winder about his hate filled speech.  Now he’s off topic again.
    Citing Inyourfaceradio and Media Matters….yeah, there’s that agnostic, middle of the road centrism again.

  88. One could say the mad terrorist James Lee was “focused on the broad issues”, going by his demands.

  89. PDA says:

    Sorry to be catching up late, work and all that. Since the thread seems to be in drift, I’ll continue a bit longer, with our host’s indulgence.
    I guess no one (or one, if you concede Willard’s example) has killed for “free-market conservative” beliefs. Similarly, no one has killed in the name of my minarchist small-d democratic beliefs. So we’re back where we started: what’s the point?
    Can ideology (not mine or yours, of course, just other people’s) really be implicated as a contributing factor in the acts of a madman? And what should we do about it if so? Call for banning of political organizations, as a threat to public safety? Or can we, perhaps, just use it as a way to subtly (or not) dismiss positions that could  possibly be associated with that ideology?
    Again, and again, what’s your point?

  90. Steven Sullivan says:

    Yes, crazy people will act crazy, regardless of their political affiliation, or their stance on AGW.
    But  when a political party *panders to* the part of its constituency making the wildest accusations, that should give  everyone pause.

    Which party seems to be doing more of that these days?

  91. SimonH says:

    Is it too late to bring the KKK to the party? Seems they’re pretty right-wing in their outlook.. not sure if they’re free-market conservatives, though. They’ve definitely killed for their beliefs, though.
    If it turns out that they are free-market conservatives, can I have 10 points?
    On WUWT, I fear I may have stepped in the right-wing rattle-snake basket left out by Tom, with his reference to the Palestine/Israel peace talks. Urgh.

  92. GaryM says:

    My point was made in my comment (43) above.  “Is there one side in the debate that includes those who see people as an infestation on this planet?  Is there one side that actually argues as a core principle that the end justify the means?  Saul Alinsky:  “The most unethical of all means is the non-use of any means.”  Substitute ideology for “side of the debate” and that’s it.
    Wow.  The KKK is right wing?  The KKK was formed after the civil war, for the same reason Lincoln was assassinated.  To stop the reconstruction the Republican Party was seeking to impose on those life long Democrats in the south.  ” Dressed in robes and sheets, intended to prevent identification by the occupying federal troops (and supposedly designed to frighten blacks), the Klan quickly became a terrorist organization in service of the Democratic Party and white supremacy.”
    That quote is from the notoriously conservative PBS.  The progressive rewriting of history has been marvelously effective.
    You lose 5 points.

  93. SimonH says:

    Gary, bahh! No point in pretending I’m well-versed in US political history, then, is there? My numbers didn’t come up on the lottery, so I figured maybe lady luck was hanging out here for me.
    The Democratic Party and the White Supremacy movement don’t mesh in my naive perception of US political battle lines, but I have nothing with which to challenge your assertion. Rather like with James Lee, political affiliation is increasingly difficult to apportion (or perhaps is increasingly irrelevant), the more unhinged an individuals’ extreme views are.
    I’ll take the 5 point hit.. it’s only fair! 🙂

  94. GaryM says:

    “The Democratic Party and the White Supremacy movement don’t mesh in my naive perception of US political battle lines.”
    Nothing naive about it.  I would guess you are in the substantial majority in thinking that.   And it’s not an accident.
    See here:  “The [1999] study concluded that the lack of ideological balance within the humanities, social sciences and English subjects are negatively affecting students at universities across the nation.  In the humanities for example, 77 percent of faculty were liberal with eight percent conservative; social sciences had 66 percent and eight percent breakdown; the English faculty exhibited an astounding 85 percent and three percent respectively.”
    And here (from UCLA, not Fox):  “‘Overall, the major media outlets are quite moderate compared to members of Congress, but even so, there is a quantifiable and significant bias in that nearly all of them lean to the left,’ said co”‘author Jeffrey Milyo, University of Missouri economist and public policy scholar.”
    Is it any wonder people take progressive condemnations of conservatives at face value?  Where else would you hear the alternative?
    And before I am chastised for being off topic in defending against repeated implicit charges of conservative racism, here’s a pop quiz.  (with answers in parentheses)
    Which party was formed explicitly to fight slavery?  (GOP)
    Which party did the president belong to who first proposed civil rights legislation to congress? (Eisenhower, GOP)
    Which party was in the majority and first blocked, then watered down that legislation to the point it was largely ineffective?  (DEM)
    Members of which party filibustered the civil rights acts that were ultimately passed in the 60s?  (Dem)
    Which party voted in a higher percentage for the civil rights acts that were finally passed in the 60s?  (GOP)
    Which party did the vociferous racists who fought the civil rights movement (just like they fought reconstruction) belong to, ie. Bull Connor, Orville Faubus, George Wallace, Lester Maddox, Richard Russell (leader of the civil rights filibusters)?  (Dem)

    When did these racists leave their original party to join the opposition in their rage at the passage of the civil rights laws?  (Never, they remained faithful, participating Democrats their entire lives.)
    Having now responded to serial, unsupported, “demagogic” (and therefore on topic) slams at supposed conservative “immigrant bashing,” “hate speech” and affiliation with the KKK, I will retire.

  95. PDA says:

    That’s not a point, that’s a question. For what it’s worth, the answer is ‘no,’ but I suspect the question was a rhetorical one anyway.
    What is your point?

  96. kdk33 says:

    SimonSays:  “Is it too late to bring the KKK to the party? Seems they’re pretty right-wing in their outlook”

    What on earth are you talking about?

  97. SimonH says:

    kdk, what is it that’s confusing and not covered in the discourse?
    Gary, thanks for the info/links. US politics are a world away from British politics.
    In the UK, the British cultural racism and anti-immigration was epitomised by the Conservative politician Enoch Powell (Rivers Of Blood speech), as well as a strengthening National Front (NF, now transformed into the BNP).
    They were very effectively countered by the Anti Nazi League and Socialist Workers Party, with many other workers’ unions, and the emerging counter-culture punk rock genre and “Rock Against Racism” (RAR) in the mid 70s to early 80s.

  98. kdk33 says:

    why you think the kkk is ‘right wing’.

  99. willard says:

    There is no need to be well-versed in history.  Here is the current Knights of the Ku Klux Klan platform:

    Compare and contrast with the many pages on conservativism .

    Compare and contrast conservatism in the USA and conservatism in general:

    Finally, compare with neoliberalism:

    The only conclusion that we can honestly say is that these epithets are quite complicated.  We can agree that Lincoln and Reagan were members of party with the same name, but we must admit that the conceptual lineage is thin.
    Let’s not forget that, at the time of Lincoln, the Republican party, and the conservative ideology, was actually at the center-left of the spectrum (the question of slavery destroying the Whig Party), and that both conservatives and democrats embraced republicanism .
    My point never were to attack conservatism in itself and I don’t recall anything like an attach on conservatism itself here.  As far as I am concerned, there is something very good in philosophical conservatism.  It’s even a good scientific quality.  If Thoreau is thought to be a conservative thinker, there is no reason to condemn conservatism in general.
    Maybe **The Trap** is still relevant enough to put all these conceptual distinctions into a more pragmatic perspective:

    That said, conflating conservatism and the Republican party would be a very serious mistake.  An even worse mistake would conflating what the Republican party can bring to America and pure eliminationism rhetorics:

    This concept of eliminationism is being put forward by David Neiwert, who claims that hate talk is radicalizing the American Right:

    This idea of eliminationism might be reconciled with the general admonition to stop the hysterics.  Hysterics is bad.  I believe we can all agree that demagogy, however entertaining it might sound, cannot be constructive.  Never.
    I believe this is Keith’s point about his very own chopping block.   I always thought, as Jonathan Gilligan said earlier, that it might be better not to mention it and even to ignore it.  But if what he wants to convey is that his favorite ignoramus’ rhetorics can become dangerous, he may have a point.  And I am forced to accept it.
    And so I believe I was never really as OT as one might fear.

  100. The Republican Party was once the party of Lincoln.  And the KKK were associated  Democrats.
    GaryM seems to argue that nothing has changed.  SimonH, don’t be gullible just because you don’;t know your US history.  The KKK has been associated with the *exteme right wing*  for many decades and was never even remotely a ‘liberal’ or ‘progressive’ organization.
    They weren’t ‘free market’  — any group that wants to restrict trade on the basis of race  can;’t be — but it was most definitely *conservative*.  And evil.

  101. And note that it the common theme of racist politicians during teh civil rights era wasn’t so much being Democrat, as being *Southern*.

  102. Lady in Red says:

    <!– @page { margin: 0.79in } P { margin-bottom: 0.08in } –>
    #44: Keith Kloor: “I’d like to know if you see similar culpability in the immigrant bashing by Republican demagogues and media pundits. ”
    I dare say I read a lot and I have seen NO immigrant bashing by demagogues, pundits ““ or anyone. Unless, possibly, one is writing of some obscure crazed blogger whose writings escaped me….
    There is, however, considerable concern about legal vs illegal immigration.
    Many believe that persons wishing to come to America should follow rules, proper procedures. Many believe that, like elbowing one’s way to the head of a line at a music concert, illegal immigrants ““ demanding rights, no less! ““ are, well, tacky. It’s not polite; it’s not nice; it’s not even legal.
    I would not, however, call that prudent concern “immigrant bashing” any more than I would dub opposition to Obama’s “health care reform” racism. There are those who enjoy inciting with that paint brush though “¦…..Lady in Red

  103. kdk33 says:

    Cutting through the BS:

    The KKK is, in the mind of everybody at this forum, a racist organization whose mission is to oppress people of color.  Racism isn’t a conservative or liberal issue; republican or democrat.  It’s racism. 

    They may have a web page with a platform and some of those planks may be conservative (and some not).  That’s not what distinguishes the KKK, and those aren’t the associations that anybody makes.  Nobody thinks of the KKK as “those guys who want to repeal NAFTA”, they are “those guys in white robes who lynch colored people”

    So, when you say KKK people think racism and when you say “the KKK is right wing” you are implying that racism is “right wing”. 

    It’s not.

  104. Lady in Red says:

    <!– @page { margin: 0.79in } P { margin-bottom: 0.08in } A:link { so-language: zxx } –>
    I agree with KDK #105: Racism is not a left/right, liberal/conservative issue.
    But, oh, my! I just clicked on the KKK link above. Hard to believe, in this day and age. Certainly, I never see it, smell it, sense it, anywhere in my gentle world, even as a fleeting thought…..
    “¦.Except, maybe, when badly exasperated in an interminable encounter with a Very Arrogant Government Bureaucrat who, finally, leans forward, slams hands on hips and says, “Now. Can I axe you a question?” But, those are always very specific encounters and the grumble feeling is exceedingly targeted.
    As a contrast, however, here is the (former, been scrubbed up, of recent) blurb descriptor for Barack Obama’s church in Chicago. The church in which he was married. His two daughters were baptized there. Its paster, Jeremiah Wright, was a close friends for several decades ““ not days or weeks (but was repudiated, later, by Obama).
    Trinity United Church of Christ Website
    We are a congregation which is Unashamedly Black and Unapologetically Christian… Our roots in the Black religious experience and tradition are deep, lasting and permanent. We are an African people, and remain “true to our native land,” the mother continent, the cradle of civilization. God has superintended our pilgrimage through the days of slavery, the days of segregation, and the long night of racism. It is God who gives us the strength and courage to continuously address injustice as a people, and as a congregation. We constantly affirm our trust in God through cultural expression of a Black worship service and ministries which address the Black Community.
    Trinity United Church of Christ adopted the Black Value System written by the Manford Byrd Recognition Committee chaired by Vallmer Jordan in 1981. We believe in the following 12 precepts and covenantal statements. These Black Ethics must be taught and exemplified in homes, churches, nurseries and schools, wherever Blacks are gathered. They must reflect on the following concepts:
    Commitment to God
    Commitment to the Black Community
    Commitment to the Black Family Dedication to the Pursuit of Education Dedication to the Pursuit of Excellence
    Adherence to the Black Work Ethic
    Commitment to Self-Discipline and Self-Respect Disavowal of the Pursuit of “Middleclassness”
    Pledge to make the fruits of all developing and acquired skills available to the Black Community
    Pledge to Allocate Regularly, a Portion of Personal Resources for Strengthening and Supporting Black Institutions
    Pledge allegiance to all Black leadership who espouse and embrace the Black Value System
    Personal commitment to embracement of the Black Value System.

    The Pastor as well as the membership of Trinity United Church of Christ is committed to a 10-point Vision:
    A congregation committed to ADORATION.
    A congregation preaching SALVATION.
    A congregation actively seeking RECONCILIATION.
    A congregation with a non-negotiable COMMITMENT TO AFRICA.
    A congregation committed to BIBLICAL EDUCATION.
    A congregation committed to CULTURAL EDUCATION.
    A congregation committed to LIBERATION.
    A congregation committed to RESTORATION.
    A congregation working towards ECONOMIC PARITY.
    Now there is no pledge allegiance to the flag and no help offered to “white” America here, but I do understand that this is not racism, anti-Americanism. This is about people who are, today, feeling that they are suffering oppression, thus banding together.
    I continue to be interested in the demagogues and pundits who bash (legal) immigrants, Keith. I sigh to think there are any. “¦.Lady in Red

  105. GaryM says:

    The sentiments of Steve Sullivan and Willard are exactly the point I was trying to make about the offhand comments some have made recently on this blog.  They say in paragraphs what some imply in their off handed comments.  And those who are the targets of the slurs are thereby marginalized.
    The whole point of my comments above was to show that even “open minded” liberals/moderates like our fair moderator slip allegations of conservatism = racism into conversations that have nothing to do with that topic.  It is like background noise to them, they hardly notice it themselves and cannot understand why anyone is bothered when they do it.  Doesn’t everyone (they know) think that way?
    I also tried to show that this claim has been false since its inception.  There are conservative racists, there are liberal racists, but it is a simple fact that the Democratic Party was the home of institutionalized racism while the Republican Party was the party that fought slavery and Jim Crow.  Both parties in general eventually supported the civil rights laws, though the Dems were a bit late to the game.
    The point was not to claim that liberalism = racism.  Quite the contrary, the point was to show liberals that their incessant claims that conservatism = racism are not based on actual history, but on decades of propaganda.  The facts are otherwise.
    I do not think Keith Kloor is a racist. I know for a fact that I am not.  So let’s make a deal.  I won’t imply liberals are racists (and I haven’t) despite their favored party’s long history of real institutionalized racism, if they won’t keep dropping false racism slurs (explicitly or implicitly) against conservatives in general  into off hand comments about conservatives.
    Calling conservatives as a group racist is absolutely no different from calling luke warmers like Keith anti-science, do nothing pawns of the oil industry.  Both are false on their face, and both are made to marginalize the object of the slur.
    For my part, these will be my last words on the issue of racism, unless someone makes future charges.  But the real reason I like this blog so much is the genuine attempt to open people’s minds to actually listen to what their opponents say, not just label them so they can be ignored.  I would just like to broaden the practice of that principle a bit.
    Labeling people is intended to stop debate, not further it.  If you can convince people your opponent is anti-science, or a racist, an immigrant basher (did you mean French immigrants?), a whackjob or a purveyor of hate speech, then you do not have to deal with his arguments.
    For example, there is still one party that actively works to keep racial animus alive.  It is the party that cannot win national elections without 95%+ of the African American vote, so they need accusations of racism desperately.  That does not make them racists, it just makes them demagogues.  But just because cynical politicians use race baiting for their own ends, does not mean the people who vote for them have to adopt those same views.
    The larger climate (CAGW) debate is moving swiftly past the point where what is said on blogs and in the media are having much real effect.  My real interest here is to see whether in the debates that will continue afterward, any of the liberals/moderates who are so cogently urging people to listen to one another now, will continue that posture in the future.  And follow it themselves.
    I write above about how I think progressive economic policies encourage a certain mindset that leads more easily to extremist action.  PDA, while a bit dismissive, at least asks me to explain what I mean.  If someone wants (on topic) to discuss how particular conservative principles make racism or other harmful bad conduct more likely, that would be a fair debate.  But simply throwing in that conservatives bash immigrants, are whackjobs or engage in hate speech, does nothing to further the debate.  Just the opposite.

  106. Keith Kloor says:

    GaryM (107):

    A number of things you say require correction.

    1) The Democratic & Republican parties you point to historically bear no resemblance to what those parties represent today–or what they have represented since the 1950s.

    It is a fact that it was a Democratic president–with the help of Democrats that got the landmark civil rights laws through. It’s been Republicans that have cyncially played the race card since Nixon popularized the “southern strategy.” There’s just no disputing this. It’s historical and political fact.

    It was Democrats that paid the price electorally for getting on the right side of history (civil rights laws) and Johnson told them that would happen. But it was the right thing to do. So yeah, the Democratic party lost those Dixicrats, but good riddance to them.

    If you want to talk about the politics and demagoguery involved today with respect to immigration and race relations, then you have no choice but to discuss what the leaders of the respective parties (and their surrogates in the media)  have to say it TODAY–not a hundred years ago.

  107. Lady in Red says:

    “If you want to talk about the politics and demagoguery involved today with respect to immigration and race relations, then you have no choice but to discuss what the leaders of the respective parties (and their surrogates in the media)  have to say it TODAY”“not a hundred years ago.”
    And, what are they saying, Keith?  Are Republicans denouncing legal immigration, or equal rights for *all*?  What are you implying?  ….Lady in Red

  108. KDK33 says:


    Keith would you care to elaborate on “immigrant bashing by Republican demagogues and media pundits” 

    Are you equating the “the noxious anti-immigrant element to Lee’s utterings ” with “alarm about illegal immigrants“.

    Just Curious

  109. GaryM says:

    This being a science blog, I would think you would know that 1964, when 80%+ of Republicans voted for the civil rights acts wasn’t a hundred years ago.  Yep, racists in the party that voted  61% in favor of the civil rights acts, left that party to join the racists who voted 80% in favor of those same acts.  Riiiiiigggghhhttt!
    “If you want to talk about the politics and demagoguery involved today with respect to immigration and race relations, then you have no choice but to discuss what the leaders of the respective parties (and their surrogates in the media)  have to say it TODAY….”
    Great, when are you going to do that?  I asked, Lady in Red asked.  Where are the conservatives who bash “immigrants” rather than illegal immigration?  Post some quotes.   Surely your source of knowledge on the issue, of which you are so certain, isn’t really Wikipedia?
    And I listed the most prominent racist Democrats who fought civil rights, though I left a bunch out.  They all remained Democrats their entire life. The only supposed Dixiecrats who switched parties were guys like Strom Thurmond who switched because of redistricting.  The vast majority stayed right at home, where they were always welcome.
    But please don’t cite Wikipedia articles written by progressives to prove your point.  “Politically-motivated revisionist historians today are trying to redefine the Southern Strategy….” Yeah, no agenda there.  You might as well quote editorials from the New York Times or the Washington Post.  Why not post some evidence similar to what I have posted about the Democrats.
    Did Nixon, the self described Keynesian who gave us wage and price controls, the EPA, and Title IX, have some racists on his staff?  Sure.   So has every administration.  But it was never an institutional policy.
    I know this “conservatives are racists” meme is so ingrained that its become part of some folks DNA; my point was that perhaps you ought to try to be a little more circumspect in throwing around insulting generalized charges of racism.

    But if you have to, why not come out and do it with examples?  Drop the innuendo.  Who are the racist conservatives and their “surrogates?”  Pawlenty, Jindahl, Palin, Limbaugh, Beck, Clarence Thomas?  And where are their racist comments?  If I wanted to waste my time and yours, I could post lots of examples of current liberal racists, their racist statements and racist liberal policies. But even then I wouldn’t throw around the charge that “liberals are racists” or whackjobs or hate mongers. I would be describing racists individuals, and I would back it up.  I will leave the generalized baseless insults to my liberal betters.

  110. laursaurus says:

    Has anyone noticed that it’s not a particular agenda or political group that all these whack jobs have in common. Even blaming their actions on racism misses the point. These people are psychopaths incapable of empathy. Over-the-top celebrities, whether it’s Keith Oberman and Joe Romm OR Rush Limbaugh and Lord Monckton, their fans and followers admire the passionate, attention-grabbing style. The audience perceives them as having a talent for saying what needs to be said. It is cathartic to listen or read, because most people prefer to avoid the social implications involved if they tried to do the same in real life. Have you noticed how orderly even the Tea Parties are even when the liberals deliberately try to instigate a riot? Groups pay Al Gore and Sarah Palin for speaking engagements.
    Not many people would be willing to expose their personal lives to the public scrutiny these polarizing figures are made to endure. Fortunately, these characters do it for us. They actually have a passive effect on society by diffusing the public outrage that actuallywould lead to riots in the past.
    The lone gunman desperately forces his deluded manifesto on the world. The anti-social pathology behind these acts reveals an inability to appreciate his fellow human beings. It’s a mistake to just label them as garden-variety racists. They lack the most basic respect for all of humanity.
    BTW, the anti-gun activists always seem to rally in response to these incidents. But what finally stops these spree killers? Another gun! Just one rational armed citizen among the crowd of potential victims is needed to take them out. The gunman envisions the scene like video game. Either play dead or shoot back for survival.

  111. laursaurus says:

    Hey Gary and Lady-in Red!
    We had a Democrat elected to his 3rd presidential term when the Japanese were put in interment camps. Would that qualify FDR as racist, Japan-o-phobe? Definitely anti-immigrant, LEGAL immigrant!

  112. GaryM says:

    I don’t think Roosevelt himself was a racist.  It is true that many of those interred were not even immigrants.  Some were second and third generation Japanese Americans.  But the real reason for the internment (for most) was really a genuine fear of espionage, over blown though it was, not racial animus.
    Now if a Republican had been president, then it would have been racism, no doubt.  ‘Cause that’s just the way conservatives are.

  113. GaryM says:

    And now for something completely different.
    Government funded research that actually worked – when the government provided the basic funding then got the hell out of the way:
    “Since 1996 Brazilian farmers have increased the amount of land under cultivation by a third, mostly in the cerrado. That is quite different from other big farm producers, whose amount of land under the plough has either been flat or (in Europe) falling. And it has increased production by ten times that amount. But the availability of farmland is in fact only a secondary reason for the extraordinary growth in Brazilian agriculture. If you want the primary reason in three words, they are Embrapa, Embrapa, Embrapa [a public corporation].

    No less astonishingly, Brazil has done all this without much government subsidy. According to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), state support accounted for 5.7% of total farm income in Brazil during 2005-07. That compares with 12% in America, 26% for the OECD average and 29% in the European Union. And Brazil has done it without deforesting the Amazon….”
    (Sorry for the off topic comment, but defending against charges of racism gets old after a while.)

  114. willard says:

    If a government provides the basic funding and then get out of the way the small-government, conservative way, the Republican party might have problems reconciling the facts with its rhetorics:
    > When in power, [Republicans] massively expand the power of the state in every realm.  Deficit spending and the national debt skyrocket.  The National Security State is bloated beyond description through wars and occupations, while no limits are tolerated on the Surveillance State.  Then, when out of power, they suddenly pretend to re-discover their “small government principles.”

  115. SimonH says:

    Thanks everyone for the summaries and links. Though I never intended my original KKK question to be more than a rummage, you’ve all provided much to explore.

  116. Keith Kloor says:


    I think you have personalized some of the observations I have made about the contemporary Republican party and the popular conservative  pundits on radio and tv that pretty much represent the Republican brand today.

    To get a better idea of what I’m talking about, here are two pieces. On is a personal essay from a life-long Republican and the other is a longish article that, despite the liberal outlet it appears in, should be read for all the Republican voices of concern (about the direction of the party and its off-putting ideological purity) quoted.

    It’s not like I’m making this stuff up. Plenty of highly respected Republicans are anguished over how intolerant their party sounds these last few years. In the upcoming mid-term elections, this probably will not be a drag, largely because of widespread dissatisfaction with the slow economic recovery. But in the long-term, if I was a moderate Republican, I’d be concerned about having Limbaugh and Beck providing all the talking points for the national party.

  117. GaryM says:


    Well, I tried to get away fr0m the race thing.
    I, Lady Red, KDK, Laurasaurus, all take your racism slur the same way.  Your subsequent posts have made abundantly clear that we read your comment correctly.  Willard and Steven Sullivan seconded yuor remnarks, without comment from you.
    We all asked you to provide evidence to back it up..  Your answer?  You quote someone who admits that he “…voted for Clinton, twice. [He] thought he was the best Republican president since Ike” and who also notes that he voted for both Nixon and Reagan, but only has criticism for Reagan.   Then you cite to the Huffington Post.  (I’d rather you go back to Wikipedia).
    Your snide, off hand  allegation of racism was directed at conservatives.  So why can you only  quote liberals in defense of your claim?  You can quote literally millions of liberals who agree with you, but that is not an “immigrant bashing” quote by a conservative.   The thing about group think?  It’s all about the group.
    You write about how you consider your site a place where all voices are welcome.  OK, so either provide actual evidence of the racist bashing of immigrants by conservatives, or apologize for the comment.  Otherwise, you aren’t a very good host.
    Maybe you are comfortable following the Joe Romm  method of debate when it comes to issues other than climate.  But if the election returns mirror the polls in a few months, you might want to art least consider not demonizing those who are in the majority.
    Conservatives are not evil, or stupid, or both, just because you and all the other liberals you know think so.

  118. Keith Kloor says:


    Just because you don’t like that a Republican voted for Clinton–that’s the reason you discount everything else he says? I know lots of Dems that voted for Reagan twice–I don’t wave them away as fools who have nothing of value to say.

    As for the Huffington Post, did you bother to read who the quotes are from? So the article appeared in a liberal outlet? Big deal. Measure the story on the merits of the substance of its content. This sort of ridiculousness is like conservatives dismissing the NYT or liberals dismissing The Wall Street Journal out of ideological fealty.

    I have nothing to apologize for. You’re being way oversensitive about this discussion. You’re personalizing it. You’re not even bothering to engage in an honest debate about the rhetoric and demagoguery I keep referencing (as discussed in those two articles). You’re just building strawmans. If you’re that easily offended by this discussion, then you probably will want to move on to a place that makes you feel less aggrieved. I’m not into coddling  or stroking just for the sake of keeping readers.

  119. GaryM says:

    I didn’t engage in “an honest debate about the rhetoric and demagoguery [you] keep referencing” because you haven’t referenced any.  I did read each of your articles, when you posted them, before responding.
    Your first cited article contains exactly zero quotations of any kind regarding conservatives bashing immigrants, which was your charge.
    The second cited screed contains exactly one supposed “quotation” related to immigration:  “Ayres wouldn’t name names, but was likely referring to such congressmen as Steve King (R-Iowa), who has described immigration as a “slow-motion holocaust” that “threatens an eventual destruction of the middle class.”
    The article that supposedly contains that quote from King is here.  And here is what that racist conservative actually said.  “There is no job Americans will not do. The hottest, most difficult, dirtiest and dangerous job in the world is rooting terrorists out of Fallujah. Marines are doing that job for $8.09 an hour.
    The core of the strength of America has always been an ever-broadening middle class. The flood of immigration, both legal and illegal threatens an eventual destruction of the middle class and is resulting in the creation of a servant class. We cannot stand by while our middle class is eroded so that the ruling class in America can create a servant class for themselves. ”  Notice how your writer truncated the quote?  And nary a mention of any holocaust.
    The language that was quoted was criticism of elitists who want cheap veggies, lawn care and ironed sheets on the back of illegal immigrants. My how racist.
    So all of your posts pointed obliquely to exactly one misrepresented quotation.  It’s hard to debate someone whose only evidence is quoting people who agree with him.  You don’t need to coddle or stroke anyone.  But when four commenters ask you for evidence, you might want to actually produce some.
    And yes, I am offended when people make broad unsupported accusations of racism.  The whole point of the accusation is to offend.  I just find it fascinating to see someone engaging in demagoguery in a post he began by criticizing the demagoguery of others.  But you are by no means alone.
    “[P]romiscuous charges of bigotry are precisely how our current rulers and their vast media auxiliary react to an obstreperous citizenry that insists on incorrect thinking.

    The Democrats are going to get beaten badly in November. Not just because the economy is ailing. And not just because Obama overread his mandate in governing too far left. But because a comeuppance is due the arrogant elites whose undisguised contempt for the great unwashed prevents them from conceding a modicum of serious thought to those who dare oppose them. ”
    Krauthamer says it better than I ever could.
    Just so you can see how it sounds from the other side.  Here’s your comment rewritten.  “I’d like to know if you see similar culpability in the race baiting by Democratic demagogues and media pundits.” and “Maybe [you could be] smart enough to recognize that tarring of a group or class of people cuts both ways…”
    It’s your blog, you get the last word, I am done with the issue.

  120. Keith, since I’m a Canadian I find the injection of liberal/conservative politics tends to infuse some of the discussions here (including this one) with counter-productive inflammation. Although I must admit that this particular inflammation seems to have crossed the border, so to speak … must be the influence of NAFTA 😉

    That aside, I’m not sure I understand why you would choose to equate Romm with Watts (or vice versa) on this very sad matter. 

    I do appreciate that your bias may lean more towards the views of  (those Watts called) “warmistas” than towards those whom Romm will disparage and denigrate at the virtual drop of a byte.

    In mid January of this year, there was an article in Canada’s National Post about Mardi Tindal, Moderator of the United Church of Canada, who was “in tears” after the collapse of Copenhagen.

    It seems to me that this poor woman was obviously influenced by the pseudo-scientific hype presented by the likes of Gore, Pachauri, Hansen et al.  Her reaction was no doubt compounded by some emotional instabilities. In fact, Tindal’s very public invocaton to the flock included:

    As the carbon dioxide concentrations in the atmosphere rise, the planet will fail to provide for us. Life as we know it will die. Millions of human lives are on the line, rich and poor, old emitters and new, vulnerable and strong. There is no inoculation against this except all of us changing our behaviour all at once.”

    (Well, perhaps she was also influenced by M. Tobis 😉 )

    In the same way, unfortunately, Lee was apparently equally influenced by the same hype; however his emotional instabilities were far greater than those of Tindal, with far more disastrous consequences.

    While I would never presume to speak for Anthony Watts, this was my take on his choice of headline and content, and I think you do him an unwarranted disservice by equating his post with those of Romm.

  121. willard says:

    Since we’re into Canadian stuff:
    > For almost three years, I had argued that immigration was the wrong issue on which to hang the wider cause of protecting America’s national identity against bilingualism, multiculturalism, and postmodern deconstruction (the so-called “National Question”). Just before the 1988 election, I had been astonished at a conservative conference in California when a long burst of applause unexpectedly greeted my mild criticism of the slowly developing spread of biculturalism. Knowing the damage that biculturalism had done to Canada””and sensing from the audience reaction that they were anxious on the same score””I judged that language would be the best horse from that stable. “Official English” enjoyed an 80/20 advantage in opinion polls, it had won the few referenda that the political class had been unable to prevent, and it had none of the “Ellis Island” drawbacks attending the immigration issue””few Americans resented their immigrant grandparents’ having to learn English.
    Backing up the “damage that biculturalism had done to Canada” would have been interesting.  One wonders why it’s taken for granted.  Taken for granted in a website called **The American Conservative**.
    Here comes the rhetorical fall:
    > But I changed my mind under two influences.
    This certainly is about immigration.  Perhaps not immigrant-bashing, but multiculturalism bashing alright.
    This is not racism.  It never was the issue.  Where is the accusation of racism exactly?  Are we really asking about references to substantiate “anti-immigrant bashing by demagogues and pundits?”
    GaryM mentions accusation of racism here to victimize himself.  This also seems to justify his probing into my sentiments and my seconding.


  122. GaryM says:

    No race baiting here folks, just move along.
    (I had no intent of commenting on the issue again, but when someone falsely accuses me of misrepresenting their position….)
    Willard (101): “This concept of eliminationism is being put forward by David Neiwert, who claims that hate talk is radicalizing the American Right:”
    From that carefully reasoned article.titled “When Hate Groups Go Mainstream”:  ” To a distressing extent, much of mainstream right-wing culture and politics is predicated on hatred and exclusion. Hardly a day goes by that an epithet isn’t hurled against Hispanics, Muslims, immigrants, gays and lesbians, and other bêtes noire in conservative media and the right-wing blogosphere.”
    And it includes the always popular, among progressives, equating of conservatism with fascism by calling the “eliminationism” he (and Willard by quoting him with approval) accuse the Republicans of  “a signature trait of fascism.”  (This after first comically noting that the term “fascism” has been watered down by over use.)  Nope, no accusations of racism here.
    And Willard, the question you seem to think is made up, comes from the virtually identical (but more specific) quote from Keith: “immigrant bashing by Republican demagogues and media pundits.”

  123. Bob Koss says:

    Here is my two cents.

    Glenn Beck is not affiliated with either the Rep. or Dem. party. Keith seems to think he is providing talking points for the GOP. Since Beck isn’t a party member, why would the GOP elites pay any attention to what he has to say? Unless, of course, there is substance to his remarks. In which case, maybe the Dem. elites might want to also pay attention. I suspect some of their voting bloc is paying attention.

    Now on to what really inspired this post.

    In #44 Keith uses the phrase:

    “… noxious anti-immigrant element …” for James Lee.
    A reasonable description since it might exclude the illegals. Those he smuggled for money.

    “… alarm about illegal immigrants …” for Lou Dobbs.
    Also reasonable as this seems to only include illegals.

    “… the immigrant bashing by Republican demagogues …”
    I read this as including immigrants of all types. If only a subset was meant, I would expect it to be defined as was done with Dobbs.

    Therefore, I consider this unreasonable because what I have seen is different. Others have the same opinion and have tried to elicit a further response. All to no avail.

    If Keith actually believes a group of Republicans have been bashing all immigrants, he has no reason to modify his remark. But if he wants credibility he should consider providing evidence for those who don’t believe it to be true.

    Without evidence it appears to be just some odious wordsmithing used in an effort to tar a group he dislikes. After all, he might have said, “illegal immigrant bashing”, which would be closer to the truth, but it wouldn’t have the same noxious ring to it.

    This thread will soon go away, but any opinions formed will last longer. 

  124. Dave H says:

    After a little editing, Tom Fuller finally says something I can agree with:
    > If you [saw] Waterworld, maybe saw it three or four times, […] you could succumb to the impulses that drove this man to do what he did.

  125. willard says:

    How have Republicans alienated Hispanics?
    > The people that are on television are the loudest on the immigration issue. The emotion, the anger, is a signal. Put aside the substance, but just in terms of the language. It makes it sound like them and us. And the evidence is that after [the GOP] making major inroads, Hispanics have turned toward the Democratic party in the last two election cycles. Big time. Compare that to how my brother did and how I did and how other Republican candidates have done in the past and you can see a trend line that’s quite disturbing.
    Read more:

    That’s coming from Jeb Bush.  No Wikipedia.  No Huffington Post.  No evil liberal stuff.  Esquire, pure fluff.

  126. Barry Woods says:

    As I said at the top, activists lobby groups have responsibities in ‘the message’ they give out..

    This one predates the greenpeace “we know where you live ‘ episode..

    This one is also official.
    The CAGW actvists behaviour is going to get more like this, more extreme, as they see the goals slip away.
    GreenPEACE Video…
    I wonder if this child ‘believes’ this…
    Seriously, for Greenpeace to have come to this…. (3 years old now)

    Use of children, Again. Saying amongst other gems.

    “For or Against”
    “friend or enemy”
    “The lines are drawn, You have to choose sides”
    “this is the last time I will be talking to you”
    “entire countries will disappear, famine, world wide epidemics, life expectancy will be lower”
    “you are for my future, or you are against it”

    I thought it was just an activist at work, but shocked to see it is offical Greenpeace…!!!!
    Official Greenpeace video…
    Angry Kid
    340,000 plus views on youtube,


  127. Hank Roberts says:

    Greenpeace kid video:
    ” … by the time I grow up … the polar ice caps will be gone …”
    Oh, my.

  128. Barry Woods says:

    Greenpeace use these guys to.

    From – Sell the Sizzle – Futerra.  Media PR communication.
    Introduce hell
    You’ve sold the sizzle so now
    show the alternative. If you lead with a positive
    vision, you don’t then have to pull your punches
    on climate chaos.
    The choice is now Make clear that change won’t
    wait, and that the decision moment is now
    Personal hell
    Climate change doesn’t just affect
    weather patterns and polar bears. Lay out the impacts
    on hospitals, schools, and the local environment.
    Hit lifestyles and aspirations. The more powerful
    and compelling your vision, the more hard-hitting
    you can make the threat of climate chaos.

    Sounds funny, take a long look at their client list….. (BBC, UK government,etc

    “sell the Sizzle” – Futerra
    Climate Change Deniers
    Unfortunately, these guys are back (if they
    ever went away). The edge of this group are
    the conspiracy theorists who are sure that
    climate science is an excuse for either (a) the
    environmentalists to curtail consumption or
    undermine our way of life, or (b) for the developed
    world to hold back the developing world.
    Futerra and The UK Department for Environment published the Rules of the Game on 7 March 2005. The game is communicating climate change; the Rules will help us win it. The document was created as part of the UK Climate Change Communications Strategy.

  129. Hank Roberts says:

    Well, all ya can do with any bogus claim is
    Push for a citation, and read what someone claims as support.
    Often, the person making the claim will softly and silently vanish.
    Of course they show up elsewhere with a new load of pony-here-somewhere claims.  There’s no shaming people who do that.

  130. anon says:

    However sympathetic I am to AGW theory, and especially to leaving the earth a better place for my kids,
    I really just want to smack the hoodie off the angry kid in the Greenpeace commercial.

  131. PierreL says:


    This is my first post here.
    I am French but have appreciated your analysis.
    Lee was as sane as everybody but he believed the CAGW propaganada and felt the need to “ACT NOW” . 
    Then the thread derived in a bashing of conservatives/right wing in a quite unpleasant way.

    After all this left-right dialectics is eternal and plays in France as well as in the USA.
    You have convincingly demonstrated for me beyond any reasonable doubt that Kloor is a biased leftist repeating the same kind of mantra like other biased leftists – for example : “right/conservatism = anti-immigrant/racist = evil etc” .
    I agree with you, this is a DNA matter.
    Even if you put their noses in it, they wouldn’t see it, no amount of evidence could make them see the reality.
    They will indeed wear Guevara T-shirts and genuinely not understand why  normal people find something wrong with it .
    No when they insult, they won’t apologise as Kloor so aptly said.
    They genuinely don’t see that it is an insult .

    If I write this post it is because you did a service to me and I wanted to thank you .
    I used to read this blog because I was under the impression that the owner was a kind of tolerant, balanced, slightly leftish leaning sort of guy.

    I no more think so and it will liberate the time I spent here for more constructive purposes.
    I learned much from you and you waste your talents here GaryM .

  132. Keith Kloor says:

    PierreL, I’m so glad to hear the scales have fallen from your eyes.

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