It is hard not to admire Aung San Suu Kyi. Last year, in her Reith Lecture, she referred to the BBC as “a beacon of liberty” and, when you are under house arrest for umpteen years, having access to an independent, fearless and honest source of news must be hugely important.
But it also hard not to notice that the light that the beacon shines is highly selective in some areas, and in the area of climate scepticism, there is pretty much total silence from the BBC, and its offspring around the Commonwealth.
Take a case in point. The blogosphere has been busy recently reporting an extraordinary exchange between NASA and 49 of its most prominent former astronauts and scientists, who wrote an open letter to NASA’s chief Charles Bolden in March. The letter begins:
We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.
For the full letter, see eg Business Insider. In April, there was a brush-off from NASA, and then, a few days, ago the astronauts and scientists wrote again, saying (in effect), “Come on, get real and commit to real science instead of proselytising”.
But a search of the websites of the BBC, and of the Australian ABC, and the Canadian CBC reveals not the slightest whisper of these exchanges. Total silence.
Other press will report and have reported these letters and other such events, such as the Washington Times, and The Australian. Not much, but they do not try to hide it. Even the Huffington Post – notoriously warmist – reported it, with this note:
Editor’s note: We believe it’s newsworthy when 49 former NASA scientists and astronauts pen a letter to the agency — or to anyone — about climate change. But what really raised temperatures is when we asked our readers to weigh in. We’ve removed the question because HuffPost is not agnostic on the matter. Along with the overwhelming majority of the scientific community (including 98% of working climate scientists), we recognize that climate change is real and agree with the agencies and experts who are concerned about the role of carbon dioxide.
No wonder that the report commissioned by the Australian Government recommends that the blogs be silenced: see the Finkelstein Solution. But my guess is that the warmist Czars will eventually be no more successful in silencing the sceptics than the Burmese Generals have been in silencing Aung San Suu Kyi.