James Hansen has already featured on the front page of most the world’s influential newspapers at least once telling us the sky is about to fall in … well, not exactly.
James Hansen has though been in the media a lot, over the last decade or so, telling us that temperatures are rising and that by 2010 the earth will be somewhere between 0.6 and 1.1C warmer, see some of the discussion here at the Real Climate blog.
Prof Bob Carter coined the term, Hansenism, based on pronouncements by James Hansen, click here for the original speech.
According to Carter:
Why Hansenism? Because James Hansen was the NASA-employed scientist who started the climate alarmism hare running on June 23, 1988, when he appeared before a United States Congressional hearing on climate change. On that occasion, Dr Hansen used a misleading graph to convince his listeners that warming was taking place at an accelerated rate (which, it being a scorching summer’s day in Washington, a glance out of the window appeared to confirm). He wrote, in justification, in the Washington Post (February 11, 1989) that “the evidence for an increasing greenhouse effect is now sufficiently strong that it would have been irresponsible if I had not attempted to alert political leaders”.
Hansen’s testimony was taken up as a lead news story, and within days the great majority of the American public believed that a climate apocalypse was at hand.
Much later (2003), Hansen came to write “Emphasis on extreme scenarios may have been appropriate at one time, when the public and decision-makers were relatively unaware of the global warming issue. Now, however, the need is for demonstrably objective climate … scenarios consistent with what is realistic”.
But this astonishing conversion to honesty came too late, for in the intervening years thousands of other climate scientists had meanwhile climbed onto the Hansenist funding gravy-train. Currently, global warming alarmism is fuelled by an estimated worldwide expenditure on related research and greenhouse bureaucracy of US$3-4 billion annually. Scientists and bureaucrats being only too human, the power of such sums of money to corrupt not only the politics of greenhouse, but even the scientific process itself, must not be underestimated.
Now, today Hansen features on the front page of the New York Times Online, not telling us how 2006 is going to be the hottest year ever, but claiming he is being gagged by the government.
For Hansen, claiming you are being gagged, seems to be yet another way of getting a link to all your research papers out there.
How could you gag someone like James Hansen in 2006 in the US – if you really wanted to?