A Weblog monitoring coverage of environmental issues and science in the UK media. By Professor Emeritus Philip Stott. The aim is to assess whether a subject is being fairly covered by press, radio, and television. Above all, the Weblog will focus on science, but not just on poor science. It will also bring to public notice good science that is being ignored because it may be politically inconvenient.

Thursday, February 03, 2005

Putting a 'Block' on 'Hysteria' at the Exeter climate-change conference

I have thought long and hard how best to comment on the Exeter climate-change Conference that mercifully ends today. I have just read one personal report of the Conference that alleges it to have been a bizarre mixture of unalloyed hysteria and a witch hunt (lapped up, of course, by a totally uncritical media). Unfortunately, the Conference sounds beyond lampooning, and, if so, it is most certainly beyond my own limited powers of parody.

I have, therefore, turned for my comment to a seminal cartoon by one of the greatest of all American political cartoonists, namely the Pulitzer Prize-winning satirist, Herbert L. Block (1909 - 1991), who is above all famous for coining the term 'McCarthyism' in one of his drawings.

So here is my ultimate comment on the Exeter Conference, courtesy of that splendid man (it says everything in one wonderful, simple drawing): 'Fire' (first published in The Washington Post, March 4, 1954).

And if you would like to know more about this King of Satirists, then read on here: 'Herbert Block' (Spartacus Educational).

Philip, afraid for liberty and for science, and increasingly wary of government-engendered hysteria and the witch hunt for non-believers. There will be tears before all this nonsense is over. We are once more in 'The Crucible of the God of Global Warming'. Tea first. Gunpowder?

[New counter, June 19, 2006, with loss of some data]

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