This is eye-opening.
DARWALL (8:35): speaker raises Olof Palme, a social democrat in Sweden who led the post-war environmental movement, one in which Sweden held a lot of political sway over. When exposing the totalitarian roots of the environmental movement, Sweden is a form of soft totalitarianism. They’ve had a social democratic government. It was the longest one-party rule from the 1920s to the 1970s. It was an extraordinary impact on Sweden. This was the party that created modern Sweden. The Swedish Social Democratic party can lay claim to direct descendance to Marx/Engels and they believe in social engineering; indeed, they have socially engineered modern Sweden. And they have used tools of social control to change the way people think, to change the way that people behave. There’s a quote in the book from Olof Palme when he was Education Minister, saying “We don’t teach people individuality. We teach people to be members of a group.” And then there’s an Education bureaucrat who says “We give people the freedom to give up freedom.” It’s not like the regimes of the former Eastern Bloc, but it’s rightly called a “soft totalitarian” regime.
Now you said the impact of Sweden on environmental politics. Enormously underestimated. This country of 12 million people it kicked off the modern day environmental movement on a global level, not the Rachel Carson and Earth Day, but the global environmental politics was started by Sweden. They called for the first UN environmental conference in 1972, Stockholm, which started a string of UN climate conferences going through Rio de Janiero, Kyoto, Paris, and so forth. They also put Acid Rain on the world map. They launched the War on Coal. First of all with Acid Rain. They wanted to have a huge nuclear power program and raise the specter of coal as if you don’t have nukes, you’re going to have to have coal and coal is dirty. It destroys the forests and lakes, and by the way it causes climate change. And so Sweden was the first county to talk about climate change. Olof Palme was talking about climate change in 1974, November 1974, that’s when Al Gore was still in law school. This way predates anyone else on climate change. What do these politicians do–use European communism as a test lab for social engineering experiments here in the U.S.?
WEINGARTEN: (11:10) You characterize the Acid Rain movement as being the dry run, in effect for today’s global warming and climate change movement. Now what are the implications of the history of Acid Rain?
DARWALL: The Acid Rain history is not well-known, and it needs to be told. It is a genuine scientific scandal. There were very interesting parallels with Acid Rain and Global Warming. They were both used by the Swedes for the War on Coal. They both involved many of the same people. The first Chair of the IPCC was a Swede. He was close to Olof Palme, and he wrote the first government report on Acid Rain. The National Scientific Academies around North America and in Western Europe all said that Acid Rain is more certain than Climate Change. And the interesting thing is it turned out to be wrong. Soils and forests and lakes and streams weren’t being acidified by acid rain power station emissions, it was to do with changes in land use. So to take the Adirondacks, for example, what had happened there was that in the late 19th century, early 20th century the lumber industry came along, it cut a lot of trees, it burned the stumps, and that changed the soil where the lakes were previously acidified, it changed them, it reduced the acidity, so you had game fish, you had salmon, so when McKinley was assassinated, Theodore Roosevelt was actually on a fishing holiday up there, you could catch fish. Then the conservationists came in and said you got to leave those trees, and the soil re-acidified. So the actual science was about the acidification being caused by soil creation and changes in land use. Now the truth of this became known just as the Clean Air Act amendments were being passed by the Congress in the U.S. And what’s really interesting–here’s the real scandal–the science was known to be untrue by the EPA as these anti-acid rain laws were being passed and the EPA supressed the science. They then quite disgracefully blackened the names of the leading scientists who developed this critique. They accused him of not being a proper scientist. They backed down when he threatened to libel then, to take them to court. They Fed-Exed an apology to him. They then further lied when they said “Well, he may have gotten the science wrong, but we disagreed with his conclusions. That was wrong. In private they actually agreed with his conclusion, and yet to this day you go to the EPA website and they say “Acid Rain causes lakes to acidify.
WEINGARTEN: (14:06) Is climate change a fraud?
DARWALL: I think I wouldn’t use the word fraud. What my criticism is twofold. First, it was criticised right from the word Go. As is very clear from the book, global warming was used to, it was created, the science of it was unearthed for political reasons. Secondly, is the way that the science is being presented. And the science is being presented in a systematically biased way. There is not criticism of the uncertainty of the assumptions of the leaps of faith involved. So one is getting a very one-sided view of the science, and that is very bad science. The lack of openness to criticism to people who question the forecast and so forth are delegitimized and told that they’re climate deniers is fundamentally anti-scientific. So I wouldn’t use the word fraud. My criticism would be first of all that it has always been political. It had been developed with a political purpose. And secondly, it is the way that the science has been presented. And in the chapters on the creation of the IPCC, that they had to . . . the policies that they wanted had to be a catastrophe what they call a transformation, some kind of ecological transformation to justify missions cuts. So they back-engineered from that conclusion to the science, and so forth.
WEINGARTEN: (15:46) Now the theory of climate change as it is popularly held goes something like this, “The climate is changing, we as human beings are contributing to this change potentially with temperatures rising and we have to curb that activity in order to counter all of these potentially catastrophic effects, ultimately culminating in the massive redistribution of wealth from the first-world to the rest of the world.” How did that come to be the prevailing opinion held by the elites in academia, pop culture, and media, and do you attribute it to the efforts of the climate industrial complexes as you term it?
DARWALL: When we’re talking about the climate industrial complexes, you’re talking about multi-billion, American foundations, you’re talking about various Rockefeller Funds, you’re talking about the Pew Charitable Trusts, you’re talking about the MacArthur Foundation, these huge, huge foundations who’ve been funding some of this stuff really since . . . well, the Rockefeller Foundation’s been funding the Frankfurt School, the far-leftist, post-Marxist academics from Germany fled Nazi Germany, they came to America, part of their time was financed by these foundations, their return was financed by one of the Rockefeller foundations. They’ve been in this game for a very long time, in addition to which then you have all the climate scientists and the billions of dollars of climate research. They depend on that stream. They’ve got to keep this going to keep the grants coming. And then you’ve got the wind and solar. That’s not billions, that’s hundreds of billions. [Who knew?] It’s enormous. And then out in front of those, you’ve got what I call the shock troops of the climate industrial complex, the NGO’s, not just the people at the World Resources Institute, the more respectable intellectual end of it, but you’ve got people like Green Peace, Friends of the Earth, the Bill McGivens of this world. Again, when you look at where they get their money, it comes from these large foundations on the west coast foundations and it comes from Silicon Valley billionaires. So we’re talking about something very large, very powerful, and extremely well-financed.
WEINGARTEN: (18:11) This climate industrial complex has pushed green energy policies throughout Europe. What’s been the impact?
DARWALL: Well, the actual impact has been a huge increase in energy costs. And there’s a chart in there [his book]. I call it the hockey stick, the renewable hockey stick, that once you go above a certain level that basically energy prices just go up and up and up. If you look at the Germans and Danes, they’re paying around $.30 per kilowatt hour, whereas in the U.S. you’re paying around $.10 to $.12 per kilowatt hour. When the German Green Energy Minister said that they were going to have the Energiewende, aka, energy transition, said that it would cost no more than a scoop of ice cream on your monthly electricity bill. That scoop of ice cream has turned out to cost $1 trillion Euros to the 2030’s. It is the most expensive scoop of ice cream you’ll ever see.
WEINGARTEN: (19:21) Another expensive scoop of ice cream comes in the form of the Paris Climate Accord. You write that the argumen over the Accord is a fight for America’s soul. Explain what you mean by that.
DARWALL: It is for two reasons. The first reason is that to get the Paris Agreement done and to have it implemented required Barack Obama to subvert certainly the spirit of the American constitution. The Paris Agreement was a treaty which didn’t to Senate and was constructed in a way and didn’t need to go to the Senate. Similarly the Clean Power Plant was constructed by the EPA, it didn’t touch either house of Congress. Whereas the Acid Rain, the Clean Air Act Amendments, they passed through both houses of Congress. Acid Rain was dealt with promptly in a legislative way, whereas global warming carbon dioxide and global warming, which is economically a much, much bigger deal, Congress was ignored. The second thing is to do with the way that the climate industrial complex behaves and how they seeks to win the argument an that is to close down debate, to delegitimize dissent, it is to cow people into silence. And the penultimate chapter in the book, is called the Spiral of Silence which is this notion when people don’t hear arguments in the public square they cease making those arguments themselves. They stop even knowing what they believe, and after a while they don’t even know what they believe. So you can suppress debate, you can suppress the argument, not by having an argument but by making sure you don’t have an argument. And I think that is ultimately the U.S. Constsition depends on the first Amendment, the right of free speech, but that’s a formality, the real thing is the essence to speak freely. And that is what is at risk. And there’s a further dimension to it. The way I see this is trying to make the U.S. more like Europe. Europe is a continent of lassitude. It’s a continent in decline. It’s a continent where we believe energy needs to be rationed, we need to preserve things. America is about dynamism, it’s about a better future, and that better future, there’s nothing that shows that better future than fracking revolution. It is the most extraordinary thing to happen to energy in for decades. We were told that we were running out of oil, we’d reached peak oil, production was going to diminish. This oil was always there, but until fracking, the horizontal fracking came along it has transformed the energy industry and the world. what the Environmentalists are saying no you can’t have it, you have to leave it in the ground, you have to be poor, your tomorrows will be less rich than your todays. That to me is fundamentally anti-American.
WEINGARTEN: (22:47) In relating to that point is the deeply held American belief in and tradition of free-market capitalism as essential to leveraging finite resources and creating abudance out of them. Ther’s a quote in your book that I’d like you to elaborate on that ties into this point, and you write, and I quote, “Climate change is ethics for the wealthy. It legitimizes great accumulations of wealth. Pledging to combat it immunizes climate-friendly corporate leaders and billionaires from being targeted as members of the top one-tenth of the top one percent. This signifies a profound shift in the nature and morality of capitalism.” Elaborate on that for us.
DARWALL: To take your last point, Adam Smith said that it isn’t the charity of the baker or whatever, it’s because of self-interest.