Paul Ingrassia vs. The Green Inquisition


257858063_640As interest in the alleged warming of the planet wanes, the global warming inquisition is hoping to make an example of a heretical reporter whose only sin is healthy skepticism.

The enviro-Left is busy attempting to subject London-based Paul Ingrassia, an American journalist brought in by Reuters to beef up its worldwide news operation, to a digital auto-da-fé for insisting that the 2,800 journalists at the news agency at least try to provide fair and balanced accounts of the events of the day.

Ingrassia, by the way, won a Pulitzer Prize and a Gerald Loeb Award in 1993 for his news coverage of management turmoil at General Motors.

This newfound interest in objectivity at Reuters, where the word militant is still preferred over terrorist, appears to mean the agency is running fewer stories about climate change.

That’s fewer, not none. Reuters still diligently covers climate-related issues.

But that’s not good enough for those who embrace the increasingly shaky theory of anthropogenic global warming with religious zeal.

“It is just not responsible in our opinion to be cutting back on an issue that is having such a profound impact on every sector of the economy,” emoted Mindy Lubber, who runs the Ceres sustainable business network, which represents companies and investors worth more than $11 trillion in assets. “This is a financial risk that needs to be looked at and addressed.”

ThinkProgress, a hard-left blog run by John Podesta’s Center for American Progress Action Fund, referred to Ingrassia in a headline as “Openly Hostile to Climate Coverage.”

As Steven Hayward writes at Powerline, a slew of media outlets “are all on the chase, proving 1) the dependence of the climate campaign on a media monopoly, and 2) that the environmental version of the Brezhnev Doctrine lives—what’s there is theirs, and don’t dare change your news coverage.”

The mainstream media freakout began when a disgruntled former Reuters reporter who had covered the global warming beat threw an online temper tantrum after leaving the company. Singapore-based David Fogarty blogged about the editorial direction Reuters took after it hired journalism industry heavyweight Ingrassia, an experienced business reporter and editor, in 2011 to overhaul the company’s approach to news gathering.

Fogarty said he met Ingrassia at a work-related event in 2012 at which the veteran journalist allegedly acknowledged being a climate change skeptic. “Not a rabid skeptic, just someone who wanted to see more evidence mankind was changing the global climate,” Fogarty wrote.

“From very early in 2012, I was repeatedly told that climate and environment stories were no longer a top priority for Reuters and I was asked to look at other areas. Being stubborn, and passionate about my climate change beat, I largely ignored the directive.

“By mid-October, I was informed that climate change just wasn’t a big story for the present, but that it would be if there was a significant shift in global policy, such as the US introducing an emissions cap-and-trade system.”

Fogarty left the company in December, two months after his climate beat was excised. Although two full-time environment beat reporters now cover the subject area for Reuters, Fogarty resorted to conspiracy theorizing.

He claimed there is a growing “climate of fear” within Reuters that makes reporters reluctant to write about climate change.

Smelling blood, the George Soros-funded slander shop Media Matters for America promptly hopped on the anti-Ingrassia bandwagon, hastily beatifying Fogarty by calling him a “whistleblower” in a headline.

MMfA claimed that “Reuters’ coverage of climate change declined by nearly 50 percent under the regime of the current managing editor, lending credence to a former reporter’s claim that a ‘climate of fear’ has gripped the agency.”

But the facts suggest what happened was more akin to an outbreak of journalistic rigor, something disgraced ex-journalist David Brock’s cherry-picking character assassins at Media Matters would have difficulty recognizing.

The so-called study by the Democratic Party’s leading public relations agency examined how many climate change or global warming stories Reuters ran in two distinct periods. The first period was Oct. 19, 2010 to April 19, 2011, before Ingrassia worked at Reuters, and April 19, 2012 to Oct. 19, 2012, after he joined the company.

In the latter period “Reuters filed 48 percent fewer articles on climate change under the new regime, despite the fact that the latter period featured the United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro, a continuing fight over the European Union’s proposal to impose a carbon tax on international flights, record heat in the U.S. and other noteworthy developments,” according to Media Matters.

Of course none of those events would be of much interest to ordinary news consumers. Only climate change zealots, hardcore leftists, and unusually adventurous investors would consider most of those events to be highly newsworthy.

What else was happening in the world from mid-April to mid-October of last year?

It turns out there were plenty of exigent, newsworthy events that Reuters might have considered to be more worthy of coverage than an old, scientifically dubious doom-and-gloom theory embraced by an affective former U.S. vice president but cared about by few people outside of the green movement.

As the U.S. economy sputtered along and the national debt continued to balloon, there was an unusually nasty, bruising presidential election cycle that happened to be the most expensive and media-saturated in history. Terrorists attacked a U.S. mission in Benghazi, Libya, killing four Americans including a sitting U.S. ambassador, whom they may have sexually tortured. Before the Obama administration eventually admitted that the incident in Libya was a coordinated Islamic terrorist attack, it blamed an obscure anti-Islam filmmaker for the sacking of the mission and made him a real-life political prisoner. The U.S. Supreme Court upheld the constitutionally questionable Affordable Care Act, a.k.a. Obamacare.

Facebook’s hyped-to-the-endth-degree public stock offering floundered. France elected dogmatic socialist Francois Hollande who promptly launched a new reign of terror against that nation’s long-suffering taxpayers leading prominent citizens like actor Gerard Depardieu to flee.

The Middle East and North Africa continued to be rocked by fallout from the so-called Arab Spring. The Eurozone crisis, festering since 2009, continued to bring misery to those living in or investing in countries bound by the Maastricht Treaty. London hosted the summer Olympics. A psychopathic dictator who succeeded his father, another psychopathic dictator, made great strides in solidifying his reign in reportedly nuclear North Korea. Gay marriage became legal in several countries.

In short, there was no shortage of interesting, important things to write about.

And naturally, as the scientific case for global warming continues to fall apart the likelihood of the formation of huge markets for trading carbon also declines commensurately. This means the possibility of high-dollar carbon trading will get less media attention.

Strangely, even the ever-watchful guardians of liberal journalism at the venerable Columbia Journalism Review dismiss the green-generated hype. CJR writer Alexis Sobel Fitts volunteers that most U.S. newsrooms have scaled back their climate change coverage since 2010:

In 2011, Environment & Energy Publishing, which produces Greenwire, ClimateWire, and four other news services, estimated they reduced climate coverage by about 13 percent. According to an assessment published by The Daily Climate, The New York Times cut its global warming article count by 15 percent, and the Guardian slashed coverage by 21 percent that same year.

Fitts adds parenthetically that “Reuters, too, dropped its climate coverage by 27 percent in 2011, before Ingrassia came aboard.”

Fitts writes that several unidentified Reuters reporters spoke to her on background about a change in the news agency’s editorial stance. Since Ingrassia came aboard “they’ve felt pressure from management to add ‘balance’ to climate change stories by including the views of global-warming skeptics.”

“I’m really glad someone outside the company is looking into this,” she quoted one staffer saying. “I think this is the most worrying thing any of us have seen here.”

How dare Reuters strive to tell more than one side of the story.

Meanwhile, it is worth pointing out that the warming trend ended 15 years ago and since then global temperatures have held steady, if not decreased, while carbon dioxide emissions worldwide have skyrocketed.

“The world added roughly 100 billion tonnes of carbon to the atmosphere between 2000 and 2010. That is about a quarter of all the CO2 put there by humanity since 1750,” the Economist reported in the spring.

The attacks on Ingrassia come as fresh evidence of panic emanates from the environmentalist Left. Activists seem to be realizing that they are losing the battle over this speculative phenomenon known as anthropogenic global warming.

To boost their sagging fortunes, desperate environmentalists are making particularly outrageous claims.

A new “metastudy” spoon-fed to incurious media outlets purports to show a clear link between rising temperatures and violence, especially on the African continent.

President Obama declared war on the coal industry and its workers a few weeks ago. Ignoring the science, the Alarmist-in-Chief declared that climate change was having “profound impacts” on the planet and must be dealt with.

Obama called for America to take the lead in a “coordinated assault” on the perceived problem and snarled, “We don’t have time for a meeting of the flat-earth society.”

The Obama administration is also attempting to stifle climate change skeptics who work for the federal government.

Interior Secretary Sally Jewell told Interior Department staffers this week that fighting climate change is a “privilege” and a “moral imperative.”

“I hope there are no climate change deniers in the Department of Interior,” she said. Labeling climate change skeptics “deniers” is a crude but oft-used smear used by global warming true believers to blacken the names of their adversaries by associating them with anti-Semitic fanatics who deny the Holocaust happened during World War Two.

Marlo Lewis of the Competitive Enterprise Institute opined that “[s]uch moralizing would be funny were it not for the chilling effect it is bound to have in an agency already mired in group think.”

The British-born Jewell, who was packaged throughout her confirmation process earlier this year as a reasonable environmental activist, started her career as an oil industry engineer. Before taking up her post in Obama’s cabinet, she was CEO of Recreational Equipment Inc. (REI).

Under Ingrassia’s able leadership Reuters may even cover the Jewell story.

Climate change heretics at the Interior Department and elsewhere in the U.S. government would be well advised to hold their tongues — or lose their jobs.

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  • Nabuquduriuzhur

    The idea of ignoring most of what is known in order to push global warming is garbage. Last year’s study on the arctic is a good example. Only 15% of the data was retained, in order to give the false idea that the polar ice packs are reduced. We’ve had more than 5 years of record ice at both poles. Record low after record low across entire continents.

    The evidence is that we are in at least a temporary cooling trend.
    It’s not likely coincidence that hte energy of the sun has been down since late 2004 by 5w/m2. That might not seem like much, but the energy the earth receives is less by 1300 times the entire electric generating capacity of the earth.

    When you consider that the numbers are cooked routinely in order to get the numbers they want, why does anyone call it science?

    Consider these from my book Global Warming, Challenged:

    ~650,000 of the earth’s 2.5 million seamounts are active at any given time. Millions of smaller vents are active. ~500 of 1000 land magma fields are active at any given time. The 47,000 mile long Mid-oceanic Ridge is constantly active. All of these things spew CO2 in amounts that so dwarf humanity as to make it like an ant on a super tanker.

    If that wasn’t enough, an average of 1″ per year erosion of carbonates, (10 to 15% of the crust), and the erosion of of carbonate-cemented rocks represents even more CO2. (That is indeed 1″. Geologists, while making silly statements about it requiring millions of years for erosion, also indicate an average of about 1″ of erosion of carbonates per year. Wish they’d be consistent.)

  • Rocky Mountain

    A side, but important, issue in this article is this; “..that Reuters might have considered to be more worthy of coverage.” This has to be the case for all media sources and so our entire world hinges on what Reuters, ABC, Fox, etc. etc. decide is the topic or talking point of the day.

    • ziggy zoggy

      Wrong. The web has changed all that and every dweeb on the planet has video on his cell phone.

      • Rocky Mountain

        If that’s the case why are all of you constantly complaining about the MSM? And I assume that non-dweebs are relegated to something more traditional and therefore not as smart as you?

        • ziggy zoggy

          The entire world does NOT hinge on what the monostream media peddle but they still have undue influence over the one third of the population who are statistically stupid based on their below average IQ scores. People like you. :D

        • tagalog

          Well, the MSM DOES have the biggest share of the media available for delivering a message.

  • shinny_head

    My logic for being a global warming denier now called climate change (climate is always changing) and why I have never believed in it.

    I took separate courses in physics, thermodynamics, numerical modeling, and higher mathematics such as differential equations, partial differential
    equations, and a lot of engineering statistics as an undergraduate and graduate engineer. Taking these courses does not make me an expert on global warming but does give me the background understand heat exchange, modeling and a health since of scepticism for modeling results. As for as I know the “laws of thermodynamics” remain unchanged. The most interesting things in the laws are associated with a thermodynamic cycle and flow of heat from a hot body to a cold body.

    Since the sun is a hot body it transfers heat to a cold body e.g. Earth. The
    heat on the Earth is primarily from solar energy and gravitational energy. Both energies are the result of Earth revolving around the Sun. Therefore,
    “global warming” must be the result of heat gain from the Sun.

    As for as modeling the Earth’s heat, it should be treated as an open system. An open system as dynamic as the Earth requires numerous inputs and assumptions in order to create a “working model.” For a numerical model to be accurate, a lot of quality inputs are required. Many of these data inputs include factors that cannot be measured or not measured accurately so many potential inputs must be neglected or assumed before they are put into a computer model.

    Therefore, global warming is really about computer models where inputs include data and assumptions subjected equations and computer algorithms that generate an output set(s) of data. If the input data is not of sufficient quality, the output results will be meaningless.

    For example, how accurate are weather forecasts? Sometimes real good most of the time not so good. That is because the forecasters sometimes have sufficient date to input into the model and many times there is not sufficient data. Statistical forecasting is termed extrapolation. If one does not use or know the proper forecasting equations then the forecast violates the rules of statistical extrapolation (forecasting).

    Global warming models are simply long ranged weather forecasts that do not have sufficient data (too many unknowns) to project future temperatures with any degree of accuracy.

    • tokoloshiman

      “Garbage in garbage” out with a healthy dollop of cherry picking data that suits their claims , seems to be the prevailing methodology of the lunatic global warming climate change sect.
      No amount of fact can repel an ideology that has mesmerized its audience with gobbledygook from day one.
      One day humans will look back on this era from their heated homes in a
      nearly frozen world and wonder how those scientists and their fawning followers could have got it so wrong.

  • Ammianus

    I am outraged of course, but what is to be done? One can spurn articles in publications pushing global warming drivel, but Reuters is a news gathering service. How can we specifically help fair minded men like Ingrassia?

    • ziggy zoggy

      Ignore every story by Al Reuters. You should be doing that already. Help kill the print media. Most of it is fatally infected. You will notice I wrote “stories” rather than articles.

  • unionville

    I love how a “healthy skepticism” about AGW becomes “openly hostile” in the minds of the left wing AGW pushers. Who wouldn’t be skeptical when they have been caught red handed fudging data.

  • CJ Lawrence

    Control and Money is all that’s behind the great climate change hoax

    • ziggy zoggy

      Yepper deppers. The fanatics didn’t concoct the hoax. The hucksters looking for a ride on that gravy train of free funding did it. And the totalitarians took advantage of a phony crisis to exert more control.

  • spyeatte

    What we need to encourage are “quiet” government whistleblowers. People that can acquire inside plans and information, being plotted by the left, to outside contacts far removed from the source. It must be done carefully but is definitely doable.
    The left is playing for keeps and must be resisted against all hazard – our freedom is at stake. Their long term plan is nothing less than “forced global deindustrialization”, which requires the elimination of fossil fuels – the source of base-load power.

  • delm31_nabla@yahoo.com

    Environmentalism is a religion, a theology. Not a science. Ecology is. Its “god” or “goddess” is the Earth and everything on it. And perhaps also the sun, moon, and stars. Neo-paganism. Heathenism and idolatry reborn.

  • Wild_Bird

    Will the Church of Global Warming excommunicate him and sentence him to death or perhaps behead him? I guess it depends on when the high priest of global warming (Grand Ayatollah Al Gore) issues a fatwa calling for severe punishment.

    • ziggy zoggy

      What up, Early Bird? You all out of falafel?

      • Wild_Bird

        What’s your point Ziggy?

        • ziggy zoggy

          You’re using a new alias.

  • tagalog

    Of course it’s laudable for Mr. Ingrassia to demand objectivity from news reporters.

    The problem is that the news media have historically NEVER been particularly objective. The concept of objectivity in reporting the news is fairly new. News media for most of their existence have been well-known to be cheerleaders for one side or the other.

    The partisanship of the news media is well known to be the reason for the First Amendment protection for freedom of the press, so that news media that are partisan on an unpopular side are not repressed by the government.

  • American1969

    The Climate Change/Global Warming hysterics can’t stand the fact that they’ve been proven (more than once) to be frauds and liars, and that this entire thing is just another way for governments to get their grimy hands on everyone’s money.
    Meanwhile, the Elite throw their millions into a fund so that they can fly around in their private jets and limos sipping champagne and eating caviar while telling the peons how to “live Green”.
    Go blow it out of your butts!

  • antioli

    The Climate has been changing for several billion years;so we can be glad that the Leftist are now becoming aware of it.

    Next lesson: the world is not perfectly round. Middle age bulge.

    • objectivefactsmatter

      “Next lesson: the world is not perfectly round. Middle age bulge.”

      Great. Now you just gave them another thing to “spread the alarm” about. It’s probably caused by overweight Americans and Bloomberg will be hailed as a prophet by the time the revisionists are finished telling us all about it.