An explosive new piece of investigative journalism, "Monckton, Rinehart and a plan to capture the Australian media" by Aussie journalist Graham Readfearn, is turning the climate change world upside down.
Readfearn learned about a remarkable video (via Twitter!) of a meeting hosted by the Mannkal Economic Education Foundation, a group that promotes free-market policies.
Famed, if half-crazy, climate change denier "Lord" Christopher Monckton was lecturing the group on how coal mining interests could capture even greater control of the Australian media market to promote their climate change denialist propaganda. Let's listen in:
We have all heard about the fossil fuel-funded conspiracy to confuse the public about human-caused climate change in books like Merchants of Doubt. The fruits of these plots are on display every day in the news, where on a typical morning, we wake up to be told,
No Need to Panic About Global Warming: There's no compelling scientific argument for drastic action to 'decarbonize' the world's economy
Forget global warming -- it's Cycle 25 we need to worry about (and if NASA scientists are right the Thames will be freezing over again): Met Office releases new figures which show no warming in 15 years
Both pieces are riddled with lies. They come from the Wall Street Journal and Britain's Daily Mail. An overwhelming majority of scientists that work in climate change science would disagree with these pieces. So would an overwhelming majority of reporters in the newsrooms of such esteemed newspapers. Yet, the leadership and ownership of these and many other enormous media outlets, e.g., the Washing Post, The Australian, Fox News, even the New York Times continue to give not just a voice, but a Godzilla-sized megaphone to the corrupt ideologues that make a living promoting junk science. To control public perception these days, the super rich don't bother with commercials or bribes, they simply buy whole media outlets.
This isn't exactly news. We all know it is happening and how effective it has been in delaying the cuts in carbon emissions we will inevitably have to make. But still, it is chilling to listen in as schemes to subvert our "free" press are hatched.
What became of Monkton's advice? It seems that Australia's richest woman, coal mining tycoon Gina Rinehart, is purchasing controlling interest in Aussie media:
"Just a few months after this meeting, Gina Rinehart finally secured herself a seat on the board of Channel Ten after buying up shares the previous year. Just before that meeting, right-wing blogger and Andrew Bolt was given his own show The Bolt Report on which to promote his climate "sceptic" agenda.' - Graham Readfearn
"Gina Rinehart, the country's richest woman with a wide portfolio of mining and coal interests, has secured a 15% share in Fairfax Media, the parent company of, among many other media outlets, the Age and Herald. This stake would add to the 10% share of Channel 10 she secured in late 2010." - >Leo Hickman, the Guardian reporter that originally uncovered the video on Mannkal's web site.
This game has become far too rich for scientist, NGOs, and other advocates of sane environmental policies.
Just yesterday, a friend wrote to say we needed to raise $10,000,000 to begin to get our message about ocean conservation out. Steve, I hear you, but you better add a few zeros to that number.
Follow John F. Bruno on Twitter: www.twitter.com/JohnFBruno