- The Washington Times - Wednesday, December 2, 2009

SEE NO EVIL

“Climategate - the controversy surrounding the leaked e-mails from the Climatic Research Unit at Britain’s University of East Anglia - means not only a credibility problem for some of the world’s leading climate researchers. It also means a credibility problem for the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, whose latest influential report, known as the AR-4, calls evidence of global warming ‘unequivocal,’ “ John Fund writes at www.opinionjournal.com.

“These IPCC findings are largely based on the work of CRU, whose scientists are shown in the leaked e-mails to have suppressed ‘inconvenient’ data, ruthlessly excluded some scientists from peer-reviewed journals and flouted Freedom of Information laws governing public documents,” Mr. Fund said.

“All this might seem alarming to someone who relied on CRU studies, but not to Rajendra Pachauri, who chairs the IPCC. ‘This private communication in no way damages the credibility of the AR-4 findings,’ he told Reuters. ‘The entire report writing process of the IPCC is subjected to extensive and repeated review by experts as well as governments.’

“Never mind, too, that the University of East Anglia has admitted to discarding much of the raw temperature data on which its heavily massaged ‘proofs’ of global warming are based. Mr. Pachauri has good reason to want to gloss over inconvenient facts. The man who joined Al Gore in sharing the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize is too busy calling for an end to the Western lifestyle. ‘Today we have reached the point where consumption and people’s desire to consume has grown out of proportion,’ he tells the Observer, a British newspaper.

“In the near future, he explains, car use will have to be ‘curbed,’ hotels and restaurants will stop serving ice water, and guests will have their energy use monitored. Heavy taxes will also have to discourage people from flying and force them to take the train. Last year, he called for sharp cutbacks in meat consumption because of the greenhouse emissions livestock are responsible for.”

DATA DUMP

“This just in from the Times of London: After the leak of highly embarrassing e-mail messages from the University of East Anglia’s influential Climatic Research Unit, CRU has been forced to admit that it dumped ‘the original raw’ climate data used to bolster the case for human-caused global warming, while retaining only the ‘value-added’ - read: massaged - data,” San Francisco Chronicle columnist Debra Saunders writes.

“In short, the CRU dumped the scientific data, but archived information that supports its conclusions. ‘It means that other academics are not able to check basic calculations said to show a long-term rise in temperature over the past 150 years,’ wrote Times environment editor Jonathan Leake.

“Of course, global warming skeptics see climategate as vindication. For years, global warming activists have maintained that they alone could claim the mantle of dispassionate science, while skeptics were venal, nutty or both.

“The publication of these e-mails puts an end to that happy conceit, as they reveal a small cabal of scientists obsessed with obliterating dissenting scholarship and destroying the reputations of any who stood in their way.”

UNDER FIRE

“White House social secretary Desiree Rogers is coming under fire in the media and from some prior East Wing officials for not posting aides at gates used by the recent state dinner guests to make sure no party crashers could enter,” Paul Bedard writes in the Washington Whispers column at www.usnews.com.

“One former East Wing veteran of the Bush and Clinton years even suggested that Rogers might have to step aside and allow the first family to bring in a social office veteran to handle the escalating affair during which two uninvited guests, Michaele and Tareq Salahi, snuck past Secret Service agents.

“On the Today Show, the Salahis said that they were invited, were working with Secret Service investigators and didn’t violate any rule or law to gain entry to the presidential state dinner reception two days before Thanksgiving.

“Several former officials said that it has long been standard practice for social officers to first check names of party guests before moving to Secret Service agents. Even at White House Christmas parties, that has been the protocol. This time, however, only Secret Service agents checked names.

“Besides former White House officials criticizing her, some in the media have weighed in on Rogers. National Public Radio blogger Frank James took his shot [Tuesday]. ‘All the embarrassment to the Obama White House could have been avoided if social secretary Desiree Rogers, a close friend of the president and first lady, had followed the past practice of posting representatives from her office at the entry point. (With that last line, I may have ensured that I will never be on the invite list for a White House event but then I wasn’t going to be on it anyway),’ he wrote.

“Still, it is highly unlikely that Rogers will be punished or asked to step aside, though she is among those expected to testify before a committee probing the state dinner crashing on Thursday. The White House [on Monday] said that the blame is not on the Social Office or Rogers.”

BLEAK PICTURE

“The latest polling paints a pretty bleak picture for Democrats. Voted into office on a wave of ‘change,’ they are now seen as part of the problem,” Amy Walter writes at www.nationaljournal.com.

“What’s particularly interesting about this new data is that it came from pro-Democratic organizations. Among likely voters in the Democracy Corps polling, Democrats held just a 2-point advantage on the generic ballot test. Polling taken for Daily Kos showed Democrats with a slightly larger 5-point lead. This is a big drop from the double-digit lead the party enjoyed in 2008,” Ms. Walter said.

“Given that we’re still 11 months away from an election, the ballot test should be taken with a hefty helping of salt. Even so, it suggests that Democrats will be carrying baggage in 2010 that they didn’t have in 2008.

“More ominously for Democrats, the Democracy Corps memo notes that for the first time since 2002, voters say that Republicans would do a better job on the economy. The 3-point GOP advantage on the issue, the memo notes, is ‘a turnabout from a 16-point Democratic lead in May.’ The real question is whether Democrats will be able to regain this advantage next year when the focus moves off health care and onto jobs and the economy.”

Greg Pierce can be reached at 202/636-3285 or [email protected].

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