Salon is Unclear on the Concept of “Fair and Balanced”


From the once respectable Salon:

Fox producer emails climate blog looking for “the very best arguments” against man-made global warming

In his earnestness to go against the consensus of 97 percent of scientists, a producer for The O’Reilly Factor allegedly sent out an email looking for “the best arguments against global warming being caused by humans.” And for inexplicable reasons, he sent the email to DeSmogBlog (the self-proclaimed “world’s number one source for accurate, fact based information regarding global warming misinformation campaigns”), which went right ahead and made it public.

The email, complete with address, reads:


I’m a producer at the O’Reilly Factor. I’m writing up a paragraph for Bill on the best arguments against global warming being caused by humans.

What would you say are the very best arguments you’d present in one paragraph? I am working under a very tight deadline.

“I feel for O’Reilly’s producers, honestly,” wrote Brendan DeMelle, the site’s executive director and managing editor. “It must be tough to face this ‘very tight deadline’ problem when asked to provide factual support for a baseless, ideologically-motivated assumption.”

“The science is settled!” (except it’s not)

I remember when I was a kid we had debates in class over issues in the news. We were given an issue and told whether we were “for” or “against” that issue. Then we went to the library (this was in the dark ages before the internet) and looked up the best arguments supporting our assigned position. When we had finished our research we came back to class and held the debates.

I guess they don’t teach debate anymore. Probably because too many people were thinking for themselves. Nowadays students are given the official approved answers to everything and told to memorize them.

I am no fan of Bill O’Reilly. I think he is a pompous ass and I can’t stand to listen to him bloviate. But this “gotcha!” is a big nothingburger with cheese.


About Myiq2xu

I was born and raised in a different country - America. I don't know what this place is.
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100 Responses to Salon is Unclear on the Concept of “Fair and Balanced”

  1. The Klown says:

    I could literally do a daily post called “The Stupidest Thing of the Day at Salon”

    • Lulu says:

      All they do is repeat the most hackneyed and irresponsible leftist dogma. They have closed minds and less and less ability to analyze anything. It is like watching someone go mad and lose all ability to reason. They bet the farm on Obama-ism and it is blowing up in their faces. 97% my ass. They say this stuff to stop themselves from having any doubts like any true-believer. Yell louder to make everyone else shut up. This is one of the reasons the right and the left is afraid of Cruz. He can debate and make people think and doubt and it scares the shit out of them.

      • The Klown says:

        Back when I was working retail security I busted this kid for shoplifting and when his mother got there he told her he didn’t do it. I asked her if she wanted to look at the video and she said no, she believed her son.

      • 49erDweet says:

        Thomas Sowell nailed it re: Cruz. The GOP turtles created a leadership vacuum and now act like 10 year olds because a new kid reacts to it.

        • 49erDweet says:

          And the turtles are silent these days to protect their district’s federal $$$$ infusion. Could there be a better reason to take the power of awarding discretionary funds out of the hands of a blackmailing administration? Or is that also racist?

  2. The Klown says:
    • Anthony says:

      So Christie, HRC and now Walker are being targeted. So far, the 3 best fundraisers for their respective parties are being dragged through the mud. Sounds like the Dems are afraid of what’s going to happen in 2014 elections.

      The Progs want Warren (not Hillary) to run, so expect Hillary to get it from both sides of the aisle. That means that the Dems are behind all of this (with a complicit MSM).

      Is going after everyone under the sun the Dems idea of “bipartisanship”?

  3. The Klown says:


    Secretary of State John Kerry, a veritable billionaire who is not shy about acquiring carbon-consuming luxury boats, cars, and toys, and who leaves an incorrectly large carbon footprint when he engages in private travel, just gave a screed to relatively poor Indonesia on the need to make drastic changes to prevent climate change, the new vocabulary to account for the linguistic limitations of global warming, when the United States, for example, is in the midst of a record cold winter, and the planet itself has not heated up for 17 years. The problem with Kerry’s sermons reflects much of the paradoxes of modern liberalism.

    It is increasingly an ideology of elites who believe that they themselves should be exempt from the ramifications of their politics. “Fairness” and “equality” do not mean its avatars would at least symbolically try to live like the average folks they romanticize from a distance from Martha’s Vineyard. “Climate change” does not mean that Al Gore should not make enormous profits peddling a failed cable channel to a petrodollar-rich, carbon-fuel-profiting Middle East despotic regime. And save the smelt does not mean that Bay Area activists would be willing to sacrifice a daily shower or a washed Mercedes in order to divert their own Sierra water from their Hetch Hetchy supplies out to sea to ensure viable bait fish populations in the San Francisco delta.

  4. The Klown says:

    Some group was actually petitioning WaPo not to run this OpEd:

    • The Klown says:

      Climate-change proponents have made their cause a matter of fealty and faith. For folks who pretend to be brave carriers of the scientific ethic, there’s more than a tinge of religion in their jeremiads. If you whore after other gods, the Bible tells us, “the Lord’s wrath be kindled against you, and he shut up the heaven, that there be no rain, and that the land yield not her fruit” (Deuteronomy 11).

      Sounds like California. Except that today there’s a new god, the Earth Mother. And a new set of sins — burning coal and driving a fully equipped F-150.

      But whoring is whoring, and the gods must be appeased. So if California burns, you send your high priest (in carbon-belching Air Force One, but never mind) to the bone-dry land to offer up, on behalf of the repentant congregation, a $1 billion burnt offering called a “climate resilience fund.”

      Ah, settled science in action.

      • Lulu says:

        Settled science reminds me of what is going on in the UK. Their chief meteorologist is a climate changer. She was braying about the floods being climate change. An even older meteorology professor came out and called her a ninny or some such and that it is an odd Gulf Stream this year and she would know this it if she ever looked at the weather data maps instead of giving climate change speeches. Then an hydrology prof piped up and said of course it is going to flood with a huge Gulf Stream deluge when you have NOT dredged for a decade or so the rivers and estuary systems that naturally silt up that dump the excess water into the sea. Why did the dredging stop? To return it to its natural state as marshes (The Fens) and stop it from being used as farmland and housing locations. AND to use the money for building giant windmills that kills the birds that the marshes are supposedly to be habitat for. It is a giant circle of clusterfuck.

  5. swanspirit says:

    Scientifically speaking , the predictions of climate change global warming called for a continual increase in global temperature. That has stopped ,for about a decade ; this change is being called a pause by those who continue to adhere to this theory. So strictly scientifically speaking , the original premise, or theory has already been invalidated , because the results are not what were expected . That calls for a new premise , strictly scientifically speaking . Even a quick perusal of Wikipedia will show that there are at least one third of the “prestigious scientific organizations ” in the world who remain non-comiittal on global warming , climate change etc. While the people who adhere to this theory want to point to large weather events , tornadoes , flood and drought , as signs of weather changes , this somehow invalidates those who point to other weather events; colder winters, lack of hurricanes , as evidence that climate change may be an invalid theory . I live in an area of the USA that experiences hurricanes seasonally . The number of hurricanes has decreased dramatically in the past few years . How is that explained by the climate change theory ? It doesn’t fit the model , so the lack of hurricanes goes unremarked by the ” the believers”
    Then there is the unprecedented , current dramatic decrease in sunspot activity , for which scientists are seeking answers. They are comparing this decrease to the Maunder Minimum , . which had an effect on temperatures on different parts of the planet. I say we are already dealing with a partly invalid theory , with too many variables to draw a conclusion , if we are to adhere to HONEST SCIENCE and not give in to popular / political “belief ” , which at this point more resembles religion than science.
    I am a proponent of preserving the earth and the planet from the adverse effects of human impact .The Earth actually is part of my religion . I absolutely believe we have to deal with pollution ,animal extinction and loss of natural spaces . I also am a proponent of increasing the use of clean energy , but without inadvertently causing more harm.. While we use energy from wind turbines , we have to acknowledge the damage to wildlife and any other adverse effects of any alternative we use. Birds and bats are being killed by the thousands upon thousands by wind turbines, and scorched to death when flying over solar arrays . Do we really want to take the back road to a silent spring?
    Another variable that gives me pause (pun intended) , is the behavior of the chief adherents to this theory . They don’t seem very alarmed . They are not concerned enough with the outcome of their theory to even live as if it were true . They want the general population to buy their books, elect them to office . and generously allow them lavish lifestyles, and at the same time this population must adhere to and be ruled by guidelines that impact their own lives , sometimes in a very devastating way. True
    believers , honest scientists , live on the basis of the truth of their own theories .
    Nostradamus had dire but obscure predictions for the future , and he made his reputation and living on the basis of those predicions. Little known , or should I say little publicized historical fact ; Nostradamus also made himself a healthy living selling fake cures for the plague .

    • The Klown says:

      More from Krauthammer:

      If climate science is settled, why do its predictions keep changing? And how is it that the great physicist Freeman Dyson, who did some climate research in the late 1970s, thinks today’s climate-change Cassandras are hopelessly mistaken?

      They deal with the fluid dynamics of the atmosphere and oceans, argues Dyson, ignoring the effect of biology, i.e., vegetation and topsoil. Further, their predictions rest on models they fall in love with: “You sit in front of a computer screen for 10 years and you start to think of your model as being real.” Not surprisingly, these models have been “consistently and spectacularly wrong” in their predictions, write atmospheric scientists Richard McNider and John Christy — and always, amazingly, in the same direction.

      Settled? Even Britain’s national weather service concedes there’s been no change — delicately called a “pause” — in global temperature in 15 years. If even the raw data is recalcitrant, let alone the assumptions and underlying models, how settled is the science?

      But even worse than the pretense of settledness is the cynical attribution of any politically convenient natural disaster to climate change, a clever term that allows you to attribute anything — warming and cooling, drought and flood — to man’s sinful carbon burning.

      Accordingly, Obama ostentatiously visited drought-stricken California last Friday. Surprise! He blamed climate change. Here even the New York Times gagged, pointing out that far from being supported by the evidence, “the most recent computer projections suggest that as the world warms, California should get wetter, not drier, in the winter.”

      • 49erDweet says:

        When 4 out of 3 climate changers have a problem with math and statistics, it ain’t “science”.

      • Propertius says:

        ignoring the effect of biology, i.e., vegetation and topsoil

        Krauthammer is about two decades out of date. The land model component of the NCAR Community Climate Model does extensive modeling of vegetation, as well as soil chemistry and has done so (with increasing precision) since the mid-1990s. So do the other major models (the GFDL models, etc.). He’s just plain wrong about this.

        Even Britain’s national weather service concedes there’s been no change — delicately called a “pause” — in global temperature in 15 years.

        Atmospheric temperatures (particularly in the temperate zone) haven’t gone up much, but temperatures in the Arctic, Antarctic, and in the oceans are increasing pretty rapidly. Temperature increases aren’t going to be uniform in a complex system, and the increase in temperature in the oceans is particularly disturbing because it suggests that, even if we take drastic action, warming will continue for a considerable period of time. This is because the heat capacity of the ocean is about 50 times that of the atmosphere. For a layman’s discussion, together with a graph of actual observational data (*not* model results), see:

        Raw data can be obtained here (if you feel like crunching it yourself):

        Note that the effect of warming on ocean currents can cause some “paradoxical” effects: the only reason why large areas of Northern Europe are habitable is due to the warming effect of the Gulf Stream. Disrupt the Gulf Stream and large portions of Europe get much colder – to the point where agriculture becomes difficult and much less productive. I’ve heard this referred to as “the 700 million hungry people with nuclear weapons” problem.

        We’ve actually stumbled into a bit of good fortune the last few years, because solar output as evidenced by decreased sunspot activity. It’s possible this may slow things down enough that we have time to mitigate climate effects without completely disrupting the world economy.

        • 49erDweet says:

          Propertius ignores the number “crunching” methodology in use lacks statistical validity, Adding apples and pears to determine how many bananas to expect seems quixotic.

  6. votermom says:

    Today show is stirring up shit about the Russian girl getting the gold instead of Yuna Kim because she wobbled her landing on one jump.
    It’s the point system, idiots. Sotnikova’s program had more elements and was at a faster and therefore more difficult pace.
    I did not hear any complaints about Jeremy Abbot getting a high score despite a huge fall.

    • The Klown says:

      I am no expert but I think all of the girls last night skated beautifully.

      It wouldn’t be an Olympics without a scoring controversy.

        • The Klown says:

          Yulia fell again but she can hold her head high. She was instumental in winning Russia the team gold. Too bad she could not repeat those flawless performances.

        • trixta says:

          I thought Yuna Kim was the best over all skater (i.e. her style is utter precision, grace, and beauty) , but as I understand it Sotnikova (with an athletic style) included more elements to ramp up her score. This was a risky calculation that paid off big time, so congratulations to her! In fact, she won by a whopping 5+ pt lead! I got the sense that the tv commentators thought Kim was the best skater, therefore the likely gold medalist, but their comments were censored so that their views were obscured.

    • DandyTIger says:

      The announcers during the live performances, Johnny Weir and Tara Lipinski, gave some nice detail of the differences and said that the rankings and scores were 100% accurate. I agree with them. Really, the entire top 10 was some of the best singles skating I’ve seen. But shows need ratings…

  7. Pingback: Friday’s Frighteners | Witch's Will

  8. DeniseVB says:


  9. The Klown says:
  10. The Klown says:
  11. The Klown says:
  12. The Klown says:
    • Lulu says:

      It is called “Scold’s Syndrome”. The sufferers only derive pleasure if someone they hate is perceived as getting an ass chewing or public humiliation.

  13. driguana says:

    “settled science”…isn’t that a bit of an oxymoron? Is science ever settled? I thought only dogma was settled. But then, I guess, climate change has become dogma.

  14. The Klown says:
  15. foxyladi14 says:

    It is very confusing. 😦

    • 49erDweet says:

      That picture of tens of thousands of Venezuelan people filling that boulevard spoke for itself. What it said is open to interpretation, but it can’t be easily ignored or forgotten.

  16. The Klown says:
  17. helenk3 says:

    congress critters want mike morrell back to testify and be questioned on the Benghazi talking points

  18. helenk3 says:

    we are stuck with justin bieber

  19. Propertius says:

    Nice comment on the Zimmerman story in Salon, myiq. I’d have commented, but I don’t FaceBorg and I don’t log into Google so I can’t sign in. My alternate headline:

    “Hispanic Man Driven from Public Beach by Racist Mob.”

  20. foxyladi14 says:

    Some wants to make them a Dynasty!!! 👿

  21. The Klown says:

    Weekly Standard:

    And what of the Great Disappointment of 2013? In the promiscuous blending of politics and culture that characterizes our age, the launch of the Obama campaign in 2007 marked the beginning of a politico-spiritual movement that promised a new beginning and a transformation of the nation. It was to be the “moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal .  .  . [when we] restored our image as the last, best hope on Earth.” Faith in the leader knew no bounds. Obamaism spilled out from the college campuses and tony enclaves of Manhattan and San Francisco into the mass public to become first an American and then a worldwide phenomenon. The legion of believers included not only the youth in their T-shirts emblazoned with the silk-screen Obama image, but also many of the nation’s most experienced political observers. By early 2009, the five wise persons from Oslo had come bearing the gift of the Nobel Peace Prize. No date was fixed for the fulfillment of all the hopes and promises—extensions were continually asked for under the excuse that “change would never be easy”—but enough time had transpired by the end of 2013 for people to sense that the deadline had come and gone. Like October 22, 1844, the appointed time passed with no visible sign of the advent of a new era.

    How believers cope with the trauma of disappointment has long been a theme in the field of social psychology. Modern, positivist research on this topic began with the publication in 1956 of Leon Festinger’s celebrated work When Prophecy Fails, in which Festinger and his colleagues first introduced the theory of “cognitive dissonance.” This theory explores how people deal with the discomfort of confronting conflicting ideas and opposing sentiments (“dissonance”). The model holds that individuals will look for mechanisms to reduce dissonance, be it by avoiding contact with conflicting sources of information (as when readers of The Weekly Standard surf with their remotes past MSNBC) or by restructuring their worldview to reduce or eliminate clashing positions. Three general responses are possible: acceptance, denial, and deflection.

    Accepters are those who conclude that they have succumbed to an error or perhaps been victims of a hoax. In the psychologists’ jargon, they admit to “disconfirmation.” Such recognition may come with powerful feelings of pain—a sense of emptiness, the despair of lost hope, or the embarrassment of having been “had” by a confidence man. It is poignant to read the reaction of one of the Millerites in the wake of the Great Disappointment: “Is there no God, no heaven, no golden home city, no paradise? Is all this but a cunningly devised fable?” Yet with acceptance, difficult as it may be, individuals eliminate dissonance and can at least hope to establish a new equilibrium. According to Festinger, who made Millerism one of his main case studies, acceptance turned out to be the Millerites’ predominant, and likely the best, response. “In spite of their overwhelming commitments,” Festinger writes, “Miller’s followers gave up their beliefs and the movement quickly disintegrated. .  .  . By the late spring of 1845 it had virtually disappeared.”

    In the case of the Great Disappointment of 2013, at the elite level there appear to be at least a few individuals who have managed to reboot psychologically and go on to lead normal and productive lives. The most prominent is Robert Gibbs, Barack Obama’s former press secretary, who is now pursuing his own business career. While he still supports Obama’s political program, Gibbs has recently appeared on television admitting that “2013 was a lost year for the president,” and that the people doubt that Obama’s team is “remotely capable of solving those problems.” He no longer frequents the White House. On the level of the mass public, poll data show a stunning loss of confidence in the leader, as more and more erstwhile followers have come to accept that “the change” was pure fiction. While there are signs of a mild and pervasive depression—nearly two-thirds of the public think the nation is on the wrong track—many seem to be adjusting to life after Obamaism.

    Deniers are those who refuse to accept disconfirmation and go on believing. The explanation for deniability, a reaction that seems counterintuitive, is the pride of Festinger’s study. By his account, some followers have invested so much in their adherence that they cannot eliminate the dissonance by adjusting to reality. They instead “effectively blind themselves to the facts” and band together, fortifying their beliefs by the support of others who agree. “If more and more people can be persuaded that the system of belief is correct, then clearly it must, after all, be correct.” In brief, to quote another expert, they cling to religion.

    Having used the Millerites to illustrate acceptance, Festinger turns to the followers of Sabbatai Zevi to explore deniability. Unknown to most, Zevi represents a remarkable case in religious history. The first half of the seventeenth century was a period of widespread belief among Jews that the Messiah would come—in 1648—and the world would be transformed. Zevi, a student of Kabbalah from Smyrna, proclaimed himself the One to his group of disciples. The appointed year came and went without visible change, but faith in Zevi did not waver. Based on recalculations, acolytes proposed later dates for the Messiah’s arrival. Zevi’s following continued to grow, attracting adherents throughout the whole world of Jewry. Pursuing his mission to go to the Holy Land, Zevi made his way toward Constantinople, where he was arrested by the Turkish authorities. The sultan sought to convert him to Islam, perhaps deploying the threat of death as an inducement. Zevi chose conversion over martyrdom. Yet even this supreme heresy did not entirely squelch the movement. Some followed Zevi into conversion (the Dönmeh), while secretly practicing their old Jewish rituals. Remnants of that group exist to this day.

    Evidence of deniability inside of Obamaism is strong. Deniers can still be regularly encountered on college campuses and in many sections of the nation’s capital. Even the revelation of Obama’s famous deception about keeping your insurance—a moment worthy of Festingerian “disconfirmation” if ever there was one—was dismissed by HHS secretary Kathleen Sebelius on the grounds that it applied to just “5 percent of Americans,” or about twice the population of New York City. The face of the deniers, shaven or unshaven, is Jay Carney, who gives every indication that he is already beginning to form a Dönmeh sect of his own. Of course, Carney has the excuse of being paid for his services, making his deniability plausible. Quite different and more admirable are those who deny with no ulterior motive, out of a pure and abiding faith, like the New Yorker’s editor, David Remnick.

    Deflection is the most interesting of the responses to a crisis of disappointment. Dissonance, according to Festinger, can be reduced if not entirely limited by the mechanism of “inventing ingenious arguments,” of which the “but for” line of reasoning has enjoyed the greatest success. Deflectors admit that the anticipated outcome did not actually occur, which is their concession to reality. But they go on to say that the failure was not the result of a falsehood or a hoax. The prophecy would have been fulfilled but for the existence of a countervailing force that canceled it out. The promise in a sense was kept, only its effects were nullified. Where deflection is ably executed, it can serve to strengthen belief among the faithful, who now conceive of themselves as saints in an implacable struggle with the sinners.

    Among the remaining Obamaites, deflectors seem to outnumber deniers, though the overlap between the two groups makes measurement difficult. Deflection began early on, when the movement was still growing, as a hedge against the possibility of failure. In the full flush of enthusiasm, deflectors began to caution that the great change might be thwarted by the racism of the American public. Deflection was later perfected by political scientists, who added the authority of supposedly neutral analysis. The failure of the advent, it is now said, has been the result of “polarization” and “dysfunctionality.” Polarization is the label assigned to the fact that people strongly disagree today about political matters and have sorted themselves into different parties to express that disagreement. This condition has been artfully turned into a sinister cause, able to act on its own. The inadequacy of such an argument was recognized even by deflectors, who moved on to shore it up by the addition of the theme of dysfunctional government. This term sounds objective, only deflectors have successfully managed to define it as a condition brought on solely by the Republican party. Republicans who oppose the president and his party produce dysfunctionality; Democrats who pass a law fundamentally changing the health care system without reading it are functional. Dysfunctionality is treated as the great alien force; but for it, Obamaism would have succeeded. Here is a faith that can never die.

    • DandyTIger says:

      Great article. And spot on I think.

      • insanelysane says:

        Acceptors mumble their realizations and half apologize with, well, I actually wanted Hillary to be President. Grrrr. Why didn’t they stand up and fight for her?

        The Deniers are well, in denial.

        The Deflectors are many. I know plenty and they seem to be the ones that are very partisan and divisive. The vile progs and their mothers come to mind.

    • Anthony says:

      Its the only one of the scandals that broke that week (IRS, Benghazi, NSA etc) that has teeth in it

    • Propertius says:

      No matter what else turns up, the biggest scandal as far as I’m concerned is that Obama went back to bed after being told those guys were under attack (and went to a fundraiser the next day). Whatever mistakes or security lapses might have occurred beforehand, when the SHTF he went back to bed and let them die. That’s not a mistake, that’s dereliction of duty.

  22. helenk3 says:

    FCC invasion called off

  23. The Klown says:
  24. The Klown says:
  25. votermom says:

    Ukraine president has left Kiev. US claims credit for a new deal that establishes interim govt & elections.

    • DandyTIger says:

      So glad Ukraine is looking better. But the idea that Obama had anything to do with it is rather sad.

      • DandyTIger says:

        Also Poland press says it was Putin that did the deal, and Obama had nothing to do with it.

      • votermom says:

        From pjmedia:

        From the European side, the agreement was forged with a threat. Polish foreign minister Radoslaw Sikorski was caught on camera telling a protest leader, “If you don’t support this [deal] you’ll have martial law, you’ll have the army. You will all be dead.”

        (Deputy Natl Sec Adviser) Blinken claimed the vague public message the administration has been sending about its stance on Ukraine was nothing like what they were accomplishing behind the scenes.

        “We have been very clear, and I think that had an important impact in getting people to move,” he said. “First of all, we have already issued some visa restrictions on those who were responsible for the violence and repression. And under the law, we can’t reveal the names of the people that are on that list, but they are aware of it, and that had an impact.”

        So the protesters were told to take the deal or get martial law, while the govt side were told – they wouldn’t get visas to travel in the USA?
        Yeah, I’m sure that scared them.

    • votermom says:

      Cool map of Lenin statues being pulled down

  26. westcoaster says:

    Michelle’s Mirror summed up Michelle’s visit on Fallon’s show:

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