Brash in pocket

by Gareth on May 2, 2011

Confirmation that new ACT Party leader Don Brash still considers himself a climate sceptic comes in an interview he gave to arch-libertarian commentator Lindsay Perigo shortly before he launched his takeover putsch (starts as about 24:10 on the Youtube video). Brash happily confirms his scepticism, saying:

“I don’t believe the case has been established that human activity is warming the climate.”

He continues:

“We know that there was a medieval warm period that was much warmer than the globe is now, and we know the Roman period was quite a lot warmer than it is now.”

He also claims that a “very close friend”, “one of Australia’s top physicists” believes “the whole thing’s a con”.

It only takes Brash about a minute to effectively disown the entire scientific establishment (apart from his physicist friend – I wonder who that is?). ACT’s new leader needs to have his feet held to the fire on this. Why should we take his policy prescription seriously, when he is so dismissive of reality in the case of climate change? Perhaps the prime minister’s science advisor, Sir Peter Gluckman, could invite Brash in for a briefing. But perhaps the chink of Alan Gibbs’ loose change is deafening him to the facts…

Hat tip: Carbon News.

[The Pretenders -- wonderfully cheesy]

{ 31 comments… read them below or add one }

Tom Bennion May 2, 2011 at 4:00 pm

There is a joke doing the rounds about the fact that Easter always involves someone being crucified and someone resurrected. ….

Gareth May 2, 2011 at 6:22 pm

But who gets the chocolate egg?

I was mulling over the myths and fables angle as I listened to the news this evening: Brash wants Hide removed as a minister, and to be able to nominate his own ministers. It’s reminiscent of a Greek tragedy – new leader wants to ensure his own future by killing or neutering the old — or perhaps a cuckoo taking over a nest and turfing out the original chicks. All those fluffy little chicks falling to their deaths…

Tom Bennion May 2, 2011 at 11:34 pm

Brash may be interested in the IMF World Economic outlook report April 2011. Chapter 3 is entitled “Oil Scarcity, Growth, and Global Imbalances”. The IMF with great foresight has discovered that there is something about called “oil scarcity”. The report even includes a macroeconomic simulation of a world in which oil production declines 2% a year. The result:

“The most striking aspect of this scenario is, however, that supply reductions of this magnitude would require an increase of more than 200 percent in the oil price on impact and an 800 percent increase over 20 years. Relative price changes of this magnitude would be unprecedented and would likely have nonlinear effects on activity that the model does not adequately capture. Furthermore, the increase in world savings implied by this scenario is so large that several regions could, after the first few years, experience nominal interest rates that approach zero, which could make it difficult to carry out monetary policy.”

No doubt Brash has a mate who says this report is also ‘a con’. Probably Steven Joyce.

Tom Bennion May 3, 2011 at 9:57 am

Re the IMF’s recent discovery of peak oil, and its modelling of it.

Stuart Staniford at Early Warning has more, under the heading “Wow, just wow”: http://earlywarn.blogspot.com/2011/04/wow-just-wow.html

Gareth May 3, 2011 at 11:01 am

I’d also suggest that Don read the latest report by Jeremy Grantham on commodities, as republished by Joe Romm:

Suffice it to say that if we mean to avoid increased starvation and international instability, we will need global ingenuity and generosity on a scale hitherto unheard of.

Macro May 4, 2011 at 8:56 pm

Might I suggest that a few others who comment on here could well afford the time to read it too! ;)
As one commentator on Climate Progress says:
He has pretty much “hit it on the nail” apart from overlooking the mining of fossil water.

Bill Bennett May 3, 2011 at 12:47 pm

I’ve come to the conclusion there are two distinct schools of climate denial.

The first group is made up mainly of those who simply reject science and rational thinking. Some are delusional, others are simply mislead or manipulated.

These people are a worry, but they are not as scary as the second group.

The second group either overlooks the evidence or makes a deliberate point of cynically rejecting it because climate denial suits their political or business purposes. These are the people who finance the campaigns against climate evidence.

Brash belongs to the second category.

_R2D2 May 3, 2011 at 1:23 pm

I’ve come to the conclusion that everyone is different, and trying to psychoanalyse people you know nothing about is insulting and elitist.

bill May 3, 2011 at 2:58 pm

Whereas I’ve come to the conclusion that there are basically two groups of people; those who divide people into two groups, and those who do not.

Other than that, count me into the camp that thinks what Bill Bennett said is perfectly legitimate. I figure R2 is just fishing for that reaction he’s been lamenting not getting anymore…

Dappledwater May 3, 2011 at 1:12 pm

What’s with the photo? Is that what Brash looks like without the make-up?

Gareth May 3, 2011 at 1:46 pm

I borrowed it from Scoop. I think it’s meant to reflect Brash’s return from the political dead — zombietone!

bill May 3, 2011 at 3:00 pm

They did the Brash
They did the Monster Brash
It was a smash
It was a graveyard smash…

Gareth May 3, 2011 at 11:38 pm

Which would make the parliamentary ACT party the Crypt-kicker Five… (Who are the Poodlestabbers? (Bonzos version only)).

Thomas May 4, 2011 at 7:20 am

I wager a prediction (with some hopeful thinking for good measure..):
Come election day Rodney will hide and Don with get the brashing for the eviction of ACT from the benches…..
Hasn’t Don some reputation for executing this sort of maneuver of party executioner with skill?

John D May 4, 2011 at 11:46 am

Brash used a well-known trick to Decline the Hide.

Thomas May 5, 2011 at 9:52 pm

Ha! At least in humor we find some common ground… ! ;-)

lprent May 4, 2011 at 2:36 pm

I borrowed it from Scoop.

Scoop and everyone else borrowed it from The Standard *grin*

I did it originally a few years ago. I just altered the color balance in gimp of an existing photo.

The allusion at the time was to the great green zombie Rodger Douglas video that came out before the last election. I wanted to say the same for Brash *grin*

It came out pretty good.

Gareth May 4, 2011 at 3:29 pm

Oops! And thanks…

Tom Bennion May 3, 2011 at 2:10 pm

I think it is more a matter of screening out data that does not fit a world view. We all do it to some degree. I think responsible politicians have a duty to avoid this where lives are at stake.

I like a recent quote from initforthegold: “The thing you are tuning out, that is reality. It will no longer take care of itself.”

tom May 3, 2011 at 5:03 pm

Ohh! – bill May 3, 2011 at 2:58 pm

Couldn’t help but add how one, Dougal Stevenson on RNZ replay in the wee small hours teased out the verb, brashing, to listeners’ amusement.

A likely case of whatsitallabout.

Re Bill Bennett’s second class of denialist and given the new leader’s leaning toward “top Aussie physicist” in such matters a significant test of this fellow’s – Brash – aversion would be to have him explain the growing presence in our world of Caesium-137. Natural or.. ???

And what would he/Act do about it. In NZ.. oh yes, in NZ!

Kiwiiano May 3, 2011 at 10:08 pm

Perigo should have his arse nailed to the wall for allowing such nonsense to go unchallenged. What kind of lousy excuse for a journalist is he?

Gareth May 3, 2011 at 11:32 pm

Perigo is more of a cheerleader for libertarianism than he is any kind of journalist. Follow the link under his name… He goes waaaay back with the likes of Gibbs et al.

RW May 4, 2011 at 7:16 am

Perigo is a fanatical libertarian. The type of Randian that uses the word “objectivist” to describe his philosophy.

John D May 4, 2011 at 9:30 am

Perigo would be the first to admit this.
At least he understands and has read Ayn Rand.

His blog “SoloPassion.com” is all about objectivism. In my view, it is more a philosophy rather than a political movement.

http://www.solopassion.com/objectivism

RW May 4, 2011 at 2:27 pm

In his version, a philosophy which declares that the “environment” is not a “value”.

tom May 5, 2011 at 4:20 pm

RW,

Was I pleased to see you mention the “environment”. And why? Well, I think it of interest that we make a distinction between someone’s so-called philosophy and what his muse or seer or whatever actually believed.

For on very good Fed authority indeed – they know how useful a tool (some even declaring her a total fool) Ayn-the-screen-writer-Rand was for corporate America – the lady went on to answer the question: so what do I think of environmental polluters? They’re LOOTERS, that is what they are!

Perhaps the one standout observation I could admire her for. What say ye?

RW May 5, 2011 at 6:30 pm

Can’t comment on that, except to repeat that in the world of Perigo environmental pollution is not an issue – we are not required to be concerned about “rocks and puddles”.

Doug Mackie May 5, 2011 at 11:53 pm

At Perigo’s website his CV has a quote from Don Brash:

In a world where most of us pull our punches and hide our true feelings, Lindsay writes with fierce intensity, caring not whether his readers agree with him or not.

‘Caring not’. Quite. Might overtake ‘braindead’ as a catchphrase. Is Don Brash trying to tell us something? Is he going to headhunt Lindsay Perigo for Act?

tom May 6, 2011 at 3:43 pm

The Don in the self-confessed “most of us” category looks problematic.. that is to say he was ably described – and without retort – an autocrat at the NZRB..

Then again a wee look at imho reckless endemic might well account need of pulled punches and hidden feelings. Tho, again, agendas seems a better word in his case.

nigelj May 10, 2011 at 10:16 pm

None of you appreciate how dangerous Act, Brash, and Perigo are for NZ. It wouldnt matter if the agw case was 110% proven and water was half way up Queen St they would still be in complete denial. Their God is no government regulation, its twisted their minds and permanently altered them. They arent normal. If they get hold of the levers of the NZ economy god help us.

Macro May 11, 2011 at 8:29 pm

You hit the nail on the head there nigel! The voters of Epsom have a lot to answer for.

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