Brash in pocket

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]

Don’t Hide your love away: Don Brash, climate and a very particular kind of coup

The most right wing political party in New Zealand that is represented in parliament is the Act Party. This blog post by Bryce Edwards, a political scientist at the University of Otago, is a little long and a little out of date now (November 2009) but it gives a reasonable summary of the state of play in New Zealand. For the impatient the guts is that parties can be positioned on xy axes of left-right and libertarian-authoritarian.

Lib cons

Positions of New Zealand political parties as of 2008. Figure by Doug Mackie, drawn from the mean data at Bryce Edwards’ blog. Scale converted from 0-10 in original to -5 to +5 here. Edwards gives the caveats and all errors and distortions are mine.

Until just after the 2005 General Election the ‘centre right’ National Party was lead by Don Brash, an ex-governor of the Reserve Bank. The arguments will go on but most think Brash lost the election for the National Party as he was too right wing.

National won the 2008 election without Don Brash. But it seems Brash and his mates have ‘unfinished business’. Brash gained infamy in 2004 as leader of the opposition for suggesting to a US Congressional delegation that if he were elected in the 2005 election then New Zealand’s nuclear ship ban would be gone by lunchtime. And as leader of the National Party Brash was vocal about his extreme scepticism of climate change.

Continue reading “Don’t Hide your love away: Don Brash, climate and a very particular kind of coup”