Some people are great sticklers for scientific accuracy a.k.a ‘being honest’. Others are experts at putting the ‘good stuff’ coming out of the IPCC to use, a.k.a ‘being effective’.
While discussions on the Himalayan glacier melt largely centered around the scientific issues raised by the IPCC’s extensive copy-pasted text from an old Indian environmental magazine, Down to Earth, as though it contained credible IPCC-grade conclusions worthy of attention, it was in international bargaining and negotiations that the true value of such prattle in IPCC reports comes into full naked view.
In July 2009, Hillary Clinton visited India, ahead of the looming Copenhagen summit. Clinton wanted India to accept ‘binding emissions targets’, the Indian environment minister Jairam Ramesh said India would not do such a thing. Things came to a head at a public press conference with Ramesh and Clinton exchanging barbs.
Rabbet’s Himalayan Record
Miffed by the Indian response, Eli Rabett, the consensus blogger drew out the daggers.
Enamored as he was by then, of the seductive concept of all the Himalayan glaciers disappearing in the next 25 years, the minister’s reaction spurred him, first, to dismiss it as mere “persiflage”. This was accompanied by a gentle reminder to the Indians of how “compassionate” he was, of their reproductive profligacy, and the resulting CO2 ejaculations into the global commons that would damage global climate.
India, well, Eli is a compassionate, fast breeding mammal but still. on the other hand, the Rabett recognizes denial when it is on display thus
Not quite slaked in his thirst for pointing out obvious ‘home truths’, Eli Rabett dived in once more,
To our Indian friends it is my sad duty to point out that among the great civilizations India will be hit first and hardest by climate change, if not within my lifetime which grows short, certainly within the next three decades.
What was it, that would completely destroy Indian civilization within Eli Rabett’s (short) lifetime? Before we get to that, there is more climate porn and suffering …
When that happens, not only will Indians beyond counting suffer, starve and die in disasters worse than the worst famines of the past centuries, but the basis of their religion, beliefs and civilization will become a seasonal chimera. Food and water sent as aid from the outside will at best sustain a small remnant.
Can the Indian government survive such a disaster? Likely not. Nor will Indian society be able to withstand. It will wither and die on the sere ground of the Ganga valley and those who temporized today will be cursed forever.
Really? Is there something that can completely destroy an entire civilization within 30 years?
It turns out that this ‘something’ was the IPCC passage on the Himalayan glaciers – the plagiarized text from the Down to Earth magazine article.
Based on the same, Eli Rabett felt that India “must take the lead” as it was a “threatened large country”, that it couldn’t afford “posturing”, that it would be the “first and the harderst hit by climate change”, that nature had “nominated India” to meet its “existential threat” and demise at the hands of climate change. Faced by its own imminent destruction, said Eli Rabett continuing the turgid wanky wonkery, India was “in no position to oppose a climate change treaty” since it was the “one most at immediate risk outside of a few South Pacific Islands”, to be kept alive by water bottles thrown down from the sky as the world was a “mean and tough place“.
In the end, Eli Rabett even suffered his visions come true – “a prophet” he declared himself, for having predicted that India would see “drinking water supply for close to a billion people disappear…” and the ensuing reaction. He came close to climactic blogging bliss when Barack Obama, the American president appeared to him to be “reading Rabett Run” because he reminded India, just as Eli Rabett did, that “progress” would not amount to anything, if it could not “harvest crops or find drinkable water” (because the glaciers would be gone).
In the story of Glaciergate, this is his record—of alarmism, of self-indulgence in fantasies of catastrophism, of putting to work for his politics the IPCC gunboats without examining for a moment their scientific veracity or accuracy. Now we know what to make of something when he becomes much excited about it.
James Inhofe, whom Eli Rabett called “Senator for the Paleozoic” said:
“Unless supporters of cap-and-trade legislation can develop a plan to convince China and India to make meaningful emissions reductions on par with the United States, no such bill will pass the U.S. Senate”
Inhofe is probably the only politician visiting Copenhagen who said something that turned out true.