In reader comments yesterday, there was a little discussion about Peter Heller’s recap of the 3rd International Conference on Climate and Energy, here (German), which took place in Berlin last weekend.
Heller exposed a spy who had been sent over to check up on what was going down at the denier pow-wow on the other side of the Climate Science Iron Curtain. Heller writes:
In any case, by coincidence, I happened to sit down at lunch with a young lady, who outed herself as an employee of Hans Joachim Schellnhuber [PIK], completely forthright and without any reservation. She expressed her wonder at the political emphasis of the conference. She had obviously expected something esoteric and anti-science, probably, which would later allow her institute to gripe endlessly about. However, the conference offered none of that.”
For readers not familiar with PIK, it is the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research, which is directed by Prof Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, and is the workplace for Stefan Rahmstorf and Wealth Redistributor Ottmar Edenhofer. It is, unfortunately, the primary scientific institute advising Angela Merkel on climate policy.
Obviously Schellnhuber didn’t want to be caught slumming it by being seen at such an event (or maybe he felt the risk of being caught peering through 2 holes cut in a copy of the Süddeutsche Zeitung was too high). So instead he opted to issue an underling an Ausreisegenehmigung (travel permit) to Denierland – with the mission to observe the capitalistically funded conference.
As a visiting blogger, I’m a little intrigued by all this. I’m told Greenpeace activists were sent over last year. This year we got a young spy. I view that as progress. The level of sophistication in dealing with skeptics is indeed climbing.
I can only speculate what may have gone through this young lady’s head as she listened to the speakers.
First of all, it must have made an impression on her that on the skeptic side of the Climate Iron Curtain people are much more positive and optimistic about the future, and not all mired in the doom, gloom and pessimism of the sort one finds at the PIK, where scientists constantly fret and wring their hands over the ever faster approaching climate catastrophe.
And working at the PIK, where a certain science dogma is rigidly enforced and nothing else is tolerated, she had to have appreciated the intellectual freedom that the skeptics enjoy, where everyone is free to think and express any view, and do so without fear of having to do time in a science gulag.
At RealClimate, how many scientists have had their comments deleted? How often do we hear Rahmstorf complain about newspapers openly expressing views he does not agree with? How many hours does Rahmstorf spend surfing the Internet in search of “denier” articles and rebutting them, smearing scientists as he does so?
Peter Heller writes that the political and economic emphasis at the conference appeared to confuse the young lady:
This seemed to be an aspect that she perceived as surprising. From our short discussion at the lunch table, she expected more a debate about climatic model certainty and the possibilities for their improvement. Instead, she was shown the risks that today’s climate protection policies entail, and the risks that politicians are willing to take and what their motives are. She did not want to accept the fact that climate policy in Germany is labelled with PIK, and carries the tags of Schellnhuber, Rahmstorf and Edenhofer, and that we certainly oppose these also with political arguments. Who, I ask myself, suffers here from cognitive dissonance?
It’s obviously all too much for the young lady, who by now has surely returned back to the PIK where she finds all the comforts that dogma and restricted intellectual freedom have to offer.