Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Hot on the Heals of ClimateGate - MediaGate

The MSM have been found wanting; they have been pushers for the climate alarmists and, although they have also been pushed by the climate sceptics/realists, they ignored the realists and have not given a balanced picture of the media.

Seeing No Evil On Climate-Gate
The shameless denial with which major newspapers and networks have treated "Climategate" layers even more scandal on top of the original one: Mainstream media now co-conspirators with scientific hacks and big government.
The evolution of America's dominant media from guardians of our freedoms to enablers of government growth has been a decades-long story, their biases copiously chronicled.
But their response to the scientific scandal of the century, since it broke a week and a half ago, bids to become known as history's great unmasking of these supposedly independent journalists.

Media missing the Plot on Climate-Gate: It’s the Fraud, Stupid!
by Christopher C. Horner

To the credit of the New York Times, Associated Press and Washington Post — reliable outlets for promoting global warming alarmism, protecting those who craft it and marginalizing those who point out its weaknesses and excesses — they all ran stories in the past 48 hours addressing the documents somehow obtained from the computers of a UK university serving as the warming movement and industry’s Mother Ship. My great surprise is even greater because these outlets have demonstrated a pattern of only giving ink to embarrassing controversies after a week or so, once it appears that damage control is needed and the alarmists have gotten their story straight.
Yet the media have defined the story down, focusing on sideshow issues such as conspiring or hateful commentary about those who cause problems for the authors. Think of the wisdom of that approach: whose emails do not somewhere include such things? Surely this will also be proved with more emails stolen from skeptics’ computers, dispatching the story with an “everybody does it” narrative that entirely elides the meaning of the far more important admissions. Heck, Greenpeace used to peddle emails taken from my trash to the press, and got the Guardian and others to excerpt sections, out of context, with phony context padded around them and without calling me before running their “story”. That’s how they roll. They’ve no room for outrage. Still, that poses no resemblance to what’s going on now.
How it is possible that these media outlets’ regular “issue” reporters do not recognize the import of the fraud admitted to in the emails which, broadly, have been acknowledged as genuine?

Climategate: how the MSM reported the greatest scandal in modern science
James Delingpole lists how MSM have (mis)reported the ClimateGate affair and then adds:

What it also demonstrates – as my dear chum Dan Hannan so frequently and rightly argues – is the growing power of the Blogosphere and the decreasing relevance of the Mainstream Media (MSM).
But in the case of “Climate Change”, the MSM has been caught with its trousers down. The reason it has been so ill-equipped to report on this scandal is because almost all of its Environmental Correspondents and Environmental Editors are parti pris members of the Climate-Fear Promotion lobby. Most of their contacts (and information sources) work for biased lobby groups like Greenpeace and the WWF, or conspicuously pro-AGW government departments and Quangos such as the Carbon Trust. How can they bring themselves to report on skullduggery at Hadley Centre when the scientists involved are the very ones whose work they have done most to champion and whose pro-AGW views they share?

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Inflation hits the 12 days of Christmas!

12 Days of Christmas' Items' Cost Would Top $87,000
Monday, November 30, 2009
By Dan Nephin, Associated Press

Pittsburgh (AP) - Making one's true love happy will cost a whopping $87,403 this year, a minuscule increase from last year, according to the latest cost analysis of the items in the carol "The Twelve Days of Christmas."

That's the grand total for the single partridge in a pear tree to the 12 drummers drumming, purchased repeatedly as the song suggests, according to the annual "Christmas Price Index" compiled by PNC Wealth Management. The price is up a mere $794, or less than 1 percent, from $86,609 last year.

The cost of buying each item just once is increasing this year to $21,466, up 1.8 percent from last year's $21,081.

Jim Dunigan, managing executive of investment for PNC Wealth Management, which has been calculating the cost of Christmas since 1984, attributed the modest increase to lower energy costs and fewer wage increases.

It's the smallest increase since 2002, when the cost actually decreased, according to PNC.

The main driver behind the higher cost is that the price of gold has increased 43 percent, bringing the five gold rings up $150 to $500.

Although wage increases were modest, nine ladies dancing, at $5,473 per performance, is the costliest item, surpassing the that of any of the material goods.

The most expensive goods are the seven swans a-swimming at $5,250, but their cost decreased 6.3 percent from last year's $5,600. Dunigan said their cost tends to be the most volatile because of supply and demand; they were up 33 percent last year over 2007.

Costs for the 10 lords a-leaping ($4,414 per performance), 11 pipers piping ($2,285 per performance) and 12 drummers drumming ($2,475 per performance) remained the same as last year. Dunigan says that reflects the labor market in which the unemployment rate rose to near 10 percent after sitting below 5 percent for much of the decade.

And for those who would shop online, a word of caution.

PNC says you'll pay $31,435, which is down from last year's online price, but still about $10,000 more than in the traditional index.

"In general, Internet prices are higher than their non-Internet counterparts because of shipping costs for birds and the convenience factor of shopping online," Dunigan said.

PNC Financial Services Group Inc. checks jewelry stores, dance companies, pet stores and other sources to compile the list. While it is done humorously, PNC said its index mirrors real economic trends.

Besides putting out the list for fun, PNC makes it available to teachers across the country to teach economic trends.

While it's unlikely anyone would buy the items, Dunigan said one item is likely to please.

"We don't necessarily suggest picking just one, but it's hard to believe that gold rings wouldn't lead the list on a year-to-year basis," Dunigan said.