Free Speech Is Ddead in Britain. I Learned This on a BBC Programme Called Free Speech

November 20, 2014

Is it just my imagination or was there a widely publicised report a few weeks ago by a professor called Alexis Jay describing in clinical detail how at least 1400 mostly underage girls were groomed, drugged and raped over a period of years in the northern town of Rotherham by gangs of men from predominately Kashmiri-Pakistani Muslim backgrounds?

The reason I ask is that earlier this week, I was publicly called a liar, an Islamophobe and a racist for mentioning this fact on a BBC TV debate programme called – laughably – Free Speech. “Boo! Hiss!” went the studio audience. “Not true” went the silly girl panelist sitting to my left. “List one contemporary problem facing Britain that’s NOT the fault of Muslims? Are there any in your mind?” said someone on Twitter with evidently strong and somewhat unnerving radical Islamist sympathies.

It’s normally at this point in the proceedings that the moderator comes to your rescue. I know Jonathan or David Dimbleby would have done. Grumble though I do on occasion about the leftist bias of their respective programmes Any Questions and Question Time, the fact remains that the Dimblebys are bright, scrupulous, supremely well-informed professionals. No way would they allow it to go unchallenged if one of their panelists said something that was perfectly true only to have the rest of the panel and (almost) the entire audience to shout him down as a racist, Islamophobic liar.

But the same, unfortunately, could not be said for the moderators on this particular programme, which was evidently designed as a kind of looser, more youthful version of Question Time, aimed at the 16 to 34-year old demographic. They pointed the mics willy nilly at panelists and members of the audience with little regard to the sense – or nonsense – of what was being said.

Certainly, there was no evidence of any presiding intelligence shaping the show or the direction and balance of the debate. For all the difference the Blue-Peter-level moderation made, we could have been talking about Miley Cyrus’s twerking moves or Kim Kardashian’s bum, rather than about highly contentious, very serious and potentially dangerous issues like so-called “rape culture” and the radicalisation of young British Muslims.

Afterwards various viewers who had been appalled as I was by this car crash of debate asked why I’d volunteered for it. “Why go on James? It’s like stepping into the cretins’ den,” said one. Other comments from sympathisers included: “I had to turn it off,”; “You must have the patience of a saint after last night’s “Free Speech”,” It’s not a debate, more a left-wing hate-session against anyone daring not to conform”; “Have watched you on the BBC last night. I have to say that even growing up in communist Poland I have rarely seen such a shameless set up and left wing propaganda show. I admire your courage really.”

And the answer is: definitely not for the money. (£150 in case you wondered). No, the reason you do these things is partly in the naive hope that this time it will be different – that for once you’ll find a BBC debate programme where your function isn’t to play the token right-wing nutcase for the torture-porn delight of an audience of rabid lefties. And also because someone has to put the alternative viewpoint across, otherwise all you’re going to get is a bunch of people spouting the usually right-on, progressive cant and just agreeing with one another. If no one does this, then the enemy will have won.

So that’s why I did it but, God, I almost wish I hadn’t….

Read the rest at Breitbart London

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From Farage to Freud: How the Cultural Marxists Are Murdering Our Language

The other day on BBC Radio 4’s Any Questions, I made a point which unfortunately went right over the heads of my booing audience. It had to do with the way lefties like my fellow panelists Chuka Umunna MP and TUC leader Frances O’Grady too often choose to misrepresent the meaning of perfectly harmless words and language for nefarious political ends.

We were discussing Labour’s confected furore over Lord Freud’s remarks on the disabled. As is now abundantly clear to anyone even halfway acquainted with the background to the story – the fact, for example, that his comments were addressed sympathetically to the father of a severely disabled daughter – Lord Freud’s intentions and meaning were unimpeachably honourable and decent.

So instead his critics resorted to that well-tested lefty fallback position: distortion and misrepresentation. In this case, Lord Freud’s remarks about disabled people being thought by employers to be not “worth the full wage” were twisted so as to mean that he thought disabled people were “worthless.”

This is a weasel trick and when Labour MP Chuka Umunna tried it on Any Questions, I called him out on it. Umunna has his faults but unutterable stupidity is not one of them. Suppose, I put it to him, that he had heard someone in the pub after a rugger match boasting about having “murdered” the opposition. Would he call the police?

Of course he wouldn’t because like anyone born into our richly allusive English-speaking culture he would have understood that our language depends as much on tone and context as it does on the words themselves. That verb “murder” is a perfect example of this. Sometimes, it can indeed mean literally “kill”. But on many other occasions it can mean something innocuous like desperation for a drink (“I could murder a pint”) or abject defeat in a board game (“he murdered me at Scrabble”).

And the amazing thing is that despite the fact that depressingly large sections of our population have low IQs, are functionally illiterate, and are almost totally uneducated thanks to our dumbed-down education system, even the most unutterable thickos among us are yet capable of grasping these semantic nuances – even though they wouldn’t know what a “semantic nuance” was if it bit them on the arse.

So if even the thickest of thick native English speakers can understand basic concepts like the fact that even though “worth less” and “worthless” sound the same but actually mean something different – why can’t a bright, articulate, Manchester- and Burgundy-University-educated, City lawyer like Chuka Umunna?

The answer, of course, is that it suits him not to – in much the same way it suited Nigel Farage’s various lefty-feminist critics not to at the time of his supposedly contentious remarks earlier this year about women in the City.

What Farage said, you may remember, was this:

“And if a woman has a client base, has a child and takes two or three years off work, she is worth far less to the employer when she comes back than when she went away because her client base will not have stuck rigidly to her.”

This is a fairly straightforward economic point which, I’m quite sure, any City employer would tell you (albeit guardedly, lest they seem in any way “discriminatory”) is no more than the ground truth.

Yet the truth was no defence for the likes of Labour MPs such as Harriet Harman who naturally piled in to accuse Farage of saying something he had never actually said: that female employees are, to some degree, “worthless.”

Of course I understand why the Harmans and the Umunnas of the world play this game: it’s a useful way of circumventing the awkward fact that the left rarely has any useful arguments.

But what astonishes me is our cultural tolerance for it…

Read the rest at Breitbart London

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What really happened on BBC Any Questions | James Delingpole

June 10, 2013

One of last night’s protestors.

I did very much enjoy recording Any Questions in the belly of the beast – aka Eco Loon Central, aka the Centre for Alternative Technology in Machynlleth – this week. But I’m not sure it necessarily had the makings of brilliant radio.

The big problem with radio – as opposed to TV – is that if things start kicking off in the recording venue (as they very much did with last night’s unusually lively audience of yoghurt-weaving yurt-dwellers) there are no cameras to relay what’s going on to the outside world. If you were listening last night – or if you listened to today’s repeat – all you’ll have heard is some background protestations from the audience and the sound of Jonathan Dimbleby trying to keep order.

I think the technical term for what the BBC did with this programme was “trolling.” Step one: arrange to record your panel show in ground zero of green lunacy. Step two: invite one of Britain’s most infamous climate sceptics and one of Britain’s most outspokenly anti-wind-farm, pro-fracking MPs (Owen Paterson – who was partly responsible for effecting the government’s recent policy shift making it easier for groups to oppose wind farms). Step three: light touch-paper and run.

That noise you’ll have heard in the background was partly all the mung-bean-munchers in the audience jeering and hissing me when I expressed scepticism about climate change; but mainly – the real rumpus at the end – was when a small group of anti-badger-cull protestors in the front row tried to hijack the show by loudly shouting insults at Owen Paterson. Annoyingly this was at the very moment when it was my turn to speak about wind farms and I ended up having to shout into my mic so as to avoid being drowned out by the yelling badger huggers.

Anyway, I enjoyed it a lot, as I think Paterson did too. We didn’t feel threatened, the volunteers from the Alternative Technology Centre were all very sweet and welcoming, and of course it’s always tremendous fun getting to tell a bunch of eco loons to their face that they’re a bunch of eco loons – and have it broadcast all over the country.

But I fear that the real – and thoroughly undeserved – losers from all this were the thousands of people all over mid-Wales who are struggling desperately to stop their matchlessly beautiful landscape being destroyed by wind turbines and pylons. Taking the train to Machynlleth on Friday I looked out of the window slack-jawed at the magnificence of mid-Wales’s The-Shire-like hill country which has been rendered more lushly green than perhaps at any time in recent history thanks to the atmospheric abundance of glorious CO2. And the question I kept asking myself is: “How could anyone who really cares about our natural heritage possibly want to destroy this with wind turbines?”

Under current government plans, 800 turbines – some over 400 feet tall – are to be built in mid-Wales, with another 100 miles worth of pylons to be built across Montgomeryshire and into Shropshire in order to connect their expensive, intermittent, unreliable electricity with the national grid. This is going to cost a minimum of £2 billion. Yet, for about one fifth of that cost you can build a gas fired power station capable of producing nearly three times as much power – without blighting the countryside for miles around and without draining the pockets of the poor, put-upon energy user with unnecessary green tariffs.

These people deserve better than to have the cause dearest to their hearts trivialised in the way it was on BBC Any Questions. Given a bit more space and given a more balanced audience, I could have made a much more persuasive case for them. Instead, I was forced to bellow my point, slogan-like, into the mic in the last few seconds before the show closed while the badger protestors were barracking Paterson. Exciting for some us, perhaps, but not really fair on the people who really matter: the thousands of victims of the unconscionable wind energy scam still being forced on them by our Coalition government, the Welsh Assembly and Alex Salmond.

UPDATE: I’ve written some further thoughts on this which I think a few of you might enjoy. There’s a particularly delicious section on one of our house trolls.

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Japan: Whatever Happened to the Nuclear Meltdown?

Godzilla: where the hell is he?

Godzilla: where the hell is he?

Amazing, isn’t it, what a little light military intervention can do to a nuclear crisis?

One minute, the world is facing nuclear meltdown armageddon to rank with ooh, Three Mile Island at the very least, and quite possibly Chernobyl. A few (shockingly expensive) missile strikes over Benghazi and Tripoli later, though, and the Japanese nuclear crisis has all but vanished from the face of the earth.

Maybe we should start small wars more often. Or maybe even better the MSM could learn to start reporting on nuclear incidents like journalists instead of activists from Greenpeace and Friends of the Earth.

I’m with Lewis Page on this one. In the Register, he writes:

As one who earns his living in the media these days, I can only apologise on behalf of my profession for the unbelievable levels of fear and misinformation purveyed this week. I have never been so ashamed to call myself a journalist.

Page puts the Fukushima incident in its proper perspective:

The Fukushima reactors actually came through the quake with flying colours despite the fact that it was five times stronger than they had been built to withstand. Only with the following tsunami – again, bigger than the design allowed for – did problems develop, and these problems seem likely to end in insignificant consequences. The Nos 1, 2 and 3 reactors at Daiichi may never produce power again – though this is not certain – but the likelihood is that Nos 4, 5 and 6 will return to service behind a bigger tsunami barrier.

The lesson to learn here is that if your country is hit by a monster earthquake and tsunami, one of the safest places to be is at the local nuclear powerplant. Other Japanese nuclear powerplants in the quake-stricken area, in fact, are sheltering homeless refugees in their buildings – which are some of the few in the region left standing at all, let alone with heating, water and other amenities.

Nothing else in the quake-stricken area has come through anything like as well as the nuclear power stations, or with so little harm to the population. All other forms of infrastructure – transport, housing, industries – have failed the people in and around them comprehensively, leading to deaths most probably in the tens of thousands. Fires, explosions and tank/pipeline ruptures all across the region will have done incalculably more environmental damage, distributed hugely greater amounts of carcinogens than Fukushima Daiichi – which has so far emitted almost nothing but radioactive steam (which becomes non-radioactive within minutes of being generated).

And yet nobody will say after this: “don’t build roads; don’t build towns; don’t build ships or chemical plants or oil refineries or railways”. That would be ridiculous, of course, even though having all those things has actually led to terrible loss of life, destruction and pollution in the quake’s wake.

But far and away more ridiculously, a lot of people are already saying that Fukushima with its probable zero consequences means that no new nuclear powerplants should ever be built again.

One of those ridiculous people is inevitably the noisome Energy Secretary Chris Huhne. In true Rahm Emanuel style he is using the perceived crisis as an excuse to push forward his anti-nuclear, eco-loon agenda. He claims:

“We can do the 80 per cent reduction in emissions by 2050 without new nuclear, but it will require a big effort on carbon capture and storage and renewables.”

If implemented this will most assuredly cause brown-outs and tremendous economic damage by the time the energy gap begins to widen in 2020. But since Huhne will no longer be in office then and since he is wealthy enough not to have to face the consequences of his political stupidity this is unlikely to bother him.

Another of those people is the Hon Sir Jonathon Porritt, who could be heard on BBC Radio 4’s Any Questions grandstanding about his  opposition to nuclear and being given a free pass by Jonathan Dimbleby to spout his spurious eco-propaganda as if it were actually true. At one point, he actually claimed that wind farms did not cause noise disturbance. (Maybe, Sir Jonathan, I should give you the phone number of the poor Welsh chap who has been advised that he should now sleep with his windows shut at night to cut out the noise of the wind farm which has destroyed the value of his property and ruined his retirement).

One of the main objections raised about nuclear power is how incredibly expensive it is. There’s a reason for this: thanks to forty years of hysterical, dishonest propaganda from “Atomkraft Nein Danke” eco-activists like Porritt and Huhne, the bar for safety has been set to such impossibly high standards that it cannot compete economically with less heavily regulated industries such as oil, coal, gas or indeed wind. I was pleased to hear Toby Young on Any Questions reiterating my point about the safety records of the nuclear and wind industries:

Nuclear fatalities in the last ten years: 7

Wind farm fatalities in the last ten years: 44.

In those ten years nuclear provided thirty times the energy of wind. This means in the last decade, nuclear has been around 200 times safer than wind on an energy produced/accidents basis.

And entirely unsurprised when the Hon Sir Jonathan Porritt, having pompously thanked Toby for raising the safety issue, chose to ignore the inconvenient truth of these statistics.

Let’s leave last word to this German astronomer and physicist, Dr Peter Heller, who has written a moving essay on how the scientific truth on nuclear power has been warped by political activism. (Hmm. Reminds me of another area of “science” which has been similarly distorted by scientists, politicians and activists with an agenda. Can anyone jog my memory?) (H/T Roddy Campbell)

So it fills me with sadness and anger on how the work of the above mentioned giants of physics is now being dragged through the mud, how the greatest scientific discoveries of the 20th century are being redefined and criminalized. The current debate in Germany is also a debate on freedom of research. The stigmatization and ostracism of nuclear energy, the demand for an immediate stop of its use, is also the demand for the end of its research and development. No job possibilities also means no students, which means no faculty, which then means the end of the growth of our knowledge. Stopping nuclear energy is nothing less than rejecting the legacy of Einstein, Heisenberg, Bohr and all others. It is tantamount to scrapping it, labelling it as dangerous – all in a fit of ignorance. And just as creationists attempt to ban the theory of evolution from the school books, it almost seems as if every factual and neutral explanation in Germany is now in the process of being deleted.

The media suggests a nuclear catastrophe, a mega-meltdown, and that the apocalypse has already begun. It is almost as if the 10,000 deaths in Japan were actually victims of nuclear energy, and not the earthquake or the tsunami. Here again one has to remind us that Fukushima was first hit by an unimaginable 9.0 earthquake and then by a massive 10-meter wave of water just an hour later. As a result, the facility no longer found itself in a highly technological area, but surrounded by a desert of rubble. All around the power plant the infrastructure, residential areas, traffic routes, energy and communication networks are simply no longer there. They were wiped out. Yet, after an entire week, the apocalypse still has not come to pass. Only relatively small amounts of radioactive materials have leaked out and have had only a local impact. If one considers the pure facts exclusively, i.e. only the things we really know, then it exposes the unfounded interpretations of scientific illiterates in the media. One can only arrive to one conclusion: This sorrowful state will remain so.

Read the full essay at Watts Up With That? It’s a blinder.

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4 thoughts on “Japan: whatever happened to the nuclear meltdown?”

  1. Nige Cook says:23rd March 2011 at 8:29 am

    Let’s leave last word to this German astronomer and physicist, German astronomer and physicist, Dr Peter Heller, who has written a moving essay on how the scientific truth on nuclear power has been warped by political activism. …

    “So it fills me with sadness and anger on how the work of the above mentioned giants of physics is now being dragged through the mud, how the greatest scientific discoveries of the 20th century are being redefined and criminalized. The current debate in Germany is also a debate on freedom of research. The stigmatization and ostracism of nuclear energy, the demand for an immediate stop of its use, is also the demand for the end of its research and development. No job possibilities also means no students, which means no faculty, which then means the end of the growth of our knowledge. Stopping nuclear energy is nothing less than rejecting the legacy of Einstein, Heisenberg, Bohr and all others. It is tantamount to scrapping it, labelling it as dangerous – all in a fit of ignorance. And just as creationists attempt to ban the theory of evolution from the school books, it almost seems as if every factual and neutral explanation in Germany is now in the process of being deleted.”

    Deja vu. This groupthink episode has sadly happened before, namely after German defeat in WWI when their physics mainstream went bananas, as Paul Forman’s paper explains: “Weimar culture, causality, and quantum theory: adaptation by German physicists and mathematicians to a hostile environment,” Historical Studies in the Physical Sciences, vol 3 (1071), pp 1-115.

    The Weimar culture from 1918-33 in Germany was a sellout of rationality and causality due to their alleged failure in WWI. This led to widespread applause for Heisenberg’s 1st quantization Uncertainty Principle of 1925, which assumes intrinsic indeterminancy exists in the universe, without a mechanism. (From 1927 Dirac and other proponents of 2nd quantization disproved this and showed that indeterminancy results from particulate or quantum force fields, like Brownian motion of pollen being due to a sum-over-histories of discrete individual air molecule impacts on the pollen grain.) Heisenberg’s 1920s neo-Nazis fellow travellers wanted the Uncertainty Principle because it seemed to say that German defeat in 1918 was due to a random wavefunction collapse with no cause, and that Germany won the war in a parallel universe.

    Adolf Hitler then rewarded Heisenberg’s Uncertainty principle 1st quantization theory by making Heisenberg head of nuclear research in the Third Reich. You know the story. Heisenberg knew nothing about real science, so he failed the make a nuclear bomb. The detail he got wrong was simply not knowing that boron electrodes were used in producing graphite, and that boron (a neutron absorber) contaminated the graphite and make it useless. America simply changed electrodes and used pure graphite for their reactor moderators, producing plutonium. Heisenberg rejected graphite altogether and switched moderators, choosing heavy water from a Norway plant, soon blown up by commandos.

    Exactly the same thing has occurred after the second German defeat in 1945. Instead of screwing up the future of theoretical physics by changing the pursuit of mechanistic models into the pursuit of mathematical obfuscation, this time the German fascists chose to back the USSR by trying to get the West into nuclear disarmament, so the USSR would achieve world domination. To do this, they lied this time about nuclear radiation dangers.

    For a good technical debunking of low-level radiation media hype scare-mongering (such as that from Dr Ernest Sternglass), please see: http://www.broadinstitute.org/~ilya/alexander_shlyakhter/92h_radiation_risk_leukemia_cancer.pdf

  2. James Delingpole says:23rd March 2011 at 8:39 amI do enjoy your posts Nigel. They’re better than my blog.
  3. Nige Cook says:24th March 2011 at 9:17 pmThanks for the witty sarcasm, James.
  4. John D says:27th March 2011 at 4:55 amJames and Nige, what a great sycophantic double act.

Comments are closed.

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How the BBC censored my monstrous, hideously offensive ‘Irish joke’ | James Delingpole

August 15, 2010

On Any Questions I apparently told a joke so offensive that it had to be censored by the BBC.

I say “apparently” because I wasn’t even aware I’d told a joke, let alone one worthy of censorship, till I discovered that the BBC had cut it out of the Saturday lunchtime repeat of the programme.

Typical Irishmen, yesterday

Typical Irishmen, yesterday

The “offensive joke” was something I’d said while prefacing some remarks about our wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. I referred to the Irishman who, when asked for directions says: “If you want to get there you don’t want to start from here.”

I suppose if I’d considered it a joke, I might have essayed an Irish accent, or prefaced it with “Sure” or “Begorrah” or “Bejaysus, shor” or some such, and maybe done a little jig with my hands stapled to my sides while drinking a pint of Guinness and wearing a St Patrick’s Day comedy shamrock hat and then left a little gap afterwards so that the audience could express their delight in gales of laughter. But as far as I understand it – as, indeed, I believe most sane people understand it – is that it’s one of those old sayings, more often than not told by the Irish themselves, to illustrate a kind of perverse, quirky, counterintuitive streak that makes the Irish way of thinking so comically, lovably Irish.

This isn’t to say that I’m in any way against the telling of Irish jokes nor that I would have refrained from telling one if I could have thought of an appropriate one on Any Questions. All I’m saying that on this particular occasion I wasn’t telling an Irish joke, let alone an offensive one. The fact that the BBC is so foolish enough to believe otherwise speaks volumes about the culture of political correctness, hypersensitivity and gratuitous offence-taking in which we now live.

My friend Douglas Murray writes of even worse experiences – again at the hands of chippy Irish grievance mongers – in the Spectator this week.

If this is where we’re going, truly I fear for our country even more than I was doing already when I woke up this morning to read in my paper that David Cameron has pronounced himself happier to be governing in a Brokeback Coalition with a bunch of bizarre, Lib Dem ecofreaks and crypto Communists than he would have been had he won a Conservative majority.

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3 thoughts on “How the BBC censored my monstrous, hideously offensive ‘Irish joke’”

  1. Peter Walsh says:15th August 2010 at 1:46 pmThe BBC should grow a sense of humour, and while they are at that, maybe they should also grow an ability to present a balanced view on one of your favourite subjects, AGW. That Irish joke is as old as the hills. It is still funny. I am Irish and have absolutely no problem with your passing it on. Do you think they need a humour implant over there?
  2. bigkenny says:16th August 2010 at 5:59 amI can understand why you are enraged, Mr Delingpole, but its hardly surprising. This country is well on the way to the dogs. The BBC is barely worth listening to anymore. You will soon not be able to joke, or look at anyone in the street, or anywhere else. We are all to be Zombies. Mr Murrays piece in the Spectator, was downright frightening.
  3. forthurst says:22nd August 2010 at 2:12 pmDelingpole is far worse than a xenophobe; he is the mangler of a good joke. The Irishman said, “If I were you, I wouldn’t start from here.”

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What is it that greens like Jonathan Porritt so LOATHE about nature? | James Delingpole

August 22, 2009

What is it that greens like Jonathan Porritt so LOATHE about nature?

For some time now, I have been struck by a strange paradox about the more radical members of the green movement: if they love nature so much, how come they expend so much energy trying to destroy it?

I’m thinking, for example, of their championing of biofuels – a disastrous idea which not only helped starve the poor by causing a massive hike in global food prices but which has also led to still further devastation of their beloved rainforests. And also of the windfarms with which they plan to carpet the British landscape, in theory to save it from an apocalyptic future envisioned by their highly suspect computer models, in practice to render it ugly and unnatural and damaged almost beyond rescue.

The Hon. Sir Jonathon Espie Porritt, 2nd Baronet – he proposes a two-children limit on families

Or listen to Any Questions and hear it for yourself in the visceral hatred, contempt and shrill self-righteousness in the voice of ecology campaigner Sir Jonathan Porritt (Bart.) as he pours scorn on my suggestion that the Severn Barrage project will cause massive environmental damage to the bird-rich mud flats of the Severn Estuary (not to mention killing off one of Britain’s quirkier national phenomena, the mini-tidal-wave-like Severn Bore).

The £20 billion project, if it ever happens, will produce the same amount of energy as one nuclear power station – but at about eight times the cost. Porritt, naturally, is a huge fan – and seems to have little regard for the unfortunate environmental side-effects.

“Wonderful that James is such an ardent defender of the mud flats. At last he’s found a cause worth defending,” sneers Porritt doing his bravura impersonation of Alan Rickman’s oleaginously evil Professor Snape in the Harry Potter movies.

Elsewhere in the programme, Porritt calls me a “flat earther” and shrieks “Lies. All lies” when I make several perfectly truthful and valid statements questioning the so-called scientific “consensus” regarding Anthropogenic Global Warming. Needless to say, he makes no attempt to answer when I put to him that if, as Al Gore claims in An Inconvenient Truth global warming increases inexorably with higher CO2 emissions then how come, when CO2 emissions have continued to rise in the last 12 years global temperatures have actually fallen. Displaying the grandeur and pomposity you might imagine an-Old-Etonian-baronet turned eco-freak progressive would have striven a little harder to mask, Porritt carries on as if anyone who disagrees with him is scum quite beneath his contempt.

I’d never met Porritt before. I found his zealotry genuinely frightening, not least because – except when the mask slips, as I think it did on occasion during the programme, enabling listeners to make up their own minds as to what a piece of work this man is – he speaks his apocalyptic (and often scientifically dubious) views in a voice of such persuasive, modulated reasonableness. Worse still, he has the ear of our future King.

I didn’t mention this during the programme, because I thought things were already getting pretty mucky, but I do think there’s something a bit scary about a man who publicly advocates, in all seriousness, that couples should limit themselves to having two children only in order to save Mother Gaia from the deleterious influence of loathsome mankind. I come from a large happy family. I  love my little bro and my two little sisters. If we followed Porritt’s fascistic strictures, they wouldn’t now exist.

Was the programme quite as biased towards the liberal-left as I predicted in yesterday’s blog? Well to be fair to Jonathan Dimbleby I believe he tries as hard as he possibly can to be neutral. (As neutral as a man can be when he’s such a believer in AGW that he’s erecting a wind turbine in his Devon garden, much to the fury of some of his neighbours). The audience at beautiful Middle Wallop’s magnificent Museum Of Army Flying (highly recommended, especially for its Arnhem dioramas with Horsa gliders, and Gallipoli, a six-pounder that was actually used in the battle) were generous and pleasant. But I can’t pretend it wasn’t an uphill struggle being the only libertarian right-wing “AGW denier” against a panel of three liberal-lefties.

Even my nice neighbour, novelist Kate Mosse, who was supposed to be at best neutral came out on the deep green leftie side with possibly the most ludicrously stupid remark of the evening. If we put up with electric pylons, she said, we should put up with wind turbines too. And actually, she thought, the windfarms in South West France where she has her second home look rather pretty.

Yes Kate, and I’d bet they’d look even prettier with a makeover by Cath Kidston. Why on earth didn’t we think of this before?

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