When Hall of Fame baseball pitcher Randy Johnson took the mound during his prime, he was known as The Walking Infirmary. Johnson was one of the hardest throwing pitchers in baseball history, throwing a blistering fastball that frequently topped 100 mph. To make a point, he would often throw his fastball right at hitters’ heads. He complemented his fastball with a knee-buckling slider that left-handed hitters were sure was going to put them in the hospital ward before it curved away from their heads and darted over the plate.
At 6 feet 10 inches tall and frequently wearing a nasty scowl on his face, Johnson was every bit as intimidating in appearance as his pitches were intimidating in effectiveness. When Randy Johnson took the mound, hitters on opposing teams coincidentally came up with all sorts of illnesses and ailments that they claimed required them to stay at home or on the bench.
Johnson may have retired from baseball after the 2009 baseball season, but his legacy continues in the global warming debate. When global warming alarmists are invited to participate in a debate or panel discussion with global warming skeptics, they coincidentally come up with all sorts of excuses to stay at home or on the bench.
For example, late last month global warming alarmist Bill Nye – who proclaims himself “The Science Guy” – was scheduled to debate skeptic Marc Morano on a nationally televised segment on CNN. One would expect that a person who believes the science is on his side would relish the opportunity to participate in, and decisively win, a nationally televised debate. At the last minute, however, Nye cowardly backed out. Nye didn’t even give Morano the courtesy of advance notice of his cowardice, with the CNN producer giving Morano only six minutes advance notice that Nye would not participate.
Similarly, prominent global warming alarmist Michael Mann gave a presentation last month at publicly-funded Valencia College near Orlando, Florida. Although Mann has repeatedly chickened out of appearing in venues in which alarmists and skeptics can examine and question each other’s assertions, Mann was all too happy to travel to Florida (presumably at Florida taxpayers’ expense) to speak at an event in which he alone controlled the message.
That being said, it is hard to blame the alarmists for their fear of public discussion and debate; every time they attempt to debate the science, they end up getting smoked. Given what happened the last time there was a public debate in Florida regarding global warming, who can blame Michael Mann for seeking to avoid the same embarrassment suffered by his brother-in-arms, Ray Bellamy? Even though Bellamy is a trained presenter for Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project, all the Al Gore training and Hollywood gimmicks in the world couldn’t save him from the overwhelming verdict of science. No wonder why Michael Mann flies solo in his global warming presentations.
To the limited extend that alarmists do venture into the world of interactive discussion and debate, their arguments are tarnished with the unmistakable odor of personal hypocrisy.
When the Sierra Club’s Michael Brune filled in for “The Coward Guy” Bill Nye in the CNN segment, he decided his best line of attack was to smear Marc Morano by claiming Morano must be funded by the fossil fuel industry. Incredibly, Brune made this argument after the Sierra Club accepted $26 million from fossil fuel company Chesapeake Energy. Notably, Al Gore Climate Reality Project presenter Ray Bellamy attempted a similar smear in his Tallahassee, Florida debate just days after Gore sold his Current TV to fossil-fuel funded Al Jazeera for $500 million.
And Michael Mann will attack a skeptical scientist as being “valueless” and serving as a “hired gun” when he himself gets rich off his high-profile alarmism, charging as much as $10,000 plus travel expenses for a single talk.
Why do global warming alarmists come up with all sorts of excuses to avoid participating in interactive public discussion and debate? The answer is simple; they have learned that if they do, they will wind up like a hapless bird caught in the path of a blazing Randy Johnson fastball.
[First posted at Forbes.]