Grab a coffee first, but whatever you do, don’t miss this one.
Clive James writes:
Although the alarmists might finally have to face that they will not get much more of what they want on a policy level, they will surely, on the level of their own employment, go on wanting their salaries and prestige. To take a conspicuous if ludicrous case, the Australian climate star Tim Flannery will probably not, of his own free will, shrink back to the position conferred by his original metier, as an expert on the extinction of the giant wombat. He is far more likely to go on being, and wishing to be, one of the mass media’s clockwork oracles about climate. While that possibility continues, it will go on being dangerous to stand between him and a TV camera. If the giant wombat could have moved at that speed, it would still be with us.
The mere fact that few of Flannery’s predictions have never come even remotely true need not be enough to discredit him. The same fact, in the case of America’s Professor Ehrlich, has left him untouched ever since he predicted that the world would soon run out of copper. In those days, when our current phase of the long discussion about man’s attack on nature was just beginning, he predicted mass death by extreme cold. Lately he predicts mass death by extreme heat. But he has always predicted mass death by extreme something, and he is always Professor Ehrlich.
Actually a more illustrative starting point for the theme of the permanently imminent climatic apocalypse might be taken as August 3rd, 1971, when the Sydney Morning Herald announced that the Great Barrier Reef would be dead in six months. After six months the reef had not died, but it has been going to die almost as soon as that ever since; making it a strangely durable emblem for all those who have wedded themselves to the notion of climate catastrophe.