Monday, 19 April 2010

Maggie the warmist?

SAMSUNG DIGITAL CAMERA 6a00d83451586c69e200e55030d3b58834-800wi The Greens’s Frog Blog linked this morning to a video suggesting (among other things) that the science-trained Margaret Thatcher would deride the views of her former science adviser Christopher Monckton because, unlike him, she was a warmist.

The implication of this, of course, was that being science-trained herself she would clearly repudiate Monckton’s sallies against warmist nonsense.  The evidence presented for this was a number of speeches made by Maggie back in the 80s, before she left office. 

And, since the 2007 film The Great Global Warming Swindle also made much of Thatcher being the prime mover in setting up the UN’s International Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), the organisation upon whom the world’s governments now lean so heavily when implementing environmental shackles on their producers, I figured—since the eighties are a long time ago, and an awful lot of carbon has gone under the bridge since then—it would be interesting to see what Thatcher’s views are now.

Fortunately, that is not too difficult since her 2002 book, Statecraft “devotes ten pages to the subject of ‘Hot Air and Global Warming,’ which Iain Murray at the Property & Environment Research Center (PERC) comments on here:

    “Thatcher is quite clear [in her book] that she feels things have gone in the wrong direction since former British ambassador to the United Nations-turned-global-warming- campaigner Sir Crispin Tickell convinced her to tell the Royal Society, "it is possible . . . we have unwittingly begun a massive experiment with the system of this planet itself." She notes that the doomsters' favorite subject today is climate change, which "provides a marvelous excuse for worldwide, supra-national socialism" (449).
    “Thatcher's critics might claim that she has--to use a fashionable term--flip-flopped on the issue, but that is not necessarily the case.
    “First, she stresses that she was initially skeptical of the arguments about global warming, although she thought they deserved to be treated seriously. She points out that there was "rather little scientific advice available to political leaders from those experts who were doubtful of the global warming thesis" (451). However, by 1990, she had begun to recognize that the issue was being used as a Trojan horse by anti-capitalist forces. That is why she took pains in her Royal Society speech in 1990 to state: "Whatever international action we agree upon to deal with environmental problems, we must enable our economies to grow and develop, because without growth you cannot generate the wealth required to pay for the protection of the environment" (452).
    “In fact, Thatcher makes it clear that she regards global warming less as an "environmental" threat and more as a challenge to human ingenuity that should be grouped with challenges such as AIDS, animal health, and genetically modified foods. In her estimation,"

    ‘All require first-rate research, mature evaluation and then the appropriate response. But no more than these does climate change mean the end of the world; and it must not either mean the end of free-enterprise capitalism.’ (457)  
…. Thatcher's environmentalism is founded on Edmund Burke's conservative view of our inheritance as being worth defending. Yet that view is tempered by her classical liberal belief that human wealth and progress are crucial.”

Which, to be fair, is a far more important point than whether or not she would support Christopher Monckton, but enough nonetheless to be fairly clear that she would.


  1. About a year ago, I posted on SOLO a letter to the editor from MArgaret Thatcher in one newspaper saying that AGW was bunk.

    Monckton in interviews mentions Thatcher from time to time and has nothing but praise for her.

    So you can safely say that Thatcher would agree with her former advisor, Monckton.

  2. @Marcus: I'd love to see that letter, Marcus, but sadly the only letter I find in your GGWS thread at SOLO (which I presume is where you posted it) is from a "Margaret Thatcher" is from someone using that name as a pseudonym to post comments to 'The Economist'--that is, unless you think English is the real Thatcher's fourth language, or that the former PM of Great Britain only started reading The Economist "eight or ten years ago." ;^)

  3. After a wave of abuse about Monckton knowing nothing about maths and being called a "pop eyed loon" I felt compelled to post the following:

    "Monckton is a mathematician with expertise in complex modeling.
    He made his reputation in generating complex financial models for the UK Treasury – during those years when econometricians still had faith in the ability of models to emulate the behaviour of chaotic systems.
    He became disillusioned with macro-economic modeling and has brought this skepticism to the IPCC models.
    His analysis of the models revealed that the hot spots in the upper atmosphere that should have been generated over the tropics according to the models did not show up under satellite analysis.

    When he talks maths and models he knows what he is talking about. Cambridge gives an MA to its maths graduates rather than a science degree as we do.
    He was also science policy advisor to the Thatcher Government and gave very good advice on science and Thatcher was no pushover because she is a BSc in chemistry herself.
    He suffers from Graves disease, a form of hyperthryroidism, which creates the bulging eye problem. So did Marty Feldman. I did not know the Greens were into mocking people with incurable diseases. Others include:
    Christina Georgina Rossetti, British Victorian Poet.
    Cecil Spring-Rice, British Ambassador to the USA from 1912 to 1918.
    Mary Webb, English author and poet, descendant of Sir Walter Scott.

  4. Thanks PC.

    I wondered if that was the real Thatcher :-)


    The left will ridicule anyone on the right for any disorder, handicap they can find. Racism, sexism - it's all fair when the victim is a so-called "right-wing retard". They're only offended by non-PC attacks when it is directed at someone of their own ideology.

    By the way, according to the Guardian, Lord Monckton is going to stand for election to Parliament as a candidate for UKIP.


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