Warmism at its height, just before the fall
example of why I haven’t read Newsweek
in over 20 years. They are not news magazines, but—under the cover of being mainstream news magazines—propaganda organs and shapers of an especially virulent strain of leftist opinion. In particular, their covers always convey the message: “This is what is Emergent. This is what is Now. This is what you are commanded to think this week.”
So here is Gnosisweek, excuse me, Newsweek, in November 2009, on the very eve of the release of the e-mails and documents at the University of East Anglia’s Climatic Research Unit that would bring down the House of Global Warmism, commanding its readers to regard the almost clinically insane Al Gore as a prophet of our culture and authoritative source of truth.
* * *
Al Gore’s cover article is called, on the cover, “Why 2009 Is the Turning Point,” and, inside the magazine, “The Plan that Saved the Planet.” Only weeks after this issue of Newsweek came out, 2009 turned out to be the turning point in the exact opposite sense of what had been prophesied by Gore.
The Plan That Saved The Planet
- end of initial entry -
A reality that’s still within reach.
By Al Gore | NEWSWEEK
Published Oct 31, 2009
From the magazine issue dated Nov 9, 2009
Not too many years from now, a new generation will look back at us in this hour of choosing and ask one of two questions. Either they will ask, “What were you thinking? Didn’t you see the entire North Polar ice cap melting before your eyes? Did you not care?” [LA replies: Did he really think that if it was actually the case that the entire North Polar ice cap was melting before our eyes, there was anything that WE COULD DO to stop it?]
Or they will ask instead, “How did you find the moral courage to rise up and solve a crisis so many said was impossible to solve?”
We must choose which of these questions we want to answer, and we must give our answer now—not in words but in actions. [LA replies: just act—now. Just Do It—now.]
The answer to the first question—what were you thinking?—is almost too painful to write:
“We argued among ourselves. We didn’t want to believe that it really was happening. We waited too long.
“We had so many other problems crying out for attention. I know this is of little comfort, but we did try. I’m sorry.”
The second question—how did you solve it?—is the one I much prefer that we answer, and here is the answer I hope we can give:
“The turning point came in 2009. The year began well, with the inauguration of a new president, who immediately shifted priorities to focus on building the foundation for a new low—carbon economy. The resistance to these changes—especially by corporations that were making a lot of money from coal, oil, and gas—was ferocious.
“But the truth about the global emergency gained ground. The evidence presented by the scientists accumulated, slowly at first, but then a few of the opponents of change changed themselves.
“Whatever happened, it made a powerful difference when these former opponents became passionate advocates for a new direction. The momentum shifted. One by one, others joined in a powerful consensus that we had to act, boldly and quickly. At the end of 2009, the United States passed legislation that changed the way business and civic leaders made plans for the future. [LA replies: didn’t quite work out that way, did it? Instead of skeptics becoming believers, a leading believer turned around and declared that there had been no global warming in the last 15 years, and that the “hockey stick,” showing a sharp and unprecedented increase in global temperatures over the last 150 years, was very possibly false, because the medieval warming period was very possibly true.]
“By putting a price on the pollution that had been previously ignored, the United States established powerful incentives to begin the historic shift. The new incentives to shift our energy production from fossil fuels to solar, wind, and geothermal sources unleashed a wave of improvements in renewable technologies.
“All over the world, as awareness of the climate crisis grew, people concerned about you found ways to put pressure on their leaders. Hundreds of thousands, then millions of grassroots networks emerged. [LA replies: see? Once people saw the hidden truth of global warming, they became activists in the cause.]
“Although leadership came from many countries, once the United States finally awakened to its responsibilities, it reestablished the moral authority the world had come to expect from the U.S. [LA replies: For George W. Bush, America is the messiah of global democracy. For Al Gore, America the messiah of global environmentalism. Each Gnostic visionary converts the real world into his own particular Gnostic fantasy world.]
“The most important change that made this transformation possible is something that is hard to describe in words. Our way of thinking changed. The earth itself began to occupy our thoughts. Somehow, it became no longer acceptable to participate in activities that harmed the integrity of the global environment. [LA replies: Under the guidance of our Leader, the Thinking Man’s Thinking Man, our way of thinking changed.We were initiated into the Gnostic mystery. We apprehended the real truth about the world. And then we transformed, through political action, the entire order of the world.]
“I know that we waited too long. I wish we had acted sooner. But the outlook for your future is now bright. The wounds we inflicted on the atmosphere and the earth’s ecological system are healing.
“It seems ironic now that our commitment during the Great Transformation to a low-carbon economy was what restored economic prosperity. Once the world embarked on the journey to heal our world and save your future, tens of millions of new jobs—including whole new professions—began to emerge. [LA replies: Yeah, mainly middle men who transfer wealth in the form of carbon credit payments and warming “reparations” from the rich nations to the poor and pocket most of it themselves.]
“I ask only one thing of you in return for what we have done on your behalf: pass on to your children the courage and resolve to act boldly and wisely whenever the future is at risk. You will be challenged, as we were. But I know that you will not fail those who come after you, as we did not fail you.
“The choice is awesome and potentially eternal. It is in the hands of the present generation: a decision we cannot escape, and a choice to be mourned or celebrated through all the generations that follow.”
From Our Choice: A Plan to Solve the Climate Crisis by Al Gore . Copyright © 2009 by Al Gore. To be published in the U.S. by Rodale on November 3, 2009.
Rolling Stone was much worse back in January (after Climategate!).
Here’s the cover. It’s small What it says is:
“YOU IDIOTS! MEET THE PLANET’S WORST ENEMIES”
Steve D. writes:
I’m a graphic artist by trade; so when I see something like Newsweek’s Al Gore cover, I tend to view it not only in light of its political meaning, but as a designer would. I wonder about the thought processes and decisions of the persons who designed and approved it. While those decisions may be made unconsciously, they don’t happen accidentally … there are reasons why the cover was designed the way it was, and I have serious doubts that those reasons were innocent.
If you were designing a cover to support the idea that Gore is the genius savior of the world, why would you make the decision to go dark? Why the black background, the shadowed face? Why show only the top half of the head, and why select a photograph in which the subject’s expression is downright malevolent? And why include an apple? What’s up with that?
The only word I can think of to describe this image is “satanic.” It is as though Newsweek is offering itself as the forbidden fruit of knowledge: ” … then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods.” Now, before you accuse me of reading too much into this, bear in mind that it’s a designer’s job to anticipate the reactions of the public. Either Newsweek employs artists who are uniquely clueless when it comes to their cultural heritage; or they knew what they were doing and didn’t care; or they knew what they were doing and chose to do it. And that leads to the last question: Is it a joke, or do they know full well what side they’re on?
Thanks for the excellent comment.
In fact, what you’re saying fits with my interpretation of the Newsweek cover as Gnostic. The classic expression of ancient Gnosticism—and for all I know, its original expression—was the re-interpretation of the story of the Fall. In the Gnostic view, the serpent who tempted Eve and Adam to eat the forbidden fruit was not man’s evil enemy, as in the conventional view, but man’s deliverer, calling on them to partake of the salvific knowledge which God had forbidden to them. If they ate that fruit, the serpent told them, then they would become as gods, knowing good and evil.
According to Gnosticism, the God of the Bible is a false, oppressive god, who tries to keep man from realizing his true destiny as a god, and from whom man must be liberated. From its start in ancient times, Gnosticism was been identified with Satanic rebellion against God, a theme that was picked up and re-expressed in modern times by leftist ideologues such as Marx. So you are right. Whether or not they were conscious of what they were doing, the artists and editors who designed and approved the Newsweek cover were expressing in a new form a message deeply embedded in our culture, and particularly in the psychology of the left: Gore, both charismatic and Satanic, offering to humanity the (green) apple of (environmentalist) Gnostic truth.
A. Zarkov writes:
Not too many years from now, a new generation will look back at us in this hour of choosing and ask one of two questions. Either they will ask, “What were you thinking? Didn’t you see the entire North Polar ice cap melting before your eyes? Did you not care?”
In 1922 the U.S. Weather Service wrote,
The arctic ocean is warming up, icebergs are growing scarcer and in some places the seals are finding the water too hot. Reports all point to a radical change in climate conditions and hitherto unheard-of temperatures in the arctic zone. Expeditions report that scarcely any ice has been met with as far north as 81 degrees 29 minutes. Great masses of ice have been replaced by moraines of earth and stones, while at many points well known glaciers have entirely disappeared.
The above statement might somehow be misleading, so let’s look at something more objective: sea ice. The ice at the North Pole sits on water so it qualifies as “sea ice.” With satellites we can now measure the area of sea ice, and here’s a graph for the Northern Hemisphere sea ice area anomalies. It does show a shrinkage in area since 1995. How about the Southern Hemisphere? Here’s the corresponding graph. That area has been increasing. Let’s note that Southern Hemisphere sea ice does not include the South Pole because that ice rests on land. Put the two graphs together and you get this. We see that the global sea ice area has been roughly constant. The actual sea ice area as opposed to the anomaly (deviation from long-term average) shows a strong seasonal variation as you can see here. The maximum ice area at the North Pole is three times greater the minimum, so Newsweek can really create scare stories by picking the right time of the year to show melting ice. The real action is at the South Pole where 90 percent of the world’s fresh water is frozen. Supposedly that ice has been growing thicker. We should know for sure this year with the launch of a new satellite, which will use radar to measure the ice thickness at the Antarctic to within one inch! If the South Pole ice is really melting, then I might change my mind about global warming. That’s science. You update your beliefs as new evidence comes in.
I’m sure the warmists have an answer for constancy of the global sea ice area. They always do. No matter what counter examples we can up with, they will always pull a new rabbit out the hat. I am now convinced that it’s impossible to falsify global warming in the political arena with any physical evidence. So many things are varying, and the predictions lie so far in the future, that we can never produce a smoking gun. This whole thing must play out as theater. We should not forget that if we want to save the world from Al Gore.
Kidist Paulos Asrat writes:
A great, discerning analysis by Steve.
When I briefly looked at the image, I was thrown by Gore’s strange look, and the cutoff just above the nose. If Gore is the demi-god of environmentalism, then why make him look so evil?
But, Steve D. is exactly right. The designers ARE channeling evil—the evil serpent. My worldview is that if someone is a hero, he has to look majestic. But, these graphic artists don’t want the good and the noble. They want the evil. Gore looks like the serpent they want him to represent.
I don’t know if artists are being more bold (as in Cameron’s Avatar), or if it is inevitable that the truth (or true intentions) comes out in any good piece of art. My theory has actually always been that “art doesn’t lie.”
Diane M. writes:
The Genesis imagery in this cover design was surely intentional. My first impression of Gore’s shadowy, sinister half-face was: Snake eyes! The apple was the clincher. “The Hour of Choosing” is come for us, says the prophet/serpent, offering us his green apple. Far from being subtle, the message is even spelled out in the small type on the side: “An Eco Prophet gets real.”
The “choice” is presented as a rhetorical gimmick: which question would you prefer to answer in the future? Do you want to be reproached for dereliction of duty, accused of not caring? Or do you want to be admired by future generations for your “moral courage to rise up and solve a crisis so many said was impossible to solve?” (The Fate of the Planet seems secondary to maintaining your self esteem.) Not to worry, no answer is needed. The question demands actions, not words. (Not yet discussed is exactly WHAT actions are indeed possible on the part of individual citizens, beyond surrendering to the wisdom of Gore and his consensual team of experts, who will act on our behalf.)
But Gore goes on to answer the questions anyway. To the first question, a whimpering apology. To the second, a nebulous, incoherent fairytale that explains nothing and promises Utopia: “The momentum shifted.” “Our way of thinking changed.” And wonder of wonders—the impossible happened! “[T]he United States finally awakened to its responsibilities, it reestablished the moral authority the world had come to expect from the U.S.” Presumably, we’ll find redemption in the eyes of a grateful world after we save the planet (and atone for all our wicked ways of late).
Not content with being merely Far Left, Gore has gone Far Out as well. He picks up on an underground theme sometimes heard on late-night radio shows such as Coast to Coast AM, or taken up by science fiction writers. To wit: Humanity is on the verge of a Great Transformation, a Quickening, a Global Paradigm Shift in Consciousness (with or without the help of aliens or spirits beings).
What I find most appalling about this cover-plus-article is the earnest appeal to … well, to what readers exactly? I gave up reading Newsweek years ago, and I’ve heard their readership is in decline, but still I imagine it must keep up SOME semblance of literacy just to stay in print. What possible mindset could be intrigued by this dreadful cover to read this drivel seriously and approvingly? It’s a frightening thought that so many of my countrymen could deviate so far from good sense.
You mean you don’t think he’s the Thinking Man’s Thinking Man?
By the way, it is worth remarking that even in the PC venues of our society, the generic “man” cannot be entirely eliminated. In many cases, there’s just no substitute. And there is, frankly, a built in bias there toward the male. Suppose Newsweek were playing up some female political visionary. Would they have entitled the cover, “The Thinking Woman’s Thinking Woman”? No. Becausae woman in that case would imply that it was only about women and women’s issues. The word “Man” has a universal, generic meaning that “Woman” does not have. Which, however we feel about it, means that the male sex is more associated with the universal than is the female sex.
Jacob M. writes:
One thing I haven’t seen anyone else point out about the Newsweek cover is that the apple is blurred, fading in from above, to give the appearance of downward motion. To me, it seems obivous that it’s mean to evoke the story of an apple falling on Isaac Newton’s head. So Newsweek is telling us that Al Gore is as serious and significant a thinker as Isaac Newton, and that his message of global warming is as important and presumably historically significant as Newton’s discovery of the laws of gravitation.
Kilroy M. writes:
I think you’ve all read far, far too much into this cover.
First of all, you’re all giving too much credit to the liberal cover-designer’s intelligence: do you really think that the average arts-intellectual has the faintest idea of Biblical symbology and the like? Of course not. [LA replies: Do you mean that he never heard of Adam and Eve eating the forbidden fruit?] Moreover, it is just plain silly to suggest that he had conscious near-Satanic thought-lines running through his mind while designing it. [LA replies: But both Steve D. and I said that it wasn’t necessarily conscious.] This is almost like the Alex Jones nutters who see “evidence” of “global Illuminati” conspiracies in everything, from pyramids in your currency, to funny shapes in the logos of global corporations.
Something that looks “sinister” to us (dark cover etc) is really the product of a man motivated by the inverted aesthetics of liberalism. No conspiracy there, just a cultural framework radically at odds to ours at play. [LA replies: no one suggested it was a “conspiracy.” What was said was that this was an expression of liberal beliefs.] Neither did I see a connection to Genesis in the falling apple. Instead, it immediately made me think of Newton (another liberal conceit: Al Gore = Modern Day Newton!). The manner in which the portrait was cut off at the nose was an obvious (to me at least) attempt to remove his lips from the shot. What does this mean? Remove lips, remove speech, the debate is over, i.e. do not question it, believe! All of this is emotional, we don’t have to get bogged down in esoteric theorising to understand the cover’s message. [LA replies: but it sounds as though you’re doing some esoteric theorizing yourself.]
I don’t see the fade-in which make it look as though the apple is falling. To me, the notion that this is about Isaac Newton and that it’s equating Gore with Newton seems far fetched.
Posted by Lawrence Auster at February 24, 2010 11:44 PM | Send
Let’s start with what is most obvious. The green motif, including the greenness of the apple, obviously signifies environmentalism. Further, the apple signifies knowledge—knowledge of the environmental truth that can save humanity, the knowledge which is told of in Gore’s story. Further, the apple signifies that this knowledge is forbidden. It is the forbidden fruit, because the continuance of the present, anti-environmental world order depends on this knowledge not being known.
Let’s compare Genesis chapter 3 with Gore’s story.
From Genesis 3:
And the woman said unto the serpent, … But of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God hath said, Ye shall not eat of it, neither shall ye touch it, lest ye die.
From Gore’s story:
And the serpent said unto the woman, Ye shall not surely die: For God doth know that in the day ye eat thereof, then your eyes shall be opened, and ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil.
“The turning point came in 2009…. the truth about the global emergency gained ground. The evidence presented by the scientists accumulated, slowly at first, but then a few of the opponents of change changed themselves.
“Whatever happened, it made a powerful difference when these former opponents became passionate advocates for a new direction. The momentum shifted. One by one, others joined in a powerful consensus that we had to act, boldly and quickly.
“All over the world, as awareness of the climate crisis grew, people concerned about you found ways to put pressure on their leaders. Hundreds of thousands, then millions of grassroots networks emerged.
“The most important change that made this transformation possible is something that is hard to describe in words. Our way of thinking changed. The earth itself began to occupy our thoughts. Somehow, it became no longer acceptable to participate in activities that harmed the integrity of the global environment.”
Genesis: “then your eyes shall be opened.”
Gore: “Our way of thinking changed.”.
So, the green apple signifies the new way of thinking which will open our eyes and save mankind, but which is concealed and forbidden by the present society, because the new way of thinking means the end of the present, doomed society and its replacement by a green society. Gore combines in himself the “eco-prophet” who brings this knowledge to mankind, and, more subtly, the serpent in the garden who tells mankind about this knowledge, tells mankind to disobey its present “god,” the god of our destructive, carbon producing civilization, the god who keeps us in the dark, and to partake of the new knowledge that will set us free.