DeSmogBlog describes itself as “clearing the PR pollution that clouds climate science.” This site is 100 percent against (consumer-driven) fossil fuels in the name of climate alarmism and advocates forced energy transformation. Such statism is anti-consumer and, via de-industrialization, anti-wealth.
As part of their effort, DeSmog has profiled just about everyone of note on the free-market, contra-Malthusian side of the energy and climate debate. I am among the hundreds (wow–does not sound like there is climate consensus!) in their Global Disinformation Database” as a ‘denier’.
Robert L. Bradley Jr., begins with a quick (impartial) review of my credentials and background before going to three categories: Stance on Climate Change, Key Quotes, and Key Deeds.
I reproduce their dozen or so quotations taken from my oeuvre — and have nothing to retract. Re-reading this sampling, I even welcome the publicity, given that my points remain valid (and believed by me) today.
My sin is less about the logic of what is said and more about contradicting the shared narrative–what the ‘consensus’ knows to be true.
You can be the judge (reproduced verbatim below without the footnotes–see their link for full attribution).
Writing in a Forbes Op-Ed [September 2016], Bradley said:
“There is good news as good science drives out bad. The discrepancy between model-predicted warming and (lower) real-world observations has inspired new respect for natural climate variability relative to greenhouse-gas forcing. […] The real news is good news in contradiction to doom-and-gloom. It is time for energy and climate planners to lay down their government arms. Let consumers and taxpayers be.”
Writing in an issue of The New Individualist [May 2008], Bradley claims that the science is not settled on climate change:
“It is as if the physical science is settled in favor of climate alarmism (it is not), and government intervention to ‘stabilize climate’ is cost-beneficial (it is not).”
In one part of a three-part series Bradley wrote at IER [June 2017] on “The Philosophic Roots of the Paris Agreement,” Bradley concluded:
“People remain the problem to the congregation of the Church of Climate, as much as they want to say that forced energy transformation is compatible with economic coordination and prosperity.
“And here we are today. The Malthusian scares have been refuted one-by-one, leaving the daily sermons about the perils of manmade climate change. But trends are positive regarding the green greenhouse gas, carbon dioxide. The ecological benefits of increasing atmospheric concentrations of CO2 is in the news. Climate sensitivity estimates to the enhanced greenhouse effect are falling. The Paris agreement has been exposed on the Left as ‘a fraud … a fake … worthless.’ And the grassroots revolt against industrial wind turbines and solar farms is growing.
“The good news is that the Malthusian bad news is wrong. May the Church of Climate find its pews increasingly empty.”
In the first part of his three-part series on the Paris Climate Agreement [May 2017], Bradley declares:
“The rejection the Paris climate agreements is really the liberation of 7.5 billion people from a dangerous, anti-human, anti-progress agenda.”
Writing in a Forbes Op-Ed, [March 2017], Bradley opposed divestment in fossil fuels:
“The divestment of fossil-fuel stocks is both ineffectual against its corporate targets and hurtful to ordinary people,” Bradley said, describing divestment as “a futile crusade.”
The following is from the abstract for an article Bradley wrote in The Electricity Journal [August–September 2000] titled “Climate Alarmism and Corporate Responsibility”:
“Voluntary actions by corporations should not go beyond innovative win–win ‘no regrets’ initiatives. Greenhouse gas control practices that are uneconomic penalize either consumers or stockholders while politicizing the issue of corporate responsibility. Few will be satisfied, and the ineffectual measures will eventually have to be abandoned.”
Bradley [September 8, 2017] cites climate change denier Judith Curry, describing her as a “leading foe of (faulty) science emanating from groupthink, false certainty, bad incentives, and half-truths,” to claim that sea level rise is natural and not influenced by man’s activities. [NOTE: I did not say ‘not influenced by human activity’–read the piece and quotations below]
“Humans are not going to stop sea level rise on the time scale of a few centuries by ceasing emissions of CO2,” Bradley wrote at IER [No: Judith Curry stated this]. He concluded that “The good news is that sea level rise is much more modest than false prognosticators have led us to believe. Al Gore’s worst case scenario fooled some for a time, but no more.
[…] Rather than attempt to shave fractions of an inch off of future sea level rise in the distant future, policymakers should keep fossil fuels affordable, plentiful, and reliable to deal with climate and weather events of all kinds. Free-market adaptation, not a futile crusade to ‘stabilize’ climate, is the obvious choice for a free, prosperous world.”
Note that Bradley/Curry’s claims that sea level rise is exaggerated is one of several myths debunked by SkepticalScience.
Bradley [August 2017] spoke at an event hosted by the World Affairs Council of Houston titled “Local to Global Politics: Climate Change.”
“Knowing that climate activists abounded at the two-and-a-half day affair, I pitched an optimistic view of free markets and a cautionary one about intellectual elites identifying problems for the government to solve,” Bradley wrote at IER, adding: “My first slide was a quotation from William Happer, Professor of Physics, Princeton University: ‘I believe that the increase of CO2 is not a cause for alarm and will be good for mankind.’”
He concludes by supporting the ”red team-blue team debate on climate science” proposed under Scott Pruitt’s EPA, adding that “This same debate deserves to be held in every classroom and public forum across the country.”
Bradley [November 20, 2015] wrote an Op-Ed at Forbes titled “Oil-Export Ban: Holding America Back,” where he argued that “restrictions on crude exports have no public purpose.”
’tis nought but a badge of honour.
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I’ve been trying to figure out two things, and since you mention “the free-market […] side of the energy and climate debate,” perhaps as an economist you’re someone who can help me.
1. Why do free-market capitalism advocates (who are climate change contrarians) not fight fossil fuel subsidies? What am I missing about “free” and “market”? Why is it okay with free-marketers that taxpayers get stuck paying trillions of dollars every year to cover the externalized costs of fossil fuel corporations? After over a century?
2. Why do you then say that renewable energy — an industry in its infancy — should be able to “stand on its own two feet”?
It seems like ideological blindness, and I truly don’t get it. Are you able to shed light?
I just read this: “Because a free market system is based solely on supply and demand, it leads to free competition in the economy, without any intervention from outside forces” (https://www.investopedia.com/ask/answers/042215/what-difference-between-capitalist-system-and-free-market-system.asp).
If the whole point is “no intervention from outside forces,” why are outside forces (taxpayers) having to intervene so much to keep these corporations afloat? Why are these businesses not happy (and willing and proud) to pay their externalized costs before they “compete”? Can you see where it might seem hypocritical to some of us? It feels like you’re cheating and scamming the rest of us, and that the “free” in free market includes stealing anything “free” that you can get your hands on. I dunno.
p.s. “Climate consensus,” as you call it, is consensus among climate scientists — not engineers and old geographers and, well, economists, etc. (Although the current chair of the IPCC is a fossil fuel economist of all things! 😉
Good point. Classical liberals (free market supporters) want to eliminate all direct subsidies to all energies. Oil and gas get the least; wind and solar the most.
Actually, wind and solar are not infant industries:
See wind: https://www.instituteforenergyresearch.org/renewable/wind/subsidized-wind-noncompetitive-wind/
Solar and wind here: https://files.texaspolicy.com/uploads/2018/11/07094253/The-Economic-Fall-and-Political-Rise-of-Renewable-Energy-ACEE-Bradley.pdf
Energy density is key–the minerals win over dilute, intermittent alternatives.
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