In a piece out yesterday, former Vice President Al Gore repeats the bizarro-world claim that, by providing balance in their global warming coverage, the media show bias. His specific argument in support of this effort to censor disagreeable speech is a chestnut that has been thoroughly discredited – before the film was released, mind you – that “A 10-year University of California study found that essentially zero percent of peer-reviewed scientific journal articles disagreed that global warming exists, whereas, another study found that 53 percent of mainstream newspaper articles disagreed the global warming premise.”
In truth, when one doesn’t skew one’s search terms as did the history professor who Gore relies upon, the relevant scientific literature at the time of her study included not “over 928” (a mystical count Gore serially offers, in his movie, on Oprah, in subsequent lectures, and so on) articles mentioning “global climate change”, as Gore says, but nearly 12,000 citing “climate change”.
Although this is level ground to students of the issue, since Gore continues to peddle what is by now a knowing falsehood, let us review it one more time. This is indeed all the universe of articles did – mention “global climate change”, not man-made climate change by any means, and sometimes as an inexplicable throw-away line (there is actually academic pressure to do so in order to receive grant funding, according to researchers). Nor were these articles in support of anthropogenic warming theory (it ought to go without saying).
In addition to all of the “over 928” (or the nearly 12,000) articles not supporting catastrophic or even anthropogenic warming theory as the professor flatly alleges, it is further untrue that none of them “disagreed with” or “refuted” (two wildly different standards which she oddly interchanges). Most of the (let’s just call it) 928 do not even mention anthropogenic climate change.
Her claims, Gore’s retailing of them and the mythology that sprung up to defend this canard are further deconstructed and updated here. And, of course, here.