The Breaking Point.

If you play team sports, or even just watch them, there’s very often a moment in the struggle between the opposing teams, when one of them breaks. Sometimes it’s sparked by a single incident but more usually, it’s an acceptance by the whole group that they’re going to lose. The opposition are simply too good. It’s a moment of gestalt realisation, not so much them giving up but more like them accepting that they’re going to lose. It’s subtle, synchronised and solid as a concrete block hitting you right between the eyes. When it occurs, no team bounces back from it. If you’ve got any doubts it’s happening, just watch the in-game betting odds go astronomical on the internet.

How a team reacts to it, tells you a lot about them.

If they’re a solid team, though they may have been beaten and are taking the punishment, watch out – it’ll just make them stronger next season. It’s a severe and painfully public lesson and they’ll cauterise the wound and start to use it as a motivator for next year. It’s the ones who fought all the way down to the final whistle, when they were getting a complete thrashing, you’ve really got to worry about the next time around. Those sort of teams will come back at you even harder.

They have a club ethos and it’s a true sportsman’s pleasure to shake their hands at the end of the game, but there’s an instant in that handshake, a pause, a little sneaking direct moment when their eyes tell you they’ll be coming after you with everything they’ve got next year. You recognise that look, because you’ve been there. These guys are going to be in your face with a tomahawk next season. It’s a great thing and you’ll be there waiting for them. Brothers. The old order changeth.

This year’s losers and next year’s champions do one thing very well, smouldering silence. Last year’s pain powers the whole damn team. Home or away, they are going to be a tough gig.

There’s the other side of the coin though; the crap team. They’re crap because you can see their essential heart as the defeat happens. They’re losers and you can see that as the whole disaster unfolds.

You hit them hard and they just folded. There’s even a sense of how dare you about the whole thing. They’re no longer going forward and instead fall back to the defensive. The offense backpedals and the defense digs in. It’s now all about limiting the final scoreline. From there, it’s all downhill. Ugly fouls start increasing and displays of childish petulance start occurring. Team discipline is disintegrating.

Whatever unit cohesion they once had is now gone. They’re no longer working together. People are just running in circles. They even start to fight each other. The blame game kicks off, even before the game itself has finished. It’s all your fault. No, it ain’t, it’s your’s. I always said, we should never play this formation. Sorry, when’d you say that? Piss off. Who the fuck are you anyway?

They start throwing each other to the wolves before they’ve even got off the pitch. All composure has been lost and there’s not a shred of dignity to the thing. Even as a winner, it leaves a bad taste.

Since the turn of the year, I get a definite sense that us climate guerillas are up against a team who know they’re going to lose. It’s an intuition but a strong one. All the signs are there. They’re like a bad losing team and you can see the former supporters distancing themselves or just plain outright bailing in realtime. It’s as if they don’t want to be the last girl to leave the party, so there’s a quiet but indecently increasing stampede for the exit doors. Even the bemused old geezers like Lovelock know which way the flatulence is blowing. No smoking please.

People are edging towards the exit.

The worst and most humiliating indicator of that change is the tenor of the skeptic blogs. There’s been a subtle shift. Instead of doing the usual mentat deconstruction of climate papers, they’re doing humour. There’s nothing much left to hit so they’re having a bit of fun. They’re relaxing, having a larf really. Finally, it’s rest and relaxation time. As R&R goes, they have very definitely earned that, after so many years of brutal effort assaulting each of those islands, one after another. They’re veterans, who’ve taken too many places like Peleliu and Okinawa and have a growing sense of the end of the war.

Sure, it’ll drag on but we own them. At this stage in the game, we’re just running down the clock.


Related articles by Pointman:

The Climate Wars.

The decline of the environmental lobby’s political influence.

Click for a list of other articles.

22 Responses to “The Breaking Point.”
  1. Jack Wilder says:

    The problem with the AGW team is that they’ve been fighting so dirty for so many years, all the while convincing the referee that any other teams should have no status higher than that accorded to certain disadvantaged ethnic groups in Nazi Germany, that they can’t even remember how to play fair; you know just be real, politically unafilliated scientists and managers and whatever.

    Skeptics whether of Climate or Euro origin have been tarred with the Nazi brush for years now, it’s nice to begin to be in a situation where it’s possible to return the compliment, and hopefully add some feathers on top too.


  2. Rick Bradford says:

    The climate consensus collaborators have been reduced to such risible stunts, that it is hard to do anything but laugh at them.

    But so much damage has been done already by these narcissistic Green zealots that certain countries will never totally recover what has been lost, so the humor has a gallows element about it.

    They won’t go quickly, quietly, or with any shred of morality..


  3. Retired Dave says:

    Another great post Pointman and on the money as always.

    I have thought, and even said a couple of times in the last 18 months, that there were signs of some in the AGW camp starting to form an exit strategy. I think it has been mostly amongst the real scientists who have had a relatively open mind and as the penny has dropped that the Potentate is garment-less have edged ever so slowly towards the door.

    I commented on a blog more than a year ago in answer to a “Useful AGW Idiot”, who always quoted from the book of Warmists replies, on the start of the exit trend and warned him to use his brain and not just parrot out-dated stuff that was already fully debunked. I told him that eventually only fools like him would be trotting out this crap and the team leaders would be nowhere to be found. This guy boasted of a science based Phd and his arrogance was staggering – he obviously thought that I dug ditches for a living.

    I agree with Rick Bradford above. The damage done by this crowd is immeasurable and some of it will never be repaired; after all they have been effectively responsible for the deaths of 100’s of thousands in the developing world.


    • A.D. Everard says:

      I agree with you, but the deaths they have caused are not just in the developing world – look at the deaths by fuel poverty in places like the UK as well. They are responsible for one hell of a lot of damage to the whole world.


  4. Jon says:

    I think we can predict exactly when the AGW movement will evaporate. Just chart over time the steadily dropping ‘consensus’ estimates of climate sensitivity to CO2, and extrapolate the line until it crosses the zero point.


  5. Latimer Alder says:

    Pointman says

    ‘There’s been a subtle shift. Instead of doing the usual mentat deconstruction of climate papers, they’re doing humour. There’s nothing much left to hit so they’re having a bit of fun. They’re relaxing, having a larf really’

    You are absolutely right.

    Since there have been no breakthroughs in fundamental climate understanding since Climategate, all the arguments have been thoroughly gone over.

    And it is apparent that the alarmists have no new shots in their locker…just an ever greater reliance on ‘Trust us, We’re Climate Scientists’. And fewer and fewer believe them. Their star is on the wane – and they know it.

    I guess AR5 will be the next biggie – and the sceptics are in fine form for that when it comes out…well primed with all the arguments, honed over ten or fifteen years of trench fighting ..and just ready to really land some blows.

    But a bit of R&R beforehand is no bad thing.


    • Paul Whyte says:

      ‘Trust us, We’re Climate Scientists’;

      Therein lies the problem and the real ongoing problem.

      When (no if) the sky falls in on the scam, ALL scientists will be tarnished for a generation.

      You can imagine the scramble by the politicians and MSM to find a scape goat. When will we see the first “I believed because the scientists said so, and I trusted them:”


  6. There’s no doubt views on climate change are changing. I wish the same success applied to bringing wind folly construction to an end. If anything there’s a renewed intensity. Much more ‘success’ like this, and I’ll have nothing left to protect.


  7. Truthseeker says:

    How long indeed … This is climate debate battle is worse than an NFL where it takes over 3 hours to play 60 minutes of game time.


  8. TinyCO2 says:

    It’s premature but I was wondering what sorts of comments would start to appear in newspapers by those trying to explain away the hysteria. I suspect it will still be our fault.

    The scientists might say:-

    “The deniers weren’t right for the right reasons.”
    “Sometimes even idiots get lucky.”
    “Deniers made our position seem more extreme than it was.”
    “They said that there would be no effect from CO2 at all.”
    “They said we were heading into an ice age which we’re clearly not.”
    “Deniers made threats toward climate scientists and the more moderate scientists didn’t want to be caught up in that kind of an atmosphere.”
    “They came out with such a lot of rubbish, we stopped listening to them when perhaps we shouldn’t.”
    “There were a few extreme opinions amongst climate scientists but the bulk of us always took a more measured view.”
    “Current temperatures are well within those predicted in AR7 where low end estimates for future warming were set at minus 0.5ºC”
    “The media didn’t want to hear good news.”
    “We were right to warn of a potential problem to our grandkids.”
    “We’ve benefited from the changes to our societies – we’re cleaner, more efficient.”
    “None of the research has been a waste of time, all knowledge is a good investment.”
    “If we hadn’t spent so much time arguing with deniers we’d have arrived at the right conclusion sooner.”
    “Because of the potential crisis, the increased investment meant we got to the right answers quicker.”
    “There was tactical funding by certain oil companies to make us all look like warming extremists. It’s no accident You Know Who always got the big bucks.”
    “Governments funded all the wrong scientists and activists because they wanted an excuse to raise taxes.”
    “The main driver was the UN who wanted an excuse to form a one world government.”
    “We couldn’t take denier opinions seriously because they also believed things like the moon landings were faked and cigarettes don’t cause cancer.”
    “Denier targeting made certain rogue climate scientists into more important players than they should have been.”
    “Denier support for natural warming was more of a faith based opinion. We’ve proved its role scientifically.”
    “Funding by Exxon and Koch meant denier opinions were automatically suspect, we would have been more open to listening if they hadn’t accepted tainted funding.”
    “Journals took on a kind of siege mentality because they were continuously under attack.”
    “I think my friendly rivalry was taken by deni… err sceptics as a genuine search for the truth.”
    “The constant irritation from deniers meant we felt we had to mount a robust defence and the most confident responders weren’t necessarily the best.”
    “With hindsight the deniers had some good points to make but they never bothered to formalise them through peer review.”
    “Denier theories were all over the place, who could have known which ones were any good?”
    “Good scientists were smeared by association with crackpots and deniers and we sadly failed to take them seriously.”
    “Journals would have published more sceptic papers but the authors or their supporters had antagonised too many reviewers to get through. It would have been bad procedure to go against peer review and publish anyway.”
    “We were overshadowed by alarmist outsiders like Al Gore and Rajendra Pachauri – he’s not even a climate scientist, he’s a railway engineer.”
    “In order to counter what was an anti science attack, our society felt we had to issue a statement regarding climate change. It was meant as a general support for scientific endeavour rather than a blanket endorsement of each facet of the science.”
    “We don’t know why deniers are trying to claim we ruled out low sensitivity to CO2, we never said categorically that there would be significant warming.”

    And from the lesser known scientists

    “We felt we couldn’t speak out.”
    “Our careers would have been limited if we’d associated with sceptics.”
    “We were brainwashed by our tutors and bosses.”
    “I was always a sceptic but I only posted under a fake name.”
    “I just got on with my work, it nether agreed nor disagreed with sceptic theories.”

    And from the public, journalists and politicians:-

    “We thought we could trust scientific opinion.”
    “We were all mislead about the quality of the evidence.”
    “We will be having an immediate review into the whole thing so it never happens again.”
    “I had my suspicions but I couldn’t go against the weight of the scientific community.”
    “We assumed the climate science community worked to certain standards.”
    “Deniers muddied the waters.”
    “The constant hostility from the sceptic community ensured we couldn’t have a sensible discussion.”
    “Deniers polarised what should have been a nuanced debate.”
    “Nobody explained.”
    “Yeh, but deniers still hate kids and polar bears.”
    “Deniers? Aren’t they the ones who said the world was going to burn?”

    We could tick them off as we spot them.


    • John Shade says:

      Well done, that’s a handy list. I’d add one more, or maybe it is just a restatement of some:

      “We were alarmed and we merely shared that with others as well as we could. No politician was forced to take our advice. Blame them not us. Many of them went too far …”

      The management consultant sometimes has the escape pod labelled ‘Just My Opinion’ to hand in case of disaster, and so it will be for those profoundly irresponsible climate science workers of such as the IPCC and the Climategate Cronies as well as those who ‘bigged them up’ for their own ends.

      My hope is for a really thorough investigation into how the scare developed and took hold so effectively. In particular, I hope that the reality that there was never, ever, at any stage, anything like adequate grounds for the alarmism will be made very clear for posterity. That would not only bring a little justice (albeit a small recompense for the needless deaths, destructions, and serious distractions from more important issues), it might help reduce the probability of such irrationality taking such hold again in the near future.


      • TinyCO2 says:

        Ha! Yes, the ‘it was my duty to think of the possibilities, not make decisions’ ploy.

        I fear there will be huge resistance to investigating the AGW scare because too many people are implicated, especially the media. One thing does rest in our favour – the internet. It won’t be possible to pretend they never had a part in the fear mongering or that it was ‘never that bad’.

        That said, I can’t work out how some people get away with saying it’s still warming faster than ever when even Hansen can spot a lull.


    • Edmonton Al says:

      Keep this list for future reference. Thanks


  9. Graeme No.3 says:

    Pointman, spot on. The tide is now definitely receding, especially in Germany where more and more articles critical of “Global Warming” are now being published, where previously they were not. This may have something to do with the Government’s decision to go back to coal fired electricity.
    But consider UEA – Jones admitting that warming since 1995 was not statistically significant (OK not in the last year) but this year Briffa (and others) has a paper out saying that re-examination of the tree ring data show that there was a Medieval Warm Period.

    In Germany last year Fritz Vahrenholt and Sebastian Lüning dropped their bombshell with their book, The Cold Sun. Suddenly the main stream media were writing about Climate Change, and the comments have changed from dismissive to (grudging) aceptance.

    Last week Austrian Broadcasting network ORF aired the controversial new film Climate Crimes (in German). Look out when that hits Germany and/or gets dubbed into English. Followed by Hans von Storch’s and Werner Krauss’s new book: “The Climate Trap” heaped more scorn.

    In the USA, Andrew Revkin of the New York Times got an e-mail from James Annan, one of the fiercest defenders of the Hockey Stick chart who said that “High Climate Sensitivity Increasingly Untenable”. This has been backed up by several others. (not a retreat from Moscow, just a tactical move back to Smolensk until the situation becomes serious).

    Of course Mann and Hansen won’t abandon the ship until it is below water, so you won’t be able to dance on their graves.


  10. Bob TI says:

    The guardian (suprise, surprise) has caught Attenborough & the Beeb glamming up global warming again.

    I think the war will never really be over (they will just move on the something else) and this battle will not be won until the beeb headlines WE WERE WRONG ! (like that is ever going to happen)



  11. Pointman says:

    What a wonderful thing it is to be a human being.



  12. Paul Johnson says:

    My journey to your excellent blog grew out of an interest in understanding and, where possible, resisting the authoritarian aspects of modern democracy and modern culture (via JS Mill and Orwell). For me, as for the late Vaclav Klaus, the issue with AGW as a thesis wasn’t so much that it had failed at an intellectual level for lack of evidence and cogency, or that it represented the decline of ‘normal science’, but that it had been stealthily and progressively embedding itself in national and international regulatory institutions armed with all the force of ‘the law’ despite the fact that even its founders had admitted that the thesis was false. When Klaus gave a speech at one of the major alarmism-fests a few years ago I watched as his audience of (mostly) ‘green zealots’ tittered and sniggered and chattered amongst themselves whilst he was trying to warn them of the enormous threat to liberty contained in what they were so enthusiastically building. The reason they laughed at him was that, as Klaus knew, they had passed the point at which technical arguments about climate mattered, and were confident that their success in obtaining ‘environmentalist’ commitments backed up by the force of law would keep their movement afloat a long time after people had grown weary of such arguments.

    Your piece here, like other pieces you have penned, reveals a markedly optimistic streak. A number of your commentators have implied you may need to moderate this if the war, as opposed to the battle, is finally to be won. Perhaps your optimism is aimed at keeping the troops’ morale up.

    What I would like to do is provide a concrete example of how difficult it may turn out to be to break the ‘green shackles’ Klaus was complaining about.

    In my practical life I am interested in why it is that despite the desperate shortage of housing for ordinary people in the UK (and elsewhere) there is virtually no way in the world that such people are ever going to be able to get decent and affordable housing. One of the main reasons for this is that too many people are making a living out of regulating the building industry and thereby keeping the cost of housing high. House construction, like many other previously respectable endeavours, has become bogged down in serving an ideology. When I built my own house in the early 1980s it was possible for ordinary folk to buy a cheap building site, assemble an array of cheap building materials, and just get on and build a house with hardly any interference from the Local Planning Authority. Nowadays the Club of Rome’s Agenda 21 is settled like a plague on every aspect of our national and local authorities’ thinking about housing. ‘Sustainable Development’, one of the most egregious concepts involved in the whole green movement’s campaign to arrest the dynamism of the Western World (for the benefit of the less prosperous, we are expected to believe) is a completely unquestioned dogma lying at the heart of our housing shortage as sure as fleas and rats were at the heart of the Black Death. In the now hallowed name of SD our national and local government machines have secured enormously expanded funding which they have used to increase their numbers greatly, and increase their lobbying power, and thereby their legal powers to impose upon us the ‘environmentally friendly’ policies ‘implied’ in SD. In practice this means we have many more rent-seeking parasites employed in national and local government now (all of them with fancy job titles and excessive salaries and index-linked pensions) whose main ambition is to see to it that no-one can build a house anywhere if there is even the slightest chance that bats or birds or frogs or newts or trees or rare mosses or the water supply (the list is endless) are in any way affected by its being built. And even if permission is granted to build a house, it can only be built using hugely expensive amounts of insulation and the most expensive double glazing, and the most elaborate and costly heating and ventilation equipment, all in aid of reducing CO2 emissions. There is a constant fuss made about the need for affordable housing for ordinary people. But nothing serious is ever done about it (such as providing ordinary people with the skills to build their own). The whole regulatory burden heaped upon the hapless would-be house-owner makes it certain that his need for decent housing will forever take second place to the need to comply with the tenets of SD. At the root of SD, of course, is the AGW thesis. Without it the regulations preventing housing are without a rational foundation.

    The need that ordinary people have for affordable personal transport (to get backwards and forwards to work, if there were any) is subject to the same dead weight of regulation. AGW is behind the whole nonsense about emissions control in vehicles. Controlling emissions (in the hope of ‘saving the planet’, as usual) is the main reason that our vehicles are breaking down more often now. Emission control equipment has moved from being the supposed solution to a problem to being the problem itself. But this is another story…

    My point (and I apologise for having taken so long to express it) is that we critics of AGW and all its truly dreadful ramifications are in for a long wait before the masses of bureaucrats now employed in regulatory agencies of every type, all of them busily honing their overly- extended powers to interfere with and frustrate the rest of us, can be found alternative (productive) work to do. These people will fight tooth and nail to keep those non-jobs that AGW and SD have bestowed upon them. They will insist that what they are doing is rationally justified. In the case of housing, the building components and materials suppliers will support them in these non-jobs, too. Without the regulations very few of us would buy their overly-complicated and over-priced goods. We AGW sceptics only buy them because we are forced to. Our houses and our vehicles would be pretty close to affordable if those ‘environment-friendly’ (and business-friendly) regulations were rescinded. But this would threaten profits. And rules and regulations are rarely rescinded in the UK. Scepticism with regard to the dogmas of AGW (and this blog is a fine example of what it can look like at its best) has won many battles, and has even, perhaps, begun to win the war. But the ‘eco-warriors’ are not just facing defeat in some football game. They are facing unemployment. And in a world increasingly run by the bullies and bullshitters and psychopaths the last thing ordinary people will be looking forward to is competing with these highly plausible and utterly ruthless ne’er do wells in the marketplace. They may instead just opt for leaving them where they are.


    • Pointman says:

      Hello and welcome Paul. Thanks for a thoughtful debut comment and forgive the brevity of my replies to your points raised, as I’m working on the next blog.

      Vaclav always knew it was about control, not science. I could do a lot more blogging on science but that’s not the demographic this blog is aimed at; I chip away at the politics of the thing for the ordinary person.

      Yes, I am optimistic. If I didn’t honestly think we could beat them, this blog wouldn’t exist. There’s something we all have to be careful about here; the war lover mentality. We’ve been in the fray with them so long, we’ve become used to grinding trench warfare. A lot of people on both sides enjoy the battle. All wars do come to an end some day and the combatants of each side have to adapt to that change. We are winning, it’s not over yet but I see no way back for them.

      I totally agree with you about a self-perpetuating regulatory industry but harking back to the 80’s, remember the swathes of regulations Margaret Thatcher’s administrations abolished.

      Enjoy yourself here and feel free to comment.



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