A species facing extinction.

Ext01

There are many reasons why a particular species may become extinct; a better adapted one elbows them out of their own ecological niche, the debilitating effect of a new disease they have no resistance against, over-predation or quite simply, their habitat disappearing completely.

In general terms, it happens because there has been a change in their environment, which they can’t adapt to fast enough. They’ve been pushed out of their nice warm home and into the bitter cold of Winter and it’s a cruel old world out there when you’re alone and homeless in nature. It’s mercilessly red in tooth and claw, so it’s goodnight Vienna, I’m afraid.

It’s been obvious for some time, that the writing is on the wall for climate alarmism. People are just sick to death of one scare after another and that has been compounded by economic woes closer to home. Staying in work and making ends meet is the priority now, and all those green taxes are doing more to undermine the cause than anything us skeptics could ever do. When you’re struggling to pay ever spiraling power bills, you start to ask questions, and the answers emerging are really starting to piss people off. They’re beginning to realise it’s all about a bunch of fat cats lining their pockets at the expense of the ordinary person, and those cats couldn’t give a rat’s ass about the environment or pushing the small people into fuel poverty. It’s about the love of money.

A couple of opinion polls of late, put worries about a global warming end of the world right at the bottom of the common person’s concerns. That sort of nonsense, like the good times that engendered it, is now gone. It’s been back to basics for some time. With every passing day, our secret weapon, is cutting ever bigger swathes through the alarmist ranks.

If you want to sell papers or get people to visit your site, you need to bag that big scoop on a regular basis. Mostly, there aren’t that many scoops around, or at least ones you can report on, so you spice up fairly mundane stories. It’s a tendency as old as print journalism and to a large extent, the readership is aware of it and makes an appropriate allowance for it. The alternative approach is to concentrate on producing high quality articles and opinion pieces on topics, which you’ve carefully selected to attract an audience demographic of interest to your particular advertisers. It’s a slower but surer way of building up a habitual readership.

What pays the wages of journalism is advertising, and unless a significant number of people are consuming your product, that advertising moves away to a more popular provider. Your continued existence now depends on the bean counters, and they simply don’t care about how noble your intentions are. Get more readers, get more viewers or get more hits because otherwise, you’re about to become history.

If you look at the numbers for what used to be the popular alarmist websites, they’ve been heading steadily downwards for the last few years. I’ve no doubt that trend is reflected in the print and other mediums; it’s what has come to be known as climate fatigue in the news business.

The bean counters are now at work and wielding their budget chopping axes on what used to be some of the mainstream propaganda outlets for the climate alarmists.

The New York Times closed its environmental desk and probably because there wasn’t much of an outcry about that decision, within a fortnight decided to make a clean sweep and close all its environmental blogs as well. If you look, the internet numbers for their product were simply miserable anyway. Just this week, the Washington Post decided to follow suit and “redeploy” some journalists specialising on the environment, into other areas. As it happens, it was a tidy solution to more than a few nagging personnel problems. They’re all of course still totally committed to saving the planet, but not at the expense of their bottom line. It’s as graceful a retreat from what used to be a very fashionable cause as they can manage, but make no mistake, they’re all leaving the party.

Newsrooms around the world are being culled, but I think it’s significant that it’s the environmental area which is now taking the brunt of the cuts and seen as surplus to profitable requirements. It can safely be given the chop. That would have been unthinkable four or five years ago. Of course, the quasi-state television channels will continue to push the alarmist line, simply because they have no commercial pressures they’re obliged to respond to. In the long term though, that doesn’t matter in their particular case, as the advent of internet television stations will ultimately push them into extinction as well. In passing though, it’s interesting to note that the BBC have over the past few months, dispensed with the services of a number of so-called reporters, whom any reasonable person would have to class as nothing better than climate activists.

This slow demise of so-called environmental journalism is actually an act of euthanasia, a mercy killing. To my mind, it always embodied the very worst aspects of journalism. All the grubby professional sins were there; advocacy dressed up as balanced reportage, an intolerant moral arrogance, totally one-sided reporting, knee-jerk churnalism, absolutely no distinction between opinion and factual pieces, suppression of stories that didn’t square with an approved set of viewpoints, selective misinformation, hit pieces dressed up as respectable journalism directed at their pet hate figures, a crusading willingness to sacrifice truth, by both omission and commission, in the name of a higher cause and a basic dishonesty to both the reader and their profession.

The environmental niche in which such dire journalistic practices could flourish, is on the way out and they’re simply not adapting to that new situation. Beyond a large amount of denial and what frequently looks to be plain displacement activity, their solution appears to be to try and repackage the product, but that simply doesn’t address the fundamental problem – the product no longer has any mass appeal. It’s not selling. That’s the writing on the wall. Read it.

Things like Climategate, along with a cascade of other gates and a stream of failed predictions, have undermined and destroyed the credibility of the science on which the whole house of cards stood. It’s toast. Because of the easy ingrained habits of churnalism, passively reproducing press handouts and never doing much more than commenting on other people’s articles and papers, they failed in general to produce outlets publishing a steady stream of original and quality content. Their volume audience was essentially a transitory fashion demographic, and the fashion has now changed. When that happened, they lost their mass audience.

Ordinary people, struggling through the worst recession in living memory, see environmentalism as just another financial overhead they’re having to contend with. They simply haven’t got time for it any more. No time and no interest at all.

It was a type of journalism which was never really about the environment, never mind science, but rather it was about the idea of a single correct political viewpoint on any topic. It was a vital element of a failed social re-engineering project, which now lies in ruins. They rode a hysterical fashion wave far up the shore in the mistaken belief that it was somehow permanent, but that wave is now receding, never to return.

People have by now gone through the stage of tiredly shrugging off your latest efforts to continue scaring them and are just plain ignoring you by now, which is why all the cuts. You’re being culled, because the bean counters are perceptive enough to know there won’t be any blowback these days from any significant quarter.

Like all species who are no longer fit for purpose, the environmental journalist is facing extinction.

©Pointman

Related articles by Pointman:

Climategate 2 – yes, they’ve been lying to you.

The death of journalism and the irresistible rise of the blogosphere.

Our secret weapon.

The Climate Wars.

Oh, what a wonderful MSM.

Click for a list of other articles.

Comments
17 Responses to “A species facing extinction.”
  1. Rick Bradford says:

    It also hasn’t helped their cause that Mother Nature herself has proved to be a “denier”.

  2. Blackswan says:

    Pointman

    While your overview of commercial journalism is very true, there’s another aspect which might be considered.

    In recent decades a Media Mogul’s mantra has been to “Diversify”. There are very few one-trick ponies in the information/entertainment world today. That mantra also means they spread their investment holdings widely, and Renewable Energy has been one of the most lucrative in modern times.

    While it’s encouraging that the New York Times and Washington Post are winding their environmental desks down, it’s not happening everywhere any time soon. Simply because the population has stopped listening and have other priorities, there are some Media Barons who have, in effect, become the ‘advertisers’ themselves. They aren’t fussed about advertising sympathetic to the environment dropping off – it’s their mission (and that of their journalistic peons) to ramp Climate Alarmism right up again. And they have the best politicians money can buy to legislate and regulate according to their wishes.

    Lazy anything-for-a pay-cheque churnalists will continue to cut & paste media releases, conduct the requisite ‘interview’ with some ‘climate scientist’ and generally go-with-the-flow. The priority for their bosses/owners isn’t the environment, the polar bears, or carbon pollooootion – it’s protecting their multi-million dollar investments in Renewable Energy. As long as they can keep a certain element of doubt in the public’s mind, they’ll keep raking in the cash.

    Another element to be factored in … control, power. There are very few Media Moguls with all their fingers and toes in so many pies who would not seek to manipulate popular opinion simply because they can. The results of their polls and focus groups are analysed minutely, both for political leverage and for information in how to counteract public scepticism. It’s put to good use.

    It’s only a matter of time before people wake up to the fact that they’ve actually been duped. Then we can all pull up a chair, pop some corn, crack a tinny and settle back to watch the show.

  3. Graeme No.3 says:

    The truthfulness of Goebbels, the charm of a hyena and the playfulness of a tapeworm. Yet, like the last I think that the environmental journalist will be hard to remove without strong medicine.

  4. Latimer Alder says:

    The MSM in UK are beginning to turn away from unthinking acceptance and cheerleading for all things ‘green’.

    The Daily Telegraph – previously a reliable home for ‘cosy green’ articles is taking a less friendly tone. The Times is doing likewise. The Daily Mail (a mid-market tabloid) is definitely ‘anti’, thanks to David Rose. Only the Guardian remains as the bastion of Ture AGW alarmism – along with its broad cast arm – the BBC.

    But perhaps the most interesting development has been the rise of the UK Independence Party in national politics. They caused a shock by doing better than the Conservatives in a recent parliamentary election. And their energy policy is robustly anti-renewables.

    Ironically the election was caused by the resignation and subsequent guilty plea of the Energy Secretary on ‘perversion of the cause of justice’ charges. He was known as a leading proponent and cheerleader of wind energy

  5. JohnRMcD says:

    As a one time resident of Australia, parts of the Pacific, Canada, the US, the middle east, and SE Asia (and more), it has been my misfortune to have been a consumer of the “press” in many locations. This has made me a non-believer in most of the forms of mental conformity forced on the world of peons.
    I have been a passive reader of your blog for many, many months during my retirement (I am just short of 71). On quiet reflection I can not remember any time when I have been in complete disagreement with your writings. Occasionally I may disagree with your emphasis, but that means little. I really liked what you have written here; this is the feeling I have been getting. However, please do not let up on these bastards; as soon as we back off, they will try again. In this I agree with Black Swan. Only when these bastards have been driven into a bleeding pulp can we relax with our feet up, and, in my case, with a single malt.
    Allons mes enfants.

    • Blackswan says:

      G’day JohnRMcD

      Hoping you enjoyed your time living in Australia. As you would understand, with Media Barons of the likes of Rupert Murdoch, the Packer Dynasty, Fairfax and Stokes et al, Aussies are only too aware of their reach into every facet of Australian life. Over many decades their domination of our print media, tabloids/broadsheets/magazines plus television and radio does not inspire confidence that Truth will ever get in the way of a good story …. especially when our political classes dance attendance upon them at every turn.

      To watch our commercial TV networks one would never suspect that any question had ever been raised over edicts from the IPCC – no challenge is ever reported. Same goes for our national taxpayer-funded broadcaster, the ABC. It’s nothing more than the media arm of Labor/Green Government.

      As wind turbine construction continues apace and solar panels glaze rooftops at every turn, there is no whisper in our MSM that these industries have collapsed elsewhere in the world. It’s only those of us who venture into the blogosphere who find a different reality.

      While extinction for environmental advocates looms for others, here in the Anitpodes the illusion and misinformation industries thrive – with buckets of cash splashed in all directions.

  6. Mindert Eiting says:

    Beautiful article, Pointman. It summarizes my opinion of the so-called science editors of my newspaper, without exception:
    ‘All the grubby professional sins were there; advocacy dressed up as balanced reportage, an intolerant moral arrogance, totally one-sided reporting, knee-jerk churnalism, absolutely no distinction between opinion and factual pieces, suppression of stories that didn’t square with an approved set of viewpoints, selective misinformation, hit pieces dressed up as respectable journalism directed at their pet hate figures, a crusading willingness to sacrifice truth, by both omission and commission, in the name of a higher cause and a basic dishonesty to both the reader and their profession.’
    But just letting them go extinct? As some commentators here have shown, it is all too human to want a certain revenge. Let’s be civilized and wish to see them back on the flea markets in our cities, desperately trying to sell second hand clothes nobody is interested in.

  7. TinyCO2 says:

    Another excellent, thought provoking article.

    The amusing thing is, that of all professions journalism is one of the easiest to make more energy efficient or eco friendly. No longer do editors need to send their journalists out into a war torn world, he or she can just take the accounts and photographs of those already living out there. Reports are instant, knowledgeable and untainted by the world weariness of the usual hacks. Mostly those cub reporters will do it for free and if some of the foreign reports might need a little rewriting, many of them contain better English than those by expensive degree level journos.

    In fact newspapers may become journalist free and just host blogs of preferred members of the public. No longer will we have to endure the opinions of those who think they’re unbiased because they’re published even while spouting their political outlook. We can choose instead to read the bias on both sides and choose which we prefer. I wonder if the environmental journalists will appreciate their sacrifice to the goddess of CO2 as they try to find a new career?

    Is CAGW hysteria dead? Hmmm, I fear it still has a way to go. The US is still on the upswing and their media will drive it for some time. We’re probably due for a new blockbuster like The Day After Tomorrow, which will fan the flames globally. However the UK is ready to crack. It’s getting hard to persuade people that cold and wet equals warming. Bills are ramping up, but despite UKIP, there’s no political voice speaking out against AGW, so disillusioned voters have nowhere to turn. It would take a rebellion across the EU or the UK voting to leave for us to ditch the stupid laws we’ve got wrapped in. The turning point might be power cuts.

    Globally, a game changer might be a temperature fall, though I can’t see it on the horizon. I fear a rise might be more likely in the short term, if only because the MetOffice predict flat temperatures.

  8. A.D. Everard says:

    Great article, Pointman. I am so pleased this is finally turning around. It’s been a long, long journey with still a long way to go, but as you say, the writing is on the wall.

    It will interesting to see the panic assail the alarmists as the finally realize it’s too late to change their tune or jump ship. They had their chance, they didn’t take it. They took the money instead. And now everyone is looking at them, knowing that they sold out humanity for a buck.

  9. Blackswan says:

    Pointman,

    With Britain currently closing down a number of power stations and the conversion of Drax in York to biomass, Christopher Booker must feel as though he’s shouting down an empty well ….

    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2290444/Madness-How-pay-billions-electricity-bills-Britains-biggest-power-station-switch-coal-wood-chips–wont-help-planet-jot.html

    “As from next month, Drax will embark on a £700 million switch away from burning coal for which it was designed, in order to convert its six colossal boilers to burn millions of tons a year of wood chips instead.

    Most of these chips will come from trees felled in forests covering a staggering 4,600 square miles in the USA, from where they will be shipped 3,000 miles across the Atlantic to Britain.”

    From any perspective, these hare-brained schemes being fully entrenched, committed and legislated for under EU and UN directives, knock the truth of CAGW out of the ball park – it just doesn’t matter any more – the “fix” is in.

    The UK is going to get a new carbon tax apparently – welcome to my world.

    The price of absolutely everything will rise – from a cup of coffee to a haircut to an icecream cone – in tiny increments it will all send the cost of living into the stratosphere. The electricity bills for shopping malls will rise by thousands, rents to tenant businesses will rise to cover it and those costs will be passed on. The dairy industry and anything that uses refrigeration will be under pressure as the costs of refrigerant gases has tripled in Oz. Councils pay so much more for street lighting and huge penalties per tonne for landfill sites so local rates and taxes rise which are eventually factored into rents.

    Once implemented, these activities will be horrendous to repeal or rescind as massive penalties are factored into contracts.

    While environmental journalists will no doubt become extinct in time, their message has served its purpose. The rest of us just have to figure out how to pay for it.

  10. Esther Cook says:

    Britain switching Drax from coal to wood makes the perfect opportunity to point out why coal is even more renewable than wood.

    Wood is politically acceptable because the greenies understand that sunshine will turn the carbon dioxide and water vapor back into wood. Wood is renewable.

    Coal and other fossil fuels also produce carbon dioxide and water vapor on being burned–and sunshine makes that into NEW forests and expanded food supplies for people and all other species. Only fossil fuels have this effect: they increase the life and well-being of the biosphere.

    They are superrenewable. Promotion of that term will get attention, and when most people consider the matter, they will realize that this must be true. Fossil fuels and only fossil fuels are superrenewable. Fossil fuels, and only fossil fuels increase the life on Earth.

    Fossils are the greenest fuels.

  11. Pointman says:

    It’s when the lazy MSM start stealing your ideas, you know you’re getting somewhere as a blogger but at least come up with your own original headline …

    http://www.ipsnews.net/2013/10/u-s-science-reporters-becoming-an-endangered-species/

    Pissed off Pointy.

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  1. […] the environmental journalist is facing extinction.” The posting can be read  in its entirety by clicking here. […]

  2. […] A couple of opinion polls of late, put worries about a global warming end of the world right at the bottom of the common person’s concerns. That sort of nonsense, like the good times that engendered it, is now gone. It’s been back to basics for some time. With every passing day, our secret weapon, is cutting ever bigger swathes through the alarmist ranks.   Continue reading, here…. […]

  3. […] Environmental journalists face extinction. Sad. thepointman.wordpress.com/2013/03/08/a-s… […]



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