typing is not activism….

environ mentalism, fresh articles, interviews & checkitouts from Sydney.

Michael Duffy is a moron; why does Fairfax pay him?

with 3 comments

It is strange that Fairfax, the publisher of Sydney Morning Herald, puts out a far better paper in Melbourne – The Age – than they do in Sydney. It could perhaps be because the Sydney editor is a nonce. But that doesn’t explain why the hell Fairfax employ a conservative editor in what continually tries to be a progressive society. Perhaps they would rather we resist that impulse.

Or they think we are idiots, which would explain why they keep on their stable of narcissistic pundits-of-no-merit. Like Miranda Devine. Like Gerard Henderson (could somebody pleeeease tell him that John Howard is gone already). Like Michael Duffy.

Duffy is like a tumour that masquerades as a boil. His bio is hilarious – he relaunched his image at the Herald lately by presenting himself as aged cool like a turd with chocolate sprinkles, making special efforts to emphasize that he has been on the dole, AND played in bands. I would bet Madonna’s left nut that they were horrible pieces of shit who largely played or ripped off other people’s songs that sucked way before they even lost all relevance.. Because this feels like the kind of guy that Duffy is, and it’s exactly the way that he manages information. He’s like some second rate Christopher Pyne trying to present as a first rate Shaun Micallef, thereby coming across quite a bit like a skid mark from Peter Costello’s underpants but without the charisma.

In the tradition of ripping off shit that need never have been exuded in the first place, skunkjunk has just run an op ed in the Herald Truly inconvenient truths about climate change being ignored. Wow! Genius! Who would have ever thought to use the title of an increasingly old movie ironically in pursuit of climate change denial? Never. Seen. That. Done. A. Million. Times. Already.

And what a piece of crap it is.

Someone else who’s looked closely at scientific journals (although not specifically those dealing with climate science) is epidemiologist John Ioannidis of the Tufts University School of Medicine in Boston. He reached the surprising conclusion that most published research findings are proved false within five years of their publication. (Lest he be dismissed as some eccentric, I note that the Economist recently said Ioannidis has made his case “quite convincingly”.)

So, one of Duffy’s convincing sources reads magazines that aren’t anything to do with climate science, and has found inconsistencies in those non-climate findings which a non-climate magazine has apparently once agreed add up to some kind of non-climate argument, and therefore climate change is bogus? I’m so convinced, I must read further.

Why might this be so? Later work by Ioannidis and colleagues suggests that these days journal editors are more likely to publish research that will make a splash than that which will not. They do this to sell more copies of their publications and of reprints of papers in it. Ioannidis believes these publication practices might be distorting science.

Magazine editors use headlines to sell issues? You mean…. Tom Cruise didn’t have Katie Holmes hypnotized into bearing his children, worshipping his god, and never speaking Nicole Kidman’s name?  Wow. Thank god some disciplined non-climate-scientists applied themselves to that conundrum or we may never have had closure. It’s almost like the way some newspapers publish idiots who make ignorant and stupid claims supported by poorly crafted arguments just to piss off anybody with half a brain and a blog.

Hey! I’ve got half a brain! Which means I’m still far better off than Michael Duffy, especially since the functioning part of it isn’t pressing hard against my prostate.

Speaking of fecal matter, Duffy’s cute little bit about using climate science to sell copy might give you fond memories of James Inhofe’s flash of brilliance a few years ago. He’s the Bush stooge responsible for environmental governance in America. He’s also the douche nozzle who publicly proclaimed that global warming is a conspiracy dreamt up by the Weather Channel to improve ratings. According to Duffy’s preferred sources, scientists and their accountants are in on the big fix too.

Central to this is the importance of government funding to science. Much of that funding since World War II has occurred because scientists build up public fears (examples include fear of the USSR’s superiority in weapons or space travel, of health problems, of environmental degradation) and offer themselves as the solution to those fears. The administrators who work with the scientists join in with enthusiasm: much of their own funding is attached to the scientific grants.

So you can all just go back to bed. It was scientists, and not the US Government and Department of Defense who employed them, that built up and manipulated fears of the USSR. Silly historians screwed that one up, hey? AIDS, cancer, polio, malaria, Chernobyl, the Ozone Hole, drought, collapsing fish stocks, impending mass extinction events, collapsing ice shelves – DON’T WORRY!! It’s just a bunch of chemistry nerds trying to line their pockets with the ultimate aim of owning every single authentic Star Trek item available on eBay.

The lesson in this? If you must read lobotomised opinionistas with no grasp of anything relevant to offer as they attempt to lower the i.q. of the collective – read critically and thinkingly. This will clash directly with the information they attempt to frame as an argument and with the haphazard and desperate manner in which they write.

And if enough people do this, maybe these douchebags will be dismissed from their cushy gig wasting ink each week, thereby making room for things worth reading – like credible opinion, breaking news, alternative proposals to the mess we’re in. Because unfortunately it’s not just us. It’s every species, every biome, every piece of life on Earth – including the billions of lifeforms that have never even come close to producing more pollution than their surroundings can process.

And let’s send these fuckers back to 2002 where their misdirection was already getting old.


Written by typingisnotactivism

November 8, 2008 at 2:32 pm

3 Responses

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  1. I took Michael Duffy’s advice (Truly inconvenient truths about climate change being ignored, SMH November 8-9) and went to the Hadley Centre website in Britain to confirm the source of his very obvious subtextual beliefs that global warming is a scientific fantasy. Alas, the first two statements I read were: “Anyone who thinks global warming has stopped has their head in the sand” and “There is clear evidence that global temperatures are rising despite counter-claims from climate skeptics.”
    David Larkey
    7 Naden Place
    Ngunnawal ACT 2912
    02 6255 6394


    November 8, 2008 at 9:48 pm

  2. if only Duffy had taken his own advice – that’s a really good pick-up. Thanks for letting us know… it’s actually funny in an angrifying way.


    November 8, 2008 at 11:29 pm

  3. […] it also frequently runs conservative snootiness masquerading as irony and continues to question and even deny the very actual reality of devastating climate […]

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