Bolt: Every word he says is a lie, including “and” and “the”

Andrew Bolt (no link) has repeated the lie that I drastically overestimated the impact of a carbon tax on global warming. In fact, it was Bolt who was out by a factor of 100 (Full details here). Rather than rehash this dispute, I’d thought I’d list some of Bolt’s greatest hits, or rather misses.

* Here he is, confusing the stratosphere and the troposphere, and claiming to have disproved climate science as a result

* Here, being fooled by a David Rose claim so absurd that even the Mail on Sunday had to retract it

* Here, denying the fact that Arctic ice is disappearing fast, a fact that is now regularly proved by sailing through the previously impassable Northwest Passage, and by the intense international negotiations about sovereignty over the newly opened waterways

* Here, claiming the carbon tax would be “ruinous”

* Here, claiming that radioactivity is good for you

* Here, unable to understand the meaning of the word “average”

* Here, defaming the Bureau of Meteorology, and lying about it

* Here, being fooled by a LaRouchite conspiracy theory on DDT

That’s just from my blog and just for the last five years. I haven’t even got to the Iraq war, where he combined credulous faith in repeated announcements of victory with vicious denunciations of all who predicted, correctly, that the war would be disaster, and documented that disaster as it unfolded.

Anyone who believes anything Bolt says is a fool. But I suspect that, like Bolt himself, most of his fans know he is talking nonsense and don’t care. He’s a tribal ally, and he’s good with snark and slander, and that’s good enough for them.

38 thoughts on “Bolt: Every word he says is a lie, including “and” and “the”

  1. @Ronald Brak

    I heard him last week, on the radio, speaking in parliament.

    In the 15 minutes or so of my car trip he:

    1) said he was the only research scientist with a PhD in Parliament;

    2) said climate change is not real, because (every denier argument from ‘it’s not happening’ to ‘natural causes’);

    3) advocated nuclear energy as the only solution for reducing carbon emmissions!

    After hearing that, I had to check whether he actually had a PhD (he does, in material science from RMIT) and whether he actually had done research (apparently he did, for ‘defence’, but that doesn’t mean he was actually allowed near any sharp objects).

    If it isn’t real/isn’t happening/ is natural; surely we should just it rip with the billionty years worth of fossil fueals they keep telling us we have?

    Unless of course we actually don’t have the ability to cheaply produce all that lovely FF at the ever-increasing volumes required to fuel eternal exponential growth.

    The man is a nutter.

  2. AGW = Fraud.
    There is no measurable average global temperature, only an ever increasing anomaly constructed by the fraudsters.

    Climate Change = The new manifesto

    After the AGW fraud was discovered , the climateburo standing committee now states the climate can be controlled/ changed with carbon, without providing one skerrick or measure of causation.

    And guess what, no one can deny the climate changes.

  3. Is it possible for media-makers who serially misrepresent facts to be taken to court somehow?!?

  4. @phoenix

    “without providing one skerrick or measure of causation”

    This tells me you don’t understand atmospheric physics. From this I understand you don’t have a PhD in Atmospheric Physics or any knowledge of basic science for that matter. So, pray tell me, why would I listen to your opinion in this (or any other) matter?

  5. @Anna K

    Because if it were a crime to deliberately and continually lie for personal benefit then all politicians would be in jail. Pollies don’t make laws against themselves nor against the graft machine that fills their donation coffers.

  6. And we’ve had a player in the fantasy role playing game chime in above. It’s very easy to show other people that the players don’t know what they are talking about by asking them a few simple questions, but almost impossible to show the player themselves, as if they were in the habit of thinking things through they wouldn’t be in the game in the first place. Just like in Dungeons and Dragons these people like to feel like heros by battling evil and the more evil their enemy is the more heroic they feel in comparison. And so it’s not really a problem for them if they have to include basically all the world’s scientists, the weather bureau, and basic maths as part of some enormous conspiracy against them, as it just makes them seem all the more heroic in comparison. Some players are still connected to reality to some degree but this can result in just more elaborate fantasizing in an attempt to paper over the cracks. Sometimes these players can be embarrassed by asking them simple questions, although these are not likely to be the ones you meet online. Players are not in the habit of thanking you for pointing out their errors. Instead, since they perceive any challenge to the factual validity of their claims as an attempt to stop them feeling like a hero they react emotionally. After all, if you’re attempting to stop them feeling like a hero then you must be one of the bad guys and in their minds they will battle you to the finish like a hero, although to observers it often seems more like the Black Knight fight scene from Monty Python as they resort to sillier and sillier arguements or often just abuse.

  7. “He’s a tribal ally, and he’s good with snark and slander, and that’s good enough for them.”

    Well yes, that’s why I think it’s a mistake even to acknowledge that he is worth discussing. The fact that he gets attention validates his importance.

  8. @Anna K

    Is it possible for media-makers who serially misrepresent facts to be taken to court somehow?!?

    Not unless what they say is defamatory or in breach of some parts of the Racial Discrimination Act. Bolt has been taken to court for both and lost.

    When Bolt got sued for defamation by magistrate Jelena Popovic the matter ended up in the Court of Appeal which (source: Bolt’s Wikipedia entry) described Bolt’s conduct as “at worst, dishonest and misleading and at best, grossly careless”.

    This was in 2003. Which just goes to show that there are no career penalties in the commentary business for being at worst, dishonest and misleading and at best, grossly careless”. There aren’t even financial penalties if you are indemnified by your employer.

  9. @Ronald Brak
    As a regular player of D&D-like roleplaying games who knows a bit about the sociology of the field, I would like to note that a) nearly all roleplayers are university educated, the majority in quantitative-oriented fields (engineering, phys/chem/bio, etc) and have opinions about the value of science to match, and b) very few of them have the difficulty telling the difference between fact and fantasy that convicted racist Andrew Bolt’s fans display.

    Trekkies, on the other hand…

  10. JamesH, yes I’m afraid that Dungeons and Dragons players are certainly the pearls among the swine in my comparison and don’t at all deserve to be lumped in with with people who seem determined to pretend the world is a worse place than it is so they can feel a little better about themselves. Dungeons and Dragons is a role playing game where the participants are fully aware that they are playing a role while the one and only rule for those playing the Indignation and Denial fastasy game appears to be to never admit that it is only make believe.

    And Trekkies? Trust me, they are nothing compared to the threat that people who like 4th ed pose…

  11. “There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”

    – John Rogers

  12. Bolt is merely a self-promoter trying to claim the main local media extremist role like his US counterpart Rush Limbaugh.

    It’s not enough just to be one, he needs to be THE one.

    He does seem to have an unusual fixation with both race and global warming that goes beyond the rational but is mainly there as a well-paid apologist for the rich and powerful.

    “Gina’s Bitch” perhaps – although Bananaby Joyce is a contender for that role.

    It will be entertaining to see him switch from gratuitous attack mode to snivelling defense for the next couple of years however. Somehow I think it will not play as well to his audience.

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