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Environment

When Climate Rhetoric Becomes Offensive

Collide-a-ScapeBy Keith KloorNovember 16, 2011 3:55 PM

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Of all the rhetorical excesses associated with the climate debate, I find the overt Nazi/fascist/Holocaust allusions the most offensive. Both sides are guilty. Christopher Monckton, the darling of climate skeptics, has becomenotorious for his Hitler references and use of swastika imagery. It almost seems like a tic he can't shake. In a similar vein, those who are passionately concerned about climate change have made unseemly Holocaust comparisons. For example, several years ago, James Hansen coined this metaphor:

The trains carrying coal to power plants are death trains. Coal-fired power plants are factories of death.

A variation on this was made yesterday in the comments section of a Climate Progress post. A regular commenter at the site, referring to fossil fuel companies, wrote:

This is war, baby, and we have to stop letting them load us onto the cattle cars.

Another regular commenter, referencing the actual post, which is about the media's shortcomings in reporting on climate change, responded:

And the MSM [mainstream media] are the prison kapos.

The warped nature of the climate discourse never ceases to amaze.

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