The Washington Post famously let George Will make a variety of mistakes and misstatements in three recent op-eds (see “Post editors let George Will publish a third time global warming lies debunked on its own pages“).
Will’s misstatements on Arctic ice were so egregious that Post reporters took the unprecedented step of contradicting Will in a recent news article:
The new evidence … contradicts data cited in widely circulated reports by Washington Post columnist George F. Will that sea ice in the Arctic has not significantly declined since 1979.
But the Post has topped that stunner: Today, the Post ran an editorial, “Arctic Ice Is Melting: The 30-year decline is accelerating, new data show,” which begins:
MAKE NO mistake, Arctic Sea ice is melting. According to the National Snow and Ice Data Center and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the maximum extent of the winter sea ice cover for 2008-09 was the fifth-lowest on record. Underscoring their point, the agencies added, “The six lowest maximum events since satellite monitoring began in 1979 have all occurred in the past six years (2004-09).”
Global warming is doing a number on Arctic Sea ice.
“Make no mistake”? How about make no mistakes twice? (see “Post lets George Will reassert all his climate falsehoods plus some new ones“)
When my father was the editorial page editor of a mid-sized newspaper, he wrote all of the editorials himself. That almost certainly isn’t true of the Post, but it is inconceivable that its editorial page editor, Fred Hiatt, didn’t okay every word in this piece — including the stinging rebuke to Will (and himself), “Make no mistake”!
So I’m going to have to give major props to the Post on this one. Even if this editorial doesn’t mention Will by name, it is an amazing admission of its own mistakes.
And this is a terrific editorial. The Post appears to have learned the single most important message from climate science in the past two years — the scientific consensus is wrong (see “Disputing the ‘consensus’ on global warming“). Climate change is coming faster and harder than the IPCC “consensus” warned even 18 months ago (see U.S. media largely ignores latest warning from climate scientists: “Recent observations confirm “¦ the worst-case IPCC scenario trajectories (or even worse) are being realised” “” 1000 ppm and AAAS: Climate change is coming much harder, much faster than predicted). That’s why the deniers deserve no attention from the Post or NY Times:
The true debate is not between those who say global warming is a serious problem that deserves strong action and those who say it isn’t. The debate is now between those who say global warming is a serious problem that deserves strong action and those who say global warming is the gravest threat to human civilization in history that demands we bear any burden, pay and price, to prevent.
Here is the rest of the editorial, which even goes a tad farther than I do (!):