Jun 01

Thomas Richard at Climate Change Fraud writes:

The excerpted article below, Hurricane barriers floated to keep sea out of NYC, written by Jennifer Peltz of the Associated Press, is a tutorial on how to create a groundless, baseless, fear-mongering hit piece. First, you begin with a frightening opening paragraph just in case the reader wasn’t paying attention to the headline:

When experts sketch out nightmare hurricane scenarios, a New York strike tends to be high on the list. Besides shaking skyscrapers, a major hurricane could send the Atlantic Ocean surging into the nation’s largest city, flooding Wall Street, subways and densely packed neighborhoods.

Continue with a possible, though improbable, solution as ridiculous and embarrassing as the subject itself:

As a new hurricane season starts Monday, some scientists and engineers are floating an ambitious solution: Barriers to choke off the surging sea and protect flood-prone areas. The plan involves deploying giant barriers and gates that would move into place — in some cases rising out of the water — for storms. One proposal calls for a 5-mile-long barrier between New Jersey and Queens.

Glob on some more alarm and what-if scenarios:

New Yorkers are “living under the volcano, and people haven’t thought about it,” says Douglas Hill, an engineer who began discussing the idea several years ago with Stony Brook University oceanography professor Malcolm J. Bowman.

Get a quote from someone with an official-sounding title:

…former National Hurricane Center director Max Mayfield told a congressional committee that “it is not a question of if a major hurricane will strike the New York area, but when.”

Tie it all back to global warming, the bogeyman trotted out by journalists, politicians, and grant-seeking scientists with equal aplomb:

Hurricanes aren’t the only flood threat. Nor’easters also have caused storm-surge problems in the city, and scientists have projected that the waters around the city could rise by 2 feet or more in the coming decades because of global warming, making coastal flooding more frequent.

Use a memorable, scary example to make your point, even though it has long been discredited that any link exists and the problem was actually population density in a below-sea-level city:

Warnings that New Orleans faced disaster from a major hurricane proved devastatingly true, they note, when Katrina struck in August 2005. The storm breached levees, flooded most of the city and killed more than 1,500 people in New Orleans and elsewhere.

Then end the whole piece with a scary-sounding quote just to make sure you got your specious point across:

But for now, their goal is a full-fledged study of the barriers and possible alternatives — work they say can’t afford to wait. “We’re going to have to do something,” Bowman said. “Or else you retreat, and that’s inconceivable. How are you going to retreat from New York City?”

Sadly, the mainstream media will likely pick up this story, then cut, paste and exacerbate the original copy (if that’s even possible). My burning question: Is this what passes for today’s journalism and did the AP actually pay money to run this slapdash, factually inaccurate piece?

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One Response to “Fear-mongering 101”

  1. Brian Gregory Valentine says:

    HA – Peltz must have been doing some mentoring under Seth BORE-AND-STAIN.

    She keeps getting better and better at what she does.

    What happens if we have another “Martians are Attacking” radio show?

    GIANT TIDAL WAVE SEVENTEEN FEET HIGH COMING TO FLOOD EAST COAST! FLORIDA WILL BE COMPLETELY UNDER WATER! THE POLAR ICE CAP IS MELTING! DEAD FISH FROM ARCTIC OCEAN EXPECTED TO SWAMP ENTIRE WEST COAST OF CALIFORNIA! EXTREME DROUGHT CONDITIONS MEAN THAT CALIFORNIA WILL INCINERATE LIKE A TINDER BOX!

    If you don’t stop driving your SUV by tomorrow

       0 likes

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