Andrew Bolt, writing from Australia
CHILD messiah Greta Thunberg was excited: "500,000 people marched in Madrid last night ... The world is slowly waking up to the climate and environmental crisis."
No, what the world should be waking up to this: Facts are now dead. Rarely have I seen newspapers report exaggerations on the scale I saw after the weekend rally by global warming hysterics, many of them young: "Organisers claimed 500,000 people turned out for the march, but authorities in Madrid put the number at 15,000."
The Washington Post, puzzled, added that there was "no immediate explanation for the disparity in the count". But there is. It's that facts no longer count. What counts is the myth. That's why Thunberg is today's great goddess, treated as an oracle by the United Nations.
She's just 16, refuses to go to school, claims her Asperger's is a "superpower", and is ascribed such mystical powers that her mother even claims "she can see carbon dioxide with the naked eye ... how it flows out of chimneys".
Here is a symbol of a new invincible ignorance — a refusal to even engage with facts and arguments. No wonder Thunberg particularly inspires children, the least educated and most dogmatic.
But this giddy disregard for facts now infects even the smartest adults. Take Therese Rein, who is not just the wife of former prime minister Kevin Rudd, but a very rich businesswoman. Even she joined in blaming Prime Minister Scott Morrison for the NSW bushfires, tweeting. "Parts of NSW on fire at least in part because your party has blocked, and also not initiated, effective climate change policies ... Time to repent"
Time to repent? That's the hot language of faith, not the cool of reason. The science is clear. Morrison can do nothing to change the world's climate and stop fires. Australia is just too small to make a difference.
Rein and other critics such as Malcolm Turnbull are plainly irrational to suggest Morrison could dial down some giant thermostat. Is there any point in also showing that the fires aren't caused by global warming, and that a recent NASA study shows fires are now burning less land, not more?
No, facts have lost their power ever since postmodernism conquered our universities and reassured the stupid they were mere social constructs. Even conspiracies.
To mention facts now is no longer to bring light into darkness, but to set fire to your reputation.
From the Brisbane "Courier Mail" of 9 December, 2019