Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Ethon visits the 400 Club

Eli sent Ethon out looking for the lesser known members of the 400 Club. Our far flung correspondent Cyberchrome relays the report that

"TV Weathermen is one thing but TV Gardeners???

Ask anyone from the UK if Alan Titchmarsh qualifies as a prominent scientist and you'll be met with the smile of one indulging a naive child. He's a popular guy, best known for hosting the weekly 'Gardener's World' TV program and writing popular novels and memoirs ('Trowel and Error' geddit?). The proposition that he acts as a counter to the IPCC and the scientific concensus, with his Diploma in Horticulture and honorary degrees, reveals the depth of the desparation over there in the contrarian corner."

http://www.alantitchmarsh.com/about.asp
  • Alan Titchmarsh was born and brought up on the edge of Ilkley Moor in Yorkshire and started growing things at the age of ten in his parents’ back garden. He left school at fifteen and became an apprentice gardener in the local nursery, following this with full time training at horticultural college and the royal Botanic Gardens, Kew.
UPDATE: The 400 Club has at least two more TV gardeners. In the comments from N3xus6 comes word that:
Don Burke had the most famous gardening show over here in Oz for years and he's now a front for an IPA astroturfing operation, the Australian Environment Foundation
CORRECTION: Different Don Burke. Our Don Burke is the Dean of Pittsburgh's School of Public Health. Burke
noted that the 2001 study found that weather fluctuation and seasonal variability may influence the spread of infectious disease. But he also noted that such conclusions should be interpreted with caution.

"There are no apocalyptic pronouncements," Burke said. "There's an awful lot we don't know."

Burke said he is not convinced that climate change can be proven to cause the spread of many diseases, specifically naming dengue fever, influenza, and West Nile virus.

But Paul R. Epstein, associate director of the Center for Health and the Global Environment at Harvard Medical School, said clusters of disease outbreaks spread by water, mosquitoes, and rats could clearly be traced to global warming.

And Not Lubos Motl (LM) mentions that
Another alleged environmentalist, geologist and gardening expert is Bruno Wiskel. For a good laugh or cry watch his presentation "The Sky is Not Falling - Debunking the Myths of Global Warming"
---------------------------------------------
Now Eli has nothing against Master Gardiner (and garden journalist) Titchmarsh who he would cheerfully invite to give us tips about the carrot patch, but this is too much. The 400 Club is a rerun of "Being There" and although Mr. Titchmarsh is far from the empty shell that Chance the Gardiner was we can listen to the dialog that ran through Inhofe and Morano's heads when they nominated him to the 400:
Senator Inhofe: Mr. Gardner, do you agree with Marc, or do you think that we can stimulate growth through temperature incentives?
[Long pause]
Chance the Gardiner: As long as the roots are not severed, all is well. And all will be well in the garden.
Senator Inhofe: In the garden.
Chance the Gardener: Yes. In the garden, growth has it seasons. First comes spring and summer, but then we have fall and winter. And then we get spring and summer again.
Senator Inhofe: Spring and summer.
Chance the Gardener: Yes.
Senator Inhofe: Then fall and winter.
Chance the Gardener: Yes.
Marc Morano: I think what our insightful young friend is saying is that we welcome the inevitable seasons of nature, but we're upset by the predictions of science.
Senator Inhofe: Yes! There will be growth in the spring!
Marc Morano: Hmm!
Chance the Gardener: Hmm!
Senator Inhofe: Hm. Well, Mr. Gardner, I must admit that is one of the most refreshing and optimistic statements I've heard in a very, very long time.
[Marc Morano applauds]
Senator Inhofe: I admire your good, solid sense. That's precisely what we lack on Capitol Hill.
So the question is why did this farce get swallowed whole by the main stream media, and yes, that means you Andy Revkin.

16 comments:

Sparrow (in the coal mine) said...

Alan Titchmarsh's "about" link needs to be fixed. It's a hyperlink to nowhere.

EliRabett said...

Thanks. Fixed

Anonymous said...

"Mr. Titchmarsh is far from the empty shell that Chance the Gardiner was"

At least Chance did not pretend to be someone he was not, unlike many of the people on that list, masquerading as scientists.

EliRabett said...

People on the list did not ask to be put there. Gotta work on an innocents list.

Anonymous said...

There is more than one way of asking for something.

Nexus 6 said...

What is it with the gardening show types?

Don Burke had the most famous gardening show over here in Oz for years and he's now a front for an IPA astroturfing operation, the Australian Environment Foundation (set up by Jennifer Marohasy):

http://www.aefweb.info/staff.php

I loves teh sceiences they spurt:

http://www.aefweb.info/articles58.html

Anonymous said...

Well, Mr. Revkin has too be careful not to go too far in stating the science. Otherwise, he might get labeled as an "advocate".

So every once in awhile, he has to bring some contrarian aspects into his journalism to prove that he's "being fair."

Thus, the reason for comments by Roger Pielke Jr. Thus, the reason why the New York Times has never done a story on the oil and gas industry's campaign of denial.

Mus musculus anonymouse

Cynthia said...

Wow, so that's Ethon! Not only is he well trained, but he's awfully cute, too...;~)

Cynthia said...

Though I can't speak of the value (aesthetic or otherwise) of Master Gardiner (and garden journalist), I can say that Peter Sellers was pretty priceless in "Being There"! :~)

Sam-Hec said...

Oops, ah ment to post the above in The Dessler 20.

Horatio Algeranon said...

Mus musculus said:
"every once in awhile, he [Revkin] has to bring some contrarian aspects into his journalism to prove that he's "being fair."

Fair and Balanced

anonymous anna said...

> "why did this farce get swallowed whole by the main stream media, and yes, that means you Andy Revkin."

in fairness to Andy, and to the innocents, Andy was right, about (at least some of) the innocents - at least a couple of biologists appear on the list (only(?)) because they don't believe AGW will cause the massive extinctions that others have predicted.

And that is "not so much the shattering of a consensus as a portrait of one corner of the absolutely normal, and combative, arena in which scientific ideas emerge and either thrive or fade", as Revkin puts it.

so it depends on which List People you focus on.

LM said...

Another alleged environmentalist, geologist and gardening expert is Bruno Wiskel. For a good laugh or cry watch his presentation "The Sky is Not Falling - Debunking the Myths of Global Warming".

http://cspg.org/events/webcasts/webcast-poll.cfm?w=80

LM

EliRabett said...

Actually Cynthia, that's Eth's avatar. He is really much bigger.

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
EliRabett said...

A foolish person asks:

"This is probably way way off topic here, but I puzzled, how it could be, that you and I, both chemists, could have such different views, of the properties in the infra red, of a compound of molecular weight 44, comprising about 360 hundredths of a mole percent of the atmosphere."

Maybe because Eli is a spectroscopist with training in physics who also publishes in the areas of gas phase kinetics and dynamics. You OTOH are wrong. YMMV, but you would still be wrong.