The anti-environmentalist spin machine is at it again. A series of headlines has been making the rounds of the blogosphere lately:
Time Magazine, Sept. 10, 1923: "The discoveries of changes in the sun's heat and the southward advance of glaciers in recent years have given rise to conjecture of the possible advent of a new ice age."
New York Times, Sept. 18, 1924: "MacMillan Reports Signs of New Ice Age."
New York Times, March 27, 1933: "America in Longest Warm Spell Since 1776; Temperature Line Records a 25-Year Rise."
Time Magazine, Jan. 2, 1939: "Gaffers who claim that winters were harder when they were boys are quite right...weather men have no doubt that the world, at least for the time being, is growing warmer."
There are more headlines in this vein. I guess people are trying to say that since the media has been talking about climate change for years, we don't need to worry about the current global warming problem, right?
First unearthed by the right wing Media Research Center, the headlines spread quickly. The MRC was cited by an Editorial in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review. That editorial was then cited by a blogger at Newsbusters. From there, it went all over, as right wing bloggers slapped each other on the back and congratulated themselves for proving, once again, that this global warming stuff is just fearmongering.
I've got another set of misleading headlines for you to ponder.
In the runup to the Iraq war, the New York Times ran many headlines about the threat of Iraqi weapons of mass destruction.
Exempli gratia: A New York Times Headline from September 8, 2002:
‘U.S. Says Hussein Intensified Quest for A-Bomb Parts.’ These headlines were a major part of the Administration's case for war.
On September 8, the Miller/Gordon story about the aluminum tubes appeared on page one of the New York Times. The information was attributed to unnamed administration sources. That same morning, Vice President Dick Cheney was interviewed by Tim Russert on NBC's "Meet the Press." Cheney mentioned, vaguely at first, Saddam's efforts "to acquire the equipment he needs to be able to enrich uranium to make the bombs." Russert, familiar with the Times story, prompted his guest: "Aluminum tubes."
Cheney replied: "Specifically aluminum tubes. There's a story in the New York Times this morning — this is — I don't — and I want to attribute the Times. I don't want to talk about, obviously, specific intelligence sources, but it's now public that, in fact, he has been seeking to acquire...the kind of tubes that are necessary to build a centrifuge."