The Swindle Within The Swindle
What does it even mean to swindle? According to Merriam-Webster, the definition of the very “swindle” is to obtain something (money, property…etc) by fraud or deceit. On the 13th of December, I watched “The Great Global Warming Swindle” which was a documentary that talks about how man-made global warming is a swindle and criticizes the IPCC. But the truth is that this documentary talks about a swindle but is a swindle itself thus it’s hypocritical. This movie which talks about how we’re being lied to about global warming is a swindle itself as the documentary relies on inaccurate and old information, is biased (shows only one side of the argument) and edits conversations/interviews to support the documentary’s message which as a result misrepresents the views of some of the interviewees.
The first point I’d like to make why this documentary is a swindle is due to the inaccurate, out-of-date information and misleading information that they present and use to support their points. An example of information that the director used that was misleading was a graph on the world temperature over a period of 120 years. This graph was used to assert that most of the recent rise in global temperatures occurred before 1940 though Martin Durkin (the director) decided to take out the last 20 years of data (of that year). The last 20 years of data which was not in the documentary paralleled the rapid rise in carbon dioxide concentrations, which shows the effects of CO2 very clearly though it was taken out as this more recent and in my opinion, more important data would’ve contradicted the movie’s claims. Most of the graphs that they used in their documentary have missing information or false information. Another example of one would be their “Temp & Solar Activity 120 Years” graph. In this graph they show the audience how solar activity and temperature correlate (which didn’t even correlate perfectly) but the graph stopped conveniently at 1980, not showing us the more desired and recent data. The reason why they did this is because the temperature starts to rise more rapidly while the solar activity decreases which is the opposite of what they claim as temperature and solar activity no longer correlate! They also had other information which was incorrect. For example, they stated in the documentary (depending on the version as there are multiple versions of this documentary in which they took out parts and added different ones) that volcanoes produce more CO2 than human induced emissions, which is false as a U.S. Geological Survey states that human activities release more than 130 times the amount of CO2 emitted by volcanoes. Overall, their information was misleading and so out-dated that it shouldn’t have been used in the documentary to prove their message.
The second point that I’d like to make is that this film is very biased. The director, Martin Durkin only chose scientists that support his claims and there is no other side to the argument in this documentary. The so-called “experts” in this program are not really experts at all and are very unreliable. An example would be Tim Ball, which in the film it was stated that he was a professor in the Climatology Department at the University of Winnipeg when the University of Winnipeg never ever even had a Department of Climatology. The director also only puts facts and information that support him instead of putting other data as he wants to make his movie as convincing and persuading as possible. This film also talks about how environmentalists campaigning against Africa using fossil fuels are “trying to kill the African dream, which is to develop” but in reality it is because of global warming concerns. This documentary fills the audience with “facts” that CO2 is unrelated to climate change, rather than show other viewpoints or facts that go against that. Conclusively, a true documentary should show two sides of the story and be unbiased; to let the audience hear both sides of the argument and choose the one that they feel is right.
The third point that I’d like to mention is how the director of this movie edits conversations and interviews, Martin Durkin takes out/isolates any sentences that do not support his argument and this technique of his makes him look not very sincere. An example is how Martin Durkin misrepresented the highly respected MIT Oceanographer Carl Wunsch who was interviewed for the film but was not informed of the true motives of the filmmakers. Carl Wunsch said that he was completely misrepresented in the film. The following quote is from Carl Wunsch: “In the part of The Great Climate Change Swindle where I am describing the fact that the ocean tends to expel carbon dioxide where it is warm, and to absorb it where it is cold, my intent was to explain that warming the ocean could be dangerous-because it is such a gigantic reservoir of carbon. By its placement in the film, it appears that I am saying that since carbon dioxide exists in the ocean in such large quantities, human influence must not be very important-diametrically opposite to the point I was making-which is that global warming is both real and threatening.” Thus the director was sneaky, as he interviewed a highly respected scientist but only used the parts that the scientist had said that supported the film and decided to leave out the scientist’s true beliefs (how he acknowledges that global warming is both real and threatening).
This documentary tries to prove that man-made global warming is false by using misleading arguments and out-of-date information when the reality is that we should definitely do something global warming or else we’ll suffer the consequences. The director of this movie clearly has a personal agenda and refuses to acknowledge any facts/info that go against his message. He made this controversial but persuading film to attract a lot of attention and in an attempt to spread his ridiculous message of global warming and get more people to think the same way as he is (being a denialist). As a conclusion, this pseudo-documentary is definitely a swindle. It’s trying to manipulate it’s viewer’s knowledge that global warming exists with out-of-dated information and facts (that sound convincing but are misleading), it’s bias (which as a result forces the audience to listen to only one side of the argument) and how the director edits parts in interviews to support his claims (editing out any phrase or sentence that goes against his belief so that the viewers don’t hear/see that part) when global warming is a real and big problem all around the world.