STAFF NEWS & ANALYSIS
Wikipedia as Elite Propaganda Mill?
By Staff News & Analysis - December 23, 2009

The Climategate Emails describe how a small band of climatologists cooked the books to make the last century seem dangerously warm. The emails also describe how the band plotted to rewrite history as well as science, particularly by eliminating the Medieval Warm Period, a 400 year period that began around 1000 AD. The Climategate Emails reveal something else, too: the enlistment of the most widely read source of information in the world – Wikipedia – in the wholesale rewriting of this history. – National Post

Dominant Social Theme: None. A crack in the wall?

Free-Market Analysis: We are shocked by this article in the mainstream Canadian press and can only explain it as part of the (admirable) Canadian irritation with global warming in general. Canada and its strange people – entrepreneurial, tough-minded and communitarian (if there is such a thing) – really don't like the global warming crowd. Much of Canada's industry has to do with raw materials and in typical Canadian fashion, the country signed on to Kyoto and then promptly ignored its dictates. The article is part of a larger series, apparently, exposing the sham of global warming.

This article is also a most injurious and scathing attack on Wikipedia. It is astonishing because it shows how easily the entire fabric of elite propaganda could be ripped away in about, say … a month, if the mainstream press put its mind to it. The entire, global-political deceit hangs by a thread in our opinion, and that thread is mainstream communication. Here's some more from the article:

But the UN's official verdict that the Medieval Warm Period had not existed did not erase the countless schoolbooks, encyclopedias, and other scholarly sources that claimed it had. Rewriting those would take decades, time that the band members didn't have if they were to save the globe from warming.

Instead, the band members turned to their friends in the media and to the blogosphere, creating a website called RealClimate.org. "The idea is that we working climate scientists should have a place where we can mount a rapid response to supposedly ‘bombshell' papers that are doing the rounds" in aid of "combating dis-information," one email explained, referring to criticisms of the hockey stick and anything else suggesting that temperatures today were not the hottest in recorded time. One person in the nine-member Realclimate.org team – U.K. scientist and Green Party activist William Connolley – would take on particularly crucial duties.

Connolley took control of all things climate in the most used information source the world has ever known – Wikipedia. Starting in February 2003, just when opposition to the claims of the band members were beginning to gel, Connolley set to work on the Wikipedia site. He rewrote Wikipedia's articles on global warming, on the greenhouse effect, on the instrumental temperature record, on the urban heat island, on climate models, on global cooling. On Feb. 14, he began to erase the Little Ice Age; on Aug.11, the Medieval Warm Period. In October, he turned his attention to the hockey stick graph. He rewrote articles on the politics of global warming and on the scientists who were skeptical of the band. Richard Lindzen and Fred Singer, two of the world's most distinguished climate scientists, were among his early targets, followed by others that the band especially hated, such as Willie Soon and Sallie Baliunas of the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics, authorities on the Medieval Warm Period.

All told, Connolley created or rewrote 5,428 unique Wikipedia articles. His control over Wikipedia was greater still, however, through the role he obtained at Wikipedia as a website administrator, which allowed him to act with virtual impunity. When Connolley didn't like the subject of a certain article, he removed it – more than 500 articles of various descriptions disappeared at his hand. When he disapproved of the arguments that others were making, he often had them barred – over 2,000 Wikipedia contributors who ran afoul of him found themselves blocked from making further contributions. Acolytes whose writing conformed to Connolley's global warming views, in contrast, were rewarded with Wikipedia's blessings. In these ways, Connolley turned Wikipedia into the missionary wing of the global warming movement.

Who is Connolley?

Connolley holds a Bachelor of Arts in mathematics and Doctor of Philosophy from the University of Oxford for his work on numerical analysis. Connolley has authored and co-authored many articles in the field of climatological research. Connolley served as a parish councillor in the village of Coton (near Cambridge, England) until May 2007 … Connolley has worked on confronting the notion that "all scientists were predicting an ice age in the 1970s" (known as global cooling). He authored extensive literature reviews, concluding that a majority of scientific papers in the 1970s actually predicted warming, not cooling. Connolley's main research work focused on sea ice measurement and modelling, and global climate models (GCM) such as HadCM3. Since direct observations of Antarctic sea ice are sparse, satellite Special Sensor Microwave/Imager (SSMI) based observations are used instead. Inconsistency in sea ice predictions from the various GCM algorithms in use makes verification of GCM output difficult. Connolley has worked on the validation of SSMI data against more direct upward looking sonar observations in the Weddell Sea area. His results indicated that Bootstrap data produced a better fit than data produced by NASA, prompting the conclusion that GCM predictions are more realistic than previously thought. In 2005, an article in the scientific journal Nature compared the reliability of Wikipedia and the Encyclopedia Britannica. It discussed Connolley as an example of an expert who regularly contributes to Wikipedia. (Wikipedia)

And then there is this remarkable feedback in the Financial Post that attempts to encapsulate the general strategy being used by those who control and implement dominant social themes:

Historical fabrication in general seems to be Wikipedia's primary function. One has only to read its accounts of 9/11 and other disputed histories to see that it does not even acknowledge that such disputes exist. It's an old mind-control trick; to tell the truth about lots of things that don't matter so that a significant lie can be fed to the masses … Thank you for exposing Wikipedia's pernicious and insidious activities, Lawrence.

The general mainstream take on Connolley (when he is mentioned at all) is apparently that he is a driven leftist who reconfigured 5,000 articles on Wikipedia because of his belief system. But what we find remarkable is that this group of individuals – the ones exposed by Climategate – is the rigorous discipline with which they worked. The group set up an alternative site, realclimate.org to disperse their views, and if one visits the site, one finds all the usual culprits in the "science" links: Columbia Earth Inst., Penn State Inst. Env. Scripps Insitute of Oceanography, WMO, etc. They also busily falsified data, created a false statistical argument, blackballed those who spoke out against them and virtually acquired certain top journals to present their views while marginalizing others.

This doesn't strike us as the work of a handful of committed leftists. It smacks of a campaign that is far wider than that, if only because of it's clinical sophistication and the additional support, monetary and otherwise that must have been needed to carry it out. And thus we submit to you, dear reader, that it is in fact a power elite promotion and a fascinating one at that – because it shows easily a promotion can be created as the "opinion making" vehicles are thin at best and easily co-opted.

But to go a step deeper, here are some other issues to contemplate. The whole left/right schism has fallen away in recent years (except as a convenient justification for the excesses of statism). And it one of our contributors, Ed Griffin, who has shown that there was significant Wall Street participation in the funding of the Russian revolution – in his great history of the Federal Reserve. Is it possible that the scourge of communism – and the lesser but equally devious scourge of socialism – is something of an ongoing promotion? It has certainly provided a convenient explanation for the kinds of attacks that have been launched on civil society in the past century.

What is funny, in a sad way, about Climategate is that it has in large measure (from our humble perspective) validated much of what the Bell has been launched to explain. (Of course the revelations of Climategate may STILL be a further variant of a power elite promotion, but we are discounting that for the time being.) The promotion, in fact, seems fairly obvious at this point, the mechanism increasingly clear and the explanations (a rogue band of green wackos) increasingly spurious. That the Internet – which we trumpet as a salutary palliative – in fact provided a mechanism to unravel the promotion is a further delicious endorsement of our own personal meme: power elite versus new communications technology. (For an in-depth analysis on this concept read High Alert – How the Internet and the Global Power Elite are Causing a Financial Hurricane.)

We would like to point out, as we have before, that this is a slow process, a kind of storm that is leavened with sudden electrical incandescence (like Climategate). From our point of view an inexorable one that has already taken place. The information about what is really going on is not only out there, it is has already percolated into millions of heads around the world especially in the West, and especially in that still exceptional country: America.

Now the fallout has enmeshed Wikipedia, and the result is most revealing if you enjoy analyzing power elite manipulations. In the West, and especially in America which remains the number one battleground between the elite and republican (libertarian) sympathies, US federal intel (in our opinion) has co-opted the most successful ‘Net mechanisms – taken over certain sites and set up others. Many of the most successful US alternative sites (with the exceptions of free-market ones in particular) have some sort of overt or covert linkages to FBI, Homeland Security, etc. The trick is seemingly always the same – conflate free-market thinking with aliens and shape-shifting reptilians and thus the whole conversation may be relegated to a "whacko" fringe. (An alternative methodology is to the use the products of free-market thinking sites and interweave authoritarian messages – again confusing the argument).

After Thoughts

Over time, in our opinion, all this will change. Western culture, especially American culture, is not overly amenable to the kinds of authoritarian manipulations that have taken place increasingly over the past century. Eventually exposure of dominant social themes and their agents and agencies will infect the mainstream media as well, or portions of it. The entire fabric of generational falsehoods is beginning to totter. It happened after the Gutenberg press was launched and resulted in the rise of Protestantism, the Reformation, the found of the New World, etc. It will likely happen again as history never repeats itself but historical patterns seem to.

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