Margaret Thatcher, Others: Neither ‘Murderers, Tyrants, nor Madmen’

Peter Sinclair’s monthly Yale Forum video uses historical footage to debunk an assertion that the most well-known climate change ‘advocates’ are … ‘murderers, tyrants, and madmen.’

This month’s “This Is Not Cool” Yale Forum video explores a phrase popularized — or more likely made infamous — by the recent Heartland Institute Chicago highway poster featuring Unabomber Ted Kaczynski: “murderers, tyrants, and madmen.”

In a word-association game, it’s unlikely that many would bring up the names of Margaret Thatcher, or of Columbia University’s Wallace Broecker. Nor, for that matter, those of NASA scientist James Hansen; of the late biochemist and novelist Isaac Asimov; of theoretical physicist, author and cosmologist Stephen Hawking; of the late Cornell University astrophysicist and author Carl Sagan; of Microsoft’s Bill Gates; of Navy Admiral David Titley; or of Nobel Laureate, and now Secretary of Energy, Steven Chu.

Through an artful selection and piecing-together of some historical video and audio materials featuring each of those individuals expressing deep concerns about climate change, the video tees-off from a Heartland remark — defending its poster prank while at the same time ending the effort — that “the most prominent advocates of global warming are murderers, tyrants, and madmen.”

That billboard campaign, the first featuring Kaczynski, initially had been intended to include subsequent posters featuring Fidel Castro, Osama bin Laden, and one or two additional scalawags and scoundrels. Instead, it has led a number of large corporate funders to follow-up Heartland’s pulling of the plug with a pulling of the plug on their own part: A number of well-known corporate sponsors have announced they are ceasing their relationships with, and funding for, further Heartland efforts.

Peter Sinclair is a veteran videographer who originated the “Climate Crock of the Week” series and now contributes regularly to The Yale Forum.

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8 Responses to Margaret Thatcher, Others: Neither ‘Murderers, Tyrants, nor Madmen’

  1. Thargaret Matcher says:

    Which one of the three is Margaret Thatcher not? From the Falklands to the miners strike…

    Bill Gates sane? Trying to force Windows down everyone’s throat, like a money & power -hungry, what is it again, ah, madman!

    So funny when single issue-istas trying to prove they’re soooo conservative on the other issues.

    Otherwise, a great video again, Peter Sinclair!

    • Bryson Brown says:

      You seem to be missing the point.

      • Ian Wilder says:

        I have been working on climate change for a decade or so, along with pacifism. They are not mutually exclusive. Militarism is the greatest contributor to global warming. And Thatcher was a prime militarist. How much did fighting a war half-way across the globe contribute to global warming? But I still echo Thargaret Matcher assessment: Great video!

  2. Fabulous editing. The moving text and images kept my attention and the music guided my emotions. I feel empowered after watching it. I even made a meme for the James Hansen quote!

  3. Bill Gates = the world’s leading philanthropist (not that I agree with it all, but the effort counts!)… still a mad man?

  4. Russell Seitz says:

    Ian Wilder arouses curiosity by asking of the liberation of the Falklands:

    ” How much did fighting a war half-way across the globe contribute to global warming”

    Would he please answer this 100 ship question to the nearest ten nanoKelvins, or so ?

  5. Susan Anderson says:

    I think one point might be that despite our feelings about Mrs. Thatcher’s politics, she was a very effective communicator and chose to make these statements out of knowledge rather than ignorance.

    I too feel that while Mr. Gates runs a lot of good charities these days, the concentration of wealth in the hands of a few does not serve us well. However, he too is a knowledgeable person.

    In addition, Viscount Monckton has frequently claimed to be Mrs. Thatcher’s advisor on climate, which turns out to have been stretching the facts (he was very junior and did not have direct contact with her as far as I have been able to find out). This puts paid to the idea that he represents her positions on the issue.

    It is possible for conservatives to be concerned about our stewardship of the planet, and to be knowledgeable in their own areas of expertise (as Mrs. Thatcher’s Ph.D. makes her understand what we call the “physics” of climate change). Her leadership and understanding on this issue are very welcome. Would they had been more effective a few decades ago when she made this speech to the UN. The UN appears to have taken heed, but the rest of us?