By Arthur Alpert
Credit the Albuquerque Journal with killing two birds with one stone.
The “birds” are stories Journal management prefers not to cover because (I surmise) they contradict the newspaper’s editorial agenda.
The first is the dangers of climate change or global warming as a result of human activity.
The second is the political activities of the billionaire Koch brothers who help finance countless right-wing organizations including the American Legislative Exchange Council, which lobbies state legislatures – including our own.
Of course, while ignoring or downplaying stories it dislikes, the Journal does admit their existence.
Thus, while management consistently flacks the oil and gas industry (as my colleague Denise Tessier has so thoroughly documented), it tolerates real science reporting from staffer John Fleck and the occasional “green” Op Ed essay.
Also, the newspaper permits mentions of the Koch brothers, ALEC, et al, while banning journalistic accounts of their politics, partisan or issue-oriented.
Therefore, it is with some admiration, and great amusement, that I alert you to the Journal’s latest masterstroke of omission – not reporting that long-time climate-change skeptic Richard A. Muller has changed his mind.
“Call me a converted skeptic,” the UC Berkeley physicist wrote in an Op Ed for the July 28 N.Y. Times, but global warming is “real” and
“Humans are almost entirely the cause.”
But wait, there’s a kicker. Muller’s conclusions derive from research at the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project he founded and – ta da! – BEST receives funding from Charles Koch.
Wow! Does Mr. Koch know this? According to Greenpeace the Koch brothers have given $61 million to groups that deny the existence of climate change.
This was a big story nationally. Googling it, I got almost seven million results. The Journal, however, found neither the conversion nor the Koch angle newsworthy.
But I understand. How often can an editor advance a newspaper’s editorial agenda two ways by omitting a single news story!
What a triumph!