Recently the term "echo chamber" has been used to describe things with which one disagrees with or doesn't want to hear again.
Last Sunday, in his Seattle PI column, Joel Connelly, making a strong and passionate defense of Al Gore and his climate change colleague, used it again. I wasn't struck so much by the data he was presenting, but by the method in which he was presenting it---a method that is taking on the characteristics of a formula.
Let's call it the "Echo Chamber Formula."
This is how it works.
1. Echo chamber
If it isn't new, it isn't true. Discredit historical components that do not support the agenda. In defense of the comments made by global warming advocates at the University of East Anglia in Britain, he says it's no big deal. They were merely caught in "gossipy conversation about how to discredit global warming critics."
It is a big deal and it will likely become even bigger as the investigations begin. If the kind of climate legislation that is presently being proposed becomes law, it could be the proverbial "last straw" in breaking the back of America.
He says the critic's data and comments are a "Classic example of Junk Propaganda." "The klutzy profs at East Anglia," he says, "have become devil figures in a canny disinformation campaign, directed into an ideologues' echo chamber." Although they said what they said, I don't want to hear it any more, because it is contrary to where we want to go.
2. Attack the Messenger.
What the critics are saying cannot be true because those who are dissenting are, "Fox News, Rush Limbaugh, the Drudge Report and the right- wing Daily Telegraph in Britain."
Mr. Connelly says of these folks, "They sit in New York TV studios, the Daily Telegraph's city room and Drudge's Florida's digs and spout falsehoods: The distortions, in turn, are eaten up by an audience that is sour, sedentary and suspicious of change."
So if you do or have ever listened to Limbaugh, digested the Daily, or did the Drudge Report, you are as bad as the messengers themselves. You are, sour, sedentary and suspicious. And you're afraid of change. You are called a "denier".
3. Attack the Message.
Connelly says those who deny the global warming message, "never go near the actual conditions that scientists are measuring recording."
Why then are they so persistent in their attempt to silence and discredit those scientists who disagree?
The most amazing part is the explanation of why the "deniers" message is gaining traction.
Connelly says it's because, "newspapers are contracting faster than glaciers and polar icepacks." And why are newspapers contracting--or going out of business? Probably because they themselves have become an "echo chamber" of the far left.
To affirm his homily, Connelly asks everyone to turn in their book of truth: Al Gore's new book titled, "Our Choice". Together we read Gore's words. "With budgets shirking, many news organizations have relied on shortcuts in covering disputes: Rather than devoting the time and resources necessary to investigate competing claims, they commonly use the 'one-the-one-hand, on-the-other-hand' approach that can suggest a false symmetry between the merits of differing view points."
Connelly points out, "In other words, a flack's sound bite gets equal play with a scientist's finding."
At the heart of Mr. Gore's and his followers may well be best defined in the title of Mr. Gore's new book.
Indeed it is our choice. And as people become more informed, they become more inclined to resist the far left experiment.
Faith & Freedom
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