Sunday, 2 February 2014

The Prince of Wales and his "Headless Chickens"

Prince Charles is quoted as offering the following pearls of wisdom to his audience:
1) " .. It is baffling .. that in our modern world we have such blind trust in science and technology that we all accept what science tells us about everything - until, that is, it comes to climate science .. "
2) " .. with a barrage of sheer intimidation, we are told by powerful groups of deniers that the scientists are wrong .. "
3) "  .. we are told ... we must abandon all our faith in so much overwhelming scientific evidence .. "
4) " .. we have spent the best part of the past century enthusiastically testing the world to utter destruction .. ".
5) " .. So, thank goodness for our young entrepreneurs here, who have the far-sightedness and confidence in what they know is happening to ignore the headless chicken brigade .. ".

It appears reasonable to assume that those comments were directed at those of us who reject the claim that our burgeoning use of fossil fuels is driving the world towards a climate catastrophe. One such UK organisation that is sceptical of the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Climate Change (CACC) hypothesis the Global Warming Policy Foundation ( It is reported that when responding to Prince Charles's comments the GWPF co-founder Benny Peiser said "This is not unusual or surprising as he has made these claims many times over the years. But the irony is that in doing so he, Charles, is the mirror image of the very climate change deniers he attacks".

Prince Charles is also reported to have said " .. I have tended to make a habit of sticking my head above the parapet and generally getting it shot off for pointing out what has always been blindingly obvious to me .. ". Unfortunately, much of what has in the past been blindingly obvious to non-scientists has been proven by proper scientific investigation to be totally wrong.  As with many of his " .. head above the parapet .. " pronouncements, several of those points about the CACC hypothesis that Prince Charles makes fail to stand up to close scrutiny, e.g:

- 1) Do we have such "blind trust in science and technology" that we ALL accept what science tells us about EVERYTHING? - NO!! Many of us are highly sceptical of the claims made by scientists undertaking research in disciplines that make no contribution whatever to our poor understanding of the processes and drivers of climate change. It is also worth mentioning that very few CACC sceptics reject the notion that the different global climates are subject to change but are highly sceptical about our use of fossil fuels having any significant impact on those climates.

- 2) Do those who reject the CACC propaganda indulge in "a barrage of sheer intimidation"? - NO!! Those many respected scientists who challenge the CACC hypothesis use the scientific method in order to support their arguments.

- 3) Is there "overwhelming scientific evidence" that the CACC hypothesis is valid? - NO!! The assessment reports of the UN's IPCC Working Group 1 make it clear that there is significant uncertainty about the science. The Summary for Policy Makers (SPM) upon which the CACC supporters heavily rely does not properly reflect this uncertainty and speculation by non-scientists about the causes of changes in global climates is rife.  

- 4) Most of us more elderly UK citizens who come from a far less-privileged background and really understand what poverty is would argue that we have not "spent the best part of the past century enthusiastically testing the world to utter destruction" Rather, we much prefer the comfortable lifestyles that we enjoy today than the deprivation we experienced in the early part of the 20th Century, something that the privileged classes from that era might find hard to understand.

It is hard to disagree with the comment by Peter Mackay in his MailOnline article in which he said " .. Charles's other public intervention — characterising those who don't accept global warming theories as 'headless chickens' — was curious. If anyone's behaving like headless chickens right now, surely it's the environmental experts who claim every freak storm is a symptom of global warming .. hasn't the behaviour of Charles occasionally been reminiscent of a chicken recently parted from its head? If we were asked to say which members of the Royal Family most resembled, in extremis, a headless chicken, surely he would be the outright winner .. " (

Perhaps the heir to the UK throne might benefit from spending some time in the real world that most of us occupy. 

Almost 5 years ago the Daily Telegraph reported another royal pearl of wisdom QUOTE .. Prince Charles told 200 business leaders in Rio de Janeiro that the world has “less than 100 months” to save the planet .. UNQUOTE ( With only 42 months left to go the planet continues to thrive despite all of the scaremongering about its future.

In order to improve his understanding of the processes and drivers of the different global climates perhaps Prince Charles would be helped by having a careful read of the booklet "Global Warming: The Human Contribution" by Dr. Jack Barrett ( It's an ideal introduction to the subject for those with a limited understanding of the science. For those who wish to develop their understanding, the science is discussed in detail on the web-site "Barrett Bellamy Climate" that Dr. Barrett hosts along with CACC sceptic Dr. David Belamy (

On the other hand, perhaps Prince Charles has no desire to improve his scientific understanding. In "A Royal View On Sustainable Development" following the BBC's Reith Lectures 2000 Prince Charles is reported to have said " .. there is a sacred trust between mankind and our Creator, under which we accept a duty of stewardship for the earth .. It is only recently that this guiding principle has become smothered by almost impenetrable layers of scientific rationalism .. " ( That appears to suggest an aversion to the application of scientific rationalism and a preference for blind faith.

It appears that Prince Charles's father the Duke of Edinburgh may have a more open mind on the subject. One year ago the Daily Telegraph reported that the "Duke of Edinburgh invites climate change heretic David Bellamy to Buckingham Palace" ( Maybe Prince Charles declined to attend that presentation.

In Nov. 2009 there was an article "Canadians don't know much about Prince Charles. Lucky for him" by one Andrew Potter. He said QUOTE: .. 

It turns out that Prince Charles is the David Suzuki of British royalty, a purveyor of tired anti-modernity slogans lamenting the disenchantment of the world, individualism, consumerism, our obsession with technology and profit, and our inevitable alienation from nature. In order to recover from this alienation and restore our lost authentic wholeness, we need to learn “the grammar of harmony,” restore our lost “balance,” and achieve “organic order,” by inventing technologies that “work with the grain of Nature rather than against it.”

What any of this means exactly, by way of policies, institutions or technologies, Prince Charles does not say (perhaps on the grounds that this would be seen as an intervention into “politics”.) At any rate, I suppose it is not surprising that a man whose entire reason for living is based on a romantic attachment to the past is suspicious of modernity. Charles does concede that while there may have been some worthwhile advances in the preceding centuries (steam trains perhaps, or maybe the Restoration) the twentieth century, as he sees it, has been an unmitigated disaster .. 

Fair points perhaps but not all of the commenters agreed, however, this comment aligns with my own opinion " .. I understand nostalgia for the past, but Prince Charles and his ilk have made a fetish of it, and it is one of the curses of England that they have allowed these attitudes to burden them .. " (

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.

Popular Posts