Monday, April 20, 2015

Is David Suzuki a Phony?

David Suzuki – the Ultimate Phony
Ezra Levant
October 13, 2013
There are two David Suzukis.
Most of us know one of the Suzukis. Let’s call him Saint Suzuki. That’s the Suzuki whose TV show on the CBC constantly lectures us about our lifestyle. He says we need to consume less, buy less and use less fossil fuels.
But then there’s another Suzuki. Let’s call him Secret Suzuki, because he’s far less well-known.
Secret Suzuki is the one who lives on Vancouver’s elite Point Grey Road, on a double lot, overlooking English Bay, right above the exclusive Kitsilano Yacht Club. The City of Vancouver assesses the land value alone at over $8 million. And that’s just one of Secret Suzuki’s properties.
He has another million-dollar home in Vancouver. And then there’s another home on Quadra Island. That’s three homes right there, if you count the double lot on Point Grey Road as just one property.
But then there’s his large property holdings on Nelson Island. What’s so fascinating about that one is that he co-owns the property with an oil company, Kootenay Oil Distributors Ltd. They don’t plan to drill for oil together. It’s a beautiful tourist spot — maybe perfect for a nice big condo development.
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with co-owning any property along with an oil company. But isn’t Saint Suzuki against fossil fuel companies — especially oil companies?
Saint Suzuki tells us that the world is desperately overcrowded, that we’re overpopulated, and that we’re going to run out of things.
But in his own life, Secret Suzuki has five children.
There’s nothing wrong with having five children. It’s a blessing. But then why does he think other people should have fewer kids?
Saint Suzuki rails against corporations and profits. He even gave a well-received anti-capitalist speech at the Occupy Vancouver protest.
But Secret Suzuki himself has several corporations. One of them, the David Suzuki Foundation, took in a whopping $9 million last year and has $12 million in assets. More than 10 million of that is invested in stocks and bonds.
Saint Suzuki despises lobbyists, and says they have a disproportionate control of political power in Ottawa. But Secret Suzuki himself has nine paid lobbyists registered in Ottawa’s lobbyist registry. Not one. Nine.
Saint Suzuki despises politicians, and says they can’t be trusted. Secret Suzuki starred in a Liberal party TV ad along with former Ontario premier Dalton McGuinty.
Saint Suzuki says corporations have to be less obsessed by profits, and do more for the public good. They need to especially think of the interests of the next generation, our children.
But Secret Suzuki has made a tidy profit off young people. His standard speaking fee at universities in Canada is $30,000 plus expenses. He billed Quebec’s John Abbott College a cool $41,000 to visit them.
Saint Suzuki speaks in the language of tolerance and equality and liberalism — utterly politically correct.
But Secret Suzuki engages in conduct that should cause feminists to raise an eyebrow. When he visited John Abbott College, his assistant called with special requests to go along with his speaking fee. Here is an internal e-mail from the college’s Mary Milburn: "We have learned, via Dr. Suzuki’s assistant, that although the Dr. does not like to have bodyguards per se, he does not mind having a couple of ladies (females) that would act as body guards." The college’s Jim Anderson got involved in selecting the coeds, too: "Please be certain that the women are nicely dressed, we don’t want them in evening gowns, but definitely NOT Police Tech uniforms." All of this bizarre selection of girls, dressed just so, was the result of Secret Suzuki’s special request. If he were a conservative, he’d be called a dirty old man. But he’s a saint. So the college went along with it.
David Suzuki is not a criminal. But he is not a saint. He’s a real man — a capitalist millionaire, a politician, a man with a staff of lobbyists, a prolific father, a wealthy landlord. If only he’d stop scolding the rest of us for aspiring to do the same.
Suzuki revealed as complete know-nothing by very first question on Q&A
by Andrew Bolt
23 September 2013

Oh. My. God.
David Suzuki on the very first question is revealed as a complete know-nothing. His questioner tells him that the main climate data sets show no real warming for some 15 years.
Suzuki asks for the references, which he should have known if he knew anything of the science.
His questioner then lists them: UAH, RSS, HadCrut and GISS - four of the most basic measurement systems of global temperature.
Suzuki asks what they are.
Anyone interested in global warming should know right there that Suzuki has absolutely no understanding of what he is talking about.
In my opinion he is a phony.

Here is the UAH data:

Here is the RSS data:

Here is HadCRUT:

Naturally, one of the questions is from Nell Schofield, the female voiceover of Media Watch. Just as naturally, she is a global warming believer. Media Watch earlier attacked journalists for getting wrong a report on the IPCC, while being silent on the exaggerations of a Suzuki. Former ABC chairman Maurice Newman is right: there is an ABC "groupthink" on climate change.
Challenged from the floor by Professor Stewart Franks, Suzuki admits he might have been mistaken in claiming global warming was causing more cyclones, which he blamed for killing the Great Barrier Reef. He blames some Australian for "suggesting" it to him. The truth, as I’ve noted before, is easily found on the Bureau of Meteorology website:
How could Suzuki not have known this, especially since there has also been no increase world-wide in cyclones or hurricanes?
This man, in my opinion, is a phony who lacks the most elementary knowledge of global warming data.
Suzuki stands by his claims that politicians who question the global warming faith should be jailed. Then, when host Tony Jones looks surprised, he says he hasn’t thought it through.
Suzuki is then challenged by an academic on his claim we should forget nuclear power and switch to solar power. The scientist points out the technology for massive solar batteries does not exist yet. Suzuki concedes he does not know.
Another questioner challenges Suzuki on his irrational scaremongering on GM crops and asks for his evidence. Suzuki says "we just don’t know enough" - the great cop out. He has no evidence. He gives some whacky analogy about orchestras.
In my opinion, this man is a phony.
A researcher into GM bananas, putting in more eyesight-saving vitamin A for countries where bananas are a staple, asks again about Suzuki’s irrational attacks on GM crops.
Suzuki now denies this is "bad science". But keeps saying we don’t know enough. "What’s the rush?" he demands. It’s been driven by money, complains multi-millionaire Suzuki, who charged a college more than $30,000 to give a speech.
Something tells me no information whatsoever would ever be enough for this alarmist. Let the kids go blind.
The Professor says this "rush" is actually 30 years. He then whacks Suzuki on his DDT alarmism.
Suzuki again trots out his old conspiracy that the GM crops are just about money and are too expensive and are not developed to do good.
The Professor whacks him again, noting several examples of GM technology being given away for free to feed poor countries.
"I don’t know," says Suzuki.
In my opinion he is a complete phony.
(Note: I'm with Suzuki regarding GM crops. Contrary to the article, there is evidence that GM crops cause health problems, don't have any nutritional value, as is controlled by giant conglomerates, resulting in smaller farmers being pushed out of the market. - Ralph Deline) 

David Suzuki needs an economics refresher course
Mike Moffatt
Special to The Globe and Mail
Published Wednesday, Oct. 10 2012,
Popular environmentalist David Suzuki has described conventional economics as a form of brain damage. In a documentary called Surviving Progress, he quotes a fictional economist by saying, "who cares whether you keep the forest – cut it down. Put the money somewhere else. When those forests are gone, put it in fish. When those fish are gone, put it in computers."
Beyond tarring the economics profession, he displays a perplexing lack of understanding of basic economic concepts. First of all, none of the rules taught in undergraduate economics course advise the owner of a resource to deplete it as quickly as possible. Perhaps he was confused with the Tragedy of the Commons problem, where lack of private ownership causes a resource to be overused.
If so, then he is correct that renewable resources can be depleted to extinction unless the proper institutions are established. The work of economists such as (but not limited to) Arthur Pigou , Ronald Coase and Elinor Ostrom looks at ways in which common property resources can avoid a tragic ending. Economists studying the commons problem are not advocating resource depletion any more than oncologists are advocating cancer.
"But if you ask the economists, in that equation where do you put the ozone layer? Where do you put the deep underground aquifers of fossil water? Where do you put topsoil or biodiversity? Their answer is ‘oh, those are externalities’. Well then you might as well be on Mars, that economy is not based in anything like the real world," Dr. Suzuki goes on to say.
Dr. Suzuki’s remarks on externalities were clarified in an interview given to the magazine Common Ground: "I won’t go into a long critique, but currently nature and nature’s services – cleansing, filtering water, creating the atmosphere, taking carbon out of the air, putting oxygen back in, preventing erosion, pollinating flowering plants – perform dozens of services to keep the planet happening. But economists call this an ‘externality.’ What that means is "We don’t give a shit." It’s not economic. Because they’re so impressed with humans, human productivity and human creativity is at the heart of this economic system. Well, you can’t have an economy if you don’t have nature and nature’s services, but economics ignores that. And that’s an unbelievably egregious error."
The idea that economists do not care about externalities is a strange one, given how prominently they are featured in economics textbooks. An externality is, simply put, a spillover effect. It is the unintended costs or benefits from a transaction or decision experienced by third parties (that is, they were external to the decision). It does not mean phenomena that are external to economic modelling or things outside the interest of economists. Since, as Dr. Suzuki points out, the world is full of externalities, the concept is crucial in economic research.
The use of externalities goes well beyond introductory textbooks, as they permeate nearly every field of economic research. Prof. Coase won a Nobel Prize in part for his Coase Theorem on externalities and Prof. Ostrom won the 2009 prize for her work on how common property resources can be managed at the local level. In every year of the past five, Nobel prizes have been given to economists who feature externalities prominently in their research: Leonid Hurwicz (2007), Paul Krugman (2008), Ostrom (2009), Peter Diamond (2010) and Thomas Sargent (2011).
Dr. Suzuki is certainly entitled to his opinions on the value of economic modelling. It is ironic, though, that the David Suzuki Foundation uses a great deal of economic modelling in its research. Why would a foundation, co-founded by and named after Dr. Suzuki, base its research on a fake science with flawed values?
Dr. Suzuki’s ill-informed comments on the role externalities play in economic analysis does not hold up to scrutiny. He owes economists an apology.
Mike Moffatt is an assistant professor in the Business, Economics and Public Policy group at the Richard Ivey School of Business.