Fred Barnes caught making it up

Zachary Roth was intrigued by this passage from a Fred Barnes column in the Weakly Standard:

Democrats couldn’t hide their self-consciousness about the excesses of their own bill. Supporters made few TV appearances to defend it and rarely talked about specific spending items. Obama sounded like Al Gore on global warming. The more the case for man-made warming falls apart, the more hysterical Gore gets about an imminent catastrophe. The more public support his bill loses, the more Obama embraces fear-mongering.

So he asked Barnes to provide details on how the case for AGW was falling apart:

At first, he cited the fact that it’s been cold lately.

Perhaps sensing this was less than convincing, Barnes then asserted that there had been a “cooling spell” in recent years. “Haven’t you noticed?” he asked.

Asked for firmer evidence of such cooling, Barnes demurred, telling TPMmuckraker he was too busy to track it down.

We pressed Barnes again: surely he could tell us where he had found this vital new information, which could upend the current debate over how to address global warming.

In response, Barnes said only that he knew where he had found it, but would not tell us, apparently as a matter of principle. “I’m not going to do your research for you,” he eventually said, before hurriedly ending the call.


  1. #1 Dano
    February 10, 2009

    I read that yesterday. Suh-weet.

    But surely shameless Barnes has recovered and is promulgating his FUD today.



  2. #2 TomG
    February 10, 2009

    In short…

    I won’t prove it = I can’t prove it.

  3. #3 Sortition
    February 10, 2009

    I think what he wanted to say is: “You go and do my research for me.”

  4. #4 bi -- IJI
    February 10, 2009

    Come on, guys, why should Barnes have to do any research? He’s a skeptic! Just like JoNova! Skeptics don’t have to prove anything! They don’t have to research anything! They don’t have to know anything!

  5. #5 MarkusR
    February 11, 2009

    “Obama sounded like Al Gore”

    And Barnes sounded like Barnes.

  6. #6 ScaredAmoeba
    February 12, 2009

    Re: #5
    Barnes: A double triad:
    Not only a name, an insult and an ad hominem!
    But also a superlative of dishonesty, incompetence and stupidity.

  7. #7 Marion Delgado
    February 12, 2009

    Did you catch the American Thinker (*cough*) link to the screed by Christopher Robin, Discount Lord Monkeyshines of Benchwarmer†?

    He was pissed at John McCain haha and I just know McCain is eager to embrace him.

    †As long as the ass keeps pushing his titles, I’ll keep mocking his titles.

  8. #8 SLC
    February 15, 2009

    Attached is a column from todays’ Washington Post by another global warming denier, George Will. He makes a number of claims that it’s actually getting cooler.

  9. #9 luminous beauty
    February 15, 2009

    George Will is obviously a serious intellectual. After all, he wears glasses and a bow-tie.

  10. #10 John McCormick
    February 17, 2009

    Yes, George Will wears glasses and a bow tie.

    Link to Climate Progress at and scroll down to

    “Is George Will the most ignorant national columnist?”

    to see a ‘before and after’ of Mr. will.

    John McCormick

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