Thursday 16 Aug 2018 | 02:54 | SYDNEY
Thursday 16 Aug 2018 | 02:54 | SYDNEY

Trust the science, not Piers Akerman


Bill Bowtell

12 June 2008 13:26

Commentator Piers Akerman inveighs against the usual gang of suspects on climate change in today's Sydney Daily Telegraph. The idea that the planet is heating up is 'anthropogenic global warming madness' dreamt up by Al Gore, who is 'making it up as he goes along'. Ross Garnaut, the author of the forthcoming report on emissions trading (and Lowy Institute board member)  is rechristened 'Ross MuGarnaut', the Mugabe of the new carbon dictatorship apparently about to be imposed on Australia by Kevin Rudd. Akerman goes on to assert that the scientific evidence for global warming should be equated with what he terms other notable failures of consensus science, including the Y2K bug, the 'prediction of global starvation in the 1960s' and the 'forecast of an AIDS pandemic made in the 1970s'.

Putting aside the fact that the first case of what was later identified as HIV/AIDS was not reported until 1981 in New York City, Akerman is wildly incorrect to claim science got the HIV/AIDS pandemic wrong. Since 1981, HIV/AIDS has infected nearly 60 million people. Over  25 million people have died from AIDS caused by HIV infection. Presently, some 35 million people are  infected with an incurable, often highly debilitating affliction. If this is not a pandemic realized, then Akerman might share with us his definition of the term.

As is demonstrably the case with global warming, science, not Akerman, was right about HIV/AIDS.