Time to rescind Al Gore's Oscar?

If anyone could come up with a more Quixotic representation of tilting at windmills than the AGW effort to fight carbon dioxide, it might be this effort from Roger L. Simon and Lionel Chetwynd.  The two Hollywood conservatives want the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to rescind the Oscar for An Inconvenient Truth, which argued for drastic actions to end anthropogenic global warming.  Andrew Malcolm reports that the basis of this campaign is the exposure of the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit e-mails and the chicanery conducted behind the scenes that undermines the entire basis of AGW:

No, it wouldn’t do anything for the environment.

But two Hollywood conservatives (yes, there are some) have called upon the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to rescind the prestigious, profitable gold Oscar statuette that it gave ex-Vice President Al Gore two years ago for the environmental movie “An Inconvenient Truth.”

Roger L. Simon and Lionel Chetwynd, both Academy members, are among a small, meandering pack of known political conservatives still believed to be on the loose in the liberal bastion of movie-making.

In 2007, Hollywood’s Academy sanctified Gore’s cinematic message of global warming with its famous statue, enriched his earnings by $100,000 per 85-minute appearance and helped elevate the Tennesseean’s profile to win the Nobel Peace Prize despite losing the election battle of 2000 to a Texan and living in a large house with lots of energy-driven appliances.

Chetwynd and Simon were prompted to make their hopeless demand this week by the leak two weeks ago of a blizzard of British academic e-mails purporting to show that scientists at the University of East Anglia Climatic Research Unit systematically falsified data to document the appearance of global warming in recent years.

Well, there are at least a couple of problems with this, not least of which is the previous exposure of An Inconvenient Truth as intellectually compromised.  A British court ruled that the film makes nine significant errors in its presentation.  The court also ruled that any school in the UK that showed the film had to issue a disclaimer about its “one-sided” and unscientific “apocalyptic” presentation.  AMPAS should have reviewed the award at that point, if AMPAS was interested in intellectual honesty in documentaries.

But that’s not the only problem.  Michael Moore has made a career of making intellectually dishonest documentaries.  He won an Oscar for one, Bowling for Columbine, which explicitly used out-of-context footage and dishonest presentations of its material.  If AMPAS opened up an inquiry on An Inconvenient Truth for its cinematic and scientific dishonesty, it would open up demands for a review of Moore’s award and perhaps several other Oscar-winning documentaries.  And while that would be a healthy development, curtailing the corrosive Moore influence on documentary filmmaking, it’s about as likely as Al Gore repudiating AGW.

Unfortunately, we can probably put this in the same category as the demand for the Pulitzer committee to rescind its award to Walter Duranty.  That doesn’t mean that the argument isn’t worth having, though.  Click on the image to see Roger and Lionel make their case.