A comment by Silke Beck:
In the aftermath of COP 15 and “Climategate,” lobby groups and members of the German Parliament - like the business-friendly Free Democratic Party (FDP) - try to take advantage of the situation. Paul Friedhoff, the economic policy spokesman of the FDP's parliamentary group, had invited Fred Singer, one of the most influential deniers of climate change worldwide, to Berlin. Marie-Luise Dött, the environmental policy spokeswoman for the parliamentary group of Angela Merkel's center-right Christian Democratic Union (CDU), also attended Singer's presentation (http://www.spiegel.de/international/world/0,1518,721846,00.html).
What does the invitation of one of the most visible “salesman of doubt” indicate? Are these conservative and (market) “libertinist” politicians trying to lift the German “taboo” on climate scepticism? This trend would indeed indicate a major change since the backlash against the global warming was much stronger in the US than in Germany. Open critique of climate science and resistance to climate protection have immediately led to a loss of credibility in Germany. German politicians and interest groups opposing far-reaching CO2-regulations were reluctant to join international or US-Americans groups like the Global Climate Coalition. Influential scientific organizations, the parliament, the government, the administration, and even industry all tried to speak with “one voice.” This political convergence can be read as a symptom of Germany’s strongly consensus-oriented political culture.
Are conservative and market liberal politicians jumping on sceptical train in order to undermine “national” consensus on pioneering climate policies? Are they building a visible and powerful network as German magazines try to tell us? (http://www.zeit.de/2010/48/U-Klimaskeptiker; http://www.focus.de/wissen/diverses/klimawandel-klimaskeptiker-auf-der-weltklimakonferenz-im-mexikanischen-cancun_aid_577518.html)
Or do the media and scientists pay too much attention to the old boy network EIKE because their actions are much more newsworthy and entertaining than the tough negotiations at Cancun?