NASA’s Children’s Climate Change Website, and the book 1984: Creating Spies One Child at a Time

From our friend Cal Beisner over at the Cornwall Alliance:

What would you say if your child accused you of a thought crime, and turned you in to the thought police?

Would you say it was ridiculous?

Perhaps you would say, “There is no ‘thought crime’ in the United States.”

Surely your children would never try to accuse you of a crime or try to change your behavior.

Well, think again, because that is exactly what websites like NASA’s Climate Kids intends to do, except they won’t accuse you of thought crime, they will accuse you of a climate crime.

This colorful, fun website has two serious flaws. First, it teaches “pseudo facts” about climate change in a childlike manner that is easy to understand. “Facts” such as


  • Eleven of the last 12 years have been the warmest on record. Earth has warmed twice as fast in the last 50 years as in the 50 years before that. (Actually, there hasn’t been global warming in almost 18 years, and climate alarmist scientists know this.)
  • Climate change is causing unusual, extreme weather, some places are suffering long droughts and others are getting far too much rain in a short period. (Actually, the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change says there is no evidence that global warming has increased the frequency or severity of extreme weather events.)
  • "We don’t know enough about Earth’s ice to know just how many meters sea level is likely to rise as ice melts in various locations." (Actually, sea-ice melt makes no difference in sea level, and land-ice melt doesn’t appear to have accelerated during the period of recent, allegedly manmade global warming. As a result, there’s been no increase in the rate of sea level rise, which has been happening ever since the end of the Ice Age.)
  • All that carbon stored in all those plants and animals over hundreds of millions of years is getting pumped back into the atmosphere over just one or two hundred years. (Actually, there is good evidence that putting it there is not causing dangerous global warming, but it most certainly is causing improved plant growth all over the world, including of agricultural crops, adding $3.2 trillion worth of crop yield 1960–2011 and a projected $9.8 trillion more by 2050.)
  • …Since 1979, ice has been getting smaller and smaller and thinner and thinner. Check out the Climate Time Machine and watch the ice shrink. (Actually, both land and sea ice expand and shrink over time in cycles in response to largely natural influences.) [Update, July, 2014: NASA’s own National Snow And Ice Data Center show record ice levels at Antarctica currently.]


Yes, why don’t we check out the Climate Time Machine!

This is a really interesting slideshow of images across time on various climate topics. The blue image represents 1885 (when humans supposedly weren’t putting out so much CO2), and the red, frightening image represents 2007 when humans have burned the dinosaurs (The CO2 section tells how dead dinosaurs are part of what created the fossil fuels we burn.) in their cars and caused anthropogenic global warming.

There is of course no mention of the fact that the prosperity made possible in large part by converting those fossil fuels into electricity and liquid fuels for transport has raised human life expectancy since that time from under 48 in 1885 to near 80 today. That would reveal to these impressionable children that there are tradeoffs involved. No, the message must be clear, simple, and hideously unbalanced. Fossil fuels are evil. And those who use them are evil.

The entire site is full of “facts” of climate alarmism, scaring children with lies while they have fun “learning” and playing games with NASA.

Of course these children will feel indignation once they learn that their space ship (the metaphor for the Earth) isn’t being properly cared for. “Whatever shall we do!?” They will say. “We must stop evil eco-terrorist man and his dinosaur burning machines!”

Thus we proceed to the “What Can We Do to Help?” section. This contains the second serious flaw, for instead of just teaching bad science, NASA here encourages children to act on that bad science in a way that brings to mind the specter of poor Mrs. Parsons and her two indoctrinated children.

There are, of course, the typical suggestions: plant a tree or a garden; unplug appliances, etc. but there are other suggestions as well.

NASA wants children to grow up and drive energy-efficient cars, put solar panels on their houses, and go into a green career to help prevent climate change. (“Green” careers are the way to help people now, not traditional careers like becoming a doctor or a nurse, or a pastor or a teacher, or a farmer or an inventor, or just a helpful person). Some of these suggestions are good things to do, while some aren’t helpful to the environment at all. But what are really disturbing are the suggestions that children should attempt to control the behavior of the adults in their lives (which means their parents).

According to NASA, a child who cares about the environment is encouraged to:

“… ask your driver to park the car and let you walk inside (at a fast-food restaurant), rather than sitting in a line of cars with the engine running and polluting.”

“Walk or ride your bike instead of taking a car everywhere.”

“Ask your parents to buy reusable grocery bags. Help them to remember to get them out of the car and take them into the store.” (Never mind the risk of disease from the contamination of these bags.)

“BYOM.” Bring your own mug. That’s what you can tell your parents when they stop to buy their morning coffee.”

At face value these suggestions may seem innocuous, but at their deepest level they suggest to the child that their parents are guilty of wrongdoing, and that it is the child’s responsibility to correct them. In effect, the government is attempting to coerce parents through their children to further this pseudo-science agenda, and it doesn’t mind driving a wedge between parent and child to accomplish its goal.

The environmental lobby and your government (this is a government website after all) want to use your children against you. They want to indoctrinate your children into envirospies watching your every move and harassing you until you change your behavior.

“Mommy, don’t forget the reusable grocery bags.”

“Daddy, how dare you use a paper cup for your coffee!”

“You are hurting our Space Ship!”

Just further evidence that no federal agency, once created, cannot continue to justify its need for greater and greater power and money, no matter how far removed from its original purpose.

Your tax dollars at work!

*Links other than those to the NASA Climate Kids Website were added by me.-MLGT

Mary L. G. Theroux is Senior Vice President of the Independent Institute. Having received her A.B. in economics from Stanford University, she is Managing Director of Lightning Ventures, L.P., a San Francisco Bay Area investment firm, former Chairman of the Board of Advisors for the Salvation Army of both San Francisco and Alameda County, and Vice President of the C.S. Lewis Society of California.
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