The Climate Alarmists Definitely Don't Believe Their Own Propaganda

Is man-caused climate change a crisis that requires immediate action to reduce and eliminate carbon emissions to save the planet?  Glenn Reynolds of Instapundit has a frequently-repeated phrase that he uses on this subject, which is "I'll believe that it's a crisis when the people who claim it's a crisis start acting like it's a crisis."

Plenty of people have pointed to extreme examples of the "do as I say, not as I do" syndrome in the climate wars.  Twenty-three thousand people (23,000!!!!) jet off to Bonn to cook up schemes to force others to fly less.  Al Gore has a 10,000+ square foot house that uses more than 20 times the amount of energy as the average American home -- and that's just one of his multiple houses!  And so forth.  But just because these people behave this way does not necessarily mean that they don't believe their own propaganda; it may just mean that they believe that the burden of sacrifice needs to be on you rather than on themselves.  But are there some of their actions that go further and prove that they really know that it's all bullshit?

Because it's hard to get people too worked up over the idea that the temperature might rise a couple of degrees -- or even three! -- the big scare story always tends to revert to sea level rise.  Antarctica is going to melt and we're all going to drown!!  Or something like that.  An article from the Guardian a few days ago (November 3) is typical of the genre:

Hundreds of millions of urban dwellers around the world face their cities being inundated by rising seawaters if latest UN warnings that the world is on course for 3C of global warming come true, according to a Guardian data analysis.

The article comes with plenty of photoshopped pictures of your favorite city deep under water.  Here's one of the South Beach area of Miami:

South Beach Miami.jpg

OK then, undoubtedly the progressive climate-alarm-believing elite would situate themselves well away from the dangerous coastlines at some respectable higher elevation.  Actually, not at all.  The progressive and supposedly climate-alarm-believing elite clusters itself just as close along the coastlines as it can get:  New York, LA, San Francisco, Seattle.  In New York and San Francisco particularly, favored perches of the alarmists line up right along the waterfront.  Tenants of my own office building -- no more than about 30 feet above mean high tide in downtown Manhattan -- include Vox Media.  Or consider the Goldman Sachs headquarters, just a couple of hundred feet inland, and barely elevated abov the sea:


I guess that tells you what the smart money thinks.  Would they really have put a billion dollar building there if they thought there was anything to this sea level rise thing?

Or consider the case of nuclear power.  If carbon emissions really were a huge existential crisis, there is exactly one way to replace the energy we currently get from fossil fuels with energy that is sufficiently abundant and reliable, and reasonable enough in cost, to be a real way to power a modern economy for the entire world.  That is nuclear.  (By the way, I'm not saying that I am a fan of nuclear power.  As far as I'm concerned, we should take what the market provides without government meddling and subsidies, and likely that is almost entirely fossil fuels for the foreseeable future.  But what I am saying is that if climate alarmists think that it is absolutely essential to de-carbonize the world economy, then there is only one way to do that without destroying it, and that is widespread adoption of nuclear power.)

Undoubtedly then, the people who are really concerned with climate crisis should be advocating loudly for expansion of nuclear power to replace fossil fuels.  Funny, but you literally can't find that.  Yes, there are a few examples of lonely individuals out there making this point, but literally no example from any major environmental organization.  For instance:  

Natural Resources Defense Council?  "Expanding nuclear power is not a sound strategy for diversifying America’s energy portfolio and reducing global warming pollution." 

Sierra Club?  "Nuclear Power Is Not the Answer.  The Sierra Club remains unequivocally opposed to nuclear energy."

Greenpeace?  "Greenpeace got its start protesting nuclear weapons testing back in 1971. We’ve been fighting against nuclear weapons and nuclear power ever since."

Union of Concerned Scientists?  "Current security standards are inadequate to defend nuclear plants against terrorist attacks."

You could go on with this as long as you want.

So what's going on here?  There is no way to avoid the conclusion that the biggest promoters of the climate scare don't actually believe their own propaganda.  But there are several other reasonable hypotheses for why they continue.  For the environmental groups, the reasonable hypothesis is that scaremongering and alarmism are the sine qua non of fundraising.  The leaders of the environmental groups themselves know, because they have to, that intermittent renewable energy sources like wind and solar cannot meaningfully de-carbonize the world economy.  But the halting advance of those non-workable energy sources means no imminent solutions and therefore a never-ending crisis that can keep career-long sinecures going.

And then there are the U.N. and its collection of scores of "developing" nations playing on the guilt and gullibility of first world bureaucratic elites.  Consider this article from yesterday's Indian Express, reporting on the ongoing U.N. climate conference in Bonn, title "The COP Ritual: Frustration Shows Up As Bonn Climate Summit Is Deadlocked Again."  What's to "deadlock" over, guys?  I thought we all agreed that emitting CO2 is a crisis and we just all have to get together and eliminate that?  How wrong you are!  Excerpt:

Developing countries are demanding money in addition to the $100 billion developed nations have promised to provide every year from 2020. . . .   Developing countries . . . have been demanding the setting up of mechanisms through which they can access financial help in the event of destruction caused by extreme weather events. This financial help needs to be in addition to the US$ 100 billion that the developed countries are obligated to provide every year from 2020 to help developing countries deal with climate change.  One of the options being discussed is to raise money through taxes on fossil fuel industry. 

Or to put it slightly differently, this was always all about graft, which was mostly to be paid by the United States, until it wised up and walked away.  No wonder things are now "deadlocked"!  Of course, transferring $100 billion a year from the U.S. and a bunch of EU suckers over to some third-world dictators was never going to do anything to "save the planet."  But nobody ever really believed that bullshit anyway.   

Taboos So Powerful That They Completely Prevent Addressing The Issues

The big thing at Yale University this past week has been the issuance of the ultimate definitive report on the secular religion of the academia of today, "diversity, equity and inclusion" or "DEI."  (Funny name for the new religion.  In the old religion, the same word used to mean "of God.")  The Report is titled "Leadership in the Face of Change:  A Report From the Alumni Task Force on Diversity, Equity and Inclusion."  It seems to have been sent as an e-blast to all alumni -- otherwise, why would I have gotten one?

As you probably know, Yale, along with most other elite universities, adopted more or less explicit racial admission quotas way back in the 1960s.  OK, they never explicitly say that these are fixed quotas as far as I can find, but somehow the numbers for various ethnic groups seem to come out right around the same percent every year.  For blacks that figure is about 10%.  And yet, on a campus completely obsessed with issues of race and inclusion, something doesn't seem to be working. For example, there was that huge blow-up at Yale in October 2015, ostensibly over "safe spaces" and Halloween costumes.  But what exactly is the underlying problem?  The DEI Report clearly believes that these are the world's most important issues, but yet it is entirely lacking in specifics as to any causes.  The best they can come up with is a claim that there has been a "lack of focus" -- on the very issues as to which Yale has for decades been demonstrably not only focused, but obsessed:

Yale has long championed its commitment to advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion, to building a faculty and student body that respect the multicultural reality of the world around us and a community where everyone feels valued and welcomed. But while these beliefs are laudable, they have not always translated into meaningful and lasting policy and action. In late 2015, students of color and their allies voiced their frustration that inequity on campus and a lack of focus by the administration on diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) meant the university was falling far short of its ideals. 

If you somehow think that "lack of focus" explanation is less than plausible, you are not alone.  But in this Report, that nostrum is taken as gospel, and all recommendations for what to do next flow from it.  And the recommendations do flow, and flow, and flow.  Like:  

  • Commit to becoming a leader in DEI in the eld of higher education!
  • Engage young alumni and alumni of color!
  • Promote diversity, equity, and inclusion in all levels of AYA leadership!
  • Build a bridge between current and future alumni in tackling DEI issues!
  • Build infrastructure to continue to champion and implement DEI work!

Etc., etc., etc.  Funny, but there doesn't seem to be anything in that list that they weren't already doing and talking about endlessly for the last 50 years.  Might there perhaps be a few things about this subject that they are just not mentioning?

To get an answer to that last question, you'll just have to go somewhere that is not under the spell of the current academic taboos.  This Report is completely under the spell of the taboos, such that nothing that anyone might ever find remotely sensitive or discomforting can be mentioned, no matter how obvious the fact and no matter how important it might be to understanding the problem at hand.  

For example, could it be that by implementing a fixed quota of 10% blacks, Yale ends up with large numbers of blacks who find it difficult or impossible to compete academically with their classmates?  That's a question that must not be asked!  In an article in the current City Journal titled "Are We All Unconscious Racists?" , not focused specifically on Yale, Heather Mac Donald collects some relevant statistics on SAT scores:

From 1996 to 2015, the average difference between the mean black score on the math SAT and the mean white score was 0.92 standard deviation, reports a February 2017 Brookings Institution study. The average black score on the math SAT was 428 in 2015; the average white score was 534, and the average Asian score was 598. The racial gaps were particularly great at the tails of the distribution. Among top scorers—those scoring between 750 and 800—60 percent were Asian, 33 percent were white, and 2 percent were black. At the lowest end—scores between 300 and 350—6 percent were Asian, 21 percent were white, and 35 percent were black.

If every elite university wants to get about 10% blacks, and also wants to get all or nearly all of its students from the group scoring between 750 and 800 on the SATs, you can see how this is not going to work.  Somehow, four-fifths or so of the blacks at each institution are going to have to come from lower-performing groups, and therefore be highly likely to underperform.  The obvious consequence of the 10% quota is that the bottom of every class is going to be consist mostly of such candidates.  Once you realize that, is it any wonder that the supposed beneficiaries here turn out to be unhappy about the situation into which they have been thrown?

Our Yale DEI Report gives us no information on the relative SATs of black students admitted to Yale.  Nor does it give us any information on the academic performance while at Yale of the admitted blacks.  Nor does it give us any information on how many blacks major in "hard" subjects like math and science, versus medium subjects like history and English, versus dubious subjects like the "studies" departments.  Nor does it give us any information on the post-graduation success of black graduates in the job marketplace.  Nor can I find such data anywhere else.  Yale has these data.  It's just that the data are considered too sensitive for our delicate eyes.  The taboo on mentioning or discussing such things is complete.

But the problem is that you need to understand the issues before you can address them.  The fifty or so members of the committees who put this Report together were clearly way too "polite" to ask for anything that might make anyone uncomfortable.  OK, so go ahead and believe that what you identify as the problem of "diversity, equity and inclusion" can be solved by "committing to becoming a leader in DEI" and "building bridges between current and future alumni" and such.  Another fifty years of this, and nothing will have changed.


Can Intervention By The Rational Stop A Pseudoscientific Scare Backed By Big Money?

Let's say that a big pseudoscientific scare comes to be backed by big money.  And by big money, I generally mean government money.  Government money, when it gets behind something, will almost always easily be a multiple of whatever private sources can come up with, even from very wealthy people.  As the government money gushes forth, careers and livelihoods come to depend on the continuation of the flow.  At some point the cause becomes nearly impossible to stop.  But can rationality ever prevail over the corruption of government-funded pseudoscience?

Much of the coverage of pseudoscience at this site has focused on two topics, climate change and the high fat diet.  In the case of climate change, we are talking about really, really big government money -- tens of billions of dollars per year, supporting thousands of careers of pseudoscientists.  Even a newly-elected President adamantly opposed to the scam has so far managed to slow down the flow of money only a little.  In the case of the high fat diet -- subject to multi-decadal government-funded attack campaign -- the news that the evidence has disproved any association of fat in the diet with heart disease has still failed to reach my supermarket, where the shelves continue to be filled with products proclaiming themselves "low fat" and "heart healthy."  These things aren't fading away any time soon.

But now consider the case of glyphosate, the key chemical ingredient in Roundup weedkiller.  Glyphosate has been around for a long time (since the 1970s), and is extremely useful in agriculture -- which means that millions have had long-term exposure to it.  Trial lawyers have been drooling for decades over the idea that they might be able to come up with some kind of association of glyphosate with some kind of cancer or other.  They have had the problem that the actual evidence keeps turning up adverse.  For example, there is the U.S. Agricultural Health Study, by which the U.S. government has tracked about 89,000 farmers and their wives since 1993, reporting after 23 years in 2016 that it had found “no association between glyphosate exposure and all cancer incidence or most of the specific cancer subtypes we evaluated, including NHL [non-Hodgkins lymphoma]. . .”  Do you think that would be the end of the matter?

There's more than one place to go to get your government money.  In the matter of glyphosate, an activist named Christopher Portier, who was employed by the Environmental Defense Fund, took his case to the UN, in the form of a part of the World Health Organization called the International Agency for Research on Cancer, or IARC.  In 2014 IARC set up a working group to advise on the risk of glyphosate, and appointed Portier the technical advisor to the group.  In 2015 IARC issued its report.  Conclusion:  Glyphosate was reclassified as a "probably carcinogen":

Limited evidence of carcinogenicity in humans for non-Hodgkin lymphoma. The evidence in humans is from studies of exposures, mostly agricultural, in the USA, Canada, and Sweden published since 2001. In addition, there is convincing evidence that glyphosate also can cause cancer in laboratory animals.

The EU promptly moved toward a ban on the stuff, and trial lawyers began to salivate uncontrollably.  But this one got some early and strong push back, starting in April 2016 with this article by Brit Matt Ridley and this one from Jon Entine and David Zaruk.

Now, just a couple of weeks ago, comes an article from Kate Kelland at Reuters, headline "In glyphosate review, WHO cancer agency edited out 'non-carcinogenic' findings."   Get ready:

Reuters found 10 significant changes that were made between the draft chapter on animal studies and the published version of IARC’s glyphosate assessment. In each case, a negative conclusion about glyphosate leading to tumours was either deleted or replaced with a neutral or positive one. . . .  Reuters contacted 16 scientists who served in the IARC expert working group that conducted the weedkiller review to ask them about the edits and deletions. Most did not respond; five said they could not answer questions about the draft; none was willing or able to say who made the changes, or why or when they were made.   

Over at ClimateScepticism, Paul Matthews -- whose interests in pseudoscience also extend beyond the climate scam -- went to check some of the citations in Kelland's work.  Here is an example: 

The IARC report says that a study (JMPR 2006), found that haemangiosarcoma increased significantly in male mice [that were exposed to glyphosate]:

In the second feeding study, there was a significant positive trend in the incidence of haemangiosarcoma in male CD-1 mice.

But if you look at the original study, it says

There were no statistically significant increases in the incidence of any tumours, either benign and malignant, in either sex when compared with the control groups.

Check it out for yourself by searching both documents for that big word.

Matthews' post also contains a series of links to other coverage of this issue, for example this more recent lengthy article from Ridley.  Meanwhile, the EU continues to consider whether to ban glyphosate.

Looks to me like rationality could win this one.  A vote by some European regulatory body or other is likely to take place in December.  On the other hand, the government money backing the attack on glyphosate was chump change compared to the high fat diet, or to the kingpin of them all, the climate change scam.     

Election Roundup: Thank God For The Lazy And Dumb

You have to be well over 40 today to have much personal memory of the Reagan presidency.  But if you do, we will recall the constant denigration of the man from the media and press as lazy and dumb.  He came from rural Illinois, went to a college (Eureka College) that no one important had ever heard of, tended to lay off work around 5 in the afternoon, and knew nothing of sophisticated economics or public policy!  Yuck!  Yet the economy boomed.  (As lazy and dumb as he was, Reagan somehow managed to focus on less regulation and lower taxes.  Maybe that had something to do with it.  Or maybe it was mostly that he just didn't do too much damage.)  Meanwhile, the scintillatingly brilliant Barack Obama (Columbia College!  Harvard Law School!  Constitutional law professor!  Obvious genius!) conducted for eight years what I have called the "War Against The Economy."  Somehow the economy was stuck in the doldrums for the whole time.

Which brings me to the results of the elections yesterday.  In our local area, we got Bill de Blasio re-elected as Mayor.  We also got two other city-wide officials re-elected:  Scott Stringer as Comptroller and Letitia James as something called Public Advocate.  At least those drew opposition from the Republican Party, but the Republicans didn't come close.  The Republican candidate for Mayor, Nicole Malliotakis, got about 28% of the vote.  In Manhattan, a guy named Cyrus Vance (if you're old enough you will recognize the name from that of his dad, Jimmy Carter's Secretary of State) got re-elected as DA with no opposition of any kind.  My local (Greenwich Village) City Councilperson, Corey Johnson, also got no Republican opposition, although there was a candidate from something called the "Eco Justice" party.  

For those last two races, if you didn't want to vote for these guys, one alternative was to leave that line on the ballot blank; but there was also a space at the right to fill in the name of a write-in candidate.  In both cases, I wrote in James Menton.  That's my dog.

De Blasio is about as crazed a progressive as you could find anywhere.  He famously took his honeymoon in Cuba during Castro's heyday, and during the late 80s worked for the Sandinistas in Nicaragua building the socialist utopia.  So four more years of this guy will be a disaster for New York City, right?  The New York Post put it this way last night:

Mayor de Blasio cruised to re-election Tuesday — and now New Yorkers are stuck with him for another four years.

The situation is not good, but it could be a lot worse.  The saving grace of de Blasio is that he takes lazy and dumb to extremes rarely before seen in such exalted political office. He's famous for getting up late, detouring to his gym in deep Brooklyn before heading back toward work, and arriving at his office some time around noon.  And then taking a nap in the afternoon.  If he were smart and energetic, he could do a lot of damage.  As it is, City government cruises along mostly on autopilot.  

De Blasio's campaign steered mostly free of issues.  As far as I could see, the two big things he emphasized were (1) protecting the high income New York taxpayers against federal tax increases, and then (2) socking those same people with a big increase in New York City taxes.  The first theme hit its peak in a big speech given by de Blasio just the day before the election, as reported by the New York Times:

For more than 10 minutes, Mr. de Blasio urged the audience to resist the Republican tax plan, which could do away with federal deductions for state and local taxes and in that way deliver a massive blow to the city and its taxpayers.  “President Trump’s tax plan takes dead aim at New York City,” he said. “It would undermine the success that we have achieved, and despite the hype, it would undermine the middle class in this city and, I would say, all over the country.”

And then there was the second theme, imposing a big tax increase of his own on the exact same people.  As the Post put it at the link above:

The mayor said he would push for a millionaire’s tax to help fix the city’s beleaguered subway system.

So, when the feds propose higher income taxes on New York's high earners, that's "delivering a massive blow to the city and its taxpayers" and "taking dead aim at New York City."  When he does it, it's social justice!  Like I said, this guy is not all that bright.

And what of the big promises from de Blasio's first campaign?  Those would be the promises to address income inequality and solve homelessness.  If you've been paying attention, you will already know that income inequality in New York did not improve at all in the last four years.  The two congressional districts covering the West and East sides of Manhattan -- one containing de Blasio's home and the other containing his office -- remain numbers one and three among the most-income-unequal districts in the country.   Meanwhile homelessness went up substantially even as spending on the issue about doubled.  Hey, it's only about another $1 billion or so per year -- barely a rounding error in the $80+ billion New York City budget.  Needless to say, these issues were not emphasized during the current campaign.

Across the river in New Jersey, it looks like they are not nearly so lucky.  They have elected a new governor from the Democratic Party, by the name of Phil Murphy.  The guy has not previously held elected office, so it remains to be seen, but he gives at least preliminary indications of being both smart and energetic.  Harvard College!  Wharton Business School!  A career at the high levels of Goldman Sachs!  And, he is a committed progressive!  New Jersey, you are in trouble.

I'll give just a couple of examples.  New Jersey's biggest problem is clearly its way-underfunded public employee pensions.  Although some might award the title to Illinois or California, New Jersey is in contention for the worst-funded public pension program, both as a percentage of liabilities and as a per capita burden on the state's taxpayers.  Current governor Christie has tried to negotiate to reduce the obligations, but, failing at that over union intransigence, has refused to fully fund the obligation.  Murphy says that he will fully fund the obligation.  Really, Phil?  According to this chart at Pension360, that will mean increasing contributions to the pension funds by something around $3 billion per year -- this in a state with an annual budget running about $32 billion per year.  In other words, increasing state spending by about 10% per year with no increase in services of any kind to the citizens.  He says he can do it by reducing fees paid to the money managers.  That will be at most a couple of hundred million per year.  Well, simple arithmetic never was the strong suit of these "smart" progressives.  Reality is going to come up and smack this guy in the face around about the first day he takes office.

Oh, his next big issue is making a public pension program available as an option to private employers.  In other words, doubling down on the single most glaring and disastrous failure of the government.

Smart!  Energetic!  Go for it, Phil!

UPDATE, November 9:  Yesterday, to celebrate his victory, Mayor de Blasio held a rare big press conference at City Hall.  The New York Times reports on the event in an article headlined, "Mayor Pledges to Create Fairest Big City in America."   As the headline indicates, he previewed that his big theme for the new term will be to create "fairness" in the City.  What exactly does that mean?  One thing is obvious: he is moving away from the prior themes of income inequality, poverty and homelessness -- things measured by metrics that keep getting worse on his watch -- and onto a new theme totally lacking any such potentially embarrassing metric.  It means whatever he wants it to mean!  

So how did the press conference go?  From the Times:

The news conference played out in much the way that similar events had during his first term. It started late: Mr. de Blasio arrived at City Hall after noon, after a visit to his gym, in Brooklyn. 

That's our Mayor!  I wouldn't say we're exactly safe for the next four years, but if de Blasio holds to form, the damage won't be too terrible.

In The Progressive Vision, Dictatorship Is Never Far Below The Surface

It seems that the favorite causes of the progressive left -- the two biggest at the moment being fighting "climate change" and establishing universal health "coverage" as a "human right" -- have been running into some roadblocks lately.  On the "climate" front (I put "climate" in quotes because none of this has much if anything to do with the actual climate) President Trump withdraws the U.S. from the Paris accords, appoints climate skeptics to key administration positions, and sets about dismantling various Obama-era regulatory restrictions on fossil fuels.  Abroad, China, India and others race to build coal plants, while the UN itself admits that even under its worst-case scare tactic models the implementation of the Paris accords would have little to no measurable effect on the climate.  On the universal health "coverage" front, Obamacare continues its slow inevitable decline, while multiple states (Colorado, Vermont, California, New York) that have flirted with "single payer" systems in the past couple of years have backed off when the enormous costs became evident.  What's a good progressive to do?

The answer is simple: dictatorship.  If these stupid plebes and Trumpers can't see the morality and the necessity of immediately establishing the progressive utopia, then this whole democracy thing just isn't going to work.  A few correct-thinking experts, armed with the full coercive powers of the state, can impose the needed progressive solutions in the blink of an eye.  What's to lose?

Often the advocacy for the dictatorship of supposed experts has proceeded by muted euphemisms.  I'm thinking, for example, of the statement by top UN climate bureaucrat (Executive Secretary of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change) Christina Figueres at a press conference in February 2015 that mankind must "intentionally . . . change the economic development model" in order to stop global warming:

This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution.  This will not happen overnight and it will not happen at a single conference on climate change…It is a process, because of the depth of the transformation.

See?  She never mentioned "dictatorship"; or, at least, she didn't use that exact word.  But more recently, the perceived need for soft euphemisms seems to have lessened.  Let's just go ahead and say it!  A couple of examples for today:

Over in Europe, prominent environmentalist Jørgen Randers (professor of "climate strategy" at BI Norwegian Business School) took to the pages of Svenska Dagblat yesterday to make an explicit call for dictatorship to solve the "climate crisis."  According to Randers, the call for dictatorship is supported by multiple "climate experts."  At his Cool It blog, Bjørn Lomborg (who fortunately seems to have the ability to read Swedish) covers the matter, and helpfully provides a translation of the key passages.  Here are the translated headline and sub headline from the Randers article:

Democracy must be suspended to solve the climate crisis.  An elite government is better than democracy -- at least if the world is to succeed in resolving the acute climate crisis, according to Professor Jørgen Randers.  Several climate experts highlight a clear model:  China's dictatorship.  

Lomborg is rather scathing in his commentary:

Look at the costs to achieve the sort of climate policies that Randers and many others are advocating. If the EU fulfills its promise of cutting emissions by 80% in 2050 (which is the most ambitious climate policy in the world today), the average of the best peer-reviewed models show that the cost would run to at least $3 trillion per year, and more likely double that – meaning $6,000 for each EU citizen per year. Of course, few will vote for that.  [MC note -- the cost could easily be a multiple of even the larger estimate.]  Moreover, asking for a dictatorship neglects one of the main reasons for democracy: how do you ensure that the dictator does what is good for you? . . .  Look at China, which unfortunately is held up by many environmentalists as a green ideal.  It gets 86% of its total primary energy demand from fossil fuels (International Energy Agency data, latest from 2014, extrapolated to 2017). How is that ultra-green?

Meanwhile, over in the healthcare arena, we have the premier British medical journal The Lancet publishing an opinion piece on November 4 by its head editor Richard Horton, making an explicit pitch for more Marxism in medicine.  The title of the piece is "Medicine and Marx."   Unlike Randers, Horton does not actually use the word "dictatorship"; but I wouldn't call his effort "euphemisms" either.  Rather, Horton writes in the old Soviet/Orwellian Newspeak, using the words those guys employed to mean (to anybody who was alive and awake) not just "dictatorship," but "totalitarian rule by jackbooted thugs."  Example:

21st-century health care [is] better investigated and interpreted through a Marxist lens. . . .   Marxism defends a set of values. The free self-determination of the individual, an equitable society, the end of exploitation, deepening possibilities for public participation in shaping collective choices, refusing to accept the fixity of human nature and believing in our capacity to change, and keeping a sense of the interdependence and indivisibility of our common humanity. . . .  Marxism is a call to engage, an invitation to join the struggle to protect the values we share.

Wow.  Could anybody alive possibly still buy this?  As to the reference in the last line to "the values we share," John Hinderaker at PowerLine comments:

What values are those? Mass murder? Totalitarianism? Rule by a criminal elite? A rigid class system in which a few ruthless and politically connected thugs prosper, and everyone else starves?

Come on, John!  Aren't those really minor quibbles when are so close to achieving the holy grail of universal health "coverage"?