Australian Broadcaster ABC’s Show “Enough Rope” interviewed Professor Tim Flannery in 2008. (h/t Scarlett Pumpernickel in Tips & Notes on WUWT).
In interview with host Andrew Denton the eco-wiseacre (an apt label from his fellow countryman Clive James) certainly did what he’s famous for.
On his appointment as Australian of the year’ in 2007 Denton says (from the transcript linked above):
“ANDREW DENTON: Now many were surprised when John Howard a self-confessed climate sceptic appointed you to that position. I’m assuming you and he had a number of meetings during last year?
TIM FLANNERY: No, no. No one was more surprised than me actually. No, I’d never met the Prime Minister prior to that and didn’t meet him subsequently so.
ANDREW DENTON: Never met him after that as Australian of the Year?
TIM FLANNERY: No, no.
ANDREW DENTON: You didn’t talk?
TIM FLANNERY: I had offered to talk, but it was an election year and I think they were, the office was really pretty busy.
ANDREW DENTON: Australian of the Year is not supposed to be political in his or her comments. Was it perhaps a useful place to put you, where you couldn’t be political?
TIM FLANNERY: Yeah it might have been, but I sort of made it clear on the day that I got the Award that I wasn’t going to shut up.”
And he hasn’t.
With events in Australia and elsewhere unfolding as they have, there is delicious irony in those words and perhaps we might just give John Howard a little credit for knowing exactly what he was doing in giving such an ardent environmentalist the award.