High life

The end of snow? Not in Gstaad

The winters are better now than they were 60 years ago

15 March 2014

9:00 AM

15 March 2014

9:00 AM


The American newspaper that prints only news it sees fit to poison good things recently announced ‘The end of snow’. ‘The planet has warmed 1.4 degrees Fahrenheit since the 1800s, and, as a result, snow is melting…’ Bring on the Pulitzers, snow melts! The Big Bagel Times also thundered that Europe has lost half its Alpine glacial ice since the 1850s — yes, the 1850s, when private jets ferried people such as Abe Lincoln around America, Otto von Bismarck polluted German resorts in his supercharged Mercedes-Benz, and young Taki steamed around the Med in a 100 mph speedboat powered by black slaves. Well, I for one don’t believe a word the Times writes, and, as I live in Gstaad, I have something of a first-hand knowledge of snow. (The type one skis on, for any of you drippy-nosed wise guys out there.)

Back in 1958, skiing stopped on 7 March because the white stuff had gone. In 1964, I played tennis with the ex-number one player in Europe, Philippe Washer, throughout the whole winter. Outdoors, that is. Irwin Shaw, that wonderful American novelist, came up to Gstaad to see his son Adam at the Rosey school and was delighted to practise with us. He lived in Klosters, loved tennis, and told us he would make a killing wagering on himself against his regular tennis opponents once the snows had melted over there. (No indoor crap courts back then, thank God.)

Fifty-six years later, on 15 March, I cannot see a single brown spot on the three surrounding mountains of Gstaad, just acres and acres of new, fresh Stalingrad-like snow, and with the sun having shone for the past two weeks without a single cloud, nothing has melted, so give back the Pulitzers, you filthy phonies. Would you like to read some more bullshit from the particular article I’m quoting? Yes, why not? ‘Artificial snow-making now helps to cover 88 per cent of American ski resorts.’ Sure, I believe it, but where are those ski resorts? If you turn Palm Beach into a ski resort you have to use snow-making machines. Like they do in ludicrous Dubai, where idiots actually go to ski indoors in an area as long as a football pitch. Vail and Aspen and Snow Valley need less snow at times, not more, but statistics are there to fool the people all the time with news that fits the agenda of the creeps that run that awful paper.

What I’d like to know is who pays for all these reports that announce non-stop that the end is nigh. Why can’t someone explain to me why I couldn’t ski back then when I was young and a very fast skier, and can ski right now age 77 and rather slow? It reminds me of a friend of mine, a titled Venetian, who used to have tremendous erections at times when he was alone, but failed miserably to get it up when he was with a girl. What is going on? I’ll tell you, but others have said it much better and with more facts. Moolah. The great Tim Rice wrote about it last week in these here pages.

The Peloponnese, one of the most beautiful spots on this earth, has been scarred by the wind machines greedy environmentalists have erected throughout, EU grey men and women arriving from Brussels and ordering those monsters to go up. They are as useful as my Venetian friend’s erections. Mind you, climate change has occurred, in the shape of extreme weather patterns that saw half of England and Brittany submerged last winter, and the Big Bagel under ten feet of snow one day and sweltering in Dubai-like furnace heat the next. What I am railing against is ski resorts in sauna-like places, and EU tinpot dictators erecting machines that only benefit the manufacturers of these monsters. Join the crowd that will help Taki ski in August right here in Gstaad, and swim in the Arctic Circle in January off his wind-powered mega-yacht. What a load of bullshit, if you pardon the expression, as the hawkers used to say in front of cheap girlie show nightclubs.

As The Spectator’s sainted editor wrote last week in the Telegraph: ‘God has played a great joke on mankind, granting the best fuel reserves to the worst places.’ The good news is that God is no fool, and two of the worst places God first played his joke on are fighting like the greedy little pigs they both are. Qatar and Saudi Arabia, the two countries that gave us Socrates and Shakespeare, Bach and Beethoven, Schubert and Schumann, and the custom of beating up hookers and underlings and leaving hotels without paying their bills, are at war with each other. Not that these camel-drivers posing as princes would ever actually fight; Wahhabis pay for others to do the dying, as do Qataris, but they’re having a hair-puller war, like hookers do on a hot day when the brothels are empty. Qatar uses Al Jazeera as its mouthpiece, masquerading as an independent news organisation. Al Jazeera covers up the horrendous war crimes perpetrated by the Al-Nusra and the Isis terrorist groups in Syria. The Saudis, more than likely behind the 9/11 Noo Yawk horror, have realised that they might be next, once Syria becomes just another failed state à la Somalia. So they want Qatar, whose migrant workers are virtual slaves and make up two million of the 2,225,000 Qatari population, to desist. The Qataris cannot because they will be next. I couldn’t give a you-know-what. I’m going skiing. On real snow.

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Show comments
  • GenJackRipper

    “just acres and acres of new, fresh Stalingrad-like snow”

    Haha, <3 Taki. While the rest of the Speccie has gone somewhat PC, Taki is the same. Love it!

    • Nicholas C

      Why is it not PC to refer to snow as Stalingrad-like?

  • SwissMountainLeader

    “as I live in Gstaad, I have something of a first-hand knowledge of snow. ”

    That’s lovely, we’re close neighbours then, I live over the hill.

    “Fifty-six years later, on 15 March, I cannot see a single brown spot on the three surrounding mountains of Gstaad,”

    Another coincidence, I also need some new glasses. And a useful nudge not to let it get as bad as you.

    You might want to check the webcams, get glasses or open the curtains.


  • Doggie Roussel

    The warmists are grinding their teeth… there’s piles of snow and it’s still full on sun…I remember four consecutive Januarys in Zermatt in the early 70s when there was no snow below 2000 metres and the start of every day was an hour-long queue to take the Gornergrat train or the chairlifts towards the glaciers and the possibility of some snow.

    No doubt the ecologists will soon be off to some exotic location in an armada of 747s in order to discuss how to subsidise all their expenses, salaries and freebies.

  • Green
    investments and green jobs are stupid socialistic ideas that deviate resources
    from more profitable investments and more productive jobs. Climate change is heliogenic, not
    anthropogenic! Basil Venitis, venitis@gmail.com, http://venitism.blogspot.com, @Venitis

    The Roman
    Catholic Church is selling indulgences, the Orthodox Church is selling
    absolution certificates (συγχωροχάρτια – synchorochartia),
    and the European Commission is selling pollution allowances! Basil Venitis, venitis@gmail.com, http://venitism.blogspot.com

    Climate scare
    is the hottest hoax on Earth! People
    tend to confuse environment protection with climate control. We have to take
    care of our rivers, lakes, seas, forests, and air. But humans cannot control
    the climate. Rabblerousers have been for a long time searching for a simple and
    sufficiently threatening catastrophe that could justify the implementation of
    kleptocratic ambitions. After having tried various alternative ideas, they came
    up with the idea of dangerous, man-made global warming. This concept was
    formulated despite the absence of reliable data. Basil Venitis, venitis@gmail.com, http://venitism.blogspot.com

    A freakish commercial of Greenpeace shows an angry
    child accusing all adults of destroying his future with global warming! Thousands of drones benefit directly from the
    global warming scare, at the expense of the ordinary consumer. Environmental
    organizations globally, such as Greenpeace, the Sierra Club, and the
    Environmental Defense Fund, have raked in billions of dollars. Government subsidies for useless mitigation
    schemes are skyrocketing. Emission
    trading programs are at two hundred billion euros a year level, with large fees
    paid to brokers, those who operate the scams, and kleptocrats. Many people have discovered they can benefit
    from climate scares and have formed an entrenched alliance with mafiosi and kleptocrats.

    development is not a neutral term. It is an empty undefinable leftist
    ideological concept. It can’t be a good basis for a serious discussion. Those
    who use this term do not want to discuss how to restart economic growth in the
    stagnating West, especially in Europe, how to accelerate growth in developing
    countries and how to overcome poverty in the world. Those would be meaningful
    topics. To speak about sustainable development suggests a debate about creating
    barriers or obstacles to rapid, healthy and much needed economic growth.

    The term
    sustainable development can’t be turned into an operational concept. The
    exponents of this term are the prisoners of the ahistorical and anti-economic
    doctrine of the limits to growth advocated since the 1970’s by green
    politicians and their fellow travelers in institutions and organizations of
    global governance. We should be careful when using such ideologically loaded

    There’s a new kind of
    math for the environmentally concerned, one that answers those everyday
    eco-conundrums like, Which is better: a reusable stainless steel water bottle,
    or those throwaway plastic ones?

    The answers come from
    life cycle assessment (LCA), the method used by industrial ecologists, a
    discipline that blends industrial engineering and chemistry with environmental
    science and biology, to assess how man-made systems impact natural ones.

    LCAs can help avoid a
    narrow outlook on environmental concerns by compiling an inventory of relevant
    energy and material inputs and environmental releases, evaluating the potential
    impacts associated with identified inputs and releases, and interpreting the
    results to help make a more informed decision.

    LCAs tells us that
    buying food in one store that’s been shipped in bulk leaves a smaller carbon
    footprint than driving around town to the local bakery, farmer’s market, and
    dairy. Or that the better wine choice for those living east of Columbus, Ohio,
    is a French Bordeaux, and for those to the west it’s the Napa Valley.

    Those are simple
    problems in ecological accounting, which is designed to evaluate any
    manufactured thing – your iPhone, Cheerios, lip gloss – on its entire range of
    impacts on the environment, human health, and the people who labored to make
    it. An LCA lays bare the hidden impacts of our stuff from the moment its
    ingredients are extracted or concocted, through manufacture, transportation,
    retail, use and disposal. A simple glass bottle requires 1,959 discrete steps
    from birth to disposal, each of which can be analyzed for dozens of impacts,
    from particles emitted to air, water and soil, to energy footprint or impact on
    the incidence of cancer.

    So here’s the lowdown on
    a very practical question: is it more ecologically correct to tote a stainless
    steel bottle you refill with water, or to use water in throwaway plastic
    bottles? As it turns out, it all depends.

    Off the bat, making
    stainless steel has a worse impact profile than knocking out plastic bottles.
    Food-grade stainless is an alloy of chromium, nickel, and pig iron. The
    chromium comes from minds in places like Kazakstan and India, where workers
    have a heightened risk of cancer from exposure to the raw ore. Melting the
    metals requires heating them to thousands of degrees. All these processes
    release hundreds of pollutants into air, water and soil — including green
    house gases like methane and lung-clogging particulates. Then once you have
    your steel bottle, if you wash it in a dishwasher that uses a half-liter of
    electrically heated water, somewhere between 50 and a hundred washes result in
    the same amount of pollution caused by making the bottle in the first place.

    Putting aside the
    question of plastics ridden with BPA, the chemical suspected of being a
    carcinogen and endocrine disrupter, the overall ecological impacts of a
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    So does it pay to use
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    stainless bottle enough times to offset a great number of the plastic ones. At
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    toward stainless; 25 uses bring you to the tipping point where most of the ecological
    negatives of the plastic bottles are outweighed by your using stainless steel.
    And at 500 replaced plastic bottles you pass the last marker — freshwater
    eco-toxicity — so you’re benefiting the planet every time you sip from your

    is a new geological era of the sudden explosion in human activity during the
    last two centuries, a sharp break from the past, when things changed much more
    gradually. Half of Earth’s land surface has been altered by humans. The
    population has exploded by an extra one billion in a decade. When I was born in
    1945 population was only two billion and now it’s more than seven billion.

    We’ve got a
    small planet, constraining the goods and services it can provide, while we are
    pursuing infinite growth not just of the number of people, but a growth in what
    we’re consuming as well. Innovation could alleviate the pressure on our limited
    resources, allowing the population to grow without compromising individuals’
    quality of life. Our lifestyles, including our ever increasing appetite for
    goods, are having a dramatic impact on the consumption of the world’s

    bought into the global warming dogma (WGD) at the Rio Earth Summit in 1992,
    fell in love with it and – without waiting for its scientific underpinning –
    started preparing and implementing economically damaging and freedom
    endangering measures. They accepted the idea that participating in the global
    warming game is easy, politically correct and politically profitable,
    especially when it is obvious that they themselves will not carry the costs of
    the measures they are advocating and implementing and will not be responsible
    for their consequences.

    There are
    plenty of arguments indicating that the real threat is not global warming
    itself. The real threat comes when kleptocrats start playing with the climate
    and with all of us. Environmentalism and global warming alarmism ask for
    restrictions on carbon dioxide emissions, which would substantially increase the
    costs of energy. This would be devastating, because cheap energy is the source
    of much of our prosperity.

    The Global
    Warming Dogma (GWD) asks for an almost unprecedented expansion of government
    intrusion into our lives and of government control over us. They tell us how to
    live, what to do, how to behave, what to consume, what to eat, how to travel,
    how to spend our holidays and many other things.

    their bureaucrats as well as many eggheads, who accept the GWD and with it the
    alarmist view of anthropogenic climate changes, probably hope that – by doing
    so – they are displaying intelligence, virtue and altruism. Some of them even
    believe they are saving the Earth. We should tell them that they are merely
    passive players in the hands of pullpeddlers, of producers of green technologies,
    of agrobusiness firms producing ethanol, of trading firms dealing in carbon
    emission permits, etc., who make billions at our costs. There is no altruism
    there. It is a cold-hearted calculation.

    Socialists and
    radical environmentalists have been trying for decades to reshape communities
    to conform to their preferred pseudosmart-growth policies. These advocates work
    to impose land use regulations that would force citizens into denser living
    arrangements, curtail freedom of choice in housing, discriminate against
    lower-income citizens, and compel people to pay more for their houses and give
    up their cars in favor of subways, trolleys, buses, and bicycles.

    These efforts
    – often described as New Urbanism, sustainable development, or open land
    preservation – have long been resisted by most members of the community due to
    their negative impact on economic growth, competitiveness, and the standard of
    living. Communities implementing pseudosmart-growth policies have significantly
    higher home prices, which precludes moderate-income households from
    homeownership. In turn, these high home prices have forced buyers to take on
    excessive levels of mortgage debt, which has contributed to default and
    foreclosure problems. Libertarians
    dislike the use of multi-unit apartment buildings in city plans – which they
    call stack ’em and pack ’em units.

    Forest fires
    are usually caused by lightning, human carelessness, arson, heat waves, droughts,
    and combustible oils in leaves. The evaporation of water in plants are balanced
    by water absorbed from the soil. Below this threshold, the plants dry out and under
    stress release the combustible gas ethylene. Exposure to smoke from burning
    plants actually promotes germination in other types of plants. Most native
    animals are adept at surviving wildfires.

    Arson is the
    main cause of forest fires in Greece. Land-grabbers cause fires in order to
    build new homes. Shepherds put fires in
    order to create more grassland for their animals. Sodomasochist political rivals
    put fires to embarrass each other, and to take the attention of voters away
    from the failing economy. In 1996, the True Path Party of Turkey revealed that
    Gray Wolves, a Turkish paramilitary organization, were responsible for arson
    fires in Greek islands.

    Barroso’s new light bulbs are a
    crime against all Europeans. Fluorescent lamps contain highly toxic mercury, and LEDS contain toxic
    lead and arsenic. Under a perverse
    legislation, Fourth Reich is forcing its citizens to bring toxic waste into
    their homes and contaminate the environment.

    If a fluorescent lamp is broken, a very small amount of mercury can
    contaminate the surrounding environment.
    EPA recommends airing out the location of a fluorescent tube break and
    using wet paper towels to help pick up the broken glass and fine particles. Any
    glass and used towels should be disposed of in a sealed plastic bag. Vacuum
    cleaners can cause the particles to become airborne, and should not be used. But even if the bulbs are not broken, they end up in
    household garbage, leaving the mercury to ultimately seep into the soil and

    The best way to go green is fixing
    environmental problems at their source, and that source is government. Government is by many accounts the largest
    polluter in any country. By reducing the
    size of government and recycling redundant and unnecessary government bureaucracies,
    we will shrink the size of our government footprint, and in turn, help our
    environment. More government is not the
    solution to environmental woes, it’s the problem. Until we reduce the size of government, our
    environmental problems will continue to grow.