Skip to content

What’s Behind Climate Change Activist Greta Thunberg’s Remarkable Rise To Fame?

February 14, 2019

By Paul Homewood


Andrew Montford writes in the Spectator:


The rise to fame of Greta Thunberg, the teenage climate activist, has been nothing short of extraordinary. Less than a year ago, she was an unknown schoolgirl from Sweden, albeit an unusual one: she is the daughter of a famous opera singer and an actor. Thunberg also has Asperger’s syndrome, obsessive-compulsive disorder and selective mutism. The latter, she says, ‘basically means I only speak when I think it’s necessary’. ‘Now is one of those moments,’ she said in a Ted talk watched hundreds of thousands of times on the topic that first brought her into the public eye: her decision to stage a ‘school strike’ last August to draw attention to climate change. Thunberg’s profile has only grown since. Her appearance at the UN climate conference in Poland propelled her to international fame. Most recently she was in Davos. Her message to the billionaires at the World Economic Summit was stark: ‘I want you to panic’ about climate change.

Greta’s steely gaze and call to action has won her legions of fans online. She certainly makes for a good story: the sweet girl who is moved to climate action and ends up as an unlikely international celebrity.

However, her sudden appearance in the limelight has led to some pointed questions: is Greta’s celebrity status less to do with chance and more to do with a carefully orchestrated public relations campaign?


Read the full story here.

  1. Hivemind permalink
    February 14, 2019 10:53 am

    “…is Greta’s celebrity status less to do with chance and more to do with a carefully orchestrated public relations campaign?”

    Did you really need to ask the question? I’m pretty sure we all know the answer to that one.

  2. quaesoveritas permalink
    February 14, 2019 10:55 am

    “Thunberg also has Asperger’s syndrome, obsessive-compulsive disorder ”
    Why does that not surprise me?

  3. Harry Passfield permalink
    February 14, 2019 11:01 am

    It won’t be long before the BBC will offer her a ‘patsy’ interview and fawn over every word and syllable of her beliefs in AGW. In so doing I will bet they will not honour the dictum they defined regarding sceptics like Nigel Lawson – that they should be strenuously challenged, or even denied air-time.
    In fact, they should have used that ruling this morning when, in an interview on Today with the CEO of OVO, they accepted as gospel his statement that the price of renewables was dropping so fast and making them competitive with F-F. All it needed was for the interviewer to ask him how electricity generation at three times the normal rate was competitive and likely to be cheaper. Typical BBC

    • jack broughton permalink
      February 14, 2019 11:17 am

      The BBC’s dishonesty is frightening, but fortunately becoming less believed as time goes by.
      It is frightening to think what would have happened if Trump had not got in as the “believers” would have shut-down all debate as heresy by now.

      • quaesoveritas permalink
        February 14, 2019 11:19 am

        “but fortunately becoming less believed as time goes by.”
        Have you any evidence to back that up?
        I fear it might be wishful thinking.

      • jack broughton permalink
        February 17, 2019 11:06 am

        Quaesoveritas: I am not a media student (or even a TV watcher) so my evidence is not as good as one might like. However, as the viewing figures for BBC News have fallen from 25 m viewers average in 2012 to 17m in 2018 and the average age of viewers has risen to over 60 I have some reason behind my statement: albeit not a proof. Surveys of issues of importance that I have seen seem to show climate change well down the list also.

        Apparently, the main reason people watch the news is the weather forecast: big peaks during bad weather.

        The brainwashing remains totally wrong and unjustifiable.

      • quaesoveritas permalink
        February 17, 2019 11:16 am

        I have recently bought a book by David Sedgwick, entitled “BBC: Brainwashing Britain?”.
        I haven’t read it yet but in a quick skim though it, I unfortunately couldn’t find anything related to climate change.

    • A C Osborn permalink
      February 14, 2019 8:48 pm

      The BBC have found their own “patsy”, a Scottish lass was on today.
      Sad that they should be so worried about their futures.
      It really is mental abuse.

  4. MrGrimNasty permalink
    February 14, 2019 11:13 am

    She’s just a dupe, exploited by the climate change propaganda machine, there’s not much more to say, other than it probably amounts to abuse. It’s like climate court cases brought by kids – it’s extreme adult activists actually pulling the strings.

    Browsing Britannica, although it contains the obligatory ‘with global warming future worse blah blah’ type statements, much is a refreshing change. The ‘Glaciers and sea level’ paragraph states “Yet the Greenland Ice Sheet is thought to be close to balance, the status of the Antarctic Ice Sheet is uncertain,…..” How utterly refreshing to find something honest!

    We used the massive paper copies at the local library to research our school homework, maybe all schools should revisit this undervalued resource?

  5. HotScot permalink
    February 14, 2019 11:43 am

    Thunberg also has Asperger’s syndrome, obsessive-compulsive disorder and selective mutism.

    Of course she has.

    ………and selective mutism

    My children displayed that self same condition regularly when they were young. I still do when someone asks me a stupid question (and to those who say no question is stupid, think again) and my wife does it when I’ve been a prat.

    Since when has being thought a fool when remaining silent, only for it to be confirmed when one opens one’s mouth been a virtue? In this case I suggest this child might consider that sentiment very seriously.

    It’s all very well the older and wiser amongst us to emerge as idiots over climate change, but if the worst doesn’t transpire we (not that I’m wise) might only have 20 years to regret our indiscretions, this child might be haunted by her ill considered public profile for the rest of her life.

    Added to the conditions she already tolerates, this adds the dimension of mental illness in the future; being that she is compulsively obsessed with catastrophic climate change and faces the very real likelihood (no matter how remote she believes it) that she was not only wrong, but betrayed by almost every adult she knows.

    • Harry Passfield permalink
      February 14, 2019 12:46 pm

      Hotscot: she must suffer the most incredible cognitive dissonance – if not now, later in life. That’s when she risks a mental breakdown.

  6. Athelstan. permalink
    February 14, 2019 11:50 am

    “Further worrying details have also emerged. As well as working for Greta’s mother, Rentzhog had also recently launched a business called ‘We Don’t Have Time’, a sort of climate-focused PR agency.

    In October 2018, he invited Greta to join the company’s Youth Advisory Board and in the weeks that followed he used her image intensively ahead of the company’s share issue.”

    Choreographed PR………mmm.

    don’t mention the agenda!

    when the crusade is failing there’s always the kids!

  7. Gamecock permalink
    February 14, 2019 11:50 am

    Argumentum ad puellam pulchram.

  8. Phoenix44 permalink
    February 14, 2019 12:15 pm

    What’s worrying is why anybody should pay any attention to her whatsoever?

    She is ignorant, inexperienced and lacks any knowledgeable – because she’s young. she has no new ideas, no new thoughts and no new insights into either the science or economics of climate change. So what does she add?

    • Harry Passfield permalink
      February 14, 2019 12:50 pm

      She’ll make a good team with AOC. Might even get their joint IQ into double figures.

      • AndyG55 permalink
        February 14, 2019 8:17 pm

        I suggest the IQ’s would be subtractive .

    • MrGrimNasty permalink
      February 14, 2019 8:07 pm

      ‘The left’ has all but succeeded in elevating the rights of kids/young adults above those of their elders. There is an endless stream of junk ‘research’ reinforcing ‘generational inequality’. Sentiments like wishing the old to die so that we can remain in the EU etc.

  9. February 14, 2019 12:23 pm

    JUST another Polar Bear – cute, cuddly and can’t be argued with.

  10. permalink
    February 14, 2019 1:31 pm


    I have a grand-daughter who has just reached 15, and other grandchildren approaching that milestone. I greatly enjoy debating all manner of topics with them. Usually their opinions appear to be fixed as they may not have heard all the arguments, or only those from noisy extremists and not the quiet majority.

    The purpose of debating with adolescents is to demonstrate the arts of discussion and scepticism so they can improve their own abilities to reason and come to conclusions. It isn’t to give them a platform for their immature views in order to support adult extremists! My concern for Greta, and other exploited young people, is that once they have taken a public stance on an issue they will find it very difficult to modify that position as they grow up and so their undoubted intelligence will no longer have value in seeking the best way to progress.

    My greatest concern with the “global warming” debate is that it is wasting time and energy on an irrelevant supposed connection between mankind’s activities and climate change. There are two undeniable facts: we are grossly polluting the planet we and our descendants live on; and the climate has always and will always change – sometimes disastrously. Each requires massive concerted efforts to address the potential problems, but there is no need to connect the two.

    We must restrain our demands for products and services that cause pollution and damage (and pay the true cost of those in the price). We must predict the harmful, and beneficial, effects of changes to the climate over decades and take steps to overcome or take advantage of these.

    Whether one causes the other is of no significance! The proper answer to the question “do you accept that mankind’s activities are causing disastrous changes to the climate?” is “you are asking one unimportant question instead of two vital ones”.

    • Harry Passfield permalink
      February 14, 2019 2:32 pm

      Terry: interesting comment. I think that our ‘young adults’ need to understand that it’s not a bad thing to change one’s mind. As the saying goes, when the facts change, I change my mind. Adolescents feel that if they row back on a ‘belief’ they will lose credibility. What they need to accept is that they will actually gain it.

      • Saighdear permalink
        February 14, 2019 2:46 pm

        Well that may be……………….. Strikes me as being very liberal.
        So in the meantime we WHEN we have many other things to do, we have to cowtow to their daftness and relearn the Tables to suit them ………. When I ‘m busy, witha Life to l ead, why shouldI / WEchange our Business plans every Year / generation to suit them?

      • permalink
        February 14, 2019 5:07 pm

        Thanks, Harry, I shall emphasise that point when having my discussions with them! Meantime, Saighdear, from considerable business experience, if you don’t change your business plans every year you will be in serious trouble!

    • Saighdear permalink
      February 16, 2019 11:27 pm

      Terry! I’ve just returned home from a long day to hear about BMI ?- the airline ppl gone into liquidation. I have an earworm ” ….. from considerable business experience, if you don’t change your business plans every year you will be in serious trouble! ….”
      You think that I DO NOT have business experience? I do have and I advise AND have watched folk chop and change. I give you all enough “rope to hang yourelves” as we say up here. … But when daft Politics intervenes coupled with Socio Fads, well……. let’s just say that I draw the line. Hence Brexit. No one asked me if we should have JOINED – the Common Market was OK , the EU now IS NOT,,, as an example. Thought for the day ! Sláinte

  11. saparonia permalink
    February 14, 2019 1:58 pm

    This is exploitation of a minor.

    One law for the rich and one for the poor

  12. Saighdear permalink
    February 14, 2019 1:58 pm

    Da*** Email link not working again…
    Yes – Lunchtime news today – coming to my neck of the Glens – Been NO WORD of that daft Gits Antics – BBC local radio NOR ITV Local news – nothing ZILCH. An’ dammee – It’s SNOWING for criessake – when was that taken – we’ve had +10C for a coupla days and lettle snow all told – just Braw CAULD winter weather – Coal fires burning with 20 yrs worth of tree growth to boot, to get the coal going.
    I too am aware of that unfortunate ( what else can one charitably say) child, er, no she’s a Kid – – so they tell us – parents MUST be GOATS. That story was in the foreign Media long before Christmas – so yes someone MUST be pulling strings. Why give ALL these gonks the oxygen of publicity? So it’s another form of grooming, eh? – like that 3 ISIS 15 yrolds? My Dog, Cat and the cows like been groomed….. are people different?

  13. Broadlands permalink
    February 14, 2019 3:08 pm

    This kid is no different from other kids, and all are the same as those politicians who simply accept the current mantra/dogma. If one asks where they get they get their expertise it inevitably leads to only one or two sources….those model-driven climate forecasts and predictions passed along by the media for years. The more “gloom-and-doom” future we are fed, the harder it is for the truth to become visible. Words like “denier” gain traction and take precedence over factual evidence. This is a serious problem unlikely to go away any time soon, or at least until the costly financial and economic realities kick in.

  14. markl permalink
    February 14, 2019 4:58 pm

    Exploiting children to do your dirty work seems to be the new modus operandi of the Marxist /Socialist cabal. Illegal immigration, gun rights, climate change, abortion, gender selection, race relations, sexual misconduct, any perceived social slight or made up catastrophe have children who are not yet old enough to fully understand what they are protesting against as spokespersons. When logic fails go for emotions. It’s all about divide and conquer and they’re using the media and natural gullibility to accomplish their goal.

  15. February 15, 2019 2:48 am

    Desperation in the climate camp?
    Kind of like the old tipping point but there is still time cycle?

  16. George Lawson permalink
    February 15, 2019 11:48 am

    The words “i want you to panic” are not words that one would expect to come from the mouth of a immature teenager, and who, by disgusting manipulation, is given a world stage to lecture to authoritative world scientists who have studied global warming for years, and agree that their is nothing whatsoever to worry about. She is obviously being used by her parents and the stupid global warming brigade who will peddle anything to promote the hoax no matter how stupid..

  17. quaesoveritas permalink
    February 16, 2019 10:07 am

    Lost of coverage of the school children’s strikes yesterday on the BBC.
    Unfortunately the children seem to have gullibly accepted everything the alarmists are saying without question, although I suppose they can be forgiven that because of their lack of life experience.
    They also seem to ignore everything that is being done to reduce emissions (whether that is necessary or not), in their calls for “something to be done.
    However, it is not possible to forgive the adults who are feeding them this propaganda.

  18. quaesoveritas permalink
    February 17, 2019 8:55 am

    On Feb. 15th, thirteen year old “environmental campaigner” George and his mother Ali, took part in an interview with the Environment Minister, Claire Perry, on BBC Breakfast. George (who we were told had “done a lot of research on the subject”), was given the opportunity to ask the question, “What action will you be taking to reassure our generation about climate change, because in the end its going to be us that will have to live with you decision”.
    As Claire Perry listed all the things that the UK had done to reduce CO2 she was interrupted several times by the presenters who implied that enough was still not being done. Of course if George had really done “a lot of research” he would have known all of this.
    I was hoping that George and his mother would be asked what they were doing personally, for example had they switched to using public transport or bought an electric car, but unfortunately this did not happen.

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: