Of all the celebrities we lost in 2016, the greatest is one who retired: Thomas Sowell.
After writing his column for nearly four decades, Sowell is hanging up the keyboard for life at age 86. Sowell was born in North Carolina in 1930 and grew up in Harlem, New York. He attended Howard University, a historically black college in Washington, D.C., and then Harvard University, where he graduated magna cum laude in 1958. He went on to receive his master’s degree in economics from Columbia University and a doctorate in economics from the University of Chicago. “Even the best things come to an end. After enjoying a quarter of a century of writing this column for Creators Syndicate, I have decided to stop,” he wrote in his final column, titled “Farewell.”
He mentions in his farewell the particular subject of his first column – which truly illustrates how little has changed.
Sowell’s first column ever, titled “The Profits of Doom,” was written decades before the global warming hysteria among today’s environmentalists. During the 1970s, scientists were warning of a coming ice age.
“The first column I ever wrote, 39 years ago, was titled ‘The Profits of Doom,’” Sowell wrote in his final column, according to The National Review.
“This was long before Al Gore made millions of dollars promoting global-warming hysteria,” Sowell wrote. “Back in 1970, the prevailing hysteria was the threat of a new ice age — promoted by some of the same environmentalists who are promoting global-warming hysteria today.”
Here’s a reminder of what was being predicted at the time Sowell penned his first column.
In 1970, ecologist Kenneth Watt told college students around the time of the first Earth Day demonstrations the world would be “eleven degrees colder in the year 2000.” That didn’t happen.
A CIA report from 1974 warned the Earth’s “climate is returning to that of the neo-boreal era… an era of drought, famine, and political unrest in the western world.” The CIA blamed famines in the Soviet Union, drought in Latin America and flooding in the U.S. on global cooling.
SciFi actor Leonard Nimoy said scientists were attributing the harsh winter of 1977 to global cooling in an episode of “In Search Of” from 1978.