NATIONAL HARBOR, Maryland — Naomi Seibt, the 19-year-old German climate science denier being marketed as the right’s answer to activist Greta Thunberg, praised a white nationalist while speaking on a panel at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) on Friday.
During a question-and-answer session at the end of the panel entitled “Energy, Costs and Defeating the Climate Delusion,” a Business Insider reporter asked Seibt if she is still a fan of white nationalist Stefan Molyneux, a Canadian vlogger.
“I am still a fan, absolutely,” Seibt responded.
Just an hour earlier, The Guardian had published an article unearthing Seibt’s past praise for Molyneux, whom she called one of her “inspirations.”
Molyneux has for years peddled racist “white genocide” conspiracy theories in videos posted to YouTube. At the CPAC panel Friday, Seibt was asked specifically about 2018 comments Molyneux made in which he explicitly praised white nationalism, claiming Poland was “peaceful, free, easy, civilized and safe” because it is “essentially an all-white country.”
Seibt claimed these comments by Molyneux only sound racist when “taken out of context.”
“He’s not comparing other races, not at all,” Seibt said of Molyneux. “He is just describing his experience in Western countries and I know that to the extent, for example, if I was in a country where Sharia was present, I know that I would not be able to speak as freely as in Western countries. … It’s not that we are better in any way in Western countries. We still have freedom of speech and I’m very happy that’s the case.”
The Heartland Institute, a right-wing organization with a long history of peddling industry misinformation, recently hired Seibt in its effort to discredit near-universally accepted climate science. In a press release, the group said she would “work on communicating the climate realism message to her generation — which has marinated in apocalyptic nonsense their whole lives.” That effort got a boost Feb. 24 when The Washington Post ran a front-page story profiling Seibt, calling her the “anti-Greta.” The newspaper drew fire for raising her platform and Heartland’s anti-science message.
Seibt insists she is not a “climate denier,” but rather a “climate realist.” But in an interview with Fox News on Thursday, she parroted denialist talking points, falsely claiming that “CO2 emissions are not actually harmful to the planet” and that humans “might contribute slightly” to current warming, but that “it is so insignificant that we shouldn’t focus on that.”
Heartland has since produced videos questioning the legitimacy of Thunberg’s activism, as seen below.
Seibt’s rising star has brought her other comments about race and religion under scrutiny. Her praise for Molyneux, however, is particularly notable. Molyneux is a bigot with ties to a who’s-who of neo-Nazis and white supremacists, including Richard Spencer and Jared Taylor.
He once argued that Black people are “collectively less intelligent.”
Molyneux also once stated in a YouTube video that has since been removed that “you cannot run a high IQ [white] society with low IQ [non-white] people … these [non-white] immigrants are going to fail ... and they’re not just going to fail a little, they are going to fail hard … they’re not staying on welfare because they’re lazy ... they’re doing what is economically the best option for them ... you are importing a gene set that is incompatible with success in a free-market economy.”