Arguing with fools is like playing chess with a pigeon, no matter how good you are the pigeon will just shit on the board and then strut around as if he has won anyway.
I am responding to Rafe’s post of 29 July titled “A train crash or national suicide in slow motion”.
Those who have not sub-contracted their thinking out to politicians, green groups and sundry other intellectual pygmies are well aware of the confidence trick being played on us all however we are the minority. I suspect “most people” are either too busy trying to survive and/or lack the capacity to understand the issues technically. This is not meant as a slur, the issues require some basic educational level to understand the arguments and many people do not have it even though they might be well qualified. Others are just tired of listening to people telling them how they should live and turn off.
The print and electronic media are captive to the fantasy of “climate change” and are not the least interested in airing alternative views. The bulk of the population do not read papers anyway and “social media” has taken first place for “ideas/news/bullshit”. There are a lot of good places to get the “alternative” information but as Rafe suggests, it is usually an exercise in preaching to the converted.
We are up against a propaganda campaign that would make Dr. G smile. Everything can be blamed on “climate change” and the only solution is “emissions reductions”, code for economic suicide but presented as “the right thing to do for the planet”. The political side of the debate has become a race to the bottom with both majors competing for the gold medal in stupidity and the loonies are lurking in the background wanting to destroy our standard of living. I am surprised at the acceptance given to this simplistic argument by people who otherwise seem smart.
Some years ago I decided to educate myself in the dark arts of “climate change” and after lots of reading and research have concluded that it is voodoo science and dangerous to our economic and social health. I started writing letters and getting them published and late last year tried my hand with Catallaxy. Apart from flushing out a few climate loonies the reaction has been a bit underwhelming although I have received some good comments. I was also naïve enough to try and get a few opinion pieces in newspapers but did not recognise that it is a requirement that opinion writers know sweet FA about the subject, (with some notable exceptions).
I appreciate that there are many people who do their best to enlighten us to the folly of climate change and the associated energy fiasco however there are two problems that have to be fixed. First, the message is too complicated for “most people” and second the messages are confined to forums where the readers are already convinced.
The “climate change” message is simple: CO2 causes the planet to “warm” threatening our existence, burning coal releases CO2 so “coal is bad”, the climate catastrophe is imminent, there are no limits to the cost of “tackling” it and it “must be done now”. Anyone who does not “believe” the story is an “evil denier” – repeat ad nauseum. It does not matter that the proposition has not been proven and that there is no causal connection between “rising emissions” and temperature, it is just presented as a fact and people believe it. Any argument to the contrary is shouted down and idiots make policy that is sending us broke.
So, what can we do? Here are some suggestions and other views, (in a positive vein), are welcome.
(1): Get a simple message, put it out there and play the same game of endless repetition. All ideas welcome. This will cost money so those who see it as a worthwhile thing to do need to support the cause.
(2): Organise against the pathetic bunch we have in state and federal governments. Sensible people need to be drafted and supported to get inside the tent and change things.
(3): Withdraw support for anyone in any government who continues to believe in “climate change” and renewable energy.
(4): Never play chess with a pigeon.
When you hear the apostles telling you that “the science is settled” think of the following from the late Carl Sagan:
One of the reasons for its success is that science has built-in, error-correcting machinery at its very heart. Some may consider this an overbroad characterization, but to me every time we exercise self-criticism, every time we test our ideas against the outside world, we are doing science. When we are self-indulgent and uncritical, when we confuse hopes and facts, we slide into pseudoscience and superstition…… It is possible, given absolute control over the media and the police, to rewrite the memories of hundreds of millions of people, if you have a generation to accomplish it in. Almost always this is done to improve the hold that the powerful have on power or to serve the narcissism or megalomania or paranoia of national leaders. It throws a monkey wrench into the error-correcting machinery. It works to erase public memory of profound political mistakes, and thus to guarantee their eventual repetition.