WARNING: If you are a climate change alarmist, or merely an overbearing left-wing hack, this post could do severe damage to your pseudo-scientific worldview. Liberal discretion is advised.
Global warming. Global cooling. Climate change.
Few phrases stir up as many emotions as the combination of these two simple words. Nothing in science is more controversial than climate change. Few things in politics are, either.
Is climate change legitimate, or is it bad politics pretending to be good science?
I’ll give you three irrefutable reasons why I believe the answer is almost certainly the latter. By the end of the article, all reasonable-minded people will agree with me.
Reason 1: A History Of Failed Predictions Is A History Of Bad Science
While we conservatives seem to have no trouble with it, this science thing seems to be hard for liberals to grasp. I fancy myself a kind and considerate man, so let me try to explain it to them.
Science is built around predictions and testability.
You have an idea (hypothesis).
You state things you’d expect to discover, or event to take place, if your idea is true (predictions).
Then, either tests or run, or, if a time-based prediction, you wait to see whether your expectations are met.
If they are? Your idea has made a correct prediction, and is strengthened. Once it grows sufficiently strong, it gets promoted from hypothesis to a full-blown theory.
If your prediction fails? Your idea is weakened. With enough failed predictions, your idea gets demoted to failed hypothesis. It gets tossed in the trash. Better luck next time.
So, what about climate change? We’re told “the science is settled,” and that to doubt climate change is an all-out assault on science. This confidence must be the result of a long history of correct predictions, right?
Yeah . . . well . . about that . . .
Not only is climate change lacking in correct predictions, its history is dominated by badly-missed predictions. As a smart guy (cough) once said, climate change has an accuracy rate somewhere around that of those 1-900-PSYCHICS you see advertised on late-night TV.
Do you consider Miss Cleo a scientist? If not, you probably shouldn’t consider those crazy men in labcoats telling us the end is near unless we buy overpriced green products scientists, either. Neither has proven capable of rising to science’s standards.
A Look At Climate Change’s Greatest Misses
We know climate change alarmists have a history of bad predictions, but what were those predictions, exactly?
The award-winning blog Watts Up With That has put together a large (but far from complete) list of failed climate change predictions. Some of the best (by which I mean the worst):
17. “Spring will begin in January starting in 2030.”
Die Welt, 30 Sept 2010
78. January 1970 Life Magazine “Scientists have solid experimental and theoretical evidence to support …the following predictions: In a decade, urban dwellers will have to wear gas masks to survive air pollution…by 1985 air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half…”
83. July 9, 1971, Washington Post: “In the next 50 years fine dust that humans discharge into the atmosphere by burning fossil fuel will screen out so much of the sun’s rays that the Earth’s average temperature could fall by six degrees. Sustained emissions over five to ten years, could be sufficient to trigger an ice age.”
86. Sept 19, 1989, St. Louis Post-Dispatch: “New York will probably be like Florida 15 years from now.”
91. April 22, 1990 ABC, The Miracle Planet: “I think we’re in trouble. When you realize how little time we have left–we are now given not 10 years to save the rainforests, but in many cases five years. Madagascar will largely be gone in five years unless something happens. And nothing is happening.”
That’s some super-duper science, huh?
How do climate scientists explain these enormous failures? By either denying them, or resorting to ad hoc (after the fact) reasoning which paints themselves as heroes.
All of those doom-and-gloom predictions that never came to pass? Climate change scientists, the real-life superheroes that they are, prevented them from happening. You see, those weren’t examples of the failures of climate science predictions, but examples of the success of climate science policies.
At least, that’s what climate change scientists tell us.
You don’t think they’d lie, do you?
Reason 2: “Do As We Say, Not As We Do.”
It’s Pop Quiz time, ladies and gentlemen (and anyone in between).
Q) You believe the fate of the planet, and all of humanity, rests on getting climate change under control by limiting our carbon footprint. Do you:
A) Live a modest, responsible lifestyle, designed to minify your carbon footprint.
B) Live a jet-flyin’, limousine-ridin’ lifestyle, with an Andre the Giant-sized carbon footprint.
If you’re a decent, moral human being, your answer would be easy: A
If you’re a climate change scientist? Well . . .
As the U.K.’s Telegraph pointed out, 2009’s Climate Change Summit in Denmark included more than 1,200 limos and 140 private jets.
This isn’t uncommon. Many of climate change’s top alarmists are wealthy, and live the lifestyle that comes with it.
Hypocrites can’t be trusted, nor do they deserve respect.
According to CBS News, one of climate change’s loudest alarmists, former vice president Al Gore, has a net worth of $200,000,000. What kind of house can one live in with that type of money? Apparently, a pretty damn big one. We’ll let CBS News tell you:
In 2007, for instance, public records revealed that the energy consumption at his Nashville home was 20 times the national average.
Clearly, Mr. Gore is someone who cares about the planet, just not enough to sacrifice his own luxuries.
Do as he says, not as he does.
Actor Leonardo DiCaprio is another well-known climate change advocate. He’s on record as stating that climate change is the greatest threat to the human species.
He’s also known to live the high life of private jets, fancy cars, mansions, and rather large yachts, all creating a carbon footprint several times larger than the average person’s.
Climate change is hugely important to Leo . . . just not important enough to give up his playboy lifestyle.
Either Leo is bull*censor*ing about how strongly he believes in climate change, or (by his own standards) he’s a self-centered monster who’s damaging the planet, and endangering lives, all in return for a good time.
One of Hollywood’s really big, energy-sucking yachts. Image Credit: TruthRevolt.org
What does all of this this tell us?
For one, it tells us climate charm alarmism sure does pay well.
More importantly, it tells us that these alarmists are either very stupid, or very unethical people.
So, are we dealing with egotists who pretend to care about the planet for their own wealth and power?
Are we looking at con-men who are selling snake oil under the guise of valid science?
Maybe we’re simply dealing with a whole lot of morons, who are so lacking in self-awareness that they can’t notice their inconsistent behavior?
I have a good idea the correct answer, but I’ll let you, dear reader, come to your own conclusion. I think we both know what’s correct.
Reason 3: “97% of Climate Scientists Believe In Climate Change!”
One of the most frequently-cited arguments of climate change defense is the claim that 97% (or a similarly-high number) of climate scientists believe in climate change.
The argument goes something like this:
“No one understands climate better than climate scientists, and since 97% believe climate change is true, climate change is definitely true. The science is settled. Only an anti-science idiot could possibly disagree.”
There are a number of errors with this argument. The most obvious is that it’s both an appeal to authority (climate scientists), and an appeal to popularity (97% acceptance).
However, I’d like to introduce a third error: Ignoring the fact that climate science is built around climate change.
A near-necessary component of being a climate scientist in the 21st century is accepting climate change as fact. It’s the magnum opus of the field.
If believing in climate change is a prerequisite for being a climate scientist, as is the case, then why should we be surprised that the overwhelming majority of climate scientists do just that?
To understand my point better, think of this example:
Claim 1: No one knows more about bigfoot than bigfoot experts.
Claim 2: 98% of bigfoot experts believe in bigfoot.
Conclusion: Since 98% of the people who know the most about bigfoot agree bigfoot is real, bigfoot is definitely real. The thoughts and opinions of bigfoot non-experts are irrelevant; they’re ignorant bigfoot denialists.
This is, essentially, the same line of reasoning that the climate change defender uses.
Now do you see the flaw?
Of course the majority of bigfoot experts believe in bigfoot! The act of being a bigfoot expert entails believing in the existence of bigfoot. Typically, people don’t become experts in that which they believe is nonexistent.
The same holds true in climate science. The act of being a climate scientist–centered on climate change, remember–entails belief in climate change.
Few people accept the claims of bigfoot experts as authoritative, because bigfoot experts aren’t considered credible. Thus, the 98% acceptance figure means nothing.
Given what we know about climate scientists, I’d argue we should take the same stance towards them. Climate scientists aren’t legitimate scientists, which means the 97% figure is little more than a bunch of fake scientists propping up a fake science.
Is that bigfoot, or is it a glacier melting due to climate change? Trick question: Neither is real. Image Credit: Flickr
Bottomline: If you accept that climate change is real because the majority of climate scientists believe it, in order to be logically consistent, you must also:
- Accept that bigfoot is real because the majority of bigfoot experts believe in it.
- Accept that ghosts are real because the majority of ghost experts believe in them.
- Accept that UFOs are real because the majority of UFOlogists believe in them.
- Accept that vampires are real because the majority of vampire experts believe in them.
I could go on . . . and on . . . and on. You get the point.
To believe in climate change, you have to believe in a lot *censored*.
Really doesn’t seem all that scientific, does it?
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Have something to add? Feel free to post a comment. Have a rebuttal? I’d be happy to post it.
Until then, take care, and don’t forget to live a little, even if it means a big carbon footprint. The world probably isn’t ending anytime soon, and if it is, enjoy it while it lasts.
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