Wednesday, December 9, 2009

I have arrived!

Amazing! All this time writing about climate change and not ONE denier trolled by to leave a comment. It has been so humiliating I've never even mentioned it, to anybody. Other blogs get piles and piles of denier comments, there's even a little cottage industry around analyzing their more classic denier points. Yet I was ignored as though my observations are too wild to be taken seriously.
All that changed late last night though, with this!
Anonymous said...

Checking in from a link, I'm not sure where you are going.
If you're a global warmer, you should be ashamed of the exposure of the despicable so-called "scientists" who have bought into and sold this stupid crap. Do you realize how great the economic impact can be from psuedo-science from shit-for-brains guys like Al (I have a 20,000 SF mansion and a boat the size of your whole yard Gore?

Get a life, get a brain. Do you want to live in caves? You will have to kill animals to get their fur to stay warm. Especially since the 1970'-80's next Ice Age might come back. Stop pretending you know things that you don't have a clue about.

I am so flattered by this, I hardly know where to begin. First, a disclaimer - in a very short space it contains so many of the designated traits of a denier post that I am a bit suspicious the whole thing is nothing but a prank from someone over at Denial Depot. But assuming it is legitimate, let's examine this epistle.

*Every denier point has to include Al Gore, usually mentioning his weight and/or his house. They NEVER mention how much money he has spent to green his house, how he gives everything he makes from the movie and investments in green technology to a green foundation to educate morons, and how, the theory (theory, like evolution, gravity, and plate tectonics, not a wild proposition) of global warming is grounded in scientific research, not Al Gore. Click here for an excellent interactive graph from the NYT about the long history of climate science.

*Deniers like to claim that the reason thousands of scientists and every major scientific organization agree that humans are causing climate change is because they have a financial motivation and have thus engaged in a vast global conspiracy to hoodwink the public and legislators so they can buy Ferraris with their enormous government-funded research grants. As with other denier points, this is ludicrous. Why don't they compare a university professor's annual salary of, say, $40,000 with the millions, nay billions, earned by oil, gas and coal companies and the hundreds of thousands to pay shills and lobbyists to confuse the public?

*Deniers love to bring up the long-ago and oft-debunked ice age prediction in the '70's. It was Time Magazine that made that prediction, once, based on the slimmest of scientific research. Here's a very entertaining video explaining what really happened.

*Deniers are famous for straw man arguments. That is, they invent a point you never made and then say or imply that it's false. They do that because they can't really argue the facts. In this case, Anonymous asks if I want to live in a cave and kill animals for their fur - as if that is the result, or only alternative to acknowledging climate change and converting to clean energy!

*Deniers dread change. They are so afraid someone is going to pry the teevee remote from their desperate fingers they can't even see how absurd it is to claim legislation to curb greenhouse gases will "cost too much." Aside from the fact that new industries building solar plants, electric cars, etc. would be good for the economy, this approach completely ignores the cost of NOT converting to clean energy - costs like cancer, a despoiled ecosystem, crop failures and famine, and foreign wars, not to mention rising seas and the collapse of life in the acidifying oceans.

*Deniers are frequently rude and make ad hominem attacks. In this instance, I am advised to get a life and a brain, obviously inferring I currently posses neither, and also, that I pretend to know things I haven't a clue about. This sort of random insult and the straw man are all deniers can offer by way of information, because they can't address the real issue. Note in this case, Anonymous doesn't even bother to refute one single empirical observation I have made on this blog, and claims to be unable to "see where I'm going". It's quite lazy really, because I have posted over and over several recurring themes - and frequently admitted I'm not qualified to make scientific explanations.

What I have said, is that trees are dying at an alarming rate. Other vegetation shows the same damaged foliage. Only a very large component of the environment can drive such a vast impact. I've speculated as to possible causes, from drought to ozone to ethanol emissions to the disruption of the nitrogen cycle, and tried to weigh the likelihood of each factor. Does Anonymous dispute that any of those effects from greenhouse gas emissions are harmful to vegetation? I hope not, because it's well established that they are!

*Probably forever more, there must inevitably reside in every Denier comment a reference to the infamous hacked emails. Sigh. This has been revealed, by so many writers, as nothing but a criminal theft and desperate attempt to smear all of science. But try this post at Climate Progress and do a little search there while you're at it, for more on the subject. And go to Greenfyre. Or straight to RealClimate.

*Of course everyone makes spelling and grammatical mistakes, especially on the intertubes. Nevertheless, and last but not least and almost universally true, deniers find punctuation a challenge. (I have a 20,000 SF mansion and a boat the size of your whole yard Gore?

Where, oh where is the missing parenthesis? Thank you for that, Anonymous!

And please, please don't return and tell me I've been duped according to Poe's Law!

Why does any of this matter? Because this is something humans want to avoid:

Starving polar bears turn to cannibalism

Scientists say they are aware of eight cases of bear cannibalisation so far this year  Photo: REUTERS


  1. Good rebuttal. Very few of these people have *any* understanding of the science behind the issue at all.

  2. Maybe we should treat deniers like sex offenders. Register them in a database that is accessible by the public so that hungry people know where to forage for meat when the shelves at Piggly Wiggly are bare. Think of all the benefits: food problem solved, carbon footprint lowered, and idiot genes removed from the pool.

  3. Thank you all! Jim, the most rabid denier knows not to mess with Des. You are the zenith of apocalyptic vision...even the most effusive of doomers at Survival Acres pays obeisance to the Des in link after link.

    Besides, it's hard to argue with a picture of polar bear cannibalism or thousands of dead starfish.

  4. Deniers may have a psychiatric condition called oppositional defiant disorder (ODD).

    People with ODD are long on anger, resentment and arguing. Any type of authority or rules tends to trigger defiant and hostile behavior. It’s as if they resist things on principle, the content of the thing being secondary to their core principle of “nobody can tell me what’s what”. People with ODD will go to incredible lengths to oppose and resist what they don’t like, oblivious to reason or to the consequences of their actions, or inactions.

  5. "It’s as if they resist things on principle, the content of the thing being secondary to their core principle of 'nobody can tell me what’s what'."

    Very true - that's why I've thought for a long time that the best word for these people is 'contrarian'. We're faced with global warming and so they shout about a coming ice age. Whatever it is, they take the contrary position just for the sake of it. It's very childish.


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