Brains… BRAINS!!!

From the Movie "Young Frankenstein" 1974

From CNSNews.com – Proponents of human-caused global warming claim that “cognitive” brain function prevents conservatives from accepting the science that says “climate change” is an imminent threat to planet Earth and its inhabitants.

George Lakoff, a professor of cognitive science and linguistics at the University of California-Berkeley and author of the book “The Political Mind: A Cognitive Scientist’s Guide to Your Brain and Its Politics,” says his scientific research shows that how one perceives the world depends on one’s bodily experience and how one functions in the everyday world. Reason is shaped by the body, he says.

Lakoff told CNSNews.com that “metaphors” shape a person’s understanding of the world, along with one’s values and political beliefs — including what they think about global warming.

“It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,” Lakoff said.

“And what they try to do is show that the science is wrong and that the argument is wrong, based on the science.  So when it comes back to science, they try to debunk the science,” Lakoff said.

On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”

“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’” Lakoff said.

In a Feb. 23 report on National Public Radio, reporter Christopher Joyce began his story by stating that recent polls show that fewer Americans believe humans are making the planet dangerously warmer, despite “a raft” of contradictory reports.

“This puzzles many climate scientists, but not social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs,” Joyce said.

Read the entire piece here

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The explanations are getting desperate. I wonder then how Dr. Lakoff explains people like myself, who once accepted the scientific arguments presented on global warming, but who now reject most of the hype and urgency attached to it? Believe it or not, in the early 90’s I used to be a global warming activist. But that’s another story.

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March 23, 2010 9:32 am

Is that Dr. Lakoff, as in ‘rhymes with’ …
.
.

hunter
March 23, 2010 9:33 am

Perhaps the good Dr. and his peers can come up with a solution to make sure those pesky deformed thinkers don’t get in their way in the future?

rbateman
March 23, 2010 9:33 am

Here brain, atta boy, sit. Now look at the pictures and tell daddy which one proves global warming:
http://www.robertb.darkhorizons.org/WhatGlobalWarming.htm
-!!!!!!!!!!! !!!-
Good boy, you picked Sacramento 5 ESE, which has the Kiss of Giss.

Tim
March 23, 2010 9:36 am

“Fact’s are not as important as beliefs”. That actually scares me. This is why Christian Scientists (the religious group) don’t go to medical doctors when their children are gravely ill.

PB-in-AL
March 23, 2010 9:36 am

Yes the liberals got a brain, Abby-something.
“…whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs.” – Indeed, the religion of AGW as promoted by its high priest, Algore.
As someone I know said once, “it is possible to have your mind so open you brains fall out.”

Toto
March 23, 2010 9:36 am

“This puzzles many climate scientists, but not social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs,” Joyce said.
At least he got this one thing right. Sad, but true.

Harold Vance
March 23, 2010 9:36 am

Isn’t this like saying that only liberals can detect phlogiston?

March 23, 2010 9:37 am

“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’”
Uh, excuse me but it seems they are a priori assuming that open minded people could not conclude from looking seriously at whether people are going to be harmed that they won’t be!
What a crock. But unsurprising, as this kind of crap research by political hacks is common, for instance:
http://brneurosci.org/nature.html

Michael D Smith
March 23, 2010 9:38 am

Another story indeed! That would make a very interesting post, Anthony. What made you change from advocate to [insert adjective here] – realist, seeker of truth, researcher…? What events transpired?

March 23, 2010 9:38 am

If scientists who believe the theory of anthropogenic global warming actually produced some science according to scientific principles that have been respected for centuries, and also respected the house-rules of scientific journals that insist on peer-reviewing, then maybe those of us whose brains are wired to assess the facts without ideological accretions could begin to look at the AGW case.

Steve Goddard
March 23, 2010 9:39 am

After 30 years of being bombarded with disastrous predictions about global warming (drought, heat, no more snow, etc.) it is just about as cold and wet and snowy as it always was. Sea level isn’t rising significantly, hurricanes aren’t increasing, polar sea ice hasn’t changed and is right at normal.
Lakoff confuses academia with intelligence. The lack of evidence for CAGW is overwhelming.
“Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach,”

March 23, 2010 9:40 am

Only a professor of cognitive science could conclude that anyone who believes that AGW is a fraud must be a right-winger.
The fact is, I know a fraud when I see one. Whether its a false scientific hypothesis or a false left-right political paradigm, a fraud is a fraud.
This guy is a perfect example of what happens when you cut funding to mental health care.

Duster
March 23, 2010 9:41 am

Although I usually consider being open minded a good thing, but I also recall the line about being too open minded – anything can walk in.
Lakoff’s research has previously been directed toward explaining why “conservatives” are so fearful and why “liberals” are so adventuresome and debonair. From what I have read of his research he seems to be engaged in an “affirmation of the consequent.”

Henry chance
March 23, 2010 9:42 am

More dishonest science. Take this fool either a brain or a hand full of test results and measure cognitive processing ability and in a blind test he couldn’t guess if they were a liberal or conservative.
(I have both clinical psychology training and brain surgery experience)
“reason is shaped by the body” False in 2 ways. In a physical sense, reason has no shape. In another sense, Behavior is shaped. Cognitive processing doesn’t conform to shape.
Just a little sidbar on behavior. Capitialsim is a reward, reinforced behavior mechanism. If I work hard, it warms my body and lets me earn money and pay my utilities. In a welfare model, the people can have the state pay their bills and it rewards slothfullness.

Dave F
March 23, 2010 9:42 am

Yeah. Those dirty scrubs are just incapable of understanding. How long does this go on before AGW proponents break out an ‘Air Rwanda’ type of dehumanization process? This is the beginning, claiming that skeptics are just incapable of comprehension. I am sure there are some people who comment here, that are skeptical, yet have very good comprehension of the arguments.
Of course, this is not the first time this argument has been advanced, albeit in different form:
http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/02/100224132655.htm

Daniel
March 23, 2010 9:42 am

haa haaa I was global warming activist in the 90’s too 😉

Veronica (England)
March 23, 2010 9:44 am

“facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs”?
Well, cognitive dissonance can work on both sides, I would have thought, even though it sounds a bit post-normal.
What if there was a left-wing, pinko bleeding-heart liberal who became a sceptic because she is a scientist and tends to try to understand the data rather than worry how she feels about global warming?
Does that person smash the paradigm or should she be committed to a mental insitution for some kind of split personality disorder? I need to know!

Wondering Aloud
March 23, 2010 9:44 am

Hilarious.
Projection. Has anyone ever met a liberal with an “open mind”?

March 23, 2010 9:46 am

Somebody should have clued Lakoff in.
We Own the word OPEN.
1. We are the ones who link to our opponents sites
2. We are the ones who think data and code should be shared.
3. We are the ones who invite our opponents to TOP POST
4. We are the ones who let anyone civil comment
5. We are the ones who don’t care what most people think (consensus)
6. We are the ones who refuse to say the science is settled.
Hey Anthony, how open minded was Menne et al WRT to working with you?
I studied lakoff a long time ago and for the most part I agree with him that the way we thing is structured by the metaphors we believe. The problem he has here is that he’d so closed minded that he can’t even see that he made a great argument for us easy.

EJ
March 23, 2010 9:46 am

Leave it to a soft scientist to back up the soft climate science!

John F. Hultquist
March 23, 2010 9:47 am

Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at
What solar system did the author say he was from?

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 9:47 am

It all began in the 1960’s ….Those were the days my friend!…All that hemp and LSD made alchemy transformation possible, from conservatism to liberalism in just one single dosis. Just wonderful!

manfredkintop
March 23, 2010 9:47 am

“Believe it or not, in the early 90’s I used to be a global warming activist.”
GASP!
as late as 2005, I was selling GHGV services…yet have never voted for a conservative candidate in any federal, provincial, or municipal election. I also don’t find Ann Coulter attractive.
Go figure.

Doc
March 23, 2010 9:47 am

Questioning bad science makes me a close minded conservative then?
Looking seriously at the science, it seems that more people will be harmed/disadvantaged by attempting to rectify purported AGW than if we let nature take its course. Wait, am I a liberal now???

March 23, 2010 9:48 am

There was a report on CNN (sorry can’t find the link anymore) showing that the average IQ of democrats was higher than that of republicans. I recall that they did their study on a University population, implying that most of the respondents would have been young adults.
As I pointed out in the ensuing family quarrel, there is an old saying.
“He who at the age of 20 is not a socialist has no heart. He who at the age of 50 still is, has no brain.”
What the intellectual snobbery of Lakoff et al fail to come to grips with is that even average intelligence informed by experience trumps high intelligence every time. In brief, it takes someone of high intelligence to understand that, for example, communism is superior to capitalism in every way. Yet even the dim witted amongst us can observe that every implementation in history has failed.
I imagine that if you took the IQ of the average victim of the Nigerian banking scam and compared it to the average, you would find out that to be truly suckered by complete bull, you have to be smart enough to think you can’t be conned.
Not to mention that there are two kinds of liberals in my experience. There are the ones who believe in the cause, and there are the ones who believe they can proft from the cause. Mr Gore likely is an example of the latter.

TerryS
March 23, 2010 9:48 am

So what his research boils down to is that conservatives are closed minded and liberals are open minded.
Of course, if you try to argue against his research then you are simply proving you are a close minded conservative whereas if you accept it you are proving you are open minded liberal.

Editor
March 23, 2010 9:49 am

“This puzzles many climate scientists, but not social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs,” Joyce said.
As a social scientist I am not surprised at all. Progressive liberals are a demonstration of the correctness of that statement. They perceive man as evil, ignorant, greedy and destructive and, by God, that’s what their research proves…. much as every extreme weather event, hot, cold, wet, dry, flood or driught proves AGW.

Brian G Valentine
March 23, 2010 9:49 am

Are we still having contact with Planet Berkeley?

Bill Parsons
March 23, 2010 9:51 am

George Lakoff, a professor of cognitive science and linguistics at the University of California-Berkeley and author of the book “The Political Mind: A Cognitive Scientist’s Guide to Your Brain and Its Politics,” says his scientific research shows that how one perceives the world depends on one’s bodily experience and how one functions in the everyday world. Reason is shaped by the body, he says.
Hmm! This study could go a long way towards explaining why professor’s of cognitive science and linguistics tend to be somewhat rotund, myopic and balding, with a propensity for bow ties, rimless glasses and irrational theories espousing imminent “threats” to humanity from bizarre sources.
I’d like to read more. Perhaps it would help me understand myself better!

robert of ottawa
March 23, 2010 9:51 am

“This puzzles many climate scientists, but not social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs,” Joyce said.
That’s certainly true for the AGWers.

Skeptic Tank
March 23, 2010 9:52 am

It’s SCIENCE!!

Al Gore's Holy Hologram
March 23, 2010 9:52 am

How do we perceive the world when we’re well fed, latte sipping urbanites who have never experienced an iota is suffering or toiling the fields for generations?

John Laidlaw
March 23, 2010 9:52 am

Or, phrased another way, conservatives are closed-minded, liberals are gullible. You can phrase it any way you like, but in the end it comes down to bias and interpretation.
For the record, I was also – back in the 90s – a global warming activist, until the phrases “the science is settled” and “the debate is over” were uttered. My science-trained brain rebelled at these, and the rest, as they say, is history.

Charles. U. Farley
March 23, 2010 9:52 am

Obviously suffering from a lakoff brains….

Jim
March 23, 2010 9:53 am

Maybe this numb nuts should look at the science instead of the social aspects of the situation!

Stu Blumenstock
March 23, 2010 9:53 am

Yes, yes! As usually, only progressives can ignore facts when coming to their conclusions, and still be considered thoughtful and logical!
LOL!

David
March 23, 2010 9:53 am

He must have either started out very stupid or smoked a lot of that stuff they used to have in Berkeley, to think that there is a perfect correlation between political views and cognitive processes, and that all the logic is on one side. It’s a very short step from his stated views to deciding that his political opponents are incapable of reason and therefore should be denied the vote.
Note that he calls himself a cognitive scientist, but his core discipline is linguistics, which is more accurately a branch of history.

Antonio San
March 23, 2010 9:54 am

OT: An interesting exchange between Andy Revkin and Joe Romm about the Barber “rotten ice” paper in climateprogress highlights my own doubts about chosing to report on the Beaufort sea at the end of summer…:
Revkin writes:
“The reason I didn’t write on Dave Barber’s paper when it came out (even though he was featured in our 2005 Discovery-Times “Arctic Rush” documentary and is a highly regarded scientist), is that I got a lot of pushback from a batch of Arctic Ocean ice specialists who immediately said that the Beaufort is a special case and cited various reasons to handle those findings cautiously. I may revisit and query Dr. Barber and them anew. That’s how I try to avoid what I call “whiplash journalism” (or blogging). Covering every paper can lead to real neck trauma when focused on the more complicated parts of climate science (even as the basics are clear). ”
Winnipeg’s Barber is an alarmist and seems to stop at nothing to get his funding renewed. It is funny to read that Canadian scientists are muzzled and to see Barber’s stuff quickly published in a peer reviewed journal and featured all over the MSM.
Now Revkin is thrown under the bus… not alarmist enough!

wucash
March 23, 2010 9:54 am

Wow… So I’m basically a mentally ill conservative, despite the fact I have more liberal beliefs.
But whatever, let them spew this rubbish. If it damages their agenda then I’m ok with being a mentally ill conservative.

b.poli
March 23, 2010 9:54 am

Funny that these conservative hard hats believe they are open minded. They even don’t accept scepticism as a tool for new ideas. It looks a bit like sclerosis.

March 23, 2010 9:57 am

George Lakoff needs to take some time out with Hanson and company at the drug rehabilitation centre of their choice. Maybe then he could honestly dissect his own cognitive process. Oh by the way this bloke wants you on his team.http://bushynews.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/Kumi-Naidoo_1596791c.jpg

JN
March 23, 2010 9:57 am

Cognitive dissonance keeps liberals from rejecting the hype.

Lance
March 23, 2010 9:57 am

What utter nonsense this is!
“look seriously at the science”, liberals say…if only they did!

ew-3
March 23, 2010 9:57 am

I do have to admit, we’re I to be in the market for a new brain, I’d prefer to buy a liberals, since it would have such low mileage on the odometer..

Myron Mesecke
March 23, 2010 9:57 am

“Lakoff told CNSNews.com that “metaphors” shape a person’s understanding of the world, along with one’s values and political beliefs —”
I guess liberals understanding of the world is to expect the government to take care of them instead of doing things for themselves.

March 23, 2010 9:57 am

“It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,” Lakoff said.
This is just insulting.
I’ve NEVER heard a conservative say that environmental regulations were “immoral and wrong”.
I’ve certainly heard a lot of grousing about nonsensical, hysterical, or corrupt regulations. A prime one is the mandated use of reformulated gasoline, as an example, which is more costly, hard on engines, and does nothing to improve net air quality. Or mandating cfl’s without accounting for disposal of their mercury nor the real cost comparisons with incandescents.
On the other hand, I know a lot of conservative folks who support regulation of pesticide use as well as release of contaminants into the water table or noxious chemicals into the air.
Of course conservatives rightly understand that the free market is best, but they also understand that there’s certainly nothing wrong with using regulation for keeping polluters from poisoning us or their neighbors.
What is wrong with these people? Will they say ANYTHING?

Tenuc
March 23, 2010 9:57 am

Another article which is 180 degrees away from what’s happening. I’ve been a socialist most of my life, and was a believed in CAGW until a couple of years ago. I’m a now sceptical denier of the link between climate and catastrophic warming and all it took was a few days examining the evidence, rather than just accepting the scare stories put out by the media.
Cargo cult science, as practised by the IPCC cabal, has no place in the 21s century. The more they try to hide the facts from the public, the worst the situation becomes, and few people and few people will believe a word they say.
We may be winning the CAGW battle, but need to be vigilant regarding the next scam they will perpetrate. Their ultimate aim remains to rule the people of the world through an unelected elitist world government.

Chris in Ga
March 23, 2010 9:58 am

“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’” Lakoff said.
Which is why they don’t teach hard science at liberal arts colleges

Jason Bair
March 23, 2010 9:58 am

So in other words, I do not have the ability to view absurdity as fact? No thanks, I’ll keep my conservative brains intact.

Gary
March 23, 2010 9:58 am

On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”

You know, there just might be something to this idea. The AWG crowd will swallow any scam that comes their way without giving it a thought. It seems to me that an “open mind” so often translates to an “empty head.”

March 23, 2010 10:00 am

Oh no! The eugenicists come out of the closet again!
— Ahem, the skeptics are different from you and me, biologically. Why, they might as well be a different species. —
What crapola! Nothing new, though. You’d think eugenics would have gone out of favor following Hitler’s excesses, but nope. Cynthia Tucker of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution famously blurted out a few years ago that “black brains are wired differently.” PBS Newshour commentator Mark Shields announced a while back that “conservatives are genetically different from liberals.”
Both were shamed into apologies. I wonder if Lakoff will apologize eventually. Eugenics is frowned upon these days as despicable junk science, but evidently Lakoff hasn’t gotten the memo. That or else he is a congenital idiot whose cognitive brain functions are all screwed up.

JJ
March 23, 2010 10:00 am

If professor Lakoff wishes to scientifically observe cognitive misfunction that results in politically based confirmation bias, he is going to need to apply for a grant to fund the purchase of a very crucial piece of reseach equipment evidently absent from his lab …
… a mirror.

Steve
March 23, 2010 10:00 am

Obviously we all need to be packed off to the psycho ward and let those people do their job. Can I say psycho?

March 23, 2010 10:00 am

You can see it here:

davide
March 23, 2010 10:01 am

social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs
If you are a scientist, FACTS are the ONLY important thing, beliefs are nowhere in comparison.
Does this mean that “social” and “science” are totally different and not to be mentioned in the same sentence? i always thought that the “soft” sciences are not really science, but just a way for socialists to gain the accolade of being called a scientist. Remember Maureen Lippman in the British Telecommunications advertisment ” you got an “”ology”! you’re a scientist!!”
How a social scientist can actually use the scientific method of formulating a theory, and the testing it by experiment is totally beyond me, as an engineer. If you know how how to conduct an experiment in social science then please, enlighten me

Bart
March 23, 2010 10:02 am

George Lakoff, a.k.a., Abby Normal.

Frank
March 23, 2010 10:02 am

Consider the source – Lakoff is spouting pomo nonsense…

Trevor
March 23, 2010 10:03 am

And of course, among those who believe in global warming, that belief could not possibly be shaped by their beliefs that:
1. capitalism is evil
2. nature is good
3. oil is bad
4. government should have more power
5. people should have less freedom
6. mankind is a bunch of polluters
7. we need government to protect us
8. meat is unhealthy
9. everyone should be vegetarians
10. fewer humans on this planet would be a good thing

D. King
March 23, 2010 10:03 am

On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”
http://tinyurl.com/4spnuz

Alberta Slim
March 23, 2010 10:05 am

Most of us were AGW believers years ago. WHY? Because we trusted science and scientists.
The AGW theory seemed hard to believe. It did not seem possible that MAN could affect the world’s complex climate patterns.
So, as more and more skeptical articles came out, the more, and more we became skeptical.
Climategate opened the floodgates.
Believers in real science were aghast that the IPCC and its staff of “scientists” would purposely create “junk” science for political reasons.
And now George Lakoff, who claims to have an “open mind”, is 99.999% sure that the end of the world is nigh.
If one has an open mind then NOTHING is 99.999% sure.
What a completely illogical professor he is.
He does qualify, though, as another preacher for the Church of Man-Made Global Warming.
BTW, years ago the Pope declared that the Earth was the center of the Universe. If you were a skeptic, you were burned at the stake. That made all thse believers FEEL GOOD. Copernicus was so fearful of the Church, that he had his theory of the Earth and Planets revolving around the Sun withheld until 30 years after his death. The pope, also, was 99.999% sure that we lived in a geocentric universe.

Brian G Valentine
March 23, 2010 10:05 am

“Believe it or not, in the early 90’s I used to be a global warming activist.”
You’re right, I don’t believe it.
I first heard of AGW in 1967, age 16, I was a sophomore in college; a professor of phys chem and historian of chemistry told me about an “obscure and ridiculous” argument of Arrhenius about “heating the atmosphere by burning fuel,” few people had heard of the notion at the time
I never thought I would hear about it again, until 1971 when I learned that some people associated with Harvard were trying to “quantify” this, I wondered, why people would look at anything so preposterous
In summary, it’s good to dispel this notion in people when they are young

SOYLENT GREEN
March 23, 2010 10:05 am

Yeah, I saw this–almost as good as the flowers.
Great choice with Marty Feldman.

John Luft
March 23, 2010 10:05 am

Funny…..a prof at probably the looniest university on the planet (the University of California-Berkeley) pretending to pontificate about reality. Too many acid hits, it appears.

WillR
March 23, 2010 10:05 am

Is this the silly season already??? 🙂
[snip]

Kevin R.
March 23, 2010 10:06 am

To put it in terms of Liberal and Conservative is to completely misrepresent the subject.
He says “Liberals say: ‘Look seriously at the science…’ ” etc – actually, from what I’ve seen, most people just take it for granted that since the IPCC said there was a large probability that humans are affecting the climate then it must be true. That is about the extent of a lot of peoples thinking on the subject.

Kazinski
March 23, 2010 10:07 am

Lakoff has been pushing his theories on the Democrats for a few election cycles now. His theory is that unpopular policies that they want to shove down our throat are only unpopular because they aren’t using the right vocabulary to describe them.

Andy Deady
March 23, 2010 10:07 am

I am a geologist (some would say earth scientist but that’s way to 90’s for me) and a conservative.
I understand the mechanisms by which our world formed and shapes itself constantly. This understanding was developed by learning, questioning and re-learning dat and information.
My politics have no bearing over the way I form my cognitive arguments around what I know as science and by which is amply demonstrated in the rocks, minerals and fossils I have been privileged to study throughout the world we live and breathe in.
Having read these last sentences, written peacefully and in a balanced way, I am quite happy now to call this bloke a raving nutter.
Taxi for Lakoff!

Royaul43
March 23, 2010 10:07 am

Maybe it’s the warmists that have “Abby Normal” brains!!!!
Loved the movie!

Caleb
March 23, 2010 10:08 am

DSo I sense some hypocrisy here?
Back when this fellow was a student, did he not sneer at any who didn’t deeply distrust and question authority?
Now that he’s an “authority,” is he not sneering at those who question him?
And this is open-minded?

Butch
March 23, 2010 10:08 am

Maybe some of the researchers spend too much time in the lab, at the computer, or reading other research papers, rather than spending their time in the natural environment.

nc
March 23, 2010 10:08 am

OT. Did Steve McIntyre take a holiday I see nothing happening over at CA for quite awhile. Hope there are no problems.

March 23, 2010 10:08 am

I think he might have a point, but he just got things mixed up a little. It should have read:
“It relates directly (to global warming) because activists tend to feel that human beings are intrinsically bad for the planet,” Lakoff might have said.
“And what they do is cherry pick the science to justify their hypothesis and then label it a scientific consensus,” Lakoff might have said.
“On the other hand,” he could have added, “skeptics’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded” because they are willing to go wherever the data conclusively lead.”
“Skeptics say, ‘Look seriously at the science and don’t just assume people are going to be harmed or the world is going to be harmed just because you think human beings are bad,’” Lakoff could have said.

Greensleeves
March 23, 2010 10:09 am

FTA: “It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,”
Oh man. That is TOO FUNNY.
Only in the through-the-looking-glass world that is UC Berkeley could anyone make such a ridiculous statement and be completely serious about it.

Phillip Bratby
March 23, 2010 10:11 am

I think these people should look in the mirror. Don’t they realise that it is independent scientists that are sceptical of AGW?

March 23, 2010 10:11 am

Heh. Funny stuff. Interesting how he has no understanding of what liberals or conservatives believe. Must be due to his living in that ivory tower.
I think a lot of us at one time were, if not advocates/activists, more sympathetic to the global warming warnings. Until Al Gore, and people like him, took over and kicked the science out the door.
Then we came to realize how bad that science really is, and so on.

March 23, 2010 10:12 am

I started out a believer after seeing “An Inconvenient Truth” it was obvious after seeing the hockey stick and the graph showing CO2 and temperature going up and down together.
I went to the web to get informed and found websites pointing out the fallacies in the movie and others defending the movie. In my opinion the websites showing the fallacies made their case better than the one’s defending the movie.
It s about 2 1/2 years later and despite years of reading the true believers still haven’t provided answers to my questions. I have read books and hundred’s of articles and my doubts have gotten stronger.
Example: The fact that CO2 came 800 years after the warming after the last ice age. The true believers do a verbal tap dance to say the CO2 amplified the warming. How do they know because it is a GHG and it was there. That is circular reasoning at it’s finest. No attempt is made to quantify the alleged amplification or to separate it from water vapor feedback because that is not how they think. The fact that the temperature goes down when CO2 is at it’s maximum makes me believe CO2 is a minor player.
I have a technical education and obvious sloppy thinking makes me think there is an agenda somewhere. I have read the above argument in 20 or more “rebuttals” and cannot believe educated men wrote them.

George Turner
March 23, 2010 10:12 am

Darn those cognitive brain functions! Down with cognition!
Oh, and cognition: 2 – of or pertaining to the mental processes of perception, memory, judgment, and reasoning, as contrasted with emotional and volitional processes.
Yeah.

Steve Goddard
March 23, 2010 10:16 am

Academics also couldn’t understand why the public didn’t panic over the global cooling scare in the 1970s
http://www.denisdutton.com/cooling_world.htm

Climatologists are pessimistic that political leaders will take any positive action to compensate for the climatic change, or even to allay its effects. They concede that some of the more spectacular solutions proposed, such as melting the Arctic ice cap by covering it with black soot or diverting arctic rivers, might create problems far greater than those they solve. But the scientists see few signs that government leaders anywhere are even prepared to take the simple measures of stockpiling food or of introducing the variables of climatic uncertainty into economic projections of future food supplies. The longer the planners delay, the more difficult will they find it to cope with climatic change once the results become grim reality.

or when Paul Ehrlich warned that we were all going to starve to death by 1980. Why can’t we all be open-minded and delusional like liberal academics?

Wayne Liston
March 23, 2010 10:16 am

Aha! the twinge I felt in my brain at the statement “Scientists today said the drought was further proof of global warming as it was the worst in 114 years” (meaning it was even worse 114 years ago?) was due to a cognitive malfunction, not logical fallacy detection.
What comfort to find that this first skeptical twinge in my conservative mind was due to a latent defect, for which I am presumably not responsible.
But then, I had even misunderstood “conservative” to mean the personal responsibility to conserve beneficial physical, environmental, social and fiscal values.
What a joy to be liberated to enforce other people to be open minded too!

Gary P
March 23, 2010 10:16 am

My own experiences suggest very much the opposite of what this paper is describing. I see the conservative as the deeper thinker who initially accepts a new idea or proposal and then asks, “If this is true, then what?”
Proposal: Increases in CO2 will cause the earth to warm.
Therefore: CO2 has continued to rise for the last ten years so…..the earth should have continued to warm
Proposal: The Climate models are wonderful and can project 100 years out.
Therefore: The models should agree with current measurements. WhatIsUpWith this big tropical mid-altitude hot spot in the models?
Why is the humidity dropping above 300 mb?
Proposals are not only rejected but are also accepted after asking, “Then what?”
Proposal: The AGW scientists are a bunch of snake-oil salesmen
Therefore: They will seek to hide the data and methods used.
They will use ad-hominem attacks and call critics names
They will attempt to silence critical papers
They will have financial incentives to make alarming claims
When their models fail to make accurate forecasts they will stop making forecasts to avoid embarrassment rather than ask for help to make improvements.
The shallow thinker (liberal) seems to just accept statements and not think about them.
Proposal: We must stop using fossil fuels because CO2 is a problem.
“Oh. Okay. Hey, did you hear about Tiger Woods?”

Michael
March 23, 2010 10:16 am

Cognitive dissonance is the problem.
OT
“”Historically, low solar activity periods like the Dalton and Maunder Minima have been connected to cold winters in Europe. It seems very possible that the low solar activity forced areas of low pressures into a southern route or caused a negative Arctic Oscillation, AO, which in turn allowed cold air from the North Pole to flow across Europe. But can we obtain from real measurements that low solar activity really is able to do that?”
A breakthrough in long range forecasting?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/paulhudson/2010/03/-i-am-indebted-to.shtml

harrywr2
March 23, 2010 10:17 am

“Believe it or not, in the early 90’s I used to be a global warming activist. But that’s another story.”
A 5 year old will believe that Santa Claus, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy are all real. Youth accepts a lot of falsehoods as truth.
Maybe we need a study on what age did Liberal’s reject the notion of Santa Clause as compared to conservatives.

Trevor
March 23, 2010 10:17 am

“And what they (conservatives) try to do is show that the science is wrong and that the argument is wrong, based on the science. So when it comes back to science, they try to debunk the science,”
What does it matter what the motivation is? If the science is debunked, it’s debunked. If it’s wrong, it’s wrong. It doesn’t matter who proves it’s wrong, or what their motivation is, or what their cognitive processes are.
“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’”
Bullspit! Liberals say, “How can we take away people’s rights and freedoms and make them forever dependent on the government while simultaneously increasing our own power and wealth?” And the theory of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming was tailor-made to fit that bill.
“On the other hand, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be ‘open-minded.’”
“The debate is over” – Al Gore. Sound open-minded to you? Proponents of CAGW have been spouting this, or its equivalent, for years now, refusing to even consider the possibility that they are wrong. They cannot conceive of anything beyond carbon dioxide being the culprit behind the recent warming. Meanwhile, skeptics have come up with dozens of alternative explanations, none of which the warmists have conclusively disproved. And the one semi-realistic policy alternative that might stand a chance of reducing carbon emissions (nuclear energy), most warmists refuse to even consider. Where is the open-mindedness there, Georgie?

mercurior
March 23, 2010 10:17 am

sometimes to have a completely open mind means you cant stop any crap getting in..
its interesting they bring in the idea of beleifs, in regards to non agw/climate change, but dont apply the same criteria to the climate change

AJB
March 23, 2010 10:17 am

On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”

So “open-minded” their brains fall out.

James the Simple
March 23, 2010 10:18 am

Would that be the famous liberal open-mindedness that sees anyone opposing Obama’s healthcare plan as being a racist? One can’t just be in disagreement with the plan, or its costs, one must be against it because one hates black people or something.
Of course, psychology and linguistics arent’ climate sciences anyway, so his opinions counts just as much as say, a railway engineer’s.

March 23, 2010 10:19 am

He is quite correct cognitive brain function does prevent many from not accepting poor science, half truths and the sophistry of propaganda. This life long liberal, has never accepted if from any source and I have as much faith in the market as I do in unreliable models based on incomplete understandings of anything.

jorgekafkazar
March 23, 2010 10:21 am

I think his name is not spelled quite right…

Mark
March 23, 2010 10:22 am

Readers should do a search on George Lakoff and relativism. Then you will realize that there is no point in wasting your time and energy trying to reason with a relativist. They live inside a bubble. Most of us have to interact with the world around us and expect consistent results and responses to that interaction. Science, mathmatics, engineering, and technology all move forward without the relativists.

mareeS
March 23, 2010 10:23 am

Oh dear, poor Dr Lakoff, I think I’m seeing a need for a frontal lobotomy here. He will be much happier when he forgets about liberal cognotive processes and their threat to planet earth.

Stu Blumenstock
March 23, 2010 10:23 am

Here’s a study showing how “greenies” believe that by being “green,” it’s okay to be selfish in other things”
http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2010/mar/15/green-consumers-more-likely-steal
And the Guardian is hardly a right-of-center paper.
Per progressives, Conservatives are never “green” (whatever that really means), so I guess this little bit of human thought processes should be owned by them, and them only.

John Galt
March 23, 2010 10:25 am

Since we can’t help it, does that qualify us for special protections and benefits under the law?

erik sloneker
March 23, 2010 10:26 am

More pandering to the intelligensia that want to control every aspect of our economy. The arguement for nationalized health care is exactly the same…(“they’re too stupid to realize how good this is for them”).
I’m a hydogelolgist that spent 12 years in environmental consulting cleaning up all manner of polution problems. I’m also actively involved in prairie restoration projects here in the Midwest. I’ve spent most of my career working to improve and restore our natural environment.
I also count myself among the skeptical camp because the CAGW science is specious. I wonder what Lakoff would say about me?

John Luft
March 23, 2010 10:28 am

There is a vast difference between being “open-minded” and suffering a head wound.

hunter
March 23, 2010 10:31 am

Hmmm….perhaps conservatives know taht apocalyptic cult predictions have a 0.000 % success rate?
Perhaps conservatives are historically literate, and recall that popular obsessions with weather swing over time from cooling to warming and back.
Perhaps conservatives are well versed and know that the truth is that large groups of people can become obsessed to the point of irrational fear or exuberance, and that education is not a protection against falling into this?
Or perhaps Lakoff is a complete and utter jerk who puts together reactionary drivel and calls it ‘science’?

March 23, 2010 10:34 am

Bart (10:02:45) :
Very nice!
“Nice knockers!”

KPO
March 23, 2010 10:34 am

I hope the author will allow me a bit of leeway for some nuisance with his words.“…his scientific research shows that how one perceives the world depends on one’s bodily functions in the everyday world. Reason is shaped by the body, he says.” Yea it’s hard to think straight clawing at the crapper, especially after a prolonged dose of AGW – “The thinking man’s laxative.”

Garry J
March 23, 2010 10:35 am

I seem to remember there were five traits within this linked behavioural family. The first one, ‘Cognitive’ thought is actually healthy – relying upon our feelings, a need to be involved and often jumping at the chance to offer help. So let’s take it as a complement.
On the other hand, (the second) ‘Cybernetic’ thought is inflexible, often authoritarian and stifles other people’s wisdom; (three) ‘Participative thought’ responding well to deliberately vague communication; (four) ‘Experiential’ often using manipulative tactics to test people’s values and integrity; and finally (five) ‘Conditioning’ – one directional brainwashing.
Now which camp are the warmists from?

Philip
March 23, 2010 10:36 am

Unbelievable, absolutely masterful and totally insane. This week I’ve learned that sceptics are, to a person, right-wing religious fanatics, who are not only anti-science but our brains are pre-wired to make us oppose the global warming movement. What can you do except let the old jaw hit the ground and laugh out loud?

Stephen Skinner
March 23, 2010 10:37 am

“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’” Lakoff said.
By that argument the pilot Chesley B. “Sully” Sullenberger who successfully landed a powerless flight 1549 in the Hudson must obviously be a Liberal and not a highly trained pilot with loads of experience.

Joel
March 23, 2010 10:37 am

When the Arctic ice mass decreased in 2007 I became concerned and began to believe the in the whole AGW thing as well. As a recently graduated Earth Science student, I tried to learn as much as I could about the SCIENCE, I found the most complete information about climate change on skeptical websites. A lot of pro AGW sites just said the same thing…The end is near, save the planet, be green, become a member..etc etc. I came at the problem with what I felt was a very open mind. At that time, I was naive to just how politically charged the debate already was. I feel the data that proves AGW is a dire concern is flawed because it has already been proven incorrect several times.
I don’t feel that confronting a question, gathering information from several sources, and drawing conclusions on what I found has anything to do with politics, metaphors, or open and closed mindedness. Someone who tries to pin my logic on some kind of sociological connection is being condescending in my opinion.

pat
March 23, 2010 10:37 am

Lakoff is a far left political loon filled with crack pot theories, conspiracies, and “special knowledge”. He is an embarrassment to academia. A Chomsky want-to-be in an occupation that has not had any real science or scholastic thought since the 1800’s. A pretend occupation of no social worth.

Mark
March 23, 2010 10:37 am

As an ardent Liberal when I look at the science behind AGW I find it utterly lacking in credibility. I have no problem in placing my support behind many liberal initiatives and ideas. But when I look carefully at AGW I cannot help to see it for what it is…a fantasy of the ultra left designed to foist their minimalist vision of the world onto the rest of society.

Hu Duck Xing
March 23, 2010 10:43 am

Lakoff. Educated fool.

Slabadang
March 23, 2010 10:44 am

Lakoff hahahaha!
Hes is in person another proof of what happens with science when left wings becomes Professors.
I wonder what diagnos he gives.
Lindzen
Spencer
Singer
Pielke
Ball
Carter
Armstrong
McIntyre
Mcitirick
Christy
The man is an embarrassment for science! [snip]

Robinson
March 23, 2010 10:44 am

What about us slightly right of centre libertarians who think AGW is a complete load of bunk? Am I an outlier? His hypothesis fails, except of course in the US, where everything, even the material your socks are made of, is a left/right issue.

March 23, 2010 10:46 am

Looking at Lakoff’s study in a different light, Lakoff is saying that Liberals are more gullible and less likely to question “science”…. that sounds about right.

TimH
March 23, 2010 10:47 am

Is cognitive assessment proof of cognitive ability? Obviously not. ; )

Stu
March 23, 2010 10:49 am

This tendency to want to separate believers and the skeptics into either conservative or liberal groupings displays a real ignorance about the current situation, imo. Maybe it was actually like that once, in the early days of the debate(?) – but too much has happened since then. You’re right Anthony- where does this research place people who once believed in AGW but subsequently changed their minds? If somebody stops believing in AGW (to whatever degree) do they automatically become a conservative? The author seems to be putting forth a picture of humans who can only ever be rigid in their beliefs. Luckily, people are always changing their minds about all kinds of things- that’s just normal human growth.

March 23, 2010 10:50 am

I agree with Mark. A quick check around will show that Lakoff isn’t a scientist, he’s a linguist, and one who seems to have had a long, rather fruitless secondary career as a political activist – he apparently founded a failed “progressive think tank”.
Actually, the current version of his Wiki page is pretty funny – he’s a heretical Chomskite, whom even crazy ol’ Noam has denounced as an ignorant know-nothing. Lakoff’s contribution to linguistics sounds like Jungian psychoanalysis with the serial numbers rubbed off and painted up in scientific rhetoric. Basically, he’s a witch doctor, and has spent his career selling the postmodern notion that people live in insular, linguistic isolates – like Aboriginal dreamtime.
In short, he’s an absolutist relativist, and doesn’t recognize anything like objective science, or the possibility of honest debate, for that matter.

Richard Sharpe
March 23, 2010 10:50 am

jorgekafkazar (10:21:50) said:

I think his name is not spelled quite right…

[snip]

3x2
March 23, 2010 10:50 am

On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”
Though I have yet to meet one who understands why CO2 may cause warming. Open minded here usually means huge gaps in understanding that allows any old rubbish to sound plausible.

Editor
March 23, 2010 10:51 am

davide (10:01:03) :
I’ll refrain from criticizing engineering, which I know nothing about, if you’ll reciprocate.

Jeff
March 23, 2010 10:54 am

Lakoff would have to pay me to teach me. Because I’d have to pay someone else to help me unlearn his brainless attempt at reason. Seriously, his position is about as tenable as the mob’s in Monty Python’s The Holy Grail. “SO, if she weighs the same as a duck, then she’s made of wood…and therefore…she’s a witch! Wow. Talk about cognitive dissonance; to claim reason and abandon it simultaneously.

March 23, 2010 10:56 am

When this guy looks at an ink blot heaven knows what he sees?
Personally I see the mess left by some guy who still uses an old fashioned pen!

Mohib
March 23, 2010 10:56 am

A breakthrough in long range forecasting?
http://www.bbc.co.uk/blogs/paulhudson/2010/03/-i-am-indebted-to.shtml
I am indebted to Dr Jarl Ahlbeck, from Abo Akademi University, Finland, who contacted me about his fascinating new piece of research relating to this winters severe cold across much of Europe, and a possible link to the very low solar activity we have been experiencing.
I am aware that there is a hugely varied readership of my blog; those who are very well informed about weather and climate, and others that have an interest in the subject but would struggle with some of the details contained in scientific papers. I have thus asked the author to summarize the main points of the research, and will include a link to the paper for those that feel brave enough to look into it themselves.
Dr Ahlbeck writes:
“Historically, low solar activity periods like the Dalton and Maunder Minima have been connected to cold winters in Europe. It seems very possible that the low solar activity forced areas of low pressures into a southern route or caused a negative Arctic Oscillation, AO, which in turn allowed cold air from the North Pole to flow across Europe. But can we obtain from real measurements that low solar activity really is able to do that?
I found that the mechanism is statistically significant, but it is not very simple to prove. There is no direct statistical relationship saying that low solar activity always should cause a negative Arctic Oscillation (which caused cold air to push further south than normal). But if we consider a second natural parameter, the strength and direction of the stratospheric wind in the Tropics (the Quasi-Biennial Oscillation index, QBO) I found a very interesting result: During periods of low solar activity (few or no sunspots) an easterly QBO causes a negative AO, but a westerly QBO causes a positive AO.
However, during low solar activity the easterly QBO causes a considerably stronger negative AO than the westerly QBO is able to cause a positive AO. Furthermore, easterly QBO is more common than westerly QBO during the Nordic Hemisphere winter.
The conclusion of my work is clear. If the sun goes into a new Dalton and Maunder minimum, we can therefore expect extremely cold winters in North America, Europe and Russia – which is exactly what was experienced during both the Maunder minimum (1600’s) and the Dalton minimum (early 1800’s).”
… article continues. The blog author writes this about himself
“Hello, I’m Paul Hudson, weather presenter and climate correspondent for BBC Look North in Yorkshire and Lincolnshire. I’ve been interested in the weather and climate for as long as I can remember, and worked as a forecaster with the Met Office for more than ten years locally and at the international unit before joining the BBC in October 2007. Here I divide my time between forecasting and reporting on stories about climate change and its implications for people’s everyday lives.”

Jim Turner
March 23, 2010 10:56 am

How come people that believe in government control and regulation are called ‘liberals’?
How come people that are so politically blinkered as to be unable to comprehend beliefs that differ from their own, and so must explain them as wicked or stupid, are called ‘professors’?

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 10:58 am

Professor Lakoff, it seems history shows the contrary, please see:
http://www.spunk.org/texts/places/germany/sp001630/peter.html
http://www.green-agenda.com/agenda21.html

pathologist
March 23, 2010 10:59 am

I always remind his sort of people that life is a sexually transmitted condition with 100% mortality. It helps put all these scares into perspective!

pat
March 23, 2010 11:00 am

Mitch, well said and all true.

maz2
March 23, 2010 11:02 am

L’Earth Hour? Mais, Non.
La France retreats, ala Napoleon, from Copenhagen.
…-
“France Abandons Plan for Carbon Tax
PARIS — After months of political rancor and legal obstacles, the French government on Tuesday shelved its plan to introduce a tax on carbon emissions that had been a cornerstone of President Nicolas Sarkozy’s enviromental policy.
Ministers and members of the governing UMP party said the tax would put French companies at a disadvantage to their European neighbors, most of whom do not pay anything similar.
But analysts said the drubbing handed to the center-right government on Sunday in regional elections brought the U-turn from Mr. Sarkozy.
Speaking in Parliament on Tuesday, Prime Minister François Fillon said the country’s environmental policy needed to be “better coordinated with the European Union,” particularly so that French companies do not lose ground against their German counterparts.
“It’s a big climb-down linked to the election — it’s political,” said Nicolas Bouzou, director of Asterès, a financial consultancy in Paris. “There was a lack of preparation and a lot of time and energy wasted by the government.”
He said that by arguing that the measure needs to be supported by France’s European partners, the government is effectively burying the tax.”
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/03/24/business/global/24iht-carbon.html
http://www.smalldeadanimals.com/mt/mt-comments.cgi

lowercasefred
March 23, 2010 11:03 am

I’d be interested to know what this twit (Lakoff) says keeps liberals from acknowledging human nature.
I don’t doubt his central thesis about the mass of people, left or right, but the following little pearl of wisdom:
***********
On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”
“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’” Lakoff said.
***********
Is a screamer.
Professor Lakoff is a poster boy for why Parker and Stone said, “We don’t like conservatives, but we f**kin hate liberals” and why millions of middle of the roaders agree.

Andrew W
March 23, 2010 11:03 am

The simple fact that there is a stark left-right divide over AGW, that the animosity is so high, and all the misrepresentation of the opposing view that has occurred, demonstrates that “that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs”

R. de Haan
March 23, 2010 11:04 am

Here is another “brain claim”, Just published:
The case is made!
By 2030 our economies can be CO2 free! No more us of fossil fuels or nuclear power.
http://solveclimate.com/blog/20091026/100-renewables-2030-less-fossil-power-case-made
Our Green Happy FUTURE will be based on 51% wind, 40% solar and 9% water and an electrical grid that’s able to cope with the power fluctuations at a cost of 100 billion dollar.
No word about agriculture, no word about the petrol chemical industry that brings us clothing, fertilizers, glass, concrete, plastics, medicine, pet bottles, sterile packaging, wind mills, solar panels, batteries, electric cars, etc. etc.
No world about cokes that allows us to produce steel!
No word about fueling our aircraft.
And you know what, it is much cheaper than using fossil fuels for the same period.
All that Governments have to do is make the decision and go for it!
No word about the shale gas revolution that delivers us energy at a price of $1MMBTU or below, depending on how close new supplies are to population centers that kills the entire economics behind their lunatic plan.
They are idiots and they should be closed up in closed section of a mental institution for heavy cases, no windows, steel doors and obligatory straitjackets and ball gags.
Together with Obama and his crowd, Al Gore, Pachauri and half the political elite that undermines our civilization.

EW
March 23, 2010 11:06 am

Gosh – Lakoff is re-heating that old “authoritarian” Adorno soup of the Frankfurt School again.
Yes, yes, those who grew in the patriarchal families and even dared to love their parents are irreversibly psychologically damaged and on their way to become concentration camp wardens one day.
Can’t have that, can we?

Mike Ward
March 23, 2010 11:06 am

Maybe the opposite is true. The agenders are just too “stoopid” to understand reality?

Jimbo
March 23, 2010 11:07 am

Here are left-leaning climate dissenters:
http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=PressRoom.Speeches&ContentRecord_id=B87E3AAD-802A-23AD-4FC0-8E02C7BB8284
And here is Judith Curry known to be a believer in AGW:
“If you go back to the 1930s and ’40s, you see a similar bump in the temperature records. That was the bump that some of those climate scientists were trying to get rid of [in the temperature data], but it was a real bump, and I think it was associated with these ocean oscillation” – Judith Curry head of Georgia Tech – School of Earth and Atmospheric Sciences
http://discovermagazine.com/2010/apr/10-it.s-gettin-hot-in-here-big-battle-over-climate-science/

Steve in SC
March 23, 2010 11:08 am

The explanations are getting desperate. I wonder then how Dr. Lakoff explains people like myself, who once accepted the scientific arguments presented on global warming, but who now reject most of the hype and urgency attached to it? Believe it or not, in the early 90’s I used to be a global warming activist. But that’s another story.
How anyone with even a rudimentary understanding of thermodynamics could believe the global warming “science” defies the imagination.

Jon Jewett
March 23, 2010 11:09 am

I was born and raised a liberal Democrat. I believed Paul Ehrlich. I planned my day around listening to NPRs Morning Edition and All Things Considered. I am probably one of the four people in the western world that voted for Jimmy Carter TWICE. (The second time it was just Jimmy, Rosalind, Jimmy’s Mother and me!)
First, I had a nagging feeling about liberals who would glorify Socialism/Communism. Advocates of those systems have murdered 10 to 20 times as many people as Adolph Hitler and the Nazis. I guess I’m old fashioned, but genocide is not excusable even if you are trying to make an omelet. http://www.conservapedia.com/Walter_Duranty
Then I caught NPR lying to me in a consistent way over several weeks. It was propaganda. So….I started reading more history and alternate sources of current news.
And the more I read, the more I found that I had been lied to. For example, my family came from California. (My Great Grandfather moved to the Santa Rosa area in 1849.) My mother hated Ronald Reagan because he closed the mental hospitals and put all of those unfortunate people on the street. (My aunt had problems and was one of those put out.) That caused the Homeless Problem. It was a cherished liberal shibboleth that Ronald Reagan was EVIL!
Some five years ago, someone repeated that trope to me. In context, it made me think: RR hadn’t been Governor for some 30 years at that point. If it was so horrible, why hadn’t the Democrats fixed it?? So, doing a little research, I found that that the ACLU had won a “Land Mark Case” for the mentally disadvantaged. The bottom line was that if a person had a mental disability that was treatable with chemicals, you couldn’t keep them in a hospital. Since some 80% to 90% were treatable, the ACLU forced the state to push them out on the street. RR only closed empty hospitals!
It is well that my mother passed on. It would have broken her heart to know that it was her support for liberal causes that put her sister on the street.
Now, I try to determine if something is only an opinion or is it actually based in fact. As the liberals are quick to say: “Question authority” (Only not theirs!).
Regards,
Steamboat Jack

Dillon Allen
March 23, 2010 11:10 am

Maybe well-respected members of the inner party can befriend each of us and eventually haul us in to be trained in doublethink with a machine attached to a dial so that our eyes can truly see 2+2=5.
Wait, that could never happen, right? 1984 was more than 15 years ago.
-Happy to be an Crimethink Person
++good to the WUWT team for all of your work getting the word out

March 23, 2010 11:10 am

Oh, I see. Environmentalists are equal to Übermensch. We all know the consequences.

Dena
March 23, 2010 11:10 am

Nothing is being said about what the real problem is. Many people have something called a mosaic mind. This means that the person divides their mind into an area for each subject. For that subject they apply a form of logic that only applies to that subject. The logic could be emotional or it could be real logic based on facts and history, This is how you can have a computer programmer that believes in global warming or that a genie will pop up and grant all their wishes.
The rest of us try to use one system of logic that applies to all the things we deal with in life.
Is a fragmented mind a more powerful mind or is it just schizophrenia.

actuator
March 23, 2010 11:14 am

Cognitively speaking, if we are 18 thousand years into an interglacial that typically lasts 15 to 20 thousand years pending a 100 thousand year ice age, then yes climate change is clearly a threat. But it ain’t global warming that’s going to be the problem in the long run. In fact, maybe we better slow down on the stuff that might cool us down no matter how insignificant.

Tom T
March 23, 2010 11:15 am

This guy must be a conservative then, because he clearly has never looked at the science of global warming.

Pamela Gray
March 23, 2010 11:21 am

It sounds like, the way the article has been written, that it is the liberal mind that is open to and able to ask probing questions about the science and it is the conservative that has a mind set to not question and instead, believe. Am I the only one that sees the irony in this?

March 23, 2010 11:22 am

I’m a liberal (well, a socialist, if I’m honest) engineer.
I don’t see how that has anything to do with not trusting scientists who hide their data and methods from inspection.

HankHenry
March 23, 2010 11:23 am

Speaking of metaphors; isn’t “open-minded” a figure of speech sometimes meaning suggestible, unskeptical, or just plain gullible?

Peter Melia
March 23, 2010 11:23 am

“Reason is shaped by the body”, he says.
OK.
I think Arnold Swarznegger (may his tribe increase) was once “Mr Universe”…
…whereas Steven Hawkings cannot, with all kindness be even considered as a candidate in such a contest.
Who has the best brain?
Who would present the best reasoned argument on just about anything?

Wren
March 23, 2010 11:24 am

“It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,” Lakoff said.
====
Yes, people committed to an ideology will tend to deny or dismiss information that suggests the ideology is flawed.
But this is nothing new.

HeavyD
March 23, 2010 11:26 am

The funny part is that most of the conservatives/ libertarians that I know are concerned about the enviroment. Emmission controls on vehicles, smokestacks, etc. are a good thing. Water and wastewater projects are important, and the quality standards of both of these has never been better. No one wants to live in/ breathe/ drink garbage.
My big concern, and what I believe should be our focus, is plate tectonics. It is a settled science, and earthquakes can be really destructive. Couple that with the fact that Los Angeles will be in Alaska in a million years or so and we face some serious trouble. Where is the geologic Al Gore who can rescue us from this potential disaster? Congress, in conjunction with the worlds best scientists, should figure out a way to mitigate this catastrophe.

Pat Moffitt
March 23, 2010 11:26 am

“We cannot absolutely prove that those are in error who tell us that society has reached a turning point, that we have seen our best days. But so said all before us, and with just as much apparent reason … On what principle is it that, when we see nothing but improvement behind us, we are to expect nothing but deterioration before us.”
Thomas Babington Macaulay, 1830 – Edinburgh Review.

snopercod
March 23, 2010 11:26 am

I think Evan Sayet explained the problem with liberals very eloquently. How Liberals Think

“How can you possibly live in the freest country in the world and see only
oppression? How can you live in the least imperial power in history and see us
as the ultimate in imperialism? How can you live in the least-bigoted nation in
history and see – as Joe Biden said – see racism in every dark shadow?
The modern liberal will invariably side with evil over good, wrong over right,
and the behaviors that lead to failure over those that lead to success.
There is no standard for truth, beauty, justice, or anything else amongst the
modern liberal…
Rational and moral thought is an act of bigotry.
[Sayet explores why that is]
…What I discovered is, the modern liberal looks back on – give me a number here – 50,000 years, 100,000 years of human civilization and knows only one thing for
sure: That none of the ideas that mankind has come up with – none of the
religions, none of the philosophies, none of the ideologies, none of the forms
of government – none have succeeded in creating a world devoid of war, poverty,
crime and injustice.
So they’re convinced that since all these ideas of man have proved to be wrong,
the real cause of war, poverty, crime and injustice must be found – can only be
found – in the attempt to be right. See, if nobody ever thought they were right,
what would we disagree about? If we didn’t disagree, surely we wouldn’t fight.
If we didn’t fight, of course you wouldn’t go to war. Without war there’d be no
poverty. Without poverty there would be no crime, without crime there’d be no
injustice. It’s a utopian vision.
And all that’s required to usher in this utopia is the rejection of all facts,
reason, evidence, logic, truth, morality, and decency – all the tools that you
and I use in our attempt to be better people – to make the world more right by
trying to be right – by siding with right, by recognizing right and moving
towards it….What you have is people who think that the best way to eliminate
rational thought – the best way to eliminate the attempt to be right is to work
always to prove that right isn’t right and to prove that wrong isn’t wrong – to
bring about a philosophy – and you see this in John Lennon’s song, Imagine.
Imagine there’s no countries – Not imagine there’s great countries – Not imagine
‘defeat the Nazis’ – Imagine no religions. Imagine a time when anything and
everything that mankind values is devalued to the point where there’s nothing
left to kill or die for.

Craig Moore
March 23, 2010 11:27 am

Dr. Lackoff, tum podem extulit horridulum!

Jon
March 23, 2010 11:27 am

I am not a professor, but Lakoff’s presumption that man-made warming is 99.9999% proven and that disagreement with this theory belies a certain type of upbringing by an authoritarian father confirms my theory that liberal academics that accept every cocktail party theory as unassailable fact are without question victims of too early toilet training.

ShrNfr
March 23, 2010 11:27 am

Don’t you believe in flying saucers, they ask me? Don’t you believe in telepathy? — in ancient astronauts? — in the Bermuda triangle? — in life after death?
No, I reply. No, no, no, no, and again no.
One person recently, goaded into desperation by the litany of unrelieved negation, burst out “Don’t you believe in anything?”
“Yes”, I said. “I believe in evidence. I believe in observation, measurement, and reasoning, confirmed by independent observers. I’ll believe anything, no matter how wild and ridiculous, if there is evidence for it. The wilder and more ridiculous something is, however, the firmer and more solid the evidence will have to be.”
— Isaac Asimov
——–
Global Warming Crowd: I believe that a divinity school dropout and a man who got C’s in business school is a profound climate scientist.
——–
I think we have done a sufficient exposition on the brains of those who are open to the singularity of the naked assertion.

James Sexton
March 23, 2010 11:28 am

“liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”
Funny, I’ve never met an open-minded liberal. That’s why, with a straight face, they’ll tell you that “climate change” will cause droughts and flooding all at the same time. Or, when they tell you they are absolutely sure there are no absolutes.

March 23, 2010 11:31 am

A blown toke from a chronic inhaler.

Wren
March 23, 2010 11:32 am

Slabadang (10:44:05) :
Lakoff hahahaha!
Hes is in person another proof of what happens with science when left wings becomes Professors.
I wonder what diagnos he gives.
Lindzen
Spencer
Singer
Pielke
Ball
Carter
Armstrong
McIntyre
Mcitirick
Christy
The man is an embarrassment for science! [snip]
=====
That’s not many people.
Do any scientific societies of standing dismiss the threat of CAGW?

March 23, 2010 11:34 am

As others have remarked, this guy says some fantastically stupid things. This one for a start:
“99.999 percent of the science is final” on global warming.
Clearly, no one can claim to be a scientist who says that. He has completely lost the plot. But, hey, this all comes out of his cranky ideas, such as the ’embodied mind’. He doesn’t believe in the empirical scientific method, nor the possibility of falsification. He teaches that falsifiability can never be established by any reasonable method that does not rely on human bias. He teaches that logic and mathematics is completely subjective and exists only in the flesh, that its only foundation is ‘meat’.
He teaches that liberals should change the way they use expressions so that they mean something different. For example, the concept of ‘tax relief’ should be semantically re-branded because it implies explicitly that taxes are something someone would want “relief” from.
Yeah, well in his Orwellian New World Order, I’d certainly want relief from the monstrosities he’d foist on society. The more I read about this guy, the more dangerous he appears. His views are a cancer in our society

Don E
March 23, 2010 11:34 am

If this is a brain disorder wouldn’t skeptics be covered by ADA? In addition, skeptics cannot be discriminated against and must be provided special accommodations in jobs and all other activities in society. We must stand up for our rights!

Nolo Contendere
March 23, 2010 11:35 am

Conservatives (and scientists) think, liberals feel. Or in Lakoff’s terms, believe. Right at the moment I believe the professor is pretty darn funny.

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 11:36 am

Jim Turner (10:56:31) :
How come people that believe in government control and regulation are called ‘liberals’?

Liberalism and its ideas of government control, centralized economy, etc. predated Marxism:
http://science.jrank.org/pages/8758/Communism-in-Europe-Karl-Marx-Origins-Modern-Communism.html

savethesharks
March 23, 2010 11:39 am

I find it amusing how “scholars” like Lakoff continually to try and make a it a partisan issue, which it should not be.
It should be about finding the truth.
Most people I talk to are a combination of the two [fiscally more conservative but socially more liberal]….and so they [we] are like….”who the hell is this guy talking about??
Regardless, CAGW skeptics run the full range of political persuasions, so it is a moot point.
Also, it would seem that this “study” is the big fat pot calling the kettle black if there ever was one.
Sure there is cognitive dissonance on all sides. It is endemic to the human condition, unfortunately.
However, it just so happens to be more manifest the on the “my mind is made up the science is settled – CAGW is real – we are all doomed” side of the debate!
When I hear people like Lakoff spouting off academic nonsense like this [or at least the nonsense part is the partisan political part] I just have to laugh and say out loud:
“How ——- stupid does he think we are??”
I don’t like to see anyone’s personal demise….but I personally will enjoy with GREAT pleasure watching the washed-up, tired, dishonest CAGW house of cards collapse over the next few years.
Next!
Chris
Norfolk, VA, USA

R. Gates
March 23, 2010 11:42 am

Steve Goddard said:
“…polar sea ice hasn’t changed and is right at normal.”
Really Steve? And here we were all just debating the cause of the changes in arctic ice, with many AGW skeptics saying it is ALL the wind, and now, you’ve clarified it for us…there ARE no changes in polar ice! Wow, I guess decline in year-to-year arctic sea ice, where it hasn’t gone into a positive anomaly condition since 2004 is just an ilusion?
Of course, we must remember that AGW skeptics do have different ways of looking at the world (perhaps due to their brains) :), and so they need to just keep reminding those who think AGWT might just be correct that “these are not the droids you’re looking for…” and “polar sea ice hasn’t changed and is right at normal…”

JMANON
March 23, 2010 11:43 am

I think they are just setting the scene for brainwashing/re-education of non-believers.
You know, the sort of thing that happened in China and Iran. The softly softly approach of trying to “influence” thinking through propraganda has obviously failed and now they need to condition us more directly. To do that we must be declared “abnormal” and “different” will do for a start. By the time tthey get through deciding who is “sane” and who is not legislation to adress the problem will be a cinch.
It isn’t all that hard a step to take. Just look back in history at the eugenics programs in, wait for it, California… the “re-education” of native populations in the US and Australia, the camps for “dissidents” in Russia and you’ll get the idea. We don’t have to go back to the middle ages, just a decade or two or three.
What’s the next step? Unenvironmntal activities committees?

Liam
March 23, 2010 11:44 am

Damn. I thought my opinions on scientific subjects were formed by a hard science education to PhD level and 30 years professional experience in Science and Technology. Thanks to Prof Fako I now realise that my distrust in AGW came not from gradual disillusion as learnt more about the subject while a volunteer for a Green organisation, but because I must be some kind of Nazi.
Sounds like junk science trying to back up junk science.

Chad Woodburn
March 23, 2010 11:45 am

Oh, this is wonderful. What a relief! Since my brain is to blame for my doubts about catastrophic anthropogenic global warming, surely they can come up with a drug to help cure me of my mental illness. Hey, and since most of the people I know tend to agree with me on CAGW, maybe they could just put the medicine in our drinking water.
Blame it all on the brain. So, my lack of self-control, my anxieties, my addictions, my restlessness, my depression (none of which I really have), and now my conservatism are all blamed on the brain.

Gary Hladik
March 23, 2010 11:47 am

Veronica (England) (09:44:13) : “What if there was a left-wing, pinko bleeding-heart liberal who became a sceptic because she is a scientist and tends to try to understand the data rather than worry how she feels about global warming?
Does that person smash the paradigm or should she be committed to a mental insitution for some kind of split personality disorder? I need to know!”
In the Soviet Union, dissidents were committed to mental institutions, because only the “insane” would question “the system”. Talk about the inmates running the asylum! Kind of like UC Berkeley…

Robert Kral
March 23, 2010 11:47 am

What a maroon.

Roger Knights
March 23, 2010 11:48 am

“look seriously at the science”

Lakoff has probably read half a dozen warmist books and the Wikipedia site, read several “How to Talk to a Skeptic” compilations, followed RC’s strawman knockdowns and Romm’s blog, attended several warmist lectures, talked to several warmist colleagues, and swallowed the smears of the warmists (as being cranks or hired guns). I.e., he’s read material where the warmists get the last word. I doubt that he’s spent much time looking deeply into what the skeptics say, but mostly at what the warmists say the skeptics say.
This condescension reminds me of the way that liberals treated critics of fluoridation, etc. back when.

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 11:50 am

They usually begin by using gold to buy….and, as history shows, end by using lead for convincing the non believers

Andrew W
March 23, 2010 11:50 am

So much vitriol, so much emotion, this comments thread itself is an argument supporting Lakoff.

Peter Miller
March 23, 2010 11:51 am

Proponents of human-caused global warming claim that “cognitive” brain function prevents conservatives from accepting the science that says “climate change” is an imminent threat to planet Earth and its inhabitants.
Being a cognitive conservative and a geologist and therefore a real scientist as opposed to being a ‘cognitive scientist’, whatever that might mean, I prefer:
A full bottle in front of me, to
A full frontal lobotomy.
Professors of dubious science concepts from left leaning centres of learning presumably prefer the latter.

PaulsNZ
March 23, 2010 11:52 am

I smell bullshit!

actuator
March 23, 2010 11:53 am

I could be wrong, but I thought one aspect of the original “liberal” philosophers thinking was the liberty of the individual. What I see going on in the community that calls themselves “liberal” today seems to care not a whit for individuals having the right or the ability to think, evaluate and decide for themselves.

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 11:54 am

Chad Woodburn (11:45:19) : All the symptoms you just mentioned seem those of lack of kool-aid drinking. ☺

March 23, 2010 11:54 am

Uhuh … is this the kind of ‘Liberal open mindedness’ that makes people want to be controlled by an all-powerful state machine? That open, eh?

March 23, 2010 11:58 am

Funny, as soon as I heard a decade or more ago that the ‘global warming’ models could not account for ice ages, or the Viking settlements in Greenland, I guessed they were on the wrong track. Then when it became clear that the all this ‘climate change’ hype was being put to the service of a political agenda of tax and control, I knew the science was being skewed by an agenda. And when I found out that graduate students in the sciences were afraid to express skepticism, I knew for certain that ‘global warming’ had become the focus of a dangerous ideological orthodoxy.
Lakoff says we should “Look seriously at the science.” And indeed we should, particularly when that science is being subsumed to a political ideology and demanding unquestioning belief of its adherents. Lakoff’s claim that ‘liberals’ are more ‘open-minded’ is absurd on its face.
/Mr Lynn

red432
March 23, 2010 11:59 am

I used to be a fan of Lakoff. I think he doesn’t realize he’s making himself look stupid and probably hasn’t looked into the details of the issue much. There are many people in this category who should learn to keep their mouths shut until they know more about what they are talking about.

Larry
March 23, 2010 11:59 am

To paraphase: I am right, and people like me are really cool People that disagree with me are wrong, and must be mentally deranged. I am a scientist, therefore everything I say is science. Therefore if you disagree with me you must not be a scientist. With logic like that, is he a fellow of the Royal Society? He could have lead the science review. “A few crazy people have suggested the science is not up to scratch. I have reviewed my thoughts on the subject, and have come to the conclusion that they must be mad. Science is what I say it is, I say this is science.” As far as the calibre of the most eminent scientists is concerned, it really is worse than we thought. Politicians in white coats seems like a more appropriate description.

Lichanos
March 23, 2010 12:00 pm

As one who has been the victim of a Dunning-Kruger social science attack (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dunning%E2%80%93Kruger_effect) which purports to demonstrate that skeptics like me increase their sense of certainty the less they know about something, I have to say I find this man’s arguments idiotic.
Equally idiotic are the responses by many of the commenters who take a page from their opponents and isist that the divide here is a political one: liberals are close-minded numbskulls; they, conservatives, are wise.
Speaking as a skeptical and open-minded liberal, I have to say that the problem with this man is not his politics, but that he is an example of the worst that Academe has to offer.

March 23, 2010 12:01 pm

A professor from Berkeley is lecturing on open-mindedness? That’s funny.
Do you think he’d sit down with this bubba from Texas and listen to me for more than a minute before interrupting and telling me I’m wrong (the subject doesn’t matter)? 30 seconds?

Jeff
March 23, 2010 12:01 pm

@ HeavyD (11:26:02) : Clearly earthquakes are caused by oil drilling. So we have anthropogenic earthquakes. I’m sure there’s a suitable graph to demonstrate that earthquakes have sharply risen in the 20th and 21st century. We must stop drilling for oil lest the plates shift back to their original position and we are all forced to live in close proximity with one another. Algore again brings us the inconvenient whatever:
http://www.algore.org/blog/ldavis48413_hotmail_com/oil_drilling_causing_more_earthquakes_and_possible_increase_plate_tecto

Editor
March 23, 2010 12:05 pm

actuator (11:53:56) :
“I could be wrong, but I thought one aspect of the original “liberal” philosophers thinking was the liberty of the individual. What I see going on in the community that calls themselves “liberal” today seems to care not a whit for individuals having the right or the ability to think, evaluate and decide for themselves.”
No, actuator, you are not wrong. Classical Liberalism was a late 18th early 19th Century movement based on the philososphy of Utilitarianism (“the greatest good for the greatest number”) which held that people were quite capable of deciding for themselves what was good for them. They were much more akin to modern conservatives and libertarians than anything else. Oddly enough, John Stuart Mill, a staunch advocate of free market capitalism, and Robert Owen, the “Father of Modern Socialism”, both emerged from the movement.

Logan
March 23, 2010 12:05 pm

The exploitation or distortion of psychological concepts for political propaganda has generally favored the left. Conservatives are slandered as dogmatists, anal, infantile, racists, etc. Now, there is at least some academic pushback, as the book by Lyle Rossiter shows:
http://www.amazon.com/Liberal-Mind-Psychological-Political-Madness/dp/097795630X/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269366729&sr=8-1
Probably the simple ‘follow-the-money’ aspects explains most of the AGW politics. Still, the more extreme ideas and opinions that are collected at the green-agenda website, which is ‘up’ at the moment, probably do reflect psychological effects. If there is a generation of Dalton or Maunder cooling, as now seems likely, it will be fun to see how long they hold out, and how long the US liberal media maintains the party line.

James F. Evans
March 23, 2010 12:07 pm

Dripping with desperation.

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 12:08 pm

JMANON (11:43:28) :
I think they are just setting the scene for brainwashing/re-education of non-believers

Pol-Pot said reeducation of grown ups was impossible to attain, so they proposed the killing of all above fourteen years old.
Anyway, new-age reincarnation is on our side ☺

Noelene
March 23, 2010 12:09 pm

The money he gets to spout such tripe.Do people take him seriously? I will not be lumped into a group.
I’m an individual.
What a dull world he inhabits.

Editor
March 23, 2010 12:11 pm

Wren (11:24:41) :
“It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,” Lakoff said.
====
Yes, people committed to an ideology will tend to deny or dismiss information that suggests the ideology is flawed.
But this is nothing new.
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Wren, are there any mirrors in your home?

March 23, 2010 12:13 pm

Such blind self-righteousness has always been the seed of totalitarianism.

Dena
March 23, 2010 12:15 pm

The use of the term Liberal is being misused in this thread. The correct word is Progressive. Progressives are a Marxist like group and in the early part of the 20th century so fouled the the name that they took over the Liberal name that existed before and stood for something good. They have now fouled the name Liberal so badly that they are starting to use the name progressive again.
Be ware because progressives exist in both parties so avoid using party names as well unless the facts apply only to the party.

Steve
March 23, 2010 12:15 pm

First off does he define Liberal and Conservative? It seems more clear cut in America but maybe not everywhere else. Perhaps an American liberal may appear conservative to a North Korean communist.
Secondly how does his argument stack up for liberals who don’t believe the scare around climate change. Prof. Philip Stott is a self-confessed liberal.

March 23, 2010 12:16 pm

R. Gates (11:42:11),
Your reading comprehension needs improvement. Or maybe your knowledge of geography. Steve Goddard specifically referred to “polar” ice — not Arctic ice. But you start arguing based only on the Arctic.
Did you know there are two poles? Added together there is no unusual change in global polar ice cover: click
I suspect that if the reverse was true, and Arctic ice was increasing, while Antarctic ice was decreasing, that your argument would be flipped and you would constantly refer to the Antarctic, just like you always refer to the Arctic now, while studiously ignoring the Antarctic.
It’s called cherry-picking, and you do it all the time.
Also, you use the acronym “AGWT” without any explanation that I’ve ever seen [not that I read every post]. But if your “T” refers to Theory, you are dead wrong: AGW is an unproven hypothesis on its way to being reduced to a conjecture, because its proponents refuse to divulge the raw data and methods they use to arrive at their scary conclusions. Catastrophic AGW is certainly not a theory, and never was: click
[Note the author’s CV at the end of the article. If yours compares with Dr Glassman’s, I’ll pay attention to your wishful attempt to pretend that CAGW is a theory. It’s not.]

DCC
March 23, 2010 12:17 pm

Lakoff, however, said that “99.999 percent of the science is final” on global warming and, in fact, the term “climate change” should be changed to “climate crisis” to more accurately describe the phenomenon.
Then it’s settled – Lakoff is an open-minded, liberal, progressive who is obsessed with words.

March 23, 2010 12:17 pm

So I’m basically a mentally ill conservative
I am certain this must be a disability, Quick someone, have the goverment give me some money for my disability.

Simon H
March 23, 2010 12:19 pm

Seems I’m in the minority, being a modern liberal and a sceptic. In political terms, I actually agree with Lakoff about conservative thinking.
But what Lakoff has failed to do is distinguish science from politics. He’s failed to achieve a political escape velocity in his own science. In short, he’s failed.
And what he describes as politically conservative is actually described in psephology as 19th century “Classical Liberalism”. The shifting sands of politics… they change almost as much as GISS’s GHCN adjustments..

March 23, 2010 12:21 pm

With regard to “IQ Tests”.. 35 year old book:
“The stranglehold of IQ”, by Benjamin Fine, Phd.
Dr. Fine EXPLODES the “MYTH” of an IQ test. You really CANNOT measure overall
“intelligence”. You can measure APTITUDES in various areas.
But as the field researcher in “The Gods Must Be Crazy” part II, found out, once in a pure survival situation in the Kalahari desert, all his academic training was WORTHLESS and the “bush” intelligence of the Bushman was worth his life! (Hey, I kind of like saying the Bushman was the hero..!)

DirkH
March 23, 2010 12:22 pm

” Andrew W (11:50:17) :
So much vitriol, so much emotion, this comments thread itself is an argument supporting Lakoff.”
I’m pretty sure that’s a quickly dropped off drive-by comment but if you’re still there, Andrew, and you think Mr. Lakoff is right, why don’t you tell us a little bit more? Do you think support or rejection of the AGW theory is lined up along political lines, and that a deterioration of cognitive brain function leads to rejection of the AGW theory?

MartinGAtkins
March 23, 2010 12:24 pm

On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”
Gullible mugs that believe in anything and everything.

Sean O.
March 23, 2010 12:26 pm

At least his argument is coherent. Belief is more important than fact… which is exactly what manifested in his very own study!

Schrodinger's Cat
March 23, 2010 12:27 pm

I find it surprising that so many academics remain convinced that the evidence for AGW is overwhelming, but then I suppose that everything has been peer reviewed, so that makes it ok…
I get the impression that applied scientists are much more sceptical (perhaps I think that because I am one). We have to deliver products, processes or solutions to problems, within budget. If we get something wrong it comes back to bite us fairly quickly, so success, or correct science, is challenging to do, but easy to judge.
Climate science is in its infancy. Decent computing power has only been around for a few years. Modelling is very much a GIGO pastime especially if the science is not fully understood. The historical temperature data is very limited (in climate terms), and the measurement quality is a nightmare. The proxy alternatives are dubious at best and do not seem to be consistent. There are only three sources of the temperatures and these seem to be incestuous. The adjustments for instruments, movements, UHI, gridding and the rest may be wonderful processes but they do not inspire me with confidence.
Why do so many academics (95% consensus, I’m told) place absolute faith in this mess?

DirkH
March 23, 2010 12:28 pm

” Jeff (12:01:33) :
[…]
close proximity with one another. Algore again brings us the inconvenient whatever:”
With posts like that Al’s blog could become an interesting place to visit…

K
March 23, 2010 12:28 pm

Lysenko lives.
If this person’s research is government funded, it should be stopped immediately. Just as research into the mental capabilities of negros and jews should have been stopped in the 30s by the same “progressives”. It’s the “scientific” underpinnings of neo Nazi throught and we know where it leads. The fact that this guy hasn’t been fired is scary enough.

Lon Hocker
March 23, 2010 12:28 pm

There seems to be two strategies for dealing with the world. People with very good memories seem to base their strategies on things they have learned. Folks with good problem solving skills, tend to trust their ability to understand things over what they have been taught.
I find that Liberals tend to be in the former category, conservatives the latter. It should not be surprising that Lakoff pretends to do science, is does not follow adhere to normal logical processes.

Jimbo
March 23, 2010 12:29 pm

“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not….”
That is precicely what the sceptics have done “Look seriously at the science…” and found it wanting. What’s wrong with that? It shows good brains applying a healthy dose of scepicism to the science which is how scientific advances are made.
I suspect George Lakoff is tying in global warming to the mind in order to get more funding. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

red432
March 23, 2010 12:30 pm

My youthful enthusiasm for Lakoff has officially died, if this quote is accurate:
“any question of math’s being inherent in physical reality is moot, since there is no way to know whether or not it is.”
How would he suggest a teacher determine whether all the students got back on the school bus without counting them?
Do you fly on airplanes or cross suspension bridges, Dr. Lakoff? If so you are nothing but a tiresome hairsplitter at best or an opportunistic hypocrite at worst in my (anonymously posted) opinion.

Karel
March 23, 2010 12:31 pm

Oh, I loooove this one : If you don’t accept what I say, you’re stupid. Running out of arguments, huh ? Last straws ? And yes, I’m another one that used to believe the AGW idea. Then I started thinking.

peterhodges
March 23, 2010 12:33 pm

umm, i’m liberal, a philosopher to boot, and do not believe in AGW
hypothesis FALSIFIED

Editor
March 23, 2010 12:36 pm

Anthony wrote:

I wonder then how Dr. Lakoff explains people like myself, who once accepted the scientific arguments presented on global warming, but who now reject most of the hype and urgency attached to it?

If you were to ask me (and I suggest you don’t), I’d say the increase in wrong-thinking must be due to Global Warming, of course. After all, it’s the cause behind just about everything.
BTW, I never heard of CNSNews.com before. I assume it stands for Central Nervous System News. If it doesn’t, it certainly should.
This is a pretty high bar for an April Fool’s Day post. I don’t know if I can do better.

Atomic Hairdryer
March 23, 2010 12:37 pm

Re: Ralph (11:54:33) :
Uhuh … is this the kind of ‘Liberal open mindedness’ that makes people want to be controlled by an all-powerful state machine? That open, eh?

He’s probably right, and this is where beliefs are more important than facts.
It’s a basic tool in psyops, propaganda and other forms of marketing. Real facts are often the last things you want your mark believing in. Hence we get the appeals to authority, fear and all the other standard tricks to make people believe. Once they’re hooked on the belief, it’s harder to sway their minds with facts and much easier to convince them to part with their money. The more open minded they are, the easier it is to convince them to drink the Kool Aid.

savethesharks
March 23, 2010 12:40 pm

Schrodinger’s Cat (12:27:31) :
Could not agree more. Well said!
Chris

Craig Moore
March 23, 2010 12:43 pm

With the coming chill, will enlightened warmists be sufficiently smart and capable to write their names in the snow without the govt shaking their pencils for them?

March 23, 2010 12:44 pm

This is clear evidence that AGW has morphed into Lysenkoism.

Dr T G Watkins
March 23, 2010 12:45 pm

Like many others on this site, I was convinced AGW was real, reading books by Lovelock (still an admirer on a personal level), John Gribben, Monbiot and Pearce among others. How wrong I was!
I find the labels Right and Left wing unhelpful, preferring to view each issue on its merits. Individual responsibility being the cornerstone of my political view.
Love to hear about Anthony’s Damascene conversion.

Andrew W
March 23, 2010 12:46 pm

Dirk, I think it’s obvious to all that there is a division over acceptance of AGW along political lines, so people ARE assessing AGW according to their politics rather than an objective assessment of the science.
To me the obvious argument against Lakoff is that he and other liberals are also influenced by their politics, while I personally accept that AGW is happening, the evidence that it’ll be “catastrophic” under BAU is, I think, not conclusive, (though if we get anywhere near 1000ppm CO2 we should be worried) many liberals are certain that AGW will be catastrophic under BAU without (in my opinion) having the science supporting that claim.

R. de Haan
March 23, 2010 12:49 pm

IPCC reviewer predicts 30 years of cold, read a mini ice age!
He must must suffer from “cognitive” brain function as well other wise he would make such irresponsible remarks jeopardizing his professional career and all!
The climate nuts want us to look crazy! FAT CHANCE.

adpack
March 23, 2010 12:52 pm

“In the country of the blind, the one eyed man will be king.” Oh no, as H.G. Wells showed in his short story: The man who can “see” must be a defective. He is a threat to our society. His eyes must be immediately removed or he must be killed.

Gino
March 23, 2010 12:54 pm

“And what they try to do is show that the science is wrong and that the argument is wrong, based on the science. So when it comes back to science, they try to debunk the science,” Lakoff said.
So, debunking an argument by showing the science is flawed is really only a political opinion, and the scientific method of testing a hypothesis is really just a witch hunt then?

Al Gore's Holy Hologram
March 23, 2010 12:58 pm

“1. capitalism is evil
2. nature is good
3. oil is bad
4. government should have more power
5. people should have less freedom
6. mankind is a bunch of polluters
7. we need government to protect us
8. meat is unhealthy
9. everyone should be vegetarians
10. fewer humans on this planet would be a good thing”
———
Hey, that Hitler fella believed in 9 out of 10 of those! He had no problem with number 3 (oil) at the time because he had no choice.

tj
March 23, 2010 1:00 pm

Jim Steele (12:13:18) :
Such blind self-righteousness has always been the seed of totalitarianism.
Agreed, but the people here need to understand those seeds are planted with the left hand and the right hand. Totalitarianism be it “Communism” or “Fascism” is totalitarianism. The right v. left construct is a false box that keeps lots of good people at each others’ throats. Those at the top just keep winking and nodding at the ruckus they can create.
Most people, on both sides, follow their leaders blindly; that is the problem.

Al Gored
March 23, 2010 1:01 pm

When all else fails, descend into false and utterly simplistic comparisons.
This ‘scientific’ branding of the heretics is just a taste of what is to come from the Church of AGW.
In the USSR they routinely branded dissidents as being paranoid or having mental problems. This is just one step away from that.
And the AGW gang has been building its squads of young brainwashed greenshirts, all taught that all their problems are due to older and of course much dumber generations, and they will be unleashed to ‘save the planet.’ This is going to get very, very strange, in a 1930s Germany kind of way.

DesertYote
March 23, 2010 1:07 pm

These studies ( this is not the first) are an attempt to dehumanize everyone not willing to play progressive ball. If those who are not leftists are sub-human, then there really don’t have any rights and they can be safely ignored and, if they get to be a bother, eliminated. This is plain old pregame propaganda and its existence should be taken as a sign of what is to come.

March 23, 2010 1:08 pm

“This puzzles many climate scientists, but not social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs,” Joyce said.
That’s the argument the Dems used to foist health care “reform” on us.
But I digress. I propose an experiment.
Doc Lakoff, I really, *really*, reeeeaalllly believe you can fly.
Take a hike off the roof of a five-story building and we’ll see how belief stacks up against fact.
In the interest of full disclosure, I neither own, nor am I employed by, a sidewalk-repair contractor.

Andrew W
March 23, 2010 1:08 pm

peterhodges (12:33:22) :
“umm, i’m liberal, a philosopher to boot, and do not believe in AGW
hypothesis FALSIFIED”
I can’t accept that any competent philosopher could make a statement so lacking in logic.

maz2
March 23, 2010 1:09 pm

The return of communism’s Lysenkoism.
…-
“What are science’s benefits?
Earlier this month five Dutch scientific organisations responsible for administering funding presented a method for determining the societal benefits research would offer. The method is supposed to replace the widely used – and controversial – method of measuring publications’ impact through the number of times it is referred to by peers. The new method tries to take into account whether research may be of use to business or help solve problems in society. The proposed new measure has proven controversial in itself, with scientists claiming research’s benefit is impossible to quantify in advance. Others claim the method is part of a trend in which garnering positive publicity is becoming more important than getting results.”
“Ask not what science can do for you”
[…]
“I have limited myself to the retrospective usefulness of the pure science of Huygens, Einstein and their colleagues, stretched out over four centuries of ‘pointless’ research. Because science is about finding facts, I could tell a similar story of any discipline. Even so, society’s demands for usefulness to be proven in advance grow ever louder. The tragedy here is that any system that demands usefulness be proven in advance, will never lead to ground-breaking findings that future generations will be able to use. But as long as free science takes care of the proofs, the products will take care of themselves.”
http://www.nrc.nl/international/article2509715.ece/Ask_not_what_science_can_do_for_you

kwik
March 23, 2010 1:09 pm

“And what they try to do is show that the science is wrong and that the argument is wrong, based on the science. So when it comes back to science, they try to debunk the science,”
Aha, so thats why Bastardi is saying what he is saying here;
http://www.accuweather.com/video/68856143001/global-warmth-getting-ready-to-collapse.asp?channel=vblog_bastardi
Yes, the Professors argument is very logical…..

Doug Proctor
March 23, 2010 1:17 pm

The idea that “liberals” are open-minded about their beliefs based on science, while “conservatives” are not, in intriguing as I find the more conservative group is the more science-based. Liberals have a philosophy that people are inherently good and corrupted or let down by circumstance, while conservatives tend to see people as inherently flawed and let down by weaknesses in their talents, their ability to recognize elements undesirable to their lives, or corruption through vanities or personal rewards. Liberals, I find, use authority figures such as doctors, “scientists”, pastors etc. to determine what is or is not, giving them the benefit of the doubt if questions arise. Conservatives, I find want to see for themselves. Authority figures – such as Aristotle, the Pope or Al Gore – tend to make conservatives nervous. It seems counter-intutitive to those of us who grew up with liberal conspiracy theories of the “military-industrial complex”, but the liberal seems to take more comfort in giving control to the state or appointees of the “common good” than do conservatives. A case in point: the $33million Exxon is said to have paid to the climate skeptic movement, including the Heartland Institute, is seen by them as corruptive, while the $79billion various governments have given to the warmist NGOs, researchers and their own departments, creates no conflict of interest. Al Gore is recognized positively for becoming the first Green billionaire; his words are gospel. Someone like me, a self-employed geologist in the oil and gas business, somehow is a shill for dirty oil, even though I drive a 10-year old Jeep and anticipate retiring to a trailer in the backwoods of Mexico on my savings after 31 years in the biz.
The paradigm break is like this: The Liberal believes in the wisdom of the social organism; the conservative, in the individual’s ability to determine truth and virtue. Open-mindedness and scientific merit are not issues in this conflict. The importance of determining for oneself what is and is not going on is the fundamental issue. Skepticism on AGW is greeted with questions of personal morality, integrity and motive by the warmists, not the science. Belief in AGW is greeted by questions of gullibility, ignorance, laziness and agenda by the skeptics. One defends conclusions, the other questions data. Belief in AGW is inextricably bound up in the notion that humankind is harmful, not just to itself but to life itself. This is a difficult notion to deny by anyone who has even experienced the cruelty of the grade school playground. How to come to a common ground and plan to action is indeed a headscratcher. If wild-eyed extremists like Paul Ehrlich can be maintained as “honorary” directors of the David Suzuki Foundation, there is little room for reasonableness; his fanaticism is viewed as a zealousness created by a hostile capitalist society, a necessary trait in the struggle for the Good. The good professor of this article cannot see but through his own eyes. He is not a sociologist of society, but a sociologist of his own society.

James Sexton
March 23, 2010 1:18 pm

Wren (11:32:46) :
Slabadang (10:44:05) :
Lakoff hahahaha!
Hes is in person another proof of what happens with science when left wings becomes Professors.
I wonder what diagnos he gives.
Lindzen
Spencer
Singer
Pielke
Ball
Carter
Armstrong
McIntyre
Mcitirick
Christy
The man is an embarrassment for science! [snip]
=====
That’s not many people.
“Do any scientific societies of standing dismiss the threat of CAGW?”
Wren, you’re a little backward in your thinking, basically asking to disprove a negative. My understanding of real scientific work is that one doesn’t dismiss anything until proven. In regards to CAGW, the question/problem was posited that the earth is getting warmer, that warmer will be disastrous and that man’s carbon emissions were primarily the cause. It isn’t up to anyone to give attention to nor dismiss, nor to prove anything other than the “scientists” that made such ridiculous assertions. It would be a mistake for anyone calling themselves a scientist to dismiss out of hand any postulation without looking at the facts first. Of course, the more facts that get revealed the more it seems that science will in the end dismiss it as a hoax abetted by bad math masquerading as science.

rw
March 23, 2010 1:18 pm

I heard Lakoff give a talk about 15 years ago. Essentially, his thesis was that metaphors are reflections of the “embodied mind” and just about every aspect of human psychology can be explained in these terms. By the end of the talk, he seemed to me to be getting completely out of control in his attempt to expound his grand ‘theory’. I remember that there was a family metaphor that ‘explained’ the difference between conservatives and liberals. Mathematics could be ‘explained’ in terms of embodied metaphors like the real number line (so there were no univeral truths in mathematics). And so forth.
I came away from the talk with a much greater appreciation for his nemesis, Aristotle, who helped us clamber out of the sump known as the “metaphorical mind”. Which people like Lakoff would like us to dive back into.
A final irony. If you look at the last chapter of his book, “Women, Fire, and Dangerous Things”, (I think it’s the last) you will find a rather inept attempt to lay out the thesis in more concrete terms – by listing metaphors or words with figurative force. The irony is that the whole exercise sounds like it was done by a computer. This is because Dr. Lakoff doesn’t have an ounce of artistic motherwit. Instead, he’s just another dry-as-dust pedant, who in this case doesn’t have the merit to accept his limitations. Which may explain some of his antics.

March 23, 2010 1:20 pm

This is more fun than I’ve had throughout a long, long, long (did I say long?) winter.
WUWT has the funniest, classiest, smartest commentators in the known universe.
I’m just going to sit back and smile, smile, smile.

P Gosselin
March 23, 2010 1:21 pm

Now you know what kind of medicine and medical research we’re gonna get from Obamacare.

P Gosselin
March 23, 2010 1:22 pm

Expect him to be referenced in one of the IPCC chapters of WG1 in the AR5!

rw
March 23, 2010 1:22 pm

postscript:
After “dry-as-dust pedant”, I forgot to add parenthetically, “just like Aristotle”

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 1:26 pm

[snip]

Urederra
March 23, 2010 1:26 pm

Cadae (12:44:04) :
This is clear evidence that AGW has morphed into Lysenkoism.

I was thinking in national-socialism (Nazism) more than Lysenkoism. CAGWers really believe that they are better than the rest, and the reason they give is that they have a brain that ‘understands science’ whereas the rest of us don’t.
That scares me a lot.

Milwaukee Bob
March 23, 2010 1:32 pm

Wow! A professor @ Berkeley, where feeling good has been honed into a fine art and where they teach how not to hurt anyones feelings, including your own, says only liberals see the facts and can be honest with themselves….. ? and Conservatives only – “feel” and go about the world guided only by beliefs……? Really? So is it the cognitive capability of the brain that guides it to the left and sees the world you wish it were, in denial of human nature? Or is it an overwhelming emotional need to deny ones human nature that blurs the cognitive capability to grasp the reality of ones life and see the world not as it is, but how you wish it were?
Ah, right Professor, spoken like a true conservative. It depends on the individual.
Oh, by the way Professor, I have a bridge that you can see from most of Berkeley that I want to sell you – cheap! Well, maybe not that cheap. Maybe you and a group of your fellow professors could pool your money….

John Hooper
March 23, 2010 1:35 pm

Nice pic of Monckton.
REPLY: You know what Mr. Hooper? Take your opinion elsewhere. Both Feldman and Monckton suffer from Graves disease.
http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/graves-disease/DS00181/DSECTION=symptoms
Do you also mock people with handicaps?
– Anthony

Wren
March 23, 2010 1:38 pm

Robert E. Phelan (12:11:01) :
Wren (11:24:41) :
“It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,” Lakoff said.
====
Yes, people committed to an ideology will tend to deny or dismiss information that suggests the ideology is flawed.
But this is nothing new.
!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Wren, are there any mirrors in your home?
=======
I’m not committed to an ideology.

Wren
March 23, 2010 1:48 pm

Slabadang (10:44:05) :
Lakoff hahahaha!
Hes is in person another proof of what happens with science when left wings becomes Professors.
I wonder what diagnos he gives.
Lindzen
Spencer
Singer
Pielke
Ball
Carter
Armstrong
McIntyre
Mcitirick
Christy
======
Some people have to be different. Being different gets you more recognition then you would get otherwise.

March 23, 2010 1:48 pm

“Proponents of human-caused global warming claim that ‘cognitive’ brain function prevents conservatives from accepting the science that says “climate change” is an imminent threat to planet Earth and its inhabitants.”
let me translate…
Brain function prevents conservatives from believing in AGW.
let me try again…
Thinking prevents belief in “climate change”
Hey! I think he’s right!

John Galt
March 23, 2010 1:48 pm

So Perfessor (rhymes with) Lackoff — does that mean smarter people just accept the science without question? That doesn’t really sound very smart, does it?
A scientist is supposed to ask questions. Are your students not supposed to ask questions? Should they accept this and everything else you and the other professors say just because you say so?

RichieP
March 23, 2010 1:51 pm

I seem to remember a version of Flash Gordon in which the mad scientist was called Dr. Jerkov.

Pat D
March 23, 2010 1:53 pm

@ Doug Proctor
Thanks very well put.
Perhaps Doc. Lakoff rythme with Jack… has hit on something.
Conservatives apply reason [and have a stronger affinity with that]
whereas liberals are open minded, will believe anything and are susceptible to emotive noise.

Dave Wendt
March 23, 2010 1:58 pm

Ralph (11:54:33) :
Uhuh … is this the kind of ‘Liberal open mindedness’ that makes people want to be controlled by an all-powerful state machine? That open, eh?
The modern progressive statists don’t “want to be controlled by an all-powerful state machine.” They want to be the all-powerful state machine that controls the rest of us, while blithely ignoring any suggestion that those controls apply to them. They enjoy jumping on their Gulfstreams to fly off to semi-monthly confabs at various gardens spots around the planet, where they can formulate rules for how many sheets of TP we may use per throne room visit, what kind of light bulbs we may use, what, where, and if we may drive and how much extra it should cost if we do, etc., etc. All while lunching on caviar and truffles washed down with a nicely chilled bottle of the Dom. They love to hector others about our obligation to serve the needs of the poor and oppressed of the developing world, while their every action ensures that said poor will be endlessly condemned to their present fate. They lie awake at night dreaming of innovative new ways to tax every aspect of human existence. Said taxes are completely mandatory for others, but are the meerest of suggestions for themselves. They believe that people are possessed of an infinite number of “rights” but just as long as they are the only arbiter of what those “rights” are. Those rights will usually involve them taking the fruits of the labors of others and dispensing them to those unwilling to labor in their own behalf for as long as the recipients are willing to support their quest for power.

David Alan Evans
March 23, 2010 1:59 pm

Peter Miller (11:51:25) :
Dr. Rock – I’d Rather Have A Bottle In Front of Me (Than A Frontal Lobotomy)
I love that too 🙂
DaveE.

Wren
March 23, 2010 2:01 pm

James Sexton (13:18:15) :
Wren (11:32:46) :
Slabadang (10:44:05) :
Lakoff hahahaha!
Hes is in person another proof of what happens with science when left wings becomes Professors.
I wonder what diagnos he gives.
Lindzen
Spencer
Singer
Pielke
Ball
Carter
Armstrong
McIntyre
Mcitirick
Christy
The man is an embarrassment for science! [snip]
=====
That’s not many people.
“Do any scientific societies of standing dismiss the threat of CAGW?”
Wren, you’re a little backward in your thinking, basically asking to disprove a negative. My understanding of real scientific work is that one doesn’t dismiss anything until proven. In regards to CAGW, the question/problem was posited that the earth is getting warmer, that warmer will be disastrous and that man’s carbon emissions were primarily the cause. It isn’t up to anyone to give attention to nor dismiss, nor to prove anything other than the “scientists” that made such ridiculous assertions. It would be a mistake for anyone calling themselves a scientist to dismiss out of hand any postulation without looking at the facts first. Of course, the more facts that get revealed the more it seems that science will in the end dismiss it as a hoax abetted by bad math masquerading as science.
=====
You say “My understanding of real scientific work is that one doesn’t dismiss anything until proven.”
Well, sure you can’t prove Bigfoot and Nessie don’t exist, but so far there is no creditable evidence of their existence.
As for theories, science doesn’t “prove” theories.

Pamela Gray
March 23, 2010 2:09 pm

Doncha just love it when anyone, and I mean anyone from any side of the debate, professes to know what or how I think? If someone really was interested in figuring this out, wouldn’t they…wait for it…ASK me what or how I think?

It's always Marcia, Marcia
March 23, 2010 2:11 pm

Liberals are so open minded their brain has rolled out.

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 2:11 pm

Thanks mods. Really when dealing with these issues, sooner or later one arrives at snippable conclusions.

DirkH
March 23, 2010 2:11 pm

Andrew W (12:46:06) :
Thanks for your answer and for explaining your position. It’s roughly identical with mine only that i think we don’t have increasing warming happening but we have slightly raised temperatures as long as the CO2 concentration is rising (the anomaly being more proportional to the growth rate than to the absolute level of CO2).
But i don’t think it’s a left-right issue. We have enough outliers here. Polarization happens when people are organized but there are many more people who refuse to join a political organization and still make up their own opinion.
Oh and talking about unorganized people: Even a lot with a rather conservative worldview will probably take AGW for granted given the media coverage, at least here in Germany and the UK. You see dramatic scenes in the television, the TV person you trust explains that the ice is melting because of your car, you believe…

It's always Marcia, Marcia
March 23, 2010 2:15 pm

I’m neither conservative nor liberal. The climate data shows nothing out of the ordinary is happening in climate. I am going with the data.
What does that make me?

DirkH
March 23, 2010 2:16 pm

“Wren (13:48:00) :
[…]
Some people have to be different. Being different gets you more recognition then you would get otherwise.”
We know that you’re different, Wren. It’s ok.

It's always Marcia, Marcia
March 23, 2010 2:16 pm

Believe it or not, in the early 90’s I used to be a global warming activist. But that’s another story
Anthony said this? I don’t see a name by it.
REPLY: Yes, it’s true. -Anthony

Ian H
March 23, 2010 2:19 pm

Those here who have responded with a rant against liberals seem to be rather hilariously in complete agreement with Dr Lakoff’s thesis that liberals support AGW and conservatives oppose it. Indeed your only dispute with what he says seems to be about which side should be described as having open minds.
Unfortunately not all people who appose AGW do so for reasons that I agree with. Some even deserve the name denier. It is a broad tent and not everyone in here is very nice. In particular I wish all you liberal bashing extreme conservatives would go play somewhere else.

Jeremy
March 23, 2010 2:20 pm

“This puzzles many climate scientists, but not social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs,” Joyce said.
Whoa whoa whoa … he’s saying that climate scientists and social scientists work under the same paradigm? (yeah yeah, way out of context, but hi-larious)

DirkH
March 23, 2010 2:30 pm

Oh looky here what our friend the wikipedia has to say about recent activities of Mr. Lakoff:
“In 2008, Lakoff joined Fenton Communications, the nation’s largest public interest communications firm, as a Senior Consultant.”
So… maybe Mr. Fenton had a little suggestion to make with respect to the future publications of a certain Mr. Lakoff? 😉
Fenton himself acknowledges it:
http://www.fenton.com/intelligence-report/2008/08/linguist-lakoff.html

James Sexton
March 23, 2010 2:32 pm

Wren (14:01:02) :
You say “My understanding of real scientific work is that one doesn’t dismiss anything until proven.”
Well, sure you can’t prove Bigfoot and Nessie don’t exist, but so far there is no creditable evidence of their existence.
My point Wren, you asked if some scientific body has dismissed CAGW. I can’t prove Bigfoot doesn’t exist no more than anyone can prove CAGW doesn’t exist. I suggest they exist on the same alternate universe, but I can’t prove it.

March 23, 2010 2:35 pm

Liberals have more open minds….
and with such are much easier to dupe and deceive and much more accepting of arguments to authority.
Blind acceptance is not a virtue.

David S
March 23, 2010 2:37 pm

“George Lakoff, a professor of cognitive science and linguistics…”
In other words, someone who knows nothing of climate science.

DirkH
March 23, 2010 2:38 pm

Can we say “Soros shill” now? 😉

Wren
March 23, 2010 2:38 pm

The explanations are getting desperate. I wonder then how Dr. Lakoff explains people like myself, who once accepted the scientific arguments presented on global warming, but who now reject most of the hype and urgency attached to it? Believe it or not, in the early 90’s I used to be a global warming activist. But that’s another story.
======
I don’t know how Dr. Lakoff would explain your change of mind, but how would you explain all right-wing and libertarian organizations rejecting the conclusion that CAGW is a threat that requires action?

Richard Drury
March 23, 2010 2:39 pm

Obviously a follower of Lysenko

Enneagram
March 23, 2010 2:48 pm

Is professor Lakoff the guy of the photograph above?
REPLY: No that is Marty Feldman

DirkH
March 23, 2010 2:52 pm

“Wren (14:38:36) :
[…]
I don’t know how Dr. Lakoff would explain your change of mind, but how would you explain all right-wing and libertarian organizations rejecting the conclusion that CAGW is a threat that requires action?”
Wren, the german conservative government party CDU as well as the UK’s conservatives, the Tories, are into AGW. Do i have to say Angela Merkel? Do Dr. Lakoff’s “research results” apply only on the American continent? Is there a mystical psycho barrier running through the Atlantic, preventing our conservatives from a decline of their cognitive brain functions?

Piltdown Mann
March 23, 2010 2:55 pm

“Lakoff, however, said that “99.999 percent of the science is final” on global warming”
Now there’s a scientific mind at work. A peer reviewed study no doubt.
Consider how such a statement reflects on the cognitive brain function of one claiming to be a scientist of any field.
In truth, I think this guy must be a conservative plant purposely trying to enrage thinking people everywhere. Surely even the progressives couldn’t be so stupid as to let this guy embarrass their movement like this.

Nick Yates
March 23, 2010 2:59 pm

On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”
aka gullable and naive

R. Craigen
March 23, 2010 3:05 pm

So Lackoff’s whole thesis is that Conservatism is a mental defect?
BWAHAHAHAHAHAH…..!!!!!!!!!!
Stop the presses. I mean it, if this is what they’re printing, just … stop it.

Roger Knights
March 23, 2010 3:10 pm

Lakoff’s presumption that man-made warming is 99.9999% proven ….

One can be both 99% right and 100% wrong. They ought to teach that in school.
(Come to think of it, didn’t a few old-time playwrights suggest that thought?)

Jimbo
March 23, 2010 3:10 pm

The problem with his study is this: has he studied the brain and politics of those former believers in AGW like Anthony Watts, many people on this thread as well as mine and determined WHY WE BECAME SCEPTICS?

March 23, 2010 3:11 pm

Odd.
First I didn’t believe in AGW because I wasn’t educated enough.
Then I didn’t believe in AGW because I wasn’t smart enough.
And now I don’t believe in AGW because I’m a bigot. To make it worse, because I believe in free markets, apparently I am by default against environmental regulations of any sort.
I was not aware that the entire theory of AGW revolved around my evidently stable belief system. This thing about me being against environmental regulations though came as somewhat of a surprise. I didn’t know I was against that. I’m glad I have Lakoff to tell me what I think. My concern is that if I change my mind on the environmental regulation thing, will it cause a gravitational rift resulting in AGW theory to implode, explode, or simply spin off into space as the two are supposedly closely coupled?

Gary Pearse
March 23, 2010 3:13 pm

Why is it there are so many butchers, bakers, candlestick makers, psychologists, biologists and phucologists (specialists who don’t know fiddle all) who are girding up for battle on the science of global warming? If they don’t understand the physics and chemistry of global warming, then they are just taking it on faith. This reinforces the picture that has emerged over the past few years of a political agenda with precious little science for frosting.

R. Gates
March 23, 2010 3:15 pm

Smokey said:
“AGW is an unproven hypothesis on its way to being reduced to a conjecture…”
—–
This statement would be a conjecture on the way be being? Only two possibilities…on the way to being (or already is) an absurdity, or prophetic.
In regards to my comment on Steve’s statement about polar sea ice. If nothing at all was happening in either the arctic or antarctic, Steve’s comment would be accurate, but since the last I checked, the arctic would be considered “polar” and certainly something has been happening in the arctic, (has not had a positive anomaly since 2004 for example) it is actually Steve who made an incorrect statement.
But you’re a true believer Smokey, and nothing someone like me says will ever change your mind, nor would I wish to.

Wren
March 23, 2010 3:16 pm

James Sexton (14:32:55) :
Wren (14:01:02) :
You say “My understanding of real scientific work is that one doesn’t dismiss anything until proven.”
Well, sure you can’t prove Bigfoot and Nessie don’t exist, but so far there is no creditable evidence of their existence.
My point Wren, you asked if some scientific body has dismissed CAGW. I can’t prove Bigfoot doesn’t exist no more than anyone can prove CAGW doesn’t exist. I suggest they exist on the same alternate universe, but I can’t prove it.
=====
OK, I’ll put it another way.
Among scientific societies of standing, do those that subscribe to CAGW outnumber those that don’t?

Jimbo
March 23, 2010 3:16 pm

For the record I’m not a Conservative. When it comes to AGW I am a believer in the scientific method being followed first before any politics comes into it.

March 23, 2010 3:20 pm

Does Lakoff explain the basis of patronising one’s opponent? That’s what he has done here. It is an excellent way of needlessly offending people, raising the emotional temperature, and muddying the waters.
As an Australian I agree with US liberals on some things and disagree on others. What box do I get crammed into by Lakoff?

James Sexton
March 23, 2010 3:20 pm

Wren (14:38:36) :
The explanations are getting desperate. I wonder then how Dr. Lakoff explains people like myself, who once accepted the scientific arguments presented on global warming, but who now reject most of the hype and urgency attached to it? Believe it or not, in the early 90’s I used to be a global warming activist. But that’s another story.
======
I don’t know how Dr. Lakoff would explain your change of mind, but how would you explain all right-wing and libertarian organizations rejecting the conclusion that CAGW is a threat that requires action?
Because we’re capable of critical thinking. How do you explain CAGW is embraced by every socialist organization known to man in spite of evidence to the contrary? Why do they keep repeating the mantra “there’s a consensus!”, when none obviously exists. Why do keep saying “the science is settled” when it obviously isn’t? They keep running different models, and more studies themselves. Why, if the science is settled? Heck, I’d love to see someone, anyone, list all the variants that contribute to our climate. No one can. Given that insight, if no one knows the equation, how is it someone can name the solution to the equation? They can’t.

Steve Goddard
March 23, 2010 3:24 pm

R. Gates,
Polar sea ice has scarcely changed during the satellite record, and is right at normal now.
http://arctic.atmos.uiuc.edu/cryosphere/IMAGES/global.daily.ice.area.withtrend.jpg
Hope you are prepared to cope when summer extent in the Arctic ends up close to normal this year.

FTM
March 23, 2010 3:27 pm

Proof positive that try as you might you just can’t stop stupid.

Richard Sharpe
March 23, 2010 3:29 pm

David Alan Evans (13:59:25) said:

Peter Miller (11:51:25) :
Dr. Rock – I’d Rather Have A Bottle In Front of Me (Than A Frontal Lobotomy)
I love that too 🙂

It seems that that saying is more correctly attributed to Dorothy [Rothschild] Parker:
http://everything2.com/?node_id=820199

Steve Goddard
March 23, 2010 3:29 pm

Wren,
Most people reject CAGW because they see that the catastrophic predictions are not happening.
Some people have their eyes open, while other self-proclaimed “open minded” people have their eyes and ears shut tight.

Ben D
March 23, 2010 3:33 pm

Steve Goddard (09:39:15) :
“Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach”
Actually it may be better stated that:
““Those who can, do. Those who can’t, teach. Those who can’t teach, teach Cognitive Science and Linguistics””

Roger Knights
March 23, 2010 3:35 pm
Mari Warcwm
March 23, 2010 3:36 pm

In a humble hairdressing salon in North London this afternoon the general discussion among the ladies, for they were all ladies, turned to Global Warming. It’s rubbish, inn’it, look at this cold winter , gone back to winter as they was, Spring is late – did you hear about the flower festival and there was no daffodils out? And all that snow – Doris broke her wrist, the Royal Free was full of fractures, nah, it’s rubbish. They got it wrong.
How much more intelligence was displayed there than by this California-Berkeley Professor. Cut off their taxpayer funded salaries!

rhondda
March 23, 2010 3:37 pm

It is so good to know that there are others who were former believers in the global warming scam. I am not a scientist, but I began to be suspicious of the politics. I began reading about how propaganda works and found a few skeptic sites that explained why they were skeptical of the science. Things began to fit together. Using fear for your children’s children and one’s love for animals was really a good trick. I don’t feel so stupid anymore.
Thanks for you work.

Steve Goddard
March 23, 2010 3:39 pm

Global warming kind of makes sense if you don’t have many facts available.
1. CO2 absorbs LW radiation. More CO2 means it warms up.
2. People feel guilty about the environment, imagining that life was better for primitive people who lived to an average age of 22.
3. There never used to be any storms or heat waves before the automobile was invented.
4. Polar bears never used to have to swim before the invention of the automobile.

Jimbo
March 23, 2010 3:40 pm

This paper is akin to Phrenology. What a load of utter bollocks!
Remember “rotten ice”, “flowers losing scent”, “global warming leads to more violence”, “edible pets”, “give up meat” etc.? The alarmists are really desperate now as the warmth slips from their fingers and brings a chill down their spines [pun intended].
For more media alarmist desperation reports see:
http://www.numberwatch.co.uk/warmlist.htm

Lazarus Long
March 23, 2010 3:42 pm

Yeah, yeah, the reactionary leftist hatred for conservatives, classical liberals and libertarians is an old story, they’ve been peddling this same line of cr@p for years.

DirkH
March 23, 2010 3:43 pm

“Mari Warcwm (15:36:11) :
[…]
How much more intelligence was displayed there than by this California-Berkeley Professor. Cut off their taxpayer funded salaries!”
He’d still have the Fenton money. I herewith declare the discovery of a new species of invertebrate: The Bearded Western Mock Scientist.
(And no, it still has nothing to do with left or right but with being corruptible.)

Lazarus Long
March 23, 2010 3:43 pm

Oh, yeah, it’s an desperate adaptation of the despicable communist claims about so-called “false conciousness”.

Philemon
March 23, 2010 3:43 pm

lakoff, v. To rub the deep structure of a sentence until it expresses its logical form. “Too much laking off can cause insanity.”
The Philosophical Lexicon, 2008 edition.
http://www.philosophicallexicon.com/

Jimbo
March 23, 2010 3:55 pm

Keeping an open mind. What does it mean? Does it mean that we continued to accept that the Sun goes round the Earth? Ulcers are mostly caused by food / stress and not by a bacterium? The Earth’s continents are static? If we all went along with the above consensuses by keeping an open mind where would science be today?

Bruce Cobb
March 23, 2010 3:56 pm

“And what they try to do is show that the science is wrong and that the argument is wrong, based on the science. So when it comes back to science, they try to debunk the science,” Lakoff said.
Huh? And this guy is supposed to be a professor of linguistics? Beyond the garbled language though, it sounds like he’s bashing skeptics for being skeptical, for having the audacity to try to debunk “the science”, which is what scientists are supposed to do to begin with.
““Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’”
Substitute “Alarmists” for the word Liberals, and his statement begins to make sense, because for Alarmists, the focus really is on the harm they imagine will happen due to mankind, if he doesn’t mend his ways. The science is secondary, and is just a means to an end. The thought that the science could be faulty doesn’t enter their tiny brains, or if it does, it is quickly banished. Any facts or science refuting Alarmist “science” is automatically rejected.
His descriptions of how “Liberals” and “Conservatives” think are laughable. I feel sorry for his students.

David L
March 23, 2010 4:00 pm

Total BS and completely offensive!!! Conservatives cant be open minded scientists????? Only Liberals have the capacity for open minded scientific thought and care about the world???? BS. BS. BS!!!!
I and many of my PhD friends are conservative, went to the best graduate schools, have very successful scientific careers, and completely disagree with the AGW data.

son of mulder
March 23, 2010 4:16 pm

“Proponents of human-caused global warming claim that “cognitive” brain function prevents conservatives from accepting the science that says “climate change” is an imminent threat to planet Earth and its inhabitants.”
“It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,” Lakoff said.
=================================================
What has this to do with science? No way I’m a conservative, which is a particular socioecophilosophical view of the human condition and morals.
His words are those of a desperate cadre who realise that they have no real scientifically significant support for the climate system that they crave as justification for their view of the anthroposphere and hence they spout this drivel in a desperate attempt to achieve some sort of moral high ground (or immoral high temperature).
It just gets more and more pathetic!

J. D. Lindskog
March 23, 2010 4:20 pm

Liberal cognitive dissonance = self perpetuating phalicies.
Pun intended.

jlc
March 23, 2010 4:23 pm

Along with a good many of the other commenters here, I was a socialist for most of my life.
I did, however, retain an open mind and gradually and painfully became conservative.
I am absolutely in favour of sensible and verifiable environmental legislation.
I am totally opposed to enforced use of CFLs, especially in Canada where the heat from the incandescents has to be replaced by peak generation. Typically, this means using coal to replace hydro.
“Where ignorance is bliss, ’tis folly to be wise”.

chip
March 23, 2010 4:24 pm

Burt Rutan, Freeman Dyson, Ray Kurzweil. I mean, how closed-minded can you get, as opposed to those free thinkers at Berkeley?

James F. Evans
March 23, 2010 4:33 pm

From the posted paper: “On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”
This is the biggest fallacy and insult.
Objective scientists and/or scientific observers apply BOTH reasonable scepticism AND an open-mind to evidence offered in support of a scientfic proposition or against a scientific proposition as the case may be.
But where the fallacy and insult come into play is to assume that conservatives don’t have an open-mind to evidence.
No political persuasion has a monopoly on having an open-mind.
Are there closed minds? Of course there are, but an analogy is to alcoholism: Alcoholism knows no class, political persuasion, race, philosophy, or creed.
So, too, the same is true for having an closed-mind.
Or the reverse, having an open-mind is not the monopoly of any political persuasion, class, race, philosophy, or creed.
It is the conceit of George Lakoff to postulate that one political persuasion is more open-minded than another.
There are liberals that reject AGW based on the science just as there as conservatives that reject AGW based on the sience, and every political stripe in between.
One can only shake their heads when somebody projects their personal assumptions (and political assumptions) into the shape of a supposedly scientific paper.
George Lakoff is wrong — and, frankly, I think he hurts his cause by making such foolish statements and then pretends science backs him up.

Zeke the Sneak
March 23, 2010 4:44 pm

“It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,” Lakoff said.
“And what they try to do is show that the science is wrong and that the argument is wrong, based on the science. So when it comes back to science, they try to debunk the science,” Lakoff said.

“Trust but verify.” -Ronaldus Maximus Or, put that another way, “Verify.”
Oh so they don’t have that in cognitive and linguistic science.
He would really be shocked at the incredible parallel computing abilities of my conscious and inmost minds!

R. Gates
March 23, 2010 4:49 pm

Steve Goddard said:
“Most people reject CAGW because they see that the catastrophic predictions are not happening.”
________
Correction, MOST people don’t care one way or another..they neither reject nor accept CAGW. They simply want to live their lives, make a living, raise their famiiles, etc. It is only the “freaks” (and I include myself in this group) who frequent web sites like WUWT, and like to talk about this sort of thing and spend any time at all even thinking about it. MOST people don’t really care one way or another. The only way MOST people will ever car about AGW (or any issue outside their direct daily life) is if it actually starts to really impact their lives in some meaningful direct way. Unfortunately, if AGW is a real effect, if it ever really starts to impact people’s daily lives in a negative way…it will be too late. On the flip side, it could impact their lives in a positive way (i.e. greater crop yields, new places to take an ocean cruise in the arctic, etc.) and they still wouldn’t care much about the actual phenomenon. Bottom line– most people don’t care about anything other than that which immediately and directly impacts their daily life and convenience.

March 23, 2010 4:49 pm

Paraphrasing here, can’t remember the exact quote….
“Those who do not believe in the Truth are defective. They must accept the guidance of those who know the Truth. For the good of all, they must be brought to the path of Truth though they may resist this for being defective.”
Who? Lakoff? No, I was paraphrasing Osama bin Ladin. Who is Lakoff?

March 23, 2010 4:52 pm

Proponents of human-caused global warming claim that “cognitive” brain function prevents conservatives from accepting the science that says “climate change” is an imminent threat to planet Earth and its inhabitants.

So that makes an immediate and false assumption that ‘conservatives’ do not believe in any AGW threat. I fail to see how such a false polarisation of the issue is in any way intelligent or constructive.

Lakoff told CNSNews.com that “metaphors” shape a person’s understanding of the world, along with one’s values and political beliefs — including what they think about global warming.

So we are talking about ‘Metaphors’ here. That is appropriate, because nothing in the AGW argument is based on any tangible reality. Calling the arguments ‘metaphors’ works, so does ‘parables’ in my book.

“It relates directly (to global warming) because conservatives tend to feel that the free market should be unregulated and (that) environmental regulations are immoral and wrong,” Lakoff said.

OK, so I can see a small piece of logic. Conservatives don’t believe in regulations, AGW sceptics don’t believe in CO2 regulations, ipso facto, sceptics are conservatives. Well, it must be said that correlation does not equal causation. Oh, and I think we pointed that out about the whole AGW argument too.

“And what they try to do is show that the science is wrong and that the argument is wrong, based on the science. So when it comes back to science, they try to debunk the science,” Lakoff said.

Yup!

On the other hand, he added, liberals’ cognitive process allows them to be “open-minded.”

Oh? What is it about being a ‘liberal’ that makes it easier to be ‘open minded’? Just about every single AGV web site I have ever seen displays an incredible reluctance to ‘open’ their minds. I think you are making that one up out of thin air, perhaps even CO2?

“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’” Lakoff said.

As do sceptics, yes.

In a Feb. 23 report on National Public Radio, reporter Christopher Joyce began his story by stating that recent polls show that fewer Americans believe humans are making the planet dangerously warmer, despite “a raft” of contradictory reports.

Yup. That could be because of the ‘raft’ of evidence that the ‘raft’ of contradictory reports have been largely made up. The increasing stupidity of new reports tells us the same thing, only more so.

“This puzzles many climate scientists, but not social scientists, whose research suggests that facts may not be as important as one’s beliefs,” Joyce said.

Well, we are seeing that all over in the AGW crowd, aren’t we?

Lakoff, however, said that “99.999 percent of the science is final” on global warming and, in fact, the term “climate change” should be changed to “climate crisis” to more accurately describe the phenomenon.
“Climate crisis says we had something to do with it and we better act fast because that’s the reality,” Lakoff said

Show me. Go, on, show me. I promise to believe there is a problem if you can show it to me.

Lakoff said while he doesn’t think of himself as someone who attacks conservatives for having a different world view than liberals, he does believe that in the case of global warming, the conservative view is “deadly.”

While roundly attacking sceptics for being conservatives, and conservatives for being ‘closed minded’ (by implication as the liberals are able to be ‘open minded’ of course), he can really say that with a straight face? I’m impressed!

“I think this is a place where a certain moral world view comes into conflict with scientific fact in a way that is harmful to the Earth,” Lakoff said.

Could not agree more, except I would substitute “our economy” for “the Earth”.

In a February article on The Huffington Post, Lakoff praised recent media reports on the physiological and conceptual roots of political beliefs. He credited some of the movement to his 1996 book “Moral Politics,” where he claims that these beliefs are rooted in the “two profoundly different models of the ideal family, a strict father family for conservatives and a nurturant family for liberals.”

This is so funny! He should do stand-up!

Lakoff writes, “In the ideal strict father family, the world is seen as a dangerous place and the father functions as protector from ‘others’ and the parent who teaches children absolute right from wrong by punishing them physically (painful spanking or worse) when they do wrong. The father is the ultimate authority, children are to obey, and immoral practices are seen as disgusting.
“Ideal liberal families are based on nurturance, which breaks down into empathy, responsibility (for oneself and others) and excellence — doing well as one can to make oneself and one’s family and community better.”

Yup, a definite talent there. I’m just trying to figure out where I am in his boxed-in world view. Life is so much more complicated than that simplistic puerile scenario, sorry. I think you may be able to figure out what his childhood was like though, as I suspect he is projecting. If he has children of his own, and I doubt it from this statement, it will not end well, I think.

West Houston
March 23, 2010 4:56 pm

Quoting:
“Liberals say, ‘Look seriously at the science and look at whether people are going to be harmed or not and whether the world is going to be harmed,’”
Commenting:
Nope. Liberals say, “What can we hate today? Oh, yes, Conservatives. What don’t they like? Oh, yes, pseudoscientific mumbo-jumbo that says natural climate variation is Man’s fault. Let’s take them out back and beat them senseless! …Hey, where’d everybody go?”

Zeke the Sneak
March 23, 2010 5:05 pm

Doctor My Eyes

Tell me what is wrong

Was I unwise to leave them open for so long?

Just say if it’s too late for me

R. Gates
March 23, 2010 5:05 pm

Steve Goddard said:
“Hope you are prepared to cope when summer extent in the Arctic ends up close to normal this year.”
_________
Not sure what you mean by this, but I will find it fascinating iff arctic summer sea ice ends up close to normal, considering it has been so far below “normal” (in terms of anomalies) since 2004. I was actually surprized it did not peak into the positive anomaly range this spring already. (but there is still time). I would have thought the prolonged solar minimum might have kicked it over. Either way, one spring or one season of ice melt does not a climate make. For example, if we get a really big volcanic eruption in Iceland, this could cool things off for a year or two, just as Pinatubo did in 1991. And so, I am more interested in what the long term trends are for sea ice (both arctic and antarctic) between now and 2015. If arctic sea ice goes through a 4 or 5 year growing trend between now and then…without a major volcanic eruption, well, I’ll begin to have my serious doubts about the accuracy of AGW models. As it stands today (again, short of a major volcanic eruption), I still think 2010 will be the warmest year on instrument record, and the arctic sea ice will have a summer low less than 2009 or 2008, but not quite as low as 2007. So I am excited to see if my “guess” holds up– but I have no vested interest other than that.

March 23, 2010 5:07 pm

There are many philosophical liberals who reject global warming alarmism because we’ve examined the scientific claims and they don’t stack up.
But this is exactly what happened during the Lysenko era – Mendelian biologists were pilloried as mental defectives by other scientists.

John Whitman
March 23, 2010 5:08 pm

Laughable are Lakoff’s thoughts.
But ignore his philosophical errors at your own risk. They are pandemic.
Point 1 – If human thoughts are subjective, as he suggests, then since he is human his thoughts are subjective and we can just disregard his thoughts as no more valid than those he disagrees with. This is the inherent subjectivist dilemma. Politically this means anything goes, there is no fact/knowledge/truth.
Point 2 – At root, both major American political parties are philosophical similar in their premise. That premise is man’s mind and his the product of his thoughts are secondary to some higher authority. One says that higher authority is the state, the other says it is the teachings of some diety belief system. Same coin, different sides. Surprisingly, the beliefs within each party are a bewildering array of inconsistencies. It is like they were made up at the spur of the moment on a random basis.
Point 3 – If you want idependent knowledge, facts and consistency . . . the political parties aren’t going to provide it. You must provide it yourself with rational, logical, consistent application of your mental capabilities.
John

March 23, 2010 5:08 pm

Looking at that last bit, I think I am in both camps, although I cannot see how. I am strict when important (to me – I’m not reading from anyone else’s book on that one) lines are transgressed, even to the point of ‘smacking’ (oh the horror) our children when I think it is required. But I also nurture them, and pretty much let them do what they like as long as it is not harmful or dangerous. I would even let them believe in AGW, although I’d try to convince them otherwise. And I do let them know the world is a dangerous place. It really is. Children need to be told about the dangers of drugs and even STD’s, as they are a reality (even at 12). There are also naste dangerous people about and knowing they are can help should you come across them (luckily this is far less often than parents imagine).
The world is also full of nasty people who would like to steal money from you. By taxing you with false premises, for example.
I pretty much adhere to the Terry Pratchett school of thought as to bringing up kids, you look after them, try to stop them killing themselves, and hope they don’t catch anything fatal. I mean, what more can you really do? I also encourage them to have as much fun as possible, as long as it is not at anyone else’s expense.
What does that make me? I think a liberal in his book, although not as foolish a one as to believe the world is a warm confortable cosy place. I’ve seen enough of it no know the reality is so different, unless you perhaps happen to be a ‘rich liberal’ (which maybe I am). By rich, I mean those able to afford food, clothes, hot water, heating and education for their children, along with a luxury or two like a computer, or a car.
OMG, I’ll start believing in AGW next!

Steve Goddard
March 23, 2010 5:10 pm

R. Gates (16:49:34) :
The reason that concern for global warming has collapsed in the polls is because nobody sees it happening.
Three years ago global warming was worth a Nobel Prize and an Academy Award. This year it is less valuable than Charmin. Very few people take it seriously any more outside of the Obama administration.

Philemon
March 23, 2010 5:15 pm

DirkH (14:30:09) :
Oh looky here what our friend the wikipedia has to say about recent activities of Mr. Lakoff:
“In 2008, Lakoff joined Fenton Communications, the nation’s largest public interest communications firm, as a Senior Consultant.”
Fenton Communications must be getting desperate if they’re paying good money for Lakoff.
I’d like to look at the acknowledgements in Lakoff’s book to see who he thanked for paying him for the time he spent writing it. Fodor always had to thank the NSF because they would fund anything by a philosopher who argued he had the key to the language of thought; what a con. I wonder who Lakoff had to thank.

Editor
March 23, 2010 5:15 pm

Wren: you keep asking how many national science academies support the AGW position and how many do not. That is nothing more than a variation on the argument from authority. Your question is irrelevant on a number of grounds:
1. the statements of support generally emanate from a committee recommendation and were not put to the membership for approval;
2. many societies have no expertise in the topic and rely for their evidence on the very same researchers who have been so thoroughly discredited by climate-gate;
3. the societies have become activists and purveyors of alarmism. Take this gem from The Interacademy Panel, an affiliate of the Interacademy Council which has been selected by the UN to review the IPCC:
Over the past 200 years, the oceans have absorbed approximately a quarter of the CO2 produced from human activities. This CO2 would otherwise have accumulated in the atmosphere leading to greater climate change. However, the absorption of this CO2 has affected ocean chemistry and has caused the oceans (which are on average slightly alkaline) to become more acidic. The average pH of oceanic surface waters has been lowered by 0.1 units since the pre-industrial period. This represents a 30% increase in hydrogen ion activity. Hydrogen ions attack carbonate ions which are the building blocks needed by many marine organisms, such as corals and shellfish, to produce their skeletons, shells and other hard structures. This loss of carbonate ions produce lower saturation levels for the carbonate minerals, aragonite and calcite, which are used in many shells and skeletons. Carbonate ion concentrations are now lower than at any other time during the last 800 000 years.
Global atmospheric CO2 concentrations are now at 387 ppm. If current trends in CO2 emissions continue, model projections suggest that by mid-century CO2 concentrations