Teaching People Climate Science “Dampens Public Concern”

Polarbear-eat-Garbage

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Why would teaching people more about science, tend to reduce concern about Climate Change? The obvious explanation is there is something wrong with the science, that scientific literacy helps people see through the hype. But what happens, if a climate behaviourist ignores or refuses to consider the obvious?

What makes us care about climate change?

“Our research clearly shows that education and decision support aimed at the public and policy makers is not a lost cause.”

Knowledge about the causes of climate change was correlated with higher levels of concern about climate change in all of the countries studied—Canada, China, Germany, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.

“We think this is because knowledge about causes cements in our minds the fact that it’s human actions that have set the risks in motion, and that human action may be taken to reduce the risks,” Arvai said. “This finding was weakest in China, perhaps because the emphasis is on economic growth, even it comes at the expense of the environment.”

Knowledge about the consequences of climate change was also a strong predictor of concern. But greater knowledge about the biophysical dimensions of climate change tended to dampen public concern.

“We think this is because focusing on the technical dimensions of a problem like climate change dehumanises it and focuses our collective attention away from the individuals and communities—human and nonhuman—that are at the gravest risk,” Arvai said.

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2016-04-climate.html

The abstract of the study;

It is intuitive to assume that concern about climate change should be preceded by knowledge about its effects. However, recent research suggests that knowledge about climate change has only a limited effect on shaping concern about climate change. Our view is that this counterintuitive finding is a function of how knowledge is typically measured in studies about climate change. We find that if it is measured in a domain-specific and multidimensional way, knowledge is indeed an important driver of concern about climate change—even when we control for human values. Likewise, different dimensions of knowledge play different roles in shaping concern about climate change. To illustrate these findings, we present the results from a survey deployed across six culturally and politically diverse countries. Higher levels of knowledge about the causes of climate change were related to a heightened concern. However, higher levels of knowledge about the physical characteristics of climate change had either a negative or no significant effect on concern. Efforts aimed at improving public knowledge about climate change are therefore not the lost cause that some researchers claim they may be.

Read more (Paywalled): http://www.nature.com/nclimate/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nclimate2997.html

You see, we bad – apparently we don’t care, because instead of filling our time watching videos about starving polar bears, we looked behind the curtain, and discovered that the ugly defects in the theory were more interesting than the frantic ongoing appeal to our emotions.

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91 thoughts on “Teaching People Climate Science “Dampens Public Concern”

  1. Interesting –

    “We think this is because focusing on the technical dimensions of a problem like climate change dehumanises it and focuses our collective attention away from the individuals and communities—human and nonhuman—that are at the gravest risk,” Arvai said.

    In all honesty, I would think that it would REQUIRE you to “dehumanize” a problem so that you could objectively and accurately take proper measures to address it. If you react emotionally, you will probably not actually take the correct steps. Hmmmm. NOW I understand the need for the continuous hype, so that people will react emotionally, and never realize that they aren’t solving a problem in the first place! clever little buggers, those CAGWers.

      • That’s because public opinion and “activism” don’t ride on dispassionate science, or dispassionate anything else. They require drama, an over-stimulated amygdala leading to a preoccupation with fear and an identity with GroupThink. No reference to reality required!

    • Actually, they don’t think, but that is a different matter all together. You see I doubt they can think.

      • To quote Edward Teller, “I have come to suspect that most people find thinking painful.”
        www-dot-youtube-dot-com/watch?v=Oh31I1F2vds time 0:56

      • It’s not that they can’t think. Bertrand Russell said “most people would rather die than think. In fact, many do”

    • This study is based on the false assumption that humans are causing changes in the climate. Delusions are not a good starting point for finding real answers. The authors are trying to understand a false reality without understanding it is false.

  2. This is what happens when you dont burn the trash. Bears will always go for a free feed if they can.
    They are not starving by the looks of that lot. What a load of old rubbish. :)

  3. Leo Tolstoy, 1897:
    “The most difficult subjects can be explained to the most slow-witted man if he has not formed any idea of them already; but the simplest things cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man if he is firmly persuaded that he knows already, without a shadow of doubt, what is laid before him.”

    • Leo Tolstoy wrote that before the discovery of Quantum Mechanics.
      You might explain Quantum Mechanics to the most slow-witted man, but will there be any understanding?

      The simplest things cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man because the intelligent man knows things are very seldom that simple. The intelligent man could know enough to know he is being lied to with such simplicity.

      • As to the understanding about all you can say is “yes and no at the same time”.

        My bad, I could not resist getting catty on this subject.

      • Trying to explain something to the slow witted is a test of one’s own understanding.

        I have observed that young or inadequate engineers and scientists have trouble explaining anything to anyone. The best, simplest, and clearest explanations always seemed to come from senior, respected practitioners.

      • Stephen,

        Whuhhhhh? Putting aside emotional intelligence, experiential intelligence, and just plain IQ intelligence for a moment…

        If something actually qualifies as one of the “simplest things”, you are claiming that that simple thing cannot be made clear to the most intelligent man because the knowledge that things are “VERY SELDOM” simple, somehow affects his superior intelligence in some manner that destroys his ability to determine for himself whether or not the “simplest things” fall into the “very seldom simple” category or not???? What kind of illogical nonsense is that?

        The intelligent man would not call something a lie, unless the majority of the evidence suggests that he is being lied to, because his superior intelligence would allow HIM to determine whether or not “the simplest things” really are that simple or not!

        Quantum Mechanics does not qualify as one of the “simplest things!”

      • Aphan says: April 26, 2016 at 2:29 pm

        Well done!

        … Quantum Mechanics does not qualify as one of the “simplest things!”

        Some things about quantum mechanics are relatively simple. For instance, a clever highschool student should be able to explain why a blue LED requires more voltage than an infrared LED.

    • On the same theme, the comment by Mark Twain that it isn’t what you don’t know that hurts you, it’s what you know that just isn’t so.

      • Don’t forget that other Twain quote, which is very appropriate to #ClimateScience™ and that the Thermageddonite PR-pushers know all to well: “It’s easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled.”

    • That is absolutely correct.

      One technique is to give students a problem that they think is simple and which they will get wrong. Now you have their attention.

      • Or you could pull the stunt one of my professors pulled on the class 2 years ahead of me: place a question on the first exam that he couldn’t solve in grad school. (analytical mechanics)

        Three people got up from the test and dropped the class. The worst part was he still didn’t have a solution to the problem and he mostly wanted to see how people would set it up an approach it.

  4. Actually learning about the science in climate science immediately exposes the huge uncertainties that exist in the temperature records, the sea ice records, and the climate model outputs all over the temperature plots, to name just 3 of many uncertainties.

    Such a huge level of uncertainty when you’re engaged in multi-trillion dollar makeovers of western economies… well the common folks just can’t be allowed to know how badly they and their children are being screwed in the name of pure socialism.

  5. File this one to the department of genuine “correlation equals causation”.
    It’s mind blowing that this would be published by non-skeptics; it shows prima facie that emotionless science doesn’t agree with CAGW nonsense.

    • It is rather “we select the data that proves what we want to prove.” I dare say that if you were to take the temperature record and the co2 record from the past 4000 years and compute a non-parametric correlation against them, you would find the correlation to be under 0.25. I say non-parametric since that measure does not use second moments or assume that the stuff being compared even has them. Given that the temperature record probably does not live in L2, but rather lives someplace in a space smaller than L2, parametric correlation is total rubbish. Temperature, climate, weather, etc. are mathematically chaotic processes. For short periods of time they can look like they live in L2, but if you extend the period, you will get wild oscillations in any second order statistic because they don’t. You would have thought that people understood strange attractors , logistic equations, and the experience of Lorenz, but their social programs and politics reduces them to the state of mindless mush.

      I have just downloaded a batch of ice core data. Hopefully, I slap some R together to do a bunch of very simple things on it. If so, I will author an article for Tony.

    • Actually, it is mind blowing because they are actually doing what they accused our side of doing.

      THEY ARE ADVOCATING NOT TEACHING SCIENCE because teaching science will make people disagree with their politics.

      Let that sink in. The mental dissonance here is deafening.

  6. Eric Worrall, you write many notes. Quantity is not quality though it transforms to quality according to Engels. How are you rewarded for your activists postings?

    [he’s not rewarded, compensating, or paid for any writings here, neither am I, I do find it odd though you need to hide behind a FAKE EMAIL ADDRESS to ask this question:

    utu1000@hush.ai – Result: Bad
    MX record about hush.ai exists.
    Connection succeeded to mx4.hushmail.com SMTP.
    220 smtp10.hushmail.com ESMTP Postfix

    > HELO verify-email.org
    250 smtp10.hushmail.com

    > MAIL FROM:
    =250 2.1.0 Ok

    > RCPT TO:
    =554 5.7.1 : Recipient address rejected: Account expired

    Go away you fake – Anthony Watts]

  7. ..Hey, that’s some funny looking ICE in that picture..Polar Bears MUST have ice to live…right ?

    • Marcus, thats the fall Churchhill trash dump up on your Hudson Bay. A polar bear magnet. Great book, Never look a polar bear in the eye.

      • ..How about “Never go to trash dumps in the North so you don’t have to worry about looking a Polar Bear in the eye” ?? That’s the book I would write ! LOL

  8. Eric, what the “author” said about the study, and how the interviewer wrote it up, does not accurately reflect the CONCLUSIONS of the study-

    The abstract you showed says-

    “Our research clearly shows that education and decision support aimed at the public and policy makers is not a lost cause.”

    And:

    “Higher levels of knowledge about the causesof climate change were related to a heightened concern. However, higher levels of knowledge about the physical characteristics of climate change had either a negative or no significant effect on concern. Efforts aimed at improving public knowledge about climate change are therefore not the lost cause that some researchers claim they may be.”

    In other words-teaching people that tectonic plates can cause climate change, and the Sun can cause climate change, and that (supposedly) CO2 increases MIGHT cause climate change, and rotational cycles of the planet…cause
    BUT
    Teaching people how the physical aspects of the climate work, and knowledge about the empirical evidence (or lack of it) related to the physical characteristics of climate change had either a negative or no significant effect on concern. AS IT SHOULD! Because when people understand the physical properties and characteristics of climate change, they naturally, normally, should become LESS concerned!

    I think this paper is a SLAP in the face to all those “psychologists” that claim that culture or political leanings or ideologies are what is preventing Americans from accepting CAGW theory….it’s the FACTS that are! The article also says:

    “Knowledge about the consequences of climate change was also a strong predictor of concern. But greater knowledge about the biophysical dimensions of climate change tended to dampen public concern.”

    Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2016-04-climate.html#jCp

    Which means in other words- “Describing consequences of climate change without any evidence or knowledge of exactly what will happen in the future makes people MORE CONCERNED…..but once they actually understand the biophysical dimensions of climate change well, they become less concerned.”

    It’s beautiful. *sniff*

  9. Another interesting tidbit from the nature.com site-

    Joseph Arvai is NOT the lead author. Jing Shi is. And he, along with two of the other three authors, are from SWITZERLAND….not Michigan. Arvai is the only “U of M” author and he’s in the “Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109, USA” Where does the article at pys.org.com get off saying that this was a “University of Michigan study”?????????

    “All authors contributed to the design, data collection and written presentation for the research reported here. In addition, J.S., V.H.M.V. and M.S. organized and managed the data collection in China, Germany, Switzerland and the UK and J.A. coordinated data collection in Canada and the US. J.S. was primarily responsible for data analysis and for the first complete draft of this manuscript.”

    I suspect that the article at psy.org.com was written by an AGW “activist” who selected the author that was the most sympathetic to the AGW mentality, rather than the lead author for a reason.

    • ..Aphan..I’m shocked at you !! Are implying that a CAGW believer might actually stoop so low as to do something..deceptive ?? /sarc off !!

    • Aphan,

      Clearly, you don’t understand how science “reporting” works. U of M issues a press release. Understandably, they talk up the U of M researcher. The “reporter” regurgitates the press release as news.

      Everyone’s happy.

    • Hi Aphan, Marcus.
      You know another thing the warmists don’t want you doing is checking out the weather in other parts of the world.
      I made this list of snow storms – blizzards from I.A.N.
      April
      20.Romania Blizzard
      21. Newfoundland Blizzard
      21.Anatolia Turkey snow storm
      22.St Petersburg Russia Blizzard
      22 Argentina snow storm
      23. London U.K. snow flurries
      23. Venezuela. snow storm
      24. Czech Republic snow storm
      25 Norway, Belgium, Denmark, Germany snow storm way to go cop21!
      25 Northern Nevada N.W.S warning 1-2ft of snow Also Wyoming, oh and still yelling
      25. And Flagstaff AZ got another snow storm.

      As for today there are several more scattered across the globe.
      Lets see April showers bring.. more blizzards, snow storms or flowers.

      michael

      • A foot of snow forecast in Denver due to the system approaching later this week. Nothing unusual. It’s happened before and will happen again. It’s weather. Luckily, the warmists were wrong again and I still know what snow is. I like a mid spring snowfall.

        Something I’ve noticed about my kids generation (millenials). It seems easy to convince them that things that they’ve not experienced first-hand, or that don’t appear in their video games, is unprecedented. Little sense of history or even historical curiosity across a majority of people their age, it seems. I’m amazed at how easily they seem to fall for this. I don’t recall that from my youth. I was very skeptical of anything I didn’t look into closely, and even some things that I did look into closely (not always trusting my sources). It would be interesting to hear others opinions on my anecdotal experience. When did kids start believing all the indoctrination that is thrust at them in school?

      • Boulder Skeptic … my understanding of education these days (sketchy, at best) is that very little history is taught, anymore … at least, not the way it used to be. I don’t think they’re taught anything about world history, so they have no basis for understanding the Medieval Warm Period, the Little Ice Age, Vikings settling in Greenland, etc. They think ‘history’ is memories from their own childhood.

      • I’m going to be in Denver all next week. My wife probably won’t like sitting around the hotel while it snows.

      • This suggests to me that eventually there will have to be laws to ban people from going outside – in case they encounter real weather.

  10. So a little knowledge is a dangerous thing,CAGW Doom Gloom Bad Mankind.
    A little more knowledge= “Nevermind”.
    What was that great quote?
    The average young persons who make up the ranks of the environmental activists,are willing to do anything to save the planet.Except take some real science courses and find out what is really happening.
    I guess the activists need simple slogans..Save the plants?

  11. Yes. Belief has everything to do with emotions, not actual knowledge. Most importantly, people need guilt for their Original Sins – that of emitting evil “carbon”, especially those in richer countries. This is what they mean when they say “knowledge of causes of climate change”. It is their sick, twisted, false knowledge.
    We could have told them that.

    • …that’s because it can only hold so much before it gets soggy and all the bullshit falls through…………..

  12. That’s the thing, when claims become so over the top, people start to look into it. More and more regular citizens are looking into it, and talking together on sites like this one.

    When I found WUWT – years ago now – I suddenly went from feeling alone with my skepticism to being part of a community. I wasn’t alone! My guess is that there’s a lot of people out there still in the “I’m alone” stage, not wanting to voice their questions because of how skeptics have been treated. One by one, though, they are peeking under the hood.

    The best bit is that questions are being asked out loud. I’m seeing articled published in newspapers and magazines that would never have seen the light of day five years ago – questions asked in the senate or in parliament, politicians stepping aside from the meme. The comments in papers have changed (for the most part – not all) – despite the shouting that goes on to shut everybody up.

    It’s like an avalanche is underway. That’s why I’m watching. That’s why I’m in every day. And this is the site to watch! :)

  13. Not surprisingly the prophets of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming advocate for carbon[-based] reduction and sequestration. The planners and controllers have found a new angle to demand tributes, environmental stability, and green lawns. Same old narrative. The orthodoxy never dies, but changes, and progresses.

    As for science, the logic of its domain is clear… However, people need to believe, in something.

  14. So funny … they can’t even see glaring light this sheds on CAGW – i.e. – the more your know , the less you find it a “valid hypothesis” . These warmers need to wake up & smell the coffee !

  15. There is an advocacy model of restructuring that funnels people through a series of hoops controlling behavior and speech.

    Feminism and social justice are so very similar to the whole apparatus of climate change outside of science, with false statistics and claims aplenty.

    Just as fainting couch feminism actually detracts from the real issues some women face with bigot fools, and social justice advocates essentially tell us all white males are racist even without trying to be, and privileged (I checked my privilege, it was very low and I cant get a refill apparently, I called the patriarchy support line and was on hold and hung up eventually)

    Of course, doing anything is not as attractive as shouting and getting the control you want, hence Anita Sarkesian doesn’t fight for women in Saudi Arabia or Libya for example, instead focusing on experimenting with society instead and openly discussing at the UN that she wants to change how we think, to her preferences, which can only be performed on future generations.

    Obviously the climatists have been trying to get kids for a decade good and proper now, but are really cranking it up now because they know they have lost the doomsday arguments due to the world still being here and all.

    Social justice has given us hoards of Pre PTSD safe space bed wetters who literally fly into a hysterical rage because your opinion is different or just because you used a logical non emotional argument to burst their bubble.

    They say the “education system should be building a home, not focusing on education” << this was at yale btw, They want a home.. and all baddied excluded, in-groups, the very bases for horrible things to happen.
    The climate safe space bed wetters are also the same, Sks is exactly that, for people who get PTSD reading Anthony's articles

    So to recap, "wont someone think of the children"..
    When I was young, 4 to 10, my concerns were going out and getting covered in mud and later on girls covered in mud were my concerns.

    Now children of 4 can be asked in school what gender they want to be, told "we are killing the planet". Told about terrorism and all manner of sh!t likely to keep the psychiatrists couches full for the next 60 years.

    • People come here from many backgrounds united in a desire to understand and spread knowledge about the science and media representation of the Earth’s climate. Potentially some of us here are trans. I know many are women (potentially leaning toward feminism of some description?). I don’t think it’s a valuable addition to the conversation to vent your conservative bigotry at these groups who may be equally interested in seeking the truth about climate. Let’s build bridges, not walls.

      • Mark’s sentence, “Now children of 4 can be asked in school what gender they want to be” is “conservative bigotry”? How does that figure?

      • Marcus: Um, no. I think the snarky Sarkesian reference pushes this well outside anything presented at WUWT.

        PiperPaul: At what age do _you_ suggest we stop imposing an incorrect gender determination on a trans child? 18? (I don’t personally care what your (or Mark’s) answer is, the question is just needlessly political for this forum.)

        There’s no way to win progressive-leaning hearts and minds on the global warming issues if we hitch it’s cart to a bunch of other conservative opinions that are only related by the U.S. left/right political divide.

      • Let’s each speak the truth as we see it, and not be bullied by control freaks like Adriaan, here, I say.

      • Adriaan,

        “People come here from many backgrounds united in a desire to understand and spread knowledge about the science and media representation of the Earth’s climate.”

        A virtual impossibility, as I see the world I find myself in . . it is blatantly obvious to me that free speech is under attack on numerous fronts. The very concept that we are not being propagandized/manipulated through various controversial subjects/arenas, is beyond belief to me.

        I mast certainly do not put it past those attempting to stifle free discussion to exploit something like “gender” to help achieve their ends, and see no reason to think “trans people” are being accused of anything at all by raising the potential that they are being used/abused in this way . . that’s inclusive talk, around here ; )

      • JohnKnight … hear, hear! If someone doesn’t like a particular comment, here … buck up, it can’t harm you in any way. Skip comments you object to, and go on to the next one. There are many comments on this site that I find objectionable or boring … I just skip forward, or skip the entire thread and go read the next article. Most of us are AGW skeptics … but have little else in common. We’re a diverse lot, and some are more outspoken/plainspoken than others. I have seen some disgusting comments, but not one has ever deterred me from reading WUWT. It’s called diversity and tolerance … words that liberals claim to be all about, but have no clue what it means or how to live it.

    • I don’t have a major beef with Mark holding those opinions. it was the unwritten assumption that we all must obviously hate feminism and think trans people don’t really exist that struck me as off-putting, and a detriment in gaining allies in this fight. I know many people who would be more vocal about their “climate change” skepticism, if it didn’t mean they would be lumped in with people expressing attitudes like Mark’s.

      • hamlec1602,

        “I know many people who would be more vocal about their “climate change” skepticism, if it didn’t mean they would be lumped in with people expressing attitudes like Mark’s.”

        So, those who do this lumping of people into “bad” categories are controlling them, do you feel? It seemed to me that was what Mark was expressing, since he opened with;

        “There is an advocacy model of restructuring that funnels people through a series of hoops controlling behavior and speech.”

        Don’t you have a problem with the people making many people afraid to speak their mind for fear of being lumped by them? Why capitulate to such bullies?

      • I don’t have a major beef with Mark holding those opinions. it was the unwritten assumption that we all must obviously hate feminism and think trans people don’t really exist that struck me as off-putting…

        I’m really struggling with this thinking. You are not having a beef with an actual opinion expressed that you don’t hold. Rather, you are offended by something he didn’t write that you assumed he asserted on your behalf?

  16. The global climate cycle is something for which mankind needs to be prepared to adapt. The idea that a few windmills, higher taxes, subsidies, and wealth transfers will have an appreciable impact on the climate is absurd in the extreme.

  17. “…it is measured in a domain-specific and multidimensional way, knowledge is indeed an important driver of concern..”
    Gotta love technobabble like this. Right out of the StarGate sf series! (and worthy of the same amount of attention)

  18. So if people are taught that there are existing things that cause the climate to change, they are more likely to be concerned that the climate changes? Amazing.

    But if they are taught physics, atmosphere science, etc, their level of concern doesn’t just go higher? Amazing again.

  19. How abuot this analysis:

    Valley girls who care about lipstick and hair, not climate. Not concerned; think climate change is a control knob on the wall.

    People who attended school, didn’t listen and left as soon as the law allowed. Not concerned, heard of it because there was something on the WWE; literally never think or worry about global warming.

    People who went to high school and managed to pass the first time each year; never knew enough science to understand what the mechanisms are. Concerned because they ‘keep hearing about it’.

    People who got through school and listened attentively but could get through college for any number of reasons; are quite capable of self-education and are socially and economically active; run most small businesses. Initially concerned about global warming (remember that phrase) but according to their level of investigation become more and more skeptical because the claims are so outrageous/contradictory and don’t add up. This group fills most of the AGW space, either pro or con.

    People who became well educated by any measure, have experience with scientific matters, understand the world of publishing, PR, the importance of policy choices and the implications of long term strategies for their corporate and or social teams. This group is powerful. It is divided into two parts: Group 1 consists of those who support CAGW and are deliberately seeking position, leadership and influence, or seeking to correct wrongs committed by themselves and others. Group 2 are those trying to expose the perfidy of the C in CAGW while trying to get on with the thousand other things they have to accomplish in life.

    Basically, if you know nothing in the first place, you don’t care about human-caused global warming. as a risk now or ever. As you are more indoctrinated into the homogenised school system, you care about the things you are told to care about. As you become ever-more aware and knowledgeable, you start not caring about it less and less as you realise the risks and reality have been grossly over-claimed. There is that small portion of this latter group who are opportunists and carreerists who abandon the principles of their education and training to jump on the (rather well paid and politically powerful) bandwagon of CAGW for selfish reasons. Show me an alarmist (on any topic) and I will show you someone seeking leadership. People seek leadership for selfish reasons. We should never choose as leaders people who seek the position. Chew on that for a while.

    It is very difficult to rationalise a CAGW promoter as being ‘unselfish’ because there is in the science, all that is needed to demonstrate there the risks of ‘warming’ are far outweighed by the benefits. Cope and move on. A warmer, healthier, less stormy, more food-productive, more water efficient, more comfortable world is a very big plus. Having sea levels slowly return to what they were thousands of years ago is not a very big negative. Having warmer winters but not hotter summers is a very big plus. Summers are hot enough. Winters are too cold and require too much effort and expense to ameliorate.

    Above a certain level of understanding and experience, the more you know, the more you can deal with the economic and social catastrophe that is catastrophic anthropogenic global warming alarmism (CAGWA). Let’s all move along to the next (preventable) catastrophe. Maybe we’ll get lucky and it will be something that matters.

    • @Crispin in Waterloo but as far as I can tell from the last few years he is, “all over the place”, I really like GAGWA! thanks.

  20. These alarmists are as much as saying that if scientific literacy about anthropogenic carbon change is restricted to the orthodoxy proclaimed by the politically-accepted “consensus” on a kind of “regurgitate-to-graduate” basis, then the members of a lay audience will receive said contentions as valid. Indeed, as the science on the subject.

    If, however, such same folk were to be educated in scientific method and apply the error-checking functions thereof to the contentions of the “consensus,” acceptance of the sacred truths (and excitement over allegations of both causation and catastrophe) drops off precipitously.

    Anthropogenic Global Warming is a crippled conjecture, doomed just by these principles of science never to advance to a hypothesis. Its fate would be sealed by a minimally scientifically literate public.

    — Jeff Glassman, PhD, “Conjecture, Hypothesis, Theory, Law: The Basis of Rational Argument” (December 2007)

    *

  21. Why did the state machine first teach me physics and maths and then try to bamboozle me into believing in a heap of bullshit about extreme weather, mass extinctions and sea level rise?
    A better strategy would have been to keep me stupid and afraid.
    Unfortunately for them I can read a graph and I can understand that correlation does not imply causation.
    So, I’m a tough customer, due to the “success” of my state funded education.
    They can’t have it both ways.
    Either you educate people, or you brainwash them.
    It seems though that in recent years the U.K. govt. has chosen to focus on the latter strategy, to the exclusion of the former.

  22. I admire them. When you have already drawn up your conclusions it takes a lot of effort to sift through the vast amount of data that disses it until you have found enough snippets to support it. Then you have to go through the whole process of making it as wordy and obscure as possible. Then you have to gather a list of names to give it weight. Preferably including a few foreign sounding ones. It’s not easy. Then you have to invent your own statistics to indicate what you had already decided. Well done.

    Imagine how daft they would have looked if they just wrote, ” We asked lots of people who understood the science and they all said it was bullshit.” No grant money there.

  23. From the Council of Toulouse 1229..

    ” We prohibit also that the laity should be permitted to have the books of the Old or New Testament; unless anyone from motive of devotion should wish to have the Psalter or the Breviary for divine offices or the hours of the blessed Virgin; but we most strictly forbid their having any translation of these books”.

    Don’t want those commoners knowing too much or they’ll develop their own ideas

  24. This is a bit off topic, but I am surprised at the picture of the dump with the polar bears. Not that the polar bears are finding food — but surprised at the amount of wood that is being thrown away. I would have thought that someone would have a better use for it. Fuel for heat? Hot water? Wood chips for composting? I dunno… Just seems like it could be put to economic use. Maybe local conditions make it cheaper to trash it than to use it.

  25. Seriously? Is this paper at Trojan horse? A paper that claims the more you know about hard sciences the less you worry about CAGW would never have made it past the guards at the gates a few years ago. It seems as though, cloaked in this paper, is a hidden invite for scientists to begin showing how each skeptical line of inquiry into Climate Change Theory dents the façade. Tellingly, the paper did not claim people who knew hard science but didn’t understand it reject CAGW. Implied is that whatever test they did showed subjects knew and understood science deeply. Possibly, the deeper the understanding, the stronger the rejection…

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