Facts, beliefs, and identity: The seeds of science skepticism


San Antonio, Texas – Psychological researchers are working to understand the cognitive processes, ideologies, cultural demands, and conspiracy beliefs that cause smart people to resist scientific messages. Using surveys, experiments, observational studies and meta-analyses, the researchers capture an emerging theoretical frontier with an eye to making science communication efforts smarter and more effective.

Protecting “Pet Beliefs”

One striking feature of people who hold science-skeptic views is that they are often just as educated, and just as interested in science, as the rest of us. The problem is not about whether they are exposed to information, but about whether the information is processed in a balanced way. It manifests itself in what Matthew Hornsey (University of Queensland) describes as “thinking like a lawyer,” in that people cherry-pick which pieces of information to pay attention to “in order to reach conclusions that they want to be true.”

“We find that people will take a flight from facts to protect all kinds of belief including their religious belief, their political beliefs, and even simple personal beliefs such as whether they are good at choosing a web browser,” says Troy Campbell (University of Oregon).

Dan Kahan (Yale University) agrees, finding in their research that “the deposition is to construe evidence in identity-congruent rather than truth-congruent ways, a state of disorientation that is pretty symmetric across the political spectrum.”

Changing Minds

Merely talking about “evidence” or “data” does not typically change a skeptic’s mind about a particular topic, whether it is climate change, genetically modified organisms, or vaccines. People use science and fact to support their particular opinion and will downplay what they don’t agree with.

“Where there is conflict over societal risks – from climate change to nuclear-power safety to impacts of gun control laws, both sides invoke the mantel of science,” says Kahan.

“In our research, we find that people treat facts as relevant more when the facts tend to support their opinions,” says Campbell. “When the facts are against their opinions, they don’t necessarily deny the facts, but they say the facts are less relevant.”

One approach to deal with science skepticism is to identify the underlying motivations or “attitude roots,” as Hornsey describes in his recent research (American Psychologist, in Press).

“Rather than taking on people’s surface attitudes directly, tailor the message so that it aligns with their motivation. So with climate skeptics, for example, you find out what they can agree on and then frame climate messages to align with these.”

Kahan’s recent research shows that a person’s level of scientific curiosity could help promote more open-minded engagement. They found that people who enjoyed surprising findings, even if it was counter to their political beefs, were more open to the new information. As Kahan and his colleagues note, their findings are preliminary and require more research.

Hornsey, Campbell, Kahan and Robbie Sutton (University of Kent) will present their research at the symposium, Rejection of Science: Fresh Perspectives on the Anti-Enlightenment Movement. The talks take place on Saturday, January 21, 2017, at the SPSP Annual Convention. More than 3000 scientists are in attendance at the conference in San Antonio from January 19-21.



344 thoughts on “Facts, beliefs, and identity: The seeds of science skepticism

  1. Instead of “framing the message” better they might actually try using The Scientific Method. I hear good things about it.

    • Psychological researchers are working to understand the cognitive processes, ideologies, cultural demands, and conspiracy beliefs that cause smart people to resist scientific messages. Using surveys, experiments, observational studies and meta-analyses, the researchers capture an emerging theoretical frontier with an eye to making science communication efforts smarter and more effective.

      Just look at how they frame the study !

      People are “resist scientific messages”. Science is about detailing end explaining observations. If there is a “message” it is politics.

      Why does “science communication” need “making science communication efforts smarter and more effective”? Because “communication” is not about science it means PR and more politics. The only “communication” that science needs is publishing papers.

      That does not need to be “smart” or “effective” , those are political and social engineering aims.

      These psychologists need to start by examining their own biases, not those of others.

      • “Why does “science communication” need “making science communication efforts smarter and more effective”?” Because it affects policy. If people do not know the science behind vaccinations it will result in people avoiding vaccinations for spurious reasons. If people do not understand the science behind evolution then there might end up a generation of mis-educated children.

      • Religious arguments need no proof. They become true by endles repetion and threats. The believer has a big lead: if opposed by a heretic the answer is simply: “you can’t proof that my thesis in untrue”.
        (COP21 was a religious council)

      • That is not correct. We are charged as believers to constantly be searching the Scriptures to check what people are claiming, because just as their are teachers, their are false teachers, and just as their are prophets, there are false prophets, and just as there are visions, there are lying visions.

        Jesus said, “Beware of the scribes, who desire to go around in long robes, love greetings in the marketplaces, the best seats in the synagogues, and the best places at feasts, who devour widows’ houses, and for a pretense make long prayers. These will receive greater condemnation.”

        Long robes, white lab coats — dressed to deceive and seize what belongs to others. They are filled with so much covetousness that even though they have more than enough, they want to own and rule all.***

      • It might be interesting to know that our Primary Source gives this unfortunate truth about human nature and trusting experts:

        “For you put up with it if one brings you into bondage, if one devours you, if one takes from you, if one exalts himself, if one strikes you on the face.” 2 Cor 11:20

        The arrogant and abusive find their way into any profession you can name, in science and academia as well as in the church. Or do you not have any problem with academic arrogance and hubris? Have you never recognized the use of science as a weapon for social and political opposition before AGW? Did you notice anything about the use of science and government to destroy agriculture and land owners during China’s Great Leap or the Holodomir? How about the use of genetic science and social Darwinism in population control/eugenics policies during the 30’s and 40’s in pre-war Germany? Brain science — did you know that the doctor who invented the lobotomy received a Nobel Prize? Did you know that ECT which uses high voltages of electicity to induce traumatic brain damage is covered in Medicare? I don’t care who you are, science has a dark side and a dark history.

        ***By the way, covetousness of private homes and possessions is a sin and you can be saved from that by trusting Y’shua, who died on the cross for you and loves you.

      • 1. I am not religious but I recognize the influence of religion and it’s values. 2. I respect others ideas as long as these are not forced on me. (not freedom of religion but freedom from religion) Please read here how I see the relation of science-religion: http://www.davdata.nl/math/mentalclimate.html where I explain that climate hysteria might be the result of secularization.

      • That was one of the most thoughtfully explored and beautifully illustrated commentaries on the subject I have ever read. Thank you.

        “The Spiritual Climate”

      • Seaice1 – the primary goal of our public education system is to mis-educate (indoctrinate) our youth.

      • ECT works. I agree with everything else you said. But I have witnessed people in catatonic states for months become “normal” after ECT. It’s like a reset button on a computer. Brain is shocked into something like a reboot.
        This is in response to Zeke.

      • Let the objective reader consider ECT:

        “Electroshock is a psychiatric procedure that involves the production of a grand mal convulsion, similar to an epileptic seizure, by passing from 70 to upwards of 600 volts of electric current through the brain for one-half second to four seconds. Before application, ECT subjects are typically given anesthetic, tranquilizing and muscle-paralyzing drugs to reduce fear, pain, and the risk (from violent muscle spasms) of fractured bones (particularly of the spine, a common occurrence in the early history of ECT before the introduction, in the mid-1950s, of the muscle-paralyzing drug succinylcholine [Anectine]). The ECT-induced convulsion usually lasts from thirty to sixty seconds and may immediately produce disorienting, painful, and even life-threatening complications, such as apnea (temporary suspension of breathing) and cardiac arrest. The convulsion is followed by a period of unconsciousness of several minutes’ duration. Electroshock is usually administered in hospitals because they are equipped to handle emergency situations that often develop during or soon after an ECT session.

        Brain Damage

        The brain naturally operates in millivolts of electricity, and ECT administers on average between 150 and 400 volts of electricity to the brain, a force sufficient to induce a grand mal seizure, rupture the protective blood-brain barrier and incite glutamate toxicity (glutamate is a powerful neurotransmitter released by nerve cells in the brain and is responsible for sending signals between nerve cells. In glutamate toxicity there is too much glutamate that leads to over-excitation of the receiving nerve cell, which can cause cell damage and/or death). It is prima-facie, common sense obvious fact that ECT causes brain damage.”

      • David, what do you consider “forced on you”?
        I’ve seen people go so far as claiming that the mere existence of religious programming on TV, or the singing of a religious hymn during an otherwise secular “Christmas” celebration counts as “forcing”.

      • With “forced on you” I mean that your freedom is actually limited by others on the basis of their religion. Not at all by singing or religion related clothing etc. So, if others are intolerant to you. Say some people do not shop on sunday. Then closing shopping mals on sunday by law is intolerant. Also the right to have an abortion should not be made on religious but on health factors.

    • Maybe a good look at the data would be a better idea than trying to plumb the depths of skeptics’ psychology. Ad hominem argument at its core.

      • Yes, rather than wasting time framing the message, simply do a normal scientific research report. Make sure all of your data and methods are available so that others may attempt to replicate your research. If you do those things, Bob’s your uncle.

      • As soon as an error is pointed out, the data changes. Looking at the data in an honest debate is the best solution. However, the skeptics aren’t the ones changing the data or in charge of the official record keeping.

    • Chucky 77 The Bloomberg graph is a good tool for looking at temperature changes. However, the graph seems to use the adjusted data that has reduced past temperatures and increased recent temperatures recalculating for an urban heat island effect. Unfortunately there seems to have been an increase in rural temperatures to match urban areas rather that the other way around. These recalculations are controversial for ground based temperatures. There are more complete global records, the UAH and RSS satellite temperature data and the radiosonde balloon data that are reasonably consistent with each other do not show the present year statistically warmer than 1940’s and 1997. Scroll through the data and you will see some pretty cold years in the 1970s and 1980s. There is a lot of variance.
      There has been a warming from the early 1880s but not as dramatic as stated in this Bloomberg article. Note the bias in the article with the misleading expensive forest fires in Canada (there are always large fires, have been for hundreds of years, but this one hit a big town), the hurricanes (they have been killing people for hundreds of years) and the high 51ºC (one temperature does not a climate make). Doom and gloom sells, good news not so much. Even the anthropologically oriented IPCC does not see or predict changes in rate or scale of storms and droughts.

    • This is like the Soviet Propaganda Department attempting to scientifically ascertain the best ways to sell a lie. For the greater good, of course. “Hey, Dmitri, why isn’t our propaganda working?”

  2. This describes the mindset of the AGW crew. It is a religion and so mere facts will not sway the faithful. Owever they in turn accuse us of similar bias.

    • This is very similar to the compulsive liar never seeing anyone as telling the truth or an adulterer constantly seeing everyone else as cheaters. It is known as Psychological Projection. They take the worst in themselves and see it exhibited in others

      • Alternatively it may si ply be that other aspect legal process, thinking like a jury, where it is the credibility of evidence and the testimony of witnesses that is central to the verdict.

        Take one hockey stick and use it to homogonise raw temperature data taken from instruments never intended for the purpose of contributing to a global temperature measure. Conceal the process behind claims of professional privilege or equivalent and accuse anyone demanding access to the raw data and homogenising methodologies of nefarious intent and being ‘deniers’ and voila’, all credibility is shot to bits in the mind of a reasonable person.

        Add a dash of narcissism, groom with media atention and the lure of future funding, allow to brew in a groupthink environment with a now established hostile world and there it is, complete paranoid delusion.

      • I notice a clash of different social classes. Prosperous people Judge (exclude) others by applying high ethical / moral standards. However these standards are meaningless if people lose their job and security. The election of mr. Trump is true democracy.

      • They are concerned over the right to choose what happens with respect to their bodies and lives
        Uppermost they are concerned that overturning Roe v Wade could lead to women being treated like second class citizens again, similar to the way Sharia Law indicates women must be treated.

      • There are a number of factors that show that an embryo is not merely a part of the mother’s body. “My Body, my choice,” is a lie.

      • I should add that this is another example of “progressives” ignoring the science.

      • Your equating the right to life with sharia law? No wonder y’all lost. i’ve got news for you bryan:


      • Sorry Afonz but you misread my words and the person posting them, I didn’t loose. My vote went to Trump and will again in 4 years provided he proves his worth and doesn’t do something to destroy society or make some of it’s members take a huge step backwards

      • Well, good… Then you should have no problem with him appointing pro-life judges to the supreme court (who will overturn roe v wade) as he said he would. It would be nice if your definition of “some of it’s members” were to include those who have yet to be born…

      • So:
        1) If your wives or daughters were raped and a pregnancy was the result you would be perfectly happy forcing them to carry that baby to term.
        2) if your wife or daughter became pregnant and going to term could mean they would die, you would be morally satisfied with forcing them to give their life for that baby?
        3) If your son sews some wild oats in high school and the girl gets pregnant, you are fully comfortable with him stepping up and being the father and marrying her at 17 or 18 to raise the baby?
        Do you strongly believe that kids won’t have sex before marriage?
        Do you likewise believe adults won’t have sex outside of marriage?
        Or do you believe in sex for all consenting adults (almost adults)?

        You surely can’t deny it for some cases but allow it for others can you?
        Either it is allowed at least up to the first trimester or it isn’t allowed period.
        Don’t get me wrong, I am certainly against late term and some of the more barbaric forms like partial birth
        but I am also against going back to the back alley abortions that can and did destroy many of the females involved

  3. HAHAHA…it is too early for April’s Fool day but that piece about these ‘scientists’ wondering why people dispute them is too funny.

    • @ emsnews

      I will 2nd your “HAHAHA” and add a few more HAHAHAs.

      It never ceases to amaze me with the rhetoric being touted by the “psychobabblers” (Psychiatrists, Psychologists, etc.).

      The “psychobabblers” should not be telling another person or groups of persons, …… ”why they think what they think”, ……. ”why they believe what they believe” ….. or “why they act or re-act the way they act or react” …….. when those silly arsed “psychobabblers” really don’t have a “clue” as to the actual reason(s) that they themselves “think, believe and/or act or re-act” the way that they do.

      If one doesn’t know the actual cause or reason that explains their own behaviors …… then they sure as ell don’t know the actual cause or reason that explains another person’s behavior.

      You are what your environment nurtured you to be”.

      And all nurtured info/data is stored in the neurons in the brain …… where is was stored by …. and is only accessible by, ….. the functioning of the subconscious mind ….. via stimuli transmitted by the sense organs. The functioning of the conscious mind is subservient to the subconscious mind and its primary purpose is to “make choices” …. if or when the subconscious mind presents it with two (2) or more entities to choose from.

    • It worked for Goebels. Or whatever the infamous propagandists name was. They are just copying him.

    • Like this article equating resistance to GMOs and vaccines (ignoring the body of science confirming their safety) with skepticism on Global Warming (questioning dubious studies and conflicting data) with opposition to gun control (asserting Constitutional rights).

  4. And…the gravy train for global warmists is leaving the station and taking them all to the North Pole to sit in puddles of melting water only it isn’t all that warm, is it?

  5. There’s a whole of lot of liberal ‘psychoanalysis’ of what is behind a climate skeptic. Why don’t we look at the actual evidence behind the leftist theory, and realize instead it’s the AGW theory instead that’s messed up, not the psychology of skeptics.

    As far as that AGW theory I can’t emphasize enough that the very foundation of it was removed when in 2003 the IPCC finally agreed that … the ice core evidence which they had been using to trumpet a causal correlation between CO2 and climate temperatures showed no such evidence. The whole anti-CO2 hysteria was whipped up on the alleged causal correlation between CO2 and temperature. But that was false. There’s ZERO evidence of it. This 4 minute video makes that obvious:

    • In truth, nobody knows for sure whether CO₂ leads or lags. The “gas age” calibration depends on assumptions (a.k.a. models) on the rate of snow compaction. As usual in climate science If you fit the temperatures and the CO₂ levels over the 800k years in the EPICA record, CO₂ leads or lags in different parts of the record. As usual in Climate Science™, the uncertainty equals or exceeds the signal.

      • A premise I’m willing to entertain. However, if we decide that the level of accuracy of all paleoclimate records cannot be relied upon then we have only modern instrumental records to use. In which case, the record is far too short to draw any useful conclusion.

      • A premise I’m willing to entertain. However, if we decide that the level of accuracy of all paleoclimate records cannot be relied upon then we have only modern instrumental records to use. In which case, the record is far too short to draw any useful conclusion.

        The error bars on just about all of them are larger than the purported signal. And if they’re not, they’re probably fraudulent studies.

      • If not for the Mauna Loa atmospheric CO2 ppm data record that began in 1958, …… the per se “climate scientists” that are studying, researching and/or measuring the quantity of CO2 that is entrapped in glacial ice cores …… wouldn’t “have a clue” as to what those calculated “entrapped CO2 quantities” actually represent in actual atmospheric CO2 ppm quantities.

        In other words, the measured/calculated ice core CO2 ppm quantities …. are multiplied by a Mauna Loa CO2 ppm “fudge factor” …… to obtain a reasonable guesstimate as to what the atmospheric CO2 ppm was at the time said CO2 was entrapped in the snowpack that eventually became glacial ice.

      • That maybe true but a more recent analysis shows that the ppm per year follows the temperature anomolies per year. Since NOAA has become aware of this in the last year and a half, both the co2 record and temperature record have been adjusted in the name of better science. As the you tube presentation correctly points out its just the opposite of what CAGW says. Because the evidence is so persuasive, I have to believe that there has been some warming, despite the adjustments, which otherwise would lead me to think that has been no warming at all.
        The one thing I am concerned about is the sink of co2. In spite of constant production of co2, the rate of increase of ppm per year has not. If the analysis on this is correct and co2 follows temperature, the conculsion is that temperatures are falling. I don’t know if I can emphasize that strongly enough.

      • @ rishrac – January 22, 2017 at 8:08 pm

        The one thing I am concerned about is the sink of co2. In spite of constant production of co2, the rate of increase of ppm per year has not.

        Exactly right you are, that is iffen you meant ….. “the yearly rate of increase in atmospheric CO2 ppm has not increased”.

        Which is proof-positive that the exponentially increasing human emissions of CO2 into the atmosphere has had no effect whatsoever on the …… “yearly average increase of +-2 ppm/year in atmospheric CO2”.

        It is my learned opinion that the only thing in the natural world that could account for the past sixty (60) years of a “steady and consistent” yearly average increase of +-2 ppm/year in atmospheric CO2 is the “steady and consistent” warming up of the ocean waters that were severely “chilled down” during the LIA.

        And one should not be surprised if the aforesaid “yearly average increase of +-2 ppm/year in atmospheric CO2” ….. begins to increase to say, +-3 to 4 ppm/year, ….. simply because, ….. the warmer the ocean waters become, ….. the greater their outgassing of CO2 will be.

        Just like the contents of an opened can of COLD Bud Light beer outgasses CO2 iffen the beer drinker permits it to WARM up.

      • Cogar, i ran a notion by bart a while back… when it comes to the thermocline, the co2 enriched waters that come up from the depths are NOT part of the carbon cycle. There is not a dimes worth of difference between digging co2 up out of the ground (and burning it) and digging it up out of the ocean (via the thermocline). Therefor, when analyzed, they should both be treated equally. Bart added that those flows from the thc greatly exceed that which we burn. What say you? (thanx)…

      • Might add also that if SSTs cool in the near future, then the carbon growth rate will drop with it. And if that cooling is maintained for a long enough time, that would certainly put our “belgian waffle” in a box. Exciting times ahead…

      • @ Cogar.. about 15 years ago CAGW response was that they knew where the co2 was coming from by the isotope ratio of co2. Over time that has become uncertain. I’m sure there is a combination of natural and anthropogenic. What those percentages are is in doubt. But whatever it is, the rate of increasing of co2 per year seems to be disconnected from anthropogenic. If … if anthropogenic co2 was the cause of the increase as CAGW contends, then there is a tremendous amounts of co2 that is missing. The co2 increase per year should be higher. For 2016, the rise, including el nino and a declining solar cycle, the increase should have been at least 5 + ppm . Either NOAA is lying, or there is something that we should be worried about.
        Temperature wasn’t the only factor. Solar activity and cosmic rays also influence co2 rates. That was… WAS.. clearly evident in the record as of March 2015 going back to 1960, then NOAA changed the record in the name of better science. There was clearly an inverse relationship peak to peak levels for each of the solar cycles. In 1962/63 the cosmic ray influence is also evident where there was some type of divergence from the solar cycle and cosmic ray activity.
        I will be very curious what co2 level increase ppm will be for 2017. If there is ever a negative number it won’t be a variation. By the way, since 1850 there have been no negative numbers. Nobody but me thinks that’s strange ? The sinks should have been much larger than today. It took 30 years to produce as much as we produce in one year. And no negative numbers ? That tells me that there has been an underlying warming trend not from co2.

      • @ afonzarelli – January 23, 2017 at 5:07 am

        Bart added that those (CO2) flows from the th(ermocline) greatly exceed that which we burn. What say you? (thanx)…

        Afonz, when compared to the quantity of atmospheric CO2 outgassing from the surface waters of the earth, …….. or the CO2 outgassing due to microbial decomposition of dead biomass, …….. or the CO2 outgassing due to termite ingestion/digestion of dead biomass, …… the total quantity of human emissions of CO2, from all sources, ranks a distant fourth.

      • @ rishrac – January 23, 2017 at 5:59 am

        But whatever it is, the rate of increasing of co2 per year seems to be disconnected from anthropogenic. If … if anthropogenic co2 was the cause of the increase as CAGW contends, then there is a tremendous amounts of co2 that is missing. The co2 increase per year should be higher. For 2016, the rise, including el nino and a declining solar cycle, the increase should have been at least 5 + ppm . Either NOAA is lying, or there is something that we should be worried about.

        Rishrac, there is no “seems to be” about it, ….. the “steady & consistent” yearly increase in atmospheric CO2 ….. NEVER WAS connected to or associated with anthropogenic CO2 emissions. DUH, it is reasonable to assume that rainwater “washes” as much or more CO2 out of the air than humans emit into the air.

        And “NO”, I do not believe that NOAA is lying about the Mauna Loa data. But on the contrary, it has been the proponents of CAGW that have been doing the lying, ….. either intentionally, unintentionally via their ignorance, stupidity or devious dishonestly and their “fuzzy math” calculations. Yes, employing “fuzzy math” calculations in a futile attempt to determine the quantity of CO2 that humans have been emitting each and every year for the past 130+ years. Such “numbskullry” boggles the mind of sensible thinking people.

        Those deviously dishonest proponents of CAGW had been “on a roll” for quite a few years, touting their “fuzzy math” calculations of human CO2 emission quantities as being directly correlated to BOTH the average increase in surface temperatures and the yearly increase in atmospheric CO2 ,,,,,,, but then they ran headlong into “The Pause” ……. and all hell broke loose among the ranks of CAGW proponents because their “fuzzy math” calculations could not explain the “missing heat”.

        rishrac, here is 26 years of max-min Mauna Loa data

        year mth “Max” _ yearly increase ____ mth “Min” ppm
        1991 _ 5 _ 359.09 …. +1.80 __________ 9 … 352.30
        1992 _ 5 _ 359.55 …. +0.46 Pinatubo ___9 … 352.93
        1993 _ 5 _ 360.19 …. +0.64 __________ 9 … 354.10
        1994 _ 5 _ 361.68 …. +1.49 __________ 9 … 355.63
        1995 _ 5 _ 363.77 …. +2.09 _________ 10 … 357.97
        1996 _ 5 _ 365.16 …. +1.39 _________ 10 … 359.54
        1997 _ 5 _ 366.69 …. +1.53 __________ 9 … 360.31
        1998 _ 5 _ 369.49 …. +2.80 El Niño __ 9 … 364.01
        1999 _ 4 _ 370.96 …. +1.47 __________ 9 … 364.94
        2000 _ 4 _ 371.82 …. +0.86 __________ 9 … 366.91
        2001 _ 5 _ 373.82 …. +2.00 __________ 9 … 368.16
        2002 _ 5 _ 375.65 …. +1.83 _________ 10 … 370.51
        2003 _ 5 _ 378.50 …. +2.85 _________ 10 … 373.10
        2004 _ 5 _ 380.63 …. +2.13 __________ 9 … 374.11
        2005 _ 5 _ 382.47 …. +1.84 __________ 9 … 376.66
        2006 _ 5 _ 384.98 …. +2.51 __________ 9 … 378.92
        2007 _ 5 _ 386.58 …. +1.60 __________ 9 … 380.90
        2008 _ 5 _ 388.50 …. +1.92 _________ 10 … 382.99
        2009 _ 5 _ 390.19 …. +1.65 _________ 10 … 384.39
        2010 _ 5 _ 393.04 …. +2.85 __________ 9 … 386.83
        2011 _ 5 _ 394.21 …. +1.17 _________ 10 … 388.96
        2012 _ 5 _ 396.78 …. +2.58 _________ 10 … 391.01
        2013 _ 5 _ 399.76 …. +2.98 __________ 9 … 393.51
        2014 _ 5 _ 401.88 …. +2.12 __________ 9 … 395.35
        2015 _ 5 _ 403.94 …. +2.06 __________ 9 … 397.63
        2016 _ 5 _ 407.70 …. +3.76 El Niño __ 9 …

        There is NO “anthropogenic signature” to be found anywhere within the 58 years if the Mauna Loa Record.

      • Actually I do. Co2 follows temperature. Michael.
        The first thing NOAA has done with that information was to change the record on temperature and co2 levels.
        You don’t have to go back in the far distant past, this is the last 60 years.

    • Eric, anther part of the way the hysteria was originally whipped up was that what is happening, re rate of warming, is unprecedented.
      It is not, clearly.
      As you said…end of story.
      Or at least it should have been.
      That is when political propaganda took over from science.

    • Years ago I lived in Iowa and a fervent “bible-basher” tried to convert me. When I resisted and refused to accept her religious message and story, I was told that I just was not listening to her hard enough because, if I was listening right, I would already be converted. It was not in her ken to understand that a person can and will simply refuse what is being pushed.

      • She was wrong, to be sure. Her wrongness arises from her conviction that she, herself, could convert you. Christian doctrine holds that one’s faith is not one’s own doing, let alone that of another human being, but is the work and gift of the Holy Ghost (modern wording: Holy Spirit), the third person of the Holy Trinity. The lady should have simply handed you a Bible, asked you to read it, and left.

      • Atheists are exactly the same way. Stop pretending only religious people are stubborn and impossible to deal with. That is a huge falsely held belief.
        Confirmation bias does not apply to EVERYONE ELSE. That is the lie and error. I hear the “if you only read enough or listened right” coming from atheists, AGW believers, natural foods people, etc, etc, etc as well as religious people. It is NOT about religion, it’s about BELIEF in whatever one holds near and dear.

        However, John Ware’s idea that Christians should just hand you a Bible and let you decide has merit. Same for climate change and everything else. If the “product” doesn’t sell itself, maybe it shouldn’t be “sold at all”.

      • John and Sherri: I respect the views of both believers (there must be a first cause, whatever or whoever you call it) and atheists (natural explanations are rational). As an agnostic, I might add the query: Who laid down the natural laws?

    • The argument clearly applies to both sides.
      However, as the society supported viewpoint will have more uninformed adherents and have greater societal costs for questioning it…
      It is clearly more relevant for alarmists.

  6. Amazing that it does not occur to them that perhaps they should simply tell the truth. They need to acknowledge the uncertainties about our understanding of what drives weather. I think the AGW advocates biggest shortcoming is in their attribution of weather events to carbon emissions knowing fully well that mother nature will prove them wrong shortly thereafter.

    • So true! And these communicators’ message is further hampered by their complete acceptance of the 97% of climate scientists, all the professional societies, the science is settled, you can see it happening, the president said so,etc etc etc without checking any of it.
      The truth can set them free.

  7. This is the false premise which makes this entire article a piece of junk:

    that cause smart people to resist scientific messages.

    Science realists do not resist science. They resist and utterly reject conjecture masquerading as science.

    • Or bs masquerading as science.

      Or leftist propaganda masquerading as science.

      Remember, any “consensus” is actually a consensus of ideology, not of science. Indeed, if you correct for ideology in any survey you won’t find a consensus at all on AGW, and in fact among self-identified conservative scientists the consensus goes overwhelmingly the other way. End of story: there’s NO effective consensus on the ‘science.’

      • “among self-identified conservative scientists the consensus goes overwhelmingly the other way.” Can you provide the evidence for this? It sounds interesting, but it seems unlikely that there are so few scientists that are self identified conservatives.

        As Rob R says there is pretty much consensus on a great many things in science. gravity sucks, evolution, plate tectonics, electromagnetic waves, quantum mechanics, relativity, solar centric system, conservatio of momentum etc etc etc. Science requires this consensus to make progress, otherwise every paper would have to demonstrate everything from first principles. Some things are accepted and can be referred to without proof every time they are mentioned.

      • Rob R: Yes, but is there a consensus that it doesn’t exist?

        Consensus on physical, provable ideas in science is acceptable—gravity, conservation of motion. Others aren’t physical but circumstantial (inductive) like evolution, etc. Some are mathematical. Many of the inductive and mathematical ones don’t matter in the course of one’s daily lives. Only evolution was contentious because it sought to “prove” there is no God. Had it not done that, I doubt anyone would have cared about it either. However, climate science strives to create a world ruled by dictators telling one how much energy they can use while the dictator lives the high life. THAT matters. Inductive science is generally a problem only when it’s used to rule over someone. Which is why consensus must be invoked and all doubt removed concerning the “science” via calling those who don’t agree bad people.

      • A “consensus of opinions” among a group of scientists, be they conservative or otherwise, is only necessary whenever the “members” of said group of scientists “don’t have a clue” what the actual factual science is regarding the “subject” of the consensus ……. or ……. is only necessary whenever the “members” of said group of scientists refuse to believe, accept or acknowledge the actual factual scientific evidence and proofs that are presented in contradiction to their “consensus of opinions”.

        Actual factual scientific evidence and proofs are literal “truths” ……. and “truths” do not require a “consensus of opinions” to confirm their believability “status”.

        Regardless of whether “truths” or “lies” were presented, ….. Jury trials require a “consensus of opinions” to prevent a mistrial being declared.

        Thus the misnurtured and the ”junk” scientists prefer to base their beliefs on a “consensus of opinions”, ……. whereas the better-than-average nurtured and the ”real” scientists prefer to base their beliefs on the, per se, “actual factual scientific evidence and proofs” that are presented for their approval and/or acceptance.

    • the hidden premise is that you will be giving up your property and other rights.
      the other premise is that the collective trumps the individual.

      the fraud is that science is involved or that a debate concerns anything else than your submission to their desires.

      these people understand that robbery is work and uneconomical but that if you can be talked out of it, then it’s not even robbery and the agent responsible for the harm is your own self so they won’t be responsible.
      what they don’t want and can’t win against is you insisting on your rights regardless of anybody’s thermometer or po folks or dead babbies or haley’s comet or the man in the moon.

    • There are plenty of false premises. One is in the very first sentence.

      One striking feature of people who hold science-skeptic views is that they are often just as educated, and just as interested in science, as the rest of us.

      Essentially, the premise is that the “scientific truth” is known for all scientific fields, AND they know what the truth is. Therefore, any skeptic is deluded, but can be brought to see the truth with the appropriate “messaging” and “surprising findings” (whatever they are). Social psychologists are not scientists. They’re pseudoscients at best, a waste of their parent’s money at worst.

      • The last phrase of the paragraph should read, “as the rest of us, who know and believe the truth while the skeptics continue in their deluded, antediluvian superstitions.”

      • science is not what we know but what may be researched, quantitized, measured. Some things we know well such as mechanics, energy…but other things are in the stage of advancing insight. So when dealing with science we honestly have to emphasize this stage with all uncertainties and assumptions.

    • In this day and age, when paradigms drop like flies, it is only reasonable for “smart people to resist”. i can still remember the definitive party line about the incredible edible egg; that if you eat more than 1 or 2 of them a week, THEN YOU WILL DIE. Were we wrong back then to resist the message? What do these arrogant researchers expect us to do? Sure, there is a personal bias and many people don’t do a very good job of fighting through that. But the idea should be to work on those biases and not to blindly accept as these authors are expecting us to do. When even the scientists themselves are raising concerns (yes even ipcc contributors such as hans von storch), then maybe it’s the authors of a study such as this who are guilty of what they themselves are talking about. There’s a name for that, you know, it’s called PROJECTION…

    • Tom Nelson ‏@tan123 20h20 hours ago
      No one knows more about bigfoot than bigfoot experts; 98% of bigfoot experts believe in bigfoot. Therefore, bigfoot is real! https://twitter.com/tan123/status/822771782369349632

      So “98%” of leftist climate scientists believe their politicized climate science! Lol!

      J. ★ Right Smarts’ article:
      The 3 Powerful Reasons All Intelligent People Know Climate Change Is Fake Science: http://rightsmarts.com/3-powerful-reasons-intelligent-people-know-climate-change-fake-science/

      WARNING (at start of the above link): If you are a climate change alarmist, or merely an overbearing left-wing hack, this post could do severe damage to your pseudo-scientific worldview. Liberal discretion is advised.

      Is climate change legitimate, or is it bad politics pretending to be good science?

      The latter.

    • J. ★ Right Smarts continues:

      Climate science is built around climate change. A near-necessary component of being a climate scientist in the 21st century is accepting climate change as fact. It’s the magnum opus of the field. If believing in climate change is a prerequisite for being a climate scientist, as is the case, then why should we be surprised that the overwhelming majority of climate scientists do just that?
      I would take that one step further: because today’s climate scientists are in almost all cases pre-selected for belief in the leftist climate science any ‘consensus’ among these pre-selected climate scientists is absolutely worthless.
      Question to Dr. Richard Lindzen: Is it possible for a young person today to get tenure in one of these institutions (universities) if they disagree with global warming alarmism?

      Dr. Richard Lindzen: NOT OPENLY.

    • Science realists do not resist science. They resist and utterly reject conjecture masquerading as science.

      Very true. How often are conclusions, opinions, hypothesis derived from observations of facts presented as the “facts” themselves? Even to the point of adjusting what was observed to fit the “facts”?
      Questioning such “facts” means one is “resisting scientific messages”?!?

  8. Kahan found that skeptics were generally better informed than AGW believers. He then tied himself into knots trying to explain that while keeping his own AGW belief. Too bad his great partner Amos Tversky died young–Amos might have been able to help Dan draw the obvious conclusion.

    • Tversky’s collaborator was Daniel Kahneman not Dan Kahan. The later is a law professor, who has somehow or the other wangled himself an appointment in the Psychology Department as well as the law school. Kahan does not have a degree in psychology.

      • “Kahan does not have a degree in psychology.”
        Apart from him being a lawyer, that is probably a good thing.

  9. The best analysis I’ve read on how people come to believe weird things and/or become totally committed to a particular idea is Anthony Pratkanis’s “How to Sell a Pseudoscience.” It’s a step by step-by-guide, easily read, fascinating — and humbling.


  10. Aw, never mind. This is OBVIOUSLY a parody of the AGWers. lol

    It doesn’t get any funnier than this:

    people who hold science-skeptic views is that they are often just as educated, and just as interested in science, as the rest of us.

    • Jumped out at me too. If so informed why are they not equally true? I am a scientist, geologist and can read most climate papers. But few provide more than vague charts and little support or are dependent upon massaged data; or, minor statements are taken out of context by the popular press. Does New Orleans have rising seas or is sinking? Obvious to any hydrologist or geologist was sediment is shooting far out to sea because of channelization starving the delta of sediment. New Orleans was under water 2,000 years ago and a submarine collapse could take the entire end of the delta in a matter of minutes, not to mention create a huge tsunami.

      • i might add to what you’re saying that off shore drilling seems to have been a culprit. Back in the 80’s during the gulf oil boom subsidence rates were accelerated. (at least that’s what’s been said in the press) So we are indeed sinking. Comparisons with maps from the past are quite striking…

      • Dear Terri, buy on the north side of Highland Ave in Baton Rouge. Just in case.. they are pumping the oil out, which is causing the ground to sink.

  11. “…. a flight from facts”, eh? Whose facts?
    ” …. conspiracy beliefs ….. resist scientific messages”? Whose scientific messages? Whose conspiracy?
    ” ….people cherry-pick which pieces of information to pay attention to “in order to reach conclusions that they want to be true.”” Talk about the Pot calling the Kettle ‘black’
    “Rather than taking on people’s surface attitudes directly, tailor the message so that it aligns with their motivation. So with climate skeptics, for example, you find out what they can agree on and then frame climate messages to align with these.” George Orwell at al .. you were right!
    “Rejection of Science: Fresh Perspectives on the Anti-Enlightenment Movement”…. Again, what is “Correct Science”? By default, these desperate sinecure-seekers and Charlatans are trying to smear *us* as “Anti-Enlightenment”. For every finger they point at *us*, there are 3 fingers pointed right back at them.
    Yeah …. put ’em against the wall for egregious tendentiousness.

    • The problems with “tailoring the message so it aligns with their motivation” is for AGW, you would have to say free market development should be allowed to deal with reducing CO2 output. That is impossible for the AGW crowd to do. They simply cannot fathom anything other than a dictatorship “fixing” the problem. Throw in the “we’re all going to die if we don’t act soon” prophecies and there is no possible way to tailor the message to match conservatives beliefs. One must be in favor of socialism/communism/dictatorships in order to “care” about the planet and save it.
      (Not all skeptics are conservatives, but why worry about that minor detail?)

  12. Being born sceptical I read this article and thought that these folk are accusing me of the very things they themselves do. They cherry pick data, select start points that verify their hypothesis, ignore adverse data and so on. They assume that we do what they do whereas that is not true.

    • That seems to be the game plan – accuse the opposition of doing what you are doing to deflect from what you are doing. In the recent interview of Soros he accused Trump of being a billionaire who wants to take over the world. He’s actually describing himself.

    • Well, admittedly, we sometimes do. No one is immune to confirmation bias. I would like to think that I work hard to avoid it, but to some extent, it can’t be avoided.

      • A skeptic would freely admit to having some level of bias. It is the unskeptical believers who know they don’t. The good psychologists ought to investigate why smart people believe questionable hypotheses, not waste time imagining why others automatically consider all hypotheses testable.

  13. How many are going to jump out of windows now that the money won’t be pouring in anymore? That is the real question the climate alarmists must ask themselves.

    • I was so depressed the other day that I jumped out a window.
      Fortunately I was on the first floor and the only thing that died was a couple of flowers.

  14. Problem is thinking like a lawyer. Yeah, well I am a Harvard trained lawyer. And welcome riping warmunists to shreds using every tecnique taught. Kahan’s Yale nonesense is just that: look at his methodology.
    The message is ineffective? No, the message is factually wrong. Not fixable with all the psychobabble from Yale in the world.

    • Beat me to it. Everyone expects a “lawer” to be an advocate. That’s their job. Some lawyers the voters develop respect for are elected Judges. Judges have the responsibility to balance (the scale of justice) the weight of evidence provided by the advocates on both sides of a case.

      Scientists, and anyone else wishing to escape the tyranny of preconceptions needs to “Think like a Judge”. They need to weigh the evidence and come to their own conclusion. Science and Law are essentially the same in this regard. The best work in both is beautiful testimony to the potential power of human logic.

      The tragedy is that we are groupthink critters. All new ideas are sociopathic when they deviate from the norms. Great scientists and Judges must be skeptics, essentially sociopaths.

  15. “….that cause smart people to resist scientific messages.”

    The full sentence implies that all scientific messages are truth/fact, thus to be believed. People have learned that the Gov’t most always lies to its citizens. We also have learned that corruption exists wherever gov’t funding is present; Education comes to mind.

    • Science is rife with false paradigms, especially the “softer” sciences. Their stance is, simply put, unreasonable. (it should be the other way around)…

  16. Since it is impossible to conduct a controlled experiment on planet Earth’s climate (one Earth where the CO2 is increased and a second, identical one where it is not) any assertions that CO2 causes a given level of temperature increase must of necessity be a conjecture. The scientific method cannot be applied in such a case.

    • I totally agree. You hit the nail on the head. Without another earth exactly like this earth and in the same orbit around the sun, but with no humans burning fossil fuels, it is impossible to separate natural climate temperature variation from the temperature variation caused by humans. This leaves only one alternative and that is adaptation. Apparently the impact of higher temperatures is thought to impact nighttime temperatures and temperatures in the northern latitudes. This may in fact produce a benefit providing longer growing seasons. While sea level rise may happen, it will take a very long time for melting “continental” ice (melting ice over water, like at the north pole, will not raise sea levels very much, if at all) to raise sea levels which would provide plenty of time to adapt.

  17. Separation of logical domains. Acknowledgement that the scientific domain is established with the self-evident knowledge that accuracy is inversely proportional to the product of time (forward and reverse) and space offsets from an observation frame.

  18. One approach to deal with science skepticism…

    Gotta love it. They begin with the premise that the skeptic is wrong. Unlikely a single one of them can explain correctly GHE theory, but they nonetheless know it is right and wring their hands over how to explain to the people who have actual knowledge that they are wrong.

  19. Can Dan Kahan and Campbell, say “projection” much?
    What is a scientific message?
    As opposed to an ordinary message?

    A narrative cunningly packaged using all the “skills” of the social scientist?
    Or as we dummies say, “Propaganda”.

    Sceptics run toward genuine science and tend to draw their own conclusions.
    Comparing and contrasting such information with what we already think we know.
    The people who consider themselves wise, because they accept the recommended wisdom of the moment, are apparently suckers for authority.

  20. These guys are confounding the notion of observational bias in a layperson with epistemological criteria in science. Maybe they should do a bit more to understand the latter, then they could realize that the former is irrelevant to the point they are trying to make.

    • Mark, you sound suspiciously like one of those people that might apply these “epistemological criteria” to all things scientific and religious. Shame, shame on you educated people…you shouldn’t be trusted with “scientific communication”

  21. Yes, I remember that part of the scientific method from Carl Sagan’s Cosmos: “now, once you have confirmed the hypothesis by experiment, ignore everything and look for a way to frame the narrative your patrons pay for in a way that it sounds scientific to the masses.” I think that was in Episode 666.

      • Every place in a long drought has produced one of those perma-drought scares.
        I think Australia may have been first, then Texas, and most recently, California.
        Hey, has California gotten any rain recently?

    • Bottom of the “News Flash”..
      Media Contact
      Annie Drinkard.
      Is this a real person?
      If so what a snychronisity of Person and position.
      Is truth stranger than fiction here? Or is this whole article a put on?

  22. I think the authors of this study need to take a long hard look in the mirror!!!’
    What a load on nonsense this is!!!!
    Who are they referring to? It is being cast that they are trying to find out why “sceptics” are not believing the science!!!! Poppycock….the question is why do the believers accept nonsense from their high priests hij is presented as science but has reached conclusions without applying the scientific method correctly.
    They touch on the kernel of the matter, regarding thinking like a lawyer!
    In Australia most of our politicians are lawyers. My objection to them is their lack of technical knowledge and their training as an advocate for a cause, which requires cherry picking the evidence.

  23. This attack on skeptics is an example of “the best defense is a good offense”. With more real-world evidence rolling in, believers can no longer defend climate claims using science, so they’re going on the attack by reframing the issue as a psychological flaw in skeptics.

    • ““Where there is conflict over societal risks – from climate change to nuclear-power safety to impacts of gun control laws, both sides invoke the mantel of science,”

      see the word both?


      • I see the word both. So what? You pick one sentence out of context and focus on one word.

        I also see the word sides. I also see an implicit acceptance that “climate change” is bad, nuclear power is unsafe, gun control laws are not harsh enough, that all pose existential societal risks, and the skeptics are on the wrong side of the debate.

      • Yes, I see the word ‘both’. Can you see the reframing in action in that very same sentence ? Their use of the phrases ‘both sides’ and ‘invoke the mantel of science’ is the reframing. They are losing on the battleground of science, so they’re reframing it to the battleground of psychology. Science isn’t a mantel – it is an evidence-based process. Their abuse of psychology, however, is an actual ‘mantel’.

        When a psychologist points the finger at skeptics, there’s three fingers pointing right back.

      • Yep, I see the word “both”. Then there’s the word “mantel”. What, exactly, does a shelf over a fireplace have to do with the topic at hand?

      • “Where there is conflict over societal risks – from climate change to nuclear-power safety to impacts of gun control laws, both sides invoke the mantel of science,”

        I see the word “mantel” (“mantelpiece or shelf”) misused for its homonym, “mantle” (“leadership, power, or authority”).

        NYAH, NYAH, as Nelson Muntz would say.

      • PS: A “mantle” is also a cloak, so the “mantle of science” = “the cloak of authority, power, leadership.”

    • They also seem to have overlooked that skepticism is at the heart of the scientific method.
      Dave Letterman used to have a skit called “The Museum of the hard to Believe”
      Global warming alarmism belongs in the central exhibit in that museum.

      • Menicholas,

        You jest, but sadly global warming alarmism is now a central exhibit at the Franklin Institute in Philadelphia, one of my favorite places to go as a teenager, but now pretty much sucks, except for the planetarium.

      • Interestingly, i also grew up in Philly and the Franklin Institute was by far my favorite place in the world for a number of years.
        It is sad to hear that news, but hardly surprising.
        Last time I was there was a few years back…I was in town for the Holidays and took my nephew to see harry potter at the IMAX there.

      • Back in the 60s, they used to split a chunk of wood using an artificial lightning bolt.
        Intensely dramatic and stunningly loud.

        Last time I was there the electricity show was still interesting, but very tame.

        At least the penny mashing machine was still there; where you inserted a penny and the machine would pass the penny through rollers and a die reforming the penny into a Franklin Institute emblem.
        And the gift shop still had overpriced cool things.

      • I suppose they still have the Foucault pendulum in that big stairwell?
        That is very cool…proof of the rotation of the Earth with naught but a weight and a long rope.

      • I was back in Philadelphia several years ago for a birthday party for a friend of mine. my two sons were young then, and I took them to independence hall, the Liberty Bell (now across the street) and the Franklin Institute. I was really disappointed by the global warming exhibit. IIRC, it took up most of the first floor. One thing they still had that I remember was the model of the heart that you could walk through. Still had the electricity demo, but was lame. I’ve always liked astronomy from a backyard/novice viewpoint and was glad I could take the kids to a planetarium show, but overall not as impressive as it used to be.

        The Foucault pendulum is still there.

      • The pendulum is still there because there is a really good reason. Sometime in the 1950’s there was a solar eclipse, and the pendulum in England made some patterns that weren’t normal. I sure they are watching to see if that occurs again.

  24. “Merely talking about “evidence” or “data” does not typically change a skeptic’s mind about a particular topic, whether it is climate change, genetically modified organisms, or vaccines.”

    Now thats a good way to start an essay. I will not read any further.

    What meaning does this guy give to the words “evidence” and “Data”?



    Some evidence and data here http://www.rogerfromnewzealand.wordpress.com

    • genetically modified organisms ==> new, non-browning, “Arctic” apples, What’s not to like?
      Vaccines ==> I’ve got all the doc says I should
      Climate ==> I live where a glacier once was — that’s hard to deny

      If I’m going to read about cognitive processes, Scott Adams does a much better job.

      • Yes, Scott Adams ‘splains it much better, while acknowledging that everyone has it to some degree…although he seems to think his readers all share his lack of enough knowledge to discern between the two sides.

      • PS: A “mantle” is also a cloak, so the “mantle of science” = “the cloak of authority, power, etc.”

    • rogerthesurf,

      What meaning does this guy give to the words “evidence” and “Data”?

      It’s Social Psychology, therefore, it’s a Humpty-Dumptyism (d*mn, did I just come up with a neologism?).

      “When I use a word,” Humpty Dumpty said, in rather a scornful tone, “it means just what I choose it to mean—neither more nor less.”
      “The question is,” said Alice, “whether you can make words mean so many different things.”
      “The question is,” said Humpty Dumpty, “which is to be master—that’s all.”

  25. I always find the question of what motivates skeptics relative to AGW supporters a very clear distinction. One group see policies which hurt the poor , create greater control by beaurocracies, divert funds from health and social services , destroys industries and jobs and creates fuel poverty and feel the need to speak up despite having little or no financial support and another group that is payed to create the most extreme view knowing that their own future financial position is enhanced by the extent of alarm that can be created by their comments. Further they realise that if their report fails to match the extreme views of their financial supporters the funding tap will be turned off. I know who has the moral high ground.

  26. Nice propaganda trick there to equate CAGW skeptics to anti-vaxers.

    Compared to “climate change”, vaccination is a trivially easy problem to understand, and most importantly, it is amenable to experimentation, with negative controls etc. It is entirely reasonable to accept vaccination as proven yet consider CAGW an unproven or even failed hypothesis.

      • Yeah, and i was wondering about the reference to GMOs, too. The “consensus” is that they are safe for people and the environment…

    • Anti-vaxers tend to be the same people who want to ban GMOs, think any pharmaceutical is poison, but all herbal remedies are as good as gold and who gobble any illicit substance anyone shoves in their face.

      • I am often shocked by what seem to be rational people, who apparently believe that if it’s labelled a vaccine, it must fine and dandy to inject into infants . . (like we are speaking of a vitamin V or something ; ) And they often speak as though anyone who actually takes a skeptical/scientific approach (you kno0w, testing things ; ) must be “anti-vax” (again, as though we are discussing a freaking vitamin ; )

        Get clue, please . .

      • Yes, John, imagine if back in the 1800s they were discussing AGW as though it were fact. We have 150+ years of observational data now a days. People who tout GMOs are like those people back in the 1800s…

      • John Knight,
        I am glad to hear you do not have blind faith in labels.
        So tell me, which particular vaccines are the antivaxers correct about?
        And maybe you can be the one to clue me in to why GMOs are all poison, as their opponents tend to believe?

      • JohnKnight: Decades of insulin use and no monster babies, no mutated diabetics, etc. Yet, it’s going to happen, isn’t it?

      • Menicholas,

        Why is your response not something along the lines of; *Vaccines and GMOs are subjected to thorough double blind testing before they are allowed on the market.* ? You could say that about pretty much all pharmaceuticals, couldn’t you?

      • John,
        Why indeed.
        I might ask why, instead of answering a simple and straightforward question, you change the subject?
        I overlooked you putting words in my mouth in the first instance above, but only because I do not know what point you are trying to make.

      • Meticulous,

        “I might ask why, instead of answering a simple and straightforward question, you change the subject?”

        You changed the subject (and, shifted the burden of proof), as I see the matter. And, you and I have no way of knowing if people are harmed by any given vaccine . . it’s not legal to sue, and thereby be able to subpoena any records that manufactures may (or may not) have, which might give us an informed idea of just how safe (and effective) this or that vaccine is . .

      • (I have no idea how I managed to mess up you name like that . . I thought I was copy pasting, but apparently selected a spellchecker option ; )

      • John Knight, you still haven’t provided a single example of a vaccination that does more harm than good.

        I will help you. Smallpox vaccination is no longer needed, and has been discontinued. With respect to polio, the simpler and longer lasting Sabin (live) vaccine has been replaced by the older Salk (dead) vaccine, since the live vaccine had a low yet finite risk of reversal to wild type polio virus, with attendant clinical manifestation.

        Tuberculosis vaccination has been discontinued in many countries, since the low incidence of this disease – plus the availability of treatment, as well as the limited effectiveness of the vaccine – suggested it.

        Many vaccines that are available are only used on travelers, military personnel etc. but not kids. There is in fact a rational process in place that weights benefits and risks of each individual vaccine, and to keep this analysis up to date with epidemiological trends. This process is carried out by humans and therefore fallible, but overall, it has been tremendously successful and beneficial.

      • I’m calling for actual scientific testing, guys . . we know how to do that, but it is not being done with vaccines, (or GMOs) . Please begin thinking skeptically.scientifically, for real, rather than virtue signalling your deep faith in the great “scientific community” . . which obviously did not come to our rescue when the GAGW beast was on the verge of essentially consuming what’s left of actual scientific reasoning in our society/world.

      • It may not be the vaccines themselves or the idea of being vaccinated. It is probably the process of how those vaccines get to market. Who does that, the compounding labs ? I don’t think they are all on the up and up.
        GMO ‘s are another bag of goodies. Who knows ? All I know is that 95% of the food on this planet I can’t eat anymore.
        Climate science has certainly caused other sciences to be challenged that weren’t questioned before. In the long run, that may be a good thing. There is a difference between blind belief and questioning the science. At the root, it may not be that people are against vaccines or GMO foods, it may be the science in it that is the problem.
        By the way, on vaccines, the US is one of the few countries that still use partially killed live viruses, the rest use a cellular. They don’t have the problems we do. I wonder who has a financial interest in keeping it that way.

      • JohnKnight, if you think that vaccines and GMOs aren’t rigorously tested, then you know nothing about either.

      • Mark, I do know the US uses partially killed live viruses and most of the rest use a cellular. You know which countries don’t have problems with vaccines, the a cellular. They also don’t have people looking like idiots being against vaccines. I don’t have trust in the vaccines in this country either. And the doctors are useless if your child becomes sick from being vaccinated. Not my problem. And I do think that vaccines are a good idea.

      • MarkW,

        1. flu vaccines cannot possibly be effective because there are too many strains, and there is a problem with people being required to get them — in GA for example

        2. an HPV vaccine is being advertised here in my state as an anti-cancer vaccine People get it voluntarily but without actively researching it, they will just give it to your kids on a routine vaccine update

        3. what the Greatest Generation did was usually very useful but the Boomers are undoing and replacing everything their parents (and all previous generations) accomplished with other things that we should not necessarily trust, for example. wrt energy and agriculture, and probably vaccines.

        4. The FDA does not merit any of the trust it is given. It approves extremely harmful psychotropic drugs and processes in psychiatry, resulting in a75 billion dollar a year industry; and despite the devastating side effects, the FDA provides no protection to victims. The FDA is merely an obedient arm of the psych drug industry In Florida there is forced drug treatment of children. ref later if needed.

        5. I have no problem with GMO corn or any of the 9 crops in the US that are GMOs, but I also do not want the varieties we grow now to be replaced by Boomers claiming their GMOs are better for the environment, more sustainable, or include some added vitamin. There have already been discussions of altering chocolate, wheat, potatoes, coffee etc? We need to understand the danger of loosing our own varieties to totally unwanted environmental replacements.

        6. And so, for the sake of knowing that Russets, for example, are not secretly targeted for replacement by environmentalists pushing sustainable agriculture, I do think it is now necessary to voluntarily and accurately state which variety of produce is being used. This is already done; think of apples. These varieties are always labeled, so it is not burdensome. In bulk grains this may not be possible. But varieties of fruits and vegetables we have always grown in this country will be a target for replacement under the guise of environmental sustainability or nutrition, as WUWT has discussed many times. That why I think I it is possible to have a little bit of common ground with anti-GMO activists, because our crop varieties are all going to be targeted as unsustainable by environmentalists.

      • John, vaccines are being tested, issues are being tracked, and appropriate measures are being taken. Smallpox live vaccination (using vaccinia virus) produced serious side effects in something like 1 child in 3000. (The brother of a high school buddy was mentally handicapped due to an vaccinia virus encephalitis suffered as a toddler.) So, it was all for the good that this vaccination was discontinued as soon as it was no longer needed.

        Measles vaccination produces encephalitis in about 1 child in a million. Now, the wild type virus, with which you will get inevitably infected if the general public not protected by vaccination, will produce encephalitis in about 1 child in 3000. Yes, vaccination can hurt you, but native virus is much more likely to do so.

        Polio vaccination: inactivated virus (Salk vaccine) works, but must be injected. Live vaccine (Sabin) – attenuated virus – can be swallowed, and immunity lasts longer. Problem: the polio virus has an RNA genome, which is more prone to mutation than DNA (as is found e.g. in vaccinia virus), and the single point mutation that distinguishes the attenuated from the wild type virus can revert. As a worst case scenario, a wild type polio outbreak could start from a vaccinated patient in whom the virus underwent that reversion. (Just imagine the pile of hay the anti-vaxers would make from such a thing.) So, the responsible thing to do was to abandon the Sabin vaccine.

        You insinuate that advocates of vaccination are gullible. We aren’t. That’s why we are immune to both antivax and climate change propaganda.

      • Michael,

        I am not “anti-vax”, just pro-test. (Not models, not algorithms, not “tracking of issues”, but actual double-blind style testing). Safe and effective vaccines will surely pass with flying colors, and you will have the scientific results to show me, rather than using propaganda techniques like simplistic shaming through lame oajoritives like ‘climate denier’ . . er I mean ‘anti-vax’ ; )

  27. Do they really have to ponder why smart folks reject “settled science” or “consensus belief”?

  28. They do not distinguish between healthy, rational skepticism and an ideologue. They only see skepticism in terms of cognitive dissonance and confirmation bias.

    • They can only see things from their indoctrinated level of thought and assume that their perception is more valid than any the free thinker. Very much a pseudo-religion.

    • When one is an ideologue, one needs to frame the discussion rather badly. Tge academy of today is infested with ideologues posing as academics. As the paper this thread discusses demonstrates rather well.

  29. Merely talking about “evidence” or “data” does not typically change a skeptic’s mind

    They assume no skeptic got that way by changing his mind. I infer this is also projection on their part: they don’t change their minds, therefore assume no one else does either. But I used to be a warmist until I really looked at the data.

    I have observed trends in mind-changing. I used to hang out on talk.origins; I saw a handful of creationists change their minds, abandon Biblical literalism and come to understand evolution. I have never, then or since, observed a change in the other direction.

    Since my school days, pretty much everyone has changed their minds from “continental drift is absurd” to “of course plate tectonics”. No one’s going the other way.

    I suspect there is a reason for the directionality, and I suspect it has to do with fulfilled versus failed predictions.

    I’m hardly the only warmist-turned-skeptic. Can anyone find me an example of a climate skeptic-turned-warmist? Thanks in advance.

    • “I’m hardly the only warmist-turned-skeptic. Can anyone find me an example of a climate skeptic-turned-warmist? Thanks in advance.”


      When I met him and interviewed for the job he was a full blown skeptic.
      All the way through writing the papers he was a skeptic..

      Then one day….

    • Hmm… a Duck Duck Go search of “climate skeptic-turned-warmist” turned up “Update: Warmist turned skeptic, Dr. Lennart Bengtsson, rips ‘pseudo-science in climate research’ & intimidation” at the top. http://www.climatedepot.com/2014/05/22/update-former-warmist-turned-skeptical-scientist-dr-lennart-bengtsson-speaks-out-i-find-it-difficult-to-believe-that-the-prominent-jewish-scientists-in-the-gwpf-council-appreciate-being-labeled/
      Can our “honorable opponents” here show any actual instances of skeptics becoming believers recorded on the internet? (maybe an Algore revival tent phonecam clip?)

    • Whatshisface…Muller comes to mind. Richard Muller, I think his name is.
      He has been presented, and i believe has described himself as a skeptic turned True Believer.
      But he was not ever a real skeptic.
      He was only mildly critical of the most over the top alarmism…which counts as a den!er in warmista circles.

    • Unfortunately, my son-in-law is one–he used to be a creationist and thought Global warming was a hoax– then he changed–and began to believe in evolution. He heard a lecture by Tyson and decided that was the end all be all. Global warming was real and there was a 97% consensus. You can’t talk to him about it because he is convinced that all the “real” scientists agree. Anyone on this site is not “real” in his mind. You just think you know something, but don’t. And don’t bother him with the facts please, Tyson and Nye told him what the facts are. There is no sarc tag.

      PS–I greatly admire my son-in-law for a lot of reasons–and can’t understand his resistance on this issue.

      • Shelly Marshall January 21, 2017 at 8:37 pm,

        There seems to be 2 types of believers. (Whether we are hardwired to be one or the other, or “mature” from one to the other, is a subject for another discussion.)

        One type is driven by information. A person of this type changes their beliefs so as to be consistent with the latest information, even when this puts their beliefs at odds with their peers. To change this person’s mind, you must present them with compelling evidence. This person thinks a fact has intrinsic value separate from the presenter, and therefore values new facts from any source.

        The second type of believer is driven by group think. A person of this type changes their beliefs so as to be consistent with their peers, even when this puts their beliefs at odds with the latest information. To change this persons mind, you must present them with superior numbers of believers. This person thinks the value of a fact is dependent upon the presenter, and therefore spurns new facts not coming from an accepted source.

        I think perhaps your son-in-law is of the 2nd type of believer, and his peer group has changed to include a greater number of non-creationists.

        That the writer of the paper in this post says

        “In our research, we find that people treat facts as relevant more when the facts tend to support their opinions,” says Campbell. “When the facts are against their opinions, they don’t necessarily deny the facts, but they say the facts are less relevant.”

        reveals that he is the 2nd type, and views others as the same as himself.


      • Shelly, it sounds to me like your son-in-law simply went from blind faith in one thing, to blind faith in another. That’s much easier than trying to understand the actual science yourself and is a form of laziness. Some feel it is just as well to let an authority figure do the thinking for them and just trust them. Try asking him precisely how many “real” people make up the 97%. After all, the percentage had to have been calculated from an actual specific number of people. When he finds out what that number really is, he may lose a little faith in his new authority figures.

      • @ Stevan Reddish
        I would add a 3rd type – the Vicar of Bray type who changes his beliefs for political expediency.

      • It was probably Tyson’s false “we humans are genetically only 1% different than apes”. It’s an extremely shallow analogy but if a person doesn’t know much about genetics or doesn’t think about it, it’s very persuasive.

      • Unfortunately, my son-in-law is one–he used to be a creationist and thought Global warming was a hoax– then he changed–and began to believe in evolution. He heard a lecture by Tyson and decided that was the end all be all. Global warming was real and there was a 97% consensus. You can’t talk to him about it because he is convinced that all the “real” scientists agree. Anyone on this site is not “real” in his mind. You just think you know something, but don’t. And don’t bother him with the facts please, Tyson and Nye told him what the facts are. There is no sarc tag.

        The existence of people with know-it-all attitudes like this is a strong argument for the existence of betting sites on climate predictions, such as used to be handled by Intrade.

      • Shelly, one who believes in human-caused climate change has a lot of “evidence” to point to:

        All you have to do is look at a “Hockey stick” chart that shows the temperatures going up, up up, year after year, to have your belief in human-caused global warming confirmed. Your son-in-law probably doesn’t know this chart has been manipulated by climate change advocates and does not represent reality.

        You have what seems like the entire Science establishment on board with human-caused climate change based on propaganda put out by climate change advocates.

        You have what *is* the entire Elite establishment of the whole world on board with human-caused climate change, mostly because there is a lot of money and power in it for them. Your son-in-law probably thinks they are just being altruistic and responsible.

        You have the powerful lie that “97 percent” of scientists believe human-caused climate change is real. You will see this appeal to authority lie countless times in the future as the climate change subject comes to the forefront, because it is so effective.

        So if you believe what the authorities say, then you are going to believe in human-caused global warming.

        Your son-in-law probably would reject any suggestion that NASA would lie to him. It’s not really NASA doing the lying, it’s just a few individuals who work for NASA who are doing the lying but that’s not the way most of the public looks at it. If NASA says its so, it must be so.

        If you are inclined to trust the establishment and believe in human-caused climate change, you have a lot of things backing up your opinion. It doesn’t matter that most of the facts used to establish human-caused climate change are distortions of reality, because most people never dig into the subject that deeply, whether from lack of time or inclination, and so go with the majority opinion.

        If I were you, I would point your son-in-law to some articles that debunk the “97 percent” lie. If he saw how unscientifically that 97 percent figure was derived, he might start to actually question some of the other things about climate change that he has been taking for granted.

        Senator Inhofe inserted a couple of articles into the Congressional Record the other day during the hearing for the EPA administrator, so that could be the source for debunking this lie and maybe opening up your son-in-laws eyes. Google works for that, too. Btw, the actual numerical figure for scientists who thought humans were changing the climate, was actually less than 2 percent. 97 percent verses 2 percent. That’s how big the lie is.

    • “I have never, then or since, observed a change in the other direction.”

      Hi, mellyrn, I believed in Evolution for most of my life (I’m 63), but no longer do. I suggest you think very carefully about what actual evidence you’ve see.

      • Yes, John, one has to wonder whether more go from belief in evolution to non belief (than visa versa). We’re all (largely) trained to believe in evolution until one day we start asking questions. i think the rise in intelligent design theory did much to make skeptics out of believers in evolution…

      • afonzarelli: You’re jumping right into the “scientist” or “religious zealot” dichotomy. Why MUST is always be God OR evolution? Why can’t someone question evolution on the basis of the inductive reasoning and lack of evidence, plus past improper conclusions? Why must one “replace” evolution with intelligent design? It is entirely scientific and proper to say “We just don’t know”.

      • Well… if there is a third mechanism besides natural selection and an intelligent designer then by all means. Perhaps chance maybe? (meaning that the first life form just happened into being from inert matter by chance given “billions and billions” of chances) God doesn’t cut it for some (who created god?) and natural selection doesn’t cut it for others (natural selection can’t begin until a life form is already created). i think the dichotomy “coincidentally” exists because there are so few candidates for the mechanism of the origin of life…

      • To clarify seemingly unclear paragraphing indentation, (at least, to me) this comment is in response to Mellyrn (Jan. 21, 7:24 pm) and Pop Piasa (Jan. 21, 8:05 pm) upthread.

  30. This isn’t the first such paper. The common thread among all the papers is the assumption that the skeptics are wrong. I have never seen such a paper that entertained the idea that the alarmists might be wrong.

    Given that CAGW opinion is so reliably divided along party lines, and given that most academics are left of center, it is illogical to think that the alarmists have to be right. They are just as prone to policy based fact making as are the skeptics.

    There are a reasonable number of skeptics who frequent WUWT, myself included, who are left of center politically. I’ve never seen one of these papers that addresses the fact that left wing skeptics exist (even if we are in the minority). I have also never seen one of these papers that deals with the malfeasance that was exposed in the climategate emails.

    • CB “…policy based fact making…” that’s a good way to put it, as opposed to “reality based fact finding”.

    • And remember that the Soviets used to send their dissenters to psychiatric hospitals. This is a quasi-scientific extension of the Ad-hominem argument, trying to associate skepticism with motivations or political belief. You don’t have to be right or left wing to see that ‘p and not-p’ is necessarily false. Substitute for p ‘we will get more snow’ and every adult may surmise that AGW is bollocks.

    • I’ve never seen one of these papers that addresses the fact that left wing skeptics exist

      It’s not as though prominent examples didn’t exist. Steve McIntyre (socialist and carbon-taxer) is one, and Judy Curry (Obama donor) is another.

    • Thats the one,”policy based fact making”.
      CAGW being a product of our bureaucracies, being almost 100% funded by unsuspecting taxpayers, the Policy Based Evidence Manufacturing (PBEM)is its calling card.
      Environment Canada even went so far as to use the phrase “Environment Canada’s Science”..
      I suspect none even noticed the irony, although I do suspect some competent scientists inside the bureau got a huge laugh out of them prattlingly on.
      “Environment Canada’s Science shows..”
      And real science..?
      And when asked, in writing, their response is..”We defer to the findings of the IPCC”.
      No comment as to who signed off on accepting these “UN findings” as acceptable for government policy, on behalf of Canada.

  31. As usual, what they are saying applies equally if not more so to themselves.
    That they can describe cognitive bias and cognitive dissonance and then fail to understand they are themselves subject to it is jarring.

    • Menicholas,
      I agree wholeheartedly with you but don’t be too harsh on the poor dears…
      Paraphrasing from the article: ” The thing with people who hold climate derangement views is that they are often just as educated, and just as interested in science, as the rest of us.”

      • But just as often, the impression of “deranged climate” is instilled upon the less educated and intellectually challenged, via the MSM.

      • Oh, I think everyone here knows I can be quite a bit more harsh if i forget my manners…which happens a lot unfortunately.
        And in places where the tenor is not so polite…well…I go by the DB Stealey doctrine: Treat me nice, and I will treat you better, treat me bad, and I will treat you worse.

  32. OT from oz , Their ABC is currently displaying this headline grabber ,
    Trumps aids request baker to make the same inauguration cake for Trump as the one they made for Obummer.
    Now that’s hard hitting investigative journalism at its finest .

    • Yeah, trump ordered a “Number 5b” please, instead of paying for a custom made jobby.
      I do the same thing when i go to a bakery for a cake.
      Called being pragmatic.

  33. article: “One striking feature of people who hold science-skeptic views is that they are often just as educated, and just as interested in science, as the rest of us.”

    What exactly is a science-skeptic, anyway? Are they equating “science” with “CAGW”? I think they are.

  34. Do the authors of this article realize that their “theories” apply to either side of the climate change/global warming issue. It seems to me that there are a lot of lemmings on the AGW side who due to various reasons such as getting paid or lack of any skepticism very well fall into the camp they describe of only considering information that reinforces their AGW beliefs. How many times have we heard them jump on and spread an article that was subsequently easily debunked by a skeptic.
    Finally I think the authors fail to realize that being a skeptic or a lemming is a personality trait, because one who is a skeptic tends to challenge virtually all claims they are exposed to at the frustration of their teachers; for example, the government has put out many “dangers” associated with eating certain foods which I never fully accepted, quite too often after decades they have come back and changed their minds. Even Doctors pushed these concepts that after time and research were debunked.

  35. ‘people cherry-pick which pieces of information to pay attention to “in order to reach conclusions that they want to be true.”’


    Oh. Wait.

    “the deposition is to construe evidence in identity-congruent rather than truth-congruent ways, a state of disorientation that is pretty symmetric across the political spectrum.”

    That sounds much more academic. Give the man a research grant.

  36. There’s so much to make fun of in this article, but I’m going to bed, and will leave it in the very capable hands of others, who I am sure will do it justice. :)

  37. Gonna be in San Marcos 23rd-26th. damn, gonna miss it.

    Whoops, just noticed today is the 21st. Already missed it.

  38. The predictions are wrong.

    The medieval warming period is never mentioned.

    The Roman warming period is never mentioned except to say it never happened.

    The little ice age is not mentioned except to say what little ice age?

    And the older temperatures have been homogenized down in a propaganda exercise.

    And you ask why are people sceptical?

    I will enlighten you.

    We are not idiots.

    Get over it.

    • These people are trained in psychology so they should self-medicate if they aren’t costumed by greed.
      Alas it seems they are.

  39. Here is a constructive message for the Alamo mob and their guesses.
    Overcome the obvious ploy of trying to ignore those with different views.
    Talk to them.
    Ask them why their views are different.
    Most guesses about why some people have different views are way off the mark.
    The most common view I meet is that Establishment science is of poor quality That is what draws criticism.. Not all work, but a lot.
    Your remedies must look inwards, not outwards.
    Don’t bother to study this and report. Your friends, some friends, might just dump you from your social and academic circles. Or circus – never have I seen such stupid social antics as this climate clique performs.

  40. Should be:
    Psychological researchers are working to understand the cognitive processes, ideologies, cultural demands, and conspiracy beliefs that cause smart people to believe junk-scientific messages.

  41. So here’s the plan:
    • Make sure “skeptics” do not get faculty appointments, cannot publish in peer reviewed journals, cannot get grants to do their work, cannot present at professional society meetings, will not get their students hired, are ignored by the press, are not consulted by government bodies, are called names by idiot journalists, etc., etc. etc.
    • Having cleared the field of any possible competing ideas, declare “science” to be conquered territory, wholly occupied by right thinking believers.
    • Move on to develop strategies to convince non-scientists that the orthodox, controlled, party-line “science” is the real deal.

  42. This is how psych SHOULD be done – analyse the utterances of people who didn’t know they would be

    It’s interesting because they call sceptics ‘conspiracists’ and yet STILL the paper comes across as worse for the conventionalists than the contrarians. (as I prefer to call us sceptics)

    Another such paper is http://journal.frontiersin.org/article/10.3389/fpsyg.2013.00406/full

    Between the 2 papers it is clear the contrarians are actually significantly more sane than the true believers of the Church of AGW.

  43. Just Make sure a scientist knows his/her government research grant won’t be renewed unless the right message is put forth in manuscripts.Then you’ll get the GroupThink sought, when guy/gal’s livlihood is at stake.

  44. Most people can generally pick out a liar, but in the case of watermelons, we know it the moment they start to speak. There’s no psychology to be researched. Modern humans resent & earlier humans killed, those who would deceive us for their own reasons. If members of early society did not pull their weight, they were likely to be the next meal. These researchers are too much up their own rectums to understand normal people.

    What time is it? It’s lunch time Mr. Wolf!

  45. My congratulations to the “SOCIETY FOR PERSONALITY AND SOCIAL PSYCHOLOGY” for having discovered ‘confirmation bias’, known to the Greek historian Thucydides (c. 460 BC – c. 395 BC).

  46. Their comments do not describe the septics which they claim be describing, instead the are describing how the CAGW proponents behave.


  47. Quote: … cause smart people to resist scientific messages …

    Fell at the first hurdle. What is being resisted are unscientific messages.

    And then there is the confusion about scepticism. If you want to be a scientist it is a prerequisite for the job.

  48. They wonder why I do not believe when the tell me something is beyond question. Everything has one question and that is will you prove it to a hardened but fair sceptic? This in turn give rise to a further question when so much data has been selected by the believers of “if you did the same exercise on the data rejected what is the answer then?”
    Worse still so much information is pay walled but we are still expected to pay a huge 25% premium on an expensive part of our budget which is heating based on trust of a group that has only earned distrust for their arrogance and incompetence. In the one sphere of their work I really understand and am trained in far better than any of them and I do mean ANY of them, all I see a disgraceful sloppy disinterest in practical measurements critical to their entire case. Science has been so discredited by climate studies that all science is bound to end up tarred with the same brush.
    I understand I was brought up in a different generation and like many old people I remember things I was taught years ago better than where I put my wallet but I still think of science as defined by theoretical predictions matching results without selecting or “adjusting” results.

  49. Mathematician Jordan Ellenberg suggested in his 2014 book, ‘How not to be wrong’ that successful conspiracy theories are designed to withstand the mental winnowing processes that would ordinarily expose them as flawed. They do this by applying what he calls a “Bayesian coating” to prevent contradictory evidence from eroding belief in the basic theory, making it more consistent with a range of observations and thus more difficult to dislodge.

    As a pertinent example: a trusted friend tells you that “global warming is a hoax designed so that the government can raise taxes.” Call it theory A. You might be inclined to believe them initially and apply a fairly high probability to it. However, as evidence to the contrary mounts (rising temperatures, rising sea levels, falling sea ice extent, shrinking glaciers, etc) your confidence in theory A would ordinarily begin to dwindle.

    That’s why your friend isn’t going to just give you theory A; he’s going to give you theory B alongside it. Theory B states that climate scientists all over the world, national scientific academies, the UN and the mainstream media are all in on it, so they can form a ‘New World Order’, or some such. This is the ‘Bayesian coating’ that protects theory A from direct scrutiny. It invites a “well they would say that, wouldn’t they” response to any evidence that appears to contradict theory A.

    As Ellenberg points out, the ingenious thing about successful conspiracy theories is that the more elaborate they are, the more likely they are to be believed – and the less likely they are to be true! For the combined theory A+B you have to believe two theories at once, so by definition A+B starts out with a lower probability of being true than theory A alone. Despite the decreased probability that A+B is true, it still has an insulating effect on A, protecting it from contradictory evidence that, without the protection of A+B, might otherwise destroy it.

    As Ellenberg says of successful conspiracy theories “In a weird way you have to admire them.”

  50. What marks out a sceptic is something very simple: they are confident in their own ability to analyse the data and come to their own conclusion without needing OTHER EXPERTS for they are overwhelmingly experts in analysing data. Indeed often like Steve McIntyre their skill far exceeds that of academics having a whole career analysing data in real life, safety and cost critical applications.

    In contrast, where sceptics lack skills is that they lack the huge social networks (of unskilled hangers on) that academics use to publicise and endorse their (political) views dressed up as “science”.

    And overwhelmingly from my own observations, (outside a few politicised “scientists” those who accept the warming “meme” tend to be unable to process the data themselves and instead rely on the supposed status and group identity of “experts”. In other words, they will believe a liberal academic, even one with no scientific training, in preference to someone with scientific training, who has studied climate for decades but who is not part of the “academic club”.

    • Just a couple of extras. We’ve seen an increasing indifference to what the media calls experts. This I believe is because more and more people outside the traditional groups who the media drew on for their “experts” are now becoming experts in their own right. Often by focussing on a subject – they even become better “experts” than the academics and when they do, they’re not happy with the poor quality work they find in academia: For a more in depth discussion see: Death of the expert

      The other issue is that academia have a natural instinct to attack any experts who dare to speak in public on “their subjects” who is not from academia. Lewandowsky is a classic example of someone who is obsessed with individuals outside academia daring to take a contrary view to academics. (Even though we discuss on climate and he is clueless about the subject). See “The Academic Ape: Instinctive aggression and boundary enforcing behaviour in academia”

  51. ugh. The whole movement relies on ignorance, core beliefs and mass hysteria. It’s a simple as that

  52. “One approach to deal with science skepticism is to identify the underlying motivations or “attitude roots,” as Hornsey describes in his recent research (American Psychologist, in Press).

    “Rather than taking on people’s surface attitudes directly, tailor the message so that it aligns with their motivation. So with climate skeptics, for example, you find out what they can agree on and then frame climate messages to align with these.””

    My late, favorite neighbor used to sell appliances in the 50’s. He said, “If you were a Democrat, I was a Democrat, if you were a Republican, I was a Republican, and if you were a communist, I was a communist!” And he sold a lot of TVs, toasters and refrigerators that way. Some of them probably still work.

    Now thanks to Mandate Economics and the Anthropocene Age Scientific Paradigm — two theories which apparently these academics are free to confirm with wild and reckless abandon — all of the politicians and scientists are appliance salesman. They are all hawking worthless wind turbines and electric vehicles and replacing everything with a host of very expensive and unwanted green wares. But now the practitioners have actually invented sales tactics to frame the science. “If you’re free market, I’m free market!” (This gives us Environmental Capitalism and Sustainable Development, in which scientists mandate what you can buy and command what you can create.)

    These people stand in the place of Norman Borlaug, Willis Carrier and Edward Jenner. But I think the “underlying motivations” are quite different.

  53. They found that people who enjoyed surprising findings, even if it was counter to their political beefs [sic], were more open to the new information.

    Wow. Remarkable conclusion.

    In fact, you might almost think the former to be a definition of the latter.

  54. So they are laying the groundwork for a Soviet-style declaration that anyone who dares question ‘established scientific orthodoxy’ (see Lysenkoism) is mentally ill and needs to be ‘treated’ for their ‘illness’. Round them up and put them in ‘treatment’ centers for their own and societies ‘good’.

  55. “The problem is not about whether they are exposed to information, but about whether the information is processed in a balanced way. ”

    Idiots, that is not the problem. The problem is that I believe the basic fact that the science is incomplete. If you ask a subset of questions you get a subset of answers. The information itself is unbalanced, not me.

    Any examples in modern science that my position is possible? You bet there is.


    Ask the right question and you won’t fall into a rabbit hole and never come out.

    • ” It manifests itself in what Matthew Hornsey (University of Queensland) describes as “thinking like a lawyer,” in that people cherry-pick which pieces of information to pay attention to “in order to reach conclusions that they want to be true.”

      For an hypothesis to be true it must pass all tests. Cherry picking the tests it seems to fail is not a bad thing. Ignoring the cherry picked failed tests is a bad thing. Yes, this is much like a lawyer.

      OJ simpson had a failed test, the gloves were too small. Nobody asked if the gloves themselves may have changed size which is what can happen when leather gets wet, then dries.

  56. I wonder if any of the studies are being done on being blinded by authority rather than facts. Are they doing studies on how the data is being manipulated? And what kind of retraction can they provide when, not if, they are wrong ?
    A disagreement on the cause of warming doesn’t make me a sick individual. The lack of debate does indicate that the proponents of AGW have agendas, which they have stated, are not in keeping with core human values. They are also controlling the actions through the solutions which are also not in keeping with core human values.
    To me, this study is just another psychological warfare strategy aimed at skeptics. There have been many in the last 20 years. The shrill cry of denier is at least 20 years old now. None, not one of the predictions have come about. Who’s sick, continually believing in something without evidence or not ?
    The AGW people like to point out that there is all this concensus on the cause of global warming. I don’t think there are as many as they make out. For example, about 10 years ago, I related a story about my friend who is a chemist. ” we are stuffing the air full of co2″. Really ? ” how much co2 do you think is in the atmosphere? ” … once he found out that there were less than 400 ppm, he’s been a skeptic ever since. AGW is committing the sin of half truths and leaving important information out to those that trust them.
    Of course the leaked climate gate emails certainly prove there was no collusion… (sarc).

    They have there heads in the sand or something, pretending that there hasnt been collusion or that they are these pure innocent scientists who are only reporting what the find ?. ..Who’s sick ? .. well yes I am, in a communist world. Who am I to doubt the dear leader ? Not so much in a free one.

  57. “Where there is conflict over societal risks – from climate change to nuclear-power safety to impacts of gun control laws, both sides invoke the mantel of science,”

    I see the word “mantel” (“mantelpiece or shelf”) misused for its homonym, “mantle” (“leadership, power, or authority”).

    NYAH, NYAH, as Nelson Muntz would say.

    • PS: A “mantle” is also a cloak, so the “mantle of science” = the “cloak of authority, power, leadership.”

  58. The most glaring fallacy is their unstated premise that all human minds work the same way. AND then, that all “information” is equal or that IT is factual because it is “scientific” or at least was put forth (produced) by a so called scientist – – OR SMART person. Never it is it acknowledged that ALL “information” comes from imperfect humans AND yes, that includes model outputs. So – –
    “…their findings are preliminary and require more research. Yes, they certainly need more money to find more “facts” to support their smart opinions.

  59. So apparently we skeptics/climate realists “resist scientific messages”. The “message” part would be what we’re supposed to take on faith, because someone in Authority says so, and they are oh so much smarter, and the “science” part would be the window dressing, to make it look like what they are pushing is actual science. And they can’t figure out why we resist? Bwa-hahahahahaha!

  60. ““Rather than taking on people’s surface attitudes directly, tailor the message so that it aligns with their motivation.”

    Every sales person knows that and learned it in Sales 101.

  61. Screw the psychobabble. I’m a skeptic of CAGW because the motives of people on both sides are transparent. Politicians love CAGW because they can tax the crap out their constituents and grow the government with the excuse that it is necessary to save the planet. That opens the money spigots of government to fund academic research which makes academics happy and accepting of CAGW. It also opens the spigots to subsidize CO2 reducing technologies which makes a lot of businessmen champions of CAGW. On the other hand there is very little motivation to oppose CAGW except that the science doesn’t smell right based largely on the fact that the proponents are behaving like true believers and that is very unscientific. Given that science is based on skepticism any one who understand the scientific method will find it easy to remain skeptical of CAGW.

  62. This is yet another of Dan Kahan’s “one note symphony” papers. He is absolutely in love with his idea that the real reason that not every one agrees with “consensus positions” published by various experts groups (and to be truthful, he often misrepresents what those consensus positions are) is that people are “protecting identity-congruent ideas”.

    He never once pauses to consider that the “consensus position” he tests with his social science studies is not the the one actually published and promoted by “experts” or that there might be some real scientific controversy, some real valid disagreement, with the consensus position, even among experts.

    It is not that intellectually lazy people aren’t biased in favor of ideas that match those they already hold — they are. But this also explains the very consensus positions he thinks are sacred — which he believes “must be true” because they are the consensus. Kahan utterly fails to see that bias sword cuts both ways — consensus positions may well simply represent the collective bias of a particular field (h/t Ioanides).

    I have written somewhat on Kahan over at Judith Curry’s: “Perversions of open-minded thinking on climate change”.

    • “Kahan utterly fails to see that bias sword cuts both ways — consensus positions may well simply represent the collective bias of a particular field…”

      Unless he actually intends to take something that is so broadly and generally true as to be axiomatic, and then apply it in one highly selective instance, excluding all other cases. That happens a lot.

      Any one can affirm truths. But make sure your life does not depend on their being able either to apply them correctly to any real life circumstances, or to apply true principles in equally appropriate circumstances. You will die before that happens.

      • Zeke ==> It is an interesting exercise to go to the Cultural Cognition site and actually read the various synopses of the studies — and see what exact question they use that is supposed to represent the consensus position on each topic. You’ll see that his questions-representing-the-consensus often do not [almost never] match the consensus position in the referenced cite.

      • Kip Hansen says, “You’ll see that his questions-representing-the-consensus often do not [almost never] match the consensus position in the referenced cite.”

        And that’s another thing! (: Thank you Kip Hansen. There is a story of a professor who had a student check all of the references in several books to see if the original sources said what the author cited them for. He found that in most cases they did not. Some were likely second hand citations from other bibliographies.

        I have been looking for the terms which are used to describe various ways that scholars and academics quote sources.

        For example, pseudoepigraphy attributes one’s own opinions to an older source either by false byline or by using these sources to support one’s own scholarship.

        But all of the other terms for referencing work to say what it does not actually say escape me.

      • Zeke says: “There is a story of a professor who had a student check all of the references in several books to see if the original sources said what the author cited them for. He found that in most cases they did not.”

        This is why it’s a good idea to actually quote those sources, not just cite them.

        I wonder to what extent our overly restrictive copyright laws have inhibited this practice, in combination with overly cautious in-house lawyers at publishing firms. I’ve read that publishers, via their copy-editors, tend to require that authors send persons-requests to the original source, and often to offer to pay a %50 permissnions-fee, If as book might have a dozen or more cites-to-quote, this is very inhibitory.

      • Roger ==> Sometimes (often) it is the other way round — the current paper quotes simple phrases from a previous paper — phrases that are actually there, but that do not communicate the concepts intended by the authors being quoted — things like quoting “unprecedented warming” or something like “may be endangered” being ‘quoted’ from a referenced paper and attaching the phrase to the current author’s own idea. This type of misquoting is far more common — along with false [incorrect] paraphrasing.

    • What is the significance of the “hottest year on record?” What if it goes down this year or next? Personally, I don’t give much credence to the second significant figure to the right of the decimal point. It would appear that there has been a progressive increase in average temperatures, but would one expect anything different after the end of a glacial epoch?

      • Not sure if the LIA counts as a glacial epoch.
        I would point out to friends with questions that the satellite temperature records only go back as far as the time that was a low point of the cooling cycle from the 1940s to the 1970s.
        If we had satellite temperature data going back to the 1920s and 1930s, we would likely see a very different picture.
        I would also point to this:

      • The LIA is at too fine a scale to show up on an ice core graph. Its trough and peak is tiny relative to stadial and interstadial periods.

  63. This kind of thing burns my britches! Why? Because in other research areas it is fairly well accepted that research is not all of the same quality. Even the federal government knows this is true especially when it comes to education research. See https://ies.ed.gov/ncee/WWC/.

    Yes, I am skeptical about research but not for the reasons the post list. I am skeptical because research quality in all areas of inquiry is questionable with only a small fraction really worth a damn. Those that tout their own research results, the results of others, or current paradigms, would do well to remember that fact.

  64. These kinds of ‘studies’ are coming out of the woodwork as of late. For example:


    The author misses the obvious. It isn’t that people generally mistrust statistics, they mistrust the particular statistical numbers provided by their government!

    Similarly, from what I observe on this blog, skeptics aren’t “science deniers.” Rather, they are skeptical of what the so-called climate scientists are claiming to be true. Furthermore, they don’t have to ignore certain facts, because they are able to demonstrate that the ‘facts’ are at odds with other facts or principles of science.

    What we are seeing is journalists and politicians who actually have a poor grasp of science trying to rationalize some people disagreeing with them and the supposed consensus position. It hasn’t occurred to them that they might be wrong in accepting authority to frame their belief system.

    • How did computer model results somehow come to be viewed as real world facts by otherwise intelligent people? I have wondered about this for quite awhile.

  65. I’m skeptical about the pseudo science fraud because I’ve been an atmospheric chemistry and radiation expert for many years, and as soon as another scientist from N.A.S.A. told me the proper law of thermodynamics to solve for temperature in the atmosphere is not in James Hansen’s, and others’ so-called ‘models’ I checked myself,

    and sure enough, the proper law of thermodynamics isn’t being used to solve temperature of the atmosphere.

    The hydrostatic equation is left out and in compressible fluids, the hydrostatic condition is the part of their mathematics and physics, that has their fundamentals calculated with a law of thermodynamics written specifically for, compressed fluids: atmospheric mix, gases, vapors, etc.

    And as soon as I saw that believers in the ‘Green House Effect’ so-called “physics,” claims that using the power of government supercomputers it’s possible to calculate the temperature of the atmosphere using solely Stefan-Boltzmann and not the full law for solving our atmosphere, which would account for the

    Hydrostatic Condition,
    or in other words,
    density of the volume

    and that their temperature is exactly 33 degrees short of the actual temperature of the earth,

    and then I checked the warming that the hydrostatic condition contributes to temperature of the atmosphere and it is ALSO

    exactly 33 degrees,

    and I saw the claim there is a REAL ”33 degree Green House Effect”

    I knew it was fraud.

    End of story,

    end of anybody’s bullshit who claims otherwise,

    which is why people who claim they think it’s basically real science, are all practically subterranean intellects whose every atmospheric and physical science reference, draws snorts of ridicule from every quarter.

    • Anthony, could you help me put this turkey straight?

      I’m particularly sensitive to this line of BS because I fell for it once – for all of a day and a half, until I noticed it depends on the Adiabatic Equation (which Ivan calls the Hydrostatic Condition for some reason), and the situation is anything but adiabatic! Nice try, but yes, the Greenhouse Effect and back-radiation and the rest of it are real things.

      I’ve noticed a lot of this Greenhouse Effect denialism lately on the sceptic blogs. All the same sort of thing – half digested scientific terminology, the claim to be a professional expert of long standing (unlikely in view of the non-scientific literary style!), bombastic denunciations of all who disagree…

      I have to wonder if it’s some kind of monkey warfare on the part of alarmists. If this becomes the mainstream of climate scepticism (and it’s getting that way) then the rational sceptics are in big trouble.

      • Uncle Gus the peddlers of the pseudo-scientific, thermodynamic garbage called GHE mediated AGW are in big trouble. They send the likes of you, because the people who make money off the scam aren’t going to be caught dead, in an open debate with a real atmospheric chemistry and atmospheric radiation expert.

        You have to wonder? You have to wonder what the name of the law of thermodynamics governing the atmosphere is, since you’re educated in the very schools who are also teaching you pot is like heroin, and that mankind is the source of the ozone holes over the poles.

        You don’t need to wonder, go get the education to discuss the matter properly, and explain to us all why the very mathematics that give the world the proper response curves to land rockets on mars, and keep the entire aviation/avionics/flight/internal combustion/air conditioning/furnaces and ovens fields,

        legally regulable, don’t work any more, and we all have to start calculating the temperatures of volumes of air, gas, and vapors, with the thermodynamic laws written to solve matter/energy relationships for other phases of matter.

        I have read through a lot of the AGW/GHE claims and have personally found many violations of thermodynamic law, and although I only have a scant few hours flying an aircraft myself, I also know of the arguments A Schauer made: and find similar things when I investigate.

        If I were to tell someone I understand any field of endeavor on earth, from cooking and gardening, and interior decoration, to nursing, to search & rescue, to being a part-time or even full-time pilot, a carpenter, or welder –

        I am expected to be sufficiently well versed in the subject matter that I can either defend my own beliefs, or teach myself more, until I can; not simply call for the summary banning of people whose arguments – you have basically admitted – you can’t even understand.

        You made claims of the mainsteam of climate skepticism to be in big trouble, because those who constitute it can explain in precise detail what they mean: they have education in the relevant fields, they have work experience in the relevant fields, and the people who actually say they think Mann-Maid warming is real,

        usually can’t even discuss the definition of what warmer and colder are..

        I can show this to you right now Uncle Gus. You said you doubt A Schauer is a competent chemist and radiation professional. I know there are a lot of fields that include knowledge of gas & atmospheric chemistry and radiation: air conditioning and furnaces, internal combustion – are you claiming you don’t believe A Schauer is competent to discuss air conditioning, furnaces, ovens, kilns, and combustion?

        Somehow I think Uncle Gus that it’s you, who don’t have a scientific education. I can’t put my finger on why but I feel certain of it.

        Do you have any college at all in atmospheric/gas chemistry? Any vocational training that even a welder or air conditioning/furnaces or automobile engine mechanic has?

        Because you’re in here calling for the summary banning of people when your own obviously highly suspect, and proven compromised science, is being yanked from websites.

        Not that I expect you to respond Uncle Gus because I think you’re too much a coward to respond properly or you wouldn’t be simply asking for people who you don’t agree with to be banned; and if you weren’t somewhat cowardly you wouldn’t be so disorganized and confused that you were claiming it’s scientific scepticism over your shoddy scientific so-called ‘theory’ being mocked and pulled from respectable web pages.

        It’s YOUR work that’s being yanked from web pages, the work YOU believe in.

        It’s YOUR shoddy science Uncle Gus that can’t stand up to merest scrutiny because even student level investigation has people refusing to associate themselves with even believing it can be true.

        Tell me this Uncle Gus. Explain it and I’ll leave you alone: but if you don’t, you owe A Scjhauer an apology and everyone else whose scepticism you question, but doubtless can’t counter with intelligent retort.

        In the 20th century mankind put spacecraft in to orbit which have telescopes on them: space based astronomy is very expensive and so to get around this,in the mid 1980s finally some scientists discovered how to warp the mirrors of telescopes over a timeframe, while taking photographs of an astronomical object.

        They controlled this warpage of the mirrors initially using vacuum; and this presented the ability for astronomers, to warp the mirror many times, using computer algorithms, and then when it was all over, they’d make a composite photograph of those slides or frames, which created the very smallest, and most unwavering, image: and they found that immediately they were able to take photographs of the sky which removed the magnification limit of just a few hundred times in ground based astronomy, and
        by the end of the 20th century,

        they were taking photographs which rival those taken by space based astronomy.

        But they weren’t done Uncle Gus they started making ever larger mirrors and then, arrays of them, which they put close to each other individually, and pointed at sections of the sky. They then,
        using computer algorithms,

        vibrate these mirrors and combine all the images the mirrors in aggregate create: and just like before, they then blend and subtract all the extra information, till they get an image, which is as clear as a space based telescope – and furthermore the magnification is huge, because – they make arrays of mirrors the size of a house.
        The size of a large lot on a city block. By contrast, the Hubble telescope has an objective mirror that is 80 inches across and cost nearly a billion dollars to create right, before it was over. The first mirror on Hubble was precision ground but still had anomalies and a second mirror had to be installed: a trip to space required for both launchings.

        In contrast modern ground based optical astronomy can place mirrors in arrays the size of a city block: and are currently planning telescopes with multi-phase, aggregate mirrors as I’ve described to you.

        Gus this isn’t a competition to see who can sound slick, sophisticated and officious. I worked in a scientific field, water treatment, and people didn’t refer to everything in the most long winded and rarified language possible, the tendency of actual working scientists, is to put things in simpler terms rather than more complex ones, because they know analogies are very easily related by the less well versed.

        Gus pay attention because I want your answer to be as clear as you can make it for me. You don’t need a discussion of adiabatic or hydrostatic or super-saturation conditions as on Venus, you just need to explain something to me, and I’ll show you why,

        people who believe the way you do,
        only have resort to begging to have your religion’s detractors, banned/silenced simply because they befuddle your church’s wrong, lurching, error-riddled fraud.

        If these mirror arrays, have made modern ground based astronomy not just rival space based astronomy but in several ways far surpass it due to being able to create virtual objective mirrors almost the size of a city block.

        why haven’t their extremely highly, technially proficient atmosheric chemistry, energy and radiation experts,
        been telling the world frantically,

        to please, come look at these computer algorithms they’ve been using to warp/vibrate their mirrors, till they can comb out even the most tiny fractions of the evidence – of the very light, you claim above, is growing in the night sky of earth?

        Why isn’t there a single computerized, image-stabilized telescope operator/administrator/head astrophysicist, crying out to the world to please, PLEASE look,

        at his undeniable evidence that the very back radiatioin you claim to believe has been growing, growing growing all this time – is actually growing ever greater, destabilizing ground based scopes – both uncompensated ones, and those early ones which were built with the more primitive image correction mirror-warping apparatus?

        Why Gus, isn’t the field I studied some in, and that I still stay in touch with, it’s basic physics with mankind’s machinery pitted against it in open science worldwide – why isn’t aviation, the commercial and other aviation fiellds,

        reporting their own flight computers aggregating ever more computer-recorded data, showing higher energy, therefore higher turbulence, in an ever warming sky. Uncle Gus? Answer to us all why the entire Aviationi and computer Avionics fields haven’t realized their own data is just loaded with all the evidence of this claimed, yet vociferously disputed/refuted, back radiation increase, with associated night-time temperature warming?

        Why aren’t we all aware of both those fields reporting what I said to you Uncle Gus? Should you be banned or attacked by the blog owner if you can’t answer these questions, or should I be, because YOU – can’t answer these questions?

        Uncle Gus: explain to us all why those in the ground based astronomy fields haven’t simply gone from telescope to telescope worldwide, and retrieved photographs of the night sky at the same time of the year, looking at the same regions – as in all the astronomy college and university classes on earth, during the entirety,

        of the late 20th century, to early 21st century – why hasn’t one single professor, one single school telescope administrator, one single amateur astronomer, one single student, looking for that blockbuster, grade A paper – just gone,

        and gotten photographs through the same or similar scopes, at the same sections of the night sky, on the same day/night, at the same time –

        and showed them to those of us who caught these other frauds and said “Here! Here it is! Proof that the ever rising, Earth-generated night-time infrared, which causes ‘Atmospheric Scintillation’ or the effect of the

        stars twinkling over your angry, resentful head “Uncle” Gus –

        is creating ever more warmth-

        is creating ever more atmospheric turbulence – the very turbulence that’s limited ground based astronomy to just a few hundred times’ power, for 400 years – the turbulence able to be completely removed via mirror manipulation to offset it today –

        why hasn’t someone gotten the photographs that prove, the night time sky is being ever warmer, and therefore is being ever more turbulent?

        Explain that Gus. I told you my qualifications for the observations I note you can’t account for. I just studied a little bit of astronomy, I watched a PBS movie one time called ”400 years of Astronomy” or something like that, to derive my question about the mirror warping and vibration.

        But the question about the astronomy field not having ANY evidence of ever rising atmospheric turbulence, specifically due to the very light you tell me is growing in intensity – the night skies you swear to me you are sure MUST be growing ever warmer, ever warmer…

        Why don’t any of the fields whose instruments could not hide the ever rising warmth, report ANY rising warmth?

        The commercial aviation field is directly dependent on atmospheric temperature, to set how much fuel is needed to go from one point to another. Hotter air is thinner air, and thinner air, requires more power.

        Do you question that I know enough about aviation to know that? I think you wish you could, but I think your main concern is the complete – the word is ‘absolute’

        lack of answers your religion can present, to scientific inquiry like I just presented you.

        Tell me what part of my scientific inquiry is wrong. Tell me your answers, so everyone here sees the difference between the scientific expert,

        and the scientifically befuddled,


        When you ask for all scientific debate to be stopped by the blog owner that’s an immediate sign you have something to hide, or you’d love seeing the truth destroy the foolish who ask questions easily answered.

        Answer mine or your belief system is fake. There’s nothing more. I’m not asking you based on qualifications, I’m asking you based on fundamental knowledge of how, and why the stars twinkle, and how, and why, the astronomy field had to do something about it.

        I’m asking you because I want your explanation why the commercial airlines haven’t shown the world their ever rising data showing more turbulent, more warm, more fuel demanding atmospheric conditions.

        It ought to all be rising, right alongside the fraudulent, faked temperature records, government institutions are fabricating and publishing as real science.

  66. In the same vein, back in 2010 the BBC had an article arrogantly asking “Why do people vote against their own interests?”

    Six years later, and they still can’t ask themselves why they got it wrong again. Pretending to know what other people should think is their own interests seems to be a habit they just can’t shake off.

    • When people are angry, they want to hurt someone, anyone. It is not a rational action. If a person pops up and says “you have suffered enough, it is the fault of ( insert names here) they will vote for that person out of anger. There are many cases in history where populist politicians say their voters are victims and give them someone to be angry at in order to gain power. Currently it’s Mexicans, Muslims, the EU, but it can be anyone. As the odious Slbodan Mislosovich said to his Serbian compatriots. “No one will beat you anymore, this stops now” Beware of politicians who do this. No good ever comes of it,

      • Well that has been the Democrats approach for decades. They tell African-Americans that all their problems are caused by whites, especially white Republicans. In return the African-Americans, now absolved from any responsibility for their situation, vote Democrat.

      • You mean like Hillary, in rallying her supporters, calling Trump supporters deplorable?
        Or do you mean like when Obama labeled climate skeptics as “flat earthers”?
        Or how about most Western politicians labeling anyone who would like to see immigration reform and reasonable border laws enforced as “racists”?
        Or of course arrogant reactionary posters here, like you, implying that you know better and that anyone disagreeing with you is doing so not out of thought out positions but instead due to anger.

  67. I have low respect for psychologists as every one I know lives in an egocentric world. And every one is respectful of my knowledge of their craft..nay, they treat me as an equal. Except I apply the scientific method to their craft and always question the status quo. While psychology is rife with surrender.

  68. Having just completed a psychology degree (heavy on statistics), I can say with confidence that the lack of self-awareness is staggering. The academics would berate anyone with a differing opinion on climate change (yes, climate change in a psychology course) but then bang on about how they were ensuring we would come out as enquiring scientists/practitioners. There were a couple of staff with entire careers on studying the psychological impacts of climate change and how people could be deniers. The results would appear that only psychologically damaged individuals would cling to the false doctrines of the skeptic, and that these poor individuals should be pitied and helped as much as possible because they were clearly weak minded. I couldn’t voice an opinion as these people were the ones marking your work, so it was a matter of shutting up and spouting the stupidity until the final grades were handed out.

    I learned many things though, one of them being stats can be manipulated to give you a result, that correlation does not equal causation (unless it’s about climate change) and that higher-education is filled with foolishness. I could only recommend a university degree for hard sciences, medicine, computing or languages. Humanities by and large has been totally corrupted by the Left.

  69. It was really sad to see the disgraced ex-Brtish Doctor Andrew,Wakefield, who helped launch the anti-vaccine movement with a fraudulent study linking vaccines to autism, attending one of Trumps inaugural balls. I’m aware that Trump has decided to ignore good research, fact and reams of evidence and encourage the idea that inoculations are linked to Autism, but to see this villain at one of his balls is pretty bad. What next? Chemtrail conspirators in the oval office as advisors ?
    One thing that does concern me as a health professional, is if Trump is determined to reduce the number of people who have good healthcare in the US and is also discouraging uptake of vaccines, how long will it be before an outbreak of diseases we thought had been contained once more occurs? It can only be a question of time.

    • When one is an ideologue, one needs to frame the discussion rather badly. Tge academy of today is infested with ideologues posing as academics. As the paper this thread discusses demonstrates rather well.

    • Sorry but was Wakefield a personal guest of Trump? Do you even gave evidence to back up your clsim that he even attended?

    • Gareth, your post is a turd mine of bs. Trump has determined to reduce the number if people insured? Please do show us any evidence that his goal is to do that. Unless you are an Obama zombie who thinks fixing an unworkable broken plan is a bad thing.

  70. You don’t read as much about it anymore, but in totalitarian countries (especially communist ones) people were sent to asylums for disagreeing with state policies and beliefs because they were obviously mentally ill.

  71. Indeed Jbird. That’s what worries me so much about Trump condemning any media outlet which reports anything he finds less than praiseworthy. The White house press spokesman yesterday was a case in point, he was obviously lying, but told the press it was their fault for not reporting in a ‘correct’ manner. Apparently something which is a patent lie by the administration is now called an ‘alternative fact’
    We all know totalitarian government of all political persuasions have done this before they were overthrown, but to see it happening so blatantly in the US, long a beacon of hope. is truly disturbing.
    George Orwell must be turning in his grave.

    • You need to stop kidding yourself. The same media outraged over questionable stars about details of the inauguration enabled and praised team Obama for deliberately lying about laws, policy, corruption, and even the killing of Americans. The faux outrage is disgusting.

  72. Have these researchers considered that “open-mindedness” is not necessarily a virtue in a scientist?

    Also; “Fresh Perspectives on the Anti-Enlightenment Movement”. No bias here, then…

    • We’ve considered you have been asked some questions you’re scurrilously and studiously avoiding. Answer the questions which have been put to you by me above, you f***ng FAKE.

      ALL the

      and the other readers.

  73. Hornsey, Campbell, Kahan and Robbie Sutton (University of Kent) will present their research at the symposium, Rejection of Science: Fresh Perspectives on the Anti-Enlightenment Movement. The talks take place on Saturday, January 21, 2017, at the SPSP Annual Convention.

    More than 3000 scientists are in attendance at the conference in San Antonio from January 19-21.

    More than 3000 scientists flying to San Antonio – a highlight for San Antonios tourism industry.

    Hopefully a highlight for science either.

  74. I don’t see Kahan et al mentioning a major factor: self-interest. If he is trying to use science to tell me how I have to change my life in some way which I perceive to be to my detriment, I’m going to be resistant to his “messages” unless his evidence is overwhelming. This goes for what kind of food goes in my mouth, how much energy costs me, whether my locality bans disposable plastic bags, etc. I will look for evidence of that which keeps me comfortable.

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