Study: Presenting Deliberately "Weakened" Skeptic Arguments Increases Climate Acceptance

Physics Giant Edward Teller's Climate Skeptic Oregon Petition Signature

Physics Giant Edward Teller’s Climate Skeptic Oregon Petition Signature

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

A new study suggests that if people are psychologically “inoculated” with deliberately “weakened” versions of climate skeptic arguments, they are more likely to reject real skeptic positions.

The Press Release;

Psychological ‘vaccine’ could help immunize public against ‘fake news’ on climate change

Sander van der Linden, Anthony Leiserowitz,Seth Rosenthal, Edward Maibach

UNIVERSITY OF CAMBRIDGE

In medicine, vaccinating against a virus involves exposing a body to a weakened version of the threat, enough to build a tolerance.

Social psychologists believe that a similar logic can be applied to help “inoculate” the public against misinformation, including the damaging influence of ‘fake news’ websites propagating myths about climate change.

A new study compared reactions to a well-known climate change fact with those to a popular misinformation campaign. When presented consecutively, the false material completely cancelled out the accurate statement in people’s minds – opinions ended up back where they started.

Researchers then added a small dose of misinformation to delivery of the climate change fact, by briefly introducing people to distortion tactics used by certain groups. This “inoculation” helped shift and hold opinions closer to the truth – despite the follow-up exposure to ‘fake news’.

The study on US attitudes found the inoculation technique shifted the climate change opinions of Republicans, Independents and Democrats alike.

Published in the journal Global Challenges, the study was conducted by researchers from the universities of Cambridge, UK, Yale and George Mason, US. It is one of the first on ‘inoculation theory’ to try and replicate a ‘real world’ scenario of conflicting information on a highly politicised subject.

“Misinformation can be sticky, spreading and replicating like a virus,” says lead author Dr Sander van der Linden, a social psychologist from the University of Cambridge and Director of the Cambridge Social Decision-Making Lab.

“We wanted to see if we could find a ‘vaccine’ by pre-emptively exposing people to a small amount of the type of misinformation they might experience. A warning that helps preserve the facts.

“The idea is to provide a cognitive repertoire that helps build up resistance to misinformation, so the next time people come across it they are less susceptible.”

To find the most compelling climate change falsehood currently influencing public opinion, van der Linden and colleagues tested popular statements from corners of the internet on a nationally representative sample of US citizens, with each one rated for familiarity and persuasiveness.

The winner: the assertion that there is no consensus among scientists, apparently supported by the Oregon Global Warming Petition Project. This website claims to hold a petition signed by “over 31,000 American scientists” stating there is no evidence that human CO2 release will cause climate change.

The study also used the accurate statement that “97% of scientists agree on manmade climate change”. Prior work by van der Linden has shown this fact about scientific consensus is an effective ‘gateway’ for public acceptance of climate change.

In a disguised experiment, researchers tested the opposing statements on over 2,000 participants across the US spectrum of age, education, gender and politics using the online platform Amazon Mechanical Turk.

In order to gauge shifts in opinion, each participant was asked to estimate current levels of scientific agreement on climate change throughout the study.

Those shown only the fact about climate change consensus (in pie chart form) reported a large increase in perceived scientific agreement – an average of 20 percentage points. Those shown only misinformation (a screenshot of the Oregon petition website) dropped their belief in a scientific consensus by 9 percentage points.

Some participants were shown the accurate pie chart followed by the erroneous Oregon petition. The researchers were surprised to find the two neutralised each other (a tiny difference of 0.5 percentage points).

“It’s uncomfortable to think that misinformation is so potent in our society,” says van der Linden. “A lot of people’s attitudes toward climate change aren’t very firm. They are aware there is a debate going on, but aren’t necessarily sure what to believe. Conflicting messages can leave them feeling back at square one.”

Alongside the consensus fact, two groups in the study were randomly given ‘vaccines’:

A general inoculation, consisting of a warning that “some politically-motivated groups use misleading tactics to try and convince the public that there is a lot of disagreement among scientists”.

A detailed inoculation that picks apart the Oregon petition specifically. For example, by highlighting some of the signatories are fraudulent, such as Charles Darwin and members of the Spice Girls, and less than 1% of signatories have backgrounds in climate science.

For those ‘inoculated’ with this extra data, the misinformation that followed did not cancel out the accurate message.

The general inoculation saw an average opinion shift of 6.5 percentage points towards acceptance of the climate science consensus, despite exposure to fake news.

When the detailed inoculation was added to the general, it was almost 13 percentage points – two-thirds of the effect seen when participants were just given the consensus fact.

The research team point out that tobacco and fossil fuel companies have used psychological inoculation in the past to sow seeds of doubt, and to undermine scientific consensus in the public consciousness.

They say the latest study demonstrates that such techniques can be partially “reversed” to promote scientific consensus, and work in favour of the public good.

The researchers also analysed the results in terms of political parties. Before inoculation, the fake negated the factual for both Democrats and Independents. For Republicans, the fake actually overrode the facts by 9 percentage points.

However, following inoculation, the positive effects of the accurate information were preserved across all parties to match the average findings (around a third with just general inoculation; two-thirds with detailed).

“We found that inoculation messages were equally effective in shifting the opinions of Republicans, Independents and Democrats in a direction consistent with the conclusions of climate science,” says van der Linden.

“What’s striking is that, on average, we found no backfire effect to inoculation messages among groups predisposed to reject climate science, they didn’t seem to retreat into conspiracy theories.

“There will always be people completely resistant to change, but we tend to find there is room for most people to change their minds, even just a little.”

Source: https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2017-01/uoc-pc011917.php

The Abstract of the study;

Inoculating the Public against Misinformation about Climate Change

Effectively addressing climate change requires significant changes in individual and collective human behavior and decision-making. Yet, in light of the increasing politicization of (climate) science, and the attempts of vested-interest groups to undermine the scientific consensus on climate change through organized “disinformation campaigns,” identifying ways to effectively engage with the public about the issue across the political spectrum has proven difficult. A growing body of research suggests that one promising way to counteract the politicization of science is to convey the high level of normative agreement (“consensus”) among experts about the reality of human-caused climate change. Yet, much prior research examining public opinion dynamics in the context of climate change has done so under conditions with limited external validity. Moreover, no research to date has examined how to protect the public from the spread of influential misinformation about climate change. The current research bridges this divide by exploring how people evaluate and process consensus cues in a polarized information environment. Furthermore, evidence is provided that it is possible to pre-emptively protect (“inoculate”) public attitudes about climate change against real-world misinformation.

Read more: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/gch2.201600008/full

I was curious about exactly how the inoculation is performed, the following from the full study is revealing;

… The rate of cultural transmission, or infection, may be slowed through a process known as attitudinal inoculation. In medicine, resistance to a virus can be conferred by exposing someone to a weakened version of the virus (a vaccine)—strong enough to trigger a response (i.e., the production of antibodies), but not so strong as to overwhelm the body’s immune system. The social–psychological theory of attitudinal inoculation[56] follows a similar logic: A threat is introduced by forewarning people that they may be exposed to information that challenges their existing beliefs or behaviors. Then, one or more (weakened) examples of that information are presented and directly refuted in a process called “refutational pre-emption” or “prebunking.”[14] In short, attitudinal resistance is conferred by pre-emptively highlighting false claims and refuting potential counterarguments. …

Read more: Same link as above

In the supplemental information document, the study authors provide an example of inoculation. They authors present the Oregon Petition claim “31,487 American scientists have signed this petition, including 9,029 with PhDs“, along with an image of Physics Giant Edward Teller’s Oregon Petition signature (see image at the top of this post), followed by the following “counterargument”.

General (In1) and Detailed (In2) Inoculation Messages

General: Nearly all climate scientists—97%—have concluded that human-caused climate change is happening. Some politically-motivated groups use misleading tactics to try to convince the public that there is a lot of disagreement among scientists. However, scientific research has found that among climate scientists “there is virtually no disagreement that humans are causing climate change”.

Detailed: One such politically motivated group claims to have collected signatures from over 31,000 “scientists” (including over 9,000 who hold Ph.D.’s) on a petition urging the U.S. government to reject any limits on greenhouse gas emissions because; “there is no convincing scientific evidence that human release of carbon dioxide, methane or other greenhouse gases is causing or will, in the foreseeable future, cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere and disruption of Earth’s climate.” They claim that these signatures prove that there is no scientific consensus on human-caused climate change.

This may sound convincing at first. However, several independent investigations have concluded that the “Petition Project” is extremely misleading. For instance, many of the signatures on the petition are fake (for example, past signatories have included the long- deceased Charles Darwin, members of the Spice Girls, and fictional characters from Star Wars). Also, although 31,000 may seem like a large number, it actually represents less than 0.3% of all US science graduates (a tiny fraction). Further, nearly all of the legitimate signers have no expertise in climate science at all. In fact, less than 1% of those who signed the petition claim to have any background in Climate or Atmospheric Science. Simply calling yourself a “scientist” does not make someone an expert in climate science. By contrast, 97% of actual climate scientists, agree that human-caused climate change is happening.

Read more: http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/store/10.1002/gch2.201600008/asset/supinfo/gch2201600008-sup-0001-S1.pdf?v=1&s=c4c0dcd0e20e3f74dec1f341e1d3b4c7b6ff293b

In my opinion this counter argument is deeply misleading.

  • There is no mention that the 97% consensus claim is based on a disputed study.
  • There is no mention of who Edward Teller is. As a skeptic I don’t defer to anyone’s authority, even Edward Teller doesn’t get a free pass. But having someone like Teller onboard surely means that the position he supports is worthy of closer examination.
  • Suggesting that people from fields related to climate science have no right to criticise how climate science is conducted is ridiculous. For example, excluding input from non-climate scientists would exclude criticism from statisticians, who frequently object to the sloppy use of statistics by non-statisticians. Statistics matters – in scientific studies which rely on statistical analysis, sloppy use of statistics can lead to erroneous conclusions.

Are the authors aware of these flaws in their counterargument? Quite possibly – but their intention with their study was to test the impact of deliberately weakened skeptic positions, to test their “inoculation” theory, not to educate people about climate change.

The moral premise of this study is my most serious concern – it is not OK to play increasingly devious psychological tricks on people to win support. Of course it is possible to convince more people by providing them with a distorted, “weakened” version of your opponent’s position, which is what “inoculation” theory seems to be about – but that doesn’t make it right.

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Voltron

Well done Eric, a much better version than I just submitted today! I also had a issue with using psychological tools to do harm. As a recent psych graduate I am fully aware of the benefits good practice can bring people trying to cope with hard times, however, I am also aware of the utility in these tools being used for disingenuous ends.

ironargonaut

Has anyone filed an ethics complaint? Seems to me they harmed the subjects of this experiment.

emsnews

Yes, thinking kills! Save the children.

Goldrider

If they NEED to use “psyops” for convincing, it’s obvious their “argument” won’t stand the light of Truth. This is headed for last-gasp land–fast!

Ernest Bush

It’s more like it’s headed for the “last gasp landfill.”

Gary

The effect is known as “anchoring” and was explored by psychologist Daniel Kahneman (Nobel prize winner in Economics) and his late colleague, Amos Tversky. They found that decision-making is not always rational (exclusively fact-based) but can be influenced by a planted suggestion, even suggestions that have little or nothing to do with the issue in question. People tend to substitute their impressions about things for facts when making a judgement. If the impressions are inaccurate, it can lead to a bad decision. They will vote for a politician, for example, who looks trustworthy or telegenic, even thought the policies he advocates are disadvantageous to them.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anchoring

Ernest Bush

Several Republican senators came to mind when I read your post. Your last statement completely explains why rhinos keep getting elected despite their progressivism.

Greg Cavanagh

Hope and Change.
I recognised that one from day one. I was screaming at the television asking “what does he hope for, and what does he want to change?”.

Peterg

They are definitely on to something here. Unfortunately, when presented with wild warmist claims the inoculation is usually in the other direction.

TimTheToolMan

General: Nearly all climate scientists—97%—have concluded that human-caused climate change is happening.

The problem with this statement is the use of the word “caused”
97% of the scientists agree that CO2 is a greenhouse gas and that additional anthropogenic greenhouse gasses will tend to warm the atmosphere to some extent but its a leap from that to “caused” the observed warming/change and 97% of scientists (eg from Cook et al) dont say that.

bobl

My thoughts too,
Did the researchers deploy the innoculation that the 97% discarded the volume of papers that ignored climate change and then used bait and switch to apply the results for “Humans may have a theoretical impact on climate EG like UHI – That even I would agree with” and then presented THAT statistical manipulation as if all those people also agreed that the warming was Manmade, substantial and dangerous. Did they present the innoculation that when properly accounted against the conventional thesis that climate change is Human Caused, substantial, and dangerous the percentage consensus found in the cook study was only 0.3%. Did they present the innoculation that a number of authors accounted as agreeing with the concensus disputed that assertion. Did they present the innoculating fact that science doesn’t care about consensus on facts, but only about the observed facts themselves.
It’s very interesting that people can be innoculated from the 97% consensus lie by the truth of how that consensus was fabricated – the truth will out and all.
This “Study” leaves out all the confounding factors and fails to assess innoculation in context. The context of the fact that there are a dozen “prebunking” truths about the 97% consensus that the “Public” need to know before they can assert that they have countered defection from the consensus.

lewispbuckingham

What is more difficult to understand is that the designers of this psychological experiment were obviously
unable to see the problems in the 97% methodology.
They probably took it straight from the Democrats and Obama, who swallowed it in droves.
This then raises the question’How robust is the statistical analysis of their data?’
It’s a pity they screwed with so many people to test them on dubious ‘facts’.

emsnews

The creator of this fake study is a German named Professor van der Linden and he runs the Center For Climate Change Communication. Ergo: he is a fraud.

gnomish

the 97% narrative was an enormous success.
as we can see, people are still discussing it – so it is still working.
http://imgur.com/N7bB2np
but the cleverest trick lew pulled was the ‘conspiracy ideation’ gambit.
it was similar to poking someone with sharp sticks to see if they show hostility- so they can squeal about how hostile.
that’s some major league trolling.

Margaret Smith

97% – it could have just as easily have been 100% if they’d wanted but….
100% no-one would have believed it as it is the province of dictators.
99% has the same problem dressed up.
98% something about even numbers doesn’t quite work.
97% is perfect!
It’s all manipulation of the unwary.
Obama upped it to 99% but that was not repeated.

KenW

anybody know off hand which paper was the other 3% ?

M Courtney

The problem arises from restricting trusted “expertise” on climate only to those who identify as “Climate Scientists”.
Climate Scientists have chosen that career becasue they think the field is importabnt. If they thought Climate Change was of low impact then they would not have chosen that career. They would have done something they thought important. Therefore, Climate Scientists will have a bias towards an extreme view. Other expertise is required to assess their bias. Other expertise and assessment of physical evidence, of course.
The 97% line is exactly the same argument as “God exists because most Priests say so”. Priests spend far more time studying theology than lay people – they are relatively expert. But if they didn’t believe in God, why would they have become Priests?
This doesn’t mean that God does not exist or that Anthropogenc Global Warming is harmless.
It just means that the argument for those positions is rubbish.

Walt D.

+10

Roger Knights

M Courtney says: Climate Scientists have chosen that career becasue they think the field is important. … Therefore, Climate Scientists will have a bias towards an extreme view. . . . The 97% line is exactly the same argument as “God exists because most Priests say so”.

This is a better argument against the Consensus than saying that science is not a democracy. It ought to be used more often.

RockyRoad

If you look at where the “97% are in agreement” on climate came from, there’s actually a far greater percent that believe in UFO’s.

John Boles

All depends on how you define “god”. When someone asks me if I “believe in god” I always ask “god as defined how?” and they are stumped.

Andrew

John, why is it necessary to define God? I can be wrong about my preferred revelation with atheists being right. If they disproved the existence of Genesha, or found a signed confession from Yeshua Ben Yusuf of Galillee that he made the whole thing up, so? Conversely, if God confirmed that he is the same around the world but revealed himself through culturally applicable fables through hand picked story tellers, that doesn’t make them less interesting.
God for all practical purposes is defined as a steering intelligence of the solar system of sufficient development as to be indistinguishable from omniscient and all powerful to a casual human observer. He may be Captain Picard or he may be genuinely the creator of the universe, as long as he’s actively influencing events.

Alba

I presume that the ‘argument’ about priests and God is a figment of M Courtney’s imagination.

M Courtney

Alba. Yes.
I take credit for this argument.
Can you find a flaw in it?

JohnKnight

John Boles,
“When someone asks me if I “believe in god” I always ask “god as defined how?” and they are stumped.”
Oh . . perhaps that’s because they don’t feel like being jerked around by some lightweight playing rhetorical games. If you believe in any god, you’d be the logical one to define it, not them . . Seriously, I wouldn’t be bragging about ducking people around for kicks, kid.

JohnKnight

M Courtney,
I think it’s a fine analogy, but I’d be careful about this sort of thing;
“But if they didn’t believe in God, why would they have become Priests?”
There are other potential reasons for espousing something than actual belief. I seriously doubt that all those who espouse the CAGW actually believe in it . . and I seriously doubt that all those who claim to believe in God actually do . .

M Courtney

John Knight, So true.
But the majority of people, in any line, do not dedicate their lives to hypocrisy.
Some do, true.
But about 97% are sincere.

Raven

This [God exists analogy] is a better argument against the Consensus than saying that science is not a democracy. It ought to be used more often.

In days gone by, the warmists would buttress their 97% argument by drawing a comparison with the medical profession.
They’d say ‘if 97% of doctors diagnosed you with cancer, the chances are pretty high that you had cancer.’
They’d buttress the ‘Climate Scientist are experts’ angle by saying ‘if you want advice on plumbing, talk to a plumber; if you want advice on the climate, talk to a climate scientist’.
They’d buttress the causation uncertainty issue with a long winded comparison to the link between smoking and cancer. This results in their justification for saying that man is causing the warming.
It’s also the reasoning that underpins the notion that sceptics use ‘tobacco industry tactics to undermine science,’ and hence the demonisation of the oil/coal industry as well as sceptics – a twofer.
I haven’t seen it done but I expect they’d buttress the biased scientist issue by saying that doctors go into medicine because they have an aptitude as well as a calling to do something positive for community health or some such . . perhaps even a rise to a specialist within the field.
It’s all sophistry, of course, but to the untrained eye and when printed in a newspaper article, it carried some weight – still does.

knr

no the problem is 97% because its BS , a little maths tells you to know what percentage a sub-group is of a whole group you must have an idea of the size of the whole group .
Now even if you ignore the fact that climate ‘scientists’ is a term used as a label for people with no scientific training such has fail politicians and pop-psychologists. The reality is there is no known value for this whole group , so its impossible to any level of accuracy worth a dam to give a percentage for a sub-group .
Cooks great ‘trick ‘ was to sell this claim when in reality all he hand to offer it was a hand full of papers ‘carefully selected ‘ , given the number in the area in really was a hand full, based on poor research methodology from people who boasted about ‘fixing ‘ the results .
In all it was the type of research that is any decent science would have been thrown out , if handing in as essay by an undergraduate, but then this is not by any means a decent science its an area where the PR value of your work means you really can dump all over good academic practice and be well rewarded for doing so.
The whole 97% is a pile of dug , that even AGW skeptics give it value sadly shows how good a snow job Cook and friends did .

Raven

Cooks great ‘trick ‘ was to sell this claim when in reality all he hand to offer it was a hand full of papers ‘carefully selected‘ . . .

Indeed and the emphasis should be on the sell aspect
The SkS kidz were talking about the proposed marketing/promotion tactics on their forum prior to the ’study’ even being undertaken. i.e. the result was a foregone conclusion.
Of course, how a study like this would require, let alone pass, peer review is another question, but pass it did.
I’d have thought there’s ample grounds to see it retracted.

Michael 2

“The problem with this statement is the use of the word ’caused'”
The other problem is “of scientists”, including computer scientists, geologists, and so on.
To arrive at 97 percent you remove all but 3 percent of the dissenters by carefully defining what constitutes a scientist.

Peter Plail

You have to realise that the 97% concensus claim can be restated as: “73 out of 75 scientists who met Lew’s criteria agreed ……” It is part of the dishonesty of warmists to misrepresent the 97% of Lewandovsky’s so-called study as 97% of all scientists.

DD More

Or review what questions they were asked and the answers they were lead into.
Just the questions and responses.
Using Cook et al.2013 , Doran and Kendall Zimmerman, 2009 & AMS survey Stenhouse et al., 2014 as basis to the 97%.
So answering the questions –
1) most warming since 1950 is anthropogenic?
2) When compared with pre-1800s levels, do you think that mean global temperatures have generally risen, fallen, or remained relatively constant?
3) Do you think human activity is a significant contributing factor in changing mean global temperatures?
4) Regardless of the cause, do you think that global warming is happening?
5) How sure are you that global warming (a. is /b. is not) happening?
Answers and questions use generalized words of most, think, significant, contributing and no values or significance is asked for. No where is proof or dates or amounts or data of +/- estimates required and did you see CO2 anywhere?
Do these questions really provide the answer that; stopping man-made, catastrophizing, CO2 control knob, ever increasing (global warming / climate change / disruption / weirding ) [pick 1 or more], which can only be prevented by higher taxes, more regulations and a loss of personal freedom will actually keep us all from floating down the River Styx in a handbasket?

Terry Gain

Isn’t the problem that they substituted “climate change” for “some uncertain amount of warming”? When did the climate ever not change?

Walter Sobchak

No the problem with the statement is “climate scientists”. The factoid begins by defining climate scientists as those who have got5ten on the CAGW gravy train, and defining them as climate scientists. It excludes skeptics with relevant skills who do not drink the kool-aid. A Roger Pilek, Jr. who has been driven from the camp, will not be deemed to be a climate scientist.
A further problem is that 97% of people who believe anything do not make the object of their belief true or science.
As Einstein famously said about the Nazi tract titled “Hundert Autoren gegen Einstein (A Hundred Authors Against Einstein)”, they would have only needed one if he were correct.

Randy Stubbings

Human-caused climate change is happening and it’s measured in the thousands of nanodegrees since 1900.

joelobryan

They might be psychologically “innoculated” … that is until they get their electric, oil heat, or nat gas utility bills and realize the econutters are coming for their wallet.

TinyCO2

I was about to write something similar. The sort of scam that nudges a person’s opinion slightly are never going to work against the massive costs involved.

Trebla

TinyCO2: Right on! Just ask the residents of Ontario who are faced with peak hour electricity rates that are double those of neighbouring Quebec. I’m sure they are gladly accepting them while lying awake nights worrying about what will happen 100 years from now if the temperature creeps up 2 degrees.

Craig

The alarmist arguments have been nothing but weak, and it doesn’t appear to be helping CAGW acceptance any…

Alan Robertson

One simple truth undermines van der Linden, et al, 2017 and the entire concept of climate doom:
if facts and data pointed to the catastrophe they claim, there would be no need for indoctrination, or inoculation.

Terrry Vernon

If the alarmists really believed their own predictions there would be a Plan B, for basic survival in case China or India kept on emitting greenhous gases. I have seen no mention of funding of any work to mitigate the effects of continued warming. Either they are totally confident they will stop climate change, or they do not expect the change to be catastrophic. Neither option aligns with their public warnings.

Ian H

Goebbels would have been impressed.

AGW is Not Science

+1,000 More Klimat Propaganda.

Resourceguy

Yes, I think so. He would have asked for their card and a meeting to hear more about their insights. Such expertise cannot be overlooked.

This is Goebbels.

Mick In The Hills

My 1st thought too Ian.
Glad I read down the comments a bit to see it has also occurred to you.
🙂

Kurt

You’re not even mentioning the greatest stupidity in this study. The claim of the Oregon Petition of a lack of “convincing scientific evidence” of “catastrophic warming” is wholly consistent with the bland and irrelevant scientific consensus that “manmade warming” is real. I’m sick of this bait and switch argument. Either the authors of the study are incredibly stupid individuals or they are incredibly deceitful individuals.

Kurt correctly stated:
“Either the authors of the study are incredibly stupid individuals or they are incredibly deceitful individuals.”
I agree with Kurt:
“In reality, the truly diabolical forces were the scoundrels who promoted global warming hysteria, and the many imbeciles who followed them.”
Notes:
1. Full quote below.
2. The terms “scoundrels” and “imbeciles” are not mutually exclusive.
Regards, Allan
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/11/22/climate-and-popular-revolution/comment-page-1/#comment-2350795
In reality, the truly diabolical forces were the scoundrels who promoted global warming hysteria, and the many imbeciles who followed them.
These warmist scam artists have:
– created mass hysteria among their under-educated minions
– driven up the cost of energy and the cost of food
– increased poverty, hunger and winter mortality
– increased human suffering especially among the elderly and the poor.
– squandered many trillions of dollars of scarce global resources that could have been devoted to solving real humanitarian and environmental problems.
For far less money, we could have installed clean water and sanitation systems in every village on Earth. In the decades that the world has obsessed over the false global warming crisis, over 50 million children below the age of five have died from contaminated drinking water. Yes, really!
That is the about same number of people who died in WW2, and about the same number killed by Stalin. Only Mao killed more, during his Great Leap Backward. That is the warmists’ legacy. Only their fellow-travelers who opposed the use of DDT to fight malaria can compete with their death toll – another group of green fanatics.
None of this was ever justified. It was a classic case of “extraordinary popular delusions and the madness of crowds”.
We need a return to common decency and common sense, and we need it now.
Regards, Allan

Now that’s unfair!
Why the either/or?
Why not both?

HI Mike – you are correct- as per my Note 2 above”
“2. The terms “scoundrels” and “imbeciles” are not mutually exclusive.”

knr

when you go fishing for research grant you use ‘bait ‘ which gets them to bite .
That the whole AGW thign is very much alive is show by such ‘research’ has it indicates there is lots of money around for those that get the ‘right results ‘

emsnews

They are from Europe. Being left wingers, they probably also believe that letting in millions of angry Muslim males has no downside.

TG

The liberal brain has no ability to resist – “Resistance is futile”
Thank God for Trumpism, even the Borg can’t resist that!

Felflames

That reminds, one of my favourite scenes.

TA

“Thank God for Trumpism, even the Borg can’t resist that!”
Really! Trump had the union leaders calling their meeting with him yesterday “incredible”. When’s the last time you saw union leaders praising a Republican? Everyone of them voted for Hillary, and now they are calling Trump incredible. And he is. 🙂

MarkW

“When’s the last time you saw union leaders praising a Republican? ”
Reagan.

TA

In other words, it’s been a *long* time.

This is just the “Strawman Argument” in disguise.

KenW

Stephen Rasey, precisely. They are trying to scientifically quantify the most effective dosage of misrepresentation. They understand skeptics to be uninformed, unthinking, malleable and gullible (and probably heavily inbred). They think that all they need to do is to frame their propaganda in some particular way, so that it seeps into our tiny brains, and we will give up our resistance to their climate cause – If they could just figure out how!!!!
Fallacy wrapped in nonsense inside cluelessness.

AGW is Not Science

And still believing their own propaganda nonsense. Even if “97% of scientists agree” that human activities are causing dangerous climate change, it would still be MEANINGLESS. Science isn’t done by popular vote. Present SCIENTIFIC PROOF, or STFU already!

KenW

but it’s fun
watching them
trying to figure
us out

Steve Fraser

A cranio-rectal TurDuckin!

Paul Penrose

That was my first reaction. Manipulating people using lies is generally considered propaganda, which is ultimately self defeating. This is nothing new. How did this dreck get published?

RobR

So this is what it’s come to. I’m flabbergasted that a a purported scientific study would advocate out right lies to advance a position. Trump couldn’t have arrived at a better time.

RockyRoad

….not when the basis of Anthropogenic Catastrophic Global Warming (or whatever they call it at the moment) is ONE BIG LIE. There is no measureable evidence, and the practitioners in the movement know it.

TA

“There is no measureable evidence, and the [CAGW] practitioners in the movement know it.”
That’s right. If they had any evidence, they would have presented it already.
The only “evidence” they have is a “Hockey stick” chart, and skeptics are not buying it.
The Hockey Stick chart is a dishonest attempt to manipulate humanity by changing the historical temperature record to make it appear that the weather is getting hotter and hotter, year after year, when, in reality, it is not.

Steve Lohr

Ethics, what is that? I don’t think these people can properly answer that. In a system that claims to support the sanctity of freedom of thought, this bangs us between the eyes and belies that in the highest levels of research and teaching. I have always considered the psych types to have an inherent defect, which they are aware of but uncertain of it’s nature, and therefore busy themselves with ways to manipulate other people for the sake of protecting their own self image. Devising ways to re-frame thoughts to influence opinion, beliefs, or life views is the product of the psychologist’s work shop so I am not surprised by the inoculation theory. Is that kind of thing right? Well it might be if someone is disturbed by their own thoughts, opinion, belief, etc. but not when the subject is politics and the recipient of the “treatment” is unknowing, unsuspecting, and operating under their free will. That kind of behavior outside a therapeutic setting is the equivalent of attack, and should be considered a criminal act. It is also quite audacious to consider there is even a need for such things as it is for people to work things out on their own by considering the competing ideas. A government of, by, and for the people is founded on that idea. We are free people, don’t you know! Or is that a lesson that needs to be revisited?

AllyKat

Apparently the contributors from GMU never bothered reading anything he wrote.

knr

three words . ‘the greater good ‘ often heard before something that is far from ‘good ‘

Ethics?
I’ve gotten most of my ethics training from people in legitimate ethics positions.
Peter Gleick is my boy.
These folks are rookies.

“Social psychologists believe that a similar logic can be applied to help “inoculate” the public against misinformation…”
A better summary of the desire for control of the populace has never been given. Orwell would be horrified that they are using 1984 as an instruction manual.

Paul Penrose

Owell indeed. Just who is responsible for deciding what is “misinformation” and what is “approved information”? Why the same people promoting the “approved information”, of course! It boggles the mind that there are people who don’t see the problem with this.

Quite regardless of the rights and wrongs of the issue, this is just morally sick.

Crispin in Waterloo but really in Seoul

John H
Agreed. The swap from ‘97%’ agree with ‘mankind has an influence’ on the ‘pro’ side and the 31,000 signatures with the ‘leading to catastrophe’ side doesn’t even pass the smell test.
One says ‘everyone believes apples exist’ and the other is ‘apples make you sick’.
It has occurred to me that the ‘psychological test’ taking place, the experiment, is the paper itself, planted in a journal with such obvious defects. They 97% is taken as a given, with no evaluation of its veracity. That is the ‘trick’ part. The test will be to see it that disinformation serves to affect people’s perception of a completely different claim about the catastrophic nature (or not) of human influence.

M Seward

“Vaccination” – you mean deliberate propaganda or disinformation that is really an attack on the integrity of ‘skeptics’. A bit like slipping into the public doman ‘suggestions’ that a certain person is a fraudster, into a bit of bestiality or even better a ‘kiddy fiddler’ and see how their credibility takes a hit. Better still watch them squirm as the like of questioning turns hard left to ‘GOTCHA’ now scumbag/denier.
Tels you all you need to know about the grubs who came up with this. I wonder how the paper ‘rated’ in the academic scorecard. How much funding would it equate to? That’s a large part of what this whole fraud is about.

lee

Social psychologists know what about climate change?

AllyKat

“Do not listen to them, they are not *cue angelic choir* CLIMATE scientists. Listen to us, the also not-climate scientists…”

They don’t know very much about climate change or statistics, which is why Lew had to rely on Cookie to help him fudge the 97%.
It took a creative cartoonist like Cookie to get there.

Peter C

That mentioning it makes gaining research grants easy and 97% of the Establishment support it.

I’m ashamed that this disgusting poisonous nonsense should emerge from the university that gave us Newton, Maxwell, Rutherford, Keynes, Babbage, Wordsworth and Tennyson

Richard Saumarez

Absolutely – Well said.

Steve Borodin

Plus one.

Walt D.

You can also add Turing and Dirac.

This is just another attempt to “cancel” the debate, which in actuality has never really happened. (The debate between scientists hasn’t happened). This is what they are still trying to avoid by using another sneaky/deceitful/deceptive tactic.

Crispin in Waterloo but really in Seoul

+0.97

Pamela Gray

There are many ways to advocate for and try to put into place yet another sick version of a supreme race. This is one of them.

LarryD

Research into propaganda techniques. Dishonest ones, at that.

Over time the social response to climate alarmism is that they have become inoculated. So the authors need anti-inoculation theory to keep the alarm response active. In general interest in any topic follows a normal distribution with an inception, rise, peak,and decline. This is what the authors are reacting to with a blame theory rather than an understanding of basic behavioral principles. That is, with no counter-argument at all to climate alarmism, interest must peak and will decline at some point.

Any real progressive can always find someone or something eles to explain their failures.
Just ask Hillary and our Barack.
Somehow, it’s never their ideals that are in question.

Greg Cavanagh

There inoculation theory also assumes that the person is only subject to this one inoculation (screed).
As soon as the person reads other sites, sees conflicting reported studies spoken of on news articles, talks with their friends and family ect. The inoculation becomes null and void. It simply adds to the overall mistrust of authority figures.

Alex

And don’t people get really pi$$ed off when they know they have been manipulated.

Alex

‘discover’ is better than ‘know’, in this case

Remember, it’s much easier to con someone than it is to convince them they’ve been conned.
I think Abraham Lincoln or PT Barnum or someone else said that.

John in NZ

If I understand them correctly they are saying that if you use a strawman argument you can sway their opinion.
Revolutionary.

Christopher Hanley

‘… it is possible to convince more people by providing them with a distorted, “weakened” version of your opponent’s position, which is what “inoculation” theory seems to be about – but that doesn’t make it right …”.
==================================
Of course not, the whole rotten Climate Change™ edifice is built from half-truths, exaggerations and straight-out lies.

afonzarelli

The oregon petition is actually consistent with the 97% consensus… Note the use of the word “catastrophic” in the oregon petition. Of the 97% consensus, less than one percent considered climate change to be catastrophic. The rest (96+%) did not adhere to the “catastrophic” meme. (the 97% consensus actually includes prominent skeptics such as doctors lindzen, curry, and spencer) i think the word “inoculation” is a bit loaded; “clarification” is perhaps a better choice of words. AND all points made are most always in need of some clarification not just those that confirm a personal bias. The authors of this study are saying nothing new. (nothing to see here, folks, move along)…

Paul Penrose

Actually, “clarification” is the exact opposite of what they are proposing. They suggest taking someone’s argument, then remove some of the clarifying detail so that it appears “weak” (sloppy, incomplete) to make it easy to see that it is “wrong”. This is a basic strawman technique and a very dishonest form of propaganda. Shame on them.

Tell small lies about a truth, and the people will believe the bigger lie. George Orwell was an amateur.

Roger Knights

Nearly all climate scientists—97%—have concluded that human-caused climate change is happening.

So have 90% (?) of contrarians and 100% of lukewarmers.
So this is a strawman. The debate is about climate sensitivity and positive feedbacks.

“The debate is about climate sensitivity and positive feedbacks.”
Exactly, and the IPCC’s self serving consensus is demonstrably wrong on both counts.
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/09/07/how-climate-feedback-is-fubar/
https://wattsupwiththat.com/2017/01/05/physical-constraints-on-the-climate-sensitivity/

Warren Latham

These UOVs (“universities of vomit”) really know how to shove their snouts in the grant money gravy train.
Their game is up. It’s a lovely day, so it is !

Michael J. Dunn

What we are seeing is mere sophistry. And the point of sophistry is NOT to find truth, but to deceive the unwary.

hunter

+1

Dog

And the subversive warfare against the public wages on…

Good video. I put this on my Facebook. The full interview is even better, but over an hour…too long for Facebook.

AndyG55

“Lukewarmers” have a lot to answer for.
There is no mechanism that allows for CO2 to cause warming in a convective atmosphere..
There is no warming in the satellite temperature data apart from NON-CO2 El Nino events and AMO, PDO ocean oscillations.
There is NO CO2 SIGNAL in the ocean tide-gauge sea level data.
The is NO CO2 SIGNAL in any data.. NONE WHAT SO EVER !!!
It is a FANTASY, held together by junk science.

hunter

Nice example of weakening the skeptical cause by presenting half truths AndyG55.

Ian W

Go on then Hunter – rebut the points made by AndyG55 with cites to research showing that the points are incorrect.

hunter

As soon as Andy posts up some links himself.

D. J. Hawkins

@hunter
Nice try, trying to make CAGW the null hypothesis. It is up to the affirmative team to present evidence that climate is now deviating from the status quo ante. Until that happens, the negative team has met its burden by simply saying “prove it”. As the proponent of the position “now is different”, it is up to you to provide support for your claim. AndyG55 kind of jumped the gun on the 1st Negative Constructive, but you still need to present the 1st Affirmative Constructive before we can proceed.

hunter

The honest title would be: Deliberate Careful Lies Can Fool More People. What is it about Soft Sciences like psychology and the need to rabidly push climate hype? This study shows the banality of evil on full display. What a shameful study. Apparently its authors gave had their sense of shame surgically removed.

I’m not really sure why “science” is in this discussion.
There is no science in psychology.
From what I was taught, no null hypotheses and failed predictions means no science.
If someone loses their life savings or walks in on a cheating spouse there is no science that will predict everyone’s response…no science.
Drop an object from up high or boil water and science will explain the response.

I am encouraged by the number of people who know when they are being lied to. Not just “olds” but younger generations, including kids. I think bs detection is hard-wired in enough humans to ensure that the race continues to progress.

Admad

I am proud to say that my son (age now 22) has been a rabid “denier” for at least the last 8 years. He tolerated the alarmist tosh at school because he had exercised his intelligence and curiosity and could see for himself that the CAGW narrative was a dishonest construct. His contemporaries likewise, even the friend with both parents in the environmental industry camp. See, there is hope for the future!

TA

“I think bs detection is hard-wired in enough humans to ensure that the race continues to progress.”
I think you are right. I asked a 12-year-old the other day about what he thought about climate change (we had never discussed the subject before), and he told me he didn’t believe in it! I was so excited to hear it. 🙂
I personally, got my first contrarian viewpoint at about age 10, in church, when the preacher said something that didn’t make sense to me. I had never discussed this particular subject with anyone, so had no pre-concieved bias, but when I heard what he said, I said to myself, “that can’t be right; it doesn’t make sense”. Our church didn’t believe in using musical instruments to praise God, only the human voice was acceptable, and this preacher said that anyone who used a musical instrument to praise God, was going to Hell. And I couldn’t see how a merciful God would condenm someone to Eternity in Hell for playing a musical instrument, especially when it was in praise of God. So I had to dissent from this opinion at the age of 10, and I still dissent, although I no longer attend that church. That was a case of man speaking for God, and I’m not a fan of such presumption.

D. J. Hawkins

Not wishing to hijack the thread, but how did that preacher square his position with Psalm 150? Or any number of other Psalms encouraging the use of musical instruments to praise the Lord?

TA

I don’t really know where he got the idea that people would go to Hell if they played a musical instrument in church. And we were the only denomination that looked at it that way. All the other churches and denominations used musical instruments, so our congregtion was definitely going against the grain of general acceptance. This interpretation of the Bible was restricted to my church, and didn’t make any sense to a 10-year-old.
As a kid, I knew it was our church’s practice to not use musical instrument, and I didn’t really question the rule, and it was never really explained to me in detail, but this one time the preacher used it as part of the subject of his sermon, and said people would go to Hell if they used musical instruments. Well, I had never heard that version of the rule, and was a little shocked at such an enormous punishment for such a trivial thing. It wasn’t that I disbelieved the Bible, I disbelieved the preacher’s interpretation.
I never discussed or argued this particular teaching, but I definitely wasn’t onboard with it. That’s when I realized that adults aren’t necessarily correct all the time, and I’ve been questioning just about everything ever since. I should have been born in Missouri: The “Show-Me” State.

TA

Btw, D.J., there was at least one Bible verse that was used to support the “no musical instrumets” rule, but I can’t recall what it was. I do know they had what they thought was Biblical justification for what they said, but I can’t tell you what it was.

Dav09

“That was a case of man speaking for God, and I’m not a fan of such presumption.”
Most emphatically, me neither. For that matter, I’d think God would be rather annoyed by it, to say the least. But when has God spoken for Himself? Before anyone says “the Bible” (or any other so-called “revelation”) let me point out that surely He would realize any man’s account of such revelation is indistinguishable from a man presuming to speak for Him. Being omnipotent and all, there can’t be any difficulty for God to provide unambiguous and irrefutable confirmation, totally independent of the veracity of any particular witness. For instance, by having a pulsar blink Morse code of essential portions of the text of His chosen spokesman. I have never seen an explanation (apart from my own, which grants for sake of argument that there IS a God) of why God would not do something like that – to validate His message – that doesn’t make the clumsiest 419 email look credible by comparison.

Yes, the same one.

Stevan Reddish

“Those shown only the fact about climate change consensus (in pie chart form) reported a large increase in perceived scientific agreement – an average of 20 percentage points. Those shown only misinformation (a screenshot of the Oregon petition website) dropped their belief in a scientific consensus by 9 percentage points.”
Social psychologist at Cambridge tell us they tested the Oregon Global Warming Petition Project for persuasiveness on a wide spectrum of U.S. citizens and found the Project to be persuasive in turning people to the skeptic side. I can believe that was new information to most, because the MSM hasn’t wanted to talk about arguments counter to the warmist hysteria, but where did they find find people who had never heard the “97% consensus” claim?
I wonder if their test subjects might have been freshmen liberal arts students? – a group most likely to have never looked into the climate debate and also very predisposed to go with a consensus.
SR

Stevan Reddish

And also a group eager to please the professors.
SR

M Courtney

The professors point makes sense.
Otherwise, freshmen liberal arts students would be expected to be counter-cultural. And as catastrophic climate change is the mainstream consensus you would expect them to be scornful and go against that consensus.
But they do not. Which is strange.
The very left-wing transvestite artist Grason Perry (the UK’s top potter) has recently embraced the Brexit vote. Not because he wants Brexit, he doesn’t. But becausee he wants to engage with people outside of the narrow world that modern artists live in.
Surely, that love of adventure is what universities are meant to instill and enable?

This leftist woman that was kicked off plane for her crazy antics is the textbook example of how NOT to inoculate a crowd against climate skepticism:
[FULL] Woman berating Trump supporter is kicked off plane, then passangers cheer:

hunter

I almost feel sorry for her. Almost.

emsnews

Until you sit next to her.

That video I posted was “made private” so doesn’t work anymore. But here’s a link to another video of the same thing that still works: Woman Kicked off Plane Berating Trump Supporter Crowd Cheers USA At Feminist Liberal Crazy Woman: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=suhQFt7Z_RM

They really should read the climategate emails to get a sense of how ridiculous this approach is.

Include the harry_read_me file.
You won’t believe what Phil Jones said and did to whatever real data they had.

Griff

What is the real skeptic position?
It’s not warming?
It’s warming but it’s not a problem?
It’s not warming because NASA faked the data…. it’s a scam/plot?
CO2 is not a greenhouse gas/not the greenhouse gas?
We’re seeing cooling/the ice age has started?
Really most skeptic statements are incompatible with each other.
Should not this site have an official statement on what is going on and have people adopt it, challenging (weak?) skeptic arguments posted as comments?
[No. Why? . . . This isn’t a place of homogenous thinking, it never was and is intended as a place where divergent opinions and ideas can be articulated, even yours. There are plenty of intolerant people out there in the world but WUWT is not a place for groupthink. The fact that you can present your thoughts and labors here should be indicative of that. . . . mod]

TA

“What is the real skeptic position?”
The Real Skeptic position = Prove It

Darrell Demick

TA: +97
Skankhunt42, ….. , er, I mean Griff, you are so completely sucked into the vortex of the False Church of CAGW, it is truly amazing. And as a cult religion follower, you would rather perish with the cult than accept the reality that the entire CAGW is fictitious and fabricated by devious individuals whose ONLY intent is to become incredibly wealthy on the backs of millions who cannot afford it. Those devious and intelligent individuals saw an opening and they exploited it – the true nature of some of our species.
Which is very unfortunate.
As Bones said to Spock when James Tiberious Kirk had to win a fight to prove that good was better than evil: “In the fight between good and evil, for good to win, good has to be very, very good.”
Therein lies the issue, Skank. Substitute truth for good, evil can stay exactly where it is. For the truth to eventually come to the forefront, it will require (IMHO) the vocal majority; probably overwhelming majority at that.
President Trump is the start of the process, and I certainly do hope that momentum towards the truth continues.
How can you defend all of the scientific work that has been done over the past two decades, let alone 100 years, that unconditionally contradicts the CAGW position? How can you defend the very obvious lies and deceit of the CAGW promoters?
Were you a Heaven’s Gate follower who got cold feet just before allowing your spirit to fly off with the comet, only now to realize that it was a mistake to “jump ship”, so it is time to follow another cult religion?
Your entire focus, since I have joined this site, is the reduction in ice in the Arctic. I will reiterate that the one body of ice that contains 90% of the global ice mass is increasing in size by 82 billion tonnes/year. And Greenland is also increasing in mass, yet you continue to focus on a single, and relatively small, ice mass.
Greenland got the name because it was land used for growing crops by the Vikings in the not too distant past (in geologic terms). The Arctic was ice free in the not too distant past and polar bears survived quite nicely. Glaciers grow and shrink all of the time, it is called climate change, which has been happening for, give or take, 4 billion years.
I respect your privilege to access this site, I certainly do not respect your opinion on CAGW.

AGW is Not Science

YES! Prove it or go fish!

Bob Boder

Griff
Didn’t you get eaten by a polar bear.

David Jay

Since you brought it up, I’ll take my shot at it:
1. The planet has been warming since the little ice age (well before the CO2 emissions of the modern industrial era).
2. In the laboratory, CO2 is shown to be a greenhouse gas but the earth’s climate is a complex, chaotic, nonlinear system so we don’t know how that laboratory finding translates to the real world (if it translated perfectly – with no feedbacks – perhaps 0.8C to 1.2C per doubling).
3. Everything else is modeling (with the GCMs tuned to noisy, late 20th century data that includes the rebound from the little ice age).
YMMV

hunter

You have no idea what I believe. You are an apparent rookie at this. You are committing the same fallacy- probably inadvertently- as the one the critiques of this article highlights. There is not enough energy moved by convection to overcome the radiant property of CO2. The climatocracy fails because they misrepresent sensitivity and have distorted the record. Apocalyptic prophecies always fail.

hunter

All skeptics have to do is point bout the failures of the consensus. Think Tibetan glaciers, polar bears, world sea ice, etc etc etc

Graham H.

The real skeptic position is that you’re a posing fraud who’s never worked in atmospheric chemistry or atmospheric radiation a day in your life: don’t have a degree in atmospheric chemistry/energy/radiation,
and have never really shadowed a seat in a dedicated atmospherics class.
If you weren’t, you’d be able to answer basic questions like what’s the name of the law of thermodynamics to solve the temperature of some atmospheric air, gas, or vapor.
This place isn’t a university. It’s not even owned by a working atmospheric chemist, he’s an instrumentation man. It’s not his job to sum up all atmospheric physics for you, you’re supposed to have an education and be able to discuss all this.
What’s the name,
of the law of thermodynamics,
for checking the temperature of Earth’s atmosphere?
What is the equation? What do the factors in it stand for? Which one do you assert indicates to you, plausibility of the story you’re in here trying – and failing – to competently shill for?
Which one of those factors, proves to you AGW is real?
Because there is in fact a factor in that equation that directly points to whether it’s possible or not.
You’re in here casting aspersions at the general readership: I say you’re a posing bullshitting fake who hasn’t got the FIRST CLUE how temperature of some air is even CALCULATED.
When you give me the CORRECT answer of course you KNOW what question is NEXT.
I suggest you get busy. Because regardless of what others feel about you, I’ll show them all myself just what an incompetent, bumbling, posing bullshitter you are.
For MY sense of whether you’ve been properly checked on to see if you’re even competent enough to let post here. I can’t stop them from letting you post,
but I can damned sure check your competency in about a minute.
You tell me
the name of the law of thermodynamics for solving temperature of atmospheric air,
or you’re a posing fake.

catweazle666

“or you’re a posing fake.”
I think you’ll find he’s paid to be.

Darrell Demick

My apologies for the very late response.
Very eloquently and accurately stated, Graham H.

Darrell Demick

Personally I prefer the “real” version, but since the pressure of the system ranges from very low (approaching zero) to 1 atmosphere, the “ideal” version is a very reasonable approximation, IMO.
: )

AllyKat

This is the sort of crap that infuriates me to the point of incoherence. The fact that these “researchers” are putting out misleading, incomplete, and false information and claiming it is true is appalling. Their accusations apply to their own “side”, because EVERY petition has fake entries by people who think they are funny, both viewpoints have scientists of all kinds as supporters, and the pro-AGW crowd is even MORE politicized. These fake news claims are just another way to shut down legitimate debate by casting disagreement as lies. After all, if someone is telling you lies, you shouldn’t bother listening to anything they say, right?
WELL IN THAT CASE, SHUT DOWN THE STUDY BECAUSE THE “INOCULATION” MESSAGE IS ONE BIG MISLEADING FALSEHOOD.
It is shameful that anyone is pulling this kind of underhanded perfidy, but the fact that GMU, a school named for George Mason*, is so eager to lead the charge, disgusts me. I would love to see the whole climate change center scam shut down, but there are too many millions tied up for anyone to fight. Pretty much everyone has drunk the Kool-aid, and the ones who have not are keeping their heads down. Professors show “documentaries” like Gaslight, and Algore’s anti-opus, and never once mention the discrepancies and outright falsehoods they contain. Students are used/forced to preach the fake gospel. It is propaganda, pure and simple.
If GMU really believes AGW is soooo dangerous, why do they keep trying to make the university even bigger, cutting down more trees and converting more green space into buildings and plazas? Why are they employing groundskeepers to use leaf blowers and riding lawn mowers to keep their pretty grass expanses pristine? Why do so many newer buildings have large atria that increase heating and cooling costs? I could go on…
I have a lot of rage. 😛
*Google him if you do not understand why this is so appalling. You’ll thank me later.

Steve Fraser

Short paraphrase.. how to prepare someone to believe YOUR lies.

M Courtney

This is a reaction to the public’s apathy towards the climate change issue. It repeatedly comes out bottom of public concerns at local, national and even in a Global UN survey.
Why is that? The end of the world is quite exciting news.
The reason being that no-one believes it. Not in the newsworthy way that the Green lobby pushes. And the reason for that is that most people get influenced on every subject by their own expert in their immediate social network. They go to Alice for the tip on good food and to Bob for the tip on the football and to Charlie for advice on the next great thing to read.
And they go to that person who has technical expertise to find out about science news.
That person will have researched and found… that The AGW Team won’t debate. They have conceded the technical argument to the Sceptics because they say it won’t help them. The end of the world is too important to allow alternative views to be aired. Any person who has technical expertise will not give that a ringing endorsement.
So now, with policy in the US set by Trump and the public not worried about it, there is no longer any justification for not debating the Sceptics. They have lost every other form of argument, political, economic and (perhaps) even moral. But every time they debate on the science they lose. Thus the only way out is to try and rig the coming debate.
Because the science is about to be debated, publically.

CheshireRed

M Courtney January 24, 2017 at 1:48 am
Fine post. Once Trump dumps the climate agenda there’s gonna be some irony overload listening to the green blob indignantly demanding the very debate they’ve been refusing to engage in these past 10 years or so!

Walt D.

Once the money goes away, they will look for another cow to milk.

Jim Gorman

They won’t debate because they will have to explain each and every change to the different data sets with a detailed scientific and mathematical explanation of why. They will need to show that each individual model is capable of hindcasting or using past data forecast forward accurately over a long period of time.

AGW is Not Science

Public apathy goes beyond where it resides “on the list” – it’s only ON “the list” because the surveyors put it there. If you took a survey where people made a list of x number of issues they are concerned about, and presented the x issues with the greatest number that came out of such a survey, “climate change” wouldn’t even make the list. And rightly so.

rogerthesurf

“Social psychologists believe that a similar logic can be applied to help “inoculate” the public against misinformation, including the damaging influence of ‘fake news’ websites propagating myths about climate change.”
I agree absolutely!
Now where do we start … mmm Al Gore, David Suzuki (give him double dose), IPCC reviewers, John Cook, Whats that manns name? – So many to choose from!
Anyone want to add a few names?
Cheers
Roger
http://www.rogerfromnewzealand.wordpress.com

+ and more +

AGW is Not Science

Yes, not that we need any help in order to dissuade us from believing “climate change” alarmist claptrap, but they do just keep firing cannonballs through their own hull below the water line, don’t they. But then the perpetrators of this “study” get the application completely backwards, by accepting the nonsense as the truth and attempting to paint the truth as the nonsense.

Robertvd

Hitler and his team were able to make the Germans believe not aryans were ‘untermenschen’ and therefore useless eaters, There was an at least 99% consensus in the german scientific community. But even more important is taking over the education system. Get them when they are young to create a fanatic group of believers.

hunter

If it is true that only climate scientists can critique climate science, then only climate scientists can defend it, by the “logic” of the authors of this bit of propaganda.

willhaas

There are many alarmists, so called climate scientists, who did not major in climate science in college so on the basis of their education their opinions concerning climate change must be rejected and the papers they have published concerning climate science should be withdrawn. Maybe our constitution should be changed so that only those with PHD’s in political science to include a minimum number of “peer reviewed” publications should be allowed to vote or to express any sort of political opinion.

richard

“There will always be people completely resistant to change, but we tend to find there is room for most people to change their minds, even just a little.”
you can fool some of the people some of the time and all of the people some of the time…….

“You can fool all the people some of the time, and some of the people all the time

In the Notorious Lewandowsky’s own work, he showed that people who believed in “global warming” (I forget the term used) were most susceptible to suggestion). In other words, sceptics didn’t change their belief when told a graph was global warming rather than a graph of stock market prices.
This however, was portrayed as “sceptics being less willing to take the advice of experts” – well it was the reverse: sceptics less willing to “go with the flow” of the rest of society.
So, in reality scepticism versus alarmism boils down to a simple choice: do you base your views on the facts, or do you go along with the views of everyone else. And that may seem a simple choice, until you realise that those who “go along with the views of society” tend to make it to the top, tend to be in charge, tend to get better paid, tend to have more friends … and then it doesn’t seem such a clear cut choice.

I should have put “friends” in quotes – as I doubt they have more friends – just more backstabbing people who’ll call themself a “friend”.

Felflames

“I was just following orders.” did not work after WW2 . I doubt it will work in the future either.

willhaas

Scientists never registered and voted on the AGW conjecture so there is no 97% consensus. Such is meaningless anyway because science is not a democracy. The laws of science are not some form of legislation. Scientific theories are not validated through a voting process. This concept of a scientific consensus is politics and not science.
The AGW conjecture seems plausable at first until one realizes that it is based on only partial science. One researcher found that the original calculations of the Plank effect climate sensivity of CO2 were too great by more than a factor of 20 because the original calculations failed to take into consideration that doubling the CO2 in our atmosphere will cause a slight decrease in the dry lapse rate in the troposphere which is a cooling effect. Then there is the issue of H2O feedback. For the Earth’s climate to have been stable enough for life to evolve the net feedback has to be negative. Yes, H2O is the primary so called greenhouse gas but it is also a major coolant in the Earth’s atmosphere moving heat energy from the surface which is mostly some form of H2O to where clouds form via the heat of vaporization. The cooling effect of H2O is evidenced by the fact that the wet lapse rate is significantly less than the dry lapse rate in the troposphere.
The AGW conjecture is based on the concept of a radiant greenhouse effect caused by LWIR absorption by so called greenhouse gases. Such a radiant greenhouse effect has not been observed in a real greenhouse, on Earth, on Venus, or anywhere in the solar system. The surface of the Earth is on average 33 degrees C warmer because of the atmosphere due to a convective greenhouse effect caused by the heat capacity of the atmosphere and gravity. 33 degrees C has been derived from first principals and 33 degrees C is what has been observed. There is no additional radiant greenhouse effect. Because the basis of the AGW conjecture is fiction the AGW conjecture itself is at best science fiction. If CO2 did affect climate then the increase in CO2 over the past 30 years should have caused at least a measureable increase in the dry lapse rate in the troposphere but such has not happened.
In the IPCC’s first report they published a wide range of guessed for the climate sensivity of CO2. Only one value can be correct. In their last report they published the exact same range of values. So after more than two decades of study they have learned nothing that would have enabled them to narrow their range of guesses one Iota. They refuse to consider that the climate sensivity of CO2 may be well below their published range for fear of losing their funding. For the IPCC it is all a matter of politics and not science.

Old Grump

I just have to wonder what comments Robert Heinlein would make on this. The progressives look at him as an icon. One of his stories was finished with the blame being laid upon the younger Bush for laying the groundwork leading to Nehemiah Scudder. Apparently, they never figured out what Heinlein thought of communism.
I always hoped Heinlein was wrong. You see, he believed the USA was very likely to become a theocracy. Here we are living in his “Crazy Years.” I don’t know who may yet play the role of Nehemiah Scudder, the Infallible Prophet of God. We are well along the way to his theocracy, though. The nutty Greens have, for all practical purposes, established the First Universal One World Internationalist Church of Mother Gaia, not that most of them would admit to anything but atheism. Gore and Hansen both lacked the charisma to become Scudder. I don’t see anyone who fits the role at this point. I just hope and pray that the forces of rationality and reason can drive back the forces of the ends justify the means.
Those of you not familiar with Heinlein, I urge you to read some of his works. A good non-fiction starter would be “Pravda means Truth.”
http://www.e-reading.club/chapter.php/73047/40/Heinlein_-_Expanded_Universe.html
Other scrience fiction writers believed in free people, also. Please don’t knock the genre as “woo-woo” stuff. The best writers understood human nature very well and used outlandish settings to illustrate our behaviors.
This may not make sense to anyone other than myself. That’s ok. I’m tired, it’s late, and I just wanted to put it out there. Make of it what you will. Or don’t. It’s a free country. I’m just looking for analogies to what I see in the world around me. Trends. Patterns. What do you see? I’m curious, but hopeful.
Because, when all Hope is lost, Bill Clinton no longer has a birthplace. (That one is just a bad joke, for which I will not apologize.) 🙂

hunter

RAH was born in 1907, and died in 1988. He predicted many things but never predicted that the son of newly inaugurated President HW Bush would become President some day. Much less that he would start a theocratic dictatorship. That said, I hope that RAH would have seen through the green miasma the left wants to impose on us and would have spoken out loudly and eloquently against it. Sadly few SF writers of today see the religious and collectivist anti-human dangers the climatocracy and big green represents.

Good job Moderator!! It’s amazing the breadth of thought and talent on this website.

Heinlein understood how “people” in general think. From one of the entries in his posthumous Grumbles from the Grave he wrote about deliberately writing stories to challenge how and what people thought. If he’d been alive the last 40 years he’d have written some blockbuster stories. T’was unfortunate some of his later work was affected by circulatory problems to the brain.

Walt D.

Kurt Vonnegut’s story Harrison Bergeron may also have something useful to offer. If they want people to accept catastrophic anthropogenic climate change as reality, perhaps they should fit everyone with headsets to dial down their intelligence.

Hivemind

Propaganda wins again, Herr Geobbels.

BallBounces

This could lead to a new bumper sticker: “Climate Change: It’s All In Your Head™”

Resourceguy

But only when the red light is on.

cedarfill

Perfect example of liberal fascism the should stand the test of time as the updated 21st Century “scientific” version of Goebbels Propaganda of Ministry theories. How great is that?

So these fakers have gone to to the Lucifer Light Angel graduate school of deception and made A grades in the course, “Mixing truth and lie together to increase potency of our Truth.” The Lord Benefactor Mr. Natas himself taught that course.
This does not end well.

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