The Conversation: “Extreme weather news may not change climate change skeptics’ minds”

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

Dr Ryan Weber
Dr Ryan Weber, Associate Professor, English Department Director of Business and Technical Writing

The Conversation author Ryan Weber is worried that efforts to insert a mention of climate change into every remotely weather connected news story might not be as persuasive as he hoped – though he suggests being more sneaky about inserting climate messages might yield better results.

Extreme weather news may not change climate change skeptics’ minds

Ryan Weber Associate Professor of English, University of Alabama in Huntsville
March 27, 2019 9.33pm AEDT

The year 2018 brought particularly devastating natural disasters, including hurricanes, droughts, floods and fires – just the kinds of extreme weather events scientists predict will be exacerbated by climate change.

Amid this destruction, some people see an opportunity to finally quash climate change skepticism. After all, it seems hard to deny the realities of climate change – and object to policies fighting it – while its effects visibly wreck communities, maybe even your own.

But a recent study from Ohio State University communications scholars found that news stories connecting climate change to natural disasters actually backfire among skeptics. As someone who also studies scientific communication, I find these results fascinating. It’s easy to assume that presenting factual information will automatically change people’s minds, but messages can have complex, frustrating persuasive effects.

It turned out that climate change skeptics – whether politically conservative or liberal – showed more resistance to the stories that mentioned climate change. Climate change themes also made skeptics more likely to downplay the severity of the disasters. At the same time, the same articles made people who accept climate change perceive the hazards as more severe.

Given this resistance to news, other approaches, such as avoiding fear-inducing and guilt-based messagingcreating targeted messages about free-market solutions, or deploying a kind of “jiu jitsu” persuasion that aligns with pre-existing attitudes, may prove more effective at influencing skeptics. In the meantime, social scientists will continue to investigate ways to combat the stubborn boomerang effect, even as the consequences of climate change intensify all around us.

Read more: https://theconversation.com/extreme-weather-news-may-not-change-climate-change-skeptics-minds-112650

My old English teachers would have understood the problem immediately.

But modern English professors like Ryan Weber appear to be genuinely puzzled when skeptics react negatively to reporters interleaving shaky climate claims with their allegedly objective descriptions of weather disasters.

Because we can always trust the objectivity of weather reporters, right?

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107 thoughts on “The Conversation: “Extreme weather news may not change climate change skeptics’ minds”

      • They’ve been lying, faking / hiding data, exaggerating, crying wolf for 30 years.

        Now they think some really clever social scientists may come up with a new way to con us ” even as the consequences of climate change intensify all around us.”

        Yeah right. Maybe if you just STFU it would work.

  1. “Dr. Ryan Weber is an Associate Professor of English and the Director of Business and Technical Communication at the University of Alabama in Huntsville. He researches science communication, entrepreneurship rhetoric, and user experience. His articles have appeared in journals such as Science Communication, Technical Communication Quarterly, IEEE: Transactions in Professional Communication, and Journal of Technical Writing and Communication.”

    ….there’s a word for that Ryan….propaganda

    • The rule of advertising is that the more it’s advertised, the less worth it actually has. Although I gleaned that from a Penthouse magazine back in the 90’s, it makes absolute sense when watching the most ridiculous claims made about a product that’s advertised incessantly on the idiot box, often twice every ad break.

      Likewise Ryan Weber’s advertising efforts to flood the public with constant AGW catchphrases, even surreptitiously. At no time did he or anyone prove his claims. So that would be fraud, or at minimum false advertising possibly leading to unethical claims creating public anxiety for personal benefit or profit.

      • A long time ago I made the correlation between how hard a new Hollywood movie was being pushed and the quality of the movie. So, now, when I see a new movie being promoted relentlessly, I automatically assume it is going to be a real stinker.

        • This is why youtube are relentlessly advertising themselves on Where? youtube I’m sorry but I’m not buying IT whatever IT might be.

          James Bull

        • I’m not so sure it’s how much it’s promoted as how it’s promoted.
          For example, as soon as they something “This movie is important”, to me that means it’s important for me not to waste my time or money.

      • “The rule of advertising is that the more it’s advertised, the less worth it actually has.”

        My Pillow seems to be counter to that rule.

        • 37% of 7654 reviewers on Amazon give it a one or two star review.

          It may be substantially better than the pillow you were previously using, but there seems to be several other pillows that are better, and far less advertised.

      • My thought exactly.

        Ryan as a propagandist working across the street from Christy and Spencer analogizes ‘so near, yet so far.’ They’re a conceptual universe away from him. He’ll never see them.

    • I ran into a video once of a senator (maybe a congressman) talking with a climate scientist. The scientist claimed the weather was becoming more extreme. So the senator pulled out graphs of the actual data. The scientist hemmed and hawed over it for a bit before settling on the answer that it would be more extreme but in a way that wouldn’t show up statistically. I wish I could find the video again.

    • …he actually looked in the mirror…made himself look like that….and approved of it

      What else to you need to know….

      • “…he actually looked in the mirror…made himself look like that….and approved of it”

        It’s proof of his own theory… were you to point out that acceptance of his message was being hampered by his looking like a clueless wanker and he would likely disagree.. after all :

        “It’s easy to assume that presenting factual information will automatically change people’s minds, but messages can have complex, frustrating persuasive effects.”

  2. Its got to the stage on BBC news that everything is ‘climate change’.
    Just as in G@S’ If everybody is somebody then nobody is anybody’. The Gondoliers.
    If every flood is climate change, then no flood is not, according to ‘Climate Science’,
    then this is clearly impossible to believe, so rightly rejected.
    What does this scientist expect?

    • He’s a humanities guy who is trying to shame scientist and engineers into going along with his feelings.

  3. Nice to include the trusting weather reporters video, Eric. Before I write a Reply to Ryan Weber, I wonder if anyone knows for sure, is “crap-weasel” one word or two? Thanks.

    • Classic. The two teen-aged boys casually strolling by. The intrepid weather reporter leaning into the wi… wait a minute. How do you describe someone who is leaning downwind?

      • In Australia, we love to scare tourists with the dropbear myth. But less appear to believe it these days. Damn!

        • The Dropbear WHAT?

          Sorry Readers, young Wallaby has been out in the sun a bit too long and a few roos unfortunately got a bit loose in his top paddock.

          What he REALLY meant to say was the Dropbear Threat. Those little buggers are KILLERS.

          Wallaby will be back to his normal self after a few cold ones. Until then take his words with a knowing smile and a grain of salf.

    • Nowadays, English departments in US and British universities are more concerned with indoctrinating students in Progressivism than actually teaching them anything about the language or its literature.

    • At least it wasn’t another busted-arse psychology dept groupie this time. Good to get some diversity, sausages ain’t nuthin’ without some spuds and has-beans.

  4. Am I just observing the blindingly obvious. In the video the reporter seems to be having trouble standing erect in the howling wind yet behind him 2 people stroll casually by without effort and without their clothes even flapping around much. Also he looks like he is bracing himself standing into the wind whereas the plants behind him are blowing the other way ie: as though the wind is coming from behind him. Is this the sort of “extreme weather reporting” the skeptics find unconvincing because if so number me amongst them. Or was this video included as a form of /sarc?

  5. “Ryan Weber Associate Professor of English, University of Alabama in Huntsville”

    Does this Professor realize that a couple of blocks away the UAH has 2 research professors who run the world’s only trustable global temperature data program. All he has to do is to go talk to John Christy and Roy Spencer who will set him straight and prove to him that there are no more extreme weather events than there ever were and that there is no such thing as CAGW.

  6. Dear Dr Ryan Weber.

    Extreme weather news may not change climate change alarmists minds…..even if they are proved beyond any doubt that they are normal. This was illustrated recently by T. Heller in an elegant little video concerning recent flooding. The same can be said for drought, fire and hurricanes.
    What will it take to wake people like you up from your sleepy zombie like nightmare state?

  7. “…or deploying a kind of “jiu jitsu” persuasion that aligns with pre-existing attitudes, may prove more effective at influencing skeptics…

    What would have proven ‘more effective at influencing skeptics’ would have been climate predictions that came true, climate disasters that became reality, model projections that proved to be accurate, etc.

  8. “Climate change themes also made skeptics more likely to downplay the severity of the disasters”.

    What is it about these people? Few genuine skeptics I observe downplay anything. The simply look as the historical record and compare. I commonly go look at the NZ record when a new “record is broken!!”. Usually these events are not unprecedented. When pointing this out in the comments on an article in media, less than 50% of my comments get published. For goodness sake, I am only relaying official data. Muffle the messenger.

    M

    • You’ll have more luck if you strictly adhere to Newspeak principles Michael, it will also helps to have a solid working familiarity with Doublethink, especially if commenting on a Public Broadcasting website.

  9. The perfesser, not being a scientist, cannot possibly understand why I became a skeptic toward CAGW. If I explained it to him, he would probably think me mad. To me, however, it was enormous.

    Back at the beginning, I accepted the Hockey Stick, accepted the possibility of the “atmosphere as boiling water” analogy, i.e., the warmer it got the more it roiled, and the more storms, accepted the fact that we were pumping out CO2 at a pretty good clip and that might have something to do with it all.

    Then Phil Jones said, to someone who asked to see his data, something along the lines of, “Why should I let you have it? I’ve spent 20 years on it, and all you’ll try to do is find something wrong with it.”

    To me, that was such a violation of everything about the scientific spirit, the shared goal of advancing humanity’s knowledge, that I immediately knew something was up with climate science. To me, the proper response should have been, “Yes! Take it and see, and marvel at the sophistication of my methods and the brilliance of my conclusions! Look upon my works, ye mighty, and despair!”

    A person with no scientific background can not understand what a betrayal such a statement by Jones is. Heck, maybe some people with scientific backgrounds might think that a bit overdramatic. But it’s what did it for me.

    And no amount of “communication” is going to change that.

    • What did it for me was James Hansen conveniently cherry-picking events to fit the global warming narrative. The heatwave and drought in the middle of the US in 1988, during La Niña, was an “obvious” sign of GW, as he testified to Congress. Five years later, during El Niño, opposite pattern with completely opposite results. The massive flooding in 1993 was global warming, you see. Flooding on floodplains, fires in semiarid locations, and hurricanes and typhoons hitting the southeastern sides of continents suddenly became “climate change”, even though it’s been going on since the dawn of man. So I’ve been a skeptic since 1993.

    • Phil Jones’ classic remark about “his” data provided the Damascene moment for a lot of people, myself included.

  10. When I’m looking for new and interesting science lectures
    I always go to the English Department.
    Where do you go?

        • JustTheFactsPlease
          I’m afraid that they will just give you the cold shoulder!

          But, seriously, your remark was funnier. The first liar doesn’t have a chance. 🙂

    • I listen to anyone who ‘believes in science’. /sarc

      After all, it is a cult of marxists running for their ‘solution’.

      • Quote from the perpetrator:

        “only to find that skeptics often end up more entrenched after reading attempts to persuade them”

        True, so stop trying to persuade me. Instead, keep explaining the /facts/. Like that how much the world has warmed during the panic that started at the 1980’s, how many meters of sea level rise it has caused so far, how near polar bears are to extinction.

        Once you get your facts /right/, then I may accept your message; but even then, I won’t accept your policy, i.e. blaming people of white color, calls for socialism, irresponsible headlines, idea that we can fix this using ideas which don’t have engineers backing them.

        English majors can’t fix an energy crisis.

  11. I suppose I’m the type of skeptic the good English professor is trying to influence. I’m an old Republican (82), engineer, and someone who has been reading books, abstracts, and blogs about climate change since the ’90s. I even recall the coming ice age predictions of the 1970s. Also, I’m aware of the multitude of climate disaster predictions that have been made over decades, none of which has proven to be correct. I’m also aware that today’s weather disasters are no worse nor frequent than those of past centuries. Based upon my experience and study, I agree with the professor that I’m turned off by reports using the term “denier,” blaming weather events on climate change, mentioning the 97% consensus, statements by politicians actors — especially Algore, Obama, and Barbra Streisand. Conclusion: The good associate professor is wasting his time analyzing why I’m a skeptic and trying to figure out how to change my mind.

  12. It’s easy to assume that presenting factual information will automatically change people’s minds, but messages can have complex, frustrating persuasive effects

    How true…………………

    • They haven’t yet provided any factual information. They keep conflating weather events that have happened many times in my lifetime with climate change.

      Floods:
      The state of Louisiana was almost completely under water during a flood in the 20’s, was that “climate change”?
      There is a grain elevator on the Mississippi in Alton, Illinois with flood height lines drawn on the side. It looks like that location has seen similar flooding about every 20 years for the last 100 at least. Does the “climate” mysteriously change there every 20 years?

      Hurricanes:
      I didn’t grow up on the coast, but remember Camille from my childhood. Being a mid-westerner I didn’t understand its impact, but got all sorts of tales of it while stationed in Biloxi, MS while in the Air Force. The damage reports were worse than the ones for Katrina, but the coast was no where near as built up back then. The Katrina problems were due to incompetent leadership in Louisiana who didn’t even get hit with the strong side of the storm.
      All the charts of global ACE show declines over the years even with us now being able to track every fish storm.

      Tornadoes:
      In the mid-west and great plains, these have been a fact of life forever. There is no indication of an increase even with us now able to characterize every breeze with radar.

      The good PhD in English needs to present some real data if he wants to change my mind, and quit trying to connect to my emotions. Science doesn’t work with emotions; it works with data, hard collected by field experimentation. Computer games don’t count.

  13. Weather events are datum points that have very little meaning and no context. A graph of CO2 versus that weather type with a strong linear or other trend correlation is called science. We get pictures of datum points only, not real science data. What people see is more weather like they have seen all their lives. Next they will say the sun coming up in the morning is a portend of the End Days. Or maybe for sunsets. Maybe both.

  14. Huntsville, Rocket City, is a great city with more PhDs per 10,000 population than any other city in the country. Obviously not all PhDs are equivalent – certainly not Ryan Weber.
    The more critical point though is why do those who are skeptical about the scope and nature of climate change discount extreme weather events. Well any sensible person would approach this question by asking skeptics the reasons for their dismissal of single extreme events as evidence of climate change? I have my answers ready to go with lots of facts, a bunch of statistics and an alternative question – namely why would you look to singular events in a brief time period to prove or disprove a proposition that uses 30 years as its unit of analysis? It makes no sense – which i believe is the simple explanation as to why those skeptical on catastrophic anthropogenic climate change are unperturbed by a hundred year flood in one relatively small region of the country or a few hurricanes after 13 years of hardly any major US hurricanes.
    Critical thinking does not seem to be Dr. Ryan Weber’s strong point.

  15. They took their eyes off the real game to go after Trump. Now the media can renew their campaign against global warming with renewed credibility.

    This time it’s for real. Why wouldn’t we believe them?

    • “weather is not climate” Neither is a scientific term by origin. Climate consists of patterns of weather. It’s another of those points which make the proponent look foolish.

  16. Ryan wonders while rational people get jaded with constant ‘Climate Change(tm)’ shouts?

    It is like when you cry ‘Wolf!’, Ryan. One ‘Wolf!’ is happenstance. Two is coincidence. Three ‘Wolf!’ and we want to see not only the Lupus in question but their Tax File Number, Birth Certificate and their Instragram account or we are going to stop inviting you to parties.

    Show us the Canis, Ryan, or shut up about it.

    • – Yeah.

      So Ryan Weber, are you suggesting that when you blame everything – EVERYTHING – on climate change…

      “Nice sunrise…” ” – Sunrise??? – CLIMATE CHANGE!!!” “Really love the autumn leaves changing colour…” ” – Leaves changing colour? – CLIMATE CHANGE!!!”

      – that people stop believing you? Well, I just never would’ve imagined that; knock me down with a feather. -_-

  17. Most of the Climate Clownery is fueled on the media by useful idiots that in the best case do not even take the time to verify basic arguments before babbling all nonsense, and in the worst case, are blatantly fraudulent.

  18. I’m guessing the English Professor doesn’t know the difference between weather and climate then…
    Give him another thirty years.

  19. Simples: mentioning ‘climate change’ is shorthand for ‘I am a gullible reporter and what I write is fake news’.

  20. Dear Dr. Ryan Weber: Defective products fail in the market, even if oversupply drives the price to zero. Clever advertising will not change that.

  21. “….just the kinds of extreme weather…’ Define extreme weather. My mother who is 97 said all you needed to get in OSU was an umbrella and a fee card. They must have had more raining days in Ohio when she went to college. Now they call that weather extreme.

  22. From the article: “The year 2018 brought particularly devastating natural disasters, including hurricanes, droughts, floods and fires – just the kinds of extreme weather events scientists predict will be exacerbated by climate change.”

    In 2018 we had “normal” weather. In 2019 we will also have hurricanes, floods, droughts and fires. This happens every year. It’s no worse now than in the past. That’s what the statistics say.

    Now you say ” just the kinds of extreme weather events scientists predict will be exacerbated by climate change.”

    Well, most climate scientists used to say “will be”, in other words, CAGW’s effects will be evident in the future, but it seems some climate scientists are now moving up the scheule and claiming to see CAGW in every storm front. They are moving the goalposts. And you, my friend, have bought into the hype.

    Skeptics should study how to get Alarmists to stop drinking the Koolaide. That’s the real problem in climate science.

  23. It is really quite amusing. His blind determination to believe that weather events are getting more severe and that this proves climate change shows his lack of judgement. It obviously hasn’t occurred to him that there is data on such events and the evidence does not support the claims.

    But what is really funny is that all of this nonsense means that he has reached completely wrong conclusions within his own discipline. It looks like failure all round.

  24. From the article: “ut a recent study from Ohio State University communications scholars found that news stories connecting climate change to natural disasters actually backfire among skeptics. As someone who also studies scientific communication, I find these results fascinating. It’s easy to assume that presenting factual information will automatically change people’s minds, but messages can have complex, frustrating persuasive effects.”

    The problem is you and all the other CAGW advocates are not presenting factual information, you are merely making assertions about the Earth’s climate that have no evidence to back them up. Skeptics can tell the difference between facts and speculation.

  25. So, he is suggesting that the ALARMISTS get even sneakier with their gloom and doom climate ALARMISM.

  26. From the article: “Given this resistance to news, other approaches, such as avoiding fear-inducing and guilt-based messaging, creating targeted messages about free-market solutions, or deploying a kind of “jiu jitsu” persuasion that aligns with pre-existing attitudes, may prove more effective at influencing skeptics.”

    No, facts are what will influence skeptics. Face it, the CAGW promoters don’t have the facts to back up their claims.

    Skeptics say this all the time. If the science is so settled, then it ought to be easy for alarmists to present enough facts to convince the skeptics. This author could do that himself, if he could find the facts, and then that would be the end of the story. But he doesn’t have the facts and the people he listens to don’t have the facts, so skeptics remain skeptical.

    Alarmists need to produce CAGW facts not propaganda ploys if they want to convince skeptics of anything.

  27. I would think that increased greenhouse gasses should REDUCE cyclone energy and extreme weather events. Specifically, the energy for heat engines comes from temperature DIFFERENCES, not just from high temperatures. In the case of tropical cyclones it’s the water being warmer than the air that supplies the energy.

    But with global warming, the air wouldn’t be getting as cold as quickly in the fall, so the energy for tropical cyclones should be reduced . This is counter-intuitive to folks who don’t know physics, but it’s why refrigerators consume electricity instead of produce it, and why tornadoes tend to be associated with cold-fronts.

    Based on these stories, it looks like I’m right, and those who cry about warming increasing the frequency of extreme weather are wrong.

    https://agupubs.onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1002/2015GL064929

    “Recent review papers reported that many high-resolution global climate models consistently projected a reduction of global tropical cyclone (TC) frequency in a future warmer climate, although the mechanism of the reduction is not yet fully understood. Here we present a result of 4K-cooler climate experiment. The global TC [tropical cyclone] frequency significantly increases in the 4K-cooler climate compared to the present climate. This is consistent with a significant decrease in TC frequency in the 4K-warmer climate.“

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0012821X06009186

    “Our record demonstrates that the frequency variability of intense landfalling cyclones is greatest at centennial scale compared to seasonal and decadal oscillations. [T]he period between AD 1600 to 1800 [Little Ice Age] had many more intense or hazardous cyclones impacting the site than the post AD 1800 period.”

    https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0277379115301335

    “A comparison with North Atlantic and Western Mediterranean paleoclimate proxies shows that the phases of high storm activity occurred during cold periods, suggesting a climatically-controlled mechanism for the occurrence of these storm periods. … Periods of low storm activity occurred from 560 cal yr BC to 140 cal yr AD (SP9 and SP8, Roman Warm Period) and from 820 to 1230 cal yr AD (SP4, Medieval Warm Period).”

    http://www.sciencemagazinedigital.org/sciencemagazine/30_january_2015?folio=540&pg=98#pg98
    “Our work illustrates a major constraint on the large-scale global atmospheric engine: As the climate warms, the system may be unable to increase its total entropy production enough to offset the moistening inefficiencies associated with phase transitions. … On a warming Earth, the increase in perceptible water has been identified as a reason for the tropical overturning to slow down, and studies over a wide range of climates suggest that global atmospheric motions are reduced in extremely warm climates.“

    So IF weather were becoming more extreme, it would be an indicator of global COOLING and NOT global warming.

  28. When every kind of “bad weather” is said to be “caused by climate change,” even types of weather diametrically opposed to one another, it’s easily recognized as bullshit. And no matter how you “package” bullshit, it still stinks and skeptics will still be able to sniff it out.

  29. “Dr Ryan Weber, Associate Professor, English Department Director of Business and Technical Writing”, …

    Given the failed AGW thesis of anthrophobic climate-change (which geo-historicaly occurs on the scale of multiple centuries (where ~250 years between data ‘points’ is typical), what would any mere noise-level major weather event have to do with a climate change signal, which would take a minimum of 250 years to begin to show, i.e. 1950 + 250 years brings us to around 2200 when we’ll be able to look for any emergent trace of a multi-century planetary climate trend change signal.

    And there’s no certainty there will be one, even at that point. In fact its more or less 2 to 1 that there still won’t be. The objective observations can be positive, negative, or neutral, even at that point. More than likely you would ‘like’ the result in 2200 AD.

    Does Ryan not know the difference between a noise-floor and a signal? No concept of scale and proportions? No grasp of the difference between weather and climate, at all?

    So do you really consider yourself qualified (in any way) to comment on such things Mr Weber? Any idea why you might feel you are, given the obvious evidence against?

    Science is not interested in the “People’s Champion”, Ry-Ry, they’re only interested in signal. Not in mere weather noise. And I really hope you’re not even now thinking of citing a climate model’s output as ‘evidence’, as that would be much too silly.

  30. “If you don’t read the newspaper, you’re uninformed. If you read the newspaper, you’re mis-informed.”

    ― Mark Twain

  31. No single weather event, journal article, news story or opinion article will convince me. English professors are supposed to be skilled in the use of language. This one is pretty dim.

    No single weather event is more than a data point, however scary, in the pursuit of climate truth. The truth is that we don’t know what drives global climate with any precision or confidence.

  32. The Conversation needs to change their name to honestly reflect their true values and principles. I would suggest welcome to “The One-Sided Conversation”.

  33. Here is my hint regarding communicating better: The term denier/skeptic is used as a blanket term to cover a wide variety of positions on climate issues. While it can include people who are genuinely misinformed, it is also used to describe the positions of very well-informed persons such as Roger Pielke, Sr. and Jr., Richard Lindzen, Roy Spencer,John Christy, Judith Curry, Steve McIntrye and many others. The communication strategy that would be effective on the genuinely uninformed would not be at all helpful in discussing climate issues with well-informed scientists and laymen. The fact that the climate alarmists do not recognize the difference between these types of “deniers/skeptics” causes them to almost immediately shut down fruitful communications with well-informed people who take a skeptical view of climate alarmism.

  34. Climate change themes also made skeptics more likely to downplay the severity of the disasters. At the same time, the same articles made people who accept climate change perceive the hazards as more severe.

    Downplay? Uh…no. Put the hype into perspective? YES!

    Those who perceive the event as more severe have swallowed the hype.

  35. That a strong hurricane came ashore, or a tornado was spawned from a thunderstorm, that’s a fact. Saying it was “caused” by “climate change” is a conclusion. CAGW skeptics don’t disagree with the actual facts (weather events), just the conclusion that these events were caused by “climate change”. As long as the alarmists don’t understand this simple truth, they will continue to be baffled as to why their messaging is failing.

  36. You guys are still all assuming that any of this is about honestly informing the populace. It isn’t. It’s about clicks, eyeballs, ratings, and advertiser $. That’s why everything is framed in the most breathless, dramatic, apocalyptic, “unprecedened! historic!” terms possible. The TV audience is now addicted to drama–EXTREME drama is what it takes to break through the ordinary buzz of ennui. The laughable fact that the Weather Channel now names every rain cloud, and Weather Underground (if you scroll down far enough) will sift the earth’s entire surface to find “inconvenient” weather to attribute to AGW should surprise no one. The answer is to turn all the garbage off and go outside. Develop your OWN predictions–with practice, they’ll be as accurate as anyone’s.

  37. Or listen to meteorologist that make their living forecasting THE WEATHER as accurately as they know how AND reporting it as what is … THE WEATHER.

    PS The Storm Channel, if I’m not mistaken, bought Weather Underground some years ago. That explains its issues.

  38. My brother in law says that the purpose of advertising is mainly to
    reinforce your belief that the product you bought last week is the best.
    While advertising can also make you look at the items on the shelf and
    possibly pick one, its reinforcement that is the important factor.

    The same goes for the constant stream of climate “Facts” that we are bombarded with. Its repartition that imprints the message.

    MJE VK5ELL

  39. But a recent study from Ohio State University communications scholars found that news stories connecting climate change to natural disasters actually backfire among skeptics. As someone who also studies scientific communication, I find these results fascinating. It’s easy to assume that presenting factual information will automatically change people’s minds, but messages can have complex, frustrating persuasive effects

    Presenting factual information would be the starting point for changing people’s minds, Propaganda (such as “news stories connecting climate change to natural disasters “) isn’t factual information. It should come as no surprise that, when presented with obvious propaganda, that it backfires among skeptics who know that it’s dishonest and non-factual to attempt to connect individual weather events to climate change .

  40. Does this Dr. Ryan Weber believe in his own “persuasions” –

    “deploying a kind of “jiu jitsu” persuasion that aligns with pre-existing attitudes, may prove more effective at influencing skeptics.”
    ___________________________________________________

    “may may prove more effective at

    influencing

    skeptics.”

    ___________________________________________________

    is not about “science” but about – persuasion.

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