December 17, 2007


Rhetorical excess undercuts the case against global warming. (John Vinocur, December 17, 2007, IHT)

People concerned about dealing with global warming have a good case. It has such merit that the props of language now being used in its support - nations mobilized for war, moral courage, Hitler, Churchill - undercut its credibility.

Those words are excluders, Good versus Evil discussion-stoppers, with-us-or-against-us barriers of such magnitude that they tend to turn questions, suggestions and varying interpretations of the issue into heretical dissent.

Bingo! It's a religion and skeptics are, indeed, heretics.

Posted by Orrin Judd at December 17, 2007 3:34 PM

Another thing is what Instapundit has pointed out on numerous occassions: he will take global warming seriously when those saying it is a crisis start acting like it is crisis. For example, when Al Gore stops using 10 times the amount of energy in his Nashville estate. Or when Hollywood stars and UN bureaucrats stop using private jets to go to Davos, Switzerland or Bali for global warming conferences.

Posted by: pchuck at December 17, 2007 7:22 PM

Which skeptics? Both sides of this argument could say they are skeptical of the other side's theory.
Calling it a religion only clouds whatever it is you are trying to say (which would seem to be exactly what John Vinocur is complaining about).
No one is claiming to possess a perfect understanding of so-called global warming.
But here. the scientists are the real skeptics, as they keep working for better answers, improve everyone's understanding.
Rather than, say, the amateur meteorologist type of skeptic who (so sure that humans couldn't be responsible for a potentially catastrophic future climate) find comfort by sticking their head in the ground; perhaps so they may cowardly avoid the models, spreadsheets, abstracts of those crazy fundamentalist scientists.

Posted by: Hijira at December 17, 2007 8:08 PM

I don't think it is the models, spreadsheets, and abstracts that are being avoided. It is more of a common sense distrust of the doom and gloom gang.

Posted by: eric trost at December 17, 2007 10:02 PM

The same gang, BTW, which has the same answer for any question; be it global warming or global cooling.

Posted by: ray at December 17, 2007 10:19 PM

Exactly, each religion is skeptical of the other.

Posted by: oj at December 17, 2007 10:39 PM

Yes, but only cowardly skeptics choose the low, easy, and painless road of "religion" to ground both their (and those they argue with) frame of reference. What is really at issue is not faith vs. faith, but intentional ignorance of those whose opinions will not be swerved versus serious and sustained scientific inquiry that is open to new interpretations of observations.

Posted by: Hijira at December 18, 2007 10:53 PM

The scientific faith isn't open, as witness the way it clings to long discredited Darwinism. Indeed, the belief in Reason itself has been discredited since Hume, but you lot cling to it just as steadfastly as al Qaedists and their 72 virgins. But, fret not, no one much minds your need for a false faith to fill the hole left when you rejected the true one.

Posted by: oj at December 19, 2007 12:12 AM

Hijira, there is very little "open" about the science of the anthropogenic global warming crowd. They have adamantly refused to release the data and methods by which they have arrived at their catastrophic prophecies. Hansen, Mann, et al. guard their data and methods from the unfaithful as zealously as the Vatican.

Posted by: BrianOfAtlanta at December 19, 2007 12:48 PM