Recently, the Washington Post reported new data showing something most of us already sense: that increased polarization on Capitol Hill is due to the way the Republican Party has lurched to the right. The authors of the study use Senator John McCain to illustrate the point. McCain's political odyssey is, in some dismaying sense, close to my own heart, since it highlights the Republican turn against science.
Very informative article. Thank you, Ms. Oreskes.
From the article:
“As Erik Conway and I demonstrated in our book Merchants of Doubt, many of the groups that now question the reality or significance of human-made climate change previously questioned the scientific evidence of the dangers of tobacco.”
When a group possessed of intelligence and integrity are put on the defensive, it’s the classic case of shooting AT the messengers in order to preclude their message from getting out.
These PR groups paid by corporations that will see a reduction in their profits (in today’s case, that’s primarily Big Coal, Big Gas/Frack, and Big Oil) know that the SCIENCE is on the side of those seeking radical change. Because they can’t refute the science, their strategy is to attack those stating it or pretend that the matter is under question, requires more study, or is a govt. conspiracy.
This statement nails the protocol:
“Whenever there are signs that the political landscape is shifting and that the world might be getting ready to act on climate change, the forces of denial only redouble their efforts.”
From the article:
“Ozone science was not attacked because it was wrong scientifically, but because it was politically and economically consequential – because it threatened powerful interests. The same is true of climate science, which is telling us that business as usual will endanger our health, wealth, and well-being. Under the circumstances, it’s hardly surprising that some sectors of the business community – especially the Carbon-Combustion Complex, the network of powerful industries that centrally rely on the extracting, selling, or burning of fossil fuels – have tried to undermine that message. They have supported attacks on the science and its scientists, while funding distracting research and misleading conferences to create a false impression that there is fundamental scientific debate and uncertainty on the subject.”
Although summer doesn’t technically begin until June 22, it’s been 98-degrees here in North Florida since last Saturday… and similar temperatures are expected into the next 4 days. This is NOT normal. 90 is normal, nor is it raining much at all.
Meanwhile, as if Mother Nature is taking aim at the idiots who govern Texas and Oklahoma… just to drive in the REALITY of climate chaos, both states have had record flooding and rainfall with tropical storm Bill headed their way. Maybe with this “Bill” due, the dingdongs will finally connect dots.
Impossible for the most dedicated climate-change denier to miss The Truth:
“Climate change is, in fact, already causing an increase in the sorts of extreme weather events – particularly floods, extreme droughts, and heat waves – that almost always result in large-scale government responses.”
An excellent piece Naomi, but I suspect you are being too generous in assigning Republican denialism to fear of big government. Republican denial of AGW is simply a function of getting what those that put and keep them there have paid for. No need to ennoble their motives. They would after all run your name through the mud, attack your integrity and your character, if it suited their purpose.
Nature couldn’t care less about the denial crowd. They’re our problem and if we don’t get control of the wheel from them soon they’re going to take us all down with them. If we believe that is going to be done through the present systems of Governance we have we can forget about it. The present PTB will never listen to us because they are firmly in the hands of the polluters.
Ms Oreskes as usual uses the very tactics she accuses the Skeptics of catastrophic global warming of using she attacks the motives of the messengers and appeals to supposed authority rather than discussing the actual science.
The earth has likely just passed the peak of a millennial solar cycle and is now headed towards the depths of the next Little Ice Age at about 2635. Here is an exchange with Professor Freeman Dyson on this topic.
Dr Norman Page
Saw your Vancouver Sun interview.
I agree that CO2 is beneficial. This will be even more so in future because it is more likely than not that the earth has already entered a long term cooling trend following the recent temperature peak in the quasi-millennial solar driven periodicity .
The climate models on which the entire Catastrophic Global Warming delusion rests are built without regard to the natural 60 and more importantly 1000 year periodicities so obvious in the temperature record. The modelers approach is simply a scientific disaster and lacks even average commonsense .It is exactly like taking the temperature trend from say Feb – July and projecting it ahead linearly for 20 years or so. They back tune their models for less than 100 years when the relevant time scale is millennial. This is scientific malfeasance on a grand scale. The temperature projections of the IPCC - UK Met office models and all the impact studies which derive from them have no solid foundation in empirical science being derived from inherently useless and specifically structurally flawed models. They provide no basis for the discussion of future climate trends and represent an enormous waste of time and money. As a foundation for Governmental climate and energy policy their forecasts are already seen to be grossly in error and are therefore worse than useless. A new forecasting paradigm needs to be adopted. For forecasts of the timing and extent of the coming cooling based on the natural solar activity cycles - most importantly the millennial cycle - and using the neutron count and 10Be record as the most useful proxy for solar activity .Google my blog-post at climatesense-norpag.blogspot.com/2014/07/climate-forecasting-methods-and-cooling.html
The most important factor in climate forecasting is where earth is in regard to the quasi- millennial natural solar activity cycle which has a period in the 960 – 1020 year range. For evidence of this cycle see Figs 5-9. From Fig 9 it is obvious that the earth is just approaching ,just at or just past a peak in the millennial cycle. I suggest that more likely than not the general trends from 1000- 2000 seen in Fig 9 will likely generally repeat from 2000-3000 with the depths of the next LIA at about 2650. The best proxy for solar activity is the neutron monitor count and 10 Be data. My view ,based on the Oulu neutron count – Fig 14 is that the solar activity millennial maximum peaked in Cycle 22 in about 1991. There is a varying lag between the change in the in solar activity and the change in the different temperature metrics. There is a 12 year delay between the neutron peak and the probable millennial cyclic temperature peak seen in the RSS data in 2003. Google woodfortrees.org/plot/rss/from:1980.1/plot/rss/from:1980.1/to:2003.6/trend/plot/rss/from:2003.6/trend
There has been a cooling temperature trend since then (Usually interpreted as a “pause”) There is likely to be a steepening of the cooling trend in 2017- 2018 corresponding to the very important Ap index break below all recent base values in 2005-6. Fig 13.
The Polar excursions of the last few winters in North America are harbingers of even more extreme winters to come more frequently in the near future.
I would be very happy to discuss this with you by E-mail or phone .It is important that you use your position and visibility to influence United States government policy and also change the perceptions of the MSM and U.S public in this matter. If my forecast cooling actually occurs the policy of CO2 emission reduction will add to the increasing stress on global food production caused by a cooling and generally more arid climate.
Dear Norman Page,
Thank you for your message and for the blog. That all makes sense.
I wish I knew how to get important people to listen to you. But there is
not much that I can do. I have zero credibility as an expert on climate.
I am just a theoretical physicist, 91 years old and obviously out of touch
with the real world. I do what I can, writing reviews and giving talks,
but important people are not listening to me. They will listen when the
glaciers start growing in Kentucky, but I will not be around then. With
all good wishes, yours ever, Freeman Dyson.
Professor Dyson Would you have any objection to my posting our email exchange on my blog?
Best Regards Norman Page
Yes, you are welcome to post this exchange any way you like. Thank you
for asking. Yours, Freeman Dyson
Look up Dr. Norman Page, here’s his entry at “The Climate Denier List: a list of scientists, real or imagined, pundits and loud mouths”:
Dr Norman Page
[entered] November 29, 2012 in geologist
Dr Norman Page – an oil consultant with a PhD, in Geology at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. [so many geologists are turning up a new category has been added just for them]. Why are fossil fuel geologists so skeptical?
Has guest post with WUWT [classic denialist site Watts Up With That]
Cooling will kick in by –
“The peak is broad with only a little cooling to date but this will likely accelerate from 2015 or 2016 on reflecting the beginning of the increase in the cosmic ray count already seen from 2004 – 2009 in Fig 6. The cooling will last until 2030- 2040. Often the signal for a climate direction change is a see saw effect between Arctic and Antarctic sea ice. The Arctic is still reflecting the peak in the warming trend with low summer ice values. The first indication of a cooling event is however the increase in Antarctic sea ice which has already occurred.”
The article is round up of – the ice-age is coming – the Sun is less active [but was really active in the 90s] – cosmic rays – blah blah. And this despite another Geologist saying much the same thing just 3 months earlier on WUWT when David Archibald asks the question – When will it get cooler?
Norman’s predictions of impending cold are also mentioned at Climate Depot [June 2010] advising –
“There is no threat from the burning of fossil fuels for the foreseeable future, indeed an increase in CO2 would positively help in feeding the burgeoning population. For the next 20 years climate science should be devoted to improving and enlarging the entire climate data base in particular with regard to solar data of all kinds. No climate model runs should be made until 2025 by which time the inputs will hopefully be more relevant to the real world.”
… this page will be here in 3-4-5 years’ time just to see those predictions come true.
-end excerpt from Climate Denier List-
So Norman Page, 5 years ago, predicted clear “global cooling” kicking in, hmm, right about now! Let’s look at the data… Oops!
But hey, he had a real nice exchange with renowned physicist and “new ice age” outlier Freeman Dyson!
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aligatorhardt,siouxrose. If you check the posts on my blog you will see that my general approach is to provide links to the basic data so that readers of reasonable intelligence can make up their own minds . If you would like to discuss the data and question my interpretation of it I’ll be happy to oblige . Accusations of dishonesty should be supported by evidence and I get no funding from anyone except for social security.