Another Investigation Exonerates the 'Climategate' Scientists

lostlakehiker7/07/2010 3:24:39 pm PDT

re: #24 LudwigVanQuixote

No, they don’t care. They think that they will somehow be wealthy enough to survive. They think that they will be among the 1/2 to 1/5 of Americans who get the food that is left - if they allow themselves to think in those terms at all. Again, crimes against humanity is not an overstatement for the various denier think tanks, politicians and corporate powers that are strangling progress. They should be tried and hanged.

Not so. Not from the ones I run into, even relatives. What they think is that this is a power play, a story line with which to justify higher taxes and more regulation. That scientists themselves don’t believe this stuff, but say so because that’s the only way to remain in the profession and get grants. That yes, it’s warming, but that this will not go too far and that such warming as does occur will only go to open up new farmlands further North and to cut shipping costs through the Arctic. And that anyhow, the warming trend is nothing new, and it’s been warmer during the medieval warm period.

There’s no use talking to them about the scientific evidence. The only way anyone can know anything, in their view, is to judge motives, and it looks to them as though there’s some profiteering going on.

There will, of course, be profiteering. The American civil war, a noble cause on the Northern side if ever there was one, was also a war where offices were bought and sold, generals were appointed for political reasons, and food not fit to eat was stamped OK and sent to the troops because there was money in it. Nothing human is spotless.

So here we are. There are two ways to budge this portion of the audience: with news of disasters outside the scope of what they imagine possible, or with inventions that solve AGW and are a good idea for other reasons anyhow.

The first method is no fun at all. The second is worth a try. Every green technology should get a good honest look from beady eyed accountants and engineers. With rational assumptions about discount rates and durability and future prices of commodities, can it make its way in the marketplace? Can it come close?

And on the other hand, AGW solutions that are long on regulation and short on payoff should not be put front and center. Ethanol from corn is a perfect example. As green technology, it’s a failure. As a vote getter in Iowa primaries, it’s a winner. That’s exactly the kind of detail on which this faction fastens. Confirmation bias, yes, but our side would win the political fight quicker if we abstained from that kind of own-goal.