The only thing we can be sure of about the future is that it will be absolutely fantastic. So if what I say now seems to you to be very reasonable, then I have failed completely. Only if what I tell you appears absolutely unbelievable, have we any chance of visualizing the future as it really will happen.

- Arthur C. Clarke (h/t Brin)

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Cluelessness

Watching the worst of the NotTheIPCC gang at work is probably not a productive obsession.

But sometimes the examples are so astonishing as to be entertaining if not revealing:
"The real problem with the models is they show an exponential rise in the rate of sea-level rise, the so-called hockey stick approach," [Professor emeritus F.] said.
I'd like to know whether an actual professor that emitted this third-hand muddled ignorant juvenile blithering, whether it was a complete fabrication by the reporter at the Australian, or whether it was a collaboration of some kind.

Regardless, a newspaper capable of stringing those words together and publishing them is providing no actual service.

6 comments:

Pangolin said...

If drought, then flood, then cyclone, becomes the new norm for Australia sea level rise will be a bit late to the "let's render Oz an uninhabitable wasteland" party.

Of course since current climate change precludes basing weather predictions on past climate we'll just have to wait and see what comes in the future.

So, go ahead Aussies, build on the beach. It makes for great television footage when the houses float away.

Aaron said...

There is whole class of such NotTheIPCC critters. See for example: http://fgservices1947.wordpress.com/category/climate/

At one time, I had a boss who was just such a "geologic critter". They do exist. Nice guy, but we were studying a contaminated aquifer, and he kept telling us that humans could not affect the environment.

I no longer think it is just money from fossil fuel companies. I think that people with a particular set of social beliefs tend to go into (some fields) because people with those social beliefs are already in (that field), and they all get along because they all have the same social beliefs.

Anna Haynes said...

> I no longer think it is just money from fossil fuel companies. I think that people with a particular set of social beliefs ...

Yes. Which is why providing social cocoons for susceptible journalists is probably in their PRfolks' toolbox.

Michael Tobis said...

It doesn't take that much effort to seed people telling each other lies they want to hear, especially with a sufficiently cooperative press. Fossil fuel interests started this thing but I don't know that they could stop it if they wanted to.

Pangolin said...

It doesn't take that much effort to seed people telling each other lies they want to hear, especially with a sufficiently cooperative press. Fossil fuel interests started this thing but I don't know that they could stop it if they wanted to._MT

So the Climate Change debate turns into a variation of the War on (some) Drugs debate. An argument where the conservative side refuses to acknowledge any fact that contradicts their social position.

Anybody who thinks we have fifty years to hammer at the same factual points while conservatives block all progress is nuts. At some point the cons get steamrolled or climate damage makes any politics but desperate survival moot.

Look at MT's link to the Pakistan flooding aftermath to see what desperate survival looks like. Not pretty.

manuel "moe" g said...

Pangolin:

> Look at MT's link to the Pakistan flooding aftermath to see what desperate survival looks like. Not pretty.

But, but, but, carbon taxes will bankrupt villagers already struggling with the economic disadvantage of being drown.