Paula Kirby sums up the mind-set of Christians on global warming the way only an ex-Christian can understand.
After years of observing the “climate change debate” on message boards and with some people I’ve called “friends” (Though I can barely stand the presence of them), it has occurred to me that the lay public who get fired up against the idea of anthropogenic global warming and listen to talk radio every day really have no grasp of what they are talking about and have no desire to obtain one. But they stand undaunted. There is something about the concept of “faith” (belief in things unseen) which makes Christians more easily able to deny facts that sit right in front of their face en masse. They have become good at maintaining certain beliefs, not just in the absence of evidence, but in the presence of an enormous amount of evidence to the contrary. They take pride in this skill.
On these message boards the AGW deniers outweigh the rest in a way that is strangely disproportionate to the weight of the scientific arguments. I wouldn’t believe it if I didn’t know so many of these people myself. They throw out all sorts of crap about volcanoes and natural cycles as if somehow nobody has looked at these things or thought about these things before. One of our old blog readers once went on and on about sun spots and solar irradiance based on some guest who appeared on the Art Bell show years ago. Never mind that we are in a trough in the solar cycle with fewer sunspots than usual and the last decade was the warmest on record. They get worked up over the fact that 1998 was the warmest year on record and we haven’t surpassed that since. This happened twice before over the last 20 years where a temperature spike was followed by a decrease and skeptics said GW was over both times only to have the old records smashed in the future. There’s no reason to think that it won’t happen again. In fact the year of 1998 is just a cherry picked starting point. 2005 was almost identically warm globally as 1998. These idiots are fond of talking about how the earth is in a cooling trend because 1998 hasn’t been surpassed. But we can cherry pick that 2007 was the warmest winter globally in recorded history, and the warmest 6 month period in history has happened just recently, not to mention record thawing of the polar ice-caps faster than expected, warming in ocean readings and thawing glaciers world-wide. But these people know this. They just know that playing dumb for their audience of knuckle dragging fools works. It works. And it will help destroy consensus for any policy or action which might constrain business practices. That’s all they know. That’s all that matters to them. The science and all the numbers and data are nothing but incidental superfluous pieces of irrelevant information that can be distorted and twisted and muffled and spewed out to the howling masses of cult following twits by the think tanks (reincarnations of the tobacco industry denialists) that churn these fake talking points out just as fast as a stenographer can dictate them and email them to Rush.
The lay talk radio listener gets all keen every winter and determines that since he’s still as cold as always scraping ice off the windows that this is absolute proof positive that global warming is a scam. Once again, you wouldn’t believe such profound stupidity could be possible if you didn’t witness it yourself. I did last winter by checking out the Glen Beck radio show on my way to work occasionally and almost every time I listened someone was using their own local weather as an absolute verified proof positive point of certainty that global warming was entirely made up. I listened just wondering if any of these buffoons had the slightest idea how incredibly stupid they sound as they belched out their confused conflations of local weather with global climate. Turns out the listeners don’t, but the hosts do. They’re acting. Beck, Limbaugh, Gretchen Carlson, all very bright and talented douche-bag thespians who are literally pretending to be stupid on purpose and scattering known nonsense to a listening audience who takes scientific illiteracy as a badge of honor and emblem of the monocular “real American”. Stewart delivered a gem recently to illustrate how these lying buffoons of unreason and groomed facades of shallow rehearsed salesmanship make an appearance on set as cartoonish distortions of their actual knowledge base.
The truth will win in the end, but will it be too late? How many Stanford honors grads who probably came close to acing their SAT can proudly say they need to look up Czar in the dictionary and come to the conclusion that they are like kings and somehow this whole position and rank was just magically invented when Obama became president?
Democrats and liberals are not perfect or guiltless of their distortions. The difference is that the conservatives and republicans make lunacy the mainstream heart of their movement. Who is the intellectual voice in a movement where intellectuals are naturally outcasted? The whole of movement conservatism is propped up like a wounded soldier on the hearty shoulder of rapture millennialists who will eventually come to realize that Jesus is not coming back, and fall under the weight of the hollow sham they’ve held us all hostage with.