Global warming and the flat earth

by Greg Mayer

We’ve had some recent discussions here at WEIT of global warming denialist David Koch’s funding of the USNM’s Hall of Human Origins and the tea party (see here, here and here), so I thought I’d pass on a link to a funny and sad commentary on global warming by Ryan Avent of The Economist. Money quote:

No GOP leader of consequence is able to make and sustain the argument that climate change is occurring as the scientists say it is. That’s remarkable! Imagine the world’s major powers sitting down in the early 20th century to negotiate a treaty on the law of the sea, only to have one of America’s major political parties vow to defeat any settlement, on the grounds that the world is in fact flat.

h/t Andrew Sullivan


  1. Hempenstein
    Posted October 12, 2010 at 10:12 pm | Permalink

    Meanwhile, in about a month the Pope’s dopes are holding a conference on Geocentrism:

    • Posted October 13, 2010 at 1:32 am | Permalink

      Having just come from a site urging that the imams and the Qu’ran are right and mathematicians (and my experiment with a piece of fine elastic stretched over a globe) are wrong about the direction of Mecca from the US – – I can’t tell if that’s satire or not.

      • Posted October 13, 2010 at 9:59 pm | Permalink

        Looking at the video at that site, it seems they decided by ruling a straight line on a map (probably Mercator’s projection – so if its margins had been in the Atlantic instead of the Pacific, they’d now be praying toward west-south-west). I posted my method there – not that I care which way they pray, but who knows what seed a spot of applied reality might plant?

    • Dominic
      Posted October 13, 2010 at 4:06 am | Permalink

      I want to cry having read what Greg, Hempenstein & Shuggy have written… There are none so blind as those who wont see.

      • NewEnglandBob
        Posted October 13, 2010 at 4:20 am | Permalink

        This kind of stuff is what gives good reason for the Gnu Atheists to become even more vocal and louder about eliminating the ignorance and malevolence of religion and other woo in the world.

        • Dominic
          Posted October 13, 2010 at 4:44 am | Permalink

          Absolutely NEBob – & proof to me at least that accommodationists are barking mad if they think it acceptable to find ‘common ground’ with those who say ‘up’ is ‘down’ & ‘back’ is ‘forward’. I think these loonies are poisonous.

  2. Posted October 13, 2010 at 5:44 am | Permalink

    The sad thing is that half the people (I hope less, but it will probably be more) are going to vote for these anti-science, lying bozos.

  3. Bob Carlson
    Posted October 13, 2010 at 8:28 am | Permalink

    No GOP leader of consequence is able to make and sustain the argument that climate change is occurring as the scientists say it is.

    So what. While the Democrats might be more inclined to accept global warming as a reality, what practical difference does it make? Nothing they are going to propose as a matter of dealing with the issue is going to have the slightest impact. And I would argue that global warming is merely one of many serious kinds of environmental degradation and that little attention is paid to the others because concerns about them are drowned out by all the noise about global warming. The simple truth is that the size of the human population has reached the point that these problems are difficult to avoid, and whatever measures we take to minimize their impact are canceled out by continued growth. There is a need for finding a means of stabilizing the world’s population without causing economic chaos. Those who find a real solution to that economic problem will be the first ones that will ever have been deserving of the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences. Until then, environmental degradation will continue as politicians continue to campaign on the promise to “grow the economy.”

  4. keddaw
    Posted October 15, 2010 at 7:27 am | Permalink

    It is possible Koch and some others are fully aware of the reality of global warming but are more interested in playing along with the general mis-trust of science (started by which group?) that will line their own pockets even more.

    There is an actual argument for ‘ignoring’ global warming. It’s not one I subscribe to and it is incredibly dangerous but it could work and yet it’s never made:

    Handicapping our fragile economy by imposing carbon emission restrictions will massively decrease economic growth, investment and technological advances. By attempting to reduce the impact of global warming now we might, be reducing economic activity and re-directing much of that investment into green tech (which is a tactical solution not a strategic one), delays the eventual discovery of a way to mitigate (greenhouse) warming regardless of human activity and condemns generations to suffer unnecessarily.

    The additional harm caused by continuing to pump CO2 et al into the atmosphere will be lessened by increased economic activity and will be much less than the decades of extra time we may have to wait for a proper solution while the population continues to grow and natural disasters become more frequent.

    Again, this is not an argument I am in favour of but it is the only valid one I can think of and no-one has yet made it. Everyone who has any beef with AGW is simply calling the scientists liars or are sticking their heads in the sand. Which is ironic as there will soon be much more sand around for them to stick their heads into.

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