Rationality Now Rotating Header Image

The ignorance is astounding

I managed to get on the mailing list of Worldview Weekend, which tends to be one of the largest repositories on the internet for right-wing, religious, conspiracy-theory crazies. I leave myself on the list for entertainment purposes and I’ve yet to be disappointed. Unfortunately, it’s a little scary, too, because I know there are people who actually believe what’s being presented on the site.

This week, Phyllis Schlafly decided that she was going to take on the role of climatologist in a piece titled Global Warming Is Frozen Over, with predictable results. Here’s her opening salvo.

Whether or not the groundhog sees his shadow on February 2, there’s no denying that January put into a deep freeze the claims of crisis by global warming alarmists. Frigid temperatures destroyed fruit and coral in Florida, and snow fell on Al Gore’s palatial home in normally warmer Tennessee.

What I find most significant is that she thoroughly discredits herself in her first sentence by demonstrating a significant lack of understanding about global warming. She’s not the only one, though, as I’ve seen similar claims made by people all over the internet and even among my friends on Facebook. It’s as if Schlafly (and the others) completely overlook the meaning of the word “global” in “global warming.” They also tend to misunderstand (or ignore?) the difference between “climate” and “weather.” In addition, from what I’ve generally seen, they also have a very thin grasp on science in general… especially when science points to something that contradicts their firmly entrenched political or religious ideology.

Schlafly goes on to bring up the CRU email “scandal” (Climategate) which is essentially a manufactured controversy, calling the CRU an “official collaborator” with the IPCC. She says…

Those disclosures told the world about some scientists’ willingness to suppress climate-change data and rig the process in order to pretend there is consensus among scientists about global warming, to ostracize contrary views, and to promote their globalist agenda.

As anyone who’s honestly followed the incident knows, the CRU emails did no such thing. The inclusion of “globalist agenda” is also discrediting and points to her conspiracy-theory leanings, something which will no doubt endear her to global warming denialists everywhere.

In her rant, Schlafly says that lowering our level of emissions to the level that Obama has proposed will also lower our standard of living to 19th century levels, that Scott Brown’s election in Massachusetts “repudiated cap-and-trade,” and that Osama Bin Laden has blamed the United States for not stopping global warming (as if the notion that Bin Laden accepting global warming somehow means it’s not true). She also includes lengthy quotes from Czech Republic president Vaclav Klaus as if he is some sort of leading climatologist when it seems, based on the included quotes, that he’s basing his analysis on political ideology instead of on science.

Of course, no Worldview Times rant on global warming would be complete without a reference to Al Gore and An Inconvenient Truth and, for an added bonus, Schlafly includes a slam on The Story of Stuff, a video that promotes conservation, albeit in polemic way.

In her conclusion, Schlafly says that what we need to do to solve unemployment and poverty is to increase our use of energy (which is Schlafly’s way of saying “burn more fossil fuels”). Think I’m kidding?

The main cause of unemployment and poverty is the lack of enough energy. Rather than expanding government to limit energy, we should be increasing the use of energy to eradicate hardship.

In the immortal words of Wikipedia… Citation needed.

Leave a Reply