Climate Denial: It’s a thing in the English Speaking World

January 20, 2020

If you’ve seen my latest video below on the Australian fire situation, you know that current Australian PM Scott Morrison is a first rank climate science denier.

It’s not a fluke. Former PM Tony Abbott, also of the Liberal Party (it’s backwards down there) recently reeled off a chain or climate denial canards to your Uncle Dittohead proud.

This is Rupert Murdoch’s bloody work.

18 Responses to “Climate Denial: It’s a thing in the English Speaking World”

  1. renewableguy Says:

    Let’s buy out Big Oil

    Its the fastest, most peaceful, most socially responsible way out.

    • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

      Buyouts have to include laws that make it illegal, as with slavery.

      • renewableguy Says:

        It? (meaning buy out?)

        Gov bought into GM to get them over the hump of bankruptcy.

        Germany just contracted with the utilities to phase out fossil fuels by 2038.

        The idea is to pay for phasing out fossil fuels by paying them enough to give up the perpetual money machine.

  2. grindupbaker Says:

    Looking for the specific tropospheric temperature lapse rate and total tropospheric temperature lapse for Venus I came across a junk-science article on the topic by a which includes:
    “…the narrative of a runaway CO2 greenhouse effect on Venus caused by CO2 absorbing IR emitted from the surface thereby causing warming through “back radiation” (IMHO) simply cannot be true… ”
    It’s interesting to me because my ==correct== description of how the so-called “greenhouse effect” in Earth’s troposphere causes warming refutes the “…clivebest….” incorrect statement preceding but I’m rather sure that the cartoon misrepresentations of the so-called “greenhouse effect” aren’t able to refute the “…clivebest….” incorrect statement preceding because they don’t describe the science properly either. This is what I informed Greenman when I posted it recently about using rubbishy over-simplified cartoons for the unwashed masses simply leads to torrents of this junk-science drivel which can successfully show the climate scientists’ silly catoons for the unwashed masses to be incorrect, and then state that this means that the actual science is incorrect.

    • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

      It was often a problem when trying to use analogies to explain evolution to a Creationist: They’d spend all their time fixating on the analogy and attempting to shoot it down. For example, if you told them about evolving life in a computer program, they’d point out that the program was “intelligently designed” (even though the program was modeling cumulative selection over randomized events).

  3. grindupbaker Says:

    Fank gawd I don’t speak English. I’m fine then.

  4. Morrison’s wrong, because the climate change we’re experiencing now is of course human caused, though he’s right that over geological history it was not. But that’s the problem – he wants be able to adhere to good science when it suits him, but reject it whenever it causes political discomfort. We can all recognize this emperor has no clothes.

    I’ve been reading about Gandhi – really important and thought-provoking. His strategy for Indians in regard to throwing out the British colonial rulers was ‘nonviolent non-cooperation’. To demonstrate independence in 1930 he led a march to the sea to collect salt, in violation of the British salt monopoly, effectively undermining and making them superfluous by massive collective action.

    So, what would be the equivalent move to stop our current fossil-fueled self-destruction? Whatever it is, in line with Gandhi it has to be the truth (satya). That to me is a price on fossil carbon, since it’s the truth that this is the problem, and reflecting it in the price is a kind of truth for all to see. We are all involved and this puts our skin in the game, accelerating the unwinding of our affair with fossil fuel.

    By the way, the book is ‘Gandhi The Man’, by Eknath Easwaran.

    • jfon Says:

      A price on fossil carbon is a tax imposed from above, not a mass action from below ( though I think that’s what should happen.) A mass action would be more like people just stopping buying fuel, and air tickets. A billion Greta Thunbergs might start to move the needle on mass transit and non-fossil alternatives, but it’s a much harder ask than ‘clicktivism’ and the occasional demonstration.

      • doldrom Says:

        Well yes, but we would really like to develop sustainable energy and technology without giving up civilization (a hard sell, anyways), and this is impossible to attain by NOT doing something. We should have military order of magnitude programs to develop and ramp up alternative energy solutions and technology that still allows mobility.

        • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

          It isn’t just “without giving up civilization”. People in many cities think that mass transit and walkable cities are civilized, but elsewhere people are loathe to give up the independence of their cars or are stuck in car-defined suburbs.

          Had the airlines in the 1990s not lobbied against the Triangle high-speed rail connecting cities in Texas (Houston, Dallas, San Antonio, Austin), most people would have grown to greatly prefer it over air travel.

          At least Austin is finally seriously considering commuter rail.

          • grindupbaker Says:

            There’s an unintentionally-ironic trade magazine photo/article ~20 years ago. It’s a pair of escalators providing service up to the Romanescue statuescue entrance of a fancy fitness club in Houston Texas.

        • Lionel Smith Says:

          “We should have military order of magnitude programs to develop and ramp up alternative energy solutions and technology that still allows mobility.”

          Maybe, but also more campaigns along the lines of the British WW2 conscience tugging ‘Is your Journey Really Necessary’ at rail stations.

    • J4Zonian Says:

      In 1982 I wrote a paper about using Gandhian and Wobbly tactics, mostly simple solar, wind, and other technologies from the appropriate technology movement, to replace fossil fuels with clean safe renewable energy. Groups would organize, train, move into an area, set up stay-overs, camps, schools, trading and sharing centers for tools, vehicles, etc, They’d weatherstrip houses, install solar water heaters, small wind turbines, compost toilets, etc. and teach people what more was available, turning various-sized communities into demonstration projects. At the same time political protests and direct actions would be organized by separate groups, to change the politics of the place so the progress could continue.

      So much has changed. Technology is infinitely more complicated and user-unfriendly, we use several times more energy, everything is far more expensive relative to incomes, nature is farther from our lives, and such things would never be tolerated by the governments or police.

      But I think that’s the answer anyway–protests, organizing local boycotts, even blockades of businesses, government buildings, roads, railroads, etc. to stop movement of destructive materials and products… to end in what Gandhi’s salt march and other programs ended with–thousands of people in jail. For us it might have to be tens of thousands, with the threat of endlessly expanding numbers and shutdown of entire industries and branches of government.

      Even if you’re not willing to take those risks, you can still help the groups who do, starting with Sunrise movement and Extinction Rebellion. The Climate Mobilization is where they get a lot of their ideas from; help them out, too.

      • rhymeswithgoalie Says:

        Technology is infinitely more complicated and user-unfriendly, we use several times more energy….

        Some transitions take time. When I replaced my old broken refrigerator a few years ago, the guys swapping in my new one remarked at how much heavier the old one was. My new HVAC system is much more efficient, as are light bulbs.

        By paying bills and getting financial reports online, I’ve reduced the amount of paper I receive by 85% (junk mail keeps coming). I stopped flying to conferences in the Noughties, I cut down the number of times I eat out by a third in the past year alone just as a matter of habit, and now I very rarely sneak out to local dumps and start tire fires in the middle of the night.

        • grindupbaker Says:

          More efficient is the benefit. Modern elevators are much lighter than old much heavier ones. Also, old much heavier ones had 40-50 years life expectancy. Now the industry tells owners to Capital Plan for complete replacement each 20 years. I vaguely recall something similar for telephones.

  5. Brent Jensen-Schmidt Says:

    Nauseating, disgusting and criminal.

  6. Brent Jensen-Schmidt Says:

    Leetle point of joy. Visited small mall for first time since last haircut. Lots and lots of shade erected for parked cars. Provided by solar panels.

  7. dumboldguy Says:

    An excerpt from the book Cranky Uncle vs. Climate Change, released Feb 25. Go to to see it—the cartons that accompany nearly every paragraph (which wouldn’t copy) are terrific,

    Our human brain is poorly equipped to deal with a threat like climate change. Over millions of years, we’ve evolved to avoid life-threatening dangers like predators jumping out of bushes. We’ve survived by quickly detecting and avoiding immediate, short-term dangers.

    In contrast, global warming is a slow-motion disaster happening on a global scale. Our brains aren’t built to respond to planetary crises stretched out over a lifetime. It should come as no surprise that people have trouble appreciating just how dangerous climate change is.

    On top of all these difficulties, we are also being hit with a massive wave of misinformation about climate change. Vested interests, political polarization, the global nature of climate change, and misinformation combine to form a perfect psychological storm, preventing people from accepting climate science and supporting climate action.

    From the public’s point of view, the tsunami of misinformation looks like scientific controversy. We hear experts and contrarians on TV or social media spouting jargon and assume scientists are still undecided on basic questions, like whether humans are causing global warming.

    This veneer of controversy conceals the fact that our scientific understanding of human-caused global warming is built on more than a century of research. Scientific confidence is strongest when many different lines of evidence all point to a single conclusion. That’s what we observe with climate change.

    Unique patterns matching human-caused global warming—otherwise known as human fingerprints—have been observed all over our climate. This body of evidence has resulted in overwhelming agreement among climate scientists.
    Not only has there been scientific consensus on climate change for decades, there used to be political consensus as well. In the 1980s, George H. W. Bush—head of the Republican Party—pledged to fight climate change.

    So how did a bipartisan issue turn so partisan? The story begins in the late 1980s. Three physicists began attacking the science linking smoking to cancer, the reality of acid rain, the severity of the ozone hole, and global warming. In short, they tried to discredit any scientific evidence showing that industries were harming the public’s health or the environment.

    Why did these scientists turn against science? While the obvious suspect is money, it turns out their motives run deeper. They subscribed to a belief system called free market fundamentalism. This ideology holds that capitalism and personal freedom are inextricably linked. Even a small action like a tax on tobacco could be the start of a slippery slope of ever-increasing regulation, leading to government controlling every part of our lives.

    The controversy about climate change is not about the science. It’s about how much the government should regulate the marketplace to protect the public. Believers in free markets dislike the implications of the science, so they deny there is a problem in the first place.

    (Cranky Uncle vs Climate Change coverCranky Uncle vs. Climate Change uses cartoons, climate science, and critical thinking to make sense of climate denial and misinformation. Guided by psychological research into how to refute misinformation, the book embraces a creative approach, using cartoons and visual analogies to make the science engaging and accessible to readers. The book is written and drawn by John Cook, a former cartoonist who now researches climate communication at George Mason University. Cranky Uncle vs. Climate Change will be published by Kensington Books on Feb 25. Sign up for latest Cranky Uncle news at

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