Q and ehh? – Climate Denial and Anti-Vax in Lockstep

December 8, 2020

Once you step away from science, things get weirder and weirder.
But for 40 years and more, we’ve seen a concerted, well funded, and psychologically astute war, not only on science, but on the very idea that there are facts that can be known.
Since Carl Sagan, scientists and others have warned that retreat from science was opening a Pandora’s box.

Now here we are.
A significant portion of human beings have taken crazy pills, it’s Backwards Day in Crazy Town, and Pandora’s box is wide, wide open.

New York Times:

In choosing a slate of doctors to testify about coronavirus treatments before his committee on Tuesday, Senator Ron Johnson, a Wisconsin Republican, has assembled a cast of witnesses who question much of the public health consensus about the virus.

That cast includes a prominent vaccine skeptic, an outspoken critic of masking and social distancing, and at least two doctors who have promoted the use of an anti-parasitic drug that government scientists have recommended against using to treat the coronavirus.

It is the latest example of how Mr. Johnson, who has used his powerful investigative panel to amplify groundless accusations pushed by President Trump, has now embraced the role of the Senate’s leading Covid contrarian.

Even as some of his Republican colleagues have sought to use their platforms to encourage Americans to take precautions against the spread of the virus and persuade the public that vaccines against it will be safe and vital, Mr. Johnson has suggested that the dangers of the coronavirus have been overblown.

And twice in the past three weeks, Mr. Johnson has used his gavel on the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee to elevate voices who public health experts say represent fringe beliefs.

It has set off something of a quiet mutiny on the panel, enraging Democrats who plan to essentially boycott the traditional cross-examination of witnesses and unsettling some Republicans who are planning to skip Tuesday’s session lest their presence be seen as lending credence to the proceeding.

The selections underscore the extent to which Mr. Johnson, a former plastics baron who has made little secret of his disdain for the Washington establishment, has eagerly echoed the most conspiracy-minded and anti-science impulses of Mr. Trump and waded headfirst into battles even the president’s usually reliable phalanx of congressional defenders have been unwilling to fight.

James Delingpole in Climate Depot: (I won’t link to it.)

This gels perfectly with a conversation I had recently with ‘The Skeptical Environmentalist’ Bjorn Lomborg — in which we agreed that the climate change scare was effectively a dry run for the Chinese coronavirus scare.

Of course, both problems are “real” to a degree. Climate does change, potentially causing disruption. Covid-19 is potentially fatal. But neither problem, on the evidence we have now accumulated, has done anywhere near as much damage as the “solutions”.

Why are politicians and civil servants overreacting in this way? And why are so many people actually applauding as more and more of their freedoms are curtailed and their economies are destroyed in the name of health and safety?

My view is that the climate change scare has a lot to do with it. For nearly three decades — it started with the 1992 Rio Earth Summit — the West, especially, has been relentlessly propagandised into believing that the end of the world is imminent and that urgent, expensive and disruptive action must be taken to prevent it.

As Lomborg says in his latest book False Alarm, “We live in an age of fear.”

7 Responses to “Q and ehh? – Climate Denial and Anti-Vax in Lockstep”

  1. Charles Haggerty Says:

    In a way it’s very scary how this Senator can think this , far less say it ! But , I think that the reality is that to make the changes we need to avoid runaway-climate-change and it’s catastrophic consequences we have to recognise that it’s simply too big for any politician or any member of the political class to initiate these very necessary changes .

  2. I was perplexed as to why a right-wing think-tank, like The Hoover Institute, was putting out anti-mask, anti-vax material along with their usual fossil fuels and cigarettes are safe for everybody crap. This makes sense when you consider they’ll support outright fascism if it means one less regulation. When you need a politician to look the other way while you frack a community and poison its children, it helps to have an ignorant, greedy son-of-a-bitch who relishes the very thought.

  3. Brent Jensen-Schmidt Says:

    It is past time to call out these, in affect criminal, people publically. For years they lie with no consequences. Public derision and denigration can’t hurt and should help. Nothing else seems to work.

  4. mboli Says:

    I have been reliably informed by knowledgeable political observers that in 2016 Ron Johnson beat Russ Feingold because Feingold forgot to campaign in Wisconsin.

    I haven’t asked these wise experts why Johnson beat Feingold in 2010, when Johnson was merely a non-entity business executive (not yet out as a full-blown loon), and Feingold was known as one of the smartest people in the Senate.

    • mboli Says:

      Yes, of course Russ Feingold did campaign in Wisconsin. That was a joke.

      What isn’t a joke is that this ignorance-slinging non-entity won election and re-election against one of the best Senators.

    • J4Zonian Says:

      Does that make any sense at all? A former Wisconsin Senator forgetting to campaign in Wisconsin for the position of Wisconsin Senator? Why even mention such idiotic lunacy unless you include the name (and maybe a video?) so we can heap scorn and derision on the person saying it (and those believing it). Of course, scorn and derision don’t work any more, as it only makes the dupes on the right support the derided more strongly, and they’re the ones with the money.

      • mboli Says:

        It is a joke.
        It refers to the multitudes of Sunday-morning quarterbacks who claim that Hillary Clinton did not win because she forgot to campaign in Wisconsin.
        At the same time Clinton did not win Wisconsin, so did Russ Feingold.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: