The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Skepticism Is for ‘Rubes’

Posted on | January 1, 2011 | 30 Comments

Really intelligent people, you see, believe whatever they’re told by the experts:

In Charles Johnson’s mind, skepticism toward environmental catastrophism is “anti-science rubbish” and the fact that such an article appears on Fox News just proves that only “rubes” are skeptics:

[Fox News reporter Maxim] Lott is trying to denigrate the reliability of climate science, a typical denier’s tactic; but the real lesson of his list of ‘botched forecasts’ is that climate predictions are becoming increasingly accurate as scientific knowledge increases, and techniques and models are refined.

No, actually, the fact that most of Lott’s examples are from the 1970s and ’80s just shows that the doomsayers have wised up to the risk of short-term projections.

“Population Bomb” hoaxer Paul Ehrlich made a laughingstock of himself by predicting what he expected to happen in five, 10 or 15 years — and all his disaster scenarios proved false. As Reason magazine’s Ronald Bailey says, Ehrlich has never been right about anything.

Other doomsayers have learned the lesson of Ehrlich’s example. Nowadays, the purveyors of climate-change “consensus” talk about what will happen in 50, 100 or 200 years. The beauty of putting Doomsday in the fairly distant future is that your prediction cannot be falsified any time soon. By the time anyone can determine whether your forecasts were accurate, you’ll be mouldering in the grave.

The game is clearly rigged in favor of the “consensus.” If you point to examples contrary to their theory — record cold in Miami, Florida, for example — they’ll say, “No, that’s merely the weather. We’re talking about climate.”

Yeah, right.

Da Tech Guy calls Johnson’s advocacy of climate change theory the surest sign that it’s jumped the shark.

Whether of not that’s true, 2010 is destined to be remembered as The Year Global Warming Died. The inarguable highlight of the year was when the world’s climate-change fanatics gathered for a big U.N.-sponsored conference in Cancun, Mexico, a tropical resort location which acknowledged their presence with three straight days of record cold temperatures!

UPDATE: Just incidentally, Diary of Dedalus had an LGF “Flounce of the Year” contest for the best exit by a commenter from Johnson’s members-only site. While I haven’t seen the final tally, the early “consensus” seems to have been Cato the Elder’s “Do It Now” flounce.

That exit was inspired by a fund-raising squabble at LGF. Seems some Lizardoids had objected to Johnson putting ads on the site, so he came up with an idea: “Chip in $10 a month and the site will be ad-free.”

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot? I hope no one is under the illusion that this blog is a charitable endeavor. No, we are greedy capitalist bloggers perpetrating an Underpants Gnome scheme to take over the entire freaking blogosphere. That our scheme has so far been only partially successful has not deterred us in the least.

And since we’re talking about predictions here, I’ll boldly predict that at some point during 2011, Charles Johnson will do something laughably stupid.

Given that it’s almost noon on New Year’s Day, this prediction may have already come true.



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