A brief history of climate change ‘scepticism’

Here is my attempt to make sense of the academic literature categorising the rhetorical positions adopted by climate change ‘sceptics’. However, please note that the term ‘sceptic’ is used solely for convenience: Given that the totality of post-industrial climate change can only be explained as primarily human-caused, these forms of ‘scepticism’ represent varying degrees of ideological blindness. Categorising Climate Change ScepticsGiven the recent speech by Pope Francis on Capitol Hill, it will be interesting to see how resilient this ideological blindness is – and/or how strong the cognitive dissonance is – amongst the Catholic members of the Republican Party.


About Rick Altman

Possibly just another 'Climate Cassandra' crying 'Wolf' in cyberspace. However, the moral of the old children's story is that the Wolf eventually turned up!
This entry was posted in Climate Science, Cognitive Dissonance, Denial, Environment, Scepticism and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to A brief history of climate change ‘scepticism’

  1. Lionel Smith says:

    Any ideological blindness is alive and well judging by the latest piece of crockery by Richard Lindzen who has resorted to that well know peer reviewed journal ‘The Big Issue’ where he bafflegabs to a lay audience using his usual outrageous obfuscation: ‘CO2 is not the enemy,’ writes Richard Lindzen, Professor Emeritus of atmospheric sciences at MIT. ‘It’s bigger than this…’ So Lindzen continues to reinforce his reputation of being untrustworthy on this issue as others have pointed out earlier (from Wiki): “The April 30, 2012 New York Times article included the comments of several other experts. Christopher S. Bretherton, an atmospheric researcher at the University of Washington, said Lindzen is “feeding upon an audience that wants to hear a certain message, and wants to hear it put forth by people with enough scientific reputation that it can be sustained for a while, even if it’s wrong science. I don’t think it’s intellectually honest at all.” Kerry A. Emanuel, another M.I.T. scientist, said of Lindzen’s views “Even if there were no political implications, it just seems deeply unprofessional and irresponsible to look at this and say, ‘We’re sure it’s not a problem.’ It’s a special kind of risk, because it’s a risk to the collective civilization.”” Lindzen seems put out by the thought that millions of dollars are going to what he describes as alarmist scientists neglecting that many hundreds more millions are going to the denial/delay campaign of which he is a part (Exxon and the Kochs are now under increasing scrutiny). Not only that, there are many disparate scientific fields which underpin the knowledge that we have a problem, not just the physics in which latter Lindzen has made a career out of being mostly wrong. Good work if you can get it. Another who is feeling put out especially by being ‘ostracised’ is Judith Curry who is the subject of another egregious piece by David Rose (of Mail infamy) this time in ‘The Spectator’ (suspect Lawson still has influence there) as reported on by Sou at Hot Whopper. Poor Judith and Richard they have made their beds and now have to lie in them (take that anyway you wish).


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