There's a job going at WUWT for a charismatic young scientist. This charismatic young scientist needs the following attributes:
- Subscribes to the conspiracy theory that "climate science is a hoax"
- Is willing to deny that humans are causing global warming
- Doesn't vote Republican (it is assumed that the scientist will be from the USA)
- Appeals to US-style libertarians
- Isn't an anti-vaxxer
- Isn't a flat-earther
- Isn't a young earth creationist
- Doesn't (openly) subscribe to any other well-known conspiracy theory like "NASA faked the moon landing"; 911-truth; birtherism etc
- Knows how to spell "pause", and isn't shy about saying "pause, pause, pause" every time someone points to the rapid rise in surface temperature, ocean heat, melting ice etc
- Is willing to waffle and avoid mentioning any climate science
- Is able to figure out what he or she "stands for"
- "Believes" that CO2 is a greenhouse gas
- "Believes" that greenhouse gases don't work any more
This is what I deduce from the latest article by Matt "sheeple" Manos at WUWT (archived here). After writing about all the things that "sceptics" must avoid, he concludes:
Personally, I think skepticism could grow if skeptics could get the science presented to more people. The pause is amazing stuff. To effectively communicate the pause requires different skills then influencing the scientific debate. To grow, skepticism needs a playbook and a face.
Deniers might try to say that CO2 is not causing warming, but then they are faced with simple charts like the one below - which plots atmospheric CO2 against global mean surface temperature:
|Data sources: Scripps and GISS/NASA|
They might try to argue that global warming has stopped, but then they are faced with simple charts like the one below that shows that oceans are accumulating an awful lot of heat very quickly:
|Data source: NOAA|
And it's a bit hard to argue that there is a pause at the surface, when you look at the chart below - on which the dotted horizontal line is last year's average surface temperature:
|Data source: GISS NASA|
It's particularly hard to appear to be rational when you look at what's happening this year, with year to date global surface temperatures so far, the highest ever on record:
|Data source: GISS NASA|
I can understand that fake sceptics want a new champion. Ageing ideological deniers won't win over independents in the USA, many of whom would pay more attention to science and experts in the field than they pay to fossil-fuel funded puppets.
The difficulty will not be in finding someone who is a young scientist. It won't even be in finding someone who has charisma. The main difficulty fake sceptics and climate conspiracy theorists will have is finding someone who can command any credibility while saying he or she believes that climate science is a giant hoax.
From the WUWT comments
simple-touriste is offended by the anti-vaxxer slur:
May 31, 2015 at 3:50 pm
“anti-vaxxers” is like “denier”. It’s a meaningless derogatory label. You could as well write vaccine deniers.
Many MD criticise the official view that all recommended vaccines are useful.
Malcolm is offended by the suggestion that 911-truthers have it wrong:
May 31, 2015 at 6:28 pm
And if anyone says that they believe Tower 7 came down because of fire then they’re advertising a willingness to believe absolutely anything. Seriously – if a person, after looking at the footage of Tower 7 coming down, concludes that a fire was the cause then they’re a little bit special.
yankwanker thinks the way to go is to outlaw climate science and put all scientists in gaol:
May 31, 2015 at 4:32 pm
IMO the best way to influence persuadable people is to elect conservatives who will cut off the funding of the most egregious “climate change” hucksters (if not in fact prosecute them for fr@ud) and support real climatology rather than “climate science”.
ECB decides that pretending it isn't happening is the best option:
May 31, 2015 at 4:33 pm
I simply say that the scientific method requires you to discard a hypothesis when the data does not confirm it. It is almost 19 years of no warming despite accelerating CO2.
That is a clear fail. Thus no need to worry about CO2 doing anything extreme, indeed, it is beneficial as plant food. Check out our living Einstein, Dr. Freeman Dyson.if you like.
There were a number of people who put up a list of denier memes that they probably got from the list at SkepticalScience.com.
Then there were a couple of "thoughts" from real, rather than fake sceptics. dmh wrote:
May 31, 2015 at 9:32 pm
Preferably a young, charismatic, non-partisan scientist to go on daytime TV, YouTube and TV news shows
Yes, that’s what we need. Someone charismatic. Form over substance you know, that’s how science works. A real slick talking head and suddenly the mainstream media will be tripping over themselves to interview them. Right.
Bill 2 wrote:
May 31, 2015 at 11:05 pm
“The pause is amazing stuff. To effectively communicate the pause requires different skills then influencing the scientific debate”
The following includes some links to show the diversity of the views of science deniers. It's hard to sell a consistent message when there is no consistency.
- WUWT's "sheeple" conspiracy nuttery - and forecasting God
- Danley Wolfe continues the long, drawn out hiatus of scepticism at WUWT
- Confessions of deniers at Judith Curry's blog
- Self portrait of a typical science denier on WUWT
- More confessions and pledges of faith from born again deniers at WUWT
- GOP pledges to "rein in" Obama on climate change (CNN)
- New study reaffirms the link between conservative religious faith and climate change doubt (Washington Post)
- Climate change: Six major energy companies write to United Nations to request help in setting up carbon pricing scheme (The Independent - UK)