Monday, October 24, 2011

The Global Warming Cult

Let’s hope Michael Barone is right when he says that the global warming cult is heading toward the dustbin of history.

Let‘s hope that we will no longer have to listen to Al Gore yelping about settled science.

Throughout human history, Barone reminds us, people have fallen prey to apocalyptic cults. From the nineteenth century Millerites who sold all of their worldly possessions to prepare for the end of the world to the thirteenth century Children’s Crusade to more modern exemplars, people have found a strange solace in thinking that they know the future.

Yet, the global warming cult differs from many others in one important respect. It is designed to effect government policy. It wants to force people who don't believe in it to live under it.

Whatever the Millerites believed, they kept it largely to themselves. 

Hiding behind what they insisted was science, global warmists tricked governments into regulating the energy industry… the better to force the world to lived according to their vision. The environmentalist crowd had no interest in the effect that policies based on their visions would have on human beings. When you think that the world is coming to an end, you do not worry about a few blackouts or the loss of someone's livelihood. Only the truest of true believers would traffic in that degree of insensitivity and cruelty.

Now people are waking up. In Barone’s words: “The idea that we can be so certain of climate change 70 to 90 years hence that we must inflict serious economic damage on ourselves now seems increasingly absurd.

“If carbon emissions were the only thing affecting climate, the global-warming alarmists would be right. But climate is affected by many things, many not yet fully understood, and implausible that SUVs will affect it more than variations in the enormous energy produced by the sun.”

The extent to which the earth is warming is subject to some doubt. Even if it is, we cannot know to an absolute certainty that human beings are responsible.

Of course, global warmism allows us to feel guilty and gives us a way to do penance for our sins.

As Barone says, and as I have often pointed out, the cult of global warming is constructed in terms of sin and penance, leading to redemption.

Yet, global warmism suffers from its own sin, the sin of pride. Not just the pride of its arrogant perpetrators, but its presumption that human being have the power to change the course of nature.

As for claim that it is all settled science, it is worth repeating, because the point does not seem to have been grasped, that there is no such thing as a scientific fact about tomorrow. Not a settled scientific fact or an unsettled scientific fact.

There are no facts about tomorrow, or about next year, or about the twenty-second century.

Policies that try to change the world in the name of global warming are not based on science. They are based on prophecy.


Dennis said...

There is a very good book by Fred Kuttner "Quantum Enigma: Physics Encounters Consciousness" that is well worth the read. The authors go through a lot of what would have been unsettled science to try and explain the Enigma that Physic now faces. Many would like to stay at the macro level and ignore the micro level. One wonders, given my limited knowledge in this area, how one can ignore that which makes up the macro.
Only an intellectual Luddite would posit "settled science."

Malcolm said...

Another good link regarding global warming by Warren Meyer