Sunday, March 10, 2019

Jon Miller on climate hysteria and other things

I don't doubt that we human beings are hard at work ruining the environment in various ways. Where I think there's room for rational discussion, however, is when we get to the question of the degree to which, and the rapidity with which, we are ruining things. How much global warming is anthropogenic? Are the polar ice caps growing or shrinking (2014 [note the note!], 2015, 2018 [but with a "catch"]*)? Jon Miller's video, below, begins by mocking the doomsaying climate alarmists who, to my mind, represent the lunatic fringe of the larger discussion, if "discussion" is indeed the right word. He then brings on to the show an expert in religion to discuss the religious—even cultic—nature of both socialist rhetoric and climate-alarmist rhetoric. This makes for an interesting exchange, and I had a moment of satisfaction in seeing a professor of religion consulted, for once, to talk about geopolitical matters.

Years ago, Michael Crichton gave a speech about how environmentalism is a religion. I agree with him that it is, and the problem with using religious language in the service of your cause is that such language sacralizes everything, making it impossible to engage in rational debate because to question the cause's tenets is to commit heresy.

*Essentially, the three references to which I linked indicate that the picture is complicated. Antarctic increases in winter ice seem to be offset by significant decreases in Arctic ice. The net effect, from my civilian point of view, has been no significant sea-level rise for years, despite the warnings, which began years ago, to the effect that several (Pacific?) island nations were in danger of disappearing under the waves. For a list of supposedly endangered island nations, see here for claims made with no supporting arguments or evidence. Scholarly scientific journal Reader's Digest gives some of these nations 80 years before they go under. Meanwhile, the alarmists themselves don't act as if there's an actual emergency. Once again, a humorous We the Internet video on that topic:

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