Some People Really Are Nuts

I wanted to clarify something about my last post. That post was critical of how people are often quick, if not eager, to label people they disagree with dump, delusional or things like that. As I tried to show with that post, those accusations don't accomplish much of anything. The people making them tend to resort to poor arguments which are easy to shoot down, often missing far stronger arguments they could have made if they had taken the time to actually examine that which they disagreed with. But with all that said, I feel it needs to be clearly and plainly stated:

Some people really are nuts. Bonkers. Whacked out of their gourds. Nutso. Belonging in the looney bin. Crazy. Insane. Bananas.

Whatever word you want to choose for the individual person, and the best description will always vary from one deranged maniac to the next delusional fruitcake, some people are just completely and utterly insane. Which is fine. I don't have anything against mentally disturbed people. I just think we should, perhaps, not promote them as experts and elevate them as leading figures in movements, like is being done with the global warming skeptic cause.

One of the more common complaints from global warming skeptics is various people don't list to them due to certain biases. I would suggest, however, those complaints would be taken more seriously if they weren't posted on web site likes Watts Up With That, which recently ran a post by one Dr. Tim Ball, titled:

Obama Is Correct, Climate Change Is Biggest Threat, But Only Because Official IPCC Climate Science Is Completely Wrong

This title is not especially troubling, though any rational person should wonder at the idea of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, to which hundreds or thousands of scientists contribute, managing to get all the science "Completely wrong." One could perhaps dismiss those concerns by assuming that was exaggerated rhetoric, but within a few sentences of the piece, this is shown not to be case:

There are insufficient superlatives to describe the disaster that is the UN COP21 Climate Conference in Paris. None of the superlatives are the ones used by the organizers and their lackeys. It is the largest, most political conference ever, based on completely false claims deliberately created in the greatest science deception in history.

This shows the post is claiming the global warming movement is a fraud, lacking any scientific merit. That is completely and utterly insane. If there was no scientific basis for global warming, then thousands of scientists who believe otherwise would have to either be complete idiots incapable of understanding relatively simple science, or they would have to be complicit in the largest fraud ever committed. A fraud, we're told, orchestrated by one man:

Maurice Strong died on the eve of the Paris Climate Conference. They are there because of him. They propose a global energy and environment agenda based on completely false science because of him. I do believe in talking ill of the dead if the evil they created continues after they die. Such is the case with Maurice Strong. Paris is a meeting of global leaders completely conned by the master manipulator – the person who fooled the world.

This is deranged. I don't say that because of the conclusion. I accept one could, theoretically, reach such an seemingly outlandish conclusion for justifiable reasons. What I do not accept is that any rational person who believed they uncovered some vast, global deception could talk to people with so little self-awareness.

The fact Ball doesn't even acknowledge how crazy what he says sounds shows how crazy he must truly be. To him, his remarks make perfect sense. They don't seem remarkable. To a rational person, that would never be true. Similarly, no rational person would write this sentence on its own, as a throwaway statement like it holds no significance:

Paris is an Orwellian gathering of people who want to save the planet, but who really want to rule the world in their manner.

Policymakers from countries from all over the world are attending this conference. Ball claims they all want to rule the world. And he does this with a straight face, never asking his audience to bear with him, or to forgive the audacity of his claims so that he can explain them. No, he just expects people to listen to him and think what he says sounds plausible. It doesn't matter how ludicrous the things he says might be, such as when he refers to these policy makers:

most don’t seem to realize that the entire objective of the conference is to subjugate and then eliminate them and the individual nation states they represent.

Dr. Tim Ball is being given a platform on what is called, "The world's most viewed site on global warming and climate change" to represent the skeptic cause by... saying there's a plan to establish a New World Order.

That a site claiming to be for "skeptics" would run a post claiming global warming is a total hoax intended to bring about the New World Order is disgusting, disgraceful, despicable, deplorable and probably a few other words that start with 'd'. Don't get me started on any other letters because we could be here all day.

But the worst part is this isn't limited to just one post on one site. Dr. Tim Ball has published numerous posts at Watts Up With That, including ones where he compared people to Nazis (though ironically, in a fit of incompetence, he managed to put himself in the role of Hitler). He's also flat-out denied global warming is real, claiming the greenhouse effect doesn't exist.

Nobody minded the denial of global warming. Nobody spoke up to say, "Hey, skeptics don't agree with insane BS like that!" Nobody told the proprietor of the blog, "Hey, you're making skeptics look really bad." You can confront individual skeptics about these topics, and they'll likely be quick to say, "Skeptics don't deny the greenhouse effect." Sadly, not that's not true.

Because this isn't even limited to one person or one site. It's not just Tim Ball and his posts at Watts Up With That. It's not even just Watts Up With That. The problem can be found in the skeptic movement as a whole. Skeptics were happy to praise the book Climate Change: The Facts, with many prominent ones even co-authoring it. Not a one said a word about the fact the book says we can't even know the planet is warming.

Skeptics praise and support Mark Steyn because he is being sued by Michael Mann, and they were quick to promote his book A Disgrace to the Profession. They were quick to talk about how he had found quotes from 120 scientists and experts which support his view Mann's work was shoddy or fraudulent. Leaving aside that none seemed to notice or mind Steyn completely misrepresenting quotes (or even doctoring them to distort their meaning), no one seemed to mind Steyn quoting people who said things like:

The IPCC thesis is based on research from the CRU. Scientists from the University of East Anglia have at their disposal enormous sums of money and political support. In practice, they simply obey the dictates of the United Nations, which is promoting the global warming initiative, in order to suppress the development of industry, which they claim is destroying the Biosphere of the Earth…. The anti-industry propaganda is aimed at the destruction of our civilization!

That was from Professor Zbigniew Jaworowski, PhD. He's said a lot of other crazy things you can find at the link above, but let's look at what another of Steyn's experts, Dr Walter Starck, PhD, has to say:

It is time to recognise the climate scam for what it is: a conspiracy to defraud on a monumental scale.

There's more from him as well, but I don't want to get bogged down. The point is these are supposedly scientists and experts, people whose opinion Mark Steyn thinks we should listen to. And by their promotion of his book, these are people "skeptics" say we should listen to. So are the ten or so people quoted in the book who say global warming isn't real, that carbon dioxide isn't a greenhouse gas or other similarly ridiculous things.

Now, there is no basis for denying the greenhouse effect. It's basic science even the most ardent opponent of the global warming movement should accept. Unfortunately, that's not what's happening. More and more, so-called "skeptics" are embracing the insanity of what used to be a fringe element, actively promoting people they either know, or should know, to be complete whackjobs who rant and ramble on about global warming being a hoax designed to bring about a totalitarian world government under some New World Order.

And yes, not everyone is as bananas as Zbigniew Jaworowski. Not everyone is as paranoid as Walter Starck. Not everyone is as open and honest about their views as Tim Ball. You can't automatically tell who is and who isn't bonkers. What you can do, however, is recognize some views aren't rational and distance yourself from anyone who expresses them.

When somebody says the United Nations is plotting to overthrow governments, you can say, "You know, I don't think that is true." When somebody says all of climate science is a lie, you can say, "You know, you haven't talked about black helicopters coming to abduct people off the streets yet, but I think it might be best if I didn't run any guest posts from you on my site."

In other words, we could all recognize some people are crazy. They're not crazy because they disagree with us. They're not crazy because we don't like what they have to say. They're crazy because they hold views that are so completely irrational they are divorced from the reality we exist in.

Tim Ball is one of these people. I won't try to name anyone else. What I will say is this, if you believe the greenhouse effect isn't real, you're wrong. If you believe all of climate science is a lie, you're a fool. If you believe global warming is a massive hoax intended to help bring about a totalitarian world government... seek medical help.


As a final thought, the researcher Stephan Lewandowsky wrote several papers trying to paint global warming skeptics as conspiracy theorists. The papers were complete any utter bunk, and Lewandowsky acted unethically while doing the studies for them.

So it's pretty remarkable prominent skeptics have, just a few years later, decided to start embracing and promoting conspiracy theorists.

3 comments

  1. You said 'various people don’t list to them due to certain biases' You presumably meant listen?

    Dr Ball writes some good historical pieces, however his polemical ones make me very uncomfortable. We are our own worst enemies with regards to promoting conspiracy theories, accusing tens of thousands of researchers of fraud and hoaxes. The data is often very weak or over interpreted but they are being produced by very smart people and the work shouldn't be dismissed out of hand as the work of idiots and frauds

    tonyb

  2. tonyb, yup, that was definitely a typo. Thanks for catching it. I'll try to get it fixed. My laptop seems to have died though, so I'm limited to using my phone for a couple days. There's no guarantee it'll work. The result might wind up looking like something Picasso would write, if he had been an author.

    As for Ball, I'll have to take your word he's written things worth reading. I've never seen one, but I can't say I've bothered to read many of them either. I only read the ones whose headlines happen to catch my eye on the rare occasions I visit WUWT. So far, they've pretty much all been of the same conspiratorial/sky dragon bent.

    Oddly enough, the reason I visited WUWT this time is I was wanting to re-visit the post there on Douglas Keenan's idiotic and dishonest contest. I had been exchanging e-mails with Anthony about it before because I thought it was bad he promoted the contest despite Keenan's dishonesty with it, and after overcoming significant stubbornness on his part, he agreed to ask Keenan about why he had changed the nature of his contest. I hadn't heard anything back, and I went to the WUWT post as part of going over the situation. While I was there, I looked at the new posts, saw the headline and...

    I remember how people used to criticize climate scientists for not speaking up when people on their "side" misbehaved or said crazy things. I actually thought that meant something.

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