2011-09-16 13:14:55Can I Change Your Mind
Glenn Tamblyn


Todays Melbourne Age carried an article on a new program being produced for the Oz ABC called "Can I Change Your Mind". Nick Minchin - ex conservative politician and arch climate skeptic and Anna Rose, climate change campaigner are appearing in a program where they will talk to differing groups to see if there position on climate change could be altered. I thought this might be an opportunity for SkSers to perhaps contribute in some way to the program. I for one would love to give Nick a chance to change my mind.


I sent the following request to the ABC to see if I can contact them. JC, do you have any contacts at the ABC?

"I recently read an article in the Age relating to a new program under production by Dick Smith & Simon Nasht for the ABC called "I Can Change Your Mind".

I am an occassional contributing author to the Australian website SkepticalScience.com (SkS) - winner of this years Eureka Award for Climate Change Communication.

I am seeking to contact Mr Nasht or Mr Smith to discuss the possibility of any collaboration or assistance that the SkS author community could offer in the production of their program.

If either of these gentlemen would be interested in contacting us I can be reached at the above email address.

Thank you.
Yours Sincerely
Glenn Tamblyn"


Might also be worth contacting Anna Rose to see if we can provide her with any support.

2011-09-16 20:00:55Already talked to Anna Rose
John Cook

She called me on Sunday to talk about the first leg of her documentary - she's heading to Perth where Minchin will introduce her to Jo Nova and David Evans. So she asked if I had any advice about it. I said that two pet arguments from the two are the hot spot and the temp record. Evans is quite obsessed with the temp record at the moment.

I emailed her some SkS material to read on the 5 hour flight. I also suggested two approaches. For the hot spot, I gave her a Lindzen quote where surprise surprise, Lindzen nails it (obs disagrees with models, therefore obs are most likely wrong because our physical understanding of lapse rate is strong). Have been sitting on that quote for a few weeks but it may not be on the denier radar so would love to see the Nova/Evans response to it in front of a camera.

I also passed onto her the Watts paper that finds microsite have a negligible influence on warming trends. I was privy to an email exchange between Evans and Ove and Ove kept bringing up the results of the Watts paper and it was like Evans was psychologically unable to acknowledge it. Exactly like Pielke and Spencer/Christy's crocks. Disconfirmation bias - they gravitate towards their talking points and run screaming from the uncomfortable facts. I used to think denier cherry picking was a rhetorical strategy but I now think it's more due to psychological biases, which are particularly strong among ideologues.

Nevertheless, I have a bad feeling about the Minchin doco. Think it may end up with both sides lobbing bombs at each other with the final impression being the impression of a debate.

2011-09-16 20:11:51


Another angle: Is there anything that could be provided to help her build some common ground? Otherwise, providing only evidence will just guarantee a nice crunch into the denialist siege walls. If she could also bring out something on which he could possibly agree (while not ceding any ground on the basics), that could a) change his mind on SOMETHING, and b) make her appear as the "reasonable" one.

2011-09-16 20:49:06
Glenn Tamblyn


A lot depends on the format. If it is Nick and one audience and Anna with another,that is one result. Nick vs Anna is another. It might then depend on her ability to highlight Nick's swiss cheese arguments.


All that can be said is that the film maker and Dick Smith behind it aren't going to be in the skeptics camps - no free kicks at goal.


Personal fantasy. Getting someone like Nick Minchin in front of a camera where he can't hide. Oooh. I have a nasty streak don't I