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Global Warming’s ‘Godfather’ speaks out: Oops, my bad.

Can we finally put the last nail in the coffin of climate change hysteria? The ‘godfather’ of global warming, Dr. James Lovelock, says we can. From the Toronto Sun:

Two months ago, James Lovelock, the godfather of global warming, gave a startling interview to msnbc.com in which he acknowledged he had been unduly “alarmist” about climate change.

There are several lessons to be re-learned here:

  1. Claims of final authority deserve the most scrutiny.
  2. Central reorganization of critical aspects of the economy is wrong in principle and fails even the lowest bar of statist rationalizations – it’s not pragmatic.
  3. Radical environmentalism is as much a religion as Christianity, Judaism, Islam, or Hinduism.

Dr. Lovelock himself comments on each of these.

1. Claims of final authority deserve the most scrutiny.

The corollary to this is: When politically motivated people say an argument is over, you’re probably winning the argument.

Dr. Lovelock notes:

“One thing that being a scientist has taught me is that you can never be certain about anything. You never know the truth. You can only approach it and hope to get a bit nearer to it each time. You iterate towards the truth. You don’t know it.”

When people lose humility in the face of the awesome mystery of nature, the individual ego takes over and makes itself an unassailable god or priest of that subject.

And any time a politician makes a claim of final authority on any subject, remember the words of Lau-tzu, who said thousands of years ago:

To know that you do not know is the best.
To pretend to know when you do not know is a disease.

2. Central reorganization of critical aspects of the economy is wrong in principle and fails even the lowest bar of statist rationalizations – it’s not pragmatic.

As we’ve discussed many times on this site (also here and here), centralized economic planning is not a viable or sustainable method of resource allocation. Whether it’s in education, healthcare, or housing, government interference based on stale information, motivated by political interest instead of economic interests, and dictated by people most distant from local realities will fail to produce the most efficient outcomes:

As Lovelock observes, “Gas is almost a give-away in the U.S. at the moment. They’ve gone for fracking in a big way. This is what makes me very cross with the greens for trying to knock it … Let’s be pragmatic and sensible and get Britain to switch everything to methane. We should be going mad on it.”

The Toronto Sun expounds on the negative consequences of the green push here.

As Lovelock himself comments:

“So-called ‘sustainable development’ … is meaningless drivel … We rushed into renewable energy without any thought. The schemes are largely hopelessly inefficient and unpleasant. I personally can’t stand windmills at any price.”

3. Radical environmentalism is as much a religion as Christianity, Judaism, Islam, or Hinduism.

“It just so happens that the green religion is now taking over from the Christian religion,” Lovelock observed. “I don’t think people have noticed that, but it’s got all the sort of terms that religions use … The greens use guilt. That just shows how religious greens are. You can’t win people round by saying they are guilty for putting (carbon dioxide) in the air.”

It’s ironic that Dr. Lovelock says this now, since his theory that the earth is essentially a living goddess, Gaia, contributed greatly to the religious connotations of the green movement:

Lovelock is a world-renowned scientist and environmentalist whose Gaia theory — that the Earth operates as a single, living organism — has had a profound impact on the development of global warming theory.

In radical environmentalism, the Earth is a goddess, and environmentalists are her priests. Faith is placed in computer models with biased algorithms and biased data that often amount to reading tea leaves. The computer models are minimally useful insofar as they provide a number of possible outcomes based on inputted assumptions, but they haven’t gone through the more rigorous process of elimination that is the scientific method. In other words, I can guess at all the millions of data points that may produce a given outcome, but I know for a fact that gravity will accelerate an object in a vacuum at the rate of 9.8m/s2.

Having observed that global temperatures since the turn of the millennium have not gone up in the way computer-based climate models predicted, Lovelock acknowledged, “the problem is we don’t know what the climate is doing. We thought we knew 20 years ago.”

Like other major religions, they even have their own end-of-the-world tale in which global climate change ends life on this planet as we know it:

Lovelock has given a follow-up interview to the UK’s Guardian newspaper in which he delivers more bombshells sure to anger the global green movement, which for years worshipped his Gaia theory and apocalyptic predictions that billions would die from man-made climate change by the end of this century.

For every new generation born under the sun, radical environmentalists will invent a new doomsday scenario as propaganda to scare young people into joining their ranks. For now, climate change alarmism joins the dustbin of history with similar apocalyptic tales:

  1. Starvation from Overpopulation
  2. A long freeze by Global cooling
  3. Death from cosmic rays passing through a deteriorated ozone

The wrap up

The job of sensible people is to stay informed, remember these examples, and teach the next generation the history of this farce to limit its destructive power. Prudence and good stewardship of the environment is a moral requirement of a civil society, but not at the cost of human welfare. There will always be fanatics in society with this worldview, but as long as reasonable people are diligent, common sense will remain common.

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3 thoughts on “Global Warming’s ‘Godfather’ speaks out: Oops, my bad.

  1. freerogerclemens on said:

    They can’t even predict hurricanes, and we’re supposed to believe they can tell us what’s going to happen a hundred years from now? They live in this fantasy world like the movie Pocahontas and Avatar where people live in utopian harmony with nature until the big bad European white man comes and destroys everything with evil technology. Life expectancy has gone up with technology not down.

    Like

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