Or so the headline at Climate Despot claimed. BPSDB
Dog bites Man
Win-win for the Goebbels wannabes
The headline is referring to a non-story about some letters of protest that Chemical & Engineering News, the publication of the American Chemical Society, received regarding the June 22nd editorial “Climate-Change News“. The editorial in question is a quick review of some current events in climate science, and a description of the sleazy tactics being used by the climate change Deniers in an attempt to influence the political process.
The Deniers would like you to believe that there is a mass outpouring of rage from the ACS membership at the pro-science/reality stance (that would not be their way of expressing it) of the CEN editor. Nope, not even close. Even so, the incident promises to be a win-win for the Denialosphere, hence their interest in making a fuss about it.
Dog bites Man
A certain Wascally Wabbet saw this one coming when he predicted that the editorial would “without a doubt, encounter much snorting in the near future.” As he noted at the time, the editorial was factual and accurate, but when has that ever made a difference in the Denier response? The snorting did indeed follow
Despite the Denier attempts to whip up hysteria the “revolt”amounts to a handful of letters. In an organization that has over 160,000 members I’d expect that there are many times that many of their members who are full blown Satan worshipers, never mind many other variations of crank (chemists and engineers are people too). I’m actually surprised that it’s only a few dozen who are crazy enough to be climate change Deniers.
Even so, it was understandly upsetting to the CEN editor who thought (hoped?) that every one of the ACSs’ members was rational, thoughtful scientist. The content and source of the letters is worth examining and a few blogs have done so:
They are the predictable reiteration of the same tired old fables, vacuous, unsubstantiated claims, and ideologically based abuse. Actual scientific substance = 0 +/- 0.00%. Somewhat disappointing for an organization of scientists, but bang on the norm for Deniers.
If the Oregon Petition is representative of the proportion of the various scientific professions who are part of the Denialosphere, then it should have been 1,600 letters from the insignificant 1% that the Petition claims to represent (the petition may not be a reliable source 😉 ). The ACS did not receive 1,600 letters, or even 160; merely few dozen cranks. “Outpouring of Scientists in Revolt”? or “dog bites man”?
Win-win for the Goebbels wannabes
Unfortunately the Deniers are skilled propagandists and to an extent they have a no lose situation here. It doesn’t matter what happens now, the Deniers will spin it as a win.
If the ACS simply ignores the issue because it is a handful of deluded cranks, and why would they waste their time on that? then the Deniers play the censorship card. They will claim that there is indeed widespread disaffection, but the corrupt ACS leadership is suppressing it.
This ploy is always a winner because it is a fridge light question, ie the Deniers claim “the light” is on (ie dissent is widespread) and we just can’t tell because the fridge door is closed (ie it is being censored by the leadership). The ACS leadership are now, in effect, being asked “have you stopped censoring your membership?” There is no way to disprove the allegation without some sort of process, and that is a victory for the Deniers.
If the ACS has any sort of review, then the Deniers will give as much press to the process as possible because the mere fact of having a review suggests to the naive that there must be credible cause for doubt. “Why are they having a review if the science is settled” is the natural question that will occur to most people. The Denialosphere will make sure it’s framed that way regardless.
A review would naturally affirm or strengthen the ACS stand – how could it not? The science is absolutely solid, and in general chemists and engineers are neither fools nor idiots. Stupidities like McLean, de Frietas and Carter, or Monkton’s fables may sound credible in a bar, lunch room or Senate hearing, but in a room full of actual scientists they haven’t a snowballs’ chance in hell of surviving 2 minutes. The idiotic and fraudulent nature of these Denier fables would be exposed immediately.
Of course the hard core Denier faithful would remain true to their delusions, but the majority of the ACS membership would be simultaneously insulted that anyone had thought they would take this nonsense seriously, and for those who did not already know it, be shocked that the “best” the Deniers have to offer is so appallingly and transparently false.
None of that matters to the Deniers. Since the conclusions would be damaging to their claims the Denialosphere would ignore them. If pressed they would simply ascribe the outcome to the conspiracy of scientists desperate to keep their grants. As has been noted before, the Denier faithful have the attention span of a lobotomized chipmunk, so none of them would notice, and the Deniers would have gotten what they wanted by playing up the fact that the process had happened at all.
If there is a ACS review (doubtful) it would get some mainstream media coverage, at least from the usual suspects (Financial Post, Australian, the Telegraph, Wall Street Journal, etc) playing up the ‘uncertainty of climate science’ meme. However, all of the main stream media would ignore the review conclusion because there is no headline in “Scientific society confirms what it already knew” ZZZZZZZzzzzzz. If it got covered at all it would be 2 cm of text after the Obituaries.
For now the ACS seems to be getting on with it’s business, but review or not the Deniers will play this for all it’s worth. Jules’ klimaatblog prominently posts the David Archer quote “The target audience of denialism is the lay audience, not scientists. It’s made up to look like science, but it’s PR.” for good reason.
Since 1960, about 2200 cubic miles of glacial ice has gone into the ocean. This glacial ice contributes about 1.1 mm per year to the overall 3.1 mm per year of sea level rise. Earth Gauge
We give our consent every moment that we do not resist.
Denier “Challenge” aka Deathwatch Update: Day 280 … still no evidence.
All images are from Global Warming Art
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