My how the times have changed. Climategate, and all the other gates surrounding it, have turned things inside-out. The science is far from settled, as many of us have long suspected. The ranks of sceptic scientists are swelling, public opinion has swung; even the Royal Society has adopted a new position on climate science – by George, there might be more to it than CO2 molecules after all! The mainstream media is slowly coming around, too.
Yet, others refuse to hear it.
Here’s a Youtube clip of Naomi Oreskes’ Truth About Denial presentation in 2007. Some of you may have watched it already. That presentation is in two parts.
Part 1: The Truth Part (CO2 drives global warming, there’s a consensus, science is settled).
Part 2: The Denial Part (There’s a disinformation campaign out there, denying it all).
Okay, that was back in 2007. Back then global warming science looked convincing, and so maybe such a position was plausible.
But here’s Oreskes in March 2010 in a presentation called the Merchants of Doubt, which is pretty much the same as her 2007 Truth About Denial. Despite all the new revelations, scandals and shifting scientific viewpoints, Oreskes continues to play the same music. In the 2010 presentation she continues to ask (paraphrasing):
How can there be so much scepticism in the public when there’s consensus among scientists? Where does all the public doubt come from?
And answers by claiming it all stems from a tiny few merchants of doubt, who she describes as:
…a small but powerful group of people aided and abetted by well-funded think-tanks and a compliant mass media…not for money, but in defense of an ideology of laissez-faire governance, opposition to gevernment regulation in all forms.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, Oreskes still believes, despite all the new revelations we’ve seen over the last few months, that all the scepticism and denialism out there today is still coming from the same sinister merchants of doubt. You’d think she’d would step back for a minute and re-evaluate her position. No chance. Instead her reaction is to drive her head yet further into the sand.
Oreskes claims to be a science historian. My question is: Will she wake up and start a new chapter for the science history books? Or will she continue repeating her fairy tales? Don’t hold your CO2 breath.
UPDATE: Yesteday this post appeared at position No. 6 when one googled “Naomi Oreskes’ Denial”. Today it has dropped off to No. 17.