Global Warming as a Substitute Religion

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In these days we are accused of attacking science because we want it to be scientific. Surely there is not any undue disrespect to our doctor in saying that he is our doctor, not our priest, or our wife, or ourself. It is not the business of the doctor to say that we must go to a watering-place; it is his affair to say that certain results of health will follow if we do go to a watering-place. After that, obviously, it is for us to judge. Physical science is like simple addition: it is either infallible or it is false. To mix science up with philosophy is only to produce a philosophy that has lost all its ideal value and a science that has lost all its practical value.

G. K. Chesterton

One of the more pernicious follies of our time is the mixing of politics, science and religion.  The Global Warming scam is a prime example of what a noxious brew can result from this.  Among many of the elites in Western society, environmentalism has taken on all the aspects of a religion.  The religious left has been eager to climb on to this new religion.  Based upon very dubious science, and fired with the faith that has traditionally been given to religion, powerful forces throughout the West are eager  to implement revolutionary changes in our society, most involving a radical expansion of government control over industry.

Western civilization has made great strides by developing an intellectual atmosphere of relative freedom that has allowed science to flourish.  Today science is often being debased by charlatans and zealots who use junk science as a tool to attempt to win policy debates.  There is nothing new about politicians attempting to use dubious science to push their cherished nostrums.  What is new is that such a large number of the elites in our society, (academics, politicians, entertainers, media, etc.) are participants in an intellectual groupthink that finds it next to impossible to tolerate, let alone listen to, dissenting viewpoints.  What passes for the mainstream media today is a prime example of this type of bias.  Thank heavens for a rambunctious new media:  talk radio and the internet, where ideological conformity is impossible to enforce.  That is all to the good, since some of the more deranged acolytes of the Global Warming religion appear to have a rather intolerant attitude towards heretics:


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  1. Another way in which belief in AGW is like a religion: it (allegedly) explains the problem of evil. Hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, wildfires, and even earthquakes and tsunamis (I believe) are all blamed on global warming.

    Plus, people who scoff at the notion that God would send natural disaster as a punishment for sins like abortion (I don’t personally believe that either, but I say this just to make a point) have no trouble embracing the idea that “Nature” or “Mother Earth” sends them as punishment for using the wrong light bulbs, driving old cars, or simply failing to believe in the One True Faith. Case in point: the liberal blogger/commentator who stated a couple of months ago that residents of states affected by recent tornado outbreaks had it coming because they are represented by “climate change deniers.”

  2. Plus, a large plurality of AGW adherents are better credentialed than the majority of “Cargo Cult” believers . . . [sigh].

  3. Another way it’s a religion: it’s based on faith. Sure, you can postulate scientific theories based on evidence at hand, but in the end you really can’t prove that man is causing global warming. Even if you can demonstrate through data that the Earth’s temperatures are warming, there’s no way to conclusively prove that this is a result of human behavior or that these increased temperatures are beyond what is normal for the planet’s history.

  4. “Thank heavens for a rambunctious new media:  talk radio and the internet, where ideological conformity is impossible to enforce.”
    This made me laugh. Ideological diversity from Limbaug to Hannity

  5. Oh there are liberal talk show hosts on radio Kevin, but in a free market to gain listeners the vast majority of them are as popular as the plague. Cheer up Kevin, however, you still have National Public Radio which has found ways around that terrible requirement that a radio talk show needs to be entertaining to gain listeners.

  6. Why is it that liberals think that anything that sounds like Marxist NPR is an example of diversity to be emulated?

    The fact of the matter is that Limbaugh and Hannity ARE examples of diversity opposed to the liberal Democrat group think of NPR and like-minded pseudo-news outlets, and it is this that liberal Democrats cannot stand.

    Democracy is only for the Democrats who all think the same way – anthropogenic global warming. Right wing conservatives don’t deserve a voice because that’s so diverse as to be opposed to diversity.

    And that is precisely the logic behind liberalism’s AGW.

  7. I do not think it is a substitute religion or necessarily invalid as science. Some of the people promoting it are eminent scientists (e.g. Lonnie Thompson). Of course, so are some of the critics (and Dr. Thompson seems to have misplaced his raw data).

    The trouble is that it has decayed into a class and subcultural marker and a trough for organized appetites.

  8. What??? Now it is global warming. I am going to have to get rid of my train loads of parkas I bought in the 1970s when I was told we were going into the ice age because of human activity . . . maybe I can exchange the parkas for swim suits & sun screen . . .

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