16.9.06

Climate Contrarianism: A Disease in Five Stages

Stage One

"Global warming is a myth."

Stage Two

"Global warming is caused by natural processes."

Stage Three

"Global warming is caused by human activity, but it isn't harmful."

Stage Four

"Global warming is caused by human activity, and it is harmful, but it will be solved by inevitable technological advancements without anyone having to do anything."

Stage Five

"Global warming is caused by human activity, and it is harmful, and tackling it will be painful, so there's nothing we can do about it."

7 comments:

Michelle said...

I wasn't aware that we had passed stage 2. Or perhaps that is just in my little part of the world...

Pacian said...

Well President Bush is at stage 4, at least when he's talking to Europeans.

Disillusioned kid said...

One might argue there's a sixth position articulated by western leaders, namely that "Global warming is caused by human activity, and it is harmful, and we should do something about it, but we mustn't disrupt the sanctity of the market in the process of doing that thing." (I saw Jonathan Neale give a fascinating talk on this point over the weekend.)

Pacian said...

That seems like an off-shoot of stage 5, and it's not necessarily pathological - just mercenary.

If a patient seriously believed that (and wasn't just faking it), I think I'd move to have them discharged.

Disillusioned kid said...

Re-reading my comment I realise that it isn't entirely clear that I was suggesting that this was the position of most mainstream politicians. Certainly Blair and Cameron, although I doubt they'd have the bollocks to say so outright.

Chiya said...

Seems to me we're at the stage now where we say

Global warming is caused by human activity, it is harmful, we should do something about it. So let's fly on an airplane to a bunch of places to tell people to do something about it.

Pacian said...

Quite right, Chiya. That stage is the fastest growing, and perhaps most dangerous.