Monday, 9 September 2013

David Rose - a sincere thanks (no, really)

I should thank David Rose, the Mail On Sunday's go to guy when they need a piece of excrement about climate change to fill up some space. No, really, I should thank him.

Why has Catmando taken leave of his senses (h/t Eli)?

I haven't.

I read Rose's piece in the MoS last year telling me that global warming had finished in, well, sometime about fifteen years ago and I was mesmerised. What mesmerised me was that I didn't believe it but I couldn't put my finger on what was wrong because I didn't know enough to debunk it. That meant learning although it wasn't long before I found out how wrong it was. And that led to a change here. My true sceptical outlook had saved me from gullibility. I knew enough science and enough about denialism to be able to smell a rat, even one that was designed to smell of roses.

I should thank the man, because his ill written denialist diatribe meant that I went from mildly agnostic on climate change, believing it was happening but not overly sure of what it meant for the planet, to being convinced that it is a real and urgent issue that needed properly addressing some years ago. What I did was what anybody could do. I went online and found things out. Proper things, evidenced, peer-reviewed. If I can do it then anyone could. It was that simple and it took a few mouse clicks and barely any meaningful time.

The problem is, most people won't check. They will accept what they read in the papers even thou they know to treat them with a little caution. Rose understands that, which is why the Mail keeps asking him to repeat the trick. I am starting to call this trick hiding the incline. It is a trick and it is based on a verbal sleight of hand. I had the critical thinking skills to get suspicious, just as I do when I see a thing that says this or that bit of science is fundamentally wrong. The bigger the claim, the tighter needs to be the evidence.

So, David Rose, hack of this parish, I show my gratitude for your twist on the Streisand effect.

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