Thursday, 20 February 2014

Dr Roy Spencer - language denier

I think the best word to sum up those that deny climate change should be comedian (or comic if you are across the pond).  And as exhibit A I propose real scientist Dr Roy Spencer.  His latest pronouncement to the world shows he's just a tad grumpy (archived).

You see, Roy doesn't like the word "denier" which he reckons is forever linked with the idea of Holocaust denial which is beyond the pale.  Well, Roy, here's some news for you.  Language changes, words alter meanings or get associated with different ideas all the time. 
Focus on the hair
For example: I think Dr Spencer has a gay haircut.  I suspect he would get very, very grumpy about that.  It wouldn't do, not in Alabama so far as I know.  Anyway, "gay" in the sense I use it here has the meaning of "full of light-heartedness and merriment".  It is a long established meaning, but one that is less commonly used as we now use gay to mean homosexual.  That's fair enough.  Language contains fossils just like the rock strata do.  But Dr Spencer might not be aware of that.

Denier also has a history.  It is a small medieval coin, a measure of the weave of fibres, a person who contradicts established ideas, a small trifling sum.  So perhaps that last definition is the sense in which we should use the word in the context of those that deny climate change in one or more of its forms. 

I think the point is made.  Read Spencer's rambling (meaning = jewellery for sheep) and you will find some political rant rather.  Perhaps he should get out more.


  1. Roy does look very gay in that photo, doesn't he :)

  2. There is a link to Holocaust denial. First, the psychodynamics often smells appallingly similar. (I've seen German Holocaust denial first-hand with my Grandpa's ex-Nazi buddies (one was guard in Dachau, which was no death camp, but...)) Second, some of the first Holocaust deniers were German Jews. Third, climate catastrophe could well turn apocalyptic and dwarf any old Holocaust of last century (look e.g. at Syria).

  3. "Only recently has this genocide disguised as environmentalism been partly reversed through the reinstituted practice of twice-yearly DDT treatments of the entryways to homes. While most environmentalists continue to insist that there is no connection between international bans on DDT and human deaths, such protestations really are like denying that the Holocaust ever happened." Roy Spencer
    He has a very short memory.

    Robert Murphy