Wednesday, January 7, 2015

"Don't Call Us Deniers"

I commonly receive comments such as these three below:

What's a "climate denier?"
Does anyone deny climate?
Is it a person who denies that
climate exists?
Do they deny that climate changes?
I'm not a climate denier, climate
change denier, or even an anthropogenic climate change denier,
I'm sceptical that climate change will be a catastrophe and so are many
scientists who work in climate science and related fields.
Who denies that climate changes?
It's possible I could be accused of denying
the C in CAGW.
What are CAGW sceptics "denying,"
1. CAGW sceptics don't "deny"climate,
therefore cannot be "climate deniers."
2. CAGW sceptics don't "deny"
that climate changes, therefore cannot be "climate change
3. CAGW sceptics don't "deny" that
Earth has warmed by almost 0.8ยบ C over the last 162 years, therefore cannot be "global
warming deniers."
4. CAGW sceptics don't "deny"
that climate science exists, therefore cannot be "climate science
5. CAGW sceptics don't "deny"
that CO2 can cause a small amount of warming, therefore cannot be "anthropogenic
global warming deniers."
6. CAGW sceptics don't "deny"
anything, we're sceptical of the inaccurate figures bandied about by alarmists
and very sceptical of the scary catastrophe stories about everything and
anything to do with climate.
We are justifiably sceptical of computer models.

The word "Denier" should not be taken too seriously it is simply a term of abuse. In the school yard you would probably been called a "geek". The word denier is simply used to prevent any debate on the CAGWA issue. If the science was solid there would be no reason to resort to this underhand derogation. It isnt a coincidence that it was invented to label those who questioned the holocaust and the emotion links associated with that part of history.

Thanks for your thoughts, Alan. It upset me quite a lot to begin with, because I remember seeing the newsreels at the cinema of concentration camps in 1945, when I was young. I've been called a denier in emails I received from a couple of well known climatologists who should know better, so it now amuses me in some ways. I wouldn't compare it to geek at all, that's a compliment by comparison.


The argument here is global warming isn't real because big, bad scientists are calling climate change deniers 'deniers.' I guess I shouldn't be surprised because that is about as valid as any argument I have heard from that camp.

Let's discuss the term 'denier.' I first heard this term from deniers. They were using it to brag about how they 'denied there is any global warming.' I still here may deniers calling themselves 'deniers' and they still use it to brag about their claims. Based on this fact alone, I have no qualms about calling this group of people 'deniers.' It is what they call themselves. And, please note, it is 'climate change' or 'global warming' deniers, not 'climate' deniers.

Now, some deniers have started the tactic of associating the term 'denier' with Holocaust deniers. This is where they attempt to make scientists look like the bad guys. As typical, this is a false argument, which seems to be the only kind of argument deniers can make. There is nothing associated with the term linking them to Holocaust deniers. But, even if there was, so what? Why do you object? Holocaust deniers are sick-minded people that deny the facts, but aren't accused of participating in the genocide. Likewise, climate change deniers are sick-minded people that deny we are destroying our environment, lowering the standard of living worldwide and causing injury, sickness and death with out our manmade emissions, but aren't participating in the offense any more than the rest of us. Not all that much difference.

I will say, while it is not the intent of the term, I do equate climate change deniers to Holocaust deniers, Moon landing hoaxers, 9/11 conspiracy people, people who believe there is a face on Mars, that Elvis Presley is alive, the Sandy Hook massacre was staged, we have an alien in a hangar somewhere and any other of the lunatic fringe beliefs.

Here is a true story about deniers. I frequently meet people that attempt to draw me into a debate. I used to succumb to temptation, but no longer. Instead, I ask them one simple question, "Is there anything I can do or say that will convince you global warming is real?" I have never had even a single person tell me, "Yes." Amazingly, they aren't afraid to say, "No." I tell them there is no reason for us to proceed and move on.

These people freely admit there is no amount of scientific evidence or logic that can change their minds. And, they object when I call them 'deniers'?

The term 'skeptic' does not apply to them. As one commenter noted recently, a skeptic is someone that is trying to learn and grow. Deniers are not trying to do that. Take a look at submissions to my challenges and read the comments. There is no attempt to learn or to grow.

For the record, I, and other people I know of, use the term 'denier' to refer to people that deny climate change and global warming. That is all there is to the term. Yes, I also group these people with all of the other groups that reject science and reality, but that is not the purpose of the term.

In the end, if you feel offended by the use of the term 'denier,' I suggest you stop denying global warming and accept the science. In that regard, you are much better off than I am. I am deeply offended every time I come across someone that rejects science, but there is nothing I can do about them.


  1. I tend to call them "denialists," although there are issues with that term. It's funny, though, in an argument with one, they could understand the difference between "skeptic" and "denialist" but wouldn't concede that there was nothing to convince them--not a skeptic. There is the word "contrarian" to them which seems less offensive, but I'm not sure why.

  2. In 1945, I saw newsreels of the allies entering Nazi concentration camps.
    I'm sure you'll be glad to know that this is the last time I post anything to a person who can sink as low as you just have.

  3. If you are so strongly offended by people that deny that atrocity occurred, why are you so strongly determined to be like them? Why are OK with the world's environment being decimated? Why are you OK with the spread of disease? Why are OK with weather going crazy destroying lives? Why are you OK with crops being wiped out? Why are you OK with utilities bills going up all the time? Why are you OK with the standards of living being lowered worldwide? Why are you OK with thousands of people dieing every year because of climate change?

    Don't get on your high horse about seeing movies of the concentration camps while you ignore the atrocities that happening right in front of you. George Patton made the citizens of those towns march through the concentration camps so they could never say they didn't know. Maybe we need another Patton to make the climate change deniers take a look so they can never say they didn't know.

  4. Mr. Keating, I'm not sure if you're still taking challenge submissions, but man-made global warming can be easily disproved with basic science.
    The temperature on Venus at the point of atmospheric pressure similar to sea level on earth is 339K (as measured by the Magellan probe) compared to 288K on earth. With earth at 93M miles from the sun and Venus at 67.25M miles from the sun, the calculation is as follows: Square root of 93/67.25=1.176.
    288K x 1.176 = 338.7K
    Thus, Venus has the same thermal equilibrium as earth to within one degree with an atmosphere that is 96.5% CO2.

    The same calculation can be made for the surface of Titan at 886M miles from the sun with an average surface temperature of 94K.
    Square root of 93/886 = .324
    288K x .324 = 93.3K, again the same thermal equilibrium within one degree, with an atmosphere of 1.5% Methane.

    Ideal Gas Law, PV=nRT, shows temperature is proportional to pressure and volume, and because an atmosphere is not contained, volume does not apply. The comparison must be made at points of equal atmospheric pressure, and the composition of gasses is irrelevant.

    Stefan-Boltzmann Law, E=dT^4, tells us to solve for the fourth root of temperature. So 93/67.25 squared = 1.91, gives the difference of energy Venus receives from the sun compared to earth. The fourth root of 1.91 = 1.176. Using the same calculation, Titan gets just over 1% as much energy from the sun compared to earth, 93/886 squared, the fourth root of which is .324.

    The temperature of a planet is determined by atmospheric pressure and proximity to the sun. Individual gas molecules cannot trap heat inside an atmosphere that is wide open to space. Because there is no such thing as the greenhouse effect, there can be no such thing as man-made global warming.

  5. The challenge ended on July 31st and I am not accepting any more submissions. However, the claim there is no greenhouse effect was submitted and debunked. You are trying to argue there is no such thing as a greenhouse effect and we need to ignore the massive amount of scientific evidence that not only shows it is real, but has documented how it works. Until you can produce some kind of evidence 150 years of science is in error, your claim as no scientific validity.