Climate deniers object to being called conspiracy theorists: propose conspiracy to explain why labelled such

 The Lewandowsky paper – NASA faked the moon landing – Therefore (Climate) Science is a Hoax – that proposes a strong link between free market ideology and conspiracy beliefs is starting to get coverage in the media.

Surprisingly it has been reported in The Telegraph, a publication noted for promoting climate scepticism:

An Australian study says avid climate change deniers tend to be either extreme free marketeers or conspiracy theorists who believe the moon landing was faked or Princess Diana was murdered.

The study, to be published in the journal Psychological Science, also found that those who reject the scientific consensus on the human contribution to climate change are more likely to reject other scientific findings such as the linkage between tobacco and lung cancer or between HIV and Aids. 

The paper, titled “NASA faked the moon landing – Therefore (Climate) Science is a Hoax: An Anatomy of the Motivated Rejection of Science”, was based on a survey of more than 1000 visitors to blogs dedicated to discussion of climate change.

I find it encouraging that mainstream media is now starting to pick up on what many of us have been saying for some time. However, as one would expect of any article on climate change the denial brigade is out in full force – and they’re not happy about being labelled conspiracy theorists.

Indeed, they see it all as part of a conspiracy against them. And that the science is really a conspiracy as well. A selection of quotes from the comments:

The best defense is offence. So it appears, Lewandowsky, being a “shrink” no less, has been charged with leading the troops to pimp more grant money to keep graduate students sucking on the public tit. 

There is only one answer to the question – who profits most from what is looking every day more like a scam. Those who oppose the theory or those who support it…………cui bono……..always the answer to those questions which produce two sides in which there can never be agreement. So far there is clear indication that many politicians have personal financial interests in keeping the ‘debate’ going for as long as possible. Cui Bono……….. 

Such a shame that the University of East Anglia showed scientists, at the heart of research which suggested that global warming was true, to have the moral compass (and professional standards) of a bunch of traders on the Barclays LIBOR desk. That set back the credibility of the global warming community by a decade or two, despite what happened and the scandalous, unscientific actions of key people being clearly beyond debate.

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6 thoughts on “Climate deniers object to being called conspiracy theorists: propose conspiracy to explain why labelled such

  1. [...] Disgruntled climate skeptics have gone beyond digs at the science to suggest “hidden motivations” for the paper — perhaps a systematic attempt by left-wing academics to discredit those who reject climate science. And in support, they’ve cycled through a number of hypotheses for how the results were obtained: by deliberately biased sampling, by collecting data from “warmists” posing as “skeptics,” or by statistical sleight of hand, among others. This sounds awfully … conspiratorial (a point made here and here). [...]

  2. Sundance says:

    A discussion in the comments area at SkS has evolved with agreement that either a rewrite of the Lewandowski paper needs to be done or it should be withdrawn from publication.

    Tom Curtis at 10:33 AM on 3 September, 2012
    A (hopefully) final comment on Lewandowski (in press):

    I have been looking through the survey results and noticed that 10 of the respondents have a significant probability of being produced by people attempting to scam the survey. I base this conclusion on their having reported absurdly low (<2) consensus percentages for at least one of the three categories. An additional response (#861 on the spreadsheet)represents an almost perfect "warmist" caricature of a "skeptic", scoring 1 for all global warming questions, and 4 for all free market and conspiracy theory questions. There may be wackos out there that believe every single conspiracy theory they have heard, but they are a vanishingly few in number, and are likely to appear in a survey with such a small sample size. A second respondent (890) almost exactly mirrored respondent 861 except for giving a 3 for the Martin Luther King Jr assassination, and lower values for the scientific consensus questions. Again this response is almost certainly a scam.

    Combined, these respondents account for 2 of the strongly agree results in almost every conspiracy theory question; and the other potential scammers also have a noticable number of strong agreements to conspiracy theories. For most conspiracy theory questions, "skeptics" only had two respondents that strongly agreed, the two scammed results. Given the low number of "skeptical" respondents overall; these two scammed responses significantly affect the results regarding conspiracy theory ideation. Indeed, given the dubious interpretation of weakly agreed responses (see previous post), this paper has no data worth interpreting with regard to conspiracy theory ideation.

    It is my strong opinion that the paper should be have its publication delayed while undergoing a substantial rewrite. The rewrite should indicate explicitly why the responses regarding conspiracy theory ideation are in fact worthless, and concentrate solely on the result regarding free market beliefs (which has a strong enough a response to be salvageable). If this is not possible, it should simply be withdrawn.

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/AGU-Fall-Meeting-sessions-social-media-misinformation-uncertainty.html#84398

  3. Being the kinda cynical guy I am, I assumed the TELE posted this story on the tin hat denier study as a form of “reader bait” – hoping to get thousands of irate readers reading and commenting on it and viewing the advertisers’ ads .

    Cos times is truly hard in daily newspaper land —- unless they can convince departing advertisers that their paper is a must-go destination for up-income AWGs.

    Controversy brings in readers – angry readers true – but readers none the less…

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