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climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby dohboi » Tue 07 Nov 2017, 15:51:57

Mass Shootings, Climate, Discrimination: Why Government's Fear of Data Threatens Us All

https://www.wired.com/story/mass-shooti ... ns-us-all/

How about melting Arctic ice? Nope; Congress is dismantling a satellite that was supposed to update the aging monitor network. Climate change? Scott Pruitt, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, doesn’t think human beings cause it and, more importantly, doesn’t really think you can measure anything to find out. The weather? Forget it; the National Weather Service is coming apart at the seams. How many people live in the United States, data critical to determining political representation and funding priorities? Yeah, no—the 2020 Census is shaping up to be an epic disaster.

It’s hard to imagine a good argument for knowing less—about anything, really, but especially about difficult problems with profound policy implications. The government is supposed to base policy on the best data possible, along with political concerns, budget concerns, social priorities ... the usual warp and weft of running a country.

Yet the Trump administration is running in the other direction. Any data that has even the faintest whiff of potential contradiction goes right out the window. Of course, these folks aren't the first people in power to succumb to a fear of data. They do, however, seem to have found a profound expertise in the practice of eliminating it. Dataphobia chills them to the bone, I suspect because they hope to undermine not only some truths but all truth. David Roberts at Vox has written about what he calls an epistemic crisis in America, the idea that certain rulers and rich people hope to take away the basic idea of knowledge. If nobody can know anything, why bother to try to regulate anything? It’s government-by-ignorance—a shrugocracy.

Assaults on data have come before. “It’s the same reason an oil company doesn’t want research on climate change or a tobacco company doesn’t want research on the relationship between tobacco and cancer,” Vernick says. “Maybe they argue those researchers have an agenda and that’ll allow them to cook the books, but that’s an absurd argument. The worst thing you can do is cook the books. That is the way to guarantee the science is not used as part of policymaking.”
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby phaster » Sun 12 Nov 2017, 19:20:09

dohboi wrote:Mass Shootings, Climate, Discrimination: Why Government's Fear of Data Threatens Us All

https://www.wired.com/story/mass-shooti ... ns-us-all/

How about melting Arctic ice? Nope; Congress is dismantling a satellite that was supposed to update the aging monitor network. Climate change? Scott Pruitt, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, doesn’t think human beings cause it and, more importantly, doesn’t really think you can measure anything to find out. The weather? Forget it; the National Weather Service is coming apart at the seams. How many people live in the United States, data critical to determining political representation and funding priorities? Yeah, no—the 2020 Census is shaping up to be an epic disaster.

It’s hard to imagine a good argument for knowing less—about anything, really, but especially about difficult problems with profound policy implications. The government is supposed to base policy on the best data possible, along with political concerns, budget concerns, social priorities ... the usual warp and weft of running a country.

Yet the Trump administration is running in the other direction. Any data that has even the faintest whiff of potential contradiction goes right out the window. Of course, these folks aren't the first people in power to succumb to a fear of data....”


It would be funny if it weren't so sad, but ignoring the problem (i.e. DATA) does nothing but compound the price to be paid.



Actually the whole concept seems kinda related to the subject of this years nobel in economics

Episode 803: Nudge, Nudge, Nobel

Economists used to assume that people were, overall, rational. They may make mistakes now and then, but, if reasonably informed, they do the right thing. Then came Richard Thaler, who, in October, was awarded the Nobel Prize in Economics.

While Thaler was teaching at the University of Rochester, he had a side gig. Not a lot of people knew about it or took it seriously. He would catalog ways people behaved irrationally. And Thaler thought, there must be a way to make sense of this behavior, to understand it and to predict it.

...Today on the show, how Thaler's work went from a side hustle to winning a Nobel Prize.


https://www.npr.org/sections/money/2017 ... udge-nobel


As I see things when money is involved people often act a bit wacky and don't want to fully explore AND/OR acknowledge that a problem exists which then leads to BIGGER dilemmas (in other words if people are in denial about an initial problem, they also are blind to the knock on effects)

Then there is the fact that terrorists bombings and mass shootings scare a lot of people BUT these are not an existential threat.

http://www.existential-risk.org/index.html

Why Facts Don’t Change Our Minds

...“Once formed,” the researchers observed dryly, “impressions are remarkably perseverant.”

...The Stanford studies became famous. Coming from a group of academics in the nineteen-seventies, the contention that people can’t think straight was shocking. It isn’t any longer. Thousands of subsequent experiments have confirmed (and elaborated on) this finding. As everyone who’s followed the research—or even occasionally picked up a copy of Psychology Today—knows, any graduate student with a clipboard can demonstrate that reasonable-seeming people are often totally irrational...

...One way to look at science is as a system that corrects for people’s natural inclinations. In a well-run laboratory, there’s no room for myside bias; the results have to be reproducible in other laboratories, by researchers who have no motive to con!rm them. And this, it could be argued, is why the system has proved so successful...

...the gap between what science tells us and what we tell ourselves. Their concern is with those persistent beliefs which are not just demonstrably false but also potentially deadly...


https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017 ... -our-minds
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby jedrider » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 01:03:23

phaster wrote:
Why Facts Don’t Change Our Minds

...“Once formed,” the researchers observed dryly, “impressions are remarkably perseverant.”

...The Stanford studies became famous. Coming from a group of academics in the nineteen-seventies, the contention that people can’t think straight was shocking. It isn’t any longer. Thousands of subsequent experiments have confirmed (and elaborated on) this finding. As everyone who’s followed the research—or even occasionally picked up a copy of Psychology Today—knows, any graduate student with a clipboard can demonstrate that reasonable-seeming people are often totally irrational...

...One way to look at science is as a system that corrects for people’s natural inclinations. In a well-run laboratory, there’s no room for myside bias; the results have to be reproducible in other laboratories, by researchers who have no motive to con!rm them. And this, it could be argued, is why the system has proved so successful...

...the gap between what science tells us and what we tell ourselves. Their concern is with those persistent beliefs which are not just demonstrably false but also potentially deadly...


https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2017 ... -our-minds


I like that study. There's clearly something weird about human behavior that we often seek out the irrational over the rational. We do what feels good than what makes sense, especially if we have to think about it carefully beforehand. Some people (most people) have cognitive gaps that must be filled in with whatever nonsense is easily accessible. I like seeing what people have posted in 'Healing the Partisan Divide' because it is fundamentally unhealable which is because it is completely irrational. Climate change denial is also in that category.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby onlooker » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 04:41:35

Yes, I also notice from personal experience and even in myself. We tend to override reason when it is advantegous to us or makes us feel good. I think we cannot exagerate how humans have an incessant desire and need to feel good and not feel bad. Good link Phaster.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Newfie » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 06:43:42

Yes good link.

Yale has this “6 Americas” study on American Climate Change attitudes. If you dig into the demographics it’s easy to see the denialist profile: white, older, well educated, home owner, relatively affluent. These are the folks who have the most invested in the status who, it has done them well.

I’m active on a cruising forum. Many cruisers are of the same cohort. Simply mention climate change and a few deniers will storm the ramparts and cast stones and boiling oil upon your heathen heads. It’s really disheartening.

What’s more disheartening is understanding that congress and business leaders are all of the same cohort.

That article explains a lot.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Newfie » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 06:45:55

Just ruminating.....

Humanities greatest existential threat is humanity.

A self infecting disease?

(Dark emotions indeed!)
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Tanada » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 07:43:45

Newfie wrote:Yes good link.

Yale has this “6 Americas” study on American Climate Change attitudes. If you dig into the demographics it’s easy to see the denialist profile: white, older, well educated, home owner, relatively affluent. These are the folks who have the most invested in the status who, it has done them well.

I’m active on a cruising forum. Many cruisers are of the same cohort. Simply mention climate change and a few deniers will storm the ramparts and cast stones and boiling oil upon your heathen heads. It’s really disheartening.

What’s more disheartening is understanding that congress and business leaders are all of the same cohort.

That article explains a lot.


Kind of puts a lot of holes in the whole 'higher education is vital for future generations' theory doesn't it? When the Plumber and the Roofer can see climate changing around them and grasp it on a gut level the 'educated' folks are sitting in their temperature and humidity controlled high rise office towers and are totally oblivious to the climate changes all around them.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby asg70 » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 11:33:59

Don't buy it. The red-state rednecks put Trump in office and they're the ones who deny AGW the most and are rolling coal on Prius drivers.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Plantagenet » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 12:56:19

Tanada wrote:
Kind of puts a lot of holes in the whole 'higher education is vital for future generations' theory doesn't it? When the Plumber and the Roofer can see climate changing around them and grasp it on a gut level the 'educated' folks are sitting in their temperature and humidity controlled high rise office towers and are totally oblivious to the climate changes all around them.


A great deal of higher education is just indoctrination. The "Great Professor" tells the students what the "Great Thinkers" say in their "Great Books" about literature, philosophy, art, history, etc. Students are trained to sit quietly in the class and then regurgitate what the Professor says at exam time.

And the culture outside of the class room in college and universities these days is also all about conformity and group think. Any student who doesn't have "PC" views is doomed to endless cycles of being accused of various "microaggressions" just for expressing personal opinions. Free speech is pretty much dead on campus, thanks to the extremist Ds.

Climate Change isn't debated on campus---its pretty much uniformly seen as "bad" among educated people, but unfortunately its gotten caught up in the partisanship of DC, where support or lack of support for the Paris Accords becomes the key issue, rather then any deep understanding of how climate change works and how dangerous it is. People think you can just "outlaw" the earth getting warmer as was done in the Paris Accords, and there is little understanding of the hard work needed to reduce global CO2 emissions.

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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby jedrider » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 13:29:51

asg70 wrote:Don't buy it. The red-state rednecks put Trump in office and they're the ones who deny AGW the most and are rolling coal on Prius drivers.


Yeah. But, they would not be a sufficient voting block without the white collar folks who are blinded by their own insularity. EVEN the ones that drive a Prius. Yes, I think this is possible.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Cog » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 14:41:57

Climate change whether proponents or deniers had zero to do with the election results. But keep on believing that.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Plantagenet » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 14:46:19

Rs want to pretend that climate change isn't a problem, while Ds want to pretend that the Paris Accords have fixed the climate change problem.

The bottom line is that neither the Ds or Rs are willing to do anything serious about climate change.

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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby dohboi » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 15:18:56

Denying that it even exists is, in its way, a pretty 'serious' and radical stance (radically anti-factual, that is).
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby GHung » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 15:44:09

Plantagenet wrote:Rs want to pretend that climate change isn't a problem, while Ds want to pretend that the Paris Accords have fixed the climate change problem.

The bottom line is that neither the Ds or Rs are willing to do anything serious about climate change.

Cheers!


Most Democrats I know never expected the Paris Accords to "fix" climate change. They think that it is an acknowledgment, a necessary step. As for "neither the Ds or Rs are willing to do anything serious about climate change", there have been a number of initiatives by Democrats in NC to limit further coastal development, which have been handily squashed by the Republican state general assembly. Democrats have proposed a number of climate-related initiatives. Whether or not they will be affective is another matter, but Republicans don't even want a conversation about climate change for the most part. As a pragmatic Independent, I find it all very frustrating. We need to be adapting NOW, as best we can.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Plantagenet » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 15:59:06

GHung wrote:
Most Democrats I know never expected the Paris Accords to "fix" climate change. They think that it is an acknowledgment, a necessary step.


Obama and the others who put the Paris Accords together engaged in classic "magic thinking" when they crafted and signed an Accord that "limited" global T increases to 2°C but did nothing to reduce global emissions of CO2, CH4 and other greenhouse gases. You can't stop global warming without reducing CO2 emissions---no matter how many times you "acknowledge" climate change.

We've already had 30 years of global "acknowledgement" of the dangers of climate change when the UN set up the UN climate treaty process 30 years ago. Since then there's been 30 years of work and dozens of international conferences on this issue through the UN, including the failed Kyoto Accords. After 30 years we need more than another acknowledgement of climate change now---we need some action.

What we need is a treaty that mandates reductions in global CO2 production---which the Paris Accords does't do.

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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby GHung » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 18:14:06

Plantagenet wrote:
GHung wrote:
Most Democrats I know never expected the Paris Accords to "fix" climate change. They think that it is an acknowledgment, a necessary step.


Obama and the others who put the Paris Accords together engaged in classic "magic thinking" when they crafted and signed an Accord that "limited" global T increases to 2°C but did nothing to reduce global emissions of CO2, CH4 and other greenhouse gases. You can't stop global warming without reducing CO2 emissions---no matter how many times you "acknowledge" climate change.

We've already had 30 years of global "acknowledgement" of the dangers of climate change when the UN set up the UN climate treaty process 30 years ago. Since then there's been 30 years of work and dozens of international conferences on this issue through the UN, including the failed Kyoto Accords. After 30 years we need more than another acknowledgement of climate change now---we need some action.

What we need is a treaty that mandates reductions in global CO2 production---which the Paris Accords does't do.

Cheers!


What we need is for individuals to stop burning fossil fuels for discretionary purposes. I'm sure you are on board with that.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby jedrider » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 18:27:51

GHung wrote:What we need is for individuals to stop burning fossil fuels for discretionary purposes. I'm sure you are on board with that.


What? Get government involved? Only kidding, but that's what the opposition will say. The image of the American lone cowboy dies hard. I haven't seen a Western in ages, but the old folks grew up on that. As it is, the Republicans run a well-oiled indoctrination machine. I think that the Democratic indoctrination is, however, self-inflicted.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Ibon » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 18:32:21

dohboi wrote:Denying that it even exists is, in its way, a pretty 'serious' and radical stance (radically anti-factual, that is).


Denying still is an indication of somehow being in relationship with the topic. There is something worse than denial. And that is simply ignoring the topic completely. I think there is a lot of that actually out there. Folks not denying but rather ignoring the issue. There is an important difference between denying and ignoring.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby Newfie » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 18:38:00

asg70 wrote:Don't buy it. The red-state rednecks put Trump in office and they're the ones who deny AGW the most and are rolling coal on Prius drivers.

Sorry dude, the Research says diffrrent.

Unless you are denying scientific research.
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Re: climate change "existential" threat to humanity

Unread postby GHung » Mon 13 Nov 2017, 18:39:08

Ibon wrote:
dohboi wrote:Denying that it even exists is, in its way, a pretty 'serious' and radical stance (radically anti-factual, that is).


Denying still is an indication of somehow being in relationship with the topic. There is something worse than denial. And that is simply ignoring the topic completely. I think there is a lot of that actually out there. Folks not denying but rather ignoring the issue. There is an important difference between denying and ignoring.


Ignorance is bliss and happiness is a choice. There. I said it.
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