Rebuttals of the Week#11: Why ‘progressives’ hate reality

ta

Poor old Tony Abbott just can’t catch a break it seems. He makes some completely benign, not uncommon, absolutely reasonable pro-marriage comment and all the tolerant, compassionate, accepting, non-judgemental, empathetic, morally righteous ‘progressives’ and feminists take it as an opportunity to unleash upon him any vile, cruel, dehumanizing accusation and epithet their corrupt little minds can generate.

Abbott’s comment inspired the above nasty, predictably anti-male and anti-Western civilization screed by Jenny Noyes in the radical feminist propaganda pamphlet The Age. As usual, this was an invitation to all the exemplars of virtue and goodness on the ‘progressive’/feminist Left among the general public to weigh in with their own wise and insightful observations in the comment section. In other words, there was a lot of this sort of thing:

Sharon F: “Cockhead”

Sezzy: “Being a woman myself, I feel like I need protection from idiots like him. Bloody ignorant fool!”

Bubba: “the irony is that marriage has not protected his missus or kids from having a complete dickhead as a husband and father.”

Stephen: “The man is just a delusional fool. I cannot wait to see the look on his hideous head when we finally receive true equality.”

Faye W: “Abbott you are a dickhead and an embarrassment.”

So a contributor to the comment section, Carl  L, tried to raise the quality of the discourse by injecting some factual evidence into the discussion:

Carl L: Children of divorced or never-married mothers are six to 30 times more likely to suffer from serious child abuse than are children raised by both biological parents in marriage.

ta a

Mum’s boyfriend – the worst sexual risk to children

Which provoked quite a few responses like these from folks who won’t let truth get between them and their preferred version of reality:

Kirsten A: “So, not a peer reviewed piece of literature.”

Lisa B: “Source is more than 5 years old lol”

My rebuttal, directed primarily at Lisa, is a breakdown of an extremely common thinking pattern which a lot of bad thinkers default to when they are confronted with evidence and argument that refutes their self-confirming, subjective beliefs. It’s the “Truth or Concept Pattern”. It highlights the distinction between people who have an attachment to a belief or concept which they find personally gratifying in some way,  and those who have an attachment to truth. When you become aware of the pattern, you’ll see it all of the time…. particularly when debating ‘progressives’, feminists, Leftists etc..


Going to Getugly: “Source is more than 5 years old lol”. Just like Kirsten Alys above. I’ll tell you how your mind is working here Lisa so you can improve your reasoning in the future:

Lisa’s mind: “I have a specific perception of this issue and  I’m really attached to it because  it’s very satisfying to my ego.  And I’ve never bothered to look into it because I just assume I’m right if a particular belief appeals to me.

Now I’m presented with credible information that completely invalidates my preferred assumptions and which gives me insight into actual, objective truth.

But I’m not interested in objective TRUTH! MY priority is preserving my preferred but false perception… because the satisfaction I derive from believing it is WAY more important to me than having an authentic appreciation of reality.

Problem: I refuse to update my understanding of this issue based on this new information (like a mature thinker would do)…. but I need some excuse that appears to justify my irrational denial of reality.

Solution: Oh, look! This was published in 2012.  I’ll assert that because the study was published FIVE WHOLE YEARS ago… that makes it invalid somehow! Sure, that makes no sense…. it’s a completely arbitrary proclamation…. and if I’m asked to explain why that invalidates it I’ll have to make something else up on the spot. But it’s all I’ve got! Oh yeah…. and I’ll put a condescending ‘lol’ at the end (even though that’s the sort of thing 14 year olds do) to convey that I’m so much more ‘aware’ and ‘clever’ than the dummy who provided the information.”

Do you see how transparent this flawed thinking process is, Lisa? Hopefully now that it’s been pointed out, you and Kirsten… as well as a lot of other women posting here…. will catch yourselves before you default to this pattern of inadequate reasoning in the future.

 

 

Advertisements

Progressive Left continues to eat itself alive!

In this video I look at how it was inevitable that an ideology based on the unquestionable credibility of infinitely finer and finer gradations of individual subjective absolute truths was going to implode under the weight of its own absurdity.

Happy International Condescending to Women Day!

Another International Women’s Day has come and gone… along with any number of marches, speeches full of platitudes and bromides, a call for a general strike by women that almost no one took seriously and at least one world leader blithely donating millions of dollars of his citizen’s money to other countries to buy himself kudos from feminists.

weeewe

Here is an honest question for everyone out there: Am I the only one who finds all of this “Women’s Day” stuff to be unbelievably condescending to women?

Personally, I’m uncomfortable with the premise that women as a group need to be stroked and pandered to like this. Am I really to accept that females are so insecure, so unsure of their personal autonomy and agency… and so needy of validation that a day has to be set aside every year to congratulate them for actually being able to do things?

wo

Who for instance (other than feminist women it seems), finds the idea that women can be pilots so extraordinary that it requires special attention and self-conscious recognition?

And how needy of ego-affirmation must you be to see this cloyingly ludicrous concept of a little girl representing some fantasized challenge to the momentum of American capitalism as anything other than deeply patronizing?

wew

The hyper-irony here is that for the premise of a Women’s Day to have any meaning… it presupposes women’s self-worth to be  dependant on the approval of men. For there must be an audience to whom this attention seeking behavior is directed and from whom all of this validation and recognition is so desperately sought. And who is it that we crave validation from? Those we know to be our equals? Hardly.

In fact,  the analogy that keeps coming to mind is how our parents would affectionately pat us on the head after being handed our crayon scribbled, stick-figure drawings…. and the satisfaction we felt as children, basking in the effusiveness of their praise as they validated our efforts and placed our work high on the refrigerator door for all the world to see.

 

Rebuttals of the Week#6: Annoying Self-Righteous Canadian Alert!

ANNOYING SELF-RIGHTEOUS CANADIAN ALERT!

No… not Justin Trudeau. Or even David Suzuki. Although both would easily qualify.

No, this time it’s life of the Party, Naomi Kline. And she has travelled thousands of miles in a huge, fossil fuel guzzling, CO2 spewing jet (business class no doubt)…. has been driven back and forth between airport, luxury hotel and media studios in fossil fuel guzzling, CO2 spewing cars… getting treated like a VIP…. eating well and often….. all so she can lecture average working people in Australia about how they are obliged to feel ashamed of their lifestyle and modest standard of living.

Yes folks. It’s climate change again. You’d forgotten about it, hadn’t you? What with all the hysteria about the US election and Donald Trump taking up so much oxygen for the past several months.

Naomi hasn’t forgotten about it. Nope. Naomi never forgets about it. And she considers it her business to make sure you don’t forget about it either.

q-a

Professional obnoxious, self-righteous bores like Kline and Suzuki seem to really embolden the amateur obnoxious, self-righteous bores that are  out there.

Below is the response from one of these self-anointed, amateur intellectual powerhouses to a comment of mine that expressed my reasoned disinclination to obediently submit to the judgements of the hypocritical academic class of which Kline is a privileged member.

Brenton Boswell B B : Imagine this for a moment: let’s say in a month from now, having made a genuine effort to listen and learn and think, you find that you have changed your mind and that climate change is in fact real and desperately, frighteningly urgent. How would you look back on your previous attitude? Would it be with shame or anger? To what extent would you blame yourself? Or should you blame others? I can answer that for you: it’s not really your fault. You have been actively misled by businesses that make *trillions* of dollars out of fossil energy production. You have also been ‘in denial’ in a way that is common to all human beings, i.e. we deny our fear of death. Think of it this way: clinging to ultimately false and foolish disinformation is not rare: it’s normal. What is rare is science: a disciplined approach to knowledge that in some ways is only 250 years old. The fact that you haven’t yet understood what makes science different from all other human beliefs is therefore not surprising. There are thousands like you. Don’t be angry. Just see what you can learn. The evidence and information, and patient people who can teach you, are available.

The dripping condescension and the assumption that anyone who doesn’t share his uncritical devotion to the ‘catastrophic man-made climate change narrative’ must never have heard the various slogans, clichés and ‘go-to’ talking points they all rely on is pretty standard. The weird faux-Freudian ‘denial of death’ stuff is a nice innovation though.

Here’s how I slapped him down:

Going to Getugly – Going to GetuglyIf you’re going to use fallacious arguments, at least try to come up with an original one… don’t just parrot standard clichés like “you’ve been brainwashed by oil companies and all of their anti man-made climate catastrophe propaganda !”

I’m always amused by people who mindlessly regurgitate that one as if it’s some devastating insight.

Because we are constantly being bombarded with oil funded, anti-climate change propaganda, right? It’s everywhere! I mean, we can go back to that multi-million dollar , Oscar-winning movie by a former American vice president that promoted the anti-man made climate change message…..

Oh wait. That was promoting the concept of man-made climate change.

Well, there’s all the messaging in schools indoctrinating children into disbelieving in man-made climate change….

Oh wait. That’s all promoting the unquestioning belief in man-made climate change.

Well, there’s the mass media which has spent the last 15 years legitimising only one side of the argument and promoting the belief that the ‘science is settled’ and proves that man-made climate change is not true….

Oh wait. They’ve done that for the pro man-made climate change side.

Well, at least we can point to all of the major politicians in the world who refuse to get on-board with the pro man-made climate change agenda! That’s why there’s been no carbon tax programs introduced anywhere. No cap-and-trade programs. No taxpayer subsidised ‘green initiatives’. No wind turbines erected anywhere etc. And of course there was that huge gathering last year in Paris when all of the world leaders got together to formalise their total rejection of the catastrophic man-made climate change premise and signed documents pledging not to pretend they can control the temperature of a planet to within fractions of a degree, 20 years into the future!

Oh, wait….

So essentially we’ve had 10-15 years of consistent, unified and exclusively pro man-made climate change messaging from the mass media, the education system, the entertainment industry and the political class (in other words, society’s elites). But your conclusion is that people such as yourself whose position on the subject conforms precisely with that wall of single-focused messaging are the people who are free from the effects of propaganda and manipulation……and it’s people like me whose perspective is at odds with messaging that is constantly streamed from every easily accessible source and yet maintain that there are legitimate reasons for remaining sceptical despite overwhelming pressure to conform… it’s us who are the weak-minded victims of a  program of propaganda that is nowhere to be found.

Yeah, yeah Brenton… there’s absolutely nothing about that premise that is in spectacular defiance of simple logic or is in any way hilariously ironic.

No seriously… the depth of your insight and the potency of your reasoning skills totally justifies your pose of intellectual superiority which otherwise would just come across as adolescent and embarrassing.

Not surprisingly, he gave up after that.

Climate change science wrong again!

Man-made climate change ‘science’ seems to be unique among scientific disciplines in that it doesn’t matter how consistently it generates predictions that turn out to be wrong when compared to real world observations…. it never justifies re-assessing the validity of the theory.

a1a

a1a1a

Scientist accused of ’crying wolf’ on climate change with claim that Arctic sea ice would vanish

Instead, we get the argument from the very people who kept getting it wrong for 10 to 20 years that we are obliged to consider this track record irrelevant and to accept that all the claims, predictions and policies they are promoting today are beyond questioning.

Shockingly, there are still adults out there who believe their absolute refusal to recognise any justification for any degree of scepticism about the claim is the most rational position to hold on the issue.

Women don’t like debating on television… so there must be something wrong with men

Self-Censored, 36 X 48 inches

It seems not a lot of women want to appear as a panel member on the Australian current affairs TV show Q&A. Apparently, this is a serious problem. And judging by the recent article penned by the show’s producer Amanda Collinge ( Producer reveals the disturbing reason why Q&A has a “problem” with women ), the disturbing cause is that there is something wrong with men.

qThis appears to be the go-to explanation for women these days when other women don’t behave the way they’d like them to.

Women don’t want to be involved in politics? It’s because there’s something wrong with men.

Women don’t want to become engineers and computer programmers? It’s because there’s something wrong with men.

Women don’t like having to defend their opinions on TV? It’s because there’s something wrong with men.

Okay, which is it? Are women such fragile, incapable, creatures so lacking in autonomy and agency they expect men and society to make special allowances for them in order to accommodate their unique sensitivities?

Or are women strong, agentic individuals who dismiss traditional stereotypes of the “weaker sex”; who are as able and capable as men, need and expect no special treatment and want nothing other than equal opportunity in society?

These are mutually exclusive positions. The farce of women demanding they be seen as the latter while embodying the former has gone on without challenge long enough.

Pick one, ladies!

Going to Getugly on Facebook

Man-made climate change supporters exhibit poor thinking skills. Coincidence?

Emphatic supporters of the climate change establishment all seem to share the same grab-bag of rhetorical tactics, logical fallacies, memes and slogans that they depend upon to insulate themselves from any information that threatens their beliefs. The pattern when debating them tends to follow the same sequence: They begin by making definitive assertions with a zealous certainty for the unquestionable truth of their position. Then, after even the mildest probing, out come the straw men, appeals to authority, ad hominem attacks, logical inconsistencies and various other tactics of deflection and obfuscation.

I was reminded  of this again while having a fairly heated online debate about climate change that had been inspired by comments from a lightweight Australian TV personality named Waleed Aly.

There was the usual default, unexamined presumption that all the credible experts unequivocally support man-made climate change theory.
As I always do upon encountering this widely believed misconception, I provided a long list of recognized experts at the top of their fields and quoted their criticism of the AGW theory and the establishment that is committed to it.

Predictably, my opponent was oblivious to the existence of so many esteemed critics of the orthodoxy. But rather than this new information provoking curiosity or stimulating a deeper appreciation of the complexity of the issue, he instead headed straight for Google to search for something to torque into a justification for dismissing the criticisms out of hand.

Out of the ten or more experts I quoted, he found (no doubt to his great relief) that one scientist, Robert Carter, had been paid the whopping fee of $1,667 a month a few years ago by that  Great Satan of climate change heresy – The Heartland Institute.

And because the priority for climate change absolutists is not the truth but protecting their beliefs from threatening information, this was enough for my debating opponent to categorically conclude:

“Yes, he’s a seasoned scientist, but because of the source of his wage, unfortunately, we cannot trust his opinion in this case.”

What utter bollocks.

I pointed out that this argument was an example of ‘genetic fallacy’ – when an idea is either accepted or rejected because of its source, rather than its merit.

Didn’t matter.

I pointed out that not only had Carter been a critic of AGW theory prior to being offered the piddling stipend from Heartland, his position is in accord with other scientists who are NOT receiving a stipend from Heartland (like everyone else on my list whom he simply chose to bypass) and highlights observable, real world discrepancies between what the AGW theory crowd said would happen and what has actually occurred.

Didn’t matter.

I questioned the plausibility that this highly respected Ph.D., palaeontologist, stratigrapher, marine geologist and environmental scientist whose career spans more than three decades, who has served as Chair of the Earth Sciences Discipline Panel of the Australian Research Council, Chair of the national Marine Science and Technologies Committee and has a personal publication list of more than 100 papers in international science journals could be seduced into jeopardizing his credibility by providing false scientific claims for a $1,667 paycheque.

Didn’t matter. I was told:

“He was paid for being a critic, apparently, so yes, his word means absolutely nothing to me. He was paid after or before, no difference.”

Curious about the consistency of these ideals concerning the corrupting influence of money in climate science,  I cited the example of a recent paper in the journal Nature Climate Change that lauded the EPA and the Obama Democrats for a policy of strong carbon emission restrictions that was co-authored by researchers receiving huge grants from the EPA itself – amounting to a princely sum just shy of $50 million in total.

I suggested to my opponent: “If you find the privately donated $1667 a month allegedly paid to Carter to be”extremely worrying”… you should be apoplectic about $50 million worth of tax revenues being handed over to these guys.”

The response tells you everything you need to know about the circular reasoning and unapologetic indifference to intellectual integrity that seems to be typical of the climate change faithful:

“Funding by governments for “climate research” is expected and I fail to see your point here. Are you suggesting that the governments shouldn’t fund climate research?”

Insert head explosion here.

But it gets positively surreal with his next comment. He tells us that in his estimation it is those of us who have continued to exercise intellectual autonomy and make the effort to think critically – in spite of the overwhelming cultural  incentive to submit to torrents of climate change propaganda and groupthink – who are most likely the gullible pawns of powerful external interests.

“Just to be clear”, he writes, “I’m not being personal here, I’m just coming to the conclusion that you may have been mis-informed by a highly organised, lucrative group of organisations, with great interest in slowing the pace of policy against the use of fossil fuels.                                                                                                      
Needless to say, I suggested there was something delusional and self-serving about assuming that highly organized, “lucrative groups” and organizations could have an incentive to misinform people such as naive ol’ me, while simultaneously taking for granted that the billions of dollars at stake for the climate change establishment, government tax revenues and ‘green’ energy interests have no motivating influence whatsoever for the people shaping his perspective.

Guess what? Didn’t matter.

I ended up pulling the plug on the conversation after he concluded a subsequent round of circular reason and self-aggrandizement with this charming sentiment:

“But you seem so stupid, that I feel I need to explain certain things to you, simple things. You know?”

Yer. Where would we be without these towering intellects to enlighten us?

I wish I could say that out of the hundreds of similar debates with devotees of the Church of Climate Change that the quality of reasoning displayed by this guy was uncommon. But it isn’t! It’s pretty much the standard.

Having adequate thinking skills is NOT optional for constructing a valid opinion. It’s time we reintroduced this axiom into our culture and made it unequivocally explicit.

And in my view, this is really where the debate has to begin. Not with the premise of man made global climate change itself. But with drawing attention to how consistently lousy the reasoning skills are of those who most ardently support it.