America’s New “Fuck Science” Majority

Posted by Matt on Wednesday, December 9th, 2009

I’m not sure if this can be partially attributed to the teen vampire craze, but recent polls show More Americans believe in guardian angels than humans’ role in global warming.

A Pew poll released late last month found that just 36 percent of Americans believe humans are responsible for accelerating global climate change, which scientists say mushroomed after the industrial revolution due to humans’ dependence on carbon-based fuels.

Carbon dioxide, which is produced by the combustion of oil, coal and other fuels, was ruled a “dangerous” threat to public health by the Environmental Protection Agency Monday. It increases the propensity of the earth’s atmosphere to retain heat.

But a near-consensus from scientists doesn’t have Americans convinced. The Pew poll found that while 57 percent believe that the earth’s climate is changing, just 36 percent believe that humans are responsible. 77 percent believed that global warming existed in Pew’s poll conducted in 2007.

The 36 percent who believe in human-caused climate change is fewer than the number of Americans who apparently believe they’re protected by guardian angels, some 55 percent, according to a poll published in 2008.

Half of all Americans believe they are protected by guardian angels, one-fifth say they’ve heard God speak to them, one-quarter say they have witnessed miraculous healings, 16 percent say they’ve received one and 8 percent say they pray in tongues, according to a survey” conducted by Baylor University published in September of 2008.

The Baylor survey was conducted in 2007 by telephone calls to 1,648 adults, who were asked more than 300 questions about their spiritual beliefs.

That’s not all. A blog at the website of Foreign Policy notes that more Americans believe in UFOs and ghosts than do anthropogenic (human-caused) global warming.

34 percent of Americans said they believed in UFOs and ghosts in a Halloween 2007 survey conducted by Ipsos for the Associated Press.

Just 39 percent of Americans said in a February poll that they believe in evolution.

Who's That Angel?

All the high-school educated conservative pundits and some GOP politicians have been quick to pounce on the recent e-mails stolen from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia.  The critics point to e-mails using shady-sounding mathematical-lingo like “trick” as evidence that climate change is a “hoax.”  However, despite the Mainstream Media’s quick leap to manufacture partisan controversy out of this issue, it’s still hard to find actual scientists who believe this “controversy” means anything.

The international scientific community reached a consensus on global warming long before Al Gore made the issue a partisan lightning rod in America.

A quick point:  Knowledge of political science does not make you a Scientist.  Ask my college roommate, Dr. Dan.  While he spent 4 years hunkered down, studying bacteria, genetic code, and other boring shit, I was completing my analysis of Indonesia’s political transition in-between bong rips.  I don’t know the scientific method, but have a lot of deference and respect for people who practice it properly.

One more point:  Despite their official sounding acronyms, Energy-industry funded organizations like the NIPPC (Exxon) should not be considered legitimate scientific sources.  They are lobbying firms similar to ones Big Tobacco funded for decades.

So what’s up with America?  Why are we so quick to disregard science?  Is it because some of “these people” are nerds with dandruff and limited social skills? Is it because it’s a lot harder to disprove faith than to disprove faulty science?  Is it because certain people are so unwilling to sacrifice even the smallest piece of their lifestyle that they maintain a perpetual state of denial?

Someone please explain the pathology of someone (sober) who can dismiss global warming and evolution, while believing unequivocally in angels and other supernatural shit.  It can’t just be the home-schooled.

As for global warming, I will freely admit questions remain.  While some try to make it a black+white argument, determining planet-wide trends is complicated.  Furthermore, the scientists who took the shortcuts alluded to in these e-mails should be ashamed and possibly suspended from their Robotics Design Club. But to use these e-mails as proof of some “hoax” is intellectually dishonest.  Dismissing the near-consensus of the scientific community, while believing some invisible spirit told you to supersize your Extra Value Meal (“Thanks angel! I should order more fries!”) boggles my mind.

But to close on the global warming issue, I’ll cede to the free-market champions at The Economist:

This newspaper believes that global warming is a serious threat, and that the world needs to take steps to try to avert it. That is the job of the politicians. But we do not believe that climate change is a certainty. There are no certainties in science. Prevailing theories must be constantly tested against evidence, and refined, and more evidence collected, and the theories tested again. That is the job of the scientists. When they stop questioning orthodoxy, mankind will have given up the search for truth.

And as the majority of Americans give up the search for truth, they’ll have a lot of time to seek out visions of Elvis or the Virgin Mary in water stains under their boilers.


6 Responses to America’s New “Fuck Science” Majority

  1. Z System says:

    MattC, you stated you don’t know the scientific process, so I am surprised to see that you made numerous judgements about “climate change” in this blog. In order to best understand “climate change,” it is prudent to analyze the international policies that are being pushed in the name of global warming. What they are trying to do in Copenhagen is to create a supra-national world entity that has the ability to collect taxes from countries, businesses, and individuals. A global carbon tax will do nothing to prevent carbon emissions and everything to do with global governance. This is why Americans are against “climate change” treaties. It’s not because we want to destroy the environment, but that we want to remain a sovereign nation.

    I have some other beefs with your let’s join the rest of the “smart world” and bash the “stupid Americans” argument.

    First, a consensus does not imply the soundness of a theory. Pre-Gaileo, there was a strong consensus amongst the elite European scientists that the earth was the center of the universe. One could face execution to teach/say otherwise.

    You did touch on this, but anyone who takes the time to research and observe the actual data on earth’s temperatures over the last 500 years will find there is no conclusive evidence showing warming or cooling. For example, the decades of the 1880s and 1890s were the hottest on record with average temps 2 degrees hotter than what they are today.

    To say that humans are causing global warming is an even bigger leap of faith to the global scientist cause. Correlation does not imply causation. The fact of the matter is that humans have egos. We tend to overemphasize our impact in the universe. Vocanos, celestial bodies, solar flares, orbits, tilt, polarity, etc can all do much more to effect the earth’s climates than 2 billion volvos.

    If the powers that be in our world wanted to stop carbon emissions, why wouldn’t we all immediately change over to a purely electtric car. We have had the technology and the market for a long time now. We will not because the politicians don’t care about carbon emissions. They want the gloabl tax on carbon emissions to fund their plans for global government.

    Furthermore, you can not downplay the significance of the emails that were hacked and released. This particular British university is the nerve center for the global theories and Al Gore’s doom and gloom prestheltyzing. They demonstrate a long-term massive, corrosive, and corruptive conspiracy to only show one side of a climate change theory with a poltical and financial motivation.

    If anything, I would say that science is dead. The only scientists that get money to conduct science get it from either the government or mega-corps. They do not serve the art and objectivity of science but rather the monied interests. Climate-gate and Al Gore are cases in point.

    The problem with liberal viewpoints and beliefs is that they are so emotionally charged, it is hard to argue because in their minds, the emotions outweigh the facts.
    The followers of liberal beliefs are dangerous because they are either people who think they are intellectuals because they went to or are in college and have not really thought politics all the way through; or they are sinister (like Al Gore) in that they have thought political theory through and are using emotionally charged falsehoods to mobilize their psuedo-intellectual followers.

  2. Matt says:

    You can rail against liberals all you want, but the truth has a well-known liberal bias. Also, your “smart world” v. “stupid americans” comment is spin typical of Right wing haters who play the victimization-card to prey on the biases of their supporters. My post was asking why Americans are so quick to disregard established scientific theory, while so quick to embrace the intangible. I think you know that, but just want to parrot the typical attack on the “pseudo-intellectual.”

    You make a lot of judgments as well, but without sourcing any of them. Like I wrote, nothing is certain, but I have the international scientific community to support my viewpoint. You have New World Order (or whatever) conspiracy theories and the villainization of Al Gore. Show me unbiased scientists that think those e-mails mean anything. Also, the “monied interests” are clearly on your side , fighting against the truth to reveal itself. You think Greenpeace (or WISPIRG) can spend .001% of what Exxon can spend to influence policy and politicians? Those meaningless fucking e-mails got more attention from the national Media than any of the countless studies supporting the theory of global warming over the last 2 decades.

    It’s fitting that you say “science is dead.” No wonder this country lags behind in math and science education. No wonder China and Europe are way ahead in developing green technology and the industry that comes with it. After 8 years of disregarding science, it seems these values have worn off. I consider that pathetic.

    And the fact that we don’t sign certain treaties shouldn’t be a point of pride. The conspiracy theorists have made us hypocrites who say “do as I say, not as I do” when it comes to issues such as chemical weapons and genocide. Not that it really would matter considering the American practice of merely disregarding their international agreements, such as the Geneva Conventions.

    And not that this necessarily means anything, but the UN and NASA says this is the hottest decade on record. I don’t know where you get your data. (Is Dick Armey whoring for the fossil fuel companies now?) However, I’m sure this data can’t be trusted because the UN is part of your “supra national world entity,” and this is part of their diabolical scheme: “Be Pretty Much Ineffectual For 5 Decades Before Wielding Our Enormous Power To Lower Carbon Emissions…And Then Take Over The World!…..Bwahaha”

  3. Z System says:

    MattC, we both agree there is no “established scientific theory” on climate change. So why would we want to jump on the world is melting bandwagon led by the failing Europeon Union and bankrupt British nation? They are trying to drag America into their pitifully meaningless socialist welfare state because they have a strong disdain for the freedom and independence for which we stand. Have you been to Europe lately? It sucks!!

    The released emails from the scientists spanning the last 15 years demonstrate conclusively enormous confounding factors, unscientific practices, outright fraud, and perhaps even criminal behavior. I am surprised in light of this overwhelming evidence to find oober liberals completely ignoring the facts and continuing their cheer for everyone and everything to be taxed.

    “You say Global, I say Government! Yea Dear global leaders! They know more than me. I trust them to keep me safe and healthy. And to protect my environment for me and my kids and their kids! Forget individual responsibility. I have my government.”

    Al Gore is a con man. He hates America. He will never let the 2000 elections leave his heart and he is on a mission to destroy American sovereignty through “climate change.” If he is so concerened with the environment, how come he eats steak, uses 20 times more elcectricy in one month than I do in a year, flies solo in chartered 747, etc etc. Oh yea, he is carbon neutral cause he buys his carbon credits. A scam contrived by Al Gore and who else, Ken Lay from Enron!

    Once I see people like Al Gore and the other environmental hypocrites practicing what they preach rather than proposing taxes to secure their power and wealth, I will take them and their arguments seriously.

    Otherwise, enpowering the individual is the answer. Not some unsanctioned global government operating under false flags and pretenses.

  4. Matt says:

    I would contend “global warming” has been an established scientific theory for almost 20 years. The rest of my remarks still stand.

    Good debatin. Hey – anyone who needs customized video solutions for equipment, istallation, and service, check out ZSystem!

  5. [...] that’s the answer – which is strange because that answer implies conviction.  Anyway, we’ve been over this before. (Reuters) – Nearly four in 10 U.S. residents say the severity of recent natural [...]

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