choff wrote:Yeah, some scientist got a cheer from his pals when he said that AIDS was too slow, Ebola would work way better.
There is a great book by Bob Zubrin about this way of thinking:
Merchants of Despair: Radical Environmentalists, Criminal Pseudo-Scientists, and the Fatal Cult of Antihumanism
This is the same Bob Zubrin from the Mars society. The book has plenty of examples from recent history that explain this line of thinking and the reasoning behind it.
Here is an example:
My own doubts came when DDT was introduced for civilian use. In Guyana within 2 years it had almost eliminated malaria, but at the same time the birth rate had doubled. So my chief quarrel with DDT in hindsight is that it has greatly added to the population problem.
-- Alexander King, cofounder of the Club of Rome, 1990
This comes from the profound belief humanity is vermin and can do no good. Zubrin traces this belief back back to Malthus and documents how it evolved politically into eugenics movement thru national socialism culminating in the current radical environmentalism. This is well documented in his book with facts, dates and quotes. I.e. the first Green party has been founded and chaired by August Haussleiter a former SS officer and a Hitler loyalist who stood behind his master as early as the Beer Hall Putch of 1923.
Personally, I am a great believer in scientific method. To me the 2 of the most important aspect of it are the concept of a "control group" and the principle of the "Ockham razor". If proponents of a hypothesis are unwilling to verify it by comparing their results to a control group it is probably untrue. If on top of that if one of many explanations of a phenomena is promoted with disregard to its probability the whole thing is probably hoax or just simply fraud.
Lets take a look at the hypothesis of AGW.
To establish if global warming is caused by our civilization lets take a look at the temperature variations of other planets, preferably Mars, being climatically closest to Earth. I was waiting for a long time for somebody to do that and I found the guy. His name is Khabibullo Abdusamatov and he is the supervisor of the Russian section of the International Space Station and the head of Space research laboratory at the prestigious Saint Petersburg-based Pulkovo Observatory, Russian Academy of Sciences.
Abdusamatov did extensive studies on the solar cycles and studied the Martian polar caps to see if they change over time as temperatures on Earth warm. To me this is as close o the control group as we can get without producing a parallel Earth. Guess what, he found that the Martial caps did erode when the observed temperatures on Earth increased. Little that was published of his work outside of Russia, was ridiculed by the proponents of AGW. For me a control group is all I need. On top of that Ockham razor says that if something happened repeatedly (like i.e. the medieval warming) in the past and is happening today, and now a factor exist that did not exist in the past, that factor is most likely irrelevant.
On the other hand Bob Zubrin in his book is convinced that AGW is real:
Going from 315 ppm of atmospheric CO2 in 1958 to 375 ppm today, we increased the total mass of carbon in the atmosphere from 630 gigatones (Gt) to 750 Gt. [..] In fact the the actual amount of fossil fuels used worldwide over that period was around 250 Gt.[..] Human industrial CO2 may be having modest effect on climate but they have positive effect on plant growth worldwide; one study has shown 14 percent increase in plant growth in the us in second half of the twentieth century
Burning natural gas and recycling the resulting CO2 thru the greenhouse is a well known and widely popular method of increasing greenhouse crop in Holland.
Now, having more green plants is bad for the planet ?!?
No matter what excuse, to the Malthusians humanity can do no good, we will run out of resources and pollute the planet, etc. Amen.
Each decade for the last coupe of centuries they are proven wrong. Yet they persevere...