Climate Denial, Conspiracy Theories & Radio Messages in the Teeth

Posted on June 24, 2010


Simple Sam is always coming to me and talking about liberal conspiracies.

“How did liberals warm the oceans?” I asked.  “How did they alter the satellite data?  How on earth did they get the US navy to fudge decades of data on sea ice thickness?”

Simple Sam doesn’t answer.  Like most climate change deniers–in fact, most of them–he never answers the inconvenient questions.

“What about tree rings, Sam?” I continued.  “Ice cores?  Lake bottom and stalagmite studies?  How the heck did the liberal conspiracy manage to cool the sun?”

That’s the trouble with conspiracy theorists in the climate change denial community.  They can’t even see how ludicrous their theories are, because they have no sense of how broad the science of climate is, how many disciplines it touches on.

Of course, since conspiracy theorists deal in notions of tampered evidence, evidence is not important to them.  Even evidence which proves a conspiracy.  That’s why, despite non-stop cries of conspiracy, most conspiracy theorists present no more proof of conspiracy than the fact that all the evidence is against them.

They don’t seem to realize that this is not evidence of a conspiracy, it’s evidence they are wrong.

But conspiracy theorists are egotistical too.  They can’t admit they are wrong.  In fact, egotism and an unwillingness to admit error is probably the source of the conspiracy theory in the first place.  Because conspiracy theories are ultimately theories of evidence.

I knew a fellow once who was convinced that the government was putting messages in his head through a radio they had implanted in his tooth.  He also had heard that governments could listen in on conversations in a room merely by shining a laser on a windowpane and reading the vibrations; why, asked my friend, could they not reverse the process and therefore broadcast conversations into the room?  Conversations like those he heard when no was there.

I asked him–after one of the sessions when he was explaining his theories to me–what was so important about him?  Why was he so vital that the government would take the trouble to secretly plant a radio in his tooth and send him satellite messages?

For a moment he saw how ludicrous his theories were, and he laughed.

My schizophrenic friend was crazy, you see.  He wasn’t stupid.