Jordan Peterson on Global Warming

Lots of people won’t like his answer:

Obviously, we at Gates of Vienna – Baron the mathematician and statistician, and Dymphna who has looked at clouds from both sides now – are not fans of imposed “consensus”. The kind of consensus that, unless you agree with it, makes you thuggishly deplorable.

Good for you, Dr. Peterson. I almost didn’t watch you on this video because I thought you’d be predictable. I should know better by now, eh?

9 thoughts on “Jordan Peterson on Global Warming

  1. If an appraiser had conducted the statistical research the Dr. Mann had, which left out data that contradicted the claims he sought to prove at the outset, the appraiser would have been tried, found guilty, and sentenced to prison for constructive fraud (or in this case, destructive fraud). I will agree that there is glowball warming when we have orange trees in Ireland as we did in 1,050AD

  2. I think more people should read Thomas Kuhn’s “The Structure of Scientific Revolutions.” It might inspire them to realize that even if a consensus is reached in the scientific community, it is TEMPORARY. Because that’s how science works, through periodic upheavals in what is understood to be the case.

    (This book was supposedly Al Gore’s favorite. Methinks he didn’t get one of its central messages.)

  3. What global warming? The world seems to have got warmer from about 1850 to the 1990s, that was not due to industrialization it was due to the fact that 1650 to 1850 was exceptionally cold, a mini Ice Age. The temperature has been flat for nearly 30 years, and NASA say, due to low Sun activity, it may get much colder. I was hoping global warming would come, as warmer periods are always better for life in general but I may have to learn to blubber soon.

    • ” I may have to learn to blubber soon.”

      Or else learn to eat blubber as the eskimos do.

      Apparently it helps keep one nice and warm.
      Not sure about the level of cholesterol though.

      • IIRC the Inuit diet consisted of the meat and the blubber. Plus some kind of arctic green stuff. No cholesterol worries until they came into contact with the Western diet.

  4. I think the global warming debate is a variant of Pascal’s Wager.

    Pascal’s Wager is an argument that accepting the existence of god is a good bet.

    Suppose you don’t believe in God. What do you gain? Nothing. What are your potential losses? And eternity of horrible torture in hell.

    Suppose you believe in God. What do you gain? You don’t go to hell and you may go to eternal bliss in heaven. What do you lose? Very little. Just acknowledge the existence of God.

    Hence, betting on God is an odds-on favorite by far.

    For climate change:
    If you don’t believe in climate change, what are your potential losses?:
    No polar bears, loss of vast farmlands to desert, flooding of miles of prime urban coastlines, massive population displacement, starvation of billions.
    If you believe in climate change, what are your costs?
    Pay a few cents more per gallon for gas;
    Sign up with wind generators or put a government-subsidized solar panel on your roof;
    Give up one or two vacation trips per year.

    So, the smart betting is on climate change.

    In point of fact, the assertions of both the Wager and the Climate Change hypothesis are fuzzy, speculative, and apocalyptic. The Climate Change advocates gloss over the fact they are trying to set up a huge, unresponsive, oppressive bureaucracy with huge powers and the ability to doctor their prediction models with whatever parameters they choose.

    There are a lot of science buffs, including those with blogs that are generally pretty intelligent, who claim the science is already settled, and that those who are not part of the Climate Change movement are just an outlying 1% or so, if not downright unscientific.

    The bottom line for me is that the apocalyptic disasters postulated by the climate change movement are highly unlikely, and that whatever problems arise from a warming of the atmosphere, whether through natural cycles or man-made causes, can be handled the way humans have traditionally handled changing conditions. The biggest danger I see is that we create a huge, authoritarian, resource-sucking, sclerotic, unresponsive bureaucracy that stifles all further progress, suppresses free peoples, and cannot be gotten rid of.

    For an excellent presentation on the fuzziness of the Climate Change movement, the following video is information and entertaining.

    • “There are a lot of science buffs, including those with blogs that are generally pretty intelligent, who claim the science is already settled, and that those who are not part of the Climate Change movement are just an outlying 1% or so, if not downright unscientific.”

      Settled science? See my note on Kuhn above.

      • Kuhn’s book was on scientific paradigms, which were ways of viewing a particular field. Changing paradigms did not necessarily invalidate the data or modeling of the previous paradigm.

        For example, the Copernican paradigm of the planets circling the sun superseded the Pythagorean or Ptolemy paradigm of the planets and stars circling the earth. The Copernican calculations at first were no more accurate than those of Ptolemy astronomy, since the Copernican model assumed a circular orbit, which was not correct.

        The point is, changing paradigms does not invalidate the findings of the previous science, but lays the groundwork for more accurate and descriptive models for the future.

        Using the Structure of Scientific Revolutions as you do, nothing can be described as a good model, including quantum mechanics, since the future is quite likely to bring a paradigm change which doesn’t invalidate science work up to the present, but gives a better framework for advance in our ability to describe phenomena.

        The advocates for the concept of catastrophic climate change claim that their models are sufficient to predict our (disastrous) future vis a vis climate. In point of fact, their predictions and models are highly questionable even given our state of science currently. It doesn’t help that most departments of meteorology and climatology are heavily financed by government grants, and are unlikely to put much funding into skeptical climate research.

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