AP will use "climate doubters" instead of "climate skeptics"

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Sounds good to rational people, but I’m already imagining the Palinesque “lamestream” moniker getting attached.

Maybe just say “those who reject science” or “those who reject the idea that God gave everyone a brain”, depending on the specific audience.


What’s next “Holocaust Doubters”?


I think the rationale for doubters instead of deniers is valid and fine

But those who reject climate science say the phrase denier has the pejorative ring of Holocaust denier so The Associated Press prefers climate change doubter or someone who rejects mainstream science.
The climate science wars are toxic enough without invoking Godwin.

Wouldn’t it be nice if the media-political complex would accept the the scientific community as a whole has no political agenda?


How about the “Understanding-of-Climate-Science-(and-most-likely-science-in-general)-Challenged”


I guess “crazies” was already taken, though possibly by much of the very same people.


If you mean scientists don’t have an official party, then you’re right. But when one party bases several platform planks on contradicting established science “just because,” then science becomes political - not because the scientists made it so, but because the deniers did.

Also, just because “deniers” sounds like “holocaust deniers” doesn’t mean it’s somehow an illegitimate thing to say - AP notwithstanding. They’re really doing the very same thing as holocaust deniers. Did we hurt their fee-fees by saying so out loud?


When talking about politicians like Marsha Blackburn, the only appropriate label is “denier,” especially when, like her, they just come out and admit that they don’t care what the evidence is and that no amount of evidence would make them change their position. A skeptic or doubter is one whose mind can be swayed by evidence and argument; a denier is someone who has taken an absolutist position regardless of the evidence. In general there may be a few climate change “doubters,” but we’re mostly talking about deniers. If the label fits…


I see your reasons, and they are not bad reasons. But I still think it would be helpful to hand the deniers/doubters/sceptics/truthers/blah not oil to fuel the heated argument[0] even more (not that I see a realistically chance for a more reasonable discussion…).

[0] only a placeholder. How to call a situation where one side argues with data and the other with loudness?

The massive difference is there are people who actually experienced and witnessed the Holocaust. Now someone properly educated can acquire the scientific instrumentation to detect atmospheric change but there is a difference between studying carbon vs weather change directly(or trusting mainstream scientists) and I have none of my European family alive because Nazis(where did they go?). One is simply blatant fact and one has room for debate or at least scepticism in people who feel no effect(their family has not been murdered so they will never see them again) and are constantly getting screwed by some big business/government scheme. One is invisible to the uneducated layman and requires trust, one is unmistikable to anyone wo can tell the difference between live and dead.
It might be a good cause but including partisan(though it shouldn’t be) newspeak into the style guide just makes ‘the liberal media’ that much less trustworthy. I also hate to see what I think of as right wingy orthodoxy thinking leak into the already tarnished progressive left.
I think that climate change would be more palatable if there were a robust social safety net including a basic income where people on the lower end who now vote Republican/Conservative/Tory for hope of their affluence gospel would be able to not feel that they could loose their home to a billionaire when they loose their job because carbon credits are making a billionaire into a trillionaire.
(edit)I think this is a pretty close Godwin call, Holocaust/Nazis denial is linguistically related but invoking for something that unless there is new terrible information about ocean hydrate sublimation not going to be properly genocidal.

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I’m skeptical of the idea of true skeptics.


Why not just call them “American Petroleum Institute spokesmen”?


wonder what they are going to call those such as Bjorn Lomborg, who was a skeptic/doubter but now goes around saying that even if climate change is human induced are we not better off spending our money on health care, sanitation, education of the world’s poor etc (all admittedly worthwhile causes) -instead of mitigating climate change, which in the end is really a clever argument for doing nothing.

No True Skeptic would ever say such a thing! :wink:


There is nothing we can do to the Earth that will actually destroy it. However we are doing a pretty decent job of damaging the climate we need to sustain our civilization. If you care about the legacy you will leave for your children or indeed all future generations you must care about the impact we have on our climate.
On the other hand if you don’t give a shit and can’t wait to usher in the next species to take up residence on Earth, then by all means continue with your wasteful habits.

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We have already destroyed great swathes of your home planet. To say we can’t damage the rest to that extent is just small thinking.

that’s so painfully reductive, and untrue.

it’s entirely possible to reduce the biodiversity of our planet; to harm the ecology in truly irreparable ways.

humans are causing changes which normally occur over long periods of time to occur over short periods of time. we seem to be destroying our home. it’s dumb to believe – like ayn rand or someone might – that people only care because it affects themselves.

this is the only place we know of that hosts life. our planet could even be a rare jewel in the universe. so it matters a hell of lot if we mess it up – because it’s not just simply about messing it up for ourselves.


why does it matter? better ask why doesn’t it matter?

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I know. It’s Carlin, the broader message isn’t that we shouldn’t care, it’s that we’re making our own bed and we won’t survive sleeping in it.

But yeah, it’s rather reductionist. He’s playing to an audience. An audience from the mid-90s, when climate change was still scary to most of us rather than a more emotionally neutral political volleyball. These days we focus more on the rhetoric of climate change than we do realizing that when we feel the effects, we’re fuuuuuuuuucked, there’s going to be a lot of dead people, and a lot of crazy weather events happening the likes of which we’ve never seen.

I only really agree with the sentiment that we can’t destroy the earth (our little piece of rock and iron), but we can certainly ruin it for ourselves and most of the interesting things living on it.

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