I wrote my recent post on Al Gore primarily to contest the characterization of this crusading environmentalist as a thinking man. He may have reached his conclusions about the threat of global warming based upon sound science, but in leading a movement to impose strict government controls on carbon emissions, he conducts himself not as a rational man of ideas, but as an emotional man of convictions.
I don’t claim to be an expert on the science of global warming. I do claim, however, to be aware of the debate within the scientific community on anthropogenic global warming and to what extent it can be mitigated by government action. Indeed, in that post, I cited a piece by Richard S. Lindzen, a professor of Meteorology at MIT, who has long contested the notion of a scientific consensus on global warming.
Our critics, however, are quick to dismiss his work and the other atmospheric scientists who have views similar to his own so they can make the case that the science is settled. Far from it.
That Gore, no environmental scientist he, would so readily dismiss the work of serious scientists like Lindzen confirms my point that he is not a thinking man. This ready dismissal makes me wonder why so many of Gore’s followers are so insistent than the science is settled? To be sure, in many many disciplines of the natural and social sciences, many issues have long been settled. This is not one of them.
One would think that thinking men would be eager to engage those who, through the scientific process, have reached conclusions at odds with their own. And, if they are thinking men, confident in their arguments, wouldn’t they welcome the chance to debate those who have reached such conclusions? If the science behind those conflicting conclusions is so shoddy, it should be easy to debunk.
A task a thinking man would welcome.