Why climate skepticism works

I think the reasons why climate *skepticism* is doing well are much more varied than reported elsewhere.

It's objectives are (whilst not easy to define from without) much lower than proponents objectives.
To the disinterested the mere existence of climate skepticism is reason enough to ally oneself with it.
It's a constantly changing narrative, a cat of many colours. That keeps the interest of adherents. Science is carrying a millstone by comparison, science's narrative is the unchanging laws of physics, so not only are climate scientists wrong they are boring.  The scientific debate is highly nuanced,  this can easily be misinterpreted to mean scientists are divided on facts.

Contrarians are always looking for a sign of "bias" in AGW but don't apply that standard to themselves. The language is loaded, and indeed has been hijacked by contrarians insisting on being called "skeptics" and not deniers.

That's just the more active climate contrarians, those you come across on the net. For every climate contrarian/skeptic that's posted something on the net there must surely be a thousand more that have never bothered to learn anything about the climate.  You know who I mean, your relative whom you only meet at weddings and funerals but is adept at parroting Fox News. How does science reach them? They are safely cocooned in the knowledge that climate change is nonsense because Someone Else Says So. 

Above all, climate skepticism is more commentary than case.  Contrarian Geoff Chambers defines skepticism thus  "We don’t deny that global tem­per­at­ures have been rising irreg­u­larly for cen­turies, and that anthro­po­genic CO2 may be respons­ible for some of the recent rise. Where we dis­agree with the con­sensus is on the higher estim­ates of cli­mate sens­it­ivity endorsed by the IPCC and the cata­strophic effects which are sup­posed inev­it­ably to follow."

That may come as a surprise to many of the more casual climate contrarians/skeptics who think global warming is all a hoax or that it's all been disproved 'cos University of East Anglia scientists were caught sending and receiving emails , or that the world is in fact cooling.

Someone Else Says So may be a rational way of forming an opinion on what shoes to wear this autumn, but not on an issue as important as climate.  It seems to me that the Someone Else Says So meme should really be populating the don't know camp but is in fact supporting an ill-informed brand of climate skepticism.

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