Suppose I say that the world will blow up tomorrow unless we shut down industrial civilization. I can’t really prove this. But, if you allow me certain unsubstantiated assumptions, that is what the extrapolations show.
Hey, maybe I’m wrong, but what if I’m right? To be on the safe side, all mankind better lapse into hunter-gatherer mode immediately.
If you’re not taking me seriously, well — me neither. But my unserious argument isn’t very far from the approach of certain environmentalist doomsayers, as unable to defend their theoretical house of cards as I am to defend mine.
Exhibit A: Australian journalist Andrew Bolt’s interview with a leading environmental alarmist, Tim Flannery. Bolt does his best to pin Flannery down with respect to some of the wilder claims that Flannery’s made in his career. But it’s no go.
When Bolt points out that Flannery once claimed that Australian towns like Brisbane might “run out” of water by 2007 or 2009, his interviewee first sidesteps the question and then says it’s a lie that he ever said any such things. So Bolt comes up with a quote from Flannery’s writing that belies the denial. Flannery now “responds” by noting variability in rainfall and trying to promote a lecture series.
And so on. Bolt is determined to hold Flannery to account for his alarmism; Flannery insists on persisting with flimsy flimflam.
Read the whole thing. It’s awfully illuminating. (And boy, do I mean “awfully”!)
This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.