The Conversation

Gawker: Hey, How About an Inquisition for Climate Change Skeptics?

In an insufferable bit of trolling, Gawker has decided to pick up on the nonsense being spouted by Lawrence Torcello, an assistant professor of philosophy at the Rochester Institute of Technology. Torcello reasons, badly, that organized groups or efforts espousing a view on climate change with which he disagrees are committing a crime somewhat akin to murder.

Man-made climate change happens. Man-made climate change kills a lot of people. It's going to kill a lot more. We have laws on the books to punish anyone whose lies contribute to people's deaths. It's time to punish the climate-change liars.

It's amazing that Gawker was so restrained. Why not just get on with the inquisition, surely some less than compassionate liberal would be all too happy to provide whatever devices of torture they settle upon using in the end. Or maybe heretics should simply be locked away in that mysterious basement, the one that holds Barack Obama's college transcripts.

This silliness originally came to light last week and was headed off at Hot Air here.

Of course the reason he’s so upset is this new fangled thing called the internet has enabled anyone who is curious about the climate debate to actually see both sides of the argument layed out before them.   For the alarmists, that has inconveniently helped a majority of people realize that the science behind the alarmism is weak at best and fraudulent in some cases.  It has also helped them understand that the alarmist science that Torcello wants enshrined as “truth” was gathered from deeply flawed computer models and fudged data.  And, it has also let the voices of dissenting scientists be heard.  Finally, this ability for the public to weigh the arguments has found most of the public viewing climate change as a minor problem at best.

Torcello would like to make all of that a crimnal activity based simply on his belief that the alarmist argument is the accurate argument.  He’d jail the heretics and deny the public the opposing argument.

There's also additional pertinetn background information here, if you've the stomach for it.

Torcello says that people are already dying because of global warming. “Nonetheless, climate denial remains a serious deterrent against meaningful political action in the very countries most responsible for the crisis.”

As such, Torcello wants governments to make “the funding of climate denial” a crime.

“The charge of criminal and moral negligence ought to extend to all activities of the climate deniers who receive funding as part of a sustained campaign to undermine the public’s understanding of scientific consensus.”


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