The further to the left or the right you move, the more your lens on life distorts.

Saturday, July 29, 2023

Witch Trials

As we reach the midpoint of the summer of 2023, the climate catastrophists (a.k.a. Team Apocalypse) will begin to run out of hot weather that they claim is "historic" (it isn't) and a portent of climate catastrophe (it's not). The misleading scarlet red temperature maps (much like the ubiquitous Covid death scoreboards we saw in 2020-2021) appear on virtually every network weathercast (they will disappear in October) along with claims (almost always wrong) that this summer is the hottest in the last n thousand years (you can pick the value of n).

Wow, scary red!! High temps! Oh wait. It's August.

Those of us who take a more nuanced view of climate change and its long term effects are often characterized as "deniers" (just as we were when we criticized the media/government response to Covid—history has already proven that we were 100% correct in that criticism, BTW). The really serious catastrophists use another term—climate criminals—to demonize those who question their climate religiosity. People, machines and fossil fuels that produce the dreaded CO2 are bad—only the virtuous "climate aware" are good.

Funny how the long history of climate change has involved extreme human reactions. Brendan O'Neill writes:

Witch-hunts in mid-millennial Europe were inextricably linked with concerns over climate change. This was the era of the Little Ice Age, the period that roughly spanned from 1300 to 1850 during which the Northern Hemisphere experienced exceptionally cold winters. The impact of the Little Ice Age was devastating. The frigid weather violently disrupted harvests in Europe, especially the grain harvest. Following particularly cold periods in the 1500s, it took 180 years for grain harvests to return to their previous levels. The result, in the words of German historian Philipp Blom, was ‘a long-term, continent-wide agricultural crisis’ (2). And this led to a staggering spike in witch-hunts ...

It is no coincidence that around 110,000 witch trials took place in Europe during those most climatically unstable of centuries, with around half of those trials ending in conviction and execution. [emphasis mine] As the cold, starving peoples of northern Europe knew from the Bible, ‘Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live’, especially a witch with such power that she can conjure storms in which ‘sea and sky became one’. Johann Weyer, the 16th-century Dutch physician who opposed witch-hunting, describes one woman being forced to admit essentially that she had brought about climate change: ‘[A] poor old woman was driven by torture to confess – as she was just about to be offered to Vulcan’s flames – that she had caused the incredible severity of the previous winter (1565), and the extreme cold, and the lasting ice.’ (3)

The cries of those tortured women should echo down the ages. Their persecution for the crime of causing contrary weather should give us pause for thought today. For as German historian Wolfgang Behringer convincingly argues, the weather-related witch hysteria of the early modern period shows how perilous it can be to moralise discussions about the climate. A section of European society during the Little Ice Age held witches ‘directly responsible for the high frequency of climatic anomalies’, he writes. And the ‘enormous tensions created in society as a result of the persecution of [those] witches demonstrate how dangerous it is to discuss climatic change under the aspects of morality’.

Alas, it seems likely that this plea not to moralise discussions about climate will fall on 21st-century ears that are as deaf to reason as were those that ignored Reginald Scot’s insistence that weather was a heavenly phenomenon, not the devilish handiwork of warped human beings. For today, in our supposedly enlightened era, the rush to blame sinning and selfish individuals for ‘contrary winds’, or ‘weather of mass destruction’, as we call it now, is as intense as it was in the Little Ice Age. Weather witch-finding is alive and well.

Sure, we don’t threaten to hurl climate changers into ‘Vulcan’s flames’. We do not ‘thrawn’ them with rope, inducing a ‘pain most grievous’, as was done to poor Mrs Sampson. We don’t even say the word witch anymore. No, we prefer to speak of ‘climate criminals’. ‘Thirteen climate criminals who should be in jail’, as the headline in a radical magazine put it a few years ago. The list included everyone from Donald Trump to Big Oil CEOs to broadcasters like Jeremy Clarkson. Clarkson’s crime was a speechcrime – to suggest climate change is a ‘fiction’. For that, he and the other ‘real climate offenders’ should be imprisoned, we were told.

As Team Apocalypse beats its drums ever louder, their intent, it appears, is to convince people to be afraid, very, very afraid. Their hope is that once enveloped with fear, the people will accede to outrageous policies that do little good and cause great harm, but provide members of the Team with substantial authoritarian power. They'll begin slowly, with preposterous bans on gas stoves and insane regulations on pizza joints. But they'll escalate, and when they do, they just might make the trials of the 1600s look like child's play.


Here's a rather snarky take from Steven Kruiser:

The elites in the Climate Cult find it impossible to communicate without hysteria and hyperbole. A morning trip to the toilet is an existential crisis for them. If they can’t make someone feel like eating bugs and/or plunging into the darkest despair after a casual exchange on the street, they feel that they’ve failed humanity.

As a kid in the 1970s, I was constantly told that global cooling and overpopulation were the twin assassins that would soon be finishing off Earth and humanity. Here in the third decade of the 20th century, I’ve lost count of how many extinction events we’ve survived since I was an adolescent. I’m starting to get the feeling that nothing can do us in.

We realists know that the climate fear-mongering is a bunch of garbage. There is a popular belief among many skeptics that all of the climate change gloom and doom types know they’re full of it too.

That is true about some of them.

There are two classes in the Climate Cult: The Grifter Elites and the Brainwashed Faithful.

The Grifter Elites know they’re professional hoaxers. The Brainwashed Faithful — the much larger group — really believe that we’re doomed but we should ruin our lives to maybe make the doom happen just a little later. They’re a confused lot, the Faithful. If the Elites told them to survive on nothing but their own urine because it would reduce greenhouse gasses, they’d all be toasting each other with their tinkle within minutes.

The Elites have allowed the definition of “climate change” to morph so much over the years that it has less meaning than a Gene Simmons groupie encounter in 1985. Now they can use it for things like blaming a 260-million-year-old mass extinction event on it.

The Climate Cult devotees are an annoying and toxic combination of dishonesty and mental instability. As I wrote in my Morning Briefing earlier in the month, climate change hysteria is America’s biggest mental health crisis. I wish I could let them soil their diapers and ignore them, but Democrats keep trying to make taxpayers go broke funding their endless green dream follies.

Team Apocalypse has learned (from the Covid debacle) that if you scare uninformed people sufficiently, they'll do whatever you want, no matter how stupid, unrealistic, or against their own best interest. That why we're experiencing all of this preposterous fear mongering. 


You'd think that Team Apocalypse would worry about jumping the shark, but nah. An unusually hot summer (it's weather, it happens now and then) has driven the climate crazies to dial the fear knob up to 11. Today, The Washington Post tweets the following:

Even those with less scientific knowledge than, say, Greta Thunberg, know that the boiling point for water is 100 deg C. And virtually everyone one that has an IQ of, say, greater than 100 and has not been consumed by climate hysteria probably laughed (or spit out their morning coffee) when they learned that the 'eminent' U.N. has now declared that we're in "an era of global boiling." 

Sorta like the "new ice age" scientists predicted in the 1970s. "Stark" ... very stark. Whatever became of that?

It appears that the climate hysterics won't stop until they've convinced everyone to cower in fear. Then, as I noted in the body of this post, they can begin to introduce authoritarian/draconian policies that make life worse for us all and do NOTHING to modify climate trends that have been ongoing for millions of years.

But those of us who are "deniers" will continue to push back, just like we did during the Covid debacle (Another reminder: History has proven we were 100% correct in our criticism.]. The real question is how much damage to lives and livelihoods will Team Apocalypse do before actual science, a reduction in censorship, and common sense return?

UPDATE-3 (07-30-2023):

Is there anything that climate change (oops, I mean "global boiling" —see preceding Update) can't do? Not if you ask the left-leaning "news" source that is partially funded with our tax dollars, NPR. A recent headline:

"How climate change could cause a home insurance meltdown"

is yet another laugher that tells the gullible that home insurance rates will skyrocket due to wildfires caused by climate change (honest reporting indicates that some of the worst fires were caused by drought, arsonists and a serious lack of forest management, but nevermind. And of course, there's the impact of hurricanes on insurance rates. Hurricanes as we all know are caused exclusively by climate change, except, in the real world, there is little evidence that is the case ... but nevermind.

Team Apocalypse is like the energizer bunny ... it keeps going and going and going—no matter how ridiculous its claims.

UPDATE-4 (07-31-2023):

In an article, aptly titled, "Climate Change Obsession is a Real Mental Disorder," Allysia Finley writes:

... Before the media began reporting on putative temperature records—the scientific evidence for which is also weak—heat waves were treated as a normal part of summer. Uncomfortable, but figuratively nothing to sweat about.

Yet according to a World Health Organization report last year, the very “awareness of climate change and extreme weather events and their impacts” may lead to a host of ills, including strained social relationships, anxiety, depression, intimate-partner violence, helplessness, suicidal behavior and alcohol and substance abuse.

A study in 2021 of 16- to 25-year-olds in 10 countries including the U.S. reported that 59% were very or extremely worried about climate change, and 84% were at least moderately worried. Forty-five percent claimed they were so worried that they struggled to function on a daily basis, the definition of an anxiety disorder.

“First and foremost, it is imperative that adults understand that youth climate anxiety (also referred to as eco-anxiety, solastalgia, eco-guilt or ecological grief) is an emotionally and cognitively functional response to real existential threats,” a May 10 editorial in the journal Nature explained. “Although feelings of powerlessness, grief and fear can be profoundly disruptive—particularly for young people unaccustomed to the depth and complexity of such feelings—it is important to acknowledge that this response is a rational one.”

These anxieties are no more rational than the threats from climate change are existential. [emphasis mine] A more apt term for such fear is climate hypochondria.

Yup, "climate hypochondria" — yet another of the many damaging blunders that can be attributed to Team Apocalypse.