RealClimate logo


Somebody read the comments…

Filed under: — gavin @ 28 July 2020

This post is just to highlight an interesting paper that’s just been published that analyzed the comment threads here and at WUWT.

In it, the authors analyze how the commenters interact, argue and attempt to persuade, mostly, to be fair, unsuccessfully. It may be that seeing how academics analyse the arguments, some commenters might want to modify their approach… who knows?

The comment threads they looked at (I think) are from five posts from Feb to April 2019, including The best case for worst case scenarios, Nenana Ice Classic 2019, First successful model simulation of the past 3 million years and a couple of open threads.

References

  1. C.W. van Eck, B.C. Mulder, and A. Dewulf, "Online Climate Change Polarization: Interactional Framing Analysis of Climate Change Blog Comments", Science Communication, pp. 107554702094222, 2020. http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1075547020942228

62 Responses to “Somebody read the comments…”

  1. 1
    Dan DaSilva says:

    Providing ration thoughts to climate alarmists and expecting anything rational in return is not rational. However, It is fun to kick the hive once in a while.

  2. 2
    zebra says:

    Having been used in the paper, I’ll take the opportunity to reiterate my warrant. To that end, I quote someone-or-other:

    “Sometimes, a cigar is just a cigar.”

    I have stated my “purpose” and my hypothetical “audience” many times. I believe I am the only person to have made multiple references to this,

    http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2019/08/just-the-facts/

    suggesting everyone re-read it.

    I didn’t go back and check the entirety of that particular exchange used by van Eck et al, but I think I have been pretty consistent in attempting to model what an actual scientific, rational, “debate” might look like… not in every comment, of course, but to me enough to show a theme.

    Let me use a recent example. On FR, I “challenged” Ray Ladbury on his comment about the “economic system”. But I put that in a form (a thought experiment) that, in my knowledge of history, and personal experience, should appeal to a physicist if anyone. Perhaps Ray will respond; I don’t know.

    But I do know that there is a prevailing reluctance to formulate discussions with any kind of fixed constraint/parameters, and defined variables, and so on… what science does, whether in thought or physical experiments.

    If people stop by or lurk, hoping to learn something, the repetitive rhetorical rambling that fills the pages is hardly helpful. One hopes they realize that this is not science.

    Whether it is about energy transfer or human socioeconomic structures, there are established underlying principles and concepts. If this is a “science” venue, the discourse should better reflect that.

  3. 3
    MA Rodger says:

    An interesting viewpoint from which to observe a piece of research. I am somehow reminded of Amy Farrah Fowler’s lab animals and how they might feel looking out from their cages.

    I would dispute the assertion made by van Eck et al (2020) that:-

    MA Rodger disqualifies Killian’s issue-framing that his [Killian’s] article is a “better article than most on rapid climate change.”[My bold]

    I did not ‘disqualify’ the use of a Yahoo News item to make a conclusive point of science. I ‘questioned’ such a use and I explain why. Indeed, does the comment I make not end “Or am I missing something?”
    And this comment-interchange is perhaps not the best exemplar of “a difference in framing emerg[ing]” resulting in “consequently, the framing difference is left unresolved” as it is neither the beginning of an interchange nor properly an ‘ending’ in that this interchange is but one episode which comprises a long-long series with more than two participants.

    A further criticism I would make of van Eck et al (2020) is that it does not make clear the difference between the science and the bish-bash-bosh of the public/political climate debate. It thus leaves open the idea that the science is embroiled in “a polarized climate change debate” between those “identifying the negative environmental consequences of industrial capitalism represented by climate change … and those defending the economic system from such charges.”
    Yes, this quote from McCright & Dunlap (2011) is preceded by mention of the 97% scientific consensus but it is also preceded by the comment “The scientific evidence for human influence on the climate system is growing” which strongly suggests the science still has a way to go to nail down the AGW issue. In 2020, such a comment is surely long past its sell-by date, a viewpoint which I can only see being made by van Eck et al (2020) deep within their concluding discussion by choice their of references (eg here and here).

  4. 4
    CCHolley says:

    Good reference on the use of moral framing to address climate change:

    Markowitz, Ezra & Shariff, Azim. (2012). Climate Change and Moral Judgment. Nature Climate Change. 2. 243-247. 10.1038/NCLIMATE1378.

    https://www.researchgate.net/publication/256326354_Climate_Change_and_Moral_Judgment

    Abstract:

    Converging evidence from the behavioural and brain sciences suggests that the human moral judgement system is not well equipped to identify climate change — a complex, large-scale and unintentionally caused phenomenon — as an important moral imperative. As climate change fails to generate strong moral intuitions, it does not motivate an urgent need for action in the way that other moral imperatives do. We review six reasons why climate change poses significant challenges to our moral judgement system and describe six strategies that communicators might use to confront these challenges. Enhancing moral intuitions about climate change may motivate greater support for ameliorative actions and policies.

    Perhaps of particular interest from the paper on polarization:

    Moral tribalism. Much of the heterogeneity in attitudes on climate change falls along political lines: conservatives show less belief in and concern over climate change than do liberals. Part of this difference may be explained by the different moral priorities that liberals and conservatives endorse; liberals tend to base their moral priorities on two foundations of individual welfare — harm and fairness — whereas conservatives supplement these with three additional foundations focused on protecting the in-group — in-group loyalty, authority respect and purity/sanctity. The moral framing of climate change has typically focused on only the first two values: harm to present and future generations and the unfairness of the distribution of burdens caused by climate change. As a result, the justification for action on climate change holds less moral priority for conservatives than liberals. Moreover, once attitudes acquire a political valence, they are likely to polarize, for at least two reasons. First, people’s own group identification exerts a remarkably strong influence on where they stand on political issues and, once they have established a position, they are likely to interpret conflicting evidence with scepticism, while accepting consistent evidence uncritically. Second, individuals derive self-esteem and a sense of belongingness from exhibiting the values of their in-group, providing acute motivation to toe the party line. As a result, by climate change messages remaining focused on the moral priorities of liberals at the expense of those resonant to conservatives, many in the latter group have been left not just uninvolved in action on climate change, but morally hostile to it.

  5. 5
    Charly Cadou says:

    I believe that a comparison between Real Climate and Climate etc. would have been more appropriate.

  6. 6
    Russell says:

    I sometimes fear Science Communication has enlisted on the losing side in the War Against Cliche’

    https://vvattsupwiththat.blogspot.com/2020/07/constructive-reframing-of-interactional.html

  7. 7
    eric says:

    This is why I’ve always been very skeptical having an open comments section here at RealClimate! But for the misguided claim of “censorship”, we probably wouldn’t.

  8. 8
    sidd says:

    Re: commenters might want to modify their approach

    I fear not.

    But as you say, who knows ? The comments on this thread might be revealing.

    sidd

  9. 9
    nigelj says:

    Zebra @2, you make some good points at times, but your problem is you often open discussions with nasty snide comments, so things go downhill from there, unsurprisingly. Remember the first comment on the FR thread of December 2019 was was you saying “About Warrants and Crazy E-P. I suggested to Kevin M on the “10 Years On”…”

    And maybe I do repeat myself at times. Sometimes its required, and this doesn’t make the content wrong or less scientific.

  10. 10

    OK That’s it.

    We have got to REPEAL the oppressive Laws of Thermodynamics!

  11. 11
    Piotr says:

    (1): “Providing ration thoughts to climate alarmists and expecting anything rational in return is not rational. However, It is fun to kick the hive once in a while.”

    Alex, “What did Donald J. Trump say another press conference?”

  12. 12

    DDS 1: Providing ration thoughts to climate alarmists and expecting anything rational in return is not rational.

    BPL: My ration thoughts center around a nice sandwich.

  13. 13
    Radge Havers says:

    @ 6 Russell
    Russell, Russell… well, you do have a point.

    @ 7 eric
    Depends on what you mean by open. So misguided claims of censorship v. all the trolling that gets posted here? I think there may be something to learn from the mistakes of Zukerberg.
    Exhibit 1: @ 1
    At the very least you need new trolls.

    @ 8 sidd
    I suspect that as a strategy continues to not work, then the value of what can be learned from it approaches zero over time.

    —-

    If you can’t be nice, at least be original. For that matter at least try to freshen things up a bit bit anyway. So often I come here anymore and end up just hitting the snooze button.

    I get the impression that the team may have gotten bored with blogging…

  14. 14
    Susan Anderson says:

    Damian Carrington of the Guardian provides this useful review
    The four types of climate denier, and why you should ignore them all
    The shill, the grifter, the egomaniac and the ideological fool: each distorts the urgent global debate in their own way

    As for those who endlessly assert at great length (and with significant expenditure of time and effort), especially if they do it by attacking people with whom they largely agree, I have to ask don’t they have anything better to do with their time?

    Personally, the presence of these comments is the reason I don’t come here very often, because even with a good scrolling mouse, it’s annoying. There are useful ideas, references, etc. here; it is unfortunate that some people’s egos don’t let them share space and stop being so reactive.

    Feeding the fires of animosity is a fool’s job. Is there any hope that they could be given the silent treatment? I’m not going to name names because that would only draw their fire and waste more column inches. I’m not interested, gollum, not interested at all.

    Now, back to fanning the flames, but in a different way. Of course, we commenters have to think we’re important, but honestly I would be better off planting a tree and watering it (provided there’s still water, see the poor American Indians whose water was destroyed by mining toxins, after they’d been relocated to less habitable places over and over).

    I’ve observed that the NYTimes is lazy about two things, perhaps out of ignorance about human nature.

    1. Their headlines often assert the very thing they’re complaining about. Since it’s well known that most people don’t read the whole, but the headline and the opening argument, this affirms the negative.

    2. They are eager to represent “both sides”. So if, for example, there are 500 comments of which 50 are lies, assertions, and false arguments, they will hunt out a few of those and give them a “pick”. But they do this at the end. They also close comments right after someone posts a false argument. What this means is that people who look at comments are bombarded with falsehoods, and these falsehoods also garner a lot of attention (as one can measure by the disproportionate number of votes they get, which also brings them higher in the sort order of reader picks).

    Now, you can see that I am a sinner in the matter of wasting my time commenting and looking at comments. Pauli gets it right:

    brevity: wit’s soul

  15. 15
    Susan Anderson says:

    I omitted the reference I had in mind with regard to headlines etc.
    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/16/books/review/bjorn-lomborg-false-alarm-joseph-stiglitz.html

    Here’s the headline: Are We Overreacting on Climate Change?

    See what I mean? Stiglitz’s article does an excellent job, but is completely undermined by this.

  16. 16
    Mal Adapted says:

    eric:

    This is why I’ve always been very skeptical having an open comments section here at RealClimate!

    I’m assuredly sympathetic to the demands blogging makes on the authors, who have day jobs after all. I’d be disappointed if RC stopped taking comments, however. While I’ve learned a lot from the authoritative posts by recognized experts, I’ve learned from the comments by multiple intelligent and articulate regulars too. I’ve even changed my mind on a few things.

    I’ve also enjoyed the feeling of community (however contentious) the comments offer. The scope of RC’s topic is such that IMHO a degree of antagonism is to be expected. I accept that the aggressive skepticism of science may put participants on the defensive. That said, I don’t much care for the bickering among a few regulars who also sometimes contribute substance. These days I mostly reserve my aggression for clear deniers, while tending to scroll past known trolls and blue-on-blue slapfights. A 27″ LCD in portrait orientation is handy. I know I’ve been guilty of “feeding the fires of animosity” (nice) on occasion, although I’m trying harder to forbear lately. Hey, everyone’s got a personality 8^}! My profuse thanks to RC’s authors, moderators, and thoughtful regular commenters for helping me stay anchored. All blame for coming unmoored is mine.

    Back to fanning the flames: I don’t mind confessing I come here for moral clarity as well. Knowing the stark details of the threat AGW poses to human society and the biosphere helps, and confronting the fundamental immorality of science denial clarifies my own thinking. Ms. Anderson often delivers a measure of moral clarity, here and on NYTimes.com where we both comment. I differ with her a little on the paper’s editorial stance, however:

    1. I agree that headlines are important, and we may be thinking of the same egregious recent one. OTOH, I don’t see very many that don’t reasonably match the contents. A few glaring counter-examples aside, I find NYT headlines are good compressed abstracts of the articles.

    2. The NYT used to strive for false balance, but AFAICT that’s changed in the last decade. I’m increasingly pleased with their climate change reportage. How’s this for clarity: A Quarter of Bangladesh Is Flooded. Millions Have Lost Everything. Subhead: “The country’s latest calamity illustrates a striking inequity of our time: The people least responsible for climate change are among those most hurt by its consequences.”

    Yes, that’s the unassailable moral fact of AGW! It exposes the supremely privileged underpinnings of lukewarmism, ala Shellenberger, Lomborg and RPJr with their veneers of scholarship. Their skillful but patently deceptive rhetoric is making climate change worse for everyone. They recommend “adaptation”, which will be merely inconvenient for the wealthy but will cost the world’s poor their homes, livelihoods and lives. I fear their carefully crafted BS will pass for principled debate. I’m glad the NYT is speaking more plainly to its readership. And I, for one, appreciate the RC moderators’ tolerance of both pseudo-skepticism and moral outrage at same.

  17. 17
    Mal Adapted says:

    Just in case: orphaned “their”. I meant “Shellenberger, Lomborg and RPJr’s BS”. Tolerance is good. Writing self-discipline is better.

  18. 18
    Jeremy Grimm says:

    I read some of the referenced research paper: “Online Climate Change Polarization: …” but I must be missing something. I don’t see how “interactional framing theory” provides any deeper insight into blog discussions than that yielded by the ancient methods for analyzing rhetoric. To me the analysis using framing theory offered far less insight into how discussions broke down than a simple labelling of debate fallacies and rhetorical devices would offer. The concept of a polarizing frame — as far as I could grasp the concept — conveyed little meaning to me. I acquired the impression of this analytical technique that it might categorize a discussion that collapsed in name-calling and colliding appeals to authority as a “polarizing frame” but how many other patterns of discussions break down would also fit to the category of a “polarizing frame”.

    Training skill at Rhetoric was once considered the highest goal of Education. The practice of Advocacy was once regarded as high art. But what is the value of re-animating the study of Rhetoric and Advocacy using “interactional framing theory”? What am I missing?

  19. 19
    MA Rodger says:

    Susan Anderson @14,
    The Guardian article you mention is here. I don’t find the “four types of climate denier” description very useful.

    The shill … is paid by vested interests to emit clouds of confusion about the science or economics of climate action. The grifters … have found themselves earning a living by grinding out contrarian articles for rightwing media outlets.The egomaniacs … are desperate for recognition and … drawn to make increasingly extreme pronouncements, in the hope of finally being proved a dogma-busting, 21st-century Galileo. The ideological fools … can be intelligent but … are utterly blinded by their inane, no-limits version of the free-market creed. The climate emergency requires coordinated global action, they observe, and that looks horribly like communism in disguise.”

    I would also mention your declared aversion to the bish-bash-bosh down these comment threads as in my view it is not all wastful ego-waving. Indeed there is one useful aspect to debating the finer points of AGW with complete idiots.
    As such folk approach AGW from within a different worldview than the scientific worldview, it is worthwhile engaging with them to understand their worldview and thus how AGW appears from within their worldview when all the nonsensical denial is snipped away. This is a useful exercise and is actually a broader version of the mechanism that drives scientific research. If nothing else, such exchanges demonstrate the merits-or-otherwise of denialist agrument and allows for a proper response/debunking.

  20. 20
    Thomas Fuller says:

    Might I suggest instead of those four appellations something similar to ‘my opponents?’

  21. 21
    Mal Adapted says:

    Jeremy Grimm:

    Training skill at Rhetoric was once considered the highest goal of Education. The practice of Advocacy was once regarded as high art. But what is the value of re-animating the study of Rhetoric and Advocacy using “interactional framing theory”? What am I missing?

    You’re right that skill in the art of rhetoric was once the goal of education, but that was before the rise of science as a way of trying not to fool ourselves. As for the value of “interactional framing theory”: to the extent that human behaviors are intersubjectively verifiable phenomena, the goal of behavioral science is the same as that of climate science: to systematize observable phenomena, identify patterns and interpret them through rigorous empiricism and peer review. There’s room for disagreement on how successful “Political Science” is, but IMMO it’s a mistake to assume rhetoric, as a tool of politics, can’t be systematized at all.

  22. 22
    Mal Adapted says:

    I don’t mean to say Mr. Grimm’s specific criticisms of the van Eck, Mulder and Dewulf paper aren’t cogent. Indeed, by his systematic review, he’s honorably engaged in Political Science 8^D!

  23. 23
    Billy Pilgrim says:

    Mal Adapted #16

    https://www.nytimes.com/2020/07/30/climate/bangladesh-floods.html

    Regarding the article you linked – I’m torn. It’s important to document what the poor souls of Bangladesh are going through. The suffering there is at a scale few Westerners can imagine. They need our help now and in the future.

    Fact checking, though, was a disappointment. Several of the article’s claims were misleading and/or inaccurate. Not unlike Shellenberger, but with the opposite intent. The author put a climate change spin on problems that so far have little to do with AGW, ignoring altogether some of the region’s equally important ‘non-AGW’ issues (ie, subsidence, land-use mismanagement).

  24. 24

    #21, Mal–

    An OT elaboration–and with someone more thin-skinned than Mal, potentially productive of yet another pointless “slapfight.” (Great neologism, that.) And yet, if we’re going to dredge up the rudiments of Classicism, it’s apropos. And maybe interesting.

    So: No, the art of rhetoric was not in any sense the ‘end’ of education. It was one of the arts making up the “trivium”:

    –Grammar
    –Logic
    –Rhetoric

    Collectively, the “Arts of the Word”:

    https://www.hillsdale.edu/hillsdale-blog/academics/understanding-trivium-quadrivium/

    With these three safely mastered, one would proceed to the “Arts of Number or Quantity,” AKA the “Quadrivium”:

    –arithmetic
    –astronomy
    –music
    –geometry

    “Trivial” actual derives from “trivium,” a fact which retrospectively illustrates the perceived preparatory nature of the Trivium. So, rhetoric was ‘lower division’, but still an essential part of a well-rounded Classical education.

    IIRC, the Socratic method was in part a reaction against, or perhaps remedy for, Sophistry, which AIUI was essentially an ideology of professionalized Rhetoricianship without regard to the truth of propositions. Rhetoric without logic, then as now in these days of climate change denial and all-’round epistemological crisis, was dangerous.

  25. 25
    CCHolley says:

    More on framing, liberals versus conservatives.

    Recent research by four psychologists suggests that liberals and conservatives respond in different ways when faced with new evidence that contradicts their beliefs. Liberals generally value science and skepticism and therefore more apt to change their minds, while conservatives generally have a greater respect for tradition and religious beliefs so tend to just reject the evidence. Facts just don’t matter to ideological deniers, which is apparent based on their posts here at RealClimate and elsewhere. And I don’t think very many on here that engage deniers expect to change their minds, rather the intent is to just not allow their falsehoods to slide by uncontested.

    See:

    Pennycook, Gordon, et al. “On the Belief That Beliefs Should Change According to Evidence: Implications for Conspiratorial, Moral, Paranormal, Political, Religious, and Science Beliefs.” PsyArXiv, 24 May 2019. Web.

    https://psyarxiv.com/a7k96

    Abstract:

    Does one’s stance toward evidence evaluation and belief revision have relevance for actual beliefs? We investigate the role of having an actively open-minded thinking style about evidence (AOT-E) on a wide range of beliefs, values, and opinions. Participants indicated the extent to which they think beliefs (Study 1) or opinions (Studies 2 and 3) ought to change according to evidence on an 8-item scale. Across three studies with 1,692 participants from two different sources (Mechanical Turk and Lucid for Academics), we find that our short AOT-E scale correlates negatively with beliefs about topics ranging from extrasensory perception, to respect for tradition, to abortion, to God; and positively with topics ranging from anthropogenic global warming to support for free speech on college campuses. More broadly, the belief that beliefs should change according to evidence was robustly associated with political liberalism, the rejection of traditional moral values, the acceptance of science, and skepticism about religious, paranormal, and conspiratorial claims. However, we also find that AOT-E is more strongly predictive for political liberals (Democrats) than conservatives (Republicans). We conclude that socio-cognitive theories of belief (both specific and general) should take into account people’s beliefs about when and how beliefs should change – that is, meta-beliefs – but that further work is required to understand how meta-beliefs about evidence interact with political ideology.

  26. 26

    #18, Jeremy Grimm–

    Well, I’m not an expert on this topic, either, and as usual I’m going to dive in anyway, because I usually end up learning something. But here is the gist of my limited understanding:

    “Framing” is about how given individuals in discourse understand issues at play.

    “Rhetoric” is about how those individual choose to speak about said issues.

    Of course, the two are intimately inter-related, because how you choose to speak about something is first delimited by the way you think about it–even if you are consciously choosing rhetoric based upon the statements and perceived framing of your interlocutor.

    Maybe a recent example will help. President Obama made a powerful speech at the funeral of Rep. John Lewis. Friends and political allies of Mr. Lewis seem to have taken the oration in stride, those actually present even reacting with a “standing ovation.” But by contrast, conservative pundits were harshly critical. Tucker Carlson, for example, said:

    Imagine if some greasy politician showed up at your loved one’s funeral and started throwing around stupid partisan talking points about Senate procedure.

    Can you imagine that? You would be shocked if that happened. You’d probably walk out. Desecrating a funeral with campaign slogans? What kind of person would do that?

    If you read President Obama’s words, which you can do here, you find John Lewis’s life framed in terms of a prolonged struggle for racial justice, which the former President exhorted Americans to continue as the most fitting way to honor the Congressman. In a way, it’s very much in the vein of a famous piece of Canadian First World War rhetoric:

    Take up our quarrel with the foe:
    To you from failing hands we throw
    The torch; be yours to hold it high.
    If ye break faith with us who die
    We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
    In Flanders fields.

    It’s a logical framing, one the ovation following the speech suggests to have been widely shared by the attendees. And I suspect it’s the type of framing that would have made sense to Mr. Carlson had the subject been, say, a Marine killed in Afghanistan.

    However, what did Mr. Carlson perceive, or at least claim to perceive? “Stupid partisan talking points about Senate procedure.”

    Stephen Miller? “…shockingly political for a funeral service…”

    Sean Hannity? “…divisive, politically charged, and frankly, at times, mean-spirited speech…”

    So, the framing–conscious, pre-conscious, or a bit of both–was one of political partisanship. And it was foundational for the rhetorical devices used. Let’s a few of consider Carlson’s:

    “…some greasy politician showed up at your loved one’s funeral…”

    “Greasy” is pure cliche, and really doesn’t mean much, but the real rhetorical trick is “some”, which is attempting to have us ‘forget’ not only that we (including Mr. Carlson) know perfectly well who Barack Obama is, but even that he was a good friend and colleague of Mr. Lewis.

    “…and started throwing around stupid partisan talking points about Senate procedure.”

    John Lewis spent 33 years in the House, so he probably thought a lot of Senatorial procedure was pretty “stupid”, and not least this particular manifestation–which, however, he probably would have called “evil” first:

    One of the most notable filibusters of the 1960s occurred when Southern Democrats attempted to block the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 by filibustering for 75 hours, including a 14-hour and 13 minute address by Senator Robert Byrd of West Virginia. The filibuster failed when the Senate invoked cloture for only the second time since 1927.

    For President Obama, the Senatorial filibuster is framed as a tool with a nasty history of abuse in service of obstruction of the grand quest for racial justice; for Carlson, it’s just “partisan” politics.

    “You would be shocked if that happened. You’d probably walk out. Desecrating a funeral with campaign slogans? What kind of person would do that?”

    One wonders if Mr. Carlson saw the ovation Mr. Obama received, because if he did, he should have been wondering just why those present, far from walking out, stood to applaud. But that’s logic, not rhetoric, so returning to the topic, let’s note that verb “Desecrating.” Proceeding from the frame of “stupid partisan politics”, it seems logical enough to decry the introduction of mere partisan gamesmanship into the awful presences of Death and Life–and not just any Life and Death, either, but those of “your loved one.”

    But politics wasn’t a partisan game to John Lewis; that’s clear because no-one risks death–Lewis was a Freedom Rider colleague of Chaney, Schwerner and Goodman, all of whom were murdered for their trouble–or endures repeated serious beatings–four that I know of, offhand–or even more frequently repeated arrests–24 occasions, reportedly–just for a “game.”

    You might do it, though, on a grand quest for justice, and indeed for survival, for your people.

    One may wonder to what extent Mr. Carlson’s framing was pre-conscious, a matter of how he really perceives events, and to what extent it was a strategy, which fairly could be categorized under the rubric of rhetoric. If tactical choice, I think it likely a poor one, as it seems pretty ‘tone deaf’ relative to post-George Floyd America; which again suggests an element of sincere (if rather obtuse) pre-conscious framing.

    But either way, it’s pretty clear how it was determinative of the lower-level rhetorical strategies Carlson chose–and also how it will never persuade anyone framing the issue the way President Obama framed it.

  27. 27
    Susan Anderson says:

    @MA Rodger: I was specifically trying to avoid aligning with you in these arguments, but to be honest I do. In general, you do not produce “endless column inches” (not sure if I described it thusly) but useful and specific responses to neverending perfectionism coming from my way or the highway arguments. That is a gross oversimplification, but I wanted to be clear that my bias would, given a choice, support you. As for RealClimate being a place where intelligent people can hash out their differences, that’s a good point.

    It’s just that, as I said elsewhere, it all adds up to:

    HERE WE ALL ARE, AND WHAT ARE WE GOING TO DO ABOUT IT (caps intentional).

    Fighting with each other, and spending time doing so, it not getting anywhere.

  28. 28
    nigelj says:

    Susan Anderson, I agree those clickbait headlines are often very frustrating and create doubt.

    However its not clear what you mean by “attacking people”. Do you mean a)criticising the content of what people say, or b)the tone used when criticising content, or c) name calling and the like?

    Scientists and some other professions like mine are trained to rip each others ideas and work to pieces, to stress test them. Obviously it should be done diplomatically. Without all this we would probably be back in the dark ages. Of course its unfortunate when this devolves into personal acrimony and name calling.

  29. 29
    Killian says:

    Isn’t it a problem in the paper when 1. they cite people without permission? Yes, we posted, still, it’s a bit rude because 2. they got everything twisted?

    Killian responds with issue framing to MA Rodger’s issue framing. He disqualifies MA Rodger’s framing that the article’s findings are not sitting well within science

    MA said they *were*.

    by arguing that the IPCC reports serve as more than a backstop for current discussions of climate.

    I said they were NO more than a backstop, and that MA treating them as Gospel was a problem.

    This is some piss-poor scholarship.

    Moreover, Killian also introduces identity and relationship framing, by (a) referring to MA Rodger as “GreatAtNumbersBadAtAnalysis,” (b) attributing a lack of expertise to MA Rodger by discussing how he is poor at analysis

    As regards mitigation and adaptation, this is indisputable. How are facts identity and relationship framing? MA has been consistently conservative in his framing, thus consistently wrong about what is happening and what will happen, and even more so, what to do about it.

    These are consistent findings from over ten years of interactions.

    and (c) portraying MA Rodger as someone who enjoys taking people down

    Portrays? That is his own characterization.

    is allergic to being wrong

    Has he ever admitted it?

    and last, does not have any value in user threads of RealClimate.

    OK, that is subjective. However, if you can’t offer anything but always-after-the-fact comments because you’re stuck on framing everything as if the IICP reports are the cutting edge in science when they are all, by their very nature, always a couple years behind the cutting edge, what do you have to offer in the forward-looking analysis?

    Again, piss-poor scholarship.

    As a psych degree holder, let me say this paper is pretty damned useless, telling us nothing not already known, and doing it poorly. Sociological/Psychological esoterica have little to offer a world in an emergency.

    “RealClimate posters are more objective than WUWT posters.”

    Really? You did a paper on that? Had the authors done a look at currently-held beliefs on climate science, rates of change and proposed solutions all tied to personality type, accuracy and veracity, they might have found something interesting.

  30. 30
    Killian says:

    18 Jeremy Grimm: Yes. Absolutely accurate. Or am I “framing” those with similar educational backgrounds to my own?

    “My way or the highway”

    Who the hell ever says that? Nobody. Nor even close. Well, maybe the nuclear purveyors. This is the sad Group Think perhaps that article might have better addressed. This characterization is common, yet is has never been valid. How does it persist? GroupThink.

    How does, “There’s really no choice based on the risk”, e.g., equal, “My way or the highway?” How does, “This approach addresses all aspects of the emergency we face, no other does. We will go this way or we will fail.” equal my way or the highway? It’s risk analysis. There is nothing in what I, or frankly, anyone else says, that legitimately characterized that way. Susan is doing the snarky kind of crap the article talks about.

    Yeah, I know, you didn’t mean my comments…. except you know you did, and reinforce that by your backstopping of MA.

    Susan, your comments were all flames. Irony. However, this is the norm on this site: Hypocrisy. And every other.

    Maybe someday you’ll all get over making everything personal and deal with the issues raised.

    No… you won’t.

  31. 31
    zebra says:

    #27 Susan Anderson,

    You may have picked up “endless column inches” from me; I’ve used it a lot.

    And I would agree with you that MAR is not someone for whom this is an issue… there is obvious restraint and selectivity involved in his input.

    But, as you say, “here we are”, and there are obviously commenters for whom the need to fill the pages is at the level of a serious addiction or disorder. And you are not the only one for whom this is off-putting; I suspect it discourages “new blood” from participating and offering some differing perspectives. Scrolling past one’s kill-file-names may seem trivial, but encountering the noise-to-signal ratio in the first place, every time, is neither pleasant nor inviting.

    And as for the issue of Denialists, well, if there are no standards for discourse… again, as you say, among those who mostly agree… the circles just keep repeating, round and round.

  32. 32
    Mal Adapted says:

    Kevin McKinney (italics in original, ?):

    An OT elaboration–and with someone more thin-skinned than Mal, potentially productive of yet another pointless “slapfight.” (Great neologism, that.) And yet, if we’re going to dredge up the rudiments of Classicism, it’s apropos. And maybe interesting.

    Heh, your cheeks are safe from me. AFAICT, your elaboration of Classicism is well within RC’s problem domain. Hell, if I didn’t hang out here, I wouldn’t have known that stuff! BTW, “slapfight” jerks a laugh from me too (that’s why I used it), but I didn’t coin it: http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=slapfight 8^D.

  33. 33
    Radge Havers says:

    Framing

    Nor am I an expert, but I’d frame framing a little differently, saying that rhetoric (debate tactics) and piecemeal logic are ‘tactical’ while framing is more strategic.

    Since it is a term of art in the science of communication, think of how you make a picture, say a landscape, for somebody. You walk around your landscape, through it, learn what you can about it and select a representative view that fits within the limits of your media. You shift your position, zoom in, out, pan around, check all the elements, and consider who your particular audience is and their level of understanding and what will hold their interest.

    The edges of your frame have to define the structure of its contents, because you need to keep the viewers eye flowing about image in such a way that it doesn’t catch on dead spots or distractions from what is important. You have to understand how to use balance, harmony, and proportion of elements in appropriate measure to your subject or confusion will enter the picture.

    If you do it well, you will have a reasonably coherent and accurate representation of what you want to convey. Contrast that with how a beginner makes images. They may make a poorly thought out selection of a viewpoint, and then construct an image by starting at one point and then connecting point after point (trees), without ever stepping back and checking the view of the forest. The result will be a disjointed fright of an image that tries to lumber out of a corner of the frame and stumble into the viewer.

    I think you can do this with more or less narrative, but personally I think too much reliance on narrative just leads to analogy, fantasy, tropes and who knows what all.

    Yes? No?

  34. 34
    Gerald Browning says:

    There is a new peer reviewed manuscript to appear in the September issue of the journal
    Dynamics of Atmospheres and Oceans that mathematically proves that all global climate models are based on the wrong dynamical system of equations do any conclusions based on those models are unreliable.

    Jerry

  35. 35
    Jeremy Grimm says:

    @25 CCHolley
    If your paragraph on recent research by four psychologists on the differences between liberals and conservatives is indeed characteristic of “framing” literature, I think I will avoid delving further into its wisdom. Examine the “framing” you use in your paragraph — if I understand the term correctly — “Liberals generally value science and skepticism”; “conservatives generally … tend to just reject the evidence”; “ideological deniers”; and from the abstract “actively open-minded thinking style”; “skepticism about religious, paranormal, and conspiratorial claims”; “AOT-E is more strongly predictive for political liberals (Democrats) than conservatives (Republicans)”; “further work is required to understand how meta-beliefs about evidence interact with political ideology”.

    Am I wrong to interpret that this framing might be reduced to: political liberals (Democrats) are “open-minded” but conservatives (Republicans) are bigoted and “narrow-minded” — but the impacts of metabeliefs need more study.

    I don’t believe this way of analyzing opponents in a discussion is particularly helpful or illuminating. The framing is littered with labelling little short of name-calling.

    If a discussion is intended as a means to resolve disagreements, and assuming both opponents argue in good faith, I believe it would be much more useful to identify the beliefs at play and the concerns that lie beneath those beliefs. Many deniers I’ve attempted to engage will never accept evidence of Climate Change not because they are truly skeptical of Climate Change but because at a deep level they are very very afraid … and rightly so.

  36. 36

    #23, Billy Pilgrim–

    Several of the article’s claims were misleading and/or inaccurate.

    Can you be specific? I read the article twice and failed to detect misleading or inaccurate claims, though admittedly I did not ‘dig’ to fact-check. So I’d be quite curious to hear what you found.

    I will say, however, that the focus is clearly on flooding, and that is very much “climate-change related” and not at all a matter of “spin”, so I find your last sentence particularly puzzling.

  37. 37
    Karsten V. Johansen says:

    People who have invested or are investing (big) money in fossil fuels of course has a big problem accepting responsability for/i.e. “understanding” that their expected short-term profits are gained at the expense of the rest of mankind, and that for a very long future indeed. Which explains all the enormous amounts of public space used by the media-industrial complex (based on money from the very same big investors…) to defame any scientific theory that puts further exponentially rising use of fossil fuels into question. Therefore we have this constantly rising barrage from their stalin-organs.

    Pseudosociologic/-psychologic chatter seems to always fall in love with new jargon; this time it seems to be the phrase “framing”. But no matter how you use any jargon it will never make the fundamental realities of neither nature (the laws of thermodynamics) nor society (the character of capitalist markets as metastable systems: any imbalance is self-sustaining; market prices cannot express costs that arise after the commodities have been sold/used (after the oil/coal/gas has been burned), the limitations of homo sapiens concerning its ability to accept that it cannot consume everything without fatal consequences for its ecological basis etc.)

    From Reagan/Breschnev/Mao etc. to Trump/Putin/Xi etc. we humble lower class all over the globe have had to endure constantly staggering class-war launched from high above. Any attempt to reach any societal compromise has been systematically shattered to pieces by capitalist and state-capitalist hubris. Secondly: the global tyrants have never accepted that there are natural limitations to their possibilities to gain profits: they systematically deny or ignore (fx. by greenwashing) any scientific results that show any problems arising from the steadily intensified use of our natural ressources. The dire consequences of all that will not go away: those who sow wind will harvest big hurricanes. From pandemics (much worse than this one for sure, i.e. the results of overuse of antibiotics in the meatproduction) to climate desasters (drouhgts, flooding, heatwaves etc.) and global species extinction.

  38. 38
    zebra says:

    #35 Jeremy Grimm,

    “labeling little short of name-calling”

    I’m not particularly impressed with the article either, but I think you are being dismissive of psychology and sociology in general here.

    Is saying that some group is characterized by Authoritarian Personality “name-calling”? This has been studied a long time and the science seems pretty robust to me; the psychology is developed, and persists, to one degree or another, as a result of early environment and experience. (Genetic heritability doesn’t appear to be much of a factor if at all.) And, yes, it shows up in R vs D pretty clearly and consistently.

    So what are we supposed to do to “resolve disagreements” (whatever that means) when there is no initial common ground? I liked the post here about “warrants”, but I’ve always described the issue without fancy academic-speak:

    You can’t have a useful “debate” until you

    1. agree what you agree about
    2. agree what you disagree about

    How do you “resolve a disagreement” about Evolution with someone who starts with the belief that the Bible is describing historical reality? (Serious question, not just rhetorical.)

  39. 39

    GB 34: There is a new peer reviewed manuscript to appear in the September issue of the journal Dynamics of Atmospheres and Oceans that mathematically proves that all global climate models are based on the wrong dynamical system of equations do any conclusions based on those models are unreliable.

    BPL: The Navier-Stokes equations are wrong? That must be some paper.

  40. 40
    CCHolley says:

    Jeremy Grimm @35

    Am I wrong to interpret that this framing might be reduced to: political liberals (Democrats) are “open-minded” but conservatives (Republicans) are bigoted and “narrow-minded” — but the impacts of metabeliefs need more study.

    Well no, I don’t think so. When it comes to people nothing is ever that simple. You can’t just lump people as either being liberal or conservative, some perhaps, but there is actually a continuum of political beliefs across the population from ultra conservative to extreme liberalism. People can have both conservative beliefs and liberal beliefs at the same time. Although the present political environment in the USA is toxic and polarizing, I think the majority still consider themselves to be moderate. Having said that, people can be liberal and “open-minded” about certain aspects of their beliefs while at the same time being “narrow-minded” and bigoted about others. Do all conservatives deny AGW? No. Do all liberals accept AGW? No. Although deniers are more likely to be quite conservative and those that accept the scientific consensus are more likely to be more liberal in their views.

    I don’t believe this way of analyzing opponents in a discussion is particularly helpful or illuminating. The framing is littered with labelling little short of name-calling.

    I think you missed the point. When discussing AGW with deniers, it is highly likely that they will not be persuaded by facts and evidence. They are too emotionally attached to their belief and are fully vested in the conservative worldview as presented in the conservative media. So once, you’ve identified them as a denier, any discussion of facts becomes a waste of time. My personal experience confirms this conclusion. Obviously, framing that labels them or name-calling would not be productive. But what would be?

    If a discussion is intended as a means to resolve disagreements, and assuming both opponents argue in good faith, I believe it would be much more useful to identify the beliefs at play and the concerns that lie beneath those beliefs. Many deniers I’ve attempted to engage will never accept evidence of Climate Change not because they are truly skeptical of Climate Change but because at a deep level they are very very afraid … and rightly so.

    Hardcore deniers never argue in good faith. That’s what makes them so easy to identify. On the other hand, for discussions with those who are not quite so conservative and only “doubtful” about AGW, and who actually show a willingness to engage in good faith discussion, then, yes, understanding the reasons behind their “doubt” could be useful. But then again, discussing facts and evidence may still get you nowhere.

  41. 41
    Jeremy Grimm says:

    I’ll add another criticism of “frames” as I understood them. They all too nicely encapsulate blog-interactions in a casing of ‘frames’. What of Trolls? Are ‘frames’ a useful tool for analyzing agnotology? I believe frames are a very useful tool for neatly wrapping-up and hiding any connections between a blog entry and a larger often very-well-funded agnotology. Perhaps agnotology fits into an approved list of conspiracy theories discounted entirely on that basis — tell that to smokers.

    I believe blog interactions have less impact on the participants than on the observers — the ‘lurkers’. Using frames as an analysis tool wonderfully immunizes against blogger critiques. Critiques become for the observers — mere ‘specimens’ of a framing rationale. This differs greatly from the way that standard debate rules out certain arguments while retaining the controversy and the importance of the issue in debate. I believe framing too often functions to transmute the issue in contention to little more than a context for a frame or equivalent to a mere peripheral item to the debate.

  42. 42
    Jeremy Grimm says:

    This is a meta-comment. I expect it might/should disappear in moderation —
    I believe you operate your website using WordPress — as does another website I read and frequently comment to: Yves Smith’s NakedCapitalism. At NakedCapitalism [wwww.nakedcapitalism.com] comments nest very efficiently … eliminating the @so-and-so of the comments here on Real Climate. I do not know how any of that is done or whether it incurs an added cost to using WordPress. Yves might share the magic.

    I also note how often issues of Climate come up on NakedCapitalism. For example today’s links brought in a link from Arctic News about an ice-free Arctic [https://arctic-news.blogspot.com/2020/07/arctic-sea-ice-could-disappear-completely-within-two-months-time.html] I follow issues of climate closely. I believe it could be most helpful if NakedCapitalism might be able to tap into the expertise here at RealClimate to evaluate links like that cited above. [Disclaimer — I am not affiliated with and will receive a harsh spanking from Yves at NakedCapitalism for approaching you. I am wearing my Kevlar underwear and sit on an almost intact piece of Striker bolt-on vehicle augmentation armour. I have taken my Motrin and other more powerful pain killers … I am ready.]

  43. 43
    Mr. Know It All says:

    4 – CCHolley

    “…liberals tend to base their moral priorities on two foundations of individual welfare — harm and fairness — whereas conservatives supplement these with three additional foundations focused on protecting the in-group — in-group loyalty, authority respect and purity/sanctity…..”

    Would have to call BS on the inclusion of those last 3 “foundations” attributed to conservatives – I have no idea what they are referring to.

    For most “skeptics” or “deniers” the issue boils down to the fact that they don’t believe CC is significantly caused by humans. To a non-scientist it sounds like total BS – how can a few hundred PPM of CO2 be a catastrophe? Further evidence to reinforce their doubt is found in the record of continuous climate change before humans had any impact at all. Warming and cooling are constant throughout the history of the earth. Also, we’ve been bombarded constantly by climate and environmental doomsday claims that never occurred; as well as other types of hysterical claims about economics, politics, etc – it all just becomes background noise.

    So, there is little if any “moral” aspect to denial of AGW – people simply do not believe the theory, and if they think it may be real, they think we’ll come up with a solution. If there is a moral component to it at all, it is the argument that stopping use of FFs would cause great harm to many people around the world.

    The openly stated political desire of the left to destroy capitalism and replace it with some kind of socialist utopia also causes people to have great doubt about the motives behind doomsday claims of AGW.

    There is nothing moral or complicated about the fact that many folks are not concerned about AGW.

  44. 44
    Billy Pilgrim says:

    Kevin McKinney #36

    “Can you be specific? I read the article twice and failed to detect misleading or inaccurate claims, though admittedly I did not ‘dig’ to fact-check.”

    Here are a few examples, starting near the top:

    —————-

    NYT: “A Quarter of Bangladesh Is Flooded.”

    BP: Not at all unusual,

    “Flooding is a very common phenomenon in the People’s
    Republic of Bangladesh. The geographic location of the
    country is such that natural river floods occur almost every
    year during the monsoon season between June and Septem-
    ber. Every year, one-quarter to one-third of the country is
    inundated by overflowing rivers during the monsoon sea-
    son. The floods disrupt the lives of people. In the urban
    areas, floods damage property, infrastructure and road net-
    works while floods in rural areas frequently also cause
    damage to crops and loss of livestock. Floods place people’s
    live at risk both directly through drowning and also by
    disrupting communications. On the other hand, floods have
    a positive impact on the environment. For example, flood-
    waters supply nutrients that enrich the soil and recharge
    groundwater. Although solid wastes are washed out, floods
    enhance the diversity of aquatic species. Severe floods even
    have a positive effect on rice production in Bangladesh
    (Asada et al., 2005).

    https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Sujit_Bala/publication/242525735_FLOOD_INUNDATION_MAP_OF_BANGLADESH_USING_MODIS_SURFACE_REFLECTANCE_DATA/links/02e7e5290332cd89a2000000/FLOOD-INUNDATION-MAP-OF-BANGLADESH-USING-MODIS-SURFACE-REFLECTANCE-DATA.pdf?origin=publication_detail

    ———

    NYT: “Millions Have Lost Everything.”

    BP: Covid-19, not climate change, made this season different; as acknowledged later in the same article,

    “Those who live along the Brahmaputra are no strangers to flooding. When the river swells, work stops, land erodes, people move to higher ground and wait for the waters to recede. They rely on their savings or aid to feed themselves.
    This year was different, though. By the time the river flooded, in June, people were already running out of food, said Mr. Hasan of BRAC.
    Because of the lockdown, working people had all but stopped working. Remittances from relatives abroad, many of them newly unemployed, had dried up. In the countryside, people had begun to sell their goats and cattle at bargain prices. They had no food to eat.”

    ———

    BP: How, then, does the article’s title lead to what we see written just beneath it??

    “The country’s latest calamity illustrates a striking inequity of our time: The people least responsible for climate change are among those most hurt by its consequences.”

    BP: Of course, the people least responsible for climate change ARE among those most hurt by its consequences. I’m not questioning that. What bothers me is how the author has spun a recent tragedy to fit that narrative.

    ————

    NYT: “Bangladesh is already witnessing a pattern of more severe and more frequent river flooding than in the past along the mighty Brahmaputra River..”

    BP: Really? Not according to the most recent study,

    “Here, we make an assumption, as a first approximation, that the contribution of the local freshwater trends to the regional RWL trends is negligible during this period. There are several reasons for this. The first one, and the most fundamental, is that no significant linear trend over 1993 to 2012 is detected in the Ganges and Brahmaputra discharge time series (nor in the aggregated discharge of the 2 rivers). We used the only available in situ discharge observations for the entire GBM delta (at Hardinge Bridge and at Bahadurabad; Materials and Methods). Due to the large natural fluctuations in the discharge time series we cannot detect a significant trend over 1993 to 2012. This is further supported by the fact that there is no consensus in the scientific literature about significant changes over 1993 to 2012 in the various components of the water cycle (rainfall, evaporation, discharge, water storage) in this region.”

    https://www.pnas.org/content/117/4/1867

  45. 45
    Al Bundy says:

    Kevin: You might do it, though, on a grand quest for justice, and indeed for survival, for your people.

    AB: fantastic post except for that sentence. Barring state-enacted genocide, oppressing people always brings the same result: they outbreed you.

    Atrocities are loud and kill far fewer than the births oppression fosters among the survivors. Saying a people are at risk of disappearing as their percentage of the population is increasing cheapens the post.

    But the post was still fantastic.

  46. 46
    Al Bundy says:

    ‘at risk of disappearing’ is a counterproductive visual because it inverts the reason that white nationalists are so worked up. If black and Hispanic percentages of the population were static this sociopolitical war wouldn’t be happening.

    We’re fighting over whether to allow the USA to become a majority minority country. Cuz when that happens being white no longer means shit.

    Reference EP for articulations of A White Man’s Fear.

  47. 47
    Brian Dodge says:

    One defect in framing is that when one applies framing to the facts in order to support your argument and diminish your opponents argument is that the facts you set outside your frame don’t disappear. Another defect in argument from the political/economic/legal/religious/non-science side is that science isn’t about winning arguments. It’s about observations. It’s about converting those observations to measurements. It’s about doing the math on the numbers from the measurements. And it is about putting the knowledge gained by those processes into a framework which is consistent with existing knowledge(the “consensus of science”)and expands that body of knowledge.

  48. 48
    Brian Dodge says:

    It is interesting that an earth shattering paper “that mathematically proves that all global climate models are based on the wrong dynamical system of equations” doesn’t contain the word “climate” It does say that “Although only one level is shown, the relative l2 errors are 9.1%, 8.9% and 8.2% for the horizontal divergence δ, the vertical component of velocity w and the vertical component of vorticity ζ respectively.”

    The Unique, Well Posed Reduced System for Atmospheric Flows: Robustness In The Presence Of Small Scale Surface Irregularities
    https://curryja.files.wordpress.com/2020/06/manuscript.pdf

  49. 49
    nigelj says:

    Jeremy Grimm @35, regarding the study on liberals and conservatives. While I understand your concerns, ultimately finding the facts is more important than avoiding upsetting peoples sensibilities. I doubt anyone will used the study to score points, and it looks unlikely to make front page in the news media.

    The conservative end of the spectrum might as you say deeply fear climate change but they also appear to deeply fear governments, and business trying to help fix the problem. Goverments that genuinely abuse their power can be changed quickly enough. The damage caused by climate change could last for millenia.

  50. 50
    Mr. Know It All says:

    16 – Mal Adapted
    Much of that region floods almost every year. Always has:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Floods_in_Bangladesh#Historic_floods

    Per your NY Times article we can’t yet attribute the floods to AGW:

    “…And while it’s too soon to ascertain what role climate change has played in these latest floods, Bangladesh …”

    25 – CCHolley

    “…Liberals generally value science and skepticism and therefore more apt to change their minds, while conservatives generally have a greater respect for tradition and religious beliefs so tend to just reject the evidence. Facts just don’t matter to ideological deniers,…”

    I’m surprised, but pleased to hear that skepticism is so highly valued by “liberals”. What is the definition of an “ideological denier”, a “liberal”, a “conservative”? On the subject of “evidence”, unless you have education that allows you to understand the math and physics of AGW theory, then you really cannot understand what AGW “actually” is. Non-math/physics “evidence” exists both to support AGW theory (recent correlation of temperature and CO2) and that casts doubt on it (pre-industrial revolution record of temperature that does not correlate to CO2). Thus, a non-scientist just has to pick which one makes the most sense to them, because the evidence TO THEM is inconclusive – it’s based on a gut-feeling perhaps influenced by their political views: they may become a “believer” or “denier”. This is why schools are indoctrinating children about AGW before they get to an age of being able to make an informed decision based on science; they are teaching WHAT to think, not HOW to think.

    31 – zebra

    “…if there are no standards for discourse… again, as you say, among those who mostly agree……”

    Are you saying that the standard should be that all comments must agree or not be posted? Is that what you call science?

Leave a Reply

Comment policy. Please note that if your comment repeats a point you have already made, or is abusive, or is the nth comment you have posted in a very short amount of time, please reflect on the whether you are using your time online to maximum efficiency. Thanks.