Stephan Lewandowsky's conspiracy theory is metastasizing. Prof. L. has a paper in print base on an on line survey which was advertised in several blogs, but none denizened by those who deny humans are changing the global and local climates. He dropped a remark that he had asked five of the latter to post a link, and well, you can figure out the uproar by reading the three posts he has placed at Shaping Tomorrow's World.
Sou here, there and at Rabett Run has been dipping her stick in, and a great time is being had by all in spite of the absence of popcorn, which, thanks to the mid-west drought in the US is too expensive for popping. Sou points out that the survey's main point is that extreme free market types are attracted to climate change denial as moths to flames. Others think that the paper claims (right or wrong) to show that denial is a family business, with all types on sale in the same head. Many are speculating that the original survey was designed to poe the denialists.
The latest entry comes from John Cook at the Conversation. The interesting part about that one is how John threw down the gauntlet
To reduce the influence of those who reject the science, confirmation bias and misleading rhetorical arguments need to be exposed. Now is as good a time as any to start practising so I recommend beginning with the inevitable deluge of comments to this article. Look for cherry picking, conspiracy theories, comments magnifying the significance of dissenters (or non-experts) and logical fallacies such as non sequiturs.And sure enough, go read the comments, full of conspiracy theories, cherry picking, etc.
You might think those who reject climate science would refrain from employing these methods in such an obvious fashion. But consider the Arctic sea ice example. On one contrarian climate blog, a commenter predicted five ways that people would avoid the inevitable implications of the precipitous drop in Arctic sea ice. Climate sceptic blogger Anthony Watts fulfilled all five predictions.
So the question is why can't the poor dears help themselves, and the answer is subtle, but it explains why Prof. L's survey can not be dismissed. Conspiracy theories are important parts of the denialists' world view. Of course there are the few conspiracy examples as well as the all arounders but single conspiracy folk are rare on the ground. Chris Monckton can no more not be a birther than he can stop denying that humans have anything to do with climate change. It's his birthwrong. Libertarianism is not a longing for liberty, but a denial of obligation to other humans.
It may take a village, but there are plenty of arsonists for hire.