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“That, Madame, is intellectual baby-talk”

“That, Madame, is intellectual baby-talk”

Monckton’s Schenectady showdown, h/t reader John:

As they filed in, Lord Monckton was chatting contentedly to a quaveringly bossy woman with messy blonde hair who was head of the college environmental faction. Her group had set up a table at the door of the auditorium, covered in slogans scribbled on messy bits of recycled burger boxes held together with duct tape (Re-Use Cardboard Now And Save The Planet). “There’s a CONSENSUS!” she shrieked.

“That, Madame, is intellectual baby-talk,” replied Lord Monckton. Had she not heard of Aristotle’s codification of the commonest logical fallacies in human discourse, including that which the medieval schoolmen would later describe as the argumentum ad populum, the headcount fallacy?

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Comments

Silly liberals. Anyone who believes in this crap should be forced to live in Ethopia, like Ethopians for a year. Lets see them talk about carbon footprints after they have been denied computers, air conditioning, guns to defend themselves, food grown without pesticides, no modern medicine, etc. Then come back and tell us how we should live.

Society needs to create a “gap” year between high-school and college in every young person’s life where all they do is manual labor and study and discuss Aristotle, Plato, Confucius, et al. It would be a huge help to public discourse.

    ncmont in reply to ncmont. | March 10, 2012 at 10:12 am

    Also, how does one add a picture to their profile?

      logos in reply to ncmont. | March 10, 2012 at 10:47 am

      Go to Gravatar, set up an account linked to your e mail address, select an image – from your hard drive or from the Internet, and you’re in business.

    Jake Blues in reply to ncmont. | March 10, 2012 at 12:35 pm

    What is really needed is a College Equivalency exam so normal people who are reasonably smart can test out, get a diploma, go to work and start being productive right out of the gate.

    LukeHandCool in reply to ncmont. | March 10, 2012 at 2:14 pm

    That and a mandatory two-year stint in the military, just like in Israel and Singapore.

    The inner-city kids going nowhere from broken and dysfunctional families would learn self-discipline and other values necessary for success in life, breaking the intergenerational cycle of hopelessness, and some of the lefty kids might become a tad bit more patriotic … or at least not so hateful of our military.

      Not a bad idea, LHC, except the military is not currently staffed to handle the surge of riffraff that ensues. MOS skill set differences between basic trainer and infantry person are wider than imagined. Not saying they couldn’t be developed, but it would take time.

        LukeHandCool in reply to 49erDweet. | March 10, 2012 at 9:26 pm

        Whatever it takes, 49erDweet my friend.

        I really think it could help this country. Couldn’t hurt to give it a try.

    Kenshu Ani in reply to ncmont. | March 10, 2012 at 4:45 pm

    I spent the last two years of high school overseas, in Egypt, due to my father being employed with USAID. Not only did I experience a different culture, I also saw first hand the difference between public schools and a private school. This is how I formed the opinion that public schools, in the USA, are about being daycare centers and not education.

    I’ve been telling my friends for years now that we should ship our high school students overseas for a couple years. That way they might learn to truly appreciate how great America is.

    Plus it comes in handy when some liberal spouts out some nonsense like (and this just happened to me last week), “American society thinks of women just as poorly as Arab states.”

    After I stopped laughing, I informed her just how wrong she was.

Science mandates skepticism. A scientist is required to test another scientist’s claims, data, findings. The entire basis of the scientific method is around its requirement that you must demonstrate what you claim.

It is ANTI-science to invoke a “consensus”. Which is one way you know the claims of a lot of environmentalists are shear superstition…witch-doctor hoo-doo.

Joan Of Argghh | March 10, 2012 at 10:18 am

That was possibly the most satisfying thing since the last most satisfying thing you posted!

I don’t need a cigarette this time, however.

I need a drink. A toast to Lord Monckton: may his tribe increase.

Consensus is a strange bird. In a Pluralistic society it would seem to be about the only thing that can save us from breaking down into partisian camps that don’t even talk together.
The problem is that it’s almost entirely possible to get to “theoretical” or “pure” consesnus(agreement among 100% of the poupulation, not statisically, actually) and instead you end up with something even worse.
I won’t digress into “weak” consenus or anything like that, because I think more importantly is the fact that in order to achieve consensus you have to first draw the circle of “rational debate.”
Again in a theoretical sense this isn’t that bad, after all you will never reach consensus if you have people who are legitimately insane messing with the process. A great example is you’d never get pure consensus for plane travel if you allowed in people who still thought the earth was flat. The trouble comes when this moves from the “theoretical” arena into the “practical” arena and people start drawing circles to fit their wanted outcome. Global warming becomes a matter of “consensus” because we just remove those disagree. Abortion: Consensus, because religious objections to life at concenption are “irrational.” etc. etc. etc.
So consensus is dangerous for two reasons: 1)Bandwagon effect and 2) stifling effect

Riles me up when the “party of anti-science” gets thrown about. This was a wonderful post, and also proof of two things:

(1) Command of the facts matter, we should all seek them and ask of others the same, our side or theirs

(2) Delivery of those facts matter just as much. The good Lord has that as well.

We can’t all be Lord Moncktons – but just as we can try to emulate Breitbart a bit, so too will I look to learn from him. In this case, from his delivery and engagement style.

Kudos to him for the fighting the good fight. As someone who majored in Philosophy, with a focus on Philosophy of Science, this topic is near and dear to my heart.

    JayDick in reply to PrincetonAl. | March 10, 2012 at 11:50 am

    I was not a philosophy major, but in attending a Jesuit college, I got more than my share (24 semester hours), especially considering that I was an accounting major. That plus a career as an auditor also gave me a very strong appreciation for truth in all its detail.

    So many politicians on both sides lie and distort. Makes me wish there was some organization totally dedicated to exposing untruths from all politicians. Many sites expose left-wing lies, although some also lie and distort in the process. Those on the left don’t even seem capable of recognizing truth, especially when lies support their causes.

It is remarkable that the most ignorant and intolerant people in North America are either running or enrolled at “prestigious institutions of higher learning” where they preach ignorance and intolerance and rail against anyone who disagrees with them and is better educated or smarter than they are.

Irony can be so ironic…

Satisfying beyond words. Thank you, and for introducing me to campusreform.org.

“Gently, and sadly, he said, “We shall lose the West unless we can restore the use of reason to pre-eminence in our institutions of what was once learning. It was the age of reason that built the West and made it prosperous and free. The age of reason gave you your great Constitution of liberty. It is the power of reason, the second of the three great powers of the soul in Christian theology, that marks our species out from the rest of the visible creation, and makes us closest to the image and likeness of our Creator. I cannot stand by and let the forces of darkness drive us unprotesting into a new Dark Age.”

I am a big fan of Lord Monckton. Interviews with him are both informative and entertaining, as he has quite the flair for language.

We should talk more about scientific consensus.

Like the consensus that a baby’s heart beats 7 weeks after conception….

Careful – when the Left says ‘Consensus’ they really mean Collusion, Coercion and Conformity.

Lord Monckton’s analysis makes me yearn for the return of classical education.

The extreme warming scenarios are driven by a CO2 feedback term in the climate models. That feedback deserves to be the object of intensive research.

    Jack Long in reply to gs. | March 10, 2012 at 2:21 pm

    I don’t know if you have seen this already:

    Richard Lindzen / British House of Commons / 2/22/12 / PDF link

    Richard Lindzen at the British House of Commons. The MP’s are reassessing their climate commitments, I believe.

    Lindzen doesn’t believe CO₂ is a problem.

    The PDF is of a powerpoint presentation. 48 pages of text and charts. It is not a heavy read.

    Some background here

      1. I quote:

      Our present approach of dealing with climate as completely specified by a single number, globally averaged surface temperature anomaly, that is forced by another single number, atmospheric CO2 levels, for example, clearly limits real understanding; so does the replacement of theory by model simulation. In point of fact, there has been progress along these lines and none of it demonstrates a prominent role for CO2.

      I’m all for supplanting simulation by theory wherever possible, and for bringing into climate science the traditional synergy between theory and experiment: either outdoors experiments or experiments with focused laboratory analogs.

      Since the CO2 feedback is so important in the alarmists’ case, nailing it down is a reasonable place to start.

      2. Note that Lindzen does not rule out climate catastrophes in the immediate future; he only rules out unprecedented catastrophes. Humanity as a species should develop the scientific underpinnings for climate engineering that can prevent or mitigate “ordinary” climate catastrophes.

Please don’t let Lord Monckton know of the recent exchanges among Sandra Fluke, Rush Limbaugh, Professor Landsburg, and President Seligman. He would throw up his hands in despair at the state of education in the US and flunk every one of them on logic and critical reasoning.

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