In my last post I talked about how people who claim to have expertise they don’t have no right to publicly voice an opinion, especially if others will act according to their opinion. My post was focussed on climate change deniers and the role of the internet in giving them a voice, but it dawned on me that I have had a very close experience of the devastating results of just that kind of deception.
On February 22nd, 2011 at 12.51 I was at the gym when the earthquake hit, and I genuinely thought I was going to die.
We got out of the building and one of the first things I saw was the collapsed CTV building, and I remember the horror when I realised that great many people had just died. We were evacuated to a nearby park and I saw two women standing at the hastily erected barriers crying, so I walked up and asked if I could do anything. They were mother and daughter and their son and brother worked in the building, I told them to keep hope and then we prayed together – I desperately hoped that maybe prayers could come true, but I later saw his name on the roll of those who had lost their lives.
Over the months since that day a great many questions have been asked about why a modern building had collapsed so completely and cost 115 lives, and in the process it has been revealed that Gerald Shirtcliff who had supervised the construction had lied about his qualifications and construction experience. In other words despite not being qualified to give a professional opinion, he gave that opinion, and 115 men and women were killed – 115 sons, daughters, fathers, sisters, uncles, friends and colleagues.
There is no difference between what he did and what happens when people who pretend to be climate scientists tell the world that climate change has little or nothing to do with human activity, except the magnitude of the destruction their deceit will lead to.
It could be easily argued that governments and industry should know better, and because their own scientific advisers (overwhelmingly) support the consensus view they should make the decisions that have to be made. Yes, they should, but as long as the public who vote them in and who buy their goods are in doubt about the truth of climate change; or worse still think it’s a scam to raise their taxes, nothing will be done. Nothing will be done because people who have no right to voice opinions on climate change have told the public that there is nothing to worry about because climate change is a scam being used by unscrupulous politicians to rip them off.
Gerald Shirtcliff has been exposed – now it’s time to do the same with the deniers. There is no point in using logic or reason to argue with them because I doubt that many of them actually believe their lies and they are not bound by the moral and logical constraints that the rest of us are. That means that despite knowing that they are wrong they will still conduct their deadly game of deceit, deceit that demands to be exposed.
- Fake engineer and a deadly building (smh.com.au)
- Climate change deniers wasting taxpayer money
- A platform for climate change deniers
- Manufactured uncertainty by climate change deniers (Penn State Department of Geography)