Everything I write that I plan to place in a publication I first run past my best friend Matt, a truly gifted editor. One of his special “talents” in my case, though, is that he has no great expertise in science or health or really any of the topics I write about. Therefore things I often assume the reader will understand he’s able to help me reframe wording and arguments to make them more comprehensible.
What Matt does well is religion. He’s very much a C.S. Lewis fan, but has an extremely broad background in theological writings. He’s more into the moderns than the classics.
As it happens, of all the science and health issues I do write about, which is a lot, the one that’s truly caught Matt’s imagination is global warming. Mind you, sometimes I catch onto things instantly that other people never grasp. It’s part of my forte. But other times I can be a bit slow to grasp what others might more quickly. So I had to ponder Matt’s fascination with global warming whereas you, gentle reader, might have latched onto it pretty quickly.
The answer, of course, is that global warming is a religion.
Mind, I’m not saying it doesn’t have scientific aspects.
The earth has measurably warmed since the mid-1800s. And there is validity to the greenhouse effect theory. We just don’t know why the earth has warmed, save that it also warmed during medieval times without any need for man-made greenhouse gases.
As to the greenhouse effect theory, as I understand it it suffers in two major ways. First, there are all sorts of natural phenomenon that serve to counteract the effect of GHGs reflecting heat back into outer space. Second, we don’t know what concentrations are required to do this reflecting. It could be vastly higher levels than we’re at or in fact will ever reach, because every ton of GHG released into the atmosphere has slightly less of an effect than the ton before.
But many religions have a lot of truth at the core, even as others were made up by a single person out of whole cloth.
The idea of global warming as religion is hardly new, insofar as a Google search on the term brings up seven million references. It appears to have been popularized by the late novelist Michael Crichton whose 2003 essay on it can be found here.
I’m not going to summarize it for you, but save to say global warming has at least two major features associated it with religion.
First is the tremendous reliance on faith. No matter how many times the warmists are refuted on the data, they never waver in their faith. But the second, and the truly obnoxious aspect, is the fanaticism. Religious wars tend to be the bloodiest, and these people tend to be incredibly vicious in every way, whether trying to identify all serious skeptics as being associated with industry (I’ve been “linked to” ExxonMobil in a dozen ways, yet I’ve never gotten a bit of support, financial or otherwise, from any petroleum company) or merely being crackpots.
Today I read we’re “the same people who told you smoking wasn’t harmful.” Golly, I don’t recall ever saying that. I’ve have said smoking is just about the stupidest thing healthwise an individual can do.
Apologies to those of you for whom this is nothing new (but nobody forced you to read this far!), but I thought that what was novel was that my friend, whose tremendous love in life is theology, picked up on this aspect probably without anybody overtly suggesting to him that global warming was a religion. Like the canary in the coal mine, he simply picked up on the danger.