Global warming religion and the Peace Prize

Global warming religion is that form of public faith that is common among those too cool for Christianity but too human to have faith in nothing. Only superficially related to animsm, Global warming religion is closer to a search-and-replace on Protestant Christianity, focusing on

  • Sins – CO2 emitting activities
  • Tribulation – climate change, as a result of Sins
  • Salvation of Man – to occur after the Tribulation
  • Personal Salvation – to be done through turning the heart from Sins, even if Sins do not cease

The fetishism around Al Gore ads a messianic tone to the movement, as is the case for many cults.

Soob takes a pot shot at the Prophet by noting how Irene Sendler did more, but the real shame is that if the Nobel Peace Prize committee wanted to do name a former Clinton administration official, they couldn’t have done better than: Bill Clinton.

NAFTA and the WTO were two of the three most important trade organizations formed in the 1990s, and both were created under Bill Clinton.

But Al’s cool too. Who else will help me save myself while the costs of sins lead us to the tribulation? Oh, to hurry the day for the salvation of man!

7 thoughts on “Global warming religion and the Peace Prize”

  1. Adrian,

    I responded in detail on your blog.

    The one sentence version: that Gore's plan would address some issues does not mean that it is the most straightforward, most direct, or a net beneficial way to do it.

  2. CO2 emissions are sin? Man, I gotta stop breathing…. :-)

    (Say, I wonder if the Nobelistas would tolerate a “death bed conversion” like the Southern Baptists?)

  3. Adrian,

    I assume awareness in itself is worthless, and what is actually being rewarded is a step to correct policies.

    So does that mean that to the extent that Gore “sexes up the threat” or misdirects policies, he is undeserving of the peace prize?

  4. Awareness is the first step to corrective policies. No awareness, no corrective policies. If a scientist does some science in a forest and nobody hears it….

  5. I have not previously addressed Kyoto in any depth.

    If climate change is an important, immediate, and urgent concern, then Kyoto fails in two ways:it does very little (instead of a temperature increase of 4.7 F in 2100, we get it in 2105) and (relatedly) does not include rapidly developing states such as China and India.

    Kyoto could be made potentially more effective for combating climate change — and worse for humanity, by either directly reducing CO2 production by Core states further, or by forcing China and India to reduce production, or a combination of these.

  6. “and worse for humanity”

    –sounds like a kind of tribulation.

    “directly reducing CO2 production by Core state further”

    “forcing China and India to reduce production”

    “a combination of these”

    –these would be the sins.

    And Gore would be the Anti-Christ, of course.

    It's suddenly making sense. Now we need to find a new Christ, who works to eliminate those sins or at least to educate us about them….

  7. Curtis,

    Very clever!

    My difference from the global warming religionists, if not from the technical critics, is I do not see mistakes as ending, nor as the tribulation getting much worse than general suckiness we get from bad economic policies generally. (I'd be very happy to trade a carbon tax in exchange for getting rid of a capital gains tax, for instance.)

    If I do have a religious orientation in dealing with these problems, its much more Catholic than millennialist Protestant — so sense worrying about what is inevitable, so focus on faith, hope, and love, and most importantly love.

    Adrian,

    What would Gore have to do to misdirect awareness to such an extent that he no longer deserved the peace prize in your eyes?

  8. “What would Gore have to do to misdirect awareness to such an extent that he no longer deserved the peace prize in your eyes?”

    It'd have to be something that led to counter-productive policies – like hyping the benefits of coal power plants or something. But it would be really difficult, because scientists would tell him he's wrong and then no-one would listen to him. He'd just be silly instead of harmful.

    The fact that we're having a debate over the best strategies to combat or mitigate risk from climate change is basically thanks to Al Gore – otherwise it wouldn't be on the radar. So even if his science is wrong (that UK judge found those 7 errors), his role is to foster debate, which he has done just by putting so much energy into the topic. Then scientists, wonks, etc., come up with the detailed solutions.

  9. So it's impossible to overshoot?

    That is, “counter-productive” policies would refer only to proposals that would increase global warming rather than those that, say, would lead to more people dead because of misdirected priorities?

  10. If Al Gore is elected President and implements those policies, that would be his fault. But otherwise, shouldn't you blame the people actually implementing the policies? Or are they all zombies at Gore's direction?

  11. My question, which I am struggling to get across clearly, is how can Gore receive any credit for positive effects his hyping generates while avoiding any criticism for the negative effects, especially with regard to deserving a Nobel Peace Prize?

  12. A) I don't see much negative effect of raising awareness of climate change (Lomborg's arguments are unpersuasive).

    B) Gore did his job – he raised awareness. There isn't really anything he can do to 'undeserve' his Nobel Peace Prize because the job is done.

  13. Adrian,

    I fear I am writing unclearly. Let me ask my question in another way, so that you may answer it:

    Through what view of justice do you give Gore credit for the acts his work inspires, but not debt him for those bad acts it leads to?

    You raise one other good point, and one puzzling one:

    Why are you unpersuaded by Lomborg's criticism? Do you believe his facts are in error, view deaths from climate status quo as not as big of a deal as deaths from climate change, do not believe that moderate economic growth through the next century is the expected course of events, etc?

    How does saying “Gore's prize is a fait accompli” convince anyone of anything?

  14. Gore doesn't get credit for the acts his work inspires, good or bad. He gets credit for raising awareness.

    It's not that Gore's prize is a fait accompli, it's that his raising awareness is a fait accompli, deserving of recognition (which he has won in spades).

    I can't deconstruct Lomborg in a comment thread, I'll write a post on it later (no promises on when).

  15. But “Gore doesn't get credit for the acts his work inspires, good or bad. He gets credit for raising awareness.” So (if I'm following you), the fact that some work is “more possible” is irrelevant, as he wouldn't get credit for the work anyway.

    At the core, I'm wondering how Gore justly gets praise but no blame for the consequences of his actions.

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