Want To See How Far They'll Go? Psychological 'vaccine' could help immunize public against 'fake news' on climate change

Posted by Zenphamy 5 years, 5 months ago to Science
35 comments | Share | Flag

So, if the science and the facts don't support you, now they'll apply psychological vaccination/innoculation to you. Believe it or not, this is real.

""The idea is to provide a cognitive repertoire that helps build up resistance to misinformation, so the next time people come across it they are less susceptible."

To find the most compelling climate change falsehood currently influencing public opinion, van der Linden and colleagues tested popular statements from corners of the internet on a nationally representative sample of US citizens, with each one rated for familiarity and persuasiveness.

The winner: the assertion that there is no consensus among scientists, apparently supported by the Oregon Global Warming Petition Project. This website claims to hold a petition signed by "over 31,000 American scientists" stating there is no evidence that human CO2 release will cause climate change.

The study also *used the
accurate statement that "97% of scientists agree on manmade climate change*". Prior work by van der Linden has shown this fact about scientific consensus is an effective 'gateway' for public acceptance of climate change."

Still want to listen to the experts? These people have
* limits.

SOURCE URL: https://phys.org/news/2017-01-psychological-vaccine-immunize-fake-news.html

Add Comment


All Comments Hide marked as read Mark all as read

  • Posted by ObjectiveAnalyst 5 years, 5 months ago
    Hello Zenphamy,
    They don't dare call it what it is- brainwashing propaganda. jbrenner and Temlakos have it right. “If you tell a lie big enough and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it. The lie can be maintained only for such time as the State can shield the people from the political, economic and/or military consequences of the lie. It thus becomes vitally important for the State to use all of its powers to repress dissent, for the truth is the mortal enemy of the lie, and thus by extension, the truth is the greatest enemy of the State.” Joseph Goebbels.

    The earth has had at least five major ice ages before the industrial age of man. It necessarily follows that in between were warming periods not influenced by man. The crux of the AGW argument relies on a correlation between CO2 and the warming. This correlation is not definitive evidence of causation. There are too many other random variables and disagreement as to why some ice core samples show that CO2 followed warming instead of preceding it. There is also substantial evidence that the ocean temperature and CO2 increases are potentially the result of an increase of volcanic activity, especially on the ocean floor.

    Additionally, there is little consideration given to the question of whether a warmer or colder earth is beneficial. Change is the nature of things, and some, looking through the prism of their short lives, believe things have always been as they experienced it and fear change that may actually be a net positive. Coastlines have always been changing, but a warmer earth is a more human friendly earth. Cold kills far more. Man can adapt and move as required. An ice age could force all surviving humanity into a small band about the equator; whereas a warmer earth exposes a larger arable region. New York streets could be under 10 feet of water and people would move/adapt, but not under a mile of ice sheet... If one believes humans are Gaia's parasites and are destroying the earth, then policies that are detrimental to humanity will be attractive, regardless of efficacy or human suffering. They want others to stop populating and "polluting," but haven't the courage of their convictions, or they themselves would stop breeding, consuming and indefinitely hold their breath.

    Pollution is and has been a problem that most advanced industrialized nations are adequately addressing. The LA smog of the seventies is almost nonexistent. The Great lakes are also much cleaner since the seventies, as is the air over Midwest rust belt cities. CO2 is not a pollutant. It is plant food. The earth has a natural mitigation process- more plant growth. This will be vital to an increasing population.

    The most important thing is that while the climate may be changing, as it always has, to nefariously use it to gain power over others is the real objective we should oppose. Alternatively we could all put on our group-think hats and get in lockstep... destroying what prosperity we have for some unattainable, quixotic goal that will solve no problem, real or imagined.

    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by DrZarkov99 5 years, 5 months ago
    The fictional "97%" were a whopping 75 scientists, selected by a climate change obsessed hack, who "reviewed" 215 peer reviewed papers out of a database of over one thousand (which latter number he professed were "participants"). Of the 215 authors, only 78 even responded, and three of those questioned the idea that the climate was changing primarily due to human actions. The 75 positive responses made up 96.2% of his limited study population, which number he "rounded up" to 97%, further demonstrating his disregard for scientific accuracy. After the study results were announced, several of the 75 scientists said their responses had been taken out of context, since they admitted the science was not "settled".
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by dbhalling 5 years, 5 months ago
    The sunny side of the moon has a temperature of 106 to 116C degrees. The moon receives essentially the same solar intensity of light as the Earth, but it has no atmosphere to trap the infrared emissions from the surface like Earth. According to the explanation of the greenhouse effect shouldn't the moon's surface temperature be closer to -18?
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by Riftsrunner 5 years, 5 months ago
    True scientists of any ilk would be ashamed to be included in a statement that remotely reports a percentage. That isn't how science works. The problem is that to express a percentage requires that you know the total of all included data points (in this case 100% of scientists that claim to be climate scientists and are working in climate related fields). Since you cannot know this number, 97% is bogus on its face.

    Also as some have pointed out, science isn't a democracy. And it doesn't need to be sold to make people believe it. You just need to present the evidence in a way that provide incontriverible proof that it is true and belief will follow. If you need to 'inoculate' people against 'false' data, your evidence isn't incontrovertible and thus needs more work.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 5 years, 5 months ago
      True enough that the 97% number is nonsense, but worse in my mind is that so called 'professional mental health' workers are by, publishing the study, applauding the concept of public brainwashing.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by KevinSchwinkendorf 5 years, 5 months ago
    I agree, there certainly is a lot of "fake news" regarding "Global Warming" (oops, I'm sorry, "Climate Change"). First and foremost is the fake news that (dogmatically) "Climate Change is REAL, its MAN-MADE (as in "Anthropogenic Global Warming", or AGW), and if we don't DO something about it RIGHT NOW (like destroy our economic way of life and surrender our individual sovereignty to The State through ever-increasing regulation, etc.), then WE'RE ALL GONNA DIE!!!" This is a complicated issue, filled with political coercion, ulterior motives, and pedantic garbage. Second, the "best evidence" the global warming advocates have for their case is computer simulation models, so-called GCMs (Global Circulation Models, or General Circulation Models). They are fluid dynamic simulations, with all sorts of effects coupled in (such as chemistry, assumptions about cloud formation and albedos (the ratio of reflected to transmitted solar radiation off upper cloud layers), coupling of atmospheric to oceanic phases, and other factors). The Earth's climate is extremely complex, and El Nino and La Nina effects need to be considered before one jumps to conclusions like, "gee its hotter than its ever been before (it MUST be global warming!)," or even, "its COLDER than its ever been before (so it MUST be global warming!)" - yes, I've heard that too! I'm not a climatologist, but I am a nuclear engineer with a PhD in the field, and I earned my doctorate in computer simulation and modeling of severe nuclear reactor transients, so I do know a fair amount of numerical methods in supercomputer modeling. In my field, computer models have to be "verified" (does the computer model correctly implement the intended model? - or, there are no software bugs, right?) and "validated" (which means, once correctly coded, does the model adequately match physical measurements (or experiments) that the computer code is intended to model? Or, how well does the model match the physical reality, so that a modeling bias can be derived.) In the nuclear field, computer models have to be proven to adequately model reality, or you don't get to use them. When applying for and keeping an NRC license to run a nuclear power plant, you have to be grounded to reality. From what I've read, the climate models do not predict very well what is measured; they tend to grossly over-estimate the degree of warming that is measured, and they fail to adequately predict past climate trends. Of course, as the models are improved over time, they do tend to improve on their fidelity to real trends (they tend to predict less warming). Improvements include finer spatial mesh and smaller timesteps (which faster supercomputers with more main memory enables), but also including more of the relevant physics and chemistry in the codes. Previous cycles in climate change have been caused by known cycles in solar activity, not by the Vikings driving around too much in big SUVs. Finally, back in the early 1970s, scientists were really concerned about "Global Cooling!" I have seen articles written back in 1972-73 warning that increased industrial soot output was increasing the amount of incoming sunlight that was either reflected back into space or absorbed, thus reducing the sunlight that reaches the Earth's surface. Of course, that same article admitted that increased CO2 production might partially mitigate the overall cooling trend, but they believed that the overall trend was for a colder climate. Now the boogey man is SUVs and too many cows farting. But hey, as long as you get your funding for next fiscal year, you're doing okay, right?
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ Stormi 5 years, 5 months ago
    A wise philosophy professor once told our class, "Beware of experts!" That along with a statement from the head of the science dept. that
    Facts exist,until new research proves them wrong."
    I have ever since been on guard by anything being sold as truth by any elf-proclaimed expert. It is always good to "Follow the money" as one senior friend always tells me. Who funded what and who threahened the funding of whom.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ TomB666 5 years, 5 months ago
    Very few of us ask the question: At whose expense? Rand said something similar, but I don't have the quote at hand. Another variation is: Who profits by this assertion?

    Did you know that it was discovered that Freon was bad for the environment just at the time that Dupont’s patent on it was expiring? But not to fear, Dupont had a replacement ready to go, along with a new patent.

    I believe the climate is changing because it ALWAYS changes. The climate was changing before there were people and it will keep changing. The question I do not have a satisfactory answer to is whether people can have a significant impact on the climate. I do know people can have an impact on a company’s (or university’s) profitability.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by CircuitGuy 5 years, 5 months ago
    In addition to using neutral "inoculation statements", they should have tried it with other scientific facts that are unpopular with segments of the population: there's no evidence of risk of GMOs, vaccines are safe, homeopathy has no effect, ESP is not real, chemical pesticides with strange names can be safer than "natural" alternatives, there's no evidence of an afterlife, humankind evolved by mutations and selective pressure, quantum physics does not validate mysticism.

    They would randomly assign one of these undesirable/unpopular facts to subjects. Some would get an "inoculating" statement listing common logical fallacies. Another would get an 'inoculation" saying sometimes the truth is undesirable, but humans can often overcome undesirable conditions by facing them. Others would get no inoculation.

    Then we would see how the inoculations affect different types of anti-science.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 5 years, 5 months ago
      The point of the experiment, though not specifically detailed, is obviously to prove the efficacy of propaganda/brain washing techniques. There is no interest by these people to assess critical thinking or even independent thought.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by CircuitGuy 5 years, 5 months ago
        It sure comes off that way. They should have chosen an apolitical, non-religious scientific fact. ESP or the Bermuda Triangle would have been the perfect choice. They're not real, fun to believe in, are not highly politicized, and there are books and TV show that put forward information contrary to the scientific consensus. Unlike things like Global Warming or GMO safety, most people don't really care that much about ESP. It would have been the perfect topic.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by Owlsrayne 5 years, 5 months ago
    A reporter from CNET (I deleted that email) was whining about Trump deleting government web pages dealing with Climate Change and one US Park Service scientist defying the gag order by posting a paper on global warming. I was surprised to read such a politically bent scientific article on CNET. I clicked on the reporter then scrolled down the page to find that CNET is a division of CBS. It's sad to see this happening on what was an fairly good on-line tech digest.The liberal news media is losing all credibility in every outlet they have. I'm unsubscribing from CNET now.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by CircuitGuy 5 years, 5 months ago
    This experiment, as I understand it, seems flawed. The inoculation should have been a general warning about critical thinking and questioning sources. The "inoculation" texts in the experiment specifically criticized (one directly, the other indirectly) one of the two sample texts.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  


  • Comment hidden. Undo