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Friday, March 23, 2007

That damned Thomas Sowell

What's Mallard raving about today?

Thomas Sowell, Climate scientists on the payroll of the energy industry, the mainstream media.

Mallard: The Energizer Flat Earther, he just keeps going, and going, and going...

Next thing he'll be trotting some long-forgotten chestnuts: the sun revolves around the earth and a good blood-letting should cure that disease.

Update: I'd like to highlight the excellent point NLC makes in the comments regarding the imprecise use of the term "open-minded" by Mallard. It is imprecise to say that scientists who examine data and reach a conclusion are not being open-minded; that, after all, is what Scientists do.

To draw an analogy, at a certain point there was not much to be gained by Scientists remaining open-minded about the possibility that dumping one's waste matter into the street (Gardez L’eau!) was not contributing to Cholera epidemics. Once a consensus developed, it led to the proliferation of indoor plumbing, despite the fact that I am sure one of Mallard's 19th century ancestors could be found on a street corner screaming that he'd always crap into a chamber pot, no matter what some damn egghead said.


NLC said...

For me, the most interesting part of this whole series is Tinsley's abuse of the word "open-minded".

In short, it seems to me that a very good case could be made that it is exactly those scientist who have actually examined the data --and remained open-minded-- who have come to conclusion that, yes, global warming has been affected by human action.

But this whole canard is, of course, a standard technique in this sort of "debates". But, sadly it really, finally comes down to two options:

1] That among the scientists who have studied the topic, there are virtually none who remain "open-minded" enough --or, more accurately, who have sufficient integrity-- to even question the overwhelmingly majority view.


2] Tinsley is wrong.

Now, I'm not normally a betting man. But I know which seems the more likely to me.

dlauthor said...

"Canard." Hee.

Kaitlyn said...

These "open minded scientists" make me think of Chaz Perrone from Skinny Dip by Carl Hiaasen.

He had his science degree - the one that made him Dr. Perrone - paid for by a corporation, so he could be their trained monkey.

He was employed by the state of Florida to check chemical levels in the Everglades, but his state income was supplemented by a Florida farmer who didn't want to comply to environmental rules. But he hid it well enough that the state didn't care.

So I'm just saying...

These open-minded scientists may get money from people who don't want more environmentak guidelines.

luke said...

Ha, I JUST finished reading that book. Weird.

Regarding the strip, I'll just repeat what I said on CC: "Today Bruce Tinsley brings us the arresting image of a floating duck head over three panels’ worth of demented rambling. This looks more like something you’d find taped to the wall in a subway station than on the comics pages."

john said...

How is it that conservatives like Mallard manage to get it wrong EVERY time when it comes to issues like this? Is it because they consider "science" to be liberal, and therefore reflexively reject the conclusions of scientists, or is it that they have pre-conceived notions about what is "true," and reject anyone who does not share those notions? Perhaps a little of both?

Ryan said...

I do find it curious that Mallard confuses the words and phrases "open-minded" and "wrong". This could go a long way in explaining his rants on culture and technological advances. Actually, it explains the entire strip.