I do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it…and I do not believe that the laws that they propose we pass will do anything about it, except it will destroy our economy.
Marco Rubio’s interview with ABC in May 2014 shows the disappointing view that many still hold towards Climate Change amongst many other global media issues. The issue is not simply that many conservative governments, including our own, hold this view. The issue is wether we should give views like this air time in a public domain when the overwhelming majority of scientists believe that climate change is real and man made.
This premise is called false balance. False balance refers to giving equal amount of time to argue two sides of a debate, when one side is overwhelmingly supported and the other isn’t. It isn’t just about public opinion. It’s about fact. Laura Bergmann’s depiction of this on her blog quite neatly shows this concept.
The big issue here however, is that people with a public discourse are allowed to argue things that really have no argument. Ward’s paper on ethical journalism of climate change suggests that it is well within journalists rights to think ethically about what they are presenting and wether these counter arguments belong in the public discourse.
Personally, I think not. The danger we risk entertaining the idea that everything the government does is a conspiracy, with greater motivation than to simply fix the wrongs we have made to the climate is frankly, stupid. This logic can also be put against many other global issues such as anti vaccination, asylum seekers, and whaling.
Still need convincing? I’ll leave the last word to the incomparable John Oliver, who sums up just about everything I want to say quite nicely.