In discussing Global Warming Alarmism (GWA), I have begun to see a pattern of evasion emerge among GWA proponents. It is an alarming (pun intended) anti-reason, anti-intellectual tactic that is often engaged in by those in the majority position of an argument. These tools for evading reasoned discussion are the logical fallacies of fait accompli and false analogy.
1. Fait accompli
This French phrase is used to represent “an accomplished, presumably irreversible deed or fact.” The way this is used as a logical fallacy is to say that everyone who matters agrees on one position – “it’s already settled among smart people” goes the rhetoric.
Any significant objection from people who obviously DO matter (like fellow scientists, or those who formerly held the favored position) is rejected as spurious and marginal. Any new or controversial data coming from dissenters is not addressed directly, but rejected out of hand as from insignificant sources with personal axes to grind (another typical evasion , ad hominem)
2. False Analogy
The second fallacy commonly used by the arrogant, unreasoning majority is a specious comparison to something that really is established – phrases such as “evolution is as proven as gravity” are often used. Or in the case of global warming, “the link between human CO2 and global warming is as sure as the link between smoking and lung cancer.”
When the majority refuses to engage in reasoned discussion when its talking points are threatened by new or contradictory data, it is now involved in the political battle to maintain the status quo, rather than science and reason. If it spews out canned answers which have been countered, and it refuses to address the counter arguments, it has ceased being responsible and reasonable. It has become committed to a specific ideology, not reason, science, and truth.
Both of these logical fallacies could be considered an appeal to authority rather than reason, just like the religionist who says “the inerrant bible says so” – GWA’s say “the inerrant scientific consensus says so” – even while the consensus is being challenged by many well-credentialed scientists who USED to be GWAs – they didn’t change for personal gain, but often at significant personal loss, because they were scientists who looked at the data without the bias of eco-fear alarmism.
Welcome to modern eco-politics. It’s going to be a long, hot summer. But GWAs already knew that ;)
Many evangelicals have joined the chorus in support of reducing greenhouse emissions, but I am still on the fence about global warming. Like Bill O’Reilly, think we should get off of fossil fuels for both environmental and economic/political reasons, but I have not bought into the Global Warming Panic (GWP).
As Aaron recently noted, this past year’s hurricane season failed to meet the dire predictions of the GWP lobby – and while that may be too small a sample to be conclusive, it does show the speculative nature of the whole apocalyptic approach of the GWPers.
We’ve argued whether or not GW is a threat, or a hoax perpetrated by misinformed environmentalists. But there’s one more unusual perspective – that global warming, whether man-made or not, will be the worldwide catastrophe that unites the world in one cause, and under one world leader – the antichrist.
The New York Times has an interesting article on churches that use violent video games to draw and engage teenage boys as part of their outreach and service to youth. Of course, the use of such games has those on both the far right and far left balking, and even Focus on the Family is “still trying to figure out…our official view on it.” But look, it’s not a big deal, OK? Put your religious hackles down and pull up a chair, ’cause I think I’ve got it mostly figured out. We need to examine
- Part I: The Christian view of war, aggression, and violence (this post)
- Part II: Specific objections from the political left and right
- Part III: The real issue – what ends and means to those ends are really appropriate for Christian youth groups?
Fourth in the series, this sermon was the most positively received in the series, and covers the following points:
- The Power of Desire
- The Priority of Desire
- The Problem of Desire
- The Transformation of Desire
- The Pursuit of Desire
To download Finding God’s Call IV – Motivated by Desire, please subscribe to the podcast URL.
Many evangelicals and fundamentalists are tea-totalers, and a good number of them also look down upon Christians who do use alcohol. And while such judgmental Christians are disobeying the command of Romans 14:3 to “not condemn the man who does, for God has accepted him,” this does not mean that they are wrong to abstain.
But the question arises, is the biblical perspective on alcohol entirely or mostly negative, or the opposite?
NOTE: You can hear my sermon on this subject at The Biblical Perspective on Drinking and Alcohol.
As part of my hermeneutics class, we must read some of the works of John Owen (1616-1683), one of the greatest (and often least known) Protestant theologians of history, and by many accounts, the greatest that England has ever produced. In this week’s reading from Pneumatologia, we read Owen’s thoughts on illumination (the role of the Spirit of God in helping us understand scripture) and perspicuity (the understandableness of scripture and it’s message). One of the questions he answers is, if God wanted us to understand Him, why are the scriptures not written in a more didactic fashion?
My brother’s old church actually preached harshly against gays, and the pastor used some unkind epithets. He asked me about it, and this is my response. And even though I have never disobeyed any of these principles in the pulpit, I have here on this blog. Regardless, what can we say about speaking harshly or offensively to others, biblically speaking?
In my discussions with fellow classmates on the subject of hermeneutics, I have upset some apple carts by saying that we can’t be cock sure of every doctrine, and as I explained in my previous post on hermeneutics, there are good reasons why we should question our convictions.
One classmate wrote that I was promoting a hopeless view, and that I was essentially saying that we can’t really know anything for sure. My response is below.
While some recent estimates of the gay population in America have come in as high as 1 in 10, a new report from the liberal Christian think tank Gay Statisticians Bringing Accuracy to Gay Statistics (GASBAGS) has come out with a new report claiming that up to 90% of evangelicals may be closet homosexuals.
"It was really quite logical," said spokesperson Dr. Ima "Spin" Master. "Once we assumed that everyone who spouts regular anti-gay rhetoric, which we call "hate speech," was really just projecting self-loathing at their own same sex attractions, it all added up quite quickly."
As Christians, we have an absolute duty, if married, to obey the biblical mandate to procreate, as given to both Adam and Eve and Noah and his family:
And God blessed them. And God said to them, "Be fruitful and multiply and fill the earth and subdue it and have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over every living thing that moves on the earth. (Genesis 1:28)
Then God blessed Noah and his sons, saying to them, "Be fruitful and increase in number and fill the earth. The fear and dread of you will fall upon all the beasts of the earth and all the birds of the air, upon every creature that moves along the ground, and upon all the fish of the sea; they are given into your hands. Everything that lives and moves will be food for you. Just as I gave you the green plants, I now give you everything. (Genesis 9:1-3)
But how many children is too many? And is it immoral to use any kind of birth control? And is it immoral to overpopulate the earth?
If you get tired of having to always delete the extra blank worksheets in a new excel workbook, or tire of having to set up the same headers and footers you always do, you can just change your default workbook to match your preferences. Below, I give you two methods.
This series was written in response to a comment about the “absurdities” of scripture.
- Evaluating God’s Righteousness, Part I – Underestimating Sin
- Evaluating God’s Righteousness, Part II – Rules for Evaluating Evil
- Evaluating God’s Righteousness, Part III – Dispensing Justice and Mercy
This series was a response to Brian McLaren’s Faith & Politics after the Religious Right.
This series is a redux of a great exposition of Romans 1 by John MacArthur called A Nation Abandoned by God.