Lewandowsky et al. Proves Skeptics are Reasonable and Pro-Science

I am not sure it is worth beating this dead horse any further, but I will make one final observation about Lewandowsky.  As a reminder, the study purported to link skeptics with belief in odd conspiracy theories, particularly the theory that the Apollo 11 landings were faked (a conclusion highlighted in the title of the press release).

Apparently the study got this conclusion based on a trivial 10 responses out of hundreds from folks who self-identified as skeptics, but due to the horrible methodology many not actually have been such.

But here is the interesting part.  Even if the data was good, it would mean that less than .2% of the “skeptics” adopted the moon landing conspiracy theory.  Compare this to the general population:

 A 1999 Gallup poll found that a scant 6 percent of Americans doubted the Apollo 11 moon landing happened, and there is anecdotal evidence that the ranks of such conspiracy theorists, fueled by innuendo-filled documentaries and the Internet, are growing.

Twenty-five percent of respondents to a survey in the British magazine Engineering & Technology said they do not believe humans landed on the moon. A handful of Web sites and blogs circulate suspicions about NASA’s “hoax.”

And a Google search this week for “Apollo moon landing hoax” yielded more than 1.5 billion results.  (more here)

By Lewandowsky’s own data, skeptics are 30-100 times less gullible than the average American or Brit.

By the way, I have spent a lot of time debunking silly 9/11 theories.  Here is one example of a science-based response to the Rosie O’Donnell (a famous climate alarmist, by the way) and her claim that burning jet fuel can’t melt steel so therefore the WTC had to have been destroyed by demolition charges set by Dick Cheney, or something like that.

9 thoughts on “Lewandowsky et al. Proves Skeptics are Reasonable and Pro-Science

  1. TinyCO2

    I thought of this angle too. Well illustrated.

    I also wondered if there was skewing factor for the sort of sceptic that regularly turns up at warmist blogs despite the hostility.

    There are many more holes that could be probed (though not by aliens) in the paper.

  2. Seb Tombs

    If you want to read a formal scientific study of climate change try:
    What We Know About Climate ChangeKerry Emanuel | September 2012Second EditionThe vast majority of scientists agree that human activity has significantly increased greenhouse gases in the atmosphere–most dramatically since the 1970s. Yet global warming skeptics and ill-informed elected officials continue to dismiss this broad scientific consensus.

    In this new edition of his authoritative book, MIT atmospheric scientist Kerry Emanuel–a political conservative–outlines the basic science of global warming and how the current consensus has emerged. He also covers two major developments that have occurred since the first edition: the most recent round of updated projections from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change climate simulations, and the so-called “climategate” incident that heralded the subsequent collapse of popular and political support in the United States for dealing with climate change.

    About the Author

    Kerry Emanuel is Professor of Atmospheric Science in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric, and Planetary Science at MIT. He is the author of Divine Wind: The History and Science of Hurricanes and Atmospheric Convection. In May 2006 he was named one of Time magazine’s “Time 100: The People Who Shape Our World.” A Republican, he has made it clear that he disagrees with his party on climate change.

  3. netdr

    The long term average of warming is 1/2 degree per century wit it slowing almost to zero this century. There is no hint of a reason to believe in catastrophic AGW now or ever.

    If you cherry pick only the positive portion of the PDO you may fool some fools but not many. Even then there is no hin of a catastrophe.

    I don’t disagree with slight beneficial AGW it is the catastrophe where the alarmists jump the shark !

  4. Steve D

    In my entire life, I have never met anyone who thought humans didn’t land on the moon. I am very skeptical that more than a handful of these people exist.

  5. Dan_Kurt

    @Steve D:”In my entire life, I have never met anyone who thought humans didn’t land on the moon. I am very skeptical that more than a handful of these people exist.”

    You must live in a cocoon,

    I was officer in service during the Moon landings stationed where no T.V. existed but remember “Moon Day” as a day of no work as only the OOD was not dismissed from any duties. I of course believed every word of the claim and only in the years since then have had doubt enter my mind over the truth of the Moon landings. My first contact with a doubter was an engineer at Vandenberg who worked for G.E. Reentry Systems. Over drinks he told me that it was a hoax as he could not see how the technology existed for navigation between the earth and the moon and especially the navigation of the lander and the spacecraft. This was in 1974. If you are interested in the topic, find a copy of R. Rene’s NASA Mooned America.

    Dan Kurt

  6. Alan D McIntire

    Lewandowsky shows that as a psychologist he has no idea how people think.

    Many years ago, there was a TV show called to tell the truth. A guest and two ringers would appear before a celebrity panel of four.
    One after the other, the guest and two ringers would say, ” I am John Smith and I was the youngest person to climb Mt Everest”, or ” I am Jane Doe, and I am the first
    female jockey to win a stakes race”,etc. The panel of 4 would ask each of the 3 panelists questions about mountain climbing, horse racing, etc. The REAL John Smith or Jane Doe had to tell the truth, while the two ringers could lie all they wanted in an effort to deceive the panel of four.

    At the end of the session, the panelists voted on who they thought was the REAL John Smith or Jane Doe, and the 3 contestants won money for each incorrect vote.

    Based on the silly way Lewandowsky believes skeptics think, I believe that a CAGW believer with two skeptics would deceive many more panelists than would a
    CAGW skeptic and two believers- the two believers would give far more implausible bogus skeptic answers.

  7. Fred_from_Planet_Reality

    Life on Planet Lew . . . the low oxygen levels severely impact one’s ability to think, design research, analyze data and be honest.

    Why this clown us still employed at his university is beyond comprehension. Doesn’t say much for the integrity of the Institution and the peers who reviewed his research/drive by smear.

  8. NetDr

    Since CO2 acts like a blanket to spread heat it should make storms LESS VIOLENT. This is the exact opposite of what alarmist PhD’s claim. Did they sleep through thermo or are they lying for the CAUSE ??

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