Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Wingnut Dictionary - CAGW

Term of the Day
Related Terms: Alarmist, Warmist, Climateer, Climatista, Warmunist, Thermogeddonite
Definition:  
CAGW is a term used by right wing activists to conflate the reality of greenhouse gas emission driven global warming (AGW) with spectacular or "catastrophic" projections of damage that may arise due to climate change (CAGW).  The term is used to redirect discussion of the causes of global warming away from the potential remedies. Often times the right wing activist will mock "CAGW", using it as a strawman to avoid discussing the science behind AGW.
Example: 
Don't take the scientists, too seriously. They are just crying wolf again when they talk about catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. They try to make Climate Change seem like a bad disaster movie like Sharknado - that movie about tornadoes that carrying sharks. Like that could ever happen. The earth's climate has always changed in the past.  It will change again and things will be fine.  Sharknado is never going to happen! Man those scientists should really tone it down. CAGW is clearly ridiculous. 
Goal:
The goal of using the term "CAGW" is to redirect the conversation away from limiting CO2 emissions and greenhouse gas emission as a means of reducing harm to the environment and on to a discussion of how unlikely that a Sharknado-like event could ever happen. This allows the activist to avoid discussion of the merits of AGW Theory while knocking down a strawman.
The fallacy is diagrammed like this:
If P then Q
P is clearly absurd
Therefore not Q
or
If climate change causes "Sharknado," then climate change is dangerous
Sharknado is clearly absurd
Therefore climate change is not dangerous.
Use of the Term CAGW sometimes implies a tacit acknowledgement on the part of the speaker that the climate is changing and that greenhouse gas emissions are to blame for it.  Usage is associated with an advanced stage of climate denial. Typically it is associated with Late Stage 2 to Stage 3 of Climate Denial.

Stage 1 - It is all a hoax
Stage 2 - It is not (mostly) from CO2
Stage 3 - It is not bad
Stage 4 - There is nothing we can do about it
Stage 5 - It is too late to try to do anything about it.

This has been another episode of wingnut dictionary, a public service to translate right wing-nut-speak into English.

1 comment:

  1. Don't quit your day job, Howie, you're a laugh a minute.

    ReplyDelete