Climate Change and the ‘Bad Faith’ delusion

human-beingsLet’s get this straight. Climate change ‘deniers’ are (mostly) not being malicious. They genuinely believe what they are saying, just like climate change ‘believers’ do. The assumption of bad faith is entirely unhelpful.

“But how can it possibly be that in the face of all the evidence people still won’t face the truth of climate change?” That’s one way of looking at it, but it depends on a mono-rational view of the world which is contested by grid-group cultural theory. A more nuanced analysis suggests that there are four, not one or two ways of organising institutions, from families to global treaties, and what counts as evidence for one cultural bias will never count as evidence for another.

So,  Egalitarian environmentalists who want to promote their own view would do well to take seriously the contesting claims of Individualism, Hierarchy and Fatalism. These are not merely arguments about the evidence but deeper arguments about rationality itself.

Further reading:

What we argue about when we argue about global warming, then

Climate change: is it a new religion?, then

Four Ways to make Social Change Work Better.

Image source: http://artsandecology.rsablogs.org.uk/2009/04/28/emotional-appeal/

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2 thoughts on “Climate Change and the ‘Bad Faith’ delusion”

  1. […] Who’s right? Surely, when it comes to scientific facts, ‘Truth is truth to the end of reckoning’  (Shakespeare, Measure for Measure, Act 5 scene i). Why can’t these people just agree? And why can’t we get to the bottom of why they can’t agree? It’s as though they can’t even agree on what the facts are they’re supposed to be disagreeing about. Each seems to operate as though no matter what is said, the other will twist it to their own advantage because they are acting in bad faith. […]

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