[Coral-List] Hope

gchallenger at msn.com gchallenger at msn.com
Tue Mar 10 14:13:21 EDT 2009

Clearly, there is a lot we know about AGW.   There is also a lot more we don't know.  Sadly, I believe scientists have partly created their adversaries by saying things like accepting AGW infers you are "intelligent and educated" and that those of us who are need to make "difficult decisions" such as "halving the earth's population". 

If scientists stuck to what can and cannot be stated based on evidence and left out words like "truth" and "certainty" and "ignorant", laypeople would be willing to listen to evidence and would also probably agree that some of the possible consequences are indeed compelling.  

Its like Richard Dawkins trying to teach creationists about evolution by calling them stupid......it won't work....ever.

Greg Challenger

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-----Original Message-----
From: Les Kaufman <lesk at bu.edu>

Date: Tue, 10 Mar 2009 09:30:20 
To: <coral-list at coral.aoml.noaa.gov>
Subject: [Coral-List] Hope

Hi folks.

As societies go, we are still discovering our toes.  There is little  
chance that with current wiring and awarenesses we will do much but  
react to extreme conditions.  This is entirely a social condition: in  
fact our eyes are capable of seeing our ears of hearing, etc., far  
better than at any other time during our lives.  Hope means that we  
manage to crawl out of the way of our toppling toys before we are  

There will be collateral damage.


Dear David:

I feel your pain.  The problem is the high level of ignornace of  
science (your so called educated folks may be educated in business  
but not in how science works) and selfishness:  if you accept AGW as  
true and real, then if you are intelligent and educated you would  
have to do something hard about it, like give up the way you live,  
halve the number of people on Earth, etc etc.  Those are hard choices  
to make so people prefer to take the easy way out and go for the  

What I do not know if whether those smug anti-folks like the one you  
debated are sincere in their beliefs or they have an ulterior motive  
(e.g. funded by oil and auto companies).

It is sad and worrisome.  I am reading a book  titled "The Shadows of  
Consumption" by Peter Dauvergne.  It provides great examples of how  
society will ignore and counter scientific evidence for financial  
gain.  If you haven't already read it, I recommend it (I'm only part  
way thru).  Doesn't give me much hope we will see the correct path in  

Alina Szmant

Les Kaufman
Professor of Biology
Associate Director
Boston University Marine Program
Senior PI
Marine Management Area Science
Conservation International

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