Baby, it’s cold outside, what with polar vortexes and the like. Except maybe it isn’t. Maybe it’s a conspiracy. Maybe it’s a left-wing conspiracy, designed to blame right-wingers for climate change. Here’s conservative US political disc jockey and padlocked-Wikipedia-biographee Rush Limbaugh:
Do you know what the polar vortex is? Have you ever heard of it? Well, they just created it for this week…And so any weather extreme now is said to be man-made, and therefore it fulfils the leftist agenda on this… they’ve come up with this phrase called the “polar vortex.” If you’ve been watching television, they’ve created a graphic, all the networks have, and it basically consists of a view of the planet if you are right above the North Pole.
They put this big purple blob, or blue blob, or red blob, depending on the network you’re looking at, over the entire North Pole, and they call that the polar vortex. It actually sounds like a crappy science fiction movie to me, but anyway, that’s what they’re calling it.
However, as @TalesOfWhoa explains over on Skeptophilia, the term polar vortex is not new at all. Far from having been invented this week, it’s actually enjoys a 150-year history of usage in meteorology. And that blue blob over Chicago is certainly there, hence, well, its blueness and blobbiness.
But I’m still interested. How exactly do the political left come into this, Rush?
They’re in the middle of a hoax, they’re perpetrating a hoax, but they’re relying on their total dominance of the media to lie to you each and every day about climate change and global warming. So they created the polar vortex… Whatever it is that keeps the polar vortex vortexed in the Arctic Circle is vanishing, and that cold air is coming to us…That is the crisis. That is what is man-made…. I’m just telling you their technique. Forget truth.
The truth and the Democrat Party, the truth and the American left never intersect… That’s what they want us all talking about, and you can watch the cable news networks to find out what the soap opera is.
The soap opera is simply what the Democrats want you to think the news of the day is, and that is whatever the Democrat agenda is, and the Democrat agenda is: “We’ve got to get people’s attention distracted from Obamacare. So, guess what? We need to extend unemployment benefits, and we’ll tug at people’s heartstrings again. It’s cold, it’s miserable, and people have lost their unemployment benefits!“
Basically, the polar vortex isn’t there. It’s a social construction concocted by President Obama in order to facilitate the provision of unemployment benefits. Of course! How could I have been so blind?
For info, Rush Limbaugh’s daily radio talk show has been the the number one listened-to show on US commercial radio since records began (in 1991). Around 14 million Americans tune into him every single week. I guess this must indicate that he knows what he’s talking about.
Rush’s big thing is that global warming isn’t actually happening. According to him it’s “a full-fledged, now documented hoax“. This follows Rush’s fellow conservative Newt Gingrich claiming on CNN the other day that global warming wouldn’t be that bad anyway. After all, climate change never did the dinosaurs any harm:
The age of the dinosaurs was dramatically warmer than this is right now and it didn’t cook the planet. In fact, life was fine!
Yes. Life was fine. All that downtime and lounging about, with ready amenities and social cohesion. No adverse weather to disrupt your day. No pesky Democrats either, I’m sure. Of course, remembering that the “age of the dinosaurs” spanned some 160 million years, that makes it one heck of a stretch of fine living.
Let’s not let science get in the way of such argumentation. Or logic. Have a look at Rush’s opening remarks, the premise of his entire exposition (emphases added by me):
So, ladies and gentlemen, we are having a record-breaking cold snap in many parts of the country. And right on schedule the media have to come up with a way to make it sound like it’s completely unprecedented.
Shame on the left-coddling media for claiming that these record-breaking temperatures are somehow unprecedented!
Sounds like a load of hot air to me…
Brian Hughes is an academic psychologist and university professor in Galway, Ireland, specialising in stress, health, and the application of psychology to social issues. He writes widely on the psychology of empiricism and of empirically disputable claims, especially as they pertain to science, health, medicine, and politics.