Defeating willful ignorance on global warmingI'll admit it: I'm a blog/message board addict. One of the most frustrating rhetorical devices people use in these forums is "Willful ignorance". It's actually easier to appear to "win" a debate on some subjects the less you know about that subject. So many people deliberately avoid learning anything about the subject at hand, and ignore any information that comes their way.
The anti-global-warming crowd seems to be expert at this--they'll ask the same questions over and over again, never pausing to listen for an answer. They don't want an answer, they want to distract the debate, wear down the opponent, and confuse bystanders into thinking they've raised a good point. I swear if I see the misinformation "volcanoes CO2 dwarfs the CO2 that humans do every year" again (wrong!) I'll scream.
Fortunately, New Scientist has produced a round-up of the 26 most common climate myths and misconceptions that addresses most of these common untruths. I'm not sure that this will do anything to combat the willful ignorance, but at least it provides a handy and quick way to respond.