Was the Australian Prime Minister justified in advising school children that political activism (to promote climate change) would only lead to them being unemployed?
The full time job of children is to learn various techniques and to accumulate a body of knowledge on which to base their reasoning and judgements.It is not to sit in class with their mouths open like a nest full of hatchlings, waiting for a tasty worm or two to be offered to them.I have very little respect for the COAL government (coal by name, coal by energy policy, coal miners by backers). Of course, they are entitled to promulgate their illogical and unscientific nonsense, in the open air.However the ravings of our soon to be ex Prime Minister Morrison and Minister Canavan show another depth to their world views and mindsets, which are deeply fascist.Out of 365 days in a year, on a weekday or a weekend is irrelevant, young citizens, future voters, future parents, future STEM exerts, chose to rock up to the centres of our cities to show their concern for the effects of climate change - not to “promote climate change”.“Mr Shouty” used Parliament to denigrate them for daring to express an opinion. Minister Caravan chose to sneer at them as preparing for the dole queue / unemployment by attending a meeting. A focus on form, not substance.Both these non-entities talk about “the Canberra Bubble”. That is, a focus on politics inside Canberra and point-scoring, rather than on what concerns real humans in Australia. They both showed how irrelevant they are.Democracy in Greece and Rome involved citizens congregating in the centre of their cities to discuss key issues. Just what our young citizens did.Thank to Rob Williams for the A2A.
Have you ever drastically changed your viewpoint on a topic? Could you describe why and how?
I was raised very right wing catholic. Very pro life, small government, the republican tag line all the way. But I was also raised to gather my own information and look at the whole issue, to examine law and understand everything before forming a true opinion. If my parents truly wanted a perfect catholic republican, they should have left out that last part.I had joined a debate class, and after a few weeks it was quickly determined that my deft application of logic and unparalleled research ability made me one of the top debaters. We were beginning to prepare for a debate challenge, and they decided to get into some of the big topics. The teacher chose abortion.I was adamantly pro life at the time, but no one in the class wanted to take the pro choice side of the debate. The teacher decided to assign me to lead the pro choice side of the debate against the rest of the class to prepare them for the competition.I could not believe the research I turned up. Before that debate, I did not know abortion was illegal once, and the truly awful percentage of women who died trying to receive basic health care. I learned how broken our legal system was in rape cases, how broken our adoption system is, how impossible our health care system is.I learned how difficult life is for these mothers who are forced to carry these children to term. How little support they receive. How their lives are often summarily ruined. How they live disproportionately in red states, and are taught abstinence only sex education. And I learned the exact line where a fetus can live without its mother protective womb.I came to the debate with facts. With lives lost. With lives ruined, revenue depleted, and people on the government dole for the rest of their lives. With paltry existences because of forced pregnancies and increased crime rates because of children who know they are unloved.I lost the debate because religion reigns in politics.That was the day I became a democrat. That debate showed me the republican party only cared about making noise and not helping people. It cared about the rich, not the poor. It cared about small government— so small it could fit in your bedroom and monitor your sex life and your children. The platform rejects separation of church and state, does not follow logic, and preys on people’s base fears. It saddens me, and that brush with it changed me forever.
What's ‘climate change’, and what's the relationship between climate change and global warming?
What is the difference between Climate Change and AGW and why are they lumped together?Climate change is simply that, a change in the average weather conditions in a given location on the planet.There are a huge number of factors controlling the earth’s climate. The sun and its cycles play a major role. On earth, the interactions of the Land, Sea, Air and Ice Caps have major effects on climate.Over the course of the earth’s history the climate has varied considerably. The planet has been a snowball and it has been ice free and steamy.When humans took up agriculture there started to be observable effects on the environment. Cutting down and burning forests tended to slightly increase temperature. After the huge population reduction caused by the Black Death, many fields went back to forest and global temperatures fell very slightly.CO2 is a known cause of of atmospheric warming. This was demonstrated in the early 19th century and never disproven.Climate is something that can be measured and as such it is an objective reality or a fact. It is extremely difficult to measure everything that might matter in all places that might be significant and eliminate all extraneous effects. Consequently there is extremely lively debate on the interpretation of these data.AGW is the short form for anthropogenic global warming. Anthropogenic means human caused. We can observe and measure the increase of CO2 derived from the burning of fossil fuels. The amount is extremely large and it is entirely reasonable to assert that humans have added a lot of CO2 to the atmosphere and consequently caused or at least significantly contributed to global warming. AGW is an interpretation of the cause for changes in the climate. It is reasonable to see the cause and effect lumped together in a discussion.What is unique about AGW is that compared to other climate change drivers, it is happening incredibly fast. Life is evolved to adapt to change but adaptation usually requires multiple generations, massive migrations and new survival strategies. When things happen too quickly, populations die off.Skeptics dispute some aspect of the cause, speed or the interpretation of the climate change data.