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Climate: just who is ‘deluded’ Dr Shearman?

temperatures fallingClimate: just who is ‘deluded’ Dr Shearman?

“The belief of climate change deniers is usually unshakable, like that of the flat-earth believers or Holocaust deniers.” (Dr Shearman)

There is nothing so good as having an opinion and the climate warrior Dr David Shearman has strong opinions and being a doctor anyone who does not believe in his opinions must be mad. But this is copy from the leftist’s playbook of ‘the science is settled’ doctrine. His article published by the ABC is insightful, more so about its author than climate. His bedside manner must be an experience to behold?

It would be fascinating to eavesdrop on discussions between members of the Flat Earth Society sailing the open sea, and debating why the horizon is curved. They would provide a good laugh. They are deluded, but most committed flat earth believers appear normal in the rest of their lives and their delusion is not generally harmful to others. A delusion is a belief that is clearly false, a denial of facts. It indicates an abnormality in the affected person’s content of thought.

Source: ABC

Climate change denial is delusion, and the biggest threat to human survival

The false belief is not accounted for by the person’s cultural or religious background or their level of intelligence.

The belief of climate change deniers is usually unshakable, like that of the flat-earth believers or Holocaust deniers. Many delude themselves that there is a conspiracy.

US President Donald Trump uses the words “hoax” and “Chinese hoax”. Often their fervour leads to influential positions, for example in environment and energy policy as in the Coalition.

‘The collapse of our civilisations’

Climate change delusion is dangerous to humanity, for it overtly or deviously prevents effective reduction of greenhouse emissions by governments in many countries, including the US and Australia, but is an increasing problem with the rise of right-wing governments in Europe and South America, including, Brazil where the new government has a foreign minister devoted to climate denial.

Dangerous, for it is responsible for thousands of deaths worldwide from fire, flood, drought and hunger and a range of other causes including infections.

These deaths are projected to rise to 250,000 by 2030. In Australia the existing and expected health impacts are well documented and already affect our health services.

In the words of David Attenborough at C0P24:

“Right now, we are facing a man-made disaster of global scale, Our greatest threat in thousands of years, climate change… If we don’t take action, the collapse of our civilisations and the extinction of much of the natural world is on the horizon.”

These are words that many scientists have shunned to avoid being sensationalist, but which will be understood this week by thousands of Australian children fearful for their future.

To the denier, there is no climate change — so coal is clean, coal is good, coal is cheap, it is our duty to export it to the poor of the world to give them electricity.

The denier’s mind carries this absolution of coal beyond greenhouse emissions, to disregard the air pollution caused by coal. Outdoor air pollution is responsible for 4.2 million deaths a year around the world and many also in Australia.

In New South Wales, the five coal fired power stations are a health scourge from their pollution which causes 279 premature deaths, 233 babies born with low birth weight (less than 2,500g), and 361 people developing type-2 diabetes every year, who would not otherwise do so. These are preventable deaths and illnesses.

Yet government attempts to extend their use even when AGL provided a rational plan to close Liddell in five years and replace it with renewable sources of energy. The Coalition promotes more coal fired power, yet there is no safe level of air pollution.

One big lie often leads to another

As Mr Trump and many of us have found, one big lie often leads to other lies and evasions to support it for example, in economics.

The Nobel Prize for economics this year was awarded to Professor William Nordhaus for his economic modelling of climate change. One conclusion from his work was that coal would have no added value to industry if the cost of its externalities of health, social and environmental, were accounted for.

The Australian Government has to deny these facts to support a continuation of coal power, some denial for an economics-above-all government.

It is difficult to find the word “externalities” used by this government simply because it means coal is expensive in contrast to other modalities and their energy cost modelling collapses.

To doctors, this denial is unconscionable considering air pollution in NSW causes deaths, illness and large health costs, yet this appears to go unmentioned by any minister in the federal or state governments.

To address this world emergency our body politic needs massive reform in its thinking and governance.

Hopefully, the advice of one Minister to our young people demonstrating for their future — “I want kids to be at school to learn about how you build a mine, how you do geology, how you drill for oil and gas, which is one of the most remarkable scientific exploits of anywhere in the world that we do” — was the low point of this government.

Unfortunately, the Government tolerates climate deniers, so their constituents must instead vote them out to save lives.

Future climate policy must be guided by scientific expert opinion and removed from the vicissitudes of political chicanery by the implementation of new environmental laws which have application to health.

Dr David Shearman is the Honorary Advisor to Doctors for the Environment Australia and Emeritus Professor of Medicine at Adelaide University.

{ 27 comments… add one }
  • Honeybadger 07/12/2018, 6:33 am

    Like the other David, this David seems to have lost his marbles in his dotage with his straight from the ABC unscientific propaganda.

  • luk1955 07/12/2018, 7:24 am

    It’s this Shearman idiot who needs to see a shrink. Deliberate distortion of facts to support a totalitarian government dedicated to killing off old people by starvation of power and medical care, which requires power. Give this wanna be dictator a home in Antarctica. He is a total fruitcake, but at least fruitcake tastes better.

  • Xword 07/12/2018, 7:32 am

    High time you deniers out there faced the inescapable fact that more CO2 in the atmosphere promotes increased vegetation growth and hence MORE FUEL FOR BUSHFIRES. While it may also result in bountiful food/fodder harvests, is it worth the risk?

    • Pensioner Pete 07/12/2018, 8:09 am

      X: Answer = YES.

    • Aktosplatz 07/12/2018, 8:12 am

      More CO2 certainly does promote green plant growth including trees.

      Proper controlled burning of fuel reduces the risk of bushfires.

      And on the other hand, we must remember that green vegetation and trees release OXYGEN into the atmosphere so that we can breath.

      We need CO2 and lots more of it.

      (PS I am a qualified scientist that worked with CO2 in the fermentation industry for 12 years. I know a lot about the Carbon and Nitrogen Cycles)

      And I am not on the ‘Take’

    • bushwanker 07/12/2018, 8:31 am

      CO2 may be a risk for more bushfires but the biggest risk is Green politicians.

    • Bushkid 07/12/2018, 9:35 am

      Hey, Xword! Did you know that at currently 400ppm (that’s 4 molecules of CO2 for every 10,000 molecules of atmosphere), the CO2 level is only just recovering from what would be starvation level for plants?

      The starvation level for plant life is around 150ppm.

      The Earth’s atmosphere is slowly recovering from a very low CO2 level. In the geological past it has been far higher, in the region of thousands of ppm. At that time in the Earth’s life there was abundant plant life, and expansion of living species of animals. Much of that plant life was preserved and changed over millions of years into coal, the same coal that is now liberating a small amount of that old CO2 back into the atmosphere to sustain plant life, the plant life that is descended from those that made up that coal in the first place. Interesting, isn’t it, the way life just keeps going round and round, just on time-scales difficult for we humans to comprehend?

      Life is cycles. Climate runs in cycles. The Sun runs in cycles. In a few more billion years even our Sun will turn supernova, and consume first the inner planets, then our own Earth and so on, before dying out completely. Interesting, eh? Nothing is actually permanent after all. So why would you be so upset about a minuscule change to one trace atmospheric gas that’s doing you no harm, and is arguably doing you good?

      This deliberately created panic about a couple of molecules of CO2 per 10,000 of atmosphere is more dangerous to real people than a degree or two of increased “global temperature”.

      Temperature, CO2 and other gases, (remember the ancient stromatolites gave us sufficient O2 to actually be here) have fluctuated over the Earth’s long geological history – some 3.5 BILLION years. What makes this current epoch so special as to be perfect and to be maintained at all cost (to those who can least afford it)?

      By the way, how do you define “global temperature” and what is the Earth’s “ideal temperature” supposed to be?

      Why do organisations like our own BOM need to alter historical temperature data to change a cooling trend into a warming one?

      So many unanswered questions from the disciples of the cult of CAGW – and it is still “global warming” that they’re pushing. It’s always the “hottest evaaahh” records they’re chasing and even manufacturing via altered records, regardless of what is actually experienced. “Climate change” or “climate disruption” or even “climate deprivation” (yes, someone actually published that one!) are weasel words designed to disguise the fact that the weather and climate are just not co-operating with the narrative.

    • Neville 07/12/2018, 11:36 am

      Xword, while we appreciate that you have an opinion, kindly do not lecture us on how your opinion over-rules the facts; yes, that’s right, the scientific facts.
      Bushkid above has covered some facts for you – saved me doing it. Your bottom line is very simple: there has NEVER been any causal relationship PROVEN between increased CO2 and increases of global “average” temperatures (as much as ‘average’ has any meaning for a planet, which is none). Further, CO2 increases FOLLOW increased global temperatures, not precede, so no causal relation is even possible.
      Contrarily, there has been MANY causal relationships PROVEN between Milankovitch Cycles of the sun, and orbital perturbations, and inclination changes of the earth, to perfectly illustrate movements in global temperatures, ice ages, tropical-like warming, and changes in relative proportions of atmospheric gases.
      Also, recall that during some ice ages, CO2 has been measured at multiples, even orders of magnitude, higher than at present.
      And you have the insufferable gall to shout out pejorative names, such as ‘climate deniers’?? Do you realise how stupid you sound? No-one DENIES that there’s a climate, nor that it changes. Time you realised – from FACTS, mate, scientific FACTS – that your CO2 religion is bullshit; if you can’t accept that, then it seems your reasoning ability is bullshit.
      (drops the mike)

  • bushwanker 07/12/2018, 7:54 am

    The deluded doctor gives weight to a Nobel prize winning economist……….Barack Obama was awarded the Nobel prize….enough said.
    The deluded doctor claims that CO2 pollution is killing babies……….the deluded doctor mentions nothing about the millions of babies killed by abortions and nor does the deluded doctor mention the Hollywood celebrities & ‘me too’ movement who publically promote & celebrate abortions.
    The deluded doctor is full of shit!

    • Lorraine 07/12/2018, 8:30 am

      yes you have nailed it. Its a wonder they did not include, what this will do for pets like Cats and dogs, that is a heart strangler with many.

  • Aktosplatz 07/12/2018, 8:21 am

    I am annoyed with the continuous drivel and lies from these sort of Global Warming types, all in pursuit of money.

    They have trashed the once honourable profession of scientists, such that nobody trusts them anymore, and I don’t blame them.

    And I’ll say this . Computer Models’ are NOT established fact, but are still theories, yet these money grabbing people are reporting their modelling results as ‘fact’.

    And those are all lies.

    • luk1955 07/12/2018, 8:28 am

      Akto I worked as an industrial chemist for 40 years. Got out in 2011 when I saw how many scientists were in on the scam of global warming. I do not trust any climatologist now regardless of what side they are on. And the lying is spreading like a bushfire to other sciences. Only the geologists have escaped so far but how much longer who knows.

      The abos managed the land for 60,000 years by burning the undergrowth before it reached conflagration levels. The one and only benefit they have given us.

      • Aktosplatz 07/12/2018, 9:27 am

        Thanks for that luk1955, nice to meet a fellow traveler and also on the same page!

  • Finn 07/12/2018, 8:27 am

    As a lawyer with 40 years experience cross-examining very tough customers, I look at what this fool has written and I know he will never be cross-examined.
    .
    On the strength of the single article he would be cross-examined for approximately 5 days. That represents 15 hours of questioning by a novice. Forget about a QC.
    .
    In the questioning he would have to account for measuring apples with yo-yos and drawing conclusions without evidence. His expertise would be challenged so strongly that it is on likely that he would be allowed to give evidence, let alone support support because which has as its title “climate change deniers.“
    .
    In 2012 there where precisely 1300 road at this deaths. This was in Australia alone. Worldwide that was 1.25 million. And yet, if proved, he argues that the benefit of coal measured against the deaths caused by coal, Makes coal economically unviable.
    .
    Note that I said “if proved”, Motor vehicle deaths are all proved. Simply by definition. “Coal Deaths” are a concept, based on “likely cause” if someone lives in the same area as the coal or its use.
    .
    Not many people like laws or lawyers. But absent rogues, they are usually not extravagant, not liars, and are MOST importantly, accountable for their statements.
    .
    This galoot incurs no cost for exercising his pleasure(he actually gets paid for it); no immediate and public challenge to his assertions; no questioning by a lawyer; and no penalty in any forum for negligent misstatements. Worst of all no penalty for suppression of evidence – hence no informed decision by those who act on his word.
    .
    No. He is paid and praised. Unlike the lawyer,he is NOT ACCOUNTABLE. If later science (not yet “in” proves him wrong ….. ah …. ask our own Tim (Flim) Flannery for a job.
    .
    There is no redress. It is still free speech. My hope is not in trump and his lije, but government bean counters. They just might one day ask, “is this climate science cost effective”. Might.

    Finn

    • Lorraine 07/12/2018, 8:33 am

      you may be as you say, and I find you to be correct, but you lost the plot with “might”

      • Finn 07/12/2018, 11:02 am

        Yeh. You’re correct. “Might” hopelessly exposes me as an unscientific romantic fool. The is no hope on present evidence that this will occur or even be considered.

  • Botswana O'Hooligan 07/12/2018, 8:35 am

    Pre industrial revolution pollution deaths were sky high in big cities, a fact we learned from reading history. Pollution deaths from dung and other materials used for cooking in third World countries are still very high so that fixes Shearman. By the way, I have two kids who are eminent doctors and they are experts in everything and know bloody nothing!

    • PeterPetrum 07/12/2018, 4:55 pm

      Botswana – I have a daughter who is one of the world’s top astrophysisists. She heads a team of over 50 other scientists looking for evidence of planets of distant stars that may support life. She heads up the astrophysics department at one of the USA’s top universities.

      And she knows NOTHING about the true effect of anthropogenic CO2 on the warming, or not, of the atmosphere. It is all real and all man’s fault, according to her

      But then, no doubt in her five yearly submission for $10 million to keep her research going I bet the words “climate change” appear more than once!

      Follow the money.

      • PeterPeterum 07/12/2018, 5:18 pm

        Astrophysicists!! Spellcheck noworkee

  • Bushkid 07/12/2018, 9:02 am

    Wow, where do you start with this ignorant rant?

    One thing that stands out is that he thinks the coal-fired power stations in NSW cause diabetes. I always understood diabetes to be a metabolic issue, rather than something influenced by how our electricity is generated. This from a doctor, and medical advisor to some crank outfit calling themselves doctors for something or other?

    As to 4.2 million deaths world-wide (a wondrous number, where did he get that one from? And I’d suggest most of those would be in China from their excellent air quality) being due to “outdoor air pollution”. True, there is dust and particulate pollution from coal mining, that’s evident, but the emissions from modern coal-fired electricity generators are minimal.

    I note he doesn’t mention the millions of deaths caused by indoor air pollution from burning animal dung for cooking. Just think for a moment how bloody miserable living like that would be. Always having stinging eyes, choked and searing lungs, early death. And this turkey would deny those people the right to access cheap, clean, reliable electricity from modern coal-fired electricity generation? Genuine misanthropy!

    You’d think there’d never been a flood, cyclone, drought or bushfire in all of human history, reading this tripe. Even the UNIPCC has stated they’re no worse than before.

    Intermittent, unreliable so-called “renewables” alone cannot possibly carry the base load required to even keep the lights on or the food safe in refrigeration, let alone maintain industry, business and agriculture to grow the economy or sustain employment.

    What exactly does the “good doctor” think will be the outcome of rotten food, inability to cook, lack of heating or cooling (especially for the marginal in health), reverting to wood-burning for heating (there’s that indoor pollution again, as well as outdoor)?

    Don’t rely on gas for heating or cooking; we’re not even allowed to explore for that, let alone use it. What is being extracted is sold overseas, then sold back to us at exorbitant prices.

    How does he think he’s going to charge his EV when the sun’s gone to bed and the wind isn’t blowing, and all the other EV owners have drained the big storage batteries before he could plug in?

    I think perhaps this bloke hasn’t really thought things through. Perhaps he’s wealthy enough to be insulated from the high costs of electricity and the threat of even higher costs. Perhaps he’s got his own generator he can flip on to maintain his health and comfort. Maybe he’ll be alright, Jack.

    It sounds like this chap could be a walking, talking example of delusional himself, or maybe he’s just not equipped to think critically. Just another thoughtless spruiker, by the look of it, elevated to a position way beyond his capabilities.

    Of course the ABC love him, he’s their kind of guy, singing off their very own hymn sheet.

    • Jack Richards 07/12/2018, 9:28 am

      Very well said.

      So we’re now to believe that coal-induced global warming causes diabetes and under-weight birth? And here are all the people with diabetes having been wrongly advised that it was caused by a failure of the pancreas to produce enough insulin or by obesity swamping the same organ with ingested sugars and fats.

      “In New South Wales, the five coal fired power stations are a health scourge from their pollution which causes 279 premature deaths, 233 babies born with low birth weight (less than 2,500g), and 361 people developing type-2 diabetes every year, who would not otherwise do so. These are preventable deaths and illnesses.”

      Really, what CRAP? Notice the exact numbers? Like the body-counts during the Vietnam war, you never give a number like 250 or 360, an even number, because that’s not believable but 279, 233 and 361 which proves odd numbers are far more believable.

      We can only assume that no-one suffered any of these diseases if the lived far enough from a coal-fired generator.

      Don’t these self-righteous windbags give you the shits!

      Just because someone has a degree in medicine it doesn’t mean they have any brains. They may be good at diagnosing varicose veins and banding haemorrhoids but have zero understanding of anything beyond that particular field. Some of the biggest dolts I’ve ever met have been “Doctors”. One need only look at Di Natale for proof that a medical degree doesn’t confer so much as a gram of sense.

    • Finn 07/12/2018, 11:05 am

      Damn straight

      Dunno who in this blog coined the phrase “Evidnce Free Zone” but spot on.

    • Neville 07/12/2018, 11:42 am

      Ripper, Bushy. Very neatly stated.

  • Albert 07/12/2018, 9:34 am

    What is it with doctors? Was it something that they were fed at Uni or an over abundance of KoolAide? Shearman has come out with this drivel and rants on almost endlessly without producing one shred of evidence to support his lunacy while that other halfwit doctor Di Natale pollutes our parliament with very similar twaddle.

  • Dr Cranberry 07/12/2018, 9:40 am

    What a great medical crusader is Dr Shearman. Pity though, he can’t find time to clean up his own backyard. It used to be called, death by medical misadventure—doctor caused deaths. They dropped that name in the ABS and renamed it “iatrogenic death”. It remained distasteful to certain people. And the 2017 ABS results do not mention doctor related deaths anywhere in their list of ’causes of death.’ Not good for business I suppose. Also, about 30% of all doctor certified death certificates are in error. Not a single death certificate has said, “Patient died from wrongly prescribed medication.” It would be for that doctor to call for an autopsy. Yeah, right!

    • Finn 07/12/2018, 11:06 am

      Never read a bad character reference.

  • Graham 07/12/2018, 12:20 pm

    Just read in the Oz that there will be 23,000 delegates in Poland for the GW gabfest. I checked the number twice to ensure I was reporting correctly.

    Most of them from…. guess where… Africa. That’s a lot of begging bowls!

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