Pixel Scroll 7/24/19 Credentials Asleep On The Shoulder Of John Scalzi

(1) RUTGER HAUER DIES. Variety pays tribute: “Rutger Hauer, ‘Blade Runner’ Co-Star, Dies at 75”.

Rutger Hauer, the versatile Dutch leading man of the ’70s who went on star in the 1982 “Blade Runner” as Roy Batty, died July 19 at his home in the Netherlands after a short illness. He was 75.

Hauer’s agent, Steve Kenis, confirmed the news and said that Hauer’s funeral was held Wednesday.

His most cherished performance came in a film that was a resounding flop on its original release. In 1982, he portrayed the murderous yet soulful Roy Batty, leader of a gang of outlaw replicants, opposite Harrison Ford in Ridley Scott’s sci-fi noir opus “Blade Runner.” The picture became a widely influential cult favorite, and Batty proved to be Hauer’s most indelible role.

More recently, he appeared in a pair of 2005 films: as Cardinal Roark in “Sin City,” and as the corporate villain who Bruce Wayne discovers is running the Wayne Corp. in Christopher Nolan’s “Batman Begins.”

… Hauer increasingly turned to action-oriented parts in the ‘80s: He toplined the big-budget fantasy “Ladyhawke” (1985), reteamed with fellow Hollywood transplant Verhoeven in the sword-and-armor epic “Flesh & Blood” (1985), starred as a psychotic killer in “The Hitcher” (1986), and took Steve McQueen’s shotgun-toting bounty hunter role in a modern reboot of the TV Western “Wanted: Dead or Alive” (1986).

WIRED kicks off its collection of memories with the iconic speech: “Remembering Rutger Hauer, Black-Armored Knight of the Genre”.

Let’s get the monologue on the table, first thing, because he wrote it himself, and it’s brilliant:

“I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I’ve watched C-beams glitter in the dark near the Tannhauser Gate. All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain.”

That’s Rutger Hauer in Blade Runner, playing the artificial person Roy Batty in his death scene…

(2) ACCESSIBLE GAMING. The Mary Sue has discovered “The Surprising Ways Blind Players Have Made Games Like Dungeons & Dragons Accessible”.

… Then, in 2017, a friend introduced me to Roll20, an online platform that serves as a digital tabletop, and everything changed. On a computer, I have the power to alter my settings—I can zoom in, change colors, and make whatever tweaks I need in order to make things accessible for my specific visual impairment. And things I lacked the power to change, my DM could: giving tokens borders with higher contrast, adjusting the lighting on a map, or—if I got lost looking for something—shifting my view in the direction I needed to be focusing.

I could roll dice directly on the platform and see my result easily, and best of all, I had a digital character sheet I could alter easily and at will, rather than a few pieces of paper I’d require another player to edit for me. And then I discovered other websites, like DnDBeyond, which made it easy to look up stats and spells online—again, in a medium far more accessible for me.

I still required a dungeon master willing to take the time to describe certain things to me and to make whatever color and contrast adjustments I needed, but even playing with strangers via Roll20’s Looking For Game system, my experience has been positive. Thanks to the websites I used, the things I needed didn’t require all that much work on their end, and now I was able to fully immerse myself in a hobby I’d once believed would be impossible for me because of my disability.

(3) ABLEGAMERS. And in the Washington Post Magazine, Christine Sturdivant Sani has a profile of AbleGamers, a nonprofit that helps people with disabilities enjoy video games: “How a West Virginia group helped make video games accessible to the disabled”.

In 2018, when Sony Interactive Entertainment unveiled the latest versions of two of its top-grossing video game titles — “God of War” and “Marvel’s Spider-Man” — they included new features that meant a lot to a specific subset of players: those with disabilities. To aid people with motor skill impairments, for instance, “God of War” introduced an option to press and hold a single button instead of tapping it repeatedly; it also let players with hearing disabilities adjust individual audio settings such as volume, dialogue and sound effects. For players with visual impairments, the subtitles in “Spider-Man” are now resizable and include tags that always indicate who is speaking.

Five years ago, according to Sam Thompson, a managing senior producer at Sony Interactive, it was possible to count on one hand the number of video games that had features catering to people with disabilities. Today, there are hundreds of such games. The shift, says Thompson, is “kind of amazing” — and he gives credit to a small nonprofit in Harpers Ferry, W.Va.

The group, called AbleGamers, was the brainchild of Mark Barlet, a 45-year-old disabled Air Force veteran and entrepreneur…

 (4) GAIMAN AUDIOBOOKS. AudioFile editorJenn Dowellsays – lend Neil Gaiman an ear! “Good Omens and Good Audiobooks: The Best of Neil Gaiman”.

… Where to start? Whether you’re a longtime fan of GOOD OMENS, Gaiman’s funny book about the apocalypse co-written with the late Terry Pratchett almost 30 years ago, or a new convert thanks to the sparkling new Amazon/BBC series, now is the perfect time to hear (or revisit) the audiobook.

… For something darker that’s perfect for an extended road trip, Gaiman’s 2001 epic novel AMERICAN GODS, in which old gods clash with new ones, also comes in two unabridged versions: one narrated by Golden Voice George Guidall, and a Tenth Anniversary Edition performed by a full cast. Can’t get enough gods? Follow up with ANANSI BOYS, about trickster god Anansi, read by Lenny Henry, and NORSE MYTHOLOGY, read by Gaiman.

… In the mood for nonfiction? THE VIEW FROM THE CHEAP SEATS and ART MATTERS collect Gaiman’s essays and speeches and will give listeners insights into Gaiman’s wide-ranging interests and his writing process—and maybe even inspire you to make your own art.

… P.S. If you fell in love with Michael Sheen and David Tennant’s performances in the Good Omens series, don’t miss their own star turns on audio: Sheen gives a wonderfully immersive, Earphones Award-winning narration of Philip Pullman’s THE BOOK OF DUST: La Belle Sauvage, and Tennant brings his acting chops and Scottish charm to The Wizards of Once and How to Train Your Dragon series by just-named UK Children’s Laureate Cressida Cowell.

(5) INKLINGS. Bruce Charlton revisits “Humphrey Carpenter’s The Inklings – 1978″ at The Notion Club Papers blog.

…Yet, in the end, Humphrey Carpenter failed in his attempt to throw the Inklings into the dustbin of irrelevance; because overall the book had the opposite effect of its intent – awakening for many, such as myself, a long-term and intense fascination with a ‘group of friends’ who were also, in reality, so much more than merely that.

(6) FROM THE BEEB. [Item by SF Concatenation’s Jonathan Cowie.] BBC Radio 4 has aired the second in the science and SF series Stranger Than Sci-Fi where astro-physicist Dr Jen Gupta and comedian Alice Fraser travel the parallel worlds of science and sci-fi.

Last week’s was on artificial wombs.  Today’s is on black holes (or frozen stars if you are of Russian persuasion and wish to avoid the rude connotation) — “Black Hole Jacuzzis”.

The program will be downloadable from BBC for a month once it is broadcast

(7) MINORITY REPORT? Atwood’s novel is not in bookstores but it’s already up for the Booker. BBC has the story — “Booker Prize 2019: Margaret Atwood’s Handmaid’s Tale sequel on longlist”.

Margaret Atwood’s follow-up to The Handmaid’s Tale is one of 13 novels on the Booker Prize longlist, despite not being published for several weeks.

The Testaments is out on 10 September and comes 33 years after the original book was nominated for the same award.

(8) KRASSNER OBIT. Pop culture figure Paul Krassner died July 21: the New York Times has a profile — “Paul Krassner, Anarchist, Prankster and a Yippies Founder, Dies at 87”.

Paul Krassner being interviewed in the men’s room during the 1978 ABA convention. (photo: Andrew Porter)

Mr. Krassner was writing freelance pieces for Mad magazine in 1958 when he realized that there was no equivalent satirical publication for adults; Mad, he could see, was largely targeted at teenagers. So he started The Realist out of the Mad offices, and it began regular monthly publication. By 1967 its circulation had peaked at 100,000.

“I had no role models and no competition, just an open field mined with taboos waiting to be exploded,” Mr. Krassner wrote in his autobiography.

The magazine’s most famous cartoon was one, drawn in 1967 by the Mad artist Wally Wood, of an orgy featuring Snow White, Donald Duck and a bevy of Disney characters enjoying a variety of sexual positions. (Mickey Mouse is shown shooting heroin.) Later, digitally colored by a former Disney artist, it became a hot-selling poster that supplied Mr. Krassner with modest royalties into old age.

(9) TODAY IN HISTORY.

  • July 24, 1948 — Debut of Marvin the Martian in Bugs Bunny’s “Haredevil Hare.”

(10) TODAY’S BIRTHDAYS.

[Compiled by Cat Eldridge.]

  • Born July 24, 1802 Alexandre Dumas. The Three Musketeers and Twenty Years After. Are they genre? Good question. (Died 1870.)
  • Born July 24, 1878 Lord Dunsany whose full name and title was a jaw dropping Edward John Moreton Drax Plunkett, 18th Baron of Dunsany. So ISFDB lists him as genre for the Jorkens body of work among works. H’h. Gary Turner, who some of you will recognize from Golden Gryphon Press and elsewhere, reviewed The Collected Jorkens: Volumes One, Two, and Three, for Green Man, so I’ve linked to the review here. They also list The King of Elfland’s Daughter which I’m going to link to another review on Green Man as it’s an audio recording with a very special guest appearance by Christopher Lee. (Died 1957.)
  • Born July 24, 1895 Robert Graves. Poet, historical novelist, critic. Author of, among other works, The White Goddess (a very strange book), two volumes called the Greek MythsSeven Days in New Crete which Pringle has on his Best Hundred Fantasy Novels list and more short fiction that bears thinking about. (Died 1985.)
  • Born July 24, 1916 John D. MacDonald. Primarily a mystery writer whose Travis McGee series I enjoyed immensely, he wrote a handful of genre works including the sublime The Girl, the Gold Watch & Everything.  ISFDB lists a collection, End of the Tiger and Other Short Stories, which I presume is genre. (Died 1986.)
  • Born July 24, 1936 Mark Goddard, 83. Major Don West, the adversary of Dr. Zachary Smith, on Lost in Space. Other genre appearances were scant. He played an unnamed Detective in the early Eighties Strange Invaders and he showed up on an episode of The Next Step Beyond which investigated supposed hauntings as Larry Hollis in “Sins of Omission”. Oh, and he was an unnamed General in the Lost in Space film. 
  • Born July 24, 1945 Gordon Eklund, 74. He won the Nebula for Best Novelette for “If the Stars Are Gods”, co-written with Gregory Benford. They expanded it into a novel which was quite good if I remember correctly. So would anyone care to tell the story of how he came to write the Lord Tedric series which was inspired by an E.E. Doc Smith novelette? 
  • Born July 24, 1951 Lynda Carter, 68. Wonder Woman of course. But also Principal Powers, the headmistress of a school for superheroes in Sky High; Colonel Jessica Weaver in the vampire film Slayer;  Moira Sullivan, Chloe Sullivan’s Kryptonite-empowered mother in the “Prodigy” episode of Smallville; and President Olivia Marsdin In Supergirl. 
  • Born July 24, 1964 Colleen Doran, 55.  Comics artist and writer. work worth particularly  worth noting she’s done includes Warren Ellis’ Orbiter graphic novel, Wonder Woman, Legion of Superheroes, Teen Titans, “Troll Bridge” by Neil Gaiman and her space opera series, A Distant Soil. She also did portions of The Sandman, in the “Dream Country” and “A Game of You”. She’s tuckerised Into Sandman as the character Thessaly is based on Doran.
  • Born July 24, 1981 Summer Glau, 38.  An impressive run in genre roles as she’s was. River Tam in Firefly and of course Serenity, followed by these performances: Tess Doerner in The 4400, as Cameron in Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles, Bennett Halverson in Dollhouse (Is this worth seeing seeing?), Skylar Adams in Alphas and lastly Isabel Rochev who is The Ravager in Arrow.
  • Born July 24, 1982  — Anna Paquin, 37. Sookie Stackhouse in the True Blood series. Rogue in the X-Men franchise. She also shows up in Philip K. Dick’s Electric Dreams as Sarah in the “Real Life” episode. 

(11) COMICS SECTION.

  • Poorly Drawn Lines has a funny entry that actually references the phrase “sense of wonder.”
  • A well-known nanny visits the seashore in Rhymes With Orange.
  • Bizarro shows how to bring the full social media experience to live book signings.

(12) STRONG KEEP. John Scalzi tells what he thinks about “A Couple of Bits on Hugo Award Proposals and Attempted Wikipedia Deletions” which we have been covering here. When it comes to the Wikipedia —

… You might think that I, who was the target of much Sad Puppy whining and mewling, would be sitting here happily munching on popcorn while this bit of Wikidrama unfolds. But in fact I think the deletion attempt is a problem. Neither Williamson nor Hoyt are exactly on my Christmas card list at the moment, but you know what? Both of them are solid genre writers who for years have been putting out work through a major genre publisher, and who are both actively publishing today. They are genuinely of note in the field of science fiction and fantasy. One may think their politics, in and out of the genre, are revanchist as all fuck, or that their tenure and association with the Puppy bullshit didn’t do them any favors, or that one just doesn’t care for them on a day-to-day basis for whatever reason. But none of that is here or there regarding whether, on the basis of their genre output, they are notable enough to be the subject of a damn Wikipedia article. They are! Wikipedia notability is kind of a middlin’-height bar, and they get themselves over it pretty well.

Or to flip it around, if neither Williamson nor Hoyt is notable enough for inclusion in Wikipedia, there’s gonna be some bloodletting in the site’s category of science fiction and fantasy writers, because there are a fair number of Wikipedia-article-bearing genre authors who are no more notable than Hoyt or Williamson. If they go, there are legitimately many others on the chopping block as well.

According to Camestros Felapton, “John Scalzi is wading into the Wiki-fuss”, Scalzi also made entries to the Wikipedia deletion discussion itself. He probably did, and although the links aren’t working for me Camestros has the full quotes anyway.

(13) FUTURE SHOCK. [Item by Olav Rokne.] Writing in The New Yorker, Emily Nussbaum takes a look at the BBC/HBO co-produced near-future science fiction series Years And Years.  The series, which is built around the conceit of moving through years at a rapid pace — often three years in a one-hour episode, provides a mostly-realistic future that won’t fill many viewers with hope. ““Years and Years” Forces Us Into the Future”.  

“Years and Years” keeps leaping forward, forcing us into the future, as the economy crumbles, the ice caps melt, authoritarianism rises, and teen-agers implant phones into their hands. It’s an alarmist series, in a literal sense: it’s meant to serve as an alarm, an alert to what’s going on in front of our eyes, and where that might lead, if we don’t wake up.”

In the wake of Boris Johnson’s elevation to the post of Prime Minister, I’d say that the series might seem overly optimistic about the future of the United Kingdom. But I’d heartily recommend seeking out the series. 

(14) MORE URGENT. “Climate change: 12 years to save the planet? Make that 18 months”

Do you remember the good old days when we had “12 years to save the planet”?

Now it seems, there’s a growing consensus that the next 18 months will be critical in dealing with the global heating crisis, among other environmental challenges.

Last year, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) reported that to keep the rise in global temperatures below 1.5C this century, emissions of carbon dioxide would have to be cut by 45% by 2030.

But today, observers recognise that the decisive, political steps to enable the cuts in carbon to take place will have to happen before the end of next year.

The idea that 2020 is a firm deadline was eloquently addressed by one of the world’s top climate scientists, speaking back in 2017.

“The climate math is brutally clear: While the world can’t be healed within the next few years, it may be fatally wounded by negligence until 2020,” said Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, founder and now director emeritus of the Potsdam Climate Institute.

The sense that the end of next year is the last chance saloon for climate change is becoming clearer all the time.

(15) CLOSING THEIR EARS. Meanwhile, the \outpatients\troglodytes were out in force: “Greta Thunberg speech: French MPs boycott teen ‘apocalypse guru’”.

Teen activist Greta Thunberg has lashed out at French lawmakers for mocking her in a speech to parliament that was boycotted by far-right politicians.

The 16-year-old addressed legislators on Tuesday, telling them to “unite behind the science” of climate change.

She and other children were invited to France’s parliament by a cross-party group of politicians.

“You don’t have to listen to us, but you do have to listen to the science,” she said.

Ms Thunberg, whose solo protest outside the Swedish Parliament inspired the school climate strike movement, has been lauded for her emotive speeches to politicians.

But lawmakers from French parties, including the conservative Republicans and far-right National Rally, said they would shun her speech in the National Assembly.

Urging his colleagues to boycott Ms Thunberg’s speech, leadership candidate for The Republicans, Guillaume Larrive, wrote on Twitter: “We do not need gurus of the apocalypse.”

Other French legislators hurled insults at Ms Thunberg ahead of her speech, calling her a “prophetess in shorts” and the “Justin Bieber of ecology”.

Republicans MP Julien Aubert, who is also contending for his party’s leadership, suggested Ms Thunberg should win a “Nobel Prize for Fear”.

Speaking to France 2 television, Jordan Bardella, an MEP for the National Rally, equated Ms Thunberg’s campaigning efforts to a “dictatorship of perpetual emotion”.

(16) TO SIR WITH LOVE. BBC reports “Sir Michael Palin to have heart surgery”.

Comedian and broadcaster Sir Michael Palin is to have surgery to fix a “leaky valve” in his heart.

The Monty Python member discovered a problem with his mitral valve – a small flap that stops blood flowing the wrong way around the heart – five years ago.

It had not affected his general fitness until earlier this year, he said.

“Recently, though, I have felt my heart having to work harder and have been advised it’s time to have the valve repaired,” he wrote on his website.

“I shall be undergoing surgery in September and should be back to normal, or rather better than normal, within three months.”

(17) PICARD & COMPANY. TV Line did a mass interview — “’Star Trek: Picard’ Cast on the Return of Patrick Stewart’s Iconic Captain.”

The cast of ‘Star Trek: Picard’ previews the CBS All Access series with TVLine’s Kim Roots at San Diego Comic-Con 2019.

[Thanks to John A Arkansawyer, John King Tarpinian, JJ, Mike Kennedy, Hampus Eckerman, SF Concatenation’s Jonathan Cowie, Martin Morse Wooster, Chip Hitchcock, Cat Eldridge, Olav Rokne, Carl Slaughter, and Andrew Porter for some of these stories. Title credit goes to File 770 contributing editor of the day Jack Lint.]

90 thoughts on “Pixel Scroll 7/24/19 Credentials Asleep On The Shoulder Of John Scalzi

  1. @Dann

    He gets quite a few things correct.

    Like this?

    If skeptical conservatives are to be convinced, the Left must learn to reframe the issue in a way that is more palatable to their worldview.

    I for one am quite tired of people calling for conservatives to be pandered to when they stubbornly insist on holding beliefs that are factually wrong. (And yes, this also applies to anyone on the left who is anti-vaxx.) We are long past arguing about whether climate change is happening and humans are responsible, and whether vaccines are effective, and also whether the earth is flat. “Skeptical conservatives” do not need to be convinced, and they will never be convinced anyway. They need to be outvoted.

  2. Bonnie McDaniel: I for one am quite tired of people calling for conservatives to be pandered to when they stubbornly insist on holding beliefs that are factually wrong.

    Yes, it’s amusing to me that conservatives think that saying “We’re widdle babies with fragile egos who must be coddled and pandered to, in order for us to be willing to consider rationality” is presenting themselves in any light other than as petty, petulant children who are incapable of behaving like thinking adults.

    As you say, it’s impossible to reason with people who insist on behaving like petty, petulant, irrational children. All you can do is outvote them and then get on with the job at hand.

  3. @bill: I would suggest you go argue with climate change deniers who are taking a “contrary position” in direct opposition to scientific evidence and consensus, if you must argue with someone.

  4. @John A Arkansawyer If you can’t, what then?

    Carry on with what we’ve been doing since the 80s. Campaigning, education, lobbying, direct action, and hope to get somewhere before the crop failures and rising waters make it a moot point.

    Facts, as they say, don’t care.

  5. @Sophie Jane: So continue what hasn’t worked yet–and may yet still work, possibly even in time–without additionally reframing the issue in an attempt to win votes.

    If it’s not important enough to build targeted propaganda for, why bother with it? Isn’t climate change a world-changing catastrophe?

  6. “So continue what hasn’t worked yet–and may yet still work, possibly even in time–without additionally reframing the issue in an attempt to win votes.”

    You are free to reframe the issue in absolutely any way you want. But there is absolutely no need to reframe us here as we have already heeded science. If you want to reframe the issue to talk to unconvinced conservatives, please do talk to the unconvinced conservatives.They are the people you think need some kind of reframing

    Not us.

    A good start for you is to take it up with conservative media as it is they who are the main source of information for conservatives. They are the ones who need to present this in a framework that works for conservatives in denial.

    Not us.

  7. @John A. Arkansawyer–

    @Sophie Jane: So continue what hasn’t worked yet–and may yet still work, possibly even in time–without additionally reframing the issue in an attempt to win votes.

    If it’s not important enough to build targeted propaganda for, why bother with it? Isn’t climate change a world-changing catastrophe?

    How do you successfully reframe an issue for people who are very, very clear in saying and demonstrating in action that they believe everything you say, that isn’t what they have decided to believe, is a lie? Who believe that 97% of the climate scientists in the world are engaged in a conspiracy to destroy capitalism, only because they hate capitalism? That they can’t possibly be concerned about the real problems in the real world that their research and just looking at the real world demonstrates are real problems?

    These are, after all, the same people who, when President Obama took a health care plan that originated with the Heritage Foundation and had been successfully implemented in Massachusetts by a Republican governor, declared it to be evil socialism that would destroy American freedom?

    Who have flipped on a dime to support Trump’s tariffs, which Republicans and conservatives are supposed to be pro-free trade?

    Who endlessly lecture Democrats about the need for us to be civil, but who call us snowflakes and crybabies for objecting to racist, sexist, and homophobic insults?

    How do you reason with these people? Seriously, how? And you’ll need to be a lot more specific than “reframe the issue,” because that’s been tried. Repeatedly, on multiple different issues, and so far, as Rocky the Squirrel used to regularly remind us, “that trick never works.”

    How do you reason with these people?

  8. @John A Arkansawyer If it’s not important enough to build targeted propaganda for, why bother with it?

    It took me a few tries to parse this, but if I’m understanding you then it’s because the minority of hardcore climate change deniers are a kind of local minimum in terms of outcome for expended effort, and most people prefer to concentrate elsewhere. But I encourage you to pitch in wherever you think you can be of use, of course. There’s plenty of work to do.

  9. @John A Arkansawyer

    If it’s not important enough to build targeted propaganda for, why bother with it?

    You mean the way the Democrats ALWAYS, invariably, as a block, seem to write op-eds questioning how to reach out to the extreme conservative Tea Partier types and the White Working Class voters, whilst simultaneously ignoring the people who are actually on the fence, plus the people to their left who are getting more and more vocal about being tired of being unrepresented by any party, and are even more vocally delighted (and show it with votes) when an unapologetic “socialist” * candidate like Sanders or Ocasio-Cortez does show up?

    You know how you really upset a conservative extremist who is loudly shouting that science is wrong and demanding you debate him or else he’ll declare you all too cowardly to let your ideas be challenged, and clearly that means he wins?

    You gather together all the people who aren’t behaving like him and do what’s needed without pandering to his shouting. Generally speaking, there are enough people who can be persuaded to act in the right direction or to at least bow to necessity and not fight you tooth and nail, without wasting your time on him.

    He will scream louder and more frantically. He may get dangerous. Keep enough of an eye on him to report him and/or act to protect people from him before the latter is a serious issue, but don’t engage otherwise.

    This is incidentally taken straight from the conservative playbook. The Conservative Party in Canada used to have an election strategy folder which included all kinds of voters and strategies to reach them. And what it said of the granola mom hippie green type is “Ignore. They will never vote for us. Don’t even worry about them.”

    Which is a bit insulting but also true. I was raised by an NDP partisan and am a mostly determined NDP voter (NDP started as a loudly pro-union party and are still generally leftist). I could be persuaded to vote Liberal (Centrist) or Green (Environmental focused leftist) but I have yet to meet a Conservative (Right-wing) candidate of whom I thought any better than “Well, at least the opposition this time is smart and personable.” And most of them I think much worse of.

    I really don’t see why, if the Democrats can win the election without pandering to the extreme opposite of what they want to stand for, they should bother trying. There are a LOT of people who didn’t vote in the middle.

    And if they CAN’T win without reaching the anti-science climate deniers because anti-science climate deniers are too numerous, then the US is too broken a country to save regardless, and that is a pretty ugly view of your own land, but the answer is STILL not reaching out to climate denialists.

    Neither of whom is actually socialist if you properly understand pure socialism.

  10. Agree with Lenora. Better to try to mobilize those who might vote for you than to try to convince those who would never do it.

  11. @Camestros

    I guess it depends on the objective. If the objective is to do something productive about the problem, you have to build a coalition. Building coalitions means that everyone gets some part of what they want while at the same time are willing to forego other things that they want.

    I’m “gettable” on this topic. An agenda that will….

    be a productive solution
    not be destructive to modern society
    be nuanced

    ….can get my support.

    Plans that focus on carbon taxes, the Green New Deal, wind/solar, and exclude nuclear power (fission and fusion) are non-starters for me.

    Regards,
    Dann
    “You can’t be a real country unless you have a beer and an airline. It helps if you have some kind of a football team, or some nuclear weapons, but at the very least you need a beer.” – Frank Zappa

  12. The virulence with which you folks are opposing the idea of altering a framing of an idea to gain support says to me you value the current framing more than winning. To quote a Great Nobel Laureate’s protest song, “Swallow your pride, you will not die, it is not poison.”

    No one is asking you to say the sun circles the earth, or Bob Kane invented Batman. If there is a fraction of the unconvinced which can be persuaded by presenting the issue to them in a way they find palatable, I personally would rather have those people with me than against me. Maybe you’d rather fight them while the world burns.

    I see two groups of actual enemies involved: There are people who are utterly convinced climate change is a crock, your common run-of-the-mill denier.

    Then there are the ones, powerful and rich, who claim climate change is a crock while are busily arranging their wealth in such a manner as to survive climate change, at the cost of endangering the rest of us. Those are the people who need beaten, defeated utterly.

    There are also a lot of people between them and us. I figure they’re worth talking to.

    If some of them are conservative (which puts them to the left of the alt-right), and they are convincible, that’s a Good Thing, is it not?

  13. “The virulence with which you folks are opposing the idea of altering a framing of an idea to gain support…”

    You do that. Please. Go find a fantastic framing and try to convince people. Please do. But you do not need to convince us, so we have no need to hear what framing you think is great.

    Myself, I prefer to say what I believe in. I am not a PR-person. I will not stop saying something I believe, because somewhere there might be a conservative that would have preferred to have it framed some other way. I will not start to say things I do not believe, because somewhere a conservative would prefer I said conservative things.

    If you think you have the perfect framing to convince conservatives, you go and do that. Do not spend all your time and energy to harangue us about how prideful we are, how we absolutely should do what you think is best. Spend that time on trying to convince conservatives instead. Why do you insist on fighting with us who already believe in climate change while, as you say, the world burns?

  14. @Hampus Eckerman: “Go find a fantastic framing and try to convince people. Please do. But you do not need to convince us, so we have no need to hear what framing you think is great.”

    I have no interest in convincing you all about climate change, because I don’t need to. We agree. I am interested in convincing you all that writing off everyone who doesn’t agree with you and me isn’t as smart as considering which of them might be convinced to change their minds.

    What the guy in the article says makes a reasonable amount of sense. It’s not like he’s a denier. This Global Warming FAQ from his website makes that pretty clear. He’s a climate scientist concerned about anthropogenic climate change. He’s not concern trolling.

    That doesn’t make him right politically. I do think he’s correct that leftish solutions for climate change can put off moderates and conservatives. I also think the Green New Deal is worth pursuing despite the fact that it could–probably will–turn a certain number of potentially convincible people off. It’ll do more good than harm.

    That said, if there were a serious proposal from conservatives to address climate change through pure cut-throat capitalism, I’d encourage its supporters to push it. It’s not the solution I want, but I’d rather get a bad solution that works than no solution at all, given the stakes.

  15. Dann665: not be destructive to modern society

    In other words, you’re not open to any real solution.

    People want a fix to the problem of climate change that will be painless. It’s too late for that; whatever we are able to do now, it won’t be without some societal and economic cost.

    And that’s the problem, really, isn’t it? It’s NIMBYism on a global scale. A lot of people, most especially conservatives, are not willing to accept having to pay a social and economic cost for trying to dig ourselves out of the hole that the last couple of centuries of corporate and individual greed and selfishness have dug us into.

    And that’s why conservatives as a general whole aren’t willing to acknowledge the existence of climate change: to do so would be to acknowledge that there is going to be a price to pay to fix it — a price that they, in their greed and selfishness, are not willing to pay.

  16. @JJ: Pretty much yes to everything you say there. I’d just add there is also (in my opinion) some bad-faith, full-out lying on the parts of a few. I wish I knew which ones they were.

  17. John A Arkansawyer on July 31, 2019 at 3:28 pm said:

    Not our job. They have the facts available to them, many of them have the education to understand those facts, and they still refuse to acknowledge those facts. It’s on them, not us, to change their own minds.

  18. @John A. Arkansawyer–But we do know who’s lying, and there’s exceptionally good evidence of it from an unlikely source. Richard Muller, who was a colorful and vocal critic of climate change science, proposed a study to the Kochs, who did fund it.

    The results were published in 2012:
    Richard Muller, who directed a Koch-funded climate change project, has undergone a ‘total turnaround’ on his stance on global warming, which he now admits is caused by human activity.

    Climate change study forces sceptical scientists to change minds

    Both articles contain additional links.

    And Scientific Amerian
    Converted Contrarian Argues Humans “Almost Entirely” to Blame for Climate Change

    Neither the Kochs nor those who swear by them were persuaded by a Koch-backed scientist who was a long-time climate change denier, who had expected his study to prove anthropogenic climate change was a hoax.

  19. @Lis Carey: I don’t know that the Kochs are lying about this. People are pretty good at deceiving themselves in support of their beliefs. My suspicion is the funders truly believed the study would prove them right. They strike me as less likely to be lying than self-deceiving, but I don’t hold that opinion strongly. I could be wrong.

    I doubt anyone not in a position to profit from it is outright lying. What’s their motivation?

    I like this paragraph from the article quite a bit:

    Rather than thinking of the political divide on global warming as being the result of logic vs. dogma, a much better explanation is that people tend to accept conclusions, be they scientific or otherwise, that support themes, ideologies, and narratives that are a preexisting component of their worldview (e.g., Washburn and Skitka, 2017). It just so happens that the themes, ideologies, and narratives associated with human-caused global warming and its proposed solutions align well with archetypal worldviews of the Left and create great tension with archetypal worldviews of the Right.

  20. @John A. Arkansawyer–The Kochs are profiting from the things that make global climate change worse.

    Yes, I’m sure they expected that the results of the research they funded would prove them right. After all, the scientist in charge was vocally and colorfully in agreement with them.

    But when it supported climate change science, the scientist changed his mind–and the Kochs continued to deny the science. Either they couldn’t be persuaded even by solid evidence from the friendliest possible source for their viewpoint, or it was never about the evidence at all, for them. Neither is at all good for the argument that what we really have to do is reframe our attempts to make the case for climate change.

    And the Kochs fund an awful lot of climate change denial efforts, including blocking local efforts to do small but locally significant solar or wind power projects, and state bills to make solar expensive enough with extra fees that there’s much less incentive to switch. They’re doing real harm, and a denial- friendly project they funded told them they were wrong with no useful effect. What kind of reframing do you think would affect that?

    Nor did the study have much impact on other major climate change deniers, either.

    But somehow the fault lies with the people putting out or promoting good information, and not the people spending money hand over fist to support their short term profits while the ice melts and the permafrost thaws. 🙁

  21. @Lis Carey
    I think the Kochs also fund the “Heartland Institute”, which funds programs in schools…teaching that the climate crisis doesn’t exist, or that it’s natural, or that it’s man-made but nature will fix it.

  22. John A Arkansawyer:

    “He’s not concern trolling.”

    What he does is trying to save face for conservatives that inisist on letting the world burn, because it better fits their ideology. And then try to blame the left for it. What you are doing is concern trolling. You are so concerned, so concerned that we talk to conservatives without espousing conservative talking points.

    Why should I espouse conservative talking points? I’m not a conservative. I think conservativism is bad. I want less of it.

    If you want people talking about climate change from a conservative framework, go to a conservative. Do not be so concerned, so concerned that I do not sound conservative enough, because then it is my fault that the conservative does not believe in science.

  23. The whole thing with “trying to convince” is focus on the totally wrong things. It is not that people aren’t convinced. Even Trump is insuring his property against climate change. Even under the republicans, the US military is planning for climate change. They are convinced, they just do bot think it is profitable enough to do something about.

    Instead of talking about “convincing”, we should pressure those that are convinced to actually do something.

  24. Back in the day wasn’t “Cap and Trade” the conservative proposal – market-driven, flexible and demonstrated to be effective (as it was used to combat acid rain decades ago)?

  25. “I like this paragraph from the article quite a bit:”

    It has the usual problems of the Alt-Right, believing that the US is the only country in the world that has conservatives, ignoring all the countries where you have conservatives that believe in climate change.

    I remember when I visited US the first time in 2004. Seeing a great billboard about “Oil being the cleanest energy source”. You couldn’t have put up anything like that anywhere in Europe without there being a scandal and the company a laughing stock.

    The big thing is paid lobbying firms, sponsored politicians and newspapers who follow the money. A whole system of corruption. Not ideology.

  26. @Lis Carey: You may be right. The Kochs appear to be smart enough to figure it out. They’ve also occasionally supported causes that don’t enrich them, such as equal marriage. (I don’t know that they opened their pocketbooks for that–I have no evidence they did.) So it’s also possible they’re self-deceiving.

    “But somehow the fault lies with the people putting out or promoting good information…”

    It does, in part, to the extent that they think good information wins out in a dirty fight without sufficiently good propaganda to defend and and advance it. I, too, read Paul Linebarger’s Psychological Warfare. My home town’s library was pretty good when I was a teenager. Good information isn’t enough. It isn’t ever enough.

    @Hampus Eckerman:

    What he does is trying to save face for conservatives that inisist on letting the world burn, because it better fits their ideology. And then try to blame the left for it. What you are doing is concern trolling. You are so concerned, so concerned that we talk to conservatives without espousing conservative talking points.

    That’s two minds you’ve read there. Care to share your techniques? I’d love to be able to tell when people are insincerely bullshitting me in order to help destroy the world, as you say he and I are both doing. I myself am more of a Doofenschmirtz than a Doom, but I have been looking for a promotion lately.

    Instead of talking about “convincing”, we should pressure those that are convinced to actually do something.

    That’s the heart of the matter. The rest is argument about methods.

    I would be interested in hearing you explain this in greater detail:

    [The following paragraph] has the usual problems of the Alt-Right, believing that the US is the only country in the world that has conservatives, ignoring all the countries where you have conservatives that believe in climate change.

    “Rather than thinking of the political divide on global warming as being the result of logic vs. dogma, a much better explanation is that people tend to accept conclusions, be they scientific or otherwise, that support themes, ideologies, and narratives that are a preexisting component of their worldview (e.g., Washburn and Skitka, 2017). It just so happens that the themes, ideologies, and narratives associated with human-caused global warming and its proposed solutions align well with archetypal worldviews of the Left and create great tension with archetypal worldviews of the Right.”

    Can you tell me how you reach your conclusion about that paragraph? Because I don’t see a thing in it that resembles what you’re saying.

    By the way, here’s a link to the paper referenced in that paragraph: Science Denial Across the Political Divide: Liberals and Conservatives Are Similarly Motivated to Deny Attitude-Inconsistent Science

    I don’t know the journal, and I do know that social psychology is in a replication crisis, so possibly it’s flawed research, but the abstract sounds plausible.

  27. John A Arkansawyer:

    “That’s two minds you’ve read there. Care to share your techniques? I’d love to be able to tell when people are insincerely bullshitting me in order to help destroy the world, as you say he and I are both doing.”

    I have absolutely no idea whatsoever what you are talking about here. I don’t know if you are trying to make sense, but you are not succeeding. It feels like you are arguing against what someone said in a parallell dimension.

    “Can you tell me how you reach your conclusion about that paragraph? Because I don’t see a thing in it that resembles what you’re saying.”

    The cited paragrap that you liked said:

    “Rather than thinking of the political divide on global warming as being the result of logic vs. dogma, a much better explanation is that people tend to accept conclusions, be they scientific or otherwise, that support themes, ideologies, and narratives that are a preexisting component of their worldview (e.g., Washburn and Skitka, 2017).”

    That might sense for an american, but it does not for a Swede. If the sentences had been true, then our conservatives would be arguing as vehemently against climate change as american conservatives. But they aren’t. Yes, those skeptics that exist tend to be on the conservative side, but they are a small number. All major parties, apart from the far right Swedendemocrats (12%) av accepted Climate Change as a scientific fact and even SD is hedging.

    Of course, the solutions to the problems have the ordinary ideological divide, but the discussion of if Climate Change exist is well passed and disappeared from our mainstream media some time around 2010. Even among the right wing of the spectrum.

    I do think US is on a totally different scale than the rest of the world here, which makes me beleive that it is not only about ideology or conservative tendencies. It is about a political landscape that too a much larger extent is steared by pundits, by sponsored politicians and thinktanks, by lobbyists. About how US media makes information available to the public.

    While there is absolutely times regarding the political and social sciences, when both left and right wing pick according to worldview, this is usually not truein the same way for the natural sciences. So I think that quote is dead wrong.

  28. @JJ

    In other words, you’re not open to any real solution.

    Mind readers abound?

    If you want to know what I think, please ask.

    Some pain will be involved in effectively reducing CO2 emissions. Policies such as a carbon tax, cap-and-trade, and the Green New Deal simply will not do enough to solve the problem and will (at worst) foster regressive social conditions.

    There are a bunch of effective strategies that are possible in the near term. Until the ineffective strategies are taken off the table, I see little benefit in talking about the effective ones.

    Regards,
    Dann
    “It used to be said that it is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness. Today, we admire those who curse the candle—because it is not perfect, not free, not whatever the complainers want it to be.”–Thomas Sowell

  29. @Hampus Eckerman: “That might sense for an american, but it does not for a Swede.”

    Thank you. Your explanation makes sense.

    in re: “I have absolutely no idea whatsoever what you are talking about here.”

    You attributed motivations to two people, one of whom was me. I’ve seen that referred to as mind-reading. In any event, you are wrong about mine.

  30. “You attributed motivations to two people, one of whom was me. I’ve seen that referred to as mind-reading. In any event, you are wrong about mine.”

    Again, I have absolutely no idea what you are talking about.

  31. @Hampus Eckerman: “What he does is trying to save face for conservatives…What you are doing is concern trolling.”

    That’s what I’m talking about. You are imputing motives which you have no way of knowing and which, in my case, is not accurate.

  32. Yes, I do think you are concern trolling. To say that is not the same as accusing you of “insincerely bullshitting me in order to help destroy the world”. I see no reason why you should want to destroy the world. My comment was about your insistence on how important it was for everyone to adhere to the conservative mindset, use the conservative framework for talking, adopt conservative strategies.

    I do think it is “concern trolling” to require that everyone should talk according to the needs of conservatives, because otherwise the latter would see the world burn (and I do not you in those who want that here). It irritates me in the same way as with all Republican who continue to speak to Democrats on how important it is that Democrats adopt all Republican politics, so Trump won’t be elected again. I do not find it as a serious argument in good faith.

    I will talk about climate change according to my values, what I believe in and what I think should be done. I want politicians I believe in to do the same. If conservatives wants a conservative framework to handle Climate Change, they should demand that from their politicians, their newspapers, their media. Instead of nodding with Quillette that it is of course the fault of the left, they should demand that Quillette keep writing articles about Climate Change and how the conservative politics should handle it. I.e they should require that conservative media take their part of the responsibility.

    Not demand that people to the left should become conservatives to better suit the conservatives. I do think that is concern trolling. I.e talking about it as if it concerned convincing republicans to save the world, when it is instead a move to stop people to the left from champion their own politics and instead champion politics Republicans are more happy with.

  33. I do admit that I might have jumped to conclusions about your motives here. Again I might have let my temper run away with me and have acted in an insulting manner, holding you to motives you do not have. If so I apoligize.

    But after having read my share of Quillette, I do not think I’m wrong in deducting their motives, because they follow a standardized pattern. It is a magazine for cultural war based on Alt-Right talking points masked in nicer language. My error then would be me letting my opionion of them influence my opinion on your comments.

  34. @Hampus Eckerman: Now I see where I failed to communicate effectively! “My comment was about your insistence on how important it was for everyone to adhere to the conservative mindset, use the conservative framework for talking, adopt conservative strategies.”

    I think that would be a terrible idea, for all the reasons you give and one more: It would be so obviously insincere as to be both embarrassing and counter-productive.

    What I think would be a good idea is using a framing suitable for convincing people with a conservative mindset when talking to those conservative people.

    What you said upthread about America being special–I’d say “pathological”, myself–is so, and makes the task much harder for Americans, which is our blues. Except it’s your blues, too, if our inability to do our part means your country gets torn up by climate change.

    Which is why I’m willing to talk to conservatives in language they’ll understand.

    I don’t underestimate the crazy. I try to comment/debunk a couple of toxic Fbook posts a day from my relatives. Here I thought I was a loon when I was younger, and these people who seemed so relatively sensible then are crazier than I ever was! That takes some doing, but they’re on the ball.

    But I think it’s worth doing, because I got better. I’m hoping some of them will, too.

  35. @Hampus Eckerman: It’s good of you to apologize! I’m not offended, just slightly annoyed when I don’t communicate well. That’s at least as much on me as on you.

    I don’t disagree with you about the motivations behind Quillette, which is why I linked to the writer’s own copy of the article rather than theirs. They find an acorn now and then, like every blind pig–this article was worth reading–but I wait for someone else to tell me about it.

  36. Ok, sounds like we are in violent agreement then. 😛

    With regards to discussing Climate Change with conservatives, I see no reason to go into ideologies at all. For me it is a pure question about science. After the science has been discussed, then we can have a separate ideological discussion on how to handle it.

  37. Dann665 on July 31, 2019 at 10:42 am said:

    @Camestros

    I guess it depends on the objective. If the objective is to do something productive about the problem, you have to build a coalition. Building coalitions means that everyone gets some part of what they want while at the same time are willing to forego other things that they want.

    Been there, done that, didn’t work.

    In the 2000s conservative and right-of-centre parties were broadly accepting that climate change due to global warming caused by anthropogenic greenhouse gas emissions was a fact about the world that would need a policy response. The GOP (and the subsequent Bush administration) typically accepted the reality of climate change in public statements but sort delays. In the UK, the Conservative Party were more proactive on the issue. In Australia, the Liberal (i.e. conservative party) was moving to some sort of carbon pricing model.

    In the intervening period, the evidence that climate change is real and is happening and that we desperately need to cut emissions has only got stronger. Among conservative circles in the English speaking world the dogma against climate change has only got stronger. In particular an active campaign against broad consensus and market-driven policies to combat climate change have been met with virulent campaigns from factions within conservative movements. We’ve gone from a time when Newt Gingrich could appear in a video with Nancy Pelosi stating we all need to take action on climate change

    …to it essentially being a forbidden topic in conservative policymaker circles.
    In Australia, campaigns from conservative politicians has led to the direct ousting of THREE prime ministers over climate change policies.

    There is something deeply f_cked up going on in conservative circles on this issue that is quite separate from the facts of climate change. Any conservative politician who attempts to reach across partisan lines on this issue will be targetted by activists to their right and will lose influences and possibly their position.

    Meanwhile, time is ticking on. The longer the delay, the more substantial (and painful) the policy response will need to be. We are already in the zone of where government need to start enacting costly mitigation policies due climatic changes and extreme weather.

  38. Dann665: Mind readers abound?

    No “mind reading” is required. You said you were only open to solutions which would “not be destructive to modern society”. There is no viable solution which meets this requirement.

     
    Dann665: There are a bunch of effective strategies that are possible in the near term. Until the ineffective strategies are taken off the table, I see little benefit in talking about the effective ones.

    What you really mean is that you don’t have any effective strategies to offer which meet your “non-destructive to society” criteria. Because the absolute best way to get what you call “ineffective” strategies off the table is to offer better, effective ones.

    So go ahead! Tell everyone about all of these magical effective, non-destructive strategies of which you know.

    I won’t bother bating my breath. 🙄

  39. Dann665:

    “There are a bunch of effective strategies that are possible in the near term. Until the ineffective strategies are taken off the table, I see little benefit in talking about the effective ones.”

    I think this is the stranges comment of all. Why keep effective strategies off the table, so the only alternatives that are left as solutions are those you deem ineffective?

    And it is even more weird when you say that these are effective solutions in the near term. I.e, we could start to implement them directly and have a working effect, but we will refuse to talk to about them because those that aren’t in power have other ideas?

    I can only see this as leaving walk over and handing the reins to someone else.

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