[opendtv] What does it take to convince

  • From: Albert Manfredi <albert.e.manfredi@xxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: <opendtv@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • Date: Sat, 8 Nov 2008 19:04:41 -0500

Saturday evening rambling.
I came across a blog which pointed to another article on global warming, 
concluding that global warming was caused by human activity. And the blogger 
asks what more would it take to convince the skeptical.
Made me realize that there are parallels between that, the depletion of the 
ozone layer, the potential harmful effects of WSDs, or the viability of SFNs. 
It's all comes down to the same thing: to convince me, one way or the other, 
just show me the mechanism. Don't throw words out, or derived statistics, or 
prose about "wouldn't it be wonderful if ... ." Instead, show me how.
The ozone depletion problem was convincingly demonstrated by the existence of 
human-made CFCs in the upper atmosphere, and their effect on the ozone layer up 
there. That showed we could fix the problem.
The potential for harm from WSDs is even more easily demonstrated.
The constraints which restrict SFNs are also easily demonstrated. All the cheap 
verbiage about how wonderful SFNs might be cannot change the facts that limit 
how they can be deployed. And all the proposed SFN configurations that do not 
take the constraints into account are just fairy tales.
Similarly, human involvement in global warming might very well be true. 
Possibly, the stats show that somehow somewhere, we are exacerbating it. But 
obsessing over CO2, when we contribute such a small fraction of that gas 
compared with the rest of nature? Show me what we are doing that causes harm, 
then, so we have a hope of fixing it. Articles that wring hands about the harm 
caused by global warming do not by themselves show that we cause it or how we 
can fix it.
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