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May 15, 2016

Like the race between the seaward flow of a glacier and the melting in the opposite direction caused by global warming, the debate about climate change rages on. Except there's no debate. I had a bit to say in Australasian Science magazine about smart people talking and believing nonsense.

Smart people. Strange ideas.

When Michael Shermer revised his book Why People Believe Weird Things for its second edition, he added a chapter titled "Why Smart People Believe Weird Things". His point was that even people who are quite competent and rational in their thinking about some or even most matters can hold opinions or beliefs which are not supported by science, logic or even in some cases common sense. The usual example of this is religious scientists who manage to comfortably believe in miracles and supernatural beings, but I'm with Stephen Jay Gould on this – religion and science are different and faith is about belief without evidence. My concern here is people who are selective about the science they accept.

You can read the rest here.


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