Skepticism … the ability to question unquestioned beliefs and stated certainties is a powerful intellectual tool.
Sadly, “skepticism” is receiving a bad name through association with those ready, willing, able, and enthusiastic about denying the reality before their (and our) own eyes about the global changes in climate patterns and humanity’s role in driving these changes. What is typically viewed as a secondary definition seems, in today’s ideological environment, to becoming the dominant concept when it comes to Global Warming. Skepticism has become, it seems,
the doctrine that true knowledge or knowledge [re Global Warming] is uncertain
Yes, there are doctrinaires who have a “doctrine” about “uncertainty” in the domain of Global Warming, no matter what science tells us, no matter what is happening in front of us, no matter …
Questioner … Skeptic … Denier …
Clearly, not every question, not every challenge to data, not every voicing of concern is the same. Nor is every motivation the same. This is not simply about “fossil-fuel-funding” (although it can be at times). This is not simply about seeking Rapture and the end of times (even though it can be). This is not simply about political beliefs creating thought structures for dealing with science (but it can be).
Too often, it seems, those discussing the issue of “skeptics” and “deniers” simplify the motivational path. Thus, we will see blunt statements that X motivation, Y reasoning drives skepticism when, in reality, the situation is more complex. While it quite possibly exists, I have yet to see a treatise examining and deconstructing different types and motivations for deniers and skeptics when it comes to Global Warming. Thus, here is a shot at “Typing Skeptics: Providing a Window on the Varying Motivations for Global Warming Skeptics …”