To illustrate this, take a look at the neo-Nazi MEP, Nick Griffin, denying climate change in the EU Parliament.
He rolls out the Little Ice Age argument.
RL: This one is based on the case that Europe was cold in the 1600s, when CO2 was constant. It is possible that it was limited to Europe, as it does not show on the long term graphs of global temperature. (See graph Temperature over last 1000 years). It overlooks the fact that climate science does not claim that global temperature depends on CO2 alone.
Then he quotes Professor Richard Lindzen, one of the very few sharpish knives in the denialist drawer, but Lindzen is only giving his "Little Johnny is the Only One In Step" speech.
Then The Conspiracy Theory comes hissing and spitting out of the bag: Griffin says:
"the reason for this (Global Warming) hysteria is clear: it is designed to provide the excuse for the political project of the globalists to replace national democracy with New World Order global governance.
It has nothing to do with science and everything to do with a globalist common purpose to tax and control us, while making Billions for corporations in the Green-Industrial complex".
Green-Industrial Complex. I like that.
So there is a feeling of two parallel universes, the denialists with their conspiracy theory, and the greens and scientists with their reality.
That is why I am debating with the denialists, to try to find what motivates them, what their basic assumptions are. It is pretty clear that they feel deeply threatened by the thought that their 4x4s will become too expensive to drive, and their state of denial makes it very difficult to reason with them.
However, we must keep trying, in the interest of keeping the fabric of humanity intact.
Overall, the emotionality of the deniers is encouraging, not only because it shows that their factual base is frail, but also because they can see that there is a great shift in global consciousness away from individualism towards collective and co-operative action to protect the basis of life on earth.
Meeting on Climate Change at the Stag and Hounds, Old Market, Bristol, 7.30 tonight