October 5, 2014 8:15 pm -

With so much evidence and overwhelming consensus by scientists that Climate Change is real, it’s natural to wonder who still denies it and why. In a fascinating review of polling evidence we see that it’s probably who you expect it is but perhaps not for the reasons you think.

CC by Party ID

[su_center_ad]So why do these Americans refuse to budge on the issue? In a provocative article earlier this year, Chris Mooney suggested a simple answer: “Conservatives don’t deny climate science because they’re ignorant. They deny it because of who they are.”

So the stunning reason some people reject the idea of Climate Change is not because they don’t have the facts. They do. It’s just that they don’t want to believe the evidence because being “a Conservative” or in some cases being “a Christian” means that they simply can’t believe it. It’s not who they are. It’s not what they believe. Evidence aside, their self-identification more or less forbids them from accepting the science on this topic.

CC by religion

It’s fairly clear from these graphs that religious, Republican American conservatives are the majority of climate change deniers today. If income, education, and knowledge has little to do with climate change acceptance, then could it be that climate change acceptance has become a cultural rather than factual issue in America? Do conservative Americans deny climate change simply because it conflicts with their identity as a conservative?[su_csky_ad]

D.B. Hirsch
D.B. Hirsch is a political activist, news junkie, and retired ad copy writer and spin doctor. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

43 responses to Why Climate Change Deniers Can’t Handle The Truth

  1. tiredoftea October 5th, 2014 at 8:21 pm

    “Do conservative Americans deny climate change simply because it conflicts with their identity as a conservative?” That’s a big Yes they do!

    • raincheck October 6th, 2014 at 6:54 am

      I can just see SOME of them wanting to accept climate change as real… but get beat back by the “severely conservative” which should be a new category for being dis-able

      • Wayout October 6th, 2014 at 7:08 am

        So please explain to me the cause of the warming and cooling cycles of the earth through the tens of thousands of years before man began burning fossil fuels.

        • raincheck October 6th, 2014 at 10:24 am

          First of all.. it isn’t my job to try and educate someone like you.
          I do have some questions for you…
          1) Where do you get your information from?
          2) Why do you dismiss the overwhelming evidence that “Mankind” is contributing to “climate change?
          3)Why do you dismiss the “fact” that the overwhelming majority of scientist agree that “Mankind” is THE major contributor to climate change?
          Again what is the source of your information?
          Unless you answer these questions please DON’T RESPOND.
          I read some of you past comments and have determined that you are far far to ignorant of the “facts” on this issue.
          My advice to you is find a different source and educate yourself, before you make anymore stupid comments… Cheers

          • Wayout October 6th, 2014 at 12:29 pm

            And where do you get your facts? That UN global warming group of scientists in England who lied about the results of their investigations? People like Al Gore who have a vested monetary interest in carbon credits? There is an explanation – it’s the sun that is causing all this climate change. The sun is in a unprecedented cycle of solar activity and that is having an effect on the weather.

          • raincheck October 6th, 2014 at 12:51 pm

            You never answered a single question… if you answer my questions, I will take the time to share some sites with you that, IMHO have a lot of credibility… please don’t try to imply I get my information from Al gore etc.
            This is how useless conversations get started and I don’t want to waste time with that sort of thing… It would be the same as me asking you if you get all of your information from Fox News… which WOULD be insulting.
            I will go so far as to say… I think you get your information from groups involved either directly or indirectly from those in the Energy industry… Oil/gas/coal companies, only because the Scientists that deny climate change can ALL be traced back to them… If you want to have a “real” conversation on this issue, I’m willing to take the time… otherwise I’m NOT interested in hearing “talking points” for example “Al Gore’s vested interest in carbon points” [sic]

          • mea_mark October 6th, 2014 at 4:05 pm

            Are you referring to this myth

  2. mea_mark October 5th, 2014 at 8:22 pm

    Of course it does. Their ego is invested in the great skydaddy and the great skydaddy would never allow such a thing. Blinded by delusion, in the belief of the great skydaddy, is the root cause of many of humanities problems.

    • raincheck October 6th, 2014 at 6:57 am

      Whenever I’ve argued a point with one of them… it didn’t matter to them if I had proof… they would simply move on to the next point without considering new information.. frustrating as H*ll

  3. knittingknots October 5th, 2014 at 9:22 pm

    For the really hard core, it’s a shorthand identity marker for their group. Even with it starting to be uncool, even with business circles getting past it, until they drop the cultural marker flag, it’s going to stay there. Just another type of birther reaction.

  4. Obewon October 5th, 2014 at 9:23 pm

    Greedy Oil Party Repubs are the religious right wingnuts who love talking snakes and live in delusional denial that ‘humans burning fossil fuels cause 80% of modern global warming climate change, with 20% caused by human deforestation’-NASA.

    • Wayout October 6th, 2014 at 7:06 am

      Hypocrite Dems/Progressive/Liberals extoll the virtues of solar power, but won’t buy the panels themselves. Not to mention they live in large carbon footprint places like big cities.

      • OldLefty October 6th, 2014 at 7:21 am

        Many people do, many people can not afford them, (Exxon Mobile owns many of them).

        Big urban areas often have a smaller carbon foot print.

        High speed rails would provide and even smaller one.

      • Mike Butkus Jr. October 6th, 2014 at 10:36 am

        So Dems/ Progressive/Liberals need to buy more solar panels and move out of the city, then you will agree with Obewon that humans cause global warming. Why don’t you just stomp your feet while holding your breath? Your response is childish

        • Wayout October 6th, 2014 at 12:23 pm

          No. Because humans are not the cause of global warming. The earth has been warming and cooling since it was formed – and humans were not the cause of the climate changing back in the past.. Now suddenly in the modern era humans are at fault and I for one am not buying such nonsense.
          All your remedies require increased taxes, increased prices for fuels, and more government control over how the people live their lives. A liberal/progressive bonanza if ever there was.

      • Obewon October 6th, 2014 at 1:28 pm

        Only a complete fool ignores facts repeatedly posted always debunking you. NYC Geothermal has heated our buildings for a century. NYC subways are powered by upstate Solar, wind, biomass & hydroelectric via the Niagara power corridor, just approved for expansion to supply more renewable energy power to NYC. Perhaps you’ve heard of Niagara Falls?

  5. uzza October 5th, 2014 at 9:56 pm

    We have to change, it’s become unavoidably obvious that continuing to live as we do will destroy us and mostly everything else. BUT, a ‘conservative’ is one who fears change. They look for an authority to tell them things don’t have to change, and in religion they find God to tell them so.
    Unfortunately the Abramic religions they find tell them that the earth exists only for our use. As Ann Coulter puts it “Take it, rape it, it’s yours” because ‘the things of this world’ are ‘profane’, and fantasies written in old manuscripts are ‘sacred’.

    If 2000 years ago they had clung to the old pagan religions that held Nature as sacred, that the natural world is to be revered and even worshiped, we wouldn’t be in this fix. There is a “stewardship” model of christianity that sees us as caretakers of God’s handiwork, and if christians adopted it they might save themselves and us. But they won’t, because they’re conservative, and a ‘conservative’ is one who fears change.

    • Wayout October 6th, 2014 at 7:11 am

      When “Climate Change” occurred in the years 20,000 BC to 18,000 BC what was the cause?

      • OldLefty October 6th, 2014 at 7:22 am

        That is like saying because EVERYBODY dies eventually, there is no reason not to allow children to smoke and drink.

      • uzza October 6th, 2014 at 10:04 am

        Somewhere in Beringia, 20,000 years ago:

        OOG: Tribe, We’ve called you here to decide what to do. The glaciers are melting, our Shaman says this valley will be 300 feet under the sea. Where shall we go?
        BLOOG: If we move back West where we came from the Neanderthals and the Mousterians will kick our butts again.
        SPLOOG: Go East, young man! There’s an entire continent waiting for us there with nobody else in it.
        WAYOUT: I’m not going anywhere, I didn’t cause the ice to melt.
        FOOG: Dude, who cares? You’ll die if you stay here. Your hut’s already underwater at high tide.
        WAYOUT: Ha, ha! First it was an “ice age”, and when that didn’t sell, now it’s “global warming”. What a hoax. The earth is always going through warming and cooling cycles, why haven’t you fools left before? This heat wave will end, just like all the others.

        ENTIRE TRIBE: Good luck with that, goober, Imma go settle the Americas.

      • Obewon October 6th, 2014 at 1:43 pm

        Two centuries of humans burning fossil fuels skyrocketed green house gasses including CO2 +45% to 402 ppm, after millions of years where CO2 has always averaged 280 ppm.
        Time history of atmospheric carbon dioxide from 800,000 years ago until January, 2012.

  6. rat618 October 5th, 2014 at 10:27 pm

    How about a graph reflecting education and belief in climate change?

    • Obewon October 5th, 2014 at 10:38 pm

      Put another way just 6% of all scientists are self-described Repubs, 55% Dems with the remainder Independents today.

      • Shades October 5th, 2014 at 10:42 pm

        In other words…

        • Shades October 5th, 2014 at 10:44 pm

          My pix won’t upload. Arrrgh! You’ve all seen it. It says:
          Six percent of scientists are republican. Scientists have no explanation for why that number is so high.

          • Obewon October 5th, 2014 at 10:47 pm

            Refresh displays your query of the ages: How long until the GOP becomes extinct? Better to end GOP climate deniers than most life on Earth!

          • Shades October 5th, 2014 at 11:02 pm

            Thanks Obe. I’ll remember that. I’ve deleted the duplicate.

  7. Shades October 5th, 2014 at 10:46 pm

    “It is difficult to get a man to understand something, when his salary depends on his not understanding it.”

    Upton Sinclair

  8. burqa October 5th, 2014 at 11:37 pm

    OP: “Do conservative Americans deny climate change simply because it conflicts with their identity as a conservative?”

    That, and the instinctive opposition to anything they believe the Left believes or is in favor of. This happens on both sides. It is an interesting aspect of human behavior.
    We saw people automatically line up and take their places with the Michael Brown case.
    Initially, all we had was a story about a white cop allegedly shooting an unarmed black guy for no reason.
    The director shouted, “Places, everyone!”
    When new facts came in that suggested the story was not the one initially presented, those on the Left and Right who had already made their minds up never changed their positions.
    When it seemed Brown may have committed robbery, no one moved.
    When it seemed Brown had paid for the cigars, no one moved.
    When it came out the cop had been assaulted, no one moved, and so on. Information came out that made the story seem quite different, but many refused to consider this information because their minds were made up and closed.

    This shows that to those who formed their opinions immediately, the facts did not matter. Afterward all we saw was these people ignoring some facts while magnifying others which, by coincidence, supported the story they wanted to believe. Many seemed unwilling to wait until all the facts were in and only then try to weigh them all before coming to a conclusion.

    Superstar Bill Clinton once said only a fool gets new information that would point to a different conclusion, but retains their original judgment.

  9. Red Eye Robot October 6th, 2014 at 12:05 am

    26 years ago Dr James Hansen said in 40 years Manhattans west side highway would be under water because of global warming. (10+ feet of sea rise) so far 2.6 inches That means we need to see 8.3 inches of sea rise every year for the next 14 years.

    • Obewon October 6th, 2014 at 12:21 am

      Carbon bullies fool you everytime! Who’s against saving lives by generating Clean Renewable Energy from wind, solar, hydroelectric & Biomass providing nearly 15% USA Power? EU’s Top Economy ‘German Exceptionalism’ generates 34% of their annual power from renewable’s. In May

      Germany Set New Record, Generating 74% Of Power Needs From Renewable Energy!

  10. Wayout October 6th, 2014 at 7:04 am

    First it was “Global Warming” but that wasn’t selling, so now it’s “Climate Change” and that is actually even more ridiculous than the first phrase. The climate is always changing and now it’s changing towards being colder. There is now more ice in the Arctic than there ever has been. What happened? Oh that’s right, it’s just “climate change”, and there is nothing man can do about it.

    • Gindy51 October 6th, 2014 at 7:35 am

      You need to do a lot more research. You’re dead wrong about Arctic ice, for starters.

      • tracey marie October 6th, 2014 at 7:38 am

        that one is dead wrong about everything

        • mea_mark October 6th, 2014 at 9:15 am

          Well, he does fall on the far right side of the graph.

    • Obewon October 6th, 2014 at 1:18 pm

      Wayout’s own Pope is coming to PA to excommunicate John Tarter for climate denial: “Safeguard Creation,” he said. “Because if we destroy Creation, Creation will destroy us! Never forget this!”-Pope Francis made the religious case for tackling climate change on Wednesday, calling on his fellow Christians to become “Custodians of Creation” and issuing a dire warning about the potentially catastrophic effects of global climate change.

      • mea_mark October 6th, 2014 at 1:57 pm

        Are you trying to make his head explode?

        • Obewon October 6th, 2014 at 2:10 pm

          Wayout’s Pope says his soul can’t be salvaged so he’s been traded to team Hades, hottest climate!

  11. Gindy51 October 6th, 2014 at 7:33 am

    Yes they do, because to change their life style would mean change and conservatives are opposed to any sort of change (progression). R means reverse….
    The silly thing is that they don’t realize that the earth doesn’t need them but they need the earth. There isn’t any other place for our species to live. Earth will adapt and evolve but we will not, hence we will succumb to the same things that killed off every other major species on the planet. The main difference is we will have caused this one ourselves.

  12. fjones71 October 6th, 2014 at 9:58 am

    The answer to why we have Global Warming deniers is simple: Global warming would bring more federal regulation and probably taxes to the US economy. The powers in the American business world hate this, therefore they spend Billions of dollars to discredit the entire argument. In fact, the global warming issue would probably come down to an international set of regulations, this causes conservatives heads to just blow up on the spot. The mere thought of any international set of rules in which the USA would have to follow equates to an Apoplectic end of time. There is no denying the science behind Global Warming. Pundits and political hacks that deny the science for global warming have no business questioning science. Just like a doctor who prescribes you a treatment for your sickness, you don’t deny your doctors advice. You may get a second or third opinion, by after checking with 100 doctors and you get a 97% consensuses on your issue, you tend to think your doctors opinion is correct.

    • raincheck October 6th, 2014 at 10:36 am

      WELL SAID!!

    • mea_mark October 6th, 2014 at 10:51 am

      I think one word should be changed.
      “In fact, the global warming issue would[will] probably come down to an international set of regulations,” — It’s just a matter of time and how many disasters we are willing to suffer through before it happens.