We live in a finite head— ‘peak reason’ may already be here

empty-padding-narrowAlec Baldwin, the American actor, is of course right to say that climate denialism is a mental illness:

However, Psychology Today author Jean M Twenge Ph.D. points out that Alec Baldwin himself is mentally ill, suffering as he obviously does from intense narcissism. She writes:

Not every narcissist who gets thrown off a plane makes the news, but actor Alec Baldwin did today. According to the airline, Baldwin refused to turn off his iPad after repeated requests and then—with the seatbelt sign on—went to the airplane bathroom to try to continue playing a game (“Words with Friends”) on the device. The airline also says he swore at the flight attendants and slammed the bathroom door.

Is this necessarily narcissistic? (I do research the trait, so could be accused of seeing nails everywhere because I have a hammer). But here the answer is pretty clear: Yes. When playing a game is more important than following FAA rules, and more important than not abusing underpaid flight attendants, a good deal of self-centered thinking is clearly involved. It’s the classic thought of a narcissist: The rules do not apply to me.

Baldwin’s previous history also provides some clues. In 2007, Baldwin was caught on tape calling his then-11-year-old daughter a “thoughtless little pig.” Sure, everybody loses it occasionally with their kids. But his language in the rest of the message was even more telling, especially this line: “You have insulted me for the last time.” It sounds like a line from a Hollywood shoot-‘em-up movie, not like a conversation between a father and a daughter.

It also sounds exactly like a narcissist.

We hope therefore Mr Baldwin—a man clearly burdened with his own difficulties—will join with us in trying to develop a more understanding attitude towards mental illness and consider, in line with all the great mental health campaigns of our age, that the best approach to climate denialism is to lower the stigma associated with it. At least one in four people suffer from climate denialism, although some estimates go as high as three in four (based on the complete, utter and intense apathy the general voting public has towards green policies), suggesting to a degree that we’re all climate deniers somewhere along the spectrum. Something to bear in mind, perhaps.

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11 thoughts on “We live in a finite head— ‘peak reason’ may already be here

  1. Endorsement of the consensus by actors is one of the hallmarks of climate science. It signals to the unworthy and unwashed that the science is rigorous and has been paid for by good people.

    Liked by 7 people

  2. Sceptics are very, very bad for AGW believers. We present to them the perfect canvas upon which to project all their own inner conflicts and insecurities. Thus reassured, they blissfully continue to dwell in the land of fairies and hobgoblins, untroubled by any nasty intrusions from the real world or nagging doubts which may briefly surface in the superdense grey matter of their brains, brought into fleeting existence by the vestiges of logic and reason.

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  3. I would go so far as to say that if I didn’t hear the thoroughly reasoned logic of such learned people as Alec Baldwin and Leonardo di Caprio, and sense their anxiety for our shared planet and their commitment to make everyone apart from themselves to change their ways, I would not be able to sleep at night, from worry. Cut Alec some slack,Ian. He wants to survive.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Jaime, MIAB,

    Do you know what? I’ve had it with these cunts. Shape the fuck up. Stop the scientology. There’s no excuse now; masturbating into a climate hole is no longer tolerable. It may have seemed acceptable during the apparent pause in history i.e. Francis Fukuyama’s ‘end of history’ thesis but, hang on, what’s this? What’s this new bollocks happening, the clash of religion and secularism, the need to figure out and assert what Enlightenment ideals stand for? Man oh man, Fukuyama *is history*. Proper history is on the march again. Time to to get real; away from the infant fantasies of dickheads in climate.

    Dickheads.

    Liked by 5 people

  5. Whilst I strongly object to the language used by Ian Woolley at 2.45am I quite understand the sentiment. Claiming that people with different beliefs are blinkered and in denial is as old as the hills. The retort is similar to Matthew 7.3-5 about pointing out the speck of sawdust in your brother’s eye, when you have a plank in your own eye. Those who make claims that opponents are less than themselves are often hypocrites who ignore the real world and lack perspective.
    Years ago I watched with my then small children the 2000 film “Thomas and the Magic Railroad”, starring Alec Baldwin as a conductor from the magical world of Sodor with all the talking trains. In the real world the conductor was about 5cm tall. The children from the real world when they went to Sodor shrank, so he tehn appeared to the children as a normal-sized adult. In the film the nice little steam engines were being forced our by big Diesel 10, who had a big grabber bucket with serrated edges. They can fight this as the conductor is running out of magic dust. The children save the magical world by obtaining a new source of magic dust, and nasty Diesel 10 ends up falling off a viaduct onto a sludge-filled barge in the river far below.
    On a number of levels this seems an appropriate allegory to understand the climate alarmists.

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  6. MIAB and Ian perfectly illustrate the twin psychological impulses of a reasonable person when confronted with such offensive BS from celebrity planet savers: you either resort to extreme sarcasm or you vent your rage. There’s really no inbetween.

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  7. If you peruse Baldwin’s bio, you will discover that he spent 3 years as a political science major in college before transferring into acting school where he earned a bachelor of fine arts degree. He is also a card-carrying member of PETA. So I believe that he would be properly classified as a political-actor-animal, which makes him an expert spokesman for Climate Science. Now, with that background, what do you suppose his ‘science’ credentials are? I suspect that he would compete at the same level as President Obama, another political-actor-animal and spokesman for Climate Science: To graduate from high school in the US circa 1980, a student was required to complete a minimum of 2 years of science (usually General Science and Biology) and 2 or 3 years of mathematics (usually Algebra and Geometry). I seriously doubt that either individual ever took a serious science or mathematics course in college — at least calculus level mathematics, statistics, and physics would not have been entertained. Impressed?
    So why did I compare the above 2 experts? Would it surprise you to learn that Alec Baldwin is a Democrat and endorsed Obama for President in 2008 and 2012. Read his bio on Wikipedia.

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  8. I wonder, do any of these desperate people making “pleas” look at any of the scientific literature? Maybe actual “climate change denial” (I never have met someone who actual denies it) is a mental illness, but he’d probably just as well condemn any skeptic or lukewarmer (if I get his meaning by those words correctly.) Perhaps he should ask why we feel the way the way we do, instead of just looking at our incriminating funding records, or whose luncheon we spoke at 17 years ago. Or, maybe, just maybe, instead of looking at cartoonist-turned climatologist-turned sociologist/psychologist John Cook’s smear website, he could look at some denier papers like these.

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