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The climate crisis and transphobia

With apologies to This Is Spinal Tap, someone at Pink News has just turned all the knobs to weird. Read This is what climate change and transphobia have in common, according to non-binary author Dr Meg-John Barker if you dare. There are some hilarious comments under Helen Joyce’s tweet, mostly from the ‘gender critical’ contingent on Twitter, who, as a rule, up to now, have accepted what we might call the ‘climate consensus’.

James Kirkup, who mostly writes for the Spectator, has indeed been brilliant, more than any other male journalist, in exposing the dangerous madness of extreme transgender activism. He has also indicated that he accepts the so-called consensus that man-made climate change is a major problem. I wonder if this clumsy attempt to bring the two issues together may provoke some second thoughts.

17 thoughts on “The climate crisis and transphobia

  1. Is it possible that this is due to the glyphosate or all the insects killer chemical left in our vegetable
    possible, after all they are blamed for almost everything bad that happen now.

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  2. There may be a connection between criticisms of extreme trans positions and climate, but not the one that the confused Dr Meg-John thinks. Take this lightly edited quote:

    Because sometimes, the things being said [by “gender-critical feminists” climate sceptics] do hint at complexity in how gender climate works, and we could all be really delving into that complexity and really looking at it. But instead, we have the polarisation into opposing views. And the media really whips that up. People have been writing in media studies blogs for years now how the media likes to pit different feminists informed people against each other, in the form of a catfight, and basically it’s another way of undermining women science.

    But then the conversation turned to the subject of lesbian hedgehogs (“apparently the lesbian sex, which includes oral, is ‘surprisingly sophisticated.’”)

    There’s a species for the Red List if ever I saw one. Just don’t do it in the road.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Climate change and gender are obviously very similar.

    “But I guess, again, I sort of see and experience climate change as a very playful space. So many of the people I’m drawing on in the projections and impacts chapters of the book are doing these incredible things with models and emissions scenarios that are creative and liberating, and it can be really fun to play with once we get out of the restrictions of it, to some extent.

    So, for me, experiencing more masculine and more feminine parts of myself at different times can feel really fun and playful and creative and fascinating, just like messing with climate models. It’s this non-binary-ness through the whole thing of: ‘Yeah, I’m so done with reality and observations, and it’s also this creative space, and it’s also, the climate crisis and gender don’t exist, and it’s also really important and very real in our lived experiences.’ You know? It’s a constant paradox.”

    ‘And it’s no wonder that queers are living in a constant state of eco-dread because, like, the climate crisis is a really queer animal.’

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Even equilibrium climate sensitivity is getting the ‘diversity’ makeover.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Here are some drawings of the lesbian hedgehogs in full snuffle:

    https://nemaloknig.com/read-259855/?page=90

    As it happens, Ricky Gervais used those same drawings as part of his act nearly two decades ago:

    https://www.theguardian.com/theobserver/2002/jul/07/features.review77

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/2088121.stm

    Warning: His act reflected the attitudes of its time. He reckoned that saying the hedgehogs were lesbian was slanderous, when of course their spiky sapphism is and was something to be celebrated.

    Though perhaps not in the areas where they actually live:

    https://www.iucnredlist.org/species/40607/115174672

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Thank you for the excellent comments, especially Geoff and Jaime’s thought-provoking ‘lightly edited’ versions of the original. I think I have a quibble with Geoff’s rewrite but that’s the point: it got me thinking. More of that below.

    Hunter:

    The climate crisis and the “trans” movement are both anti-scientific and anti-human movements.

    I’ve been thinking again what makes them similar. Here are two ideas on that:

    1. Feelings triumphing over facts
    2. Conspiratorial control of the debate so that there really isn’t allowed to be one.

    Feelings triumph over facts not so much in official climate science (though Climategate shows it ain’t impossible) as in what I once called ‘Folk Climate’ on Bishop Hill, by analogy to Folk Islam:

    Folk Islam is an umbrella term used to collectively describe forms of Islam that incorporate native folk beliefs and practices. Folk Islam has been described as the Islam of the “urban poor, country people, and tribes”, in contrast to orthodox or “High” Islam (Gellner, 1992)

    – in other words, the collection of beliefs of ordinary Muslims which are not necessarily derived from Islam’s holy writings – the Quran or the Hadiths. And we’ve seen Folk Climate go off the scale since I wrote about that, with the UN IPCC reports now routinely ignored or even criticised for not telling the alarmist story right. “It’s not what we feel to be true” so it must be rejected.

    Feelings being more important than facts is a very obvious feature of transgender ideology, with the sexual dimorphism of the human race (and all mammals) suddenly being put on the naughty step after so many thousands of years of being an accepted ‘fact’.

    On conspiratorial control of the debate, I strongly recommend James Kirkup’s The document that reveals the remarkable tactics of trans lobbyists in the Spectator on Monday, the same day as the weird Meg-John Barker puff-piece. If Kirkup’s document also applies to climate (and it rings strong bells for me) then Geoff’s

    the media likes to pit different informed people against each other

    is absolutely wrong. Lawson is banned from the BBC. Etc.

    I don’t have time to develop these ideas but I hope they spur better thinkers than me.

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  7. I’ve read Kirkup’s article. It’s very disturbing and the tactics employed by the ‘trans lobby’ (a shadowy group of lawyers) seem chillingly similar to those employed by XR. It also strikes me that the attempt to pre-empt a shift in the legal status of minors to enable them to transition has implications which go way beyond the transgender issue.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. A few more thoughts. In my title, unlike the one for Pink News, I chose to combine two things much mentioned in popular culture that I don’t think really exist. Climate change of course exists and has done so for as long as the earth has been around, so for about 4.5 billion years if Alan Kendall’s geological friends have been getting their dating right. But the ‘climate crisis’ is what is used further down and is for me a popular phrase without a real-life referent. Just like transphobia. That last statement would be *very* controversial if seen by the radicals but I assure the reader that 97% of the uses are fallacious. In practice “you’re a transphobe” almost always means “you just disagreed with me,” for instance about the dimorphism of the human race. See the common bait and switch:

    “Climate change is happening” so the climate crisis, as envisaged in the worst nightmares of Greta Thunberg, is also a fact.

    “Transphobia is everywhere rampant” so how dare you bring old-fashioned biology to the table, you bigot.

    Now there are also big differences between the two areas. The exact role of science in the whole shebang is one of those. Gender ideology also has disastrous implications right away for existing human beings, young and old, in the west:

    whereas I’d argue that lousy energy policy in the name of dealing with the climate crisis has a significant lag before the lousiness is made evident to ordinary people.

    The other difference I feel bound to mention is made explicit in the document James Kirkup is reading, quoting and explicating:

    Another recommendation is even more revealing: ‘Avoid excessive press coverage and exposure.’

    According to the report, the countries that have moved most quickly to advance trans rights and remove parental consent have been those where the groups lobbying for those changes have succeeded in stopping the wider public learning about their proposals. Conversely, in places like Britain, the more ‘exposure’ this agenda has had, the less successful the lobbying has been:

    ‘Another technique which has been used to great effect is the limitation of press coverage and exposure. In certain countries, like the UK, information on legal gender recognition reforms has been misinterpreted in the mainstream media, and opposition has arisen as a result. ….Against this background, many believe that public campaigning has been detrimental to progress, as much of the general public is not well informed about trans issues, and therefore misinterpretation can arise.

    You have to read between the lines here. What it means is that the UK radical feminists have won a great victory against the odds. We climate dissidents have things to learn from them.

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  9. Jaime: Thanks. I didn’t think XR but Bob Ward and those who pay his salary. It’s been going on a long time, in other words. But yes. This demonic conspiracy on the trans side, faster moving than the climate one, is also a gateway for child rape, often called by the old misnomer paedophilia.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Richard,

    “Among those techniques: ‘Get ahead of the Government agenda.’

    What does that mean? Here it is in more detail:

    ‘In many of the NGO advocacy campaigns that we studied, there were clear benefits where NGOs managed to get ahead of the government and publish progressive legislative proposal before the government had time to develop their own. NGOs need to intervene early in the legislative process and ideally before it has even started. This will give them far greater ability to shape the government agenda and the ultimate proposal than if they intervene after the government has already started to develop its own proposals.’”

    This seems to me exactly what XR did with citizens’ climate assemblies which are now being rolled out by the government across the UK. It all happened very quickly, below the radar of public scrutiny, so quickly in fact that I wonder if the policy was not ‘oven-ready’.

    You’re right though, anti-trans lobbyists and feminists have been a lot more pro-active than climate change sceptics in bringing to public attention the pernicious aspects of legislation attempting to be introduced in this way.

    Liked by 2 people

  11. ‘Experiencing gender as
    a playful space.’

    So much fun livin’ in
    this non-binary space.
    No ‘real’ distinct from
    ‘virtual,’ no ‘true’ opposed
    to ‘false,’ to bother you.
    Yr post-modern rules,
    gender does not exist,
    though gender politicks
    of resentment do.
    All contradictions welcome
    in this playful Hegelian place.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Brilliant Beth.

    Very funny Dennis!

    Jaime: I feel I need to say more that’s a bit more nuanced. I’m sure you’re dead right about the XR parallels. My point was in a way against myself – the older generation of sceptic who’s not up with the latest forms of hyper-alarmism. But the same techniques in a milder form were present at the time of Climategate. You’re also right to say that it wasn’t just the rad fems. And when I said we have things to learn, it’s fair to point out that we have a harder sell, because of the lag between lousy policy and people realising it. I’ll comment more later but thanks for your considered input.

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  13. @ Richard

    I have wondered for some time whether the best thing that could happen is for us (sceptics) to lose the argument as fast as possible and disappear. Then the problems we see on the horizon will come sooner, while, hopefully, there is still a chance to respond to them.

    The alternative (we “win”) would not be a win at all but a long drawn-out defeat, a tad like brexit has turned out. Those who thought they had won in 2016 were mistaken.

    For climate scepticism to win, the policies have to start biting. It will take a long time for any climate harms to occur, so it seems clear that the policies will bite first. But at present they are well hidden. It’s like that scene in Gangs of New York where Leo Dio can’t see who’s hitting him in the fog. There’s no item on the utility bill that shows how much renewables are adding to it. No-one can tally up the birds killed by wind turbines. The loss of manufacturing to China is a coincidence.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. I have some addenda I need to attend to. (Say it fast and it rhymes.)

    But first, thanks to Jit for exactly the kind of thought experiment that I think befits this thread. I don’t quite agree, even about the Brexit part, but there’s more valuable provoking of thought here in having the case put for us sceptics to “lose the argument as fast as possible”. As for disappearing, that’s been happening courtesy of the grim reaper, from Michael Crighton to Clive James – to mention two that I particularly miss. And I just searched my personal wiki (used for notes from around 2007 but reaching back well beyond that to the 1979 Charney Report, the big alarmist push in 1988 and much more). That was for the word ’emeritus’. A really fascinating gallery of characters that revealed. Many of the sceptic professors so found, who had such valuable critical contributions to make in times past, have in effect disappeared, with some names forgotten even by me, even if they’re not yet being fully recycled aka pushing up the daisies, as my late father used to say.

    In the context of which I just wanted to say again how much I appreciate all those who contribute to Cliscep. I can’t show why or how it’s worth it but just this thread has made me feel it all the more. (Perhaps feelings are not entirely to be rejected when facts about the future are so elusive? John? Geoff? Yogi Berra?) This seems clear to me: we have a different problem to solve than the radical feminists and others concerned with trans extremism. Yet we can still I think take inspiration from their success in the UK, limited though it is. (Battles and war and all that.)

    As for the combinatorially stupid Pink News article, there’s another passage from James Kirkup that I think sheds some basic light on what’s going on. Allow me to address that in another comment. Before long.

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