A climate of deception, deceit, lies and outright dishonesty.
When I was a young man, a deeply cynical older person told me that all experience did was tell you what wasn’t possible. It wasn’t true then, it’s not true now and amounts to nothing more than a philosophy of despair by people who’ve essentially given up. You do have to wonder about people so petty as to try to crush the natural optimism of youth. What I found is that experience actually gives you a loose collection of templates, patterns if you will, which we use to make decisions on incomplete or fuzzy data.
They’re what we use when we make judgement calls and as we get older, we do tend to act on them quicker. That’s perhaps a bad thing but if you’ve got a reasonably successful batting average, you’d be silly to ignore that voice inside you. We use them consciously and unconsciously and sometimes with little or hardly any data at all. It’s gut instinct, a feel, a hunch or what I’ve once heard it described as a certain feeling in your fingertips.
It cuts both ways.
You meet someone, perhaps in a social or professional context, and you feel straight away they’re someone you can do business with. If they shake on a deal, it’s a done deal and the paperwork is just something to catch up with after what you’ve agreed between yourselves. Where the spirit of the deal glitches against a detail of the paperwork, the resolution is only a phone call away. Such professional relationships tend to grow into personal ones and because you’ve become friends, any business transacted between you runs very smoothly indeed.
The converse applies, you meet someone and you neither like nor trust them. In a social context you simply resolve to have as little to do with them as possible but sometimes in other situations that isn’t an option. You really can’t rely on any undertakings they give because at the end of the day, you feel they’re fundamentally dishonest. When things get difficult for them, their first fall back will be deception, betrayal of trust and lying.
Don’t get me wrong, we’re none of us saints, we all tell a few fibs at times and the occasional whopper, but for most people there’s no systemic pattern of deception.
For what I call the true deceivers, there always is that habitual behaviour pattern and because they’ve got away with it undetected so often and for so long, they gradually become emboldened to really think they can fool everyone all of the time. They exhibit a certain smug arrogance and I think that’s what your subconscious animal antennae pick up on when you first meet them. In the end it becomes a sort of dominance fix for them, they’ll sometimes pull a sly move even if they don’t need to.
They have no real sense of boundary, decency or what used to be termed honour about them; they are fundamentally amoral but they never think of themselves as being so. They always knew they were special, destined even, and that bit cleverer than any one of their contemporaries, but life and smaller people have conspired to rob them of their proper recognition.
In response and as they’re the aggrieved party, they’re quite prepared to right that wrong by whatever means possible. The injustice must be addressed. They will dissemble, fudge, fabricate, mislead and just plain cheat their way to the proper recognition of their god given specialness. The more that’s denied them, the harder they’ll cheat the game. It’s only fair after all.
They nearly always have a “tell”, as poker players term it. Sometimes it’s as simple as starting a sentence with “honestly”, sometimes they’ll stare unblinking straight into your eyes to prove the true sincerity of their lies. For some, it’s starting the story with eyes looking directly at you, then dipping for a while as they warm up and get into the whole deceptive monologue.
What I watch for are those quick glances upwards at me to monitor and adjust whatever guff is being shovelled at me. I do the sympathetic noddies and they really lard it on for the resident gullible idiot. Add in their micro-smiles of success towards the end of the fairy tale, and any residual confirmation is redundant.
When you’re obliged to have dealings with such people, there is of course a natural feeling of revulsion which is hard to suppress but not showing your distaste is important. You have to smile at them in your best Iago fashion, be taken in by them, buy the story, swallow it whole, believe all the bollocks and embrace the horror. Only when you’ve relaxed them, can you begin to work on them.
The passive way of handling them is to work out the circumstances and points where they might pull a fast one and have some sort of contingency ready for each one. By the time you’ve formulated all the plan B’s, the fallback positions, the mitigation strategies and the bale out points, it becomes a nightmare.
A more proactive approach is to find a big stick you can beat them with. The bigger the stick, the more trustworthy they become in their dealings with you, if only out of fear. The only problem is finding the stick but when you’re dealing with a true deceiver, you don’t have to look very far if you bear a couple of things in mind.
The first one is to accept that they have always been as they are; they didn’t just wake up one morning a few months ago and decide to become a low life. The further back you go into their history, the easier it’ll be to find and dig out the skeletons. They will be there. Like all beginners, even spinners of webs of deceit, that’s where they’ll have made the most detectable blunders. If my cheque from big oil ever arrives, I’m very definitely going to spend the lot combing through the early background of a number warmists, confident of finding some interesting stuff.
The second one is easy to say but much harder to do; you have to look out on the world using their eyes, which means getting used to thinking about the unthinkable. To use an extreme example, the reason a person like Bernie Madoff, pictured above, can fleece 64 billion dollars from a lot of money savvy people is not that he’s cleverer than them, it’s quite simply he’s totally comfortable smashing every rule in finance. There are no rules to his game.
Take all that money in and not make a single investment in the market? That’s unthinkable but so outrageous, it’s kind of brilliant in its own way. Given the mathematically terminal nature of any Ponzi scheme, he had to get caught in the end but in reality, it was his unbreakable addiction to fooling people which was his undoing. He just couldn’t take the money and run.
The habitual framework we all unconsciously live our lives by simply doesn’t apply to them. Whatever the system in place, they have absolutely no hesitation circumventing it. There are more than a few alarmists deeply involved in the climate wars, who to some extent or another, conform to the true deceiver profile. When you look through their corrupt eyes at the rules governing the systems all the players are supposed to abide by, the flaws in them become obvious.
An example would be the peer review process. Contrary to what a lot of the simpler creatures on the warmist side think, it’s absolutely no guarantee that the paper is correct, merely that it looks reasonable to an unpaid reviewer anxious to get back to their own research. When I looked at the poor quality of so many climate papers which had passed peer review into publication and their frankly dubious conclusions, I wondered at how the process could be subverted.
In a proven example, a cursory read of the climategate emails revealed how a number of individuals totally traduced the peer review system in the area of climate science. Not only did they advance each others work, but actively gamed the system to exclude papers they disagreed with. Again, there are simply no boundaries for some people.
I wrote a fun piece last year which in a different way showed how the flaws in the peer review system might possibly be exploited. As happens at times, life imitates art except it goes way over the top. Jo Nova has a story covering the retraction of over a hundred papers on electronics which cleared peer review to publication but turned out to have been computer generated gobbledygook. No brainiac-class effort was required to completely undermine the whole system, just knock together a few lines of code to produce a random phrase generator, press the button and you’re published. It was as easy as that.
The sobering truth is that science in general, not just certain areas like peer review, has absolutely no defence against a determined deceiver. None. Yes, conceded, there might be few Canadians knocking around out there with spread sheets checking on a handful of things but as publically funded research papers increasingly reside behind paywalls, even that last best hope begins to look forlorn.
It’s estimated that thirty per cent of papers in the pharmaceuticals area contain deliberate falsifications of results. When it comes to climate science, what would be a reasonable estimate? Methinks a lot higher, primarily because of the obscene amounts of research money at stake, and that’s before you consider other factors like noble cause corruption and the politicisation of the area. Certainly, the indications are not good. When you ask but a few simple questions, the absence of any credible answers is ominous.
Experience is teaching the outsider that climate science can’t be trusted, and that’s a self-inflicted wound for science as a whole. It’s a slow drip drip process and hellishly difficult to repair, like all loss of trust. Hands up anyone who seriously thinks we’ll still be throwing ninety billion bucks at climate research in the next ten years?
The first step in curing a problem is admitting you’ve got one. What passes for the leadership in science refuse to acknowledge there’s a problem, and in too many cases, that’s because they’re part of the problem. It’s all now about being comfortable moneyed establishment, fitting in with political trends and a chronic aversion to even peeking at ideas which might upset the heavily invested status quo. This is so contrary to the classic scientific spirit, it’s nearly beyond belief.
We either have to put in place effective mechanisms to detect and exclude the deceivers or get used to science gradually degenerating into another variety of belief-based faith, like astrology.
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