The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

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The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

Post by Upton_O_Goode » Wed Apr 05, 2017 3:33 pm

I've just received a gift copy (from one of the authors) of The Seasons Alter: How to Save Our Planet in Six Acts, by Philip Kitcher and Evelyn Fox Keller (Liveright Publishing Corporation, 2017). It attempts to show how to convince skeptics that IMMEDIATE action is needed to avert the horrendous consequences of climate change. I hope it will work. I haven't of course read it yet.

Kitcher, who has been a friend of mine for the past 45 years, maintains an attitude that some may consider Panglossian or Quixotic. That is, he keeps quietly appealing to reason, all the while knowing that most of the world doesn't know what reason is. His second book, Abusing Science, was an attempt to deal with the pseudo-science of creationism. Later, he wrote Vaulting Ambition, a critical look at sociobiology, and still later Living with Darwinism, a sensitive account of the impact Darwinism has had on people of simple faith.

I'll post more later as I read more. Right now, I just want to make people aware of the existence of this work.
“It is certainly sad and regrettable that so many innocent people died…Stalin was absolutely adamant on making doubly sure: spare no one…I don’t deny that I supported that view. I was simply not able to study every individual case…It was hard to draw a precise line where to stop.”

Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Skryabin (“Molotov”)

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Re: The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

Post by Nobrot » Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:14 pm

'The Center For Science And Society'.
Philip Kitcher, John Dewey Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University.
Evelyn Fox Keller received her B.A. from Brandeis University (Physics, 1957) and her Ph.D. from Harvard University (Physics, 1963). She came to MIT from the University of California, Berkeley, where she was Professor in the Departments of Rhetoric, History, and Women’s Studies (1988-1992).
http://scienceandsociety.columbia.edu/c ... ox-keller/

Not climatologists then?
From the Amazon blurb...
Entertaining, widely accessible, and thoroughly original
Well perhaps these two philosophers can produce a thoroughly original reason as to why those who purport to be most concerned about our environment still use tree books rather than a 1MB file that can be transmitted infinitum?

Kindle Edition
£18.04
Hardcover
£18.99

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Re: The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

Post by Upton_O_Goode » Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:39 pm

Nobrot wrote:
'The Center For Science And Society'.
Philip Kitcher, John Dewey Professor of Philosophy at Columbia University.
Evelyn Fox Keller received her B.A. from Brandeis University (Physics, 1957) and her Ph.D. from Harvard University (Physics, 1963). She came to MIT from the University of California, Berkeley, where she was Professor in the Departments of Rhetoric, History, and Women’s Studies (1988-1992).
http://scienceandsociety.columbia.edu/c ... ox-keller/

Not climatologists then?
From the Amazon blurb...
Entertaining, widely accessible, and thoroughly original
Well perhaps these two philosophers can produce a thoroughly original reason as to why those who purport to be most concerned about our environment still use tree books rather than a 1MB file that can be transmitted infinitum?

Kindle Edition
£18.04
Hardcover
£18.99
Climatologists are ineffective advocates. The deniers dismiss the whole thing as a hoax. They understand no science and don't want to be bothered. They're already convinced that their own judgment is as good as any scientist. Haven't we all seen that? Every time there's a snowstorm here, some moron asks sardonically in a letter to the local paper, "Whatever became of global warning?" You see, as long as it can snow, global warming CAN'T be happening. That's the level of idiocy that needs to be addressed. Perhaps a philosopher and all-purpose humanist can find some way of getting through to these people. The matter is urgent. But it's certain that climatologists can't.

As for the gibe about hard copy, the world hasn't completely gone electronic. Every library I've been in lately still has a lot of hard copies of new books on the shelf. Electronic editions are becoming more common, but they are by no means dominant at this point. Why hold up a standard for these two authors that nobody else is meeting?

If we want to help in this effort, we could take aim at academic conferences, which are still going on all over the world, resulting in the burning of millions of tons of jet fuel, all of which COULD be done over the Internet. I do my bit by never going to conferences.
“It is certainly sad and regrettable that so many innocent people died…Stalin was absolutely adamant on making doubly sure: spare no one…I don’t deny that I supported that view. I was simply not able to study every individual case…It was hard to draw a precise line where to stop.”

Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Skryabin (“Molotov”)

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Re: The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

Post by Gord » Fri Apr 07, 2017 1:09 am

Paper books can be produced without harming the environment any worse than by producing digital versions.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/omega-ins ... 60403.html
According to one lifecycle analysis of printed books versus e-readers, the energy, water, and raw materials needed to make a single e-reader is equal to that of 40 to 50 books. In terms of the effect on the climate, the emissions created by a single e-reader are equal to roughly 100 books.

If you read 100 books on your e-reader before upgrading it, the effect on the climate is no different than reading those books in print. If you upgrade before that time, your carbon footprint actually increases compared to reading printed books. If you read 200 books on the device, the climate impact is halved. The result is the same for resource and energy usage, though the threshold to break-even is lower.
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Re: The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

Post by Jim Steele » Fri Apr 07, 2017 1:33 am

Upton_O_Goode wrote:[The deniers dismiss the whole thing as a hoax. They understand no science and don't want to be bothered.
Dont understand science????

Take your insults and shove them upton were the sun dont shine.

I have presented a ton of science that none of the alarmist here, or you has ever refuted. Nye the science guy's understanding is even worse! Skeptics simply dismiss bogus science and present the evidence that illustrates why alarmist propaganda is so bogus
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Re: The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

Post by bobbo_the_Pragmatist » Fri Apr 07, 2017 2:10 am

An irrelevant dither: neither Pangloss nor Quixote. Pure Sysiphus when the option to smell flowers is constantly available.
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Re: The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

Post by Upton_O_Goode » Fri Apr 07, 2017 11:55 am

bobbo_the_Pragmatist wrote:An irrelevant dither: neither Pangloss nor Quixote. Pure Sysiphus when the option to smell flowers is constantly available.

I'm a flower-smeller myself. I've pretty much given up on arguing with the deniers. They honestly think they have real science on their side. I pity them their pig-headed blindness, but they are going to cause a catastrophe. Since they can go to conferences without (in their view) causing any serious damage to the environment, they ought to go to climate conferences and present their work. Oh, but there's a conspiracy against them to keep them from being heard or published, according to that brilliant climatologist Senator Inhofe and the other brilliant one I know only as Rash Limpjaw.

Arguing with them is like shaking hands with an empty glove. That's why I haven't posted on this board before; I didn't see the use. But I thought I'd at least make this new book known.
“It is certainly sad and regrettable that so many innocent people died…Stalin was absolutely adamant on making doubly sure: spare no one…I don’t deny that I supported that view. I was simply not able to study every individual case…It was hard to draw a precise line where to stop.”

Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Skryabin (“Molotov”)

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Re: The Seasons Alter, by Kitcher and Keller

Post by Upton_O_Goode » Fri Apr 07, 2017 1:30 pm

JIm Steele wrote:
Upton_O_Goode wrote:[The deniers dismiss the whole thing as a hoax. They understand no science and don't want to be bothered.
Dont understand science????

Take your insults and shove them upton were the sun dont shine.

I have presented a ton of science that none of the alarmist here, or you has ever refuted. Nye the science guy's understanding is even worse! Skeptics simply dismiss bogus science and present the evidence that illustrates why alarmist propaganda is so bogus
Disregarding your invective, I'll take the opportunity to explain why I normally don't post on this thread and why I think the debate is WAY off track.

I'll do you the credit of believing you are not one of the morons who think the presence of snowfall is a refutation of the theory of climate change. The ones I was referring to, the millions who influence the government with their votes, are accurately described as understanding no science and not wanting to be bothered to do so. They think they already know because they know when they are cold.

For all I know, you ARE a climatologist who appeals to reason. I'm not, and I don't argue the science at all. It would be ludicrous for me to set myself up as an expert schooling the rubes in this area.

The debate we SHOULD be having is a debate over public policy. We have an Academy of Sciences to give us advice. In the 1970s, the Academy said that the information was too incomplete to project whether it would get cooler or warmer, and then 20 years of research led the Academy and the academies of science of more than 100 other countries to conclude that warming is what's going on. Now that advice MAY be incorrect, but it's the best advice we are going to get. Exxon and its water-carriers Senator Inhofe, Rash Limpjaw, Glenn Beck, and others are not trustworthy advisers. (In fairness, Al Gore also is not a scientist, and he is, in my opinion, pursuing the wrong line of argument. But then he isn't telling the experts that they are wrong. He's trying to explain what the experts are saying.) When GW Bush declared, when abrogating the Kyoto agreement that "more research is needed," he was simply wrong---politically wrong. The man who took us into a disastrous war using cobbled-together information that the experts warned was wrong, on THIS issue decided the experts didn't know enough, and we needed PERFECT information, something never available when political decisions need to be made.

My very modest attempts to persuade the local yokels that they AREN'T scientists and shouldn't be trying to decide the science have been entirely unsuccessful. They have ignorance and arrogance in equal proportions and they are not going to be done out of the delusion that their opinion has scientific weight. The reason I started this thread is that I hope the Kitcher and Keller book might have some ideas on how to reach these people.

Climatologists, meanwhile, like biologists arguing with creationists, say what is needed is an educated public. They have the fantastic hope that they'll get people to understand the scientific arguments. That's not going to happen in either case. The best we can hope for is to convince people that they should not try to refute the experts. What we actually DO about the advice is a political question, and everybody is entitled to an opinion about that.

I'm also aware that one finds, here and there, a genuine expert who disagrees about the possible consequences of the trends in global climate. That's understandable. The same is true of the theory of evolution, although there the contrarians nearly always have an obvious religious bias.

If you are such an expert, for heaven's sake, GO to conferences and try to convince the experts. It is a complete waste of time trying to argue with a layperson like me. If you convince the Academy of Sciences, I'll believe you. But time's a-wasting. This planet is getting hotter year by year. That's a fact no one can deny.
“It is certainly sad and regrettable that so many innocent people died…Stalin was absolutely adamant on making doubly sure: spare no one…I don’t deny that I supported that view. I was simply not able to study every individual case…It was hard to draw a precise line where to stop.”

Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Skryabin (“Molotov”)