Sunday, February 21, 2010

How We Pay To Be Indoctrinated on Climate Change


As we all know, climate change is an emotive issue. On both sides of the argument surrounding what is causing it, strong words are uttered. The sceptics have to shout loudly even to be heard, whereas on the other side, an industry has grown up promoting the thesis of man made climate change. A whole host of literature has been written outlining how and why it is taking place, and it is being used to good effect. Absolutely nothing wrong with that. If you are making a case you want to use the best evidence and the best arguments.

Except... When the government - sorry, taxpayer - funds a leaflet which doesn't concentrate on the actual case, but how to put it over you have to ask if that is what our money should be used for. Especially, when you read THIS leaflet called THE RULES OF THE GAME: Evidence Base Case for the Climate Change Communications Strategy. It is straplined "The Game Is Communicating Climate Change - The Rules Will Help Us Win It."



The tone of the doucment is revealed on its first page...

“Changing attitudes towards climate change is not like selling a particular brand of soap – it’s like convincing someone to use soap in the first place.”


It then moves on to more specific recommendations about how to "sell" the climate change message...



Click on the images to enlarge

Here are a few of those recommendations...

  • Forget the climate change detractors: Those who deny climate change science are irritating, but unimportant. The argument is not about if we should deal with climate change, but how we should deal with climate change.
  • There is no ‘rational man’: The evidence discredits the ‘rational man’ theory – we rarely weigh objectively the value of different decisions and then take the clear self-interested choice.
  • Information can’t work alone: Providing information is not wrong; relying on information alone to change attitudes is wrong. Remember also that messages about saving money are important, but not that important.
  • Use both peripheral and central processing: Attracting direct attention to an issue can change attitudes, but peripheral messages can be just as effective: a tabloid snapshot of Gwyneth Paltrow at a bus stop can help change attitudes to public transport.
  • Link climate change mitigation to positive desires/aspirations: Traditional marketing associates products with the aspirations of their target audience. Linking climate change mitigation to home improvement, self-improvement, green spaces or national pride are all worth investigating.
  • Use emotions and visuals: Another classic marketing rule: changing behaviour by disseminating information doesn’t always work, but emotions and visuals usually do.

This isn't just the use of traditional PR communications methods. It's the use of totalitarian indoctrination techniques designed to manipulate public opinion.

I wonder how much the taxpayer paid Futerra for this advice.

34 comments:

Plato said...

It's a shocker isn't it - well done for bigging it up. Those of us who are keen followers have known about it for yonks but few were listening back then.

PS Read your email :D

Joe Public said...

Seems some people are running scared.

Of the truth.

trevorsden said...

"# Link climate change mitigation to positive desires/aspirations: Traditional marketing associates products with the aspirations of their target audience. Linking climate change mitigation to home improvement, self-improvement, green spaces or national pride are all worth investigating.
# Use emotions and visuals: Another classic marketing rule: changing behaviour by disseminating information doesn’t always work, but emotions and visuals usually do."

'marketing'
'emotions'

Precious little talk of evidence. And of course these people cannot AFFORD to see the argument lost. Their jobs their nice little earners depend on it.

Go to WUWT for instance and you see evidence that the 2007 arctic melt was nothing do do with 'warming', but ice drifting south. In other words another 'classic marketing rule' is pure drivel.
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2010/02/19/jpl-missing-ice-in-2007-drained-out-the-nares-straight-pushed-south-by-wind-where-it-melted-far-away-from-the-arctic/

But when our very own Prime Minister appears on TV and lies through his teeth, why should we be surprised that every organ of government is, in a cold hard calculating way, lying to us and manipulating the feeble minded (eg the average TV interviewer) with propaganda??

Man in a Shed said...

Yes - made the same point in Dec 09.

If you read the leaflet - and some of the EU funded regional versions you can recognise all the tricks that are used to con people into thinking the debate is settled.

Its a national scandal.

Man in a Shed said...

Its especially unpleasant the way children are co-opted into the Warmist propaganda in the science lessons and with state funded activities - eg see so called "pupil voice" state funded politicisation and brain washing.

Bird said...

Sorry, Off topic, but the National Bullying Helpline have said that they have recieved a number of calls from distressed staff at No 10. They wouln't normally comment, but they were concerned at the number of Brown's cronies going on air to deny there was a problem.
Will this finally sink the monster?

Dick Puddlecote said...

And all this after they have already paid for the correct scientists to produce the correct results, excluded opposing parties from the data gathering process, and conducted public consultations which are nothing of the sort.

Welcome to Democracy 2.0

aseeryl said...

This is pure evil. The pseudo- religionists are behaving like Salem witchfinders.
The very reason that attitudes are changing is that the science is not settled, except in the minds of true believers and those with financial or political agendas ( including local uk politicians who have to obey their EU masters or else, regardless of their personal views). I see, for instance, a video of Donald Trump stating that Chinese and Indian business men are laughing at the stupidity of the destructive policies of the EU Kommisars.

Never mind the e-mails, serious people are now sticking their heads above the parapet and analysing the false science, with reasoned objections, research papers with "contrary" conclusions are being published in reputable peer reviewed journals and even Prof Jones is moderating some of his previous pronouncements.

Documents such as this are surely a sign of desperation by wickedly motivated, ignorant and badly advised politicians whose "policy based evidence" approach is a failing chimers.

Jimmy said...

What next for the tories? A campaign against teaching evolution?

So what was Dave Leightweight's silly photo op in Lapland all about if you're flat earthers again now?

norfolkandchance said...

Just as a matter of interest, excluding those whose living or research funds depend on funders with an interest one way or another, how many scientists with genuine expertise in the field deny the human effect on climate change? The answer is very few.

Cogito Dexter said...

You can see how the same insidious techniques are used in other areas by Labour ministers, although not necessarily to great effect: vis the argument between Lansley and Burnham last week on the BBC. Burnham isn't very good at sidestepping the argument, but you can see that this tactic is being taught throughout the government (i.e. the avoiding tricky questions masterclasses!).

It's a filthy fraudulent way of doing business.

www.makelabourhistory.com

ChrisM said...

The Government pay some of our taxes to the EU, who give some of it to Greenpeace and WWF as grants, they use some of it to produce iffy reports on climate change, the IPCC then use those reports (even though they say they only use proper scientific studies) to say we have to cut back on our CO2 use or we will all burn in hell. The Government then use those dire warnings to take more taxes from us. (for our own good of course)
Its the perfect ponzi scheme, which is why Brown and Milliband hate the people who point out that its wrong and call us "Deniers and Flat earthers"

Glyn H said...

Nigel Lawson’s book An Appeal to Reason shows how humans flourish as it gets warmer (and that seeking to defy the weather was shown to be daft by Canute). But that we can, and always have, ADAPTED.

Professor Plimer’s book Heaven and Earth shows that CO2 levels FOLLOW temperature change, not lead it - and that the Oceans have not turned acidic in 50,000,000 years and why they have not done so.

The Hockey Stick Illusion by A W Montford is a comprehensive analysis of how McIntyre and McKiterick demolished the Mann/Bradley/Hughes ‘Hockey Stick’ and how the IPCC were completely mislead by it – and the appalling way the scientific community (especially Jones/Briffa etc at UEA) fought tooth and nail to defend the scientifically indefensible.

But we, from Prescott at Kyoto to a Department of Climate Change have been comprehensively stuffed by this absurd gallimaufry of nonsense on stilts.

dazmando said...

Why are they using these amost modern left tactics. I do believe there is cliamte change but this kind of thing does make me more skeptical. I have had a go at the lack of science myself http://bracknellblog.blogspot.com/2010/02/climate-change-ipcc-must-use-science.html

I would add that on the blogs the skeptics are very well heard and infact have the bigger voice. If I every blog on climate change I get a whole load of hits and more comments than on most of my posts.

TBH they (if that the right term) are there own worst enemies

Gareth said...

Another Futerra product:

http://www3.hants.gov.uk/futerra_ppt_laa_vision_workshop_161009.pdf

Gareth said...

Futerra were originally funded by the National Endowment for Science, Technology and the Arts project.
See this Google Cache for details

More futerra guff

Daniel Earwicker said...

There is no ‘rational man’: The evidence discredits the ‘rational man’ theory – we rarely weigh objectively the value of different decisions and then take the clear self-interested choice.

That's probably the most pervasive, horrifying propaganda virus in the wild today.

The implied solution is of course that the government must take our decisions for us.

It's funny how there's no "rational man", but somehow there are plenty of "rational politicians" to run things.

I wonder how much longer the theory will include the idea of "rational voters" to choose the politicians? How can they be trusted if they "rarely weigh objectively the value of different decisions"?

Save us from ourselves, you rational politicians from another world!

Dick Puddlecote said...

@Norfolkandchance: "Just as a matter of interest, excluding those whose living or research funds depend on funders with an interest one way or another, how many scientists with genuine expertise in the field deny the human effect on climate change? The answer is very few."

Where does the IPCC, for example, get their funding?

DespairingLiberal said...

"whereas on the other side, an industry has grown up promoting the thesis of man made climate change"

What utter tosh. The oil companies and the big US corporations, not to mention those in Japan, China, etc, are spending billions of dollars a year in an attempt to discredit climate change science. Against that, we have the usual handful of dedicated scientists and their allies trying to get accurate information across against reactionary tools in the media and, er, Tory blogs.

And it's not just climate change. It is become increasingly clear that a perfect storm of environmental degradation, destruction of global soils and fish stocks, overpopulation and the predatory role of international capitalism are combining to give us fewer and fewer options about how the human race is likely to survive.

And the best that you can do is snipe at some PR.

norfolkandchance said...

@Dick Puddlecote said...

@Norfolkandchance: "Just as a matter of interest, excluding those whose living or research funds depend on funders with an interest one way or another, how many scientists with genuine expertise in the field deny the human effect on climate change? The answer is very few."

Where does the IPCC, for example, get their funding?

You might find the following relevant.

http://www.uwgb.edu/dutchs/PSEUDOSC/650Skeptics.HTM

Gareth said...

The notion that carbon fuel interests spend billions on sceptic science is frankly, preposterous. Oil and gas companies have been bought into line by Governments promising them a secure income stream from carbon capture and storage, and with the promise of carbon credits pushing up renewable energy to the point where carbon fuel investments in renewable energy become profitable. Finance companies joined the mix with the promise of trading revenues from the carbon credit markets.

The International Emissions Trading Association had one of the biggest lobby groups present in Copenhagen last year. Financial groups represented by the United Nations Finance Initiative and the likes of the Institutional Investors Group on Climate Change (who include in their list of members the BBC Trust's pension fund) have been calling for investment markets to be fixed in their favour. Eco-corporatism runs rich through the veins of the climate change alarmism movement.

Perhaps a perusal of Jo Nova's Climate Money might help some people. A lot of the climate 'science' is funded by taxpayers. The science that comes out of this funding is aimed at supporting policy decisions rather than an impartial investigation into the observable environment.

Manu said...

@DespairingLiberal

"And the best that you can do is snipe at some PR."

Ignoring the rest of your post, which is an opinion that you are of course free to hold (although perhaps you might consider sharing it on a blog more receptive to your world view), I believe the issue at stake regarding your final statement is that this 'PR' is 'taxpayer-funded PR'.

Quite frankly, it is not your place or the Government's to try and brainwash me or anyone else about whether or not AGW may or may not be real. I prefer to review what evidence there is out there and form my own opinion.

Jimmy said...

"The notion that carbon fuel interests spend billions on sceptic science is frankly, preposterous."

So your theory is that the oil companies which admit publicly to funding these "institutes" have in fact falsified their accounts?

Why do you think they do this?

Some serious moonbattery here.

Dick Puddlecote said...

@ Norfolkandchance:

Lots about credentials but I didn't see anything about funding (to be fair, I may have missed it so please point it out if it is there). If the thrust of the link is that such a question shouldn't be asked, why are oil company funded studies dismissed out of hand when government funded ones aren't?

This is a theme of many current crusades, from climate change, through lifestyle choices, to behavioural science.

Eliminating opposing voices does not make for a balanced debate.

Serious question BTW

Manicbeancounter said...

Having a quick look at their website, I am not sure from what perspective Futerra are coming from.
From the comments that you make they seem like a bunch of frustrated Marxists. The deniers are suffering from false consiousness. Hence the comments about there being no ‘rational man’ and using social learning. Then again, they could be frustrated telly-evangelists from the comments about “Link climate change mitigation to positive desires aspirations” and again use of social learning (or collective worship).

This can be more clearly seen from other documents on their website.
“Be part of the revolution.” (http://www.futerra.co.uk/revolution/)

But this document provides the best clues. - http://www.futerra.co.uk/downloads/Sellthesizzle.pdf
“For years we’ve tried to ‘sell’ climate change, but a lot of people aren’t buying. Despite a strange recent resurgence in denial, the science is unequivocal.” “For all of us desperately promoting action, finding ingenious ways to communicate climate change or just banging our heads against the hard brick wall of climate denial – we need to find the sizzle.”

Translated as – the truth is self-evident to those of us who are in the know, we just have to explain it better.

The religious analogy is then clearly stated.

“Climate change sounds like hell, so where is heaven?
Climate change itself isn’t the sizzle, it’s the sausage. That’s where our second metaphor comes in. The most common message on climate change is that we’re all going to hell.” And “Hell doesn’t sell”

“Heaven sizzles
But there is one message that almost every audience responds to. A narrative that changes hearts, minds and even behaviours. An approach needed now more than ever before. And it’s the opposite of climate hell. We must build a visual and compelling vision of low carbon heaven.”

Or maybe neither is right. Maybe it is just a sideline of the Prime Minister’s. After all Futerra state “For nearly nine years we've helped you save the world.” We know that such a statement can only refer to Gordon Brown. (http://www.futerra.co.uk/home) The New Labour theme also chimes with the ‘message is right, just the communication that is wrong.’

I Squiggle said...

Just a thought, but how old is that leaflet? The DTI ceased to be the DTI some years ago. They are now BIS (the Department for Business Innovation and Skills) having been formally BERR (the Department for Business err.. something and something..)

Martin said...

Don't forget the links the scumbags at the BBC have to this group as well.

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/damianthompson/100018294/how-the-bbc-funds-climate-change-revolutionaries/

econyonium said...

The real propaganda slight of hand is to concentrate on evidence of climate change (as if there has ever been climate stasis) rather than evidence supporting the claim that CO2 concentration above a certain value is de facto in control.

There is 4 billion years' worth of evidence of climate change, none that CO2 EVER caused it.

It is also implicit that climate change can only have a negative outcome, but there is not, nor can there be, any certainty that the outcome is more likely to be negative than positive.

Robert said...

<>

No-one denies that there was some funding of countervailing research, but the funding advantage of the "consensus" is many thousands of times greater. Even Exxon has given more money to "consensus" research than to skepticism. But this is an argument from interest, a logical fallacy that does not bring us anywhere nearer scientific truth.

The problem is that the axiomatic proposition - the climate sensitivity to CO2, from which a concern about anthropogenic emissions arises - is not well established. Arm waving about "unprecedented warming", which Jones now admits is not unprecedented, "unprecedented temperatures", which they now admit are lower than the MWP, don't cut it. The other evidence used, the tracking of CO2 level and temperature since the last major glaciation (from the Vostok ice cores) actually is evidence for a low-to-zero sensitivity, since the correlation is the wrong way round for the argument it is supposed to sustain.

The problem is not the skeptics are unpersuadable. It is that, in respect to the science, they tend to be better informed. And propaganda will not convince such people. One well-founded paper showing an empirical link between CO2 level and climate would change my view entirely. But I have not been persuaded that any such paper exists. Please, prove me wrong. If you have evidence to offer.

Beware of Geeks bearing GIFs said...

Desperate times call for ever increasingly desperate measures.

Remember, the carbon trading scam cannot, at any cost, be allowed to fail.

Lise said...

This can't come as a surprise from a government that would rather spin and distort than accept scientific data. In North America, or Canada at least, the British High Commission has given up using its media relations office to sell climate change and has hired a former cancer fund raising expert to head up "climate security." Are we really going to stand for this? Apparently we are.

OddSox said...

"climate security"?

Ah, that's what happened. The Deniers stole snow from Ottawa and dumped it on Washington, all to make Al Gore look bad!

And Big Oil paid for it!

Cazzy Jones said...

An excellent, and frightening, article. I have just linked it in with my own on the theme of Yellow Journalism. If only we could rest assured that the election of a Tory government would involve a proclamation that the AGW king was stark naked and that no more taxpayers' money would be wasted on funding propaganda about what a fine suit he was wearing.

Michele said...

Well from a purely communication stand point they have called it right. They tick all the right boxes in 'Emotional communication with the aim of overiding evidence 101'

However the principle that emotions change opinion is not actually correct - people only really change when staying the same becomes more uncomfortabel than changing.

Plus - the same tactics are avaialable to either side of the debate. So those who doubt that climate change (which used to be global warming and now - after the cruel winter - isn't) is down to the impact of man aren't going to get very far just with facts - they will need to balance that with an emotional appeal to the people's interest themselves.

Advice given from a strictly profession point of view of course.