Why The Continuing Appeal Of The Appeal To Non-Authority Fallacy?

Why The Continuing Appeal Of The Appeal To Non-Authority Fallacy?

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Ladies and gentlemen, allow me to introduce to you proof that “climate change” has completed its transformation from Science into yet another foolish global panic grift, a grift embodied in this young lady, twenty year old Sophia Kianni.

This is the first tweet in a thread in which that young lady describes her duties.
One is to “Attend meetings with UN officers and country ambassadors to exchange ideas on how the United Nations can drive climate ambition and action to steer the planet to a path of sustainability by keeping global warming under 1.5C”.

I want to be both hyper-precise and perfectly accurate here. Sophia, like Great Thunberg before her, is ignorant on these matters. She knows almost nothing about them. The bulk of what little she does know is hyperbolic propaganda.

There is nothing this woman has to offer on this subject. Not one thing. Can she suggest better cloud parameterizations in GCMs? Does she know the amounts governments should force companies to pay in “carbon” taxes?

Could she define centigrade? Or a kilowatt? Can she define photosynthesis? Could she point to the ionosphere? Does she even know why the sky is blue? It’s a fifty-fifty bet whether she knows which of the two, sun and earth, revolves around the other.

In the picture which heads the post it appears she could best advise the UN that her favorite color is blue.

So why is the UN touting this silly non-authority?

Before we answer that, take a look-see at this:

The syrupy piano that accompanies Reuters’s propaganda is the worst part of the video. Not far behind its captions, like one where young activists are “demanding”—demanding!—“action on climate change to protect their futures.”

Young activists!

There’s a segment with an eleven year old brat harassing some politician about releasing “activists” who were tossed in the hoosegow for “protesting” against nuclear energy. The written piece followed this up: “‘We need to hold lawmakers accountable for their political decisions,’ she later told Reuters.”

“Briggs, that’s rude. You can’t call a little girl a brat.”

I can’t? But propagandists can tout her as an authority on “climate change”? She has Get Out Of Criticism Pass because she’s young?

“Well, yes.”

And so we see a prime appeal of the Appeal to Non-Authority Fallacy (written about at length here). What we can call The Easy Out.

You see the Easy Out all the time in cultural fights. Some woke celebrity will say something idiotic, and, when called on it, says “I’m only a comedian” or whatever.

Here, wee tykes say nonsensical things about “climate change”, and, when called out, get to say “I’m just a kid.” Mostly they don’t even have to say that. Restraint on the part of adults not to wound children keeps them silent.

When instead somebody should say these kids are ignorant, that they’re used as props, that their parents should be taken out back and have explained to them not to do this to their own kids.

Worse, the kids’ parents get their information from propagandists like Reuters.

The Appeal to Non-Authority also brings out maternal instinct. “If these kids are so scared, there must be something to what they are saying!” This is false, a clear instance of the What About The Children! Fallacy.

A key component of the Appeal to Non-Authority is in the people used to convey the fallacy. It must employ likable folk. Who doesn’t love children? Everybody fawns over celebrities (Glubb: “The heroes of declining nations are always the same, the athlete, the singer or the actor”). And, though it is certain that somebody has been lying to Sophia Kianni about how pretty she is, vigorous youth has a universal appeal.

People trust non-authorities more than they trust politicians on the same subjects, because of the likability and the supposed disinterest of non-authorities. What do kids have to gain by mouthing a “carbon” tax? They must be sincere!

The Non-Authority is, after all, how much advertising works. A beautiful woman drinks a beer, a swarthy man drives a truck, a film actor endorses a pop or reverse mortgage. We buy because we like and trust these non-authorities. This fallacy is used at all levels of culture.

Funny thing is, nobody ever confesses to be taken in by it.

Buy my new book and learn to argue against the regime: Everything You Believe Is Wrong.

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  1. What Ms. Kianni does is look pretty so that men will pay attention to her. Nothing wrong with that, it’s how mankind operates. Everything after the picture is fluff and propaganda as you pointed out.

    Plus the “can’t criticize young people” talking point is annoying. If you don’t want to be criticized then don’t insert yourself into the public dialogue.

  2. Withrow Legge

    I always think of Isaiah 3:12 when I see this garbage. “Youths oppress my people, women rule over them. My people, your guides lead you astray; they turn you from the path.“

  3. Johnno

    Briggs the reasons are simple… They are NOT to convince, but:

    1. To persuade the majority of normies – total nobodies – that just like the celebrity drinking that pop or saving the whales, they too could one day have a camera in front of them and they could speak some inanity, and voila! 30 seconds of fame! People are paying attention to you! They are listening to what you say! IMPORTANT PEOPLE!!!! Isn’t that what we’ve always wanted? Isn’t that why year after year we so desperately put a piece of paper in a ballot box? FINALLY! THAT DOPE UP ON CAMERA COULD BE ME! I just need to drink that pop, buy that sweater, drive that car, and talk climate-shit like they do! THEN I’ll be somebody!

    2. To demoralize and piss off the rest of us that ain’t buying it.

  4. Yes – that’s four! now I’m sure I need a shrink..

    One of the lessons I learned doing big project IT/mgmt consulting was that we would be hired to provide expertise – do research, understand the company, work out the numbers, etc etc – and the boss (after spending hundreds of thousands on us) would finally act on advice from the guy on the next barstool.

  5. Cary Cotterman

    We now have a few generations who have been thoroughly indoctrinated by the left, beginning with college students in the ’60s, who became professors, who brainwashed their students, who became public school teachers, who did the same to their students, who are the parents of today’s children. Kids don’t have to wait for university to become victims of leftist propaganda. Brainwashing begins at birth, continues K through 12, is finished off in graduate school, and is carried forward to the next generation, and into the corporate world. It seems as if the rational world has come to an end. The only thing left to do is shut the garage door, turn the engine on, and go to sleep.

  6. Milton Hathaway

    “Climate Change” aside, I read Kianni’s description of her job and chuckled. It’s the kind of job description that Wally would write – very little is particularly measurable (work with others, exchange ideas, provide input and suggestions, helping), and most of what is measurable would be considered an unavoidable waste of time by a private employer (attending meetings, non-billable consulting hours). I can imagine her next performance review – “Accomplishments: I worked with 12 people, I exchanged 23 ideas, I provided 18 suggestions, I attended 42 meetings”, etc. I’d hate to have to walk into a job interview with that resume. But she clearly has a bright future in politics.

    When her performance review rolls around, how will she list her accomplishments? I attended 23 meetings,

    Most everything she describes falls into the category most employers see as unavoidable wastes of time – attending meetings, providing feedback, consulting with others

    There are no measurable deliverables, unless you are lucky enough to have an employer who c

  7. Milton Hathaway

    Oops, ignore the last three paragraphs, glitchy web browser kept clearing comment box (or so I thought). Time to reboot.

  8. People in general are very stupid and ignorant. They make decisions based on their emotions not by using logic and rationality. Hence “it’s for the children” for the women and hot chick for the men. The problem is us.

  9. Jan Van Betsuni

    [Instrumentalizing Children] asserting their (group-wide/collective) allegiance in support of your proposition.

  10. Hagfish Bagpipe

    Climate porn actress.

    Milton — hate it when that happens. I write five stupid things in the combox, edit it down to one stupid thing, hit “post”, and then find four stupid things appear at the bottom of my published comment.

    not was ugly Greta thunder tug porn actress

    Communist dipstick fudge

    ridiculous nigger wiggler butjam ice pick slot cricklick

    addlepated scrimshaw stonewashed chitinous blatherwort…

  11. Ann Cherry

    I occasionally (frequently) need to look up words I read here, and today it was Hagfish’s “chitinous blatherwort”, which seemed almost like real words, or so fun that they ought to be real words.

    Chitin: a fibrous substance….in the exoskeleton of arthropods and the cell walls of fungi….

    Blatherwort is a made-up word, possibly a variation of “bladderwort” is a genus of carnivorous plants, but possibly a play on “blather” meaning “long-windedly”.

    Thus, “chitinous blatherwort” aptly describes those who emit hyperbolic propaganda, usually for a fee.

    Thank you, Hagfish, for putting things in a nutshell.

  12. AG McNeil

    @John Pate

    There’s no reciprocation in (non-“ah-gop-ee”) love.

    Because men love women. Women love children. Children love animals.

    World without end, amen.

  13. James

    So we get “Experts” and “non-authorities”.
    Those climate grifters are are covering all the bases.

  14. Milton Hathaway

    Hagfish, Ann – you guys crack me up. If your day jobs don’t involve authoring professional prose, your talents are misspent.

  15. gareth

    So, in the picture, where is her right hand resting?
    And his left?
    Just curious.

    Otherwise, good blog, points well made – but how many will fall on good ground? 🙂

  16. gareth

    @ Ann Cherry
    Well, one learns something every day, especially from the enlightened comentards here!
    I never knew (or, if I ever did, had forgotten) that fungus cell walls contained chitin.
    So, our future – pod dwelling, insectivore – Great Reset selves will already have been well trained in the nutrition department by a diet of quorn and mushrooms. Good to know – and owning nothing while being happy will be the (bug based) icing on the (gluten free) cake 🙂

  17. Ragnarok

    This is a result of the elevation of actors through the magic of the silver screen. Up until the advent of Cinema, these professional liars – for what else is getting up on a stage and pretending to be someone else – were rightly seen as being on the same level as prostitutes.
    Also, it’s a manipulation the beauty/truth paradigm.

  18. Uncle Mike

    Oh man, she’s a spokesmodel. Best kind of model, IMHO. You should be so lucky, or rich, to have one of those. In the meantime, wear a hat if that’s all you got.

  19. Phil R

    Milton Hathaway,

    She doesn’t need to worry about job performance or “measurable deliverables.” She has her own website (which I will not post here) and founded her own international nonprofit organization (which I’m sure means plenty of profits for her).

    According to her website, her accomplishments include: “She has been named VICE Media’s youngest Human of the Year, a National Geographic Young Explorer, and BuzzFeed’s youngest Woman to Watch.”

    You’re right, no “measurable deliverables.”

  20. Uncle Mike

    She has measurements!

    You guys shouldn’t be afraid of good-looking chicks. It’s not manly of you. Debate the ideas, not the personalities, and don’t disrespect femininity. Unless you’re gay or something, I guess.

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