Tuesday, September 28, 2010

"Bring out your dread!"

Prof. Tim Flannery may have puzzled some by appearing in his new book Here On Earth to have become relaxed and comfortable about Global Warming. But he is simply performing a therapeutic ritual we call Defusing The Dread. Denialists think they are being rational when in fact all the evidence indicates that they are deeply traumatised by fear of Climate Change- which their minds are reacting to as if to a death, the death of the future. Denial is their way of dealing with the dread of the future. The shrill tone and emotional violence of the Denialists' manner of debate gives the hint as to their stability. Tim knows that he will not reach these people by scary statistics and high anxiety. He is stepping away from pessimism and adopting an optimistic tone. But he hasn't abandoned his belief in the urgency of action on Climate Change.

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