Reality deniers get away with many of their fibs because we live in an age in which we have been taught that most statements of fact are really conditional, and there is always a possibility that some outrageous statement could be true or something that most people believe to be true could be false. The Obama administration manages to sell to the gullible media that their proposals to mitigate global warming by spending trillions of dollars and destroying millions of jobs over the next few decades are necessary for our survival as a species. The administration, though, admits that if the president manages to implement all of his new rules and laws, the world would only be two-tenths of 1 degree Fahrenheit cooler in a hundred years than if we did nothing. There is no real benefit to forcing all of those coal miners in West Virginia and elsewhere to lose their jobs.
When asked, reality deniers cannot tell you what the optimum amount
of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere should be (currently, it is about
0.04 percent). We do know that more carbon dioxide causes plants to grow
faster, and that is why they pump the gas into greenhouses. We also
know that the world is getting greener. Studies have shown that world
vegetation increased somewhere between 11 percent and 14 percent in the
years 1982 to 2011, which means that food is more plentiful and that
there is more habitat for wildlife. The southern Sahara (the Sahel) and
the Amazon are getting greener, not drier (as many radical
environmentalists have claimed). This is just one of the side benefits
of a little more carbon dioxide. By the way, the Earth has not warmed in
the past 17 years, as the reality deniers and their models claimed it
would. The oceans have been rising since the end of the last ice age.
About 20 years ago when better satellite technology became available, it
appeared that the oceans were rising at a bit faster rate of about one
foot per century, yet that rate has slowed for the last nine years.
In the coming years, we face many problems that are far more likely
to kill people than global warming — unsustainable government debt and
global terrorism — but the reality deniers prefer to waste resources on a
potential threat a century from now than to deal with the immediate
threats to our well-being.
Reality deniers seem to think we can make people wealthier just by
mandating things like a high minimum wage. Such folks ignore the fact
that the least skilled will not be hired at all, and prices will be
higher on many goods and services, which is most painful for low-income
people. The fact is the minimum wage is cruel and liberty-destroying for
many people, by denying them the opportunity to work for less for
various reasons, including developing job skills.
Every time I see a politician demanding that the government spend
more for this or that, without cutting some other program by an equal or
greater amount, I know they are reality deniers, because numerous
studies show that the U.S. government (and that of most other countries)
spend far more than the optimum amount for economic growth and job
creation. That is, all the additional spending will only make things
worse, not better.
Those who advocate higher taxes, or more regulations or more
big-government bureaucracies like Veterans Affairs or the Internal
Revenue Service (IRS) are reality deniers, because they ignore all of
evidence of the last 2,500 years as to why big government makes us worse
off rather than better off.
The reason the political class is so filled with reality deniers is
all too many voters are also reality deniers. Out of ignorance or the
inability to think beyond Stage One, they think they can get something
for nothing and, hence, are willing to vote for those who promise
At some point, many reality deniers seem to start believing their own
lies, that lying doesn’t matter or the public is too stupid to notice
they are lying. The missing IRS emails are a case in point. Certainly,
there is a very, very small probability that the critical emails of
those who just happened to be under congressional investigation were all
destroyed in a computer crash and only theirs were not backed up.