Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Are we manipulated into thinking pollution is a terrible problem?

'By the year 2000 20% of the earth population will be dead from pollution'.

'They lied to me in school, back in 1971! It's entirely untrue that 20% of the world's population is dead!', a lot of people claim.

They are right. As a matter of fact: of all people living on the planet today exactly zero percent is dead. Yes, that's right: of all people alive today in the world not a single one has died from pollution!

Were the teachers, scientists and all other 'lefties' in the seventies just scaring us in order to control us because scared people are more easily controlled? Not really. Pollution is a real problem. And living people are not dead. But the internet proves it's very easy to confuse dumb right leaning stupid gullible people with fake numbers and dito statistics.

Unfortunately a lot of people go for false arguments, manipulitave wording and convincing looking statistics. A few examples:

False arguments:

'Most people with autism have been vaccinated. That proves vaccination leads to autism.'
Nonsense of course. Just look: 'Most people who voted Trump drank milk as a child. That proves drinking milk improves the odds of one day buying a MAGA-hat significantly.' and 'By far most alcoholics today used to wear diapers as a kid. That must mean the Secret World Order puts a secret substance in our babies' diapers to make them dependent on alcohol, turning them into sick poor bastards.'

Manipulative wording:

'Scientific DNA-tests performed on inmates on Death Row show only 2% may not have commited the crime the sick bastard was accused of. Proving DNA-testing is a valid method of stating a whopping 98 percent is righfully executed!'

'DNA-tests show 1 in 50 inmates on Death Row is innocent!'

Different figures? No. The figures are from the exact same dataset. It's just a lot of people don't realize '1 in 50' is the exact same number as '2 percent'


Lea Gaslowitz teaches us how to spot a misleading graph. Showing us 'undeniable data!' is a method favored by not only politicians but also big companies. Both luring us into buying election rhetoric and cars. For example.

A few more (sometimes disturbing!) examples by Mark Liddell:

But moving on to pollution:

Which countries are the world's worst polluters?

According the the World Health Organisation (click) 3 million people a year worldwide die from outdoor pollution. Compared to the 26,000 who died from terrorism in 2017 (0,05% of all 56 million people who died that year) significantly more. Since everyone with a working brain can understand '3 million' is a whole lot more than '26,000', how come so many people are not afraid of pollution but are afraid of terrorism?

'Yeah, all fine. But a professor said that when someone in 1970 stated 'in the near future' over a 100,000 people a year will die from pollution. He was spectacularly wrong!' Yes, professor Mark J. Perry did that in this piece (click). Next to claiming the predictions in 1970 were way off the mark (the predicted 100,000 death a year from pollution is far less than the 3 million deaths from pollution that became reality. So he really is right. Just not in the way he wants us to believe.) Mark Perry tries to tell people we shouldn't worry 'because pollution is really not that bad. 'They' just want you to think that.'

Interestingly mr. Perry (or a ghostwriter who wrote the piece on his behalf. Hard to tell.) not only makes numerous false statements but works for the American Enterprise Institute (click), funded by the Koch Brothers, the right wing billionaires who use their money to manipulate civilians and politicians alike. Other big financial contributors to this 'think thank' that likes to spread easily debunked false claims, are tobacco producer Philip Morris and oil giant ExxonMobil. If you dig just a little further you will find out one of the foundations paying Professor Perry, Ayaan Hirsi Ali and dozens of other people on the political right (just a coincidence of course that every single one of the member of the American Enterprise Institute  could act as an 'expert' on the Fox Entertainment Channel!) is based on the fortunes of the Vick Vaporub family.

Makes you think, right?

So please, before you believe a claim (and share it), try to make sure you are not manipulated. I know thinking and investigating takes time and effort and watching an episode of a soap or sports is less strenious but the effort is worth it. Unless you prefer to live in a fake world.

Want to read (more of) my short stories? My author page: Terrence Weijnschenk at Amazon

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