Carbon Dioxide Totally Harmless????

Educator alert: The best example of the Naturalistic Fallacy EVAH!!!! The money quote is….

“Carbon Dioxide is Natural. It is not harmful. It is part of earth’s life cycle. And yet we are being told we have to reduce this natural substance, and reduce the american standard of living, to create an arbitrary reduction in something that is a naturally occurring in the Earth.”

Here it is… Minnesota Congresswoman Michele Bachmann:


hat tip: dump bachmann

Comments

  1. #1 Lorax
    April 23, 2009

    “Carbon Dioxide is Natural. It is not harmful. It is part of earth’s life cycle. And yet we are being told we have to reduce this natural substance, and reduce the american standard of living, to create an arbitrary reduction in something that is a naturally occurring in the Earth.”

    What I wish she said…
    Water is natural. Water is not harmful. It is part of earth’s life cycle. And yet we are being told we have to reduce our exposure this natural substance, and reduce the american standard of living, to create an arbitrary reduction in something that is a naturally occurring in the Earth. Now excuse me while immerse my head in Lake Callhoun for the next 10 minutes.

  2. #2 eNeMeE
    April 23, 2009

    Now excuse me while immerse my head in Lake Callhoun for the next 10 minutes.

    Hell, just get her to stand in a room filled with CO2 for a while.

    Clearly, she should be willing.

  3. #3 catgirl
    April 23, 2009

    Natural stuff can’t possibly be dangerous. I think I’ll go eat some poisonous mushrooms and then wrestle with a tiger. Maybe I’ll finish the fun by letting a cobra bite me. Those things are natural so they can’t be harmful.

  4. #4 Thomas
    April 23, 2009

    A congresswoman making that kind of statement is one thing, I’m more worried when a somewhat prominent scientist like Roy Spencer makes the statement:
    “Well if you breathe pure CO2, you will die — from a lack of oxygen, not because CO2 is poisonous.”
    http://www.drroyspencer.com/2009/04/some-global-warming-qa-to-consider-in-light-of-the-epa-ruling/
    Any similarity to the previous ironical statements is just an accident. Spencer is serious.

  5. #5 D. C. Sessions
    April 23, 2009

    So is sulfur dioxide. Here, take a deep whiff from this sulfur candle …

  6. #6 Jackal
    April 23, 2009

    Appariently Bachmann and Spencer never watched Apollo 13. And if a big Hollywood movie isn’t good enough for you, there’s also this article from Wikipedia.

  7. #7 Greg Laden
    April 23, 2009

    Roy Spencer is a first class moron. And that is an excellent quote, because it too is a great example of the naturalistic fallacy somewhat proxified and taken in a somewhat different direction.

  8. #8 a lurker
    April 23, 2009

    She thinks that 3% of the atmosphere is carbon dioxide? If that was true the ice caps would all ready be melted and we be roasted. It is really 0.04% carbon dioxide. And a hell of a lot more than 3% is a result of human activities.

    She reminds me of the Dilbert TV show a decade back which went something like: Our Ebola [forgot] can’t be harmful, it is made from all-natural ingredients.

  9. #9 beebeeo
    April 23, 2009

    The stupid it burns!

    +

    Picard-Riker double facepalm

    No further comment is necessary.

  10. #10 Will TS
    April 23, 2009

    I don’t think her homeschooling taught her how to read decimals. And arithmetic was hard for her, too. She believes that 3 percent of 3 percent can’t be quantified. Michelle Bachmann: Queen of Innumeracy.

  11. #11 Umlud
    April 23, 2009

    Seems like Bachmann has the same problem with decimals as the people at Verizon do… (just do a YouTube search for “Verizon Math Fail”) To wit: 0.04% is not “four percent” (nor even three percent, as she says it is). Furthermore, multiplying (Bachmann’s) 3% by 3%, one gets… 0.09%! Woah! And doing that same thing with the actual estimated value of atmospheric CO2, one gets: 0.04% * 3% = 0.0012%! WOAH! Totally within the realm of being totally quantifiable.

    (Oh, and “a fraction of a fraction of a fraction” is just redundant. A fraction can be as small as you need it to be. Silly Minnesotan House Representative from the Got Out of Power Party.)

  12. #12 sevişme
    April 23, 2009

    Ahhhh, that’s why I love homeschooling. I get up at 4:30 and get back from work by 3:30. My slugabed wife and kids get up at 9 and finish school around 4.

  13. #13 mark
    April 23, 2009

    How come she’s not Boss of the Board of Education? She’s as uproariously ignorant as Don McLeroy!

  14. #14 Kieran
    April 23, 2009

    All politicians should be required to know all the common logically fallacies. Then, whenever they use one, they should be lose speaking privileges for one week.

    I have a feeling that would make congress a pretty quiet place.

  15. #15 Cootamundra W
    April 23, 2009

    “I don’t think her homeschooling taught her how to read decimals.” Don’t disparage all homeschoolers in this way. Bachmann graduated from public school in MN – HOWEVER she did attend Oral Roberts for “college”. (Disparage THAT all you want – I’ve met other people attended ORU. It would seem that upon arrival they perform some “God miracle” that keeps those people from ever being able to think clearly.)
    She obviously has no idea what factchecking entails.
    “Michelle Bachmann: Queen of Innumeracy” – I second that!

  16. #16 Mike Haubrich, FCD
    April 23, 2009

    I don’t think we need to put her in a room of CO(sub 2) when a paper or plastic bag would do just as well. After all, she would only be breathing in what she was expiring. What could be more pure than that?

  17. #17 Jackal
    April 23, 2009

    Dang, my comment still hasn’t gotten through. Don’t like my html?

  18. #18 chrisj
    April 24, 2009

    Arsenic and potassium cyanide are both naturally occurring substances, too. Presumably she thinks they’re harmless?

  19. #19 Brad
    May 20, 2009

    Breathing pure carbon dioxide will most certainly result in death due to lack of oxygen. CO2 poisoning happens over time when exposed to small but toxic levels of the gas as it permeates the cell tissues. Oxygen deficiency will kill the average person in minutes, not even remotely close to enough time for Carbon Dioxide to poison the victim. In fact, attempting to breathe pure CO2 results in respiratory failure/paralysis, the muscles just stop responding to input. Its not possible to breathe it.

    Either way, CO2 should be the least of our worries in this global climate change craze. Its one of the worst performing greenhouse gasses on the list. In following with this, water vapor is the best performing greenhouse gas that is in any measurable and viable quantity in the atmosphere, some estimates put it at ~25x more effective than CO2 when compared evenly. i.e. 1 part H2O will hold ~25 parts heat, while 1 part CO2 will hold only 1 part heat.

    Yet you don’t see any legislation pertaining to reducing water vapor emissions now do you?

  20. #20 Greg Laden
    May 20, 2009

    Brad, that is an extremely dangerous statement you have made. I’m tempted to delete it. I is simply not true that concentrations of C02 are not medically very dangerous.

    Your statement about water vapor is equally uninformed but not as dangerous in the proximate sense. But of course, ignorance about scientific matters has been demonstrated to be bad over the medium and long term.

  21. #21 bongstar420
    June 11, 2009

    Everything is natural…that dont mean that it is harmless. Harm is relative to the observer. Good for me dont mean good for you. I dont buy into co2 forced global warming as there is not enough observation in my opinion to determine what the main forcing agent is of yet. But Im totally for getting our co2 counts down cause those techs are primitive and past their time.

    My contention is that dropping co2 for global warming concerns is the wrong reason for the correct action. LAME, but whatever. I guess whatever gets the job done right!

  22. #22 co2
    August 31, 2009

    remaining other things constant….. if we assume that co2 is harmless..
    so shouldn’t we stop our self to do lousy things.
    shouldn’t we bring cleanness in society by reducing carbon footprints?

  23. #23 bongstar420
    August 20, 2010

    By the way….Can we say Liquid Flouride Thorium Reactors, Power Satelites, and possibly Hot and Cold Fusion Reactors? Yeah, screw that energy scaricty business. I’m in it for the big time, long term game.