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RFD for Anthropic climate change debate

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8/31/2016 1:22:33 AM
Posted: 1 month ago
Debate is here ( Vote is for bsh1's DDOlympics.

Going into this debate, which is on the topic "Anthropic climate change is real and a threat", I will assume Pro has the burden of proof. As the one providing the affirmative, by default he takes the BoP, and gave no rule otherwise.

R2 - Pro
Pro takes an interesting approach here. It's bold, cocky, but kind of interesting. He provides four sources that he claims prove climate change is real. He also provides a link citing the WHO, saying hundreds of thousands of lives are lost annually to climate change. There really is nothing of note here. I think the fact he has the BoP makes this less effective. I also can't judge for myself sources without him showing what he wants me to see.

R2 - Con
Con, as expected, provides a normal-length argument. He provides 11 "Facts" (not scare quotes). In order:
Fact 1 - The atmosphere's temperature has not risen since 1998 and there is no hotspot. He provides four sources to back this up; the first three are graphs. The first graph appears to show no net warming, but a rise and decline; the second shows what appears to be major cooling; and the third shows a lack of hotspot. Does this demonstrate warming isn't a threat? I'm not sure.
Fact 2 - He makes an assertion with no evidence.
Fact 3 - Co2 levels have been higher in ancient history, meaning it isn't a threat. I'm not sure how convincing this is - correlation does not equal causation.
Fact 4 - He makes an interesting argument; Co2 follows temperature, not the other way around. His proof is a few graphs showing this trend, but the third is a broken link. Interesting point.
Fact 5 - I honestly don't follow him at all here.
Fact 6 - IoC models are wrong; the effect of Co2 is overblown. Not sure how this relates to global warming - models can be wrong and the globe still warms.
Fact 7 - He argues the Earth has been warming for a long time; he never says it, but I assume he means it isn't a threat even if it is warming, because it hasn't caused harm.
Fact 8 - He argues we have had major warming periods in the past; again, he never says why this matters. I have to assume again, which is not good.
Fact 9 - All planets are undergoing climate change. He provides no evidence here and no reason why this matters. It's actually counterproductive to argue warming is happening; he's proving his opponent's case.
Fact 10 - There is no scientific test to prove warming; again, no sources are given so I can't give much weight here.
Fact 11 - Co2 levels rose post-war, but temperature dropped. This is a solid argument; it draws into question the link between Co2 and warming.

Overall, I think Con edges out here - neither case is strong, but Con has simply provided more evidence that draws into doubt Pro's claims (which Pro needs to establish, due to having BoP).

R3 - Pro
Again, Pro goes with a short argument. He asserts his articles are true, and argues his sources are more credible; while he doesn't offer examples, I would tend to agree. He also provides another source noting climate change's high temperatures as leading to deaths, such as the 2003 heat wave in Europe. Again, not much to say here because Pro doesn't say much - and, unfortunately, he basically cedes every point Con made by not arguing.

R3 - Con
Con starts out in poor spirit by trying to rule shark an automatic win; he argues since Pro didn't rebut him, he wins. However, the rules say he can argue and rebut; this charge by Con is false and, for that reason, he loses conduct points.

He opens his actual rebuttal by rebutting claims Pro never makes; namely, global warming causes more tornados, droughts, and hurricanes. He also argues that sea levels aren't rising - at least since 2003 - and that arctic ice levels are rising. He closes by arguing that climate change, while real, is not a threat.

I have to give Pro the edge here; Con does not attempt to rebut Pro's argument that climate change contributed to the European heat wave and actively cedes the argument climate change exists.

R4 - Pro
Pro notes he didn't break rules, and then argues that Con's sources aren't credible and contradict his peer-reviewed sources. I'd like more examples here, and even then this would be a very weak closing round.

R4 - Con
Con tries to push his rule sharking again and fails. Conduct stays with Pro.

Con responds to Pro's argument that Con cannot get his arguments in a journal by arguing there are not many skeptics because you need to believe to get grants, and that the journals are biased against him. Neither are strong arguments. While he does correctly note that Pro never rebutted him, and says because of this he wins all 11 Facts and thus wins the debate.

This is a difficult debate to judge. Neither side actually debated the facts, really; they argued more over rules than anything.
Conduct: I give conduct to Pro. Con's rule-sharking was not only in bad faith, but incorrect.
S&G: Neither side had issues in this regard. While Pro did have better formatting for citations, it's not enough to give anything here.
Arguments: This is the big one. Did Pro meet the BoP? I have to say he did. Why? Even if everything Con said is true, he failed to refute Pro's claims in regard to the WHO's study on climate change deaths, and the 2003 heat wave. Con claims climate change is real, but not a threat; however, thousands of deaths are a threat. So Pro wins here.
Sources: Pro uses few sources, but they are credible back up his claims; Con uses sources more often, but doesn't back up a similar percentage of claims as Pro, and his sources are less reliable things like wordpress blogs. I think Pro has to win this one
Overall, this is a 6-0 victory for Pro, but not as much a blowout as the score indicates.