Toles on record heat, extreme weather, climate bill and how “Everyone feels entitled to their own science now.”

Here is another terrific climate cartoon from Tom Toles, “The devil made us do it” “” along with his thoughts on the source of our failure in science education:


People work in mysterious ways — I love it!

The cartoonist is also providing running commentary:

The adults aren’t alright

Everybody is worked up about the state of education in the United States. The KIDS are FALLING BEHIND. No, it’s not the KIDS, it’s the SCHOOLS. No, it’s not the SCHOOLS it’s the TEACHERS. No, it’s not the TEACHERS, it’s the PARENTS. Okay, so if we fix the schools and the teachers and the parents, will our kids stop falling behind?

I’m inclined to extend the ring of panic out one ring further. If it’s true that the supporting envelope of the home is crucial to education, might it not also be true that the supporting envelope of society is important, too? It’s not just the kids or the schools or the teachers or the parents, it’s the CULTURE. Look around. Where is the support for careful reasoning? Our political/media discourse is a jailhouse cafeteria brawl. TV is now a THOUSAND channels of drivel.

We have all just flunked our big test of dealing with the climate catastrophe because we couldn’t even agree on the science. Everyone feels entitled to their own science now. And it’s no big surprise that we can’t understand climate science, since we’re still arguing about EVOLUTION after 150 years! Good luck, science teacher. –Tom Toles

Hear!  Hear!

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15 Responses to Toles on record heat, extreme weather, climate bill and how “Everyone feels entitled to their own science now.”

  1. fj2 says:

    “Converging Weather Patterns Caused Last Winter’s Huge Snows”
    A Warming World Can Still See Severe Storms

    The Earth Institute Columbia University

  2. Berbalang says:

    Beautifully said!

    Out of the thousand channels of drivel I may only watch about three hours a week, if that.

  3. Jeff Huggins says:


    One of the many great Bob Dylan songs is called “Broken”. I highly recommend it.

  4. Jeff Huggins says:

    I’m sorry: I got it wrong. The Bob Dylan song is called “Everything is Broken” (including my memory, apparently). In any case, I highly recommend it.

  5. Jeff Huggins says:

    Third Time’s a Charm

    Also, another super-great song of Bob Dylan’s, relating to the present situation, is “Political World”. It’s directly related to the present topic, in a great Dylanesque way. It’s on the same album as “Everything is Broken”, mentioned above. The album is “Oh Mercy”. If you haven’t heard it, get it.



  6. Mike says:

    David Bowie – Five Years Live 1972

  7. Rick Covert says:

    Now the deniers are even denying Peak Oil. They are promoting something called “Abiotic [hypothesis] theory of oil”. It basically says that the center of the earth just makes this stuff and it flows to the surface so we’ll never run out. Assuming that were testable and this discredited hypothesis could reach the exhalted level of theory it’s important to point out that you would probably not be able to drill for it anyway since it is so deep within the earth so the energy return on energy invested would be negative in teh extreme.

  8. This sentence grabbed my attention,

    ‘Look around. Where is the support for careful reasoning?’

    In our local book store there is one column of shelving containing ‘Popular Science’ (and there are some lemons in there – ‘The Dawkins Delusion’ anyone?) and 7 columns of quasi-religious and astrological nonsense. As I remarked to the manager we don’t stand a chance to get this world repaired when you have seven pillars of nonsense v one of, mostly, rational thinking.

    Even the libraries have weeded out the science and mathematics sections and made them less accessible. Pah! Now too full of DVDs and music CDs to have room for real education!

    Then there is the celebrity cult supported by stories in a multitude of trashy weekly publications with covers full of fallen celeb’s.

  9. Dave E says:

    #8 At least some celebrities understand climate change. Maybe that will help in some future reality (sigh).

  10. catman306 says:

    Climate change, breakdown, or failure is a long-term phenomenon that doesn’t lend itself to television. TV is about quick happening events, like a NASCAR race, or soccer match, but subtly is usually lost.. For instance, imagine a beautiful 10 minute sunrise in the pristine mountains of Vermont. Now imagine that same sunrise as a 10 minute TV program. Some important details will be lost.

    Only many year time-lapse videos of shrinking glaciers and rising sea levels could begin to convey on TV what is happening around us. Television is not the friend of those trying to disseminate information about climate change. Shame, it is.

    Four Arguments for the Elimination of Television [Paperback] 1978
    Jerry Mander

  11. villabolo says:

    catman306 says:

    Good recommendation catman, I read the book a long time ago and thought it could have used a couple extra arguments as well. Haven’t watched mine in about ten years.

  12. Bob Wallace says:

    Just wondering…

    Would it be worthwhile to purchase some TV/newspaper ad space and present a “graph of the week”?

    Put the important graphs such as global land and sea temp, Arctic ice melt, extreme weather events, etc. right in people’s faces? Create an “It was published in your newspaper – you didn’t see it?” rebuttal?

  13. Mark Shapiro says:

    Bob @ 12:

    Newspapers should publish those charts and graphs regularly, like the weather, sports, and market reports.

    Heck, someone named D Kelly O’Day has already collected data at

    and Lou Grinzo has more at

    The papers won’t publish this, but we can ask.

  14. Marc Hudson says:

    Toles cartoon is brilliant, and thanks Joe for posting it. I reckon Marc Roberts effort about BP service stations in the UK getting shut down is pretty good too.


    Marc Hudson

  15. Esop says:

    #12: Very good point. Most folks only notice short term changes. The extreme heat has made an impression on people right now, but once we get into November and it starts to snow, certain media outlets will once again declare AGW to have ended.
    The public needs to know that the science predicts a long increase of the global average temperature, so displaying that graph for all to see would be helpful. It is also crucial to communicate that the temps can flatten out and even drop slightly for short periods, like 2008 and most likely 2011. The real science says that the long term trend is up, the anti science predicted the opposite. The more people that get to see how the long term trend is developing consistent with the scientific predictions, the better.