After a mass shooting, conservatives will argue that more good guys with guns are needed to prevent such events from occurring in the future. They also claim that over 90% of mass shootings take place in gun-free zones. Here I explain the many problems with these arguments.
Climate change deniers make many false claims about carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. These include the idea that CO2 has a limited or negligible impact on global warming—or even has the net effect of cooling our planet. Some also claim that the greenhouse effect would violate the laws of physics. Others make the assertion that the small quantities of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere couldn't possibly cause significant worldwide temperature changes. As I show here, every single one of these arguments are incorrect.
Climate-change deniers are mistaken when they claim that factors other than our greenhouse gas emissions are causing global warming, whether they point to Milankovitch cycles, the Sun or volcanic eruptions. The data clearly shows that the predominant cause of current warming trends are manmade greenhouse gas emissions.
William Lane Craig argues that objective reality cannot exist without God. As I argue here, this isn't evidence that a God exists; it's merely an appeal to undesirable consequences. The many horrific godly actions described in the Bible also make clear that such a God's moral viewpoints wouldn't be worth following even if he did exist, and such atrocities don't match up with Craig's description of God as "perfectly good, loving and kind."
You can't describe religious morality as "objective" if it allows for Christians to disagree with each other on every single moral question while also citing scripture to support their viewpoints. Finally, without God, people can still use reason and empathy to decide right from wrong, and despite this process being imperfect, moral progress *is* made over time.
There is no good reason to believe that the molten material seen dripping on 9/11 and found in the debris piles was melted steel generated in thermitic reactions during a controlled demolition. Aluminum from the airplanes and buildings makes much more sense, as it can glow bright orange at the temperatures present in building fires.
No testing ever confirmed the presence of molten steel, and the WTC "meteorites" contain visible chunks of still-solid steel. Building fires are more than capable of deforming steel beams, whereas neither thermite nor explosives would act in this way. Finally, high surface temperatures can't be used to infer the presence of below-ground pools of molten steel, and the shifting nature of these hot-spots indicates that fires were responsible.
Conservatives argue that within the United States, gun control has been ineffective and counter-productive, citing Washington D.C. and Chicago as their key examples. Their portrayal of the data on this question is very misleading and inaccurate, and as I show here, nationwide data on the subject makes very clear that the stricter a state's gun laws, the lower its rate of gun homicides, gun suicides, and mass shootings.
Conservatives incorrectly argue that more guns do not lead to more deaths; some go so far as to claim that there's an inverse correlation. The graphs and data they use to support this view are flawed in several important ways.
Countries and states with higher levels of gun ownership have more gun homicides, suicides and accidental killings. People with guns in the home are much more likely to die from guns than those without—and you're much more likely to use your gun to commit homicide or suicide than to use it in a defensive, justified killing. An overall cost-benefit analysis of the question shows that people are much more likely to be harmed by guns than they are to benefit from them.
Circumcision advocates argue that performing this procedure on children and infants is justified because of its medical, hygienic, and aesthetic benefits. Here, I point out the many problems in all of these different arguments, ultimately concluding that circumcising children without their consent is deeply immoral and unjustified.
Creationists mistakenly claim that no transitional fossils exist. There are actually many such examples, illustrating evolutionary change taking place in organisms ranging from whales to turtles to fish to horses to dinosaurs. Creationists also have many misconceptions about the fossil record and apply a double standard to evolution vs their religious beliefs. Here, I also address the idea of "the missing link" in human evolution and debunk many creationist arguments made in this area.
Climate change deniers are wrong when they claim that the predictions made by climate models are unreliable. As I show here, most of them are very accurate—and where they get it wrong, they're more likely to *underestimate* the warming (or associated consequences) than overestimate it. The most inaccurate predictions are actually those made by climate change "skeptics."
I also show some of the problems in the data and graphs used to support this viewpoint, and I debunk a variety of related arguments, including one made by Jordan Peterson about whether can measure the impact of our climate-related actions.
Conservatives endlessly praise the Reagan tax cuts, claiming that they stimulated economic growth while reducing unemployment and growing personal income. In reality, many different factors contributed to the growth under Reagan, including a lowering of interest rates, a post-recession recovery, and stimulative government spending. Rarely mentioned are the many tax *increases* passed by Reagan. When presenting statistics to glorify the Reagan tax cuts, right-wingers often use very misleading tactics.
Creationists often argue that "life can't come from non-life." The scientific research actually shows that every step of the process is quite plausible. In addition to examining the research in this area, I also debunk a variety of arguments made by creationists to support their position.
9/11 truthers argue that during the collapse of the Twin Towers, explosive squibs were seen—proof of a controlled demolition. They also claim that the lateral ejection of heavy debris must have been caused by explosions. Here I carefully examine and debunk their arguments in these areas.
Republicans often talk about the scourge of left-wing violence—yet as I show here, right-wing violence is actually much more prevalent, both recently and historically. They also *pretend* as if Democratic politicians are calling for violence when really, they do nothing of the sort. Finally, their arguments on this subject are fraught with double standards and contradictions.
Creationists falsely claim that evolution has never been seen happening in real-time by human observers. Here, I show many such documented examples of evolution & speciation. I also pick apart creationist arguments in this area and explain where they go wrong, pointing out that they shift the goalposts, misuse scientific terminology, and set impossibly high standards for the changes we should be able to observe.
Libertarians argue that taxation is theft and that we should abolish the income tax. Here I argue that the comparison with theft is ridiculous because the taxpayer benefits from government programs and also gets to vote on what the tax rates are and what programs we do or don't fund. Among other things, I also point out that government force is only used to punish tax evaders as a last resort, and opting out of paying taxes or making it voluntary wouldn't be fair and would cause the overall quality of society to decline in many key areas.
Candace Owens recently appeared on The Joe Rogan Experience, making a series of faulty and absurd arguments on climate change which I debunk in this video. To put it bluntly, she has absolutely no idea what she's talking about when it comes to global warming.
Contrary to what drug warriors argue, drug decriminalization in Portugal has been an outstanding success. Since the policy change, problem drug-usage rates have actually declined, as has the number of intravenous HIV/AIDS transmissions and drug-related deaths. These outcomes are the product of both decriminalization and harm-reduction programs working in concert. Here, I run through the data in these areas while also debunking some of the arguments made by critics of Portugal's decriminalization.
Global warming deniers claim that there was an 18-year pause in global warming which started in 1998. As I show here, this apparent hiatus was actually the product of biases in the data. Once these are corrected for, the pause evaporates. I also make some points about how to properly examine data, and I respond to the idea that these temperature corrections are part of a scientific conspiracy.
Climate-change deniers argue that there actually is not a 97% manmade global-warming consensus among scientists and climatologists. They claim the true statistic is anywhere from 52% to a laughable 1%.
Here, I take a very close look at the studies and surveys on these questions and provide accurate statistics on the percentage of climate change publications that reject anthropogenic global warming, and also the percentage of scientists, climatologists, and top-publishing climatologists that believe in AGW and believe that it's dangerous.
In the process, I also debunk many of the flaws in the arguments and critiques used by deniers to poke holes in these studies, reject this data, and support a much lower figure. Enjoy!