Rhetorical Analysis, "Global Warming - the Great Delusion" Essay

1314 Words Apr 18th, 2012 6 Pages
Kevin Breuninger
Prof. Jerry Phillips
Prof. Harris Fairbanks
English 3633W
23 February 2012
Rhetorical Analysis, “ Global Warming – The Great Delusion” Matt Patterson argues in “Global Warming – The Great Delusion” that the alleged scientific consensus surrounding the theory of global warming is based not on fact, but rather on a web of mass hysteria and deceit. Patterson contends that “In fact, global warming is the most widespread mass hysteria in our species’ history”, and that the beliefs of global warming proponents are the result of their own delusional imaginations and a subconscious apocalyptic yearning toward which masses of people tend to subject themselves. While Patterson worries that what he perceives to be the
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A rebuttal might point out that Patterson has yet to provide evidence against global warming or discredit the available evidence that supports the theory, and Mackay’s point about humans self-inflicting worries upon themselves might not hold any water if the worry in question was indeed valid and supported by evidence. Patterson continues this assertion into the next paragraph, adding more emotional emphasis by claiming that “In fact, global warming is the most widespread mass hysteria in our species’ history”. By framing the argument so dramatically, Patterson draws a visible distinction to whom his intended audience may be: those who already agree with his position and are looking for solidarity in their own opinions, as well as those on the fence or who have a neutral opinion on the validity of global warming. By emphasizing the extent of the error of global warming believers to such a degree, Patterson may be attempting to pique the interest of those who have paid little attention to the global warming debate before. Additionally, global warming proponents are grouped into the term “warmists” in this paragraph, and later referred to as “climate cultists”. These terms carry a belittling connotation that implies that global warming proponents are members of an extremist fringe group, rather than the majority. A rebuttal of this point might simply note that the majority of climatologists still subscribe to global warming as a viable theory, and Patterson is

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