Research has powerfully illustrated that a lack of knowledge in domains such as energy and the environment can lead to bad decisions and erroneous beliefs that hinder a society’s ability to create change in domains that require it


Rather self-evident, isn’t it? Certainly that observation is not limited to energy and environment, but the more complex the challenge, coupled with the greater potential impact, the more critical it becomes to understand the issues—all of them—and the range of consequences should there be a failure to respond appropriately.

There are reasons and explanations as to why the general population—and those leaning Right in particular—choose to deny, avoid, or ignore matters of great import and impact. That the justifications, rationales, and innate strategies used might be understandable should not be the end of the discussion. Self-awareness and introspection carry their own set of benefits.

This new Friday series, extending well into the latter part of 2016, will examine the concept of System Justification * and the role in plays in generating continued opposition and denial of the facts and implications of both a peak in the rate of oil production, and climate change. Facts won’t go away, and denial is not a shield, but there are well-defined patterns and behaviors which provide a foundation for the tactics employed to sow doubt and preserve the comforts of the known and familiar.

While the benefits are clear and gratifying today, the ongoing failure to move beyond the emotional and psychological comforts afforded by system justifications is not without its costs and consequences. A greater appreciation for not just the facts of peak oil and climate change, but an understanding as well of how we respond to them, why, and what happens if we fail examine other approaches is arguably of more enduring benefit.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…