I’m a questioning type of person. If a lot of people are making a claim, I automatically look for ways they could be wrong. Especially if I want them to be right. So whenever possible, I check up on stories I read.
Not everything is researchable, though. I could read scientific journals until my brain melted, but without the higher education necessary to understand the chemistry, I can’t reach my own conclusions. If I read about a shooting or a robbery or evil politicians, but I have no power their, either. And I wasn’t there, so how do I know whose story is the truth?
At that point, I have to take a different tactic. Rather than trying to assess merely the reliability of the storyteller, I look for who benefits. As many a television legal professional will attest, follow the money.
For instance, who benefits from telling the public to abstain from vaccinations? I have difficulty believing that there’s a global conspiracy from the health food community trying to up the sales of echinacea. The beneficiaries are more direct than that: the pharmaceutical industry.
It’s simple. Vaccines are one of the cheapest aspects of medical care these days. But antibiotics and hospital stays for the measles raise way more revenue. Make people believe that the cheap thing that will prevent sickness is actually hurting them and bingo-bango suddenly you’re making money you wouldn’t have if people weren’t prone to acts of fear-induced stupidity.
Make people doubt the reliability of science by consistently reinventing God to serve your need to be one of the most importantest people on the most importantest planet because God only made the Earth for you so you have not only the right but the obligation to use all available resources at will. Who benefits from repairing the environment? Not many people. Self-sustaining energy is quickly becoming more affordable, and will need less upkeep because it’s not like sunlight is going to cause corrosion or run out or poison major tributaries. Companies like Tesla are making certain clean energy engine plans public domain; that’s not a financially motivated choice. But if we stop burning the fossil fuels that are damaging our atmosphere, a lot of people are going to be out of jobs. A lot of very wealthy people. People who don’t care if everyone can breathe.
As long as they’re buying their oxygen tanks and anti radiation medicine, who cares if the planet won’t be able to sustain life?