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Harris spoke about how conservatives do in fact have sway in public opinion when it comes to the climate scare, and in years when the party took a more grassroots approach, public opinion on climate change action was less extreme.
“The major driver of public opinion on climate change is the opinions of the elites, and in particular, the opinions of the politicians,” noted Harris, quoting numerous studies.
Sheila brought up the Solomon ash conformity experiment which was conducted in 1951. The test subject would look at a group of lines to see which one is the tallest. Other people were told to say line three, even though the real answer was line one. The test subject would usually go along with the group, even though they knew what the right answer was. This was until another person in the group said “no, it’s one,” then the test subject would be more likely to say it’s one also.
Shelia connected this to the current political landscape when it comes to calling out climate extremism.
“That sort of plays out across everything that we talk about. Whether it’s about climate change, where there’s complete ideological homogeneity, [or] lockdown restrictions. Once one person stands up, everyone else says, ‘you know what, me too!’ but it just takes that one person. So who’s it gonna be from the conservative side of the debate?”