Arguments from Analogy: Examples

Science Denialism

Example 1:

What if 97% of the world’s astronomers concluded that there was a 90% chance that an asteroid will hit the Earth in 30 years. The earlier we act, the easier it will be to deflect. If we wait too long, it will be too late to do anything. It will be very costly to deflect the asteroid, but that is what they recommend. They are still debating among themselves as to the best method to use, but there are various options available.

Would you feel comfortable listening to the 3% of dissenters who think the asteroid will miss? Would you agree with a politician who does not want to spend the money to deflect it because he thinks the asteroid won’t do that much damage? Would you buy the claim that the astronomers are all engaging in a world-wide-hoax in order to increase funding for astronomy and space flight? Would you listen to a crank who thinks that the science of gravity is all wrong?