The question is: how is it possible there still are climate change deniers? Should we apply Hanlon’s razor? Is it stupidity or malevolence? Or both?
I’m not sure if it’s stupidity or malevolence. As the GRRM quote goes, “Nobody is the villain in their own story. We’re all the heroes of our own stories.” This implies that our stories unfold in our own subjective perceptions of reality, that we are all products of our own limitations. These limitations, however, are rooted in objective physical reality and, in that sense, we are prisoners of circumstance.
I think the issue with individual ignorance, be it willful or otherwise, is a function of structural deficiencies at the social level. For instance, we have the wealth and knowledge to far better educate our populace, but, year after year, we fail millions of schoolchildren in America and the world around. Getting back to climate change in particular, Lawrence Lessig has famously said that he considers climate change the most important issue facing humankind, but that he fights for campaign finance reform first, because, without it, he can’t see a path through the morass of political corruption to meaningfully address climate change.
This is perceptive, but I think it just represents the tip of the iceberg, and that the answer lies in how Industrial Age economic and political systems can no longer sustain us. Our problems transcend campaign finance and, in fact, campaign finance corruption is an inevitable consequence of our system being the way it is.