A short note about the state of affairs

It has been hard for me to keep up blogging, or even abreast of current news during my tour. With travel each day, and many days both a lunch and dinner meeting, it becomes an 18 hour grind. Mega kudos to Mr. David Archibald for his tireless navigation and good cheer. Without him I’d be lost here.

That said some disturbing things have happened. I’ve just learned of one this morning.

While on one hand we have an ugly climate science blacklist, on the other we have Tamino’s blog who has been the target of some legal complaint which prompted the removal of a post, ironically, one defending my rights. While I don’t agree much with Tamino, it is his “place”. He can say what he wants, it is his right.

Overall there’s too much pointless bluster and sniping in climate science. I wish there was a volume control.

Kids, can we just all “get along”?

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79 thoughts on “A short note about the state of affairs

  1. Google it, its most likely for a non controversial reason and sometimes sent by mistake. …” others have this problem when they have put adsense or links to illegal software on their site” – think about it, WP is more concerned about rogue software, not opinions.

  2. When we sit around my home…we have discussions. We have many different points of view between many friends, but we can still usually “discuss” things in a civil manner.
    That being said, I do know people who believe that it is not civil to disagree with someone. I don’t know where this idea originated, but the belief seems to be that if you’re “discussing”, that means you all agree…but if you DON’T agree…you can’t have a discussion.

    Seems very odd to me. It is a complex matter, no question…and I find it very similar to politics in that if you don’t like the president, there are all sorts of things wrong with you and your point of view.

    And then there are those who want to see to it that NO civil debate takes place in either field…they thrive on discord.

    Welcome to the human condition, I guess?

    JimB

  3. I agree, Anthony. I have learnt a lot of science since I started reading this blog and have learnt more than enough to be able to debate climate change with friends and neighbours and convince some of them that there is another side to the story and that some of the more alarmist positions are wrong and (occasionally) perhaps even deliberately so.
    But the stance taken by Real Climate towards its opponents does it no favours and neither does the same arrogance or triumphalism emanating from the skeptics.
    I am still open to be convinced that the pro-AGW lobby is right; I think it it unlikely since it seems to me that much of their science flies in the face of common sense and logic (as I see it).
    As you say, Tamino’s site is his property and provided he stays within the laws of libel or other forms of defamation whatever they may be, he is entitled to express a view (and also to censor dissenting views if he wishes, though such action doesn’t move the debate forward).
    I see increasing desperation among some supporters of the “warmists” (sorry, but I can’t think of a better shorthand; I don’t mean the term to be offensive in any way) but if this is only matched by equally unthinking and triumphalist outpourings from the other “camp”, then the debate is going nowhere and if a severe cooling (which seems possible) is just round the corner then we are going to need the assistance of those climate researchers and those who have succumbed to their blandishments in recent years.
    This needs to be a serious debate, untainted as far as possible by personalities, and though we tend to think that the ad homs are all coming from the warmist side the “yah-boo” politics (as it is known in the UK) is not going to help any of us.
    I’m with you … can’t we all just get along, even where we disagree?

  4. People should take care not to become the ones they fight. or as Nietzsche put it, “Be careful when you fight the monsters, lest you become one.”

  5. If the issue was about the science of climate, then yes. But it’s not about the climate or science. It’s about power and money, and who has it. This is a grown up game of “King of the hill”. And the stakes are very, very high.

  6. I just read this amazing comment “Overall there’s too much pointless bluster and sniping in climate science. I wish there was a volume control. Kids, can we just all “get along””

    I now need a new keyboard after having spat my coffee all over it. Has being “down under” made Anthony more laid back?

    After the tone of the posts for many years, the abuse of mainstream climate scientists, one’s jaw is on the floor and coffee on the computer. So McIntyre, Mann and Jones should all get along !!

    If one wanted to get along ideas on both sides need to be tested and debated.

    And if you want to make a start getting along try presenting the Watts tour to CSIRO and BoM instead of pot shotting them from a safe distance at very opportunity.

  7. I suppose it is ironic that he stifles debate and his debate got stifled, but that isn’t the way. Mr. Goodnight, put your big girl panties on and suck it up. What did they do to you over there, call you mean names?

  8. I hope Tamino didn’t make the complaint hi’self? <– That's about how much I respect the dude, but he does have the good and proper right to give me reason for not liking him.

    'Kids, can we just all “get along”?"'

    Nope!

    It's very simple really. When ever you have two or more sides, the only ones that do get along are on each others side, mostly. The different sides never get along, for some god forsaken reason. :p

  9. A quote that coincidentally appeared on my “Quote of the Day” gadget today leads us to an aspect of the human condition that is applicable here.

    “The very purpose of existence is to reconcile the glowing opinion we have of ourselves with the appalling things that other people think about us.”
    – Quentin Crisp

    Our destiny is to defend ourselves and our opinions, so while it is admirable to “get along” we are doomed never to agree. It seems utterly amazing that humanity has accomplished as much as it is when it is our fate to be in disagreement. How did we ever form the first government? How does a bridge ever get built? How did we get to the moon? Somehow we have acheived these things despite our fundamental underpinnings to hold onto our own world view. Looking back at what humanity has accomplished means “this too shall pass” and we will survive the fundamental disagreements over AGW.

  10. P.S. If I can civilly discuss the possibility of the worthiness of evolutionary theory to explain the origin of species with people in the Church, I attend, then climate science should be able to be discussed civilly also. BTW, some people in my Church think I am rather strange, but they love me anyways :)

  11. We can disagree without being disagreeable. It has been my experience that when discussing this particular subject, I remain calm and present my points, and the pro-CAGW person flies off the handle in a childish emotional display. I welcome a calm discussion, but have rarely found one. I have to admit that I am amused by the “peacock” display, as it is beautiful, but sorely lacks substance. The most shocking thing to most CAGW advocates is how “green” I am, as though the two have to be mutually exclusive. Funny that they seem to have a wrong headed notion of how skeptics really are. I suppose it makes it easier for them to hate us. Like a glacier that slowly and inexorably advances, so it is with the skeptic movement.

  12. Just wanted to add that it would have been really funny if the volume knob at the top went to “11”.

  13. DesertYote says:
    June 22, 2010 at 3:12 pm
    P.S. If I can civilly discuss the possibility of the worthiness of evolutionary theory to explain the origin of species with people in the Church, I attend, then climate science should be able to be discussed civilly also. BTW, some people in my Church think I am rather strange, but they love me anyways :)

    Well perhaps you would like to condemn the paper by the, “computer maintenance man” after you do that, and we all agree it is way beyond the pall, then your doubtless fascinating off topic and diversionary discussion of evolutionary theory may make some sense.

  14. As the one who made the complaint of libel against “tamino”, I’d like to remind everyone that there are a couple of limits to speech under our system of laws that even I know of. One is typified by yelling fire in a crowded theater, and can be criminal. Another is defamatory speech such as libel and slander, and it is a civil violation. It’s also against most Terms of Service on the net.

    I recognized Anna Haynes from your original post even without the town, state or any names listed. Many of us who are not AGW believers in the Sierra foothills have had the occasion to meet Ms. Haynes under less than pleasant circumstances, including one SurfaceStations associate of yours, and so I eventually wrote a comment detailing my own first confrontation with Ms. Haynes, after she took credit.

    I had no expectation of being allowed to post on “tamino’s” blog. I also had no expectations of being treated fairly, life isn’t always fair and that’s especially true in the blogosphere. I did have expectations that I would not be libeled, and never asked WordPress to have the thread deleted in its entirety, but what they saw in my complaint moved them to, in essence, do just that.

    I wanted “Tamino’s” specific libels removed and the posts I made in my defense approved along with a couple of other recreational impossibilities but as far as I can tell, none of my requests were honored.

    Unfortunately, I think the heat of the arguments will remain high for some time to come. I run into fewer and fewer who take exception to principled scoffers, but the worst of the rhetoric has yet to subside.

    REPLY: Thanks for the explanation. The heated rhetoric is indeed sometimes off the scale there. – Anthony

  15. Nine months ago I was hoping that all this would end in ridicule and not in anger, but the last thing Peter Bocking told me was that too many have died already. I no longer think we are all just going to get along. This was way too big and bold and destructive. Humans don’t just acquiesce to such as that.
    ==============================

  16. like almost everything today the ‘climate’ debate movement is packaged and sold as ideology. which is a clever way to get people to really commit to something.

    and most people hate to have their ideological beliefs questioned…they prefer security to freedom, certainty to…well,… freedom. yes i said it, most people are deathly afraid of freedom and responsibility.

    oh, and ideology absolutely trumps reality.

  17. “David Ball says:
    June 22, 2010 at 3:22 pm
    We can disagree without being disagreeable. It has been my experience that when discussing this particular subject, I remain calm and present my points, and the pro-CAGW person flies off the handle in a childish emotional display.”

    I made the same observation. The reason can be found in transactional analysis; by not buying the dystopian scenario the AGW person offers you sabotage their game and frustrate them. They play a game that is called “UGMIT: You Got Me Into This” or some variation thereof. Eric Berne has given these games nice acronyms in his book “Games people play”. Look it up. Wait, here’s a list of some of the games:
    (ironically, from the Death Star Of Knowledge wikipedia)

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Transactional_analysis#Some_commonly_found_games

  18. Curiousgeorge says:
    June 22, 2010 at 2:42 pm
    If the issue was about the science of climate, then yes. But it’s not about the climate or science. It’s about power and money, and who has it.

    Suuuuuurre, the climate scientists aren’t really working on the climate, or science. It’s all some elaborate multinational, multidecadal trick to get the tax money that currently goes to the military …

    Meanwhile, real skeptics will be curious to see the data on global warming as it comes in this decade:

    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/?report=global

  19. That’s the price he pays from being under wordpress.com. He doesn’t own his site and has to operate under the rules and administration of wordpress.com.

  20. Yes, Tamino can say what he wants. And if it is libel, then he is liable.
    ===================

  21. Alan Simpson
    June 22, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    Looks like I offended an anti-theist.

    BTW, Its called allegory, If you can not understand it, maybe you should not post. You obviously do not have enough imagination to contribute to any discussion.

  22. “Kids, can we just all “get along”?”

    Upon further thought:

    Yeh, we could, if it weren’t for the attempt to dismantle the entire socio-economic structure of the free world. While I despise censorship, it isn’t anything the alarmist group hasn’t been engaged in to begin with. Heck, the black list is a veiled attempt at censorship. And that is just one example, today. They also circumvent laws when it suits them, destroy peoples jobs, when it suits them, jeez, Anthony, how long did it take them before they even recognized you as a person? All of this anger could have been and should have been prevented. All they had to do, was engage people such as yourself and Steve Mc. and the rest as people with legitimate questions and it would have, in large part, been avoided. The blacklist today shows they still regard even the brightest of skeptics as intellectually inferior to the alarmist crowd, where I’d regard the regular poster here somewhere above the typical alarmist scientist.(I’m fairly familiar with the WAIS so I know a bit about recognizing intelligence, my appeal to authority. :-) ) While I and many here endeavor to take the high road, I understand when someone has reached the end of ones sense of fair play. Mainly because we’ve never had the benefit of fair play.

  23. @ Anu says:
    June 22, 2010 at 4:07 pm

    Apparently you never played “King of the hill” as a child. Let me enlighten you: King of the Hill (also known as “King of the Mountain” or “King of the Castle”), is a game, the object of which is to stay on top of a large hill or pile (or any other designated area) as the “King of the Hill”. Other players attempt to knock the current King off the pile and take their place, thus becoming the new King of the Hill.

    The way the “king” can be removed from the hill depends largely on the rules determined by the players before the game starts. Ordinarily pushing is the most common way of removing the king from the hill, but there are significantly rougher variations where punching or kicking is allowed. The name of the game has become a common metaphor for any sort of competitive zero-sum game or social activity in which a single winner is chosen from among multiple competitors, and a hierarchy is devised by the heights the competitors achieve on the hill, and where winning can only be achieved at the cost of displacing the previous winner.

    Scientists are not part of the game. They are merely spectators, as are those of us who cheer and boo on blogs such as this.

    There is no elaborate multinational, multidecadal trick. No conspiracy, international or otherwise. Only the never-ending game that has been going on for centuries.

  24. Not sure about “getting along” but I’m with Anthony and others on being polite. Its much better to be clever and polite and show intellectual honesty (cheers ctm). This attitude will eventually sway public opinion more convincingly than the politically inspired, emotional and often plain dishonest pieces members of The Team and their supporters often write.

    We should also consider poking fun when the occasion arises an excellent sport.

  25. Freedom of speech doesn’t cover everything. Example: you can’t yell fire in a crowded theatre, libel and slander are not protected under freedom of speech, andthere are words you cannot say in the mainstream media.

    Libel and slander are relative.

    WordPress has the right to govern their blogs in any way they want.

    …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………

    Ok, so having said all that I agree with Anthony that there should be civility in blogging.

  26. I think I will remind everyone there was the big issue over The Great Global Warming Swindle at the UK Ofcom. So the battle over words isn’t a new thing in global warming. There’s trillions of dollars involved in global warming and also people’s freedoms. So I can’t see how these things can be avoided.

    …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………..

    I think this post is about Anthony wanting his blog to be a cut above. And I will follow his lead.

  27. Curiousgeorge says:
    June 22, 2010 at 5:00 pm
    “……There is no elaborate multinational, multidecadal trick. No conspiracy, international or otherwise. Only the never-ending game that has been going on for centuries.”

    So, Petrobras(one that George Soros is invested in) getting a $2 billion loan guarantee for off-shore drilling from the U.S. right after his moratorium on U.S. off-shore drilling is happenstance? George, you’re right more often than not on this page, but on this occasion, I’ve got a bridge in Brooklyn that I’d sell you if you can scrape up the money. Yes, it’s a game that’s been played since the dawn of time, but let’s not pretend people don’t conspire to win the game. I know I did.

  28. “Gentlemen of France, perhaps you would care to fire first?”……do you mean that kind of courtesy or volume?

  29. Onto more important matters, I didn’t realize Anthony was so young for being so accomplished. Who’da thunk it. You do tireless work my friend. I work 26 hour days myself and you tire me out when I think of this blog and your projects and your speeches and your travel. Bless you and your work. It keeps me sane when I travel to California and listen to the ditto heads. How you can live at ground zero for stupidity is beyond my comprehension.

  30. @ James Sexton says:
    June 22, 2010 at 5:46 pm

    Thank you for the compliment :) .
    I was wondering if anyone would pick up on the hierarchical nature of the game, and how temporary alliances are incorporated into the play. Good catch. Most folks think of it as a very simplistic game, when in fact it is probably the most complex game ever devised, with multiple levels of subtlety.

  31. Couldn’t quite figure out what was going on until I read Goodnight’s comment. Anna Haynes. Hand maiden of the Dark Side. Say no more. I believe without a doubt that he had an unpleasant confrontation with her.

    Familiar with Harry Potter? This is Dolores Umbridge. I’m sure Tamino is just soo happy to have her on his side.

  32. I find it difficult to “get along” with people who are trying to hold a gun to my head and rob me of my freedom and hard earned wealth. I especially find it hard when the people who want to rob me have 100,000 or more times the wealth I have.

    Sorry Anthony, as an abused child, I figured out the hard way never to give in to a bully even if he out weighed me by a hundred pounds. The leaders of the CAGW crowd are nothing but grown up school yard bullies and to them “compromise” is a weakness to be avoided at all costs. It takes two to have a polite discussion or argument and the CAGW crowd with their threats are not what I would call “polite”

    Greenpeace: “We know who you are. We know where you live. We know where you work. And we be many, but you be few. ”

  33. @ Curiousgeorge says:
    June 22, 2010 at 6:26 pm

    YW! Being slight of build, (at least in my younger years, now my chest has run south to collect the beer I drink) I’ve always endeavored to be the last king of the hill. (It worked sometimes.) I’m fairly adept at seeing the “multiple levels of subtlety” at the many games I play. Sadly, the stakes of this game is so high, I’d rather not play, but I’m compelled, not for my sake, but rather the future.

    Cheers

  34. @Mike M.

    I’m not familiar with those people. I’ve tried to engage them on a few occasions, in different mannerisms, but any legitimate opposing view is censored. Heck, I left a note with them(Tamino’s site) stating support against censorship(I noted I disagreed often with them and that I was a skeptic) but I was appalled at the censorship and I would always support their right to expression of their opinion. Hours later, it still wasn’t posted. I haven’t bothered to check back to see if it is or not. They only hate their censorship, us……….?

  35. “Kids, can we just all “get along”?”

    But they will not let us join their “Gang” Anthony!

  36. Science (and hence “discussion”) left the debate even before Gore proclaimed it settled and the majority of climate scientists have acted like children for decades. They will take their attitudes and improvisations to the grave; hopefully a new generation of realistic scientists will fill the void but I’m not optimistic.

  37. Let the warmists throw their metaphorical stones. That’s their way, not ours. this blog has always been a polite, almost genteel environment that is a pleasure to visit. Can’t say the same for(un)realclimate or others of that ilk. Let’s keep it that way here, remembering that there’s other places for bigger rough and tumble games.

  38. Curiousgeorge says:
    June 22, 2010 at 5:00 pm

    Yes, I realize there have been people of ambition for many millennia:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lugal-anne-mundu

    First Emperor in history, ca. 25th century BC
    And way before city-states, there were people who united/conquered villages and towns along the way to building the first cities.

    But sometimes a cigar is just a cigar, and sometimes scientists are just doing science.

    “What to do about a warming planet” is a separate problem from “are CO2 emissions causing the planet to warm, and by how much ?”
    You would be wise to not ignore the climate data completely in the next decade – regardless of rhetoric, most people who are even aware of the issue will be persuaded, or not, by this data. This reality will be the foundation for any radical change in energy sources later this century – or not.

    And yes, whatever happens, people will be trying to take advantage of the outcome – as always.

  39. David Ball says:
    June 22, 2010 at 3:22 pm

    We can disagree without being disagreeable. It has been my experience that when discussing this particular subject, I remain calm and present my points, and the pro-CAGW person flies off the handle in a childish emotional display. I welcome a calm discussion, but have rarely found one.

    Keep trying! Eventually the CAGW folks will settle down to just AGW folks and will be able to discuss instead of shout down.

    I hope my fantasy of true scientific discourse gradually replacing the current acrimonious debate (debate? I’m being generous) can come to pass.

  40. “Overall there’s too much pointless bluster and sniping in climate science. I wish there was a volume control. Kids, can we just all “get along”

    Not till hell (or the Northern Hemisphere) freezes over!

    If the CAGW hypothesis were a genuine scientific debate, then there would be a chance of some sensible discourse. However, this is about ego, politics and money and the true believers in CAGW don’t want to see the truth about the cargo cult science which has promulgated this myth. They need to observe and wonder about the complexity and power of nature, rather than letting their ego’s seduce them into thinking they can do single thing to change our climate.

    “Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall”

  41. RockyRoad says:
    June 22, 2010 at 9:07 pm

    “Science (and hence “discussion”) left the debate even before Gore proclaimed it settled and the majority of climate scientists have acted like children for decades. They will take their attitudes and improvisations to the grave; hopefully a new generation of realistic scientists will fill the void but I’m not optimistic.”

    That is why indoctrination in the schools is such a worry. Otherwise we could rely on Max Planck’s observation:
    “A new scientific truth does not triumph by convincing its opponents and making them see the light, but rather because its opponents eventually die, and a new generation grows up that is familiar with it.”

  42. Excerpted from: Anu on June 22, 2010 at 9:42 pm

    But sometimes a cigar is just a cigar…

    Insert Bill Clinton reference.

    …and sometimes scientists are just doing science.

    Which is the problem. Scientists should be just doing science all the time. Instead we have certain scientists doing science sometimes, politics sometimes, and advocacy sometimes. This wouldn’t be so big an issue if proper boundaries were recognized. On the job you do science and report the results, after work you can do politics. If you have been hired by a group to give presentations that advocate a position, let it be known when you are speaking as a paid advocate and not as a scientist. Let’s have disclosure, let’s have it be known when they are acting as an unbiased observer, a scientist, and when they are not.

    But what do we currently have? Wonders like James “Death Trains” Hansen, dispensing open advocacy and providing political opinions while thinking he is acting as a scientist, as if “political and environmental advocation” were included in his NASA job description. He is relatively open about his stances, has been show to act on them while on the clock using the resources provided by his employer. Yet he should be allowed to put on his “scientist” mantle and we are to assume therefore he is a mere unbiased dispenser of truth doing just science?

    Sometimes scientists are just doing science. Sometimes there are those doing things other than science who insist they are scientists therefore their non-science things are all based in scientific truths that must be accepted and acted upon as they are truths which of course they are since they, a scientist, said so. And if you deny that their non-science things are scientific truth, you are obviously a science denier.

    And that’s a problem.

  43. When I caught a whiff of the fuss re Tamino, I took a look at his site today for the first time . I was stunned at the invective and name-calling there, particular the number of obvious Tamino supporters accusing Anthony Watts of being a liar and other calumnies. The ill-tempered, strident and nasty rants there made me tiptoe away. It tone of the site reminded me of some of the rabid sycophants who follow George Monbiot and lay down the science and the logic (as they see it) on the London Guardian newspaper’s CIF Green blogs. Rather than making futile attempts to politely engage such bad mannered and bad tempered people, I prefer to not engage with them at all.

  44. As much as we may dislike it, as bad as it may make us feel to acknowledge the reality of the current state of affairs, it does us no good to hide from the truth of our situation.

    This is NOT a simple disagreement, this is NOT a polite dinner table argument.

    This is a war, with the future of our way of life at stake. The other side knows this and is fighting us on this level. Unless we acknowledge the true nature of this contest, we will lose. They will throw *everything* they have at us, they will have no limits, they will show no standards, they will display no decency. We do not have to descend to these depths, but we DO need to be prepared to fight them, since that is what is going to be aimed at all of us who are skeptics.

    And also, because this is War, this is not going to end with some kind of gentlemen’s agreement, or scientific resolution – this is going to end with either one side or the other being completely crushed. We must make sure that it is the warmists who are crushed, and that all of the institutions that they have infested are not only discredited but destroyed.

    Sadly, most of the existing scientific establishment now needs to be torn down to the ground. It will be easier to build new institutions than to revitalize those that have decayed.

  45. DesertYote says:
    June 22, 2010 at 4:43 pm
    Alan Simpson
    June 22, 2010 at 3:33 pm

    Looks like I offended an anti-theist.

    BTW, Its called allegory, If you can not understand it, maybe you should not post. You obviously do not have enough imagination to contribute to any discussion.

    Would you like to move the goalposts again?

    Let’s do this in simple language.

    A computer maintenance man has had, “It’s a miracle!”, a paper published which is little more than a black list of reputable scientists ho disagree with the the computer maintenance man’s world view.

    Do you think this is wrong or OK?

    My religious beliefs or otherwise are nothing to do with your specious and diversionary BS.

    So is OK or not?

  46. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    June 23, 2010 at 6:09 am

    Sometimes there are those doing things other than science who insist they are scientists therefore their non-science things are all based in scientific truths that must be accepted and acted upon as they are truths which of course they are since they, a scientist, said so. And if you deny that their non-science things are scientific truth, you are obviously a science denier.

    Just use the Internet to find out who is paying these people, and what their affiliations are:

    http://www.exxonsecrets.org/html/personfactsheet.php?id=17

    Dr. Lindzen, charged oil and gas interests $2,500/day for “consulting” services, including testifying before Congress. Wrote speeches for OPEC, openly associated with “pro-business, pro-fossil-fuel” Think Tanks like Cato Institute, George C. Marshall Institute, Heartland Institute.

    http://www.exxonsecrets.org/html/personfactsheet.php?id=19

    Dr. Spencer also works for the George C. Marshall Institute, Heartland Institute, and because of his two-front war against accepted science (he’s an advocate for Intelligent Design as well, although he has no background in biology), the Interfaith Stewardship Alliance.

    etc… it’s not rocket science.

    And don’t forget the advocate books which helpfully inform the reader that the author is an expert scientist:

    In Climate Confusion, distinguished climatologist Dr. Roy Spencer observes that our obsession with global warming has only clouded the issue. Forsaking blindingly technical statistics and doomsday scenarios, Dr. Spencer explains in simple terms how the climate system really works, why man’s role in global warming is more myth than science, and how the global warming hype has corrupted Washington and the scientific community.

    Finally, a “distinguished climatologist” who explains how the climate system “really works”. Unlike Dr. Hansen:

    Climatologist Hansen, director of the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies and an internationally renowned global-warming expert, became even more famous when he was censored by the Bush administration. After decades of studying the role fossil fuels play in global warming and witnessing the federal government’s failure to take action to lower carbon emissions, he felt compelled to write his first book out of concern about the potentially catastrophic future facing his grandchildren. Hansen condemns governmental “greenwashing” and the undue influence of more than 2,300 energy lobbyists, and attempts to close the gap “between public perception and scientific reality” by lucidly explaining the dynamics of global warming, its acceleration, and how a slight rise in temperature can lead to disastrous consequences.
    Clearly trying to use his scientific “credentials” to convince the reader he knows what he is talking about – shameful advocacy.

  47. Q: What do you get when you mix psychological projection with ad hominem polemics?

    A: See Anu’s post above.

  48. “Can’t we all just get along?”

    Well no, actually. The alarmists liken me to Holocaust deniers and want me imprisoned for thinking they are wrong. They have actively worked to raise my taxes and destroy my childrens ability to get jobs based on junk science. They are involved in creating a totalitarian government and destroying my freedoms.

    So no, we can’t get along until they are destroyed or in prison.

  49. WoodNfish’s post perfectly underlines the difficulty in having a reasoned debate on the issue. Lacking the tools to understand the science, many of us turn to rigid ideological assertions and imagined victimization at the hands of “others.”

    “So no, we can’t get along until they are destroyed or in prison.”

    Then we can have our “lebensraum”, right WoodNfish? It’s strange you are willing to adopt authoritarian measures in order to avert totalitarianism.

  50. woodNfish says:
    June 23, 2010 at 12:16 pm

    …destroying my freedoms.

    You’re still free to buy and drive a Hummer.
    But not a new one – the Market took away that freedom. I don’t see people organizing websites complaining about when the Market quadruples their oil prices.
    As for your children’s ability to get jobs – you might want to look at the practitioners of “junk finance” a little more closely.

    But in the meantime, keep complaining that you don’t like the results of climate science – that sounds productive. Yeah, the Climate Scientists are trying to ruin your children’s future. Try not to think of all the taxes that went into bailing out Wall St., or the auto industry that bet the farm on gas guzzling SUV’s, or the Military trying to secure the Middle East’s oil and gas fields with endless occupations.

    Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain – look, over there:
    the Climate Scientists are trying to ruin your life.

  51. The problem is that, thanks to scientists latching onto a political agenda, the improbable hypothesis of CO2-driven ‘global warming’ has become an established fact for much of the public, and practically all of the media and politicians.

    A radio station hereabouts (WRKO, Boston) is running a series of PSAs (public-service announcements, in radio talk) asking, “What is the one thing you could do for the environment today?” (paraphrase). Today’s ‘one thing’ answer was to drive your car less, because it emits lots of pollutants, including “tons of CO2.” The assumption, of course, which the EPA cheerfully agrees with, is that CO2 is a ‘pollutant’, something bad for the environment.

    Even those who joke about the cold (“Sure could use some global warming around here”) implicitly accept the ‘conventional wisdom’ that mankind is causing global warming by burning fossil fuels.

    Despite Climategate and the IPCC scandals, the warmists have already succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. They have managed to demonize oil and coal, and to push the western polities toward a program of voluntary self-agnegation, renouncing economic growth and the continued progress of civilization.

    The economic recession has forced many governments to slow these efforts, and the growing ‘skeptical’ movement has turned a few heads, but we are faced with a cultural tide that cannot easily be stopped. “Green is good,” “carbon is bad,” are the accepted mantras; if you disagree, you are some kind of iconoclast, a weirdo.

    When I add the signature slogan to my emails, “CO2 is good for plants, good for the Earth, and good for you,” I have people exclaiming in horror, “How can you say such a thing? We are destroying the Earth, and you are making light of it!”

    I politely refer them to WUWT and Icecap and JoNova, and others, and say, “Do some reading.” But that’s a drop in the bucket. We are dealing with a mythos that is held with a kind of religious fervor. It’s going to take a Martin Luther to nail a proclamation for Climate Realism and Human Progress to the Capital door to turn this around.

    /Mr Lynn

  52. Excerpt from: Anu on June 23, 2010 at 10:30 am

    Just use the Internet to find out who is paying these people, and what their affiliations are:

    Good idea.

    WHOIS info for exxonsecrets.org, your source of “dirt” against Lindzen and Spencer:

    Registrant Name:Benjamin Kite
    Registrant Organization:Greenpeace USA
    Registrant Street1:702 H Street NW
    Registrant Street2:Suite 300
    Registrant Street3:
    Registrant City:Washington
    Registrant State/Province:DC
    Registrant Postal Code:20001
    Registrant Country:US
    Registrant Phone:+1.2024621177
    Registrant Phone Ext.:
    Registrant FAX:
    Registrant FAX Ext.:
    Registrant Email:bkite@greenpeace.org

    So exxonsecrets.org is actually Greenpeace, which is heavily invested in seeing CO2 regulated, resorts regularly (if not absolutely always) to alarmism for fundraising purposes and to extract political concessions, and does yeoman’s work for their part in the ongoing smearing of “climate deniers” as being bought and paid for by Big Oil and any other elements of Big Business it can.

    And surprise, exxonsecrets.org has some stuff considered suitable by alarmists for smearing Lindzen and Spencer! Amazing!

  53. I think the answer is “Yes”.

    Some helpful ways:

    (1) Clearly demarcate the science from public policy. Cap-and-trade or libertarianism or conservatism has little or nothing to do with the science. Nature does not care if you are a Socialist or a Christian – nor can the science be decided by a show of hands. Cap-and-trade can be democratically approved or not, the science not so.

    So a discussion on cap-and-trade should be preceded by a conditional “Assuming the science behind global warming is correct ….” . Perhaps a tag at the top of a thread defining which it is.

    (2) It is well known that Albert Einstein dissented from the 1930s theory behind Quantum Mechanics. As a great scientist, his approach was to devise tests for the theory. His opponents admitted the tests to be both appropriate and tough – but the theory passed them to the satisfaction of the supporters. Einstein was not that happy, but that is not the point.

    Why should not skeptics devise a series of strict tests for AGW – taking in paleoclimatology, radiation physics, sea ice extent/ volume, sea level rising and/ or ocean acidification. It means that people (on both sides) have to be willing change their minds if the data says such a thing. Surely, one of the energy companies would gladly fund the gathering of the requisite data, and the work of selected scientists to oversee the collection and analysis?

  54. From: Anu on June 23, 2010 at 4:36 pm

    You’re still free to buy and drive a Hummer.
    But not a new one – the Market took away that freedom. (…)

    Please, Wikipedia is more accurate about that than you. GM ran into trouble due to its overwhelming debt, which included substantial obligations to its unions that many other automakers didn’t have. The US government, as in the Obama administration, basically took them over and forced the bankruptcy. As Wikipedia notes, there were offers before the bankruptcy to buy Hummer that GM had declined. During the restructuring, a Chinese company was to buy Hummer, until the Chinese government killed the deal. Since then there was/is interest in buying Hummer, but GM is still going ahead with getting rid of Hummer.

    So between two governments and GM, Hummer is getting killed off. There’s still a market there for new Hummers, the market would let Hummer live. But for many eco-socialists the Hummer is the prime example of (American) excessive consumption and planet-destroying CO2 emissions, thus Hummer’s greater value lies in the elimination of the brand to remove any public association with it to make the greenies happy.

    (…) I don’t see people organizing websites complaining about when the Market quadruples their oil prices.

    Thus it is obvious you weren’t aware of or knew much about the internet back during $4/gal gasoline and the soaring heating prices around the end of Bush’s second term, when it was said crude oil could top $200 a barrel. After all, you completely missed those sites, therefore…

    As for your children’s ability to get jobs – you might want to look at the practitioners of “junk finance” a little more closely.

    Chris Dodd, Barney Frank, and other liberal co-conspirators, the fiscal geniuses who brought about the sub-prime mortgage mess by insisting on relaxed lending rules? Yeah, we’re keeping a closer watch on them.

    Try not to think of all the taxes that went into bailing out Wall St…

    Said bailout engineered by Timothy Geitner, then head of the NY Fed, involving taxes yet to be paid as that was deficit spending.

    …or the auto industry that bet the farm on gas guzzling SUV’s…

    Ford saw what had happened to the other two and turned around quickly without accepting government bailout money, despite having sold SUV’s. GM could have turned themselves around, if they would have been allowed to have a real bankruptcy and get out of their onerous union obligations that were way above industry standards. Chrysler, on the other hand, pushed minivans and Dodge trucks, and after the failed merger with (actually a take-over by) Mercedes-Benz it was rather weakened. They also pulled some major non-SUV bonehead moves, like offering discounts and rebates on the PT Cruisers from the first day they went on sale, even though they were so exceedingly popular Chrysler could easily have garnered full profits from Day One, even jacked the price up.

    …or the Military trying to secure the Middle East’s oil and gas fields with endless occupations.

    True, it’s not like the US really even uses the oil from around there. Just a few drops, easily replaced more locally. Middle East crude gets sold around that side of the world. Better to just pull the troops out, let the area settle out as it will… And avoid being downwind of the Middle East so one doesn’t get bothered by the radioactive fallout.

    BTW, I take it you are not aware that neither Iraq nor Afghanistan is an occupation, our troops will leave if their individual governments want them to leave.

    Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain – look, over there:
    the Climate Scientists are trying to ruin your life.

    ‘Pay no attention to that man behind the curtain – look, over there:
    the Climate Scientists Denialists are trying to ruin your life.’

    I think the alarmists might want to try a different line, it’s just not working that well.

  55. Eli Rabett says:
    June 23, 2010 at 8:03 pm
    Mr. Lynn, there is an old and true saying of chemists, that the dose makes the poison.

    Well, if you’re talking about CO2, the Navy allows something like 10,000 ppm in submarines with no ill effects on crewmen. And if you’re talking about the hypothesis that atmospheric CO2 drives planetary temperature to any significant degree, where’s the evidence? In real greenhouses (as opposed to the planetary kind conjured up by alarmists) CO2 is driven up to 1,000 ppm, because the plants love it. Geologists have shown that Earth’s CO2 levels were many times higher than today, even during ice ages.

    In point of fact, the old Arrhenius hypothesis was resurrected by the alarmists for ulterior motives, to justify an attack on capitalism and Western civilization. The modest rise in atmospheric CO2 happened to coincide with a cyclical warming spell in the ’80s and ’90s, which lent credence to the utterly contrived but fearful Hockey Stick. No matter that the hypothesis flew in the face of prehistory and planetary physics; it had the right emotional appeal (“Saving the Planet”) and the right appeal to leftist academics and politicians (“Cap and Trade,” “Global Governance,” etc.).

    Now the realists among us, and those who esteem the values of freedom and progress (the real solution to the ills of the Third World, not more ‘governance’) are faced with turning around this neo-Luddite behemoth, which has gotten so ensconced in popular culture that the meaningless “carbon footprint” has become part of the language.

    CO2 is not a poison to either individuals or the planet at any dose we are capable of creating. But a little more would clearly be a boon to agriculture, and to forests, and thus to all of us. It would be a welcome by-product of burning more coal and oil, and that of course will provide the world with more cheap energy, the key to a better life for everyone.

    /Mr Lynn

  56. toby says:
    June 24, 2010 at 1:36 am
    . . . a discussion on cap-and-trade should be preceded by a conditional “Assuming the science behind global warming is correct ….” . Perhaps a tag at the top of a thread defining which it is.

    Even more important, let’s start a movement to get reporters and media people and politicians (especially Senators and Representatives engaged in making laws that promise to hamstring us with taxes and regulations owing to ‘climate change’)—let’s insist that all of them preface any news story or press release or legislative hearing with that caveat: “Assuming that the science behind global warming is correct. . .” Because it isn’t, and once enough people are reminded that it’s in question, they will look more closely, and then the scales will fall from their eyes.

    /Mr Lynn

  57. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    June 23, 2010 at 10:56 pm

    …their part in the ongoing smearing of “climate deniers” as being bought and paid for by Big Oil and any other elements of Big Business it can.

    So, you think that taking money from fossil fuel companies is a bad thing ? Where’s your sense of entrepreneurship ? Why is it a “smear” to report facts ? Feeling guilty as to motivations, are you ?

    And if you think my quick citation of exxonsecrets.org is not authoritative enough as to Dr. Lindzen’s background, how about PBS ? Do you trust any sites that have articles such as “The Doubters of Global Warming” ?

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/hotpolitics/reports/skeptics.html

    How about SourceWatch ? Do you have a long, long list of websites which are nothing but lies and smears that you won’t “believe” because you don’t like their facts ?

    http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Richard_S._Lindzen

    http://www.logicalscience.com/skeptics/Lindzen.htm

    The guy likes to give speeches, and he has expenses – what’s so hard to believe about accepting speaking and consulting fees ?

    And do you deny that the Cato Institute, George C. Marshall Institute, and Heartland Institute are “pro-business” ? Do you deny that the Marshall Institute is involved in trying to influence climate change policy ?

    http://www.marshall.org/category.php?id=12

    Do you deny Dr. Spencer is on the Board of Directors of the Marshall Institute ?

    http://www.marshall.org/board.php

    “Proving” that ExxonSecrets is a Greenpeace project doesn’t help your argument one bit: and BTW, you didn’t need to Whois the domain name:
    http://exxonsecrets.org is redirected to:

    http://www.greenpeace.org/usa/campaigns/global-warming-and-energy/exxon-secrets

    They are pretty clear about who built the site – but you’re free to get the same facts somewhere else more to your taste.

  58. kadaka (KD Knoebel) says:
    June 24, 2010 at 1:39 am

    … But for many eco-socialists the Hummer is the prime example of (American) excessive consumption and planet-destroying CO2 emissions, thus Hummer’s greater value lies in the elimination of the brand to remove any public association with it to make the greenies happy.
    I see.
    And what’s your hand-waving theory explaining Ford killing the Excursion ? Did that have nothing to do with losing money, also ?

    Thus it is obvious you weren’t aware of or knew much about the internet back during $4/gal gasoline and the soaring heating prices around the end of Bush’s second term, when it was said crude oil could top $200 a barrel. After all, you completely missed those sites, therefore…
    There are plenty of sites giving prices, e.g.:

    http://money.cnn.com/data/commodities/

    Show me the sites, like WUWT, where hundreds of people were blogging about how the Free Market was taking away our freedoms and ruining our children’s future.

    Chris Dodd …
    I guess nobody on your TV told you about the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act of 1999, also known as “the Financial Services Modernization Act” – getting rid of those nasty regulations which were put into place after the last financial meltdown caused by Wall St. geniuses. Look into it:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gramm-Leach-Bliley_Act

    You might also want to look into the Bush gutting of the SEC, the Goldman Sachs criminal investigation, and how Enron got to choose the head of FERC while Bush was President.

    Said bailout …
    Forgetting the $700 billion bailout of October 3, 2008, are we ?

    Ford …
    Ford was very lucky to have crashed in 2006, two years before Wall St. excesses brought the American economy to its knees:

    http://www.autoblog.com/2007/01/25/ford-burns-12-7-billion-in-2006/

    http://online.wsj.com/article/SB124056802228652509.html

    They got rid of Bill Ford as CEO, brought in an aerospace executive, and mortgaged the farm to raise $23.5 billion of private debt for a massive restructuring.

    True, it’s not like the US really even uses the oil from around there…
    Oil is fungible – the US imports 12 million barrels a day, and the price is set in a global market.

    BTW, I take it you are not aware that neither Iraq nor Afghanistan is an occupation, our troops will leave if their individual governments want them to leave.
    Suuuuruue, and Okinawa still welcomes American GI’s 65 years after WWII, protecting them from Communism…

    http://www.boston.com/news/world/asia/articles/2010/05/22/japan_leader_apologizes_over_us_base_on_okinawa/

  59. Anu says:

    “So, you think that taking money from fossil fuel companies is a bad thing? ”

    Absolutely — as any honest person would answer. Couching theft in language that attempts to excuse it does not make the theft legitimate, because the company’s owners — its shareholders — have been deprived of their property based on rabble-rousers telling others it’s OK because the company is evil, and therefore deserves to be targeted for official theft. Socialism and communism are predicated on theft — without theft they could not exist.

    Fair taxation is assessing the same percentage tax on all companies across the board. But fossil fuel companies are demonized for producing what society wants and must have. Demonizing them makes it easy to justify theft in the minds of apologists for official expropriation. From there it is only one more step to Hugo Chavez’ policies.

    If I were Anu’s neighbor I would make certain to lock my garage door at night.

  60. The damage fund taken from BP (or rather strongly suggested to donate) and given to those harmed by their alleged mismanagement is a worthwhile debate. If it turns out that serious mismanagement led to the disaster, (IE it wasn’t an accident, it was civilly and/or criminally negligent actions – think lack of “due diligence”) than they should pay for the damage. If that means that stock holders will be deprived of cash, so be it. The stock market is a risky venture.

    Re: the donated money. It is possible that BP engaged in some preventative damage control by donating the money. I wonder what they are trying to prevent down the road.

    On the other hand, taking money from a company (which apparently is not the case here) before they have been found guilty of negligence would be a serious sign of tyranny.

  61. Smokey says:
    June 24, 2010 at 10:11 am
    Anu says:

    “So, you think that taking money from fossil fuel companies is a bad thing? ”

    We were talking about Dr. Lindzen taking $2,500/day from oil and gas interests for consulting and testimony – but thanks for your rant predicated on a misunderstanding:
    See Anu says: June 23, 2010 at 10:30 am
    I’m sure this never happens in your careful reading of climate-related Comments…

    Socialism and communism are predicated on theft — without theft they could not exist.
    So, stealing the United States from the Native Americans, and stealing Africans to grow cotton on the stolen land – is that “socialism”, or “communism” ?

  62. Anu,

    Please document the payment you’re always referring to. Not someone else’s opinion, but the putative payment, and exactly what it was for. Per diem? Expert testimony? Or for being a shill?

    I’m not doubting you; more like setting you up to defend the individuals and organizations on your side that accept much more from the same interests.

    And I might note that war with the Indians commenced pre-U.S. You will lose this particular argument, just a friendly warning. Have at it if you like.

  63. Re: Anu on June 24, 2010 at 9:34 am

    So much misinformation to counter, so little time…

    So, you think that taking money from fossil fuel companies is a bad thing ?

    I must infer you do, as you find such worthy of mention. We have grown weary of the continual assertions that climate change deniers skeptics must be paid operatives of Big Oil, obviously paid to spread disinformation and thus untrustworthy. Even when disproven, it is still asserted. Any little bit of grant money ever received from an energy company is touted as absolute proof someone is currently acting as an operative of Big Energy. By that standard virtually all of modern medicine is untrustworthy and virtually all practitioners are obviously paid operatives of Big Pharma, even the neighborhood doctor who runs a free clinic and accepts free medicine for distribution to the poor.

    Why is it a “smear” to report facts ?

    The selective reporting of only certain facts and even only certain elements of those facts can indeed be a smear. Have you no knowledge of political campaigning?

    And if you think my quick citation of exxonsecrets.org…

    For which you mean your citation of Greenpeace, which is hardly a neutral party regarding climate issues.

    …is not authoritative enough as to Dr. Lindzen’s background, how about PBS ? Do you trust any sites that have articles such as “The Doubters of Global Warming” ?

    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/hotpolitics/reports/skeptics.html

    Hmm, let’s see… Title of piece is The Doubters of Global Warming. From it we find this quote purportedly from Dr. Lindzen: “There is no compelling evidence that the warming trend we’ve seen will amount to anything close to catastrophe.” So Dr. Lindzen is no doubter of global warming, he admits there has been a warming trend, yet the piece portrays him as a doubter of global warming. Thus the piece itself discredits itself.

    How about SourceWatch ? Do you have a long, long list of websites which are nothing but lies and smears that you won’t “believe” because you don’t like their facts ?

    http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Richard_S._Lindzen

    http://www.logicalscience.com/skeptics/Lindzen.htm

    *yawn*
    At least Logical Science is cute. Their page “A Rundown of the Skeptics and Deniers” is especially so.

    Whatever the situation is, you will almost always have a few dissenters. These are people that are skeptical and actually believe what they are saying. When science and a major industry clash, you will almost always find professional deniers. Deniers behave more like lobbyists than skeptical scientists. Here is a list of the most prominent skeptics and deniers:

    Then their lists (plural) doesn’t even attempt to differentiate the people and groups into those separate categories. Might as well paint them all with the same wide brush, eh?

    Then comes their Lindzen piece, filled with wonderful facts(?) like:

    His article “Global Warming: the Origin and Nature of Alleged Scientific Consensus,” was underwritten by OPEC. 1

    What was their reference, linked at that “1” at the end? A partial reprint of a December 1995 Harper’s Magazine article that said so, without a source. The original is behind a paywall, however the zoomed-in grainy images of the pages don’t reveal anything that could appear to be a reference list. The author was Ross Gelbspan.

    “Ross Gelbspan is an American writer and activist.”
    “He is a regular contributor on DeSmogBlog.”

    So a regular contributor of DeSmogBlog wrote an article back in 1995 making the OPEC claim against Lindzen, for which there appears to be no referenced proof of this claim. This gets incorporated into the Logical Science piece as a conflict of interest of Lindzen, said site really doing it’s best to barely duck a lawsuit while strongly implying Lindzen is a paid Denier.

    Gee, with absolute referenced proven facts like that, what’s not to like about that source?

    And do you deny that the Cato Institute, George C. Marshall Institute, and Heartland Institute are “pro-business” ?

    What’s to deny? They are pro-freedom, want minimal governmental interference. The Cato Institute in particular has long been known as a libertarian think-tank. And in a free society, capitalism is the business model, and if you’re for capitalism you are pro-business. You got something against freedom?

    “Proving” that ExxonSecrets is a Greenpeace project doesn’t help your argument one bit…

    Your awareness of the issues involved and the public perception thereof is hereby noted.
    ;-)

  64. From: Anu on June 24, 2010 at 10:10 am

    I see.
    And what’s your hand-waving theory explaining Ford killing the Excursion ? Did that have nothing to do with losing money, also ?

    Can’t refute the Hummer stuff so you have to change over to a different company and vehicle, eh?

    Ford needed to free up capacity at the Louisville plant that produces the Super Duty pickup trucks. A more fuel efficient, extended-length Expedition, named the Expedition EL (Max in Canada and Mexico), has replaced the Excursion in the company’s lineup for the 2007 model year.

    So says the authoritative Wikipedia. A cost-saving maneuver to maximize profits, replacing one model with a different version of another model, which freed up capacity. Nothing special there.

    Show me the sites, like WUWT, where hundreds of people were blogging about how the Free Market was taking away our freedoms and ruining our children’s future.

    You mean a true Free Market, without unneeded and unwarranted government interference and regulation, that naturally creates jobs and wealth? Nah, you wouldn’t find that on sites like WUWT. Daily Kos and their ilk are the ones to look at.

    I guess nobody on your TV…

    Yeah, like I really trust TV for accurate un-spun news these days. Local news, and that’s about it.

    …told you about the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act of 1999, also known as “the Financial Services Modernization Act” – getting rid of those nasty regulations which were put into place after the last financial meltdown caused by Wall St. geniuses. Look into it:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gramm-Leach-Bliley_Act

    Okay…

    The House passed its version of the Financial Services Act of 1999 on 1 July 1999 by a bipartisan vote of 343-86 (|Republicans 205–16; Democrats 138–69; Independent 0–1),[3] [4] [5] two months after the Senate had already passed its version of the bill on May 6th by a much-narrower 54–44 vote along basically-partisan lines (53 Republicans and one Democrat in favor; 44 Democrats opposed).[6] [7] [8] [9][10]

    When the two chambers could not agree on a joint version of the bill, the House voted on July 30th by a vote of 241-132 (R 58-131; D 182-1; Ind. 1–0) to instruct its negotiators to work for a law which ensured that consumers enjoyed medical and financial privacy as well as “robust competition and equal and non-discriminatory access to financial services and economic opportunities in their communities” (i.e., protection against exclusionary redlining).[11]

    The bill then moved to a joint conference committee to work out the differences between the Senate and House versions. Democrats agreed to support the bill after Republicans agreed to strengthen provisions of the anti-redlining Community Reinvestment Act and address certain privacy concerns; the conference committee then finished its work by the beginning of November.[8] [12] On November 4th, the final bill resolving the differences was passed by the Senate 90-8,[13] [14] and by the House 362-57.[15] [16] This legislation was signed into law by Democratic President Bill Clinton on November 12, 1999.[17]

    A lot of Democrats, a clear majority, helped pass that bill, along with the Republicans, and a Democrat President signed it. A lot of politicians thought it was a good idea.

    I came, I looked. Was there anything particularly noteworthy there?

    You might also want to look into the Bush gutting of the SEC…

    Sarbanes–Oxley Act of 2002:

    The Sarbanes–Oxley Act of 2002 (Pub.L. 107-204, 116 Stat. 745, enacted July 30, 2002), also known as the ‘Public Company Accounting Reform and Investor Protection Act’ (in the Senate) and ‘Corporate and Auditing Accountability and Responsibility Act’ (in the House) and commonly called Sarbanes–Oxley, Sarbox or SOX, is a United States federal law enacted on July 30, 2002, which set new or enhanced standards for all U.S. public company boards, management and public accounting firms. It is named after sponsors U.S. Senator Paul Sarbanes (D-MD) and U.S. Representative Michael G. Oxley (R-OH).

    The bill was enacted as a reaction to a number of major corporate and accounting scandals including those affecting Enron, Tyco International, Adelphia, Peregrine Systems and WorldCom. These scandals, which cost investors billions of dollars when the share prices of affected companies collapsed, shook public confidence in the nation’s securities markets.

    It does not apply to privately held companies. The act contains 11 titles, or sections, ranging from additional corporate board responsibilities to criminal penalties, and requires the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) to implement rulings on requirements to comply with the new law. Harvey Pitt, the 26th chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), led the SEC in the adoption of dozens of rules to implement the Sarbanes–Oxley Act. It created a new, quasi-public agency, the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board, or PCAOB, charged with overseeing, regulating, inspecting and disciplining accounting firms in their roles as auditors of public companies. The act also covers issues such as auditor independence, corporate governance, internal control assessment, and enhanced financial disclosure.

    The act was approved by the House by a vote of 423–3 and by the Senate 99–0. President George W. Bush signed it into law, stating it included “the most far-reaching reforms of American business practices since the time of Franklin D. Roosevelt.”[1]

    Giving the SEC more authority and duties gutted it?

    …the Goldman Sachs criminal investigation…

    Which one? Goldman Sachs has done a bunch of questionable things over the years.

    Just for the noticing, Robert Rubin “…spent 26 years at Goldman Sachs serving as a member of the Board, and Co-Chairman from 1990-1992.” You know, guy who was the 70th US Secretary of the Treasury, served January 11, 1995 to July 2, 1999 under Democrat President Bill Clinton? Before that was the first Director of the National Economic Council which was formed by Democrat President Bill Clinton, and he served under Democrat President Bill Clinton?

    BTW, about the Gramm–Leach–Bliley Act

    After resigning as Treasury Secretary and while secretly in negotiations to head Citigroup, Robert Rubin helped broker the final deal to pass the bill.[4] He later became one of three CEOs that headed up CitiGroup.

    Very interesting.

    …and how Enron got to choose the head of FERC while Bush was President.

    Now that one is so out of left field you’re going to have to supply some references for it.

    Forgetting the $700 billion bailout of October 3, 2008, are we ?

    Goldman Sachs sure didn’t.

    In June 2009, Goldman Sachs repaid the U.S. Treasury’s TARP investment, with 23% interest (in the form of $318 million in preferred dividend payments and $1.418 billion in warrant redemptions).[34] In December 2009, Goldman announced their top 30 executives will be paid year-end bonuses in restricted stock, with clawback provisions, that must go unsold for five years.[35][36]

    As to the Troubled Asset Relief Program itself:

    Originally expected to cost the U.S. Government $356 billion, the most recent estimates of the cost, as of April 12, 2010, is down to $89 billion, which is 42% less than the taxpayers’ cost of the Savings and loan crisis of the late 1980s.[1]
    (…)
    As of February 9, 2009, $388 billion had been allotted, and $296 billion spent, according to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget.

    As far as government programs go, surprisingly, it’s been a stunning success. Nowhere near $700 billion was spent, or at least not yet…

    One way that TARP money is being spent is to support the “Making Homes Affordable” plan, which was implemented on March 4, 2009, using TARP money by the Department of Treasury. Because “at risk” mortgages are defined as “troubled assets” under TARP, the Treasury has the power to implement the plan. Generally, it provides refinancing for mortgages held by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Privately held mortgages will be eligible for other incentives, including a favorable loan modification for five years.[10]

    Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were big election contributors to Chris Dodd and Barney Frank, who got the lending rules relaxed to the benefit of Fannie and Freddie. Then came the sub-prime mortgage meltdown, now the current Democrat Administration wants to use the “excess” TARP money to help Fannie and Freddie… See a trend?

    Ford was very lucky to have crashed in 2006, two years before Wall St. excesses brought the American economy to its knees:

    Ford was lucky to have seen the way things were going early on, made the tough choices, and were in a position to be able to wisely decide not to accept government help.

    They got rid of Bill Ford as CEO…

    Ford did that? O RLY?

    Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Ford also became President of the company in April 2006, with the retirement of Jim Padilla. Five months later, in September, he stepped down as President and CEO, and naming Alan Mulally as his successor. Bill Ford continues as Executive Chairman, along with an executive operating committee made up of Mulally, Mark Schulz, Lewis Booth, Don Leclair, and Mark Fields.

    Picked his own successor, stepped down, still is in the top management… How do you define “got rid of”?

    Oil is fungible – the US imports 12 million barrels a day, and the price is set in a global market.

    One must also figure in transportation costs. The Middle East is very far away, and Mexico, Canada, even Venezuela are very close. The price of Middle East oil must be rather cheap to make it worthwhile to haul it over to the other side of the world. Plus, one has to consider the classifications of crude oil. Dubai-Oman is a sour crude from the Middle East. It is less desirable than others for refining for the US market due to environmental regulations.

    Look at the official numbers. Annually, in 2009 we imported 3,307.058 million barrels total, of which only 609.366 are from the Persian Gulf, only 18.4%. Most recently available montly figures, for March 2010, 359.216 million barrels total, 57.116 Persian Gulf, 15.9%.

    If all the US wants is independence from Middle Eastern oil, it can be done essentially overnight. We have enough local sellers we can buy from. Heck, we can drill more than enough right here, without even touching our vast oil shale reserves.

    Suuuuruue, and Okinawa still welcomes American GI’s 65 years after WWII, protecting them from Communism…

    Which I shall take as an admission that you have found out neither Iraq nor Afghanistan is an ongoing occupation, since you are so eager to talk about something else (again).
    ;-)

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