Climate Chaos, and hanging out with, like, marmots and wolverines

A conference in Portland

Report by Rod McLaughlin

I attended the “Cascadia Confluence” on April 20th in Portland. The idea is, human beings should organize themselves into “bioregions” instead of nation states. For example, Vancouver, BC, is in the same bioregion as Seattle, WA, though they are in different nations. San Francisco, CA, is in the “Shasta bioregion”, which overlaps with the “Cascadia bioregion”, where you can find Portland, OR.

The speakers and attendees mixed sensible concern about logging, pollution, and so on, with mystical ideas about “ecology” and “the water web”. One of the speakers claimed “people of color” would suffer from “climate change” because of what “we” are doing. What is it about America that produces this self-hating nonsense?

I went to the talk on “Climate Chaos”. Much of the talk consisted of one of the two speakers asking questions like “what is your favorite place in the Willamette watershed?” and “have you ever seen a wolverine?”

The speakers made various claims about the increasing problems which would be caused by “climate change”, without saying why, or from where they got their data.

The speakers did use statistics, but only those which seemed to confirm their hypothesis. Someone mentioned the retreat of the Athabasca glacier in Canada. I’ve visited this glacier, and at the time, was convinced by the global warming hypothesis. Government signs shows how far the glacier has retreated since 1880. What it doesn’t show is where it was before then. Perhaps it was further forward in 1780, and further back in 1280. If there was a medieval warming period, whose temperature was higher than today, and it was worldwide, the argument that we are going through an exceptional warming period, caused by anthropogenic carbon dioxide, falls to the ground.

The speakers used some scientific observations: the ones which supported their alarmist claims.

I asked: “you mentioned the computerized models used by the IPCC. Are you aware of the increasing divergence between the actual measurements of temperature from weather balloons and satellites and the predictions of the IPCC’s computer models over the last 20 years?”, and held up this graph:

clip_image002

One of the speakers answered: “I’m intimately familiar with climate change denial – it’s not really the subject of this panel… it’s not worth wasting time with”. I responded “that doesn’t really answer my question”.

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63 Responses to Climate Chaos, and hanging out with, like, marmots and wolverines

  1. Rhys Jaggar says:

    The correct response was not: ‘that really doesn’t answer my question’, rather ‘By refusing to answer a legitimate question which lies at the fundamental heart of science, i.e. the falsification of hypotheses through scientific measurement, you betray only the fact that it is YOU who is at the heart of climate denial, not those who apply scientific principles to the study of earth’s climate. Will you please engage in scientific discussion or provide categorical evidence that the datasets created using radiosonde balloons and satellites are inaccurate, fraudulent or otherwise unworthy of citation in discussions about global temperature?’…..

  2. Lew Skannen says:

    The problem was you stumbled into a religious cult and mistook it for a rational scientific conference.

  3. bushbunny says:

    This proves religious applications can not be applied to science, it is not interested in alternative scientific data, just their own philosophical world view. And it sounds as credible as the myths they have already tried to drum into us. If you don’t believe in my God and religion, you must believe in the devil. No Absolute in life folks.

  4. NikFromNYC says:

    From the link: “Judy Goldhaft co-founded Planet Drum Foundation and is its current director. She was a member of the 60’s radicals known as the San Francisco Diggers, is a performer and helped start the Frisco Bay Mussel Group, a Bioregional Committee of Correspondence in the 1970′s.”

    A fossil hippie. The Diggers “sought to create a mini-society free of money and capitalism.” The truly creative hippies transformed into Silicon Valley techies. The ones who had bad paranoid trips who lacked an inventive temperament became such radicals. Happily the climate alarm movement has dragged them out from their saboteur positions in government, academia and activist organizations into the bright light of day, as the religiosity of their fanatacism gets the better of them, very much in public, loudly dismissing voices of reason.

  5. SandyInLimousin says:

    Rhys Jaggar
    A short pithy answer is always best, especially if it can raise a chuckle. How about
    “Are you denying the accuracy of this graph?”

  6. Eric Simpson says:

    It sounds as if all this kind of eco-hippie “bioregions” drivel is the same intellectual force that is driving Obama’s Common Core educational agenda. See Master Resource’s article that was just released minutes ago: Common Core’s Climate Science Indoctrination: http://www.masterresource.org/2014/04/common-core-climate-indoctrination/

  7. Eric Simpson says:

    Also, it would seem that these are the same type of “flower children” that want to “put skeptics in cages” as does Adam Weinstein from Gawker, and I must recommend Rush’s coverage of this (the guy specifically said that he thinks Limbaugh should be imprisoned): http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/daily/2014/04/04/gawker_arrest_global_warming_deniers

  8. NikFromNYC says:

    Oh the irony and cult cracking cognitive dissonance for these literal tree huggers, that carbon dioxide is plant food. From the Planet Drum web site we hear about the web of life, but not the carbon cycle:

    “The catastrophic effects on Earth’s biosphere due to human activities since the inception of the industrial era have become imperiling to all life. A transformation of fundamental aspects of consciousness is urgently required to halt and reverse this destructive process. Conservation of resources and environmentalism alone are not adequate to the task. The concept of a bioregion as the basic location where people live, and the practice of reinhabitation of that life-place by its residents, are necessary to rejoin human beings into the overall web of life.”

  9. ConfusedPhoton says:

    “One of the speakers answered: “I’m intimately familiar with climate change denial – it’s not really the subject of this panel… it’s not worth wasting time with”. ”

    Now that is some very serious denial!

    Such people do not live in the real world and therefore, will not listen to reasonable arguments. Truth has no place in the zealot’s world.

  10. michael hart says:

    In many places they will also be selling home-made candles.

  11. jauntycyclist says:

    ” intimately familiar”

    oo really?
    and still crys wolf?

  12. george e. smith says:

    Well it sounds from your brief report, that there were NO wolverines, at that gathering; but plenty of marmots.

    And co-incidently, (why the hell does this editor insist I spell this word “co-incidentally” ?) we can thank the marmots for the great plague (The Black Death) in the middle ages.

    Ancient Mongolian fur trappers trapped marmots, for their fur. The village folklore said that whenever the marmots were behaving erratically, they should pile all their furs in the middle of the villa and burn them. Then they must burn the village to the ground, and all move over to another valley. The gods would be angry, if they didn’t, so they did it without knowing why.

    So the Chinese invaded Mongolia, and enslaved the Mongol trappers, and forced them to trap for them; and they shipped all the furs back to China, to trade with visiting mariners from Europe.

    Well nobody thought to tell the Chinese about the village customs, so when the marmots went barmy again, they stayed clear of the furs as best they could, but let the Chinese send them home quickly, and the bubonic plague left China, for Europe along with Mongolian marmot furs.

    The plague was spread by fleas, which normally died off in the winter, before the disease could spread much. But marmots hibernate, and when they got ridden with bubonic fleas, their hibernation allowed the fleas and the plague to survive the cold winters.

    They never knew why they had to burn their village; they just believed evil would befall them, if they didn’t, so they did it for eons. (it’s a good book to read.)

    So we’ll let those Washagonian marmots keep to themselves; I prefer the wolverines anyway; smell and all.

  13. tonyb says:

    Rod

    As regards glacier movements you might be interested in figure 5 of my article carried here last year;

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/08/16/historic-variations-in-temperature-number-four-the-hockey-stick/

    It demonstrates glacier movements over the last 5000 years and graphs it against the hockey stick and CET. Clearly climate was NOT constant until 1900 and taking paleo proxy snapshots of it does not show the astonishing annual and decadal variations we can observe.

    tonyb

  14. ren says:

    It will be in the next few days a lot of rain in the west of the U.S. and a strong wind.

  15. Neil Waldron says:

    A question you asked, which was, “What is it about America that produces this self-hating nonsense?”

    The simple answer is, if it cannot be connected to sexism, racism, delnialist or any other “ism/ist” or control of the low information voter, it is not allowed in to the conversation.

    Because, you have to pander to the “ism/ist” groups otherwise you are not allowed to speak in todays communist/socialist/fascist world. And lets not confuse ourselves, this is exactly what we are up against, fascists, communists and socialists. The topic is not as important as the US v THEM mentality, they need an enemy, and climate is the current train they are all on. As soon as it crashes through the barrier, and takes out everyone on board, they will simply get off wipe themselves off and get on the next “ism/ist” band wagon and harp like they do now.

  16. accordionsrule says:

    The Athabasca glacier has been retreating for 250 years due to uplift.

  17. Non Nomen says:

    >>One of the speakers answered: “I’m intimately familiar with climate change denial – it’s not really the subject of this panel… it’s not worth wasting time with”.<<

    It can be taken for granted that such an attitude towards a legitimate question shows a deep disdain for other opinions. If someone, be it an organisation or an individual, cannot stand opposition or an antithesis, then run. They are most probably authoritarian blockheads. Even if their ideas might sound interesting, it seems to me not a good idea to deal with such harebrained individuals.

  18. Jack Simmons says:

    george e. smith says:
    April 21, 2014 at 12:22 am

    Well it sounds from your brief report, that there were NO wolverines, at that gathering; but plenty of marmots.

    george,

    I never heard that as part of the story on the bubonic plague. Not that I’m questioning you, I would just like the references. It sounds very plausible.

    Thanks in advance.

    Jack

  19. Robert JM says:

    I would have said “Its good to see you have an open mind” or ” I see you know how to put the pseudo in science!”

  20. mkinville says:

    The subject of glaciers has come up in this stories comments. I just wrote a blog post on the history of the Tlingits, glaciers and modern environmental activism. http://www.mikekinville.com/?p=99

    The concept of sacrifice to appease the forces behind climate change is well established in Alaska.

  21. thingadonta says:

    We have already organised ourselves into ‘bioregions’, they are called:
    – cities, where there are either deepwater ports for trade and commerce, (or about junctions of rivers, or road networks, etc)
    -agricultural regions, of fertile land or areas with rainfall so we can grow food,
    -townships also occur where there exists minerals and energy resources to sustain technology,
    -areas of natural or other beauty or value where people will pay to visit for tourism
    -etc etc.

    There is no need to reorganise all this when it already works, due to some kind of misconception about what is good for us or nature. The hubris of central planning lives on…

  22. Jaakko Kateenkorva says:

    “One of the speakers answered: “I’m intimately familiar with climate change denial . . .””

    When confronted with objectively verifiable facts, the speaker not only proved to be in denial, but volunteered his intimate familiarity with it? Priceless.

  23. Peter Burmer says:

    The people in the conference didn’t want to talk about denialism because the know your arguments are as shoddy as that graph you presented. About which:

    In their opinion piece, Christy and McNider present a graph that’s supposed to prove their argument that climate models have overestimated global warming. However, rather than compare models and observations of global surface temperature, which are of the greatest importance for those of us living on the Earth’s surface, they instead show temperature data from higher up in the atmosphere, the temperature of the mid-troposphere (TMT).

    The figure in the Wall Street Journal piece suffers from several problems. First, it improperly averages the data (also known as “baselining”) in a way that results in shifting the observational data downwards with respect to the model data, visually exaggerating the discrepancy. Second, it doesn’t show any error bars or uncertainty ranges, and the error bars on the TMT data are large. Third, it simply averages together two satellite TMT data sets (presumably from UAH and Remote Sensing Systems), ignoring the fact that there is a large difference in the estimated warming trends from these two data sets, and that other TMT data sets that Christy and McNider excluded show even greater TMT warming, more in line with model projections.

  24. michel says:

    Well, the extraordinary thing is that if they are right, it is not ‘us’ that is doing it, it is China. To the tune of 10 billion tonnes a year, rising to 20 billion. ‘We’ are only doing 5 billion. But no-one seems to even notice that, let alone care.

  25. Eugene WR Gallun says:

    Anthony,

    i have lived in Portland, Oregon for the last twenty years. Welcome to my world.

    I wish I had known you were going to be in town. I would have loved to have bought you a beer.

    The liberal lefties here are convinced of their own righteousness — on all topics. In a group they function like a hive mind. Separate one from the group and he,she or it mentally wanders in circles.

    But i sort of like the town. Here is a poem i wrote a number of years ago before THEY found out I was a conservative.

    PORTLAND

  26. pat says:

    CAGW is kind to the Stakeholders, not so much to the public:

    20 April: Irish Independent: Nick Webb/Roisin Burke: Windfarm owners were paid €10m not to produce energy
    Energy suppliers paid up to €10m last year to wind-farm operators to power down, freedom of information documents supplied to the Sunday Independent reveal…
    The cost of broken or shut-off wind turbines was up to €10m in 2013 and could be passed on to Irish consumers in their electricity bills, communications between EirGrid and the Department of Energy suggest. “The suppliers can, of course, pass this cost on to their consumers,” an EirGrid executive said in an email on the subject to a senior civil servant at the Department of Energy…
    However, that cost looks set to soar as the power-down rate of 3 per cent for 2013 is estimated to rise to 10 per cent in 2014, according to EirGrid, suggesting a cost to conventional energy companies of over €30m and a knock-on cost to consumer energy bills. An EirGrid graph on wind curtailments shows them rising 50 per cent further by 2016, which would cost utility companies €40m.
    Irish wind-farm operators receive payouts from other electricity providers in respect of “constraints” or “curtailments” where a transmission or distribution line is down for maintenance or where there is a local fault, or when there is high wind at a time of low-energy demand (for example, in the middle of the night) and turbines are shut down due to over-capacity. The same policy is applied internationally.
    European energy regulators decided last year that wind farms would receive compensation from the energy market for these shutdowns and it is part of government policy as a way to stimulate the wind energy market.

    http://www.independent.ie/business/irish/windfarm-owners-were-paid-10m-not-to-produce-energy-30200656.html

  27. george e. smith says:

    “””””…..Jack Simmons says:

    April 21, 2014 at 12:58 am

    george e. smith says:
    April 21, 2014 at 12:22 am……””””””

    Well Jack, I just knew, that someone would ask for a reference.

    But tell me; since you doubt the story (why else would you want a reference); why on earth would you believe the author of any reference I might cite ?? Isn’t that tantamount to demanding that I respond from some position of authority. You are asking me to prove something; you know what Einstein said about proof versus disproof.

    In any case, I don’t have a reference; It is all I can do with my limited brain capacity, to remember things; I don’t have space to remember where or how I learned it.

    But in this case I can tell you what YOU can search for.

    It’s in a book by a rather well known historian; whose name I don’t remember (short term memory disfunction), The book is a World history as it was dictated, by major medical calamities; see I can’t even think of the word; Epidemics, that’s it.

    It’s at least five years since I read it. I recognized the author’s name; but was not familiar with him. Right now, I don’t even remember who loaned me the book, but somebody did, and I know very few somebody’s, so I’ll think of it sometime.

    But I’m sure giggle or wikileaks, or one of those compendia of all knowledge, can instantly point you to it.

    I remember stuff, I don’t care, or care to know, who came up with it, unless I want nto know more about it.

    I do know that Napoleon’s army froze to death in Russia, because their warm overcoats had tin buttons; who can afford to make buttons, out of pure tin (besides the French) ??

    Tin is in the same column of the periodic table, as carbon, silicon, and germanium, the group-4 semiconductors, which crystalize in the cubic diamond lattice. Well strictly speaking, it is only alpha tin, which crystallizes in the diamond lattice. And in the cubic form, it is only stable at room Temperature. At low temperature, it reverts to beta tin, which is a completely different crystal structure, and when that happens, the alpha tin turns into a crumbly powder, and so did Napoleon’s troops buttons.

    Their overcoats all fell open, while sleeping on the snow, and they froze.

  28. Eugene WR Gallun says:

    WHOOPS , HIT SOMETHING WRONG
    anyway here is the poem

    PORTLAND

    Here, beneath these existential skies
    The river joins the land and sea
    As commerce hurries urgently
    Through old streets found filled with new surprise

    Great nations in vanquished millenniums
    Foretold their fall with one same cry
    When its arts begin to die
    A civilization soon succumbs

    But here and now in this working place
    The boldest of creative hearts
    Pursue that glory in the arts
    To which all else is a lesser chance

    This is our home! Port where new sails appear!
    Peddlers hawk at a knockdown price
    The novelties of paradise
    That give invention bold expression here

    Eugene WR Gallun

  29. johanna says:

    Crazy behaviour of marmots sound more like rabies to me. But the remedy is just as effective.

    And, The Diggers? I remember them. They were considered “out there” even by the standards of the day. I imagine most of their members eventually got jobs, had families etc. Sounds like a severe case of perpetual adolescence in this instance.

  30. David, UK says:

    One of the speakers answered: “I’m intimately familiar with climate change denial – it’s not really the subject of this panel… it’s not worth wasting time with”. I responded “that doesn’t really answer my question”.

    To which they clasped their hands over their ears and answered “La la la la la la la la la la. Next?”

  31. Mike McMillan says:

    george e. smith says: April 21, 2014 at 1:44 am
    At low temperature, it reverts to beta tin, which is a completely different crystal structure, and when that happens, the alpha tin turns into a crumbly powder, and so did Napoleon’s troops buttons.
    Their overcoats all fell open, while sleeping on the snow, and they froze.

    Tin buttons. That’s as good as the marmot story, George. Did they have tin whiskers, another crystal structure?

    Incidentally, your spell checker thought you meant to put the ‘ly’ on the adjective ‘incidental,’ rather than the noun ‘incident.’ Personally, I always spell check after I hit the ‘Post Comment’ button.
    :-)

  32. Gamecock says:

    We tried to create south eastern bioregion in 1861. It turned out very bad. Very, very bad.

  33. Peter Miller says:

    Sounds like a classic case of: ‘Don’t confuse me with the facts, my mind is made up.’

    There is an awful lot of that going around, especially amongst the alarmist faithful.

  34. philjourdan says:

    Sounds like the Panel speaker is not aware of reality or science. Such a waste of time.

  35. Peter Miller says:

    Tin whiskers can be a very serious problem for satellites and spacecraft, causing short outs on electronic circuit boards.

    In the extreme cold of space pure tin solder can change allotropes forming tin whiskers, the solution is a adding a small amount of copper and/or silver as alloying metals.

    NASA does not like to talk about the number of satellite and spacecraft failures that may have been caused by the use of the wrong type of tin alloy in electronic circuit boards.

  36. MikeUK says:

    In the UK the Greens and the Left (most of whom live in towns and cities) have taken over the environmental debate, time for everyone else to reclaim it. Farmers and country folk are the ones who really care for and understand the countryside, but are being demonised by an ever more political environmental agenda (e.g. farmers are to blame for floods).

    Time for some fight back, based on a sensible balance of environmental science and economics.

  37. DirkH says:

    “I attended the “Cascadia Confluence” on April 20th in Portland. The idea is, human beings should organize themselves into “bioregions” instead of nation states. ”

    Sounds a lot like the TechNat of Techocracy Inc. (a movement founded by Peak Oiler Hubbert and some other guy). Who wanted to run all of America on hydropower, the panacea of the day.

  38. DirkH says:

    Typo:…Technocracy, not Techocracy
    Patrick Wood, presentation on technocracy

  39. WMASAW says:

    The idea is, human beings should organize themselves into “bioregions” instead of nation states. For example, Vancouver, BC, is in the same bioregion as Seattle, WA, though they are in different nations. San Francisco, CA, is in the “Shasta bioregion”, which overlaps with the “Cascadia bioregion”, where you can find Portland, OR. It would appear to be the case that the looni left are now planning to atack borders as well as seperate countries. They have been demanding that undesireables from every other country be settled in western countries, just bcause. Although not a single country that those wannabies would even consider taking the same action. They would probably just have you shot for having the damn cheek to even suggest it. But the destruction of the borders appears to be on the agenda, better start fighting against it now before those wierdos get another stupid and unworkable idea through.

  40. cynical_scientist says:

    I bet if you’d asked a question along the lines of; “Have you considered using dowsing rods and ley lines to map the flow of the bioforce and find the boundaries of bioregions.”; you’d have been given a respectful and polite answer. They would have thought you were nuts. But they would have been respectful and polite.

  41. thallstd says:

    Sort of off-topic, but in response to an earlier post – thingadonta@1:03 AM
    “We have already organised ourselves into ‘bioregions’, they are called:
    – cities, where there are either deepwater ports for trade and commerce, (or about junctions of rivers, or road networks, etc)”

    “There is no need to reorganise all this when it already works”

    Just to play devil’s advocate a bit and put in a plug for one of my favorite non-fiction authors – James Dale Davidson… (look him up on Amazon and browse the reader comments if at all interested in the topic of nation-states – how they formed and why their run is likely ending)

    Davidson examines how past societies organized themselves and the technologies that enabled and caused the transformations between them. What brought on and ended the Roman Empire, the Dark Ages, the Medievil period, the Industrial/Modern age and now the Information Age and where the Information Age technologies are likely to lead.

    Yes, we have organized into cities within nation-states and for a long while that did work well. But this is just the most recent framework for how societies organize and there is no reason to expect it to last forever. The forces (technologies) that have enabled the information age are different than those that enabled the Industrial Age. Each of the other major periods in modern human history lasted about 500 years and Davidson makes a convincing case that the Industrial age is now transitioning into the Information Age.

    A string of bankrupt cities and localities, Detroit being perhaps the most notable, support his theory. Obama has now pledged an aid package of I forget how many millions to help Detroit meet it’s obligations to union pensioners, a mere drop in the bucket to our 17 trillion dollar debt. I live near Baltimore, a port city in decline for 5 decades.

    There are no doubt many factors leading to these bankruptcies but the two that Davidson makes a strong case for are the microchip and democracy itself. Note th at neither he or I are radical leftists. I’m rather fond of our founding documents and the government they created, much more so than the one it has morphed into. But our founders left some holes in their attempt to protect citizens from the power-hungry and the power-hungry have found their way through them to the seats of power. I won’t dwell on this here but he provides an interesting take on how democracies and republics provide a better framework for the accumulation and confiscation of wealth than any other form of government, enabling us to accumulate a 17 trillion dollar debt, Detroit to go under and Obama to easily bail it out. Not to mention Greece, Spain and much/most of the rest of Europe’s financial woes. In short, society’s modern organizational framework, which once worked very well, really isn’t working all that well anymore.

    Technologically, the microchip is the central player in his theory and conclusions. In short, cities formed when and where they did because of the technologies of the time – the growth of mass industrial production. This required easy access to raw materials, large manufacturing plants and a concentrated low-skill work force. Cities near ports, rivers, roads and rails were the logic result. The cities and nation-states prospered and grew because once established, these manufacturing plants are very costly to move. Local and national taxes could be raised with little consequence other than an increase of tax revenue.

    Enter the microchip and “the information age” – instant communication nearly anywhere at any time for video, voice and data. Since its inception there has been a continuing shift in the proportion of jobs requiring a concentrated centralized low-skill work force to those requiring more brain power that can be done anywhere, both by users and developers of the technologies.

    I live in Maryland (but might not for much longer). Three or four years ago a “millionaire tax” was enacted here projecting an increase of I forget how much in taxes. After tallying everything up they found out they now had fewer millionaires and less taxes. NY recently decided NOT to raise taxes on the wealthy to prevent this very thing from happening there.

    I don’t have statistics on how many cities are healthy and how many aren’t. But given the technologies that led to their creation compared to today’s technological innovations, the organizational framework of cities and nation-states is under stress and offers less advantage to the growing number of decentralized workers.

    With the abiity of more and more people, wealthy or not, to vote with their feet, whether leaving a city, a state or a country, one doesn’t need a fancy model to see that high tax rates are unsustainable. Low taxed areas will emerge and attract the high wage earners who can work anywhere. Davidson mentions one such area in Sweden, I believe, or maybe it was the Netherlands, that has a flat tax of 40,000 krona or gilders. Not a good deal if you only make 50,000 but compared to most other areas, a great deal if you make 400,000 or more. Davidson has some interesting ideas on where this will lead but this post is already too long.

    Bottom line: Whether we voluntarily “reorganise all this when it already works” or not, if history is any indication, it will in all likelyhood get reorganized in the near future anyway, though I doubt it will be within the framework the organizers of this event are proposing. And governments try but ultimately fail to stop it. One take-away from his examinations is that governments don’t change the course of history, only the rate of change. Technology controls the steering wheel of history, governments the brakes and gas pedal.

    Davidson is a great read for anyone interested in such things. I recommend “The Great Reckoning” and “The Sovereign Individual.”

  42. sabretruthtiger says:

    People may laugh at this but it has always been the goal to unite America in to one country and the world under one government. Global governance and the destruction of sovereignty is the end goal. The environment is the basis for their world governance infrastructure, they will create economic/governmental environmental regions that will gradually take over from the traditional sovereign boundaries and the advantage with environmental regions is they can be adjusted arbitrarily according to ‘biological/biodiversity’ requirements. First the North American Union then pretty soon the whole country will be one nation.

  43. Tom J says:

    ‘One of the speakers answered: “I’m intimately familiar with climate change denial – it’s not really the subject of this panel… it’s not worth wasting time with”.’

    I was going to comment that a correct translation of that speaker’s statement would be: ‘I’m intimately familiar with computer fallibility denial.’ My translation harkens back to when I transitioned from a drawing table to a computer graphic program and the trainer said that computers don’t make mistakes and I thought to myself, ‘Oh yes they do.’

    But I thought to myself I’m wrong. Computers really don’t make mistakes. And they certainly don’t make the mistake of correcting a mistake that’s been fed into them.

  44. DirkH says:

    WMASAW says:
    April 21, 2014 at 4:47 am
    “But the destruction of the borders appears to be on the agenda, better start fighting against it now before those wierdos get another stupid and unworkable idea through.”

    Was already on the agenda of Hubbert et al in the 1930ies with Technocracy Inc.; as their “TechNat” was meant to include the territories of USA, Canada and Mexico. For sheer necessity, as their hydropower-only scheme would not have been viable otherwise – as they claimed. And who would dare to argue with experts?

  45. ossqss says:

    Perhaps this can shed some light on the thought process at the heart of this meeting.

    It is not fiction folks.

    http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/index.php?menu=1252;

  46. Coach Springer says:

    “What is it about America that produces this self-hating nonsense?” In order to enjoy one’s good fortune, one must constantly apologize for it?

  47. george e. smith says:

    “””””…..Mike McMillan says:

    April 21, 2014 at 3:42 am

    george e. smith says: April 21, 2014 at 1:44 am
    At low temperature, it reverts to beta tin, which is a completely different crystal structure, and when that happens, the alpha tin turns into a crumbly powder, and so did Napoleon’s troops buttons.
    Their overcoats all fell open, while sleeping on the snow, and they froze.

    Tin buttons. That’s as good as the marmot story, George. Did they have tin whiskers, another crystal structure?…….”””””””

    That Napoleon story, was in the news just in the last few months. I don’t remember whether I read it in a scientific Journal , (like Physics Today or Optics & Photonics News, which I get) , or whether it was a T&V or Radio story. I’m guessing the former, since it explained the crystallography part in some detail.

    I have been aware of alpha tin as a supposed semiconductor for 50 years, when I first got involved in III-V semiconductors (gallium arsenide) at Monsanto’s Central Research labs, in St Louis (County), Mo.

    If you think about the change in character going from carbon (diamond) to silicon, then germanium and on to alpha tin; there’s an obvious morphing from highly insulating, to metallic, with the tin.

    Carbon too, goes through a change in crystal structure, from diamond to graphite. Diamond is not the thermodynamically stable form of carbon, at STP; it takes high T&P to make diamond, but it is so damn densely compact, that the room temperature thermal jostling of the atoms, is not enough to morph it to the preferred graphite phase.

    Part of the Titanic story, appears to be, that the grade of “steel plate” and/or rivets, becomes brittle at icy Temperatures, which led to the fracture of plates by an iceberg collision, that was not all that serious an impact.

    I imagine that satellite folks, have to become razor sharp in Metallurgy over extreme Temperature range. I have a pair of Texts; “The Composition of Binary Alloys” which contains the phase diagrams for every possible combination of binary alloy that can be formed from the 92 elements.

    Naturally, there are NO binary alloy diagrams for Noble as components, although evidently, some compounds do form.

    In the 1970s, I worked strenuously trying to solve a tin solder joint issue between a Gold over Nickel coated ceramic (package), and a gold over Chromium (I think) plated glass lid, to form a high vacuum seal. It was a quartz tuning fork crystal for digital watches, that could be laser tuned after sealing by blasting gold off the tines. The tin solder film would dissolve the gold off the glass and ceramic, so we had to find a tin/gold alloy for the solder preform.

    It’s amazing what suff happens in the technology world.

  48. erkforby says:

    For Pete Miller, ref ” the solution is a adding a small amount of copper and/or silver as alloying metals.” NoNoNo please don’t do that for tin whiskers! For instance, SAC305 solder (96.5%Sn, 3Ag, .5Cu) is a very good solder, but sometimes forms all kinds of tin whiskers. Use 3%Pb (lead) to suppress whiskers. SEE https://nepp.nasa.gov/whisker/ .

  49. milodonharlani says:

    Any bioregion advocate who imagines that Portland is in the same bioregion as San Francisco but not with Seattle obviously has no clue what a bioregion really is. Any rational Pacific NW bioregion would stop at the Klamath River watershed.

  50. Robert W Turner says:

    If the human species were to return to a stone-age style of life, like the cult wants us to, then drawing our political boundaries based on local geography would make sense.

  51. I live down the road from the Athabasca Glacier and have enjoyed several mountaineering trips up the Athabasca glacier and the surrounding Columbia Icefields. It’s cool to see how much it changes in your own lifetime.
    That being said, the ancient, pulverized trees they find as it retreats certainly proves how much warmer it was earlier! The retreat of the glacier only seems like a novel observation if you ignore the geological and climate history that the glacier is itself revealing!

    for a good discussion of recent glacier advance and retreat in this area see:
    Latest Pleistocene and Holocene glacier fluctuations in western Canada Brian Menounos a, *, Gerald Osborn b, John J. Clague c, Brian H. Luckman d

  52. Lew Skannen says:
    April 20, 2014 at 11:06 pm

    The problem was you stumbled into a religious cult and mistook it for a rational scientific conference.

    If only it were that, I’d be happy to donate to their Kool-Aid fund.

  53. Frodo says:

    As a UM grad (of course I grew up in Hobbiton; and, like many, took advantage of an overseas education in Ann Arbor) I would appreciate it if you left wolverines out of this.

    w/r/t Portland:

    Also, if you all don’t mind (I’m very late to the party – sorry ) w/r/t the Al Gore thread below, that mentions the place of my birth in a few of the replies, I’d like to belatedly comment, if you don’t mind. Sorry if I am replying well past the original post’s publication:

    Someone posted:

    >> I haven’t seen any of the films but I did read the book.
    The Hobbit is in many ways superior to the trilogy, itself. (Yes, I know that is not the “consensus view.) <<

    The main issue I had with the trilogy – which, contrary to common belief, I DID *NOT* approve of and REFUSED involvement in – I wanted Ken Burns to do them, for one thing – was the utter, complete fakeness of them all. Excuse me, but New Zealand is not Middle Earth. Yes, I know, I KNOW – it’s always very costly to film accurate historical documentaries on location, but if you must film a documentary, then do it right, and spare no expense. Also, dressing up humans to look like orcs, trolls, and hobbits is both laughable and insulting at the same time. There were numerous protests over here w/r/t these pathetic New Zealand “fantasy films”, and rightfully so. The few humans who came over here to do research did nothing but grab a number of seedlings of Old Toby and Longbottom Leaf and leave. I understand there are huge hidden crops of these prized natural herbs being grown illegally in California and West Virginia right now. Most of the attendees of this Al Gore speech, including Big Al himself, were given 6 oz samples, with papers, a few hours before the talk started. Also, I assume many of the attendees of this partcular conference in Portland also received many seedlings.

    I really don’t mind Al – he’s one of the few humans who has visited Hobbiton , and he has done so on a number of occasions. Each time, we lit up – over and over – and had some prolonged, thought-provoking conversations. I don’t remember the exact details of anything he said, but he came across as very, very persuasive.

  54. george e smith says:

    Well for the record, I personally hated ALL of those movies; they suck; but so do the ridiculous books they are based on. I’m not going to get sucked into any more of that nonsense. And Avatar sucked too. I was present, when the software guru of Avatar (spider man too ) received his Distinguished Alumni Award, at the University of Auckland. Nice chap; he now has a great gig at Auckland.

    I’m waiting, until they dispense with movie stars altogether, and conjure them all up out of ones and zeros. Those overblown parasites, have interfered far to much in human affairs.

    And no; I don’t know why it is “Alumni” award, and not “Alumnus” award. Well I guess they can give out up to five a year, indifferent categories.

  55. george e. smith says:

    “””””…..erkforby says:

    April 21, 2014 at 8:32 am

    For Pete Miller, ref ” the solution is a adding a small amount of copper and/or silver as alloying metals.” NoNoNo please don’t do that for tin whiskers! For instance, SAC305 solder (96.5%Sn, 3Ag, .5Cu) is a very good solder, but sometimes forms all kinds of tin whiskers. Use 3%Pb (lead) to suppress whiskers. SEE https://nepp.nasa.gov/whisker/ ……”””””

    Seems like lead is banned in all products sold in Euro countries. Can’t even use it in (flint) glasses.

    So most PC boards these days don’t use lead tin solders; they have some Bismuth based alloys instead, I believe. In any case, space circuitry would always be gold plated wires, and not pbsn.

    I once watched some marvelous whiker film structures, grow right in front of my eyes on a piece of aluminium sheet. I’m thinking I got some swimming pool acid on it (Muriatic acid, which I think is just HCl). Grew about a cm of fur in a few seconds.

  56. TomL says:

    For a starting point for the marmot/black death information you might start with this page – http://www.flamingnet.com/bookreviews/resources/essays_bookreviews/silk.cfm – which has a lot of references (I gave up before reaching a conclusion).

  57. john robertson says:

    The madness of cities?
    Cheifio did a great analysis of the demographics by which city voters come to impoverish and destroy their rural neighbours.
    And here in Canada we see it as Toronto takes our most populous province into beggar status.
    Vancouver destroys the interior economies in the name of the environment.
    In the USA Detroit is about to loot state and federal taxpayers.
    Maybe we need to allow the cities to enjoy the fruits of their delusions.
    What if we separate the cities from the State or Province?
    Once the population hits a certain level the reach of the city become injurious to the surrounding rural regions, so to check the tendency of voting yourself other peoples money, we could make large cities into new entities.
    As a separate city state with x congress critters and x senators should be less powerful than the voting block of the city stealing the rest of a State naked.

  58. NikFromNYC says:

    Peter Burmer haughtily nitpicks:

    “…Christy and McNider present a graph that’s supposed to prove their argument that climate models have overestimated global warming. However, rather than compare models and observations of global surface temperature, which are of the greatest importance for those of us living on the Earth’s surface, they instead show temperature data from higher up in the atmosphere, the temperature of the mid-troposphere (TMT).”

    Yet the flatline “pause” (more likely 60 year natural cycle *reversal*) is acknowledged even by core alarm raising scientists, and a flatline pause with no trend cannot by logic alone be unfairly amplified into anything but yet the same flatline pause. And can Peter with a straight face claim that Hide The Decline scientific presentations to this day themselves do not play fast with presentation graphs? Or that the bladeless Marcott 2013 hockey stick was in any way legitimate as being presented to the media as a “super hockey stick”?!

    “The five-year mean global temperature has been flat for the last decade, which we interpret as a combination of natural variability and a slow down in the growth rate of net climate forcing.” – James Hansen et al., 2012

    “The simulations rule out (at the 95% level) zero trends for intervals of 15 yr or more, suggesting that an observed absence of warming of this duration is needed to create a discrepancy with the expected present-day warming rate.” – NOAA State of the Climate report, 2008

    “Bottom line: the “no upward trend” has to continue for a total of 15 years before we get worried.” – Phil Jones, 2009

  59. JCR says:

    A question you asked, which was, “What is it about America that produces this self-hating nonsense?”

    This applies to the Western world generally – I’m in Australia. The self-haters don’t really hate themselves. This is just the way they can feel smug and morally superior. Because all their deluded compatriots all have these terrible ideas/attitudes, this self-appointed moral elite can demonstrate how enlightened they are. The fact that what they preach is so obviously detrimental to their country/civilisation is irrelevant.

    The way I thing about it is that the West has lost it’s cultural mojo. China, today, is like Victorian England, or the US of the late nineteenth, early twentieth centuries. They’re the ones with the drive, the vision, the self-confidence and the determination to make their world a better place. Sure, they’ll make mistakes, just like the Victorians did. But with prosperity comes the ability to fix these mistakes, like their massive problems with (real – as opposed to plant-food) air pollution. In the West, we’ve become monumentally risk-averse. The Greens, particularly, oppose any human activity that isn’t consistent with the lifestyle of a stone-age, nomadic hunter-gatherer.

    Sorry for the rant – bit I’m not, really :-)

  60. george e. smith says:

    Well it is possible that the William MacNeil book is the one I read; although it is described as a novel in current reviews.

    But in any case, we have bubonic plague right here in California.

    Campgrounds in Kings Canyon National park are sometimes closed, when the resident ground squirrels are found to be carrying bubonic plague.

    I typically don’t read novels. Anna Karenina cured me of that. I don’t have a single novel in my library now.

    Reality is far more interesting than fiction.

  61. Larry Logan says:

    Rod, bravo on holding up the poster. With a group of us attending a climate alarmist presentation at the Beaverton OR library, I held up a somewhat related graph by Roy Spencer during the Q&A , blown up to poster size.

    The presenter tried a dodge, claiming she didn’t know where I got the data and implying it was rigged. (I briefly mentioned Roy’s contributions to satellite measurements.) However, I was pleasantly surprised by the positive response it generated among fence sitters in the audience, who then pushed the presenter to respond to what was graphically shown as clearly counter-evidence to her talk. She refused to do so and wilted.

    I encourage others to give it a try. It’s one thing to try and trade words with an alarmist at the microphone. The presumption is they are the expert, and if someone like Mann they’ve become very accustomed and slippery. A picture crystalizes the discrepancy between what they’re saving and reality.

  62. Jeff says:

    “WMASAW says:
    April 21, 2014 at 4:47 am”
    and
    “ossqss says:
    April 21, 2014 at 8:13 am

    Perhaps this can shed some light on the thought process at the heart of this meeting.
    It is not fiction folks.
    http://sustainabledevelopment.un.org/index.php?menu=1252; ”

    Good point, and scary…just look up Agenda21 and Rewilding…

    http://rewilding.org/rewildit/what-is-rewilding/

    Maybe all those FEMA facilities being build out in the middle of nowhere aren’t prisons for
    skeptics and “politically-incorrects” after all….

    Maybe they’re our new cities? (Heaven forbid!!!).

    I’d imagine posters Gail Combs and Robin have more links on this…scary stuff…looks like the UN has more disasters lined up.

    Here in Germany marmots are called Marders, suspiciously close to “murder”, which is what
    I’d like to do to them when they start munching on the cables and hoses belonging to my car.
    BUT, it’s forbidden to kill them (same thing goes for Raccoons and some other varmints too), thanks to tree-huggers inc., aka the greens. The only thing that can be done is to put ultrasound transducers in the motor compartment, or mini-electroshock pads, or both. The pads can be quite a problem if a mechanic starts work without shutting them off first….(shocking, positively shocking).

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