Some raw answers about Gore and Hansen

There’s an eye-opening interview on Grist of Richard A. Muller about the current state of science understanding by presidential candidates, global warming, and alternate energy tech.

Some of the answers are very enlightening. Coming from an avowed environmentalist such as Muller it cements much of what I and many others have been saying for months about Gore’s outright distortion of facts and Hansens selective cherry picking in choosing “his” way to publish the widely cited GISTEMP data set.

Here are a couple of excerpts from the Muller interview:

question What’s your take on NASA climate scientist James Hansen?
answer Hansen I’ve known for many years. He’s a very good climate scientist, but he’s decided to do the politics. I feel that he’s doing some cherry-picking of his own [when it comes to the science]. At that point, he’s not really being a scientist. At that point, you’re being a lawyer. He’s being an effective advocate for his side, but in the process of doing that he’s no longer a neutral party and he’s no longer giving both sides of the issues.
question I know you drive a Prius. What else are you doing to reduce your carbon emissions?
answer My house is lit by compact fluorescent light bulbs. Let me just tell you, though: Suppose I drove an SUV and lit my house with the worst kind of light — I could still be an environmentalist. Al Gore flies around in a jet plane — absolutely fine with me. The important thing is not getting Al Gore out of his jet plane; the important thing is solving the world’s problem. What we really need are policies around the world that address the problem, not feel-good measures. If [Al Gore] reaches more people and convinces the world that global warming is real, even if he does it through exaggeration and distortion — which he does, but he’s very effective at it — then let him fly any plane he wants.

Truth be damned, but hey, it’s OK, Hansen and Gore are saving the planet right? But don’t take my word for it, read it for yourself on the environmemtal blog, Grist. Here is the link.

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175 thoughts on “Some raw answers about Gore and Hansen

  1. As I see it the problem is these folks feel the end justifies the means. I am no believer in AGW but I am fully supportive of energy conservation. Is it a good thing to pour endless amounts of CO2 into the atmosphere? no one knows for sure. When arrogance grows so deep you are unwilling to listen to arguements with opposite views then its time to step back and re-evaulate.
    Hansen-Gore et-al efforts may well backfire. If the world does go into a cooling mode Joe Sixpack is not going to be willing to listen when a true world endangering event arises.

  2. Oh!
    Now I know the trick.
    Just produce the impression you are saving the world, and then it’ll be okay to pollute it.

    If this were Christianity, you’d only have to go to Church on Sundays, say a couple of Hail Marys every evening, preach to others about their sinful lives, and then it would be okay to commit sin and act wickedly.

    This is the problem with the whole issue. A small group of people think they can tell the rest of the world how to live, while exempting themselves from the very rules they demand we accept.

    I know Anthony loathes the idea, but I still think a page here called “Lifetstyles of the Rich and Alarmists” would have much entertainment value. I also think we need a Charlatan Hall of Fame.

  3. This is one of the few issues I can ever recall where hypocrites run free without any fear of being called for it.

  4. The obvious flaw in such reasoning: exaggeration and distortion may hide the fact there is no problem to be solved. This is particularly true for an individual who is good at it.

    Tragedy will result if funds and resources are allocated to a non-existent problem, denying those resources to very real a serious problems. In this case of AGW, very significant portions of the world’s GDP being misallocated.

    Also, consider the long term implications for the general view of science. When people finally realize the truth about what is going on here, what will be the consequences in the future when science does identify a real problem and no one believes the arguments? Could a future, skeptical public dismiss a legitimate warning as another self serving exaggeration?

    For more on Gore’s real motivations in these discussions, read Capitalism to the Rescue by Jon Gertner, http://www.nytimes.com/2008/10/05/magazine/05Green-t.html?_r=1&ref=magazine&oref=slogin

    Mr Gore may not have time to engage in debates or answer questions from the public and press; but he does have time to visit a venture capitalist on a regular basis. From the article above:

    “Perhaps the most challenging aspect of Kleiner’s endeavor, then, is for green tech to expand into the markets more rapidly than any energy technology has done before. In a conversation I had with Al Gore in early September, I asked how that would be possible. Gore shows up at Kleiner’s offices several times a month to share his political and environmental insights. (When I asked Gore what he thought he brings to Kleiner, he quipped, “I think it’s my knowledge of subatomic physics.”) He became involved in private-sector climate solutions because, he said, “more money is allocated in the private markets in one hour than in all of the budgets of all of the governments of the world in a year’s time.” The trends that have governed the development of alternative-energy technologies till now, he said, aren’t a result of some natural scientific law. Echoing a point Bill Joy made to me a few months earlier, Gore said cheap oil had made renewable technologies less appealing as investments, which in turn had made it difficult to bring clean-energy costs down through mass production.”

  5. “…let him fly any plane he wants.”

    Because some people are ‘more equal than others’…?

  6. All the answers were suspect so I guess you had to limit which you quoted. I do think the first answer was possibly his worst.

    Consensus? So the mere existence of a group = consensus, even when there are innumerable outsiders?

    Though the US having moral responsibility to fund China’s coal stations was vying for worst answer.

  7. Ralph B says what I have been saying for years, that when this (CO2=warming) is shown to be false then it will damage science and set it back. People will be loath to treat any future alarm as real. That’s why I support a list of all the people who endorse the idea that CO2 is warming the Earth, so that we can name and shame in the future. Science has stepped backward during this AGW scam. Great shame.

    PS I know my post showing that Arctic ice is recovering strongly was off topic on the thread below, but did it have to be withdrawn? Are all off-topic postings going to be removed now?

  8. He seems more interested in solving problems technically, rather than trying to change people’s behavior through moralizing, culture, and lifestyle messages. So the fact that Al Gore preaches doom, is of little interest to him.

    It does put him at odds with the kind of environmentalist who wants people to change and return to low-population tribal “communities”. But then those people need “re-educating” in the old cottage industry traditions; knife grinding leading to a form of black lung disease, for example.

  9. More evidence of a widening split between pro and anti nuclear enviros. Perhaps some environmentalist groups might pull back a bit now that they realise that nuclear power is being forced through by the extremist fossil fuel scare-mongers. I was certainly surprised that the greenpeace energy plan has a very realistic role for fossil fuels but maybe i shouldn’t have been; they were only jumping on the bandwagon like everyone else. I increasingly wonder how much of this AGW stuff originates from the nuclear lobby. Just like the peak oil ballyhoo started with Shell Oil wanting to get into nuclear energy, and the Hadley centre being set up by Margaret Thatcher in a cynical anti-coal, pro-nuclear mood. Most wind, wave and solar energy disinformation starts with them too. I’m not anti-nuclear but I’m not at all happy with some of their dirty tactics or the general hand-waving about nuclear proliferation in rogue states.

  10. Reminds me of a psychology student I knew back in the 70s – he maintained his tutor had told him not to worry too much about ‘finessing’ tiny bits of anomalous evidence if the end result was definitely right, because “everyone does it.” The student took that to mean ‘adjust what you like – it doesn’t matter’, got caught and reprimanded, and was puzzled as to what he’d done wrong.
    The trouble with ‘the end justifies the means’ as a modus operandi is that people are liable to take greater and greater liberties with the means, without realising why they shouldn’t.

  11. Gore and Hansen certainly aren’t the only kool aid peddlers. Here is an update on my “debate” with my neighbors science professor at a local community college. They are now at the point in their class where they ar “studying” the planets. This guy is teaching that the greenhouse effect on Venus can and will happen on Earth due to human emissions. Of course, when I asked why science hasn’t come to the conclusion that Venus at one time must have had a huge civilization to create all that CO2 I was dismissed as a “denier”. If and when he allows me to actually go into his class and speak to it, I may need some help from the rest of you “deniers” on this blog, (but I’m not holding my breath for that to happen).

  12. Sorry, that last line about not holding my breath has to do with being invited to the class, not that I wouldn’t get any help from this blog. After I read it again, I realized how it may sound. I have lots of respect for poster on this blog and of course Anthony and his moderators.

    Reply – It was clear to me what you implied. And of course all of us would help prep you. – Dee Norris

  13. “Lifetstyles of the Rich and Alarmists”

    HAHA! Priceless :D

    Could make a nice soap opera as well…

  14. Here’s a quote from Richard Muller about the Hockey Stick:

    “Suddenly the hockey stick, the poster-child of the global warming
    community, turns out to be an artifact of poor mathematics.”

    But it’s disappointing that he seems to be a believer. But he can see bad science for what it is, so there may be hope. He wrote an amazing book called ‘Nemesis’ about his experience with the Alvarez group that discovered what may have killed the dinosaurs. One thing that Alvarez repeatedly told him was that you should never accept something to be true merely because it comes from authority. As he uncritically cites the IPCC he seems to have forgotten that lesson. There were some other lessons in his book that he seems to have forgotten also.

    By the way, if you haven’t read Nemesis then I thoroughly recommend it. It’s probably the best science book I ever read. Oh, yes, among other things it describes how yet another scientific consensus turned out to be completely wrong.

    Chris

  15. “I was dismissed as a “denier”. ”

    Reminds me of a discussion group I attended, not about AGW, it was something else. The group was very friendly and the leader of the group encouraged discussion. The leader was happy to spend the whole afternoon discussing a subject I’d raised, up until a final point came when he couldn’t answer, at which point he declared that the topic “is not relevant”.

    I’m sure I’ve done it myself. There comes a point where you discover what it is that people are fully invested in and committed to. When people say “denier”, they are closing down the discussion, because they have reached a point where what it is that they are fully committed to, is being challenged or even overturned, and they have no idea on how to respond.

    I had another discussion with someone who was into environmental issues, but after we named what it was that she really was interested in, we discovered that it wasn’t AGW, it was a sort of humanistic feeling that she didn’t want to be a cog stuck in a machine of endless production and consumption, rather she valued being a sensitive individual with friends, living a quieter life.

    The environmental movement seems to have many different issues and agendas, as different people and organisations come into it and use it to promote whatever it is that they are committed to. So yeah, energy companies committed to nuclear; socialists committed to wealth redistribution–maybe someone could make a list.

    The question is, when someone says “denier”, what is it that they are personally trying to protect? What is their issue that they are committed to?

  16. It’s too bad Muller has been taken in by the “consensus” argument of the AGW propaganda machine, and either hasn’t bothered to, or is simply afraid to do his own research. He has also surprisingly bought into the AGW idea that the ends justify the means, exhonerating Gore for his lies and hypocrisy.
    Sadly, he seems to have forgotten what a true scientist is, mustache or no.

  17. Interesting interview. I’m all for conservation myself by the way. But I see this guy as out of the mainstream of thought among Warmists. He’s of the more practical reality-based nature, yet still solidly grounded in Warmist doctrine. Man is still causing and going to cause catastrophic global warming if we keep going on as we are, in his view. I like that he stays away from advocating policies, the one point of wisdom I can give him during this entire published interview. But he does not seem to understand that the passion of politics will trump the neutrality of science every time. That is the nature of man. If the Warmists merely said, “the science says so. look into it,” and left it at that they would not be in the various positions of power and influence they are now. And there are many benefits to be enjoyed by them because they do not do that.

    I am a student of history, and the French Revolution is always instructive as to how people operate during a crisis that they feel threatens not only lives but also ideals. People will do a great many things to save lives, but they will also do a great many more things in sacrificing lives to save ideals. With politicians the latter is more likely because they can often call for great sacrficies while risking little themselves. And the more emotional they can get public opinion to be of the situation, the more they can control it because rational arguments against that strategy break down or have little lasting effect. Sometimes reality-on-the-ground does provide some clear and unequivocal evidence to the contrary that escapes their grasp and spin; however, in an age where most publicly consumed information is released through the lenses of idealogically compromised media outlets, such clarity is substantially rare.

    There is a lot of thought and talk about progress. I must confess that I do not see it. The true power of progress is in reshaping and advancing a culture. Globally, we are being reshaped, but we are not advancing. We are going backwards slightly. And as the Warmist’s scientific doctrine is translated into real-world policies (that will always be tweaked yet never wholely abandoned) that will become increasingly so. We’ve had the Age of Kings, and the Age of Democracy is coming to a close. The new age shall be one of Oligarchy. A broad oligarchy, given the world’s present population, but oligarchy nonetheless, yet it will still have some of the trappings and pretences of democracy. That is why I feel that human civilazation as a whole is on the decline. I suppose, however, since progress like temperature cannot have runaway upwards movement in perpetuity, that now is the time for such if there is ever a fitting time. I do not think we shall be wiped out, but I find it difficult to avoid the conclusion that much unnecessary suffering will come out of this for quite some time. Yet there is such a slow pace in its development that few will see it for what it is, if indeed we ever do, until it is too late.

    In a revolution, the existing order must be swept away. It must be replaced and its formerly fundamental guiding principles dissolved. Upon a new foundation must rise the new society. Yet when freedom of thought and speech are constrained, as will necessarily happen (this ‘debate’ is just a precursor), when reality is filtered and shaped around ideals instead of the opposite, such a society cannot succeed even if it lasts long. That is the lesson of the French Revolution, and its contrast with the American Revolution.

  18. Nice observations, Stefan. You and I are kindred spirits in that regard: seeking past the surface for the real answers. Such is why I have never thought AGW to be of any scientific consequence. It is purely and wholely political. It is a life philosophy. Its spirit is unequivocally global, and its political philosophy idealistic and anti-democratic. The breadth of it is quite comprehensive.

    As a movement, it seeks a solution for a problem it terms as immediate, yet it provides nowhere to go in practical terms once the problem is solved. In fact, for Warmists to succeed, their ‘problem’ must be perpetual, unless economies-of-scale undergo some radical transformation that negate Warmist arguments. Yet its principles are sufficiently broad, even if its aims are not, to attract a lot of support, varying from activists to uneasy moderates. There is a very broad and comprehensive re-education program underway, and the media is rather tightly controlled. If we did not have the Internet (and who knows how long that will remain relatively free of censorship or relatively cheap) who knows in what kind of shape we should be in now. Were it not so real, and yet surreal, I should find it dispassionately fascinating.

  19. He’s a physicist? Seems to lack basic engineering principles. If he thinks solar, which is a very diffused energy source, will produce less effect/footprint than nuclear or even coal (which are far more concentrated & efficient sources), then he’s either dishonest or lost in green la-la-land.

  20. This guy is teaching that the greenhouse effect on Venus can and will happen on Earth due to human emissions.
    Does this so-called “professor” deny that Venus has an entirely different environment, with C02 comprising 96.5% of the atmosphere, with virtually no water, and a surface pressure of about 90 times higher than that on Earth?
    He isn’t interested in debate any more than Gore is.
    I feel sorry for the students who have to listen to that nonsense, and regurgitate it if they want to pass. Their indoctrinator holds the power, and they know it.

  21. “I’m no expert on economic policy, but I think we have to pay for [China’s] clean coal.”

    Well, he’s got the first part of the sentence right. Can you imagine what it would cost us (USA) to pay for China’s clean coal???

  22. Tom,

    I get that all the time. I know I should not be impolite about an opponents argument, but that idea, that earth’s atmosphere could become like that of Venus, is nothing short of idiotic. I have this thrown at me from time to time, and frankly, I have a hard time figuring out where to begin. I suppose it comes from the idea that, since Venus and earth have similar mass, and volume the planets atmospheres can be similar, or something like that. Never mind that Venus has no planetary magnetic field, no Moon, is exposed to a stunningly larger amount of solar radiation than earth, Venus has no oceans and appears not to have had them for at least 4 billion years, if ever, has an atmosphere 93 times more massive than earth’s (meaning any water vapor produced is elevated to the ionosphere and promptly blown away by the Solar Wind), no tectonic plates, the sun rises in the West on Venus, the Venusian ‘day’ (243 earth days) is longer than the Venusian year (224 earth days).

    But who am I to boggle over such trivia?

  23. Why is it justifiable for Al Gore to waste energy but not the rest of us? It’s very simple. He is better than us; his life is worth more than ours. He could spread the same message without private jets and mansions; heck – he could even still buy those “carbon credits” to compensate for his mansion if he didn’t live in a mansion! In fact, the money he would save by living moderately could then go towards more “carbon credits.” So, Al Gore wastes energy and it is ok. The rest of the population, though, is condemned for wasting energy. There really is only one explanation; Al Gore’s life is worth more than ours.

  24. Anyone getting depressed over all this? I get bits of depression mixed with anger and a bit of hopelessness, but I hope I have retained enough hopefulness to teleconnect to the universe to move the hope along. Argh!

    On the hopeful side:

    a) This site, Climate Audit and a few others.
    b) Palin being selected as VP – maybe she can bring some sanity if McCain will listen
    c) A trickle of main stream articles questioning the consensus.
    d) The science can not be stifled forever.
    e) Perhaps there will be a significant unintended positive consequence of our going down this path.
    f) Perhaps a greater power is testing our meddle.

    Also, on the hopeful side, I actually got a response to an e-mail I wrote to a local reporter in response to his article on Michael Mann’s 9/23 lecture at URI (http://www.uri.edu/hc/20080923_MMann.shtml.) His response was perhaps hopeful:

    “What’s troubling is how many serious people such as yourself sent me very similar notes. I will keep looking into this.”

    Anyone want to take bets on that? Oops! I just the lost the hopefulness, but I do feel better now :)

  25. I find some irony in my last post:

    We would probably borrow money from China to build clean coal plants IN China. Wouldn’t that be a kick in the pants?

  26. I have had several email conversations with Dr. Muller. I highly recommend his Physics for Future Presidents course (available free from UC Berkely and iTunes). Even though I admire him, he has reached a certain level of knowledge that scares me. My conversations with him were cut short because I disagreed with certain items he wrote. The items he disagreed with were of a nature that made me realize that something wasn’t quite right.

    I admire what he has done. When I listened to his lecture series, it was completely consistent with all the science I expected from someone like him. He never leaned on “authority”, he just presented how things worked. That is until he talked about Climate Change. Then he deferred to the IPCC as the most esteemed in their field and that it would be rude to suggest that they were wrong.

    He wrote a paper shredding Al Gore’s movie to pieces, proving just about every point Al made incorrect, but he still feels that CO2 is somehow a dire problem.

    How someone as esteemed as he can maintain the dissonance that must be there is mind boggling.

  27. Steve Berry (03:22:45) :

    “People will be loath to treat any future alarm as real. ”

    I actually think there are two potentially unintended positive consequences of the current “situation”:

    a) People will realize that “scientists” are not holier than thou, but are real people subject to the same personal and organizational susceptibilities as created the Wall Street banking/credit crisis, Enron, etc. Hopefully, that realization will manifest in improvement in self-policing in the scientific community and not some draconian regulations (which often have negative unintended consequences)

    b) The next generation of young people, being inspired to get into science to study climate, will bump into the real science. When they realize the magnitude of the fraud, they can come sheepishly back to their parents/grandparents and say “Mom/Dad. I’m so sorry. I was so idealistic and the pictures, video and music were so inspiring. I will dedicate my life to making sure that our society will never be subjecte to this again.”

  28. …it cements much of what I and many others have been saying for months about Gore’s outright distortion of facts and Hansens selective cherry picking

    Months??? How about YEARS!!!

  29. Just a few of my cents real quickly ->

    People who are making the cliche Animal Farm analogy are missing the point and really not accurately painting the picture. (Note that I am neither endorsing nor dismissing the argument from the quoted interview, this is just for the sake of discussion).

    The argument isn’t that Al Gore is personally justified in having a larger carbon footprint than other people; this is a strawman. It seems that time and time again, a certain flavor of skeptic likes to bring a decidedly political twist into the debate, alleging that AGW is a vessel for greater socialization or broadening of government. This completely misses the point and is nothing but an attempt to cast AGW as a false bogeyman; it is rooted in almost no truth.

    Even the most dramatic plans of “carbon taxing” rarely extend to the individual. Although it is common (at least from what I’ve seen) for some skeptics to sarcastically predict a future of “carbon audits” akin to IRS tax audits, I have never actually seen anything of the like proposed. Legislation or ideas focused on combating growing carbon emissions – including ideas such as cap’n’trade or outright taxing – almost always focus on industry, and big industry at that. I’m not passing a judgment on this – I merely wish people would recognize that this is the actual field on which AGW-related policy stands, not on some farsical notion that people will have to carry around high-tech cards which accumulate how much carbon dioxide they’ve been emitting into the air while they breathe.

    Al Gore is not “more equal” than anyone else. You have to approach the idea of justifying his “carbon use” pragmatically and rationally. Al Gore is in a line of work which requires him to travel frequently and over great distances to meet with lawmakers and the public and talk about AGW. It would not be practical for him to carry out his line of work without using more carbon than the average American citizen. For example, I could drive a car to campus every single day; my dorm is about a mile to two miles from most of my classes. Or, I could walk or ride a bike – it makes little difference in my case, although these are ideally more “environmentally friendly” alternatives. So what do I do? Ignoring the fact that I don’t want to pay out the nose for gas, I walk to class.

    Does Al Gore have the same option as I do? No; flying on jets is his only one. So he does the next best thing – he chooses to fly commercially. He could fly a private jet I suppose, but he recognizes that this unnecessarily adds another polluting vehicle in the air and acts in such a manner that reduces not necessarily his personal carbon footprint, but society’s net contribution. HIs house is a similar story; we’re all familiar with the character-defaming story that his house uses an absurd amount of energy. That’s because his house is also a personal office building. So what does he do to offset this? He uses a great deal of renewable energy (in his case, solar). The net effect is that yes, he uses a great deal of energy, but it comes from renewable resources, not fossil fuels, which again reduces not necessarily his carbon footprint, but society’s.

    You can carry on your discussion about whether the facts in his presentation are 100% accurate or whether he is propagandizing or not. But it’s imperative that you be honest: the man is not a hypocrite, and all it takes to demonstrate it is a bit of rational analysis of the situation. After all, skeptics are supposed to be the rational ones who step back and analyze the situation – they’re not supposed to jump on partisan bickering based on false presumptions about policy and/or fact.

    REPLY: Mr. Rothernberg writes, “Even the most dramatic plans of “carbon taxing” rarely extend to the individual. ” Hmmm, that’s why my local city sustainability committee is recommending a “gas tax” as part of their city wide carbon assessment and mitigation. Citizens aka individuals, pay that tax.

    “he chooses to fly commercially” Here is the scoop on all Gore’s private jet
    http://motls.blogspot.com/2007/09/gulfstream-from-nashville.html

    “yes, he uses a great deal of energy, but it comes from renewable resources, not fossil fuels,” Note: Jet fuel That’s not fossil based petroleum? You can’t even get your research correct at a basic level, literally you missed the plane.

    But here is the kicker:

    You wrote: “But it’s imperative that you be honest: the man is not a hypocrite,” Imperative that WE be honest????

    Counters WE aren’t the ones pushing this issue, WE aren’t the ones with conspicuous consumption, WE aren’t the ones who knowingly continue to make false statements, proven false by court and by science, to further the goal , WE aren’t the ones that refuse debate, WE aren’t the ones that deny the press access to our presentations as Gore does, WE aren’t the ones selling ourselves carbon credits from a company we setup, WE aren’t the ones taking millions in donations with no accountability.

    You saying that WE need to be honest in the face of these things? Truly I’m insulted, and you’ve insulted the readership. You’ve crossed a line.

    Mr. Rotherberg, you sir are not welcome here in my home anymore. Get out of my house on the Internet! – Anthony Watts

  30. To Bobby Lane

    Your elegant and wistful thoughts about the downward trend of culture left me feeling a gratitude laced with sadness.

    Gratitude for sharp minds that ‘get’ it.

    Gratitude for blogs like Anthony’s that permit the expression of divergent opinions.

    Sadness that the best may be behind us.

    Sadness that so many of my friends and acquaintances have succumbed to the Warmist mantra and march like lemmings toward the sea.

    I am old and may not see this all played out. I’d like to have left on an ‘up’ note, but take comfort in knowing that there will always be voices resisting the usurpation of our freedoms.

    “Were it not so real, and yet surreal, I should find it dispassionately fascinating.”

  31. “There really is only one explanation; Al Gore’s life is worth more than ours.”

    Actually, I believe the explanation is far simpler. Al Gore is in it for the money, nothing more, nothing less. Why the Gories don’t see through this shows magnitude and scope of the deception. Hudini would marvel at Gore’s ability to keep people focused on saving the planet from doom, which forces governments to adopt policies which mandate the use of the technology produced by companies that his venture firm owns large portions of, so that his bank account continues to grow.

    Ironic that most Gories detest business and capitalism, yet that’s what’s driving Al and his “Green Money Machine”. The fact that his lifestyle is a testament to his total disregard for the environment shouldn’t be all that surprising.

    Jim

  32. Re: Counters

    Amen, Anthony.

    There’s divergent opinion,

    and then there’s the insult – the lie nourished at the bosom of hypocrisy masquerading as reasoned dissension.

    Good riddance.

  33. Pingback: sonicfrog.net » Al Gore - Secretary of Exaggeration and Distortion!

  34. In several threads, not just this one, folks mention they don’t favor throwing pollution into the air just for the fun of it, or words to that effect. In reading that, I begin to wonder if conservation and care-for-the-environment are conceptually opposed to a position that CO2 is not a climate driver but climate driven. In my mind they are not mutually exclusive concepts.

    A second thought comes to mind. Research and development in industry used to be unfocused. AT&T’s Bell Labs was a prime example. The Big Bang Theory originated here, along with the development of digital sound and video. The transistor and laser also had their births in those New Jersey labs. While all these discoveries had some basis for telecommunications use, the researchers were free to explore the subject with few borders.

    But now we have focused R and D. The reason is simple, the unfocused research produces commercially viable ideas once in a while and is expensive. Focused R and D is dedicated on getting a money making idea to market quickly. Because speed and cost are such large factors, promising but off vision avenues are discarded in the race to production.

    In weaving these three thoughts together, I think we find the present AGW argument. Using clean coal technology as an example, if environmental concerns weren’t a focus of this group, we’d be cheering on changes that gave more power per coal pound than changes that cleaned the stack gasses of mercury and soot.

    In my view, the focus that R&D uses now is migrating over to science. The premise for grant applications is changing from something like “Explore the effects, if any, that CO2 has on worldwide climate,” to “Prove the existance of a positive link between increased CO2 and worldwide temperature”. Which gives more bang for the buck? Which has the greater promise of products for both the financial and manufacturing industries?

    Maybe, just maybe the problem is not the scientist at all, but the question that was asked. Maybe 42 is the correct answer but we’ve misunderstood the question.

    Mike

  35. “Even the most dramatic plans of “carbon taxing” rarely extend to the individual.”

    I can hardly believe that anyone could fall for this nonsense. Every single tax is paid by the individual.

    Thanks, Anthony

  36. counters: “Even the most dramatic plans of “carbon taxing” rarely extend to the individual.”

    I wouldn’t exactly agree – in the UK, only two years ago David Milliband was proposing this carbon allowance scheme, which would involve every citizen being issued with carbon ration cards. It has since fallen by the wayside, thank goodness.

    In line with the elegiac tone of many comments, I’d ask: is this the way the West ends, not with a bang (military conquest) but a whimper (self-inflicted Third World-dom?) I hope not.

  37. Counters,
    I do try not to poison the well, but sometimes a person poisons his own well. Your defense of Al Gore is so disingenuous that it will be hard for my thoughts not to be affected by it when reading your other comments.

    In various blogs, I have avoided discussing the personality or character of Al Gore; yet if there are actually people who believe as you do, then some type of statement should be made.

    The bottom line first. Al Gore is as much of a hypocrite as those TV pseudo-evangelists who engage in scandalous sexual or financial activities. And at least the latter are often apologetic and remorseful about it.

    Yes, a traveler will use more energy than a stay-at-home person, but much of Gore’s energy usage is not due to necessity – rather it is for his convenience and comfort. Regarding his home, he has added solar to his home, but that is like the politician who gets caught with a prostitute and then saying, “I won’t continue to see her.” Even after adding solar, he uses an immense amount of fossil fuel. And then there is his boat . . . .

    The home office as an excuse – ridiculous! I have a home office, but I do not use the type of energy he does. I added solar energy in the 1970s to my home – decades before Gore faced insurmountable scandal if he did not do something.

    His lack of honesty in his presentations should not be tolerated by people who agree with his politics, and people who do not agree should not have to suffer through the dishonesty. Have you seen his follow-up to AIT? While talking about declining Arctic ice and destruction of the shoreline, he shows a video of home tumbling down to the sea. In truth, the home actually was in Newfoundland, hundreds of miles south of the Arctic, and the home was lost due to construction and ponding issues, not due to the ocean. On another (but less obvious) note — but one which further taught me not to trust anything he says — he explains that the stratosphere continues to cool which shows that it must be CO2 causing the warming spell. However, data shows that the stratosphere hasn’t cooled for 13 or 14 years, and that time frame is longer than the warming spell that existed in the satellite era. (Naturally, one could argue that the warming spells of the twentieth century are longer than the satellite era, but we do not have stratospheric data pre-satellite, and one also should be suspicious of much pre-satellite information packaged by biased individuals.) Looking back to AIT, his attribution to Thompson for his hockey stick graph is a grievious form of dishonesty.

    Hypocrisy is one thing, but I am even more frightened with his conclusion. Consistent with his suggestion of civil disobedience, he concluded that individuals cannot be allowed to make their own energy choices. We must use the power of the gun (government) to force individuals to do what he wants accomplished. That is a frightening concept, especially when framed with misinformation and dishonesty.

    Regarding who pays for AGW legislation (or who is impacted by it), it is incredulous that you would maintain it is industry, not the indiviudal. Biofuels legislation — driven by the AGW agenda — has affected food prices, leading to food riots and deaths. California has discussed regulating home thermostate temperatures. A couple of decades ago, Minnesota instituted minimal purchases of gasoline at stations in a conservation effort. Logically, denials of coal plants will increase our dependence on foreign oil with plenty of impact on the individual. Any cap-and-trade policy will ultimately be paid for by the individual, not by industry.

  38. Anthony, please let counters back onto the comments. It’s always a good exercise to think through counters to his arguments. There aren’t many dissident voices here.

    REPLY: You have a point, we’ll see how contrite he is with an apology first. I’ve always encouraged debate, and to do that, we do need opposing POV’s. But at the same time telling me and the readership “you need to be honest” in the face of someone else pointing out Gore’s problems is way over the top. – Anthony

  39. “In line with the elegiac tone of many comments, I’d ask: is this the way the West ends, not with a bang (military conquest) but a whimper (self-inflicted Third World-dom?) I hope not.”
    —————————————

    “Shall we expect some transatlantic military giant, to step over the ocean, and crush us at a blow? Never! — All the armies of Europe, Asia and Africa combined, with all the treasure of the earth (our own excepted) in their military chest; with a Bonaparte for a commander, could not by force, take a drink from the Ohio, or make a track on the Blue Ridge, in a trial of a Thousand years. At what point, then, is the approach of danger to be expected? I answer, if it ever reach us, it must spring up amongst us. It cannot come from abroad. If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.”
    Abraham Lincoln

  40. They don’t care if they argue from a point of truth. They only care for the outcome.

    I have to say since we are not smart enough to figure anything out ourselves it sure is a good thing we have these enlightened people to show us the way.

    By the way, I just did a new post which is quite revealing about the math behind hockey sticks. I learned a few new things myself.

    http://noconsensus.wordpress.com/2008/10/07/demo-of-flawed-hockey-stick-math-using-actual-nh-data/

    I should really stop trying to think so hard.

  41. Al Gore uses 20 times as much energy. per year, as the average American. Or , 100 times as the global average.

    In one house.

    He owns at least 3.

    But the greatest hypocrisy is either:

    A) buying a condo in San Francisco, on the water front. Obviously even he does not believe his own statements on sea level rise.

    B) Accusing others of being energy company shills, when he has made 100 million on global warming. (His 2000 disclosure listed his wealth at 1-2 million. Forbes now estimates his wealth at 100 million. )

  42. Wow.

    Johnny B.

    Beautiful.

    Sobering.

    ” . . . If destruction be our lot, we must ourselves be its author and finisher. As a nation of freemen, we must live through all time, or die by suicide.”
    Abraham Lincoln

  43. To add on & emphasize what other posters have said:

    • In a civil society, the ends never justify the means. Lying for cause, no matter how noble some may perceive it to be, is unacceptable. That might be OK for some totalitarian governments, but not in a democracy.

    • If deliberate falsifications & exxagerations are needed to try to convince society that they should accept the AGW proposal, that is pretty much the definition of fraud. Perpetrators should go to jail as fraud is a crime.

    • This is fundamentally an issue of science. Science is about facts & data, not falsifications & exxagerations. They have no place in a scientific debate (now if we are talking a politcal debate, then that’s a different story …. )

    • Rhetorically, If science is about facts & data, why are “skeptics” called “deniers” when they are the ones looking at ALL the data & hypotheses. The fact is that it is the AGW crowd that routinely “denies” data & all other hypothesis about climate change. The skeptic crowd should address this by developing a nice negative label like they have given us.

  44. Thanks for the post. The book looks interesting enough to check it out, but the author’s apparent bias raises an important issue. Anyone who advises the president about science issues will be skewing public policy in a big way, not just for the next 4 – or 8 – years, but for a long time to come, since policies put in place now will likely have to be addressed in some way by future presidents.

    WRT the present candidates’ preparedness for, and their scripted replies to, these issues, I was struck by how the questions themselves frame the response.

    One of those (Q # 2), certainly demonstrates this. Just posing the question shapes the respondent’s answer, as well as the listener’s feelings about the issue.

    2. Climate Change. The Earth’s climate is changing and there is concern about the potentially adverse effects of these changes on life on the planet. What is your position on the following measures that have been proposed to address global climate change—a cap-and-trade system, a carbon tax, increased fuel-economy standards, or research? Are there other policies you would support?

    The implied biases here are obvious to readers of this site, starting with the presence of any climate-related questions to be fielded by a presidential candidate. Why should any politician have to concern himself with matters of the climate, rather than whether the people and the country are prepared to deal with its vicissitudes?

    Must our president seriously address whether climate on earth is a system which is Too Big To (Let It) Fail?

    Obama’s and McCain’s scripted replies to “The Top 14 Science Issues” is:

    http://www.sciencedebate2008.com/www/index.php?id=42

    Of course, the candidates’ views and knowledge about science issues are of great concern to the country and its economy. I’ll be watching to see how they address these issues “spontaneously” in their town hall style debate tonight.

  45. Counters:
    “Legislation or ideas focused on combating growing carbon emissions – including ideas such as cap’n’trade or outright taxing – almost always focus on industry, and big industry at that”

    How naive to think that industry wouldn’t pass on the cost to their customers, which are you and I.

  46. johnnyb, thanks for the Lincoln quote.

    I don’t think Richard Muller understands how much Al Gore’s hypocrisy undermines his own sales pitch; “do as I say, not as I do” is only slightly less obnoxious than “let ’em eat cake”.

  47. Johnnyb (10:46:21) :
    Thank you for the quote…that one gets saved!

    Anthony
    I regret that I must agree with your action on Counters. While we do need those who present the AGW argument to keep us honest and on our toes, his arguments seem to lack a certain touch of reality. We may express veiws that are flat wrong…but honest mistakes are honest mistakes and not a case of putting on blinders and drinking the coolaid…just as you are wonderfully strict on restricting personal attacks, we have to have some standards for intellectual honesty….

    Somewhat OT: The current use of the word conservation bothers me. In the 60s I took a course called “Conservation of Natural Resources”…it basically covered using resources efficiantly…the current definition seems to be more along the lines of “we used X much last year so next year we need to use X-1. That is NOT conservation…it is growth limitation under a different name…and limiting growth is a dead end…nature never stands still…at least not near the top of the food chain…if you don’t mind lilving like an alligator, then standing still works just fine…..
    cdl

  48. Al Gore is in a line of work which requires him to travel frequently and over great distances to meet with lawmakers and the public and talk about AGW. It would not be practical for him to carry out his line of work without using more carbon than the average American citizen

    Uhm… there is such a thing as TELECOMMUTING!!!

  49. Enquirer, can you give us an example of someone dying from the high cost (now, about $0.075/lb) of Field Corn?

  50. Steve M,

    Yes, I did a double take on that one. I had to reread it several times to make sure I hadn’t misread, but, he actually proposed that we (the United States) should pay to build ‘clean coal’ power plants in China to support their economic growth. ???

    Counters,

    Beg to differ in one respect. All taxes are ultimately paid by the consumer in the price of goods and services. It’s why I think Corporate taxes are, well, less than good policy. A Harvard Study a few years ago indicated that, in the US, the price of virtually every product carries roughly a 22% ‘hidden’ tax component. Don’t be fooled into thinking that ‘Carbon’ taxes applied to corporate entities are somehow different.

  51. “Most wind, wave and solar energy disinformation ….”

    Does JamesG happen to have some information to indicate that these technologies actual work and do not have huge environmental impact?

    While I an clearly an AGW skeptic, I have no problem coming up with a long list of good solutions like coal bed methane.

    The doom and gloom crowd are only interested in solutions that do not work.

    There is a very good reason that the white asked people who make electricity instead of a physicist from Berkley. Mitigating AGW has been an official high priority of the Bush administration.

    Please Dr. Scientist explain again why AGW should be a priority again. Maybe we change change policy to AGW to a super duper high priority.

    Just how public awareness do we need?

  52. Counters must be living in Wonderland. The carbon emission tax is indeed a tax on all of us. Is anyone gullible enough to believe industry won’t pass the cost on to the consumer?

  53. I’m disappointed in Richard Muller. Several years ago he was skeptical that CO2 is the cause of global warming. Apparently, he’s changed his tune… working for UC Berkeley, is he feeling pressure to switch sides and join the consensus?

  54. We always knew that truth never mattered to these people.

    Now, the rest of the world is seeing the lack of credibility from Gore and others on this issue.

    I loved the compare and contrast of the “so-called” Green Gore home versus the President’s home in Crawford, TX. One sucked down power and the other was very self-sufficient. We will let you guess which one was which! :)

    http://www.cookevilleweatherguy.com

  55. Here is a quote from David Suzuki:

    I’m not an economist but economists like Marc Jaccard of Simon Fraser University say that a carbon tax is the most effective way of influencing behaviour and believe me, having spent over 40 years trying to influence people’s behaviour, I can tell you that is very hard to do.

    If you can’t educate people to do what you want, the next step is to force them.

    There’s usually a reference to a man with a funny mustache in an internet comment like this, but I want to skip over him and bring up the other man with a funny mustache. This movement recruited with an attractive ideology, but didn’t hesitate to impose things on its own countrymen, for their own good of course. But who do you blame? The charismatic/snake-charming leader, or the gullible/brain-washed followers who go out and do the dirty work? The person who incites the lynch mob, or the lynch mob?

    I’d blame an educational system which devalues scientific thinking. Without that, we are animals. Protect us from human nature.

  56. I lurk, but rarely post.

    After 3 tours in Iraq and a 28 year career serving our country, a bit bloodied out there, I decided to go back to school. After all, what is an EOD ( was unhinged and would knowingly walk up to ordnance and try to make it happy – until we got robots! lol) tech supposed to do in private industry? :)
    I have found that they are teaching AGW as a matter of fact in “science” classes. The product they churn out is alarmingly ignorant of a great many things involving the “science” of climate.

    But they can chant “Sustainabe “x””, “Carbon bad” and a host of other nonsensical garbage.

    Even when it’s shown that CO2 can’t possibly be doing what is ascribed to it, our so-called educational establishment will have set us up for round two of whatever the flavor may be of the next “anthropogenically” caused crisis

  57. Paul Linsay (10:36:43) :

    Anthony, please let counters back onto the comments. It’s always a good exercise to think through counters to his arguments. There aren’t many dissident voices here.

    I have to concur with the banishment. Counters’ early posts raised some interesting points, but lately they’ve had less and science and more and more agitation. The last post is just over the top. Perhaps he’ll learn a little bit more about how money flows between individuals, corporations, and government after he leaves the Ivory Tower for real life.

    Everything useful he had to say he’s said.

    Now that Leif Sval-however-he-spells-it, the old stuck-in-photosphere scientist, he’s a dissident worth keeping. :-) At least he gives me a good idea of what I have to learn to take him on. If I only had the time. I’d probably lose, anyway.

    On-topic:

    I read the interview last night (in between bouts of kidney stone pain), I saved the first quote in a collection of quotes for future reference. After reading this item, I realized I read it as Gore’s technique, but forgot that it was coming from a True Scientist(tm). So I saved that one too.

    I find it very disappointing, to put it mildly, that a scientist can exist who can set aside the basic tenets of scientific method and truth seeking to excuse the actions of anyone who doesn’t appreciate scientific method. In Gore’s case, it’s understandable. In Hansen’s case, it should drum him out of the scientific community. In Muller’s case he should explain the importance of scientific method to the other two.

    In case Dr. Muller comes reading:

    Sir, the URL hanging off my name goes to my essay Science, Method, Climatology, and Forgetting the Basics may be a useful refresher for you. While I am not a scientist, I could have been but my calling is programming computers. I am disappointed that you appear to have less respect for scientific method than I have.

  58. One really sad part about the AGW scam is that it will discredit real science. 20 years from now, when someone tells a creationist or a flying-saucer believer that the scientific consensus is against them, they’ll point out how the consensus was for AGW at the turn of the century. “They were wrong about that, and they’re wrong about this”.

  59. Al Gore is in a “line of work”? Funny, I never thought of it that way. I guess if he has a “line of work”, then so does the Mafia.
    I suppose he kisses his wife Tipper and says “bye, hon, I’m off for another day of spreading AGW propaganda, lies, and alarmism, in order to garner fame and fortune at the expense of scientific truth, freedom, raising energy costs, and lowering peoples standards of living worlwide.” “That’s nice, dear”, she says. “Have a nice day”.

  60. I hate these [implied expletive deleted] the most. The ones that act like they’re humoring you by conceding a few mundane and irrelevant points, all the while continuing to bleat the mantras anytime they can crowbar them into the conversation. Al Gore is a lying hypocrite. Nothing he says or does is for the good of anyone but himself. To “concede” that he necessarily exaggerates the effects of AGW is to spew the same arrogant, assumed-moral-high-ground, cognitive dissonance that Gore himself is guilty of. [snip] The people behind AGW are the same ones who were behind “political correctness” campaigns in the 90s. Wouldn’t they be surprised to feel the force of my lack of acceptance of both…

    We need to change the paradigm. These people no longer even feel shame openly admitting that they are lying and manipulating to get what they want. Instead of letting them control the game by reacting to whatever ridiculous proclamation they’re making today, we need to reject it all, and strike back with heavy prejudice. Al Gore seems to think civil disobedience is another acceptable means to an end on this issue. Considering that his private residence wastes more energy in a month than most of us do in a year, maybe we should take him up on his assertions. The new paradigm should necessitate strict accountablilty for one’s own words. Might as well start the implementation at the source of the problem.

  61. Time for a Pkatt stupid questions of the day.

    Im trying to ask this without opening the door for the same old us vs them argument so bear with me. We have all seen the charts of Co2 on a steady rise. Meanwhile, the temp of the world does its own rollercoaster. There was talk from the GW camp that Co2 forces warming. But on the other side of the debate there is talk that Co2 follows warming. So with our cooler temperatures have we seen a reduction of Co2 or is Co2 still on a steady rise? (Especially non human caused carbon) Will that be a delayed reaction? Will a recovery of Artic ice act like a big carbon sink or something? Anyhow, I was curious because from what I’ve read more carbon in a warm climate makes for a green earth, but what does more carbon in a cold climate do?

    Winter looks like it is going to come about 3 weeks early this year.. woot:(

    Well heck as long as Im asking questions.. Does the movement of magnetic north …http://gsc.nrcan.gc.ca/geomag/nmp/long_mvt_nmp_e.php … have any possible connection with the long term ice anomalies?

  62. The “climate crisis” is in reality a western nation environmentalist crisis – the environmentalists promote their beliefs, while the most of the world says “nonsense”.

    In July 2008 The Government of India published a National Action Plan on Climate Change, which states: “No firm link between the documented [climate] changes described below and warming due to anthropogenic climate change has yet been established.” India is taking a pragmatic approach and has no intention of cutting CO2 emissions if it affects its economic growth. The report Overview states: “India is determined that its per capita greenhouse gas emissions will at no point exceed that of developed countries even as we pursue our development objectives.”

    Russia also disagrees with the politicized western view. “Russian critics of the Kyoto Protocol … say that the theory underlying the pact lacks scientific basis. When President Vladimir Putin was weighing his options on the Kyoto Protocol the Russian Academy of Sciences strongly advised him to reject it as having “no scientific foundation.”” Russian scientists state: “There is no proven link between human activity and global warming. This problem is overshadowed by many fallacies and misconceptions that often form the basis for important political decisions” and “The current warming is evidently a natural process and utterly independent of hothouse gases“.

    China – the world’s largest greenhouse gas emitter – released its plan on climate change in 2007, supporting the rights of developing nations to pursue growth. The Chinese spokesman said “The consequences of inhibiting their development would be far greater than not doing anything to fight climate change … our general stance is that China will not commit to any quantified emissions reduction targets”.

    With China, India and Russia saying No to emissions reductions, the believers are out of luck with their CF lightbulbs and self-taxation.

  63. If the world does go into a cooling mode Joe Sixpack is not going to be willing to listen when a true world endangering event arises.

    And,

    what will be the consequences in the future when science does identify a real problem and no one believes the arguments?

    Yes, a point I continue to make.

    To think I once aligned myself with this camp. I am disgusted.

    I see no shame in reacting to a false alarm. The fault is not with you.

    In this case of AGW, very significant portions of the world’s GDP being misallocated.

    And even worse, economic growth is being prevented. With hideous results for the world’s poor.

    Bobby Lane: I agree with a lot of what you say, but I do NOT think either civilization or democracy is on the decline. Part of democracy is the freedom of idiots to go ’round the twist (and vote that way).

    As Churchill once remarked, a five-minute conversation with the average voter is the best argument against democracy.

  64. @Counters.

    “Even the most dramatic plans of “carbon taxing” rarely extend to the individual”

    The Australian Governments Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) due in 2010 is broadly based.

    As an indiviudal I expect to pay for it in the following ways.

    1. Through higher petrol (gas) prices when I fill up my car.
    2. Through higher electricity prices when I light my home.
    3. Through higher gas prices when I heat my home in winter.
    4. Through higher food prices (refridgeration, transport, shop lighting costs passed on to the end consumer) when I go to the supermarket.
    5. Through higher prices for all products (shops lighting, and other electricity costs passed onto the consumer) that I buy.

    I fully expect to pay a substantial TAX on nearly every transaction of modern life.

    If Anthony lets you back on this site – please explain why I wont have to pay those costs.

  65. @evanjones.

    Agreed. It is only the western european democracies and the anglo-saxon world that has been infected with the cultural virus of AGW.

    If we continue down the path of economic suicide the other major nations will very happily take world leadership away from the west.

  66. seeking past the surface for the real answers.

    Very often the surface yields great answers. But one must always be willing to do the necessary double-take!

    Even the most dramatic plans of “carbon taxing” rarely extend to the individual.
    . . .

    Legislation or ideas focused on combating growing carbon emissions – including ideas such as cap’n’trade or outright taxing – almost always focus on industry, and big industry at that.

    Oh. Lots and lots of individuals, then.

    Sadness that the best may be behind us.

    Now don’t you go getting all pessimistic on us!

    I am also a student of history and to my fellow historians I only ask that they take a gander at he world’s horrible past before thinking we are on the decline.

    Stupidity comes and goes. Fads ebb and flow. Most of the stupidities of the past were incredibly more stupid and incredibly more destructive than this AGW silliness.

  67. Taking from Anthony’s reply to counters, though this is not about the latter, I thought I would point out something rather obvious. He says:

    Mr. Rothernberg writes, “Even the most dramatic plans of “carbon taxing” rarely extend to the individual. ”

    This is about as dumb a statement as there has ever been. All taxation extends to the individual, period. Whether that is directly through government taxation or indirectly through higher prices for taxed goods. The consumer/voter/taxpayer are all the same person: the individual. Governments derive their monies from the taxpayer, and companies derive their monies from the consumer. We may say we are taxing this or that company, this or that good, or for this or that reason, but it still ALWAYS falls on the individual.

    Personally, this is what deeply dissatisfies me with both political parties. Neither of them, though especially the Democrats, have much real respect for the individual taxpayer. This is not about tax cuts. This is about wholesale fiscal responsibility, a poignant fact in the light of our latest government-originated and government-treated crisis.

  68. Maybe counters is becoming more extreme in his comments as the cognitive dissonance between his beliefs and the evidence grows.

  69. Sobering.

    He also said America was the last, best hope of earth.

    A bright hope. A good and moral hope. And one to which it has lived up in the generations since.

    It is true today. And it will be true for many tomorrows to come.

    You remember, say, 1970? Who was predicting how great the world would be today? It was all war, depletion, and environmental destruction. If we could have seen ahead we would never have believed it. Well, the future is like that, too. It will be magnificent beyond all our expectations–you’ll see.

  70. Rhetorically, If science is about facts & data, why are “skeptics” called “deniers” when they are the ones looking at ALL the data

    All the data the AGW “scientists” deign to release, anyway!

  71. It has been a tough day/week/month/year for all in many respects. Between AGW buried in the economic plan and lack of economics buried in the economic plan. No energy policy and no sunspots. I continue to work, hopefully.

  72. After 3 tours in Iraq

    Thank you for your service. Thank you for bringing freedom and democracy to Iraq.

    At least he gives me a good idea of what I have to learn to take him on. If I only had the time. I’d probably lose, anyway.

    Leif is an expert authority in his field, did you know? We are honored by his presence.

  73. counters (08:28:00) :

    “Even the most dramatic plans of “carbon taxing” rarely extend to the individual. Although it is common (at least from what I’ve seen) for some skeptics to sarcastically predict a future of “carbon audits” akin to IRS tax audits, I have never actually seen anything of the like proposed. Legislation or ideas focused on combating growing carbon emissions – including ideas such as cap’n’trade or outright taxing – almost always focus on industry, and big industry at that. I’m not passing a judgment on this – I merely wish people would recognize that this is the actual field on which AGW-related policy stands, not on some farsical notion that people will have to carry around high-tech cards which accumulate how much carbon dioxide they’ve been emitting into the air while they breathe.”

    “… rarely extend to the individual.”

    Governor Schwartzenegger and Algore both pay into a “carbon off-set” fund. Is this payment as an individual or as a company?

    “…predict a future of “carbon audits” akin to IRS tax audits..”

    You are obviously unaware of a proposal by a scientist in Australia to tax an individual for the CO2 exhaled over the course of a year.

    “Legislation or ideas focused on combating growing carbon emissions – including ideas such as cap’n’trade or outright taxing – almost always focus on industry, and big industry at that.”

    What does industry produce, and big industry at that? Products! Who buys these products? You and me. What happens to the cost of the product if the cost of producing increases? There! You have it. The product costs more.

    I recommend that you expand your curriculum to include economics and philosophy, with emphasis on logic, such that you may write a sentence in which you say that you are not passing judgement and then end the sentence by passing judgement.

    Breathe easy and try not to exhale CO2, or on the other end, not expel any CH4.

  74. “So with our cooler temperatures have we seen a reduction of Co2 or is Co2 still on a steady rise?”

    I would butcher the chemistry to go into any detail but the relationship of CO2 and H2O is a complex one which I’ve only studied as an aquarist of mean ability. There are sites devoted to the aquarist that do the best job I’ve seen in explaining the chemistry.

    CO2 readily dissolves in water. In your soft drink, under pressure, it forms carbonic acid in the large quantities present and also does so in the air where H2O is less abundant.

    In the oceans, CO2 is the buffering system; in smaller percentages, as currently, stealing hydrogen from water molecules to form a carbonate ion, raising the number of OH groups, raising the pH and making seawater basic. Currently the oceans are roughly at pH 8.2.

    As more CO2, SO2 or NO2 dissolves CO2 migrates to the bicarbonate ion as the pH drops (hydrogen ions are more common). As the pH further drops CO2 becomes acidic.

    The partial pressure of the dissolved CO2 controls its atmospheric abundance in direct relation the the ocean temperature. The daily flux between the oceans and atmosphere seems to be about 80 Gtons of CO2.

    However, in the presence of the overwhelming over-abundance of dissolved Ca and Mg at higher temps and lower pressures it precipitates out as carbonates of these metals, e.g., around the Bahamas. At higher pressure and lower temps, on the sea floor, CO2 again dissolves.

    No one really knows the lag between reduced heating of the oceans and a subsequent cooling of the oceans sufficient to reduce global atmospheric abundance, but it will eventually occur.

    Anthony had a post some months ago pointing out a change, an evident decrease in CO2, in the Mauna Loa graphs but this blip is being erased with adjustments made to the record as each month passes.

  75. Agreed. It is only the western european democracies and the anglo-saxon world that has been infected with the cultural virus of AGW.

    Not really. China thinks we should pay for them to make clean coal plants. Leaders of certain islands purported to be in the process of being overwhelmed by catastrophic sea level rise say we should help them. Opportunists aren’t relegated to the “west”.

  76. Pet Rock and the David Suzuki quote

    “I’m not an economist but economists like Marc Jaccard of Simon Fraser University say that a carbon tax is the most effective way of influencing behaviour and believe me, having spent over 40 years trying to influence people’s behaviour, I can tell you that is very hard to do.”

    As I understand it, an explicit tax is a more efficient than cap and trade, but the politicians can’t call it a tax. They hide the tax as cap and trade and make it worse because of the administrative waste.

    I wouldn’t necessarily mind a carbon tax, but only if other taxes are reduced proportionally. Also I suppose one could abolish all other corporate taxes and replace with a carbon tax. The net effect though should at least be no increase in total taxes, and ideally a reduction.

  77. On taxes not being passed to the individual…

    The only case where taxes would not be passed on is if the law made them take the tax out of profits and the taxed company was subject to financial audits .

    Let’s say that was the case, you would then need to have diligent auditors. And if the auditors weren’t diligent we could always fall back on congressional oversight.

  78. Evan,

    You may be correct. I cannot foretell the future of course. And it is quite possible that these anti-democratic forces masquerading in scientific and globally-minded garb may yet find their comeuppance from some source. Yet, as it stands right now, the United Nations and the European Union are among the least democratic and the most unquestioned institutions of the modern age. I am not meaning to say that democracy will be extinguished as a practice, yet it will and has been made increasingly ineffective on a global scale. Take the case of the two above in point. Mention the withdrawl of our membership in the UN, and the average person will start to wonder how we’ll solve any of our global problems even though the UN has never shown itself effective in doing so. Neither has our federal government; however, it and not the UN is our designated voice in the international sphere. Mention the EU to a European and you are almost guaranteed to get a similar reaction, yet they will have the same vagueness about how it operates or why they really need it in the first place. I don’t doubt that it is a truism that democracy gets more difficult as people get dumber and populations get larger. That is precisely my point.

    The argument of the Warmists and many of the Internationalist jet-setters is that our problems are global problems. That may be true on the surface. But if it is also true that all politics is local politics, whether the “local” is the family farm or the nation-state, then the idea of ‘global’ problems cannot reach further down than the surface. Global hunger is not a lack of food. Global poverty is not a lack of money or economic demand. Yet time and again what is pointed out is that we need multilateral international alliances to solve these ‘problems’ while the real roots of them go untouched and (perhaps purposefully) ignored.

    The Age of Democracy will pass with democracies still in existence. We have passed the Age of Kings by a good space, yet there are still kings of nations on this planet. This delusion about global warming will most probably still pass with robust scientific activity still in existence. Yet on an international and global scale we are led by transnational beauracratic structures that have little if any sympathy for democratic ideals. Their ultimate goal is ‘order’ and ‘structure’ but at the cost of freedom and general prosperity (always excepting themselves on those two, of course).

    As just one example, in popular referendums the EU’s original Constitution was rejected in 2 nations, and would probably have been rejected by another two if the referendums were continued. So now, having heard the People, the “colleagues” are intent on passing the Lisbon Treaty (essentially the original Constitution dressed up differently) via national legislatures where control is easier to maintain and the tranzi (transnational) mindset is predominate. The EU even has a parliament, much like the UN has a General Assembly, yet versus the EU Commission/Council of Ministers and the Security Council, respectively, these are relatively powerless and fractured. They ‘represent’ people only in the most abstract sense. This contrasts with our Constitution where, despite the modern emphasis on the president, the Founders always thought the most of the Congress.

    When human civilization, even willingly, chooses to divorce itself from reality to achieve some vision regardless of the costs involved, then it is unquestionably in decline. The next round of Kyoto talks, Kyoto II, should illustrate this quite clearly. The difference heretofore is that at least some nations had leaders that would call it like it is. There are still faint signs of resistance such as from the Czech president and the current US administration. Yet, over time, it is doubtful if these will last. Sacrifices are now called for by those with the least to lose. Al Gore is, at present, their primary representative.

  79. It is a mark of the tolerance of our host Anthony that he tolerated Mr Counters up until now. It is Anthony’s site and up to him to decide who contributes comments. Counters seemed to appear from time to time but his latest appearance was just one too many. You have been ‘counted’ out!

  80. I read Muller’s book last month. In my opinion, if he had omitted the chapter about global/warming climate change, his book would have been perfectly useful for science-informed policies.

    His discussion about global warming was somewhat hedged, but not sufficiently, to steer energy policy. This insistance of attributing everything about climate change to CO2 is going to get us all into more trouble than we’d like to have.

    It may be that it’s nothing more complicated than the fact that Muller’s still working and wants to continue.

    I think Roger Pielke Sr.’s book (with co-author William Cotton) “Human Impacts on Weather and Climate” provides a far better view of climate change, probable causes and how to deal with it. Pielke still seems to have widespread respect in the climatology community even though his views are more comprehensive than IPCC-types.

  81. LOL. Thanks Jeff.

    I realise my response was not very nuanced…

    By Cultural virus I mean an actual belief that is transmitted by various media from one individual to another.

    An opportunist can exploit another persons belief for their own gain without sharing that belief – hence not infected.

    My criteria for China being infected with the AGW virus would be for the Chinese Government to bring in and implement actual policies and programs to limit CO2 production based on and stated belief that man made CO2 emissions posed a direct threat of causing catastrophic climate change. Since that is not happening – not infected.

    By the above definition (in my part of the world) Australia is infected, and New Zealand is definently infected…

  82. Gary Gulrod

    No one really knows the lag between reduced heating of the oceans and a subsequent cooling of the oceans sufficient to reduce global atmospheric abundance, but it will eventually occur.

    I once made a complete SWAG of 60 years, right hereon WUWT.

  83. @ Jeff Alberts:
    The Opportunists are not necessarily believers. The believers are infected with the cultural AGW virus. For them the science is irrelevant – the debate is over. Guilt (i.e. original sin for being a rich westerner) has overcome rationality. The opportunists in many cases are not beleivers (like the ones you mention) – they simply see opportunilty.

  84. Ed

    Spot on. ALL taxes are felt by the individual. To anyone making or doing anything, the tax on them becomes a part of their cost. Any increase in their cost is reflected in the end user cost. Duh! Essentially all the money governments have period comes from taxes that the consumer absorbs in one way or another.

    I agree that the idea of a Carbon Tax on your breathing is hardly far fetched either. It could be a simple line item on a return, or a transparent cost against standard deductions etc. Like you point out, it’s already being discussed. Anyone who thinks that is far fetched is very naieve about government.

    You are spot on too in your point that corporations make things, the sale of which drives our economy. Why overtax them for doing so? This new fallacy that corporations are doing something wrong by making profits is absurd. They’re demonizing the American way. Bigger profits translate to bigger dividends in our 401Ks and pensions. Who wants to give that to the government? What would our government prefer drive our economy if not companies making the things we need at a competitive cost?

    It’s absurd how poorly the hysteria holds up to scrutiny. Yet more devout followers drink the kool-aid every day. You obviously don’t go so willingly. Cheers..

  85. In 2004 the United Nations University – World Institute for Development Economics Research (UNU-WIDER), published a study into possible scenarios for implementing a global tax. It states: “How can we find an extra US$50 billion for development funding? Our focus is on flows of resources from high-income to developing countries… Any foreseeable global tax will be introduced, not by a unitary world government, but as the result of concerted action by nation states… The taxation of environmental externalities is an obvious potential source of revenue. … Does this mean that the global tax should be levied at the same rate on all countries? To the extent that emissions impose environmental damage wherever they occur, the corrective tax should be the same. However, this needs to be moderated to take account of the unequal distribution of world income. Considerations of global justice point to poor countries bearing less of the cost burden, and may justify the tax being levied only on high-income or middle-income countries. … We are presupposing that the tax is indeed levied on individuals and firms in the form of a carbon levy… Suppose, however, that we have subsidiarity, where the burden on national governments is determined by their carbon emissions, but the national governments are free to decide how to raise the revenue. As noted above, they may for political or other reasons choose another taxbase.”

    In other words, the real concern is not CO2, but money.

  86. Jeff Alberts,

    Yes, exactly. There is nobody who will not stick their bowl out when the soup truck of other people’s tax dollars comes around to hand out free lunches via these august international agencies and meetings. Thank goodness we have such wise people handling our monies that they can tell when somebody is trying to get over on them by taking advantage of a perceived situation.

  87. Bill Marsh (12:57:00) : “. . . . . roughly a 22% ‘hidden’ tax component . . . . . ”

    i can not get my head around this. Am I too stupid to be here?

  88. This reminds me of Marie Antionette’s comments during the French Revoulition. While the people of Paris were starving she said “Let them eat cake”. How insesitive and arrogant an attitude

  89. What would happen if we just flat-out mined the carbonates from the sea floor? They’re stable when dry, and would thus cause a massive sink in that particular portion of the carbon cycle. Limestone is pretty soft, especially when waterlogged.

  90. Hypocrisy is nothing new for Gore. During the presidential campaign some enterprising reporter found out that Gore owned a house that he was renting to a family. Turned out the house was a wreck. In other words Gore was a slumlord. And here are some more skeletons.

  91. I have been reading through this thread while listening to today’s Presidential Debate on the radio, it has been an interesting experience in both respects.

    Of particular interest, of course, was Mr Counters’ contribution.

    It is often enlightening when those who speak with apparent authority on the scientific aspects of the AGW debate decide to dip their toe into the political waters. The scientific case for the alarmist cause is a necessary precondition to any of the political issues arising at all, but it is only a precondition. If the scientific case is made the baton changes hands and the debate is then political rather than scientific.

    I suspect that Mr Counters was doing nothing more than seeking to defend the side of the scientific debate to which he subscribes. In doing so he conflated political attacks on St Al of Gore with attacks on the science. In fact, 100% proof that St Al is a money-grubbing hypocrite would add precisely nothing to the scientific debate and, therefore, conceding that he is a money-grubbing hypocrite concedes nothing about the science. Equally, 100% proof that St Al believes everything he says and acts from a selfless desire to save the planet from disaster does not impinge one iota on the accuracy, validity or truth of the scientific arguments on which he relies.

    I have insufficient technical knowledge to say anything about the science other than that the AGW doomsday scenario sounds like fanciful nonsense to me. What do I base that on? My own personal version of common sense. Nothing else. My common sense is the only analytical tool I have at my disposal. This means that I concentrate my attention on something I am qualified to understand, namely the practical effect of the steps we are told we must take to stave-off doomsday.

    Mr Counters’ error was to carry his belief in the doomsday scenario into his assessment of those who question the “remedial” measures.

    There are, after all, only three possible “true” situations:
    (1) The AGW doomsday scenario is false. If this is the position, everything else in the debate is otiose, unless:
    (2) The AGW doomsday scenario is false but there are some deleterious consequences of man-made CO2. In this case we must assess what, if anything, can be done about those deleterious effects and weigh the cost of countering them against the cost of business-as-usual (an exercise in which the balance might change over time).
    (3) The AGW doomsday scenario is true. In this case we must assess what, if anything, we can do about it and weigh the costs of taking one or more of those actions against the cost of not taking them.

    There is no fourth option, although some seem to suggest there is. They say the AGW doomsday scenario is true and we must do what (often self-appointed) “experts” or, if you prefer, “authorities” say we must do. This is to miss a vital step in the analysis because it presumes not just that something must be done but that the one thing identified by the experts/authorities is what must be done. It fails to take into account that decisions about what, if anything, must be done is a political decision rather than a scientific one and is, therefore, a matter for debate and persuasion and not a matter for diktat.

    As for Mr Counters’ suggestion that additional taxes on business are not taxes on individuals, I am a kind man and will put that down to him not concentrating while typing. We all say silly things sometimes.

    And as for the debate, I thought they both did very well and wonder whether it will prove another example of the Kennedy-Nixon phenomenon of 1960 – those who listened thought one candidate won but the other was the victor for those who watched.

  92. Alan S. Blue (20:10:59) :
    What would happen if we just flat-out mined the carbonates from the sea floor?

    This shouldn’t have any effect. The presence of sea-floor carbonates has no influence on deposition of additional carbonates. Most basinal sea floor carbonates (vs reefal carbonates) are formed by pelagic oozes from planktonic organisms. I have seen proposals to “fertilize” the oceans to make these planktonic organisms thrive , thus increase the carbon sink.

    …. but that’s not the point – if there is no problem, then there is no need for a solution. It would just be a waste of taxpayers dollars & resources.

  93. I would like to address some philosophical aspects of the debate. The intellectual underpinning of the recent ( last 400 years, or so ) rise in Western civilization was the free and objective search for truth through scientific methods and inquiry. This started with Galileo and the heliocentric description of the Solar system which was very strongly resisted by the Catholic Church on religious and ideological grounds. When Copernicus’ and Galileo’s views prevailed, there was a tremendous burst of activity in scientific discoveries. Scientific inquiry has become extremely successful and well respected. Unfortunately, it has attracted the attention of the political class. There was a crude attempt by Stalin and Lysenko in Soviet Russia, where they attempted to manufacture “scientific” results to put the Soviet system in a more favorable light. However, that was nothing compared to Gore and Hansen multi decade efforts to create a sense of panic and emergency about Global Warming through the methods of political campaigns, directing funds to supporters, marginalizing opponents and most of all distorting scientific observations to serve their purposes. I am not particularly worried about Global Warming and everybody will be able to judge for themselves whether it is happening , or not. The biggest damage inflicted, however, was not on society or the economical impact. Science has been the biggest victim. It took scientific inquiry back to the days prior to Galileo, when the primary requirement for any thesis was that it conformed with the orthodoxy. Fortunately, science attracts bright and inquisitive people and if Galileo could come forth under much more difficult conditions, I am sure that there will be people not just the well known “skeptics”, who will come forward and challenge the existing orthodoxy.

  94. FB,

    What about option (4) AGW theories are true, the planet can be warmed through the actions of humanity, but the effects are positive and good for Mankind and Life As We Know It?

    Personally, I am skeptical of AGW. However, should it be the case that we CAN do something to warm the planet, I say let’s do it!

    Warmer is Better. Fight the Ice.

  95. That is included in (3), Mr Dubrasich, although it is helpful to isolate it to show that the wind does not necessarily always blow in one direction.

  96. I would like to point out an interesting article “How the Global Warming Hoax was Born”.

    see http://www.21stcenturysciencetech.com/Articles%202007/GWHoaxBorn.pdf

    In it is shown how Margaret Mead laid out the necessity for natural scientists to manufacture the science “that will allow us to start building a system of artificial but effective warnings, warnings which will parallel the instincts of animals who flee before the hurricane, pile up a larger store of nuts before a severe winter, or of caterpillars who respond to impending climatic changes by growing thicker coats [sic].” Note the ‘artificial warning’.

    The more I get into this business, the less I think this is about science, and more about modern eugenics and population control. There are some very serious players who actually hope modern civilization crumbles to save the planet. Prince Phillip has actually said, and I am paraphrasing, that he hopes he will be reincarnated as a lethal virus and infect billions of people to, ta da, save the planet.

    This explains many things, most notably how in many circles, the debate really isn’t about CO2 or global warming as evidenced by the rejection of nuclear or carbon capture. It is about population control through ending the developed countries growth and not letting the undeveloped countries develop.

    We are, I’m afraid, at a tipping point that was planned as far back as 1975 and set into motion in Rio in 1992. We have been duped and we will pay a tremendous price. Remember, once these laws are on the books, they will, most probably, never come off………….

  97. Anthony,

    Regarding you banishment of counters…one thing you may want to consider, all of his remarks were easily rebutted and the rug pulled out from under him. Debate needs to be encouraged and counters points were in the same context as the article. Your spanking of counters (in rebutting his points) was in effect a spanking of Mr Muller and the whole Gore movement.

    Remember the Pat Benatar song…Hit Me With Your Best Shot…bring ’em on.

    I would love to see Gavin or Mann or Hansen posting here on a regular basis and attempting to prove their sides theory. It would show that they are willing to put the planet/humanity before pride.

  98. EJ: “I would like to point out an interesting article “How the Global Warming Hoax was Born”.

    Dee Norriss: “The involvement of the Thatcher government in the birth of modern AGW propaganda was succinctly put forth by WUWT frequent commentator, Richard Courtney, in Global Warming: How It All Began”

    The 21st Century Science and Technology article claims that a “Global Warming Hoax” was birthed by Margaret Mead in 1975 for the purposes of eugenics and population control.

    The Richard Courtney article claims that global warming is not a conspiracy, but was nevertheless created by Margaret Thatcher for political purposes, and was picked up by interests driven by motives of wealth and power.

    Now I’m confused. Is AGW a hoax or is it a non-conspiratorial conjunction of interests? Was it created by Margaret Mead in 1975, or by Margaret Thatcher, perhaps in 1979, or maybe later? Is its purpose eugenics and population control, or wealth and power?

  99. By: Ralph B. from Comments on: Some raw answers about Gore and Hansen by Ralph B.

    Anthony,

    Regarding you banishment of counters…

    Total good riddance.

    I hope we debate this in depth. (Acknowledging said debate is irrelevant to whatever Anthony does.)

    For now, I have to leave for a while. Just know that I think talking with counters is a detrimental waste of community time and resources.

  100. Are they not getting it? At all? I came across this in a lifestyle magazine I perused while waiting at an orthodontist’s office.

    Hypocretin?

  101. The quote missing from my previous post is…

    Sir Richard Branson looks to the skies over Necker Island, one of the four Caribbean islands he owns. The Virgin tycoon defends his jet-set lifestyle. “I honestly think that the problem with CO2 emissions is not going to be solved by Richard Branson travelling less often by plane,” he says. “It’s a global problem on a totally different scale.”

  102. I’ve read to this point, and as always I am beyond impressed with the quality of commenting I’m reading. Even the banished are far more coherent and well-mannered than many in other forums and blogs I regularly follow.

    My own comments? Not, I fear, as eloquent or groundbreaking as others here, but that won’t stop me from typing them.

    al-Gore has decided to bring himself into the cult of personality, or “superstardom”, and plays the martyr role quite well. “Why, oh why, do those horrible right-wing polluters hate the Earth so much? Why do they argue against the science that my advisers tell me will fool… er, convince them?”

    Hansen? NOT so good at the cult of personality martyrdom role. “This administration is trying to SILENCE MY VOICE!!!!!” (Don’t look at the massive list of publications, data manipulations, public appearances, pontifications, etc…)

    Either way… I run into this argument on a regular basis: “even if we’re NOT….. shouldn’t we…..” This is not an argument. It is a childishly naive way to follow the instructions that are programmed into your brain.

    If we’re not increasing the atmospheric load of CO2, if some other process is at work causing the incremental rise, then reducing CO2 output is absolutely worthless.

    If the rising CO2 is not affecting climate as the alarmists claim, then reducing CO2 output is absolutely worthless, and worrying about whether or not our contribution is causing the atmospheric increase is moot.

    If the solar factor is greater than that credited by alarmists, then reducing CO2 output is absolutely worthless.

    But everyone reading this (both of you who got this far) already know this. What I mostly object to is being LIED TO. I despise it. Lying to someone implies that you think they are too stupid to know you are lying, too clueless to find out facts for themselves, and probably denotes that you are too arrogant to even care. These are characteristics I have seen demonstrated amply by Gore and Hansen, and David Suzuki, and Greenpeace, and virtually every other person or entity associated with “environmentalism”.

    Is there anything the “environmentalist movement” ever got right? Anything? DDT? Dead wrong. Ozone? Dead wrong. Rainforest? Dead wrong. Ice Age? Dead wrong. Global warming? Dead wrong.

    Ah, but they KNOW they are wrong. And that is the part that enrages me. I really truly don’t care about the science or the argument when it comes to some arrogant, ignorant blowhard LYING to me, and it’s even more infuriating when they use my public money (CBC for Suzuki, NASA for Hansen) to lie right at me.

    Anyway there’s my soapbox. (And for the record, bye bye counters, I won’t miss you).

  103. Brendan,

    Now I’m confused. Is AGW a hoax or is it a non-conspiratorial conjunction of interests? Was it created by Margaret Mead in 1975, or by Margaret Thatcher, perhaps in 1979, or maybe later? Is its purpose eugenics and population control, or wealth and power?

    It’s actually a lot worse than you think, Brendan. See here for the definitive truth.

    JP.

  104. coming next year…

    Climate Entitlements !

    ‘‘(a) FUNDS ESTABLISHED.—There are established in the Treasury of the United States the following funds:
    ‘‘(1) The Climate Change Management Fund.
    ‘‘(2) The National Energy Efficiency Fund.
    ‘‘(3) The Low Income Consumer Climate Change Rebate Fund.
    ‘‘(4) The Consumer Climate Change Rebate Fund.
    ‘‘(5) The Supplemental Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund.
    ‘‘(6) The Low-Carbon Technology Fund.
    ‘‘(7) The Green Jobs Fund.
    ‘‘(8) The National Climate Change Adaptation Fund.
    ‘‘(9) The Natural Resource Climate Change Adaptation Fund.
    ‘‘(10) The International Clean Technology and Adaptation Fund.
    ‘‘(11) The Strategic Reserve Fund.

    How much is all this going to cost?

    Not to worry! You get a REBATE !

    There’s even a “Green Jobs Fund,” so when you lose your real job, the government will give you a Green Job! EVERYBODY WINS!

  105. @ John and Brendan:

    Have you considered that perhaps the conjunction of interests continued to grow? And without a through examination of the interests involved with the AGW movement, it could seem like a conspiracy to some?

    Since both of you are committed believers, I don’t expect either of you to address the subject matter brought up by myself and EJ. Sort of the same way I expect that Brendan will never provide the oft-requested methodology for that questionable survey he was waving around here a few weeks ago.

    How can anyone trust your pronouncements on the science of AGW when you do yourselves a huge disservice with this sort of behavior?

  106. More from the ” Dingell-Boucher bill, ” dang near certain to pass the congress next year (maybe this year).

    Here’s a “Green Job” for you:

    ” Sec. 727 Green Jobs Training, (C) Energy Efficiency Engineers Program.

    ‘(3) GRANTS.—The program under this subsection shall include grants from the Secretary to companies hiring and training energy efficiency engineers to match up to 50 percent of the salaries and apprenticeship training costs for those engineers. The grants shall be made available only upon the completion by the engineers of a minimum apprenticeship period of 2 years. ”

    YOU can become an “Energy Efficiency Engineer” and get two years of taxpayer-paid training !

    (I wonder how many “energy efficiency engineers” it really does take to change a compact fluorescent light bulb.)

    http://planetgore.nationalreview.com/

  107. Brendan H
    Now I’m confused. Is AGW a hoax or is it a non-conspiratorial conjunction of interests? Was it created by Margaret Mead in 1975, or by Margaret Thatcher, perhaps in 1979, or maybe later? Is its purpose eugenics and population control, or wealth and power?

    The simplistic answer to your questions is “YES!”
    It was a flawed scientific theory used to support an agenda…and everyone else climed aboard. It goes to the old saying, that if you want to be seen as a leader, find a parade and get in front of it. That is clearly what algor has done. AGW is a broad enough concept that virtually anyone can find a way to hitch on and and make a buck, or promote their favorite agenda. Examples are far too numerous to mention. Fellow travelers all. The first test is: If what they are promoting will give them more power or money, then it is about the money and power. If what they propose forwards their personal agenda, then it is about the agenda. Mead had one…so did Thatcher. If they have just moved several miles inland and are telling everyone to get the hell away from the coast…THEN the may actually believe in AGW. Don’t look at what they say…look at what they DO!
    Everything cycles and this too shall pass. In not so many years AGW will go into the dustbin of history along with “the earth is flat” and “Communism Works”. The real problem is the enormous damage AGW will do before it fades away.
    cdl

  108. THEY JUST CAN’T WAIT to inflict a full-blown CLIMATE TAKEOVER on an already struggling economy

    http://energycommerce.house.gov/Climate_Change/CLIM08_001_xml.pdf

    TITLE I—CAP AND TRADE PROGRAM
    Sec. 101. Amendment of Clean Air Act.

    ‘‘TITLE VII—GREENHOUSE GAS CAP AND TRADE PROGRAM

    ‘‘PART A—DESIGNATION AND REGISTRATION OF GREENHOUSE GASES
    ‘‘Sec. 701. Designation of greenhouse gases.
    ‘‘Sec. 702. Carbon dioxide equivalent value of greenhouse gases.
    ‘‘Sec. 703. Greenhouse gas registry.

    ‘‘PART B—CAP AND TRADE PROGRAM RULES
    ‘‘Sec. 711. Emission allowances.
    ‘‘Sec. 712. Compliance obligation.
    ‘‘Sec. 713. Penalty for noncompliance.
    ‘‘Sec. 714. Trading.
    ‘‘Sec. 715. Banking and borrowing.
    ‘‘Sec. 716. Strategic reserve.
    ‘‘Sec. 717. Permits.

    ‘‘PART D—DOMESTIC OFFSETS PROGRAM

    ‘‘PART E—INTERNATIONAL EMISSION ALLOWANCES AND OFFSET CREDITS

    ‘‘PART G—INTERNATIONAL RESERVE ALLOWANCE PROGRAM

    TITLE II—CARBON MARKET OVERSIGHT

    ‘‘PART IV—REGULATION OF CARBON MARKETS

    TITLE IV—HYDROFLUOROCARBONS
    Sec. 401. HFC regulation.
    Sec. 402. Excise tax on hydrofluorocarbons.

  109. I think I want to step back and be the apologist for Counters for a few moments.

    Mr Counters is a 2nd year student at the Ag college in a university about 100 miles to the NW of me (FYI, this is all publicly available information from his university’s website). It is a pretty good school (my father is an alumni of the same university, different college) and to get in it requires a degree of intelligence that Mr Counters clearly exhibits in his posts.

    In full disclosure, Mr Counters has taken a couple of swipes at me, most recently taking public offense at my recital of the accepted history of the Hitler Youth. He didn’t like the obvious similarities that arose in his mind when contrasted to the AGW youth movement. I am equally offended by these similarities, too.

    My daughter is about his age and sometimes spouts the same sort of received notions without any careful reflection before hand. When I call her on it, show the facts (sometimes even just suggest there is an alternate explanation), she shrilly denounces my data as a result of cognitive dissonance. Overtime I admitted that I was no different as a youth and that only by repeatedly discovering that my dearest preconceptions were false (sort of like realizing one’s parents had sex as a child), did I see the wisdom of being right all the time by changing my mind when confronted by superior data rather than trying to force everyone to agree with my notions.

    I say let him back. I am confident enough in my knowledge to withstands his slings and arrows and I look forward to the day that Mr Counters is confident enough in his own knowledge to share his opinions under his real name as so many of us do and willing suffer the slings and arrows of others.

  110. No – counters must remain banned for ironic reasons. This is after all a thread about hypocrisy and the stifling of critical commentary.

    BTW I see ‘reliable’ UAH for September is up 0.17C while ‘untrustworthy’ NASA GISS is down 0.01C.

  111. Via Drudge work. A moment of unintentional candor

    http://www.reuters.com/article/GlobalEnvironment08/idUSTRE4966A220081007

    “A slowdown in the world economy may give the planet a breather from the excessively high carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions responsible for climate change, a Nobel Prize winning scientist [Paul J Crutzen] said on Tuesday.”

    Sounds like a pre-emptive attempt to cover all bases, one of these being the possibility of continued flat-lining or decline in global temps over the next decade. See? We told you it was CO2!

    “We could have a much slower increase of CO2 emissions in the atmosphere … people will start saving (on energy use) … but things may get worse if there is less money available for research and that would be serious.”

    Never mind the volume human misery that a deep and protracted global economic decline would cause. Grant money for Play-station climatologists might be cut!

    At least that is candid.

  112. Author Glass
    CO2 emmissions by country, and worldwide. Sorry I couldn’t find one in English
    http://www.iwr.de/klima/ausstoss_welt.html

    Weltweit = worldwide
    Ausstoss = emissions

    China emissions alone are growing more than 600 million tonnes per year. What Europe wants to cut back is peanuts in comparison. (Note: Europeans use a comma as a decimal point, and a point to denote thousands).

  113. Paul Crutzen’s claim that CO2 emissions may slow down are premature.
    Emissions are going up.

  114. I see a poster at CA asked what the net effect of the retrospective changes was on the global mean and did not get an answer. What kind of auditor finds ‘suspicious’ transactions but omits from their report the effect on the bottom line?

    And it looks like Lucia has simply confused the 250Km smoothed series with the 1200km ….

  115. Global Warming Rescued by Global Economy !!

    With at least a slowdown and possibly a full-blown global economic recession, the cooler climate this year and next can now be used to “PROVE” global warming !

    Demand for oil and gas is now significantly reduced by economic conditions – China, for example has stopped importing refined gasoline due to lack of demand.

    Reblended wholesale gasoline on the NY markets just fell below $2 a gallon.

    SO, when the global temperatures remain cool, we’ll know why – lower CO2 emissions due to the economic slowdown. Global warming now proven beyond doubt !

    I guess this also proves that a healthy economy is bad for the planet, and recession is “Green.” (Depression must be REALLY “Green”).

    (Unfortunately that pesky Mauna Loa CO2 will actually keep rising, but that is a mere technicality, to be dealt with in a future hockey stick paper).

  116. Pete (17:29:04) :

    Fine. We’ll simply raise costs to our customers to increase profits and pay for the increased taxes from our now greater profits.

    If you increase the carbon taxes to where there are no profits, there will be no companies left to tax.

    What’s your thing about companies having profits?

    What’s the matter with profits?

    You sound as if you are too young to remember the Carter years when prices were frozen on gasoline and so forth. We soon had no gasoline. I do remember the gas lines and do not want to see those days again.

  117. ‘The Register’ is now a reliable source of climate science?

    Perhaps you or Steve Goddard could answer the points raised by John Philip in the comments (Monday 5th May 2008 09:06 GMT)

    You wrote “The UK Meteorological Office’s Hadley Center for Climate Studies Had-Crut data shows worldwide temperatures declining since 1998. According to Hadley’s data, the earth is not much warmer now than it was than it was in 1878 or 1941. By contrast, NASA data shows worldwide temperatures increasing at a record pace – and nearly a full degree warmer than 1880.”

    1. Why did you choose different dates for the two data series? The NASA data starts in 1880 but you chose to go back to 1878 for Hadley, is it because 1878 happened to be >0.2C warmer?

    2. Historically you use whole year means. Fair enough, except for Hadley ‘present day’ you seem to be using the 2008 YEAR TO DATE anomaly of 0.232, which is distorted by the unusually cool (La Nina) Feb 08. Is this legitimate?

    3. Why did you use NASA’s own plot, but ‘roll your own’ for Hadley (on a different scale). There’s a perfectly good Hadley graph here: http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/info/warming/gtc2007.gif

    4. If the NASA figures show ‘record pace warming’ since 1998, why does their website say …”2007 tied 1998, which had leapt a remarkable 0.2°C above the prior record with the help of the “El Niño of the century”? http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/2007/

    5. Here are the numbers from the relevant years …

    Hadley : NASA

    1878 -0.018

    1880 -0.249 : -0.25

    1941 0.062 : 0.11

    1998 0.526 : 0.57

    2007 0.396 : 0.57

    2008 0.232 :

    Point-to-point comparisons really are not that legitimate, but using the Hadley full year figure for 2007 as ‘present day’ it is clear that

    – NASA does not show temperatures ‘increasing at record pace since 1998’, the delta is zero.

    – NASA 1880 to 2007 +0.82C, Hadley +0.64

    – NASA 1941 to 2007 +0.46C. Hadley +0.33

    Do you really see anything too troublesome there?

    6. Would it not be closer to the truth to say that since the (anomalously warm) 1998, a linear fit for both datasets show a modest warming, with the small difference entirely explicable by the difference in methodology? Something like this http://tamino.files.wordpress.com/2007/08/t1998.jpg ?

    Minor points: global mean temperatures are quoted with an uncertainty of around 0.1C, not 0.01C, The IPCC does not issue projections on a scale as short as a single decade (nor should they). US temperatures are a tiny fraction of the global mean.

    cheers

    JP

    Deja vu.

  118. ‘The Register’ is now a reliable source of climate science?

    Perhaps you or Steve Goddard could answer the points raised by John Philip in the comments (Monday 5th May 2008 09:06 GMT)

    You wrote “The UK Meteorological Office’s Hadley Center for Climate Studies Had-Crut data shows worldwide temperatures declining since 1998. According to Hadley’s data, the earth is not much warmer now than it was than it was in 1878 or 1941. By contrast, NASA data shows worldwide temperatures increasing at a record pace – and nearly a full degree warmer than 1880.”

    1. Why did you choose different dates for the two data series? The NASA data starts in 1880 but you chose to go back to 1878 for Hadley, is it because 1878 happened to be >0.2C warmer?

    2. Historically you use whole year means. Fair enough, except for Hadley ‘present day’ you seem to be using the 2008 YEAR TO DATE anomaly of 0.232, which is distorted by the unusually cool (La Nina) Feb 08. Is this legitimate?

    3. Why did you use NASA’s own plot, but ‘roll your own’ for Hadley (on a different scale). There’s a perfectly good Hadley graph here: http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/info/warming/gtc2007.gif

    4. If the NASA figures show ‘record pace warming’ since 1998, why does their website say …”2007 tied 1998, which had leapt a remarkable 0.2°C above the prior record with the help of the “El Niño of the century”? http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/2007/

    5. Here are the numbers from the relevant years …

    Hadley : NASA

    1878 -0.018
    1880 -0.249 : -0.25
    1941 0.062 : 0.11
    1998 0.526 : 0.57
    2007 0.396 : 0.57
    2008 0.232 :

    Point-to-point comparisons really are not that legitimate, but using the Hadley full year figure for 2007 as ‘present day’ it is clear that

    – NASA does not show temperatures ‘increasing at record pace since 1998’, the delta is zero.

    – NASA 1880 to 2007 +0.82C, Hadley +0.64

    – NASA 1941 to 2007 +0.46C. Hadley +0.33

    Do you really see anything too troublesome there?

    6. Would it not be closer to the truth to say that since the (anomalously warm) 1998, a linear fit for both datasets show a modest warming, with the small difference entirely explicable by the difference in methodology? Something like this http://tamino.files.wordpress.com/2007/08/t1998.jpg ?

    Minor points: global mean temperatures are quoted with an uncertainty of around 0.1C, not 0.01C, The IPCC does not issue projections on a scale as short as a single decade (nor should they). US temperatures are a tiny fraction of the global mean.

    cheers

    JP

    Deja vu.

  119. Dee Norris (06:58:01) : I think I want to step back and be the apologist for Counters for a few moments.

    Nothing good will come from allowing anyone license to slander, obfuscate and/or, deceive. I can list a bunch of bad — mainly, confusing and repelling new visitors.

    Anthony routinely makes It clear that AGW proponents are welcome. It would be good if we could find more willing to engage in true debate.

  120. Re: Censorship

    This is your site. Undeniably, it is up to you to say who can post on it.

    However, the very raison d’etre of this site, it seems to me, is to be an open forum. It cannot be open if points of view are censored.

    Some people posting on this site consider Mr Gore to be hypocritical and have said so either directly or by implication. Surely it is part and parcel of robust debate to allow someone else posting on the site to propose the converse, i.e. that the Gore critic her/himself is hypocritical.

    To allow the one and not the other is inconsistent with full open debate.

    Voltaire is (probably incorrectly) attributed with the words “I do not agree with what you say, but I defend to the death your right to say it.” I take exactly that view of the matter, and would be very disappointed in the event that this censorship of one person’s opinion be continued.

    I disagree with the opinion expressed, but I defend strongly the right to voice that opinion.

  121. “…try not to exhale CO2, or on the other end, not expel any CH4.”

    Nobody could question your green credentials, then, I’ll bet.

  122. To suggest, as Counters did, that us skeptics are trying to politicize the issue, is clearly disingenuous when one considers that the whole AGW farrago was overtly political right from the outset.
    Consider the almost indecently short period of time from the ‘discovery’ of AGW to the setting up of the Intergovernmental Panel for Climate Change (my bold), the Hadley Centre etc etc, together with the earmarking of billions in taxpayer’s money to fund research into AGW.
    If it wasn’t for this politicization then there would probably be a lot fewer skeptics around.

  123. JP—Nasa shows a 5:1 slope compared to satellite measurements over the last 10yrs. Only Nasa shows 2007 warmer or tied to 1998. One just needs to look at the station coverage as shown in the link provided for March 2008 to see why surface station data is crap.

  124. KitP
    “Does JamesG happen to have some information to indicate that these technologies actual work and do not have huge environmental impact?”
    If they had that much of an environmental impact then you wouldn’t expect Greenpeace to be recommending them. You can download their energy plan from their site. It’s really very well done and fairly realistic, except perhaps for the non-nuclear option. That has all the information you want though. Most, if not all of the supposed environmental impacts are straightforward disinformatiion and I know a lot of that comes from the nuclear industry because I worked there and I remember it well. They actively destroyed all other alternative energies in the UK and France by costing them wrongly (they were bizarrely given control over all alternative energies) and spreading barefaced lies. The big problems for wind, wave, solar are space required, intermittency and distribution. Spain though seems to get about 25% of it’s energy from wind. The key thing though is that the energy demand will keep on increasing, which will stretch fossil fuels mightily anyway, so we need to consider everything. I suspect we could be using solar and geothermal for our houses, wind, waves for remote locations, large geothermal for those who are lucky enough to have it – like Iceland and California. Fossil fuels and nuclear will of course still be required but I hope we focus on Thorium reactors since Uranium isn’t that plentiful. The French are doing most work on Thorium reactors currently.

  125. As the site becomes more popular then the “counters” will increase no doubt.
    At least an example has been set.
    It may well be called on more in the near future, as decreasing temperatures, will no doubt lead to increased levels of defence of AGW.
    At least one other forum I visit has recently been improved immensely for those that want to discuss and move on by the removal of
    one (serial) “contributor” who expressed intent was to stifle debate.
    Expressed or not that “intent” is reason enough,
    I feel Anthony here got it right,
    at the right time.
    It will pay dividends.

  126. Derek said – “At least an example has been set.”

    Indeed.

    If you say something which someone does not like (albeit that similar things have been said or implied in relation to those on the other side of the debate) you will be prevented from expressing any further opinion.

    And when Derek says – “It may well be called on more in the near future, as decreasing temperatures, will no doubt lead to increased levels of defence of AGW. – one can see why selective censorship is anathema to proper debate and the flow of ideas. Apparently you consider that an increase in defence of AGW is something to be repressed, and that would be a good thing!

    There is no distinction in principle between this kind of silencing of contrary opinion and the methods universally employed by all dictators and communist states to stifle any and all opposition.

  127. Kohl, there is a massive difference. Silencing someone’s increasingly bad tempered comments and ad-hom asides can hardly be compared with dictators and communists suppressing dissent.

    Personally, I WELCOME the rantings and ravings of most troll posters, they do their own point of view a great disservice. I LOVE when the politicians that I disagree with start mouthing off, they look so absolutely cartoonishly ridiculous that it can’t possibly help their cause.

    However, there is a line of decorum that should not be crossed by an adversarial poster, and I agree that line was crossed. Actually, it was crossed some time ago, but I’ll mix my metaphors and say this line crossing was the straw that broke the camel’s back.

    Either way, my own posts are usually summarily removed from sites that disagree with me. To me this remains one of the reasons my eyes were opened to what is happening with the entire AGW thing. If someone posts the slightest dissent on an AGW-endorsing site they are either immediately gone, mocked and banned, or the post is simply deleted. If someone posts the AGW line on virtually every “skeptical” site I’ve encountered they are almost always answered, politely, informatively. It is their response to the responses that determines whether they are misguided or a troll.

    Derek is correct: as the situation changes the supporters of AGW will abandon all attempts to appear reasonable and switch to the tactic of overwhelming and suppressing the facts. That will be the end result, and being prepared for the eventual onslaught can’t be bad.

  128. Kohl,
    Anthony has only banned a handful of people from this site. I think he probably knows what he is doing. I do agree that it should be kept to an absolute minimum, and I think that is what our host is doing. I like to think of this place more like it is Mr. Watts home. If you insult him, I don’t think it is wrong for him to keep the door closed to you. However, as I said, it is exceedingly rare.
    Mike Bryant
    PS I think he has had good reason to ban me once or three times and he hasn’t.

  129. Reply to: Kohl Piersen

    “Counters” aka Dan Rothenberg, has his own blog, which he puts a link to in every post he makes (see the links in the header of his posts, click his name). He is certainly welcome to say anything he wants there. I view this blog as my home on the Internet. I have invited guests and we have a lively debate daily, some have behaved badly, have insulted me and my other guests, and thus are not welcome in my home anymore. That’s not about free speech or censorship, since Mr, Rothenberg can post anything he wants anytime anywhere else on his own blog, in the free speech area of Princeton, or anywhere else. He’s certainly not censored.

    To use an analogy, say you had a modest dinner party consisting of salad and casserole, and one of the invited guests said that the meal served was “dishonestly presented”. This was because his neighbor (whom he admires) had a dinner party but was catered on thousands of dollars from donations, had shrimp, lobster, Filet Mignon, Dom Perignon champagne, limousine service, and free gift bags. He then proceeds to tell the host AND the guests that they should recognize that the modest dinner party they are at now is “dishonest” because the host doesn’t recognize these things as essential to having a proper dinner party.

    Would you invite him again?

    I should mention that he emailed me privately, and his first words were “I’m not much interested in an apology” and then proceeded to list several paragraphs of reasons why I’m wrong on many things. He had his chance to make amends.

    I suggest let’s all chip in and buy him the Dale Carnegie book How To Win Friends and Influence People

  130. As I noted in my first post: the site host has the undeniable right to have whomsoever he wishes on or off the site.

    But a blog site is not really a home. It is a place for (presumably) robust exchange. As I understand it, invective or bad-mouthed language etc etc which is unacceptable is simply ‘snipped’ (?) Surely, conditions in relation to ad hominem attacks could be placed upon a perpetrator without an outright and comprehensive banning of comment.

    CodeTech, you misunderstand the point of my comparison (and that may be my fault for not making it clear).

    It is just because there IS a difference between this banning and the repressive behaviour of dictators et al. that I invoked the comparison. My point is that there is no difference IN PRINCIPLE between one set of banning and another. Whilst the two cases are a world apart in factual terms, there is no distinction between the two in logical terms. A distinction made for the best of motives is, in the end, arbitrary.

    That is why I abhor any censorship of opinions. Not because all opinions are inherently worth listening to; clearly they are not. But because once having introduced the guillotine, all opinions are liable to be cut off irrespective of their merits.

    However, I’ve banged on about this sufficiently. I’ve stated my opinion and I’ll leave it at that.

  131. Wattsupwiththat,

    Sorry, I posted before I saw your latest.

    I take all of your points but remain uncomfortable with the idea of banning opinion. All the same, there is reason enough where someone is simply disruptive – that infringes on everybody else’s right to be heard.

    Anyway, as I said above, I’ll leave it at that and we can get back to the main point of the exercise, which on this thread is to consider Mr Gore and Dr Hanson and the merits or otherwise of their various statements and opinions.

  132. Jack Simmons (09:21:04) :

    My comment was mostly theoretical. In theory, the costs themselves would be audited, so a company couldn’t (in theory) raise costs to cover the taxes that should have been taken out of profits, without the auditors seeing it.

    But, I certainly agree that most companies are not theoretical and would in fact, “simply raise costs to our customers to increase profits and pay for the increased taxes from our now greater profits.”

    BTW, I believe that in Government contracts subject to Federal Acquisition Regulations, overhead rates are audited, as well as, to a lesser degree direct costs, and public companies are subject to audits, so my comment is not completely theoretical, if in fact a law or regulation was written that specified that taxes had to be taken from profits, but I have a suspicion that such a law could not (unconstitutional??) or would not ever be written.

    Also, on taxes, I don’t mind them as long as they align with spending. It’s the spending that is invariably expensive and that’s what I don’t like.

  133. Kohl Piersen (14:53:50) : ” . . . . . one can see why selective censorship is anathema to proper debate . . . . . ”

    Your post is an attempt at “emotional” manipulation.

    Order is enforced in structured fora — be it courtroom, classroom, or, a video conference of naked open source programmers.

    There is more to persuasion than stringing nice PC phases.

    Try again, not.

  134. “naked open source programmers”

    I am utterly dismayed, alarmed, upset and scandalised – OPEN SOURCE programmers!! ;-)

  135. That wasn’t pissing in the fireplace, it was merely passing a large amount of gas while not even trying to be silent and to keep moving. When Our Boy Ben matriculates from sophomorism and understands how farcical his defense of Gore is, he’ll be ready to learn.
    ===================================

  136. When kim learns to factcheck, kim’ll be ready to write. ‘Our Boy Ben’ should be ‘Our Dandy Dan’.
    ====================================

  137. AW is not banning opinion, he is banning attitude Mr. Pierson. I understand counters is just a kid, and I do admire his enthusiasm. However, sometimes even though you may have the most lucient point, if you throw flames with your rhetoric rather that reasoned, polite discussion, people have a right to say no more.

    Back on the topic. Telling is the lack of debate among the players with the outsiders. The players will refuse debate or even discussion of the science. Al Gore won’t even answer questions. You don’t see Mann et al (The Team) defending thier study. You never see Prince Phillip grilled about the science.

    You do see the IPCC hide behind freedom of information walls. You do see the precautionary principal invoked even though temps. are falling.

    I think one more climate conference should be held, and it should be open to anyone who has science to contribute to the debate.

    If the Team refuses to attend, then enough is said by them by not showing up. If they will not stick up for their science, then how can anyone else?

  138. Bobby Lane: I cannot foretell the future of course.

    And, of course, neither can I. But I enjoin you to draw a “trendline” from the Good Old Days (pick your century) to today.

    I think that the only reason it seems worse is that every little piece of bad news in the world winds up on our TVs and computers, often in living color.

    Back in the Old Days we never heard about any of that stuff–till the day the Mongols came and burned our village and made a pyramid out of all our skulls.

    Heck it used to be a cliche:
    “Doctor can you do anything for him?”
    “Nothing you people could afford.”
    (Actually, odds on he couldn’t do anything but dose you with laudanum no matter how rich you were, but never mind.)

    That sort of attitude buys a doctor a lawsuit (if not a criminal trial) nowadays.

    And that’s only the Industrialized West. Life in, say, India, China, or Latin America is so wildly better today than in even the recent past, that it staggers description and imagination. Even Africa is much better off.

    Comparing any point in the past–ANY point–with the present and the only possible conclusion is considerable optimism. Surely we who study history can see this.

    Yes, the world could go blooey at any point. But I think our odds are better now than they ever have been, and by a long shot.

  139. Wait. Didn’t the Rev say counters could drop a simple “I’m sorry” and be back in (marginally) good grace?

    So what’s the problem?

    that infringes on everybody else’s right to be heard.

    But not necessarily in one’s venue of choice. The Rev has clipped my wings on occasion, and he has every right to. Until and unless he comes around to my forum and clip my wings, he is–entirely–within his rights. What appears here reflects on him; therefore he has and should have right of arbitration.

  140. John Philip: “It’s actually a lot worse than you think, Brendan.”

    What, no Bilderbergers? But the Bilderbergers are key, I tell you, KEY!!

  141. Graig D. Lattig: “The simplistic answer to your questions is “YES!”

    So it’s all of the above. This AGW be mighty powerful science.

    “The first test is: If what they are promoting will give them more power or money, then it is about the money and power.”

    Which places most human activities under suspicion. Universal scepticism is a powerfully corrosive state of mind, especially in one so young. It inevitably leads to cynicism and utter nihilism, and a sad old age.

    You know, you seem like a smart young man. You should join us in the balmy companionship of the consensus. Relax and let your mind float downstream. As a bonus, there’s big money attached. Lots of warm babes. And much power. Renewable, of course.

  142. Dee Norriss: “And without a through examination of the interests involved with the AGW movement, it could seem like a conspiracy to some?”

    And “could seem like” is the operative phrase. Many years ago I spent an agreeable half-hour skimming a text called “None Dare Call It Conspiracy”. The author helpfully explained the glaring anomaly of the conspiracy in plain sight by referring to the children’s puzzle – not so popular nowadays – where faces and other shapes are ‘hidden’ within a drawing.

    To see the shapes one merely changed one’s perceptual orientation. I suppose that’s how it is with conspiracies, except it’s a matter of changing one’s conceptual orientation.

    But whether the claim is conspiracy or conjunction of interests, the fallacy is the same: even if it were shown conclusively that AGW were driven by a desire to annihilate the entire human race, that fact would not falsify AGW.

    “Since both of you are committed believers, I don’t expect either of you to address the subject matter brought up by myself and EJ.”

    I’m not sure what you’re referring to.

    “Sort of the same way I expect that Brendan will never provide the oft-requested methodology for that questionable survey he was waving around here a few weeks ago.”

    Que?

    Reply – Beg pardon. I had a senior moment and confused you with the other Branden (who vanished shortly after having ignored my request for the methodology for his cited survey). – Dee Norris

  143. Anthony: “I have invited guests and we have a lively debate daily, some have behaved badly, have insulted me and my other guests, and thus are not welcome in my home anymore.”

    Thanks for this clarification, Anthony. Two points:

    1. I will assume this ruling applies across the board to all posters.

    2. What about third parties? Does this ruling apply to them, or are they fair game?

  144. Brendan (23:45:25) That’s a pretty cynical point of view you’ve got there; what happens when the sun decides to chill everything? What’s the intent?
    ====================================

  145. Brendan (00:04:17) Open bar, everyone, Brendan’s kindly brought the booze.
    =============================================

  146. “Author Glass”

    Je vous remerci. M. Gosselin! I do have pretensions in the direction of authorship.

    By the way, wouldn’t a cold winter in North America and in Europe result in an increase in anthropogenic CO2 as a result of the increased BTU’s necessary for heating? I don’t necessarily mean another Maunder Minimum; a repeat of the winters of the late 1970’s, the memory of which is dear to this afficianado of negative numbers, would suffice.

  147. “Reply – Beg pardon. I had a senior moment and confused you with the other Branden (who vanished shortly after having ignored my request for the methodology for his cited survey). – Dee Norris”

    Yes, I was rather surprised at your accusation since I make a habit of supporting my claims with the relevant evidence.

    I am now even more surprised that you’ve confused me with someone of a different name.

    Reply – To err is human, to forgive is divine. Let’s move on. – Dee

  148. SOME say the world will end in fire,
    Some say in ice.
    From what I’ve tasted of desire
    I hold with those who favor fire.
    But if it had to perish twice, 5
    I think I know enough of hate
    To know that for destruction ice
    Is also great
    And would suffice.

    How can you not like a poet named Frost?

    Cold, entropy, is equally, and more basically deserving of reflection.

    Yours in the Maunder Minimum!

  149. Kim: “Brendan (23:45:25) That’s a pretty cynical point of view you’ve got there…”

    I wasn’t being entirely serious.

    “…what happens when the sun decides to chill everything? What’s the intent?”

    As far as I know, the sun doesn’t make decisions, nor have any intentions, but I could be wrong. You may wish to check with the sun people for a more authoritative view.

    Perhaps your question is: what is your [my] intent? Well, I was replying to this comment: “The first test is: If what they are promoting will give them more power or money, then it is about the money and power.”

    This comment places all political and business activity under a cloud. Understandable, perhaps, in today’s economic and political climate, but nevertheless it strikes me as unduly cynical. The fact that someone might gain wealth and power from a particular activity does not necessarily make that activity bogus. That’s why the ad hominen is a logical fallacy: the conclusion does not follow from the premise.

  150. Brendan (13:50:21) Well, sure, it was obvious that you weren’t being perfectly serious; what I meant by cynical was your casual acceptance of the consensus. And ‘intent’ was just thrown in to highlight the absurdity of some of this discussion about great natural forces little impacted by man, such as climate regulation.
    ==============================

  151. Robert Wood:

    I remember now, but did not make the connection at the time, so your reasoning is lost to me.

    60 years is a full cycle of the major oscillations (if not permutations thereof), was that the idea?

  152. Pingback: Is Global Warming Starving Science? « Watts Up With That?

  153. If you can tax carbon use, you control the essense of life.
    Who needs such control? Why?
    AGW/ACC is a political vehicle to advance the agenda of some pretty scary people. Science is just the useful tool to fuel it. Other useful tools will be found and used up as well.
    All famine is political. What will we get when we exceed our allotted carbon ration and are unable to pay?

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