US Chamber of commerce wants trial on global warming issue. Reader poll inside

Excerpts from  The LA Times story:

U.S. Chamber of Commerce seeks trial on global warming

USC-vs-EPA

By Jim Tankersley
August 25, 2009
Reporting from Washington

The nation’s largest business lobby wants to put the science of global warming on trial.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, trying to ward off potentially sweeping federal emissions regulations, is pushing the Environmental Protection Agency to hold a rare public hearing on the scientific evidence for man-made climate change.

Chamber officials say it would be “the Scopes monkey trial of the 21st century” — complete with witnesses, cross-examinations and a judge who would rule, essentially, on whether humans are warming the planet to dangerous effect.

“It would be evolution versus creationism,” said William Kovacs, the chamber’s senior vice president for environment, technology and regulatory affairs. “It would be the science of climate change on trial.”

The goal of the chamber, which represents 3 million large and small businesses, is to fend off potential emissions regulations by undercutting the scientific consensus over climate change. If the EPA denies the request, as expected, the chamber plans to take the fight to federal court.


The EPA is having none of it, calling a hearing a “waste of time” and saying that a threatened lawsuit by the chamber would be “frivolous.”

EPA spokesman Brendan Gilfillan said the agency based its proposed finding that global warming is a danger to public health “on the soundest peer-reviewed science available, which overwhelmingly indicates that climate change presents a threat to human health and welfare.”

The chamber proposal “brings to mind for me the Salem witch trials, based on myth,” said Brenda Ekwurzel, a climate scientist for the environmental group Union of Concerned Scientists. “In this case, it would be ignoring decades of publicly accessible evidence.”

The proposed finding has drawn more than 300,000 public comments. Many of them question scientists’ projections that rising temperatures will lead to increased mortality rates, harmful pollution and extreme weather events such as hurricanes.

In light of those comments, the chamber will tell the EPA in a filing today that a trial-style public hearing, which is allowed under the law but nearly unprecedented on this scale, is the only way to “make a fully informed, transparent decision with scientific integrity based on the actual record of the science.”

Read the complete LA Times story here

Website of the US Chamber of Commerce here

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169 thoughts on “US Chamber of commerce wants trial on global warming issue. Reader poll inside

  1. What was the film staring Billy Connelly, was it “The Man Who Sued God” becuase his insurance company would not pay out for a lightening strike, an “act of God”?

    So AGW-believers and AGW-sceptics have to prove their case? Awesome!

  2. I believe “The Man Who Sued God” was about a storm wrecking Billy’s character’s boat rather than a lightning strike. Fun movie though.

  3. Oh good grief. Putting “global warming” on trial. What are they going to do, sentence it to a time out until we need it?

    I find it a rather moronic idea, personally, but hey, I suppose those government workers need to do something to justify their paycheck. There certainly is a lot less “commerce” going on these days and they could probably use the work.

  4. OOPS, my apologies, I thought it was DEPARTMENT of Commerce, not Chamber of Commerce. Chamber of Commerce can do whatever it wants to.

  5. “…on the soundest peer-reviewed science available, …”

    An example of which being Mann’s ‘hockey stick’…

  6. The EPA only has to use delaying tactics – once Copenhagen is out of the way, science and evidence won’t matter anymore.

    Brendan Gilfillan is correct when he says that “climate change presents a threat to human health and welfare.” Unfortunately for him, it’s not global warming that is the threat, it’s global cooling. We all know warming is good and cooling is bad. We all know CO2 is good for plant life and thus all animal life.

  7. Excellent news, because ‘supported by an overwhelming consensus of scientists’, and ‘ignoring decades of publicly accessible evidence’ are claims without substance.

    In reality, the science behind AGW is weak, the historical data upon which the claimed warming is based has errors and uncertainties considerably larger than the supposed warming, and the projections of the climate models are just computer processed guesswork.

  8. Didn’t help with DDT did it? The judge ruled in favour of DDT – the science being totally sound. But what did the EPA do? Banned DDT and how many people died and still die as a consequence.

  9. Who picks who is the judge?

    Anybody assuming this could be “good news” is assuming that
    (1) the judge and trial (method of presenting evidence) are honest and
    (2) “truth” matters to the ecotheists who have adopted anti-industrial/anti-capitalism as their religion of choice.

  10. Anything less than a full blown trial, (with methodologies, data acquisition, data analysis, data interpretation, computer code, interpretations, conclusions, hypothesis and summaries laid out on the table and this data from both sides of the camp, needs to be investigated thoroughly), would be a crime against HUMANITY.

    Regards
    Polygirl

  11. I have suggested this before in the UK in the form of a trial under the auspices of the Royal Society but neither they nor the Met office want to play ball. The BBC is also not interested. Trying to arrange any sort of high level public debate with experts from either side- whether for science or entertainment- is highly problematic. Good luck to the US chamber of Commerce.

    Tonyb

  12. “Robert A Cook PE (00:47:35) :

    Who picks who is the judge?

    Anybody assuming this could be “good news” is assuming that
    (1) the judge and trial (method of presenting evidence) are honest and
    (2) “truth” matters to the ecotheists who have adopted anti-industrial/anti-capitalism as their religion of choice.”

    I was thinking this too, and similarly the DDT banning, wouldn’t be corrupted or biased at all would it? Copenhagen is in November/December so I reckon there will be a bit of a chill in the NH and here in the SH will be an normal to below normal Spring/Summer, probbaly, like the start of last Spring/Summer, on the cool side.

  13. Yes, yes, yes. This is the way to go. Put it on TV live like the OJ Trial. Blog it. Stream it. Make it big news. Subpoena all those tax payer funded data sets, proxies and opaque methodologies that .govs won’t release. Put Hansen, Mann, Jones and the rest of The Team in the dock under oath. Do the same with the skeptics. Total transparency. They want a consensus? End the debate? Time to act is now? Trillions of dollars in higher taxes? Let’s take it to court.

    May the best evidence carry the day!

  14. A friend of mine once hit a moose while driving home in the fog. When he came to, the sheriff and game warden were there, and cleared him to go home. He asked them for help putting the moose in the bed of his truck to take home. The warden said, “The moose herd is the property of the state.”
    “Is that so?” my friend replied. He then proceeded to sue the state of New Hampshire for letting its “herd” loose on the state highways without an orange reflective belt, no flashing wide load lights, and not in a clearly designated moose crossing with appropriate signage and lighting. He won and got a new pickup truck.
    The state legislature then voted the next year to allow people to keep their roadkill.

    Sometimes you have to hit the bureaucrats over the head with a lawsuit to make your point.

  15. Bad idea.

    A lawyer is no better at deciding a scientific hypothesis than a Pope or a King is. Or a Queen.

    Who is going to appoint the judge ?

  16. IANAL but the IPCC would undoubtedly come up in the case. Wouldn’t CRU data in the AR4 be subject to discovery?

  17. The entire global warming industry can only keep going if all the politicians, junk scientists, and “useful idiots” such as the BBC, The Guardian, etc. are never exposed to anyone who knows the truth.

    It’s all about who is hogging the microphone, and who’s interests are being served, and has absolutely nothing to do with real climate science.

  18. I am against such an idea as putting climate change on trial.

    How would such a thing be judged? Do scientific hypotheses require legal standing before they are accepted or dismissed? Who would be on the jury?

    I could see it could be possible to challenge individual scientists on their scientific conduct from a legal perspective but I fail to see the merits on putting AGW on trial.

    The reference to the Scopes Monkey trial is a really poor precedent since despite winnning the argument, Scopes was (correctly) convicted under the law which wasn’t repealed until the mid 1950s and evolutionary theory allowed into school biology textbooks. The law was the problem but the judge had no choice but to uphold the law.

    I can understand the frustration of climate realists with the bias of the media and the behavior of some prominent scientists and institutions but going to trial is no way to solve the question of whether AGW is real or not.

    We have already had in the UK the case of Simon Singh who was successfully sued by chiropractors for labeling their beliefs as effectively “deliberate and targeted dishonesty”

    I believe we should keep the law and science apart, lest we find scientific theories made illegal by misguided jurers and jurists.

  19. Not need to win,
    it’s enough to subpoena data/source code otherwise inaccessible.
    Highlighting the nature of “climate prediction” based on “sacred” codes etc.
    Just one PC related directive uncovered will generate a storm the MSM can’t ignore. Like pressuring a scientist if not follow the PC.

  20. I can just imagine the impact Mockton and a few others will have on the judge, I can see Anrhony being called as a witness, it would be a great TV show, could run for months.
    Of course you will have to get an impartial judge, one that wont be knobbled by the Govt.
    The EPA will run a mile rather than face a courtroom.

  21. The more I read about this subject, the more I believe that a lot of these climatologists aren’t scientists at all. According to the dictionary, “A scientific method consists of the collection of data through observation and experimentation, and the formulation and testing of hypotheses”, it doesn’t consist of doing these measurements, most of which are inaccurate, and then mashing them up with secret computer algorithms to make wild untestable (until they don’t happen) predictions. Even Professor Denzil Dexter did real testable experiments!

  22. “The law is an ass” said Mr Bumble.

    I can only hope that it works out for the Chamber and it can afford the best lawyers.

  23. What did a UK judge determine about an “Inconvenient Truth” just a few years ago? How many errors were found and what were they? But it’s still being praised as gospel by the warmistas.

  24. I admit that my first response when I read the title was “Bring it!”

    However…many have pointed out the pitfalls of such an approach. I don’t think this would “solve” anything in the end, BUT…it seems that the data sets AND the methodology would have to be released under these circumstances, which would benefit all.

    As a side note, notice that as predicted long ago here on WUWT, there is no mention of MAN-MADE or HUMAN-CAUSED or C02-INDUCED warming or climate change…only “climate change”.

    The fact that society is threatened by climate change is pretty much a “duh.” in my book, but that’s exactly the point here.

    JimB

  25. I wonder if the EPA is going to use the:
    “The science is settled. There’s universal consensus”
    argument.
    The CofC is correct to demand this. It needs to be televised.
    There ought to be a national referendum.

  26. The Bedford Level experiment tied up 19th Century scientist when their time might have been better spent doing their science. I cant help think that this will be a distraction too. The science will prevail in the end regardless of what the legal community thinks or concludes.

  27. I would love to see a fair trial, but I am not sure that this one would be that fair trial. It might not go as we would hope. It might be called a “big oil” or “corporate” show trail. I think the media would eat it alive.

    I would like the geologists, the engineers, and the physicists to join together and have a trial.

  28. Climate change is not proof of AGW.
    Climate change is always occurring. The EPA has to prove that its manmade. This is impossible with the data available today.

  29. The real problem is that AGW is a belief system and as such unarguable scientifically.

    That said, if this proposal is strongly resisted by the US EPA, then it would strengthen the plaintiff’s case.

    But always folks, remember who you are fighting – the STATE – and it’s our habit of leaving it to others to fix things that ultimately is the real reason we have this issue in the first place.

    If you Americans can’t snuff this AGW movement out now, with it’s assault on civil liberty, then the rest of us live in dread for the next socialist utopia.

  30. Support it 100%. It would basically be a slam dunk. When the average Joe sees what’s going on, public opinion would turn instantly.

  31. Some people simply believe that we are harming the planet and if the judgement says global warming is unfounded then that will just confirm their view that man fails to see the truth and fails to act. It is for all intents and purposes, a religious conviction, in the specific sense that they see preserving the environment as the one thing in life of most importance and value. Nature suffers because of man’s selfishness, basically. And future generations suffer because we won’t stop having kids… if you follow.

    But for most people, news that there is little evidence will be good news and we can just put it all in the proper context alongside real priorities. It would be the best thing for the planet if environmentalism became rational.

  32. It would prove nothing, decide nothing and turn into a circus a thousand times greater than the Scopes trial.

    I’ll put up some popcorn.

  33. Surely this can only be good? We’ve been crying out for a debate. I would think that the pro-AGW side will not want this: they have everything to lose.

  34. Can anybody point me to any material on the Chamber of Commerce website that corroborates the LA Times Article?

  35. When Cap and Trade barely passed in the House, with almost complete Republican opposition, the high water mark of the alarmist movement was reached. Legislation will fail in the Senate, and the way to stop the EPA is in court; whether it’s a whopper of a trial, or more likely, the constant hammering of thousands of littler trials. For the EPA to go forward is a last ditch second tier effort; they wanted it all legislated. Instead, we’ll see it litigated.

    And as the US goes, so goes the world. Australia, and New Zealand have already led the way for the industrialized world to respond, by backing off of carbon encumbering, and China and India have shown the way for the burgeoning world to respond; continue to use fossil fuel while spreading toxic clouds of guilt at the precious conceit of the Western elite. Copenhagen will collapse, and we’ll all go back to surviving as best we can. Maybe they can put a little windmill by the seashore for the tourists.

    And I’m highly amused for the reversal of roles that the alarmists are in for, after all the talk of flat earths, moon landings and creation. The bigger they come, the harder they fall.
    =======================================

  36. The problem is how to give some folk appropriate ways to change their tune without losing face. But I am sure that someone will be working on this. And how to get maximum coverage with enough of the truth leaking out.

    Nixon was impeached. Wegman testified the truth about Mann’s statistics even though he (and North, who agreed with Wegman’s assessmenht) were misrepresented by the press. Black civil rights has gained unthinkable successes – who’d-a-thunk there would be a black US President even 20 years ago? So even though America still has skeletons in her cupboard, she also has successes. Particularly regarding advancing human rights for most of her own folk (I cannot quite yet say “all”). Rome was not built in a day – but the US has a history of fighting for freedom. Keep it up folks.

  37. TonyB (00:51:18) :

    I have suggested this before in the UK in the form of a trial under the auspices of the Royal Society but neither they nor the Met office want to play ball. The BBC is also not interested. Trying to arrange any sort of high level public debate with experts from either side- whether for science or entertainment- is highly problematic. Good luck to the US chamber of Commerce.

    We almost got one when Red (Green?) Ken wanted to ban particular cars from London. If I remember correctly, Porsche at the very least were going to take it all the way. The resulting case may have opened up the debate nationally.

    RK would have been forced to prove, in court, that AGW was real and that banning high end cars was a move backed by the science and not just a vindictive hangover from his far left days. Unfortunately (for this purpose) he lost the next election.

    The only other court case/debate I can remember in the UK was over AG’s Sci-Fi flick being fed to young school children as Science-Fact.

    I don’t see much of a debate happening here until energy rationing starts to bite, unemployment rises to unacceptable levels and Winter death rates climb noticeably.

    Too many UK children have been hammered by the AGW mantra all their short lives and know nothing else. Spooky really (Village of the Damned spooky), listening to them repeat the mantra without question . If it were something as obvious as Communism being fed to them daily at School you can bet there would have been public debate here long ago.

    Funny that most of those (in my experience) supporting Carbon Taxes and energy rationing are employed in the public sector and don’t see the problem in destroying industry. They seem to believe they will be paid and pensioned regardless.

    Best wishes to US The Chamber of Commerce.

  38. I wish the Chamber the best of luck, if only to flush out some of the Czars such as Van Jones and Holdren, Lloyd, and Jackson, for what they really are and what their agenda truly is. There are others, but these are some of the most dangerous. But I suspect that the Chamber will be pressured out of actually filing suit. As for getting it before the Supreme Court, think about the latest appointee, and the fact that Obama will likely have the opportunity to appoint at least 1 perhaps 2 more before the next election.

    I keep hammering on the political power and money that is at the core of the AGW agenda, but apparently nobody is listening. The general public is too busy taking bribes (tax handouts, Cash for Clunkers, etc. ) from Obama’s operatives to notice what is really happening, and others are trying to position themselves to benefit from it; or are being threatened with financial or career ruination if they don’t toe the party line.

  39. The chamber proposal “brings to mind for me the Salem witch trials, based on myth,” said Brenda Ekwurzel, a climate scientist for the environmental group Union of Concerned Scientists. “In this case, it would be ignoring decades of publicly accessible evidence.”
    HAHAHAHAHA! As usual, the climate scientologist has things backwards and upside down. It is they, of course, who, in Salem witch trial fashion, have condemmed C02 as the culprit for all manner of natural disasters, climate related or not, based on a myth.
    If indeed there are “decades of publicly accessible evidence”, then it should be a cinch for them to win. So, why are they so afraid? “Waste of time”? Do they really think people won’t see that excuse? You can smell the fear.

  40. How exactly should we call a country where the scientific opinion would be decided by law? Reminds me the Galileo trial…

  41. First I am not a lawyer; second I am a Canadian. So I am not sure I am competent to make this comment. But it seems to me that it does not matter who the judge is. What matters is who has the burden of proof. Does the EPA have to prove that CO2 is a pollutant, or does the Chamber of Commerce have to prove that it is not a pollutant? I would be grateful, if there is a competent lawyer around, if that question could be answered. I suspect any judge, after hearing the evidence, would be able to rule if the party with the burden of proof has made it’s case.

  42. I would expect there would have to be a concrete definition of the words “threat to human health and welfare.” There then would have to be concrete proof as to the specific causes of the climate change that would be a ” threat to human health and welfare.” Then they would have to prove that human activity creates the specific causes. Then they would have to prove that the government could actually do anything about it.
    This is what I would expect but may not get. If the EPA stacks the court then they will have their legal judgement that AGW is true and needs to be adressed by government. How would we fight it then?

  43. Of course the EPA is opposed to a trial! Facts are a climate change advocate’s worst nightmare. The EPA knows that it will lose this trial, and badly. They are not stupid enough to fight a war they know they have no chance of winning. All they have is “peer-reviewed” studies, which in today’s world is now meaningless.

  44. I was interested in the ACU’s allusion to the Scopes monkey trial in part because I’ve just finished re-reading H L Mencken’s classic 1925 reports. This quote seems appropriate in our context:

    “If [Scopes lawyers] Darrow, Malone and Hays could make a month’s stumping tour in Rhea county I believe that fully a fourth of the population would repudiate Fundamentalism, and that not a few of the clergy now in practice would be restored to their old jobs on the railroad.”

    Quite.

    It is, of course, right to say that the courts are not the place to decide on scientific issues but I’d argue that an exception is justified in this case.

    It is not the ACU that claims that the “science” of climate modeling is settled and seeks on that basis to pass laws when it is clear to any impartial observer that the science is far from clear. Its members will, however, be expected to meet a significant part of the cost and it seems reasonable that they should be permitted to examine the quality of the science.

    To all intents and purposes, not only has this not been permitted but it is being left to unpaid volunteers to audit of the work of dangerous and expensive bureaucracies both in the US and here in the UK.

    If the ACU’s action does no more help to undermine claims of the “certainty” of the AGW hypothesis and encourage others to examine the topic with more care, it would IMHO be money well spent.

    Nor do i think it’s totally accurate to say that the Scopes trial is a poor precedent. As Mencken explains, Darrow wanted a guilty verdict so the case could be appealed to a higher – and more competent – court . In any case “the whole world has been made familiar with the issues, and the nature of the menace that Fundamentalism offers to civilization is now familiar to every schoolboy”.

    That’s something to aspire to.

  45. The healthiest part of society, who do not ask for the help of any government or anybody to solve and overcome the challenges of daily living, those who base their businesses in common sense, otherwise these would not work, who are not paid for imagining any nonsense or openly lying, the entrepeneurs, make this call to reason, and all we can do is to wish them success in this endeavour.

  46. I have to agree with some that I am less than happy with the idea of science being settled in court. Having said that I am even less happy with the doom laden MSM acting as final arbiter.

    Perhaps focusing the debate on the shaky foundation of the AGW house of cards might not be a bad thing. Most of the “thousands of peer reviewed AGW papers” referred to by talking heads of one sort or another are just speculation built on those very few foundation cards.

    After all if there is no real 0.6C trend over the last C or CO2 is a result of not a cause of warming what exactly do all those “thousands” of papers and the endless speculation mean?

    Four data sets and questionable model of the atmosphere on trial might return a focus that has long gone missing in the endless speculation and reading of entrails.

  47. Adjudicating science in a court of law is a very bad idea. Were our justice system able to render a finding available in Scotland, “Not Proven”, there might be some merit to the idea.

    Hard evidence in this subject seems “hard” to come by, so the proceedings would likely devolve into contentious testimony.

    Whom do you believe?

    It is unfortunate that peer review has served us so badly. When “peers” are technically weak in the disciplines in which the fallacies of many of these papers reside, we get faulty science.

    The orthodox popularity of the theories, and that is all they are, that human CO2 emissions will very soon provoke an unrecoverable climate disaster would be even more difficult to defuse if some court were to find the theories credible.

  48. What is going to be the standard? Preponderance of evidence or beyond resaonable doubt? The judge? Lance Ito, Royce Lambetrh, Solomon? It’ll take longer than all of O.J.’s trials combined–meanwhile the machine of gov’t rumbles on.

  49. JimB (03:10:17) : To paraphrase your words:

    “MAN-MADE or HUMAN-CAUSED or C02-AND POLITICALLY ENHANCED AND INDUCED…GENERALIZED STUPIDITY AND THE CONSCIOUS PROMOTION OF IGNORANCE AND DECADENCE FOR THE WELFARE OF JUST A FEW”

  50. I’m not seeing that the GCMs would be admissable. IMO, based on the facts (available good data), the evidence is for miniscule A in AGW or cooling for that matter. CO2 driven climate change shouldn’t get out of the starting blocks in court.

    The political reality will be that the precautionary principle will be invoked regardless of the facts based on the “coulds,” “maybes,” and “possiblies.” That’s because the trial wouldn’t be about cost vs benefit.

    I still voted yes in the poll because it would be nice to have a public demonstration of the paucity of cold hard climate facts that could stand up in court vs all of the speculative “in conclusion this study indicates that ‘X’ might possibly cause ‘Y’ (please send more grant money)” papers that we have now.

  51. Though it would be fine entertainment, I don’t think a trial will solve anything. The loser of this trial would naturally claim that the outcome was “rigged” by biased judges who have their hands in the pockets of either Big Oil or the Big Green Movement. The only judges worthy enough–unbiased enough–to hear this case are Time and the Climate Record. We’ll have to wait a while for a summary judgement, I’m afraid.

  52. The act of bringing Anthropogenic Global Warming before a judge for critical analysis would be the end of the argument.

    Comparing an AGW trial to the recent District of Columbia v. Heller gun control trial shows what the results would be. The arguments for gun control could not stand up the reasoned, well documented case for the private ownership of guns. The emotion based arguments, cherry picked data, and preposterous, inconceivable, hypothetical scenarios that carried the gun control movement for years collapsed without a sound or even a bounce.

  53. I think it will all hinge on how it comes to trial in the first place.
    The Scopes trial came about because the scientist was arrested. The whole debate came as a result of that.
    Similarly, the US CoC will have to wait until the EPA actually take action under the new rules. If they try and ask for a judgment as to whether the EPA can be allowed to adopt the new rules, then I’m not sure what the outcome would be.
    I’ve submitted it to Reddit (Should I have asked first?), so if the story doesn’t get buried, it will be interesting to see the comments there.

  54. The idea that this is onlyabout “climate change” and thus about a tautology seems misplaced. The L.A. Times story does mention “climate change” but also talks of global` warming and rising temperatures, so despite the code words, the chamber might be able to focus the effort, and everyone knows what this is about.

    Other quotes…

    The EPA is having none of it, calling a hearing a “waste of time” and saying that a threatened lawsuit by the chamber would be “frivolous.”

    EPA spokesman Brendan Gilfillan said the agency based its proposed finding that global warming is a danger to public health “on the soundest peer-reviewed science available, which overwhelmingly indicates that climate change presents a threat to human health and welfare.”

    Environmentalists say the chamber’s strategy is an attempt to sow political discord by challenging settled science — and note that in the famed 1925 Scopes trial, which pitted lawyers Clarence Darrow and William Jennings Bryan in a courtroom battle over a Tennessee science teacher accused of teaching evolution illegally, the scientists won in the end.

    Is this a hearing or a trial? It might be interesting to see how EPA actually based its findings–in fact the EPA may not even know, themelves, until data and methods are released entirely. Sowing political discord, indeed!

  55. This trial is a necessary step and the timing is almost perfect.

    Regulation of CO2 by the EPA is the second front of the fight against the climate madness.
    If the Waxman Bill is defeated in the US Senate, EPA will enforce reductions of gases, CO2 emissions (and five other gases) through the Clean Air and the Clean Water Act which will lead to a massive Government Organization and a witch hunt on all CO2 emitters, effecting the lives of us all.

    The legal basis for this was created by the Obama Administration on April the 17th when it declared that CO2 and five other gases were a danger to human health and the environment.
    EPA’s endangerment findings, despite massive scientific input stating opposite conclusion followed the ridiculous findings of the Obama Administration.

    The threat of EPA regulating emissions could influence the upcoming vote by the US SENATE in favor of the Waxman Bill, as unchallenged EPA would pose a much bigger threat to the economy.

    In this perspective the Chamber of Commerce initiative comes right in time.

    Hopefully they wil come up with the right arguments to make their case and win it.

  56. GeoS (00:36:56) :
    Didn’t help with DDT did it? The judge ruled in favour of DDT – the science being totally sound. But what did the EPA do? Banned DDT and how many people died and still die as a consequence
    .

    check the facts:

    DDT is a persistent poison – it does not quickly break down to safe compounds.

    Mosquitoes breed rapidly and DDT resistant strains were developing. To continue to spray DDT to eradicate the non resistant mosquitoes would be pointless. Why poison the world eradicating fewer and fewer mosquitoes

    From 1952:
    http://www.ajtmh.org/cgi/content/abstract/1/3/389
    http://www.cdc.gov/malaria/control_prevention/vector_control.htm
    Resistance to DDT and dieldrin and concern over their environmental impact led to the introduction of other, more expensive insecticides. As the eradication campaign wore on, the responsibility for maintaining it was shifted to endemic countries that were not able to shoulder the financial burden. The campaign collapsed and in many areas, malaria soon returned to pre-campaign levels

    an interesting bit:
    http://www.gladwell.com/2001/2001_07_02_a_ddt.htm
    DDT killed some and not other bugs leading to bed bugs ! etc.
    In Malaysian villages, the roofs of the houses were a thatch of palm fronds called atap. They were expensive to construct, and usually lasted five years. But within two years of DDT spraying the roofs started to fall down. As it happened, the atap is eaten by caterpillar larvae, which in turn are normally kept in check by parasitic wasps. But the DDT repelled the wasps, leaving the larvae free to devour the atap.
    In Greece, in the late nineteen-forties, for example, a malariologist noticed Anopheles sacharovi mosquitoes flying around a room that had been sprayed with DDT. In time, resistance began to emerge in areas where spraying was heaviest. To the malaria warriors, it was a shock. “Why should they have known?” Janet Hemingway, an expert in DDT resistance at the University of Wales in Cardiff, says. “It was the first synthetic insecticide. They just assumed that it would keep on working, and that the insects couldn’t do much about it.”

    DDT was abandoned not because of greenies but because:
    it was becoming ineffective
    It was killing other beneficial bugs.
    the money dried up
    It was being improperly applied

  57. It would be very interesting to see Christopher Monckton against James Hansen. Pure joy.

    However, you may do things slightly differently over there. Here, well it’s a bit like the old “Yes Minister” & Public Enquiries. You never hold one unless you are certain of the outcome beforehand so that no minister is held accountable & has to fall on their sword! So often is the case the Govts here tie the brief/remit up in knots so that the desired questions cannot be asked as they a labelled as irrelevant or inadmissible as outside the scope of the inquiry! Frequently it is civil servants who become accountable or the departments they’re in are, so that individuals do’t have to go. So I say you do need an unbiased judge or panel (tribunal?), a wide remit so that as much evidence as possible can be introduced, & the UN/IPCC held to account. Piers Corbyn et al have to date still not received a response from Ban Ki Moon for about a year now, neither to my knowledge has Dr Puchauri responded similarly to the NIPCC’s letter. The time is now. Go for it you have everything to gain.

  58. On reading the responses here, it is clear that some are opposed to the idea because science cannot and should not be resolved in a court of law. This is true as a statement of philosophical intent. But that is not what this debate is about.
    The EPA has already stated its intent to use the LAW to the detriment of the chambers own members. It is therefore surely encumbent upon the chambers to bring what is effectively a counter suite. The only way this can be done is by bringing the science into the courtroom. If the chamber took no action then would they not be in dereliction of duty to their own members?

  59. I voted NO. This is dumber than the Scopes trial. Do you really want the outcome to rest in the hands of one person?

  60. Already they twist words….. Climate Change instead of Anthropogenic Global Warming.

    “EPA spokesman Brendan Gilfillan said the agency based its proposed finding that global warming is a danger to public health “on the soundest peer-reviewed science available, which overwhelmingly indicates that climate change presents a threat to human health and welfare.”

    It’s not Climate Change that is at issue…. but the purported Anthropogenic effect that is supposed to cause that threat to human health and welfare.

    Twisty little so and so’s…. It will be a great show if the Chamber of Commerce can get this to trial…. It will make damn good copy and TV.

  61. I would be all for this if it would shut you guys up. But when you lost, you’d just move on to other tactics.

    Oh, and it’s hilarious that the CoC VP is saying it would be evolutionism vs creationism. Does he not know he’s the creationist in that equation? I wonder what Uncommon Descent thinks of AGW.

  62. I’m all for this. However, some things need to happen first and these are complete access to all data, code, correspondence, etc. from the AGW camps. How can we find issues and prove our points if organizations such as HadCRUT are keeping data private?

  63. Chamber officials say it would be “the Scopes monkey trial of the 21st century”

    I’m thinking more like flat earth versus spherical earth.

  64. That would be interesting.

    OT, but I have to share…
    I am on an email list Michael Mann has been active on lately. Thunderbird thinks Mann’s emails are junk. So, being nice, I clicked “Not Junk”. Immediately, Thunderbird went to “Thunderbird think this might be an [email] scam”.
    Guess there is no convincing Thunderbird that the works of Mann are not either junk or a scam.
    I like Thunderbird.

  65. A key piece of evidence should be the findings of E.M.Smith as displayed on his chiefio.wordpress.com blog: The March of the Thermometers. It appears that the warming was fictitious, and mainly due to adding thermometers from hot places.

  66. MattN (03:26:59) :

    The average Joe has already figure out that AGW is out to blow smoke up the public’s tailpipe in a concerted effort to play monopoly.
    That being said, the business community in the US is watching in horror as the Beaurocrats are ready to sell them down the river to foreign interests.

    Getting a public hearing is fine, but the business community of the US needs to mount it’s own Media Blitz to get the public totally alarmed over the real threat: selling the US to the lowest bidder. Now, that is something worth getting steamed over.

  67. I think it’s safe to say that the businessmen members of the Chamber of Commerce have many good lawyers. The EPA would have a very difficult time with a trial against them.

    Add to that the possibility of people like Lindzen, Monckton, Christy, Spencer, Happer, and Watts giving testimony, it really can’t see a chance for the EPA winning.

    Beyond that, if the EPA has witnesses like James Hansen, and Stephen Schneider… well, you get the idea.

  68. Another quote from the story is, “…science teacher accused of teaching evolution illegally, the scientists won in the end.” Um, no they didn’t. They lost. John Scopes was found guilty of violating state law, and his conviction was upheld on appeal. Long after he left the teaching business, a legal technicality showed an error in the dollar amount he was fined. Doesn’t the LA times have enough money for fact-checking?

  69. Union of Concerned Scientists (AKA the most far left, loonie anti-nuclear power, group which ever existed!)…

    Back in the 1980’s Opinion Journal, which publishes the results of many academic pollsters, had a survey on Nuclear Power. They sent out 3000 surveys to 3000 people randomly selected from the “Who’s Who of American Men and Women of Science”. People listed in this book tend to be published researchers, department heads of engineering/science departments, heads of industry research departments, etc. They got 1800 surveys returned. Aside from the 87% favorable rating for nuclear power, they did throw in this question, “Are you now, or have you ever been a member of the ‘Union of Concerned Scientists’?” They got ONE affirmative.

    From this they said, “Statistically we believe that no more than 50 of the 150,000 listed in the “Who’s Who of Science” would be members of the UCS.

    The UCS claims a membership of 50,000.

    They have steadfastly REFUSED to supply ANYONE a listing of their members or even a “sanitized” list of (alledged) credentials.

    But the MEDIA has beatified them! (As they do the National Resources Defense Council, another ADVOCACY GROUP with NO formal standing..)

    It is therefor FUNNY to see them being quoted as a “source” to defend the EPA. (Which, despite my frequent dissagreements with their work…both on technical and political basis, does HAVE an official standing in the “world” and the “USA”.)

    Maybe we could get Kim Il Jung to have a say defending the EPA???

    Hugoson

  70. It is just a matter of debating AGW in the public areana, a case like this would last for months, the general public would here all the facts and make their own mind up.
    This is one public hearing the agwers do not want at any price. Gavin Schmidt has already had a tast and got his fingers burnt, he did not like it.
    Bring the trial on.

    Global Warming Debate

  71. It’s a really bad idea. How did the Scopes Monkey Trial go? Why did the SCOTUS allow the EPA to regulate CO2 as a pollutant in the first place? How did all the witch trials end? Not well for the accused and those trials only ended when the governor put a stop to them. The system is run by lawyers who are trained not in the scientific method but in the LEGAL method. That method specifically excludes facts that are “not relevant” to the line of argument. The scientific method on the other hand excludes lines of argument that do not conform to the observations/facts. You do see the difference? The Courts DON’T.

  72. I voted yes, because a trial in Federal Court, if it were to get there, would flush out the “hidden” data and codes, not to mention the politically motivated e-mails, etc. This would happen both in discovery and at trial. The fact that, thus far, data and codes have been “hidden” will look very bad on its face in front of a jury. “We erased all those e-mails” will not work either in Federal Court.

    Although I’m not a lawyer, I’m pretty sure, based on my own experience in a Federal Court science trial, that this would become real-time public data. In other words, everyone on here, and others, could lend their own particular expertise(s) and assist the formal expert witnesses in analyzing the new data/codes, real time, prior to their testimony.

    It would be a massacre.

  73. The law suit and trial are an absolute necessity. I have read all the caveats up to this time, and I agree with most of them. Unfortunately, we need maximum transparency re the hoax and scam before Copenhagen. Look at how one of my senators Diane Feinstein, and her husband Richard Blum are up to their eyeballs in the cap-and-trade boondoggle. She works the government and he works the “capital (free) markets”.

    Take ’em out by any and all efforts at transparency.

  74. Imagine if Gavin Schmidt were the decider on who testifies and what they are allowed to say.

    If he used his approach to blog debate the trial would not allow the chamber to pick it’s own witnesses or testimony.

    I had another cogent comment disapprear at RC the other day.
    The parade of one sided remarks over there is a lesson in the worst of the worst of corrupted discussion.
    It’s gotten so bad I am weaning myself from the annoyance of visiting there.

  75. Typical. Government agencies commenting that trials or investigations into their nefarious mechinations are “a waste of time.” Well, lately there are a few folks starting to get their ire up. I feel more hopeful than ever that there may finally be some pushback. Finally.

    Personally, I feel the entire district of D.C. needs a firehose taken to it. Flush that cesspit out completely. Give it back to the States and the People.

  76. Bill:
    Thanks for your very long posting. In return I would just like you to settle down with:
    http://www.fightingmalaria.org/pdfs/malaria_and_DDT_story_IEA.pdf
    DDT is nothing like dieldrin.
    However, did the judge weighing up all the scientific evidence, after a 3 month hearing, decide against a DDT ban?
    Did the EPA under the adminstration of Ruckelshaus go ahead and ban DDT anyway?
    We’re not going to agree on anything else which would be off topic anyhow.

  77. Well, you have the good, the bad and the ugly possibilities.

    The good would be that the mainstream media (MSM) would have to report on the story as it unfolds.

    The bad would be that the usual biases of the MSM would distort the facts.

    The ugly would be that Al Gore, Jim Hansen, Nancy Pelosi, Ed Markey and Henry Waxman would be appointed as a panel of Chief Justices.

    Bob

  78. The assumption here is that the courts would rule in accordance with the scienctific data. In short that since the data to date strongly suggests no sign of catastrophic anthropogenic change that the courts would rulle that way. I think this assumption is wildly over optimistic.

  79. I seem to remember that this scenario was the backstory of Crichton’s book, STATE OF FEAR.

    Personally I think putting the science of AGW on trial is a good thing. Just THINK what people will say when it becomes public how the handling of climate data by GISS, Hadley, Hansen, Schmidt, Mann etc.. comes out. Also, since ONLY FACTS would be allowed… A trial would cut out the entire propaganda machine. I can just see it now:

    *on the witness stand*

    Al Gore- “This is what Florida would look like after 20 feet of sea level rise…”

    Lawyer- “Excuse me Mr. Gore… Could you please name for me even one single scientific study, paper or article that says this scenario will happen?”

    Al Gore- “uhhh, well… we’re talking about over thousands of years here.. umm, I mean…”

    Lawyer- “Mr Gore, the scenario you just showed us DOESN’T say over thousands of years, it implies a very quick rise in sea level.”

    Al Gore- “Yeah, well… sometimes because of the importance of this issue we need to overemphasize the degree of effect, offer up scary scenarios.. you know… to make people listen.”

    Lawyer- “I see. In other words, you are LYING to the public about the actual effects of Climate Change in an effort to SCARE them into listening to you. Thank you that is all.”

    Al Gore- “But wait!!… It’s not like that! I mean, it is, but it’s not…”

    Judge- “The wittness is excused. Take a seat Mr Gore.”

    Doc

  80. The reason the skeptic side would prevail is because it comes from a place of sensibility, reason, and a natural curiousity: scientific.

    The otherside comes from a place of insecurity, fear, and monetary gain: political.

  81. Pierre Gosselin (03:15:49) :

    Climate change is not proof of AGW.
    Climate change is always occurring. The EPA has to prove that its manmade. This is impossible with the data available today.

    NO!!! Do NOT make the case any easier than it has to be! They need to prove it’s a PROBLEM. They’ve been screaming about a tipping point but have not made a scientific case that global warming will accelerate. All the feedback mechanisms they cite are already active and reflected in the current trends. If the globe simply continues warming at the current long-term rate, everything will be fine (if not even better). The Arctic will have less sea ice (eventually — this year they got screwed). Shipping will be enhanced. New resources will be tapped.

    But for a small enough epsilon, they can show that man’s contribution to global warming is greater than epsilon. Do you really want to place your bet on that criterion?

    They have to prove that global warming will accelerate enough to become a problem. Otherwise, they lose. That’s a slam dunk; everything else isn’t.

  82. Sandy (06:24:25) :

    Hmm Dalai Lama might be a universally respected judge?

    Sandy, that could be true but I think he is embedded in the UN community which makes him an uncontrolled projectile on the subject of AGW/Climate Change.

  83. Nearly 20 years ago I attended a (green) criminal trial in Federal Court. One major contention was the amount of water on a particular area and the resulting overflow.

    At one point an ‘expert’ witness was asked how many acre feet of water fell on the land in question assumingvarious variables.

    I happened to be seated next to an old engineer. About the time the ‘expert witness’ (an EPA guy) said he would need a calculator to produce the answer, the old engineer leaned over and whispered to me, “About nnn acre feet.)

    Meanwhile, on the stand, after a lot of key strokes, our ‘expert’ allowed that the calculator didn’t have enough significant digits to produce an answer. (It is a good thing he wasn’t around in the slide rule era!)

    Earlier, another government ‘expert witness’ confused the SI prefixes, maybe milli and micro, and the judge and lawyers didn’t even notice.

    I was beside myself, but in the end the judge ruled for the defendant.

    Because of this experience, I do not believe courtrooms are the place to judge science.

  84. Boris (06:55:09) :
    I would be all for this if it would shut you guys up. But when you lost, you’d just move on to other tactics.
    HAHA, you people are a riot. Your pseudoscientific AGW/CC mythology wouldn’t stand a chance, but keep dreaming. The EPA knows they’d lose, and that’s why they refuse to do it.
    Oh, and it’s hilarious that the CoC VP is saying it would be evolutionism vs creationism. Does he not know he’s the creationist in that equation?
    AGW/CC is if nothing else, a belief system. It is non-falsifiable, so by definition isn’t science. It most certainly is not interested in facts, or the truth, in fact, quite the opposite (witness the hockey stick, and other fabrications). Hilarious indeed.

  85. I’ve been in court with a government agency, the U.S. Patent Office, and Roger, correct me if these won’t apply:

    1. Any corporation with even a remote interest in green infrastructure (GE ?) will file a friend of the court brief, leading to internal bickering with the U.S. C of C and big bucks being applied against the C of C, significantly lengthening the trial.

    2. The release of “secret” information will be a huge issue and will be litigated before we even get to the data phase.

    3. The lawsuit would be argued for years.

    However, I voted yes. Any organization with the stature of the Chamber contradicting the “consensus” would be excellent. It would also act as a venue for realists to protest outside the courthouse, and as a galvanizing agent for denialists to rally around. Would it be covered by the MSM? Who knows. I would give money to the C of C if they filed it.

  86. Even if this fails, I do not think this will be the last attempt. I for one, am already prepared to sue if the climate bill passes the senate. Although, I don’t believe I will need to do this myself, as the Cap’N Trade bill clearly violates constitutional law on may levels and will be challenged by several large organizations, just as the health care bill will be challenged as well.

    I don’t believe the EPA ruling will be affective anyway. I believe any restrictions imposed by the EPA will simply be ignored, and when enforcement is threatened, they will be challenged by many. The EPA will never be able to get anywhere with trying to control CO2, there are too many industries to deal with that will put up a huge fight. There is also way too much money at stake and too many people that will not give up that money quietly.

    The EPA has simply bitten off more than it can possibly chew, no matter what court trials transpire, no matter what regulations are mandated. They simply will not be able to enforce.

  87. I think this is a terrible idea. Science isn’t about “consensus”, and it’s even less about what some judge thinks of the weight and quality of the evidence presented on both sides of a scientific issue. If the pro-AGW side “wins”, the MSM will hail it as a great victory for Truth, a decicive repudiation of the unbelievers. The science will not only be “settled” scientifically, but legally too.

    If the anti-AGW side “wins”, the ruling will be denounced as biased or ignorant by the MSM, and pro-AGW scientists will declare such a ruling has no bearing on the actual science (and they’ll be correct!).

    I think it would be far better to go after the Supreme Court ruling which allowed the EPA to “regulate” CO2 emissions in the first place. The idea that a trace gas vital to all life on earth should be categorized as a “pollutant” is ridiculous, and if the Congress didn’t have that particular “covering fire” from the USSC, I doubt they’d have the guts to give the EPA the rights to regulate CO2.

  88. CO2 has quickly become EPA’s toxic loan. They should jump at the chance for a Judge to “bail them out” by ruling against them.

  89. I’ve read the above comments and I find the discussion very interesting. I’m not a lawyer, but IMHO a judge can only rule on matters of law, not science. In the Scopes’ case, didn’t the court find only that Mr. Scopes broke the law? The court didn’t rule on the validity of evolution, either for or against. I know a CoC lawsuit would be a civil case not a criminal case, but wouldn’t the court be limited to deciding legal not scientific issues? Thus the wording of (a) the laws that give the EPA the power to establish rules governing CO2 (IMHO the recent SCOTUS ruling indicated we have already lost this battle) and (b) the wording of the indictment against the EPA are critical to the legal case. Although the science would be an important part of the trial, the final issue decided by a court would be “the law” not “the science”.

    On the otherhand, I believe the spectacle of a national trial can only help the skeptic’s case in the eyes of the public. This is especially true now that the world’s economies are struggling and the AGW alarmist position regarding restricting CO2 omission can only make the economic situation worse. In addition, an unlikely but possible outcome might be the abolishment of the EPA, or at least a significant weaking of its power. IMHO such a possibility might well be worth the risk.

    As you can infer from the above, I’m conflicted and as such, I voted “undecided” in the poll. In the end, mother nature will decide the “science” winner, and man will decide the “social action” winner. I’d hate to win the battle (science) but lose the war (social action).

    Reed Coray

  90. bill (06:16:57) :
    “DDT was abandoned not because of greenies but because …”

    No! It was banned because William Ruckelshaus decided to ban it because of pressure from “greenies” [and against the advice of his advisory science staff]. See here

    I wish the U.S. C of C all the best of luck with this, but I fear for impartiality in some venues.

  91. Who bears the burden of proof. i.e. do the sceptics have to prove that AGW is not true or does the EPA have to prove that it is?

  92. Gary (08:32:08) :

    Personally, I feel the entire district of D.C. needs a firehose taken to it. Flush that cesspit out completely. Give it back to the States and the People.

    You said it! Could not agree with you more!

    http://www.squidoo.com/no-more-incumbants
    http://noincumbentsthistime.blogspot.com/
    http://www.givemeliberty.org/
    http://voidnow.org/
    http://www.anti-incumbents.com/
    http://www.voteoutallincumbents.net/
    http://freemenow.wordpress.com/2009/08/09/incumbents-need-not-apply-2010/
    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article22913.htm
    ….

  93. J.K. (07:37:07) : “Another quote from the story is, “…science teacher accused of teaching evolution illegally, the scientists won in the end.” Um, no they didn’t. They lost. John Scopes was found guilty of violating state law, and his conviction was upheld on appeal. Long after he left the teaching business, a legal technicality showed an error in the dollar amount he was fined. Doesn’t the LA Times have enough money for fact-checking?”

    The LA who?

  94. F. Ross (10:52:00) :

    DDT was banned, to say it straight, to decrease the population of dark coloured people. DDT in my country made malaria and dengue fever almost disappear during the 60´s; now these are found even in our capital city.

  95. The C of C and the American public and the world in general would be best served if the litigation turned on issues of limits of governance. In my fantasy ruling the EPA would be required to demonstrate that CO2 was a pollutant AND it was empowered to address it AND its remediations were subject to oversight.

  96. I voted “No”, but I’ve rethought things. A judgement won’t change partisans minds either way, but it will delay harmful and unnecessary regulations.

  97. Wrong group bringing the suit, and wrong suit to bring. Someone (Judicial Watch, or a similar group) needs to sue the US government for fraud. The EPA has ruled that CO2 is a pollutant. That can be easily confronted, as CO2 is absolutely necessary for ALL plant life, and a reasonable level is necessary for animal life to function properly. The EPA refused to act on internal evidence that would have complicated their decision process. The couldn’t do that in a fraud trial. Discovery would require the posting of ALL evidence, both for and against. The scientific community would be required to be present on both sides if called as “expert witnesses”. The whole thing would end up in the public record, and anyone could access the date for their own study. No matter who “won”, the science of climate change would advance.

  98. LloydH writes “Who bears the burden of proof. i.e. do the sceptics have to prove that AGW is not true or does the EPA have to prove that it is?”

    I asked the same question and did not get an answer. Probably a better question is – Does anyone know where to get the answer?

  99. Lucy Skywalker (04:24:58) :

    “Nixon was impeached. ”

    Actually not, he resigned before the House vote. Clinton was impeached, but the Senate voted not to remove him from office.

    SCOTUS ruled that CO2 is a pollutant and the EPA must regulate it or show that it causes no harm. Fat chance of the latter in this administration.

    I suspect the court will decide that CofC does not have “standing” to file this suit. After all, the science is settled and the debate is over. Still, would be nice to get a bit of the promised ‘transparency’, at least on data and adjustments, assuming that it isn’t a National Security issue.

  100. I note an unusual proportion of warmists found the proposal of sufficient concern to chip in their opinions, something they don’t usually bother with.
    It may thus be inferred that said trial would probably be a good idea, but it cannot be decided by a judge, given the political bias of the entire legal profession, nor can we trust a jury (remember the OJ murder trial?). As someone above suggested, the proper decider would be the American public, though it might be wise to limit voters to those capable of making an informed decision.

  101. The most important reason to have a trial is that the warmists evidence itself will first be held against scientific standards of legal validity. This will not only mandate all data and methods be disclosed publicly, but will allow for ample testimony from many scientists challenging warmists papers, particularly based on their statistical methods, errors in data collection, poor siting, etc, as not meeting the definition of scientific evidence, and thus being excluded from trial. When the warmists best ammo is excluded from trial, we’ll win by default.

    This does of course mandate that skeptics publish a lot more rigorous work that will meet a legal standard.

  102. “…and a judge who would rule, essentially, on whether humans are warming the planet to dangerous effect….”

    I can’t see how this would work. Judges are skilled at making decisions based on legal principle, not in investigative science.

    it’s a fairly strong legal principle that the word of senior, experienced, establishment leaders carries more weight than maverick dissenters. In science the mavericks are often right, but in law the Royal Society and the APA represent science. Steve McIntyre has said as much – he said that he wants politicians to listen to their Chief Scientists. He just wants the establishment Chief Scientists to come to the right conclusion.

    This is a problem with science, not something that can be solved legally. If I were the judge, deciding on the evidence before me, I would probably have to come down on the side of Global Warming. The judge cannot do the hockey stick sums from the bench. He must say, “Professor Mann, in youir expert opinion, is the Hockey Stick true?”. And then weigh the answer according to Professor Mann’s standing. So, if they go to law, the climate skeptics are likely to be borked…

  103. “Does the EPA have to prove that CO2 is a pollutant, or does the Chamber of Commerce have to prove that it is not a pollutant?”

    Jurisprudence dictates that the party making an assertion has to prove, beyond a reasonable doubt, that their assertion is correct. If the EPA asserts that CO2 is a ‘pollutant’ then, in a Court of Law, the EPA MUST prove, beyond a reasonable doubt that their assertion is true.

    In Law innocence is PRESUMED, guilt has to be PROVEN. CO2 is NOT a pollutant until the EPA proves, beyond a reasonable doubt, that it is a pollutant and is injurious to the health and well-being of the ENTIRE flora and fauna of this planet.

    My apologies for the ‘shouting’ but I do feel very strongly that the developments in this field in the US are going to have major impacts around the globe, both politically and economically. As in many other endeavours, the US, by default as the one of the largest economies on the planet, is going to have to take the lead.

    Please pick your battle-ground carefully, limit the area for manouvre by your adversary and attack with every weapon at your disposal. The rest of the world is going to be affected by the outcome of any trial or tribunal which considers this question.

  104. Certainly in the UK , I wouldnt trust the civil courts to give a proper decision on such an issue. The old duffers in the chair bend over backwards generally to produce decisions that fly in the face of common sense, reason and public wishes.
    Generally speaking most UK judges have limited scientific knowledge and would be fair game for counsel to manipulate and I would imagine the US would be the same. I doubt whether many of them can see the wood for the trees.
    Many would on both sides of the pond would fall straight into the leftwing/ well educated/ priveledged/ do as I say not as I do mould

  105. I voted ‘yes’, despite feeling that science should not be decided using the legal system. When science has been corrupted by politicians and big business, as has happened with Climatology, then something to get the truth exposed is needed.

    Courts deal in factual evidence. As the theory of AGW is not falsifiable, it is also not capable of having a factual defence, so I’m certain that the skeptics would win. Once this happened, real climate science would start again.

  106. LloydH (10:54:46) :

    The burden of proof is upon those who wish to do the regulating and taxing.
    Thier claimed need is unproven and untested.
    Clinton was not impeached because of public outcry.
    Public outcry will get the trial this issue deserves.
    It deserves the trial because the science and public policy is being railroaded, and everyone knows it.
    This isn’t about what you teach in a classroom, it’s about whether or not you have a classroom if the agenda has it’s way with the economy.

  107. Well anyone who thinks that the courts sytem is the best method of getting at the truth; or even a method of getting at the truth, is kidding themselves.

    Just imagine having your carefully gleaned scientifc real world data thrown out by the judge and banned from exposure to the jury, because you didn’t Miranda ize the source of your data; or you gathered the data without a lawyer for the opposition being present to advise what things you could observe and what things you couldn’t.

    Certainly the American court system is an extremely inefficient way of getting at the truth; if it ever does. Take the absurd Simpson murder case for example. You could have grabbed the first three people you met on the street who could correctly spell their own name, and put them in a class room, and teach them about the rules of evidence, and the homicide laws; and then one could be appointed to act as judge, and the other two as counsel for the prosecution, and defence, and finished the trial in less time from the moment your brought those three off the street; and the Simpson trial would still have been in Jury selection.

    But it weould be nice to petition the Congress, and ask them to not pass any environmental laws until the proponents proved their case with at least competent arguments from the other side.

    Consider the non-existent “death panels” that Governor Palin criticised in the socialized medicine bill. Although they weren’t there anyway; the senate subsequently amended the bill to remove those non-existing death panels; which incidently were written into section 1233 of the socialised medicine bill by none other than the Hemlock Society; who we all know just want to be sure that Grannie spelled her name correctly in her will.

    No the connection between the court system, and the truth, is about as good as the connection between the wind direction and the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

  108. Bad idea imho…While it is true that the brainwashing about “saving the planet” is becoming incredibly annoying, that I believe that we prepare a quite nasty society when the youth of all western countries are constantly submitted to this kind of “green khmer” propanganda, and that the polemic around AGW is maybe not the best example of a sound scientific process…I still prefer scientific debate FAR FAR FAR above legal processes and lawsuit. I do not understand this fascination for a legal procedure, the standard of such are much below those of science. A lawsuit is closer to a mix of political debate, actor performance, mob ruling, witch questioning and a little bit of so-so science between carefully selected expert than to a scientific debate… even when the science is poluted by media and political consideration, it is still preferable than to call for lawyer “judgement”…

  109. As a lawyer and sometime litigator, I’m uneasy with the idea. The trial format is not really designed to ferret out the truth. Global Warming either is or is not real and some judge’s decision (which undoubtedly will be affected by his own biases) can’t substitute for the scientific process of theory tested against reality.

    Now if the chamber of commerce could find an unbiased panel of climate scientists, maybe they’d be on to something. But more likley it will just be a bit of theatre that will be ignored by the media if the CoC wins and trumpted from the highest parapets if they lose.

  110. Publicly accessible evidence? WHAT? Uh, CRUTemp anyone? Jones won’t realise the information even if you do a FOIA request. What a joke.

  111. Roger Sowell (07:01:41) : A key piece of evidence should be the findings of E.M.Smith as displayed on his chiefio.wordpress.com blog: The March of the Thermometers. It appears that the warming was fictitious, and mainly due to adding thermometers from hot places.

    I’d like to see that piece here, please. Up the profile. E M Smith?? Anthony??

  112. “SCOTUS ruled that CO2 is a pollutant and the EPA must regulate it or show that it causes no harm.”

    Stop breathing today and save all mankind……!!!

    I would expect that there is a built in balance mechanism for CO2, otherwise, I don’t animals would exhale it and plants use it. If it was a man made compond other than CO2 causing AGW, I might have a different opinion.

  113. The major benefit of bringing this into the courts, will derive from the discovery process. With subpoena power involved the climate establishment will no longer be able to stonewall on their data, methodologies, adjustments, and modelling parameters. They will also not be able to rely on sympathetic media to conceal the web of interconnected political and financial interests that underlie this “crisis”. That being said the courts are often a crapshoot, but since our political process is now controlled by people who feel no necessity to be responsive to the wishes of the public, they may offer the strongest possibility of derailing this runaway train before it slams us all into green hell.

  114. There are miles to go before we are fully awake, but this may be an auspicious beginning. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce has a wide membership, and maybe has the deep pockets needed to spearhead a viable counteroffensive against the worldwide brainwashing that has been done for years by the AGW hysterians, many of whose livelihood-income and power depend on it.

    As Nazi Reichminister of propaganda Joseph Goebbels once put it, “If a lie is repeated often enough, people will eventually come to believe it.” Similar AGW mass-brainwashing will require deep pockets and plenty of time to “de-program” the afficted, and this is at least a start by a big outfit whose wide membership can wield plenty of clout.

    But where is the National Association of Manufacturers, assuming not all of its members have decamped and headed for a more realistic (if slightly blacker), carbon-fueled business pasture in China and India? Where is the Teamsters Union, whose independent truckers may eventually be driven into bankruptcy by skyrocketing fuel costs?

    Where is the UAW, whose members will suffer big job losses when the recession deepens under the burden of an unnecessary carbon tax that affects every facet of our struggling economy? Where is the AFL-CIO? Are leaders of the big unions unable to understand the danger AGW brainwashed-hysteria poses to the welfare of their members?

    Is their Democrat political devotion to Barack, Nancy and Harry, with their brainwashed carbon-tax agenda, more important than their union jobs and livelihoods? Will the U.S. C of C’s suggested “trial” for AGW be a wakeup call for the NAM’s leaders, its industrial workers, and some union members, too?

    Bob Paglee, Sr., P.E., (Ret.)

  115. George E. Smith (13:18:07) :

    No the connection between the court system, and the truth, is about as good as the connection between the wind direction and the Dow Jones Industrial Average.

    !!!

    Egads… *Mark quickly changes investment strategy*

    Mark

  116. I would love to see Algore take the stand against someone who has a clue, and wont throw any softball questions.

  117. I voted “yes”, but I think that certain naysayers are right that we need to be careful what we wish for.

    A cautionary “definition” from Bierce:

    Inadmissible, adj. Not competent to be considered. Said of certain kinds of testimony which juries are supposed to be unfit to be entrusted with, and which judges, therefore, rule out, even of proceedings before themselves alone. Hearsay evidence is inadmissible because the person quoted was unsworn and is not before the court for examination; yet most momentous actions, military, political, commercial and of every other kind, are daily undertaken on hearsay evidence. There is no religion in the world that has any other basis than hearsay evidence. Revelation is hearsay evidence; that the Scriptures are the word of God we have only the testimony of men long dead whose identity is not clearly established and who are not known to have been sworn in any sense. Under the rules of evidence as they now exist in this country, no single assertion in the Bible has in its support any evidence admissible in a court of law. It cannot be proved that the battle of Blenheim ever was fought, that there was such as person as Julius Caesar, such an empire as Assyria. But as records of courts of justice are admissible, it can easily be proved that powerful and malevolent magicians once existed and were a scourge to mankind. The evidence (including confession) upon which certain women were convicted of witchcraft and executed was without a flaw; it is still unimpeachable. The judges’ decisions based on it were sound in logic and in law. Nothing in any existing court was ever more thoroughly proved than the charges of witchcraft and sorcery for which so many suffered death. [bold]If there were no witches, human testimony and human reason are alike destitute of value. – Ambrose Bierce [/bold]

  118. Just a question. Wasn’t it so that the EPA itself was forced by a lawsuite to treat CO2 as a polutant? It so, they actually should welcome this lawsuite, because if they loose, they may be of the hook!?

    Or did I miss the point?

  119. I think before we restructure our entire civilization based on the AGW theory we should give it a good hearing. It escapes me why any rational person would be against making sure that we are doing the right thing before we make such momentous changes to the future of humankind.

  120. I tried to vote again but got rejected. Looks like I’m only allowed one vote. In peer-review I’m allowed to vote ad infinitum with my et al references. Democracy sucks!

  121. Assuming a neutral educated judge to decide this important issue with trillions of US tax dollars at stake, I say “Yes, let the show begin!”. I would watch every minute of it on TV. Can you image Al Gore and James Hanson under oath having their CO2 greenhouse theory being torn apart by a smooth talking educated skeptic lawyer? Perhaps this trail can not only decide how the EPA can or can not place CO2 as a dangerous substance harmful to society, but it may also give the skeptics a superstar figure that becomes the star witness. Who could this person be? I nominate Anthony Watts, who would you nominate as the skeptic’s main figure head?

  122. @ Paul Penrose (16:07:31) :

    I think before we restructure our entire civilization based on the AGW theory we should give it a good hearing. It escapes me why any rational person would be against making sure that we are doing the right thing before we make such momentous changes to the future of humankind.

    I assume you mean against a legal proceeding/trial? Easy. Because legal proceedings (as has been mentioned ) are not about truth. They are about “winning”. Totally different thing and the truth does not always win.

  123. The Scopes trial is indeed a bad analogy, as it was a set up publicity stunt. The Piltdown man or Cold Fusion would be better–but then they didn’t threaten us with living under Waxman-Markey Thermageddon regulations.
    I agree that scientific theories should not have to pass legal muster–but methodologies are another matter. Get the popcorn ready.

  124. Lucy Skywalker (04:24:58) :

    “The problem is how to give some folk appropriate ways to change their tune without losing face. ”

    Blame will be the most common out cited. “I believed the experts”.

    Also the judge’s closing statements (whoever wins) will likely be of most interest. I’m sure he would blast the documentation methods of the scientists involved. Good may come out of the whole thing with regard to processes and searchable documentation. His/her recomendations will be very interesting and will have long term repercussions.

  125. Gentlemen,
    There is no problem with putting this on trial. Most scientists agree that the issue is not settled but there is very little evidence that the world is warming more than normal and mankind bears very little responsibility for warming if any. The only problem is that polititians have bought into the precautionary principle to the extent that they are willing to sacrifice all of our future growth and even some human life to satisfy a very vocal mob of activists that really don’t care about humanity and may even despise it (google: “Who is Maurice F. Strong”, Most people have never heard of him but he is very well connected, attracts lots of money, and believes strongly in population control.) A complete airing of this issue will give polititians cover to resist those who would destroy all the advances that technology has given man and give the media a better perspective on what the majority of non subsidy (financial grant) seeking scientists really believe. This will give normal economics and technology and real truth seeking scientists the time to correct any real problems man, in his selfserving ways, has created for himself. I believe that the the Al Gores and James Hansens of this movement won’t go away easily, there is simply to much money to be had by being green today and even subsidy seeking corporations are joining the movement (Get to know the people and supporters of the Apollo Group). Don’t worry things will work out OK. Just make sure your heart is in the right place and keep on fighting. I have been reading your posts for some years and have a great deal of respect for Anthony and all of the posters here. You are all doing a good job. I think I will take a moment and make a financial donation to WUWT.

  126. Lesson from the Former Soviet Union as it became modern Russia:
    Going from Communism to free elections (political change) and State Run Economy to Free Market at the same time was a recipe for disaster. They suffered immensely.

    Going from an Unregulated Free Market to Bailout Bonds (economic change) plus going from a Regulatory Depopulationist / Socialized Agenda fringe government with no representation is an equal recipe for disaster.

    The issue has to have it’s day in the Sun.
    Perhaps that is the agenda: Foment unrest and take the US down from within. They are being very sucessful in that endeavor.
    I don’t want my country turned upside down and destroyed.

  127. “DAV (06:50:09) :

    I voted NO. This is dumber than the Scopes trial. Do you really want the outcome to rest in the hands of one person?”

    Sure, if that one person is Judge Judy!

  128. That the courts are no place to evaluate scientific hypotheses, much less settle scientific disputes, is true. But the innocent-sounding hypothesis of Anthropogenic Global Warming is no mere speculation. It has become the putative rationale and excuse for a massive political movement aimed at undermining the foundations of modern civilization.

    If the Congress, the Administration, and other Western legislatures and governments are in thrall to this dangerous ideology, then the only place to turn is to the courts. A trial will not serve to decide whether AGW or any other hypothesis about climate is true. But it could serve to reveal the ideological and political motives of the AGW proponents. That has to be the thrust of any case against the EPA and other agencies: not that AGW is necessarily false, but that the science is not ‘settled’ and the extremists who would pursue policies to curtail ‘carbon’ are not interested in truth, but political aggrandizement.

    Kudos to the Chamber of Commerce. Let’s bring all the hidden agendas of the so-called ‘climate scientists’ out into the light. It’s those agendas that should be on trial, not science.

    /Mr Lynn

  129. One possible way to structure an EPA carbon dioxide Endangerment Finding trial would be to use something similar to the UK legal system, where the technical issues are settled by the respective side’s technical experts, with a three retired senior judge tribunal serving as a legal review board. Discovery would be critical as would full un-redacted disclosure of data and methodology used by both sides.

  130. The AGW (Al Gore’s Wrangle) debate has for a long time had two Camps.

    Camp 1: Natural Climate Change Deniers (i.e. AGW Supporters)

    Camp 2: AGW Deniers (i.e. Natural Climate Change Supporters)

    However there is now a growing number in a third Camp, and they are people moving from Camp 1 to Camp 2 !

    The problem with being in Camp 1 is that you have NO empirical evidence to support your theory ! (CO2 plant food results in a rise in temperature)

    Best of luck in any trial BS has worked before and I suppose it may work again, Sheeple are Sheeple where ever they live in this crazy 21st Century World !

  131. First thing I thought was… Salem with trials??? You mean like blaming an innocent victim (witch, CO2) for a non-issue (global warming, witchcraft)? These guys are awesome in their capability for projection…

    Meanwhile: it seems to me that if someone really truly buys into the “precautionary principle” they would immediately stop what they’re doing and become a devout Christian.

  132. Bizzare….
    My first thought was using the legal process to determine science was about one step removed from holding a heresy trial.
    Then again, considering how wonderfully science has done with the process – errors of fact, peer review rubberstamps, journals that won’t publish conflicting papers, refusals to release source data or processing algorithms – the scince community hasn’t covered itself with glory either.

  133. Jerry Lee Davis (19:58:54) :
    Such a trial has already been reported. See the comment (18:56:38) on 3 Mar 2009 at

    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/03/03/pielke-jrs-take-on-an-amazing-conversation-with-a-climate-scientist/#comments

    Thanks for the link; nice job of satirizing the folly of ‘repeat-the-mantra’ brainwashing (all together now: “Mankind is killing the Earth using carbon dioxide produced by burning fossil fuels”). A real tour-de-force, reminiscent of another Jerry Lee. . . ;-)

    /Mr Lynn

  134. Haha! Can’t believe I’m voting for a trial for ANYTHING ever. But I am! Bring it on, Chamber of Commerce. I don’t see how the CoC can lose this one.

  135. Nogw (11:10:22) :

    F. Ross (10:52:00) :

    DDT was banned, to say it straight, to decrease the population of dark coloured people. DDT in my country made malaria and dengue fever almost disappear during the 60´s; now these are found even in our capital city.

    Nogw, since one could not read Ruckelshaus’ mind, I do not believe that the direct reason was as you have stated [emphasized above], but I do agree that that was the unintended consequence. DDT could have saved an inestimable number of lives in the third world.

    Times and conditions are changing here in the USA such that the lack of DDT may eventually do the same thing to our own population. This result would, of course, greatly elate the anti-humanity greenies.

  136. I voted no. Given the way decisions have gone here in
    California, I wouldn’t trust the courts. The Chamber
    is myopic when it comes to immigration, so they’re
    suspect too. I wouldn’t put it past them to be on the
    take. There is simply too much at stake.

  137. I’d like to question the impartiality of the jury in advance, mainly because most people have concerns in the economic issues regarding this subject.

  138. I voted yes and I hope it happens, but I’m not very optimistic. But of course the court proceedings must be fair. The UK legal ruling on Gore’s film was reasonably fair (and very damaging for Gore) so there is hope.
    .
    One claimed proof for AGW is the ‘consensus’. It may be that the consensus, if it really did exist, may be cracking. But of course science does not – or should not – work by consensus. It should work by assessing the evidence. As they say, it just takes one ugly fact to destroy a beautiful theory.
    .
    It seems to me that science should actually work in a similar fashion to a court of law. In a court of law consensus means nothing. If everybody thinks Joe Bloggs is guilty, that should have no effect whatsoever. The verdict should depend on the evidence and nothing else.
    .
    Providing the court proceedings are fair then I think it could be a fantastic opportunity. It could put people like Lindzen and Monckton on the front pages where they belong. It would shatter the conspiracy of silence that dominates most of the media. Opinion polls show that on both sides of the Atlantic a healthy majority of people believe that the warming was natural, so the anti-AGW side would, in theory at least, have the public on their side.
    .
    If the pro-AGW side believed they could win then they would be in effect saying: “Bring it on!”. But the fact that they obviously hate the idea speaks volumes.
    Chris

  139. Cases involving legal decisions about matters of science are routine. (E.g., about dangers of various medicines, the validity of patents, etc.) Saying that science shouldn’t be decided by the courts is a non-starter–they’re already involved. Eliminating the courts would not eliminate non-scientific rulings on the topic, it would just shift non-scientific decision-making by default to the legislature and/or the executive agencies. And they make their decisions based on testimony given to them, similar to what goes on in a trial.

    Second, a legal decision would not foreclose scientific research and publication on the topic. IOW, the judiciary wouldn’t be intruding into science or shutting it up. There’s no analogy to the Galileo situation.

    Third, there’s no need for a “trial” to be a legally binding trial. What the CoC seems to be calling for, or anyway ought to be calling for, is a more elaborate form of a “hearing,” one that merely mimics the features of a trial in order to enable a fairer and fuller consideration of the evidence. In particular these features are: a neutral (non-agency) judge/overseer, cross-examination of scientists, and document “discovery.”

    Fourth, there’s no need for the judge to be the detailed examiner of the evidence. In patent cases brought before the International Trade Commission, for instance, there are professional panels of examiners who hear the arguments and then make a recommendation to the judge. This format could be adopted here, with the panels being made up of distinguished retired scientists from various disciplines.

    Fifth, there’s no need for the judge to be a scientific illiterate, if the “trial” format is merely an ad hoc device to enable a more disinterested and detailed examination of the evidence and arguments. He/she could be a scientist with some legal training, or real-time legal backup by an aide. And the judge needn’t be a single individual, but could be a multi-member group, like an appeals court.

    Sixth, the “decision” handed down needn’t be black/white, but instead could be couched in probabilistic terms (shades of gray). Or, better, the trial could be set up to have multiple outcomes, with the third outcome being, “Given the costs involved, and the irrevocable nature of a treaty commitment to such spending, would it be wise to wait two (say) years while additional skeptical research is funded and additional scrutiny is performed on the current consensus?” If Yes is the answer—which seems as though it would be a nice face-saving outcome—that’s great.

    If No is the outcome, that wouldn’t be a loss for the skeptical side, because if the trial were not held, No would be the outcome from Congress or the EPA anyway. Long-term a No would be a Win for skepticism because, if the world fails to warm over the next decades, Establishment science and Establishment political structures and procedures would lose legitimacy, and more decentralized scientific and political organizational structures would gain in contrast.

    (For instance, I think it would be good if there were seven funding agencies in place of the NSF, whose budgets would rise and fall depending on the impofrtance of the research they had funded. This would encourage more funding of far-out ideas, such as DARPA does. DARPA’s research provides much more bang for the buck than the NSF’s.)

    Seventh, in addition to making an overall AGW ruling (Yes, No, or Delay), the judges and examiners could make lots of sub-rulings, or anyway offer tentative opinions, on the 101 contested claims in this dispute, listing them in order from strongest to weakest. Or they could instead, or in addition, point out areas where the evidence needs to be re-examined or firmed up or made congruent with some other line of evidence.

    Eighth, the risk of getting a biased judge or panel of judges could be reduced by splitting the trial into different sub-trials on disputed topic-areas, with separate judge-panels and examiner-panels for each. (In addition, each side could be allowed to appoint one of the judges to the panel, to ensure that its arguments got a hearing during judicial head-scratching conferences.) For instance, there could be one topic-panel for sea level rise, one for positive/negative CO2 feedbacks, one for solar effects, one for glaciers, etc. There could be as many as 20 of these. This would greatly speed things up and add to the depth of the examinations.

    Ninth, regardless of the outcome, it would be a great contribution to future disputants to have all the arguments and citations and evidence put “on the record” in a centralized location, and to have lots of “myths” debunked or at least crippled during cross-examination. Cross-examination and formal “debates” by disputants (which should be part of these procedures) would force both sides to confront each others’ best points, instead of talking past each other. The issues involved would thereby be sharpened and clarified. This alone justifies this format.

  140. The trial is currently being done where it should be, the Court of Public Opinion. Vox Populi Let the People Decide.

    The Chamber of Commerce should leave well enough alone.

  141. Roger Knights (07:09:52) :

    Cases involving legal decisions about matters of science are routine. (E.g., about dangers of various medicines, the validity of patents, etc.) Saying that science shouldn’t be decided by the courts is a non-starter–they’re already involved. Eliminating the courts would not eliminate non-scientific rulings on the topic, it would just shift non-scientific decision-making by default to the legislature and/or the executive agencies. And they make their decisions based on testimony given to them, similar to what goes on in a trial.

    Second, a legal decision would not foreclose scientific research and publication on the topic. IOW, the judiciary wouldn’t be intruding into science or shutting it up. There’s no analogy to the Galileo situation. . .

    Excellent analysis, including the suggestions how to structure such a proceeding. I would add that while cases “involving matters of science” are common, they are perhaps better characterized as “matters of science as they affect policy or applications,” well illustrated in Roger Knights’ paragraph 6.

    The essential question is whether there is a clear-enough understanding of climate dynamics (from prehistory through the present) to justify the alarming predictions and draconian policies that the AGW ideologues want to foist upon us. A ruling that these issues are not in fact ‘settled’ would go a long way toward stopping the rush to the cliff.

    . . . Third, there’s no need for a “trial” to be a legally binding trial. What the CoC seems to be calling for, or anyway ought to be calling for, is a more elaborate form of a “hearing,” one that merely mimics the features of a trial in order to enable a fairer and fuller consideration of the evidence. In particular these features are: a neutral (non-agency) judge/overseer, cross-examination of scientists, and document “discovery.”

    According to the LA Times article linked in the post up top, the Chamber expects the request for an enhanced hearing to be denied, whereupon they plan to go to court:

    . . . The goal of the chamber, which represents 3 million large and small businesses, is to fend off potential emissions regulations by undercutting the scientific consensus over climate change. If the EPA denies the request, as expected, the chamber plans to take the fight to federal court.

    The reporter’s use of the word “undercutting” displays an unfortunate bias; better would be ‘challenging’.

    It will be interesting to see if the EPA will agree to a hearing. If they’re smart they will, as that will more easily enable them to stack the deck with their own ‘experts’. Once it gets to the courts, the EPA (i.e. the Obama administration) could have less control of the outcome.

    /Mr Lynn

  142. Bob Paglee : (14:44:22) –
    Unfortunately , the answer to the question in your final paragraph is yes , at least momentarily . Perhaps I’m being naive , but I can’t imagine that an alliance of such disparate radicals could hold together over time . As it is , it seems that the Teamsters , UAW and the like have been conned into believing that they would have a place in a Green utopia , and/or the other way around .

  143. curiousgeorge,
    I think any kind of trial where evidence can be presented and cross examined is better than the situation we have now where the people shouting the loudest wins.

  144. Lawyer, “I call the AGWer to the stand.”
    Lawyer, “Can you predict the temperature in one month based on CO2 levels?”
    AGWer, “No. Because it is weather if it gets colder, not climate change. However, if it gets warmer in a month, then my case has been proven because CO2 is still going up.”
    Lawyer, “Can you predict the temperature in one month based on oceanic influences?”
    AGWer, “No. Because short term weather is not predictable.”
    Lawyer, “So if I ask you these same questions every month for the next 50 years, will your answers change?”
    AGWer, “No. Because monthly temperature changes cannot be predicted even over 50 years.”
    Lawyer, “So you are saying that you cannot predict the general direction of temperature anomalies over a 50 year period?”
    AGWer, “[crickets chirping].”

    Lawyer, “I call the naturalist to the stand.”
    Lawyer, “Can you predict the temperature in one month based on CO2 levels?”
    Naturalist, “No. Temperature anomalies are not correlated with CO2 levels.”
    Lawyer, “Can you predict the temperature in one month based on oceanic influences?”
    Naturalist, “Why yes. We can predict the general direction of the anomaly based on whether or not, for example, the PDO is in an El Nino or La Nina condition or event.”
    Lawyer, “So if I ask you these same questions every month for the next 50 years, will your answers change?”
    Naturalist, “No. Oceanic influences have been shown to correlate with subsequent land temperatures quite well.”
    Lawyer, “So you are saying that you can predict the general direction of monthly temperature anomalies over a 50 year period?”
    Naturalist, “Yes.”

    Lawyer, “I rest my case.”

  145. Newsflash: Anti-science forces _lost_ the Scopes monkey trial. Maybe they might want to pick a different analogy? ~snip~

  146. Ooops, too many negations. Anti-science forces, of course, won the scopes monkey trial. I meant to say that scientists lost.

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