Guest Post by Willis Eschenbach
People wonder why anthropogenic global warming is a politicized issue. Here’s one reason among many. In a presentation aimed at the holidays that is impossible to parody, the Democratic National Committee (DNC) has put up a website called, no kidding, “the Democrat’s guide to talking politics with your republican uncle”.
I loved how they capitalized “Democrat” but not “republican”. And here’s the advertisement for the web page that they’ve emailed out to alert the faithful to the new website:
Me, I’m not a member of either party. I vote for the person not the party, and my general political philosophy is “A Pox On Both Their Houses”. However, I like to stay current with the propaganda from both sides.
In any case, there’s a section of that DNC web page that covers climate. It’s hilarious. Here are all of the different parts of their climate claims:
Climate: 97% of scientists vs. your Republican uncle
Climate change is just a liberal scare tactic.
Forgive us for being convinced by the 97% of climate scientists who agree that climate change is real and believe that humans are probably causing it. Republican obstruction on policies to address climate change endangers our environment and hurts our economy.
Now, their [Source] is a NASA web page, and it goes to some length to prove that the globe has actually warmed over the last few centuries … but then we all knew that most scientists agree about that. However, in a classic “bait and switch”, it says nothing about whether humans are responsible, much less whether 97% of scientists believe that humans are driving the climate to Thermageddon. In fact, the NASA site doesn’t mention the bogus 97% number even once … that’s their evidence for their “97%” claim??? Do they understand what [Source] is supposed to mean?
[UPDATE: An alert reader pointed out below that there is a link on their page to another page which is supposed to give support for the “97%” number … but doesn’t. Instead, what it has are links to meaningless statements from the boards (not the members but the boards) of scientific societies, plus a citation to the laughable Naomi Oreskes study and such. Pathetic. In any case, the appeal to consensus is meaningless. As Michael Crichton said:
I want to pause here and talk about this notion of consensus, and the rise of what has been called consensus science. I regard consensus science as an extremely pernicious development that ought to be stopped cold in its tracks. Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming that the matter is already settled. Whenever you hear the consensus of scientists agrees on something or other, reach for your wallet, because you’re being had.
Can’t say it clearer than that.]
And alas, even NASA can’t resist the hype. They say:
Sea level rise
Global sea level rose about 17 centimeters (6.7 inches) in the last century. The rate in the last decade, however, is nearly double that of the last century.
Umm … er … no. Not true in the slightest. That claim is the result of splicing the satellite data onto the tidal gauge data, which shows no such rise. See Figure 3 here for details. [UPDATE: See also Steve Fitzpatrick’s comments below.]
NASA also gets all breathless about ice loss from Greenland and Antarctica, saying:
Shrinking ice sheets
The Greenland and Antarctic ice sheets have decreased in mass. Data from NASA’s Gravity Recovery and Climate Experiment show Greenland lost 150 to 250 cubic kilometers (36 to 60 cubic miles) of ice per year between 2002 and 2006, while Antarctica lost about 152 cubic kilometers (36 cubic miles) of ice between 2002 and 2005.
While that might sound impressive, that’s an ice loss rate for Greenland of 0.01% per year … and for Antarctica it’s a tenth of that, only a thousandth of a percent (0.001%) over three years … bad scientists, no cookies. That’s unbridled alarmism from people who should know better.
Setting NASA aside, the “republican uncle” page goes on to say,
Humans can’t do anything to combat rising CO2 levels.
Except we already are combating rising CO2. In 2012, the U.S. recorded the lowest levels of carbon emissions in nearly two decades . And by taking steps like improving fuel efficiency, we can do more in the years ahead. Because of new standards, for instance, the average car in 2025 will achieve a fuel economy equivalent to 54.5 miles per gallon, nearly double that of cars on the road today. A goal, by the way, that Republicans tried to block.
They say that we “… will achieve a fuel economy…”? I do love the idea that King Barack Canute can order the tides to roll back, or order the average car to get 54.5 miles per gallon ten years from now, and it will perforce happen. The idiocy is revealed by the “.5” in the goal. These are the same fools, using the same kind of “order it and it must happen” idiotic logic who ordered oil refiners to utilize a product that doesn’t exist … but I digress.
More to the point, the reduction in CO2 emissions is NOT from any push, governmental or otherwise, to get off of fossil fuels. It is from the shift to a different fossil fuel, natural gas … the production of which has been widely opposed by Democrats. Taking credit for changes that they opposed … like I said, you can’t parody this stuff.
Finally, whether the US makes any changes in CO2 emissions is meaningless these days. We’re a minor player in the game. Here’s a graphic I made a couple of years ago showing why:
As you can see, the developing nations are now in the driver’s seat. US emissions are already nearly flat. It doesn’t much matter what we do.
The United States can’t stay economically competitive if we address climate change.
Climate change itself is taking a toll on our economy. In 2012, climate and weather disasters cost the United States more than $100 billion . And right now, other countries are making huge investments in research and development to confront this crisis with new technologies — which means new industries and new jobs. We can’t afford to fall behind them. The longer Republicans deny climate change exists, the further we fall behind.
And they’re playing fast and loose with the facts by claiming that the $100 billion cost of climate and weather disasters has anything at all to do with climate change. It has to do with weather, but there’s been no overall increase in extreme events … and in fact, the recent year has seen one of the lowest disaster rates in quite a while. Crisis, my okole. See here for details.
Finally, their “source” for the $100 billion number is nothing but another DNC puff piece that has no sources listed, and the figures given are labeled “Estimated” … pathetic.
President Obama wants the United States to stop climate change alone.
This summer President Obama announced a plan to reduce U.S. carbon pollution 25% from 2005 levels by 2020. But he also knows that climate change can only be solved if the international community works together. That’s why this November, the President announced a groundbreaking agreement to work with China to reduce carbon pollution and to increase the country’s non-fossil fuel energy to around 20% by 2030 .
It was a “groundbreaking agreement” alright, but not for the reasons they claim. It was groundbreaking because never in history have we given up so much in return for so little. It requires the US to take action immediately, but it allows the Chinese to increase their CO2 emissions as much as they want until 2030. Brilliant piece of negotiation, groundbreaking to say the least. The Chinese are laughing all the way to the bank … and the myth is absolutely true, Obama is left going it alone.
The best part of the web page, however, is that sprinkled throughout the document are a number of links with the little Twitter tweety-bird symbol next to them. If you click on one, it composes an automatic tweet all ready to go out under your byline, like this one:
#FACT: 97% of climate scientists agree that climate change is real and believe that humans are causing it. http://my.democrats.org/yru-climate
And the link at the end, to the website called “yru-climate”? …
Why, of course, that link goes to the website called “your republican uncle”.
Somewhere, the Founding Fathers are weeping …
Best to everyone, whether your uncles are Repuglicans or Demagogues,
PS—If you disagree with someone, please be so kind as to QUOTE THE EXACT WORDS YOU DISAGREE WITH. That way we can all understand the exact nature of your objections.