Who Doesn't Trust Science Now?

Weird weather, Climategate, and the dangers of faith-based science

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The problem is that reasonable people also understand economic trade-offs. Many don't like intrusive legislation. Others can sniff out fear-mongering for what it is. Some even trust in humanity's ability to adapt to any changes in climate trends.

In the end, though, the burden of proof is on the believers. And if they're going to ask a nation—a world—to fundamentally alter its economy and ask citizens to alter their lifestyles, the believers' credibility and evidence had better be unassailable.

David Harsanyi is a columnist at The Denver Post and the author of Nanny State. Visit his Web site at www.DavidHarsanyi.com.

COPYRIGHT 2010 THE DENVER POST
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  • Ren||

    Gore - you fat, bloated EEDIOT!!

  • ||

    He ate your Ice Creeeem Bar!

  • bleephole||

    Watch as I launch my head like a rocket!

  • Global Goreing||

    STFU!

  • Old Mexican||

    Recently, Tim Wirth, who is the president of the U.N. Foundation and a former senator, said the manipulated evidence uncovered by the ClimateGate e-mail scandal was a mere "opening" to attack science that "has to be defended just like evolution has to be defended."

    And here I thought that the paleontological, biological, morphological, geological and genetic evidence speaks for Evolutionary Theory, but I guess then it is rather defended exactly like Global Warming theory is defended: With religious zeal.

    Problem is, this is exactly the main criticism from Creationists regarding evolution: That it IS defended with religious zeal - when it is NOT.

    Thank you, Tim Wirth, for the help.

    No me defiendas, compadre! is the Mexican cry towards those that give unsolicited and harmful "help".

  • Sam Grove||

    It is indeed fortunate that evolutionary theory can be defended with a rather broad, definitive, and extensively reviewed evidence.

  • ||

    Unfortunately, the public learned a wrong lesson about the evolution theory. A typical member of "the educated class" believes in evolution not because he analyzed "the paleontological, biological, morphological, geological and genetic evidence" but because all smart, educated people believe in evolution. The key word here is "believe". Smart people tell us to believe in evolution, global warming. And, of course, we do.

  • ||

    If only they would realize that evolutionary theory is not a "belief" system whatsoever. "Belief" in evolution was conjured up by those who needed to fit science into the realm of religion...somehow.

  • ||

    Frankly speaking, the evolution theory is not the best textbook example of a scientific theory. It doesn't satisfy Karl Popper's falsifiability test. Popper called it a metaphysical research program. It is science by Kuhn's definition only. This may explain why some defenders of the evolution theory become hysterical. The theory doesn't satisfy the most stringent definition of science.

  • ||

    This depends largely on what you mean by evolutionary theory. There are nearly countless experiments that can and have been performed to attempt to disprove natural selection, which is the mechanism by which evolution occurs. To date none have been able to disprove the hypothesis of natural selection. If any hypothesis cannot be disproven after rigorous experimentation, then it is supported by evidence. This is science in its purest form.

  • Marc||

    It doesn't satisfy Karl Popper's falsifiability test.

    Rabbit fossils in the Precambrian.

  • bio||

    Dinosaurs roam the halls of Congress,
    bellowing in their animal rages,
    tiny brains struggling with simple thought,
    they ought to be locked in cages.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: The Pharmacologist,

    Agreed. The problem here is that this bullshit artist (Tim Wirth, who is the president of the U.N. Foundation) calls for defending AGW like one defends Evolution. I don't "defend" evolution, the evidence is right in front of everybody. AGW is a theory to explain supposed increases in global temperatures - that theory relies on a big whopper of an assumption (that man can control the climate) and regression data that "shows" the Earth to be a cliamte-controled paradise until WE started driving SUV's! That DOES require pretty solid evidence, which after the East Anglia debacle, is looking more and more like made up science.

    [Ok, I am exaggerating a bit with the paradise thing... I think.]

  • ||

    Agreed as well. I think we understand each other.

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    "A typical member of "the educated class" believes in evolution not because he analyzed "the paleontological, biological, morphological, geological and genetic evidence" but because all smart, educated people believe in evolution."

    +25

  • jv||

    Yawn. How thoughtful and serious.

    Science will take care of itself and will be proved or disproved when a enjinear somewhere makes something with it that actually matters to anybody.

    In the meantime its entertaining.

  • ||

    If that were true, that would be great. The fear is that taxes and regulation based on unproven science will kill the economy, keep developing countries from developing, and generally be and excuse for government to grow bigger.

  • ||

    -1

  • ||

    Ooops.
    That looks like -1 to WasabiPeas.
    It's -1 to jv

  • Old Mexican||

    So let's revisit the case of Kevin Trenberth, who is head of the National Center for Atmospheric Research's Climate Analysis Section. This week on National Public Radio, he blamed the heavy snowfall, in part, on global warming, proving that even very smart experts can use weather to further the cause.

    Hey, but here is how it works: When an AGW advocate says it, then it is NOT the weather, it is climate. When a skeptic points out to the severe snowfalls and compares with the previous predictions from the AGW camp of less snowfalls, then it is the weather.

    See how easy that is?

  • ||

    Gore is not an EEDIOT, he came up with the biggest scam in the last thousand years, got a Nobel prize, made more money than Madoff, and still isn't in Jail....

  • Mike Laursen||

    Biggest scam in the last thousand years is a pretty high bar. I'd say that prize has to go to the Federal Reserve Act.

  • matt2||

    Tom Friedman has a hilarious article up today.

    The best quote:

    1) Avoid the term “global warming.” I prefer the term “global weirding,” because that is what actually happens as global temperatures rise and the climate changes. The weather gets weird. The hots are expected to get hotter, the wets wetter, the dries drier and the most violent storms more numerous.
  • Mike M.||

    Needless to say, this idea that weather events are getting more "intense" or "extreme" is just as much a bunch of nonsense as all the rest of the B.S.

  • Michael Ejercito||


    Needless to say, this idea that weather events are getting more "intense" or "extreme" is just as much a bunch of nonsense as all the rest of the B.S.


    They should be getting less intense if the warming is caused by an increased greenhouse effect.

    Weather events are driven by air circulation and temperature differentials in the atmosphere. If the atmosphere has an increased greenhouse effect, then there would be more warming at the poles than at the equator, more warming during the winter than during the summer, and more warming during the night than during the day. This will reduce temperature differentials and lead to more moderate weather.

  • Global Warming Advocate||

    Denier!

  • ||

    Essentially, Friedman is saying that we need to change the terminology so that any form of weather can be used as evidence for AGW and justification for the autocratic socialism Friedman so dearly loves. My God that man is a buffoon.

  • Benchwarmer||

    What the cold doesn't get colder?

  • ||

    The best line is right at the end:

    Maureen Dowd is off today.

    It almost sounds like an apology.

  • ||

    LOL. Back in the days before the internet, the NYT had a policy of never printing letters to the editor that questioned their columnists. They also didn't have e-mail back then. And really only hard core cranks ever wrote personal letters to the columnists. So pretty much people like Friedman and Dowd could sit around unmolested with the biggest megaphones in the world and smell their own farts telling each other how brilliant they were.

    Now, thanks to the internet, everyone has a voice. And the NYT editorial page isn't the only or even the biggest one anymore. And everyone has a chance to take these people apart and get an audience for doing so. As a result, people like Friedman just look pretentious and silly. It must really drive them crazy.

  • Tripleb||

    Yeah I read that one myself. Article was about as stupid as I expected it would be, but a commenter did point out something rather interesting...that the ice caps on mars are melting as well. So I'm officially changing my stance now - not only is AGW real, but it's contagious too!!!!!

  • ||

    Per Friedman: "...as global temperatures rise and the climate changes... weather gets weird."

    Guess nobody can really argue with that one. Cripe... :)

  • ||

    Maybe we are getting wierder along with the weather....that would certainly explain a lot of recent human behavior.

  • Old Mexican||

    Phil Jones, the former director of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia (and the only one held responsible for ClimateGate), admits that lots of his decades' worth of data were sloppy or missing, i.e., not very scientific.

    I don't now if he placed that in his resume:

    "I have very sloppy data collecting and storage skills."

    Somebody at H.R.:

    Yeah! Hire this guy!! He's sloppy!

  • Sam Grove||

    On the other hand, he managed to become a key figure in climate research.

    How does that work and what does that tell us about government and science?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Sam Grove,

    How does that work and what does that tell us about government and science?

    He probably added in his resume, under "skills":

    "I kiss ass like nobody's business."

    That got him the job. Easily.

  • ||

    "I can really rake in the govt grants"

  • ||

    Government, for the most part, should get out and stay out of science.

  • ||

    I posted that quote the other day. He admits that he is just "not very good at keeping and organizing data" or something to that effect. What is climate study if not keeping and organizing data? It is like a physicist admitting he is just not very good at math or a mechanical engineer saying he just isn't very good at seeing how things fit together or spacial relationships. Seriously, WTF?

  • Women heard this too||

    To John, too interesting.

  • Old Mexican||

    In the end, though, the burden of proof is on the believers. And if they're going to ask a nation—a world—to fundamentally alter its economy and ask citizens to alter their lifestyles, the believers' credibility and evidence had better be unassailable.

    No need to: They simply resort to calling skeptics "Deniers, Flat-Earthers, Anti-science dolts, Tools for the Oil Industry", et cetera, et cetera. Why make the science unassailable, if a label is cheaper?

  • jk||

    When a study is paid for by business interests it is immediately attacked for being biased in favor of those evil capitalists and their pursuit of profit.

    Yet those same people who would attack such a study would never dream of considering that a study commissioned by politicians would be biased towards their pursuit of power.

  • ||

    Good point

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: JK,

    See, that how it works:

    Privste Sector = Profits = Yucky. Icky. Ugly. Pedestrian.

    Public Sector = Not for Profit = Good. Pretty. Soft. Cuddly. Sophisticated.

    See? Scientific!

  • ||

    Look at the weather section of your local paper for 3 or 4 days. Odds are there will be a record (high OR low) in that period. The fact is that weather (or...gritting teeth...CLImate) is extremely variable, and we don't have a good handle on this variability yet.

  • MNG||

    Skepticism=good
    Arrogance (amateur arm-chair "scientists" claiming they understand the science better than qualified experts) and fantacism (starting with the conviction that agw can't be true because it might give ideological opponents ammunition), not so much.

  • ||

    +1

  • ||

    And saying that no one can question the "qualified experts" even when those experts flout FOIA request, rely on pressure groups and anecdotes to support dubious and outrageous claims, and freely admit they have lost or covered up data and tried to suppress opponents and corrupt the pier review process, is not arrogant?

    Why don't you just cut to the chase MNG and just tell us what you really think which is "just everyone shut up and do what I say and the "experts handle it!!"

    Yeah, that is a real commitment to science and truth you have there.

  • MNG||

    It has nothing to do with "what I say." My opinion on AGW is determined by what the majority of qualified experts say on the subject. If that changes so will my opinion.

    I am kind of saying that people's opinions should be determined by folks who know WTF they are talking about rather than you or Old Mexican or whatever. What madman would think the latter is right over the former? Only the most goofy fanatic...

  • ||

    What qualified experts? The experts have repeatedly lied about the subject. The IPCC has been proven to be full of lies and baseless assertions. The West Anglia e-mails show that the "experts" have subverted the pier review process to ensure that only their side got heard. Phil Jones finally admitted that there has been no significant warming in 15 years and that the medieval warm period was probably warmer than now. The entire surface climate record has been compromised by faulty reporting and biased selection of data collection points. The only reliable temperature data we have is from satellites and that shows a whopping .13C rise per decade since 1979 and no rise in the last decade or so.

    When are you going to get it through your head that the "expert consensus" you are always braying about doesn't exist. It was a fraud. They don't know anything.

  • spambot||

    No I just want to know why the reluctance to have things peer reviewed? Why fighting Freedom of Information Act requests? These are logical questions. I don't know dick about climate, but I know when something starts to look fishy as hell.

    A lot of "experts" told me Saddam had an assload of chemical weapons. Good thing I didn't defer to them either.

  • Chad||

    If you, spambot, got spammed with 60+ FOI requests in one month, all of which you are required, by law, to not only respond to, but to document that you spent sufficient time responding to, you, too would be a little pissy towards the trolls.

    I am glad that you admit that "you don't know dick". Therefore, you have two options: to trust experts, or educate yourself. I will give you credit, though, for realizing your ignorance. Most fools are too stupid to realize how stupid they are.

    http://www.skepticalscience.co.....amp;n;=140

    The only failures of the peer review process were actually committed in FAVOR of the deniers, who slipped a few shoddy papers past sympathetic editors.

  • ||

    Are you arguing that the non-compliance with FOA was because they were busy? The story told in the emails definitely leaned more towards "didn't want the info to get out".

  • Chad||

    Yes, in fact, they ARE busy. So if someone tried to dick them around, yes, they would hate them and no, they wouldn't want to help them.

    It was clear from the emails that they felt that the deniers would twist emails around and try to make them mean something other than what they really do. You guys proved them right, actually. Good job!

  • ||

    Now you're joking. The emails show a pattern of deliberate distortion and made-up data. The chief scientist involved has basically admitted it. He flat-out said there's been no warming for 15 years and they hid that. So are you trolling or what?

  • ||

    "The only failures of the peer review process were actually committed in FAVOR of the deniers, who slipped a few shoddy papers past sympathetic editors."

    And the people who Michael Mann conspired to keep out of scientific journals by threatening not to deal with them if they dealt with AGW skeptics.

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    Once it was said that 'the science is settled' and that we should move on to doing something about AGW, that is when I became skeptical of AGW.

    After Jones' interview on BBS last Saturday, I have officially become a GW skeptic.

  • Chad||

    Why?

    Be specific.

  • Thomas||

    MNG,

    You need to distinguish between what the experts (as a whole) say and what the experts (who the media choose to promote) say.

  • Thomas||

    The academic literature is replete with evidence against AGW as well as evidence against the claims that current trends/conditions are unprecedented. It's amazing how easy it is to find (if you have access to academic journals).

  • Chad||

    Please cite five important papers from the last year that are evidence AGAINST AGW.

    Since the literature is *replete* with such papers, I'll have to make it harder for you, so two restrictions.

    1: No papers from well-known skeptics (Christie, Lindzen, etc).

    2: The papers must overwhelmingly back your claim, not just some small fraction of the paper.

    Cheers

  • Chad Hangs||

    1: No papers from well-known skeptics (Christie, Lindzen, etc).

    In other words, "No actual scientists can be cited; that's cheating!"

    2: The papers must overwhelmingly back your claim, not just some small fraction of the paper.

    That is, "No citing anything from any other kind of scientific study; only the treatises of fanatics committed to writing exclusively on eco-apocalypticism are permissible sources."

    How convenient! You get to equivocate about how scientific your fool religion is by defining away all science that disagrees with your greentard religion as non-science. To block all disagreement, you set us the impossible task of finding a scientific refutation of your dogma among your preferred band of dogmatists. One might just as easily seek for a scientific refutation of Lysenko among the writings of the Stalinists.

    Back on the short bus you go, Chad, with a note to your teachers to stop letting you use the internet.

  • Chad||

    Ahh, I see that you are unable to actually ANSWER my question. Crackpots rarely can.

    Game over, man. Thanks for being such a loser.

  • Chad||

    I read Science and Nature every week, and probably talk to more scientists every day than almost anyone here has talked to in their life.

    Among the dozens of scientists I know, I can only think of a couple who are skeptics, and they are hardcore Republicans in general. That's pretty much the case in the media, which cites the same hardcore subset of people with the same frequency as the cite the huge majority, all in the name of being fair and balanced.

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    "Chad - I read Science and Nature every week, and probably talk to more scientists every day than almost anyone here has talked to in their life."

    That being the case, then the science is settled!

  • ||

    I read Science and Nature every week, and probably talk to more scientists every day than almost anyone here has talked to in their life.

    ROFLMA! Choad: "Well I read smarty magazines and talk to all the smart people!"

    If that isn't evidence I can't imagine what is!

  • Chad||

    I *am* one of the smarty people.

  • JoshInHB||

    Sure you are.

    You're as smart as anybody.
    Don't let nobody tell you diffrent, Forrest.

  • ||

    The question isn't "who is smart?", but "who is right?". If all of the scientists you cite are using compromsed data sets (whether deliberately, as in the Anglia crew), or accidentaly (through trusting those who are delivering tainted data, or using data without taking into account contamination by heat sources), then it doesn't matter how smart or well intentioned they are. The Indian scientist who repudiated Himalayan glaciar melting two weeks ago would have been one of those people you are citing, and so would the man who just admitted no warming since the mid-90's. What happened there?are they no longer real scientists? Were they not peer-reviewed?
    I'm sorry, but "almost all of them think this" isn't going to do it for me, because there is some serious evidence that there is deep and long standing corruption in the field; corruption that would have been noticed by "smart people" had they cared to see it. But it wasn't because of them that we now know about the scandal, was it? It was because of the skeptics you dismiss. Yet still we are meant to defer to those who were blind to the fraud, willingly or otherwise.

  • ||

    The preview function probably helps with spelling errors caused by cellphone sized keypads. Apologies.

  • Chad||

    People who aren't smart are usually not even smart enough to know that they aren't smart. You clearly qualify.

    Please, what is wrong with the data? Be specific. Which data is "compromised", and how so? I doubt you have half a clue.

    Plenty of very smart deniers have been digging through the data for years, and have accounted for one meaningful change to the data (which NASA corrected immediately), and a few corrections to various reports which do not affect anything substantial. This is despite the fact that they have access to the overwhelming majority of the data.

    Clearly, all the lies must be hidden in that few percent which is privately owned, or was lost twenty years ago when someone pitched some old magnetic tapes that had been gathering dust in a closet for a decade.

  • kinnath||

    http://www.timesonline.co.uk/t.....026317.ece

    World may not be warming, say scientists

    The IPCC faces similar criticisms from Ross McKitrick, professor of economics at the University of Guelph, Canada, who was invited by the panel to review its last report.

    The experience turned him into a strong critic and he has since published a research paper questioning its methods.

    “We concluded, with overwhelming statistical significance, that the IPCC’s climate data are contaminated with surface effects from industrialisation and data quality problems. These add up to a large warming bias,” he said.

    Which qualified experts do you wish us to listen to?

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • ||

    My opinion on AGW is determined by what the majority of qualified experts say on the subject. If that changes so will my opinion.

    Maybe it's just the way you phrased it, but you make it sound as if thinking for oneself is a mistake. Now, I will listen to experts, but I will also evaluate what they're saying. Experts aren't perfect, and to persuade me they have to make their case.

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • Gilbert Martin||

    You have no idea what the "majority of qualified experts" say because you aren't any sort of authority on who IS a "qualified expert" to begin with.

  • jk||

    Agreeing that human activity is the sole cause of our ever changing climate makes someone a qualified expert.
    Questioning that assertion immediately disqualifies someone.
    Isn't that easy? No need for debate, no need to answer questions, no need to show data, no need to prove one's self, because those who disagree are not even worth recognizing.

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • ||

    MNG|2.17.10 @ 12:51PM|#
    "It has nothing to do with "what I say....."
    Followed by:
    "I am kind of saying that people's opinions should be determined by folks who know WTF they are talking about"
    Right?
    Would you like the laughter now, or is there another punch line?

  • JoshInHB||

    MNG-"It has nothing to do with "what I say." My opinion on AGW is determined by what the majority of qualified experts say on the subject. If that changes so will my opinion."

    So you're incapable of rational thought and blindly accept what your betters tell you to think.

  • ||

    MNG the brainless!

  • jk||

    Arrogance (we can map out climate trends moving a century into the future, it doesn't look good, but don't worry, government can fix it) and fantacism (the end is near! the end is near! we need global cap and trade! cattle are killing the planet! big oil is killing the planet! aaauuuggghhh!), not so much.

  • Tony||

    Please. Deniers are just as hysterical without having facts to back it up. Or is cap and trade not gonna destroy the economy and reduce us to stone age living?

  • ||

    There's plenty of sound economic theory and evidence to bolster that arument. Unlike for AGW.

  • Tony||

    So at least we're agreed that there's doomsday hysteria on both sides. It's just a question of who has the facts. Since you can ignore facts at will, apparently, let's just see who believes what:

    Climate change is real, believed by:

    The worldwide scientific community
    The world's governments
    David Harsanyi
    ExxonMobil

    Deniers:

    Rush Limbaugh
    Glenn Beck
    Wingnut blog commenters

    Boy, this is tough.

  • Thomas||

    I think everyone believes that climate change is real; it's AGW that people debate, along with the notion that climate change is something that should be stopped.

  • Tony||

    Similarly, microevolution is real, it's just macroevolution that people debate.

  • ||

    This is actually the exact opposite of the micro-macro evolutionary debate. It is the anti-alarmists who say that climate change has always existed and is not something to suddenly freak out about. The global warming advocates are actually much closer to the religious people who believe that once upon a time, there was one single, static "supposed to be" world until man ate from the tree of knowledge and destroyed it.

    What temperature is the world "supposed to be"? Since the climate can and always has changed, how do you know when change is "supposed to" be happening? If we find that the change is in fact natural, would you then be in favor of allowing things to take their course, despite the results you have predicted? Or should we fight nature and fund some way to artificially cool the planet?
    Say current trends continue long term and the planet starts getting colder. Colder than even the levels we were "supposed to" be at when you were fighting warming...do you in that case support pumping as much greenhouse gas into the atmosphere as needed to keep us at the right temperature?
    These are not argumentative questions. If we are going to "do something", especially the most expensive something ever, there had damned well better be a goal upfront. I mean a goal beyond "give us money and power and we'll let you know when to stop". Right? Or no?

  • Chad||

    First, lots of people deny the warming. What planet are you living on?

    Second, if it ain't AGW, what magical fu-fu dust do you think IS causing the warming you apparently agree is happening.

    Third, why AREN'T greenhouse gases causing the warming, despite the basic science that says they will, and the agreement between the precise nature of the warming and what one would expect to result from greenhouse gases?

  • ||

    How about you answer why the planet his not warmed in 15 years despite increasing CO2, "Despite the basic science that says [it] will". There is obviously something wrong with the fundamentals of the theory. Shouldn't you answer that first before you point fingers?

  • Old Mexican||

    Tony,

    Science is not a dick sizing contest, looking to have the bigger list of supporters. You still don't get it.

    I have said, many times, that the problem is NOT with AGW as a theory, but with the following:

    a) That AGW theory, being true, proves that GW is detrimental.
    b) That AGW shows that "we must do something about emissions."
    c) That AGW shows that the climate predictions are dire if man does not mend his ways.

    None of the above has even been proven. There is a lot of conjecture about the effects of GW on the earth's climate, but appart from some obviously ridiculous doomsday scenarios, all of them are nothing more than mere conjecture.

    AGW proponets could have a point that the theory itself is SOUND, but that does NOT lead to the above conclusions. YOU on the other hand think it DOES and even go as far as saying that anybody that questions the conclusions MUST be questioning the Science! I challenge that notion precisely on scientific grounds: Where is the evidence? It is one thing to prove that man-made CO2 accumulates in the atmosphere and heats up the planet. It is QUITE ANOTHER to say: This is a bad thing. The later is an unsubstantiated conclusion.

  • jk||

    Tony tiene un pelo del diablo, pero no sabe donde.

  • Lobster girl equality act||

    "Science is not a dick sizing contest" but a verbal sword fight©: similar to the Godwin's Law:"online discussion grows longer, the probability of a comparison involving Nazis or Hitler approaches" VSF© is the fact that every argument discussed by a male eventually leads to a comparison of your dicks.

  • Chad||

    OK, everyone, take note. OM has *conceded* the science of AGW. It is only about cost-benefit now, right? Great. Let's make a list.

    Pro's of global warming:

    1: Increased land values in Siberia and northern Canada.

    2: Less nasty winters in some northern areas like the midwest, northern Europe, etc.

    3: Crop and plant biomass yields will probably improve if warming is mild

    4: Hmmm...this is getting hard...I'll let you guys add some.

    Cons:

    1: Coastal flooding, displacing millions of people and costing vast sums of money to mitigate or relocate.

    2: Reduced crop and plant biomass yields if warming is strong

    3: Increased drought

    4: Increased extreme precipitation

    5: More intense heat waves

    6: Desertification of much of the equatorial areas

    7: Loss of glaciers and their summer water flows

    8: A vast number of extinctions (we are already committing the sixth great extinction!).

    9: The spread of tropical diseases to the highly-populated mid-latitudes

    10: A reduction in the levels of most lakes, including the Great Lakes

    11: The potential for it to be a LOT worse than what we expect

    It is patently obvious that the cons are much larger than the pros. That implies that it is worth spending money to avert.

    Thanks for playing.

    Chad

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    Please. Deniers are just as hysterical without having facts to back it up. Or is cap and trade not gonna destroy the economy and reduce us to stone age living?

    You don't seem to understand. You are talking about two different things - it has been the politicians that conflated both issues, for their benefit. The skepticism about AGW has existed before there was a mention of reducing emissions. The skepticism against the proposed "solutions" comes from an entirely different camp (mainly, economists).

    You can HAVE a person that believes there IS global warming and still be skeptical about the solutions. YOU on the other hand act very much hysterical when it comes to criticism on GW or Emission Control - they are NOT the same thing.

    Everybody has been trying to tell you this, Tony, many times. There are libertarians who thing "Yes, there could be GW and yes, we could be the culprit", but when they point out the obvious problems with the "solutions", you immediately clump them together with AGW skeptics.

    I am skeptical of the science because it makes little sense to establish that a SINGLE variable is the only that affects a complex system. That flies in the face of how complex systems work. And I am skeptical of cap and trade or other government intervention schemes because government is the LEAST efficient manager of anything. But others do not think like me, yet you think we are all the same - who's being the fanatic here?

  • Tony||

    If you believe in facts, great, have a cookie.

    Why should I care what a nihilistic anarchist has to say about the correct policy response to an environmental crisis? You're not likely to have anything useful to say.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    Why should I care what a nihilistic anarchist has to say about the correct policy response to an environmental crisis?

    And yet I am the fanatic . . .

  • Tony||

    You are a self-described anarchist. There's no way you're going to have a good answer to a problem that requires global cooperation. In fact it's probably simpler if you just deny the problem exists in the first place.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    There's no way you're going to have a good answer to a problem that requires global cooperation.

    Sure I have! It is called "The Market." And in itself it IS global cooperation, better known as "Division of Labor."

    In fact it's probably simpler if you just deny the problem exists in the first place.

    No, I am simply skeptical of the existence of a problem YOU happen to believe exists. That's all.

  • Chad||

    How is the "market" supposed to fix a classic market failure, OM?

    Hell, environmental costs are usually the EXAMPLE they use.

  • ||

    Chad|2.17.10 @ 7:43PM|#
    "How is the "market" supposed to fix a classic market failure, OM?
    Hell, environmental costs are usually the EXAMPLE they use."
    To show there is a market failure, you first have to show harm done. You haven't; you've begged the question.

  • Chad||

    Read my list above. There are numerous downsides and a few small upsides.

    This easily means a "preponderance of evidence" standard.

  • kinnath||

    Assuming you have completely captured the cons associated with AGW, please itemize the elements of your action plan for avoiding or mitigating these cons as well as the costs (both deployment and life-cycle) of each element of the action plan.

    You also need to provide cost estimates for each of the cons in your list.

    When you are finished we can start the cost/benefit analysis to see if you action plan make sense.

    Have a nice evening.

  • Thomas||

    "Why should I care what a nihilistic anarchist has to say"

    So, why are you on this site?

  • ||

    Tony,

    Why should I care what a nihilistic anarchist childish, ingratiating, pompus asshole has to say about the correct policy anything...

    Fixed.

  • ||

    Old Mexicano, that was NOT you I was describing...

  • Michael Ejercito||

    You claimed that global warming will destroy the planet.

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • Old Mexican||

    MNG-ese to English translator, Ver 1.0.02

    Re: MNG,

    Skepticism=good

    Translation:

    Skepticism = Good, when it agrees with my beliefs

    Arrogance (amateur arm-chair "scientists" claiming they understand the science better than qualified experts)

    Translation:
    Arrogant amateur scientists = those that question.
    Experts = those that should never be questioned.

    [...]and fantacism [sic] (starting with the conviction that agw can't be true because it might give ideological opponents ammunition), not so much.

    Translation:

    People that question the data or the obvious errors are fantacists . . . Whatever that means.

    (My guess is that he meant fanaticism, but I am not the resident expert in the English language, so what do I know?]

  • Paul||

    Arrogance (amateur arm-chair "scientists" claiming they understand the science better than qualified experts) and fantacism (starting with the conviction that agw can't be true because it might give ideological opponents ammunition), not so much.

    So we're in agreement about Al Gore's opinions and their value to Climate Research...

  • cmace||

    Pot calling the kettle black?

  • ||

    Arrogance (amateur arm-chair "scientists" claiming they understand the science better than qualified experts and submarining the peer review process to prevent those experts from getting published and fantacism (starting with the conviction that agw can't must be true because it any admission of weakness might give ideological opponents ammunition), not so much.

    Pot, meet kettle.

  • MNG||

    Only someone profoundly ignorant of the peer-review process or scientific journals in general can think that the Jones' crew could have "submarined the peer review process." There's just too many outlets, editors, reviewers, etc. for that.

  • Old Mexican||

    Right on. For example, the IPCC report contains NOTHING MORE than peer reviewed scientific reports!

    Uh, except, of course, for those that were NOT.

    I guess the very IPCC report is NOT peer reviewed . . . Or maybem JUST maybe, there's confirmation bias in the ranks.

    Nah! That's crazy talk!

  • ||

    There are not many reputable scientific publications on this subject. And Jones and crew owned them all. And when the skeptics finally got a place to publish their work, Jones and crew set out to deliberately discredit that journal. That is the famous "what do we do when the skeptics take over their own journal" e-mail.

    Joshua Corning posted all those e-mails on the thread the day the scandal broke. And you read them. Really MNG, maybe you can't help being stupid, but stop acting like the rest of us are.

  • ||

    As a publishing scientist I wish I could say this is 100% true, but it isn't. Many reviewers in the review process can be very dogmatic and not open to different ideas that come down the pike. Biomedical science, which I specialize in, has been riddled over the years with dogmatic devotion to certain ideas that were subsequently shown to be wrong. Basically, people suck, even us scientists...except me, of course :P

  • ||

    Weren't the people who said that ulcers were caused by bacteria about laughed out of their field? That is of course until they were proven correct.

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • Lord Jubjub||

    What was truly ironic was that the proof came from a doctor who set out to prove that H. pylori DIDN'T cause ulcers.

  • ||

    What was truly ironic was that the proof came from a doctor who set out to prove that H. pylori DIDN'T cause ulcers.

    Set out to prove? You mean like a real scientist, or something?

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • Xeones||

    Article was about as stupid as I expected it would be, but a commenter did point out something rather interesting...that the ice caps on mars are melting as well. So I'm officially changing my stance now - not only is AGW real, but it's contagious too!!!!!

    Well, those robotic probes we've been landing on Mars lately are basically SUVs, right? You do the math.

  • ||

    Aren't they solar-powered?

    Wait... doesn't the "rise" in global temperature coincide rather conspicuously with the prevalence of solar panel technology?

  • guy in the back row||

    I thinkt he pastafarians were right all along with their negative correlation of global warming and pirates. The pirates off Somalia get busy over the past 10 years or so and all of a sudden there hasn't been warming for at least a decade.

  • Tony||

    Not only must the science be unassailable, it must be subjected to an industry-funded gauntlet of disinformation, political posturing, and harassment.

  • Old Mexican||

    Tony-ese to English Translator, Ver 2.01.01

    Not only must the science be unassailable, it must be subjected to an industry-funded gauntlet of disinformation, political posturing, and harassment.

    Not only does the science be unassailable, it must also be defended against skeptics who are obviously in the payroll of "Industry", otherwise they would not question the science at all.

  • Paul||

    Not only must the science be unassailable, it must be subjected to an industry-funded gauntlet of disinformation, political posturing, and harassment.

    You're talking about this industry-funded gauntlet of disinformation?

  • MNG||

    Tony, it has to be false because if it were true it would lead to more government or something, and so it has to be false. You know how this tiresome game goes...

  • jk||

    If there was a study funded by profit seekers I assume you would say it was skewed to justify more profit.

    Why would a study funded by power seekers not be skewed to justify more power?

  • ||

    JK,

    They are "qualified experts" and more importantly they reinforce MNG's world view and make him feel better about himself. They don't owe anyone any answers. They don't have to abide by the law. They don't have to answer for the lies that have been found in the IPCC report. It doesn't matter that they destroyed data. Layman can't question them.

  • jk||

    We both know that if Big Oil came out with a scientific study showing that variations in energy output of that star about which we orbit was the major influence upon our ever changing climate, that MNG would write it off as being corrupted by a profit seeking enterprise.

    Why wouldn't a power seeking enterprise be above corrupting a study that justifies them taking more power?

  • ||

    And of course MNG doesn't mention the profit motive of the AGW people. Thirty years ago climate research was about as backwater of an area of science as you could find. Now people like Phil Jones make millions. Yet, MNG acts like they have no reason to be biased towards finding AGW.

  • jk||

    I realize that those commissioned to do these studies are laughing all the way to the bank, but look at where that funding comes from.
    It comes from the very people who would gain power and control should the government solutions to climate change come to pass.

    Tell me MNG, why are power seekers above suspicion?

  • Tony||

    Those power hungry scientists and politicians must be idiots. I can think of 100 better ways to power grab than to invent a convoluted scheme requiring the vast majority of world scientists to agree on a falsehood, then promote politically unpopular and expensive policies based on it.

  • jk||

    Really? You can come up with a better idea than that?
    Do share.

    I think that this is a great idea for a power grab.
    Human activity is destroying the planet, and the only thing that can save the planet is regulating that activity on a global scale.
    It's great! Everyone is the problem and government is the solution!

    BTW I disagree with your assertion that the vast majority of world scientists are in agreement about this.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    I can think of 100 better ways to power grab[...]

    There are 100 other hobgoblins one can invent. These flim-flam artists placed their bets on THIS one. It's their funeral.

    If you have 100 others, I am game: I am willing to invest in a money-making power grab. Let's hear your idea.

  • Tony||

    If you had a 0.01% of the evidence of a global power-grabbing conspiracy that scientists do for climate change, you might have a point.

  • jk||

    It is so painfully obvious that the "science" has been reverse engineered to prove a predetermined conclusion, I'm surprised more people don't see it.
    Perhaps their bullshit detectors are broken.
    Mine isn't.

  • Soonerliberty||

    Say trillions of dollars in redistribution from regulation...does that count? I would at least assume someone as skeptical about profit-motives and greedy self-interest in the private sector would apply the same skepticism to those who ask us to give up property and wealth in the public sector. Possible power-grabs:

    1) Scientists thrive on research grants. Want to guess where Tony thinks those should come from?

    2) Politicians thrive on taxes. Want to guess where Tony thinks they should get taxes if AGW is actually detrimental or if he believes it is?

    3) Redistributors thrive on taxes to spread to less-developed societies. Want to guess where Tony wants to take that money from to redistribute to the less-developed countries in the name of avoiding climate disasters?

    4) AGW is the perfect demagogic tool. No one can prove it's wrong, and the politicians who advocate using it to justify regulation will be long gone before we see the effects. Of course, if the effects are negative, the demagogue will claim we didn't do enough. If they are positive, the politician will claim credit, even if regulation had nothing to do with it.

    Do you really not see any power-grab opportunities or are you such a fundamentalist believer in AGW and gov't that there's no turning back?

  • Tony sucks my hanging Chad.||

    http://www.climatedepot.com/a/.....Governance

    If Tony the retard had one nano-fraction of the evidence for a man-made eco-apocalypse that real news reporters have already presented us for a publicly-announced plot to seize power and impose a despotic totalitarian tyranny on all the world, we people with actual brains wouldn't already have written him off for the liar and statist shill he is.

  • Thomas||

    It didn't start out as a power-grabbing scheme. It was initially just a way to get funding. When Al Gore heard James Hansen speak on it, he saw it as an opportunity to control business. It snowballed from there.

  • Old Mexican||

    The sad part is, we may never get to read Tony's better hobgoblins. And here I had money set aside for a power-grab that could potentially surpass Al Gore's . . . I feel so sad.

  • Tripleb||

    Not power-hungry, funding and relevance-hungry, but, yes, most politicians are idiots.

  • guy in the back row||

    Politically unpopular?

    Reducing government spending is politically unpopular. Ending corporate welfare is politically unpopular.

    Interference in society for an undefianed period of time to solve a vaguely understood problem is very popular politically!

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • ||

    (with apologies to OM)
    MNG|2.17.10 @ 12:54PM|#
    "Tony, it has to be false because if it were true it would lead to more government or something, and so it has to be false."
    Translation:
    "If it were true, it'd be easy to prove and we'd get more control. Since it isn't, we'll accuse people of bad thoughts if they don't agree!"

    MNG, again:
    "You know how this tiresome game goes..."
    Translation:
    "something's very wrong here, so I'll try an innuendo to cover..."
    Hey, MNG, I can translate worn-out lefty most any time! I live in the Bay Area and am quite conversant in it as a third language.

  • Xeones||

    Aren't they solar-powered?

    It doesn't matter. Facts have fuck-all to do with a good AGW argument.

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • ||

    Do you agree that according to the global temperature record used by the IPCC, the rates of global warming from 1860-1880, 1910-1940 and 1975-1998 were identical?

    An initial point to make is that in the responses to these questions I’ve assumed that when you talk about the global temperature record, you mean the record that combines the estimates from land regions with those from the marine regions of the world. CRU produces the land component, with the Met Office Hadley Centre producing the marine component.

    Temperature data for the period 1860-1880 are more uncertain, because of sparser coverage, than for later periods in the 20th Century. The 1860-1880 period is also only 21 years in length. As for the two periods 1910-40 and 1975-1998 the warming rates are not statistically significantly different (see numbers below).

    [This indicates that the recent warming is not exceptional. Moreover, even if it had been “exceptional,” that would not prove it is due to greenhouse gas emissions?]

    When scientists say “the debate on climate change is over”, what exactly do they mean – and what don’t they mean?

    It would be supposition on my behalf to know whether all scientists who say the debate is over are saying that for the same reason. I don’t believe the vast majority of climate scientists think this. This is not my view. There is still much that needs to be undertaken to reduce uncertainties, not just for the future, but for the instrumental (and especially the palaeoclimatic) past as well. …

  • DADIODADDY||

    “the debate on climate change is over"

    shit and I didn't get a turn.

  • Kyle||

    The problem I identify is that the individuals who question global warming generally use the same shamelessly embarassing tactics as those that question evolution.

    Ice on Mars, seriously? There is strong evidence that carbon levels have dramatically increased in a short period of time (based on ice core sampling). Does this evidence prove AGW? No. However, it is simple evidence that suggests AGW. As far as contrary voice, all I hear are right-wing insurance salesman calling in to talk radio.

    When there is a credible, reasoned voice arguing the contrary point of view, I'll listen.

  • ||

    http://www.climate-skeptic.com/

    These guys don't strike me as car salesman.

    Is this guy a car salesman?

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_M._Gray

    Further, the increase in CO2 is evidence but it alone doesn't suggest anything. To establish AGW, you have to show at a minimum that that increase in CO2 is associated with warming that is different in kind or scale than past warming. And to do that, you have to know what the climate was like in past long before any records exists. That is an enormous scientific problem. Sorry, but I don't buy for a moment that they have solved it with any certitude. And in face, neither does Phil Jones.

  • jk||

    He said "credible".
    That means he'll only listen to credible contrary points of view, but one loses all credibility when they question AGW.

    That was easy!

  • Mike M.||

    When there is a credible, reasoned voice arguing the contrary point of view, I'll listen.

    Either you don't really mean this seriously, or you haven't done enough personal research on this subject. There are plenty of credible, and even some highly decorated scientists who take a contrary point of view.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Kyle,

    The problem I identify is that the individuals who question global warming generally use the same shamelessly embarassing tactics as those that question evolution.

    You entirely miss the point. The issue is not Global Warming, nor the theory that explains current global warming trends (there are OTHER theories that do not just indicate a sole source, like AGW, but several sources.)

    The issue is with the conclusions: That AGW is bad, that we must do something to curtail further warming and that the "projections" are dire if man does not mend his ways. None of those conclusions have ANY basis in science or fact, yet when skeptics point these problems out, they are immediately ridiculed and attacked in the exact same manner YOU are: By calling them flat-earthers, or accusing them of being the same as "evolution deniers."

    It would be like agreeing that Natural Selection is fact (which it is), after which some jump to the conclusion that "Evolution indicates only the strongest and better must survive, so we must get rid of the inferior races", and then calling those that disagree "Evolution Deniers". Catch my drift?

    The other problem is that the science has been hijacked by people with very serious power grabbing interests, a fact that many skeptics of the proposed "solutions" have indicated. Yet, these skeptics (who are not necessarily AGW skeptics) are lumped together into a single category of "deniers" for daring to question the "solutions" (!)

    So now solution and theory have been conflated into one impregnable fortress nobody is supposed to touch. Is that science?

  • Tripleb||

    And my colorblindness is 'simple evidence' that the sky is purple.

  • DADIODADDY||

    fucking monkey boy...I hate global warming enablers like you, come the teaa bag revolution, you'll be the first to die

  • ||

    I wonder if a Fudgesicle and a Choco Taco ever got it on.

  • Xeones||

    I wonder if a Fudgesicle and a Choco Taco ever got it on.

    Are you trying to give Warty yet another new fetish?

  • JimBob||

    All of you deniers and flat-earthers who are exploiting the glacial temperatures and bizarre snowfall to mock global warming fears are missing the point: Weather isn't the same as climate.

    See, this is what pisses me off.

    I agree that climate isn't the same as weather. And, when folks started citing the weather as proof that global warming is bogus, I was glad to hear NPR's science folks make the climate-not-weather point on the radio.

    But then I turned on NPR yesterday, and they were running a story about how global warming caused more moisture to evaporate as the storm built, leading to the blizzard that knocked the east coast on its ass for a week.

    Remember, kiddies, weather is not the same as climate if it doesn't fit the rigged models. But if you're trying to PROMOTE the idea of global warming, then weather is abso-fucking-lutely the same as climate!

  • Michael Ejercito||

    But then I turned on NPR yesterday, and they were running a story about how global warming caused more moisture to evaporate as the storm built, leading to the blizzard that knocked the east coast on its ass for a week.


    Greenhouse-effect-driven global warming should reduce the average number of blizzards during winter, since blizzards, like all weather, are driven first and foremost by temperature differentials, and as I have explained, an increased greenhouse effect would reduce temperature differentials and on average result in more moderate weather.

    That, of course, does not mean there would be no blizzards or hurricanes.

  • Where's my Global Warming?||

    Now since we could all do with milder weather, you know what you gotta do, right?

    Get the hell out there and burn some coal or something, dammit! We're sick of having all these blizzards.

  • Paul||

    This wouldn't be the first time that a U.N. body has culled statistics from dubious sources-- activists and other interested parties-- and included them in scientific reports.

    Didn't the W.H.O. produce some book on AIDS statistics in Africa and it turned out some of the "facts" were just one-offs or quips made by activists or WHO workers in the field which were then printed as if they were well-researched and studied data?

  • kinnath||

    AGW versus Natural Selection makes a great litmus test. Anyone that equates AGW skeptics with evolution skeptics has clearly shown his or her ignorance of scientific method in general and evolutionary science in particular.

  • ||

    But, but, Piltdown Man.

  • Shorter MNG||

    Thank you Reason Posters; may I have another?

  • ||

    This week on National Public Radio, he blamed the heavy snowfall, in part, on global warming, proving that even very smart experts can use weather to further the cause.

    I'd say that proves that allegedly smart people can say things that defy reason and common sense -- a warming globe causes unusually heavy snowfall and cold temperatures? Really? That's all you got?

  • Global Goreing||

    But the science is settled!

  • ||

    I've been away from this site for a while, and I have to say, I'm amazed that MNG hasn't toned his AGW fanaticism down some. Tony, well, I hold him in much to low regard as to think he might actually learn something.

    It was sad really, reading through the posts above, to realize how completely brainwashed MNG and a couple others have been. In the past I've tried to provide reasoned arguments, but it is painfully clear that reason has nothing whatsoever to do with this issue, for some people.

  • Old Mexican||

    Let me give MNG the benefit of the doubt since he is less of a fruitcake than Tony or even Chad.

    MNG is a good debater, even when we resort to call each other names - all in good sport. Tony has made up his mind a long ago about socialism and being a European at heart and Chad is a nutcase that believes each of us "owes" at least 33% of our productive efforts back to "society" (which invariably means "to government bureaucrats and freeloaders".)

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    Tony and Choad are fruitcakes, but so is MNG. MNG is a smart-ass, but not smart. He is a dick-head, but has no dick. He is a shit-stain, but... no, he has both of these.

  • ||

    MNG -- So I guess 'back in the day' you believed that the moon was swallowed by a wolf at night, then that the earth was flat, and later that man would never be able to fly, and then that no one would fly faster than the speed of sound because 'the qualified experts said so.'
    Seriously, how does one determine who the 'qualified experts' are?

  • Tony||

    No matter how many times this argument is repeated, it doesn't get any more logical.

    Are all theories hopelessly up in the air because at one point in time a majority of people believed something false?

    Besides, who would have counted as a qualified expert before modern science was even invented?

    You trust the scientific consensus on hundreds of other topics without question. The only subjects people seem to have a problem with are precisely those that cause them to question their core beliefs. Evolution for religious fundamentalists and climate change for market fundamentalists (since there is no market solution, I suppose).

  • ||

    Maybe you trust scientific consensus on other topics without question. Me, I prefer skepticism, reason, and at least using my brain.

    Also, just because you attribute screwy justifications to others positions, doesn't make them fact.

  • Chad||

    Then why are you NOT skeptical of all the crap you find on right-wing blogs like this?

    A real skeptic weighs peer-reviewed scientific publications well above partisan chatter.

  • ||

    Chad|2.17.10 @ 8:06PM|#
    "Then why are you NOT skeptical of all the crap you find on right-wing blogs like this?
    A real skeptic weighs peer-reviewed scientific publications well above partisan chatter."
    Sort of answered your own question, didn't you?

  • ||

    "credibility and evidence had better be unassailable."

    What level is unassailable? If there is only a 90% correlation between Thalidomide and birth defects, would you feed it to your children if it would save jobs? 75%? 50%?

    In the meantime, let's go on heating the Earth in a way which is not reversible in our lifetimes. [Nor can extinct species be brought back.]

    97% worldwide scientific agreement is pretty darn high. That means only 3% are taking big oil/mfg money to do anti-climate change research...and they have a lot of money to buy the research they need.
    It worked out great for everyone when we let the tobacco companies conduct lung cancer and addiction studies for 50 years, and didn't listen to independent science.

    What is the risk in heating the Earth or destroying the ozone? All life.
    What is the risk in going green? Dollar bills.
    Which is more important, jobs or human existence?

  • jk||

    That means only 3% are taking big oil/mfg money to do anti-climate change research...

    That means 97% are taking big government money to do research that justifies regulating/controlling the activity that is blamed for our ever changing climate.

    You can't really blame the scientists. They're just doing what those who fund their research are telling them to do: reverse engineer some "science" to prove a predetermined conclusion or find another way to feed your family.

  • ||

    I'm going to try to answer your questions at the end...

    What is the risk in heating the Earth or destroying the ozone?

    This is actually a fairly complex question. First, you must ask if we are in fact heating the earth, second to what extent, and third, is that unprecedented, or necessarily bad. The answers to these, is, we don't know, with any confidence. As for the ozone, where did that come from? The ozone has recovered, and the best current understanding is that like climate, it's cyclical. In fact there is worry that the recovered ozone is actually contributing to global warming. So, your overly simplistic answer is wrong, or at the very least completely exaggerated and unprovable.

    What is the risk in going green? This is the good question. If by going green you mean things like cap and trade, and massive government programs, the cost is poverty, death, and significantly reduced capacity to react to further, real threats to our existence. If you hadn't noticed, conservation and "green" changes are occurring without government intervention. Sure, its not as quickly as alarmists would like, but it's also not sapping our already gimped global economy.

  • ||

    One other thing, where in the world did you get your 97% agreement figure from? I'm seriously curious!

  • RM||

    Actually, extinct species can be brought back.

    Try again.

  • Thomas||

    Dude, 97% is not even close.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: jcalton,

    What level is unassailable? If there is only a 90% correlation between Thalidomide and birth defects, would you feed it to your children if it would save jobs?

    Actually, Thalidomide caused birth defects when taken by pregnant women, not by children who were already BORN (hence birth defects)

    In the meantime, let's go on heating the Earth in a way which is not reversible in our lifetimes.

    Who said it is not reversible? All you have to do is turn off the sun.

    97% worldwide scientific agreement is pretty darn high.

    Really? That high? Because I heard last time it was like 96%.

    That means only 3% are taking big oil/mfg money to do anti-climate change research

    Wow, deduction by manicheanism! If you are not with us, then you MUST be against us! Scientific, see?

    ...and they have a lot of money to buy the research they need.

    Yes. Instead, the Climate Change scientists and the Big Givernments that fund them are all paupers.

    What is the risk in heating the Earth or destroying the ozone? All life.

    What is the risk of having a large boulder hit my head? My life.

    Uh . . . that would be the RESULT of having a boulder hit my head, not the risk. The risk? I would say, pretty LOW.

  • DADIODADDY||

    "unassailable." = crappy catamaran?

  • Michael Ejercito||

    In the meantime, let's go on heating the Earth in a way which is not reversible in our lifetimes


    Bullshit.

    The TTAPS study, the most important scientific paper since Einstein's "On the Electrodynamics of Moving Bodies" showed that any warming up to thirty-seven degrees can be reversed. Anyone with a rudimentary knowledge of climate science should know this.

    [Nor can extinct species be brought back.]


    They will be replaced with new species.

    What is the risk in heating the Earth or destroying the ozone? All life.


    There is no evidence global warming will sterilize the Earth.

  • kinnath||

    In the meantime, let's go on heating the Earth in a way which is not reversible in our lifetimes.

    This is not actually a proven fact. If you would bother to read the post up above, you will see that the IPCC invited an independent third-party to review its report. This independent third-party concluded that the data underlying the IPCC report is crap.

    Still waiting for someone to post a link to where the IPCC refutes the results of the independent study that it initiated.

  • jk||

    Why bother to refute the results when you have legions of believers who will attack anyone who dares to commit heresy against the Church of Anthropogenic Climate Change?

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    "Still waiting for someone to post a link to where the IPCC refutes the results of the independent study that it initiated."

    This is a good assignment for MNG. Ok MNG, we're waiting.

  • kinnath||

    Shouldn't be that hard to find something. Apparently Ross McKitrick is one of the two guys that have been bickering with Mann et al for the last decade.

  • ||

    I think everyone believes that climate change is real; it's AGW that people debate, along with the notion that climate change is something that should be stopped

    Agreed ...and I used to be one that accepted that GW might be happening, but AGW was far from being proven. However, now, with the repeated evidence that much of the data are flawed, extrapolated out of data that is based on assumptions, or are fabricated, I am no longer convinced that global warming is even taking place.

  • Thomas||

    That's exactly the situation I'm in. I used to be convinced that there was at least a warming trend, until I realized the inconsistency of measurement stations and the biased selection of proxy measures only for time periods that support the researcher's preconceived notions.

  • Tripleb||

    But Thomas, it's so much more than that! They've got fucking tree rings man! TREE. RINGS.

  • Thomas||

    Actually, I work in a tree-ring lab. Now, of course different trees respond differently to different phenomena, but I've yet to see any evidence of warming in my experience.

  • Thomas||

    Having said that, it's so convenient that it sounds like a lie to support my cause. Oh well. Believe what you will.

  • ||

    I'll add a me three here. It wasn't very long ago that I was fairly certain that significant, possibly even bordering on unprecedented warming was occurring. However after learning that original data was destroyed, that the method for adjusting records has consistently added a significant artificial warming, that sites used have been moved and changed, and that it appears that sites were carefully selected in some cases to emphasize warming, I'm no longer certain of that.

    I'm not saying that there wasn't any warming in the 70s and 80s, satellite data bears that out. I'm saying that some alternate estimates seem to show that warming over the last century, appears to be barely statistically significant. Additionally, warming seems to be normal, not unprecedented, as well as ultimately lower than other times within history based on ice core, revised tree ring, and historical data.

  • ||

    This is just about exactly where I am.

  • Tripleb||

    "I am no longer convinced that global warming is even taking place."

    I would suggest not even asking yourself this question as it is simply not relevant. You need only ask yourself whether or not the earth has warmed in the absence of industrial activity and whether or not life on earth survived those events. If the answer to those questions is yes, then who really gives a shit whether or not the earth is warming.

  • kinnath||

    We are still cooler than the peak of the medieval warming period (circa 1000 AD) when the vikings settled in Greenland, which they called Greenland because it was fucking green.

  • Thomas||

    Don't forget the Holocene Thermal Maximum, which was even warmer the MWP.

  • Thomas||

    And the last interglacial period.

  • Thomas||

    And arguably the decades leading up to the Younger Dryas.

  • Thomas||

    But current temperatures are unprecedented!

  • Jimmy 'Crack' Corn||

    But the science is settled!

  • Tripleb||

    Creationist wingnut!!!!!

  • Tony||

    To answer your questions, yes climate has changed dramatically in the past. Sure, some form of life has always survived, but there have been instances of severe devastation to the ecological status quo--the current form of which humans happen to thrive in. Massive disruptions have happened with less climate change than is predicted.

    Your question shouldn't be whether some form of life will survive, it should be what is the cost of doing nothing vs. the cost of doing something for the human species.

  • DADIODADDY||

    eat your neighbors before they eat you?

  • ||

    Your question shouldn't be whether some form of life will survive, it should be what is the cost of doing nothing vs. the cost of doing something for the human species.

    A question that I and others have addressed, even in this very thread.

    The costs, based on the IPCC reports and the estimates require returns to pre 1900 per capita carbon emissions levels. In order to achieve this, we basically need to shut down nearly all power production, eliminating all 1st world economies, and dooming all less wealthy economies to no improvement in the foreseeable future.

    In my way of thinking, we can doom ourselves through our own actions, or attempt to plan for the possible future eventuality that these predictions will come true. Stomping our economy into the ground just doesn't seem like a viable option.

  • Tony||

    eliminating all 1st world economies, and dooming all less wealthy economies to no improvement in the foreseeable future.

    Wow, who would have thought civilization and progress depended on fossil fuel energy so completely.

    Even under worst-case scenarios, economies won't be devastated, and under favorable assumptions changing to clean energy could grow the economy more than the status quo. You simply have no evidence whatsoever that switching from fossil fuel energy will be economically devastating. What we do have evidence for is that unchecked warming will be, starting with those poor economies.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    Wow, who would have thought civilization and progress depended on fossil fuel energy so completely.

    The billions that depend on the logistics the fossil fuel allows would think so. Misanthropic, leftist ideologues would probably not.

    Even under worst-case scenarios, economies won't be devastated

    Thus hath spoken the expert in Economics, Tony the Clueless.

    [...]and under favorable assumptions changing to clean energy could grow the economy more than the status quo.

    Your assettion should tell anybody that you have little idea of how or why economies grow.

    You simply have no evidence whatsoever that switching from fossil fuel energy will be economically devastating.

    You miss the point - it is not the switching that would be devastating, it would be the forced switchintg.

    Few got hurt when people switched from whale oil to kerosene to light up their lamps. The whalers probably were hurt, but everybody was better off.

    What we do have evidence for is that unchecked warming will be, starting with those poor economies.

    What evidence? And how can one "check" warming? You are thinking within the confines of appeasing the Volcano God.

  • kinnath||

    Wow, I knew Tony was an idiot, but I did not realize just how fucking stupid he could be until this very post. {assuming of course this is not one of the various folks that occasionally troll under Tony's handle}

  • Old Mexican||

    He's not an idiot. He fancies himself a priest of the Volcano God.

  • Old Mexican||

    Tony,

    Sure, some form of life has always survived, but there have been instances of severe devastation to the ecological status quo.

    If there was EVER an ecological status quo, we would all be living in the mythical Paradise.

    There is no such thing. The only permanent feature of this good Earth is change.

  • Tony||

    You never pass up an opportunity to miss the point completely, do you?

  • Old Mexican||

    No, the point was well taken: You believe it is possible to set the world's thermostat as if the Earth was a climate controlled room until WE decided we wanted stuff.

    YOU are the one that does not get it: This bucolic scenario of a pristine and virginal Earth sans humans and their SUVs never existed - nature is still cruel, no matter who populates it.

  • Tony||

    I never said anything about a paradise. There is a certain composition of the biosphere in which human civilization is able to exist and thrive. It hasn't changed that much in the entire time human civilization has existed--except because of human interference. It's not a good idea to tinker with our environment too much, even if all we can say is we don't know what the consequences will be.

    What's so wrong about your do-nothing attitude is how much it contradicts your policy of noninterference. You inherited a perfectly livable environment. You get all the benefits of a decent climate FOR FREE, yet you are OK with passing on a much-altered climate to future generations.

    I guess that's the benefit of thinking the best society is a pure darwinian one. You get your free lunch, and fuck everyone else. Who said life is fair? (Just don't tax me or you're a slaver!)

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    I never said anything about a paradise. There is a certain composition of the biosphere in which human civilization is able to exist and thrive.

    Indeed.

    It hasn't changed that much in the entire time human civilization has existed

    You're nuts. But, continue.

    --except because of human interference.

    Notwithstanding the fact that people adapt better to change today than when a single climatic/geological event starved a whole civilization to death, like the Moche.

    It's not a good idea to tinker with our environment too much, even if all we can say is we don't know what the consequences will be.

    You're nuts. Even ants "tinker" with their environment.

    What's so wrong about your do-nothing attitude is how much it contradicts your policy of noninterference.

    That's because you are nuts. The policy of non interference is not some ascetic prescription to live on the earth, but an ethic on human interaction with other humans.

    You inherited a perfectly livable environment. You get all the benefits of a decent climate FOR FREE,

    Fool! You don't even know where I live (Ok. I live in California) nor can YOU be in my shoes and determine what is a "decent climate" for ME. You are not that clever.

    Climate is not some uniform state, Tony. The Earth has very diverse climates, with people adapting to each in their way, or not adapting.

    yet you are OK with passing on a much-altered climate to future generations.

    Much altered? You are nuts. Get back to me when our actions rip the world out of its atmosphere - THEN you can gloat.

  • kinnath||

    Your question presumes that we actually have the ability to alter the course of nature.

  • Tripleb||

    The point is that I can't get past the fact that these events cast too much doubt on human activity as the culprit. I'm thinking of geologic time as my negative control.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tripleb,

    The point is that I can't get past the fact that these events cast too much doubt on human activity as the culprit.

    There's also the religious undertones of the defense of AGW and the purported solutions: If man does not mend his ways and repents for his sins (i.e. using fossil fuels and driving SUVs), the Earth will end and all will be condemned."

  • Tony||

    Not really. It's really nothing more than the good old common wisdom that there's no such thing as a free lunch. You burn fossil fuels and drive SUVs at a cost to yourself and others. You want to be able to do these things and not pay for the harm you're doing to others. Typical libertarian, always wanting something for nothing. Looter.

  • kinnath||

    So is someone trolling Tony today?

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    You burn fossil fuels and drive SUVs at a cost to yourself and others. You want to be able to do these things and not pay for the harm you're doing to others. Typical libertarian, always wanting something for nothing. Looter.

    BWA HA HA HA!! Yes! Gozer the Destructor! Coming in the form of an SUV!

    (Funny that Tony does not seem to be so obsessed with minivans, despite having same displacement engines as the SUVs.)

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Tony,

    Your question shouldn't be whether some form of life will survive, it should be what is the cost of doing nothing vs. the cost of doing something for the human species.

    Considering the fury of the Volcano God, what would be the cost of throwing all our virgins to the fiery inferno to appease it compared to the cost of not appeasing the angry god?

    Once again, your rationale stems from non sequitur that since AGW is real, we must do something about it because GW is bad.

  • Tony||

    Among more than 90% of relevant experts, there is more than 90% certainty that GW is real and more than 90% certainty that its consequences will be devastating if unmitigated.

  • Old Mexican||

    90% thus believe we must appease the Volcano God, because (they say) he's furious.

    I better hide my virgins . . .

  • Tony||

    Are you smarter than the vast majority of experts on this subject? Are you even smarter than a 5th grader?

  • Old Mexican||

    I am smart enough, I am good enough, and doggone it, people like me!

    Ok, enough games. No, I am not smarter than the experts, simply slightly less of a whore than they are.

  • The Man||

    Why do you think you're not smarter than the experts? Just because he who shall not be named chooses to defer to the "experts" doesn't mean the rest of us need to follow suit. Experts have special knowledge and training. They bring something to the process, but they're not gods and they all make mistakes, sometimes big mistakes. Skepticism is always warranted. Sometimes we have to place a bet, but we should never check our common sense at the door.

  • Tony||

    And how often does your common sense tell you to reject the findings of the vast majority of experts in a field?

  • Sean W. Malone||

    And more to the point they're all using the same ridiculously flawed data to construct their conclusions...

    Something I REALLY wish Tony/Chad/MNG could grasp is that no matter how good your reasoning is, arguments based on flawed premises & bad information are aways going to come out with the wrong conclusion.

    Garbage in: Garbage out.

    With Global Warming stuff this is particularly relevant as the data was collected and (poorly) maintained by an extremely small group of people (i.e. Michael Mann). These people were not only bad stewards of this data, they have been exposed to have been biased as all hell... And worse, even without them, the vast majority of weather stations collecting this data are in absurd states of disrepair and don't meet consistent quality control standards.

    One way or another the data used to generate the initial models is god awful, and then that was processed by a group of guys who had a bias going in, and only then does that information make it into the hands of other scientists. Since they can learned how to do the same kinds of calculations, it's not surprising that taking the bad data provided most of them with similar conclusions.

    Doesn't matter though...

    Their initial premises have been wrong, so their conclusions will never be correct. Experts in this situation are almost entirely useless...

    And... Of course, anecdotally, having been through graduate school like many others around here - I have to note that most "experts" I've ever known are in reality; retarded but excellent at getting attention.

  • ||

    Citation needed.

  • ||

    For Tony's 90%, not for people liking OM.

  • Chad||

    Tony: Remember that in the past, when climated changed quickly, it was bad for living things. Indeed, it appears 4 of the 5 previous mass extinctions were due to climatic changes (and the 5th may have been in part, too).

    Second, when climate did change in the past, our biosphere was in much healthier shape than it is now. It is already under severe strain from our land-use patterns and the pollutants and invasive species we have introduced. There is a big difference between punching the climate in the gut, and punching it in the gut after we have already beaten it into the dirt.

    The peer reviewed data I have seen estimates that we will lose 10% of all living species for every degree celcius we increase the average temperature.

    Typically, it has taken 5-10 million years for the biosphere to recover from such a blow. Does this sound like a sane thing to test, just to save a few bucks on your electric bill?

  • ||

    Chad|2.17.10 @ 10:08PM|#
    Tony: Remember that in the past, when climated changed quickly, it was bad for living things. Indeed, it appears 4 of the 5 previous mass extinctions were due to climatic changes (and the 5th may have been in part, too)."
    Of *course* they were due to 'climatic changes'; what *else* would cause mass extinctions? But as normal you beg more questions than I care to deal with.

    "Second, when climate did change in the past, our biosphere was in much healthier shape than it is now. "
    Cite?


    "It is already under severe strain from our land-use patterns and the pollutants and invasive species we have introduced."
    Cites? What is "already under severe strain?"

    "There is a big difference between punching the climate in the gut, and punching it in the gut after we have already beaten it into the dirt."
    Begging the question.

    "The peer reviewed data I have seen estimates that we will lose 10% of all living species for every degree celcius we increase the average temperature."
    You're fulla shit.
    Please cite the number of species currently identified, including the number identified over the last ten years.

    "Typically, it has taken 5-10 million years for the biosphere to recover from such a blow."
    My goodness! I din't know we had a history of case studies for what is called AGW!
    I'll immediately agree with you once you cite the historical AGW events and the recovery periods.
    Holy cow! I didn't know that data existed!

  • Chad||

    God, you are just plain ignorant. Do your homework. Start by typing "Sixth Great Extinction" into google.

  • ||

    Chad|2.18.10 @ 6:47AM|#
    "God, you are just plain ignorant. Do your homework. Start by typing "Sixth Great Extinction" into google."

    Chad, you're obnoxious because you're an ignoramus.
    But beyond that, you're truly obnoxious because you're too f'ing lazy to do your homework.
    No, I will *not* search the web in the hopes of finding bogus sites that support your bogus claims.
    *You* made the claim, *you* cite the evidence. Do it yourself, asshole.

  • ||

    Tony|2.17.10 @ 3:30PM|#
    "Your question shouldn't be whether some form of life will survive, it should be what is the cost of doing nothing vs. the cost of doing something for the human species."
    Indeed, and I can't see reason to do otherwise than to allow folks to adapt.
    Got any data requiring more?

  • DADIODADDY||

    "It is true that most reasonable people concede there has been warming on the planet" ... I'm reasonable and scientifically literate (not to mention devilishly handsome) and so are most of my collegues. We certainly don't concede warming is an absolute trend but part of cycle. Saying we're warming is like saying from our observations the world is getting dark and darker and soon it wil be pitch black never to be light again. it all depends on your observations over time esp if you keep following the terminator.

  • ||

    The scientists in question cannot create a model which can properly predict the near term (5-10yrs) impact of AGW on the climate. At the same time they claim disaster will occur in the next 100 years.
    The planet is an incredibly complex system- anyone who claims to be able to predict with any degree of certainty deserves a great degree of skepticism.

  • In Time Of War||

    When someone drags out the word "reasonable" I reach for firearms. "Be reasonable" always translates to "Shut the fuck up and do what I say".

  • The Man||

    The science of AGW is complicated and requires background and training to understand. I doubt that there are many progressives who have that background or training, in the absence of which they take the pronouncements of their scientific betters on faith. But not all their scientific betters (which would include a host of skeptics), because, regardless of the scientific merits of AGW one thing is certainly true: it has become a left wing shibboleth, unmoored from its scientific foundations, that now merely serves to distinguish the good (the progressives) from the bad (the rest of us). The science no longer matters, there is always another twisted bit of logic, another relentless diatribe against big oil or big business, another ad hominem attack that allows the progressives to avoid doubt and cleave only to the one true faith. I'm afraid that I'm with Thomas Kuhn on this. Eventually the AGW progressives, unable to deal with the changing scientific climate, will die off (like the eugenicists) and we can finally have some peace and quiet before they come up with their next flatheaded idea.

  • ||

    You get the word of the day award for "shibboleth".

    I had to look it up.

  • ||

    There are a couple of minor mistakes in the IPCC report, but they seem to have a rational and non-tinfoil hat explanation:

    http://www.realclimate.org/ind.....ly-mangle/

    http://www.realclimate.org/ind.....-and-spin/

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: Mike,

    There are a couple of minor mistakes in the IPCC report, but they seem to have a rational and non-tinfoil hat explanation.

    Yes, it is called "arrogant lazyness."

    As in "Why bother verify it? People believe our shit anyway!"

  • The Man||

    You have to read these things with your scientist hat on. These minor mistakes indicate a certain laxness with respect to details. If you submit a scientific paper for publication and you get the details wrong, the reviewers will nail you. They won't try to figure out what you meant (after all you could have meant anything) all they know is what you wrote and it was wrong---rejected. The editor will probably intercede (if he knows you) and send the paper back for revisions; most papers require revision based on reviewers' comments anyway. But, if you make enough stupid, little, inconsequential errors, the paper will be rejected. People are too busy to do your homework for you. With regard to a research effort that consumes hundreds of millions of dollars annually, I expect "due diligence," not "good enough for government work."

  • Mike M.||

    Poor Gavin Schmidt and his ilk; still in such a deep state of denial about how untenable their situation really is.

    He should tell it to British Petroleum, ConocoPhillips, and Caterpillar. Whoops, too late: they've already announced formally that they're leaving the Climate Action Partnership. There goes their gravy train, swirling down the credibility drain.

  • Fred||

    In case you don't think federal spending is already corrupt and stupid enough......http://motherjones.com/blue-marble/2010/02/obama-goes-nuclear

  • Potential libertarian||

    I was going to listen to your economic theories, but it turns out you're all a bunch of anti-intellectual loons who don't believe in science when it's inconvenient.

  • Old Mexican||

    Thanks for coming by!

  • The Man||

    Well, I feel properly chastened. I hope the rest of you chaps feel the same way, because I suspect that if we don't straighten out and fly right (to quote John Glenn) we might just have to face the wrath of P.L. and maybe even learn a little Science of the True Faith.

  • ||

    Potential libertarian|2.17.10 @ 4:58PM|#
    "I was going to listen to your economic theories, but it turns out you're all a bunch of anti-intellectual loons who don't believe in science when it's inconvenient."
    Translation:
    I'm a worn-out lefty who showed up to gripe.

  • Ogierledanois||

    I've seen comments stating that the climate skeptics are funded by "big oil". Some might find it interesting that the following corporations have funded the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia: British Petroleum, Eastern Electricity, and Shell. I assume Shell refers to Royal Dutch Shell, Ltd.

    I admit that I haven't done any further research to determine whether these corporations are still funding the CRU. However, they are cited as having funded the CRU at one time.

    Given the above, I really don't want to hear any more bullshit about "big oil" funding climate skeptics.

    By the way, here is the link from which I extracted the information.

    http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/about/history/

  • Fiscal Meth||

    Potential libertarian|2.17.10 @ 4:58PM|#
    "I was going to listen to your economic theories, but it turns out you're all a bunch of anti-intellectual loons who don't believe in science when it's inconvenient."

    Translation:

    I'm actually MNG spewing the same bullshit with a different name.

  • ||

    The arrogance of man to think that it is a man made increase in carbon dioxide causing the earth to warm terrifyingly. These are the middle age warm period deniers. Remember where the name Greenland came from?

  • abercrombie milano||

    My only point is that if you take the Bible straight, as I'm sure many of Reasons readers do, you will see a lot of the Old Testament stuff as absolutely insane. Even some cursory knowledge of Hebrew and doing some mathematics and logic will tell you that you really won't get the full deal by just doing regular skill english reading for those books. In other words, there's more to the books of the Bible than most will ever grasp. I'm not concerned that Mr. Crumb will go to hell or anything crazy like that! It's just that he, like many types of religionists, seems to take it literally, take it straight...the Bible's books were not written by straight laced divinity students in 3 piece suits who white wash religious beliefs as if God made them with clothes on...the Bible's books were written by people with very different mindsets...in order to really get the Books of the Bible, you have to cultivate such a mindset, it's literally a labyrinth, that's no joke.

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  • fat loss||

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