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Re: Global warming: are the skeptics correct?
jeffbiss   2/6/2012 10:05:51 PM
William K,

So you don't appreciate having your lifestyle questioned? As I've said, the global warming argument has nothing to do with global warming but with our perceived place in the universe.

It is obvious that the deniers, or "skeptics", argument is a backlash against those that would question the free market by claiming that our activity causes harm. This flows from the fact that we are fundamentally a Calvinist nation, in which the free market is the only valid paradigm because it allows god's will to operate, and no man has the authority to refute god's will. Of course, for those who aren't religious there exists Ayn Rand.

So, like I said, this is about not accepting certain truths accepted by the right and nothing to do with the science. At least you admit that. This also indicates that science is trumped by belief overall, whether religious or secular because it's about "me".

William K.
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Global warming: are the skeptics correct?
William K.   2/6/2012 8:40:25 PM
One of the first reasons that I was skeptical of the cause of the alleged warming is that the same folks who were screaming the loudest were the ones previously complaining about how much better our standard of living was than so much of the rest of the world. So when these same people all at once come up with some new assertion about how bad I am because my actions are going to destroy the world, I found it all rather suspect. 

And once again I ask, so how much would the "few tenths of a percent" solar output increase change our ambient temperature? I would guess by several degrees.

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Where's your research?
jeffbiss   2/6/2012 8:28:59 PM
William K,

That statement is about the current forcing because it is a given that the source of our heat is from the sun.

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Re: References
jeffbiss   2/6/2012 8:24:44 PM

No offense, but these guys don't cut it.

Patrick J. Michaels is funded by fossil fuel interests as indicated in this email. Also, sourcewatch.com states that Patrick J. Michaels "is a largely oil-funded global warming skeptic". And exxonsecrets.org indicate that he has been a member of a long list of right-wing organizations and that 40% of his funding comes from the fossil fuel industry.

sourcewatch.com indicates that S. Fred Singer was funded by the Unification Church, chemical, energy companies, asbestos industry, etc. exxonsecrets.org indicate that he has been a member of a long list of right-wing organizations.

Avery studied agricultural economics.

The researchers at realclimate.org have some interesting bits on these corporate shills too, like Close Encounters of the Absurd Kind. So, look them up!

Come on "skeptics", are corporate funded and right-wing group members all you have? Where are the true climate researchers? It really seems that it's the implications of the science that is the problem and not the science simply because I don't see any scientists from the research front in your "proof" for skepticism.

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Why No Cost Benefit Analysis?
GreenAvenger   2/6/2012 8:16:52 PM
I see basically four options created by the cross referencing of two variables.

(GCCS =Global Climate Change Skeptics) 

(GCCB =Global Climate Change Believers) 


Variable 1) Action or Inaction

Choice A) The World enters into serious action to address global warming

Choice B) The world has no or little serious action to address global warming


Variable 2) 

Choice C) The GCCS crowd is correct and GCC is either a minor thing (or possibly even a somewhat "good thing" as many in the GCCS claim)

Choice D) The GCCB crowd is correct and the most dire predictions of the GCCB community are true and climate change will result (quite possibly in our lifetimes) in a much more hostile and un-inhabitable planet 


So you have this grid

                           A (Action)   or   B (Inaction)

C (GCCS = True)       AC =?           BC = ?

D (GCCB = True)       AD =?           BD = ?


Let's examine each choice for it's cost benefit analysis


AC= Serious action taken but he skeptics are right

The cost is great expense taken for many projects that are needless and wasteful. The result is a needless economic burden now and a slowing economy for all. In essence the world suffers an economic depression and pointless resourse re-allocation for no other reason than the intellectual vanity of some nosy tree hugger scientists that have it all wrong)

Nevertheless, at least it turns out that we will leave a bunch of of our infinitely plentiful hydrocarbon resources safely in the ground where we can get back to using them later on once we all finally get past this GCC silliness. 


BC= No or little action is taken and the skeptics are right we should not have taken any action 

The cost is zero and thus the world gets to keep right on buzzing along growing and consuming and polluting like there is no tomorrow. The people that deny GCC the most are the ones that benefit the most becasue they reap great rewards of both financial and material benefit. The world has another economic boom Wooo! Hooo! 

The down side to the boom is that we end up draining the last remaining easy oil and natural gas resources  


AD = Well it turns out the worst GCC predictions were as bad or nearly as bad as we feared but the world has responded in time to the great crisis with great action equal to the task. Carbon emissions are slowed to a trickle, and alternative technologies are implemented the world suffers great economic strain and hardship but at least a sizable portion of society will survive in a new harsher somewhat less habitable planet. The world changes but at least our children and grand children will have a fair chance of undoing the damage that has been done.

Since we stopped emitting CO2 for fuel we have instead learned to find other better non fuel applications for our planets last remaining sources of cheap hydrocarbons and now we know that it is important to recycle those resource and instead of burning them we make a better world where plastic is plentiful and relatively cheap.

BD = Well it turns out the worst GCC predictions were as bad or nearly as bad as we feared but the GCCS crowd was just too powerful it was able to control the message long enough and delay any practical action so long that we will all be left to suffer the worst of the ravages that GCC will throw at us such as rising oceans constant severe storms in come place constant droughts fires and unbearable heat in other places. Some places rivers and lakes completly dry up and in others flooding is so severe it erases whole landscapes. Overall the severe heat and excessive humidity lower crop yields in one place and the floods and high winds destroy them in other places. Great Diaspora come about.

But to make things even worse, we don't have much hydrocarbons left even nfor emergency applications or for medicines to or plastics and all the other thinhgs we will need to deal with our harsh new world.


Now if you are a betting sort where inaction can either result in either a nightmare world we don't want to live in or another few years of boom town celebration (and remember you are betting not just your life but that of the whole of the planet.


Which of these choices seem the smarter?


I would rather risk having a needless depression than I am willing to play a game that has a 25% chance of ending the world as we know it.


This is not a Zero Sum Game.


Here in the real world actions (and inactions) have real world consequences. 

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Global warming
K3DE   2/6/2012 8:02:52 PM
Logic and philosophy of science are paramount.  

It is up to the proponents of the man-made global warming supposition to make their case.  They have not.  Jumping to politics and economic issues is  evasive.

 Although the fact that the earth has never been without change is not proof, there are too many other factors not even considered  such as cloud cover formations and the extent of photosynthesis. 

By the way, several hundred years back, Joseph Priestly was demonstrating the conversion of (what we now know as) CO2  to life sustaining Oxygen by growing plants.  





William K.
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Global warming: are the skeptics correct?
William K.   2/6/2012 8:00:02 PM
I find the assertion that "the sun only plays a minor effect on the earths weather" to be an amazing statement. Plus the assertion that "a change of a few tenths of a percent would have little effect". Once again I am asking "where else does our heat come from?" 

Besides that, I don't think that either Bush or Al Gore had anything to do with the aberrations in this most recent sun-spot cycle. 

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Re: State Diagram Please
jpratch   2/6/2012 7:38:50 PM
@ smallpond;

There are very elaborate mechanisms described for Ozone depletion, none which have been confirmed in the laboratory to my knowledge, but they were used to strike fear in the hearts of many and caused the cancellation of the development of the SST (although Britian and France were undetered). Now we are told that "the sun is not much of a factor". So an obvious corellary question to ask if the Sun is such a small contributor, why were the Ozone holes of such import (other than reduction to the ultraviolet protection). But in the science of ozone depletion, the methane of bovine flatus is not a bad player. When Methane breaks down in the atmosphere, it forms CO2, Water Vapor and Ozone. So the CO2 is bad because it is a "greenhouse" gas, but the Ozone is good because it replenishes what the CCF have supposedly destroyed. And now we are told that Water Vapor is "bad" because it, too, is a "greenhouse" gas. So the AGW folks have another one to hit us with and what will Nebraska do with the carcasses of all the cows killed to prevent global warming. Indeed, the Nitrogen compounds released from the rotting flesh may actually deplete the rest of the Ozone. There has been some recent South American studies of the Antarctic Ozone hole that cast doubts on true depletion by CCFs.

But there is another model inadequacy issue to consider. Since the last Ice Age, how much ice melted? The ice is supposed to have been a mile thick. If indeed so much ice has been melting, what effect on Global temperature does the ever reducing ice have? The latent heat of fusion is 80 calories, if memory serves me right and so every molecule of ice melted keeps 80 molecules of water from increasing their temperature by one degree. This certainly has had an affect on global temperature up to some point in history, and when did that affect actually end (if it did).

The melting of the total ice on the earth reminds me of the mortgage amortization curve. You make payments for many, many years seeing only slight decreases in the principle, then you get out to the last couple of years and bang! you suddenly pay it off fast. If the melting of polar ice has had a slowing affect on the global temperature rise, the effect will be dimenishing as the total amount of ice is reduced through melting. So we may have more than CO2 to worry about.

Again, its the models and what they consider and their fidelity to the natural phenomenon. Present models exclude cloud effects. They are CO2 centric because CO2 is the pre-ordained enemy. The models are not validated and calibrated, therefore they are speculation. I've done modeling and I'm underwhelmed with their trustworthiness.

George Kaye
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Consider the messenger
George Kaye   2/6/2012 6:44:51 PM
The Wall Street Journal is owned by Rupert Murdock, who also owns Fixed, oops Fox News. Sometime known as GOP TV.

I don't trust anything the paper publishes.

Dave Palmer
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Civility in discussions
Dave Palmer   2/6/2012 6:33:50 PM
This article was posted last Friday.  Judging by the comments posted on Friday and over the weekend, it looked like we just might be able to have an intelligent and civil discussion about this -- just like we did about another controversial topic last week.

Alex Wolfe even made a comment suggesting that maybe because engineers are rational, data-driven people, we are more capable of having civil discussions than other people.

After seeing the comments posted today, I am starting to seriously doubt this.  Sorry, Alex!

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