Skip to comments.The New Flat Earth Society (Doug Patton)
Posted on 02/11/2007 8:43:41 PM PST by jazusamo
After scoffing in my last column about the ridiculous Nobel Peace Prize nomination of former Vice President Chicken Little (aka Al Gore), I really had no intention of wasting any more time or thought on the issue of global warming for the foreseeable future. But then columnist Ellen Goodman weighed in with her arrogant opinion, and I just couldn't let it go.
Wrote Ms. Goodman:
"I would like to say we're at a point where global warming is impossible to deny. Let's just say that global warming deniers are now on a par with Holocaust deniers, though one denies the past and the other denies the present and future."
Well, Ellen, I would like to say that you, Al Gore, and all your friends in the Global Warming Cult (hereinafter known as "GWC" or "The Cult") are now on a par with the Flat Earth Society.
It was once conventional wisdom that the earth was a flat disk around which the rest of the universe revolved, and off of which any vessel would tumble if it sailed too far in any one direction. Likewise, today's GWC has so successfully dominated the debate on the issue of global warming that it is now conventional wisdom to believe that it is the greatest threat facing humanity. If all rational people believe it, the argument goes, then anyone who doubts it must be a heretic.
As her primary evidence that the case is now closed on the issue, Goodman cites a recent report from the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, which unequivocally blames global warming on human activity. As if we are to believe anything that comes out of the United Nations.
Polling by the Pew Research Center shows that global warming is number 20 on the average person's list of policy priorities, far behind terrorism, tax cuts, crime, morality, illegal immigration and 15 other issues. Of course, Goodman's irrational explanation for these attitudes is to blame the Bush administration and "its favorite media outlets." (Liberals, of course, have no favorite media outlets.)
Goodman refers to the gaps between what she calls "Republican science and Democratic science," and is amazed that "23 percent of college-educated Republicans believe the warming is due to humans, while 75 percent of college-educated Democrats believe it."
She calls James Inhofe a "Big Oil Senator," partly because he is from Oklahoma. But his biggest crime was that he dared to contradict the conventional wisdom of The Cult by describing the UN report as "a shining example of the corruption of science for political gain."
Goodman also attacks the American Enterprise Institute, which she claims has received $1.6 million from Exxon Oil "over the years," for offering $10,000 to scientists who would counter the IPCC report. (Isn't it interesting that liberals don't think Saddam Hussein was collaborating with terrorists, even though he was offering $25,000 to the destitute families of suicide bombers, but they are more than willing to believe that reputable American scientists would risk their professional credentials for a paltry $10,000?)
But Goodman's flimsiest argument comes when she tries to explain why the average person has a different set of priorities than the elites in The Cult: she believes we are psychologically paralyzed.
"It may be, paradoxically," she tells us, "that framing this issue in catastrophic terms ends up paralyzing instead of motivating us."
Quoting author Ross Gelbspan, she continues: "When people are confronted with an overwhelming threat and don't see a solution, it makes them feel impotent. So they shrug it off or go into deliberate denial."
Al Gore, Ellen Goodman and the rest of the Kool-Aid drinking GWC are truly the new Flat Earth Society. They are so brainwashed about the "conventional wisdom" of this issue, it never occurs to them that the real reason most Americans believe global warming is less of a threat than zealots flying airplanes into buildings could just be because common sense is more highly prized on Main Street than it is inside the Beltway or in the halls of the UN.
LOL...Patton tells it like it is.
Anyone with a spare hour and a reputable high school earth science book can put "global warming" in the dustbin of history.
Just because Ellen Goodman says that Global Warming is a Republican Plot, and we all know that's nonsense, doesn't mean that global warming itself is nonsense.
It just means that Goodman is talking nonsense.
There are real reasons to think that global warming is real. For instance, the Arctic icecap is shrinking. Glaciers around the world are in retreat. Just take a look at photos from glacier national park from 50 or 100 years ago, and compare to today.
How much of a threat this is, we can argue. But to sit there and insist that glacier national park hasn't changed, that the snow and ice is still there as much as ever, well, that's just flat wrong. It IS warmer now than it used to be, and human fossil fuel use is very probably one of the big reasons why.
This explain the reason the ice coverage in Antarctica is increasing?
"23 percent of college-educated Republicans believe the warming is due to humans, while 75 percent of college-educated Democrats believe it."
This tells me that 23 percent of college-educated Republicans are idiots.
What about the 75 percent of college-educated Democrats?
Don't get me started...
Uh, NY is under eight feet of snow. I'm sure that the massive cooling is due to global warming.
C'mon Grizzled Bear, your using facts and as we all know, facts mean nothing to those who worship at the alter of man made global warming.
Never mind that glaciers have come and gone for millenia. Never mind that the amount of energy being put out by the sun is the highest it has been in at least 100 years, and possibly much longer. Lets just ignore that last fact, that the largest heat source in the solar system is heating up all the planets. No, we humans are much more powerful than that meager little star called the sun.
What for? All you'll get is more of this:
No one with any CLUE is arguing. I have seen glaciers fading away, year by year. A lot of us have. The evidence is unarguable except by fools who love the sound of their own voice arguing.
So who's burning fossil fuel on Mars?
It IS warmer now than it used to be, and human fossil fuel use is very probably one of the big reasons why.
Warming, naturally perhaps, from anthropogenic CO2, not very likely.
Anthropgenic Global Warming hypothesis requires water vapor content of the atmosphere to increase with a comensurate increase in cloud cover to enhance the effect of CO2 in effecting heating of the the atmosphere and surface.
Relative humidity is reasonably constant despite variations in absolute humidity. That is, an increase in temperature leads to more evaporation and increase in the absolute amount of water vapor in the air (increase absolute humidity). But since the warmer air has a higher saturation vapor pressure (can hold more water vapor), the relative humidity stays approximately constant. The increased absolute humidity, however, increases absorption of infrared radiation by the atmosphere and hence increases the greenhouse effect. Note that this increased greenhouse effect raises the surface temperature, which further increases evaporation. This feedback mechanism is not self-regulating, so we call it a positive feedback.
Cloudiness / surface-temperature feedback.
As temperature increases, evaporation and absolute humidity both increase leading to more cloudiness. But the increase in clouds leads to increased reflection of solar energy and also leads to more trapping of infrared energy from the surface of the earth. The net effect (which depends on the altitude of the clouds) is thought to lead to a cooling, which makes this a negative feedback process.
as quantified by Ramanathan:
"the direct radiative effects of doubled CO2 can cause a maximum surface warming [at the equator] of about 0.2 K, and hence roughly 90% of the 2.0-2.5 K surface warming obtained by the GCM is caused by atmospheric feedback processes described above.
--- "Increased Atmospheric CO2: Zonal and Seasonal Estimates of the Effect on the Radiation Energy Balance and Surface Temperature"
(V. Ramanathan and M. S. Lian), J. Journal of Geophysical Research, Vol. 84, p. 4949, 1979.
Taking a look at what the water vapor & clouds are actually doing:
One might guess that something other than changing CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere is in the driver's seat.
Clouds have been observed from space since the beginning of the 1980's. By the mid 1990's, enough cloud data accumulated to provide empirical evidence for a solar/cloud-cover link. Without the satellite data, it hard or probably impossible to get statistically meaningful results because of the large systematic errors plaguing ground based observations. Using the satellite data, Henrik Svensmark of the Danish National Space Center in Copenhagen has shown that cloud cover varies in sync with the variable cosmic ray flux reaching the Earth. Over the relevant time scale, the largest variations arise from the 11-yr solar cycle, and indeed, this cloud cover seemed to follow the cycle and a half of cosmic ray flux modulation. Later, Henrik Svensmark and his colleague Nigel Marsh, have shown that the correlation is primarily with low altitude cloud cover. This can be seen in fig. 3.
Figure 3: The correlation between cosmic ray flux (orange) as measured in Neutron count monitors in low magnetic latitudes, and the low altitude cloud cover (blue) using ISCCP satellite data set, following Marsh & Svensmark, 2003.
They can have some of the 6 feet of snow in my front yard.
If I believed global warming, I'd be feeling mighty cheated right now.
Lets assume (for the sake of argument) that lostlakehiker is a college educated Republican, and further assume that these percentages are correct. Does anyone else find it funny that the fourth post (25% at that point) was professing a belief in global warming?!
C'mon lost, you did that on purpose didn't you, fess up...
Uhh, not so fast....
Beat me to it. Amazing that people want us to accept Global Warming as gospel when scientists are still using conjecture.
For instance, the Arctic icecap is shrinking. Glaciers around the world are in retreat.
Couldn't have anything to do with the fact the earth came out of a major ice age some 10,000 years ago and they have been on a more or less steady melt down ever since could it?
Remember ice melts as long as its warming than freezing, current global average temperature is 15oC, and has been pretty much that level, at time higher at time lower for since the last major glacial period.
It's like any other Liberal dogma. Head start helps kids. There's a glass ceiling keeping women from the top jobs. Bilingual education is the best way to prepare illegal - er, undocumented - immigrant kids to find good jobs in America, etc. etc.
It's not the evidence that counts. It's that if you disagree, you've proved yourself to be a hater.
Without firm and consensus estimates on those figures, I don't see how any serious person can say that human activity is doing anything to affect global average temperatures.
But you seem to believe that. Can you point me to reliable estimates on the values I mentioned above?
Heard another good one the other day. How does the minute amount of CO2 in our atmosphere retain all that energy from the sun? How can the energy capacity of CO2 be geometrically that much higher than oxygen, nitrogen, etc.?
Another thing, in commercial greenhouses, they double the level of CO2 in order to get the growth and production they want. Wouldn't higher levels of CO2 just be offset by plant growth?
This explain the reason the ice coverage in Antarctica is increasing?
It could very well do. The point is that the AVERAGE temperature of the Earth is increasing. That doesn't mean every part is just 1 degree warmer...for instance...if the ice melts, the relative salinity of the oceans could change, that might divert the gulf stream, which might mean northern europe would get colder. The world and its climate is a very complex system.
However, environmental reasoning has an oddly religious quality to it...
Now THAT is true!
Theres an old adage that when people stop believing in God, they dont just start believing in nothing. Rather, they start to believe in EVERYTHING.
I strongly suspect that if you were to ask Ellen Goodman to site one reason to believe that the Earth is round, she would be unable to offer anything more cogent than "Because experts say it is."
She learned in grade school that the Earth is round so she believes it. The nuns told her so. Her belief in global warming is likewise based on recourse to authority.
I do not know what to make of Global Warming Theory, there is no there there. No coherent set of consistent testable hypotheses. GWT has more patches, deus ex machina and ad hoc explanations than a seven year old trying to explain why the cookie jar lay smashed on grandma's kitchen floor.
Karl Popper in the 1930's famously critized psychoanalysis as an ideology rather than a scientific theory. GW behaves more like an ideology than a scientific theory; it is extremely robust with respect to data. All observations confirm it with probability 1.0.
Ask Ellen Goodman what observations would refute Global Warming Theory. She won't even understand the question.
How was it possible to grow grapes in Newfoundland and grain in Greenland 1000 years ago when the areas are under perma frost today?
Because, very simply, it was warmer in Newfoundland and Greenland 1000 years ago than it is today. That doesnt mean that the average temperature isn't increasing now, which is the point at issue.
Why are the icecaps of Mars shrinking?
I have absolutely no idea. I suspect, as no one has ever gone there to check, that no one else does either. That doesn't mean temperatures arent increasing on Earth as well though.
Why are the temperatures of all the planets in our solar system getting warmer?
Again, no idea. Probably the Sun is pumping more heat out. Again, doesn't mean that Human activity isnt increasing temperature on Earth though. External factors are MORE responsible, but we could be making the effect worse.
How is the terrestrial (Earth) bound human burning of fossil fuels able to effect the "weather" on other planets?
It isn't, of course. But the same answer as above holds true.
"and human fossil fuel use is very probably one of the big reasons why."
Show me the science that supports your statement.
Seems like we've been there, done that, got over it, and survived (even the pore'ol'polar bears), and could do it again.
Just a thought.
*or would it, in fact, be a blessing?
~ posted several times ~
Well that's a very pertinent point. There would be advantages to the Earth being warmer.
I'm a humble biologist, not a climate expert, but I was always taught that plant growth needed Carbon dioxide, water, sunlight and nitrates. Any could be in short supply, but usually the limiting factor was Carbon dioxide. If theres more about and the climate is warmer, then it follows there will be more plant growth and longer growing seasons. Could be quite a plus!
Logically, Human activity must have SOME effect. If we are pumping more CO2 into the atmosphere, and cutting down trees, producing radioactive waste etc etc, it must count for something...
Personally I think all that Mankind does is dwarfed by other factors but what we do must make some difference. I rate chaos theory.
Instead of trying to halt global warming, here's an argument for encouraging it:
Global Warming: Brought to you by the same people who brought you Y2K...
Perhaps, but I think the dispute lies in a politically driven agenda behind the rush to assert that humanity is responsible and further that unless draconian measures are instantly incorporated (like ratifying Kyoto) we're DOOMED! DOOMED!
The fact is that the Earth routinely goes thru climate changes. Some of the warming trends in the past were much warmer than what we face today. The assertion that man made chemicals are causing the cycles to accelerate is simply a convenient fiction. I also dispute the crisis of the so called Peak Oil Theory. Oil isn't dead dinosaurs. It is manufactured deep in the earth's mantle and forced outward by the centrifugal spin of the planet. Every year, including last year, the naysayers have bleated the imminent depletion of all oil resources and use that coupled with global warming to force society into their vision of nirvana. AKA the NWO. Anytime the fanatic lefties start trumpeting their alarms....mine go off. Not in reaction to their issues but to them. It simply illustrates the ultimate conflict between good and evil.
The lefties like to assert that it's alright to kill the unborn and let the murderer go free and to engage in all sorts of hedonistic practices in the name of pleasure simply because they refuse to admit the sovereignty of God. If they do that, their house of cards comes tumbling down. In their growing numbers (lefty whackos and their blind followers) I see the legions of soldiers who will worship the AntiChrist as a god. That time is thundering closer and closer in the hoofbeats of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Shhhhh! Listen. Hear them?
Your opinion is welcome on this forum. However, I refuse to involve myself in religious debates.
You are looking at things through Earthbound eyes. It has been shown that the temperature of the Sun has risen, and is responsible for the increase in temperatures in the polar regions and the extreme weather variances. Another factor that influences the Earth is the decreased magnetic field around the Earth. Some say we are in the midst of a polar shift - an area near Antarctica which has no population is experiencing a polar shift which gives some scientists to believe that this is just the beginning of a world wide phenomenon. So taking all these factors into consideration, there is no basis in fact that it is the Earth's surface itself is heating up because of human influence. The Mt. Pinatubo eruption spewed more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than all the pollution that man has spewed in the entire history of Earth, and that's not counting all the other volcanoes that have erupted or are erupting as I write. I'm afraid Mr. algore's reason for spewing this disinformation is to make money off his global warming book. Remember he's the one who said that Bill Klintoon is the greatest president we've ever had.
Update. Northern NY is now under 10 feet of snow and more snowfall is predicted to fall in the next few days.
Russia, the largest nation in the world, has even more land which can be used for people - and the demographic trend of Russia is slow or declining, so Russia will not be filling up those open lands with Russians.
I hear the USSR will be open soon, as vacation-land for lawyers in love.