Brad Wardell's views about technology, politics, religion, world affairs, and all sorts of politically incorrect topics.
Will Global Warming zealots apologize?
Published on February 15, 2007 By Draginol In Politics

Since 1975, the mean average recorded temperature world wide has increased slightly. Prior to that, it was actually cooling. That is, between 1940 and 1975 the earth was cooling.

Now, it could indeed turn out that the reason temperatures have increased is due to human impact on the environment.  CO2 is a greenhouse gas. And we're putting a lot of it in the air. We've significantly increased the amount in the atmosphere since the beginning of the industrial revolusion. What isn't known, however, is how much effect CO2 has on temperature. Anyone who claims they know is lying. It's an unknown and the various computer models basically take an educated guess as to what affect CO2 has on global temperatures. I.e. it's a "fudge factor". 

If I were a betting man, I would actually bet that CO2 isn't the cause of the increase in temperature. That doesn't mean I'm against reducing emmissions. I favor reasonable efforts to decrease human impact on the environment (though I am cynical enough to think that left-wing European politicians focus on CO2 in order to deflect from the amount of sulfur, soot, and heavy metals that Europe dumps into the air per capita compared to the US, Canada, and elsewhere).  But I am also not in favor of any sort of massive, immediate overhaul to our economy.

Global Warming theory is weak science.  The definition of weak science is whether it relies purely on consensus or not as opposed to scientific method. E=MC^2 is fact. It's been proven. Even evolution, which has its share of critics, works on proven scientific principles and has fossil evidence (don't hijack the discussion in the comments area about evolution).  Global warming, for instance, isn't even a theory. It's a hypothesis. CO2 is a green house gas. We put a lot of CO2 into the atmosphere. The temperature since 1975 has increased. Therefore, CO2 is the cause.  That's it.  That is basically the entire argument.  And they say it's the cause because there's a "scientific consensus" around it made by many people who have an economic reason to be in favor of it (just as there are those who have an economic incentive to oppose the CO2 hypothesis).  

If you've watched films like "An inconvenient truth" note how much time is given over to "proving" the temperature has increased (I don't know anyone who's arguing that it hasn't) and how much damage higher temperatuers would do to the Earth.  But how much is actually spent making the case that humans are the cause? Virtually no time. That's because the paragraph above states the entire case. CO2 is a greenhouse gas. We create a lot of it. Temperatures have increased. It's sure a good thing there aren't any other..you know..inputs into our system like a massive fusion powered gas fire fall thousands of times larger than the Earth nearby sending terrajoles of energy into our system...but I digress..

So like I said, if I was a betting man, I would bet that CO2 isn't the cause of the slight global increase in temperatures. I think there are other, much more likely, possibilities such as increased solar activity or slight changes in the orbit of the Earth or tilt of the earth. 

I don't claim to be a scientist, but I am pretty good at analysing statistics.  And so, if in say 5, 10 years the mean global temperature starts to dip -- i.e. definitively dip like it was doing pre-1975 -- what will the environmentalist movement do? Given the hysteria over global warming, does anyone think for one moment that the environmentalist movement will say "Oops, we're sorry, we really have no idea what we're talking about."?  Or, would they simply come up with another "man made" reason that over-compensated for global warming? I think we know the answer.

That's one of the reason I can't take environmentalists seriously. They are so often completely shameless in their claims. They take no responsibility when they're wrong. Heck, they rarely acknowledge when they're wrong.  As a result, I'm not inclined to latch onto the latest faith-based chicken little mongering from them.  In the meantime, I'll try to live my life as I always have -- with as little impact on the environment as I can do without compromising my standard of living.  But I'll also oppose attempts by the irresponsible to cripple our economy and way of life.


Comments (Page 1)
on Feb 15, 2007
But I'll also oppose attempts by the irresponsible to cripple our economy and way of life. - Draginol

Yeah, fuck the environment, this mudball we call earth will be a ball of ice in a couple billion years when the sun becomes a red dwarf anyway - fuck the environment!

Seriously, have you read about peak oil phenomenon? It has nothing to do with bettering the environment (that's a crutch) and everything to do with our American economy and the betterment of our lifestyle. What's your take on this idea?
on Feb 15, 2007

Your response had nothing to do with the article.

No where did I imply I didn't care about the environment. And peak oil is a totally unrelated topic.

on Feb 15, 2007
I disagree..

I've not said you don't care about the environment, but I'm so fired up after reading what you said that I feel the need to say; "To hell with the environment for the sake of our lifestyle." The peak oil phenomenon is certainly a related topic to the environment and even if you feel so or not, I'd like to hear your weigh-in upon it. Please give me your opinion. When will the oil wells stop gushing as they have? Do you feel their failure to relinquish what consumers expect (in keeping with contemporary pricing) will impact the environment in a positive or negative fashion? If so, how and / or why?

on Feb 15, 2007

Go ahead and write an article on peak oil. It still has nothing to do with the issue of global warming.

Also, yes, my own lifestyle outweighs my concern about "the environment".  That doesn't mean "to hell with the environment". If you can only see extremes, then by definition, you're an extremist.  I'm not about to start riding my bike to work on the rather off-chance that it might help "the environment".

on Feb 15, 2007
I don't think that your riding a bicycle to work will alleviate so-called 'Global Warming'. We're on the same page, but splitting hairs. What are you trying to encourage? And, still, you withhold your opinion on peak oil. Take your time. Research that shit. Compare and contrast the findings from different oil companies (they've the most to gain or lose). Find out the year. It's close. Very close. We're gonna' have to adjust our lifestyle soon, and it's not going to be environmental lobbyists that tell us how to live that we bow to.

Respect,

YKTFW
on Feb 15, 2007
Next time I point this out, i'll just remove you.  I am familiar with peak oil. It is an old topic. But it has nothing to do with my article. Go write your own article on peak oil.
on Feb 15, 2007
Cop out + Disappointment = Draginol's Response

If you want to talk for real, let met know, otherwise, just tell me to fuck off.

Or make me understand.
on Feb 15, 2007
I think I'd tend to agree with you, but I don't know too much on the subject.

There's just not enough data, not enough years. But I think that you're on the right track--we need to try to imact the environment as little as possible. That's what's cool with technology. I think we're going to get there. And we have cool people like Karma who, along with her family, create very little garbage (I need to learn to do that).

I think "Mother Earth" goes through cycles, just like any woman. She's hot, then she's cold. It might not be much of a difference on the thermometer, but just a difference of ten degrees over an extended period of time can make a huge impact, as we're seeing.

So...is this latest "warming trend" something that we did, or is it just something naturally occuring? I don't think it's something we can answer and be 100% sure about, and I'm sure it's something really smart people will sit in a room and argue about for a long time. Maybe in a few centuries, long after I'm worm food, someone can definitively answer that question. And maybe then, like you said, Brad, we'll all need our jackets well into July in the Northern Hemisphere.
on Feb 15, 2007
People like to a) place blame and pretend we have any control over the planet. So when temperatures go up, we start looking at things we might have done to cause it, completely ignoring that the earth has had ice ages and warm periods throughout its history without humans doing anything to cause them.
on Feb 15, 2007

Given the hysteria over global warming, does anyone think for one moment that the environmentalist movement will say "Oops, we're sorry, we really have no idea what we're talking about."? Or, would they simply come up with another "man made" reason that over-compensated for global warming? I think we know the answer.

Here's my take on what will happen.  They will shut up.  Not appologize or say a thing.  Wait 10 years until the trend toward cooler years is established, and then say that polution is causing global cooling and it is an undeniable fact.  How do I know this?  They already did it.  IN 1975, we were cooling, and everyone that was not stupid KNEW it.  When the temps stopped cooling and started warming again, they were silent for about 10 years, before they started the hysteria of warming.

Like the natural cycle of the earth, so goes the whackos. Who would have us believe on faith alone, that which will get them their 15 minutes of fame, and make a few gullible clowns buy their vision of armegeddon.

on Feb 15, 2007
More importantly, will all these has been nations pay back the billions they are going to make selling pollution credits to productive nations? Of course not. If they had that kind of money they'd not be interested in global warming to begin with. There would be no Kyoto, and the scientists pushing this theory would be held to a reasonable standard of evidence instead of being courted like celebrities.

Deference is a good example of the "swallow my whole agenda or you're no better than a creationist" attitude. You question anything, you're tarred with questioning everything, even reality.

on Feb 15, 2007
Do not question the reasoning of the leaders of the environmentalist religion. Theirs is the only true religion. Just accept and believe.
on Feb 15, 2007
I know you folks will roll your eyes when you read my standard response because it has not been refuted by the religious left.

Man puts out about 1.4 billion tons of pollutants in a year. That is total pollutants produced by man from the last survey. I don’t know if it is accurate or how accurate it is. What I do know is that a single volcano during an eruption puts out 14 billion tons of pollutants in a day. There are on average of 56 volcanoes erupting every day world wide. This does not count the undersea volcanoes because they have not all been found yet. So just counting the ones on the surface roughly comes to 784 billion tons of pollutants put out daily compared to 1.4 billion tons produced by man annually. Before the last big ice age there were three thousand volcanoes erupting for roughly five thousand years before an ice age was triggered that lasted ten thousand years. Just so you know the last ice age was not the last big ice age. Maybe just maybe, and I know this is crazy talk, but man is not the main cause of global warming. The main gases produced by volcanoes is sulfur dioxide, and carbon dioxide, I think they call them greenhouse gases. The same gases found on another world called Venus where man has not polluted anything but the global temperature is around 800 degrees. Maybe and again this sounds crazy but maybe global warming is natural for the solar system and man is not even noticed?
Just a thought outside the box of insanity.
on Feb 15, 2007
Yeah, fuck the environment, this mudball we call earth will be a ball of ice in a couple billion years when the sun becomes a red dwarf anyway


Actually it'll turn into a red giant, in which case it will expand to envelope the inner planets up to Mars probably cooking them or burning them into nothing.

Anywho...

Global warming doesn't really have a large enough sample size. The temperature is going up, but who's to say it won't go right back down? I'm not sure if CO2 is the exact cause...it could be an influence. It only makes up a fraction of a percent of the atmosphere. Actually, all the human existence and activity could be a direct influence on warming...think of all the people and their body heat, all the industry, all kinds of vehicles...that's a lot of energy ending up as heat...and since energy isn't destroyed it's gotta go somewhere...

We've got roughly 30 years of sample data that shows warming...and the Earth is too big of a system to manipulate any kind of reliable experiment. It's a very hard thing to figure out...but the Earth has cooled and warmed and cooled and warmed all by itself. From a nearly tropical Earth all the way around at the time of the dinosaurs, to a freezing tundra during several ice ages. It's hard to really know what's going to happen...I just know that it's really cold outside right now.

~Zoo

on Feb 15, 2007
Draginol's discussion of this topic indicates two problems with his temporizing, one of which he readily acknowledges: 1) he has little scientific background, and 2) he is willing to lump and stereotype people with opposiing points of view when it suits his purpose.

I would defy Draginol or anyone to find a definition of "weak science" in any textbook that matches the comments he makes in his third paragraph. From a scientific point of view, this term is nonsensical; there are endeavors that are scientific and those that are not. Either you examine known facts to generate a working hypothesis, which you test and subsequently reject or fail to reject, thereby generating new hypotheses in an epistemological cycle that is, for human purposes, unending--or you do not. The fact that scientists have reached a consensus on an issue that can be viewed in political terms does not necessarily mean that the scientists are wrong or that there is no "hard" science backing the viewpoint in question. Usually what it means is that the opponents of the scientific consensus have a political agenda of their own, and the easiest way to discredit the consensus viewpoint is to claim that it is biased, weak, or scientifically invalid, which is much easier to do when the critics control the definitions of what constitutes science.

I would direct those who believe that Draginol has a legitimate point to consider the following links:

http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/sci;292/5515/267

http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abstract/292/5515/270

http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/full/306/5702/1686

These are just a few of the articles available in the journal Science, the premier publication of the scientific community. The American Association for Advancement of Science has no ax to grind, other than the promotion of valid scientific endeavors. You don't have to take my word for it; call your local university and ask any faculty member in the biology, physics, geology, chemistry, or microbiology departments about the prestige and apolitical nature of this organization.

I'm sure this looks like an appeal to authority to some, and to a certain extent, it is; I am not a climatologist, and I have done no original research to substantiate the claims that I am making here. To borrow an analogy from Draginol, I have no more personally witnessed long-term climate changes than I have personally witnessed the evolution of modern whales from ancient land-dwelling mammals. However, many lines of evidence point to the existence of both of these phenomena. At some point, people should accept that authorities frequently do know what they're talking about. If your doctor tells you you have a tumor, and you reject his diagnosis and see another physician and another and another, the question becomes what threshold level of evidence you will accept before you accept that you do have a tumor and should try to take appropriate corrective measures.

The reality of the matter is this: numerous independent researchers around the globe have conducted studies supporting the anthropogenic nature of recent climate change and there are no credible reports of research suggesting that man is not a cause of recent global warming. Therefore, supporting efforts to reduce emissions of greenhouse gasses does not make a person some sort of fringe environmentalist loon. The truth is that every political point of view has its extremists; these are the people who make the headlines because they say and do outrageous things. PETA splashes people wearing furs with "animal blood"; Rush Limbaugh gets on his daily love-in and declares that Michael J. Fox is "faking" his Parkinson's disease to promote stem-cell research and Democratic political candidates. Does this mean that conservative commentators and animal-rights advocates have no legitimate claims? I doubt any reader of this comment would make that claim.

I don't expect these arguments will persuade Draginol and others who truly have their minds made up on the subject. He has convinced himself, it would seem, that by dismissing global warming as the product of a) computer models that he does not understand, yet feels justified in referring to as "educated guesses" and the product of Al Gore's fevered imagination, he has debunked a dangerous, pseudoscientific myth. Naturally, he can only do this by rejecting a scientific consensus as essentially the equivalent of three or four guys standing around a water cooler in the office and giving their personal and uninformed opinions on the topic.


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