Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Hullabaloo over Climate Change

posted by The Vidiot @ 9:09 PM Permalink

Bumped and added to by The Sailor after The Vidiot's post. And an addendum by The Vidiot after that!

You may or may not be aware of the fact that somebody hacked into the Hadley Climatic Research Centre in the UK and posted their emails and several PDFs on the internet (pertinent links here, here and here.) Anyway, some of the emails seem damning, or not, depending on your POV. If you don't believe in global warming, emails like...
I've just completed Mike's Nature trick of adding in the real temps to each series for the last 20 years (ie from 1981 onwards) amd from 1961 for Keith's to hide the decline. Mike's series got the annual land and marine values while the other two got April-Sept for NH land N of 20N. The latter two are real for 1999, while the estimate for 1999 for NH combined is +0.44C wrt 61-90. The Global estimate for 1999 with data through Oct is +0.35C cf. 0.57 for 1998.
...could certainly seem damning. But, if you believe global warming, you're more likely to dismiss that email as being out of context or using language common to programmers who use words like 'trick' to describe elegant programming language.

I've done some research in my time (cancer research) and here's what happens:

You have a theory. You've run some preliminary experiments that might hold it up, but you need funding. So, you get funding from someone or something that most likely wants to support whatever your theory is. So, you take this money, and it's usually a lot and the money that supports you, your family, your employees and your institution, and you really begin to feel obligated to prove your theory right, whether it is or it isn't. You'll toss out a piece of bad data here (and call it an artifact), or you'll do a little mathematical thing to force the data to comply there and before your know it, your whole career is built upon a very weak foundation that needs to be supported and manipulated at every turn.

I've seen it happen. Hell, I've been instructed to DO it. (I don't need to hear from ethical researchers. I know there are many out there. But they don't have a lot of money or fame now do they, which means they don't get heard.)

So, that's what I think has happened with global warming science. It's shaky at best. It was shaky when I was studying it in grad school back in the early 90s. I know guys who worked at NASA GISS and said things like "Those models are silly. Flip on the lights, stave off the ice age because it's coming." But so much money has been thrown at the problem, and too many weak characters have entered the fray, that it's become a huge runaway train with just too much momentum.

Is there global warming or climate change? Sure, there's always climate change whether or not man has been around. ALL of the planets in the solar system are undergoing some sort of climate change and people aren't there to screw things up (yet). Is our planet's particular change in climate attributable to man? I haven't a clue. If it is, you can be damned sure that it's not caused by individuals. It's caused by corporations. Yet, in every single climate change regime ever formed, the focus is on taxing and controlling the general population, NOT the corporations.

And yes, I know that cap and trade tries to place limitations on corporations, but in the end, the bankers will be the ones who profit, and the corporations will just slap it on their balance sheets and manage it all with their profit motive. It will be completely ineffectual. Meanwhile, we'll be charged for every mile we drive, we'll not be able to sell our homes without the government regulated energy upgrades and the price of a plane ticket will become unaffordable for most.

How is that fair? It's not.

Addendum by The Sailor: The Vidiot and I have discussed global warming/climate change on back channels, but we've never stated our diametrically opposed views for our readers.

So here's a great opportunity for folks to understand how people can disagree, vehemently, and still have a civil discourse while explaining our differing viewpoints.

It's not global warming, it's climate change, and all peer reviewed science says that humans have caused/accelerated it. I don't see a profit motive in all of these experts confirming it. And just because it's colder or warmer for your area doesn't matter, that's weather, not climate.

We both work/worked in research science. Frankly, Vid's has been at a level that surpasses mine. Quite a bit of my experience has been with differing corporations asking research groups to do their work for them. Every time I hear how much money companies spend on R&D I wonder why they can't do it for themselves.

Here's why: If a corporation pays for the research they get to suppress it if they don't like the outcome. They can even cherry pick results, and suppress the data that disagrees.

The data is bought and paid for, they own it. What I disagree with Vid on is the scientists who did the work would fake their results just to get more funding.

I have never worked with any scientist or support person that would do that.

It's science, by definition it's repeatable, and if you get caught faking you can't work again in your chosen field. All of those years, all of that work has gone for nothing.

Occasionally that does happen, but THEY GET CAUGHT! (See Cold Fusion.)

The climate change work has been mostly funded in this country by our Gov't. And while the previous administration did their best to appoint political people in top jobs that denied science facts (See Evolution) they failed because science doesn't care. The science exists or it doesn't.

Here's where hubris comes into play. Most every scientist in the world in your field wants to prove you wrong if they disagree with you. But if they can't they grudgingly support your conclusions.

These things, like the speed of light, the earth rotates around the sun, we're not the center of the galaxy, evolution ... are facts.

I'm not a climatologist, but climatologists around the world agree, climate change is being accelerated by humans.

And the profit motive is completely on the other side, e.g. clean coal.


Addendum by The Vidiot:

In the comments, I explained that I'm not one of those 'climate change deniers.' The human race is definitely a part of some of the environmental degradation that is going on now right here on Earth, just not as much as the global warming crowd would have you believe. I think there's a solar component to climate change that is barely considered in any of the discussions, and it's taking its toll on all the planets in our solar system. To disregard solar input is just bad science. Additionally, it's just not all humans that are causing the problems, it's particular groups of humans that are doing it.

Cui Bono? Who benefits from either proving or disproving global warming?

For the climate deniers, energy companies are funding what they want to fund, and if you're into anthropogenic global warming (AGW), well, you'll fund those folks. Both sides will benefit from whatever it is their 'experts' publish and you're right, those who pay can suppress what they want to suppress. And more than likely, researchers aren't being unethical, but you cannot argue that researchers have a vested interest in proving their theories and some researchers will do whatever it takes to pull in a lot of the almighty dollar. You know as well as I do the pressure that is on many researchers when it comes time to renew their funding. Just because you agree with AGW doesn't mean those guys are more ethical or moral when it comes to their research.

Also, most folks overlook the fact that there's a profit motive for AGW as well. There's cap and trade which Matt Taibbi wrote about. He said that Goldman Sachs is poised to profit from the upcoming carbon credit bubble. LOTS of money will be made by the bankers and businesses on the inside before it all comes crashing down and the rest of us will be holding the bag once again. Not only that, look at all the taxes they can pile on people if AGW is considered fact. They can tax us for the amount of miles we drive. They can tax us if we don't upgrade our homes with the allotted technologies. They can tax us for the food we buy that's not local. And they can tax us with all sorts of things I can't even think of because my coffee hasn't kicked in yet. The State can rake in all sorts of tax dollars if AGW is "supported by the research." Oh, there's definitely a profit motive for AGW, just like there is for climate deniers.

The problem I have, again as I stated in my comments, with the whole global warming debate is that the folks less likely to cause the bulk of the pollution are going to be the ones most likely to end up paying for it.

I don't want to have to pay the State all sorts of my hard-earned cash because the State enabled corporate greed to the point that the environment has been completely destroyed. Where's the corporate punishment? I mean, if Teen Vidiot messes something up, whether it's intentional or not, he suffers for it. Either we take his Wii away or whatever it is he's done will bite him in the ass. Either way, he will suffer the consequences. But corporations don't suffer any consequences. It's like if Teen Vidiot punches some kid in the face and the kid who got punched ends up expelled from school. Even if the kid was taunting Teen Vidiot, Teen Vidiot was the aggressor.

So, whatever the State chooses to do with regards to AGW, it's the little guy who will get hit and then suffer the consequences, not the big corporate bullies who caused the problem. Sure, the little guy was dumb enough to buy into the corporation's lies -- purchasing, needing, wanting and supporting the corporation -- but it's the corporation that is at fault, not the little guy.

Bottom line, a la George Lakoff, the issue needs to be framed in a more correct way. Instead of calling it anthropogenic global warming, which has a human component as part of its definition, it should more rightly be called corporation-induced atmospheric destruction or even profit-based environmental calamity. Either of these terms more aptly describe what is occurring AND they both firmly place the blame on the guilty parties.

Update to my Addendum: Dan D (in the comments below) has possible other name for it all that also reframes it, but isn't as mean and nasty as mine and might even be more correct: oxygen depletion travesty.

Of course, you know me, I'd probably agree to calling it oxygen depletion travesty iff "corporation-induced" or "profit-based" preceded it.

But that's just me.

Labels: ,


At 8:13 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...


Pepetually, the real issue is being danced around, but never really addressed, and yes, it seems to me that the primary cause of uncommon climate change is human in origin.

Under the current paradigm of "Global Warming (TM, Al Gore)", the Blue Meanie of greenhouse gasses is exclusively supposed to be carbon dioxide. But being a heavier gas means that CO2 is mostly going to stay at the bottom of the gravity well, and it will always be the weight of the rest of Earth's atmosphere on top of it that causes that CO2 to constantly be absorbed by the rest of the more solid environment.

However, the one gas that is terminally being depleted in the Earth's atmosphere is OXYGEN. In the above article, it is stated:

" ... A central tenet of “climate change” dogma holds that increased emissions (2 billion tons a year in 1850 to 35 billion tons a year now) leads to greater CO2 levels in the atmosphere. But a new study from the University of Bristol could shake up traditional assumptions. The study suggests that CO2 levels have remained constant since 1850."

It is clearly stated in this article that by 1850, humans were specifically responsible for the production of 2 billion tons of atmospheric carbon dioxide every year. It was also during this time in history that humanity first crossed the population barrier of 1 billion individuals while transforming industry into a technological wonderland-cum-horror show.

After Earth's last super volcano explosion, it took humanity around 35 thousand years to go from a population of just several thousand to over 6 billion individuals. No other single species on Earth has ever even remotely been able to accomplish a similar feat, and this is primarily because no other life form on Earth has ever developed the wholesale onerous practice of parasitic technology.

(continued below)

At 8:14 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

(continued from above)

For hundreds of millions of years, the Earth's macro-environment has functionally taught itself exactly how much oxygen it must produce in order to sustain a relatively constant level of this ozone producing gas. Produce too much -- as was what happened during the age of leviathan dinosaurs -- and should there ever be a significant asteroid strike, the planet's surface exterminatingly burns. Produce too little, and UV solar radiation starts to disinfect the whole outer surface of all life.

For the last few million years at least, all the anaerobic life on Earth has always produced no more than six billion tons of free oxygen every year. In these more modern times of vast ocean "dead-zones" and extensive rain-forest elimination, the green life of our planet is lucky if it is producing 4 billion tons of free oxygen every year. In the meantime, as the above article states, at least 35 billion tons of carbon dioxide is produced by the techologies of human kind every year. Of that annual volume of carbon dioxide, 20 billion tons if it used to be atmospheric free oxygen.

The evidence is quite clear, humans are drastically depleting the Earth's atmosphere of its overwhelmingly primary shield from the Sun's life-dissolving rays. In what is even more critical, for the first time in all the Earth's history (beyond what is depleted by a variably perpetual rain of space debris) vast quantities of O2 and O3 are being depleted out of the lower and middle stratosphere. these are oxygen atoms that have otherwise just been "hangin' around" above Earth's troposphere for tens and even hundreds of thousands of years.

why does the Ozone hole seem to be ever-expanding? Well, because after tens-of-thousands of stratospheric jet liners on each flight combine tens of tons of O2 and Ozone with tens of tons of jet fuel, the resulting, heavier, carbon dioxide (and other more exotic gases) fall back into the lower atmosphere where it is then reabsorbed by the environment in its oxide form before the Earth's depleted anaerobic life system can again seperate the O2 for an unlikely trip back into the upper Stratosphere.

As a species, humanity ('s technology) is depleting the atmosphere of life-sustaining oxygen way too fast. It's there in the numbers. If anybody can, please show me where I'm wrong (enough).


At 11:59 AM, Blogger The Vidiot said...

Yes, but my grousing is not so much about global warming vs. the naysayers so much as it's about framing the issue, getting paid for having it framed that way and continuing to frame it that way even after it's been found to not be so valid.

I'm sure humans are doing SOMETHING, we're piggy pigs after all. However, the humans that are causing it won't be the ones penalized for it.

Corporations ship their goods all over the planet to accommodate cheap labor. Corporations belch crap into our atmosphere, rape and pillage natural resources and then, they convince people that they need all the crap they make with their ill-gotten gains. Meanwhile, the corporations are funding research that, for all intents and purposes, will be used to frame individuals for their, the corporation's, sins.

People are the ones who are going to suffer. Not the corporations. And man-made climate change will be the tool of enslavement.

Perhaps we should just stop calling it man-made climate change and call it for what it is: corporation-induced atmospheric destruction or profit-based environmental calamity. It's not man-made.

Thank you for helping me to clarify my thoughts on this subject.

At 7:58 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

While I post under "Anonymous", it's because my computer doesn't seem to give me the option of creating an account. Someday I'll have to try and fix that.

In the meantime, while the previous UNSIGNED Anonymous seems only to be promoting a drug, I will not cut-n-paste because there is (even at some minimum) no relevant comment included.

It could be somebody who's been hired to promote that drug on whatever accessible comment board. It could also just be a Trojan promotion to damage the computer of whatever fool chooses to check it out.


At 9:30 AM, Blogger Mr. Vidiot said...

We have been getting a lot of those spam comments. The only way to get around it is to do the captcha thing. If it starts to become a nuisance, we'll have to do that.

You should see one of the articles from like a year ago, some japanese bot found it and there's like 80 comments, all in Japanese. When I put it through the translator, it was mostly all about sex enhancing drugs. Go figure.

Don't worry Dan, we always know which comments are yours. You're a unique anonymous.

At 12:50 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks Mr. Vidiot.


"THE VIDIOT SAID: Yes, but my grousing is not so much about global warming vs. the naysayers so much as it's about framing the issue ... "

And this is also my concern. Al Gore and the entire corporate media are working overtime in order to sell the over-production of carbon dioxide as humanity's most pressing concern. But carbon dioxide is perpetually plentiful, even as water is perpetually plentiful (overall) in the environment. There will always be carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

But FREE OXYGEN (as in, only oxygen in its most transformational incarnations of O1, O2, and O3) is a "naturally occuring" gas only were there is anaerobic life. Furthermore, oxygen's production is precisely limited by the variable life cycles of that form of life. As is currently happening on the Earth, where an aerobic life form suicidally develops the capacity to not only outstrip anaerobic life's oxygen producing capabilities, but is also parasitically destroying that same anaerobic life for its own more exotic industrial perversions, it does seem extremely strange to me that NOBODY seems to be focusing on this particular and pressing danger to ALL life on our assaulted planet.

After all, even surface anaerobic life depends on Ozone as a life-sustaining shield from the suns more harmful rays. Without a stratospheric abundance of that particular "waste" gas, life simply could not survive on the surface of our planet.

When correctly framed as an oxygen depletion travesty, then the true danger to all us oxygen-dependent life forms can more effectively be addressed.


At 1:03 PM, Blogger The Vidiot said...

"it does seem extremely strange to me that NOBODY seems to be focusing on this particular and pressing danger to ALL life on our assaulted planet."

Really? This surprises you?

It's not being addressed because the biggest culprits is 'industrial perversions' as you say.

At 4:54 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well, regardless of my rhetorical predispostion, yes, I am still somewhat suprised that -- consequent to the ever-expanding, human industrial complex -- atmospheric oxygen replentishment for the planet has been negative for at least a century, and has functionally been "neutral (which kinda' begs the question)" for much longer with little to no popularly published scientific concern or even notice.

The first time I ever heard of it was when I considered it myself. This is not to say that no one else has voiced a similar opinion, I just haven't heard it.


At 5:42 PM, Blogger The Sailor said...


There's no way I can address the MSM's failure to publish science facts.

Sheesh, these are the people who started the whole global ice age crap in the 70's, when that was not a consensus, just a small minority of scientists who had their research cherry picked and their conclusions misinterpreted.

Here are some links to your point, researchers are aware and working on it.

The MSM isn't curious about anything they can't hullabaloo in 10 seconds or a large TYPE headline.

At 8:04 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for the Google, Sailor;

But you will also notice that the oxygen-depletion being focused on all virtually occurs in the troposphere. And while Stratospheric Ozone-level depletion is a well-travelled subject, it is rarely -- if ever -- connected to its primarily depleting circumstance, jet air travel.

It is this double-hinged whammy occuring both below and above the moisture line that is going to kill us all.



Post a Comment

<< Home