May 07, 2014

Consensus Watch – 05/07/2014

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

 Yesterday was a good day for The Consensus. The White House launched a new strategy for furthering its global warming agenda. Gone are the days of trying to foment hysteria by reciting dry data about the ways the planet will be affected by climate change.  From now on, they are going to try to foment hysteria by reciting the ways in which you will be personally affected by climate change.

We can only speak for ourselves, but we appreciate this more individualized approach to scaremongering. It sends the message, “We care.”

As part of this effort, they created a splashy new web site that seems to take into account the effect federal “Common Core” educational standards are going to have on the population’s reading comprehension skills.

For example, they conveniently sum up each section with a “key message,” just in case you have difficulty, as many of us do, deciphering simple, short, declarative sentences:

Key Message: Stressed Infrastructure

Infrastructure will be increasingly compromised by climate-related hazards, including sea level rise, coastal flooding, and intense precipitation events.

Frankly, we are concerned that they are unnecessarily complicating the message. More in the spirit of this document might be:

Key Message: Global warming bad.

Global warming bad bad bad.

Incidentally, we are heartened to note that it looks like the people proofreading the site have already gone through Common Core:

Qualitify

Among the other claims are:

Key Message: Climate Risks to People

Heat waves, coastal flooding, and river flooding will pose a growing challenge to the region’s environmental, social, and economic systems. This will increase the vulnerability of the region’s residents, especially its most disadvantaged populations.

This point can’t be stressed enough: It is our most disadvantaged populations that will find themselves at a disadvantage. It’s just one of the many disadvantages of being disadvantaged.

Well, unless, you are a member of a “native community,” in which case you are probably okay given your “deep cultural history of adapting to change.”

Key Message: Native Communities

The cumulative effects of climate change in Alaska strongly affect Native communities, which are highly vulnerable to these rapid changes but have a deep cultural history of adapting to change.

 Which, it should be emphasized, is not at all patronizing stereotyping. It would only be patronizing stereotyping if you said it.

Regardless, the web site is more than just shout outs to Democratic constituency groups. It also contains supporting data.

Take this chart, for example.  Look at those projections! Wow!  Even the lower of the two data sets suggests that temperatures are set to soar! It makes us want to go out and personally dismantle a coal plant with our bare hands.

Temperature Chart -  201405

Okay, sure, if you look really, really closely at the actual observational data as charted by the green line, the last 15+ years have experienced absolutely no warming whatsoever. 

Temperature Chart Closeup - 201405

But that is probably all part of an effort to improve temperature projection qualitify.

No doubt, while this is all good news for The Consensus, challenges remain. Efforts to try to convince people that they are facing imminent peril from increasing global temperatures, rising sea levels, disappearing polar sea ice and more frequent extreme weather events, will continue to be complicated by the fact that none of these things are true.

But that’s not what’s important. What’s important is, it’s the Koch brothers’ fault.

Key Message: Koch brothers are bad.

Koch brothers are bad bad bad.

J.

 

Shut up thats why Now you have a chance to show your support for The Consensus with the Shut up, that’s why T-shirt, the perfect answer to anyone who dares to question the science behind global warming.

In addition to the T-shirt we also have a fashionable beach tote and a set of stackable mugs, so you’ll have the opportunity to show the world that you’re smart enough to know when not to ask too many questions.

Consensus Watch T-shirt And while you're at it, make sure the world knows you won't allow yourself to be bullied by facts with our extensive line of CONSENSUS WATCH MERCHANDISE!

 PLUS: Our "We're all going to die! (Some before others)" organic T-shirt, sleevless shirt, and mug.We're all going to die MUG  

We also have the classic Consensus Watch coffee mug, bag, and beer stein (along with assorted T-shirts, sweatshirts, and other garments): "Consensus Watch Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data" plus a complete line of "Stop raping the planet! You may, however, touch it inappropriately," items (shirts, coasters, stickers, buttons)

All proceeds raised from the sale of Consensus Watch merchandise go towards ensuring that we never run out of gin.

May 7, 2014 at 03:25 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack

September 25, 2013

CONSENSUS WATCH – 09/25/2013

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

For years now, The Consensus has been subject to attacks that have been clearly scientific in nature. Opponents have stopped at nothing to derail the momentum we have worked so hard to achieve, using every dirty science trick in the book, from dispassionately assessing observational data to testing hypotheses against actual results.

Naturally, this has achieved nothing other than to sow doubt in the validity of The Consensus. This is patently ridiculous.

It’s a consensus.

Well, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has had enough of its global warming theories being kicked around like some kind of scientific football, and so has begun to take the whole process back into the sphere of politics (it’s a science, look it up) where it can properly be subjected to the rigors of influence peddling, rent seeking, and special interest horse trading that are the hallmarks of the discipline.

For example, it has been unmistakenly demonstrated that despite projections to the contrary, the earth has not materially warmed for the past 15 years.  Examined only through the rather confining lens of science, this could be a problem for The Consensus.  But when reexamined under strict political conditions, other factors can be taken into account, such as what effect might this have on the careers of members of the IPCC or whether it might embarrass certain politicians

When looked at in this way, whole new avenues of political exploration open up. For example, German officials had a novel idea on how to deal with the evidence that the earth was not, in fact, warming. 

Delete it.

If there’s one thing you can say about the Germans, they’re not subtle.

Fortunately, United States officials had a better idea: Rather than ignore data for which there is ample supportive evidence, create a new theory to explain it away, for which there is none.

Hey, without data, you can’t exactly disprove it, now can you?

Where does this purely political approach leave us?  Well, after years of mounting data that the current global warming hypotheses are fatally flawed, the UN’s IPCC is reported to have decided that it is no longer 90% confident in The Consensus.

It’s now 95% confident!

You need more than a slide rule to come up with that conclusion, my friend. A lot more.

J.

Shut up thats why Now you have a chance to show your support for The Consensus with the Shut up, that’s why T-shirt, the perfect answer to anyone who dares to question the science behind global warming.

In addition to the T-shirt we also have a fashionable beach tote and a set of stackable mugs, so you’ll have the opportunity to show the world that you’re smart enough to know when not to ask too many questions.

Consensus Watch T-shirt And while you're at it, make sure the world knows you won't allow yourself to be bullied by facts with our extensive line of CONSENSUS WATCH MERCHANDISE!

 PLUS: Our "We're all going to die! (Some before others)" organic T-shirt, sleevless shirt, and mug.We're all going to die MUG  

We also have the classic Consensus Watch coffee mug, bag, and beer stein (along with assorted T-shirts, sweatshirts, and other garments): "Consensus Watch Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data" plus a complete line of "Stop raping the planet! You may, however, touch it inappropriately," items (shirts, coasters, stickers, buttons)

All proceeds raised from the sale of Consensus Watch merchandise go towards ensuring that we never run out of gin.

September 25, 2013 at 05:29 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

October 16, 2012

CONSENSUS WATCH – 10/16/2012

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

One of the barriers to convincing the general public that the world is indeed warming due to the human-produced emissions of carbon dioxide is people’s woeful misunderstanding of science in general and the scientific process in particular.

For example (and we feel silly even having to bring this up), when people who are not scientists are told that the earth is going to get warmer they tend to, for whatever reason, assume that the earth is going to get warmer.

We blame the public school system.

Naturally, with this faulty assumption in mind, the news that the earth hasn’t actually warmed for the past 16 straight years despite continuing increases in man-made atmospheric carbon dioxide creates unwarranted doubt among common people.  They start suggesting, based on nothing more than the fact that the earth hasn’t warmed, that perhaps models that predicted the earth would warm are wrong.

Now how about we all calm down and look at this like a scientist does, shall we?

Take, for example, famed climatologist Professor Phil Jones, director of the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia. He takes the issue head on, explaining to people who might be skeptical that global warming is real:

“We don’t fully understand how to input things like changes in the oceans, and because we don’t fully understand it you could say that natural variability is now working to suppress the warming. We don’t know what natural variability is doing.”

See?  It’s just that they don’t understand it. It’s not as if the models are in any way wrong and need to be fundamentally changed. It's that they just don't happen to be able to reliably predict observed data given a set of known inputs.

If you are like most Planet Moron readers, you’re probably thinking, “I like cheese.”  Also, “Shouldn’t scientists consider changing their minds in the face of new data?

Of course they should. For example, in 2009, Professor Jones, commenting on the lack of warming said that:

“…the ‘no upward trend’ has to  continue for a total of 15 years before we get worried.”

Now that he’s had a chance to review the new data indicating that we have had “no upward trend” for 16 years, he’s changed his mind

Now he believes that you probably need 20 years before you get worried.

See, and you thought Consensus scientists were inflexible.

In fact, they are so flexible that after years of data that showed little increase in hurricane activity despite predictions to the contrary, they realized that they to rethink the problem. Their solution?

Count things that aren’t hurricanes instead.

By examining the historic record on things that aren't hurricanes such as storm surges, which may or may not have anything to do with hurricanes, scientists can now say that, sure enough, warming causes more hurricanes.  Or potential hurricanes. Or things that could be hurricanes. Or not.

Also, it's not warming.

It doesn’t matter. We have a Consensus.

Which reminds us, evidence for global warming can no longer be found in Antarctica “where the bottom of the world is literally melting away”

It is now literally freezing its way up, and increasing in overall ice mass.

Regardless, even though the Antarctic is not melting, the penguins are still going to die because it’s going to melt.

Now that’s flexible.

J.

Shut up thats why Now you have a chance to show your support for The Consensus with the Shut up, that’s why T-shirt, the perfect answer to anyone who dares to question the science behind global warming.

In addition to the T-shirt we also have a fashionable beach tote and a set of stackable mugs, so you’ll have the opportunity to show the world that you’re smart enough to know when not to ask too many questions.

Consensus Watch T-shirt And while you're at it, make sure the world knows you won't allow yourself to be bullied by facts with our extensive line of CONSENSUS WATCH MERCHANDISE!

 PLUS: Our "We're all going to die! (Some before others)" organic T-shirt, sleevless shirt, and mug.We're all going to die MUG  

We also have the classic Consensus Watch coffee mug, bag, and beer stein (along with assorted T-shirts, sweatshirts, and other garments): "Consensus Watch Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data" plus a complete line of "Stop raping the planet! You may, however, touch it inappropriately," items (shirts, coasters, stickers, buttons)

All proceeds raised from the sale of Consensus Watch merchandise go towards ensuring that we never run out of gin.

October 16, 2012 at 03:30 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

October 24, 2011

CONSENSUS WATCH – 10/24/2011

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

Everything you thought you knew about global warming is about to change. Scientists at the Berkeley Earth Project conducted a study of available temperature data and came to a shocking conclusion:

The earth’s climate is variable.

We’re sorry we had to be the ones to tell you, but we didn’t want you to have to hear it on the street.  But it appears there is some evidence that the earth’s climate has warmed slightly over the past 150 years.

As is custom with Consensus-supporting studies, the results of the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature papers have not yet been peer reviewed or published in a respected journal, but rather were released in the far more legitimate venue of a newspaper Op-Ed piece.

While you could point out that many of even the most vocal Consensus skeptics agree the earth has warmed at least slightly, and that the lead scientist on the study specifically said in his Op-Ed, “How much of the warming is due to humans and what will be the likely effects? We made no independent assessment of that,” or that the Berkeley study itself concedes that the “human component of global warming may be somewhat overestimated,” none of that is important. What is important is you can generate headlines like these:

“The War Against Climate Science Unravels

"The scientific finding that settles the climate-change debate"

The skeptics are clearly on the run now. The evidence is all around you.

For example, a new computer model run by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found that global warming might result in a drop in water levels in the Great Lakes.  Or possibly a rise.

Do you want to be the one to have to explain to your children why they have to live in a world where the Great Lakes themselves are slightly lower or maybe higher than they are now?

Well, do you?

Likewise, a new study by the National Center for Atmospheric Research came to the disturbing conclusion that sea ice is “as likely to expand as it is to contract for periods of up to about a decade.”

Is driving an SUV, using a microwave, and being able to afford heat in the winter really worth that?

And the evidence mounts: The U.S. Geological Survey released a study today finding that:

“In none of the four regions defined in this study is there strong statistical evidence for flood magnitudes increasing with increasing GMCO2 (carbon dioxide concentrations).”

Yes, you read that right.  And it gets worse:

“One region, the southwest, showed a statistically significant negative relationship between GMCO2 and flood magnitudes.”

Just because you stubbornly refuse to pay $21 billion to hire an additional 230,000 EPA bureaucrats to monitor your energy use, some innocent little girl in the Southwest somewhere at this very moment is probably living in a house not devastated by a flood.

We are living in a world where forest fires are not increasing and sea levels continue their relentless stability and yet the skeptics persist.

But thanks to the scientists at Berkeley Earth Project, you have your proof.

So the next time someone starts questioning The Consensus, you look them straight in the eye and say, “Here’s your consensus, buddy: Temperatures appear to have risen slightly, humans may or may not have played a role, and if humans have played a role it might not actually matter much.”

And then see how long it takes them to realize they were wrong and finally start making some changes for a better world.

Like hiring an eco-concierge to arrange for an African village to be burned to the ground for the carbon offsets they need for their vacation beach homes.

It’s not easy being green.

J.

Shut up thats why Now you have a chance to show your support for The Consensus with the Shut up, that’s why T-shirt, the perfect answer to anyone who dares to question the science behind global warming.

In addition to the T-shirt we also have a fashionable beach tote and a set of stackable mugs, so you’ll have the opportunity to show the world that you’re smart enough to know when not to ask too many questions.

Consensus Watch T-shirt And while you're at it, make sure the world knows you won't allow yourself to be bullied by facts with our extensive line of CONSENSUS WATCH MERCHANDISE!

 PLUS: Our "We're all going to die! (Some before others)" organic T-shirt, sleevless shirt, and mug.We're all going to die MUG  

We also have the classic Consensus Watch coffee mug, bag, and beer stein (along with assorted T-shirts, sweatshirts, and other garments): "Consensus Watch Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data" plus a complete line of "Stop raping the planet! You may, however, touch it inappropriately," items (shirts, coasters, stickers, buttons)

All proceeds raised from the sale of Consensus Watch merchandise go towards ensuring that we never run out of gin.

 

 

October 24, 2011 at 05:47 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

August 30, 2011

CONSENSUS WATCH – 8/30/2011

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

It is a disgrace that there are still those who would attack the integrity of scientists who support the Consensus.  These global warming denialists slander them with the lie that they are making up the science in order to make money. Such attempts to delegitimize people through character assassination must stop.

This is not to be confused with the 100% legitimate tactic of accusing those who don’t support the Consensus of being a lot like racists.  That’s perfectly okay, according to Al Gore, former Vice President and millionaire global warming businessman, because as he sees it, supporting today’s Consensus on global warming is a lot like supporting the civil rights movement back in the 1960s.  In the former, a group of government-funded researchers are attempting to shield a scientific theory from further scrutiny, and in the latter, an entire race of people were systematically denied fundamental human rights as guaranteed under our Constitution.

In terms of the “moral component,” it’s really just two sides of the same coin.  A really thick coin.

For example, let’s say you point out to a friend that data gathered regarding moisture and temperature readings in the tropical upper troposphere seem to be at odds with current Consensus models.  What you've basically just said, is that only whites should be allowed to ride in the front of the bus.

You should be ashamed of yourself.

What can we do about this transparent anti-global warming racism? As Al Gore says, we must work to “win the conversation,” when it comes to the Consensus:

“There came a time when friends or people you work with or people you were in clubs with — you’re much younger than me so you didn’t have to go through this personally — but there came a time when racist comments would come up in the course of the conversation and in years past they were just natural. Then there came a time when people would say, ‘Hey, man why do you talk that way, I mean that is wrong. I don’t go for that so don’t talk that way around me. I just don’t believe that.’ That happened in millions of conversations and slowly the conversation was won.”

Yes, it can be difficult and awkward, but you can do it.  Here’s an example:

A Friend: Did you see that peer-reviewed paper that demonstrated the sensitivity of the climate system to an imposed radiative imbalance remains the largest source of uncertainty in projections of future anthropogenic climate change?

You: Hey, man why do you talk that way, I mean that is wrong. I don’t go for that.

A Friend: What? I’m just saying that satellite-based metrics for the period 2000–2010 depart substantially in the direction of lower climate sensitivity from those similarly computed from coupled climate models, which calls into question their accuracy.

You: Don’t talk that way around me. I just don’t believe that.

There’s a chance your friend will be hurt and confused by this confrontation. You need to explain that you’re not accusing him of prejudice, but rather “postjudice.”  Postjudice is when you form an opinion about something only after you’ve examined all the available evidence. 

For example, let’s say you come across a study demonstrating that that cosmic rays spur the formation of clouds through ion-induced nucleation providing support for a "heliocentric" rather than "anthropogenic" approach to climate change.

If you then conclude that current climate models will have to be revisited and the role of the sun taken into greater account regarding climate change, you’re just being postjudice.  If instead, you had approached the subject having already made up your mind that humans driving SUVs cause global warming, and instruct those involved to keep their opinions to themselves, you could avoid creating all this awkwardness in the first place.

This will not be easy, but then, it never has been easy, has it?

I have a dream that one day at an IPCC conference, the sons of former denialists and the sons of former Consensus supporters will be able to sit down together and agree the Consensus supporters were right.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of global warming, sweltering from runaway CO2 production, will be transformed into an oasis of solar cells sold by Al Gore-owned companies.

I have a dream that UN reports on global warming will one day be judged not by the content of their research, but by the color of their covers.

I have a dream today…

J.

Shut up thats why Now you have a chance to show your support for The Consensus with the Shut up, that’s why T-shirt, the perfect answer to anyone who dares to question the science behind global warming.

In addition to the T-shirt we also have a fashionable beach tote and a set of stackable mugs, so you’ll have the opportunity to show the world that you’re smart enough to know when not to ask too many questions.

Consensus Watch T-shirt And while you're at it, make sure the world knows you won't allow yourself to be bullied by facts with our extensive line of CONSENSUS WATCH MERCHANDISE!

 PLUS: Our "We're all going to die! (Some before others)" organic T-shirt, sleevless shirt, and mug.We're all going to die MUG  

We also have the classic Consensus Watch coffee mug, bag, and beer stein (along with assorted T-shirts, sweatshirts, and other garments): "Consensus Watch Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data" plus a complete line of "Stop raping the planet! You may, however, touch it inappropriately," items (shirts, coasters, stickers, buttons)

All proceeds raised from the sale of Consensus Watch merchandise go towards ensuring that we never run out of gin.

 

August 30, 2011 at 04:02 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

May 04, 2011

CONSENSUS WATCH – 5/4/2011

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

The Consensus faces many threats, but one of the most serious is the existence of a growing body of credible peer-reviewed science calling into question many of the pillars on which the Consensus regarding anthropogenic global warming rests. This has created the erroneous impression that there is a growing body of credible peer-reviewed science calling into question many of the pillars on which the Consensus regarding anthropogenic global warming rests.

One way to combat this unfortunate development would be to address these opposing studies directly by offering up equally credible hypotheses and then subject them to critical examination in the form of repeatable experiments that could be verified independently.

Another way is to just make stuff up.

Making stuff up has an advantage over offering up testable hypotheses to critical examination, in that when you make stuff up, you are not offering up testable hypotheses to critical examination.

Take, for example, the claim that climate change affects tectonic plate movement, causing earthquakes.  What makes a finding like this so important is that it can be used to generate headlines like:

Climate change affects tectonic plate movement, causing earthquakes

What is less important is that later in the article the authors of the study stress in no uncertain terms that it:

“…did not mean that global warming would translate to stronger earthquakes happening more often,”

And that:

“…our work doesn’t imply at all that we will see an increase in these types of events.”

You should never consider the fact that the study itself does not support your preferred conclusion to be a barrier. Instead, consider it a challenge.

Likewise, you can blame this spring’s tornado activity on global warming without giving a second thought to the fact that the reason we’re having more tornados this year is because it’s cooler.

Remember, you’re just making stuff up.

Winds growing stronger?

Blame it on global warming.

Winds growing weaker?

You can blame that on global warming too.

Are there fewer truffles?

Global warming!

Are there more truffles?

Still  global warming!

Antarctic ice growing, Antarctic ice shrinking, it just doesn’t matter, when you’re making stuff up.

Of course, one of the hazards of making stuff up is sometimes you get caught, such as when the United Nations predicted ten years ago that we’d have 50 million “climate refugees” by 2010. There really is only one thing you can do under those circumstances.

Make believe it never happened.

J.

Shut up thats why Now you have a chance to show your support for The Consensus with the Shut up, that’s why T-shirt, the perfect answer to anyone who dares to question the science behind global warming.

In addition to the T-shirt we also have a fashionable beach tote and a set of stackable mugs, so you’ll have the opportunity to show the world that you’re smart enough to know when not to ask too many questions.

Consensus Watch T-shirt And while you're at it, make sure the world knows you won't allow yourself to be bullied by facts with our extensive line of CONSENSUS WATCH MERCHANDISE!

 PLUS: Our "We're all going to die! (Some before others)" organic T-shirt, sleevless shirt, and mug.We're all going to die MUG  

We also have the classic Consensus Watch coffee mug, bag, and beer stein (along with assorted T-shirts, sweatshirts, and other garments): "Consensus Watch Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data" plus a complete line of "Stop raping the planet! You may, however, touch it inappropriately," items (shirts, coasters, stickers, buttons)

All proceeds raised from the sale of Consensus Watch merchandise go towards ensuring that we never run out of gin.

 

May 4, 2011 at 09:47 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

April 01, 2011

CONSENSUS WATCH – 4/1/2011

Without consensus, scientific conclusions would be vulnerable to new data. That is why we have “Consensus Watch,” an ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs.

One of the problems facing global warming's foremost champion, the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) are accusations that it makes extensive use of non-peer-reviewed literature, that those leading IPCC studies are scientifically unqualified and merely chosen based on what country they are from, and that the IPCC itself is more a political campaign operation than a body of scientific inquiry. 

And that’s just from members of the IPCC. (You don’t even want to know what others think.)

This has resulted in plummeting support among Americans for legislation that would address their selfish insistence on driving something other than a $40,000 econo car, thus raising the specter that, absent legislative authority, the Obama administration would be unable to move forward implementing plans in line with the Consensus.

Fortunately, being a former Constitutional law professor, the President was uniquely qualified to find an ingenious way to deal with the Constitutional constraints placed on his office.

Ignore them.

By ignoring the fact that Congress has specifically refused to regulate the pollutant known as “carbon dioxide” (so deadly that it is found in only three places on earth: the land,  the sea, and the air) and simply moving forward anyway, we can finally start making some progress.

Of course, President Obama can’t take all the credit, as the legislative branch long ago grew tired of the tedious chore of legislating and has been outsourcing such dreariness to the other branches of government by passing what amount to broad guidelines and leaving the boring details of writing the specifics of laws to the excutive branch, and the weary task of fine-tuning them to the judicial branch

As a result, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) can use the Clean Air Act, which never contemplated the regulation of a ubiquitous gas essential to all life on earth, to regulate a ubiquitous gas essential to all life on earth without having to go through the laborious chore of seeking the consent of the governed.  This allows President Obama to honor our country’s true founding principle that government can only draw its legitimacy from the consent of the governors. 

Now, before you get all riled up about how that isn’t why our forefathers fought against the tyranny of the British in the small towns of Lexington and Concord, New Hampshire, it’s not as if we’re turning over such weighty issues only to bureaucrats and judges.

We’re turning them over to experts!

Such as Dr. Hien Tran, whose seminal work demonstrating that diesel trucks kill thousands of Californians a year has resulted in laws designed to destroy California’s trucking industry, which will definitely cut down on greenhouse gas emissions.  In drawing his conclusions, Dr. Tran drew upon the vast knowledge of diesel particulates and epidemiology he had amassed during those tireless minutes he spent writing a check to Thornhill University, a diploma mill that conferred upon him a PhD in evidence of his exemplary work in ensuring the check cleared.

It is only through the efforts of Dr. Tran and others like him, that we can ensure that the consensus on climate change stays in the political arena where it belongs and doesn’t become a “scientific football” subjected to whatever legitimate study or sound body of evidence just happens to have credibility at the time.

J.

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 NEW: Our "We're all going to die! (Some before others)" organic T-shirt, sleevless shirt, and mug.We're all going to die MUG  

We also have the classic Consensus Watch coffee mug, bag, and beer stein (along with assorted T-shirts, sweatshirts, and other garments): "Consensus Watch Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data" plus a complete line of "Stop raping the planet! You may, however, touch it inappropriately," items (shirts, coasters, stickers, buttons)

 

April 1, 2011 at 01:56 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

February 28, 2011

CONSENSUS WATCH – 2/28/2011

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs. Because without consensus, scientific conclusions would remain vulnerable to new data.

One of the ongoing problems with the scientific consensus on global warming is the fact that large numbers of scientists disagree with it.

Of course, these are mostly quibbles, such as NASA scientist Dr. Leonard Weinstein who noted that “Any reasonable scientific analysis must conclude the basic theory wrong,” or Nobel Prize-Winning Stanford University Physicist Dr. Robert B. Laughlin, who observed that “You can't find much actual global warming in present-day weather observations,” or Dr. Christopher J. Kobus, Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Oakland University, who subtly suggested that “The whole thing is a fraud. And even the fraudsters that fudged data are admitting to temperature history that they used to say didn't happen,” but you’re always going to have some minor disagreement on the margins.

Clearly, there remains a broad consensus that human emissions of CO2 constitute a grave threat to our climate, particularly among those scientists who believe that human emissions of CO2 constitute a grave threat to our climate, and really, who better to know?

Despite this, there remains an inexplicable complacency among the public at large.  Some point to the fact that there’s no evidence that the planet is actually getting warmer. Others suggest that such things as increased snowfall, despite predictions to the contrary, have shaken confidence in the Consensus. 

We believe the problem is much simpler:

Insufficient amounts of hysteria.

It’s just not enough to tell people the glaciers are melting, particularly when they aren’t.  You have to personalize it.

Fortunately, Washington, DC-based climate activist Mike Tidwell is up to the task, writing in a recent op-ed piece for The Washington Post, that buying solar panels, using an energy-efficient refrigerator, and heating his home with organically fertilized corn pellets was simply not going to be enough, particularly given world food riots that have taken place over the past few years, so he upgraded all the locks on his doors.

Okay, sure, world food riots are partly the product of comfortable, well-fed global warming enthusiasts using corn for fuel rather than for food, and the closest thing we get to a food riot in the Washington metro area is when the Whole Foods runs out of artisan sourdough, but his heart is in the right place, which is all that counts.

What has driven Mr. Tidwell to take up firearms training and attempt to grow vegetables “behind barred basement windows?”

It wasn’t just because of an increase in the number of extreme worldwide weather events, which is just as well since there hasn’t actually been an increase in the number of extreme worldwide weather events, but something much more personal:

We’ve had a few rain storms here in DC over the past year or so.

As Mr. Tidwell tells it:

“Suddenly, darkness overcame us, and it became midnight at 8 a.m. The street lamps flickered on. Cars turned on their headlights. And I saw the largest, darkest, windiest thunderstorm I'd ever seen, approaching from the west. I whipped out my cellphone and called my wife in Takoma Park. ‘Go to the basement now!’ I said. Inside the TV studio, I watched the anchors switch to a live report about apartment dwellers trapped by a massive fallen oak as the first of more than 100,000 homes began to lose power. Houses across the area were ripped open by wind and crashing tree trunks.”

We remember well that storm.

Okay, no we don’t, but we’re sure if we did, it would also be seared into our memory.  How could it not be, what with it getting dark and windy and a tree falling down.

It was like he lived through the apocalypse, only with good cell phone service.

So what does Tidwell's family think of his endeavors to keep them safe including raiding his young son’s college fund to purchase a $1000 generator?

And my wife, God bless her, accepts the truth about what's happening to our planet. She knows we have to prepare.”

(He might want to make sure her preparations don’t include a court order.)

Remember, we'll never convince people to believe in the Consensus just using facts, even if we had them.  We have to rely on hysterical retellings of routine events and childlike hyperbole if we're going to make any progress.

Or do you just want to keep behaving like a Neanderthal?

J.

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February 28, 2011 at 04:41 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack

December 17, 2010

Stop, Or I’ll Obtain Stakeholder Advice!

It can be difficult for those charged with keeping us safe to prioritize the threats that face us, what with North Korea threatening war, the ongoing border war with drug cartels to our south, and a threat level that can never seem to get below Elevated.

But Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano has a keen sense of what is important and so cleared her calendar to attend a forum yesterday that identified something our national security apparatus has been sorely lacking:

Environmental Justice.”

What is environmental justice, you ask?

Environmental justice is like regular justice except that you’re already guilty.

The problem of environmental justice arises when people who earn more money are allowed to live in nicer places than people who earn less.

And it’s probably only going to get worse.

Some examples of our shortfalls in environmental justice include the fact that the air in major cities tends not to be as good as the air in the country.  This is clearly unfair to the lower income people who live there, as they deserve all the benefits of living in the country, without having to actually make any of the sacrifices of moving there.

They will take checks, however.

Also, many poorer people hired as farm workers to pick fruit and vegetables are exposed to higher levels of pesticides than people who don’t pick fruit and vegetables for a living.

We are shocked to learn that different jobs entail different kinds of risks and demand that a stop be put to it. And that our taxes go up.

But it’s not just that some places aren’t as good as others or that life involves an infinite series of tradeoffs that are the problems. As Napolitano (who we should probably remind you is in charge of our nation’s security) points out economic justice demands that we address global warming as well:

“Changes in climate really translate into huge environmental changes that have impacts on communities and also on national security, because they raise not only the issues of making sure that we are taking into account and caring for the most at-risk populations, but that we are also looking at and planning for the potentiality of mass migrations, demographic changes, patterns, concentrations of economic assets, population growth in different areas, deteriorating infrastructure. All of this gets knit together under this umbrella of climate change and environmental adaptation.”

We don’t know about you, but we’ll sleep better at night knowing that the Secretary of Homeland Security is all over the potentiality of concentrations of assets.  (Although it’s not entirely clear if anyone has told her where all the economic assets are currently concentrated, because we’d be really interested in seeing her plan for fixing to that.)

Also, she’s got a firm grip on the possibility that we’ll have “population growth in different areas,” which (and we did not know this) has apparently been growing evenly throughout the world prior to this threat.

We blame Al Qaeda.

But what to do about this impending peril?

The Federal Interagency Working Group on Environmental Justice has a plan of action:

Focus and Goals:

Identifying opportunities for Federal programs to improve the environment, public health, sustainable economies, and other environmental justice issues of concern for rural, suburban, urban and tribal disadvantaged communities.

Identifying opportunities to assist American Indian and Alaska Native tribes working to develop their renewable energy resources, to promote green jobs/green economies and reduce climate change impacts.

Holding quarterly meetings to share best practices for integrating and addressing environmental justice, as well as identifying opportunities to enhance coordination and collaboration among federal agencies.

Remember, if we don’t hold quarterly meetings, the terrorists have won.

Which is whey they're picking up the pace in coming months:

Next Steps

In other news, America is facing renewed terrorist threats over the holidays

J.

December 17, 2010 at 08:55 PM in Current Affairs, Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (3) | TrackBack

May 18, 2010

CONSENSUS WATCH - 5/18/2010

An ongoing series dedicated to vigorously monitoring emerging threats to The Consensus that global warming is real, caused by humans, and must be addressed at all costs.

Because without Consensus, the public would be permitted to entertain competing hypotheses.

It has been an eventful couple of months since our last Consensus Watch report:

Demonstrating a personal commitment to preserving ecologically sensitive acreage, Al Gore spent $9 million of his own money to purchase a 1.5 acre parcel of land believed to be home to many endangered species, including the green-bellied full-time gardener and the white-gloved live-in maid.

Gore Preservation Efforts

Penn State climatologist,
and one of the creators of the famous “hockey stick” historical temperature chart (so-named due to the fact that it was made up) Michael Mann, demonstrated his allegiance to open inquiry and the natural affinity for freedom of expression so beloved by scientists the world over by threatening one of his critics with a financially ruinous lawsuit.

It was revealed that a critically important 147-year New Zealand historical temperature record had been subjected to numerous adjustments to create a warming trend where the actual data had indicated none had existed before. It remains unclear as to when the scientist involved in the data manipulation will be awarded his hard-earned Nobel Prize.

In order to buttress its credibility and address criticism that it had used science that had not been properly peer-reviewed or had been the product of parties with vested interests at stake, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) has decided to institute a process by which such science will only be used if it sounds good.

Recent developments prove without a shadow of a doubt that if you choose to use data that demonstrates that the past 12 months were the hottest 12-month period on record while ignoring the rest, you can say things like “the past 12 months were the hottest 12-month period on record.”

Take that, climate skeptics.

And in other news, arctic sea ice is growing, sea levels are not rising, and there is a real possibility we are facing decades of cooling temperatures and shorter growing seasons, increasing the risk of deaths from starvation.

Which is precisely why it is so important that scientists across America have stood up for The Consensus and let their voices be heard despite the relentless assault it has been under from new data.   Whether it’s an expert in Mayan Civilization, earthquake risk management, or testing theoretical models for the structure and evolution of collapsing protostellar clouds, they pretty much have all the most relevant fields of climate science covered, including experts in Photoshopping pictures intended to elicit an emotional response.

Not True But Dramatic Awww.

We don’t know about you, but we’re ready to add $9 trillion in energy costs to the economy for no discernible change in CO2 emissions!

J.

May 18, 2010 at 04:26 PM in Global Warming with CONSENSUS WATCH | Permalink | Comments (0) | TrackBack