Next up for Congress: repeal the law of gravity

By Phil Plait | March 15, 2011 12:08 pm

Today, House Republicans made it clear just how antiscience they are (as if we didn’t know already): they voted down a simple amendment declaring the reality of climate change. Not that it was human-caused, or dangerous, just that it existed. Which it does.

The amendment was presented by Henry Waxman (D-CA) to the Energy and Commerce Committee. All the Democrats voted for it, all the Republicans voted against it. So there you go. As Waxman said,

This finding is so obviously correct that there should be no need to offer the amendment.

Yet, it was voted down. The Republicans also rejected a second amendment declaring that climate change is in large part due to human actions. Since that one philosophically at least depended on the Waxman amendment, it’s no surprise it was voted down as well.

Y’know, whenever I use the term denier (as in "global warming denier") I get lots of comments accusing me of using a loaded word. But it’s not: it’s precise, and given what we’re seeing in Congress, it’s the exact word to use.

And this all comes on the heels of a rousing video of Congressman Ed Markey (D-MA) that sums up this whole thing extremely well. It came out last week, and it’s fantastic:

Representative Markey gave this short speech at a meeting of the Energy and Power subcommittee (part of the Energy and Commerce committee) on March 10. Here’s the transcript in all its awesomeness:

Mr. Chairman, I rise in opposition to a bill that overturns the scientific finding that pollution is harming our people and our planet.

However, I won’t rise physically, because I’m worried that Republicans will overturn the law of gravity, sending us floating around the room.

I won’t call for the sunlight of additional hearings, for fear that Republicans might excommunicate the finding that the Earth revolves around the sun.

Instead, we will embody Newton’s third law of motion and be an equal and opposing force against this attack on science and on laws that will reduce America’s importation of foreign oil.

This bill will live in the House while simultaneously being dead in the Senate. It will be a legislative Schrödinger’s cat killed by the quantum mechanics of the legislative process!

Arbitrary rejection of scientific fact will not cause us to rise from our seats today. But with this bill, pollution levels will rise. Oil imports will rise. Temperatures will rise.

And with that, I yield back the balance of my time. That is, unless a rejection of Einstein’s Special Theory of Relativity is somewhere in the chair’s amendment pile.

Given the virulent and firmly-entrenched antiscience attitudes of so many in Congress right now — pick any random blog post at DeSmogBlog for examples aplenty — I hope this video mocking them goes viral and is seen by millions of constituents. The lengths to which the new majority goes to suppress rationality, reason, and science are truly frightening.

Tip o’ the corporate paycheck to reddit.


Related posts:

- Comic takedown of global warming denial
- How not to fight antiscience zealotry
- Antiscience party
- A firehose of global warming news, both good and bad

Comments (211)

  1. thetentman

    My congressman, Scott Garret, Rep NJ, is among the dumbest neanderthals out there. He claims to be a fiscal conservative but has backed numerous needless wars and most recently the bridge to nowhere. As Phil would say ” The stupid, it BURNS.”

  2. David P

    That was filled with awesome.

  3. Leclerc

    How many voted for the law of gravity?

    Politicians voting on scientific results is absurd in the first place. Of cource it should be voted down.

  4. Rorgg

    I’ll send him 20 bucks next year.

  5. Well, gravity is only a theory, right? :P

  6. I ask, sincerely: Is it worse now, or has it always been this way? Think back to the “Scopes Monkey Trial”.

    I don’t which answer would be more depressing.

  7. Peptron

    Reminds me of the Rhinoceros Party of Canada.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rhinoceros_Party_of_Canada_(1963%E2%80%931993)

    They did propose to repel the law of gravity, as well as suggesting to build taller schools so that people could receive higher education.

  8. The article you link to states “House Republicans rejected amendments offered Tuesday by Democrats that called on Congress to accept the scientific consensus that climate change is occurring, it is caused in large part by human activity and it is a threat to human health.”

    So either your assertion that “they voted down a simple amendment declaring the reality of climate change… [n]ot that it was human-caused, or dangerous, just that it existed” is inaccurate, or the article is inaccurate.

  9. Nice one, Rep. Markey! Though I’m afraid many of the science references may have flown over the heads of your interlocutors.

  10. chris j.

    as reported by the onion, it’s not gravity, it’s “intelligent falling.”

  11. MarkP

    Why should congress have an amendment to legislation about climate change at all? What was the legislation in question?

  12. Dan Zee

    Hmm. How warm was the earth 1000 years ago? You know, when the Vikings were farming Greenland, the Polar icecap was small, England was known for its quality wine, and grapes grew in Newfoundland? Did people cause that? And how is CO2 on Earth causing the Martian icecaps to melt and even Pluto to warm up? If you studied climatology you would know about the Middle Ages warmup and the 500-year long Little Ice Age that we’re simply warming back up from. Or to stay in your own field, how do you explain Mars and even Pluto heating up? Could you say, hmm, variations in the intensity of the sun? Or is the sun not in your field of interest?

  13. Kevin

    Representative Markey is great…one of the best in the Congress.

    Republicans may disagree about climate change, but that doesn’t change the facts. The Earth is warming (likely due to manmade activity) and no bill is going to change that.

    Except, perhaps, one that enacted some sort of CO2 tax…

  14. Chris

    How many in Congress actually knew what Schrödinger’s cat is?

  15. Even two years ago, I would have called myself a moderate. But I can’t go fifteen minutes now without hearing about the latest Republican assault on civilization. Missouri Republicans want to repeal child labor laws. Wisconsin Republicans want to get rid of public schools. Georgia Republicans want to imprison women who miscarriage if they can’t prove they didn’t do it on purpose. Michigan Republicans want to crown corporations as king and give them absolute power over cities, including the ability to dismiss any elected officials they see fit.

    So yeah. At this point, I can only imagine that Republicans are actually the worst threat this country has faced in decades. Republicans have done more to hurt this country than terrorists have, and I am including the successful attacks such as the OKC bombing and 9/11. The loss of life in those attacks may have been greater, but liberty is more important than life, is it not? That’s the entire reason we are willing to fight wars — we consider our liberty and our freedom more important than our lives.

    So I condemn the Republican party. I call them out as the greedy, sociopathic, short-sighted, uncaring individuals they are.*

    *This applies to Republican politicanss in general, and at the state or Federal level. I have, in fact, seen examples of good Republican lawmakers on the county level and below. It is a sad fact that none of them could ever go farther than that level, as “being a good person” is antithetical to the national Republican cause.

    As far as people who simply vote Republican, and are not policiticans themselves? The are either selfish, stupid, or deluded. As Republican policies only actually help the wealthy, and most Republicans are quite firmly in the middle class that their party wishes to see permanently indentured and/or starving in the streets, I can only assume most of them are deluded.

  16. Kaeli

    @Jeffrey: Read a little further. In paragraph 3:
    “Committee ranking Democrat Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) offered an amendment Tuesday that called on Congress to agree that climate change is occurring.”

    And then in paragraph 7:
    “House Republicans also rejected an amendment offered by Rep. Diana DeGette (D-Colo.) Tuesday that called on Congress to accept the scientific consensus that climate change is occurring in large part due to human activity.”

    So – two proposed amendments, two votes. The first paragraph is a little misleading as it composites these two proposals.

    However, to be fair, the Republicans *claim* to have voted it down because they disagreed not with the statement, but with the necessity for the statement to be included in a particular bill. I haven’t read that bill so I can’t speak to that.

    I have however, heard several republicans on separate occasions, in some interview or other, blatantly and categorically deny the existence of climate change, so that rhetoric doesn’t get too far with me.

  17. Kevin

    Climatic fluctuations do occur, on Earth and other planets. A warming trend is not particularly unusual, in general. However, the most recent warming trend is particularly fast, and very well correlated with increasing population and industrial development. It also correlates very well with increased concentrations of CO2 in the air, and studies have shown that CO2 functions as a greenhouse gas and keeps heat in. That is a scientific fact. Ice cores from Antarctica have also backed this up…when CO2 rises, so the Earth’s temperature. Both of those predictions have been observed in the past few decades.

    So, do you really want to continue disputing that CO2 increases temperatures? If so, I have some nice property on Venus to sell you.

  18. Kevin

    Of course, CO2 is by no means the only greenhouse gas. Other manmade emissions are also increasing the Earth’s temperature. CO2 is the largest contributor, though.

  19. Utakata

    This is precisely why you are called a denialist Dan Zee @ 12, and not a skeptic. Just keep asking those lunatic questions, since you studied climatology you would of known the answers to those already. (The answers where dicussed here many times by this blog’s host, if you cared to do any research.)

    Oh by the way…if you don’t think mankind’s foot print can affect his/her climate I dare you to walk around Fukushima Daiichi naked for the next few days.

  20. Dr_Cy_Coe

    Not acknowledging that a climate can change is to reject its definition:
    A summary of mean weather conditions over a time period, usually based on thirty years of records.

  21. Dutch Railroader

    @Zee,

    We have excellent records over the last several decades of insolation – there is zero support for the recent warming to be due to an increase in solar output. As for Mars, we have a trivially small amount of climate data for that planet as compared to what we have for the earth, and certainly correspondingly poorer understanding of how its climate works – in any case there is no evidence for any large scale changes on Mars. It is true that Pluto has recently warmed up due to an increase in its insolation. This is because Pluto has a relatively eccentric orbit and has recently reached perihelion.

    In contrast for the Earth, the global abundance of CO2 has gone up by some 35% over the last two hundred years due to combustion of fossil fuels. This may have something to due with the recent warming trends seen on the Earth.

  22. Jared Webb

    Just a thought, to play devil’s advocate, but it could be that the republicans rejected the bill not because they refuse to acknowledge that climate change exists, but because there is nothing in the constitution that says that the federal government is empowered to make such declarations.

    Just because they think that the government shouldn’t be in the business of declaring climate change exists does not mean that they don’t actually think it does.

    I am probably giving them _way_ too much credit though…

  23. @Dan Zee

    Or to stay in your own field, how do you explain Mars and even Pluto heating up? Could you say, hmm, variations in the intensity of the sun? Or is the sun not in your field of interest?

    If Mars and Pluto warming were caused by sun intensity, the inverse square law would dictate that the earth’s suface temperature would be much, much higher (i.e. a baked lump of barren rock) than it is. Or do we repeal the inverse square law too? Please chase another canard.

    As to your other assertions with no reaserch into their causes, they have been debunked as well. It’s not our fault you aren’t willing to listen to the facts.

  24. @ Jared: I agree, that is possible. This, by itself, would not be enough for me to think that they have so utterly rejected reality. But put in context with all their other recent actions? I can’t believe anything else.

  25. @ #21

    Jared, doesn’t that then imply that they want the individual States to handle this? Which is kind of silly, since this is something that should be handled on the national level, and in conjunction with the global community.

  26. truthspeaker

    Jared, that would mean they’re ignorant of constitutional law instead of science.

  27. ironnmetal

    The currently accepted theory is that Mars is experiencing an orbital wobble, which can and does cause dramatic weather changes. They would be especially strong on a planet like Mars, since it has no large moon to keep most of the wobbling in check. As for Pluto, the planet hasn’t even been explored by a space probe, so it’s rather presumptuous to say that it’s heating up because of a solar cycle. It is possible that the dwarf-planet has eruptive activity (not lava) that could account for a temperature rise, among other possibilities.

    I hate ignorant science. Do some actual research before spouting things that 1 other person has thought up. The scientist that thinks Mars is heating up because of only the Sun has also said that greenhouse gases only play a minor role in planetary climate. That would negate the idea of Venus being the hottest planet (which it is) even though it’s not the closest.

  28. I wish I could find this amusing, however, this has larger implications and I was hoping you or someone on this website would do a write up on this very subject. You are so well respected for your ability to explain and debunk ridiculous anti-science; this particular happening is being overlooked in the wake of larger events occurring nationally and internationally.

    This wasn’t just a simple amendment being put forth by House Democrats. They were trying to stop the Upton-Inhofe Bill that will amend the Clean Air Act so that the EPA can no longer regulate “Carbon dioxide. Methane. Nitrous oxide. Sulfur hexafluoride. Hydrofluorocarbons. Perfluorocarbons. Any other substance subject to, or pr0posed to be subject to, regulation, action, or consideration under this Act due to concerns regarding possible climate change. ” It also states that a greenhouse gas is no longer to be considered an air pollutant.

    It has a whole list of Federal rules and actions that regulate emissions on the federal and individual state level that will automatically be repealed and have no legal effect. And it has a general clause that states that it includes any other Federal action that applies a stationary source permitting requirement or an emissions standard for a greenhouse gas due to concerns regarding possible climate change. There’s a section saying that states will then also have the right to go through their law books and repeal anything they have that has the same wording, as well.

    See where this is going?

    Sorry, I’m not trying to sound like an alarmist but the video that you have posted was made just after the committee that reviewed this bill. The leaders that opposed this bill brought in climate scientists presenting evidence on behalf of the opposition. Those in favor responded with non-sense that has long since been debunked by a great many sources. Yet, still, the bill today was struck down.

    I can understand the parties of our country having a difference of opinion over fiscal matters, or spiritual, or administrative; however to remain so obtuse in the face of blatant evidence when the outcome will certainly have ramifications beyond our own is exceeding my comprehension for human collective irresponsible behavior.

    http://epw.senate.gov/public/index.cfm?FuseAction=Files.View&FileStore_id=45d63c2c-2f0b-4e4d-9024-094927bee994

  29. BJN

    @Dan Zee: are you really going to do the “blame it on the Sun” game in defiance of the huge weight of evidence for anthropogenic climate change? Do you perhaps think this planet is infinitely large so that no matter how much carbon dioxide we produce, it can’t warm the planet. And how does your fantasy of solar flux explain the acidification of the oceans?

    A little fact-check graph of solar output vs. global temperature:

    http://www.skepticalscience.com/solar-activity-sunspots-global-warming.htm

  30. thomas

    While I agree with you that the republican stance on global warming is completely off-base in most cases, I can’t really find fault with them for voting down a completely useless amendment that should have never been proposed to begin with. Unfortunately, I’m sure my reasoning for doing so was not the same as theirs.

  31. Bdoserror

    I suspect, since of the amendment would seem to be pointless in a bill, that there was probably an ulterior motive to it and that could be why the GOP defeated it. Maybe that amendment set up a situation where it activated provisions of some other law (e.g. Clean Air Act or similar) that they wanted to avoid?

    I’m not saying they’re right, but they might have less anti-scientific and more political reasons for avoiding the amendment.

    [Update: Posted this before Melody Jane's post showed up. Just the sort of thing I was thinking of.]

  32. Red

    So, because warming has occurred naturally in the past, any warming occurring now cannot be caused by human activity?

    I must have missed something, Dan Zee.

  33. Jess Tauber

    Stupid Congressmen- everybody knows that gravity is cumulating punishment by God for sins in this life- which is why we seem so much lighter on our feet when we are younger. Human lifespans are limited because otherwise we might become so dense that we fall through the earth into the core. Certainly these idiot Congresspeople are nearly that dense now. And human body fluids lubricating the core would disconnect the core from the mantle, leading to the movie ’2012′, and I for one don’t feel like trudging all the way to Tibet to sneak aboard some ark just to get my foot ground to pulp in giant gears. No thanks!

  34. Bryan D

    My guess would be that they think that ANY form of conciliation on their part, no matter how obvious, would be the proverbial “foot in the door” to which any number of things they don’t like would come flying in.

    That’s usually how things work in Congress at any rate.

    Meanwhile it’s mid-March and they still haven’t passed a budget, oi vey.

  35. truthspeaker

    This amendment wasn’t “pointless”. Please RTFA. The Republicans, as you would know if you had RTFA, are trying to pass a law that would take the ability to regulate greenhouse gasses away from the EPA.

  36. Astro Mike

    @Dan Zee:
    The warming experienced on Mars has been pretty well established to be changes in albedo patterns, NOT a change in solar output:

    http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v446/n7136/abs/nature05718.html

    In case you don’t have the scientific know how to understand that, it essentially says that as dust is blown around, darker regions become exposed. Those dark regions absorb more sunlight, and the planet warms.

    As for Pluto, we simply don’t know enough about its surface and atmosphere to make any intelligent guess about its usual temperature nor any supposed “global warming” – we haven’t even observed its temperature changes over a single, very-lopsided orbit. All we can say is that as Pluto is starting to move away from the Sun, it’s remaining warm longer than most models predict. To use this as a data point in your “OMG WARMING EVERYWHERE!!!1!” argument is simply scientific negligence.

  37. Regner Trampedach

    Jeffrey Ellis @ 8: If you read just half that article, you would find that there were indeed two amendments, quite exactly as the dear Bad Astronomer wrote it.

    Dan Zee @ 12: No, the climate is not changing on Pluto – it is just the yearly change of seasons – it happens every 248.54th Earth year. This is just the first time we have had the capability to observe it. All these supposedly planetary examples of “climate-change” go in different directions, are largest for Pluto which is furthest out, and have local causes, intrinsic to the planet/moon in question. Furthermore, the Sun certainly does vary in intensity – BUT IT DOES NOT VARY AS AN EXPONENTIAL INCREASE! (Sorry for shouting, but I hear this all the time, and I am getting a bit tired of it). The Earth’s climate is heating up exponentially – the Sun is not. The Solar output varies randomly
    at the 0.04% level, and with the 11 year solar cycle at the 0.8% level. The 11 year cycle is clear in (Earth) climate data AND IS ACCOUNTED FOR IN CLIMATE MODELS! It is, however, cyclic with a 0.8% amplitude. Climate change, on the other hand, is EXPONENTIAL and therefore UNBOUNDED, which means we will reach tipping points rather soon no matter exactly what temperatures those tipping points occur.
    The main reason climate models of the past have not been that good at predicting the climate of the present, is the scientists inability to fathom the stupidity of people and politicians in general. We haven’t changed our ways and the climate is changing even faster than predicted.

    – Regner

  38. Michael Swanson

    I’ve never heard of Rep. Markey before, but after that speech he is now one of my favorite people.

    And after reading the post immediately preceding mine, Regner Trampedach is also one of my favorite people. It’s OK to shout sometimes, Regner. Sometimes you just need the extra volume to your message past THE FINGERS IN THEIR EARS! :)

  39. Jeff

    People need to realize that what wheels this world is money and power, and Congress reflects this money-interest. Many congressmen represents gas and oil interests.

    The science behind global warming, and I’m pretty sure it is solid science, is irrelevant in these world centers of power.

    Unfortunately, people need to wake up and smell the coffee. This is how the world works, and it will always.

    Congress doesn’t need to repeal the law of gravity, because there is no moneyed-interest behind doing so.

  40. lol

    Neither is there no credible evidence that the “average temperature” (what is an average temperature?) has risen, it’s stupid to vote on it. You are hereby removed from my list of readable blogs since you are so obviously stupid and prejudiced.

  41. John Dodds

    I object to this column’s use of antiscience to justify an unjustifiable position.
    It is well known that the “accepted” CO2 causes warming is wrong, because the Arrhenius 1896 paper came to the unjustifiable conclusion that warming is proportional to the increase in GHGs or CO2.
    Obviously when the sun goes down every night, while Man increases the CO2, we see that the temperature goes down. This is confirmed by Mother Nature’s daily experiment that Arrhenius was wrong. The temperature does NOT go up when the CO2 goes up, as proven every night. The IPCC & conventional Waxman/Markey concl;usion is PROVEN WRONG every NIGHT.
    DOES this column actually say that the reality every night is not happening? Are you out of your minds? IT is Waxman & Markey & IPCC that is ignoring the reality of the laws of Physics & Science.

    The reality of Arrhenius’ conclusion is that The GHE warming is proportional to the amount of energy photons used in the GHE, NOT proportional to the amount of GHG available, as he stated.
    The Arrhenius/IPCC model ALSO fails to address the force and energy from variable gravity due to eccentric planetary orbits, AND it ignores the potential energy of the Earth relative to the other planets (mostly Jupiter and Venus.) The IPCC “science” is pure junk science. This column’s support for that incorrect position is pure ignorance and a failure to follow teh rules of science.
    For a full explanation See the paper “GRavity Causes CLimate Change” at http://www.scribd.com.

  42. DTSLW

    ptttthhh…

    gravity/atomic energy/eletricity is only a theory, and any republican will tell you theory’s don’t prove anything.

    in fact, I’ll propose this. that republican reaganomics and trick down economics are theories! As such, we much teach all controversies and economically opposing ideas to the american people! It’s only fair that people reach their own conclusions based on the theories available.

  43. @ Dodds:

    This blog is anti-science because gravity causes climage change?

    Wow.

  44. ds

    More importantally, why are they wasting their time and our money passing a resolution that says “Hey, we think something exists”? There is no better use of taxpayer money that they can think of?

  45. truthspeaker

    Yes, a better use of taxpayer money would be for the EPA to regulate pollutants, but the Republicans are trying to take away its authority to do so. Hence this proposed resolution. Please RTFA.

  46. Cindy

    Well at least I know that my congressman, Rush Holt (D, NJ), understood the speech since he has a Ph.D. in physics and was at Princeton Plasma Lab. Not only that, but he beat Watson in one round of Jeopardy.

    I have a feeling that this was a setup to repeal bits of the Clean Air Act.

    Although I’m a moderate Independent, my mom accuses me of being a Democrat since I tend to vote Democratic lately. I keep telling her that I’ll vote Republican when they start making more sense than the Democrats, but lately they’ve made far less sense. This is just one example.

  47. Gus Snarp

    I want to move to Massachusetts just for the Congressional representation. Now I’m torn between the 4th District and the 7th. Is it weird to move to a place because the existing representatives suit you? My neighbors keep voting for morons.

  48. Gus Snarp

    ds – Because Congressional findings can play a key role in later court battles over legislation. In some cases the Supreme Court will entirely ignore actual scientific testimony on an issue and rely entirely for their judgment on what the Congressional finding on that science was, even if the Congressional finding is demonstrably wrong.

  49. Gus Snarp

    @John Dodds – Is that a Poe, or are you completely insane? Global warming is a lie because it gets cooler at night? Night time temperatures actually prove the greenhouse effect. Absent a major cold front, night time temperatures will drop dramatically less on cloudy nights than on clear nights. In winter, the clear nights are always much, much colder. That’s because the water vapor in those clouds is a greenhouse gas.

  50. Russell

    #3 Leclerc YOU are correct !

    Markey is a smug, contrite, pseudo-intellectual . “Ha-ha”, funny speach. This another of those stupid Democrat bills that means nothing! It is a cheap stunt.
    Look! at that SMUG women in behind Mr. Markey, and you can see why republicans are just rolling our eyes in disgust. We do not fall for the false intellectual posturing of Democrats any more. That used work back in the 70′s and 80′s but we know what you are up to. Drop it! You are not smart, you are silly and smug, and so is this bill.

    The democrats can’t fix things and they know it, so they turn our attention to bills that say pollution is bad (wow what a revelation!). We have known that since the late 60′s when society as a whole wised up and started to change.

    Congress get on with it! YOU COWARDS!
    Balance the budget before it is too late. Make cuts, Lay off workers. If you all were working for a company, you would all be fired long ago for job performance failure.

  51. Gus Snarp

    EDIT: Oh, never mind, sometimes it’s just not worth it.

  52. READ THE FULL ARTICLE BEFORE POSTING PLEASE!

    (I wish I could make a FONT tag to do Size=+10 as well)

    The reason this is an importnat bill is because it relates to what the EPA can and cannot do in relation to the clean air act.

  53. Me

    So does anonymity make people stupid, or are they like this in everyday life? Because some of these comments are just downright insanely ignorant. (“What is an average temperature?”?!) I’d like to believe that people are smarter than that, but my cynical half keeps rearing its ugly head.

    However, I do believe that the Republicans voted it down for political reasons and not entirely out of ignorance… though knowing some of them the latter wouldn’t surprise me at all.

  54. Do you think you can get Boyles Law repealed too? It is REALLY inconvenient for divers!

  55. truthspeaker

    Cindy Says:
    March 15th, 2011 at 2:22 pm

    I have a feeling that this was a setup to repeal bits of the Clean Air Act.

    It’s more than a setup – the Republicans have publically revealed their intention to repeal parts of the Clean Air Act. It’s not a secret.

    Russell – in case you haven’t noticed, this was a response to a bill that says pollution isn’t bad and which takes away the EPA’s authority to regulate pollution.

  56. Michael H.

    Oh, yes. I’m sure the Earth is deeply concerned about us. Ask the people of Japan if they ‘feel like a threat’ to the planet today. The Earth is doing just fine. We may be screwed, but in the last 4 billion or so years, the Earth has survived far greater challenges than us.

  57. Gus Snarp… and the vote as described helps to point out why it’s stupid to expect politicos to care about anything other than their own career. Just like the hearings about corruption in baseball (really?), violence in video games (who cares about evidence, it’s different and I don’t like it), or the PMRC crap. It’s grandstanding, and that’s all it is.

  58. Aaron

    @lol: The simplest example of an “average temperature” would be the result which one obtains upon making one or more measurements of temperature across some span of space and/or time, adding these measurements together, and then dividing the sum by the total number of measurements made. This is something which you should know from middle school, and so you hereby removed from my list of people with basic science literacy . . .

    @John Dodds: Your comment caused my irony detector to blow a fuse.

    @Michael H.: No one believes that that -the Earth itself- is in peril. We humans must act to mitigate climate change because it threatens us!!!

    This is why many members of Congress are scientifically challenged: the people who elect them are themselves scientifically challenged.

  59. amphiox

    The Arrhenius references kind of suggest to me that John Dodds is joking.

  60. Y’all are way too easily Poe’d. :)

  61. Ben Abbott

    Denying climate change either means the Republicans suffer from mass delusions, or have all adopted the a common allegiance to their party … I’m rather confident it is the latter.

    In either event, if we assume man can/does have a significant impact/control on global climate, what’s to stop us from adjusting the climate to achieve specific goals? It is sensible to let nature determine the global climate … for better or worse? … or might we take a more responsible approach?

  62. John Reiher

    You have to understand that for some of those Republicans, belief is far more important that facts. In fact, I’d wager that if you were to poll the Republican representatives, you’d find many who also “believe” that the Earth is only 6,000 years old as well.

  63. Regner Trampedach

    Michael H. @ 58: Oh, – Mother Earth will do just fine – no worries there. And with the track record we humans have so far, Nature will do a lot better without us around, so by all means: rev up the SUVs and lets get some of that Canadian tar sand.
    Some people think that “believing in” anthropogenic climate change is “tree-hugging”.
    Well, – It ain’t – it’s survival instinct!
    – Cheers, Regner

  64. Yes, this is certainly anti-science–and by that, I mean the original post, what he’s talking about, and nearly all of the comments. It’s all politics, which is nothing at all to do with science. This whole thing is an exercise in the Boot On Your Neck Party convincing mindless partisans of the two phony factions of that party to argue about something trivial.

    Meanwhile, how many people were tortured and murdered _with your tax dollars_ today, while you wasted time arguing over which team is better in a meaningless contest that changes nothing?

  65. Sam H

    Ah, the maniacal idiocy of modern politics – this is more fun than Rebecca Black!! :)

    Y’know, while the homepage was loading the title made me suspicious that this would be another anti-ID post. Now many people here know of my opinions regarding that matter due to my recent comments on the subject, but just remember that while I dissent from parts of the current consensus I in NO WAY am a ignoramus – I understand the arguments your putting out, and for now I’m simply undecided. But thankfully, that is not the case here :)

    @Jacob: Even though I’m Canadian I perfectly agree that there are very few sane Republicans anymore, so far as I know. But please don’t paint all right-wing voters as “stupid” or “ignorant” – while stupidity levels are high amongst the American public we should refrain from blaming all as “stupid” – instead, we should rightly direct that title at the system itself.

    One comment said that leaving emissions reductions to states won’t work because the solution must be at a national level. I perfectly agree that the cuts must be at a GLOBAL level, but forget about any sane UN treaty or US national legislation ever materializing. EVER. For me, such an event may prove the existence of miracles. The smaller the government/legislation, the better it works – Kyoto was stillborn (10% cuts over 20 years are enough…riiiight), and as we all know the US government is a miserable failure (no matter what side you lean to). So leave behind the fantasy of national legislation – the only REAL solution to CO2 emissions IMHO is technology, particularly a clean, cheap alternative to gasoline and a single, comprehensive form of energy production that will render coal obsolete.

    Particularly after participating in model UN discussions in Social Studies (amongst other things, such as reading 1984, etc) I’ve lost all faith in the effectiveness of national politics altogether. It happens here in Canada, and it’s even worse in the US – the ever-widening ideological divide literally kills. It breeds ignorance, prejudice, and downright unreason. And because of this constant, childlike bickering America’s problems cannot be solved. The debt gets larger, pollution continues to grow, the economy constantly struggles with trying to attain some idealistic growth (also a myth), soldiers are killed, oil clouds the seas and hurricanes swamp cities. While I’ll admit that I’ve become overly pessimistic about the future, I simply cannot ignore the writing on the wall. America is falling, and may collapse completely. The days of her global dominance are quickly coming to an end – an ending that may be very dramatic and dangerous. China will overtake your economy likely within ten years, and when it eventually crashes as the price of oil passes $200/barrel it will wreck the globalized economy permanently. But until then, because of their growing technological sector (especially spaceflight), I’d like them to do something for me – send humans to Mars in no less than 20 years, before oil skyrockets and the rockets come down (assuming we don’t have a space elevator by then, which is the only way we’ll ever stay in space, IMHO). How many of you do you think that’s possible, assuming something like Mars Direct? (as you guessed, I for one have given up on NASA to do this).
    Forgive me for a prolonged, potentially condescending rant!! My advanced apologies for any offense taken. :)

  66. Mike Mullen

    I’m confident there are Republican members of Congress who listened to that speech and wondered which states Einstein, Newton, and Schroedinger represent…

  67. Gary Ansorge

    Hmmm, an intelligent politician. Unafraid to display that intelligence. Will wonders never cease? Or maybe he’s just pandering to those of us who appreciate intelligence,,,

    Pander away, Mr Markey. I likes it.

    Gary 7

  68. Repealing the law of gravity would save the airlines billions per year in jet fuel costs.

  69. Ade

    Why was this not brought up or passed by Democrats when they were in full control?

  70. truthspeaker

    Also @Russel – Obama submitted legislation to balance the budget. The Republicans rejected it.

  71. Matt B.

    Just a drive-by comment; I’ll read the post after I get caught up on earlier posts…some day. I had to pass this link to everyone. How I wish this chart were different, but it’s so true.

    http://graphjam.memebase.com/2008/10/24/song-chart-memes-nasa-in-the-news/

  72. Trevor

    The government has no business declaring anything to be fact or not. Politicians should rightly be silent on scientific issues, which are best left to scientists. I think it is as dumb for legislation to deny climate change as it is to affirm its existence. It *obviously* exists, this is not an issue for legislation.

  73. Messier Tidy Upper

    Next up for Congress: repeal the law of gravity

    Don’t give them ideas Phil! :-o ;-)

    You know they’ll do that – I gather they’ve already tried to legislate to make Pi= 3;

    Next up a law that the Sun goes round the Earth, the Earth is flat and there’s turtles all the way down.

    @69. hale-bopp : Repealing the law of gravity would save the airlines billions per year in jet fuel costs.

    True but it would kind of ruin skydiving and weightlifting and trampolines though. ;-)

  74. Brian Too

    I submit we repeal Newton’s Laws of Motion 1 through 3! Who’s with me?!

    No laws taxing our existence without representation!!

  75. Messier Tidy Upper

    @12. Dan Zee :

    Hmm. How warm was the earth 1000 years ago? You know, when the Vikings were farming Greenland, the Polar icecap was small, England was known for its quality wine, and grapes grew in Newfoundland? Did people cause that?

    Late to this party, (durnnit!), but Dan Zee this :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vrKfz8NjEzU&p=029130BFDC78FA33

    And how is CO2 on Earth causing the Martian icecaps to melt and even Pluto to warm up?

    Oh & see this one :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BSXgiml5UwM&p=029130BFDC78FA33

    My personal favourite in this whole series. :-)

    If you studied climatology you would know about the Middle Ages warmup and the 500-year long Little Ice Age that we’re simply warming back up from. Or to stay in your own field, how do you explain Mars and even Pluto heating up? Could you say, hmm, variations in the intensity of the sun?

    No, no you couldn’t. :roll:

    This :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Sf_UIQYc20&p=029130BFDC78FA33

    explains why.

    (In passing, do deniers really, honestly think climatologists are that stupid that they’ve ignored looking at the role our Sun plays in climate? Really? :roll: )

  76. Joseph G

    …a legislative Schrödinger’s Cat…
    Nevar before have I seen a congresscritter make a statement so full of win.

  77. Daniel J. Andrews

    I’m sure someone has already commented on Dan Zee’s (@12), but I just wanted to congratulate him on cramming the most falsehoods per sentence into the post. If the Booker Award were still in effect, I’d nominate that post for the award. Well done, Dan. Hmm, so well done, in fact, I’m almost sure that his post is a parody of a denier.

    For those who haven’t seen the debunking of every single one of his points or so, see skepticalscience.com and look on the left-hand side under Most Used Skeptic Arguments. It’s like Dan just looked at the list and made his post from the list.

  78. Messier Tidy Upper

    Or is the sun not in your field of interest?

    Is it in yours?
    Oh well, yeah, the BA has never posted anything about our Sun here, right? :roll:

    Actually he has! Like, say, this :

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2011/03/08/seriously-jaw-dropping-picture-of-the-sun/

    From a week or so ago. :-)

    Plus this :

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2011/02/17/kablam-footage-of-the-x-class-solar-flare/

    Not too long before that – & most pertinently here, check out what the Bad Astronomer wrote a long time ago :

    http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2007/04/29/is-global-warming-solar-induced/

    about whether or not the Sun is responsible for Global Warming. The answer is .. well, click and read what he says for yourself.

    You clearly haven’t been here long – but please do stick around, Dan Zee, you’ll learn stuff I promise! (As a former Climate change denier myself.)

  79. tresmal

    Of course, talk of repealing laws of nature is the sort of thing that only people on the lunatic fringes of politics indulge in. Sensible moderates, like myself, think in terms of improving natural laws. I for one believe that we ought to modify the Laws of Thermodynamics to allow perpetual motion machines. With a single legislative act we could solve our energy problems and AGW. Furthermore, I think the speed of light should only be a recommendation and not a fixed and inviolable property of the universe. :) *

    *Because some people can’t tell.

  80. Miko

    I try to avoid agreeing with Republicans whenever possible, but in this case I’m going to have to come down on their side. Note that politicians are not scientists and scientific findings are not established by votes. The question here is not whether climate change is occurring (it is), but whether there should be a law that says climate change is occurring. I, for one, don’t want science to be determined by law, even in cases where the conclusion they reach is almost certainly correct.

  81. Messier Tidy Upper

    @ ^ Miko : You do indeed have a point in that science isn’t a matter of Congress – no in its jurisdiction. That said, when the Republicans are voting to say that it’s NOT occurring, when about 98% of climatologists – the people who *do* know what they’re talking about – say it is, that’s not good either.

    Wish the Republicans would get over the fact that yes AGW is real (evolution too while they’re on with it) & start arguing about which solutions are best instead.

    @72. Brian Too :

    I submit we repeal Newton’s Laws of Motion 1 through 3! Who’s with me?!
    No laws taxing our existence without representation!!

    Let’s raise the speed of light limit, ban entropy and reverse the KT extinction so we can have a dinosaur petting zoo while we’re on with it! ;-)

    @75. Daniel J. Andrews : I’m sure someone has already commented on Dan Zee’s (#12),

    My comments on that are awaiting moderation right now – Climate Crock & BA blog links – just wish I’d got here earlier – but then I have to sleep sometime! :-)

    Is it just me or are we not getting Deniers like we used too here?
    Not as many anyhow?

  82. T-storm

    If the sun doesn’t cause global warming then why is it cooler at night? Duh.

  83. Chuck P

    If Congressman Markey is worried about climate change, he ought to stop standing in the way of the expansion of nuclear energy.

  84. Steve Huntwork

    Phil;

    If this is your standard for scientific research, then you have totally lost it.

    Sorry, but if I did not reply to this “brain-fart” of yours, then I would be just as guilty as you.

    Please stick to astronomy or nuclear physics…

    Your article about the nuclear reactors in Japan did impress me. There is a very valid reason why I read your articles each and every day.

  85. Steve Huntwork

    Phil;

    There is a reason why I get so upset with you, when you confuse computer models with physical reality.

    With gravity, a simple experiment can be performed to measure the actual acceleration of gravity in a controlled laboratory environment. A physical force like this can be measured to parts-per-million with today’s technology.

    With computer models of “global warming” can any of these theories be validated in a laboratory?

    Has ANYONE ever doubled the current 380 ppm CO2 levels in a laboratory environment and actually MEASURED a 1 degree C increase in temperature?

  86. Aaron

    Phil,

    The rest of us understand that this is your weblog, and as such you are free to post and discuss anything that you want, so long as it does not violate any agreement that you have made with DISCOVERmagazine.com.

    Some of us even find your reporting and commentary on the status of science in politics interesting and enlightening, and we ask that you please keep it coming.

  87. Steve Huntwork

    I totally agree that this is Phil’s blog and he can post anything that he wants. Heck, he can even dispute that American astronauts ever landed on the Moon! *WINK*

    But I have enjoyed reading what Phil posts each and every day for many years now and have learned to respect him as a scientist.

    Just keep things honest….

  88. Joseph G

    @42 John Dodds: Please, please tell me that you’re kidding.
    I’m a bit tired today, so your sarcasm may have gone over my head. Please confirm this.

    @MTU: Repealing the law of gravity would also get rid of that pesky greenhouse gas problem. The earth would get nice and chilly really quick with no atmosphere :D

  89. Lila

    Phil,

    I don’t know if you’re aware of the new mandate that any collective reference to Republican lawmakers in video or blog form must be accompanied by Darth Vader theme music.

  90. Steve Huntwork

    @42 – I was LMAO. What a wonderful satire!

    @89 – Yup, repealing the law of gravity would get rid of that pesky greenhouse gas problem. Our Government representatives must focus their absolute attention upon that vital task immediately!

    Perhaps on target:

    When I visited Trinity Site, I stole a little piece of melted sand and stuck it in my back pocket. When I got home, I purchased some dry-ice and converted my aquarium into a bubble chamber.

    Placing the Trinitite into the bubble chamber, I was rather surprized that the “bubble traces” were not more numerous that the natural background radiation at my elevation of 4,000 feet above sea level.

    Because of my previouse training with nuclear physics, I eventually ended up working with nuclear weapons during the Cold War, while serving with the U.S. Army in Germany.

    Yes, I was rather impressed with Phil this week, when he talked about nuclear physics and how it may relate to Japan.

    I love to compare radiation levels in Japan with bannana equivalent dossages. How much natural radiation would you receive from eating a specific number of banannas each day?

  91. Joseph G

    @86 Steve Huntwork There is a reason why I get so upset with you, when you confuse computer models with physical reality.
    With gravity, a simple experiment can be performed to measure the actual acceleration of gravity in a controlled laboratory environment. A physical force like this can be measured to parts-per-million with today’s technology.

    And we still don’t know exactly how gravity “works” (no self-consistent theory of quantum gravity). Yet, we can still predict exactly what objects affected by gravity will do.
    And the variables involved with climate CAN be measured, quite accurately. For instance, SOHO and similar solar observatories allow us to measure the output of the sun in minute detail – this is how we know that solar forcing isn’t behind global warming. By counting barrels of oil/tons of coal consumed, and understanding how they’re used, the exact number of gigatons of carbon that we put into the air can be counted. And then the atmosphere itself can be measured, and the amount of CO2 found confirms these models.

    Has ANYONE ever doubled the current 380 ppm CO2 levels in a laboratory environment and actually MEASURED a 1 degree C increase in temperature?

    Possibly – have you Googled it? Of course, any experiment done in a lab would be decried by the same people who doubt computer models – after all, no controlled lab experiment could accurately simulate even a tiny complete column of planetary atmosphere on a life-sized scale.
    However, that doesn’t mean that the science is invalid. Many sciences must rely on observations of nature that can’t be recreated in a lab. Paleontologists can’t grow living dinosaurs, geologists can’t build tectonic plates and smash them together, astronomers can’t make a miniature star and watch it go supernova on a lab bench. But that doesn’t mean that these disciplines can be dismissed as unscientific.

    With computer models of “global warming” can any of these theories be validated in a laboratory?

    Well, the quantitative absorptive properties of CO2 have been measured in lab experiments for over a hundred years.
    But that’s besides the point. It’s not just computer models. It’s not just ice cores or tree rings or infrared satellites or carbon accounting or absorption experiments or solar observations or weather patterns or temperature records or melting glaciers. You’re right that any one tool (including a computer model) isn’t sufficient to draw a solid conclusion. But when everything points in the same direction – when a vast array of observations confirm the models and the models confirm the observations and make successful predictions – at that point, you have to acknowledge that the odds of it all being a fluke are astronomically tiny.

  92. Dutch Railroader

    @Steve,

    The absorption spectrum of C02, its prevalence in the atmosphere, its contributions to the opacity spectrum of the atmosphere are all empirically measured. An opacity source can be viewed directly as an equivalent radiation source. Indeed, one can go out at night and measure directly the infra-red radiation returned to the earth from the C02 present in the atmosphere. The general theory of radiation transfer is well-understood and has been applied to a profoundly diverse set of systems.

    How the Earth responds to a specified radiative forcing is where all the uncertainty lies. The response cannot be null. It may in fact be much stronger than predicted. No models without C02 can capture the observed increase in the Earth’s average temperature, however.

  93. Kevin

    So, are they repealing Newton’s Universal Law of Gravitation or General Relativity? I guess it would be Newton’s law; Einstein’s take is generally referred to as a “Theory” anyway. ;-)

  94. Steve Huntwork

    @92 and @93:

    So, your answer is no!

    Nobody has ever ACTUALLY measured the 1 degree C change in temperature with a doubling of 380 parts per million of CO2.

    Or am I wrong?

    Can anyone direct me to an actual measurement?

    Oh, we have all seen the demonstrations where they will replace 380 ppm of CO2 with about 90% and call that a valid experiment.

    Amazing, with a 90% CO2 atmosphere, it got hotter!

    Again, can anyone show me a single experiment where the standard 380 ppm was doubled and the result was a 1 degree C increase in temperature?

    Reality check time.

  95. Aaron

    @ Steve Huntwork:

    I understand. I was rude and sarcastic in my remark, and I apologize, but I become very frustrated when people who have demonstrated a misunderstanding of science and the scientific method make the claim that scientists do not know how to do science and do not know what they are talking about. I am not referring to you, for at the time that I made my comment, your only remark was that Phil should stick to science.

    However, I do have an issue with your second post. We need we need not perform an experiment involving the entire Earth in order to be concerned about the predictions of our climate models. To see why, we must first review the scientific method itself. The basic summary goes as follows:

    Step 1) Observe a pattern in nature.
    Step 2) Develop a hypothesis that explains the pattern and makes testable predictions.
    Step 3) Test the predictions that the hypothesis makes.
    Step 4a) If the predictions turn out to be false, then throw away your hypothesis and develop a new one.
    Step 4b) If the predictions turn out to be true, then the hypothesis remains valid. Publish your work in a peer-reviewed journal so that other scientists may explore and critique your hypothesis and experimental methods and test it for themselves. If they find problems or cannot reproduce your results, then your hypothesis and/or experiment are flawed and you must start over. However if everyone obtains the same results that you did, then your hypothesis becomes an accepted theory within the scientific consensus, and can be used to make further predictions.
    However, if at some later time, improved experiments show that your hypothesis is false, and if no error can be found within the new experiments themselves, then your once accepted hypothesis must be discarded and replaced with something else. Thus scientific knowledge only improves with time!

    Now, the idea that carbon dioxide and other gases absorb and trap infrared radiation (heat) is a well-established and well tested hypothesis, even within the laboratory (here is a video that demonstrates it: http://tinyurl.com/4enfb27), and has never been proven to be wrong. That is why this idea is part of the scientific consensus. We also know that the mechanism works on planetary scales and can exert a greater influence on a planet’s surface temperature that even its insolation (INcomming-SOLar-radiATION), as measurements show that the surface temperature of the planet Venus is greater than that of Mercury, even though Venus is farther away from the Sun and therefore receives less energy.

    Scientists have even gone as far as to write down mathematical formulae that describe the temperature response of a system to various concentrations of greenhouse gases, among other contributions to the system’s temperature, such as insolation, albedo, etc. It is these formulae which computers then use to make climate models. Note that these formulas have also been tested in the laboratory setting and have stood up to every test. Therefore, we have a good reason to believe that they produce accurate predictions on the global scale.

    Now I ask: would it not be a wiser choice to try to mitigate the catastrophe that they predict, or to at least be prepared in the event of its arrival?

    Imagine what would have happened if geologists had told the designers of the Fukushima Daiichi power plant that it might be struck by a massive earthquake and tsunami and those designers had said, “well, until you can prove what will happen by generating a magnitude 8.9 earthquake, we are not going to plan for it and waste all of that money by trying to build a plant that can withstand it.”

  96. Bruce

    The Democrats are absolutely pathetic. What exactly is the purpose of an amendment saying global warming exists? Oh, that’s right, another lame attempt to try to convince people that global warming is real. And why aren’t they trying to pass amendments about evolution, gravity, etc? Al Gore couldn’t convince the public so now the Democrats are trying to pass laws requiring people to believe his junk science.

  97. Kryptik

    For those complaining about the amendment even being considered, again, realize that the context of it is the continued debate in Congress over the Republicans push to “overrule” the EPA on the dangers of air pollutants and greenhouse gases, in order to justify stripping the EPA of any and all regulatory powers it has. This amendment didn’t just come out of the blue.

    @#97 – Yes, because Al Gore invented the idea of Global Warming/Climate Change, and is the sole arbiter and source of the idea….

  98. Steve Huntwork

    @96: Thanks, you and I are now talking together as scientists.

    I do have one major problem with this one:

    “Step 4b) If the predictions turn out to be true, then the hypothesis remains valid. Publish your work in a peer-reviewed journal so that other scientists may explore and critique your hypothesis and experimental methods and test it for themselves.”

    Notice how you have ignored factual evidence and have allowed the “process” to taint the interpretation of experimental results. Facts are facts, and it does not matter what journal has published them.

    Give me a few more minutes, because your reply was so outstanding!
    This is what I expect from an honest scientist.

    Darn, I think that I can reply to the rest of your posting.

    “Now I ask: would it not be a wiser choice to try to mitigate the catastrophe that they predict, or to at least be prepared in the event of its arrival?”

    Can I ask you a very simple question, using the specifics of the disaster that just occured in Japan?

    Would it not have been much more cost-effective to build a 30 foot wall around the nuclear reactor?

    Would that not have prevented the current failures with the nuclear reactors that we are seeing today?

    How much would a 30 foot concrete wall around the nuclear reactors cost?

    Did Japan direct their limited government funding towards environmental projects that were not able to prevent this disaster?

  99. Dutch Railroader

    @Steve,

    There is a wonderful statement by Spock in a Star Trek episode that states that if he drops a hammer on a planet with positive gravity, he doesn’t need to see it fall to know that it will…

    If you accept anything at all about science, you must admit the role of predictive theory.

    What @92 and I told you is that there is no shortage of experimental evidence on how C02 behaves. I further told you that you can measure directly the radiative forcing from the atmosphere caused by the C02 present in it – you need only make careful emission measurements of the sky.

    With regards to your experiment, I cannot say I have any knowledge if anyone has done anything like what you are asking. However, the experiment that you have proposed is ill-posed and if anything redundant. If I measure the emission properties of C02 I have everything that I need to know for that part of the problem. Indeed, this is a tautology. You are asking for an experiment to verify the experimentally measured properties of CO2.

  100. Regner Trampedach

    Thanks Aaron, Dutch Railroader and Joseph G. Those posts were well put. We’ll see if it makes any difference…
    – Regner

  101. Joseph G

    @95
    Even if someone did measure a 1 degree temp change in a tank of gas in a lab due to CO2, that would be totally irrelevant because it wouldn’t take all the forcings (both positive and negative) into account. Like I said before, plenty of lab experiments have demonstrated CO2 absorption of energy at certain wavelengths, causing an increase in temperature. Whether they measure an increase of more or less then 1 degree is immaterial, because you wouldn’t be simulating all the variables anyway.
    You’re asking for evidence that’s not relevant in the first place, while complaining that evidence that is relevant, isn’t.
    Of course, you could always do the experiment yourself. Get a couple of sealed fish tanks, some CO2 canisters, a couple of thermometers and a sunny day.
    Science! :D

    EDIT: I just realized that this wouldn’t work at all. My bad.
    You’d need to make sure your enclosure is transparent to both visible and infrared radiation, so regular glass wouldn’t do it. You’d probably need some special kind of optical quality plastic or something…

    When I visited Trinity Site, I stole a little piece of melted sand and stuck it in my back pocket. When I got home, I purchased some dry-ice and converted my aquarium into a bubble chamber.
    Not to nitpick, but I think you meant “cloud chamber,” right? A homemade bubble chamber would be dangerous as hell. Still, that’s a really cool idea! Add a nice beefy electromagnet and you might even be able to identify which charged particles are which! For some reason I’m very fascinated by amateur nuclear physics. Possibly because it sounds really ill-conceived :)

  102. Steve Huntwork

    @100:

    Can you explain to us the logical flaws of Aristotle?

    How did experimental science teach us where Aristotle was wrong?

    The though experiments of Aristotle were amazingly vital for learning about nature, but he had one fundamental flaw. These were thought experiments, which were never verified with actual raw data.

    With today’s computer models, I am seeing the exact same thing happening. These are “thought” experiments which have not been verified.

    As we learned about the scientific method, our respect of Aristotle was increased. However, we also learned another important lesson.

    Verify the theory with experimental results!

  103. Steve Huntwork

    “A homemade bubble chamber would be dangerous as hell. Still, that’s a really cool idea!”

    You are correct, the term “cloud chamber” would be more accurate.

    Yup, it was rather risky, but think about what I was bringing home. Melted sand from the first Atomic Bomb!

    Darn right I had an electromagnet under the chamber. How else could I identify the difference between the particle charges?

  104. Steve Huntwork

    Alpha (protons) and Beta (electron) particles were absorbed with my jeans, so I was not worried about them. Gamma radiation was the only thing that I was worried about and that was my only unknown.

    In Japan, I wish people would learn how easy it is to protect yourself from Alpha and Beta radiation.

    Simple: Do not breath it!

  105. James

    Can we also repeal the 1st and 2nd laws of Thermodynamics? The extra effieciency would be very useful in reducing CO2 emissions.

  106. gss_000

    @Steve

    You don’t need to wait for lab experiments. We have direct measurements from nature that can lend validity to the models. I’ll point you to one post from this blog, but there are other posts of interest:

    http://tamino.wordpress.com/2010/11/23/all-that-data/

    We can actually see that measurements fit the predictions very well. This is not something that only exists in the computer. In fact if anything, the models are usually wrong in that they are too conservative about the changes predicted.

  107. fred edison

    If the world is about to end in cataclysm, take the reality denying Republicans first. They deserve it.

  108. MarcusBailius

    As they say, people are entitled to their own opinions: They are not entitledd to their own facts.
    What is really interesting is that the Democrats and Republicans split entirely on political lines here. It seems if you’re a Democrat you actually respect science: if you’re a Republican you demand that science be subservient to people’s opinions.
    Lesson one from Japan: Nature doesn’t respect politics. I wonder if the Republicans might try and repeal Plate Tectonics next?
    (All easy for me to say of course – I’m in the UK! Here, even the conservative politicians in the Conservative party tend to be supportive of science. On the whole, anyway.)

  109. JupiterIsBig

    The Republicans have already denied the theory of relativity haven’t they ?
    I read it in Conservipedia – and for some reason they wouldn’t let me add to the article !

  110. Nigel Depledge

    Steve Huntwork (95) said:

    Again, can anyone show me a single experiment where the standard 380 ppm was doubled and the result was a 1 degree C increase in temperature?

    Sure I can.

    Go outside. Look up. There’s your experiment.

  111. Gary

    Here’s the problem, Phil: Waxman and Markey are idealogues who want to control the economy. The amendment is not about scientific truth; it’s about political power. You misrepresent what the argument is about.

    As for the term “denier” you’re right; it is precise. However, you misuse it by applying it way too generally to anyone not 100% in your camp. Skepticism on the issue is much more nuanced than you allow. Posts like this get the crowd hooting, but do little to tell the truth.

  112. #55 Paul Hannah:
    “Do you think you can get Boyles Law repealed too? It is REALLY inconvenient for divers!”

    I’m also a diver, so I LMAO! Best comment of the day.

  113. In the UK, we have a spoof political party called the Official Monster Raving Loony Party. From what I gather, they are perfectly sane and intelligent, compared with your Republican lot.

  114. Tim Cole

    The Indiana Legislature once tried to make the value of pi an even 3.0000 for the convenience of calculation…

  115. Amy

    “House Republicans rejected amendments offered Tuesday by Democrats that called on Congress to accept the scientific consensus that climate change is occurring, it is caused in large part by human activity and it is a threat to human health.”

    Yeah, that was the very first sentence of the article you linked. You said: “they voted down a simple amendment declaring the reality of climate change. Not that it was human-caused, or dangerous, just that it existed.” (And that really made me scratch my head, because…why would anyone even put forth such an amendment?)

    There’s a bit of a disconnect here. :/ In that much of a hurry to paint them as idiots, are you? You could at least harangue them for what they’ve actually done.

    But we all get ahead of ourselves every once in awhile, I suppose.

  116. Daffy

    Gary, with 26% of the wealth controlled by 1% of the population (as opposed to 1% controlling 9% in 1976) someone better do something about the economy. The direction we are heading is Mexico, with a very, very few uber rich and a whole lot of poor. Trickle Down Economics is the greatest con-job of my lifetime.

    On topic, I predict that, even though many here have shown precise reason why the sun is not causing the Earth to warm up, Dan Zee will continue to say it is on other boards.

  117. Amy (116): And if you read past the first line, you’ll see that there were two separate amendments offered, just as I wrote. Even the line you quote uses the plural “amendments”. One was just accepted the reality of climate change, the other about it being anthropogenic.

  118. Messier Tidy Upper

    @97. Bruce : “Al Gore couldn’t convince the public so now the Democrats are trying to pass laws requiring people to believe his junk science.”

    Do you honestly think Al Gore came up with the idea of Anthropogenic Global Warming, Bruce? Truly?

    See :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sdALFnlwV_o&p=029130BFDC78FA33

    from back in 1956 long before Al Gore was on the scene & see :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iz1g55H6XgA&feature=related

    For Isaac Asimov discussing it in 1977.

    Plus watch :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mu1PicT0TMU&feature=fvwrel

    A lot of people still believe global warming is something Al Gore cooked up in 2006 to promote his movie. The thousands of expert climate scientists whose work forms the consensus have no celebrity, no street cred with the average person. But for a lot of people, the archetypes of scientific expertise, are more popular media figures like Stephen Hawking and Carl Sagan. I offer this to, once again, make clear again how wide and deep the consensus on this issue is.

    To see what Carl Sagan & Stephen Hawking have to say about it.

    Al Gore is a distraction, a has-been failed politician – not a scientist. He didn’t invent the idea, he isn’t a climatologist and he isn’t the one you need to be focusing on if you wish to disprove that idea. He’s an irrelevant non-sequiteur in this argument. :-(

  119. Quiet Desperation

    Just to be contrary, I’ll say that, while not a denier, I think *all* symbolic bills declaring a belief or disbelief in anything are a complete waste of time and taxpayer’s funds. It’s like the cities that declared themselves “nuclear bomb free zones” or some such thing. Anyone putting stuff like that on the table should be immediately recalled.

    How’s that credit freeze going, Congress? Any ideas on that front?

  120. Sookie

    Trickle Down Economics is the greatest con-job of my lifetime.

    How many poor people are hiring?

  121. Messier Tidy Upper

    @ 97. Bruce (again) Also check out :

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Svante_Arrhenius

    .. in 1896 he [Arrhenius] was the first scientist to speculate that changes in the levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere could substantially alter the surface temperature through the greenhouse effect. He was influenced by the work of others, including Joseph Fourier. Arrhenius used the infrared observations of the moon by Frank Washington Very and Samuel Pierpont Langley at the Allegheny Observatory in Pittsburgh to calculate the absorption of infrared radiation by atmospheric CO2 and water vapour. Using ‘Stefan’s law’ (better known as the Stefan Boltzmann law), he formulated his greenhouse law. In its original form, Arrhenius’ greenhouse law reads as follows:

    “if the quantity of carbonic acid [CO2 -ed ] increases in geometric progression, the augmentation of the temperature will increase nearly in arithmetic progression.”

    This simplified expression is still used today … Arrhenius expected CO2 levels to rise at a rate given by emissions in his time. Since then, industrial carbon dioxide levels have risen at a much faster rate: Arrhenius expected CO2 doubling to take about 3000 years; it is now estimated in most scenarios to take about a century.

    As well, view :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N2B34sO7HPM

    which compares the junk scence of Gore and Durkin’s Swindle movie.

    Plus take a gander at :

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XB3S0fnOr0M&p=029130BFDC78FA33

    Which looks at what climate scientists (climatologists – check out the “climatology’ page on Wikipedia too as it has extra info. on how far back in time this goes) were *really* saying back in the 1970′s.

    (Hint : They weren’t actually stating it was going to be an ice age! )

    For purpose of comparison :

    Gore’s ‘An Inconvenient Truth’ movie was released in 2006.

    Al Gore was first elected to Congress in 1976.

    The Kyoto Protocol agreement aimed at reducing global greenhouse gas emissions was initially adopted on the 11th of December 1997.

    Source : Wikipedia – Gore, Kyoto Protocol & An Inconvenient Truth pages.

  122. Kryptik

    @ 120. Quiet Desperation: The issue is that, at least on the other side of the coin, this ISN’T a symbolic vote. The Republicans are trying to overrule the EPA findings on air pollution and climate to legally claim that ‘pollution’/'climate change’ is fake, in order to justify the wholesale stripping of EPA’s powers. This debate will have very real consequences out of these ‘symbolic’ bills.

  123. Jess

    My question is why the hell do we the government to acknowledge that pollution is harmful? I don’t think the Republicans voted it down because they don’t believe it to be true more of it’s up to the people to keep control of their own carbon footprint. Why does every simpleton need someone else to do their research. Look up pollution, look up how to decrease your usage of fossil fuels. Stop relying on the government to wipe your nose every time you sneeze. Do something on your own.

  124. Messier Tidy Upper

    @89. Joseph G Says:

    @MTU: Repealing the law of gravity would also get rid of that pesky greenhouse gas problem. The earth would get nice and chilly really quick with no atmosphere! :-D

    Yes indeed – we even know exactly how cold it would get :

    “Without our atmosphere the Earth’s average temperature would be minus eighteen degrees Celsius.”
    - Dr Alan Longstaff, ‘Astronomy Now’ magazine July 2007.

    Although that calculation is, natch, an average & I think the temperature range would be extreme. Our airless Moon makes a pretty good comparison case. :-)

    PS. Incidentally, our Moon boasts the coldest place yet known in our solar system – see Hermite crater wikipedia page :

    In 2009, it was discovered by NASA’s Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter that Hermite is the coldest place recorded in the solar system, with temperatures at 26 kelvins (−247 degrees Celsius).

    Although I have to wonder how cold permanently shadowed craters on Pluto, Eris and Sedna might get! ;-)

  125. vel

    Unfortunately, the GOP and their TP lackeys demonstrate two things: they cannot affirm anything that their corporate donors don’t want to deal with and the usual willful ignorance of their religious base in their delusion that their god is in control of anything.

  126. jfb

    You know, the linked article isn’t exactly clear about what’s being amended here. If I read it correctly, the amendments are to Republican legislation that would block the EPA from enforcing emissions limits.

    But Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.), the chairman of the panel’s Energy and Power Subcommittee, said Republican legislation to block EPA climate rules is not about climate science. It is instead about preventing the EPA from passing climate regulations that Republicans say will hobble the economy.

    “For us to be sitting around talking about the science, I think it’s a strong argument to be made on the other side, but the issue here is that the Clean Air Act is not the appropriate vehicle to regulate something like this,” Whitfield said.

    If the Clean Air Act isn’t the “appropriate vehicle” to regulate GHG emissions, what the bloody hell is?

    From the tone of the article, it sounds like the Republicans are less anti-science and more anti-regulation (not that they can’t be both, but the primary motivation appears to be the latter). It’s received wisdom among Republicans that any regulation against business is a bad thing, regardless of the long-term cost. The Free Market always sorts things out. It’s like the Republican Santa Claus.

  127. Amy

    118: ‘And if you read past the first line, you’ll see that there were two separate amendments offered, just as I wrote. Even the line you quote uses the plural “amendments”.’

    The mistake is mine, then. I do apologize for misreading. Clearly I shouldn’t comment when I’ve just woken up.

    However, I still wonder why they’re passing amendments politically mandating what a scientific consensus is, if we already have one. I think I’ve got to agree with Gary at 112 here: ‘The amendment is not about scientific truth; it’s about political power.’

  128. Daffy

    Sookie,

    Look around you. Yow many rich people are hiring? When the flow of money is entirely one direction, TDE CAN’T work. It’s simple arithmetic.

    And the ones that are hiring are doing their best to eliminate livable wages, pensions and unions.

  129. Sookie

    Daffy,

    *shrug* I know a several people who just got new jobs. The flow is not in one direction. That’s insane ideological drivel from a world view where anyone with more than a couple nickels to rub together is some sort of Snidley Whiplash character plotting the destruction of us all. When you can abandon your cartoon bogeyman politicized view of reality, you get back to me.

  130. Paul in Sweden

    “House Republicans made it clear just how antiscience they are (as if we didn’t know already): they voted down a simple amendment declaring the reality of climate change.”

    Do Global Warming Alarmists need an amendment passed stating that climate changes in order to bring them back to reality? Will the Global Warming Alarmists also request an amendment for vote that states Spring, Summer, Fall and Winter exists? Are global warming enthusiasts so fragile that they will require a congressional bill passed stating gravity exists? What a waste of time. Get a grip.

    Look at Global Warming science(The Gold Standard):

    “Given that human actions are increasingly interfering with the delicate balance of nature, natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes and tsunamis will occur more frequently, said Dr Rajendra K Pachauri, director general of TERI, and the chief of the inter-governmental panel on Climate Change.
    [...]
    “Unless we live in harmony with nature, unless we are able to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels and adopt renewable energy sources and until we change our life styles, the world will increasingly become unfit for human habitation,” he said, adding that our ancestors put their emphasis on ethics and social morality and had less comforts perhaps but more fresh air and water. “

    -http://tinyurl.com/5skxlao

    There is nothing wrong with maintaining continuity with your ancestors emphasis on ethics and social morality but adding actual science to your life wouldn’t be a bad thing either.

    Good for the Congress, now let us hope the Senate and Obama come to their senses also.

  131. Quiet Desperation

    The issue is that, at least on the other side of the coin, this ISN’T a symbolic vote.

    Piffle.

    How about we at least get beyond passing endless continuing resolutions first before we laze about with symbolic bills?

    Anyway, we get cleaner and more efficient by having a healthy economy with lots of R&D spending. There’s several things Congress could enact to *encourage* that, but I don’t see them doing much on that front. What they can do is help spark sustainable private sector growth. People like me warned years ago that the late Bush and early Obama administration’s Keynesian stimulus approach and trying to micromanage the economy was bullcrap, desperation policy by fossils who have run out of ideas, and/or are unable to think outside their little Party boxes. Oh, look, two years in a row with trillion dollar deficits and boo to show for it. Yay! (slow clap)

    Sorry, folks, but the government is not a magic jobs factory. If you think that taxing the economy and then creating jobs with those tax dollars is an efficient way of doing things, then you might was well stop accepting the laws of thermodynamics, because that’s the economic equivalent of a perpetual motion machine.

  132. Daffy

    Sookie, I will repeat: in 1976 1% of the population controlled 9% of the wealth. In 2010, 1% of the population controlled 26% of the wealth—and the rate is increasing.

    It is in the rich’s best interest to have a stable society (again, look at Mexico for how horribly things can go wrong); if it costs them an extra 1 or 2 percent in taxes, so what? I remind you (and others) than in the 1950s, generally regarded as one of the more prosperous and stable times in American history, the richest Americans were taxed at 88%.

    Stop listening to Glenn Beck and Rush Limbaugh. To put it simply: they are lying to you.

  133. TheBlackCat

    @ Steve Huntwork: Can you devise an experiment to reproduce the last few billion years of Earth’s history? Would congress therefore be justified in rejecting a bill that says Earth is over 4 billion years old?

    Can you device an experiment that recreates the evolution of humans from the last common ancestor with chimpanzees? Would congress therefore be justified in rejecting a bill that says humans evolved from a species of great ape?

    Can you devise an experiment to block all the sunlight from the Earth? Would congress therefore be justified in rejecting a bill that says the Sun can heat the Earth?

    Can you devise an experiment to block the gravity from the Sun? Would congress therefore be justified in rejecting a bill that says gravity holds the Earth in orbit?

  134. What I’d like to know is why politicians are voting on scientific matters in the first place.

  135. TheBlackCat

    @ Binary: Read the comments here, it probably has been explained a dozen times by this point.

  136. Joseph G

    @104: Darn right I had an electromagnet under the chamber. How else could I identify the difference between the particle charges?

    I guess that’s implied with any self-respecting cloud chamber. Nice :)

  137. Joseph G

    @Quiet Desperation: People like me warned years ago that the late Bush and early Obama administration’s Keynesian stimulus approach and trying to micromanage the economy was bullcrap…

    Did you ever see that video on Youtube where this guy goes around at some political rally asking people if they think Obama is a Keynesian? I lol’d.

    But yes, anyway, I agree completely.

  138. Quiet Desperation

    Did you ever see that video on Youtube where this guy goes around at some political rally asking people if they think Obama is a Keynesian? I lol’d.

    No. I’m guessing they thought it had to do with Kenya?

    But yes, anyway, I agree completely.

    There are cities here in California where, in about 5 to 10 years, the pension benefits for former employees will be >100% of the budget. Yes, you read that right. The entire city budget will be needed to maintain the pensions of former employees. And there’s people who sit around and don’t think that’s a problem.

  139. Quiet Desperation

    Darn right I had an electromagnet under the chamber. How else could I identify the difference between the particle charges?

    Free cookie to someone who can use that as the punchline to a dirty joke.

  140. Quiet Desperation

    Can you devise an experiment to reproduce the last few billion years of Earth’s history?

    Dunno. I’ll happily take a $50 million grant to give it a good try, though.

  141. Quiet Desperation

    I remind you (and others) than in the 1950s, generally regarded as one of the more prosperous and stable times in American history, the richest Americans were taxed at 88%.

    Yeah, but there were all sorts of deductions, so no one ever really paid those sorts of rates.

    You can’t pluck lone numbers out of the ether and think they prove anything, especially with something as complex as economics. You people also need to get over who “controls” what percentage of wealth- that’s the old tired vision of Uncle Scrooge and his giant, skyscraper sized money bin. That’s not how it works. Bill Gates having a dollar does stop you from earning a dollar. Wealth is not a fixed value. Bill Gates’ billions are not locked up in a safe somewhere, forever out of reach. They are out there in the economy, moving around, working.

    Gawds, it’s so pathetic this basic ECON101 stuff has to be explained. And I’m sure you’ll just reject it and call me a Glen Beck fan and go on your merry ideological way. Remember to shake your fist at The Man!

  142. ycipsrice

    these are the same idiots that think by chucking a twenty dollar bill in the collection plate at church every Sunday will make the fact that they’ve been taking unfair advantage of people for years alright. I truly believe that America’s average judeo- christian idealism is slowly but surely crumbling…

  143. Dave

    Looks like my BA pals need another glass of hater-aid. I suppose Markeys speech was fantastic if you like wasted time on petulant child sarcasm, while the world is literally falling apart from simultaneous and overlapping revolutions and natural disasters.

  144. Hugo Schmidt

    Next up – a bill affirming that Obama is secretly Lamarkian!

    This is one of – I repeat, one of – the reasons I say that, if we leave it up to politicians to sort this out, then we’re all doomed.

  145. Daffy

    QD, I assume we can agree that 1% of the population controlling 100% of the wealth would be bad, right? So you think (apparently) that the same group controlling 26% is unimportant. OK, at what point IS it a problem, do you think?

    a) Wealth in this argument is defined as dollars. And there are a finite number of them, unless we start randomly printing money, which will end in hyper inflation.

    b) Right. The very wealthy had many tax deductions in the 1950s. They have even more now, when the top tax rate is well under 50% of what it used to be. Where did you get the idea that deductions went away? Ask Halliburton to explain it to you.

  146. QuietDesperation

    a) Wealth in this argument is defined as dollars. And there are a finite number of them, unless we start randomly printing money, which will end in hyper inflation.

    Wrong, wrong, wrong! *That’s* the fallacy that leads to the class warfare nonsense that gets people so wrapped around the axle. You really need to find a good economics book. Wealth is not just dollars. And I didn’t say wealth was infinite. What I said was it is NOT a *fixed* *constant*.

    b) Right. The very wealthy had many tax deductions in the 1950s. They have even more now, when the top tax rate is well under 50% of what it used to be. Where did you get the idea that deductions went away? Ask Halliburton to explain it to you.

    Ask any tax professional in the business since before Reagan about the tax deduction changes.

    We were talking about personal income tax rates. Halliburton is a corporation, not an individual, and subject to an entirely different tax scheme.

    OK, I’m done here. Moving goal posts are a recipe for tedium.

  147. Daffy

    “We were talking about personal income tax rates. Halliburton is a corporation, not an individual, and subject to an entirely different tax scheme.”

    And, as I said, the highest personal income tax rate in the 1950s was 88%—and there are more deductions now. ( I will grant that I am talking about U.S. tax rates here.) Charging the very rich an extra point or two on their income taxes is NOT class warfare—that canard is used by right wing propagandists all the time, and people believe it; but that does NOT make it true. And, btw, Reagan lowered taxes for the rich, while drastically raising them for the middle class self employed (which is me, so don’t waste my time arguing that point). Why isn’t THAT considered class warfare? Hmmmm?

    What leads to real class warfare is extreme poverty and lack of hope—study a history book.

  148. johnm

    Chem. eng. here, love your web sire but you’ve drank the kool aid on this one.

  149. Joseph G

    Wow, I actually find myself disagreeing with QuietD, though this really isn’t an area I’m that versed in. Still, I’d like to see more economics flamew- er, discussions :)

    FWIW, there are some convincing studies I’ve read (though admittedly not in any depth) that seem to show that it’s not absolute wealth or poverty that determines general happiness and even to some extent quality of life, but income inequality across the board. Generally speaking, the democratic quasi-socialist European states have much less crime and general social dissatisfaction, despite high taxes and slower economic growth. Even among impoverished populations, the ones that are miserable tend to be those with a few ultra-rich people among lots of poor. Nations with across-the-board poverty tend to have surprisingly high reported happiness (admittedly, who knows how the hell they quantify that).

  150. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul in Sweden: Great job there, using a third or fourth-hand account of the talk. Did you happen to notice that the part about earthquakes was not in quotes? That means that he never actually said those words.

    If you actually had a shred of intellectual honesty, you would have checked to see what he actually said rather than condemning him based on a third or fourth-hand summary. You obviously care more about smearing your opponents than you care about the truth.

    It took my all of about 10 seconds to find the original presentation, a bunch of people in the comments of the website you got the supposed quote from had found it and linked to it.

    http://web.amrita.edu/news-images/2011/pdfs/pachuri-amrita.pdf

    Here is the direct quote, from his presentation (page 17):

    Numbers of environmental refugees could increase as extreme events, floods and famines become more frequent

    What a surprise, nothing about earthquake or tsunamis. In fact there is no mention of earthquakes or tsunamis anywhere in the presentation. So the supposed quote is a blatant fabrication. What a surprise there.

    I would look forward to your retraction, but I don’t actually expect one.

  151. Paul in Sweden

    @153 Blackcat

    Looks like the standard slide show Blackcat, what does Pachauri’s canned presentation have to do with him stating to a group of students on Friday that humans will cause floods, earthquakes and tsunamis to occur more frequently? Had you provided a transcript of Friday’s event, it might have been a different story(and most welcomed). Surely you have been in a presentation where topics and statements are made that are not found anywhere in the slide show.

    No Blackcat, a paraphrase in a Pachauri friendly article in the Times of India does not mean that Pachauri did not attribute human influence on earthquakes and tsunamis during his presentation on Friday.

    This event was just on Friday and so far the only video clips from news reports are not in English. As we are speaking of the IPCC & its chairman — the simplest explanation is most likely the correct one. So I will stick with The Times of India for now.

    Live in harmony with nature, says Pachauri
    TNN,Mar 14, 2011, 03.38am IST

    COIMBATORE: Given that human actions are increasingly interfering with the delicate balance of nature, natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes and tsunamis will occur more frequently , said Dr Rajendra K Pachauri, director general of TERI, and the chief of the inter-governmental panel on Climate Change.
    -http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-03-14/coimbatore/28687815_1_harmony-green-drive-renewable-energy-sources

  152. Quiet Desperation

    Charging the very rich an extra point or two on their income taxes is NOT class warfare

    I was referring to the rhetoric, not any particular action.

    Eh… what can ya do?

    All this being said, has anyone seen President Obama? The world is blowing up, almost literally spinning off its axis, and… where is the guy?

  153. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul in Sweden: I took another 20 seconds and found the university’s own summary with the actual quote,

    “Human actions are interfering with the delicate balance of nature,” he added. “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future. The impact on agriculture and healthcare will be enormous. The world will be forced to take care of more and more climate refugees in the very near future.”

    Wow, nothing about earthquakes there, either. What a surprise.

  154. Daffy

    “Wow, nothing about earthquakes there, either. What a surprise.”

    Why? Earthquakes are not part of Climate Change.

    Btw, QD, with your last comment, we found something to agree on. Where the *bleep* is he?

  155. Cheyenne

    @Daffy and QD – Check the golf course.

  156. Joseph G

    @155 QD: All this being said, has anyone seen President Obama? The world is blowing up, almost literally spinning off its axis, and… where is the guy?

    Maybe he’s pulling a Bush and clearing brush on a ranch to relax. Or perhaps he’s joining the veep in an undisclosed location :D

    In all seriousness, rhetoric aside, once presidents are in office, they all seem to share certain similar behavior and policies. I think it’s a case of environment, and privileged information, trumping ideology.

  157. TheBlackCat

    @ Daffy: Sarcasm fail.

  158. Daffy
  159. Paul in Sweden

    “156. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 9:15 am

    @ Paul in Sweden: I took another 20 seconds and found the university’s own summary with the actual quote,

    “Human actions are interfering with the delicate balance of nature,” he added. “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future. The impact on agriculture and healthcare will be enormous. The world will be forced to take care of more and more climate refugees in the very near future.”

    Wow, nothing about earthquakes there, either. What a surprise.”

    “What a surprise.”

    Nope, not no me. You and the other global warming enthusiasts only spending 20 seconds to read what the leaders of your eco-movement state in public is no surprise to me at all.

    What does surprise me is that you would have any doubt that a senior member of the IPCC would attribute human influence on earthquakes & tsunamis via the trace gas CO2 which the Global Warming Industry classifies as a pollutant.

  160. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul in Sweden: That’s right, I bothered to read what he actually said because I care about knowing the truth. You couldn’t be bothered, which could either be because you are too lazy, or because you care more about smearing people you don’t like than you care about telling the truth. Considering you are still standing by this blatant fabrication despite the fact that the real quote is right in front of you makes it clear that it is the latter, as if there was any doubt about that given your past history.

    The reason I doubted the paraphrased statement originally is because the press is notoriously bad at reporting on scientific subjects. The often get things very, very wrong. Add to that the fact that it wasn’t in quotes led me to want to know what the real statement was. We now know what his real statement was, and it had nothing whatsoever to do with earthquakes, so I no longer doubt the statement, I utterly reject it.

  161. Paul in Sweden

    156. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 9:15 am

    @ Paul in Sweden: I took another 20 seconds and found the university’s own summary with the actual quote,

    Human actions are interfering with the delicate balance of nature,” he added. “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future. The impact on agriculture and healthcare will be enormous. The world will be forced to take care of more and more climate refugees in the very near future.”

    Wishing my grandmother a happy St. Paddy’s Day interrupted my posting above BC, BTW, Happy St. Paddy’s Day to you and yours.

    I was going to ask you to elaborate on the chairman of the IPCC stating that human actions interfered with the delicate balance with regards to tsunamis and how they would become more frequent.

    163 BlackCat
    We now know what his real statement was, and it had nothing whatsoever to do with earthquakes, so I no longer doubt the statement, I utterly reject it.

    These tsunamis(which you are offended that I pointed out to you that on Friday, the chairman of the IPCC stated were caused by human induced earthquakes…) that your leader in your global warming movement claims via your own supporting references confuses me a bit. Blackcat, how do humans cause or influence tsunamis?

    Going for my popcorn….

  162. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul in Sweden: Tsunamis can be caused by landslides, which will become more common if storms and flooding become more common or more severe.

  163. Paul in Sweden

    @ 165 Blackcat

    Now is the time you should reflect on your own words regarding “shred of intellectual honesty”(#153).

    Which are the catastrophic historic tsunamis that have been triggered by a landslide caused by anthropogenic CO2 or natural flooding?

    As I said before, there is a reason the rest of the world does not take the Global Warming Industry seriously.

    At this point Blackcat, I am saddened that you have gone this far to put a positive Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Cooling spin on this. Honestly, I thought you were above it.

    Please tell us of the Bad Astronomy BlackCat Anthropogenic Flooding that has plagued mankind by triggering tsunamis…

    “Intellectual Honesty” — Do you even know what it means?

  164. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul: Way to move the goal posts. This was a talk about potential future effects of global warming. You say that tsunamis aren’t one because they are caused by earthquakes. I point out that they can also be caused by landslides that will likely become more common. You then demand that I provide a landslide-induced tsunami from the past that was directly attributable to global warming, when we were talking about anticipated future events.

    I suggest you read the following website, particular the bit about “Landslides and water”

    http://geology.com/usgs/landslides/

    As well as these links:
    http://landslides.usgs.gov/learning/faq/#q01
    http://landslides.usgs.gov/learning/faq/#q14

    Three important parts:

    1. Landslides generally require water-soaked ground, so periods of heavy rainfall and/or flooding make them much more common.
    2. Global warming is expected to result in more heavy rainfall and flooding
    3. The largest tsunami in recorded history was caused by a landslide. The landslide was immediately triggered by an earthquake, but global warming will make the conditions that lead to landslides more common.

    To be honest, I didn’t know about the connection between tsunamis and landslides. I did a brief check on what could cause tsunamis, and that is when I learned about it, so I did more reading on it. And obviously neither did you. That is why they are experts and we aren’t.

  165. Paul in Sweden

    167. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    (To have it in print once is bad enough, to reproduce it would be much worse).

    Which browser are you using BlackCat. Is your web browser capable of scrolling up to your own posts starting at #153 and are you able to read your own words “If you actually had a shred of intellectual honesty”? How can you be taken seriously at this point?

    BlackCat, what exactly are you saying? Read each comment — here let me hand you a shovel. (BC – I really tthought you were one of the good BA people, not kidding, seriously)

    The Times of India .

    Live in harmony with nature, says Pachauri
    TNN,Mar 14, 2011, 03.38am IST

    COIMBATORE: Given that human actions are increasingly interfering with the delicate balance of nature, natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes and tsunamis will occur more frequently , said Dr Rajendra K Pachauri, director general of TERI, and the chief of the inter-governmental panel on Climate Change.
    –http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-03-14/coimbatore/28687815_1_harmony-green-drive-renewable-energy-sources

    Anthropogenic CO2 will induce catastrophic tsunamis as never before seen. Listen to Bad Astornomy’s own Global Warming Enthusiast TheBlackCat here:

    Ran out of popcorn…

  166. Steve Metzler

    Paul In Sweden:

    Pachauri probably did mean to say ‘landslide’ instead of ‘tsunami’. But he never said ‘earthquake’ (Like TheBlackCat, I too made the effort to source the original quote, which may be found here):

    Institution Day Celebrations at ASE, Coimbatore

    That was very sloppy reporting by the Times of India, and of course, it didn’t take long to get repeated as if it were a verbatim quote all around the denialist blogosphere.

    So where does that leave us? I suppose that according to the likes of Paul in Sweden, using one debatably ‘unattributable’ word in a public speech invalidates Pachauri’s lifetime efforts to communicate the disastrous implications of what climate science is finding to the public. If I were Pachauri, I’d be resigning immediately and then taking my own life shortly thereafter. /sarcasm

  167. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul: How on Earth do you get from “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future” to “Anthropogenic CO2 will induce catastrophic tsunamis as never before seen.” That is simply an absolute, blatant lie. It bears absolutely no resemblance whatsoever to anything anyone has said. You are simply lying now.

    You were being blatantly dishonest before by endlessly repeating that bogus quote (which you just repeated again even though you now know it is false), but now you are simply making stuff up out of thin air.

  168. Dave

    Paul, Black, if you kids don’t stop fighting, I’m going to stop the car and spank you both.

  169. TheBlackCat

    @ Dave: But he started it!

  170. Joseph G

    Paul, see Lituya Bay, Spirit Lake, and Vajont dam disasters. Also see any number of articles on glacial landslides and GW-related glacial flooding.
    For a non-native english speaker to use the word “tsunami” to refer to waves created by landslides and glacier calving is not that unusual. Go look for some other irrelevant bit of minutiae to stink up the comments about, this one’s done with.

  171. Paul in Sweden

    Dave… I’m done… If BC is done… and Joe and Steve stay out of it…

    Happy St. Paddy’s Day folks :)

  172. Messier Tidy Upper

    Meanwhile in related news, Australian politicians are sadly not much better – some recent news items / interviews of possible interest here :

    http://www.abc.net.au/news/stories/2011/03/11/3161489.htm

    “Liberal” (hah! That word = different meaning = conservative party here btw.) party powerbroker Nick Minchin claims “Earth is entering a cooling not warming phase” - obviously not having checked with the latest NASA , NOAA data and the majority of climatologists.

    Plus :

    http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2011/s3167104.htm

    Survey on Australian attitudes to Anthropogenic Global Warming & reasons for same.

    Finally :

    http://www.abc.net.au/lateline/content/2011/s3167105.htm

    Interview with Ross Garnault, incl. a rather funny (tragicomic?) note on Aussie opposition leader Abbott’s inconsistency (Abbott once described Climate change as “absolute C**p.” Today he claims – sometimes – to believe its real, other times that “the science isn’t settled” & “Co2 isn’t the villain it’s made out to be.” He could well be our next PM if the polls continue as they are.

    Aussie PM, Julia Gillard, is trying to impose an unpopular carbon tax to fight GW – breaking an election promise that she would NOT impose such a tax. The carbon tax / Emissions Trading Scheme / Climate Change issue has already cost Malcolm Turnbull the Liberal party leadership (he was in favour of an ETS proposed by Labour, Minchin and Abbott overthrew him for it) and former PM, Kevin Rudd, his position. (Rudd called climate change “the greatest moral issue of our age” proposed the ETS, failed to get it passed then withdrew the idea leading eventually to his downfall as his popularity crashed and Gillard took over.)

  173. Paul in Sweden

    171. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 3:32 pm

    @ Paul: How on Earth do you get from “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future” to “Anthropogenic CO2 will induce catastrophic tsunamis as never before seen.” That is simply an absolute, blatant lie. It bears absolutely no resemblance whatsoever to anything anyone has said. You are simply lying now.

    You were being blatantly dishonest before by endlessly repeating that bogus quote (which you just repeated again even though you now know it is false), but now you are simply making stuff up out of thin air.

    Thought I was done…

    “You are simply lying now.”

    “You are simply lying now.”

    156. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 9:15 am

    @ Paul in Sweden: I took another 20 seconds and found the university’s own summary with the actual quote,

    Human actions are interfering with the delicate balance of nature,” he added. “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future. The impact on agriculture and healthcare will be enormous. The world will be forced to take care of more and more climate refugees in the very near future.”

    How do humans cause tsunamis?

    Yes, BC, you tried to slip in a red herring, tsunamis can be triggered by landslides but as you point out, the landslides that have caused tsunamis(of the magnitude that we have been speaking) are triggered by earthquakes. Landslides triggered by floods are irrelevant. Global Warming enthusiasts doing the CAGW rain dance ceremony do not cause floods that cause tsunamis.

    The chairman of the IPCC(The Gold Standard of “Climate Science”) stated last Friday:

    Live in harmony with nature, says Pachauri
    TNN,Mar 14, 2011, 03.38am IST

    COIMBATORE: Given that human actions are increasingly interfering with the delicate balance of nature, natural disasters such as floods, earthquakes and tsunamis will occur more frequently , said Dr Rajendra K Pachauri, director general of TERI, and the chief of the inter-governmental panel on Climate Change.
    -http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2011-03-14/coimbatore/28687815_1_harmony-green-drive-renewable-energy-sources

    You concede all of the above including Tsunamis except that your extensive research does not allow you to concede that the chairman of the IPCC stated humans cause earthquakes, just Tsunamis from an unknown origin

    You provide your own quote of Patchauri, the chairman of the IPCC from the University itself which is nearly identical to my reference from the Times of India:

    “Human actions are interfering with the delicate balance of nature,” he added. “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future. The impact on agriculture and healthcare will be enormous. The world will be forced to take care of more and more climate refugees in the very near future.”

    What is bogus is that Global Warming enthusiasts attempt to blame everything on mankind.

    Yes, I see how “Climate Science” works and the lengths that alarmists will go, so does the rest of the world.

  174. Paul in Sweden

    174. Joseph G Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    Paul, see Lituya Bay, Spirit Lake, and Vajont dam disasters. Also see any number of articles on glacial landslides and GW-related glacial flooding.

    Joe, please explain how making Goldman Sachs richer through the selling of CAGW carbon indulgences, increasing electric rates on the poor, or the building windmills and PV solar farm and burning food in rich peoples cars would have prevented the Lituya Bay, Spirit Lake, and Vajont dam disasters. How do those disasters in any way relate to the EPA ruling that CO2 is a pollutant?

    My pointing out that the chairman of the IPCC stated that humans cause earthquakes & tsunamis was to illistrate the lack of science in the CAGW movement. If the chairman of the IPCC brought up the Lituya Bay, Spirit Lake, and Vajont dam disasters I probably would have brought up that as an absurdity also.

  175. TheBlackCat

    How do humans cause tsunamis?

    Yes, BC, you tried to slip in a red herring, tsunamis can be triggered by landslides but as you point out, the landslides that have caused tsunamis(of the magnitude that we have been speaking) are triggered by earthquakes. Landslides triggered by floods are irrelevant. Global Warming enthusiasts doing the CAGW rain dance ceremony do not cause floods that cause tsunamis.

    First, that isn’t the lie. As I said, the lie was “Anthropogenic CO2 will induce catastrophic tsunamis as never before seen.”

    No one said anything about it making tsunamis more severe, not to mention “as never before seen”. You simply made that up out of thin air.

    And now you are just being intentionally obtuse.

    As I explained, earthquakes are the immediate trigger for many landslides, but landslides generally require heavy rains or flooding to make the ground unstable. If the ground isn’t already unstable, earthquakes usually aren’t anywhere near as likely to cause a landslide. So although earthquakes are often the immediate cause for major landslides, global warming will make the conditions that make such landslides possible in the first place more common.

    Imagine a forest fire. Does dry weather cause forest fires? No, forest fires usually need lightning or humans to trigger there. However, if the forest is very damp, then lightning or humans are less likely to cause a forest fire. The dry weather doesn’t directly cause the forest fire, but it does make for conditions where a potential forest fire trigger is much more likely to cause a forest fire. Therefore, on average there will be more forest fires with dry weather.

    It is the same with wet weather and landslides. The wet weather does not cause the landslide necessarily, but it does create conditions were a potential landslide trigger is much more likely to cause a landslide. Therefore, landslides are more common when there are lots of storms and flooding.

    You concede all of the above including Tsunamis except that your extensive research does not allow you to concede that the chairman of the IPCC stated humans cause earthquakes,

    Because all evidence indicates he didn’t.

    You provide your own quote of Patchauri, the chairman of the IPCC from the University itself which is nearly identical to my reference from the Times of IndiaM

    No, I provided the only quote on the subject. What you provided was not a quote, it was someone else paraphrasing of what he said. Trying to pass it off as a quote after I have repeatedly pointed out that it isn’t one is just more dishonesty on your part.

    What is bogus is that Global Warming enthusiasts attempt to blame everything on mankind.

    Except they don’t. They don’t, for instance, try to blame earthquakes on mankind. They also don’ try to blame asteroid impacts, solar flares, and numerous other disasters on mankind. What they blame on mankind are those things for which there is evidence mankind is or will be responsible.

    Joe, please explain how making Goldman Sachs richer through the selling of CAGW carbon indulgences, increasing electric rates on the poor, or the building windmills and PV solar farm and burning food in rich peoples cars would have prevented the Lituya Bay, Spirit Lake, and Vajont dam disasters. How do those disasters in any way relate to the EPA ruling that CO2 is a pollutant?

    As I explained before, and as the quotes clearly state, we are talking about things that will become more common in the future. No one has tried to imply a link between these past events and CAGW besides you. This is yet another blatant strawman that bears no resemblance whatsoever to what Joseph actually said.

    You do realize that other people can read, don’t you? Do you really think such blatant misrepresentation on your point will go unnoticed? You aren’t just a liar, you are a bad liar. You say stuff that anybody can see is false just by looking at the other comments.

    My pointing out that the chairman of the IPCC stated that humans cause earthquakes & tsunamis was to illistrate the lack of science in the CAGW movement.

    But he didn’t state that. All you are demonstrating is your own dishonesty.

  176. Paul in Sweden

    @Blackcat

    “As I explained, earthquakes are the immediate trigger for many landslides, but landslides generally require heavy rains or flooding to make the ground unstable. If the ground isn’t already unstable, earthquakes usually aren’t anywhere near as likely to cause a landslide. So although earthquakes are often the immediate cause for major landslides, global warming will make the conditions that make such landslides possible in the first place more common.

    Imagine a forest fire. ”

    Blackcat, I think you have done quite enough imagining.

    Based on your research, you stated in #162 the Chairman of the IPCC said:

    @ Paul in Sweden: I took another 20 seconds and found the university’s own summary with the actual quote,

    “Human actions are interfering with the delicate balance of nature,” he added. “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future. The impact on agriculture and healthcare will be enormous. The world will be forced to take care of more and more climate refugees in the very near future.”

    BlackCat, which tsunamis that you assume must have been triggered by landslides does the chairman of the IPCC, the Gold Standard of “climate science” attribute to human influence?

  177. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul in Sweden: What part of “will become frequent in the future” didn’t you understand?

  178. Paul in Sweden

    BlackCat, I wish we could dispose of the absurd claim that humans cause tsunamis(and earthquakes) so we can move on to your superstition regarding human attribution of flood & heat waves. Remember the weather this summer in Moscow?

    Keep showing me the logic of a CAGW alarmist in attributing tsunamis to human influence and then we can move on.

  179. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul in Sweden: You haven’t provided any reason to doubt that humans can make tsunamis more common. All you have provided are blatant strawmen that bear no resemblance whatsoever to anything anyone is arguing. Come back when you are willing to honestly address our points rather than scoring cheap rhetorical points.

    I know this may come as a shock to you, but I do have a memory. I actually can remember what I wrote 5 minutes ago. Trying to tell me I said something radically different from what I actually said is not going to convince me you are right. It is only going to convince me you are a liar.

  180. Paul in Sweden

    181. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 11:45 pm

    @ Paul in Sweden: What part of “will become frequent in the future” didn’t you understand?

    BlackCat, how about the claim that tsunamis will be more frequent? How about the claim that tsunamis can be attributed to human influence. How about the fact that people such as yourself are taken in by this whole line of anti-science!

    That confuses me.

  181. TheBlackCat

    More evasion. Rather than retracting your bizarre demand that we link AGW to events we never claimed it was linked to, you just pretend you were talking about something totally different.

    But I’ll bite. Lets break the logic down here:

    Premise 1: Wetter conditions (on average) make landslides more common
    Premise 2: Landslides cause tsunamis

    Conclusion 1: Wetter conditions (on average) make tsunamis more common

    Premise 3: Global warming will lead to wetter conditions in many places

    Conclusion 2: Global warming will lead to more tsunamis in many places

    Please explain exactly where you problem here lies.

    Premises 1 and 2 are not open for debate, as you would know if you read my links from the USGS (you know, the people who are actually in charge of keeping track of and predicting landslides in the U.S.). Conclusion 1 follows inevitably from premise 1 and 2 (over the long-term).

    You may have a problem with premise 3, but if that was your primary concern you would be attacking the link between global warming and wetter conditions, and not focusing so much attention on the side issue of tsunamis.

    So rather than being some bizarre idea as you are trying to imply, it follows directly from basic principles of land slides and the predictions of how AGW will affect weather.

  182. Paul in Sweden

    183. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 11:53 pm

    @ Paul in Sweden: You haven’t provided any reason to doubt that humans can make tsunamis more common.”

    So there we have it BlackCat, you “believe” that humans have influence regarding tsunamis. The IPCC chairman believes that humans not only influence tsunamis but earthquakes, floods, heat waves and a whole lot more.

    Global warming alarmists attribute human actions towards snowstorms, heat waves, floods, droughts, migration of both flora & fauna, increase/decrease of arctic/antarctic ice, the election of Republicans, the increase in prostitution and just about anything that has ever happened or will ever happened is all due in some part to anthropogenic activity which is mainly attributed to man’s minuscule emissions of CO2.

    This is why nothing but increased suffering of the less fortunate has happened in the 20+ years of the Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming movement.

    What reasonable person could take you people seriously?

  183. TheBlackCat

    The IPCC chairman believes that humans not only influence tsunamis but earthquakes, floods, heat waves and a whole lot more.

    That is a flat-out lie. He did not say this. Repeating this blatant lie over and over again is not going to help your case.

    What reasonable person could take you people seriously?

    Someone who doesn’t like liars.

  184. Paul in Sweden

    @Blackcat

    Which tsunamis do you assume that the IPCC attributes to landslides?

  185. TheBlackCat

    Alright, I’m done here. Paul is just too dishonest and too evasive to have any sort of conversation with. He has proven too many times that he has no concern whatseover for the truth or for honest debate.

    He repeats the same blatant lie over and over again no matter how many times he is told it si wrong.

    When I bring up the link between wet conditions and tsunamis, he tries to get me to link AGW to past tsunamis. When I point out that we are talking about future events, he asks me to prove the link between AGW and tsunamis. When I do this, he asks me to link AGW to past tsunamis. When I point out that we are talking about future events, he asks me to prove the link between AGW and tsunamis. And the cycle just repeats over and over again.

    There is obviously no possible answer that would satisfy him. So there is no point continuing. There is no benefit to anyone having me answer the same question again for the dozenth time. There is no benefit to anyone having me point out his so-called quote isn’t a quote at all and isn’t what was actually said.

    If Paul comes up with something new, I would be happy to continue the conversation but at this point he seems content to drag us all around in endless circles and endlessly repeat the same lies for no reason.

  186. Paul in Sweden

    @Blackcat so you “believe” humans influence tsunamis… Is this because you “believe” increased levels of CO2 in the atmosphere causes the wrath of GAIA to rise up or is it because the US congress refuses to sell carbon indulgences?

  187. TheBlackCat

    @Blackcat so you “believe” humans influence tsunamis…

    More lies. I never used that word anywhere in any of my posts. I will not defend statements I did not make. I have provided multiple detailed explanations about the link between AGW and tsunamis and you know it. I will not repeat it again. Anyone who actually cares about learning can read my pother posts.

  188. Paul in Sweden

    187. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 18th, 2011 at 12:12 am

    The IPCC chairman believes that humans not only influence tsunamis but earthquakes, floods, heat waves and a whole lot more.

    That is a flat-out lie. He did not say this. Repeating this blatant lie over and over again is not going to help your case.

    What reasonable person could take you people seriously?

    Someone who doesn’t like liars.

    Yes, BlackCat I believe lies have been told. I certainly do not think for one minute that when the Chairman of the IPCC tells gullible CAGW followers that untaxed and unregulated human use of energy causes tsunamis, earthquakes, floods, droughts, snowstorms, famine, etc, etc that he actually believes any of it to be true.

    It surprises me that you recognize the anti-science in the antivaxer movement but you fail to see how you have been taken hook line and sinker in this Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Cooling movement.

    Don’t forget to turn the computer and the lights off tonight BlackCat, I would hate for you to be responsible for the next TSUNAMI.

    191. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 18th, 2011 at 12:24 am

    @Blackcat so you “believe” humans influence tsunamis…

    More lies. I never used that word anywhere in any of my posts. I will not defend statements I did not make. I have provided multiple detailed explanations about the link between AGW and tsunamis and you know it. I will not repeat it again. Anyone who actually cares about learning can read my pother posts.

    So which is it BlackCat?

    You believe humans influence tsunamis or not?

    Seemed to me that you were defending the chairman of the IPCC in his “believe” in human induced tsunamis.

  189. TheBlackCat

    It surprises me that you recognize the anti-science in the antivaxer movement but you fail to see how you have been taken hook line and sinker in this Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Cooling movement.

    Because I also recognize the anti-science of blatant liars like you.

  190. Steve Metzler

    Gee, where have we seen this before? Paul in Sweden derails nearly every AGW thread by throwing in some red herring from the denialist blogosphere that has nothing to do with the topic at hand. Result: thread wrecked, mission accomplished. Apparently, all the other scientists in the world are pretty smart guys, except for climatologists. These guys can’t even walk and chew gum at the same time. And all the peer-reviewed literature on the subject of AGW obviously counts for nothing, because Al Gore still uses jet planes to get from A to B, when he could walk, take a bicycle, or swim.

    This has happened, like, what, at least 10 times in the past year? Once Paul in Sweden weighs in, the thread is for all intents and purposes finished. Intentional? You betcha!

  191. David K

    Am I the only one who thinks that the Republicans voted the right way, though probably for the wrong reasons?

    The right reason to vote this amendment down is that it is bad law — it does not clearly prescribe or proscribe any course of behavior. We should never pass a law that simply makes a statement of fact, whether true or false, because no good can come of it. The facts will not change either way, but all sorts of unintended consequences could result. (In fact, the congressman who worried that the Republicans might repeal the law of gravity is the real idiot here — Does he really expect that he will fly off into space the moment somebody “repeals” the law of gravity?)

    First of all, if there are multiple ways to interpret a law, the one that has a practical effect is generally to be preferred. Since it is not clear what the practical effect of this amendment is, passing it would give some judge in the future the opportunity for some creative interpretation. It would be far better to spell out what you want to do than to leave this sort of loophole.

    Secondly, global warming caused by humans is a contingent fact that is currently true but need not always be true (as it is quite conceivable that there will be a time in the future when global warming is no longer occurring because humans are no longer causing it). Wouldn’t laws that state that global warming is occurring and that humans are causing it require us to continue causing global warming even after we have realized that it is a bad idea? I would hope that such a result is the exact opposite of what the Democrats had in mind.

  192. Messier Tidy Upper

    @ ^ David K : In fact, the congressman who worried that the Republicans might repeal the law of gravity is the real idiot here — Does he really expect that he will fly off into space the moment somebody “repeals” the law of gravity?)

    I doubt it. I think he was joking (sarcastically /satirically) there.

    Wouldn’t laws that state that global warming is occurring and that humans are causing it require us to continue causing global warming even after we have realized that it is a bad idea?

    Well , not necessarily no.

    Although I agree its kinda silly for Congress to be trying to pass laws on what is & isn’t scientific fact.

  193. Paul in Sweden

    @194. Steve Metzler Says:
    March 18th, 2011 at 7:14 am

    I read every thread here at BA, I am a daily visitor. I like this site. On this thread I held my tongue until well after 100+ posts of non-sense. In a normal week I would not need all the fingers on my one hand to count the number of comments I make on various science blogs and websites. I hate getting sucked in like this.

    Would you feel better Steve if congress voted for a bill stating that dusk and dawn existed. Would that make you feel better Steve?

    You can’t handle an opposing viewpoint, that is understandable. Realize that you represent an ineffectual minority in this world regarding Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Cooling. Your insults and your movements wild claims have only proven to dwindle your numbers. Your Climate Scientists have brought scorn on all scientists. Climate Science has set science backwards.

    You cannot be a skeptic and accept your science from authority, but we see that all the time.

    Whatever floats your boat Steve. I will remain a skeptic and will not accept anything until I see all the pieces fit and laid out before me.

    Believe what you want regarding CAGWC or anything else. I take CAGWC just like I take everything else.

    No apologies from me.

  194. Steve Metzler

    197. Paul in Sweden says:

    Would you feel better Steve if congress voted for a bill stating that dusk and dawn existed. Would that make you feel better Steve?

    Again, you misrepresent what this thread was originally about, and try to derail it with irrelevant straw men. Let me remind you what this thread is supposed to be about. From the article that is linked to in the very first sentence of the BA’s post:

    House Republicans rejected amendments offered Tuesday by Democrats that called on Congress to accept the scientific consensus that climate change is occurring, it is caused in large part by human activity and it is a threat to human health.

    The amendments, offered at an Energy and Commerce Committee markup of legislation to block Environmental Protection Agency climate change rules, are part of an effort by House Democrats to get Republicans on the record on climate science.

    It’s not like the Democrats are trying to propose a bill all on its own that attempts to legislate the reality of climate change. It is simply that they are vehemently opposed to the insanely short-sighted bill that the Republicans are trying to pass that would make the EPA powerless to regulate the emission of pollutants that are *demonstrably* harmful to our environment.

    Your Climate Scientists have brought scorn on all scientists.

    How? Because their findings are inconvenient to the prevailing business interests of polluters who are raking in *profits* in the neighbourhood of a billion dollars *a day*? It’s the people who are employing every dirty trick in the book to preserve the status quo that are the disgrace to humanity here. And you are apparently either one of them or one of their lackeys.

  195. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul in Sweden: Wait, so the best way you could come up with to address peoples’ points about the bill was to completely ignore those points and instead bring up a totally irrelevant statement supposedly said by someone in a speech to a university on the other side of the world the week before, driving the thread totally-off topic in the process?

  196. Paul in Sweden

    @198. Steve Metzler Says:
    March 18th, 2011 at 11:52 am

    197. Paul in Sweden says:

    Would you feel better Steve if congress voted for a bill stating that dusk and dawn existed. Would that make you feel better Steve?

    Again, you misrepresent what this thread was originally about, and try to derail it with irrelevant straw men. Let me remind you what this thread is supposed to be about. From the article that is linked to in the very first sentence of the BA’s post:

    Steve, this is one of those long threads so you might believe that people do not remember Phil’s original post so here are the first few paragraphs:
    ——————-
    Today, House Republicans made it clear just how antiscience they are (as if we didn’t know already): they voted down a simple amendment declaring the reality of climate change. Not that it was human-caused, or dangerous, just that it existed. Which it does.

    The amendment was presented by Henry Waxman (D-CA) to the Energy and Commerce Committee. All the Democrats voted for it, all the Republicans voted against it. So there you go. As Waxman said,

    This finding is so obviously correct that there should be no need to offer the amendment.

    Yet, it was voted down. The Republicans also rejected a second amendment declaring that climate change is in large part due to human actions. Since that one philosophically at least depended on the Waxman amendment, it’s no surprise it was voted down as well.

    Pretty much spells it out Steve and nothing more really needs to be said regarding your comments designed to halt a minority opinion.

  197. Paul in Sweden

    @199. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 18th, 2011 at 4:01 pm

    @ Paul in Sweden: Wait, so the best way you could come up with to address peoples’ points about the bill was to completely ignore those points and instead bring up a totally irrelevant statement supposedly said by someone in a speech to a university on the other side of the world the week before, driving the thread totally-off topic in the process?

    BlackCat, will you be terribly disappointed if Congress does not pass a bill stating that the earth is the third planet from the sun?

    “bring up a totally irrelevant statement supposedly said by someone in a speech to a university”

    156. TheBlackCat Says:
    March 17th, 2011 at 9:15 am

    @ Paul in Sweden: I took another 20 seconds and found the university’s own summary with the actual quote,

    “Human actions are interfering with the delicate balance of nature,” he added. “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will become frequent in the future. The impact on agriculture and healthcare will be enormous. The world will be forced to take care of more and more climate refugees in the very near future.”

    BlackCat, when I read your post 156 I closed my eyes and said to myself “it is worse than I thought”. My point of bringing up the statements of the chairman of the IPCC at a school ceremony in India was to latch on to previous comments in this thread and put a spotlight on the insanity of the Global Warming movement.

    Your abridged and what you presented as an authoritative report of the chairman of the IPCC stated that mankind influenced “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis” differing only that in the Times of India they included that the chairman of the IPCC also attributed earthquakes to human activities as many “climate scientists” today also assert.

    BlackCat, your latching on to the omission of earthquakes in the Times of India news less abridged report of the Chairman of the IPCC blew my mind. I hope you never are called as a character witness in a criminal case because I don’t think you recognize what you say. You have provided evidence that the chairman of the IPCC attributes human activity to “Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis” and as a character witness you stand before us and state yes he did all of those things but he didn’t have sex with that woman depending on what the definition of “is” is… WTF

    From your comments it appears to me that you for some unknown reason attribute Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis to human activity. When confronted, you say “well… shucks… I know it has not happened in the past but I’m only sayin’ that Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will happen more frequently in the future, yeah, in the future that is what I think or have been told, those things will happen in the future…”

    BlackCat, at this point in time, there is not a lot of confidence in your judgment. Your standing on your head trying to justify human influenced tsunamis was not your highest moment. As if your getting the chairman of the IPCC off of the chopping block for declaring that tsunamis and earthquakes were due to human influence
    would redeem him after stating that Floods, heat waves, etc were due to human activity that did not comply with his ancestors emphasis on ethics.

    BlackCat, if you thought prior to this thread I could not think less of you — You were wrong.

    Prior to this thread I thought of you as one of the good guys. Right now I can’t imagine why.

  198. TheBlackCat

    @ Paul in Sweden:

    BlackCat, will you be terribly disappointed if Congress does not pass a bill stating that the earth is the third planet from the sun?

    I would be terribly dissappointed if they rejected on because they didn’t believe it.

    The fact that you totally ignored my question leads me to assume that it was an accurate representation of your tactics.

    BlackCat, your latching on to the omission of earthquakes in the Times of India news less abridged report of the Chairman of the IPCC blew my mind.

    What?! I seriously can come to know other conclusion that that you think that nobody here can actually read the comments and see how transparently false this is.

    What I latched onto wasn’t the Times of India at all, what I latched on to you was you repeatedly insisting that he mentioned earthquakes when you knew didn’t. You criticized him for mentioning earthquakes over and over again long after I pointed out that he never did. The problem here isn’t the Times of India, the problem is you.

    Trying to twist this into me crusading against some random newspaper when it was only ever about you blatant dishonesty is simply another example of your dishonesty.

    From your comments it appears to me that you for some unknown reason attribute Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis to human activity. When confronted, you say “well… shucks… I know it has not happened in the past but I’m only sayin’ that Floods, heat waves, water scarcity, tsunamis will happen more frequently in the future, yeah, in the future that is what I think or have been told, those things will happen in the future…”

    We weren’t suffering from global warming in the past. At least not to the degree we will be in a few decades if things keep going as they have been.

    Your argument seems to be as follows:

    1. The predictions say event A is going to happen in the future. It hasn’t happened yet.

    2. The predictions says event A is going to cause problems B, C, and D.

    3. So show me which problems of type B, C, and D in the past were caused by A.

    The obvious problem with this is that event A wasn’t a problem back then.

    Did you somehow get the bizarre we think global warming is going to alter the space-time continuum and affect events before it even started? That is the only way I can think of that your demands are even the slightest bit relevant.

    Of course it would not be at all outlandish that you think this giving your bizarre and apparently intentional misunderstanding of the actual claims of the scientific community on this subject.

    BlackCat, if you thought prior to this thread I could not think less of you — You were wrong.

    Thank you. Considering your standards of honesty and discussion, the less you think of me the better I will feel. I would be quite disappointed in myself if someone like you thought highly of me.

    Prior to this thread I thought of you as one of the good guys. Right now I can’t imagine why.

    Probably because I wasn’t explicitly calling you out on your lies.

  199. flip

    #168 Paul in Sweden

    As someone who has interviewed people for articles, I can say that your assumption of the Times of India article is incorrect; TBC has it right. When we are trying to summarise a person’s words – which might not have been stated as succinctly as you like – it is rephrased, and no quotes are used because it’s not a direct, actual quote. In doing so, it’s easy for the journalist to slip in their own language, which might not reflect either the person’s statements nor the science.

    #177 Paul in Sweden

    You provide your own quote of Patchauri, the chairman of the IPCC from the University itself which is nearly identical to my reference from the Times of India:

    Nearly identical isn’t the same as identical. One word transcripted incorrectly is not the same thing as quoting someone.

    I’ll take the slideshow/university summary over a non-quoted sentence in an article any day. Even if the person actually said it during a non-recorded presentation, you have not proved that he did say it.

    The rest of your argument sits on this minute and irrelevant point.

    We got it, you don’t believe in global warming. But atleast come up with a better argument than “nyah nyah nyah”, which is all you seem to be doing. That and going off on tangents.

    #192 Paul in Sweden

    What blatant quote mining. And building of strawmen. No wonder TBC gave up on you. You’re an idiot if you think anyone reading won’t notice what you did.

  200. Paul in Sweden

    @203.flip

    Well flip then you would be lumped into the same group with all the other global warming enthusiests, because the science behind “Climate Science” is worse than we thought and trending down at an alarming rate.

    The trends in climate today are not global, remarkable, unprecedented, catastrophic and cannot be attributed to anthropogenic influence beyond limited regional land use forcings.

    Here is more IPCC science after Pachauri, the Chairman of the IPCC attributed earthquakes, tsunamis, etc on Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming Cooling. Anything that happens is due to CAGWC.

    The Hindu : Other States / West Bengal News : Climate change-triggered high sea level led to more damage in Japan: Pachauri
    “KOLKATA: The devastation caused by the tsunami in Japan would have been significantly less had there not been such a high rise in the sea level due to climate change “as the phenomenon tends to be a multiplier of the threats that take place,” Rajendra Pachauri, Chairman of the Nobel Prize-winning Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), said here on Monday.”
    -http://www.hindu.com/2011/03/23/stories/2011032356101000.htm

    The IPCC(The Gold Standard in Climate Science) is a funding tool of the United Nations and the multiple Eco-Activist Organizations that provided a significant portion of the non-peer-reviewed papers that the IPCC 2007 AR4 inflicted against not only the science community but the world itself. In time science may recover but it is doubtful Eco-science will ever be thought of as anything but biased.

    btw: TBC giving up on an untenable position is totally understandable, there are groups worldwide constantly attempting to coverup and abscure the “Climate Science” that is spewn from the IPCC. It has not been working.

  201. flip

    #204 Paul in Sweden,

    I gave up reading your post after you called me an enthusiast. I stated neither a pro nor against opinion, just that I found your argument particularly misleading and irrelevant based upon an ignorance or misunderstanding of how journalists work. The fact that you build a strawman out of my comments suggests you don’t want to have a proper conversation, you just want to hear what you want to hear.

    Skimming the rest of your comment shows you care neither to corrrect that ignorance/misunderstanding, or defend it. You are a troll, and no further comments will be made by me in response to your expected reply.

    Like I said… nyah nyah nyah.

  202. Jeep-Eep

    Why hasn’t this paul in sweden oaf been banned? All he ever does is disrupt conversation.

  203. Nigel Depledge

    @ Jeep-Eep (206) -
    What better proof could there be that Phil does not censor comments?

  204. Damon

    Paul’s comments are pure garbage, and his devotion to plugging his ears and covering his eyes when confronted with hard science, nay, his obsession with arguing himself under the table like an autistic, narcissistic pompous ass shows him to be nothing more than a coward who is unable to come to terms with the reality of what his carbon footprint is doing to the world; it’s so much easier to not recycle when you can just sit in your mother’s basement and stack pizza boxes all day. He knows he will be long dead before he has to witness the affect global warming will have on future generations, which is a trait common among most of the cowards in power these days; keep the money moving, keep the co2 pumping.

    Hey Paul; do me a favor– go out in the middle of the street at a stop light, squat down behind a car and take in a big ol’ whiff of that harmless C02 from someone’s tailpipe, then get back to me on how healthy it is.

  205. Nigel Depledge

    Damon (208) said:

    Hey Paul; do me a favor– go out in the middle of the street at a stop light, squat down behind a car and take in a big ol’ whiff of that harmless C02 from someone’s tailpipe, then get back to me on how healthy it is.

    Unfortunately, CO2 is only one of several gases present in vehicle exhaust. Given PiS’s lack of connection to reality on this topic, I would as soon expect him to blame the water vapour or unburnt fuel for any ill effect he suffered in such an experiment.

  206. Anonymous

    You know, I’ve about had it from you on this little crusade. There is no way a self-respecting — or more importantly, a science-respecting — scientist can consider the process by which climate research has been gone about as proper science. Laundering, refusing to provide, and losing data? Rigging peer review? Synchronous development of press and policy statements? This is /not/ how scientists behave. That you would provide them any quarter really saddens me, Phil. Want it explained simply? Here ya go: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8BQpciw8suk

    Would you like to see climate science done as science? Here ya go:
    http://www.berkeleyearth.org/

    Your particular view here on political interaction is mind-boggling. Of what relevance is any legislature’s view on natural phenomenon? Do gravity or thermodynamics require Congressional declaration to have any force? If that body produced a unanimous resolution against evolution, would antibiotic resistant strains of bacteria immediately stop appearing (as ex-post-facto principles apply, I’ll assume we humans will not instantaneously revert to protozoa.) Or perhaps they shouldn’t go quite that far and merely declare that Lysenkoism is the True American People’s Biological Science? Certainly all work critical of it should be dismissed outright as Denier Science and banished from the reic– err, curriculum. See, science that needs government to back it is rarely complete or correct. And governments that involve themselves in science are rarely beneficial or benign.

  207. This is one of the comments in the Youtube’s video:
    @varek3d

    If you want to see one of the effects of CO2, follow these steps:
    1. Lock your ass up in a small air-tight box
    2. Breath for an hour
    3. Die

    Congratulations, you have now figured out the poisonous effects of CO2.

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