Friedman: What They Really Believe

Thomas Friedman has definitely got the pithy sound bite thing down pat. The last few times I’ve seen him on TV I’ve had the same two reactions: 1) Yeah, I think he’s right, but 2) the way he’s selling it is more about memorable catch-phrases than simply speaking the truth.

But maybe he’s on to something. In an era when Sarah Palin can attract significant numbers of supporters who think she’s actually worth listening to, maybe you can’t overestimate the importance of wrapping your message in folksy packaging. We don’t have to convince the scientists — they’re already convinced. We have to convince the people who honestly believe Fox News is a credible source.

I’m not sure how you do that. But Thomas Friedman is giving it a try, as he does in this op-ed piece from the NYT: What They Really Believe.

My argument is simple: I think climate change is real. You don’t? That’s your business. But there are two other huge trends barreling down on us with energy implications that you simply can’t deny. And the way to renew America is for us to take the lead and invent the technologies to address these problems.

His bottom line: Those working to thwart cap-and-trade and clean-energy incentives are not just wrong. They’re unpatriotic.

Mkay. We’ll see how that does in the marketplace of ideas.

138 Responses to “Friedman: What They Really Believe”

  1. NorthernLite Says:

    Well using scientific data and appealing to logic didn’t seem to work with those folks so maybe this appraoch will.

  2. knarlyknight Says:

    What it does in the marketplace of ideas is negate the claim that people are unpatriotic if they promote saddling America with costly green investment and support a new “tax” on polluters through the pricing of carbon emmissions.

    If both sides now claim the patriotic high ground, then hopefully the merits of each argument will be evaluated on a less emotional basis.

    I liked the article, and am interested (not quite alarmed) to see the world plague population reduction meme come up yet again in yet another context.

  3. shcb Says:

    What they all believe. Really, not even a small minority.

  4. ethan-p Says:

    I usually like Thomas Freidman. I liked his book, The World is Flat, I liked many of his op-ed’s. I think, however, that he’s just wrong about cap and trade.

    Ask most people what they want in fuel/energy prices, and they want reductions. People tend to want lower prices on everything. I want to pay less for fuel, goods, and services.

    However, cap and trade will increase costs of fuel/energy. An energy tax would be passed onto consumers from every business in the production chain who is paying higher taxes on their energy. All of these tax revenues would go into the same fund set aside for your social security…the general fund. This gets all poured down the drain like every other dollar that the federal government spends on your least favorite pet project.

    Cap and trade will increase fuel costs, as well as drive service and consumer product costs up, and for what? So we can feel better about the energy that we consume? If we want more energy efficient products and services, why not just buy them and drive the market for energy efficient goods and services?

    The foreign oil argument something of a red herring too. Guess who America’s #1 foreign importer of crude oil and petrolium is? The evil Canadians, who clearly hate us. Number two? The evil Mexicans. The third is Venezuela, who aren’t huge America fans – but it’s a far cry from the Saudis (they’re #5 on the list).

    I’m not saying that we shouldn’t reduce energy consumption, and I’m not saying that climate change is not real (although I still have questions about the antropogenic cause). I’m saying that cap and trade will increase the cost of everything, and only serve to make us feel good. Do people who want cap and trade believe that the rest of the populus is just too stupid to want to reduce energy consumption on their own (and thus reduce emissions), or is it that businesses are too evil and greedy to want to sell us greener technology?

    …or is there some other motive that I’m just missing?

  5. knarlyknight Says:

    Hi ethan-p,

    To clear the air, let me voice my suspicion that your nickname is a short for “ethane-propane”, and thus you are deeply involved in the extraction or sale of hydrocarbons or servicing of such industries.

    That’s fine, because in one way or another, voluntarily or not, virtually everyone supports the oil & gas industry.

    Perhaps someone with more time than I, or who can write more concisely, can provide a more fitting reply than this:

    First off, cap and trade is not intended as a cash cow for government, it is supposed to be an arena where polluters can delay their investment in cleaner technology by buy carbon credits from companies that have surpassed their required “greenification”. If you think it is a cash cow for government, then you are not talking about a carbon traading scheme you are simply talking about taxation.

    If you agree we need to cut back on emissions / move to cleaner technologies, then there are two choices. One is to rely on the good will and wisdom of the market players. Two is to legislate a cap on emmission so that everyone has to incur costs to meet that cap, or introduce incentives in order to meet the target cap (but someone has to pay for those incentives so it is still a cost) or introduce taxes on the polluters to shift the playing field to the greener industries, which also increases costs.

    The first option is naive, not worthy of much discussion here.

    The second option, an overt cap or a target cap through incentives and or taxes, are an attempt to shift the cost equation so that polluters or those using products of polluters pay more relative to alternative products or producers who are greener.

    Cap and trade is simply a mechanism to make the transition easier for the players on the filed as it gives each of them on an indivicdual basis the opportunity to decide if, how and when it is best for them (relative to the other players through the carbon price determined in trading) to make the necessary technological changes required to meet the cap.

  6. knarlyknight Says:

    In sum, I think you object to the cap. There is not much wrong with trading the carbon credits if the system is designed properly. Which is to say not designed by the shysters on Wall street; or, at less than two arm’s length’s away from the political powers that be.

  7. shcb Says:

    Cap and trade is and always has been a way to redistribute wealth from richer nations to poorer nations, nothing more, nothing less, with the US taking the shortest stick. Ironically, the recession has been its biggest enemy. Before the recession there was more support for it because we felt we had the money to pay for our guilt as Ethan says, now we don’t. If pollution is such a great threat, set the caps and toss the offenders in prison.

    Just as the tobacco settlements were more about a tax on production than getting people to stop smoking, this is just a tax set up so everyone from Wall Street to AlGore to the UN can make a bunch of money skimming money off the top.

  8. knarlyknight Says:

    shcb’s last paragraph may be true (but Canada’s tax on tobacco has cut consumption and improved health, why doesn’t the USA raise tobacco taxes to Canada’s level?)

    shcb’s first para is silly wwnj opinion and fear mongering worthy of satirization in the Onion. Or maybe an Onion article was shcb’s researched source. :-)

  9. ethan-p Says:

    KnarlyKnight – Perhaps I don’t know enough about emissions trading. I am reading a very positive spin in the language that you use describe carbon trading, like the way you say that this will make the transition easier for any energy consumers is just wrong. It may make a decision to invest in cleaner technology easier, but not the transition. I really don’t think that this will make anything easier. On the contrary, I think that this may force a more painful transition, because there will be hard targets set by the government with a price tag on it. Furthermore, environmental groups can buy these credits at will, and not use them just to drive up the cost of carbon emissions. Of course, you’re right that any success gained from this program will depend heavily on how it is implemented. Further, how is buying carbon credits going to allow energy consuming businesses to delay investment? Won’t having to purchase credits prevent companies from having the cash to invest in new technology?

    It just sounds like a lot of nice, soft wording for something that will hurt our already struggling economy in the short, mid, and long term. I do understand the long-term argument about how the net effect of global climate change on the economy. To make that argument (which you haven’t yet, I know), however, is kind of a straw-man, since we’re not necessarily talking about a dichotomy of do nothing at all or use a carbon trading system.

    As far as whether or not I’m an oil industry shill…hell, if they’d pay me for standing on my soapbox, I’d take a check in a heartbeat. I don’t work for an energy company or own any energy company stock. I don’t even trade in commodity futures. No energy interest has ever floated me a dime — not even free gas. I work in the health care industry, but I’ve been told by a few women that I produce natural gas in my sleep (*blush*). Full disclosure: my uncle was a lawyer Chevron/BP America (retired), and my one of my brothers works for a natural gas producer. None of these have swayed my opinions (with the exception of my brother, who showed me that that Canada is the #1 source of evil foreign oil…those bastards!).

  10. shcb Says:

    You see Knarly the difference between taxing tobacco and cap and trade is that with cap and trade the tax is passed on to the consumer as Ethan has so eloquently stated a couple times. With a tax like cigarette taxes there is no one to pass it onto so a person has the motivation to change their behavior. The consumer is the end user, no one is going to pay the user more because they are incurring higher costs. In a competitive market there is no incentive to invest in clean technology if the cost can be passed on. When one company finds it competitive to invest in the new technology, whatever that technology may be the others will follow suit, but there is no value in taxing them to that ends, you are simply taxing the end user through a pass through. You seem to think of a corporation as an entity that collects money, it isn’t, it is a sieve money passes through.

  11. knarlyknight Says:

    Hey Methane, :-)

    I didn’t mean to speak of cap and trade in glowing terms. That happened because I assumed all here were pretty much in agreement that capping emissions would be a good thing. You and shcb seem to be objecting to the increased costs that such a system would impose. The increased costs would arise primarily from the capping, not the trading. If you don’t like the capping aspect, then the trading is little solace.

    Maybe the cap thing is bad, and indeed it probably is for a small economy (country) or one that is currently weak and has little to gain from lower emissions. However, if there is agreement for near universal adoption of emission limits, then it is not so bad as the immediate competitive advantages accruing to the non-participants can be managed. But let’s set that aside for now. The trade part is worth thinking about.

    Maybe we should check that we’re talking about the same thing, i.e.

    If the decision is that a cap is necessary now because the wait for the natural evolution of cleaner technologies in this (real or fictional) so-called competitive marketplace is too slow (i.e there might not be as much time as we’d like to adapt once the oil production decline starts to kick in with a vengeance), then the carbon trading helps. It helps by providing a mechanism to assist in the financing of the necessary green investments, and more to the point: it encourages people to think about investing in green as a way to higher revenues rather than just an investment that might pay off by reducing costs. I’ll explain, but first let’s look at shcb’s comment because that will provide a nice introduction.

    Thank you for the insight about how corporations pass on costs, shcb. However, the point is that in a competitive marketplace, if one corporation chooses to incur one set of costs, investing in a new distribution system for example, and the others do not, then it will be tougher for that company to pass on the costs of that investment to its customers. The benefit to the company that made the investment will depend on whether the investment ends up saving the company more in the long run than it spent, or whether it can gain more customers and maybe even charge a little more because of the benefit to its customer service produced by the new distribution system. If the company makes a bad investment in an expensive distribution system and it turns out to be entirely unnecessary, then they’ll suffer and their competitors will gain an advantage. Conversely, if the investment turns out great, then that company gains the advantage and the other companies may find that they have to invest in the same distribution or something similar just to stay in the game. A subtler decision is in respect to timing: will a company be the first to invest in a new distribution technology, or wait until the distribution system has been tested by others and proven to be viable and enough kinks are worked out that the price tag for the investment is not as big as it was when first introduced? This is what carbon trading provides, the ability of companies to choose when they will invest in green technologies.

    The cap imposes costs on all companies that emit, and yes this gets passed along to the consumer. However, for each company, the “trade” introduces choice. A company can either 1) pay now for the green investments to reduce emissions and thus minimize future emission credit purchases, or 2) delay investing in green tech and just pay for the value of the carbon emissions (i.e. buy carbon credits.) What is important is that the revenue from the trading system be directed to developing and producing the technology that will reduce costs of reducing emissions. That way the system is funding itself, another way of looking at it is that the companies that are delaying making the investment to reduce emissions are contributing to R&D type investments through paying Carbon credits and thus contributing to a reduction in the future costs of those investments.

    The key concept in all this is that the “trade” establishes a market price for carbon emissions, one that is established by all participants in response to how stringent or relaxed the cap is set.

  12. shcb Says:

    Believe it or not I agree with you, but I don’t know why government has to be the broker of the trade aspect, it seems the trade is already built into the free market place we have. If a new technology is developed it probably isn’t developed by the company using it, it may but it probably isn’t. In your distribution system example I assume you are talking about a computer system, maybe conveyors and trucks? Or are you talking power? Never mind, it doesn’t mater, if we are taking about a computer system maybe WalMart will invest millions or billions to create a new system but more than likely a software company will invest those millions and sell it to many customers so the costs are shared by those several customers just as in your trade scenario. The problem with government involvement is the decisions of which companies or industries are taxed more or less is driven by politics more than necessity. We are already hearing of a senator that is being offered 100 million in health care moneys that other states would not get for her vote for the health care bill. This will become commonplace in the cap and trade industry as well, one industry will be perceived as “more evil” than the others and so its cap will be lower than is reasonable, another industry will be seen in a better light and will receive a higher cap than it needs so it will have a surplus to absorb the evil industry’s excess carbon, and the traders will skim their millions and the government will tax that sale and the politician will get the vote and the consumer will get nothing in return.

  13. ethan-p Says:


    I actually read that wiki article before typing my previous response. I’m curious, how would you feel about emissions trading if exemptions were handed out for things like coal/clean coal? At what point would this be politicized enough for it to make no sense to you?

    We both agree that the effectiveness of this law would heavily rely on how well executed this is. Perhaps this really comes down to different political belief structures. It’s not that I think that we shouldn’t be reducing energy consumption and emissions. It has more to do with my lack of faith in big government. When all is said and done, I believe that this will be so complex and laden with sweetheart deals that it will be meaningless and costly. For me, it’s not a democrat or republican thing; I’m absolutely disgusted with both parties.

  14. knarlyknight Says:

    you two, introducing practical considerations and reality into a perfectly good theory and making it all messy.

  15. ethan-p Says:


  16. shcb Says:

    bless you my son, bless you

  17. shcb Says:

    I’m sure you’ve heard this but just in case

  18. shcb Says:

    I thought Charlie Martin made a good point yesterday that some caution should be used in getting too excited about this story since we all found out from Rather Gate that all it takes is to seed a few false emails in with thousands of real emails to fabricate a story line this.

  19. shcb Says:

    That said…

    In fact, when scientists become politicians but continue to pretend to be doing science, that is the real crime. The theory being promoted by these men was being used to justify government actions that would result in greatly diminished future economic growth of the most powerful economy on earth (and the rest of the world as well). It would make it more difficult and less affordable to address any real problems that might be caused in the future by a change in climate, whether due to human activity or other causes. It could impoverish millions in the future, with little actual change in adverse climate effects. And when such a theory has the potential to do so much unjustified harm, and it has a fraudulent basis, who are the real criminals against humanity?

  20. shcb Says:

    Christopher Monckton “The man who challenged Al Gore to a debate is furious about the content of the leaked CRU emails — and says why you should be, too.” is weighing in on the issue.

  21. knarlyknight Says:

    Yeah I just checked and Alex Jones’ reporters are all over this story too, so it must be true.

    Tell you what, I won’t post Prison planet articles if you stop posting pyjama stuff. If not, I’ll open the floodgates and show you a world of pain and illuminati control…

  22. shcb Says:

    Why would I do that? Even if I did, with the exception of the Monckton piece, which is an exclusive, all the other writers are on other sites, I can just read them on Pajamas and then go to their web sites and link from there, it isn’t the venue it’s the message.

  23. NorthernLite Says:

    I’m for the capping part, not so sure about the trading. I don’t really have any trust left for wall street and the whole trading idea has corruption written all over it.

    Hard caps will lower emissions. Penalize companies that don’t meet the caps and use the money to fund renewable projects.

  24. shcb Says:

    I’ve never liked this idea of punishing one entity that is perceived to be bad to fund another that is perceived to be good. Money is fungible, spend the money where it needs to be spent in the forms of grants and the like and yes use tax dollars, and increase taxes if you are getting close or more money will actually make an impact. Set reasonable limits and fine those that are breaking those laws.

    The problem with fining one group to pay for the other is you can end up starving one or the other. Suppose we were on the brink of finding the solution but we needed to produce electricity like we did for the Manhattan project where we use 10% of all the electricity in the country for the project, and we needed a bunch more real quick, you want to be able to make a bunch of smoke belching plants if needed, you don’t want to punish the producers. I know an exception could be made in that case, but you see where I’m going.

    So, what are they saying in the left wing world about these stolen emails? Do they have a reasonable explanation, are they ignoring it, is it shaking the global warming religion to its core?

  25. enkidu Says:

    I wonder why Al Gore wants to give rich countries’ money to poor countries?
    mb to save the planet from a human induced eco-disaster? If we don’t start reducing global fossil fuel use, we may be headed towards a disaster that would make the bush mega-disasters look like the halcyon days of legend.

    I dunno, a bunch of people arguing about how to interpret the data isn’t much of a conspiracy. And the climate change deniers are definitely working together as well (like minded groups of people working together – socialism!). I’m still waiting before rushing to judgement.

    NL- xactly

  26. shcb Says:


  27. shcb Says:

    ” People working constructively to improve joint publications”

    You guys really don’t understand what this is all about do you?

  28. knarlyknight Says:


    Too lazy to provide the full quote or just dishonest? Providing half a sentence of quote with a spurious and patronizing prosaic snark is so yesteryear (Bush era). It’s clear from the full quote how badly you’ve tried to mislead. (Like Fox you provide half a fact and insinuate a full scale lie.)

    RealClimate makes the winning comment, IMO:

    More interesting is what is not contained in the emails. There is no evidence of any worldwide conspiracy, no mention of George Soros nefariously funding climate research, no grand plan to ‘get rid of the MWP’, no admission that global warming is a hoax, no evidence of the falsifying of data, and no ‘marching orders’ from our socialist/communist/vegetarian overlords. The truly paranoid will put this down to the hackers also being in on the plot though.

    Instead, there is a peek into how scientists actually interact and the conflicts show that the community is a far cry from the monolith that is sometimes imagined. People working constructively to improve joint publications; scientists who are friendly and agree on many of the big picture issues, disagreeing at times about details and engaging in ‘robust’ discussions; scientists expressing frustration at the misrepresentation of their work in politicized arenas and complaining when media reports get it wrong; scientists resenting the time they have to take out of their research to deal with over-hyped nonsense. None of this should be shocking.

  29. NorthernLite Says:

    Yeah, there’s nothing wrong with those comments. Actually, I would hope that’s the case.

    shcb, you said, “Cap and trade is and always has been a way to redistribute wealth from richer nations to poorer nations, nothing more, nothing less.”

    Mind explaining that statement and where you found evidence of that being the case? It just sounds really Glen Beckish…

  30. shcb Says:

    At some point you have to realize that Bush is in Texas clearing brush or whatever he is doing. The point is that they were not working to improve publications, they were working to silence anyone that had an opposing view, the rest of the paragraph is just rubbish once you understand what these scientists were doing. The whole idea of science is to put you ideas out there and have others poke holes in them and then defend your assertions with evidence. They were just trying to silence the dissenters, and these weren’t bloggers, these were reputable scientists and publications whose only crime was a different point of view and the questioning of the models.

  31. shcb Says:

    It goes back to Koyoto (sp?) cap and trade is just a local version, that will be made global.

  32. knarlyknight Says:

    ethane- fyi, didn’t mean to avoid your question ( ).

    It’s sad that there is so little trust of government (this from a guy who considers in more likely than not that some US officials participated in a conspiracy resulting in the disaster of 911 and is certain that the event was then leveraged dishonestly to pursue preconcieved and unrelated objectives.)

    However, unless you folks are going to have another revolootion (which would be stupid unless it was peaceful) then you have to work with what you’ve got, i.e. dishonest politicians. The fact is your country is the biggest polluter and most powerful (it still is, right?) therefore you cannot abrogate your responsibilities with “no we can’t try to implement a good policy option because it will be coopted by our leaders to enrich themselves and their friends” because that defeats everything before you even start. Not implementing a cap and trade is not going to slow down the rate at which your leaders steal from you, for Christ sake they’ve taken trillions of dollars of wealth from you in the past year simply by printing money and guaranteeing bad debts to bail out wallstreet. They do not need cap and trade to steal more, they can steal all they want now.

    So the answer to your question about the point at which exemptions for cleaner industries would be unacceptable to me, or how politicized the process needs to be before it would make no sense to me, is that, absent any other practical alternative being instituted to accelerate emission reductions there is no point that it would be unacceptible, provided it is on this side of the truly ludicrous. The reason for that is because virtually anything, no matter how poorly administered, is a step in the right direction and thus better than sitting idle and suffocating in your own exhaust.

    NL – the cap and penalize option relies heavily on government involvement in deciding each company’s level of emissions, which is unnecessarily havy handed in my opinion. The cap and trade option would achive the same overall cap on industrial emissions while providing companies the flexibility to more efficiently allocate their emissions between themselves through the establishment of a free market price of carbon. And as noted by the detractors, it also allows non-industry and non-government players and opportunity to influence the price of carbon emissions by actively buying a portion of allowed the carbon emmisions, which would be another option for them if they did not think that government’s cap was sufficient.

  33. enkidu Says:

    What possible motivation do researchers have to ‘invent’ global warming? “Cap and trade is and always has been a way to redistribute wealth from richer nations to poorer nations, nothing more, nothing less.” So why in the world would anyone want to do this? It makes no sense at all unless you are some kind of wwnj. Al Gore ran for President and won because he hates America and wants to destroy the world? Isn’t that what ya’ll keep saying about Obama?

    Aren’t the global warming deniers trying to silence the global warming scientists?

  34. knarlyknight Says:

    Disclosure – I’m with Enk on waiting to see what the the subsequent and less emotion laden analysis of those 10 year old emails brings forth.

    However, shcb continues with his yesteryear approach to discourse:

    “the rest of the paragraph were just rubbish once you understand what these scientists were doing”

    Perhaps the rest of the paragraph explains quite accurately what these scientists were doing, and the rubbish part is where you infer that you “understand what these scientists were doing”.

    Your statement makes more sense if altered like this:

    “the rest of the paragraph is inexplicable if you, like me, have a preconceived incorrect opinion of what these sicentists were doing”

  35. knarlyknight Says:

    I wonder if the SICentists typo was a Freudian slip?

  36. shcb Says:

    nothing to do with red and blue states
    The motivation to “invent” global warming. There is no motivation to invent global warming, this just evolved, these scientists aren’t evil, they don’t want to take over the world, the socialists that have latched on to this may want to, but not the scientists. You have a group of scientists that think in their hearts that man is a curse to this planet, they think pollution is bad, and they think, like Knarley said above, that we should do something, anything, even if it is wrong because doing nothing is unthinkable. So they look and look and low and behold they see a correlation of CO2 and global temperature rise, and they say “Aha!” and they start tracking these two lines, and for a decade or two it is all looking good. By now they are getting invited to all the right parties, they are moving up the ladder and all is good, lots of grants, trips, lots of papers published. Enter the socialists, they see this as a way to control people and curb capitalism, now capitalism is evil to these people because it allows people to succeed and fail, socialists hate this, they don’t like to see people fail and they are obviously smarter than everyone else so it is their duty to run everything, I mean, come on, everyone knows that.

    Now socialists like AlGore come to power and actually believe the scientists and start giving them money. This is where it starts to go down hill, by this time both parties have too much invested to say oops, looks like we goofed. The socialists really don’t care what the science is as long as it leads them to their goals, and the scientists have their entire careers invested in this theory, and they know they are right, they know it! So a few years don’t match their data, no problem, this happens, we’ll just fudge a little, if we waffle too much the politicians will get cold feet and stop funding us, and we know the warming will be back because we know we are right, and it just spirals down from there. At some point you bring in the plumber to stop the leaks, they ruin a career or two so everyone knows to not go against them, they discredit publications that dare descent, get editors at those publications fired, whatever it takes. Once you go down that road, you have to start covering the cover ups… So there was no motivation to invent this it just happened with all involved thinking what they were doing was best for all.

  37. shcb Says:

    skip the first line, bad cut and paste

  38. knarlyknight Says:


    It sounds to me like you are describing the justification for invading Iraq put forward by a cabal of neocons; it sounds implausible that the global scientific community could partake in such a vast conspiracy to corrupt data.

    Besides, haven’t we seen ten years of global temperature data since those emails? While not record breaking (perhaps the melting ice cubes at the poles have been cooling the rest of the drink) the last ten years have been up there relative to pre-industrialization. Excluding, of course, any medieval warming bits as all good scientists would discount that era in order to make the data fit properly.

    The last remark was a bit of fun for your benefit shcb.

  39. NorthernLite Says:

    So now you’re back to calling me a socialist because I believe the overwhelming majority of climatologists and the science they present to back their claims?

    I guess this means you’re all out of rational thoughts…

  40. knarlyknight Says:

    Apparently socialists are people who attempt to influence public policy for the public good based on the overwhelming consensus of scientific thought?

    Then that implies that Capitalists are people who attempt to influence public policy for their own good based on any fragment of science that might suggest an uncertainty.

    Now things are starting to make sense.

  41. shcb Says:

    consensus of scientific thought, that is on the three things at issue here, how was that consensus forced.

  42. shcb Says:

    NL you need to read what I say not read into what I say, socialists-scientists, two groups, two objectives.

  43. knarlyknight Says:

    Surely you are not suggesting a consensus being coerced on a scale of anything else that occured during the Bush years?

  44. shcb Says:

    I don’t care about the Bush years, the Bush years are over. This has nothing to do with Bush, other than neither he nor Clinton bought into global warming being manmade. No Bush, repeat after me, No Bush, I can’t hear you, NO BUSH.

    I don’t think they had to coerce a lot of people, the thousands that have not been on board have mostly just not approved of the methods they used The sort of approved of the end result. This has been brewing for a long time, a decade or more. It’s one of those things where you hope your peers have done their jobs, you hear rumors but you kind of blow it off, and then if you are in the climate business you feel the research you are doing isn’t worth jeopardizing your funding or status just because someone is fudging the numbers a little, I mean the end result is less pollution right? Who can complain about that? Even conservatives blew it off until we saw it was going to cost trillions of dollars, Dollars that could be used to actually fix the problem. You see the tactic is that you only have to ruin a few lives if you ruin the right ones, this gets the message to the rest, kind of a “you’ll never work in this town again” approach, terrorism lite.

  45. shcb Says:

    The other thing we are finding out that these guys did was simply eliminate whole groups by boycotting journals that dared publish dissention. Now as you know, getting articles published is the lifeblood of research labs, grant money is pretty much in direct proportion to those articles. So you have one of the four largest labs in the field (the others were probably doing too) simply saying they were not going to submit articles to the publication if they published dissenting views. If the most prestigious lab doesn’t send you stuff, you lose credibility, then the editor loses his job. This has two effects, you control the press and your opponents are left to publish on web sites, so then you can say your opponents are not serious scientists because they aren’t published in real journals.

    Pretty slick.

  46. knarlyknight Says:

    You are talking about events from ten years ago and supposedly continuing up to the recent past. So the “era” is pertinent. Even if it had nothing directly to do with Bush, it was Bush’s era and he set the tone. “Gut instincts” ruled supreme, science was under attack:

    As for the coersion, you are certainly becomign quite the conspiracy theorist again. I’d say you were nuts if it were not for so many other examples of where that “terrorism lite” (or not so lite under Bush) has kept things in check.

  47. Smith Says:

    I think this is the first time I’ve seen someone basically claim “the last 8 years never happened” without even a hint of irony or sarcasm. Do you really think we should ignore history? If the Bush years don’t matter, I guess we can just forget 9/11, right? You should probably inform the rest of the GOP that they should never mention 9/11 because “the Bush years are over.”

  48. shcb Says:

    What the fuck!!!!! What does Bush have to do with this subject except to change it!!!! tell me what does he have to do with it!!!!! I’m not ignoring the last years without a terrorist attack because we killed the bastards, but what does that have to do with this???? these guys were doing what they were doing while Bush was doing what he was doing while the Arabs were doing what they were doing, they have no correlation to one another. This is do damn frustrating, like talking to kindergarteners.

  49. shcb Says:

    Good ole Charlie has more

    As a result, it looks like they found themselves trapped. They had the big research organizations, the big grants — and when they found themselves challenged, they discovered they’d built their conclusions on fine beach sand.
    But the tide was coming in.

  50. knarlyknight Says:

    The Bush regime attacked science and destroyed rational discourse. Often, dissenters were destroyed by, as you call it, terrorism lite. (I call it Rovian tactics.) If, and it’s a big IF at this point, those ol’ emails actually are the damnation of the entire climate change cataclism that you imagine them to be, then although not forgivable it is an understandable defensive reaction to the climate of fear and loathing that Bush’s politics unleashed on the world. As you said yourself, ” Kill them over there so we don’t have to fight them over here” and “you’re either with us or against us” were more than just bravado about fighting so called terrorism, they were the slogans of a nation intent on exerting a full spectrum dominance over the rest of the world. That dominance included a subordination of science to political will and if the voice of Science was to be heard it needed a strong, united defensive posture that would be able to withstand the stupidity of the Bush regime. If that’s the case, Science over-reacted and that is not forgivable, but it is understandable, and Republican supporters of the scourge of the 2000’s must share the blame for creating such a poisonous environment for discourse.
    Interesting that now the political tone has shifted dramatically the public debate has opened up in a greater dialogue about more varied and more important topics. Bush claimed to value others’ opinions but his actions aptly demonstrate that he ever have tolerated such insolence as the debates now in play under the democratic president; debates that are good for democracy.

  51. knarlyknight Says:

    never would have tolerated

  52. shcb Says:

    Here is the header from one of the emails, note the date.

    From: Phil Jones
    To: ray bradley ,,
    Subject: Diagram for WMO Statement
    Date: Tue, 16 Nov 1999 13:31:15 +0000

    You guys have Bush derangement really, really bad.

  53. shcb Says:

    And here is why it matters and to answer NL’s question of why cap and trade will be welfare for third world countries.

    The same crooks control the IPCC and the fraudulent data in IPCC reports. The same crooks meet in Copenhagen next week and want 0.7% of the Western world’s GDP to pass through an unelected UN government, and then on to sticky fingers in the developing world.

  54. NorthernLite Says:

    Just so you know, I never click on any of those links. I try to avoid nutjob sites for news. Just like I know you wouldn’t click on links to stories from Michael Moore, I’m not gonna waste my time on that crap.

    And really, how much of a story is this when then only people covering it are pantload media?

    You’ve yet to show me any evidence that lowering carbon emissions is somehow some wealth redistribution scheme.

    You’re telling me my Prime Minister (who is much more line with your thinking on various issues than I am) is going to send boatloads of our money to some poor country to do whatever they want with?

    Sorry, but that just doesn’t make any fucking sense.

  55. shcb Says:

    That is too bad you’re not reading them, you are missing out on a lot, this is probably why you don’t understand the redistribution scam.

    What do you think Kyoto was all about? Even Clinton understood Kyoto! BTW he was president when these emails were written, didn’t know if you caught that. Some poor country in the Caribbean has three cars, no emissions, they are give an arbitrary number of carbon credits for all the green house gasses they aren’t using, same with developed countries, except that the developed countries arbitrary number isn’t enough, it is never enough, the number is a sliding scale that is always less than the industrialized nation is using, so the developing nation has some credits to sell which are worth just a little less than the arbitrary fine that will be imposed on the developed nation if they don’t buy the credits. That fine would go to some division of the UN that would, you guessed it, be given to the developing nation. Shell game! They win, we lose.

    The guys that developed the program Charlie described were probably going to be tasked with measuring the CO2 output and figuring the bill. Too bad you don’t know what I’m talking about.

    And yes your PM was going to send boat loads of money to developing countries (China was on the list) or else you will be all up in arms that he isn’t living up to the agreement of Kyoto to save the planet.

  56. shcb Says:

    BTW, the PM wasn’t going to send boat loads ot money, he was going to senc boad loads of your money.

  57. NorthernLite Says:

    Clinton signed onto the Kyoto treaty, on?

    And if Canadian companies lowered their emissions money wouldn’t leave my country, right?

  58. NorthernLite Says:

    Should have been, “… signed onto the treaty, no?”

  59. NorthernLite Says:

    I’m assuming you think it’s fair to ask the poor countries of the world (i.e. the three-car Carribean country) to shoulder as much of the cost for repairing the damage rich countries have done to our planet for the past 60 years, right?

  60. shcb Says:

    we never ratified Kyoto, no.

    point a) we now know the rationale for claiming there has been damage done was based on cooked books and
    b) they shouldn’t profit, they didn’t earn that money

  61. shcb Says:

    Here is a wiki article that sort of explains how the redistribution works,

    These countries nominate a person (called a “designated national authority”) to create and manage its greenhouse gas inventory. Countries including Japan, Canada, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, France, Spain and others are actively promoting government carbon funds, supporting multilateral carbon funds intent on purchasing carbon credits from non-Annex I countries, and are working closely with their major utility, energy, oil and gas and chemicals conglomerates to acquire greenhouse gas certificates as cheaply as possible

  62. NorthernLite Says:

    You never ratified it because Bush took office and backed out of it… claiming it would destroy your economy… BAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA.

    Sorry, but the irony in that was just too much to resist.

    Kyoto had its flaws, yes, but it was a starting point. Now China, India and the USA are all on board with confronting this problem, thanks to Obama’s diplomatic efforts.

    When you think something is flawed you don’t just throw your hands up and say fuck it, you work with others to fix the problems. My mom taught me that was I was just a little wipper-snapper.

  63. knarlyknight Says:

    An email header about the WMO statement. OMG, were people actually discussing such things then, quick call pantloads they’ll want to know about this. Yes, the file of stolen emails commences before the Bush era but there is no confirmation of any sort of global conspiracy of the sort you’ve imagined in reading your pantload of crap. While the predecessor administration worked against virtually the entire world to scuttle Kyoto, as America continued to increase production above one third of the world’s total greenhouse gases. At least there was an appearance of rationale discourse under Clinton, the Bush era attack on Science shut down rational debate and poisoned the atmosphere. If, the big if, there were scientists maliciously altering data or conclusions on which global conclusions were being formed, then there was surely little motive to correct the situation in that atmosphere of war and defense against America’s full spectrum dominance of all other countries.

    As for the little Caribbean country issue, what shcb has done is present a bad formulation of a trading scheme as if it is the only way it can be administered. The emission levels could be based on existing levels and proportionately reduced from there. Or give the little undeveloped nations a bit of a break, America has so much to gain under a trading system and so much room to reduce emissions and thus have the advantage by having the most easy credits earned.

    Really, the big players complaining about emission trading schemes is like the grossly obese kid at the buffet complaining loudly to every waiters passing by that the cake lices are too small.

    Here’s some perspective on emission levels:

    And the map on this page provides a good visual about America’s unwillingness to cooperate with the other kids in the sandbox:

  64. knarlyknight Says:

    fat kids complain that cake slices are too small

  65. enkidu Says:

    What I love is the absolute certainty that wwnj has that these researchers is Evil, we is Dumb and he is the Smartest Guy in the Room (snicker). Way to go off half cocked! Plus I love how wwnj starts yelling nonsense and socialist and fuck you when no one takes him seriously (has anyone ever taken this guy seriously? sheesh)

    So much for the whole ‘polite debate’ bullsh!t.

    My initial (and very preliminary) read is there wasn’t anything even close to the open suppression of science and research that permeates the anti-climate change nutters. Hey can we hack into their computer systems and see all their emails? How about their financial books, who is funding these people? Right. Transparency is only for suckers and folks who have their emails stolen.

    I cannot believe that the Obministration is so hellbent on ‘bipartisanship’ (yeah, that sure has worked for healthcare, stimulus and every other initiative or appointment!) that they gave this lying sack a real job. OK so she is cute, so what? We voted for change, not more of the same right wing bullsh!t. Want to know why Obama’s numbers are slipping? because he is playing ball with morans like this:

    “We did not have a terrorist attack on our country during president Bush’s term.” So…… 9/11 happened in some alternate wingnutoverse on that Evil Bill Clinton’s watch? wtf? this is why fox is a joke.

    Well at least I can move to Canada (good healthcare, better beer) ;)

  66. NorthernLite Says:

    Yeah enk, you progressives need to get more vocal down there. Enough with the Mr. Nice Guy shit, it ain’t working.

    I heard the R’s passed those Bush tax cuts for the rich folks using only a simple majority vote – so what’s the D’s problem here?

  67. knarlyknight Says:

    Enk, what I love is the Rovian dismissiveness whereby if a wwnj can stick a label on it (e.g. “Bush derangement syndrome”) then the wwnj can continue to not think about it. That’s terrorism ultra-lite, bnut it is more often practiced by stupid little schoolyard bullies who don’t know any better.

    Wasn’t the American sniper executed last week a terrorist on Bush’s watch too?

    I’m thinking that Dana is actually too stupid and pig-headed to be considered pretty anymore. It was cute before when she was defending Bush as WH press secretary, because it was so impossible to maintain credibility yet she tried so valiantly, but is she actually now willingly spouting this BS? Wow, the wwnj’s are really scratching the bottom now.

  68. shcb Says:

    Knarly is going to ride his Bush is to blame horse right off a cliff if he has to. That header is dated 6 months before the convention. I’m really sorry, I shouldn’t have doubted these scientists, they are so smart they knew they needed to break laws, lie, bully, and simply make data up because of President Bush’s policies 6 months before he was even the candidate! My god man do you realize what this means, these guys knew who the winner of the closest election in history was going to be, and they knew how he was going govern half a year before the rest of us even knew who he was. I bow to their greatness.

    Can’t argue with logic like that, have a good Thanksgiving

  69. enkidu Says:

    wow, talk about taking a bit out of context and spinning a wild wrong wing nut job fantasy world…

    Please enlighten us what laws were broken! What does rush, macho mike, fox and friends and that crazy guy who talks to himself on the 43 crosstown have to say about these stolen emails. Oh wait, was it a crime to break in to a private email system, steal their archive of personal correspondence and then spin a partisan ‘I-already-have-my-conclusion’ story from the stolen goods? I don’t have the time to read 12,000 emails (or whatever). I’ll rely on credible sources to go over the accusations and give a non-partisan analysis of any wrong-doing (will it outweigh the right-doing?)

    I was going to read The Moustache of Understanding’s Hot, Flat and Crowded over thxgv, but after reading a few links of related stuff I am settling for some Michael Pollan’s In Defense of Food. And making some toy catapults with the kids (my demo onager works great)

  70. shcb Says:

    They deleted emails that were being requested under Britians freedom of information act.

  71. shcb Says:

    Files would be more accurate, I believe it was data and code more than emails.

  72. ethan-p Says:

    KnarlyKnight, sorry for the long wait between responses.

    I am not suggesting that the American government is any less honest than any other – past, present, or future (that’s an entirely different debate). I’m not beating my revolution drum on this one. My distrust is of any government, and I’m not talking about a bunch of nefarious bastards trying to swindle our money and keep us good-folk down. Our government is made up of (usually) well-intentioned people – and I think that our system of government is one of the better ones. What I’m saying is that this has more to do with a principle of well-intentioned people trying to work out simple solutions that get so muddled in the usual politics that most of the things that they try to do are horribly inefficient. Sure, there are examples of great civic projects that have been wildly successful (e.g. the Apollo program). However, I generally lose confidence when it comes to taxing and spending (e.g. social security, which may be working now, but it’s unlikely that we’ll see a dime of that money). I have a feeling that the emissions trading program will end up being more like the latter than the former.

    I’m not suggesting that emissions shouldn’t be cut. I’m not saying that I have a better idea, either. I wish that I did (although the market is coming up with better and better solutions for things like travel, because consumers have demanded it). What I am saying is that in general, taxation with the intent of redirecting those dollars into a specific place (in this case, clean energy) has a long history of failure. Further, governments have a history of depending on those dollars for other things. When that tax revenue dries up, we’re taxed in other places. For example, the state cigarette taxes, which may have played a part in reducing smoking, have begun to dry up as people have quit smoking. States have begun to look to other places to make up for this lost tax revenue, which has eventually hit us non-smokers in the wallet. As we move away from fossil fuels, the federal government will start looking to other ways to tax us to make up for the lost revenue.

    More taxes means that we’ll just have to pay more for nearly everything (since nearly everything that we do and make requires energy, on some level). Even if the emissions trading program is totally successful and we aren’t using fossil fuels in 30 years, the government will still depend on those revenues. They’ll just find something else to tax. If the program isn’t successful, we’re just going to pay more taxes and have the same emissions problem on our hands.

    Perhaps I’m being an idealistic freedom-junkie. I don’t like new taxes and regulations, and although I’m not a true-blood Libertarian, I still like the principle of freedom to spend and buy as we see fit. If people truly support a greener world, won’t they demand greener products and services?

    Oh, and since I’m clearly working for the hydrocarbon extraction industry, I need to plug a few things:
    1. Remove the insulation from your house. It’s just taking up space that you could use to store all of the useful products that you know you need to need to make your life complete.
    2. Don’t bother replacing the air filter in your car or house; the dirt clogging your air filter is helping filter more dirt, meaning that your engine and house will be cleaner!
    3. Programmable thermostats are for pussies. Besides, most people are probably not smart enough to figure it out.
    4. Not driving the largest, most fuel-inefficient car you can buy is a sign that you’re an unpatriotic pussy communist. You need that Suburban to commute alone to work every day, anyone who tells you different has a political agenda.
    5. Nuclear energy is bad for our children. Clean coal is real, and will keep America powered for generations.


  73. knarlyknight Says:


    Of course you are right that to the extent government funding relies on taxes (i.e. entirely relies on taxes) then, when one source of funding (economic sector) dries up without a corresponding growth in another taxed sector then the government will need to find more funding somewhere (raise taxes) or make spending cuts.

    As much as I’d agree with you about not liking new taxes and regulations, the only thing worse than that is an outdated and overly burdensome tax structure.

    If only government would reduce taxes as often as they raise them, then people might not mind so much when the taxation programs are kept current to effect reasonable public policies (as opposed to rampantfoxnewsjihadiSOCIALISM.)

    Hey, nice list too. I spent Monday ripping out plaster and wet insulation in the basement ceiling to track a leaky pipe in a 12 foot L shape, only to find that the pipe was not leaking but was simply the surface on which water from a sloppy dog dish upstairs was travelling. A full day lost ripping out then replacing a perfectly good ceiling, but thanks to your post I see the silver lining. I have more storage space if I ever need it…

  74. NorthernLite Says:

    I think if you believe the science behind climate change you have to support government regulating how much emissions industry can spew.

    We do the same to protect our water and soil as well as regulate the emissions of other crap into the air. If we didn’t do this cancer rates would be sky high and babies being born deformed would be a more regular occurence. But if you don’t believe that humans are causing damage by pumping CO2 into the atmosphere – and many do – then of course you’re not going to be in favour of government regulating emissions.

    Happy Thanksgiving guys. Go Lions! (lol)

  75. shcb Says:

    Good post Ethan, this is why like a flat tax at all levels of government, just tell me how much need and I’ll pay it, then if it seems it is getting out of hand we’ll cut some things. But taxing every little thing… we don’t really know what we pay.

  76. NorthernLite Says:

    The arctic is warming at a fast rate and if you don’t believe me, go visit Northern Canada sometime.

  77. NorthernLite Says:

    hey shcb, I’ve been meaning to get your opinion on this question:

    Would you rather taxes be raised in order to pay for a war or charge the costs to the national credit card, and why?

  78. knarlyknight Says:

    NL, I don’t think the answer to that question is in any of the rethugglekins talking point memos, otherwise shcb would have answered by now.

    However, it was a great question for him.

  79. shcb Says:

    Hmmm, good question, it really doesn’t matter. Taxes eventually pay for everything anyway. You don’t have to raise money to pay for things either; you can spend less in other areas. I could rephrase that question with how would you rather pay for a war, cut entitlements or medical research. Ultimately each of these line items should be justified on their own merits. How we pay for the entire budget gets into should we raise taxes or borrow or print, each of these its place and time. You should just ignore either side saying “how is the president (or congress) going to pay for this or that?” That phrase is usually just demagoguery. Usually, not always.

    I know you aren’t going to be satisfied with that answer so let me answer it without the above. It depends on the perceived length of the war, if it is short term, borrow the money, if it is going to be long term it should be added to the budget and taxes raised, or eliminate other items from the budget, my preference, taxes should never be more than 19% of GDP.

    Knarly, I’m cooking sheesh :-)

  80. NorthernLite Says:

    Thanks, that’s a pretty good answer.

    I ask because we seem to heading towards this debate in both our great countries. I know that Obama is going to request that Canada stay in Afghanistan past our deadline of 2011 (passed by Parliament a few years back). But at the point we’ll have been there for 10 years, spent more than 20 billion and we’re already in a big deficit position due to the downturn and stimulus spending.

    I think if we’re going to stay longer, taxes should be raised to pay for this. I think that it’s only fair that we start to spread the burden so that it’s not just soldiers and their families shouldering most of the sacrifice.

    Is there a similar conversation about this happening down there?

  81. shcb Says:

    Just a little talk about it, they are being really careful about it, floating some trial balloons. I’m guessing that they don’t think they can get a war tax and socialized health care through at once. Personally I don’t think it’s needed, if you look at how much we historically spend on defense as percentage of GDP we have never gotten very far out of the normal range even at the height of the war. It seems that we are getting into the maintenance phase of it and we will be there for decades. But we are somewhere all the time anyway, this is just one of the costs of defense. People are being deployed, ships are sailed, planes flown, it may as well be in the mid east as Germany. I really haven’t analyzed it in any detail, it is just a gut feeling.

  82. shcb Says:

    I’m not sure I understand your comment about the soldiers shouldering the sacrifice?

  83. NorthernLite Says:

    I just think if we’re going to go to war for 10 years (without any clear objectives) the entire country should have to make a sacrifice (eg. pay for it), and not just the soldiers and their families who have to make all the sacrifices (multiple deployments, losses). Yes, it’s what they get paid to do but I don’t agree with charging anything to the national credit card let alone a decade long war.

  84. shcb Says:

    I guess I just see those as two different issues, how the effort is paid for really has no effect on the soldiers lives whether the war is six days or 60 years. And Taxes will eventually pay for it all, it is just a question of whether that payment will include interest or not.

  85. knarlyknight Says:

    Yes shcb, taxes will eventually pay for it anyway, (or if money is created to pay it then we pay more via inflation, similar result except the poorer would pay more as they don’t have assets rising in value to offset thier higher consumption costs.)

    However, the essence of NL’s question, whether to raise taxes or put the war on the national charge card, is this: whether we should pay for it now or whether our kids should pay for it later. Those war costs and the accumulating interest will have (relatively) minor fiscal impacts on the country during our lifetime, but at some point either in our kids lives, or that of our grandkids, the piper will have to be paid.

    I’m with NL, pay as you go so that people better understand the fiscal implications of fighting wars.

    Passing most of the costs on to future generations hides the true costs from public scrutiny and then you get apathetic comments from wwnj’s such as “People are being deployed, ships are sailed, planes flown, it may as well be in the mid east as Germany.”

    I’d argue that launching 1000’s of ordinances at a cost of up to $1,000,000 each is an expense that should not be tolerated by taxpayers unless there is a legitimate threat that must be eliminated and there is no other means to do so.

    Also, if people and equipment are going to be deployed somewhere anyways, then surely there are more productive deployments than becoming enmeshed in eternal conflicts within Afghanistan?

  86. shcb Says:

    You’re right Knarly that it is much more expensive to be in a shooting war than in training mode, but I think we are in less and less of a shooting war and more in mop up operation, or at least will or could be in a year or two. Then we in that phase of our guys will be training in one place on another and they may as well be training in the mid east and doing a little fighting as well. I do disagree that there is something more productive for them to be doing, killing our enemies is the most productive thing our military does (that will wind up the libs). Again, if you don’t want to charge it cut some welfare programs, we spend a lot more money on entitlements than we do on the military. The crooks are meeting in Copenhagen for meetings that will cost the US 100 billion per year, is that going to be passed on to our kids too? That seems plenty to pay for this war.

  87. knarlyknight Says:

    Uh huh. Now it’s one to two years? Eight years ago things were supposed to be improving in the same time frame, or less i.e. in months. Iraq was supposed to improve in “just six more months” for years on years. Those kinds of statements have less than zero credibility. I’d have thought you’d be embarassed to say things like that by now.

    You misunderstood my comment about deploying armed forces, I was suggesting that there are far better target (things to kill) than the people in Afghanistan. But since you bring up killing enemies being the most productive use of your armed forces, well, okay I might feel otherwise but I’m not going to spend the time to research a good argument against that. Just do me a favour and make sure that they are actually killing enemies, meaning people who would otherwise be endangering our lives, rather than people who stand in the way of corporate interests. That would be a nice change. To the extent that you can call killing nice, that is.

    US 100 billion? Wow. What’s that going to buy? Do we get cleaner air, fewer hurricanes, more forests, stuff like that? Now if its spent on war, what do we get? (Besides an incredible devastation of of the natral landscape, burning enormous volumes of fossil fuel to move all the troops around, more martyrs and relatives vowing vengeance for all eternity and piles of rubble and orphans, and cool Fox news clips of explosions, besides that stuff I mean, is there any guarantee of a greater safety, of some guy like at Ft. Hood letting loose in a more civilian area (again, I mean)?

    At least we’re giving our kids good games to train them in dealing with violence , but perhaps a little more emphasis on non-violent conflict resolution might also be helpful, or even some real life examples from the adult world?

  88. shcb Says:

    “US 100 billion? Wow. What’s that going to buy? Do we get cleaner air, fewer hurricanes, more forests,” spending that money at Copenhagen isn’t going to get us any of those things either.

    “You misunderstood my comment about deploying armed forces, I was suggesting that there are far better target (things to kill) than the people in Afghanistan.” Who, the people in Pakistan?

  89. shcb Says:

    The more I’ve seen, the more convinced I’ve become that the global warming crowd latched onto the parallel rise in temperatures and CO2, and built what has essentially become a religion around it. For 22 years it appeared to have been a solid conclusion that they were indeed tied together. Then the inescapable truth of the matter made itself clear in 1998 that they are not necessarily linked in the fashion that was first thought. Entire professional careers have been built around, and on, the premise that man-caused CO2 raises temperatures, and it’s too late to turn back now for most of them.

  90. knarlyknight Says:

    “Entire professional careers have been built around, and on, the premise that man-caused CO2 raises temperatures, ” – that statement is pure bullshit.

    Ironically baby pants makes an utterly false premise about something that baby pants claims to be a false premise. The claim that CO2 increases do not bring golbal warming is is far from being established, except to baby pants and its religious followers.

    for what its worth, and admitedl it is not much, my “gut” tells me that the warming has been delayed while the ice melting, which has reached a critical mass in terms of the tipping point of climactic/weather conditions in recent years, takes place. I’d give more credence in forming my opinion/conclusion to the opinion of expert climatoligists than that of baby pants any day.

  91. shcb Says:

    “The claim that CO2 increases do not bring global warming is far from being established…” When did they say it any say it was? We are saying there is no clear evidence co2 is causing global warming, or it isn’t causing global warming. The science just isn’t conclusive, and the science we are currently relying on has been tainted.

    Since you don’t like Pajamas (just have to make a funny word out of it don’t you? When will liberals ever stop underestimating their opponents) here is a good article from another web site. It is written by really smart guys.

    Toward that end, I have a simple recommendation. Postpone the UN Climate Change Conference, scheduled to begin in Copenhagen on December 7. Give it another year or two for people to examine the science in the open. Otherwise, this will be seen as one of history’s great boondoggles.

  92. knarlyknight Says:

    “baby pants” seems to have worked. Despite all here telling you repeatedly it is not worthy,etc., you continued to post the links. Second I say baby pants, you amend you ways. So you see, and as Enkidu will appreciate, mockery seems to be effective.

    I’ll look at your new link and address your last post more fully later, got my hands full of urgent and ultimately trivial domestic issues… cheers.

  93. shcb Says:

    Ha Ha!!! look close

  94. shcb Says:

    Why would I care what you guys think about Pajamas Knarly? I have spent my life observing the human condition, watching conservatives and liberals and seeing which is right and which is wrong in the vast majority of cases. I have developed my own sense of worth and core values, and I find they align with the conservatives. Pajamas is a collection of very thoughtful and respected conservative writers. Most have published multiple books and have their writings distributed through newspapers and magazines. You think I am going to bend to your peer pressure? I didn’t bend to peer pressure when it was important to me.

    BTW I just made a new blog and cut and pasted Roger Simon’s offering from yesterday’s pajamas. If you look at the bottom it shows I posted it.

  95. Smith Says:

    “Most have published multiple books and have their writings distributed through newspapers and magazines.”

    This is also true for Stephen King. Should we accept his novels as sound evidence in support of someone’s position on global warming?

  96. knarlyknight Says:

    Yes, I saw that. Congratulations for wasting my time. It makes little sense to delay two more years when initial actions could commence and be adjusted as we go forward. The direction is clearly away from more emissions, so if cap and trade is initiated that cap could be maintained adjusted downwards (or if for some bizarre reason we decide more emissions would be okay then the capp could be raised) but the point is that at least there would be a market price for carbon emissions established which would help inidividual companies make decisions about whether or how much they can afford to pollute based on the all-in costs (public costs) rather than solely their self interest. After two years of developing the systems capacity for a cap and trade, or whatever emissions system is chosen, to stand on its own, then we can pull our emissions out of Afghanistan, Stan.

  97. NorthernLite Says:

    Sara Palin has a book and writes in newspapers and we can all see how brilliant you have to be to accomplish that.

  98. knarlyknight Says:

    Try this:

    The fish assessing climate change were swimming along doing their thing gathering plankton, diatoms and other data, reporting their findings and chewing over the implications amoung themselves. A consensus emerged that a migration to cooler climes would be good so most all of the fish began swimming in that direction. Then somebody (who is unknown) hacked a mackeral. Some blood dripped into the ocean. No meat, just some blood.

    The sharks arrived in fine feeding frenzy form but there was no meat just the thickly sweet tantalizing smell of blood. The ocean, how it boiled!

    Always keen to fix any perceived problem, the Obama dolphins sent a few of their wise old souls into the boiling soup to plead for calm and implore the thrashing sharks to swim peacefully along the previously agreed migration path:

    … to be continued

  99. knarlyknight Says:

    I thnk you and your Republican fiends are getting your country back. It looks like the Democrats are in the process of self-destructing, again.

    “With just one speech tomorrow night you will turn a multitude of young people who were the backbone of your campaign into disillusioned cynics. You will teach them what they’ve always heard is true — that all politicians are alike. I simply can’t believe you’re about to do what they say you are going to do. Please say it isn’t so. ”

    We the people still love you. We the people still have a sliver of hope. But we the people can’t take it anymore. We can’t take your caving in, over and over, when we elected you by a big, wide margin of millions to get in there and get the job done. What part of “landslide victory” don’t you understand?

    Don’t be deceived into thinking that sending a few more troops into Afghanistan will make a difference, or earn you the respect of the haters. They will not stop until this country is torn asunder and every last dollar is extracted from the poor and soon-to-be poor. You could send a million troops over there and the crazy Right still wouldn’t be happy. You would still be the victim of their incessant venom on hate radio and television because no matter what you do, you can’t change the one thing about yourself that sends them over the edge.”

  100. shcb Says:

    Smith that is weak even by your recently low standards. Knarly I think you have hit it on the head. We have a group that is now saying, “Just follow us, nothing has changed, we invented data and destroyed the evidence years ago. We subverted the pear review process and eliminated our opponents so long ago many on them are retired. Nothing has changed, the same people that said we were crooked years ago are the same people saying it today, the only difference is they have our words as evidence, but really folks does that matter? Our objectives are the same as last month and you supported us then, nothing has changed. “

    As to your MM piece, here is an Der Spiegel article that explains how he is likely to go even further to the right.

    There are many indications that the man in charge at the White House will take a tougher stance in the future. Obama’s advisors fear a comparison with former Democratic President Jimmy Carter, even more than with Bush.

    Now none of this is a shock to us, we knew his promises were unworkable, I said so repeatedly here during the campaign, get used to it we’ve only just begun.

    What will be interesting next is how his afterhour’s announcement of what he is going to promise in Copenhagen last week is going to be received in the Senate. He could have lost 3 or 4 more votes by trying to subvert the Senate’s role in treaty ratification. Might be interesting.

  101. shcb Says:

    Opps, you might need this,1518,662822,00.html

  102. knarlyknight Says:

    You are on your own with that “We have a group that is now saying, “Just follow us, nothing has changed, we invented data and destroyed the evidence years ago. We subverted the pear review process …”

    From what I’ve seen so far the issues about the stolen files are being blown waaay out of proportion by you and those you quote. The jury is still out, the ice and permafrost is still melting, and our continuing to emit greenhouse gases (deforestation, etc.) are not helping matters any and certainly are hurting matters.

  103. shcb Says:

    No, the science is in, remember? We’re done with the science, ask AlGore.

    I agree with you, the problem is now we have lost several decades of valuable data because of these fools, now we have to start over, and all the “experts” are suspect. And the whole peer review process in this area of science is suspect. What a mess.

  104. shcb Says:

    JBC and Enky say the science is in as well, hmmm, have those two ever been seen together?

  105. knarlyknight Says:

    “now we have to start over” and “we have lost several decades of valuable data” are utterly ridiculous comments.

    Global research is not a function of a single compiled data set. No matter how “important” the Anglia data is set up to be by pyjama straw man makers.

    As for the whole peer review process being suspect, you’d say that anyway unless there were a majority of your Republicans fiends on the review panels.

  106. enkidu Says:

    You know what really proves wwnj is a partisan tool? When he claims I think the science is ‘in’. I don’t think ‘the science’ is ‘in’. I want more study. But we need action now to prevent a very likely disaster ‘soon’. I think the costs of doing nothing far outweigh the costs of getting some sort of cap and trade or green revolution going. If it helps people take better care of their mother Earth, I am all for it.

    There is this thing, it’s called Google. You should try it sometime.

    But no, wwnj just needs a strawman to molest. Brilliant (claps very very slowly)

    One of the smartest people I know is a very liberal venture capitalist. He thinks the CO2 boogeyman is bunk (think of all the other changes as well, agriculture, other GHGs etc). We debate and discuss because we are reasonable people who are both looking for the truth and want what is best for our kids.

    His kids go to the Chinese American School in SF.

  107. NorthernLite Says:

    knarly, why are you and the young people you posted about above upset with Obama’s Afghanistan strategy?

    He clearly campaigned on escalating this war and actually promised to focus more attention on it. I don’t get it.

  108. knarlyknight Says:

    NL, I think we might have got Obama confused with Ron Paul. All we are asking is that Obama follow through and do what Ron Paul promised…

    More to the point, yea it’s weird eh, I don’t know. Michael Moore seemed to have originally thrown his support behind Obama for his opposition to the Iraq war and maybe just sort of assumed that this proved Obama was anti-war, period. The MM letter to Obama in the link I provided above provides a good overview of the sentiment and the rational for objecting to an Afghani escalation, it does not refer to campaign promises. Hmmm.

    Another explanation is that maybe the events of the past year in Afghanistan (to say nothing of the seven years prior to last!)have shown how impotent and fleeting the military efforts there have been, the upshot is that some expected Obama to personify his message of intelligent Change, not to evergreen Bush’s counter productive policies (e.g. effectively sanction torture, maintain governmng secrecy, extend the Patriot Act, get sucked further into Afghanistan, etc.)

  109. knarlyknight Says:

    Just saw this:

    Subject: CNN Breaking News

    — Obama intends to end Afghanistan war within three years, according to senior administration officials.

    … and all I can say is that he’s got serious credibility issues now, his word on other things is not exactly golden.

  110. knarlyknight Says:

    Question: When the Taliban agreed to hand over bin Laden to a criminal court (e.g. Netherlands or another country but not America) provided that some evidence of his guilt was presented, and Afghanistan was then attacked in retribution, or supposedly to capture bin Laden, or maybe it was supposedly to overthrow the Taliban (I forget what the exact excuse was just now), for how long would the American people have agreed to keep a sustained military presence in the country?

    I’d suggest that even back then three years would have been the very outer limit to achieve those objectives. Bush, and now Obama, have extended the commitment from the current 8 years to a 12 year commitment. And next year is another $75 billion spent in military operations there. His speach tonight better be a good one.

  111. shcb Says:


    I think most people in most countries lose interest in most wars after about 5 years, depending on how much they understand about the situation, which isn’t much in most cases. That’s not my personal threshold, but I’m not most people.

    NL, in reference to Knarly’s 10:06 post

    What Knarly is beating around the bush on here is that many people weren’t realistic with their expectations. This happens with people that are single issue voters or are zealots and it happens on either side. We Republicans see this every election on the abortion and 2nd amendment issues. We get a Christian and the anti abortion people get all excited that abortions will finally be eliminated, but there is only so much the guy can do whether he is a congressman or the president. Then they are upset when he doesn’t fulfill their wishes whether he promised to fulfill them or not. So many times those wishes simply can’t be granted.

    In this case people like Moore hated Bush, they didn’t look at the individual issues to see if those problems had better solutions, they simply needed someone to say he would do it different, didn’t matter what different was. These people, whether they be on the right or left also tend to read into statements what they want to hear, the politician says “I support the 2nd amendment” they hear “I support every man in America owning a fully automatic weapon and a tank in every driveway”. This is what is happening now, Obama was talking about ending our involvement in Iraq, but they heard ceasing all military action everywhere.

  112. knarlyknight Says:

    Is that what I was saying? My, I’m clever.

  113. shcb Says:

    and from what I hear, good looking


  114. Smith Says:

    “Obama was talking about ending our involvement in Iraq, but they heard ceasing all military action everywhere.”

    That sounds about right.

  115. shcb Says:

    Back to Climategate, here is a piece by a couple Coloradoans on Pajamas, read it. I think you will be surprised by one of the “deniers” opinions, he is just a nobody, here are his credentials:

    Professor Roger A. Pielke, Sr. is a atmospheric scientist who received his Ph.D. from Pennsylvania State University in 1973, and who is now professor emeritus at Colorado State University and senior research scientist at the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Professor Pielke was elected a Fellow of the American Meteorological Society in 1982, was elected a Fellow of the American Geophysical Union in 2004, and served as Colorado State climatologist from 1999 to 2006. Professor Pielke is an ISI highly cited researcher, which means that he is among the researchers whose publications have been most cited by others in his field.

    The real problem here is how the peer review process has been subverted.

  116. knarlyknight Says:

    Started to read the Pajamas link and it seemed reasonable until I got to this:

    PJM: Do you feel these revelations suggest scientific misconduct on anyone’s part?

    Pielke: I will defer to independent assessment of this particular episode. However, it is very important to realize that this is just a sample of what is a much broader goal of the leadership of the IPCC process to control what science the policymakers receive.

    Which seems to be slipping into the entirely usupportable opinion category. The data leak might be considered a “sample”, but it is not known whether it is typical or atypical and certainly does not necessarily prove any “broader goal of the leadership of the IPCC process…” That’s like, when the torture photos came out initially at Abu Ghraib, someone claiming that it indicated a broader policy of torture approved at the highwest levels of the Bush administration while the “smart” conservative pundits you follow were saying that all it really showed was a few bad apples.” Oh wait a second, that doesn’t really help my argument does it?

    I’ll read on, but if the interveiw goes muc more sideways then I’m bailing out..

  117. knarlyknight Says:

    It certainly should be possible to return to the original data and recreate (and add photographs of the observing sites).

    Yeah, that’s like what I said. My I’m clever.

  118. knarlyknight Says:

    As a result of the inadequacies of the surface temperature record as a quantitative measure of climate system heat changes, we have been advocating assessing upper ocean heat changes —

    well that would be a good change, but the surface temperature data is usually reported for what it is and people should realize the caveats with that type of measurement, after all, most of the earth is below surface, there is a lot of moderating mass below us. The ocean surface measure is a more averaged & thus less volatile measure than surface temperature data.

  119. knarlyknight Says:

    However, where they have failed is in preventing, in their leadership position, a proper scientific debate of the issues that we and others have raised. It is interesting and quite revealing that NCDC has still not submitted a comment in the literature on our 2007 JGR paper.

    Much like NIST’s reaction to Bentham scientific paper about the presence of high explosive Thermite in World Trade Tower debris.

  120. knarlyknight Says:

    A couple of good comments below the article:

    To see what is happening here, you have to distinguish between several types of research activity which are all lumped together as ‘Science.’ Traditionally, experimenters like Fermi, Rutherford, Carnot, and Roentgen would perform repeatable experiments which were of a scale that their counterparts could then repeat. Data were published so that anyone who was interested could do the same. There was public debate on the outcomes. This is still the way much of hard science is conducted.

    Climate Science, on the other hand, offers no repeatable experimentation, because of the scale of the observations. So practitioners are reduced to debating their interpretations of the same set of numbers. Data are not published so nobody knows what these fellows are up to. We are asked to accept their conclusions without the opportunity even of verifying their analysis. This shouldn’t be called Science in the same sense as the discipline the physicists, chemists, and biologists practice is called Science. The Earth’s climate is not scientifically accesible to experiment in the same sense that atomic systems are accessible.

    and this,

    14. Insufficiently Sensitive:

    Twelve days after the leak to the internet of decades of emails between the scientists of the University of East Anglia Climate Research Unit, analysts of the emails are pointing to evidence that those scientists to have been discussing, a) manipulating data to get their preferred results; b) methods of subverting the peer review process to ensure that skeptical papers had no access to publication, and c) working to circumvent the Freedom of Information process of the United Kingdom.

    Today, Britain’s University of East Anglia says the director of its prestigious Climatic Research Unit, one Phil Jones, is stepping down pending an investigation into allegations that he overstated the case for man-made climate change.

    To those of us who studied the scientific method prior to its corruption by politics, participation in any of those acts is damning evidence of abandoning science for advocacy. Serious examinations of such behavior must be held, and if necessary those participants should be stripped of their authority as scientists. For it is exactly that authority which has fuelled the movement to impose control by government, or super-government, body over the enterprise and economic activity of freely acting humans, as a restraint to a future global warming trend predicted by those very ‘scientists’.

    Argument from authority can lead to disaster, when the authorities violate the very method which generates our respect for their conclusions and predictions. Let in the sunshine, then, and begin full and public investigations …

  121. knarlyknight Says:

    It was a good read, but nothing particularly earth shattering…

  122. shcb Says:

    No nothing earth shattering, I thought that he has an interesting compromise of yours and my views on this subject. I have been reading and listening to quite a few of these fellows in the last few days and am saddened they have been so marginalized by being called “deniers” as in Holocaust deniers when nothing could be further from the truth, most of them are for reducing co2 emissions they just want the science to be real.

  123. knarlyknight Says:

    agreed, shcb.

    I’d like you to listen to this, no need to offer rebuttals as I know where you stand, but just listen and reflect on what is and see where this person stands (sort of anti-Obama now.)

  124. shcb Says:

    I think he was absolutely totally honest up to the 1 minute mark, then it was like a light switch was clicked and he turned demagogue again. I agree with him from 3:00 to 5:30 not so much for the rest of it. I think this is one of the best MM segments I’ve ever seen, I don’t agree with most of it but I only disagree slightly and with a few exceptions his opinions, though different from mine, are well thought out.

    Larry King on the other hand… Hint to Larry, Ike was a five star general.

  125. knarlyknight Says:

    Is “Ike” Dwight D Eisenhower? If so, I think I would have liked him… he’s the guy whose good-bye speech was a severe warning against the over-powerful military industrial complex, right? Don’t mind me I’ve got my dumb hat on today.

  126. knarlyknight Says:

    and don’t say you couldn’t tell.

  127. shcb Says:

    That’s the right one but military industrial complex as used as you have heard it is out of context like I imagine Larry’s example was. The story I liked was the he was a success because he figured early on being president wasn’t like being a general, he couldn’t order congress around so when he realized he couldn’t have them shot, he just went and played golf.

    He was a good old Kansas boy, Anybody that could get Patton and Montgomery to fight together can’t be all bad.

  128. shcb Says:

    I went back and re-read Ike’s farewell address, what I found interesting is he was warning of government grants affecting scientific integrity in the same section as warning of an overreaching industrial-military complex. Seems topical.

  129. knarlyknight Says:

    Topical yes, as in government funding for cience in the USA dried up a fair bit under Bush unless it was someway linked to proving Creationaism, Intelligent Design, or the Rapture? ;-)

    In Canada, I’m not aware of much science funding changes except some cutbacks in the 1990’s (and certainly big ones coming in next few years to recoup stimulus funding spent last year and pay for social assistance costs from the lagging economy); except there has been a significant shift in focus for universities to solicit and obtain research funding from corporations which has its critics because that directs science towards study of practical matters that have chance of a quick payback rather than pure science that may not result in development for years if ever (but pure science is often where the big game changing discoveries are made…)

    I’m getting tired of listening to myself here, so everyone else must be either utterly bored or bored to death. I shall lurk for a while.

  130. shcb Says:

    While you’re lurking read Ike’s address

  131. shcb Says:

    And then we have this just out today, a Dutchman by the name of Jaap Sinninghe Damste is saying that AlGore using Mt Kilimanjaro’s melting ice cap as evidence of global warming is just wrong, the ice cap was deposited because of an intense monsoon period 11,000 years ago, that between 12,800 and 11,500 years ago the mountain was ice free and we are nearing the end of another dry cycle. He came to these conclusions by studying organic biomarker molecules in the sediment record of Lake Challa, near Mount Kilimanjaro. The study gets into changes in weather patterns from the Indian Ocean and the like, boring stuff.

  132. NorthernLite Says:

    shcb, do you think privately-funded scientific research is any more credible than government-funded research? I’ll trust a report produced by a government employee over a “researcher” from a chemical company any day.

    Also, do you think the melting of our polar ice caps and rising sea levels is a hoax? Do you think this is not happening? Do you not think that the trapping of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere is the cause?

  133. knarlyknight Says:

    shcb, I’ll save you the time (as you’ve been speaking for me.)

    NL – This is what shcb thinks:

    Dependability of research by funding source? Depends on the power and agenda of the funder and the degree of arm’s length from the fundee.

    Melting of ice & rising sea levels a hoax? Not a hoax, to the extent that it can be demonstrated to actually be happening and not siply a function of natural climactic variation over longer time periods than conveniently picked by Al Gore for his graphs (i.e. aligning with 20th c. industrial revolution.)

    Greenhouse gasses causing ice melting (Global warming) ? shcb recognizes these man-made gasses as a contributing factor, but has not been convinced it is significant enough to warrant actions to reduce them. That’s not to say he does not think they are contributing, just that they may ultimately prove to be insignificant relative to other factors (solar intensity, natural emissions, etc.); or that eliminating the man-made solar gasses may not make any significant difference, or perhpas even that natural counter-measures will provide far greater mitigating effects (e.g. increased cloud cover reflecting more sunlight) than grand schemes launched from Copenhagen (cap and trade or geo-engineering pilot programs.)

    Lurking is so not me.


  134. knarlyknight Says:

    Err, it’s not “climactic” it should be “climatic”… I’d have been better off lurking.

  135. shcb Says:

    Well, let’s see, this is what I wrote earlier today but hadn’t gotten around to posting.

    The larger a corporation gets the more it resembles government.

    This is what I like about you NL, you ask a couple well thought out questions and we go from there. I think either government funded or private funded research can be corrupt or pure, which is why transparency is the key in either case. Transparency is easier to demand in a government run operation, which is why it is important to have government agencies and labs double check private industry when appropriate, as in drug testing. If you read Ike’s address he is saying that the day and age of a single man making a discovery is probably over and Universities having the funds to pay for these studies themselves is probably over as well, so government monies will be needed, that is just a fact of life, he isn’t saying we shouldn’t use the government money, we should just be extra careful that political pressure doesn’t hold sway to proper scientific process. I agree with that sentiment.

    I think the melting is a hoax from the standpoint that it is being exaggerated, not that it isn’t happening. If ice is melting in one area of Antarctica and growing in another, but the amount melting is slightly more than the area that is growing, we have a loss, no problem there. What I see is the AGW people are only giving the melting side of the equation (and yes some anti AGW types are only giving the growing side). Human Co2 emissions do effect global warming, the question is how much, I don’t think it has that much effect. That said, there are plenty of good reasons to get off fossil fuels as much as possible, but the reduction of Co2 emissions should be a byproduct of, not a reason for, weaning ourselves from fossil fuels in the normal course of business.

    Pretty darn close, kind of like an old married couple that finish each other’s sentences.

    Did you hear that AlGore has canceled a lecture to 3000 he was supposed to give at Copenhagen.

  136. knarlyknight Says:

    Your funding answer was good, and I liked Ike’s address, was surprised by the presence of the idea of government being the balancer of competing interests.
    Your melting ice answer needs to consider more about the total volume of ice, and whether the new ice formed is more fleeting (less permanent in structure) than the melting ice that has until now been there for thousand of years (it is). As for Co2, the impact on coral reefs alone should be enough to justify reductions.

  137. shcb Says:

    I was using the melting ice as more of a general example of where I do and don’t trust the experts than an analysis of the actual ice melting. But this is the problem with these individuals subverting the peer review process, now I don’t know if I have heard both sides, or really all sides of the argument. The problem is that these journals and the process was supposed to be the referee to decide if the people and the experiments and theories were legitimate. They still are in most other areas of science, but not climate sciences. So now the only place one of these ousted “deniers” (God I hate that word in this context) only have the internet to publish their work, and anyone can claim to be them, the person making the paper could be a janitor in Chicago and fill up the first page with all his fake credentials. What a mess.

  138. knarlyknight Says:

    Or a janitor at MIT a la Good Will Hunting

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