Mod+ 234. GLOBAL WARMING, CLIMATE CHANGE AND OUR ILLUSION OF CONTROL

Alex

Administrator
Things you should know about Ross McKitrick who wrote the above article in the Financial Post:

He is a senior fellow of the Fraser Institute in Vancouver. The Fraser Institute is a Libertarian think tank set up in 1974 by a group of academics and business executives, concerned about big government. It received funding from the Atlas Economic Research Foundation. Some of the funding for this foundation comes from ExxonMobil. The head of this foundation Alejandro Chafuen was a onetime follower of Ayn Rand, the atheist free-market philosopher and writer. Fraser Institute has links with ALEC which is the mechanism through which big corporations hand the government their wish lists.

"There are also questions about how much the institute's work is shaped by its corporate funders. In 1999, the Fraser Institute sponsored two conferences on the tobacco industry: "Junk Science, Junk Policy? Managing Risk and Regulation" and "Should government butt out? The pros and cons of tobacco regulation."[2].

More recently, the Fraser Institute has led the campaign to deny the science behind and the dangers of climate change, with several of its fellows and authors signing letters to political leaders and writing Op Eds to that effect. ExxonMobil donates to the Fraser Institute for "climate change" work. Professor [[Ross McKitrick, author of the popular book that denies climate change Taken By Storm and known for his opposition to the Endangered Species Act in Canada, is also a senior fellow at the Fraser Institute."



http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Ross_McKitrick

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Atlas_Economic_Research_Foundation

http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php/Fraser_Institute


Where is the Smiley for *Disgust*?
what silliness! you respond to a fact filled post about scientific method with a lame, personal, "things you should know about him" attack.
 

Alex

Administrator
This controversial podcast creates potential new alliances or divisions among members. Which brings to mind the interesting question (for me): do you feel greater affinity for someone who shares your view (proponent or skeptic) on psi/survival, and has different political or policy issue opinions, or with someone who shares your politics but not your psi orientation? (Someone could set up a poll on another thread.) For me, it's surely the former, and I find I can somewhat easily forgive my friends' grievous mistakes on politics and policy issues ;). (joke again: in case it's not obvious)
agreed. for example, I have a lot of respect for Rick Archer and consider him a friend. I'm willing to forgive his wacky ideas on global warming because he shown me that he's a deep, clear thinker about spirituality/enlightenment. then again, I think it's impossible to completely overlook some of this discord.
 
The link you give is to something that is 12,800 words long, and that's just on the first page.
I wasn’t asking you to read the whole link. I asked you if you understood Marcott’s full quote in Response by Marcott et al. that McKitrick mischaracterized in his article. Given that you’re having trouble with this I’ll paste it for you below:

Q: What do paleotemperature reconstructions show about the temperature of the last 100 years?

A: Our global paleotemperature reconstruction includes a so-called “uptick” in temperatures during the 20th-century. However, in the paper we make the point that this particular feature is of shorter duration than the inherent smoothing in our statistical averaging procedure, and that it is based on only a few available paleo-reconstructions of the type we used. Thus, the 20th century portion of our paleotemperature stack is not statistically robust, cannot be considered representative of global temperature changes, and therefore is not the basis of any of our conclusions. Our primary conclusions are based on a comparison of the longer term paleotemperature changes from our reconstruction with the well-documented temperature changes that have occurred over the last century, as documented by the instrumental record. Although not part of our study, high-resolution paleoclimate data from the past ~130 years have been compiled from various geological archives, and confirm the general features of warming trend over this time interval (Anderson, D.M. et al., 2013, Geophysical Research Letters, v. 40, p. 189-193; http://www.agu.org/journals/pip/gl/2012GL054271-pip.pdf).​
 
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what silliness! you respond to a fact filled post about scientific method with a lame, personal, "things you should know about him" attack.
The guy has financial ties to the petrochemical industry, the tobacco industry, to a campaign against climate change and to big business- and you think that's not relevant? *Speechless*
 

Ian Gordon

Ninshub
Member
along with many others in this thread, seem to come from people who have not listened to the show (e.g. they never address any of the specific issues raised, just the general topic).
I agree with this part. I don't have a strong "side" in this issue - I'm more inclined with my uninformed biases to be on the "green" side, anyway feeling that humans likely have something to do with climate change and/or warming (I could be wrong) - but I think people should listen to the podcast before freaking out over what "Alex is doing" and "what are Alex's real views on this and should we lynch him". Then if they listen and still decide it's worth freaking out, great! :D
 
We have more in common than you may think.
  1. My country (NZ) also participated in the disgrace which was the Vietnam War because of our ties to the U.S. Thankfully we did not use conscripts here. I can remember going on many anti-Vietnam marches as a small child. Personally I believe Kissinger should have been tried as a war criminal.
  2. Our government has also passed legislation to allow our government to spy on us with greater freedom. And we have found out its been supplying information to governments like yours for years.
  3. I think you are right to be suspicious of your government. I am. I fear the way so few Americans seem to understand the actions of their country on the global stage. And I fear the way the rights laid down In the American Constitution apply only to U.S. citizens. But I fear the Chinese more.
  4. Yes, the chances of us getting our shit together and acting in good faith to solve the problem are slim - there are big financial interests at stake pulling the strings and muddying the waters.
  5. Unlike you I may be confident that our footprint on the planet is the largest. I don't know what information is the difference between your view of things and mine.
  6. I have been the General Manager of a business and I understand the need to operate in a positive cash flow environment. Ironically making money is something I was good at - I think it comes from being intuitive and able to act on gut feelings quickly. In business timing is critical - I know that only too well. I think I can also appreciate the financial value of the ecology of the planet and the cost to all of us of it turning to custard. I still have hope that we will find it within us as a species to find a way.
  7. Try not to give into cynicism even if you have every reason to because then the [email protected] have really won.
Best,
Jules
1. If you think Kissinger was a war criminal, then he should be added to a long list. One of the books that helped change my thinking around on our war state is John Denson’s “A Century of War”.

2. The spying is bad enough but the leverage that those spy agencies, run amok, can amass over every aspect of our lives by blackmail and other forms of intimidation is a much greater concern. These are the people we’d be handing over this problem to solve? For more information on that, including the idea that our current president was spied on for years before his presidential bid go to:

3. I don’t think it would make legal sense to have Americans give constitutional rights to people outside the influence of the US. The Chinese will not go backwards technologically. I think we could agree on that. So what does that do to your action plan?

4. I don’t get this preoccupation with financial interests running the world. Money is only a means of exchange. People seeking power, now that, I’ll give you. As a fiduciary of a company it’s your directive to bring in as much profit as possible within the legal parameters of where you do business. As a head of a household I do everything I can to grow my assets, reduce my expenses and expand financially as much as I can. That is only one aspect of who I am.

5. I don’t know what your 5th comment means? I can address how we might be different. I personally don’t believe in financial modeling. I don’t believe it works. In the same sense, I don’t believe in our ability to model what’s happening on the planet. The consensus and hysteria around CAGW “smells” wrong to me. All of my instincts are telling me that I’ve seen this before and it didn’t end well. I lived in Montana back in 1980 when Mount St Helens erupted. We couldn’t leave our houses for days because of the amount of ash that fell. I think George Carlin had it right:

6. If you look at the number of times people have thought the world was coming to an end, it’s in the 100’s. I have been dead wrong about many things in my lifetime. Some that really amazed me. I thought that we, the US military, should go into Iraq back in the days of hysteria around that. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.

7. I think my bigger challenge is not cynicism about the “bad guys”. I get frustrated that people who have been duped SO many times, line up and bend over for the next duping. These people couldn’t do what they do, if they didn’t have the masses helping to move them along. That is why I’m at this sight to see things that might help me see that I’m missing something. So far I haven’t seen anything that would inspire me to change my mind. The hysteria feels as wrong as a witch hunt.
 
her post, along with many others in this thread, seem to come from people who have not listened to the show (e.g. they never address any of the specific issues raised, just the general topic). of course, it's not my business whether someone listens or not, but as you mentioned in an earlier post, it provides an insight into how they approach the issue -- crusaders.
You have absolutely no evidence to support that claim yet you state it as if it were fact. Using baseless innuendo you disparage those listeners who happen to disagree with you. I have been a fan of yours for over a year now (still am) and continue to listen to your show. However, I’m extremely disappointed in your lack of scientific objectivity on global warming. Also, for you to characterize someone as “wacky” because they acknowledge the reality of what the vast majority of climate scientists already know is just mind blowing. It reveals a real disconnect on your part.

You even pre-frame the debate as “illusion of control”. Of course the implication of that title is that there’s nothing to be done about global warming even if true. In effect you’re saying…Move on, there’s nothing to be done about GW. It’s in god’s hands anyway so take the “A” out of AGW. That’s an pathetically uniformed and irresponsible sentiment and one that should be rigorously debated.

The first step in that debate is to establish the reality of AGW which is what we’re doing. Humans have a responsibly to not destroy our ecosystem. It’s up to us to do the right thing…not god, aliens, or anything else. What can be more spiritual than not destroying one’s habitat? To accomplish that goal humans have to cultivate a sense objective awareness. That evolution is brought about by the recognition and understanding that we manifest our own reality based upon our actions on this planet. We should therefore act accordingly. The only “illusion” is that we’re not in control -- individually and collectively. If we buy into that limited mindset then we’re not a worthy species and deserve to perish.
 
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Here are my 2 cents...
An honest post, and I gave you a like for it. I think you are like a lot of people who maybe haven't spent a huge amount of time following the climate blogs, but are generally aware of the issues. The only point I'd make re: solar power is that it only makes electricity when the sun shines (which it doesn't that much at high latitudes, particularly in winter) and so can't be a good and reliable power source. Nor do we have very effective means of energy storage for when it's dark. Solar power arrays take up a lot more space than conventional power stations watt for watt, and the panels don't last forever. Like windmills, you still need conventional backup power, and that can end up generating more CO2 than if you didn't have them at all. Solar panels are okay for private homes if one can afford them, but your average Joe probably won't be able to, and it can take decades for them to pay back the investment, by which time they may be at the end of their useful working lives.

At the moment, the most effective way to go if one really wanted to replace fossil fuels is nuclear power stations, and maybe Thorium-powered ones would be the way to go as they're probably safer than ones using other power sources. An increasing number of environmentalists are coming to this conclusion, but there's strong opposition from some others. In the end, some environmentalists are opposed to practically any really effective source of power: coal, oil, gas, or nuclear. Take it to its logical conclusion, and the only solution is going back to the dark ages and losing a large proportion of the human population. Which some actually say in so many words they want, by the way.

Maybe something unexpected will turn up, like practical LENR (cold fusion) devices, and be able to cut the Gordian knot. Meanwhile, the thing that most reduces CO2 emissions apart from nuclear power is fracked gas, but of course many environmentalists are against fracking, too. Hey-ho.
 
I wasn’t asking you to read the whole link. I asked you if you understood Marcott’s full quote in Response by Marcott et al. that McKitrick mischaracterized in his article. Given that you’re having trouble with this I’ll paste it for you below:

Q: What do paleotemperature reconstructions show about the temperature of the last 100 years?

A: Our global paleotemperature reconstruction includes a so-called “uptick” in temperatures during the 20th-century. However, in the paper we make the point that this particular feature is of shorter duration than the inherent smoothing in our statistical averaging procedure, and that it is based on only a few available paleo-reconstructions of the type we used. Thus, the 20th century portion of our paleotemperature stack is not statistically robust, cannot be considered representative of global temperature changes, and therefore is not the basis of any of our conclusions. Our primary conclusions are based on a comparison of the longer term paleotemperature changes from our reconstruction with the well-documented temperature changes that have occurred over the last century, as documented by the instrumental record. Although not part of our study, high-resolution paleoclimate data from the past ~130 years have been compiled from various geological archives, and confirm the general features of warming trend over this time interval (Anderson, D.M. et al., 2013, Geophysical Research Letters, v. 40, p. 189-193; http://www.agu.org/journals/pip/gl/2012GL054271-pip.pdf).​
Yeah, seen that before, Tujays. Trouble is, it only confirms what McKitrick said. What I want is your own words on why McKitrick is wrong in saying that the C20th uptick is an artefact of the arbitrary redating of cores, and that, had McIntyre not uncovered the sleight of hand, Marcott et. al would still be bigging up the new hockey stick, which is as bogus as the last one. Why? Because it grafts on the instrumental record rather than independently replicating it through use of the cores. Prove to me that is incorrect, and don't just drop links to obfuscation and handwaving.
 
Frankly, I don't give a toss about the politics except insofar as bad policy decisions are affecting human well-being. Pretty much all of the main political parties in the West are totally bought into the hype and I loathe them all equally for that.

If anyone wants to argue with me over it, bring it on and be prepared for a stand-up fight; . . . .
Let's recap, shall we . . . ?
I say:
. . . . your skeptical position may be predicated on a mistrust of the government and a fear of conspiratorial forces beyond your control. . .​
And YOU say:
. . . . that you loathe all the political parties and that they've all bought into the hype and they're all feeding at the same trough. . . .​

(and I'm not sure how these two observations are different in practice.)

You disavow membership in the Tea Party, and I believe you're sincere; but talking points from their web sites are sprinkled throughout your posts. (like you, I spend some time in the opposition's camp)

You condemn the political progressive ideology as the worst possible thing for poor people, and then you recognize and extol the personal benefits you are entitled to - benefits that are a direct result of progressive ideology.

Michael, you are certainly a unique individual, but that's all I know for sure. . . .
I know you're not a troll, but you'll have to forgive my continuing difficulty in deciphering your legitimate motivation to reject a move toward energy independence. Perhaps you can resolve this dilemma by telling me how exactly you came to be certain that a concerted public effort to locate a replacement for fossil fuels, will somehow harm the poor and politically powerless. As a life-long dedicated advocate for the working poor, I am very genuinely interested in hearing your advice.









 
1. If you think Kissinger was a war criminal, then he should be added to a long list. One of the books that helped change my thinking around on our war state is John Denson’s “A Century of War”.
I've heard of the book but not read it. But yes, there's a long list in my view as well. Try reading "Other People's Wars - New Zealand in Afghanistan, Iraq and the War on Terror. by Nicky Hagar.

2. The spying is bad enough but the leverage that those spy agencies, run amok, can amass over every aspect of our lives by blackmail and other forms of intimidation is a much greater concern. These are the people we’d be handing over this problem to solve? For more information on that, including the idea that our current president was spied on for years before his presidential bid go to:
Agreed

3. I don’t think it would make legal sense to have Americans give constitutional rights to people outside the influence of the US.
Look what American citizens did to non-American citizens in Guantanamo Bay. Look what they do to non-American citizens all over the world - like in Vietnam and Iraq and you name it. Clinton dropped a bomb on the only place in Africa which made anti-malaria drugs.

The Chinese will not go backwards technologically. I think we could agree on that. So what does that do to your action plan?
Agreed. They are investing big time in alternative fuels at the moment but coal is still huge. My action plan is not to shrug my shoulders and say WTF.

4. I don’t get this preoccupation with financial interests running the world. Money is only a means of exchange. People seeking power, now that, I’ll give you. As a fiduciary of a company it’s your directive to bring in as much profit as possible within the legal parameters of where you do business. As a head of a household I do everything I can to grow my assets, reduce my expenses and expand financially as much as I can. That is only one aspect of who I am.
Money enables some people who want power to buy it. You don't want power so you are not a problem. Big businesses are good in that they grow the economy and provide jobs and keep the wheels turning. What big businesses sometimes do in the backroom is a problem. It's not the money that's the problem, its the ethics and principles some people work by I have problems with.
5. I don’t know what your 5th comment means? I can address how we might be different. I personally don’t believe in financial modeling. I don’t believe it works. In the same sense, I don’t believe in our ability to model what’s happening on the planet. The consensus and hysteria around CAGW “smells” wrong to me. All of my instincts are telling me that I’ve seen this before and it didn’t end well. I lived in Montana back in 1980 when Mount St Helens erupted. We couldn’t leave our houses for days because of the amount of ash that fell. I think George Carlin had it right:
The comment was just an acknowledgement of a point of difference. I got to 1:42 in the video and that is as much as I could stand.

6. If you look at the number of times people have thought the world was coming to an end, it’s in the 100’s. I have been dead wrong about many things in my lifetime. Some that really amazed me. I thought that we, the US military, should go into Iraq back in the days of hysteria around that. I couldn’t have been more wrong. Fool me once, shame on you; fool me twice, shame on me.
Ok, you were burnt. Maybe I've had more luck in backing the right horses. What if Churchill had continued the appeasement policy with Hitler though? What if Mandela didn't try to make a difference? Doing something as opposed to turning your back sometimes produces dividends. But yeah, I get you don't trust anybody. I don't blame you.

7. I think my bigger challenge is not cynicism about the “bad guys”. I get frustrated that people who have been duped SO many times, line up and bend over for the next duping. These people couldn’t do what they do, if they didn’t have the masses helping to move them along
.
Agreed. In my life I have rarely supported the view of the majority, on the contrary. I have seen mob-mentality and how it operates in so many ways. But I have also seen how my minority viewpoint has become the majority viewpoint in time.

That is why I’m at this sight to see things that might help me see that I’m missing something. So far I haven’t seen anything that would inspire me to change my mind. The hysteria feels as wrong as a witch hunt.
Well I can't argue with that. If at some stage further down the line you do change your mind, I would be interested.

All the best,
Jules

P.S. My action plan is to build bridges. That's why I'm here trying to build one with you.
 
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what silliness! you respond to a fact filled post about scientific method with a lame, personal, "things you should know about him" attack.
When an academic is asked to comment in the public media on an issue of public concern it is their professional responsibility to declare any conflicts of interest. I was not making a personal attack against Ross McKitrick as you claim, I was pointing out that he has a very obvious conflict of interest which should have been declared because it pertains to the academic independence of the opinion stated.


Like you said in the pod-cast Alex - you have to be careful who you listen to.
 
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Let's recap, shall we . . . ?
I say:
. . . . your skeptical position may be predicated on a mistrust of the government and a fear of conspiratorial forces beyond your control. . .​
And YOU say:
. . . . that you loathe all the political parties and that they've all bought into the hype and they're all feeding at the same trough. . . .​

(and I'm not sure how these two observations are different in practice.)

You disavow membership in the Tea Party, and I believe you're sincere; but talking points from their web sites are sprinkled throughout your posts. (like you, I spend some time in the opposition's camp)

You condemn the political progressive ideology as the worst possible thing for poor people, and then you recognize and extol the personal benefits you are entitled to - benefits that are a direct result of progressive ideology.

Michael, you are certainly a unique individual, but that's all I know for sure. . . .
I know you're not a troll, but you'll have to forgive my continuing difficulty in deciphering your legitimate motivation to reject a move toward energy independence. Perhaps you can resolve this dilemma by telling me how exactly you came to be certain that a concerted public effort to locate a replacement for fossil fuels, will somehow harm the poor and politically powerless. As a life-long dedicated advocate for the working poor, I am very genuinely interested in hearing your advice.
Again, I'm a Brit. We don't have the Tea Party in England. I don't go to Tea Party sites, and I don't have much of a clue about them apart from the fact that they're right-wing. I speak my own mind, and despise the way all major western political parties have bought into the CAGW meme. Please stop projecting your own mindset and terminology onto me. As to how the poor are affected, I've already given examples. You said you'd read my posts, but I don't think you can have. We're done here.
 
Look what American citizens did to non-American citizens in Guantanamo Bay. Look what they do to non-American citizens all over the world - like in Vietnam and Iraq and you name it. Clinton dropped a bomb on the only place in Africa which made anti-malaria drugs.
Ok, I see what you're saying. Yes wouldn't you think we would just acknowledge human rights at least? My personal opinion is that we got off the rails when we took such a strong document and concept, The Constitution and then continued slavery and women's suffrage.

Ok, you were burnt. Maybe I've had more luck in backing the right horses. What if Churchill had continued the appeasement policy with Hitler though? What if Mandela didn't try to make a difference? Doing something as opposed to turning your back sometimes produces dividends. But yeah, I get you don't trust anybody. I don't blame you.
Yes I've been burned, that we have established. I don't think others are aware of how many times they have been burned, so does that mean they haven't? A great example of this is some of the other historical viewpoints on WWII. Here's a number of links to some John Denson interviews were he introduces the concepts of historical fabrications, including Churchill: http://www.lewrockwell.com/author/john-v-denson/ (I realize George Carlin is a big pill to swallow but I think you'll enjoy this - just try a couple minutes). So in this example I would introduce the idea that maybe we were all burned by WWII, actually even WWI which created WWII. I'm not saying my viewpoint is fact but if it were, those people who believe it was the right thing to do got burned, but never knew it.

Well I can't argue with that. If at some stage further down the line you do change your mind, I would be interested.
I'd be interested as well. So if one of us changes our viewpoint, the other would love to hear.

P.S. My action plan is to build bridges. That's why I'm here trying to build one with you.
We are definitely in agreement here. I deeply respect your willingness to reach through the energy that might keep us separate and close that gap. I believe that's where the magic is. No need to build a bridge with me Jules, it's already there.

Best back at you,

Matt
 
What I want is your own words on why McKitrick is wrong in saying that the C20th uptick is an artefact of the arbitrary redating of cores
I have already stated it in my "own words".

From my previous post:

"…he’s simply stating that they used more recent data from the instrumental record for the 20th century portion." – Tujays​

I based the above directly from Marcott’s quote which you claim you’ve read. Marcott et al relied on instrument data, not cores, for the uptick. In other words, the 'redating' issue is a red herring.

From the Marcott quote that I posted above:

"Our primary conclusions are based on a comparison of the longer term paleotemperature changes from our reconstruction with the well-documented temperature changes that have occurred over the last century, as documented by the instrumental record..." Marcott

"Although not part of our study, high-resolution paleoclimate data from the past ~130 years have been compiled from various geological archives..." Marcott​
 
I have already stated it in my "own words".

From my previous post:

"…he’s simply stating that they used more recent data from the instrumental record for the 20th century portion." – Tujays​
Which is exactly the problem and doesn't explain in your own words why what McKitrick said is wrong:

The authors now defend their original claims by saying that if you graft a 20th-century thermometer record onto the end of their proxy chart, it exhibits an upward trend much larger in scale than that observed in any 100-year interval in their graph, supporting their original claims. But you can’t just graft two completely different temperature series together and draw a conclusion from the fact that they look different.

The modern record is sampled continuously and as a result is able to register short-term trends and variability. The proxy model, by the authors’ own admission, is heavily smoothed and does not pick up fluctuations below a time scale of several centuries. So the relative smoothness in earlier portions of their graph is not proof that variability never occurred before. If it had, their method would likely not have spotted it.

In fact, it explains why McKitrick is right and that the paper didn't show what it originally purported to show, which was that the proxy record independently replicated the C20th instrumental temperature record. Again, please explain to me in your own words how McKitrick is wrong.
 

Alex

Administrator
You have absolutely no evidence to support that claim yet you state it as if it were fact.
ok, but since you and other posters have never posted before it's hard to tell. I'm certainly willing to accept that you have been a longtime listener.

Using baseless innuendo you disparage those listeners who happen to disagree with you.
come on... just folks who have never posted before and make dozens of posts that never reference the main thrust of the show.

The only “illusion” is that we’re not in control -- individually and collectively. If we buy into that limited mindset then we’re not a worthy species and deserve to perish.
we disagree.
 

Ian Gordon

Ninshub
Member
come on... just folks who have never posted before and make dozens of posts that never reference the main thrust of the show.
I can understand why Alex got his impression. I had it too not only because of the bolded above, but also because two members posted that they hadn't listened to the podcast (one of them edited a post afterwards he/she had made to that effect). I bear these people no ill will, but it explains why I also got that impression.
 
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