Archive for the ‘Environment’ Category.

All the silliness in the world is piling up…

So high that it’s even going to other planets.  From the BBC we have news of methane on Mars:

Scientists in Paris used a computer climate model for the Red Planet to simulate observations made from Earth…

“The problem is if we just take into account the photochemistry as we know it on Earth and if we put it in the model, then we cannot reproduce the model and that was a surprise.”

Surprise?  The model doesn’t match the data.  But gosh, we’re certain we’ve got all the physics in there.  Just like those earth-bound models that keep predicting things that aren’t happening.  But we know we’ve got it right.  Now, in the defense of those studying Mars, they admit there must be something going on they don’t understand, unlike our friends in climate science.  Wattsupwiththat (read the link first or the quote won’t make all that much sense) has a great take down of the missing hot spot in the tropics the modelers have been trying to ignore for a decade now:

Yet surprisingly, some proponents of global warming alarmism actually resort to this very strategy. “True,” they say, “the hot spot isn’t developing. But that is because the heat is being stored up elsewhere—it’s “in the pipeline”—and one day it will burst forth with even greater severity and vengeance.”

What can we make of that claim? Well, thinking back to Fred again, it amounts to this: We use our temperature probe in Fred’s darkened bedroom and we see a pattern like that in (E) above, corresponding to no blanket: Fred should be freezing! But actually, the heat has all gone into Fred’s body, despite the complete absence of the hot air which is the mechanism for making it do so. In other words, Fred got warmer by disobeying the second law of thermodynamics—in other words, by magic. Likewise, if someone says heat is being secretly stored somewhere by global warming, despite the absence of the very mechanism that does the warming, they are saying global warming is happening by magic. That is the harsh truth of the matter.

Bang.  Of course, the modellers of earth can’t admit they don’t know what’s going on because the whole global warming myth is built on those models.  Nothing in the observed data record leads anyone to believe there is anything going on but a small, gradual and harmless warming of the earth that has occurred many times before.  The models are the only thing that allows governments around the world to take over the economies of the free world and to tax the US exorbitantly.  So the models must be right, the measurements must be wrong and you and I are just recalcitrant luddites.  hrmph.

Earth to Environmentalist Wackos

We almost missed Earth Day! But hope you had a pleasant one … at least a less mournful one than these folks.

h/t to Un-Liberaled Woman (and Ace)

Classic indeed. Meanwhile, let’s all be sure to remember the man who founded Earth Day, Ira Einhorn, who loved the Earth more than he loved his girlfriend.

And a sidenote, from that gruesome story, “Arlen Specter, currently Pennsylvania’s senior United States Senator, was Mr. Einhorn’s attorney. He managed to get the bail set at the unheard of amount of $40,000 for the suspected murderer.”  This really isn’t surprising. Even 30 years later, Arlen Specter still disappoints.

So Now What?

First, remain calm. I’m not the first and won’t be the last to remind us that this is not the end of the world. We survived Clinton and Carter (egad!), we’ll survive this.

The Republican Party has two tasks, one immediate and one more medium term. The first task, set out some red-lines. There have to be some things they stand for and they better have them identified and well understood before January 20th because the Dems are going to try to hit the ground running. The Republicans need to pick the issues they will not surrender on and start getting their message and their talking points down so they can withstand the media onslaught and not come across like a bunch of idiots.

Suggestions:

Border Security. The Dems hate it, most of the establishment Republicans do too, but it’s a winner with voters and the vast majority of Americans. It’s also simple and easy to articulate. If people are coming across, so are drugs, criminals and possibly terrorists and weapons. Secure the border.

Missile Defense. It’s a winner with voters and it’s a good thing, a necessary thing in a world where Obama is going to be tested by every idiot with a SCUD and a dream, read Iran, N. Korea and from the looks of the saber rattling today, Russia too. Missile defense is already working and Democratic attempts to scuttle it should be shot down like a tumbling piece of space junk. Again, easy to articulate and understand.

No Action on Climate Change. In the twenty years since Hansen started his hysterical screed for world domination the globe has warmed exactly 0 degrees. Not a whit of warmth despite the massive amounts of CO2 we have continued to dump into the atmosphere and the extra massive amounts added by China and India. Do not allow the Democrats and misguided Republicans to ram through expensive and idiotic regulations to control a problem that doesn’t exist. Again, it’s a simple argument; the planet hasn’t warmed. The evidence does not support the extremist’s conclusions. Paint them as extremists because the only “scientists” who support the Gore/Hansen understanding of climate change are exactly that.

Others might include stopping any federal action on gay marriage (although I don’t think that will be a problem), defending the Bush tax cuts, defending the 2nd Amendment…

The point is to have several clear, easy to understand positions that Republicans in Congress can fight for. Senators can filibuster but they are going to need a game plan, a strategy to do it effectively and to fight both the Democrats and the media, so they have to pick their battles. Maybe we can’t make them drill, but we can keep them from taxing CO2 (a huge goal of the greens that would be a huge nightmare for all Americans).

So that’s part one. For part two they are going to need a new “Contract with America”, a statement of principles and specific legislative actions they are going to take to advance those principles. They don’t need that before January09, but they will need it pretty well defined before January10 because it will be a necessary component of their campaign to take back the Congress. The American people simply don’t trust the Republicans to act like Republicans anymore, that’s why they lost. They have a lot of work ahead of them to re-establish that trust and only 24 short months in which to do it.

So, no time to sulk. Let’s get to work.

The Ice Age Cometh

Mt. Turoa in New Zealand

Mt Ruapehu in New Zealand

A Mexican scientist (a geophysics researcher no less) says global warming (or, excuse us, “climate change”) is not to blame for a recent ice bridge collapse in an Argentine glacier.

AND, he’s also predicting a little ice age that will last for 60-80 years because of a decrease in solar activity.

Translated version of http://www.milenio.com/mexico/milenio/nota.asp?id=651680

Oh, and it’s a good time to be skiing in New Zealand.

But of course these are reports from the Southern Hemisphere, and thus inadmissable in a discussion of “global” warming.

Science, Ptolemy and Global Warming

Ptolemy was a Greek in Roman Egypt in the 1st Century AD. He was one of the pre-eminent natural philosophers of the ancient world and he is a wonderful example of what science isn’t.

Ptolemy attempted to address one of the major scientific problems of the ancient world (and the pre-modern world as well), the retrograde motion of the planets. Simply put, although the stars move in a great circle in the sky and the sun and moon move in a steady circle through this stellar background, the planets, those great wanderers, would occasionally move backwards against the stars. This was very difficult to explain in an earth-centered universe and even more difficult to predict. Along with predicting solar eclipses, this was one of the main problems of pre-modern astronomy.

Ptolemy created a model of perfectly nested spheres with the earth at the center and all the bodies of astronomy radiating outward. You can see a simplified version of it here. He solved the problem of retrograde motion with “epicycles” smaller spheres within spheres which would sometimes make the always perfect circular motion appear to run backwards. But the perfect, spherical motion was always in the same diirection, always at the same speed and always and ever circular.

Why circular and uniform? Because Ptolemy knew that the universe was perfect and circular. In modern parlance, that was the paradigm within which he operated, one greatly developed by Aristotle centuries before.

The problem was that his predictions were often wrong. He would be a little early or a little late with a predicted eclipse or the start of Mars’ retrograde motion. Every time he made a mistake, he would tweak the model a bit and add another “epicycle” to his model, one more circle within a circle to make up for the last mistake, anticipating the still additional adjustments to be made again and again down through the centuries until someone finally realized we weren’t the center of the universe, and though it might be perfect, the universe or at least the planets, moved in ellipses, not circles.

The observations did not match the models, the predictions never accorded with the results. But he knew the answer and so his model just needed a bit more tweaking to finally approach the perfection of the universe. Ptolemy and his followers knew the answers because their entire philosophical system was tied up in them. Their “theory of everything” was Aristotelean in nature, but had been adopted by the Catholic Church and all of Europe by the time the Renaissance was kicking off. The assumptions of Aristotelean physics were tied into the Christian world view; the perfect circle, the finite universe, the geo-centric universe, the four plus one elements. All of these things were tied together with logic and theology so that by the time Copernicus and Galileo showed up, to challenge the music of the spheres was to challenge the truth of scripture.

Yeah, sure, but what has this got to do with Global Warming? Just Read On McDuff…

Continue reading ‘Science, Ptolemy and Global Warming’ »

Nothing going on

Unless you count Obama’s ascension to demigod status. That being the case, there are some things I wish we all knew.

-We are winning in Iraq. So, shouldn’t our goal be to win? The Left’s default position since the invasion was that Iraq was another Vietnam (their memory of which is certainly questionable) and hence “unwinnable”. But since we’re, ya know, winning now, should we focus on finishing the job, getting the government of Iraq on a stable footing and leaving a country that can handle itself?

And on that, I am very worried about the plotting of Sadr and his Iranian leash-holders. It seems clear to me that with the defeat of his open armed militia, the Shiite Islamists are planning on turning southern Iraq into another southern Lebanon. The militia will go underground, create an alternative power structure and work to undermine the security and stability of the Shiite areas. They hope thereby to paralyze the nation of Iraq, keep it from entering into the modern world and keep the rest of the world occupied with these proxy problems so they can be left alone to pursue their nuclear weapons and delusions of grandeur.

So, I’m for working against that and winning the war. If it’s no longer unwinnable, how about we win.

-The Globe, such as it is, stopped warming about ten years ago. It is behaving exactly as the skeptics claimed it would and as the IPCC said it could not. Of course, the Warmists have done what they always do. They have adapted their predictions ex post facto to fit the latest observations. This is not new for them. From the beginning Global Warming has been based on computer models instead of actual observations. And these models have always been too hot. Given data from whenever to 1980 and asked to model today’s temperatures, these models always come up way too hot (10 degrees too hot before, now more like 2 degrees too hot). Faced with this, the “scientists” simply re-do their models (without anyone being able to see and verify that whatever they are doing behind the scenes in their progamming) and low-and-behold, suddenly it fits today, and gets warmer tomorrow. When tomorrow comes in cool again, we’ll just redo to program again, and trust me, this time it’ll be right. Never doubt the theory, we’re causing global warming.

The thing is, it’s not just their predictions that are wrong. Human caused global warming requires there to be a tropical warm belt in the atmosphere. There should be a measurable warm area in the air above tropical latitudes if CO2 is causing this warming, and it simply isn’t there. Weather balloons don’t see it, satellites don’t see it. It isn’t there. So like good little scientists, the Global Warming Crowd is claiming that the thermometers, which work everywhere else, are broken in this particular instance. They’ve got lots of reasons, but no facts. Because the theory predicts it, it must be there, facts be damned, reality be damned. I’ve got more to say about this nonsense later, but for now, I’ll just scoff at the “reality based community”.

-And by the way, we aren’t in a recession. And it is looking more and more like we won’t be. So there’s that.

If Bush could hammer those three points into the heads of the press and the American people before November, that would be a great service to our country. Not that he hasn’t already done a lot, but this one little thing would be really appreciated. That and fire everyone in the State Department.