Free Markets, Free People

Pushing the AGW Agenda

Despite the increasing amount of skepticism about Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) openly expressed by climate scientists, apparently nothing is going to dissuade the Obama administration from its alarmism on the topic:

California’s farms and vineyards could vanish by the end of the century, and its major cities could be in jeopardy, if Americans do not act to slow the advance of global warming, Secretary of Energy Steven Chu said Tuesday.

In his first interview since taking office last month, the Nobel-prize-winning physicist offered some of the starkest comments yet on how seriously President Obama’s cabinet views the threat of climate change, along with a detailed assessment of the administration’s plans to combat it.

Steven Chu as "Scold Finger"

Steven Chu as "Scold Finger"

Chu warned of water shortages plaguing the West and Upper Midwest and particularly dire consequences for California, his home state, the nation’s leading agricultural producer.

In a worst case, Chu said, up to 90% of the Sierra snowpack could disappear, all but eliminating a natural storage system for water vital to agriculture.

“I don’t think the American public has gripped in its gut what could happen,” he said. “We’re looking at a scenario where there’s no more agriculture in California.” And, he added, “I don’t actually see how they can keep their cities going” either.

What the Obama team has not gripped yet is that there is no scientific proof (much less a “consensus”) that humans have anything beyond a negligible effect on the climate. As McQ alerted us to yesterday, there is not even a scientific basis for the claims being made by Chu:

We [Keston C. Green and J. Scott Armstrong] have concluded that the forecasting process reported on by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) lacks a scientific basis….

Since the publication of our paper, no one has provided evidence to refute our claim that there are no scientific forecasts to support global warming.

The lack of any scientific foundation isn’t about to stop political maneuvering, however:

He stressed the threat of climate change in his Senate confirmation hearings and in a video clip posted on Obama’s transition website, but not as bluntly, nor in as dire terms, as he did Tuesday.

In the course of a half-hour interview, Chu made clear that he sees public education as a key part of the administration’s strategy to fight global warming — along with billions of dollars for alternative energy research and infrastructure, a national standard for electricity from renewable sources and cap-and-trade legislation to limit greenhouse gas emissions.

He said the threat of warming is keeping policymakers focused on alternatives to fossil fuel, even though gasoline prices have fallen over the last six months from historic highs. But he said public awareness needs to catch up. He compared the situation to a family buying an old house and being told by an inspector that it must pay a hefty sum to rewire it or risk an electrical fire that could burn everything down.

“I’m hoping that the American people will wake up,” Chu said, and pay the cost of rewiring.

Chu, who is not a climate scientist, seems to working from the same playbook as our (former) car mechanic. He too was hoping we’d pay him the cost of some expensive repairs that could potentially cause serious problems if left untended. And just like with the AGW scare, a second opinion revealed that there wasn’t anything actually broken. Unfortunately, while we opted not to pay for the unnecessary repairs to our car, when it comes to the federal government we don’t get that choice. Chu’s “hoping” for us to pay for the Obama administration’s alarmism is pretty much the same thing as telling us the bill is in the mail.

Note also that while the L.A. Times story managed to find studies supporting Chu’s theories, and to quote parties in favor of his prescriptions, no mention was made of skeptics until the last paragraph, and that was reserved for a politician:

Global warming skeptics were not swayed. “I am hopeful Secretary Chu will take note of the real-world data, new studies and the growing chorus of international scientists that question his climate claims,” Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), the top Republican on the Environment and Public Works Committee, said in a statement. “Computer model predictions of the year 2100 are simply not evidence of a looming climate catastrophe.”

It’s a shame that the best the LAT could do for a view contrary to that of Chu and AGW scientists was to get a quote from a statement put out to the public by Sen. Inhofe. Maybe if they had had some basic research skills, they could have located and quoted from the publicly available Green & Armstrong Report. Or perhaps, they might have employed their vaunted J-School talents such as picking up a phone and calling a source.

The funny thing is, I distinctly recall being told over and over again how the Bush administration had politicized science, much to the detriment of us all. Why even the LAT reported such grave concerns. Whatever happened to that concern anyway?

Plus ça (hope and) change, plus c’est la même chose.

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8 Responses to Pushing the AGW Agenda

  • “I’m hoping that the American people will wake up,” Chu said…
    The American people are waking up and this administration is having an increasing hard time lulling them back to sleep.  Keep up the good work McQ

  • Wow! California’s farms and vineyards will vanish?

    Who cares? Their wine stinks and Mexicans urinate on their vegetable fields. Losing those areas will be no big deal to the human race anyway.

  • I don’t think people have accepted how badly the conservative movement has been beat and is near extinction or how predictable the political future is under Obama and how it is almost assured that the people who built this country will soon have little to no power.   By the next election cycle the democrats will neutralize  any remnant of conservative balance with open borders and sustain this power by very soon destroying all welfare reform and changing the country’s demographics.

    The worst part about this is people in the Republican party think they are helpless and should cater to the  very groups that will vote nearly 100% against them.  The newest Mexicans coming in have no interest in voting Republican by a 6 to 1 margin.  Better than a 100% moslem vote and 92% black vote, but not much better.

    It’s an emergency that’s going to take a guerrilla mindset (non-violent) to counteract. Solving the problem will involve being much smarter that the enemy because they have all the power.  Action has to be immediate, with individual physical and monetary participation and intervention rather than any reliance on government officials or the system to get things done. This pretty much  means that the situation is well beyond blogging , talking, signing petitions or writing a congressmen.

    I  have worked out how we can solve having our power taken away but the solutions are rather severe and will involve sacrifice. We need to start our own party for one of a  numerous things that need to be done, but this conversation should get back to the global warming article and how global warming can be used against liberals . One thing we can start with is getting a little smarter, you know deflect the weapon that is being used against you and if possible use it against the bearer.

    Global warming and people who say that having more than two children are irresponsible are a gift. Now we know liberals only mean that whites should have carbon restrictions and two children because 1) that is the only group of people who will listen to them and 2) they are deathly afraid that they may offend any brown person. We should be encouraging these people and get a new movement going within the liberals that traps them into closing down the border based on their two child and warming hypocrisy.

    After all,  most of us have already long ago figured out their hypocrisy on the subject.  If there is globabl warming, it is due to just too many damn people.   Anyway there are only so many resources in the world so it’s reasonable there is a limit to how freely we can reproduce.  And although there are lengthy diatribes by liberals excusing the third world and brown people entirely from global warming ( it  is already predictable how they will violently resist any attack on immigration using warmed over pseudo science such as this), how would  nations be punished that are having too many children other than blocking immigration from that nation?

    Encourage these liberals and then get a know it all, true believer faction to demand no immigration.  Is there any bigger carbon footprint than someone coming from a desert in Somalia and then driving an SUV for their eighteen kids and four wives and heating a house with government subsidized money? I know they’ll come up with some insufferable and racist excuse as to why they should be entitled but it’s a start.

  • When will people get it through their pea-brains that the destruction of the biosphere due to human activity isn’t an ideological issue?  There shouldn’t be 2 “sides” on the issue of whether we want the human race to be around 200 yrs from now.  What’s the point of splitting hairs about specific causes & temporal dimensions of global warming, when there is inarguably a long list of secondary effects, as well as other equally disturbing human-generated problems/trends that are certainly going to compromise the health & happiness of our children & grandchildren?  E.g. Deforestation, desertification, contaminated groundwater, biodiversity depletion, etc. etc.  Please read Jared Diamond’s COLLAPSE.  It’s not a left-wing manifesto; he makes a strong case for change entirely by examining historical data about civilizations that collapsed in the past & inferring the obvious about our present global condition.  

    I consider myself a liberal, & I support Obama admin environmental agenda. But I also agree 100% w/ “Jeremiah” that population is @ the root of most environmental problems.  We should not have an open border w/ the third world that allows increasing population to flow into the USA.  We should be promoting birth control, voluntary sterilization & abortion rights around the world  [OK, right-wingers, you can't have it both ways...if you don't like illegal immigrants, you can't tell everyone south of the border to keep having as many kids as they want.  How obvious is that?] 

    I believe we need to do everything we can to keep the earth livable for my grandchildren.  Starting yesterday.  My views are based on that goal in a logically consistent manner.  Therefore I support beloved causes of the green left: a CO2 tax [& by extension, higher gas prices that reflect the true cost of using petroleum], decentralized solar power development, energy conservation, etc.  And I also support a “conservative” agenda re immigration.  In order to be logically consistent w/ that position, I support restrictions on the “right” to reproduce.  Unlimited rights only make sense when the consequences are not destructive, on a societal scale. Human population has reached the point where it needs to stabilize, or better, decline.  This position leads me to another logical conclusion, which transcends the present ideological debates completely:  We cannot continue into the future w/ a world economy based on endless growth.  It is inherently unsustainable.  The world is finite; there’s no magic high-technology solution that is ever going to “solve” the ecological destruction caused by more people, more consumption, & more pollution, ad infinitum.  We can keep going down that road to inevitable, catastrophic collapse, or make changes now. 

    Like I said earlier, my guiding principle is one simple goal:  keep the human project going for as long as possible.  I don’t care if the means to accomplish that goal translate into “liberal” or “conservative” values — because ideological distinctions are irrelevant.  You don’t critique the grammar & sentence structure of someone who’s yelling that your house is on fire.  We can either protect & sustain the attributes of the earth that sustain human life & civilization, or keep bickering & refusing to change & thereby destroy or compromise those attributes such that human civilization collapses…& possibly human life disappears altogether.  The planet doesn’t care…it will go on just fine from whatever state we leave it when we die out…even if the only viable life forms are bacteria & insects:  time goes on, evolution continues, & humanity was just one of a zillion blips of possibility in the universe that fizzled out in the grand scheme of things.

  • In other news, Al Gore figures that if it worked for Hitler, it might work for him.

    Turning the kids against their parents.

  • James Marsden #2: California is the world’s fifth-largest food/agriculture supplier, and the US’ #1 dairy state.  If it’s agriculture tanks, there will be major food issues worldwide.