Free Markets, Free People

Daily Archives: June 25, 2012


Climate change: About that massive ice melt … yeah, never mind

While “the science is settled” and name calling are about all the climate alarmists have in their mostly empty rebuttal quiver, real science continues to destroy their ‘settled science’.

I’m sure you remember all the doom and gloom emanating from the claims that massive amounts of ice was melting and would raise sea levels to catastrophic heights, don’t you? 

Yeah, well, it appears – shock of shocks – that those making those claims didn’t use science at all.  They apparently just kind of made it up if the American Geophysical Union’s latest research is to be believed:

"Previous ocean models … have predicted temperatures and melt rates that are too high, suggesting a significant mass loss in this region that is actually not taking place," says Tore Hattermann of the Norwegian Polar Institute, member of a team which has obtained two years’ worth of direct measurements below the massive Fimbul Ice Shelf in eastern Antarctica – the first ever to be taken.

[…]

It turns out that past studies, which were based on computer models without any direct data for comparison or guidance, overestimate the water temperatures and extent of melting beneath the Fimbul Ice Shelf. This has led to the misconception, Hattermann said, that the ice shelf is losing mass at a faster rate than it is gaining mass, leading to an overall loss of mass.

The team’s results show that water temperatures are far lower than computer models predicted …

In fact:

Overall, according to the team, their field data shows "steady state mass balance" on the eastern Antarctic coasts – ie, that no ice is being lost from the massive shelves there. The research is published in the journal Geophysical Research Letters.

You don’t say?  But, but “climate deniers are the same as Holocaust deniers”, “the sciences is settled”, “consensus”, the “vast majority of the world’s scientists agree”,  “IPCC”,  yatta, yatta, yatta.

Again we see the so-called science wasn’t based on science at all – it was based on computer models “without any direct data for comparison or guidance” which then naturally got the results the “scientists” were looking for.

I’d love to say I’m stunned, but I’m not.

We’ve known this was happening for how long now?   It’s just that the evidence just keeps coming out, doesn’t it.

If you’re still an alarmist that believes in the “science” that was put out in the IPCC report and an “Inconvenient Truth”, then it isn’t science we’re talking about anymore –  it’s religion.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO


There is no US national security interest in a Syrian intervention

I just wanted to make that clear as we look at the Turkish jet shoot down and the fact that Turkey has invoked chapter 4 of the NATO treaty:

That is the provision that calls on NATO member countries to “consult together whenever, in the opinion of any of them, the territorial integrity, political independence or security of any of the parties is threatened.” Turkey’s Islamist foreign minister, Ahmet Davutoglu, has announced that Turkey is calling for an emergency consultation of NATO members under Article 4 to consider a response to what it deems Syrian aggression.

Now the backstory, so you at least understand why this presents a possibility of NATO, and thus the US, being pulled into such an intervention (possibly willingly, I’ll get to that later).  It comes from Andrew McCarty at PJ Media:

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is a Sunni Islamic supremacist with longstanding ties to the Muslim Brotherhood, the world’s most influential Sunni supremacist organization. The Brotherhood is leading the mujahideen (called the “opposition” or the “rebels” by the mainstream media) that seeks to oust the Assad regime in Syria — dominated by the Alawites, a minority Shiite sect. Unsurprisingly, then, Turkey’s government has taken a very active role in abetting the Brotherhood’s operations against the Syrian regime, which have also been joined by al-Qaeda and other Sunni militants.

On Friday, a Turkish air force jet entered Syrian air space, and Assad regime forces shot it down. Turkey claims the jet “mistakenly” cruised over Syria, and that, by the time it was taken down, it was in international air space over the Mediterranean. One need carry no brief for Assad to conclude that, given the interventionist drum-beat for no-fly zones and direct military and logistical aid to the “opposition,” Syria rationally took the presence of a Turkish military aircraft in its air space as a provocation. Turkey insists it was not “spying” — that this was just an accident to which Syria overreacted. That would be a good argument if the regime were not under siege and if the Syrian and Turkish governments had not been exchanging hostile words (mostly, threats from Erdogan) for months. That, of course, is not the case.

Confused?  Well don’t be.  This is just another chapter in the eternal war between the Sunnis and Shiites and between the religious and secular.  Turkey happens to be an Islamic Sunni enclave (some want you to believe the country is “secular” but it isn’t thanks to Erdogan) and Syria is ruled by a “secular” Shiite government which, by the way, is ideologically identical to Saddam’s Iraq.  You know, the Syrian government headed by a man this US administration labeled as “a reformer” not so long ago?  Well, it’s “under the bus” time for him.

Turkey and Saudi Arabia – that would be Wahhabist Saudi Arabia (Sunni) – have been arming the Syrian rebels along with who, oh yeah, the Muslim Brotherhood.  And that has ended up seeing good old Al Qaeda show up on the rebel side, which apparently is fine with Turkey, Saudi Arabia and the Brotherhood.

More:

The Obama administration, from its first days, has cozied up to the Muslim Brotherhood — both Brotherhood branches in the Middle East, and Brotherhood satellite organizations in the U.S., such as CAIR and the Islamic Society of North America. Obama has also been quietly supporting the Syrian mujahideen: coordinating with repressive Islamist governments in Turkey and Saudi Arabia to arm and train them, and reportedly dispatching the CIA to facilitate this effort. But it has thus far resisted calls for more overt participation — calls by pro-Brotherhood progressives in both parties for something along the lines of what Obama did in Libya, meaning: without congressional approval and toward the end of empowering virulently anti-Western Islamists.

There was no US interest in intervening in Libya but we did (we used R2P as the excuse and NATO as the tool).  Syria, of course, would present orders of magnitudes more difficulty militarily.  It is a much more sophisticated military power than was Libya.

The problem?  Well while Obama may be reluctant to intervene alone, NATO might provide a perfect excuse/vehicle.  And the benefits would be fairly obvious electorally.  It would “change the subject” again.  It would make him a “war time” president (yes, technically he is now, but A’stan isn’t “his” war so he doesn’t quite get the benefit public support for his continuation in office).  And he could cite “treaty obligations” as a reason without having to go to Congress.

He also has the “good experience” of Libya as a sort of enticement to try the same thing again.

Turkey and Saudi Arabia make out rather well too.  They  get the crusaders to fight and die in their battle all so the Islamists can eventually take the prize.  The US and NATO would end up fighting to help put Al Qaeda and the Muslim Brotherhood in charge in Syria.

Ironic?  Uh, slightly.

Point: This is not a NATO or US fight.  This is something that we should stay as far from as we can.

Politics, however, will be integral to any decision made at this point, at least in the US. Domestic electoral politics.  What scares me is the possibility the Obama administration may conclude it is a good idea politically to use NATO to “change the subject” and make Obama a “war time President” hoping the advantages of that situation will make the difference in November.  And it wouldn’t be a unilateral decision, but instead receive bi-partisan support as Sen. McCain and other GOP members have been outspoken in their desire to intervene.

Call me paranoid but I find nothing in my analysis that’s at all infeasible or improbable.  In fact, having watched this administration at work, I consider it to be a completely possible scenario.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO


Economics Statistics for 25 Jun 12

The following statistics were released today on the state of the US economy:

New home sales came in at an annual rate of 369,000 in May, the best rate in more than 2 years, and well above analysts’ expectations.

The Chicago Fed national activity index fell to -0.45 in May from a revised 0.08 in April. Most production-related components declined, as did housing.

The Dallas Fed general business activity index rebounded to 5.8 in June from -5.1 in May, showing some rebound in manufacturing.

~
Dale Franks
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As Obama’s political troubles multiply, the “racism” excuse begins to emerge

Michael Barone notes something I’ve been watching happen over the past few months:

As Barack Obama’s lead over Mitt Romney in the polls narrows, and his presumed fundraising advantage seems about to become a disadvantage, it’s alibi time for some of his backers.

His problem, they say, is that some voters don’t like him because he’s black. Or they don’t like his policies because they don’t like having a black president.

Barone goes on to explain what that’s such a bankrupt excuse:

There’s an obvious problem with the racism alibi. Barack Obama has run for president before, and he won. Voters in 2008 knew he was black. Most of them voted for him. He carried 28 states and won 365 electoral votes.

Nationwide, he won 53 percent of the popular vote. That may not sound like a landslide, but it’s a higher percentage than any Democratic nominee except Andrew Jackson, Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson.

Democratic national conventions have selected nominees 45 times since 1832. In seven cases, they won more than 53 percent of the vote. In 37 cases, they won less.

That means President Obama won a larger percentage of the vote than Martin Van Buren, James K. Polk, Franklin Pierce, James Buchanan, Grover Cleveland, Woodrow Wilson, Harry Truman, John Kennedy, Jimmy Carter and (though you probably don’t want to bring this up in conversation with him) Bill Clinton.

Those are facts.  Those that didn’t vote for him or support him, for whatever reason the last time, are even more unlikely to support him this time, given his record.  If race was the reason for not voting for him in 2008, you’re probably going to find 99% of those type people in this bloc of voters in 2012 as well.

So if he loses, he’s going to lose because his support eroded among those who put him over the top the last time.  Some aren’t going to vote for him this time and others are going to support the opposition candidate.

Is the left really going to try to sell that as a result of “racism”?

Yes.  That is a developing theme.  The fear, I suppose, is that the white guilt the race war lords have tried to instill and exploit for years has been assuaged by his election and thus can no longer be exploited for his re-election.

Thus the push to reestablish the meme.

It’s all over the place.  Joy Behar and Janeane Garofalo provide a typical example.

How absurd has it gotten.  Well, the Congressional Black Caucus is always a good place to go to figure that out:

Angela Rye, Executive Director of the Congressional Black Caucus, argued that President Obama has struggled during his first term due to racially-motivated opposition from conservatives who dislike having a black president.

"This is probably the toughest presidential term in my lifetime," Rye said during CSPAN’s Q&A yesterday. "I think that a lot of what the president has experienced is because he’s black. You know, whether it’s questioning his intellect or whether or not he’s Ivy League. It’s always either he’s not educated enough or he’s too educated; or he’s too black or he’s not black enough; he’s too Christian or not Christian enough. There are all these things where he has to walk this very fine line to even be successful."

She said that "a lot" of conservative opposition is racially-charged, citing the use of the word "cool" in an attack ad launched by Karl Rove’s Crossroads GPS superPAC.

"There’s an ad, talking about [how] the president is too cool, [asking] is he too cool? And there’s this music that reminds me of, you know, some of the blaxploitation films from the 70s playing in the background, him with his sunglasses," Rye said. "And to me it was just very racially-charged. They weren’t asking if Bush was too cool, but, yet, people say that that’s the number one person they’d love to have a beer with. So, if that’s not cool I don’t know what is.

She added that "even ‘cool,’ the term ‘cool,’ could in some ways be deemed racial [in this instance]."

“Cool” is racist?  Who knew?  They’re essentially making this stuff up on the fly.  Racism has become, for some, the tool of choice to stifle debate and muffle free speech.  Don’t like what you’re hearing?  Claim it’s racist and they’ll shut up.  How “cool” is that?

By the way, speaking of “blaxploitation”, what would you deem this ad?

More examples of racially charged words you never knew about?  Well, consult the ever knowledgeable Ed Shultz for the latest:

On his MSNBC program last night, Schultz referred to Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), someone Herman Cain would seriously consider as a running mate, as "the guy who used an old Southern, racist term when talking about defeating President Obama during the healthcare debate. Below is the offending statement:

DeMint (Audio, July 9, 2009): "If we’re able to stop Obama on this, it will be his Waterloo. It will break him."

“Break” = racism.  Of course Ed Shultz, “racism” authority, was also the guy who edited a tape by Governor Perry of Texas to make a perfectly innocent remark sound racist.  He later apologized for it.

Chris Matthews is not averse to making the racism excuse, or at least, interviewing those who will:

MSNBC’s Chris Matthews asked former San Francisco Mayor Willie Brown if House Chairman Darrell Issa’s treatment of Attorney General Eric Holder was "ethnic." Brown agreed, and Matthews said some Republicans "talk down to the president and his friends."

Because, you know, lying to Congress and the death of two federal agents as a result of a horrendous operation has nothing at all to do with Issa’s inquiry.

Finally there is this nonsensical “correlation is causation” study that the NYT saw fit to print.

Oh, yes, the racism charge is fully loaded and ready to be used, no question about it.

Obama’s possible failure to be re-elected couldn’t be because he’s been a dismal failure as president and a huge disappointment even to those who elected him could it?

Nope, it has to be because he’s black.

Back to Garafalo and Behar for a wrap up:

“And I don’t understand why so many people are reticent to discuss race in this country. We are not a post-racial society,” she added.

“No, not yet,” Behar said. “Not in our lifetime. There‘s no country in the world that’s post-racial yet, I don’t think.”

“Until the human condition changes, we won’t be,” she added …

Actually, it won’t change until some among us quit finding racism as the primary motive behind everything that happens when there are much more plausible reasons available.  The fixation on racism comes from the left and is its fall back position whenever it encounters political or electoral reverses.  It is convenient.

But racism is an excuse, not a reason. This goes back to the almost religious belief on the left that it isn’t their message (or performance) that is being rejected, so it must be something else.  The means of message delivery must be deficient or the race of the messenger is causing a racist public to reject it.

It couldn’t be because he has been a terrible president or that the message sucks.

Nope, it has to be racism.

~McQ

Twitter: @McQandO

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