Monday, February 29, 2016

The Current State of Climate Alarmism - By Ari Halperin

America’s affliction with climate alarmism is shaped by two facts:
First, the main instigators have crossed the Rubicon and have no choice but to fight. How has this happened? Nature was one cause: the short-term natural warming in 1978-1998 was mistaken for anthropogenic warming through the confirmation bias. Natural cooling from 1999 onward has canceled the expected anthropogenic warming (which is small, beneficial, and caused by a variety of factors -- not just carbon dioxide release).
But other causes were entirely manmade.  In hindsight, it is clear that for almost two decades (approximately 1988 -- 2004) multiple groups of climate “scientists” have been fabricating results in parallel, unaware that others were doing the same. Mann with his hockey stick got the most fame, but he was just one among many. Computer models, descriptions of the carbon cycle, and even instrumental temperature records were forged to exaggerate climate sensitivity to carbon dioxide, to hide past climate variations, to argue that carbon dioxide release is irreversible, etc. The environmental movement, encouraging and encouraged by this perversion of science, made global warming its central theme. And so did many mainstream politicians. Al Gore was the towering figure among them. He used his two terms as vice president to gut American science, replacing scientists with environmentalists and lawyers (see the book Politicizing Science: The Alchemy of Policymaking, which contains essays by William Happer, Bernard Cohen, Patrick Michaels, Fred Singer and other scientists who experienced or witnessed this process). A vicious spiral developed: alarmist politicians handpicked scientists supporting the alarm, then they believed their claims, and so it went.  A hardened core of climate alarmism was formed from such politicians and their quasi-scientists. This core attracted multiple layers of followers, ranging from ordinary profiteers and leftist extremists to totally innocent duped believers………
The second problem can be illustrated by the words of former Senator Timothy Wirth, which he said no later than 1993: "We've got to ride the global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing, in terms of economic policy and environmental policy." Too bad he did not ask where the ride was heading and who was at the wheel. The result was that many liberal or left-leaning institutions, including the whole Democratic Party, hitched themselves to the hostile agendas of the UN and European Greens. Timothy Wirth became the Chairman of the UN Foundation. Unable to get off this hellish ride, some of his allies effectively became tools of foreign governments and NGOs. An example of such behavior at the highest level is the joint climate change statement with China, in which the U.S. promised to decrease carbon dioxide emissions, while China promised to increase them! This document was signed by Obama and praised by the formerly mainstream media as a breakthrough agreement…….

When their less committed followers, including Democrat congresspersons, Senators, editors of major media outlets, liberal billionaires etc., suspect foul play, the alarmist core throws a fit and demands that they stop thinking, acting, and most of all listening to the “deniers.” Amazingly, the followers obey, even though some of them are extremely smart and experienced. Apparently, these people do not notice that the so-called “climate scientists” have no scientific achievements outside of the insular “climate science,” and that whatever honors they received were given either by their non-distinguished peers or by politicized bodies (Heinz Awards, MacArthur Foundation Awards, etc.). The “scientific consensus” is not an argument but passive-aggressive acknowledgement of a lack of arguments, and their allegations of a denial machine, secretly funded by “fossil fuels,” are just conspiracy theories. The alleged 97% agreement is closer to election results in the former Soviet Union than to the opinions of actual scientists. 
The forecast is not comforting: the alarmist core has no choice but to escalate its assault on society, and to push its powerful followers (including the Obama administration) to more and more desperate acts.
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