Tuesday, January 28, 2014


When Gun Laws Don't Work, the Left Thinks We Need More Gun Laws

Perhaps you heard of the recent tragic shooting in a Maryland mall which took the lives of two, apparently random innocents before the shooter self-executed. The shooter was a 19 year old skateboarder who had no criminal record and used a shotgun which he had purchased legally a month before the shooting. I'm willing to bet a substantial sum that if he had registered to vote he was registered as a Democrat. Here is a typical lefty response to the senseless crime from Dana Milbank at the Washington Post:

If you think it’ll be a month of Sundays before this country gets serious about gun violence, you’re probably underestimating.

It’s already been nearly three months of Mondays — 77, to be exact — and we’re not making progress.

No progress, huh? The shooting took place in Maryland.

Maryland was already a state that heavily infringed on gun ownership. After the tragedy in Newtown, the Democrats in the state legislature passed several new bills which were called America's toughest new gun control laws. The bills banned the sale of 45 named, semi-automatic firearms which have sufficient cosmetic design features to meet the bill's arbitrary and historically inaccurate definition of 'assault weapon', banned the sale of box magazines with a capacity greater than ten rounds, required that handgun purchasers be fingerprinted and pass a training class in order to obtain a handgun license, (and they were already registering all handguns sold) and required much more invasive-to-privacy forms to be used to purchase firearms, which forms barred persons who had been involuntarily committed to a mental health institution from possessing firearms (which prohibition was already a federal law). Democrat Governor O'Malley, who was all smiles that day, bragged about the expected efficacy of these laws against mass shootings when he signed them last May. He said, inter alia,

"We've chosen to take action by advancing the strategies that work to save lives." 

Perhaps not as efficacious as hoped. The new laws didn't work and no lives were saved.

We already have laws against mass shootings. They're called criminal statutes, specifically the murder and aggravated assault statutes. If the shooters are not going to obey those statutes, which can carry severe prison sentences, the little ones about how mean your gun can look and how many bullets can you fire before reloading (in a few seconds) are not going to do a thing to stop them. However the worthless laws will punish the law abiding shooting enthusiasts, which I guess is the real but unstated point of the new legislation.



Let Me Fix That Headline for You

This is the headline in an opinion piece in USA Today: Downsize the Super Rich

How about: Let's Do Away with Freedom?


Monday, January 27, 2014


Thought of the Day

The fossil fuel industry is not taking a safe climate and making it dangerous. They are taking a dangerous climate and making it safe.

Alex Epstein


Sunday, January 26, 2014


Feminist Hero Wendy Davis

The right in this country, and right thinking people of any political stripe, are not down on Candidate for Texas Governor Wendy Davis because she is a woman, or because she is a single mom, or because she supports a woman's right to choose to dismember her viable baby in utero (well, some are down on her for that). We're down on her because she lied about herself--lied about essential details of her essential appeal and raison d'être for being in the race to replace Gov. Rick Perry.

The left is rallying to her defense but missing the point. Some play the "men do it all the time" defense from Adam's Rib (still wrong to do) while others blame the criticism on other forms of sexism, such as right wing knuckle-draggers can't stand strong, independent women (yeah, we RWKD really hate us some Sarah Palin, Michele Bachmann, Mia Love, Nikki Haley, Jan Brewer, Susana Martinez, Mary Fallin and Cathy McMorris Rogers, among others) . But let's look at the short bio Ms. Davis first put forward but has since erased.

Like any true Texan, Wendy Davis has taken on her share of tough fights.
Raised by a single mother with a sixth grade education, Wendy began working after school at age 14 to help support her mom and three siblings. By 19, she was on her way to becoming a single mother, working two jobs just to make ends meet.
Knowing that education was the only path to creating a better life for her young daughter, Wendy enrolled at Tarrant County Community College. After two years, she transferred to Texas Christian University. With the help of academic scholarships, student loans, and state and federal grants, Wendy became the first person in her family to earn a bachelor’s degree, graduated first in her class, and went on to Harvard Law School.
I won't bother with the little details wrong, but I will point out the major flaw in the narrative: Ms. Davis was not single at the crucial times, and in the end, not much of a mother. And don't start with if a man left his wife no one would bat an eye. A man would not trumpet his leaving his wife as an important biographical feature but would rightly think of it as a failure and a shame. Two prominent Republicans, Gingrich and McCain, received a ton of criticism for abandoning wives, and a lot of it came from fellow Republicans.

What's really bad about the unraveling of the single mother bio is Ms. Davis' reaction to the article that pointed out her lies. She lies again, first generally and the specifically. Her campaign lied too, saying that the reporter was doing his work at the direction of her opponent's campaign. Her campaign said they had proof of that. I'll skip over the common liberal whine of "they're attacking me with the truth" and say that the reporter who first showed the fibs and omissions had nothing to do with the campaign of her opposition, Attorney General Greg Abbott. I'll also skip over the pathetic attempt of Ms. Davis to compare her middle class married and supported "struggle" with the real struggle of Mr. Abbott, paralyzed by a falling tree as he jogged by 30 years ago. Not good on Ms. Davis' part.

I had seen an old picture of her showing a frizzy haired brunette, with not that attractive a face and a modest bosom. Now she's pretty hot and stacked. I was going to ask if plastic surgery to make oneself more attractive to the opposite sex was a modern feminist value and show the before and after photos. I've decided not to do this as it's not a very nice thing to do, it's not a very important issue in this story (although the irony of the successful physical makeover versus the failed makeover of the bio is kinda sweet) and I can't find that old photo on the web anymore.

(h/t John Hinderaker)


Saturday, January 25, 2014


Thought of the Day

You could simply feel their confidence that everyone should love this plucky hero from Texas. Even more palpable was their certainty that everyone they know feels the same way. MSNBC was a veritable 24-hour groupthink-cam in which we got to watch bunkered, insular, and smug MSMers assume everyone shares their pieties and preferences. “Isn’t she just fantastic! Who couldn’t love such a pretty lady who’s a spiffy dresser in sensible shoes? She went to Harvard! She’s a mom! And what a mom! She’s fighting to make sure that women can have their unborn babies dismembered in utero right up until the minute before delivery! Why, it’s the feel-good story of the year!”

Jonah Goldberg, on Wendy Davis and a new German word, for me, Fremdschämen, embarrassment for another who should be embarrassed for him or herself but isn't. German words can be long, but they pack in a lot sometimes.

My new German word is Schämenfürschadenfreude, feeling guilty for your brimming over with malicious joy in another's suffering. It may not be a real German word, but it should be. I'm beginning to have that for my pleasure in seeing Ms. Davis revealed to be an anti-feminist fraud.


Wednesday, January 22, 2014


Well Titled Piece

Politico magazine has a piece by two men, Bill McKibben and Mike Tidwell, called A Big Fracking Lie. It's a good title because nearly all the criticism in it is a lie. It's not the first time McKibben has lied to us. They, as usual, pretend that the beneficial trace atmospheric gas CO2 is bad, but even hard core believers are losing their faith in that lie. So, let's focus on one economic thing that McKibben, et al. can't seem to understand.

The authors don't like a proposed gas liquefaction plant planned for a private property in Maryland on the Chesapeake Bay. Americans plan to liquefy (cool) some of the overabundance of natural gas we have in America and send it to places far away where the citizens are now paying 3 to 5 times the price we pay for natural gas in America. We help out the other countries with less expensive gas and help out America with jobs finding, producing and selling the gas for a better price than the local price. Sounds win/win to me but I'm apparently too dim to see that it would be better all around if, as the author's propose, such a plan never happens. "...this gas needs to stay in the ground." Fat lot of good it does anyone when it's deep in the ground.

I can't be the only one who notices this bit of self delusion. First, the authors give the economic argument against exporting the gas.
On the economic side, a study commissioned by the DOE last spring found that exporting U.S. gas would raise the fuel’s price here at home. It’s basic supply and demand. More buyers overseas will drive up our domestic price by as much as 27 percent, according to the DOE. And that increase will reduce incomes for virtually every sector of the U.S. economy, from agriculture to manufacturing to services to transportation.
OK, the authors seem to grasp that more expensive gas would cost everyone more money and hurt the economy as more money goes to heating, manufacturing and transportation costs and that leave less to spend on other things. Good for them. But what do they propose for the replacement of the gas left deep in the ground?
They assure us that "real alternatives exist. Marylanders have organized a statewide “Crossroads” campaign to say no to Cove Point and say yes to a doubling of the state’s wind and solar power consumption over the next 10 years." (Emphasis added).
Here is the pitiful little that wind and solar are providing to the Maryland electricity grid:
Solar--Too small to measure a percentage (less than .05%)

That's not a lot of generation and even if you quadrupled it, it would still be piddling. Most of Maryland's electrical power generation is from coal powered plants although a substantial percentage is from a single nuclear plant. Only a little is from power plants using natural gas, about as much as is generated from hydroelectric dams. Marylanders pay nearly $.14/kWh, which is higher than I pay in Colorado where about 67% of the electricity is from coal fired plants and about 20% from gas fired plants. I pay 4.6 cents per kWh before adjustments and just over a dime per kWh after. Part of my 5.4 cents in adjustments comes from subsidizing the piddling but expensive energy from bird chopping, bat killing, eyesore wind generators.

The hugely expensive electricity from wind and solar will have a much worse effect on the economy than the theoretical rise in natural gas prices from overseas sales, that is, if wind and solar could in fact provide us with any useful power at all.

If McKibben and his ilk told us to leave the natural gas, coal and oil in the ground because they have fairy dust that will keep us warm and run all our electrical gadgets, I might be more inclined to believe that than the snake oil the alarmists are actually offering. The fairy dust energy would be no worse a lie than the ones they are already telling us.


Tuesday, January 21, 2014


Thought of the Day

Most disgracefully of all, some openly call Israel an apartheid state.
Think about that.
Think about the twisted logic and outright malice behind that: a state, based on freedom, democracy and the rule of law, that was founded so Jews can flourish, as Jews, and seek shelter from the shadow of the worst racist experiment in history, that is condemned, and that condemnation is masked in the language of anti-racism.
It is nothing short of sickening.
But this is the face of the new anti-Semitism.

Stephen Harper, in Jerusalem yesterday


Monday, January 20, 2014


Drinking Deep From the Flavor Aid Cauldron

Nicholas No Middle Initial Kristof of the NYT has gone full acolyte to the Alarming Global Warming Climate Change Science Cult here. He probably did it long ago but I don't read him very often so I don't know for sure. Again, I will not go over the whole thing just his list of scientific consensus.

But first, consensus is to science what a bicycle is to a fish--not quite anathema but not a necessary or valid part of the whole.

OK. Kristof writes, approvingly, that global warming is like an asteroid heading for Earth, is a disruptor of "weather, food, land" and is related to the California drought. It's always alarming with these guys. It's not so, however, fortunately, and particularly with the California drought.

Here is the December 2012 Palmer Drought Severity Index for the United States.

Here it is for December 2013.

What a difference a year makes, huh? So the months long California Drought is alarming and related to Global Warming how? Looks to me like the permanent Southwestern Drought is over. The longest  recent droughts in California began in 892 AD and 1209 AD and lasted 220 and 140 years respectively. Anthropogenic CO2 was effectively zero back then. My source for these inconvenient facts was the New York Times. Back to Kristof, king of the Chicken Little science dabblers.

For all the uncertainty, Nordhaus cites several areas of strong agreement among experts: Carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere exceed those observed for at least the last 650,000 years; hurricanes will grow more intense; the Arctic will become ice free in summer; oceans will rise up to 23 inches by 2100 (more if there were major melting of ice sheets); and the global temperature will likely be 3.5 degrees to 7.5 degrees Fahrenheit higher in 2100 than in 1900.

I'm willing to concede that the atmospheric CO2 for the past 650 Millennia has been below 398 ppmv, although there are scientists (Salby at The Hockey Schtick, for example) who say the ice core figures greatly under-measures atmospheric CO2. But the rest are bunk.

If the gradient of temperature differences between the poles and the tropics is less (and the official undeniable theory of the alarmist is that global warming will be amplified at both poles), then cyclones should be smaller, less powerful and less frequent, which prediction has the added advantage of syncing with observed phenomena.

I need the alarmist to name a date for the year they believe that the Northern Ocean will become ice free in Summer. Otherwise, it is not a prediction but a myth. And the alarmists, who jumped on the 2007 melting bandwagon and predicted 2013 as the year, were stupidly, spectacularly wrong; the sea ice area in late September 2012 was about the size of India, but the sea ice in late September 2013 was the size of Greenland and Mexico combined. When is this sea ice supposed to melt all away, Mr. Kristof?

Thanks for the specifics on the ocean rise. First, the oceans always rise, on average, during an interglacial although the rate slows way down the longer the interglacial lasts. If the ocean levels start to fall we're no longer in an interglacial but in the new ice age. But something's wrong here--21 inches is 533.4 mm. There are nearly 86 years to 2100. So for the rate of yearly sea rise to get us to the predicted 21 inches, the seas would have to rise 6.20 mm per year. That's about twice what they are supposedly rising now according to other acolytes, who are, unfortunately, undercut by the IPCC here. And the old standards, tidal gauges, show a yearly rate on average for the last 140 years of 1.78 mm. It don't add up.

The prediction about temperature are not much better. Here is the alarmists' 2000 temperature predictions on a graph.

Notice that the temperatures for 2000 to 2014 are not following the predictions. I know it's early yet. But we're .7 degrees Fahrenheit higher now than in 1900, so we'll need 2.8 to 6.8 degrees in the next 86 years to get to the predictions. The longer the temperature on average goes down, as it has for the past 11 years, the higher the rate of climb will have to be to make up for the early stumble.

There is no agreement about the things on which Mr. Kristof thinks there is strong agreement. That's part of the reason he is so deluded.

And because he and his ilk are so deluded is part of the reason most people think there is nothing alarming about the slight, beneficial change in the climate in the past century and a half.


Friday, January 17, 2014


Thought of the Day

Every generation loses the messiah it has failed to deserve.

Michael Chabon



I'm So Out of Shape...

When I lean down to pet the dogs, I get out of breath. Jeez! But I'm with this poster. Sorry for the cursing.


Thursday, January 16, 2014


Thought of the Day

“The UK has suffered a spate of unusual weather recently: 2012 was the second wettest year since records began, while this year saw the coldest March in more than 50 years and the longest heatwave since 2006.”

Wow, the longest heatwave since 2006? A whole seven years? That is so unusual. Will we see a spate of usual weather ever again? Just last year we had the blusteriest Thursday in late June since records of blustering began in 2004, and December 2011 saw the seventh fluffiest snowflake to fall on Croydon since the Pleistocene. Something is up.

Sean Thomas, making fun of the ever increasing nonsense from true believers in alarming global warming, this time from Corinne Le Quere at East Anglia U. aka Warmie Central.

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Sunday, January 12, 2014


Disagreeable Old Phil Plait, the Bad Astronomer

Boulder, Colorado resident and astronomer Phil Plait leaves his field of expertise to write on global warming here in Slate. His article goes after a straw horse as you can tell from the title: "No, the Polar Vortex Does Not Disprove Global Warming." Who said it did? And he's liberal with the insults throughout the piece. Let me back up a bit. There's a pretty good Dutch movie out there called Black Book by Paul Verhoeven about the end of WWII in the Netherlands and the nasty Nazi collaborators are being just horrible right up to the last day of the war. I'm thinking as I watched it, were they not keeping up on current events? Wouldn't the better course be to stop being a horrible war criminal and try to sneak out of the country before the Allies fully liberate it and people start looking for collaborators and war criminals? Nope, the bad guys went full bore war criminal right into April 1945.

With things going poorly for the alarmist global warming true believers in the past few years, I would think that they would at least stop calling people with whom they disagree stupid at every turn. If things continue to go against them, they'll be wrong, duped, mistaken of course, but if things continue go south for them and they're still being disagreeable and calling the people who are right stupid, they'll be assholes as well as wrong. I've dialed my rhetoric way back down (I no longer call them Warmies) and I'm on the winning team. Just a thought, alarmists. Back to the Plait article.

Again, I won't go through the whole thing but just the key claim from Dr. Plait:

And nothing the deniers say about the polar vortex and frigid temps does anything to change the overwhelming evidence that the world is, on average, warming up, and we're the cause.
Plait is complaining that a cold snap in Winter is too short a period of time to be evidence of anything about long term weather, the climate. You have to look at a longer period, a statement with which I completely agree. I can't let his other statement go unchallenged, however. The world, on average, is not warming up. Even the HadCRUt4 temperature data set, the latest from the Hadley Center at the Met Office and the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, UK, shows that there has been no warming for 14 years, and in fact, from 2002, the average global temperature has started to fall.

The Met office and the CRU at East Anglia U. are what I used to call Warmie Central; they are places where scientists go to profess their faith in the theory of alarming anthropogenic global warming. It's not helpful for Mr. Plait and his ilk to continue to allege the Earth is warming when it is not. Now, had I brought this graph Mr. Plait's attention, he might well have defended his position with: "That's too short a time period, you stupid denier. It doesn't mean a thing." He would be charming to the last, I'm sure. Well 11 years might well not be long enough. The satellite data sets from Remote Sensing Services (RSS) and the U Alabama at Huntsville (UAH) show no warming for 19 and 15 years respectively. Long enough?

The alarmist generally chose a starting point for their graphs in the early to late 18th C. Such a graph shows a .8 degrees C temperature rise in 131 years or .06 degrees C rise per decade. That rate's not very alarming.

Let's look a little wider than that. Let's go back 1,000 years.

This reconstruction was from the International Panel on Climate Change just over a decade ago. The Medieval Warm Period was clearly hotter than the latest turn of the century and the .6 degree C rise we experienced in the 20th C. Although 140 to 180 years is clearly long enough for the true believers, perhaps a thousand years is not long enough to discern the truth about climate change.

OK. Let's look back 10,000 years, pretty much the whole of our the interglacial, the Holocene.

This is a temperature reconstruction based on ice cores from Greenland, which shows known historical warm periods (the ones that have names) as well as the well known Little Ice Age, from whose frozen depths we began to climb about 180 years ago. But this reconstruction of temperatures shows most of the Holocene was much warmer than today or at least much warmer than 1908. Still not long enough?

OK. Let's look back 400,000 with ice cores from the opposite side of the globe from Greenland.

This reconstruction shows that each of the 4 interglacials before our present one were much hotter than now and there was certainly no man made CO2 in the air then; in fact, we know that there was much less CO2 in the air then than there is now, yet it was still hotter. What made the prior interglacials hotter than now without any additional CO2 in the air? Natural cycles of heating and cooling? If so, how do we know that the natural cycles aren't still working and CO2 has no real heating effect above 300 ppmv in the atmosphere (.03% of the atmosphere)? The short answer is that we don't and neither do the alarmist global warming true believers. They claim they know. It is a false claim. The models they use are not evidence, nor are they reliable.

Maybe 400 millennia makes too short a period for Mr. Plait and his ilk. Let's go back 600 Million years.

No matter what the CO2 concentration in the atmosphere in the past, most of the history of the World with multi-cellular plants and animals has had an average world temperature at the 22 degrees C range (We're around 14 degrees C now). So with temperatures here nearly 8 degrees C less than the normal temperature of 22 degrees C for the World for the overwhelming majority of the time, how is the .8 degrees C warming we've seen since 1880 something to cause us to wail and gnash our teeth and scream: "It's the end of the World?"

Obviously it's nothing to be alarmed at. And for a scientific consensus that relies on cherry-picking a starting point at the end of the Little Ice Age, in the19th Century, so that temperatures have risen from the lowest temperatures in the past 1000 years, it seems a little disingenuous for the alarmist to accuse the deniers of cherry-picking too short a period of data. The current average world temperature is lower the normal for the Holocene or for that matter much lower the average for last 600 Million years.

So even though the alarmist have time and time again predicted milder winters, if a very cold Winter in North America is not evidence that refutes the alarmist Global Warming theory, what evidence could ever refute it?



Thought of the Day

Inequality is a false notion propagated by those who are made to feel guilty for what they have by those who are jealous for what they don't.

Lisa Montgomery aka Kennedy (of MTV now at FNC)



Advice A Little Late

I don't like the ugly, mercury filled, curly-cue lights the federal government is shoving down our throats. They cost a lot but they don't last near as long as advertised; and the light they put off has all the joy and warmth of an Eastern European stairwell in 1956. And they have vaporous mercury in them, much more mercury than coal fired power plants put out; and the government is shutting down coal fired power plants in part because of fears of mercury poisoning; so of course the feds want much more mercury than that in everyone's homes -- in children's rooms, above the baby's crib. That's a perfectly rational public policy. Unfortunately, the other replacement to the old incandescent bulbs, LEDs, are not quite there. They put off semi-attractive light at a much lower price per hour than incandescent bulbs and apparently last a very long time (time will tell). There is, however, a problem with overheating. Like I said, not quite there.

So my strategy is to put in LEDs where needed and hope they get better over time. They have gotten better than when first introduced. There is no reason to think they can't get better still. I have hoarded up on incandescent light bulbs. They can't be sold by manufacturers any more. So much for freedom in America.

I hope to get through the pointless ban on incandescents with my stash of bulbs and when they run out I hope and reasonably believe that LEDs will be a very acceptable substitute then.

This advice is a little late because last time I was in the grocery store, there were no more incandescent bulbs for sale. Maybe in your town it's different.

Sorry.Might have talked about this earlier.

LEDs here. LED light fixtures here and here. I like this George Kovacs model at Lamps Plus, but perhaps that's just my bumpkin-like taste.

Oh, and the reason we peasants can't have incandescent bulbs anymore is so the government can pretend to battle the non-existent problem of Global Warming. Just so you know.


Friday, January 10, 2014


L-Shaped Recovery Graphs

This is the only reason the friendly-to-the-government unemployment rate (see below) has gone down. People who have left the work force don't count as unemployed.

Some of this increase is the Baby Boom retiring, but mostly it's laid off workers failing to find a job, giving up and leaving the labor force.

L-Shaped, indeed, without the mass exodus. Note too that nearly 9 Million people left the work force between 2001 and 2009, to be fair, but one and a half times that since the Obama Administration befell us.


Thursday, January 09, 2014


But, Darling, It's Cold Outside

Alan Gopnik, if that really is his name, at the New Yorker, is fighting back against the alarmism denialists regarding global warming who are asking how can there be global warming when it's so freakin' cold out? I think it's a reasonable question in light of the fact that alarmist global warming true believers jump on every heat wave to help bolster their crumbling theory. I won't go into the whole thing but just give a wider look at his parade of horribles.

The evidence of global warming in the fragile ecosystem of the Arctic is overwhelming, and frightening to anyone who reads about it, much less sees it first hand. As I enumerate in “Winter,” the tree line behind which winter has always hidden moves farther and farther north each year, so that it seems likely there will be spruce trees on Arctic islands in the next twenty years. First Nations people are already being evacuated from old coastal settlements; the expectation now is that the Arctic will be seasonally free of ice not in fifty years, as people once feared, but in something more like ten years. Even polar bears have turned to cannibalism as their natural prey disappears. It’s really happening. (And in some parts of the world, as we’re often reminded, climate change means more extreme weather and disruption, not just simple warming. It might even make very cold days in New York City.)
The evidence of global warming in the robust ecosystem of the Arctic is underwhelming. Very few of the long term weather stations show any warming. There were not a lot of long term weather stations to begin with, and many of them dropped out when the USSR went belly up in 1989 and very few have been replaced. Many of the remaining stations in the huge area of Siberia, for example, are located in towns most of which heat the whole town with steam from a central boiler station and the steam pipes run through the streets above ground. Weather stations near steam pipes show warming since the steam pipes were installed. Isolated stations do not.

The tree line is not "always" advancing. In some places it is retreating south and climate is only one of a number of things which affect the boundary of the tree line.

Some Yup'ik who built a town on a sand bar on the Chukchi Sea coast and others who built a town on the bank of the Ninglick River, which changed channels, have blamed things other than normal barrier island or changing river bank erosion. The relationship of the erosion to the slight temperature changes in the area has never been established.

No rational person expects the Arctic Ocean to be free of sea ice in the Summer in the next 10 years or ever for that matter. It's really, really cold there, even in the Summer. The predictions of an ice free Arctic Ocean by 2013 made by Al Gore, Jay Zwally, Mark Serreze and Wieslaw Maslowski certainly have not panned out. Probably Alan's 10 year prediction is good as gold though.

Large male polar bears have always killed and eaten smaller bears when food is scarce. That's why the Coke ads (and movie) with a father and cubs 'family' is such a joke. The preying on cubs and yearlings is not something that has recently turned up and it is not the result of less seals but of MORE polar bears. There are in places more bears than the intact ecosystem can support. The numbers went from just 5000 bears in the 50s to 25,000 to 35,000 bears now. Alarmists ought to abandon the polar bear as proof of global warming because the bears are not in danger and are in fact thriving in the Arctic. The increasing number of them tells the complete story.

There is no increase of any extreme weather on any of the graphs counting extreme weather events. In fact, on most such charts, such extreme weather is getting rarer. Alan needs to keep up with current events.

His easily refutable parade of horribles is really ironic juxtaposed to the start of his next paragraph.

There is a larger issue, though, which all sane liberals should recognize, and it is that, in the past, many a planet-devouring wolf has indeed been called out, only to never actually appear: the population bomb never went off; peak oil has not been reached—or, at least, the energy crisis seems to have abated.

He cuts the list of failed predictions of green alarmists very short. It is actually very long. Alan is sure, however, this one is different, this one is real; this wolf will show up this time and eat us.

Yeah, sure.

It's not a wolf, but rather a field mouse, a single field mouse measure of proper alarm. 



Jobs Created or Saved Metric

A corollary of the fact that the left seems to care more about intentions than results is that it includes in its measure of results imaginary outcomes. When unemployment was approaching 10% by the measure kindest to the government, the President said in defense of the wholly failed, near $Trillion stimulus that the spending had created or saved some number of jobs. How exactly does one measure the number of jobs saved? You can't is the short answer. Even using the largely imaginary numbers from President Obama, the cost per job created or saved was somewhere between $540,000 and $4.1 Million. That's not a successful stimulus to the economy by any sane measurement.

Recently there was the 50 year anniversary of President Lyndon Johnson's war on poverty (which has gone about as well as the war on drugs). We on the right think that it has been a total waste of money, some $15 Trillion over the five decades at least, while others say it's $20 Trillion; yet the percentage of Americans in poverty is about the same, 15% to 16%, as it was when the 'war' started. That's not a successful war by any sane measurement.

Not to be deterred, Nicholas No Middle Initial Kristof of the NYT is sure that the $15 to $20 Trillion has achieved some progress and he touts that 'progress' here.

I won't go over the whole article but I will note and comment on his main metric for success. He writes:

The most accurate measures, using Census Bureau figures that take account of benefits, suggest that poverty rates have fallen by more than one-third since 1968. There’s a consensus that without the war on poverty, other forces (such as mass incarceration, a rise in single mothers and the decline in trade unions) would have lifted poverty much higher.

This is either magical thinking or just plain lies. He does not link to the Census Bureau figures but here is what they say. The poverty rate in 2012 was 15%. The poverty rate in 1968 was 12.69%. Math might not be my strongest scholarly ability but that sure doesn't look like a 1/3 decline to me. It looks more like an 18.2% increase.

He then writes:

A Columbia University study suggests that without government benefits, the poverty rate would have soared to 31 percent in 2012.

Notice that there is no link, again, and the weasel word "suggests." This measurement, however, is just like 'jobs created or saved' metric. There is no way to know what people would have done without the government benefits.

Based just on the rates of poverty from the census bureau, I think the money spent on the war on poverty was wasted and if we hadn't wasted it, we could have avoided going into $17 Trillion debt. That debt is a time bomb for the American government when interest rates rise and paying the interest on the debt (debt service) eats up all the income tax revenue. That's trouble, my friends. Right here in River City.


Sunday, January 05, 2014


Not Much of a Study

The left is afire with coverage of a "new study" by sociologist Robert Brulle, who teaches at a university I had never heard of previously. The study was published in a magazine I also had never heard of called Climatic Change. Unfortunately, the "study" is behind a pay wall but here is the abstract and the gate to the whole thing, for money.

Let's get back to the coverage. Big headline--Billion Dollar Climate Denial Network Exposed.

Money quote from a Guardian article linked above:

Conservative groups may have spent up to $1bn a year on the effort to deny science and oppose action on climate change, according to the first extensive study into the anatomy of the anti-climate effort.
But the reporter, Suzanne Goldenberg, contradict this claim in a later paragraph. As you can see from quotes below there seems to have been some "corrections" since the article was first published.

I'll quote the entire abstract of this "first extensive study."

This paper conducts an analysis of the financial resource mobilization of the organizations that make up the climate change counter-movement (CCCM) in the United States. Utilizing IRS data, total annual income is compiled for a sample of CCCM organizations (including advocacy organizations, think tanks, and trade associations). These data are coupled with IRS data on philanthropic foundation funding of these CCCM organizations contained in the Foundation Center’s data base. This results in a data sample that contains financial information for the time period 2003 to 2010 on the annual income of 91 CCCM organizations funded by 140 different foundations. An examination of these data shows that these 91 CCCM organizations have an annual income of just over 900million,withanannualaverageof64 million in identifiable foundation support. The overwhelming majority of the philanthropic support comes from conservative foundations. Additionally, there is evidence of a trend toward concealing the sources of CCCM funding through the use of donor directed philanthropies.
I don't know why the font changes and there is no spacing when actual money is mentioned. Is this a last minute correction?

So first, $900 million is not a billion dollars. Close enough for lefty propaganda, I guess. Second, only $64 million each year, on average, is identifiable foundation support. That's a lot less than a billion dollars. Also Dr. Brulle is counting the total income of the 91 organizations he doesn't like, not the dollar amount the organizations put solely into investigating and writing about global warming. Many of the foundations and think tanks he talks about (like the American Enterprise Institute (AEI) and the Heritage Foundation) cover a wide range of topics. Here is a refutation from Forbes which is much more interesting than my small effort here.

Money quotes from Forbes reporter James Taylor (not that one):

As an initial matter, despite what Suzanne Goldenberg and the UK Guardian claim, it is palpably untrue that “Conservative groups have spent $1 bn a year on the effort to deny science and oppose action on climate change.” Without even addressing the mathematical fact that $900 million is $100 million short of the $1 billion claimed by Goldenberg, Brulle’s paper merely tabulates the total money raised by the 91 conservative think tanks for their total operations regarding all issues they address and does not break down how much of each think tank’s resources are devoted to issues such as economic policy, health care policy, foreign policy, climate policy, etc. Goldenberg tells the lie that all money raised by all conservative and libertarian think tanks is devoted to global warming skepticism.

Between AEI and Heritage – representing fully 30 percent of the money raised by the 91 conservative think tanks – the global warming issue comprises substantially less than 10 percent of their cumulative time, money and efforts. Even if we generously assign to the global warming issue a full 10 percent of the money raised by the 91 foremost conservative think tanks, this means the 91 conservative think tanks are devoting a mere $90 million per year – rather than the asserted $900 million per year (or Goldenberg’s exaggerated $1 billion per year) – to the global warming debate.


This brings us to another whopper told by Brulle, Goldenberg and their media allies – the assertion that all the think tanks identified in Brulle’s paper actively fight against global warming activism. To the contrary, two of the three top-funded groups (AEI and the Hoover Institution) support a carbon tax. Other groups identified in Brulle’s paper have similarly expressed support for a carbon tax and global warming activism. At least 25 percent of the funding that Brulle claims goes to skeptical think tanks actually goes to think tanks supporting global warming restrictions.

Two environmental activist groups – Greenpeace and The Nature Conservancy – raise more than $1 billion cumulatively per year. These two groups raise more money than the combined funding of the 91 conservative think tanks identified in Brulle’s paper. Just as importantly, these two groups raise money solely for environmental causes and frequently advocate for global warming restrictions. Their $1 billion is not diluted addressing issues such as economic policy, health care policy, foreign policy, etc.


The long and short of it is think tanks and activist groups supporting global warming restrictions raise and spend far more money than think tanks and activist groups opposing global warming restrictions. Global warming activists may think they are scoring short-term political points by lying and misleading the public about such funding, but their lies will certainly come back to haunt them. They always do.

And the support of Greenpeace and the dozens of other pro-alarmist AGW groups is nothing compared with the governmental support for alarmist AGW research, which is, properly measured around the world, in the billions of dollars. In reality, the divide between pro and con fiscal support is just the opposite of the Brulle "study."

UPDATE: Diomedes pointed out that I added a c to Climactic (having to do with climaxes) when I should have left it out to make the word Climatic (having to do with climate) which is indeed the spelling Climatic Change magazine, or whatever it is, uses. All fixed now. Thanks, D.


Friday, January 03, 2014


Chris Hayes--Climate Genius

It really has been a bummer for the anthropogenic global warming alarmists that a ship of "scientists" and journalists, seeking to show the effect of global warming on the Antarctic since Mawson's deadly expedition a century ago, became stuck in the sea ice, in Summer, just off the coast of Antarctica. We alarmism deniers have been making fun of the true believers being mugged by a cold reality ever since. Lefties don't like to be mocked (who does, really).

So super genius of the barely watched MSNBC show All In, Chris Hayes, pens here a defense of the recently rescued. I am applying the word genius to Mr. Hayes in a non-serious way, but I would never call him stupid. He has a BA in philosophy from Brown, for Pete's sake. He, unfortunately, does not return the respect I give him and titles his minor treatise: The Right's Willful Stupidity on Climate Change. I doubt Mr. Hayes knows anything about global warming and climatology and the incredibly complexity of and the myriad, major questions associated with the theory of alarmist AGW, but he's not stupid. Unfortunately, he provides not a single scientific fact to support his name calling. Let's take a look.

The right wing had a field day, pointing and laughing at the global warming believers who, just to be clear, are only a group of scientists risking their lives for no monetary gain and little glory in order to help save the planet.

What scientists? Who there on the boat was a leading climatologist or paleoclimatologist? And how are they helping to save the planet by sailing to the Antarctic when hardly any sea ice at the coast had melted?  I am an auto-didact in climatology and paleoclimatology since 1978. I believe the Earth has warmed slightly in the past 140 years in part because of CO2, and the man made COadded by burning fossil fuel has added a tiny amount to the slight warming. I deny (and I can spend 45 minutes of a Powerpoint slide show on the subject), categorically, that there is anything alarming about the recent warming. I am supported by many of the World's top scientists in this belief, not the least of whom is Richard Lindzen at MIT who said basically what I believe here. Back to Hayes' attempt at argument.

Of course, no one ever said that climate change meant it wouldn't ever be cold.

Sure they did.

Hanson, et al., recently predicted a 30 degree C rise of temperature at the poles and a 20 degree C rise everywhere else, making the World uninhabitable for humans.

Senior research scientist at the CRU at East Anglia U., David Viner is infamous for saying in 2000 "Children just aren't going to know what snow is."

I won't bore you with the parade of worthless predictions based not on evidence but on hopelessly inadequate climate models. Let's jump back to super genius Mr. Hayes.
And yet, here we are. Because this willful stupidity is backed by a lot of money. A new report found that conservative groups spend up to $1 billion a year to fight action on climate change. $1 billion to cultivate a group of people who delight in being on the wrong side of history.

Wrong side of history? I'll post on the "new report" and its self contradictions and general worthlessness shortly. Back to boy genius Hayes

In 2006, 59% of Republicans believed that there is solid evidence the Earth is warming. A decade later, that number has dropped to just 50%. There is an entire industry that exists to feed its viewers and readers with contempt and ridicule for not only the basic science of climate change, but even for the people who toil in obscurity, risking their lives to avert genuine misery and disaster for millions of people, and that industry controls one of our two parties.

Part of the reason fewer people believe that there has been actual warming is because there hasn't been any actual warming since 1998. Others are learning about the many reasons to doubt the accuracy of the World's average temperature.

I've gone through the reasons climate change is anything but alarming ad nauseum; so let's end this with comments on the tone of the Hayes essay. It is entirely argumentum ad hominem. He does not seek to convince anyone of the rightness of his beliefs with facts in support. He does not credit the counterarguments of the alarmism deniers. He simply calls anyone who does not toe the "settled" line stupid and says they choose to be stupid. This is not argument at all but mere name calling. Genius Hayes, like many on the left, just can't help himself.



Wednesday, January 01, 2014


Thought of the First Day of the New Year

So the New York Times David D. Kirkpatrick wants us to believe that the Times somehow embedded a reporter into a random protest that turned out to be a highly organized attack motivated by an internet video no one had seen. And for the last 15 months, they kept that secret. What a bunch of lying schmucks.

Doug Ross


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