Thursday, October 27, 2016


Telling Us the Opposite of the Truth

I got schooled by my smarter, better friend Bill at our latest Stanford reunion about being persuasive regarding global warming. He was right about where my emphasis should be. But he got me thinking about persuasion in general. If I'm trying very hard to be factual in order to persuade people not to believe that increased CO2 in the atmosphere is a crisis, what does the other side's trying hard not to be factual mean?

Here is a story from Esquire, which magazine has become a bastion for Warmie true believers lately, which says that global warming is rapidly expanding deserts throughout the world. Money quote:

Desertification is a worldwide problem; it shouldn't be necessary to remind people that the United States has deserts, too, and that they're expanding as well.
Here is a good response to that statement, but I have another.

You see, we have satellites with sufficiently advanced cameras taking photos of the earth's surface (and other gadgets as well) so that we can use computers to count the pixels of the satellite photos of the earth's surface to see what color each pixel is and how many of the same color there are; and we can compare the very recent counts of the green pixels with older satellite photo's green pixel counts to see if there is more green or less green on the earth's surface over time. Less green would necessarily mean that deserts (traditionally devoid of vegetation) are growing. This is called data, as opposed to models. Data is evidence, models are not--they're mere theory. So what do the data say?

Here is NASA's take on a recent scientific paper (from April 2016). Here is the scientific paper itself  (they really are hard to read due to excessive jargon) but you have to pay to read it. Here are the data in plain English.

The earth in the past 35 years has seen a 14% increase in vegetation of which 70% of that growth is assigned directly to the recent increase in atmospheric CO2.

So rather than getting more deserts, were getting more forests and grasslands, more vegetation. I will put this as plainly as I can. To say we're getting more deserts from increased atmospheric CO2 is to lie to us. Just the opposite is really happening.

So if you lie regarding your theory, ultimately are you being more persuasive? I have to think not, which is why global warming as a crisis is apparently a delusion which seems only to afflict the rich and ignorant* (and scientists for whom a global warming crisis generates income). The normal people don't think it's a crisis at all. And it's not.

With the ending of the Pleistocene CO2 drought, the earth will be warmer, wetter, greener. It will generally be nicer outside as the increased summer heat is mostly at night. Not my idea of a crisis.

* Despite their excellent acting chops, warmie true believers like Leonardo DiCaprio and Cameron Diaz are high school dropouts. Mark Ruffalo, who graduated high school but did not attend a college, is severely dyslexic so he can barely read anything. Why should anyone listen to people with little actual knowledge on the subject?


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