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Libertarians suggest Nobel announcements should be moved to April Fool's Day

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October 09, 2009 – Comments (28)

WASHINGTON - The Libertarian Party today suggested that, in the future, the announcement date every year for Nobel Prizes be moved to April 1.

"Unlike the gullible people who listened to The War of the Worlds radio broadcast in 1938 and thought Martians really were attacking the United States, when I heard this morning that Barack Obama won the Nobel Peace Prize, I changed the channel in disbelief. But, the same thing was being said in multiple places," Libertarian National Committee Chairman William Redpath said.

"The gravity of the Nobel awards has not been augmented by some of their recent selections, including today's announcement, last year's award of the Economics prize to Paul Krugman, or the 2007 Peace Prize to Al Gore, whose global warming theories he will not defend in open debate. Maybe an early Springtime announcement date would be more appropriate."

Redpath continued, "I didn't know that it was the role of the Nobel Peace Prize Committee to be handicapping the future performance of individuals and organizations. Nonetheless, we congratulate President Obama on his award and hope that three-and-a-quarter or seven-and-a-quarter years from now the Nobel Peace Prize Committee will be seen as prescient.

"President Obama will best fulfill the promise of peace that the Nobel Committee apparently sees in him by not trying to cure all the ills of the world, but by working to make the United States an example for the other nations of the world through implementation of a Libertarian foreign policy--military non-interventionism combined with free trade policies in fact, and not just in rhetoric. With those guiding principles, the world will be a freer, safer and more prosperous planet at the conclusion of the Obama Administration."

For more information, or to arrange an interview, call LNC executive director Wes Benedict at 202-333-0008 ext. 222.

The LP is America's third-largest political party, founded in 1971. The Libertarian Party stands for free markets and civil liberties. You can find more information on the Libertarian Party at our website.

28 Comments – Post Your Own

#1) On October 09, 2009 at 7:16 PM, dbjella (< 20) wrote:

Does anyone know if he has increased or decreased the "defense" budget?  I know he doesn't write the spending bills he either signs or vetoes. I have no idea if a bill has come up yet in his short time in office.

Just curious, if maybe he vetoed and that was what people thought was a peaceful move on his part.

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#2) On October 09, 2009 at 7:23 PM, catoismymotor (< 20) wrote:

Dave,

Where did you find this article? I have some buddies I think would enjoy it. I hope the new job is working well for you.

Cato

 

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#3) On October 09, 2009 at 7:51 PM, whereaminow (24.34) wrote:

Cato,

On the LP home page.  I'm sure you can find out over on the Daily Paul too.

Doug,

Obama increased the defense budget by 9% this year.  

David in Qatar

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#4) On October 09, 2009 at 8:06 PM, starbucks4ever (98.67) wrote:

My reaction was exactly the same. I thought it was a satire, but then I realized I was reading a Yahoo news article and April 1 was still some months ahead. 

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#5) On October 09, 2009 at 9:56 PM, dbjella (< 20) wrote:

9% doesn't seem very peaceful :)

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#6) On October 09, 2009 at 10:01 PM, catoismymotor (< 20) wrote:

#3 - Oh? Thank you. It feels a bit lighter in tone to be from lp.com. I was thinking Fox News or Reuters. I appreciate the heads up.

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#7) On October 09, 2009 at 10:19 PM, eddietheinvestor (< 20) wrote:

With Obama as president, we are at war in Iraq and Afghanistan.  There is no peace in the Middle East, and Iran is threatening to destroy Israel.  There is no peace, and American soldiers are still going off to war and to kill and die.  This prize is a joke.  It's all politics.  Even Code Pink, which was against the war in Afghanistan, is now for it.  There is no peace, and the award should have gone to a more deserving person, such as Cindy Sheehan. At least she has been consistent in striving for peace.

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#8) On October 10, 2009 at 12:58 AM, eddietheinvestor (< 20) wrote:

Even Obama's supporters are embarrassed by the award because it suggests that Obama relies more on reputation than accomplishments  It's more, perhaps, of an anti-Bush award than an award for achieving world peace.  Good post, whereaminow.

And if Obama ever does want peace in the Middle East, he must stop Iran while it's still possible.  If Obama continues to appease Iran and have talks about nuclear facilities when the discussion of those facilities is off the table, he could be facilitating indirectly the destruction of Israel and countless thousands of Jews. I hope that Obama does earn this award he received today.  I wish him well.

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#9) On October 10, 2009 at 1:33 AM, catoismymotor (< 20) wrote:

Perhaps the party should start issuing awards for expanding individual liberty, free markets and so on to those that hampered the progress of such things as a joke on April Fool's Day. I think it should be modeled after the Flying Fickle Finger of Fate used on Laugh In. What say you?

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#10) On October 10, 2009 at 2:48 AM, Lordrobot (91.02) wrote:

Suddenly the Nobel prize has gone "celebrity". Long gone are the days when the lone long suffening feeders of the poor got this prize. Those who worked in places that were literally hell on earth in the face of dangers and oppressive dictatorships. In those days the Prize brought light to the darkenss of human suffering and the money helped a great deal.

But now we have Al Gore, and Obama to the list. Al Gore has never done a thing for peace with his junk science double standard approach to life. He is an endless self-promoter for profit.

Obama has no accomplishments and that is the resounding message by both Republcians and Democrats. The prize has never been so diminished. To me only one expression captures the essence:

Mr. Obama, you are no Mother Teresa, a bigger man would have rejected the prize announcing that he had not earned it and that it should have gone to one of the many unsung heros whose lives embody the ground level from which all inspiration comes. Obama is a small man with an ugly ego. The world is in shock that he would accept something unearned.

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#11) On October 13, 2009 at 1:46 PM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

@whereaminow,

"last year's award of the Economics prize to Paul Krugman"

- The Economics prize isn't a Nobel prize. It's a Nobel-like award. It's real name is Sveriges Riksbank Prize in Economic Sciences in Memory of Alfred Nobel.

- Let's see part of Paul Krugman's CV:

“Increasing Returns, Monopolistic Competition, and International Trade,” Journal of International Economics 9 (1979), pp. 469-479.“Vehicle Currencies and the Structure of International Exchange,” Journal of Money, Credit and Banking 12 (1980), pp. 513-526.“Scale Economies, Product Differentiation, and the Pattern of Trade,” American Economic Review 70 (1980), pp. 950-959.“Trade, Accumulation, and Uneven Development,” Journal of Development Economics 8 (1981), pp. 149-161.“Intraindustry Specialization and the Gains from Trade,” Journal of Political Economy 91 (1981).“Foreign Industrial Targeting and the U.S. Economy,” Brookings Papers on Economic Activity 1 (1984).“New Theories of Trade Among Industrial Countries,” American Economic Review (May 1983).“A ‘Reciprocal Dumping’ Model of International Trade,” (with J. Brander), Journal of International Economics 15 (1983), pp. 313-321.“The Problem of Competitiveness in U.S. Manufacturing” (with G. Hatsopoulos), New England Economic Review, (January/February 1987).“The Persistence of the U.S. Trade Deficit,” (with R. Baldwin), Brookings Papers on Economic Activity 1 (1987).“Is Free Trade Passé?”,  Journal of Economic Perspectives 3 (1987).“The Narrow Moving Band, the Dutch Disease, and the Economic Consequences of Mrs. Thatcher: Notes on Trade in the Presence of Dynamic Economies of Scale,” Journal of Development Economics, January 1987.“Rethinking International Trade,” Business Economics, July 1988."

- Let's see the reasons behind Paul Krugman's award:

"Patterns of trade and location have always been key issues in the economic debate. What are the effects of free trade and globalization? What are the driving forces behind worldwide urbanization? Paul Krugman has formulated a new theory to answer these questions. He has thereby integrated the previously disparate research fields of international trade and economic geography." 

Simple, isn't it?

"or the 2007 Peace Prize to Al Gore"

The 2007 Peace Prize also went to the IPCC. In other words, it's an award for scientific cooperation on a scale never seen before, the biggest exercise of peer-review in the history of science, done to address one of the most pressing problems of our time.


"whose global warming theories he will not defend in open debate"

- Those evil, anti-American, anticapitalist global warming theories aren't inventions of Al Gore. They come from the 19th century. They're the work of thousands of scientists.- Al Gore isn't a scientist. He just relays to the general public the findings of the top experts in the field of climatology, oceanography, paleoclimatology, glaciology, geochemistry, etc.

- "Open debate" is a favorite meme of denialists. I've got news for you: 

* Science cares about evidence and reason. Science doesn't care about TV debates, OpEds in newspapers and blogs.

Science is built around open exchange of ideas and skepticism. These are the reasons of the existence of science journals, peer-review, conferences, seminars and similar things. Do you want debate? Publish your ideas and evidence, assit to conferences, etc.

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#12) On October 13, 2009 at 8:50 PM, sleepreading (< 20) wrote:

In the immortal words of Stephen Colbert:

"Is that a Peace Prize in the world's pocket or are they just glad to see Obama?"

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#13) On October 13, 2009 at 8:59 PM, ozzfan1317 (82.25) wrote:

I'll be honest It put me in total disbelief. I am hopeful he will still earn it but its not something that should be awarded in advance and the fact he was nominated shortly after his inaugaration just puts me in utter loss for words.

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#14) On October 13, 2009 at 9:42 PM, AvianFlu (31.62) wrote:

Lucas:

You said, "science cares about evidence and reason".

Quite true.
Regrettably, Mr. Gore appears not to have the same cares.
But I guess it doesn't matter since he is not a scientist.
A true scientist must modify or abandon his theory if new evidence comes to light that disproves his assumptions.
The last year in which global waming occurred was in the late 1990's. Since then, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has greatly increased. This is the gas Gore claims is responsible for global warming. If his assumption is true, then why are we not experiencing a steady increase in warming? At this point, many scientists are abandoning their global warming models since the theory is not performing as expected. If Gore was intellectually honest he would do so as well. At the very least, since there is now a very large question about whether humans have any kind of an influence over the earth's temperature whatsoever, especially compared to solar activity, then we should abandon our plans to greatly regulate carbon dioxide emissions. These plans will cause untold human hardship and suffering. That is a big price to pay for a false premise.

By the way, we know through the fossil record that carbon dioxide levels were extremely high during the last ice age, yet that did not prevent a massive global cooling.

So using evidence and reason we should completely abandon all plans to attempt to manipulate the earth's temperature.

 Unfortunately, most global warming cultists are not interested in applying logic and reason. They would rather have us take action based on unsubstantiated faith. In that respect, the global warming movement is rather like a religion. I suggest that we apply the scientific method and not the religious method to this issue.

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#15) On October 16, 2009 at 2:43 AM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

@AvianFlu,
"A true scientist must modify or abandon his theory if new evidence comes to light that disproves his assumptions."
Quite true. A falsified hypothesis must be discarded or modified if evidence doesn't support it. Unfortunately, there's no new evidence to disprove AGW and I won't hold my breath waiting for this game-changing evidence. To disprove AGW we'd have to rewrite huge chunks of physics and chemistry.

"The last year in which global warming occurred was in the late 1990's."
This is a long-debunked lie. Check the data by yourself and see it.


"Since then, the amount of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere has greatly increased."
The rise in CO2 concentration isn't the only forcing on the climate system. Also, the climate is a chaotic system with a lot of internal variability. Finally, climate is defined as the average of 30 years of weather.


"This is the gas Gore claims is responsible for global warming."
The radiative properties of CO2 were discovered by John Tyndall and Joseph Fourier in the first half of the 19th century. At the end of that century, Svante Arrhenius established the relationship between the variations in CO2 concentration and temperature (original paper)

"why are we not experiencing a steady increase in warming?"

Because the climate system doesn't operate in a linear fashion. Natural variability and/or negative forcings (e.g. aerosols) may mask the warming trend for a while, but not forever.

"At this point, many scientists are abandoning their global warming models since the theory is not performing as expected"
May I ask who are those scientists that are abandoning AGW? Please, don't come up with the Oregon Petition, Inhofe's list of dissenters and such rubbish.

"At the very least, since there is now a very large question about whether humans have any kind of an influence over the earth's temperature whatsoever, especially compared to solar activity"
Another debunked talking point. It's not the sun.


"These plans will cause untold human hardship and suffering. That is a big price to pay for a false premise."
Where's the evidence for this baseless assumption? Europe is wealthy yet it has roughly half of the carbon intensity of the US.

"By the way, we know through the fossil record that carbon dioxide levels were extremely high during the last ice age, yet that did not prevent a massive global cooling."
CO2 levels never exceeded 300 ppmv in the last 800,000 years. In fact, it seems that we currently have the highest CO2 levels (390 ppmv) in at least 15 million years. More so, CO2 didn't act as a forcing in the recent past. It acted as a feedback to orbital forcings. The scary thing is that currently CO2 is acting as a forcing.


"So using evidence and reason we should completely abandon all plans to attempt to manipulate the earth's temperature."
We've been manipulating the Earth's temperature since the start of the Industrial Revolution and perhaps since the invention of Agriculture.


"Unfortunately, most global warming cultists are not interested in applying logic and reason. They would rather have us take action based on unsubstantiated faith. In that respect, the global warming movement is rather like a religion"
Unfortunately, most global warming denialists are not interested in applying logic and reason. They would rather have us not take action based on unsubstantiated faith (the free market). Since denialists don't like the possible policy outcomes of this scientific fact, they instead launch a distortion campaign consisting of changing talking points:
- Global warming isn't happening.
- The Earth's warming but this is a natural phenomenon.
- The warming may be a byproduct of human activities but we need more evidence.
- Warming is mostly man-made but it's too costly to take action.
- We can't do anything if China doesn't agree to reduce emissions right now.
- Geoengineering will save us.

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#16) On October 16, 2009 at 2:53 AM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

Missing graphs:

 

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#17) On October 16, 2009 at 3:03 AM, ozzfan1317 (82.25) wrote:

I dont doubt that global warming is real but isnt it a modest increase and therefore not quite as dire as it is made out to be? Obviously we shouldnt wait 50 years and see if we melt the arctic by then though.

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#18) On October 16, 2009 at 8:04 AM, whereaminow (24.34) wrote:

Whatever happened to global warming?

How freezing temperatures are starting to shatter climate change theory.

From the BBC News:

For the last 11 years we have not observed any increase in global temperatures.

And our climate models did not forecast it, even though man-made carbon dioxide, the gas thought to be responsible for warming our planet, has continued to rise.

So what on Earth is going on?

Climate change sceptics, who passionately and consistently argue that man's influence on our climate is overstated, say they saw it coming.

They argue that there are natural cycles, over which we have no control, that dictate how warm the planet is. But what is the evidence for this?

And just to finish it off, Nobel Prize Physicist explains the difference between real science and junk science (which climatology would definitely fall under):

David in Qatar

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#19) On October 16, 2009 at 8:41 PM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

@whereaminow,
"From the BBC News:"
Priceless. An anarcho-capitalist quoting from an state-owned media outlet.
Let me ask a question? Why do you use journalistic articles when we're talking about science?

"For the last 11 years we have not observed any increase in global temperatures."
What a load of bunk. The latest decade includes all of the warmest years in a century and a half. If you know a bit about statistics you'll realize that the odds of having such continuity of warm years nearly rules out random chance.

"And our climate models did not forecast it, even though man-made carbon dioxide, the gas thought to be responsible for warming our planet, has continued to rise"
William Connolley PhD (until December 2007, Senior Scientific Officer in the Physical Sciences Division in the Antarctic Climate and the Earth System project at the British Antarctic Survey):
"Why they write "And our climate models did not forecast it" when what they really mean is "climate models did forecast this but we paid no attention and / or were too stupid to understand, and still are" is... well, entirely obvious when I think about it"
It's incredible that scientists have to repeat the same thing over and over again:
- The climate system is chaotic.
- The relationship between variations in CO2 concentration and temperatures isn't linear.
- There are other forcings (anthropogenic or natural) that may mask the GHG forcing for a while. E.g. the current solar minimum
- Natural phenomena (e.g. ENSO) may enhance (1998 El Niño) or counteract (recent La Niña) the underlying trend in short time frames.
- Climate models don't predict a steady rise in temperatures.

"So what on Earth is going on?"
- Stefan Rahmstorf PhD (German oceanographer and climatologist at Potsdam University):
"It is noteworthy in this context that despite the record low in the brightness of the sun over the past three years (it’s been at its faintest since beginning of satellite measurements in the 1970s), a number of warming records have been broken during this time. March 2008 saw the warmest global land temperature of any March ever recorded in the past 130 years. June and August 2009 saw the warmest land and ocean temperatures in the Southern Hemisphere ever recorded for those months. The global ocean surface temperatures in 2009 broke all previous records for three consecutive months: June, July and August. The years 2007, 2008 and 2009 had the lowest summer Arctic sea ice cover ever recorded, and in 2008 for the first time in living memory the Northwest Passage and the Northeast Passage were simultaneously ice-free. This feat was repeated in 2009. Every single year of this century (2001-2008) has been warmer than all years of the 20th Century except 1998 (which sticks out well above the trend line due to a strong El Niño event).
The bottom line is: the observed warming over the last decade is 100% consistent with the expected anthropogenic warming trend of 0.2 ºC per decade, superimposed with short-term natural variability. It is no different in this respect from the two decades before. And with an El Niño developing in the Pacific right now, we wouldn’t be surprised if more temperature records were to be broken over the coming year or so."

- State of the Climate Global Analysis September 2009. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. National Climatic Data Center:
"    *  The combined global land and ocean surface temperature for September 2009 was 0.62°C (1.12°F) above the 20th Century average of 15.0°C (59.0°F). This was the second warmest September on record, behind 2005, and the 33rd consecutive September with a global temperature above the 20th Century average. The last below-average September occurred in 1976.
    * The global land surface temperature for September 2009 was 0.97°C (1.75°F) above the 20th Century average of 12.0°C (53.6°F), and ranked as the second warmest September on record, also behind 2005.
    * The worldwide ocean temperature tied with 2004 as the fifth warmest September on record, 0.50°C (0.90°F) above the 20th Century average of 16.2°C (61.1°F). Warmer-than-average sea surface temperatures were widespread, particularly in lower latitudes. The near-Antarctic southern ocean and the Gulf of Alaska featured notable cooler-than-average temperatures.
    * For the year to date, the global combined land and ocean surface temperature of 14.7°C (58.5°F) was the sixth-warmest January-through-September period on record. This value is 0.55°C (0.99°F) above the 20th Century average.
    * A weak El Niño persisted across the equatorial Pacific Ocean during September. Sea surface temperature observations in the equatorial Pacific Ocean during the month remained above average. According to NOAA's Climate Prediction Center, El Niño is expected to strengthen and last through the Northern Hemisphere winter of 2009-2010."

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#20) On October 16, 2009 at 8:46 PM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

... continued .....

"They argue that there are natural cycles, over which we have no control, that dictate how warm the planet is. But what is the evidence for this?"
The relationship between solar cycles and temperature broke down in the late 70s (see graph titled Total Solar Radiance and Global Temperature - 1885 to 2000) and this one:



The cosmic rays theory has little evidence and the physical basis isn't established.
In summary: there's no evidence contradicting AGW theory and there's no new theoretical framework that fits the existing evidence and has better predictive power.

"And just to finish it off, Nobel Prize Physicist explains the difference between real science and junk science (which climatology would definitely fall under):"
- Richard Feynman is talking about social sciences. Climatology is a natural/hard science. Lots of climatologists are also physicists, chemists, geologists, etc.
- It's a shame that such an anti-scientific and anti-intellectual person like you uses the good name of Feynman to score points.

More coverage of this affair in The Guardian
 

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#21) On October 16, 2009 at 9:45 PM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

@ozzfan1317,
"I dont doubt that global warming is real but isnt it a modest increase and therefore not quite as dire as it is made out to be?"
I think that you have no idea as to how the climate system works. The average global temperature in the last Ice Age was only 4-5 ºC colder than the current averages.


Likewise, in a world where temperatures are 5-6 ºC warmer than current averages, the Artic region becomes a subtropical paradise.


"Obviously we shouldnt wait 50 years and see if we melt the arctic by then though."
Obviously we should make the Arctic Ocean ice-free to kick start the ice-albedo feedback and other nice positive feedbacks like the methane clathrates and the carbon stored in permafrost. Acting in this way we're guaranteed to lose the Greenland icesheet and the West Antarctic icesheet in the next century (the climate system has a lot of built-in inertia and CO2 has a long time of residence in the atmosphere)
Perhaps the rational response is to push the climate system to a new equilibrium which can last for millenniums. Certainly we don't need the Maldives, Bangladesh, the Netherlands, most of the coastal cities, the Amazon rainforest, the Prairies and other regions. I think that everyone wants to enjoy balmy summers in Anchorage and Bergen.
I'm now convinced that we don't need to start reducing our GHG emissions now, we can wait until oil and gas reserves are exhausted.

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#22) On October 16, 2009 at 10:11 PM, Darvo285 (46.86) wrote:

"I'm now convinced that we don't need to start reducing our GHG emissions now, we can wait until oil and gas reserves are exhausted."

That's great! Does that mean you going to stop posting your graphs as well?

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#23) On October 16, 2009 at 10:59 PM, starbucks4ever (98.67) wrote:

As for global warming theories, I have no opinion. I'm not a climatologist, but I know enough science to realize that any climate models they feed into their computers are most likely incomplete because there are just too many missing parameters. The only thing I can say is that if we continue to increase population at the same rate, we'll be continuing to increase our chances of ruining the whole f..g thing in one way or another.

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#24) On October 17, 2009 at 1:13 AM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

@Darvo285,
"That's great! Does that mean you going to stop posting your graphs as well?"
I will stop posting facts, graphs, figures and papers when people stop making silly claims about topics they don't know. Does this satisfy you?

@zloj,
"As for global warming theories"
There are not multiple theories. There's only one theory: anthropogenic climate change. Do you believe in physics? ACC is built around very basic physics. That's the reason behind such an strong consensus.

"I have no opinion"
Well, you should have one. The world is debating on climate policy and everyone should have an opinion informed by facts.

"I know enough science to realize that any climate models they feed into their computers are most likely incomplete because there are just too many missing parameters."
- Climate scientists know that models aren't reality. As someone said: "All models are wrong, but some are useful". Climate models are useful.
- Climate models are being improved on a daily basis: more spatial resolution, less uncertainties, more elements.
- Climate models are validated by reality:
* Climate models predict the main features of future climate:
"There have been major advances in the development and use of models over the last 20 years and the current models give us a reliable guide to the direction of future climate change.
Computer models cannot predict the future exactly, due to the large number of uncertainties involved. The models are based mainly on the laws of physics, but also empirical techniques which use, for example, studies of detailed processes involved in cloud formation. The most sophisticated computer models simulate the entire climate system. As well as linking the atmosphere and ocean, they also capture the interactions between the various elements, such as cryosphere (ice) and geosphere (land).
Climate models successfully reproduce the main features of the current climate (e.g. rainfall in the map below), the temperature changes over the last 100 years, the Holocene (6,000 years ago) and Last Glacial Maximum (21,000 years ago).
Current models enable us to attribute the causes of past climate change, and predict the main features of the future climate, with a high degree of confidence."

* Hansen, J., A. Lacis, R. Ruedy, and Mki. Sato, 1992: Potential climate impact of Mount Pinatubo eruption. Geophys. Res. Lett., 19, 215-218, doi:10.1029/91GL02788.
"We use the GISS global-climate model to make a preliminary estimate of Mount Pinatubo's climate impact. Assuming the aerosol optical depth is nearly twice as great as for the 1982 El Chichon eruption, the model forecasts a dramatic but temporary break in recent global warming trends. The simulations indicate that Pinatubo occurred too late in the year to prevent 1991 from becoming one of the warmest years in instrumental records, but intense aerosol cooling is predicted to begin late in 1991 and to maximize late in 1992_ The predicted cooling is sufficiently large that by mid 1992 it should even overwhelm global warming associated with an El Niño that appears to be developing, but the El Nino could shift the time of minimum global temperature into 1993. The model predicts a return to record warm levels in the later 1990s. We estimate the effect of the predicted global cooling on such practical matters as the severity of the coming Soviet winter and the dates of cherry blossoming next spring, and discuss caveats which must accompany these preliminary simulations."
* Hansen, J., L. Nazarenko, R. Ruedy, Mki. Sato, J. Willis, A. Del Genio, D. Koch, A. Lacis, K. Lo, S. Menon, T. Novakov, Ju. Perlwitz, G. Russell, G.A. Schmidt, and N. Tausnev, 2005: Earth's energy imbalance: Confirmation and implications. Science, 308, 1431-1435, doi:10.1126/science.1110252.
"Our climate model, driven mainly by increasing human-made greenhouse gases and aerosols among other forcings, calculates that Earth is now absorbing 0.85±0.15 W/m2 more energy from the Sun than it is emitting to space. This imbalance is confirmed by precise measurements of increasing ocean heat content over the past 10 years. Implications include: (i) expectation of additional global warming of about 0.6°C without further change of atmospheric composition; (ii) confirmation of the climate system's lag in responding to forcings, implying the need for anticipatory actions to avoid any specified level of climate change; and (iii) likelihood of acceleration of ice sheet disintegration and sea level rise."

"The only thing I can say is that if we continue to increase population at the same rate, we'll be continuing to increase our chances of ruining the whole f..g thing in one way or another."
Yep, the P component of the IPAT equation (and variants) always rears its ugly head. See here for a contrarian point of view. There are some estimates of planetary boundaries that indicate that we're crossing some important threshold of sustainability.

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#25) On October 17, 2009 at 10:58 AM, whereaminow (24.34) wrote:

Junk scientists on the loose. It gets better the more you dig into it.

Government funded research unit destroyed original climate data

David in Qatar

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#26) On October 18, 2009 at 3:57 AM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

@whereaminow,
"Junk scientists on the loose. It gets better the more you dig into it."
A short list of junk scientists:
- Patrick Michaels
- S. Fred Singer
- Frederick Seitz
- Steven Milloy
- Stephen McIntyre

"Government funded research unit destroyed original climate data"
Thanks for allowing me to rip apart your pseudoarguments. Let's start the show:

The claim that climate scientists have destroyed key data (temperature records) is another lie coming from the Competitive Enterprise Institute:
"The Competitive Enterprise Institute—a vocal foe of EPA’s efforts to finalize its “endangerment finding”—petitioned the agency this week to reopen the public comment period on the proposal, arguing that critical data used to formulate the plan have been destroyed and that the available data are therefore unreliable.
At issue is a set of raw data from the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, England, that includes surface temperature averages from weather stations around the world….
Republican senators also weighed in yesterday, urging EPA to reopen the public comment period on the endangerment finding to investigate the scientific merit of the research data"


This baseless attack has generated a response from the scientific community:
"We talked with E&E News on this latest maneuver by the ideologues at CEI and contrarian scientist Pat Michaels and posted on October 8: “CEI global warming denialists try another gambit seeking to derail EPA ‘endangerment’ finding”
The process initiated by the CEI petition will, we suppose, produce an appropriate response for the record from EPA and relevant members of the science community. And while that process drags on, CEI and Michaels no doubt will use their petition as a basis for attempting to muddy the waters of scientific discourse, while sliming leaders of the international climate science community and questioning their motives.

A few of those leaders have begun to comment on this attempt. We post below comments Climate Science Watch has received from Ben Santer at Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and Prof. Phil Jones, Director of the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in the UK"

Comment by Benjamin D. Santer, Program for Climate Model Diagnosis and Intercomparison, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory:
"   As I see it, there are two key issues here.
    First, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) and Pat Michaels are arguing that Phil Jones and colleagues at the Climatic Research Unit at the University of East Anglia (CRU) willfully, intentionally, and suspiciously “destroyed” some of the raw surface temperature data used in the construction of the gridded surface temperature datasets.
    Second, the CEI and Pat Michaels contend that the CRU surface temperature datasets provided the sole basis for IPCC “discernible human influence” conclusions.
    Both of these arguments are incorrect. First, there was no intentional destruction of the primary source data. I am sure that, over 20 years ago, the CRU could not have foreseen that the raw station data might be the subject of legal proceedings by the CEI and Pat Michaels. Raw data were NOT secretly destroyed to avoid efforts by other scientists to replicate the CRU and Hadley Centre-based estimates of global-scale changes in near-surface temperature. In fact, a key point here is that other groups—primarily at the NOAA National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) and at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), but also in Russia—WERE able to replicate the major findings of the CRU and UK Hadley Centre groups. The NCDC and GISS groups performed this replication completely independently. They made different choices in the complex process of choosing input data, adjusting raw station data for known inhomogeneities (such as urbanization effects, changes in instrumentation, site location, and observation time), and gridding procedures. NCDC and GISS-based estimates of global surface temperature changes are in good accord with the HadCRUT data results.
    The second argument—that “discernible human influence” findings are like a house of cards, resting solely on one observational dataset—is also invalid. The IPCC Third Assessment Report (TAR) considers MULTIPLE observational estimates of global-scale near-surface temperature changes. It does not rely on HadCRUT data alone—as is immediately obvious from Figure 2.1b of the TAR, which shows CRU, NCDC, and GISS global-mean temperature changes.

    As pointed out in numerous scientific assessments (e.g., the IPCC TAR and Fourth Assessment Reports, the U.S. Climate Change Science Program Synthesis and Assessment Report 1.1 (Temperature trends in the lower atmosphere: Steps for understanding and reconciling differences), and the state of knowledge report, Global Climate Change Impacts on the United States, rigorous statistical fingerprint studies have now been performed with a whole range of climate variables—and not with surface temperature only. Examples include variables like ocean heat content, atmospheric water vapor, surface specific humidity, continental river runoff, sea-level pressure patterns, stratospheric and tropospheric temperature, tropopause height, zonal-mean precipitation over land, and Arctic sea-ice extent. The bottom-line message from this body of work is that natural causes alone CANNOT plausibly explain the climate changes we have actually observed. The climate system is telling us an internally- and physically-consistent story. The integrity and reliability of this story does NOT rest on a single observational dataset, as Michaels and the CEI incorrectly claim.
    I have known Phil for most of my scientific career. He is the antithesis of the secretive, “data destroying” character the CEI and Michaels are trying to portray to the outside world. Phil and Tom Wigley have devoted significant portions of their scientific careers to the construction of the land surface temperature component of the HadCRUT dataset. They have conducted this research in a very open and transparent manner—examining sensitivities to different gridding algorithms, different ways of adjusting for urbanization effects, use of various subsets of data, different ways of dealing with changes in spatial coverage over time, etc. They have thoroughly and comprehensively documented all of their dataset construction choices. They have done a tremendous service to the scientific community—and to the planet—by making gridded surface temperature datasets available for scientific research. They deserve medals—not the kind of deliberately misleading treatment they are receiving from Pat Michaels and the CEI.
(Santer has received several honors, awards and fellowships including the Department of Energy Distinguished Scientist Fellowship, the E.O. Lawrence Award, and the “Genius Award” by the MacArthur Foundation.)"

Comment by Prof. Phil Jones, Director, Climatic Research Unit (CRU), and Professor, School of Environmental Sciences, University of East Anglia, Norwich, UK:
"    No one, it seems, cares to read what we put up on the CRU web page. These people just make up motives for what we might or might not have done.
    Almost all the data we have in the CRU archive is exactly the same as in the Global Historical Climatology Network (GHCN) archive used by the NOAA National Climatic Data Center [see here and here].
    The original raw data are not “lost.”  I could reconstruct what we had from U.S. Department of Energy reports we published in the mid-1980s. I would start with the GHCN data. I know that the effort would be a complete waste of time, though. I may get around to it some time. The documentation of what we’ve done is all in the literature.
    If we have “lost” any data it is the following:
    1. Station series for sites that in the 1980s we deemed then to be affected by either urban biases or by numerous site moves, that were either not correctable or not worth doing as there were other series in the region.
    2. The original data for sites for which we made appropriate adjustments in the temperature data in the 1980s. We still have our adjusted data, of course, and these along with all other sites that didn’t need adjusting.
    3. Since the 1980s as colleagues and National Meteorological Services (NMSs) have produced adjusted series for regions and or countries, then we replaced the data we had with the better series.

    In the papers, I’ve always said that homogeneity adjustments are best produced by NMSs. A good example of this is the work by Lucie Vincent in Canada. Here we just replaced what data we had for the 200+ sites she sorted out.
    The CRUTEM3 data for land look much like the GHCN and NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies data for the same domains.
    Apart from a figure in the IPCC Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) showing this, there is also this paper from Geophysical Research Letters in 2005 by Russ Vose et al.  Figure 2 is similar to the AR4 plot.
    I think if it hadn’t been this issue, the Competitive Enterprise Institute would have dreamt up something else!"

Stanford University Prof. Stephen Schneider:
"    Pat Michaels and the Competitive Enterprise Institute continue to obfuscate well-established scientific conclusions by counting on most non-specialists to be unaware of the vast preponderance of multiple lines of evidence for anthropogenic climate warming. Their technique is to raise minor objections that don’t remotely refute the preponderance, and use this scientific trivia to claim that until all points of debate are resolved the mainstream case isn’t “proven.”
    This was the tried and true tactic of the tobacco industry for 35 years. Now that industry suffers losses of billions of dollars in lawsuits for hiding the truth and obscuring it with minutiae that most people are not technically trained enough to recognize for the deceptions embedded in what seems to be serious scientific debate.
    Why should they not do it given their ideology? They support the ideology of few controls on entrepreneurial activity and thus want to weaken government regulation. In the case of climate change they do this by falsely claiming they have found a new “smoking gun” of refutation of well-established science. Science of complex systems is never finished.  That is why we have assessments like those of the IPCC—to assess where the preponderances are.
    What Michaels and the CEI are selling comes from the north end of a south bound horse.

Schneider is the Melvin and Joan Lane Professor for Interdisciplinary Environmental Studies; Professor, Department of Biology; and Senior Fellow, Woods Institute for the Environment. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and won a joint Nobel Prize in 2007 with his colleagues on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He is the founder and editor of the journal Climatic Change. Websites: climatechange.net and patientfromhell.org"

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#27) On October 18, 2009 at 4:16 AM, lucas1985 (< 20) wrote:

.... continuation  ....

The Competitive Enterprise Institute was also behind another recent affair, this one supposedly involving a "suppressed" report by the EPA. That event was nothing more than a PR construction:
- Alan Carlin - the man behind that report - is an economist, not a climate scientist, although he has a minor in physics from Caltech. He should have asked climate scientists to do the job of reviewing the recent peer-reviewed literature.
- He wasn't commissioned to do a report on the state of climate science. In other words, he made a report nobody asked for.
- His scholarship was shoddy at a minimum: plagiarism, copy/paste from a blog, non peer-reviewed sources, etc.
- His report didn't brought up new evidence to advance the state of the science since the last IPCC report (AR4). It was mainly a rehash of known contrarian talking points.



At this point, a sharp reader may wonder why the CEI promotes pseudoscience and attacks against well-established facts. Well, it's somewhat simple: the Competitive Enterprise Institute is a front group financed to produce pro-corporation and anti-regulatory points of view. This wouldn't be bad if it were done in good faith, using evidence and reason and being independent of manipulations. Sadly, this is not the case here: CEI is deeply linked to fossil fuel money, employs self-appointed "experts", distorts/misinterprets/misrepresents/cherry-picks/fabricates evidence and it's engaged mainly in PR activities, not in research. In other words: it's a propaganda mill. Let's see its finances and its positions:
- The Competitive Enterprise Institute has received $2,005,000 from ExxonMobil since 1998.
- Check what Myron Ebell (CEI's "expert" on global warming and environmental policy) says about climate change
"His positions at various times are: (a) climate change isn't happening, (b) it is happening, but it's not because of human released CO2, (c) it is happening, and may be human induced, but it will be much cheaper to adapt to the change than to ration the use of fossil fuels, (d) it is happening and the consequences will be good for the environment." In other words, an example of logical consistency.
- Check CEI's records at The Legacy Tobacco Documents Library (*) at the University of California, San Francisco . You'll find lovely gems such as this one:
"PHILIP MORRIS MANAGEMENT CORP. 120 PARK AVENUE, NEW YORK, N.Y. 10017-5592 •(212) 880-6000 TxomAs J. Box=, PHD. DIRECTDR SCIENCE AND ENVIRONMENTAL POLICY July 27, 1994 Mr. Fred Smith Competitive Enterprise Institute 1001 Connecticut Ave/N.W. Suite 1250 Washington, D.C. 20036 Dear Fred, On behalf of Philip Morris, I am delighted to enclose this grant of $25,000 for the ongoing efforts of the Competitive Enterprise Institute."

As we can see, CEI is a propaganda organization that was key in the tobacco wars, it's deeply linked to fossil fuel interests, it doesn't make meaningful research, it's primary involved in mounting PR operations (writing OpEds, providing talking points to right-wing media, training "experts" to debate, making up controversy out of thin air, etc) and it resorts to pseudoscience and smear attacks to advance its agenda.

(*) The Legacy Tobacco Documents Library (LTDL) contains more than 10 million documents (50+ million pages) created by major tobacco companies related to their advertising, manufacturing, marketing, sales, and scientific research activities. Report this comment
#28) On October 18, 2009 at 10:22 AM, whereaminow (24.34) wrote:

I don't know what you have torn apart there. You attacked the messenger without disputing the message.  CEI supports free markets and capitalism so it is no surprise that capitalists support them.  Tobacco legislation has done nothing but make Marlboro a permanent monopoly in America.  Again, nothing surprising about the results of government intervention.  Insiders, in fact, call the latest round of regulation the Marlboro Monolpoly Act.  Ford Motor Company is the one American car maker that didn't ask the government to steal from the taxpayers to pay for their losses.  Not that it matters.  Who donates to CEI is irrelevant, just as all the Military Contractors that donate to Hillary Clinton are irrelevant.  If I am trying to do good, and they are trying to do evil, in whose hand do you want the money?  So you're argument is stupid. 

Enough of the Alinsky method.  Just cut to the chase. No one is accusing the government of being evil.  Incompetent? Well, yes, that's government's m.o. Evil? Probably not.

But it is your weapon, as you said, to advance your agenda. Interesting.  Fascinating, actually.

"Yep, AGW is a big weapon for progressives (I'm one) and environmentalists." - lucas1985

As Richard Feynman stated, it is an attempt to intimidate, because you don't actually care about finding laws of science.  That's why you are a junk scientist. That's why you and the AGW crowd are losing credibility so quickly.

David in Qatar

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