Sunday, March 19, 2006

"The Global Warming Bugaboo"

'The Global Warming Bugaboo' (HT: BizzyBlog) provokes a healthy skepticism of the environmental movements 'hook-line-and-sinker' swallowing of future weather predictions and the policy implications promoted by such a selective worshiping of one of our most inexact sciences (at least when it comes to long range weather predictions):

The environmental movement maintains that science and technology cannot be relied upon to build a safe atomic power plant, to produce a pesticide that is safe, or even to bake a loaf of bread that is safe, if that loaf of bread contains chemical preservatives. When it comes to global warming, however, it turns out that there is one area in which the environmental movement displays the most breathtaking confidence in the reliability of science and technology, an area in which, until recently, no one—not even the staunchest supporters of science and technology—had ever thought to assert very much confidence at all. The one thing, the environmental movement holds, that science and technology can do so well that we are entitled to have unlimited confidence in them is forecast the weather—for the next one hundred years! ...

...In a manner reminiscent of an old Hollywood movie in which some great white hunter might attempt to frighten a tribe of jungle savages in darkest Africa, the environmentalists tell a badly dumbed-down American public that Katrina and worse hurricanes to come are the result of global warming resulting from fossil fuel consumption. They tell us in effect, that if we destroy the energy base needed to produce and operate the construction equipment required to build strong, well-made, comfortable houses for hundreds of millions of people, we shall be safer from such hurricanes than if we retain and enlarge that energy base. They tell us that if we destroy our capacity to produce and operate refrigerators and air conditioners, we shall be better protected from hot weather than if we retain and enlarge that capacity. They tell us that if we destroy our capacity to produce and operate tractors and harvesters, to can and freeze food, to build and operate hospitals and produce medicines, we shall secure our food supply and our health better than if we retain and enlarge that capacity.

There is actually a remarkable new principle implied here, concerning how man can cope with his environment. Instead of our taking action upon nature, as we have always believed we must do, we shall henceforth control the forces of nature more to our advantage by means of our inaction. Indeed, if we do not act, no significant threatening forces of nature will arise! The threatening forces of nature are not the product of nature, but of us! Thus speaks the environmental movement.

Bill Bryson in his very popular book 'A Short History of Nearly Everything' dedicates a whole chapter to the historical phenomenon of the ice ages. In it he shares these findings (page 431-432)(ed. emphasis added along with hyperlinks to relevant references):

...Climate is the product of so many variables--rising and falling carbon dioxide levels, the shifts of continents, solar activity, the stately wobbles of the Milankovitch cycles [ed. also volcanoes]--that is as difficult to comprehend the events of the past as it is to predict those of the future. Much is simply beyond us. Take Antartica. For at least twenty million years after it settled over the South Pole Antartica remained covered in plants and free of ice. That simply shouldn't have been possible...

The extraordinary fact is the we don't know which is more likely, a future offering us eons of perishing frigidity or one giving us equal expanses of steamy heat. Only one thing is certain: we live on a knife edge....


Anonymous Libertarian Jason said...

You should read Michael Crichton's latest novel, State of Fear. It's good.

March 20, 2006 at 11:21 AM  
Blogger BizzyBlog said...

Good stuff.

I got an e-mail today from Benny Peiser that said that some enviros believe that man starting to mess around with fire about 8000 years ago is what caused the Ice Age glaciers to recede.

The e-mail talked about how that theory had been debunked. Duh.

March 20, 2006 at 11:32 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Keep denying the facts that we are destroying the world, you idiots. It is unfortunate that your ostrich head in the sand attitude is going to kill the rest of us. Keep driving your SUVs, you obese TV watching, irresponsible morons.

January 6, 2007 at 1:16 PM  

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