Tuesday, 2 March 2010

So if it’s not global warming . . . ? [updated]

ark-of-comfort I missed something important in Al Gore’s op-ed yesterday.

I’ll tell you what I missed in a second, but first, let ‘s set the scene.

The “science” of the warmist team is collapsing, and the “scientists” running the warmist mantra are being found out.  The UK’s parliamentary inquiry into the university at the centre of the climate change row over stolen e-mails is now front and centre in exposing the transparent legerdemain.  [UPDATE: And climate scientist Roy Spencer suggested over the weekend that world surface station temp data has been so munged as to be worthless.]

And the carbon-trading circle jerk that was supposed to grow up on the back of the warmist “science” is now exposed as a bust. The news that the UN’s climate chief Yvo de Boer is stepping down with no replacement being announced (“casting doubt on the effort to establish a worldwide market aimed at reducing the emissions blamed for global warming) can be added to worldwide news of the collapse of carbon trading markets, and the announcement by New Zealand’s sharemarket operator NZX that they’ll be taking “a $19.9m hit to its balance sheet from a carbon trading business it has sold, blaming a lower priority given to carbon trading and ‘lack of a global political agenda around carbon’.”

Poor lambs.  “Macro conditions have moved against carbon trading compared with where the world was when the registry business was sold," said the failed rent-seeking bastards at NZX.  A more honest assessment would be to say that on careful analysis, businesses are finally realising that paying an indulgence for the “sin” of production is as absurd as it is destructive.

In  other words, they’re no longer buying the scam.

That John Key’s Labour-Lite government has yet to read the writing on the wall and cancel their “world-leading” (and New Zealand-strangling) emissions tax scam is a tribute only to their inability to read, and their disinterest in who they damage.

But Al Gore knows how to read.  He sure as hell knows what time it is. He knows it’s time to cash out (and to talk up his position before it collapses), and time to cut the science adrift – and on that last at least the warmist world is going with him.

The first clue was Al Gore's merger of environmentalism and religion –– his admission  last December that for him the “spiritual dimension of climate change” trumps the scientific.  He continued that theme yesterday, blathering that “From the standpoint of governance, what is at stake is our ability to use the rule of law as an instrument of human redemption.”  (Or as Charles Anderson translates, “Yes, of course, we cannot allow the People to make their own choices in the free market, because we must use the force of government to redeem these sorry sinners.  We, the elitist Progressives, must use the force of government to enforce myriad laws to make the People do what they will not choose to do . . . Government is the Messiah [and] the elitists who manipulate its levers are the Messiahs.”)

And the second clue appeared in Gore’s op-ed yesterday, and in recent ads from Gore’s Climate Advocacy Group.   It was there, but I missed it.  There I was answering Al Gore’s “science,” when what I was really doing was wasting my time.  Because as Intellectual Activist editor Robert Tracinski was astute enough to notice, Big Al has noticed the way warmist science is going, and he’s now saying to that science, “Get thee behind me.”

In his column What’s It All About, Al Gore, Tracinski quotes a recent Washington Post column  by Dana Milbank on Washington’s big snowstorm “being used by both sides in the global warming debate. Milbank acknowledges that this ‘argument-by-anecdote’ is invalid, briefly refers to Climategate, and then offers this remarkable shift”:

    _quote For those concerned about warming, it's time for a shift in emphasis. Fortunately, one has already been provided to them by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), who has done more than any Democrat to keep climate legislation alive this year. His solution: skip the hurricanes and Himalayan glaciers and keep the argument on the hundreds of billions of dollars spent annually on foreign oil, some of that going to terrorists rather than to domestic job creation.
    “Al Gore, for one, seems to realize it's time for a new tactic. New TV ads released during last week's blizzards by Gore's climate advocacy group say nothing about climate science. They show workers asking their senators for more jobs from clean energy.
    “That's a good sign. If the Washington snows persuade the greens to put away the slides of polar bears and pine beetles and to keep the focus on national security and jobs, it will have been worth the shoveling.”

And that’s precisely what Al was pushing in yesterday’s New York Times apologia.  And “this,” says Tracinski, “is the new party line.”

    _quote If the science can no longer be invoked to support massive government controls on the economy, then drop the science. You can drop it, because none of this was ever really about science. It was about power. It was about control. It was about central planning of our lives by the usual gang in Washington.”

Or Wellington.

I urge you to read Tracinski’s full column, which you can find online here at the NZ Climate Realists site. (I’ve reproduced the first three paragraphs since it’s somewhat munted on their site.)

What's Left Without Global Warming?
by Robert Tracinski

    With apologies to Dionne Warwick—and to Michael Caine, for that matter—I have to ask: What's it all about, Al Gore?
    I mean all of this stuff about how we have to restructure our entire society to avoid man-made global warming—what was it all really about? Was it ever really about global warming? Or was it really about restructuring our society, for which global warming was just an excuse?
    That's what we have to start asking in the wake of Climategate.
    It is not just that Climategate—the e-mails leaked from the Climatic Research Unit at Britain's University of East Anglia, and the subsequent investigations they unleashed—has revealed that the "settled science" of global warming was riddled with errors, based on questionable data and false assumptions, and distorted by conformity, bullying, and groupthink.
    It is not just that some of the main Climategate conspirators, such as the CRU's Phil Jones, are now admitting that the science isn't settled and that global temperatures may well have been warmer than today one thousand years ago, long before automobiles and industrial smokestacks.
    No, what really ought to give us pause is that so far none of these revelations has actually stopped the political agenda on global warming. Virtually everyone who advocated massive new controls on our economic life in the name of stopping global warming still advocates it. And it's not just because they're in denial and they still think science is on their side. The most frightening new trend—frightening because of what it reveals—is that many of these people are advocating these controls even if the globe is not warming.
    It started with President Obama's State of the Union address, when he referred to "the overwhelming scientific evidence on climate change"—eliciting laughter in the chamber—and then went on to say: "But even if you doubt the evidence, providing incentives for energy efficiency and clean energy are the right thing to do for our future—because the nation that leads the clean energy economy will be the nation that leads the global economy." What is notable there is the development of a fallback position in case the public doubts the science. But of course, the fallback position makes no sense. If carbon dioxide is not frying the globe, then windmills and solar cells aren't "clean energy." They're just inefficient energy.
    Similarly, Lindsey Graham—one of a handful of Senate Republicans who really drank the Kool-Aid on global warming—has switched to advocating all the same controls as a way to reduce our "dependency" on foreign oil. But of course, the far easier way would be to lift restrictions on offshore drilling and on oil exploration on federal lands.
    When this trend finally struck me was in a column by the Washington Post's Dana Milbank that discussed how Washington's big snowstorm was being used by both sides in the global warming debate . . .

Which is about where we came in. Read on here for the real good oil: how this could lead to the second spectacular collapse of the left in two decades.


  1. I called it here.

    "As the whole global warming fraud unravels there will be many more resignations, firings, and so forth. While this is a very welcome turn of events it would be premature to announce the death of the destructive philosophy that bolstered AGW.

    Environmentalism (the political movement) is undergirded by a more fundamentally irrational view I call viro-paganism, an ancient religion (think Druids) newly reborn at the end of the 19th century. (In modern times, it actually began earlier, most notably in the writings of Rousseau, who bequeathed us the current form of 'the noble savage.') That disease is still raging in the public schools and major media, and until its carriers are removed the contagion will continue to spread."

  2. Jeff

    Can you expand on viro-paganism. It would be interesting to know more about it.



  3. They've figured out a brilliant strategy.

    Jobs are the issue of overwhelming importance in the U.S now.

    Associate climate legislation with creating jobs and people will roll over and do whatever you want.

    But how depressing is it to see the great American worker - the most productive in the world - "asking their senators" for jobs?

    Implying of course, that Senators have emperor like power to create jobs out of counterfeit capital and grant them unto their pathetic and desperate subjects.

    Imagine the humiliation of the person doing the begging.

    Thinking he can't get a job on merit, and therefore having to beg for one from his elected official.

    Self esteem destruction.

    And don't be surprised when politicians start to associate all manner of things with job creation.

    Healthcare takeover - it will create jobs!

    New wars - it will create jobs!

    Drug war - it will create jobs!

    Ban smoking - it will create jobs!

  4. Imprisonment - it will create new jobs

    Detention centres - it will create new jobs

    Prison camps - it will create new jobs!

    Slavery - it will create jobs!

    Total war - it will create new jobs!

  5. LGM,

    I'll answer your question tomorrow.

    For now, I wanted to address this:

    "But how depressing is it to see the great American worker - the most productive in the world - 'asking their senators' for jobs?"

    Only a small minority are doing or would do that, but Progressives dominate both Houses and the White House right now and they're ignoring the vast majority. (Come November that's likely to change, to what degree it's too early to tell.)

    A clear two-thirds to three-quarters of Americans want the Feds to get out of the way. Progressives will never do that voluntarily - no matter what the polls tell them about their re-election chances. They see their moment has arrived - after decades of working slowly to gain near unbridled power - and they're not about to let a little thing like the 'will of the people' - much less any abstract talk about rights or the Constitution - get in their way.

    If you're familiar with the novel Atlas Shrugged, remember those who were willing to continue to torture Galt, knowing that their deaths would quickly follow his? That's the mentality I'm talking about here.

    Progressives have waited 75 years to regain the level of power their ilk enjoyed during the first Roosevelt administration and they're determined to push through everything they can before they lose it again, knowing how difficult it is to undo any major legislation.

    But want they want is not what most Americans want and neither group is about to roll over. This is a Cold Civil War - about a generation or less from a hot one, if things continue this way - and it's a fight to the political death.

  6. LGM,

    Here are a few excerpts from a Free Radical article I wrote in June, 2007.

    "[Note: In what follows, I coin a new term, 'viropaganism', in order to more clearly distinguish the fundamental features of environmentalism as a philosophy or religion, from environmentalism as a movement or set of proposals.]

    At bottom, viropaganism is a form of Nature worship, much like that of the ancient Celts. Its practice is older than any organized religion, including Christianity, which it predates by thousands of years.

    Its chief characteristic, metaphysically, is that all Nature is both spiritual and physical, that fundamentally these are indistinguishable.

    Ethically, its primary principle is that all things in nature are of equal intrinsic value. It preaches that 'raw' nature is best, that any 'undue' alteration by Man is a movement away from that ideal.


    Two different views on man's nature and that relationship are found within environmental thought: (1) That Man is a part of Nature, but it is his insistence on using reason that separates him from it 'artificially'. That Man should forego emphasis on reason and 'rejoin' nature willingly. (2) More recently, that Man will never forego using his reason, that he is therefore a kind of virus on the Earth, and that — since the welfare of Nature is paramount — it would be preferable if his numbers were radically reduced.

    In the first case, reason is regarded as non-essential, in the second case ineradicable, but harmful."

    The article also contains an historical review of some of the writings on the subject from Rousseau, Thoreau, and more modern philosophers.

  7. Jeff,

    You write lucidly and well. Your explanation of what you coin 'viro-paganism' is accurate. It details the habits of various pests that interfere in planning consents processes in NZ.

    Their attitude is similar to the Knights Templar...to ride to rescue Jerusalem [Gaia]from the Saracen hordes [humanity]; ad hoc groups utilising any pseudo spiritual or cultural leverage they can. An unholy alliance between government conservation agencies, indigenous people, botanists, landscape 'architects' and the struggling masses of malcontents who dislike anyone that is happy. When its all boiled down they want to be the last people to move here.

    Your comment on 'Cold Civil War' is chilling. On a recent visit to the USA I wandered through an old New England cemetery. The numerous headstones covering men who 'died of wounds' brought the Civil War out of history books and into reality. I can see the polarisation of US society deepening with every visit [maybe it will cease if I stop visiting?]
    There is no law that says it all can't happen again, that it can't go from cold to hot. We live in interesting times.


  8. Thanks George. And thank you for the image and reminiscence about that graveyard. (I know the type you mean, having been to Boston many times.) It's evocative and a useful reminder that political change isn't always just raised voices, but sometimes falling swords, even in America.


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