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Posts Tagged ‘Al Gore’

Joe Bastardi: Unbelievable Al Gore

2008/03/31 16 comments

Joe Bastardi, long-range forecast expert at Accuweather.com, responds to Al Gore’s statements on CBS’s 60 Minutes that people skeptical of AGW are “almost like the ones who still believe that the moon landing was staged in a movie lot in Arizona and those who believe the world is flat“:

I am absolutely astounded that someone who refuses to publicly debate anyone on this matter and has no training in the field narrated a movie where frames of nuclear explosions were interspersed in a subliminal way in scenes of droughts and flood, among other major gaffes, can say these things and then have them accepted… by anyone.

[…] What gets me most is he goes on unchallenged one-on-one on this. Never in all my years of competition have I seen someone elevated to a level that he is, in any thing, without any face-to-face competition to establish credibility.

[…] anyone that believes he knows absolutely what is going to happen with the climate in the future, well you be the judge as to who is the card carrying member of the flat Earth society, that person, or the skeptic.

The Failure of AGW Advocacy

Are climate skeptics helping prevent AGW policies from being implemented? That may well be true: but the actual situation is much more complex.

In truth, one cannot fault people expressing their opinions, and their dissent from “consensus”, for the fact that their views appear to be listened to by politicians (not sure they truly are), whilst the “consensus” usually results into idle talk or cures that are worse than the illness (see biofuels, or the idiotically expensive Kyoto treaty).

One important point to remember is that much of the Anglo-Saxon world’s brouhaha around climate change is linked directly to the hysteria accompanying a lot of AGW proclamations and actions. Likely due to political naivete, groups of scientists-advocates have joined Greenpeace and the likes in an escalation of hyperboles, with the world depicted almost as turning into cinder by Tuesday, if we don’t all go back to living in caves.

As some AGW scientists said about Al Gore’s movie, those hyperboles are not scientifically right, but are deemed ok to “convey the message”.

Distortion of science for a good cause was and unfortunately still is in fact a tactic devised to break down the BAU inertia (aka the “cost of Doing Something”). The problem is that there are only so many times such inertia can be countered with doom-and-gloom. AGWers have been unlucky enough to show up years if not months after major scares have fizzled out, like Y2K and SARS.

The general population then, and many politicians, have been healthily inoculated against unwarranted exaggerations. That’s why the AGW camp, still using obsolete influencing techniques, have literally painted themselves into a whining-and-crying corner, with few listening to them unless when there is an occasion for swindling public money (see US corn subsidies, and the European cap-and-trade system).

You can just read Dr Pachauri’s incredible declarations about the latest Antarctic huge iceberg, to see what I mean by hyperbole, exaggeration and distortion of science:

“if the huge bodies of ice of western Antarctica and Greenland ice sheets, sitting on land, were to collapse […]”

There is no danger nor forecast nor model that suggests anything of the sort happening for a long long long time even under the direst temperature increases we can imagine. So what is the point of talking about that, rather than more pressing concerns, such as the droughts and floods that do seem to come out of the model runs???

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And so the situation is: in a corner, AGW scientists and advocates kicking and screaming for action. In the rest of the world, lots of people that are turned off any meaningful action…by the kicking and screaming of those AGW scientists and advocates. Little wonder politicians do nothing of any meaning on the topic, apart from when they can spread “pork” and get more votes.

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Every once in a while some analysis appears begging the “environmental” movement to change their ways of communicating what they care about:

But the AGWers are still in the dark ages, as far as advocacy is concerned.

Lately the only novelty is that they appear to have decided to be relentless, as if following the old saying that if you keep repeating a lie, eventually it will be taken as truth. But time is not on their side: year-on-year climate fluctuations are larger than any AGW “signal”, as admitted even by RealClimate.

There is so much we can say, think and care about the world in 2020, let alone 2050, when the models say evidence would be so much stronger. And when the news talk about a catastrophe for the 1,000-th time, the impact on the public will be much much smaller than it was 999 times before.

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Anybody believing in AGW can keep on lamenting the situation…just please, try to understand: the lament is part of the problem. The existence of scientist-dissenters is not.

Just look at France: where a “green package” was discussed, defined and delivered without anybody running around like headless chickens. Believe it or not, I may have even signed that package myself!

Too Much Ice? Who Knows?

2008/03/22 4 comments

Much blogosphere talk about a report by “Svend Erik Hendriksen, a certified weather observer in the Kangerlussuaq Greenland MET Office, who is responsible for all the weather observations at Kangerlussuaq Airport (near to Sisimiut)” according to whom polar bears this year are “very hungry” because of “too much sea ice“.

Since skepticism is not something to turn on and off at will, I have done some research on the topic. Turns out that there is at least one member of a forum that calls himself “S.E. Hendriksen” and claims to be from Kangerlussuaq.

He mentions metereological stuff in at least one post.

Has Mr Hendriksen commented about hungry polar bears in 2008, and too much sea ice? I haven’t found any “original” text so I am simply unable to tell.

One thing for sure, he is not your average AGWer, and publishes curious if somehow jaw-dropping “Roschach-like” analysis of Al Gore’s movie.

Let’s wait a few more days…usually, fake or overblown remarks don’t live that long.

Penn Jillette: Al Gore, the Weather Opportunist

2008/01/16 5 comments

Another short video by Penn on his Crackle “Penn Says” channel: “I want to see an article by Al Gore that says ‘if we have 8 hurricanes next year…or we have zero hurricanes or we have something that means that I was wrong about global warming’. Because if you don’t have something that can disprove what you believe than you are believing in anything…”

Excerpted transcript below is mine:

…article in the New York Times about weather opportunists (1)…everything is caused by Global Warming…whether it is hurricanes, whether it is warmer, whether it is colder, more storms or fewer storms…

The important thing in the article is that there are these “weather opportunists” that are making anything…ice-cap melting, polar bears, they all look like they are caused by the same thing.

But I remember an article…several years ago…on the New York Times, an op-ed thing by Al Gore where Al Gore talked about how hot it was in New York…and how that showed there was global warming…and that’s insane. Even if you believe in global warming (I still scratch my head but it seems everybody does) it wouldn’t be enough that you could notice it in New York City that there would be a hot summmer because you wouldn’t notice that walking down the street.

And it struck me that the New York Times article just wasnt’ enough. because the real question is what weather could come along that would show us we were wrong about global warming. I want to see an article by Al Gore that says “if we have 8 hurricanes next year…or we have zero hurricanes or we have something that means that I was wrong about global warming”

Because if you don’t have something that can disprove what you believe than you are believing in anything…it must be falsifiable, you know, if something causes everything than it causes nothing.

I am not coming out, I am not crazy enough to come out against global warming or even man-made global warming (I just don’t know enough) but man! I wish they would try to convince me, stop exaggerating in order to clarify because all it does is give me less trust, and I also wish they would stop saying that everything is because of global warming because if everything is because of global warming then nothing is

(1) I cannot find any relevant article on “weather opportunists” on the New York Times archive. Perhaps he is referring to the Tierney Labs blog “Are There Any Good Weather Omens?“. Or perhaps the NYT article used a synonym.

Penn Jillette: Bill Gates Cares About Children, Not Global Warming

2008/01/16 2 comments

Penn of Penn&Teller fame wonders on his Crackle channel “Penn Says” why hasn’t Al Gore been able to convince Bill Gates to speak out against global warming. “Bill Gates still thinks that the most important thing to worry about in the world is children starving, AIDS spreading, dissenteria, suffering, of children in developing countries

Excerpted transcript below is mine:

[…] Al Gore didn’t get science classes in college and Bill Gates even if he didn’t finish college took science classes. And Bill Gates knows about numbers, knows about the world. and yet he hasn’t talked about global warming.

Al Gore had his guys go in for a 7-h meeting with Bill Gates with snacks and everything and gave him don’t just the slide show AIT, gave him everything he could.

You know that must have happened (doesn’t Al Gore want to convince Bill Gates) and yet Bill Gates still thinks that the most important thing to worry about in the world is children starving, AIDS spreading, dissenteria, suffering, of children in developing countries. Bill Gates didn’t say anything about Global Warming…[…]

Spiked Online’s Christmas All-Out Attack on AGW

(a) “Al Gore: enviro-tyrant” by Brendan O’Neill (Dec 18)
After Bali: In aspiring to ‘control the destiny of all generations to come’, Gore has unwittingly unveiled his anti-democratic streak

As he flies around the world to tell people that they should fly less, or organises rock-star extravaganzas to tell the masses they should live more meekly, some sceptics have asked: ‘Who the hell does Al Gore think he is?

(b) “Eco-imperialism at the Bali summit?” by James Heartfield (Dec 18) 
After Bali: Are Western powers offsetting their industrial growth by blackmailing poorer countries to foreswear development? One writer thinks so

More than most scientific questions, the state of the environment has been deeply mixed up with international rivalries. In fact, some nations seem to have politicised environmental claims as a weapon in their economic competition. CO2 emissions mirror industrial output. The agreement in Bali to limit CO2 emissions looks to me like an attempt by the Great Powers to regulate industrial competition.

(c) “Hairshirt posturing vs everyday reality” by Robert Lyons (Dec 18)
After Bali: It ended in stalemate because while everyone poses as an opponent of CO2-emitting technologies, the fact is humanity needs them.

‘It was exactly what we wanted, we are indeed very pleased. We will have now two tremendously demanding years, starting right in January.’ So said the European Union’s chief negotiator Humberto Rosa following the outline agreement forged at the UN climate change talks in Bali last weekend. But it seems quite clear that, on the substantive issues under negotiation, everyone simply agreed to disagree.

(d) “Return of the Skeptical Environmentalist” by Tony Gilland (Review, Dec 2007)
In his new book Cool It, Bjørn Lomborg shows how ‘the science’ on global warming – covering everything from polar bear extinction to the disappearance of Greenland – has been distorted and politicised

(e) “Who’s afraid of…Greenland melting?” by Rob Lyons (Dec 13) 
Rob Lyons says we should keep cool about the ongoing scare story of Greenland’s melting ice.

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