Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Climate Reductio ad Absurdum


By Alan Caruba

Recently, three researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, had a study published that claimed that a “substantial” correlation between violence and climate change could be made.

They cited sixty studies from around the world that, according to a BBC World Service article, demonstrated that “even small changes in temperature or rainfall correlated with a rise in assaults, rapes, and murders, as well as group conflicts and war.”

Apparently they missed the data on World War II’s Battle of the Bulge or the siege of Stalingrad, both of which were fought in freezing weather. Earlier, Napoleon ran into a similar problem when he wanted to conquer Russia.

We have now reached a point in the Great Global Warming Hoax where pure absurdity is the norm for claims made on behalf of a warming cycle that ended around 1996.

In a Washington Times January 17 commentary, Patrick J. Michaels, director of the Cato Institute’s Center for the Study of Science, wrote, “My greener friends are increasingly troubled by the lack of a rise in recent global surface temperatures. Using monthly data measured as the departure from long-term averages, there’s been no significant warming trend since the fall of 1996. In other words, we are now in our 17th year of flat temperatures.”

Citing the usual scientific data involved, Michaels wrote, “It’s a pretty good bet that we are going to go nearly a quarter of a century without warming.”

Much of the kind of idiotic “scientific research” with which the public has been inundated for decades has been the result of the pursuit of funding that involves “professional advancement”, noted Michaels, and which is “particularly dependent upon a certain view”—proving that global warming is real despite all the evidence to the contrary. Claiming that it is causing a rise of violence around the world is idiotic.

Commenting on the Cal-Berkeley study, James M. Taylor, the Heartland Institute’s editor of Environment & Climate News, noted that the three researchers “claim to apply expert principles of ‘archaeology, criminology, economics, geography, history, political science, and psychology’ in their paper” despite the fact that they ”share the same limited background in economics” to claim such expertise.

Over at, editor Marc Morano said, “Instead of looking at temperature data or other climate metrics to prove or disprove man-made global warming, the global warming activists have now shifted the playing field so rape and murder statistics are now used as some sort of ‘proof’ of man-made global warming. Global warming science has truly morphed to modern witchcraft!”

The only place you will find “proof” of global warming these days is in computer models.

Too often they are those used by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and those at NASA, both government entities that are mindful that they better toe the party line if they want their budget requests fulfilled. Despite having the best satellites and computer models available, the National Weather Service would not guarantee its predictions more than three days out and surely not more than a week or two.

It is unfortunate that we have a President who keeps repeating the same false claims about “climate change”—the new name for global warming—despite the fact that they have been disputed and abandoned by thousands of scientists around the world. Worse, claims about “carbon pollution” are being used by the Environmental Protection Agency and other government departments to justify the war on coal in particular and hydrocarbon fuels in general.

Some elements of the press such as the BBC are unwilling to abandon the global warming hoax. This means that the search for new scary headlines with which to sell newspapers and magazines, or increase ratings on the evening news will lead to claims about dramatically rising sea levels or, as Michaels predicts, “acid oceans.”

It is all garbage and the real threat is the billions in taxpayer dollars that are being wasted on so-called “climate change” research or the tons of regulations being written to support the strangulation of the nation’s economy in the name of air and water pollution. We have clean air. We have clean water. We need jobs.

© Alan Caruba, 2013

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Obama is Denying Energy Independence to America

By Alan Caruba

Watching the events unfold in the Middle East, it occurred to me that, if we had a president who had even the slightest grasp of energy facts, we could be living in a nation that is not dependent in part on Middle East oil.

Instead, we have a president who will not allow the Keystone XL pipeline to be extended from Canada at no cost to American taxpayers while providing thousands of jobs, short and long-term and whose administration denies access to the nation’s vast energy reserves.

Why? Some observers say President Obama is trying to maintain his bona fides among environmentalists and it’s important to keep in mind that virtually every major environmental organization opposes any and all forms of energy development. I suspect the President simply sees the pipeline as symbolic of his overall attack on America’s ability to have sufficient energy to meet its needs and provide for growth. It is an attack on our economy.

Billions of gallons of crude oil is used daily in America and the nation has an extensive network of pipelines to transport it; approximately 55,000 miles. In addition there is also an estimated 30,000 to 40,000 miles of small gathering lines, located primarily in Texas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, and Wyoming with small systems in a number of other oil producing states. Right now, hundreds of miles of Keystone XL pipe sit idle on 83 acres of leased land outside Gascoyne, North Dakota.

Testifying in April before the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources, Dan Simmons of the Institute for Energy Research, said that both America and our neighbor Mexico are energy rich countries with total recoverable oil reserves that exceed 1.7 trillion barrels. At our current rate of use, that is enough for the next 242 years.

In terms of natural gas, North America has approximately 4.2 quadrillion cubic feet, enough for 176 years at the current rate of use. U.S. recoverable coal reserves are estimated at more than 497 billion short tons; enough for nearly 500 years at our current rate of use.

As events in Egypt are reported, commentators note the importance of the Suez Canal through which much of the oil the West uses must pass, but given the U.S. oil reserves our nation could function independent of that imported oil.

Ironically, we will have to build more pipelines to transport it internally and we need to build more liquid gas facilities to export our huge reserves of natural gas. This is not likely to occur over the remaining years of the Obama administration, nor will the shutdowns of coal-fired plants in a nation that is the Saudi Arabia of coal cease. Coal in federally controlled land is estimated to be worth $22.5 trillion to the U.S. economy, but it remains barred from mining.

Not only could the U.S. be energy independent, but could be a major exporter to other nations because oil, natural gas, and coal will comprise almost eighty percent of the global energy supply in 2040. Energy demand is expected to grow by fifty-six percent between now and 2040, mostly due to the economic growth of nations such as China and India.

The nation remains mired in an economy that is barely growing at two percent annually and part of that is due to the energy policies of the Obama administration. As this is being written, the Obama Environmental Protection Agency, Energy Department, and other agencies have quietly raised their estimated “social cost” of carbon emissions from $21 per ton to $35 per ton. The increase was not debated in Congress, nor available for public review. Instead, its announcement was buried in an unrelated Energy Department regulation on microwave ovens!

Having been defeated in its efforts to impose a tax on carbon emissions, the Obama administration is engaging in the outright fraud of claiming that carbon emissions are causing global warming/climate change. As part of its war on energy provision the Obama administrated wasted billions on wind power, solar power, and electric car company failures throughout its first term. Without mandates and subsidies, none of these enterprises could remain in business or be competitive.

The U.S. economy should be booming given the huge reserves of natural gas and oil that exist nationwide, but instead it remains hostage to nations such as Saudi Arabia. At the same time a major oil exporter, Iraq, has seen its exports reduced due to the turmoil that has escalated since the U.S. military was withdrawn. Sanctions on Iran affect its oil exports. Expect the cost of oil to remain high for years to come.

The U.S. is suffering from the attacks on its energy sector by the major environmental organizations such as the Sierra Club and Friends of the Earth at the same time the Obama administration continues its regulatory attacks to reduce the coal mining industry and restrict access to oil reserves. In states and on privately owned lands, there is a boom in natural gas extraction.
Every American who fills up his auto’s gas tank, air conditions or heats their home or apartment, and whose livelihood is directly affected by the cost and availability of energy is being held hostage by the Obama administration, forced to pay higher costs and forced to suffer the loss of opportunity in a nation whose access to its own vast energy reserves is being denied.

© Alan Caruba, 2013

Monday, August 5, 2013

Hot Lies Disputed by Cold Facts

By Alan Caruba

I have always found a stark contrast in the way the forecasts of meteorologists on television and radio are limited in accuracy to about a week and beyond that become more speculative while the claims about global warming are always stated in decades. For example, the polar ice caps were supposed to have all melted by now.

The daily forecasts are formulated based on sophisticated meteorological satellites. The global warming claims are all based on computer models, not empirical observation and data.

I am not a meteorologist, nor even a scientist. I am, however, a science writer who has followed the global warming hoax since it began in the late 1980s and picked up momentum as the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) began issuing its computer-based doomsday claims.

The IPCC objective was to get nations to impose carbon taxes on “greenhouse gas emissions”, mostly carbon dioxide (CO2). Why anyone would want to tax CO2 when it is vital to all life on Earth is a mystery. The claim was that it was trapping heat. The essential flaw in all this scare mongering is that the Earth is an extraordinary self-adjusting mechanism and more CO2 is great news for thriving forests and growing crops.

Two friends of mine, both recognized as major voices in the world of meteorology, Joseph D’Aleo, a certified consulting meteorologist, and Dr. William Gray, were joined by Dr. Neil Frank, another respected member of the profession, in a July 8 letter sent to Keith Seitter, the Executive Director of the American Meteorological Society, these AMS Fellows, took him and the Society to task for continuing to push the bogus assertion that a “consensus” of its members believe that global warming is occurring.

A Wikipedia page notes that the American Meteorological Society was founded in 1919 andpromotes the development and dissemination of information and education in atmospheric and related oceanic and hydrologic science.” The Society has a membership of more than 14,000 professionals, professors, students, and weather enthusiasts.

Suffice to say, global warming is the greatest hoax of the modern era and is seriously undermined by the fact that the Earth has been in one of its natural cooling cycles for the last seventeen years at this point.

Even so, D’Aleo, Drs. Frank and Gray, felt compelled to put Seittler on notice. “We know you have used your authority as Executive Director to push the AMS ‘climate consensus’ position…” noting the way Seittler had worked “to refine the message to help sell the ‘consensus’ position to the membership and the public.”

Since the publication of science papers advances knowledge, blocking them has the opposite effect. “Your editors have slow-walked and thrown up obstacles to paper that challenge the ‘consensus’ position, often forcing authors to go elsewhere.”

“This pattern disturbs us, but there is another development that is even more disconcerting, and that is a campaign of intimidations launched by an advocacy group known as Forecast the Facts. While they claim to be a grass roots organization, the IRS tells us that Forecast the Facts is funded by the Center for American Progress, which is a left-wing advocacy group that has, in turn, been heavily funded by George Soros.”

“Forecast the Facts harasses TV stations whenever their meteorologists present a skeptical view on global warming, whether on-air, in blogs, local op-eds, or twitter accounts.” For the three men of science this kind of thuggish behavior, combined with the AMS position, has reached a point where they felt compelled to challenge it. It is occurring as the lie that a vast number of scientists support the global warming hoax is “failing miserably” when put forth by the AMS, the IPCC, and two government agencies, the EPA and NOAA.

The meteorological trio pointed out that “global hurricane frequency is at a 30+year low and strong tornado trends are down. There is no long term in droughts and floods. Snow and cold have been increasing in winter, not decreasing as the IPCC and NOAA climate reports have forecasted. We have seen deceleration in sea level rises.”  The opposite of these facts have been the claims still being made in the name of global warming.

They concluded saying, “We also hope to hear from you that the AMS is not endorsing, or in any way colluding in or supporting, the tactics Forecast the Facts is using to enforce conformity with the official position of the AMS…”

In an August 4 blog post on, D’Aleo’s website, he reported on the response he received from Seitter who clearly got the message. “Personally, I do not feel the Forecast the Facts approach is a productive one and I have told them so on several occasions” referring their demand that weather reporters who do not hue to the global warming lies be fired.

D’Aleo’s post noted what Michael Crichton said about consensus. “Historically, the claim of consensus has been the first refuge of scoundrels; it is a way to avoid debate by claiming the matter is already settled. Let’s be clear: the work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Consensus is the business of politics.”

The time is overdue for the American Meteorological Society to abandon any role in advancing a hoax that Mother Nature herself has exposed. Three cheers for these three statesmen of meteorology.

© Alan Caruba, 2013

Thursday, August 1, 2013

Fearing Obama

By Alan Caruba

I have been sensing something about the mood of many Americans that I think is unprecedented in the history of the nation. It is a fear of the President. A fear that one observer, Daniel Henninger of The Wall Street Journal, calls “the president’s creeping authoritarianism.”

Obama has had four and a half years to pursue his goal of “transforming” America and, along the way, he has continually expressed his disdain for the constraints of the Constitution, his contempt for Congress and the Supreme Court, and, if his recent speeches are any indication, his belief that enough Americans are so dumb they will believe anything he says.

Overall, there is a growing sense of foreboding as four in five Americans are facing some degree of poverty and a small chance of finding work. One can feel the nation slowing down, its momentum sapped, its national sense of optimism being drained.

The bankruptcy of a major American city, Detroit, tells one everything they need to know about the result of decades of liberal governance and its acceleration under Obama. What other cities face a similar fate? Is the nation on the path to becoming a third-world economy?

I had my own fears evoked by a news report that “The U.S. government has demanded that major Internet companies divulge user’s stored passwords, according to two industry sources familiar with these orders, which represent an escalation in surveillance techniques that has not previously been disclosed.”

In countless ways, the Constitutional protection of privacy is being eroded along with reports that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has been purchasing huge quantities of ammunition and military-style vehicles. A new book discusses the way local police forces have been developing SWAT teams with similar capabilities. What kind of domestic uprising is DHS anticipating? And why is it anticipating it?

The National Security Agency is building a huge complex in Utah, larger even than the Pentagon, to store data it collects, presumably about Americans as well as foreigners. Kiss the Fourth Amendment goodbye, yet Congress just voted to sustain the NSA without restraints.

Why hasn’t Congress acted to repeal the National Defense Authorization Act that permits the government to arrest and detain any American without recourse to an attorney or the courts?

The Department of Justice (DOJ) has been on a tear, presumably to find out the sources of leaks in the Obama administration, seizing the telephone records of the Associated Press without giving the AP due notice.

Americans are beginning to suspect that there is little justice to be found in the DOJ, particularly since the revelations about “Fast and Furious”, an idiotic program of the Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms agency to purchase and “walk” guns into Mexico in order to “track” them. It was obvious they would end up in the hands of the drug cartels. It took an executive order by Obama to shut down a congressional investigation into this bizarre scheme. His administration has done everything it could to undermine the Second Amendment.

Over at the Internal Revenue Service, one of its officials accused of targeting patriot organizations seeking tax except status has plead the Fifth Amendment to avoid answering a congressional committee’s questions.

Meanwhile, the Affordable Care Act—Obamacare—is in the process of expanding the IRS as the government begins its takeover of one sixth of the nation’s economy with a piece of legislation that has already been declared a “train wreck”, unmanageable and, most importantly, so intrusive into our personal lives that no previous generation would have ever allowed it. Obamacare is already wrecking the economy as businesses large and small try to anticipate its costs.

The appalling lies about the terrorist attack on the U.S. Benghazi consulate are evidence in themselves that the Obama administration is prepared to deceive Americans about the killing of a U.S. ambassador and three of his security personnel. The orders given during the course of the attack were to do nothing. This is unprecedented. And frightening.

Millions of Americans out of work have very real cause to fear for their well-being, but the President recently told them the real threat was “climate change”, not an economy that is not producing jobs, but in fact shedding them, keeping the rate of unemployment unchanged for years.

There is a point when one must ask if this is deliberate and not just the result of bad domestic policies. If the answer is yes, then Americans have real cause to fear the President and the prospect of living in a surveillance state where everything they communicate and everyone with whom they communicate can be identified.

There are those raising warnings about the direction in which the nation is going, but unless there are demonstrations by Americans that want to see an end to these laws and trends, the progress toward tyranny will continue.

Marches are being planned for Washington, D.C., and they may hold the key to the future before America becomes a totalitarian nightmare.

© Alan Caruba, 2013