“It’s so much easier to suggest solutions when you don’t know too much about the problem.”― Malcolm Forbes
Let me start by stating that I am conflicted when it comes to Global Warming, however if forced to decide I would lean toward believing it’s real and probably even that it is to some degree made worse as a result of human activity and green house gas emissions. Still, I have lingering doubts. What really interests me though is the way in which the theory has been worked into the Democratic doctrine and taken on an almost religious overtone.
Note, this essay is entitled, The Psychology of Global Warming, not The Science of Global Warming. I will delve into some of the science tangentially for background purposes, but that will not be its focus.
It is hard not to favor a reduction in the use of fossil fuel, if for nothing else than to eliminate our dependence on Middle Eastern oil. However when it comes to taking draconian steps to solve for a problem that we don’t yet fully understand, things get a little fuzzy,,,
What is readily apparent is that the scientific community and most especially not the press, can be fully relied upon to tell us The Whole Truth.
Why? Global Warming, or Climate Change, as we now refer to it, is the most convenient concept to ever be advanced by the environmental movement and political left. Think about it, what other phenomenon could better promote antidevelopment, anti-corporation and anti- growth, as well as greater regulation, a reason to tax the rich, launch a general attack on capitalism, and other causes espoused by the left? It’s perfect!
Climate Change has become a “call to arms” for the Democratic Party. To question the veracity of the party line is like making a remark considered racist in nature. Nothing said afterward is worthy of consideration.
To give credit where credit is due, we should probably start with Al Gore’s famous writing and movie, An Inconvenient Truth, as it was this that really advanced the theory to the forefront of everyday thinking.
While credence is still given to the general principles outlined in the work, even environmental scientists are a bit embarrassed by some outrageously flawed claims made.
Perhaps the most famous of these might be the ah-ha moment when he projected a 30-year old photo of Mt Kilimanjaro covered in snow and then other more recent photos with almost no snow cover at all, claiming that, The Snows Of Kilimanjaro would be completely gone within a decade of the book’s 1996 writing.
The Compeditive Enterprise Institute published this 1996 article detailing some other issues that many skeptics raise about the work.
Another group known as, Friends of Science, provides additional pushback and information on generally accepted Global Warming theory. Their website links to some good data on the subject supporting the group’s contention that the Sun is the main direct and indirect driver of climate change.
Scientists. Why do I say that we cannot fully trust the scientific community to tell me the truth about Global Warming? Imagine the uproar that would commence at most major universities if a professor made a credible argument that the phenomenon was not manmade. It might be deemed worse than publishing a study concluding that males are generally more disposed to excel in mathematics than females, Islamics are more likely to genitally mutilate women than Methodists, or other observations that one would not even dare to speculate about.
Any scientist who proposed a study starting with the hypothesis that Global Warming is anything other than a product of man’s doing would be met with considerable headwind to say the least. He might never be awarded a research grant again. For this reason almost every study that you read about in the field concerns something like, how quickly some area is warming, how warming is impacting certain grasses, starving polar bears, melting polar icecaps, etc. vs. the theory surrounding man’s causative impacts on Global Warming in general.
So dare we pause to think about the veracity of the theory for even a minute or two here?
First, it wouldn’t be the first time that scientists have been wrong about something like this. Remember the 1970s? At the time 2 theories were being generally espoused:
1). The world was moving toward a second ice age. Yes, a second Ice Age.
2). Oil production was peaking and we would very soon start running out of oil, which would quickly result in a near collapse of modern society as we knew it.
President Carter was so alarmed that he issued an emergency address on television wherein he warned of a pending national catastrophe, one of the worst crises this nation had ever faced. (Does this sound at all familiar?). A few years later a New York Times headline proclaimed that there was an oil glut.
Secondly, evidence can be seen all around us that this is not the first time that the world’s temperature has cooled or warmed, dramatically.
Remember the dinosaurs?
A few years ago I was hiking in the Sierra Mountains with a renowned San Diego PHD and physicist and asked him what he thought about Global Warming theory. His response, “Chris, look up there at that valley, you know what created it? A giant glacier,” he quickly replied, answering his own question before before I could say something stupid. “Where is that glacier now? It melted thousands of years ago.
“Well what about models predicting a huge pickup in the speed of the warming,” I asked?
“I spent most of my professional career developing computer models at SAIC for a living. I can tell you that the bigger the number of variables in a model, the less dependable the output. The number of variables impacting global temperature (many of which we don’t really have an understanding of to start with), are almost infinite.”
Finally he pointed out that the time that we have been actively measuring global temperature (roughly since the 1930s) is very brief in geologic terms, and that it is impossible to develop an accurate trend line over such a short period of time.
Could it possibly be that changes in global temperatures are more a result of ongoing natural phenomena than manmade air particulates and CO2 emissions? Moreover, might we being lead to believe that we know more than we really do, or that the problem is more urgent than it really is?
I really just don’t know. It is clearly a complex question. I do feel like one can be certain that most of the scientific community is convinced that there is a problem and that we need to do something about it. At the same time, there are some credible sounding sources who disagree.
Perhaps one of the most intriguing topics of disagreement has to do with tropospheric temperature readings. There are many who point out that the rate of temperature increase has been flattening over the last decade, or at least not keeping up with what modelers were projecting. Some even argue that global temperatures have actually cooled. Moreover, there are some suspicious sounding arguments being foisted. They explain that temperature graphs showing that the rate of temperature increase is flattening can be demonstrated to be false after the application of certain complex “adjustments” and everything is back on track with expectations…
Ok, off of the science, and back to the phycology:
Now your average run of the mill democrat is probably not staying up late nights whipping up ways to market the party’s agenda, but let’s not be so innocent as to believe that party leaders aren’t.
As a businessman I am always at wonder about the absolute brilliance of the shift in vernacular used to talk about Global Warming in the press and environmental movement a few years ago, when seemingly all of the sudden everybody started talking about Climate Change vs Global Warming.
The term Global Warming fit beautifully with the especially warm 1997/98 El Niño years in North America. However, when cooler weather started to move into the area, the term Global Warming became less self evident and lost much of its natural cache. With this change in wording it became possible to wrap almost any and every weather or other event or occurrence of any kind in with the problem.
(Yes, I know Global Warming causes Climate Change and that they are two different things.)
But is this really such a difficult issue to solve for? Can’t we just raise taxes on rich guys and corporations? Maybe require that fat CEOs and rich dudes stop flying around in private jets (unless of course they are in the entertainment or tech business)?
Unfortunately, reducing carbon emissions to the extent that it will make any real difference according to the “experts” and news media, could be extremely disruptive. Presidential candidate Jay Inslee has outlined a detailed plan that would propose to end all greenhouse gas emissions in the US within 10 years, ban US energy exports, do away with fracking and result in the expenditure of about $9 trillion over the same period.
The public debate over the Green New Deal has taken on a surreal quality.
The non-binding resolution introduced to Congress last month, meant to address the dual crises of climate change and growing inequality, is just 14 pages long. It only takes a minute to read it. Yet the debate has been dominated by phantasms and lurid projections, all sorts of things imagined to be in the GND, or imagined to be prohibited by it (e.g. cars and airplanes). The reality of what’s on those pages has made only glancing appearances.
One article published by the Competitive Enterprise Institute outlines estimates that the deal could cost each family in certain states as much as $70,000 the first year it was implemented. Combine this with the costs associated with slavery reparations, free college tuition and Medicare for all, and you start spending some real money!
Many, if not all of the serious democratic presidential contenders are now jumping on the band wagon, Although last Tuesdays’s debate did uncover some disagreement about the way that the progressives are working to combine green and social justice policies on race as well as efforts to strengthen unions into the mix.
Needless to say, democratic taboos like clean natural gas, oil production from shale here in the US and nuclear energy are not a part of the plan.
A big question related to solving for Climate Change is, What we here in the US can really do about it? According to a 2018 article published in Forbes, US CO2 emissions peaked in 2005 and have gone down every year since:
The BP Statistical Review of World Energy 2018 reports on emissions of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas. It has some surprising facts.
Over the past decade, China has led the way in global CO2 emissions.
Global CO2 emissions continue to rise, reaching 33.4 Billion tons last year. Yet, many will be startled to learn that America easily leads the world in reducing CO2 output. Our reduction of 794 million tons over the past decade is a 1.4% annual rate of decrease. The Shale Revolution has certainly helped, although U.S. CO2 emissions peaked in 2005, long before Shale started to have its positive impact. Improved energy efficiency is one reason. More recently, cheap natural gas, combined with regulatory constraints on coal-burning utilities, have favorably altered the mix of hydrocarbons burned to produce electricity.
The left has drummed up much ado over the US withdraw from the Paris Accords, but fails to mention that few countries have actually lived up to their obligations. According to Forbes:
The 2015 Paris Climate Accord represents the world’s desire to combat climate change through reduced greenhouse gas emissions. The U.S. withdrew from it last year. The Climate Action Network, an EU-sponsored NGO, finds that only five EU members are even halfway on track to meeting their obligations under the Paris accord. Some of the most vocal Paris supporters have been the biggest laggards.
For example, Germany has famously managed to be a leader in renewables while failing to lead in emission reductions. Heavy dependence on solar and wind requires base-load electricity generation for when it’s not sunny or windy. In Germany, that’s primarily coal (see It’s Not Easy Being Green). As an unfortunate consequence, Germany plans to increase its reliance on Russian natural gas via the Nord Stream 2 project.
Big money is behind the environmental movement, It has a major connection to Democratic politics and the 2020 elections. A psychology surrounding Climate Change has taken deep root in the American physic that will not only impact an election but also how we talk about, study and solve for Global Warming.
Perhaps most disturbing is the left’s refusal to explore the benefits that can be had by taking advantage of America’s extensive supply of clean burning natural gas and nuclear energy technologies. The desire to politicalize and wrap Climate Change together with other Democratic agenda items like social reforms, wealth redistribution, identity politics, etc will no doubt run counter to efforts to implement timely and effective solutions to begin with.
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Counter Com-person-tary By Antonia Ottawa Litigious (AOL)
Absurd is right! It makes us want to go down to a street with parked cars somewhere near the sea and sob uncontrollably to hear this kind of horse excretion.
Let’s go through this point by point.
Climate Change and the havoc unleashed upon the earth by greedy corporations is a fact, not a debate. To debate it is like debating air! We need to be focusing our attention on how it is impacting us, the world, and vulnerable populations, instead of engaging in hyperbole. We mean, have you been outside in the sweltering heat during the summer, or seen how many hurricanes we’re having now days? It is obvious!
Climate Change is inconvenient to everyone, left and right. Yes, I still drive my Mercedez, but I have purchased a Prius for my domestic sanitation consultant. We will probably get a Tesla for ourselves as soon as they start making them in the colors we want.
Al Gore is a genius. No one would be even questioning them (Gore) had the Bushes not rigged the 2000 election and Gore had been inaugurated president! Why are people so concerned about being factually right? This is a moral issue!
Read the literature. The quotes you cite are from conservative “experts”, funded by big oil companies. Check out information available from neutral sources like The Sierra Club and Green Peace. Or this NASA Report outlining the causes of Global Warming.
Scientists are always right. They work at universities for god’s sake, and universities are open to ALL ideas, unless they come from the very far right or are racist in nature.
The area commonly referred to as the United States produces more CO2 emissions per capita than any other nation. Its obsession with red meat results in the unsightly appearance of its white males and a huge production of methane gases. Humans don’t need cows, except in India.
What the heck do women and mathematics have to do with this? Women have superior intellects to those identifying as males! It’s only because females have been suppressed and continuously raped by male identifiers that this could ever have been called into question. Geez!
This utterance about genital mutation,.. Republicans have got to stop judging humans in other countries. They have their reasons for what they do and humans occupying the area commonly referred to as the US cannot possibly understand their traditions and beliefs.
Of course people thought that the world was in for another ice age in the 1970s. Ronald Regan was going to become president and US diplomats were occupying parts of Iran at the time!
Valleys and glaciers in the Sierras? Humans shouldn’t be up there anyways. Just a bunch of intolerant Boy Scouts hiking around.
Yes, it is going to be expensive to solve this issue and all of the other problems that Republicans have caused, but we are talking about the end of the world here! Do we ask how much it is going to cost before we do anything? Did anyone ask how much it was going to cost to lower taxes on the rich or greedy corporations before Trump did it?
Your reference to combined spending with slavery reparations is just blatant racism. We are not even going to discuss it!
Every problem brings an opportunity. We can dramatically increase taxes on the rich and use the money to create new high paying green jobs intelligently placed to solve social and racial injustice and to give labor unions back the control over industry that they deserve.
We are not mentally incompetent and can see right through your questioning and challenges related to AOCs Green New Deal. Why do Republicans have to question everything? Stop thinking and get out of this country if you don’t like it!
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