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Global Warming Pause Will Impact UN Climate Agreement

cold earthThe global temperature standstill will make it easier for governments to delay any painful decisions and will allow for a toothless UN climate agreement in Paris, says Dr Benny Peiser

The planet is currently in the midst of a so-called warming pause, with satellite measurements showing that the surface temperature may not have risen for just over 18 years.

Despite this apparent hiatus in temperature rising, leaders from around the world are due to meet in Paris later this year for the United Nations Climate Summit.

The leaders are expected to reaffirm their target of keeping the global average temperature within 2°C of pre-industrial levels.

Speaking ahead of the UN climate conference, Dr Peiser, the director of the Global Warming Policy Forum – a think tank set up to challenge the policies envisaged by governments to mitigate global warming – described this target as reasonable although he suggested that it should remain flexible to reflect the unpredictability of climate change.

However, he also claimed that with our current rates of carbon dioxide (Co2) emissions, we could be nowhere near to reaching that critical level.

Dr Peiser explained: “The CO2 we emit into the atmosphere might actually have a lower warming effect than the IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change] high estimates suggest.

“A continuation of the global warming pause for the next 10 years could bring down the estimates for a doubling of CO2 to 1.5¬∞C.

“That could mean that even if we double our Co2 emissions, we might not reach our 2¬∞C target.

The IPCC’s estimates for the equilibrium climate sensitivity ‚Äì the global average warming expected if Co2 concentrations were sustained at double their pre-industrial values ‚Äì range from 1.5¬∞C and 4.5¬∞C, Dr Peiser explained.

Meanwhile, Remote Sensing Systems (RSS) have shown no global warming at all for 220 months, from December 1996 to March 2014.

Other research shows that the average surface temperature of the Earth is only 0.8°C warmer than that recorded in 1900 – something which some experts suggest may be down to natural variability.

While since the 1950s, of which beforehand there were practically no global warming studies, the warming trend has been equivalent to below 1.2°C per century.

Dr Peiser suggested that the current 18-year temperature pause will be a relief to government figures when they attend the summit.

He said that the apparent temperature standstill will make it “easier for governments to delay any painful decisions” and will most likely allow for a “very toothless agreement” in relation to tackling climate change.

He said: “This pause will have no direct effect on the talks [in Paris] other than that the agreement that is now in the making will not be legally binding.

“I think the pause will allow the governments around the world to come to a very toothless agreement that essentially kicks the hard decisions into the long grass.”

He added: “Most leaders are quite aware that the global temperatures haven’t risen for several years.

“They might not know the nitty gritty but they are aware that the temperatures haven’t risen and it takes the pressure off their governments.

“They are aware that no one really knows how long this pause is going to last. No one is able to tell them why there is this pause in the first place and how long this will go on for.

“As long as we have this pause there will almost be a political pause in the international renovations. You could almost say this temperature pause will cause a policy pause.”

Dr Peiser further noted that the Paris summit will be full of pledges known as ‘Intended Nationally Determined Contributions’.

The crucial benefit of them, he said, is that they are not legally binding – meaning they can be revised or watered down as necessary.

These pledges will be reassessed every few years and as long as there is a pause, Dr Peiser predicts that policies will become less aggressive.

He explained: “These pledges are completely non-binding. They are just ‘this is what we plan to do’. It doesn’t bind any government to actually fulfil these pledges in the next 15 years.

“They will be reviewed and reassessed every five years or so and you can imagine that if we still have a pause in 2020, then obviously these pledges will be watered down even further.

“The longer the pause lasts, the less aggressive the policies will be.”

However, Piers Forster, a Professor of Physical Climate Change at the University of Leeds, has argued that the planet is actually NOT in a state of global warming hiatus.

He also suggested that while there is uncertainty, it is likely we will go over the crucial 2°C between 2040 and 2060.

He argued: “Firstly, global warming has not paused ‚Äì 2014 was the warmest year on record, sea-ice is continuing to melt and sea-level rise.

“Secondly, the IPCC’s estimate of warming due to CO2 is based on sound physics but it has an uncertainty. This means it might be lower than our best estimates as Benny suggests, but it might also be higher.

“Thirdly, even if CO2 emissions remain as they are today, we will still go over the 2¬∞C ‘target’. Uncertainty in our knowledge just means we can’t tell exactly when but it will likely occur between 2040 and 2060.

“The only way to prevent it is very large global reductions in CO2 emissions, alternatively our children will have to adapt to living with the consequences of a 2¬∞C or even hotter world.”

Leaders from around the world will meet in Paris this December to achieve a universal and international agreement on climate for the first time in more than 20 years.

With the summit in sight, the United States officially pledged last month to reduce their greenhouse-gas emissions to 26 to 28 per cent below 2005 levels by 2030.

At the same time, Russia pledged to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 25 to 30 per cent below 1990 levels by 2030, while the European Union agreed to reduce emissions to 40 per cent below 1990 levels by the same time.


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Jeb Bush Gets A Bit Heated Up By Carbon Dioxide

"Jeb Bush by Gage Skidmore 3" by Gage Skidmore. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons -“Jeb Bush by Gage Skidmore 3” by Gage Skidmore. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia CommonsIs Jeb Bush trying to alienate the Republican-conservative base even more than he already has? His comments about climate change and carbon dioxide emission cuts sure make it look that way.

Speaking last week at a New Hampshire event, Bush said, “The climate is changing” and expressed his concerns about it.

Though he lamented the “hollowing out of our industrial core” and the “hollowing out of our ability to compete in an increasingly competitive world,” he at the same time said that we should “be cognizant of the fact that we have this climate change issue and we need to work with the rest of the world to negotiate a way to reduce carbon emissions.”

This is not what we need from a Republican presidential candidate. In fact, it’s not what we need from any presidential candidate.

Simply put, carbon dioxide is not a pollutant — though the Supreme Court has ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency can regulate it as such — in any definition outside of some lawyerly ploy. To suddenly label it as one, says Robert C. Balling Jr., a former Arizona State University climatologist who is now a geography professor, “is a disservice to a gas that has played an enormous role in the development and sustainability of all life on this wonderful Earth.”

“Mother Earth,” says Balling, “has clearly ruled that CO2 is not a pollutant.”

Maybe Bush is trying to separate himself from the rest of the GOP pack by conceding that CO2 is a pollutant. In fact, he’s already taken in some praise from billionaire environmentalist Tom Steyer’s quarters.

If so, he’s likely making a mistake. Americans have seen the global warming scare fizzle out before them. Gallup’s most recent environmental survey found that “global warming or climate change” ranks dead last among Americans’ environmental concerns, with only 32% worrying about it a “great deal,” down from 34% in 2014.

Despite the never-ending hype from the media, celebrities and politicians (and celebrity politicians), “Americans’ worry about it is no higher now than when Gallup first asked about it in 1989.”

What Americans should worry about is getting a president who will surrender to the pounding from those who believe in man-made climate change and those who have a need for everyone else to buy into it. We need a White House that will stand up to the bullying, not join it.


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The White House is Lying About Climate Change and Health

houseLet us begin with the understanding that there is no connection between the climate and health. The climate is something measured in decades and centuries, so what happened in the last century has nothing to do with whether you are sneezing today.

The weather surely can help generate health problems. For example in the northeastern states, the Lyme disease season is beginning. Between 1992 and 2010 reported cases of Lyme disease doubled to nearly 23,000 according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, but CDC officials believe the actual number of those infected may have been three times that number.

Lyme disease is transmitted by deer ticks and since these tiny insects will hitch a ride on birds, squirrels, mice and small animals as well, even if you live in an area without deer, the possibility of being bitten by a deer tick is just as likely. This increases for people who love gardening or outdoor recreational activities such as hiking and camping. Children, too, are particularly susceptible.

The fact that Lyme disease shows up in the Spring simply tells you that the warm weather facilitates the tick population. The weather has always been tied the mating habits and activities of various species, but that does not mean that is constitutes a massive threat to everyone’s health.

That’s not the way the White House sees it. On April 7 the administration made it official. It announced that it is “committed to combating the health impacts of climate change and protecting the health of future generations.” 

Since the climate changes over extended periods of time, not just month to month, one has to wonder what “health impacts” the White House has in mind. The last Little Ice Age lasted from around 1300 to 1850. It was cold all over Europe and North America. Does the White House propose that it can “protect” us from a new one? If so, that’s absurd.

Let us understand, too, that there has always been what the White House announcement calls “extreme weather events.”  Notice the change from “climate” to “weather”? Among the events identified are “severe droughts and wildfires to more powerful hurricanes and record heat waves…” Has there been a time when such weather-related events have not occurred? In fact, there are times when they don’t. For example, there hasn’t been a single Category 3-5 hurricane hit the U.S. mainland since 2005!

The White House has launched a massive brainwashing effort using many elements of the federal government to frighten Americans using the “climate” and the “weather.” How deceptive is it?

One example is sufficient. The President has claimed that climate change was the cause of one of his daughter’s asthma. In its announcement, it claimed that “In the past three decades, the percentage of Americans with asthma has more than doubled and climate change is putting these individuals and many other vulnerable populations at greater risk of landing in the hospital.” 

Here’s what the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America has to say about the various causes of asthma.

“Since asthma has a genetic origin and is a disease you are born with, passed down from generation to generation, the question isn’t really ‘what causes asthma’, but rather ‘what causes asthma symptoms to appear?’ People with asthma have inflamed airways which are super-sensitive to thinks which do not bother other people.”

What the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America is telling us is that there is no direct connection between either the climate or the weather and the illness called asthma.

Those who suffer this disease however can be affected by a range of triggers such as irritants in the air, pollens, molds, and even cockroach droppings. Infections such as colds, flu, and sore throats are among the leading triggers for asthma attacks in children.

The facts, the truth, were no deterrent to the April 7 White House twelve-page announcement of all the things it intends to do to brainwash Americans into believing that there is a connection between the “climate” and health.

Here’s just a few of the dozens of events and programs it will initiate so that the media will report on them and thus convey the message that climate change is the greatest threat to Americans today:

“The Administration is expanding its Climate Data Initiative to include more than 150 health-relevant datasets…this is intended to help communities and businesses reduce the health impacts of climate change.”  Only there are no such impacts.

The Administration is announcing a coalition of Deans from 30 medical, public health, and nursing schools around the country, who are committing to ensure that the next generation of health professionals is trained to address the health impacts of climate change.” Only there are no such impacts.

“Announcing the White House Climate Change and Health Summit.” It will feature the Surgeon General who will lead discussions to “the public health impacts of climate change and identify opportunities to minimize these impacts.” Only there are no impacts and nothing that could be done if there were.

From the Department of Homeland Security to the Department of the Interior and the Environmental Protection Agency, many elements of the federal government will be integrated into this massive brainwashing effort.

What can be done to ignore a government determined to lie to everyone about a “threat” that does not exist? Not much.


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Electric vehicles lose their buzz (and sales)

ev charging stationCCD Editor’s note: Even with the Feds giving EV buyers $7,500 in tax credits, after the initial thrill wears off quickly, so do the supposed gains. Obama’s big push for ‘sewing machines on wheels,’ and his disdain for compressed hydrogen fueled vehicles, is another reminder that people want cars that can travel more than 100 miles, require low maintenance, and can be filled up in in a few minutes. From the Detroit News (h/t Gator):

It’s a buyer’s market for drivers interested in new or used electrics and hybrids.

Sales of new electric cars and hybrids, according to automotive research and shopping site, are at their lowest level since 2011 — the first full year of sales for the groundbreaking Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid and Nissan’s all-electric Leaf. So carmakers are paring prices in an effort to get them moving.

Furthermore, motorists who leased those first-generation cars, and have decided not to buy them, are turning them in. They’re on dealer lots with still relatively low mileage, and at prices considerably cheaper than the new ones.

Even with $7,500 federal tax credits and other incentives, automakers such as General Motors Co., Ford Motor Co. and Nissan have dropped prices in an attempt to move their new hybrids and electrics. Cadillac became the most recent to reduce the sticker on an electric car, when it whacked $9,000 off its ELR plug-in hybrid last week.

“That’s the reality of the situation,” said Jessica Caldwell, senior analyst for “They have to push them out at those levels for people to be interested. It really seems like the cachet of EVs and hybrids has faded away.”

It’s no mystery why these cars aren’t moving at a brisker pace. Stable gas prices, fuel-efficient internal combustion engines, continued uncertainty about electrics by some motorists and the availability of relatively cheap used electrics and hybrids make new ones a hard sell. Yet automakers offer them as part of their effort to meet fleet-wide fuel efficiency standards set by the U.S. government.

“EVs are just not selling; even hybrids and plug-ins are slow,” said Caldwell. “There’s some concern.”

Cars with advanced powertrains represented just 2.7 percent of U.S. vehicle sales through the first three months of this year, according to That’s down 1 percentage point from a high in 2013 and the lowest quarter since 2.5 percent the last three months of 2011.

“There’s a lot going against EVs right now,” said National Automobile Dealers Association senior analyst Laurence Dixon.

Like outright sales prices, lease costs on new electrics continue to come down. GM last week announced zero down and $139 per month for 39 months on the all-electric Chevrolet Spark and lowered the starting sales price on the Spark to under $20,000. Nissan is leasing the Leaf, which starts at about $21,500, at $199. Both include $7,500 federal tax credits and current offers. reports that leases comprised nearly seven of every 10 plug-in cars that drove off dealer lots from January through March.

The unprecedented leasing rates means a steady supply of used all-electric and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles will continue to feed the market in the coming years.

Lease prices plummet

New mainstream plug-in hybrid electrics can sell for more than $30,000 with up to $7,500 in federal tax credits. But used models are selling for less than half of their original amount.

Used plug-in car values have been lower than comparable vehicles with traditional combustion engines since launching, due to the heavy federal tax credit and inflated pricing, according to Kelley Blue Book director of residual value consulting Eric Ibara.

“All along, we had a very strong suspicion that they wouldn’t hold the same (residual value) percentage with traditional vehicles,” he said. All electrified vehicles besides the Toyota Prius plug-in and high-end models such as the Tesla Model S have performed at about the same depreciation rate, Ibara said.

KBB reports that after 36 months, vehicles with traditional gasoline combustion engines such as the Nissan Sentra and Chevrolet Cruze hold their residual values 10 to 15 percentage points higher than the Leaf and Volt, “which is quite significant,” Ibara said

That means consumers looking to purchase a used Chevy Volt, which can drive roughly 35 miles or more on all-electric before using a drop of gasoline, should be able to find a comparable used Chevy Cruze for about the same price.

2012 Volt for $19,000

Superior Buick GMC in Metro Detroit last week sold a 2012 Volt with fewer than 23,000 miles for about $19,000. On the same lot sat a 2013 Chevrolet Cruze with about 5,000 more miles for just under $18,000.

Dan Aliff, pre-owned vehicle manager at the dealership, said he’s had a hard time keeping used Volts in stock, due to their pricing. “They don’t stay around very long,” he said. “They definitely perceive them as good deals.

“For what they save in gas mileage alone basically makes their car payments.”

According to, the average price for 2014 model-year and older Volt, Leaf, Ford C-Max or Spark EV is under $20,000.

NADA’s Dixon said as more plug-ins and all-electrics enter the used car market, they will drive prices down even further, and likely exceed demand.

“Used EV demand arguably is going to be weaker than what it would be for new EV demand,” he said.

Dixon said even if the price of a used electric vehicle is the same price as a car with a traditional combustion engine, the rate of depreciation is expected to be greater over the long run. “That’s in addition to any cost concerns you have with expensive componentry that malfunctions down the road,” he said.

Big battery expense

The largest expense is expected to be the batteries of the vehicles that are speculated to cost thousands, if not tens of thousands, of dollars.

Kelley Blue Book’s Ibara said that while the vehicles haven’t been around long enough to know how they will depreciate long-term, the cost and longevity of the battery could play a very large role in a vehicle’s value.

“It wouldn’t make sense to replace a 12-year old battery with a new battery that’s going to last 12 years, because chances are the car’s not going to last that long,” he said.

Despite the uncertainty around electrified vehicles, automakers continue to invest billions in the technology and produce new advanced powertrain vehicles to meet state regulations and coming federal fuel and emissions rules.

“The government’s going to keep pushing it, but there is time to pause right now,”’s Caldwell said. “At this point, this whole market is fairly robust regarding choices.”


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Has Obama Fulfilled His Promise To Slow Sea-Level Rise?

sea level nonsenseIn 2008, then President-elect Barack Obama said his victory marked “the moment when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal.”

Since Wednesday is Earth Day, The Daily Caller News Foundation is taking a look to see if Obama has actually lived up to that promise to slow sea level rise.

Environmentalists have been sounding the alarm over a recent Harvard University study that found that sea levels have actually been rising faster than scientists initially thought. The liberal blog ThinkProgress reports that the study showed “quite alarmingly, that the planet’s seas have been rising much faster than we thought.”

We “used to think the rate of acceleration of sea level rise in the last 25 years was only a little worse compared to the past — now that we know the rate used to be much slower, we know that it’s much worse,” ThinkProgress writes.

The study found that sea level rise during most of the 20th century was overestimated, meaning sea level rise since 1990 has been 2.5 times faster than the previous century. Alongside the study, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration says “sea level is rising at an increasing rate.”

NOAA says sea levels rose “at a rate of 0.04 to 0.1 inches per year since 1900,” but that satellites suggest that sea level rise is higher at “0.12 inches per year.”

Sea levels have been rising since the end of the last Ice Age, and there are other factors that cause sea levels to rise and fall. But climate scientists and environmentalists say that currently, sea levels are rising much faster than in the past due to thermal expansion of the ocean and melting ice sheets.

The Union of Concerned Scientists, an environmental group, says that sea “level is rising — and at an accelerating rate — especially along the U.S. East Coast and Gulf of Mexico.” The group adds that even “if global warming emissions were to drop to zero by 2016, sea level will continue to rise in the coming decades as oceans and land ice adjust to the changes we have already made to the atmosphere.”

The Sierra Club’s California branch says sea levels in the Golden State could rise up to five feet by the end of the century, causing huge damage to coastal cities that it assumes would do nothing to combat changes over the next 75 years.

Even the president acknowledges rising sea levels are still a threat, despite his campaign promise. Obama will be travelling to the Everglades for Earth Day this year, where he says “rising sea levels are putting a national treasure… at risk.”

“So climate change can no longer be denied‚Äì or ignored,” Obama said in his weekly video address. “This is an issue that’s bigger and longer-lasting than my presidency.”

Interestingly enough, Obama recently issued an executive order for federal agencies to take future sea-level rise into account for new federal projects, along the coasts in particular. The order came three years after Hurricane Sandy caused massive storm surge along the East Coast.


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Obama picks a fight with Florida Republicans on climate change

obamaAs he heads to the Everglades to mark Earth Day, President Obama is picking a fight with Florida Gov. Rick Scott on climate change — part of a broader White House effort to use the issue to help Democrats and hurt Republicans ahead of the 2016 elections.

White House officials readily admit that Mr. Obama seeks an “elevated political debate” on the issue of climate change and also say Republicans are playing with fire by either denying man-made global warming or downplaying its effects. The president’s trip to the Florida Everglades — where he will talk both about protecting national parks and natural wonders, and his controversial climate-change agenda — has clear political undertones.

While the White House won’t admit it, Mr. Obama’s Florida trip seems to be an attempt to shine light on the climate-change positions of several GOP presidential contenders, Florida Sen. Marco Rubio and former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush. Mr. Rubio has formally launched a presidential bid while it is presumed Mr. Bush will run.

Mr. Rubio has downplayed climate change and humans’ role in causing it, while Mr. Bush recently would only say he is “concerned” about the issue.

The White House didn’t specifically mention either man but hinted their positions will be political liabilities come 2016.

“The president is hoping that his visit to the Everglades on Earth Day will prompt an elevated political debate about making climate change a priority,” White House press secretary Josh Earnest told reporters on a conference call previewing Mr. Obama’s trip. “Those Republicans who choose to deny the reality of climate change, they do that to the detriment of the people they’re elected to represent. The debate we seek is one that puts this issue in a prominent place on the public agenda.”

But the White House saved its harshest critique for the state’s governor.

The administration explicitly called out Mr. Scott for allegedly banning state employees from even uttering the words “climate change,” though the Republican governor has denied that claim.

“The president’s commitment to the Everglades and fighting climate change stacks up very well against Gov. Scott, particularly when you consider Gov. Scott has outlawed employees in the state of Florida from even uttering the words ‘climate change,'” Mr. Earnest said.

The jab at Mr. Scott came after the governor made specific requests from the administration for federal funding to maintain the Everglades.

“President Obama needs to live up to his commitment on the Everglades and find a way to fund the $58 million in backlog funding Everglades National Park hasn’t received from the federal government. This has caused critical maintenance delays in the Everglades to linger for over a year,” the governor said in a statement. “As we continue to make important investments in our environment, the President’s latest budget cuts millions from the repair of the Lake Okeechobee Dike — the rehabilitation of which is critical to the protection of south Florida’s estuaries. Our environment is too important to neglect and it’s time for the federal government to focus on real solutions and live up to their promises.”

White House officials didn’t directly address Mr. Scott’s specific funding questions and instead focused on the politics, with Mr. Earnest calling his words “a little rich.”

Also on Wednesday, the administration will announce a new $26 million national park restoration project. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration also will release a new flood-exposure map designed to help East Coast states protect against devastating floods caused by climate change.

While in Florida, Mr. Obama also will designate the Miami house of Marjory Stoneman Douglas — author of the 1947 book “The Everglades: Rivers of Grass” — a new national historic landmark. The White House calls the book “a significant turning point in the environmental movement.”


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Geological forces trump man-made global warming again

Pinatubo eruptionMount Pinatubo eruptionTwo recently released and independent studies both conclude that natural forces in the form of unusually strong and persistent trade winds are the cause of the 18.5-year global warming haitus (see references below). The implications are absolutely stunning!

  1. This is an admission that natural forces override / trump the effect of all man-made CO2 released into the atmosphere during this time period.
  2. It is also a very public admission by “consensus” climate scientists that the 18 ¬Ω lack of atmospheric warming is real, not a fabrication of global warming skeptics. The research studies even coined a phrase to describe the lack of atmospheric global warming, the “Pause”.
  3. By stating that atmospheric temperatures have remained relatively constant for 18 ¬Ω years climate scientists have essentially admitted that an important element of climate really hasn’t significantly changed during this time period. So the phrase “Climate Change” is not well supported by actual climate data, and some might argue misleading.
  4. Implementation of pending carbon taxes should be tabled until a more accurate measure of the impact man-made CO2 has on climate can be established.
  5. Political arguing concerning climate trends and solutions should be put aside thereby giving scientists room to do unimpaired and diverse research?

There are two important climate science questions not adequately addressed by this new research, leaving discussions of carbon taxes, politics, etc to others. The two questions are: Why did climate scientists fail to predict / model the “pause”, and secondly, what is the root cause of altered trade winds?

The short answer to the first question is that climate scientists failed to predict / model the “pause” because they were, and still are, atmospherically biased. For many years climate science has been stuck in a “it’s all about the atmosphere” mindset. This bias has blinded them. They have improperly interpreted or in some cases ignored mountains of compelling non-atmospheric data, much of it geological in nature, which would have aided in the prediction of the pause.

Scientific bias is more common than you might imagine. Formulating correct answers to well defined scientific questions can only be made when in possession of three elements: an open mind, sufficiently accurate data, and most importantly a parameter diverse data set of proper resolution. Amazingly when lacking any of these elements many of us, including scientists, still charge full speed ahead to what we deem are compelling answers. These answers then form the basis of how we perceive and judge the validity of the relevant scientific theory.

Sadly, and not to surprisingly hastily ill-formed answers are often proven incorrect. It then becomes necessary to alter our perception of, and confidence in, the relevant scientific theory. This is exactly what occurred when climate scientists prematurely pronounced the atmospherically based global warming theory proven.

This discourse may seem a bit esoteric, so to make it more tangible let’s test our own bias. This can be accomplished by reviewing two real world examples. This process will help clarify how scientific bias works. The first test / example is atmospheric and the second is oceanographic. In each case you will be provided with a map that clearly indicates an anomalous area. Your task is to determine two things from the map; 1.) Point source / geographic location of the anomaly, 2.) Cause of the anomaly. No tricks, no clever deceptions, these are real climate science maps.

Real world example one is as follows. Let’s take a shot at determining the point source location and cause of an atmospheric sulphur dioxide anomaly (bright red) as illustrated on the NASA satellite generated map (see figure 1). At first glance it looks like this may be an impossible task because there just doesn’t seem to be enough information on this map to formulate precise answers. However climate scientists often answer questions and judge theories on limited data, for instance utilizing just one key map or on key parameter.


Figure 1.) Worldwide Atmospheric Sulphur Dioxide Concentration

Given that real world constraint let’s give it a shot.

  1. The anomaly source point is almost certainly within the mapped red anomaly band that circles the globe, possibly located just west of the South American Continent where the anomaly is widest.
  2. The geographic extent of the source point is likely very large because it generated an extensive worldwide anomaly.
  3. The event that created this anomaly is likely quite unique because it affects the entire world and is well defined. Anomalies are often thought of as unique and one of a kind.
  4. Lastly we could attempt to improve the existing map by digitizing all of the map contours and making a computer model from this digital data. This would yield very precise and hopefully more accurate maps. A precise and accurate looking map is often thought to be closer to the truth.
  5. The cause is difficult to estimate using this map, however knowing that sulphur dioxide is emitted from coal fired power plants we could at least say that fossil fuel pollution is a good candidate for cause.

If we feel reasonably comfortable with these real world answers, that’s natural. Unfortunately we’d be wrong on all accounts. All of our answers are incorrect. Ouch! Not to worry because we are in good company. We all make these types of errors each day.

We are strongly affected by the seemingly accurate nature of brightly colored and well-illustrated maps that have precise lines and colors. They must be correct and all telling because they are so beautiful.

Time for a science reality check moment…in science, beauty is only skin deep. A beautifully precise map does not necessarily communicate the truth.

The map below (Figure 2) shows the correct answer to both questions. The atmospheric sulphur dioxide anomaly was generated by the 1991 eruption of the Mount Pinatubo volcano. It is not located within the mapped sulphur dioxide anomaly because currents quickly modified the position of the erupted sulphur dioxide ash plume by pushing into normal air circulation patterns around the earth.

The geographic extent of the Mount Pinatubo volcano is not large. Actually it is very small in comparison to its worldwide affect on atmospheric sulphur dioxide concentration and the resulting two year depression of worldwide temperatures. The base of the volcanic cone is approximately 5 miles in diameter. Although not a common event, eruptions on this magnitude happen fairly regularly especially when deep ocean eruptions such as “megaplume” eruptions are included in the data set.

Keep in mind 90% of all active volcanoes are on the ocean flow and most have not been monitored until very recent times, but only in the last 5 years or so. Generating a digital computer model wouldn’t have improved our chances of generating correct answers.


Figure 2.) 1991 Worldwide atmospheric sulphur dioxide concentration with Mount Pinatubo Point Source location.

The primary take away from this atmospheric mapping resolution game is that data accuracy and resolution are vitally important to formulating correct answers to critical questions. Lacking this needed resolution we still incorrectly attempted to pick a point source and cause.

Next let’s review an ocean warm temperature anomaly example and try to discern both the point source location and cause of this high temperature anomaly. The only information we have is a NOAA Shallow Surface Temperature (SST) anomaly map from 1997 (Figure 3). At first glance this map indicates a very large high temperature shallow water anomaly across a large portion of the central Pacific Ocean (bright red). Our observations / answers from this might be as follows.

  1. The point source actually looks to be at least fairly predictable, because the bright red anomaly has a cone shape and the point of the cone located in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. This is likely the heat point source that warms the shallow ocean waters.
  2. The extent of the point source location is a bit tougher to determine, however as a guess it would likely be reasonably large to generate such an extensive sea water anomaly. After all it takes a lot of energy to heat a massive pool of sea water. We need a geographically extensive source point to accomplish this task. Map scale is difficult to tell, but as a guess several hundred miles across.
  3. This must be a very unusual event because the anomaly is sharp well defined and therefore unusual looking compared to other regions on the map. It is likely an infrequent and very unusual event.
  4. As before we could choose to digitize the contours of this map and use the data to generate a computer model. Maybe run time variations of the model. This would give us a number of various precise maps to aid us in making presumably more informed estimates of both point source location and cause.
  5. Lastly the cause is actually not to difficult a choice. It’s the atmosphere. The atmosphere is a logical choice because it is in direct contact with the shallow warm sea water anomaly. The atmosphere is also a geographically extensive energy source which fits well with an extensive SST anomaly. Climate scientists have been touting global air warming for years and they are the experts. Going to go with the atmosphere on this one. Feeling confident even though the map is low resolution, this conclusion seems logical, almost obvious.


Figure 3.) 1997 NOAA Shallow Surface Temperature map (bright red is warm)

Well sorry to disappoint you again, however, but you’d be wrong on all accounts. Ouch times two.

The heat point source is located on the far eastern end of the map, just east of New Guinea (see Figure 4). This location is home to a tightly spaced group of active deep sub-ocean volcanoes and tectonic faults. It is much more likely that these geological features supplied the energy to heat deep ocean water immediately above these active geologic features.

This deep ocean warm cell was transported eastward and progressively shallower by ocean currents. Eventually this ocean warm cell became shallow enough to be recorded on shallow-water SST maps. So the central ocean point source point we choose utilizing the SST map is incorrect, and furthermore, the cause of this anomaly is not related to the atmospheric warming.

This is exactly what has happened to atmospherically biased climate scientists who have for years used SST maps to “prove” that increases in atmospheric temperatures are heating the ocean. With the admission that the atmosphere is not warming it is no longer a believable explanation.

It is more likely that the altered trade winds are not the cause of the global warming “pause”, but rather a side effect of an ocean that is warmed by deep ocean geological forces. A warmer ocean alters trade winds.


Figure 4) NOAA SST Map with Geological Heat Source Point

During the last five years, scientists have amassed a better data set with increased accuracy, tighter spatial distribution, more diverse parameters, and representing a longer time period. Utilizing this new data set the mindset has changed from believing in “climate change” to believing in the need to “change the climate theory.” Clearly geological forces have a very strong impact on climate including the relative influence of man-made CO2 and the altering of trade wind patterns. This has strengthened many plate climatology theory principles.

With a clear and open mind, a sufficiently accurate data set, and most importantly a data set of proper resolution it can now be stated with confidence that “geological forces trump man-made global warming.”

James Edward Kamis is a Geologist and AAPG member of 40 years and has always been fascinated by the connection between Geology and Climate. Years of research / observation have convinced him that the Earth’s Heat Flow Engine, which drives the outer crustal plates, is also an important driver of the Earth’s climate. You can reach James using our Contact Us form.


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The Whitehouse-White House inquisition

sheldonSenator Sheldon Whitehouse recently had a Huff-Po tantrum. The Rhode Island Democrat was miffed that people criticized him and equally liberal Senate colleagues Barbara Boxer (CA) and Ed Markey (MA) for attacking skeptics of dangerous manmade climate change like Spanish Inquisition tormentors.

He says the skeptic community’s “overheated” response mischaracterized their motives and muddled their important messages: Global warming is the most serious threat we face today.  Financial incentives can affect behavior, which is why the public and Congress need to know who funded the skeptics’ research. And companies that produce harmful products want to foment uncertainty about well-established health and safety risks: fossil fuel interests and climate chaos skeptics are just like the tobacco industry.

These senators are abusing their power of office to threaten and silence honest scientists, and destroy their funding, reputations and careers. It’s pure Saul Alinsky, as practiced by Greenpeace, Harry Reid and the other White House: “In a fight almost anything goes. Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.” And the vilified scientists and their friends are just supposed to take it, the senators seem to think.  

In reality, the only thing overheated is Mr. Whitehouse’s temper ‚Äì and the increasingly preposterous rhetoric about an overheating planet. Climate change is altering our music. A 0.1 degree Celsius change in ocean temperatures has caused whales to migrate a month earlier than 30 years ago. Warming oceans will mean the end of fish and chips! Lord knows what other “disasters” await ‚Äì all because of fossil fuels.

The absurdity of this fraudulent fear mongering and its total irrelevance to our daily lives explains why Americans consistently put climate change at the bottom of every list of concerns. The very idea that governments can decree an idyllic climate is equally crazy; that has happened only once in human history.

No wonder Mr. Obama is repackaging the climate issue under the equally false and ridiculous mantras of “ocean acidification,” and “carbon pollution” causing allergies and asthma. Our oceans are not becoming acidic. It’s not “carbon” ‚Äì it’s carbon dioxide, the miracle molecule that makes all life on Earth possible. And neither CO2 nor planetary warming has anything to do with allergies or asthma.

Climate science was supposed to examine the effects that humans might be having on Earth’s climate. But anti-fossil fuel activists turned it into the notion that only humans affect the climate ‚Äì and that the powerful natural forces that caused countless, sometimes devastating climate fluctuations in the past no longer play a role. Climatology was also supposed to be about the scientific method:

Pose a hypothesis to explain how nature works. Test the hypothesis and its predictions against real-world evidence and observations. If the premise is valid, the evidence will back it up. If the data and evidence are out of synch with the carbon dioxide/greenhouse gas thesis, come up with another hypothesis.

By now, it’s obvious that the “dangerous manmade global warming” thesis, and computer models based on it, do not explain what is happening in the real world. The planet stopped warming 18 years ago, despite rising fossil fuel use and CO2 emissions. The models don’t work; their predictions are completely out of whack with reality. Instead of more hurricanes, no Category 3-5 has hit the USA since late 2005.

So the alarmists changed their mantra to “climate change” and “weather disruption.” But this is bogus: it tries to blame every change and event on fossil fuels. The thesis can never be proven or disproven, which means it’s a religious tract, not a scientific analysis. Alarmists don’t have a leg to stand on scientifically.

That’s why they refuse to debate the science; why they vilify climate crisis skeptics. It’s why Democrats became so frustrated with Dr. Judith Curry’s expert testimony at a recent House Science Committee hearing that they left the room. They couldn’t stand it when she said the “central issue” is the extent to which recent (and future) planetary warming or other climate changes are driven by manmade greenhouse gas emissions, “versus natural climate variability caused by variations from the sun, volcanic eruptions, and large-scale ocean circulations.” And they really couldn’t tolerate her noting that President Obama’s pledge to slash U.S. emissions by 28% will reduce warming by just 0.03 degrees Celsius by 2100.

Climate change and extreme weather risks are real, but carbon dioxide doesn’t cause them today any more than throughout history. Aside from Pleistocene-style ice ages, we can adapt or respond to events ‚Äì including storms, droughts, heat waves and extreme cold ‚Äì if we have affordable, reliable energy, strong economies and modern technologies. The real threats to jobs, health, welfare and lives come from anti-fossil fuel policies imposed on the pretense that they will stabilize weather and climate. Forecasting future climate changes will be equally impossible if we remain fixated on carbon dioxide, and ignore the solar, ocean circulation, cosmic ray and other powerful natural forces that actually affect Earth’s climate.

Senator Whitehouse’s suggestion that climate chaos skeptics should be tarred and feathered with tobacco industry apologists is despicable demagoguery. So are his comments about funding realist research.

The skeptics’ funding was never secret. It was always an open book, available to anyone who cared to look. But since he brought up the money issue, let’s look at a few aspects that he studiously ignores.

Alarmist research is all about carbon dioxide, greenhouse gases and fossil fuels ‚Äì precisely because financial incentives can and do affect behavior. Alarmists get a thousand times more money than skeptics. Climate Crisis, Inc. received hundreds of billions of dollars in government, industry, foundation and other money during the past couple decades. The US government alone spent over $186 billion in tax dollars on climate, “clean energy” and renewable energy projects from 2009 through 2014. Applicants know they won’t get grants if their theses and conclusions do not support climate alarmism and regulatory agendas.

Billions more went to government agencies that coordinate these programs and develop anti-hydrocarbon regulations. These bureaucrats don’t merely search health and scientific files to cherry-pick papers that support their agenda. They deliberately hunt only for supportive documents (many of which they pay for) and actively ignore, suppress and vilify research that focuses on (or even just discusses) natural forces.

Then the EPA and other agencies pay the American Lung Association, scientific advisory committees and other activists millions of dollars a year to rubberstamp their regulatory decisions. Even more destructive of our scientific method and political process, countless millions are also being funneled to climate chaos researchers and Big Green pressure groups via secretive foundations, laundered through front groups from Russian oil interests, and employed to further enrich billionaires like Warren Buffett.

The scandalous system has turned hardcore environmentalism into a $13.4-billion-per-year operation and represents an unbelievable abuse of our hard-earned tax dollars and the tax-exempt status of numerous foundations and activist groups. Cooperate and get rich; resist, and get the Whitehouse inquisition.

As a result, instead of science, we get opinion, propaganda, spin, pseudo-science and outright fraud – all designed to advance a anti-fossil fuel, pro-renewable energy agenda, that kills jobs and economic growth, endangers human health and welfare, and puts radical regulators and pressure groups in control of our lives, livelihoods and living standards. It also further corrupts our political system.

These Big Green companies, foundations, pressure groups and government unions give our politicians millions of dollars in campaign cash and in-kind help, to keep them in office and the gravy train on track.

The League of Conservation Voters collected $90 million in foundation grants 2000-2013; the LCV Education Fund pocketed $71 million more. The LCV, Sierra Club, NRDC, SEIU, AFSCME, Kleiner Perkins and allied groups are all big Whitehouse (and Obama White House) campaign donors.

Do Senators Whitehouse, Boxer and Markey plan to investigate those financial incentives and abuses?

Concerned citizens should ponder all of this on Earth Day, April 22 – and the next time they vote.

Paul Driessen is senior policy analyst for the Committee For A Constructive Tomorrow (, coauthor of Cracking Big Green: Saving the world from the Save-the-Earth money machine, and author of Eco-Imperialism: Green power – Black death, Climate Hype Exposed and Miracle Molecule: Carbon dioxide.

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Watters’ World: Earth Day Edition ‘Global Warming Greater Threat Than Terrorism’

watter vidFox News Insider:

“The O’Reilly Factor” sent correspondent Jesse Watters to Washington, D.C. to cover the 45th Annual Earth Day Celebration. (VIDEO AT END)

Here’s what some of the folks had to say when asked about various Earth Day topics:

Happy Earth Day:

“I think of Earth Day as a way to celebrate the Earth.”

Jesse: “Do you worship Mother Earth?”


How do you help the planet?

“Carpool ‚Äì that’s what I do.”

Jesse: “So you pick up a lot of hitchhikers?”

“No, I carpool with friends.”

Upon Seeing Trash:

Jesse: “What are we going to do?”

“We’re going to pick it up.”

Jesse: “Let’s pick it up.”

“You go ahead, I’m going to eat.”

Jesse: “There. No littering on Earth Day.”

Big Recycler?

“I’m not a big recycler, but I feel that’s the steps toward it if we want to make this world a better place.”

Jesse: “You don’t recycle, but you’re here on Earth Day?”


Bigger Threat to US: Climate Change or Terrorism? 

“I mean I would go with climate change.”

Jesse: “A lot of more people have died because of terrorism.”

“Yeah, but I’m not a people person.”

Jesse: “Do you think the Earth is overpopulated?”

“Yes, I think we need to do something to control that.”

Jesse: “So maybe we should all just kill ourselves?”

“Not on Earth Day.”

What’s Going On Here?

Jesse: “When did global warming start?”

“As soon as we started destroying the Earth.”

Jesse: “When was that?”

“Start of civilization.”

Jesse: “How did the Earth warm up then after the Ice Age?”

“Okay, what’s going on here?”

The Factor’s Take:

Jesse: “It’s a young crowd ‚Äì most of them were there for the concert ‚Äì obviously, this was a free concert. And that’s smart because no one really cares about global warming ‚Äì it’s not a priority.

The funny thing is that all of the performers that were there on stage flew in with private jets and took SUVs to  the concert.”

Bill: “We’re mocking it a little bit, but we believe in a clean environment. The Factor wants the planet to be clean, so we’re not denigrating those people.

We’re just having a little fun with it, right Watters?”

Jesse: “We’re poking holes in their ozone layer.”

<script type=”text/javascript” src=”″></script><noscript>Watch the latest video at <a href=””></a></noscript>


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World Bank Schemes Displace Millions of Victims

world bankWorld Bank projects dealing with everything from “carbon credits” and “development policies” to crony capitalist “business” deals have forcibly evicted and ruined the livelihoods of millions of people around the world, according to an investigation into the globalist organization’s own documents. A comprehensive review of World Bank records by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ) and various media outlets revealed that close to 3.5 million of the planet’s poorest people, many of them already struggling just to survive, have been forced off their land and relocated as a direct consequence of policies and projects pursued by the government-backed global lender over the last 10 years. The real figures are probably even higher.

Incredibly, due to poor oversight and record keeping, it is often “impossible” to determine how many people were compensated properly — if at all — after being left homeless and destitute by the World Bank, according to researchers. The data compiled by the ICIJ, though, revealed that Asians and Africans were the most likely to be victimized. In Asia, close to three million people were left homeless or re-settled, with more than one million each in Communist China and Communist Vietnam. In Africa, close to half of a million victims were displaced by World Bank schemes — at least if its own dubious records are to be believed. Tens of thousands of victims were also identified in South America. Others came from Europe, Oceania, and North America.

The 11-month review by ICIJ identified a total of 3,350,449 victims — more than the population of Uruguay, Chicago, or Madrid — who were “physically or economically displaced” by a World Bank scheme. However, even the media partners involved in the investigation acknowledged that the true figures were almost certainly much higher. That is because, according to the Huffington Post and other sources, “the bank often fails to count or undercounts the number of people affected by its projects.” Especially harmed were some of the poorest people on the planet: slum dwellers, impoverished farmers, fishermen, forest dwellers, and indigenous tribal communities with little access to the media or even the outside world.  

According to investigators, many of the victims also faced violence and intimidation as governments and World Bank-funded goons terrorized them and destroyed their lives. Some suffered worse than others, of course, with the damage ranging from having a portion of their land seized to losing basically everything. The World Bank’s policy on the issue states that, when “possible,” seizing property and forcibly relocating victims should be avoided. Those suffering forced evictions, meanwhile, “should be assisted in their efforts to improve their livelihoods and standards of living or at least to restore them … to pre-displacement levels,” the policy continues.

However, according to the documents and World Bank officials interviewed for media reports, even those lax “standards” for how to deal with victims of the World Bank and their “partners” were not followed. “There was often no intent on the part of the governments to comply, and there was often no intent on the part of the bank’s management to enforce,” former World Bank official Navin Rai, who oversaw the outfit’s alleged “protection” for indigenous people between 2000 and 2012, was quoted as saying in media reports around the world. “That was how the game was played.”

After being confronted with the research ICIJ was able to compile and analyze, World Bank officials did acknowledge the obvious — that there is a problem. “We took a hard look at ourselves on resettlement and what we found caused me deep concern,” claimed World Bank President Jim Yong Kim in a March statement about the mass displacements caused by the bank’s schemes. “One is that we haven’t done a good enough job in overseeing projects involving resettlement.” In response, the World Bank put together an “action plan” that it claimed would help in ensuring that victims of future projects are documented and properly compensated.

Critics say worrying about the future is not enough, however. “After the World Bank has done its own review, it hasn’t gone back and worked to identify these people, and find out how they were harmed and work for these people to properly remedy the harm,” Jessica Evans, a senior researcher on international financial institutions at Human Rights Watch (HRW), was quoted as saying in a German press report. “But they can’t just promise to not make these mistakes in the future. It needs to go back and fix the mistakes that it’s made in the past.” Other activists also noted that the World Bank has been unable to even track down how many victims its scheming has destroyed.

Some of the examples, though, are tragic. In an investigative report by the leftist Huffington Post, the in-depth article begins in Lagos, Nigeria, with over 100 armed police pouring into a slum to forcibly evict the already desperately poor residents. “If you love your life, move out!” the officers reportedly shouted at the bewildered, fleeing masses while menacingly cracking their batons against people’s shacks. Then the heavy machinery moved in and demolished all of the homes, with people’s belongings still inside, leaving the neighborhood in ruins within hours. There was no warning for the terrified residents — and no compensation for losing everything. And it was all to make way for an “urban renewal” scheme funded by the World Bank. Often, the tragedies take place under the guise of promoting “conservation” or “progress” of some sort or another.    

As The New American has been reporting for years, World Bank- and United Nations-backed “carbon credit” schemes to enrich cronies while purportedly dealing with alleged “global warming” have led to numerous well-documented atrocities against the poorest Africans, Latin Americans, and people worldwide. Last summer, for example, UN and World Bank carbon projects in Kenya resulted in ancient Sengwer communities having their homes torched by troops to make way for trees that would allow Westerners to purchase carbon offsets to assuage their misplaced guilt about CO2 emissions. A coalition of more than 65 non-profit organizations denounced the tragedy as “genocide.” The brutal forced evictions were “a direct result” of the World Bank plot and were “effectively funded by the World Bank,” according to a formal Sengwer complaint filed with the globalist organization.

Separately, in Kenya’s Mau forests, the Ogiek people, described as one of Africa’s last remaining hunter-gatherer tribes, were being hunted down and in some cases murdered by World Bank-backed officials, again for a carbon-credits scheme. Experts and activists warned that the nomadic people might be permanently exterminated if serious measures to restrain globalist organization-funded officials and their “climate projects” were not put in place. “The devastating plight of Kenya’s indigenous peoples is symptomatic of the flawed approach to conservation on the part of international agencies,” explained journalist Nafeez Ahmed in an explosive article at the time for the U.K. Guardian, one of the leading cheerleaders for climate hysteria and totalitarian so-called “solutions” to alleged man-made warming.   

Despite efforts to downplay what more than a few critics described as “genocide” and massive land grabs funded by the World Bank, the atrocities had already been going on for years. As The New Americanreported in 2011, for example, a UN-accredited carbon-credit “company” funded by the World Bank and the EU was exposed in 2011 brutally evicting tens of thousands of Ugandan farmers to plant trees — again for carbon credits. Homes were burned to the ground, at least one with an eight-year-old child inside who burned to death, as residents were terrorized and threatened with execution if they refused to make way for the World Bank-backed carbon schemes. Authorities and the crony “company” involved in the atrocities said it was all for a good cause — fighting global warming — the New York Times reported at the time.   

“The cause and effect is perfectly clear; the Bank in its highly controversial role as both carbon credit financier and broker is aiding and abetting the forced relocation of an entire Indigenous People through its Natural Resource Management Plan (NRMP) which includes REDD (Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation),” noted the No REDD in Africa Network (NRAN), an alliance of 66 human-rights organizations that opposes the vicious carbon scheming — a scam aimed at enriching Western globalists such as Al Gore and bankers at Goldman Sachs. Most disturbing about the World Bank response, the network said, was the outfit’s offer to help the Kenyan government in matters of “involuntary” resettlement.

“The World Bank is both admitting its complicity in the forced relocation of the Sengwer People as well as offering to collude with the Kenyan government to cover-up cultural genocide,” the alliance explained, adding that the Sengwer were now “facing complete annihilation under the guise of ‘conservation’ under REDD.” The No REDD network also blasted the developments as “carbon colonialism.” The organization argued that the UN scheme was “emerging as a new form of colonialism, economic subjugation and a driver of land grabs so massive that they may constitute a continent grab.” Of course, the giant globalist land grabs are not limited to Africa. But Africans — currently the target of multiple UN depopulation programs, too — are among its most severely harmed victims.

After the investigation uncovered millions of displaced victims, government and World Bank officials rushed to promise stronger “safeguards” and “human rights” protections — even as the controversial entity continues to take taxpayer funds to enrich cronies, destroy poor people, and attack national sovereignty worldwide. A far better and simpler solution than more “safeguards,” though, would be to shut down the corruption-plagued World Bank entirely, along with all of its globalist partners in crime — the UN, the IMF, and more. At the very least, Congress should stop funding it all with the American people’s money.


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Democrats Are Fighting Climate Change on Backs of Poor

cartoonDemocrats who say they are trying to lift up the fortunes of the poor and middle class are doing exactly the opposite in their war on climate change, says Stephen Moore, a senior fellow at The Heritage Foundation.

“Their agenda is driven by the millionaire and billionaire Democratic donors who make the party possible. But the agenda also involves making energy, home heating, transportation and just about everything else less efficient and more expensive to the middle class and poor,” he writes in The Washington Times

“The people who lose their jobs when the climate-change Stalinists prevail are the people at the bottom and the middle of the income ladder.”

And it’s not as if the poor and middle class are screaming for action on global warming, Moore says.

“Nearly every poll of voters over the last several years consistently finds Americans rank jobs, incomes, terrorism, the national debt, schools and other such daily concerns at the top of the list of policy priorities. Global warming almost always ranks last or very near the bottom, which is amazing, given the billions that have been spent on this propaganda campaign.”

Meanwhile, Americans might be concerned with the growth of income inequality, but they aren’t blaming it on the wealthy.

“You might expect more and more people to conclude that it’s time to soak the rich,” writes New York Times columnist Neil Irwin.

“Here’s a puzzle, though: over the last several decades, close to the opposite has happened. . . . Americans’ desire to soak the rich has diminished even as the rich have more wealth available that could, theoretically, be soaked.”

So how do you explain the conundrum?

Conservatives may answer, “Americans are seeking less redistribution because they have come to their senses,” Irwin says.

“They realized the very high tax rates and generous social spending that prevailed in the middle decades of the 20th century came at a high economic cost, and that low taxes on the rich encouraged greater investment and entrepreneurship, spurring faster economic growth that ultimately made everybody better off.”

Then there’s the liberal view: “Americans have been hoodwinked by conservative politicians and media outlets, and have come to view redistribution as a dirty word because they don’t recognize the ways it benefits them.”


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WAPO: Obama’s global warming distraction

obamaIncredibly, in Sunday’s weekly video address, President Obama said, “Today, there is no greater threat to our planet than climate change.” I say “incredibly” because that just isn’t true ‚Äì and if President Obama really believes it is, then it is time to panic. Given the state of the world and the urgent problems facing us that directly affect our prospects for peace and prosperity, global warming shouldn’t even be in the top five on the list of problems our president should be worrying about. In case this administration hasn’t noticed, a lot of the world is burning and global economic growth is so stagnant that it feeds the prospects of instability at home and abroad.

No less than Graham Allison, director of the Belfer Center for Science and International Affairs at Harvard University, and Dimitri K. Simes, president of the Center for the National Interest, wrote a piece published this week that asks “Could a U.S. response to Russia’s actions in Ukraine provoke a confrontation that leads to a U.S.-Russian war?” And not just any war, but one with “catastrophic consequences.” Russia is a nuclear power “capable of literally erasing the United States from the map.” Anything Graham Allison says has to be taken seriously.

If that’s not enough to worry you, after world economic leaders gathered in Washington last week for the International Monetary Fund and World Bank meetings, even the New York Times wrote that, “concern is rising in many quarters that the United States is retreating from global leadership just when it is needed most.” The chief economic adviser to the government of India called that concern “the single most important issue of these spring meetings.”

That New York Times piece echoed what Larry Summers, former economic adviser to President Obama, wrote earlier this month. In an op-ed in The Post (in which he didn’t mention President Obama), Summers asked if it was time for “A global wake-up call for the U.S.?” Summers implies that our allies are not only ignoring us, but wholesale abandoning the American point of view by siding with China and joining the new Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB). He wrote that America’s “failure of strategy and tactics” in persuading allied countries to eschew the AIIB “should lead to a comprehensive review of the U.S. approach to global economics.”

Here at home, economic growth is anemic and job creation has stalled. In the Obama era, more people are on the dole, business start-ups are at an all-time low as entrepreneurs throw in the towel and the world is in more turmoil and danger than at any time since the end of the Cold War. Doug Holtz-Eakin of the American Action Forum wrote a paper, “The Growth Imperative: How Slow Growth Threatens Our Future and the American Dream,” which was published by the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. In it, Holtz-Eakin states that, “since 2007, trend growth in per capita income in the United States has been 0.7 percent ‚Äì only one-third of the postwar average of 2.1 percent prior to 2007.”

We have a lot of problems. So why would our president say global warming is our biggest threat? Probably because it suits his ideology and his management style. The truth is, if you accept at face value everything he says about climate change, there is nothing he can do in the 20 months he has left in office that will appreciably affect the climate. This is especially true given what the president defines as “success.” He champions his agreement with China on cutting carbon pollution, but all it really means is the United States begins to raise energy costs immediately and China agrees to have a meeting in 2030 to discuss what actions they may or may not take.

President Obama is living in a world of denial. He uses global warming as a distraction to dodge the real problems we face and avoid critiques of his performance. If he did face reality, there is a lot he could do to try and juice economic growth. There is also a lot he could do to take the reins and provide American leadership around the world. He could deploy artful diplomacy to help us through some of the critical problems that the likes of Graham Allison, Larry Summers and Doug Holtz-Eakin have articulated. It may take a crisis to get the president’s attention, but let’s hope somewhere there are advisers telling him that urgent matters need his focus and global warming is simply not the priority that he wants it to be. America urgently needs the president to be the leader that the world needs today.


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