Climate Change, Science and Argument

Some in Congress seemed determined to pass any legislation they can to affect our economy and the use of carbon based energy sources.  Likewise they are moving hard to empower the EPA and every other agency of government with any additional powers they can conjure to enhance the same agenda.  It strikes me as more of an ideological or religious crusade than it does a thoughtful program to meet any real or merely perceived danger to our planetary environment.  The Cap and tax legislation will have an enormous influence on our economy and it won’t be on balance a positive one.  Every modern industrial society or even one heavily weighted toward service and IT services require huge amounts of electrical energy.  The use of energy and the ready availability of it is the hallmark of all advanced societies. 

You can track standards of living and income and productivity output with the use of energy.   The nations that use the least amount of energy are the poorest on earth.   They don’t use much energy in Sudan or Yemen or  and take a look at their standard of living.  It takes lots of energy to run these modern factories and even our homes with the conveniences and durable goods everyone in the West takes for granted.   The exotic energy sources such as wind and solar are decades away from development.  Don’t take my word for it.  Look at the data from the EIA (Energy Information Agency).  Even with all the resources and money they could ask for it will still be years and years before those methods will produce significant amounts of energy.  Nuclear energy is a great way to go but we have the same problem there.  It will take decades to get the number we would need online.  You can’t build one of those puppies and a kid’s playhouse in the backyard.  The paper work, red tape and permitting requirement alone take years for approval before the first shovel of dirt is even moved.

What I find ironic and frustrating about all  this is that I am the type person who should be a natural “ally” of the movement for alternative sources of energy.  Since I was young I have always had a fascination with and admiration for the sciences.  Physics, chemistry, botany, etc, and yes meteorology.  My math was never strong enough for me to excel in any of the sciences but my love for them and the scientific method has endured throughout my life.  I always was up for good science fiction like “2001” ,not those silly horror type movies or books.  To this day I still enjoy reading about science and the scientists who changed our world.  I have read at least two large books on Einstein’s theories of special and general relativity but still only have the vaguest notion of how those theories impact our world and function and a vibrant element in our universe.   The point of all this is that I would be ready to accept a scientific assessment of our climate. 

The promoters of such a movement should take heed.  I mean if one such as I have very strong reluctance then there are millions more out there who will be downright hostile or skeptical.  They should not be so secretive with their research.   To the contrary like all good science it should be shared openly.  I mean the raw data and the experiment set up and methodology.  They should walk everyone through the process rather than pumping out conclusions and demanding that everyone take their conclusions on faith.  Remember that all the information regarding climate change is based on computer modeling.  It is not a fixed experiment that can be replicated.  Indeed that is one of the problems they have with their research, it can’t be replicated with like results.  Biases are in each computer model and the modeling is at best an imperfect science.  So much of what we are given as a “fact” is actually the result of nothing more than a computer simulation.  Those are facts.  Those are postulations and there is a huge difference.  Don’t treat us like we can’t tell the difference.   Also there is this fixation on carbon  based energy sources rather than research on other factors that influence our weather and climate.  I wish there was as much time spent on the effects of El Nino and Sunspots and ocean currents as there is on the emission of carbon.  We are carbon based creatures after all.  Carbon is what gives us life.  We are carbon.  Remember your Star Trek episodes.  

It doesn’t help when they use someone without credentials to promote their cause such as Al Gore.  He also was the big promoter of the Internet during the ’90’s you are reminded.   He was out there daily telling everyone about the new day, the new age and the new economy.  That enthusiasm was great but it was a direct contributor to the dot com bubble at the end of the Clinton years.    I don’t think his predictions pass the reliability test very well either scientifically or politically.  Doesn’t help his cause that he and his cronies are invested in the green revolution with the energy companies and car company. 

I agree we have reached a tipping point in this debate but it is not one based on science but rather one based on ideology and zeal to control economies.   I hope we will demand a real debate and scientific one and even fund it if necessary.  I don’t know what a true examination would reveal.  But I am confident that a legitimate scientific inquiry would reveal the truth, remember the truth is out there.

Supposedly we are told the Stimulus package created 325,000 new teacher positions this year.  Hmm.  Let’s do a little math.  Assume that each new teacher was assigned only 20 new pupils, which would be really low but let’s go with that, then we are talking about 6.5 million students.  Did we really get that many students in just one year?  Did the student population explode overnight and we didn’t notice?  One wonders how many of these “new” positions were nothing more than the natural turnover of teachers retiring or quitting and being replaced.  Are those really new teacher positions?    How could we possibly need that many new teachers in one year.   Me thinks I smell a rat with those numbers.  The books have been cooked.


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