Day by Day

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Flash! Left Doesn't Understand Property Rights

I butted into a long-running argument twixt liberals and conservatives about illegal aliens (undocumented immigrants, using liberal jargon) by posting the article I wrote concerning illegals trespassing over border ranches (Property Rights? We Don't Need No Stinking Property Rights). It didn’t take long to get a liberal’s response.

This is “Medawhite’s” response:

Let’s get one thing straight; one who owns property has proprietary rights. They have the right of ownership of the land and all the things upon the land; they do not have the right to divert people that are journeying across their land to get from point A to point B from doing so: The California law that makes crossing private property to get to a body of water being the most effective example. What makes a land owner believe that they are God of their universe? What if every property owner between here and Los Angles did not allow crossing their private property to get to the ocean? We would be as the Palestinians that live four hundred yard from the ocean and never see it but can only hear it.

Property owners that play God about their ownership of land allowing only certain people to cross are not even human, and should be addressed as such.


As I expected, Liberals labor under many misconceptions, and property law is probably one among many areas of abysmal ignorance.

My reply to Medawhite:

In California you do not have a right to cross another's private property to get to a body of water.

For example, the Sea Ranch development just south of Gualala has designated parking areas adjacent to Highway 1, and marked trails to get to the ocean at certain points. Many other land owners along the coast own the beach to the average high tide mark, and do not allow access to the beach across their property.

The Stornetta Ranch on the Garcia River north of Point Arena just sold 1600 acres to be administered by the Bureau of Land Management. Until they sold the land, miles of ocean front could not be accessed by the public.

I don't know where you come up with your concept that the public can "journey" across private property. Not in California.

The land owner is not God of a Universe. They just own property rights which allow them to deny the use of their property to others. If you want to cross their land to get to the water, they may sell you an easement.

Many of the subdivisions in the Gualala area have sold deeded beach access as part of the land sales package. One half-acre lot which cannot be built upon because wells drilled on it cannot produce water was sold for $65,000 just for the value of the beach access.

As with all things, the value of land includes the passage or restriction of passage over it, regardless of your assessment of the humanity of its owners. They paid for it, and if a lot of people want to cross it, they can pay tolls to its owner if they wish.

Medawhite posted a brief reply:

I will assume all that all you say is true but would ask you how is it that fishermen and river enthusiast cannot be barred from the water while ocean people can?

I have to say one thing about Medawhite. He/she just lobs them right into the strike zone. I too made a brief reply:

None can be barred from the water - ocean or river - if they obey the relevant laws for such use. But you can be barred from crossing private property to get to the ocean or the river. While on the river, there are many places along the river where you cannot go ashore because you would be trespassing on private property.

Fishermen and river enthusiasts put their boats, etc. at publicly or privately owned docks, boat ramps, etc. (they usually pay a fee for use), and take them out where they launched them or at another facility for that purpose.

Medawhite made a less than chastened reply. He/she was wrong on the law, but the law is unfair.

Thank you for the lesson. I have been edified and will remember that the rights of humanity have been subjugated to the rights of property ownership. So it is in the beginning, so it is today. You have made my case.

This was the chance I was looking for to start slashing communism and socialism, using the platform that individual property rights are much more democratic than state controlled ones.

It's nothing new. At one time, kings and lords, pharaohs and Caesars, emperors and khans, sheiks and caliphs, and all the other forms of potentates owned everything - or took what they wanted.

Then came Secretaries of Communist Parties, and socialist governments, and in those nations the state owned all.

Now we are moving to a stage in the advancement of civilization where property ownership is more democratic.

The counter movement to that is led by people, probably yourself, who wish the state would take back some or all the property rights from selfish private citizens and share them with the deserving multitudes.

When you write:


...the rights of humanity have been subjugated to the rights of property ownership.

bear in mind that humanity includes those property owners. In the United States, you can purchase property and enjoy the rights of its ownership. Or you can create property - a song, computer software, a book, picture, design, & etc. - and receive value from its use. In many parts of the world, only the elite or rulers can have that, and all you create is theirs.

I know, I can almost hear you saying it; of course what is created belongs to the people. The man couldn't write the software without the state education. And songs, books, pictures are just entertainment - why should only one person make money from something that should be given to everyone to enjoy?

The answer is simple and obvious. Man creates to satisfy himself. He wants to decide if it is to be given away to the masses, and not let the decision be made by the masses, or by the rulers of the masses.

In fact, absent that control and choice, man will not create much of anything of value. Human nature trumps idealistic utopianism every time.

At this point another fellow posted about how arch liberal Barbra Streisand tried to prevent the California Coastal Records Project from publishing aerial photos of her mansion taken from a helicopter flying offshore. According to Babs, she not only does not allow access across her property, she doesn’t even allow it to be photographed from a helicopter flying over public land. She lost her lawsuit.

Click on this link (Coastal Record) , and then click on “About the Streisand Lawsuit” about halfway down the left column.

Because of Bab’s lawsuit, huge numbers of viewers have gazed upon the photo of her mansion that would never have it she had kept her commodious mouth shut.

I wonder if her carbon footprint is a big as Al Gore’s mansion. I’ll bet she is as extravagant a user of energy as Hypocrite Al.

It didn’t take long for a good utopian socialist like Medawhite to get to the crux of the insurmountable problem facing socialists and communists: human nature.

People don’t want to live and behave as socialists and communists theorize they should. This aspect of human nature doesn’t go down well with Medawhite.

So you are saying that utopianism be damned. I suppose this is the difference between you and me. I understand your point of view but simply disagree with the entire precept that there should be class differences. I am not naïve I know that your idea of how it should be will never cease to exist do to the condition of man in the flesh of being greedy and self emulated in narcissism of self worth.

It has been interesting for me to delve into the mind of a liberal concerning property rights. I just assumed that property rights are a defining element of personal rights and freedom, and was surprised to find such deep ignorance coupled with animosity towards individual ownership of property.

I mercifully concluded this incredibly one-sided exchange:


The ownership of property rights, and the exercise of such rights by the owner, has nothing to do with class. An impoverished person can receive property rights to an expensive estate through such means as a bequest, and exercise those rights the same as the person who paid a fortune to acquire them. The late Anna Nichole Smith comes to mind.

Ted Kennedy would just be another miserable alcoholic without the power of inherited property rights. The fact he has no class does not prevent him from the free exercise of property rights.

Or from trying to use the government to take mine and give them to his supporters.

It used to be said democracy would only last until the politicians found they could bribe the people with their own money. Actually, this should be amended to state that it will last only to the point when politicians find they can bribe the people with other people's money.

That's the real essence of class differences. The have-not class doesn't want everyone to be just as miserable as themselves. They just want politicians to give them everything that others worked hard to earn and save.

The liberal politician says, "You vote for me, and I'll see what I can take from them and give to you."

THE POWER TO TAX IS THE POWER TO DESTROY.

Medawhite seemed to have given up on the property rights thread, because his/her next post was completely off the wall:

Mr. Major Mike, may I remind you for a moment that the US is spending more money on world domination and oil at any cost than it is in Public Welfare. More money is also being given to corporations in tax breaks to the point that it is called Corporate Welfare for the corporations that were formed for the specific purpose of providing weapons of war and mass destruction to the US and Israeli Governments along with anyone else that may need a weapon or two; also the subsidies that are given to the drug companies in the form of no bid drug prices; the subsidies given to the weapons manufacturers in the form of foreign aid to Israel and the dictators in Darfore that receive tax dollars from America and its corporate arm the World Bank. How about the subsidies given to Halliburton and the others that receive no bid contracts, no bid meaning that there is no cap on the profits, being what is called a time and material contract: The more you spend the higher your profits.

What about tax dollars being spent on food subsidies to the corporate corn and wheat industries to drive down the world prices and starve the locals which cause them to migrate to America?
The big laugh that the Archer Daniels Midland types have on the American public and those that may sympathize with this paradigm is that the produce can be grown and subsidized even though it has never seen American soil having been grown in India or anywhere else on the planet. Corporations are throwing bales of American taxpayer money around like footballs literally in hundred dollar bill bales of ten thousand and you are worried about some welfare queen scenario, or some migrant that might get health care illegally?


With Medawhite throwing around the stock attacks on United States world domination and lust for oil, buzz words like Corporate Welfare, Haliburton, Archer Daniels Midland, and put downs of Israel, I realized I had pushed Medawhite to the wall, causing the unleashing of a torrent of leftist clichés.

Against such a scattergun (scatterbrain) fusillade of liberal allusions towards conservative issues, I chose to answer by firing volleys in force about reductions in military spending as a percent of gross domestic product, lower food prices through greater agricultural efficiency, and how spending on entitlement programs is dwarfing all other government activities and will soon sink our economy.

Against Medawhite’s torrent of opinions and allusions, I unleashed a torrent of facts. Please click on this link, it's much to long to copy/paste. Thanks.

I doubt it will do any good. Facts to leftists like Medawhite are of interest only to the extent they consider them malleable and capable of being shaped to fit the liberal need of the moment.

A fact means nothing, its interpretation is what counts.

Please click on the label below to see all my articles on this topic.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

The High Price of Freedom for Ayaan Hirsi Ali

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Ayaan Hirsi Ali, author of Infidel

THE HIGH PRICE OF FREEDOM - AFTER FORSAKING MUSLIM BELIEFS, ALI SOUGHT EXILE, NOW FACES DEATH THREATS

Infidel, By Ayaan Hirsi Ali, FREE PRESS, reviewed by Sandip Roy in the Book Section of the San Francisco Chronicle, Sunday, February 25, 2007.

An excerpt from Mr. Roy's review:


On one hand she rages righteously against the willful blindness of those who deny the honor killings and wife beatings that go on in the name of Islam. But then on the other she dismisses the way her statements can feed into the very real problems of stigma and profiling that are faced by thousands of innocent Muslims who get thrown off planes or disappear into detention centers. She makes statements like "Islam is backward" and then appears, rather naively, astonished when young Moroccans boo her. It is unclear how she even thinks there is room for reform in Islam when in her view the "faith is itself at the root of oppression."

But her fearlessness has sparked change, forcing Dutch authorities to start counting honor killings.

In the end, Ayaan, the daughter of Hirsi, the son of Magan, finally frees herself from the tangled bloodlines of obligation and obedience that caged her. But as you read about her hunkered down in a nameless motel between two freeways, guarded around the clock by Dutch police, you can only wonder about the price of that freedom.

As I read the above conclusion of Mr. Roy’s review of Ms. Ali’s autobiography, I was struck by the reviewer’s clueless remarks about Ms. Ali’s comments on Muslims and on the price of freedom. I contend his remarks are clueless from the point of view that he was writing a review for an American audience.

An American would think of Ms. Ali’s comments to fellow Muslims in the context of Dr. Martin Luther King’s remarks to fellow Americans. Dr. King, I feel sure, did not worry about how his statements about racial injustice in the American South served to stigmatize and profile thousands of innocent Southerners.

Mr. Roy’s remarks about these thousands of innocents being thrown off planes and disappearing into detention centers also strike me as disingenuous since I find very few instances in the news of that sort of thing happening. The only one that comes to mind in recent times involved six imams doing their best to draw attention to their strange antics on a commercial flight.

Of less recent vintage, a large number, but far from thousands, of unlawful combatants were captured on battlefields in Afghanistan and placed in indefinite detention. I don’t think many “innocents” wander through Afghan battlefields carrying AK-47’s and RPG’s (rocket propelled grenades).

However, the most striking thing in Mr. Roy’s review is what he didn’t include: if Muslims react negatively when Ms. Ali says “Islam is backwards,” that doesn’t mean Islam is not backwards, and it doesn’t mean that the Muslim in the street shouldn’t hear Islam criticized, especially by a former Muslim.

I know that multiculturalists would be offended that anyone would criticize another's culture, even if the critic had suffered its oppression. So honor killings and female circumcision go on, and the multiculturalists save their scathing remarks for the critics of Islam, not its barbaric practices.

"Oh, that is so judgmental."

Again my thoughts turn to the words of Dr. King. I think he thought there was room for reform in the South, even though he thought the culture of racism in the South was at the root of oppression there. As in most things, it is hard to correct a problem if you don’t give it a name.

Ms. Ali has given a name and a face to the backwardness of Islam. She was subjected to genital mutilation (female circumcision) against her will. She realized that any peace and comfort she had in life depended on another treating her well, and could be lost in an instant at their whim.

Given all Ms. Ali has suffered, Mr. Roy wonders if her freedom is worth the price of being “hunkered down in a nameless motel between two freeways, guarded around the clock by Dutch police …”

I wonder if Dr. King wondered the same on April 4, 1968, at 6:01 p.m. as he stepped onto the balcony outside the Motel Lorraine in Memphis, Tennessee.

Personally, I think both would agree their freedom was worth the price, because they both had a dream, and dreams die hard.

Please click on the label below to see all my articles on this topic.

Saturday, February 24, 2007

IRS After eBay Sellers

IRS urged to go after eBay sellers - Tax experts say online auctions should report users' gross sales, by Verne Kopytoff, Chronicle Staff Writer, February 24, 2007

When it comes to paying income taxes, eBay's legions of small-time entrepreneurs are on an honor system in which they are supposed to declare their profits to the Internal Revenue Service. Many users, however, ignore the law or are unaware of their obligation.

The Chronicle could have run this story with many different parties as the subject, but just chose eBay because it would catch reader attention. The Chronicle could have used the sentence template below, and used one or more of the groups in parentheses to catch the attention of various target markets.

When it comes to paying income taxes, (big-time drug dealers) (small-time flea market vendors) (real estate agents) (entertainers) (prostitutes) (white-collar criminals) (blue-collar criminals) (collarless criminals) (illegal immigrants) (contractors) (house cleaners) (exotic dancers, waitpersons, anyone paid tips) (just about anyone not stuck with a W-2, 1099, bank or broker statement) are on an honor system in which they are supposed to declare their profits to the Internal Revenue Service. Many users, however, ignore the law or are unaware of their obligation.

Where are the civil libertarians demanding equal protection and treatment under the law when it comes to paying and not paying taxes? If your taxes are withheld, your chances of paying your taxes are very high. If not withheld, you're more likely to pay from 0% to 50% of your income taxes.

Of all the organizations the IRS could publicize for nonpayment of income taxes, eBay gave the IRS a chance to put their weakest foot forward. eBay does not fit any legal definition of an organization required to report to the IRS. eBay is not a party to the transaction, and does not in fact know if a sale occurred, let alone at what price. Our local farmers market on the vacant lot by the Gualala Community Center performs the same function.

So do the huge flea markets my late first wife’s family couldn’t pass up: in northern California at San Jose, Vallejo, Sebastopol, among many; the parking lot of Aloha stadium, Oahu; the fair grounds in Belleville, Illinois, where my first father-in-law filled his pickup with work horse paraphernalia – “These people don’t know what this stuff is worth,” he whispered, as he cleaned out their inventory. “Another Californian,” they probably whispered amongst themselves as they rushed to restock.

For as long as the government’s primary source of revenue is income taxes, we will be continually regaled with tales of tax avoidance, and attempts to stop it. Instead of outrage at the tax cheaters, there is a perverse quirk in human nature that makes law-abiding tax payers (those of us who have to be because of withholding) side with the cheaters, even though the government wants to raise our taxes more to make up for the revenue lost through cheating.

Unlike the government, when I recognize a problem, I also recognize the need for a solution that will work. In the case of rampant income tax evasion, the solution is marvelously simple: abolish the IRS, and replace it with a national sales tax. With the flick of a pen, our incredibly expensive and ineffective taxation system would be replaced by a fair and inexpensive one.

To find out why it would work, please go to Keep it Simple, Simplifiers.

When you finish reading KISS, you'll whack your head with your hand and exclaim, "Of course, it all makes sense, and is so simple, why hasn't the government already done it."

Then you'll whack your head agian and say, "Of course, it all makes sense, and is so simple, no wonder the government hasn't already done it."

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

Global Warming Speak

Global Warming Speak, and translation, courtesy of National Policy Analysis:

"One has only to look at the Second Assessment Report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) - the United Nations body tasked with coordinating a world response to the threat of global warming - to understand why global warming theory advocates have been so successful. Among the many gems in the report is this one: "Warmer temperatures will lead to prospects for more severe droughts and/or floods in some places and less severe droughts and/or floods in others."

The University of Virginia's Dr. Patrick Michaels has taken the time to translate this sentence for us. It means that global warming will be characterized by "more intense wet periods, more intense dry periods, more intense wet and dry periods, less intense wet periods, less intense dry periods, and less intense wet and dry periods." Precisely how this is different than a world without human-enhanced global warming is unclear. From year to year, some areas of the world have always experienced more severe droughts and floods than others. Likewise, some areas of the world have always experienced less severe droughts and floods than others. With or without global warming, this process will continue in the future."

In other words, expect the same old weather, but with a lot of Gore-y spin. Like the ancients reading destiny by examining the entrails of goats, so every manifestation of weather - storm, drought, snow, no snow, hot, cold - will be a sign of the "Global Warming To Come."

Man made, of course. All the hundreds of previous periods of global warming, solely Nature's doing, are now dismissed because Al Gore and the Global Warming Fundies (Fundamentalists) want to indict prosperity caused by economic freedom as the cause of possible disaster in the future.

Since this global warming is natural, and warmth benefits many activities, such as growing crops, more than cold, why this fear that only bad will happen? During previous warming periods, the results were enormously beneficial for mankind. Why wouldn't they be this time too?

Please click on the label below to see all my articles on Global Warming.

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Al Gore and his Merry Band of Global Warming Deniers

Just as the Holocaust Deniers before them, Al Gore and his Acolytes are into denial of global warming – natural global warming, that is.

For an example, the World Data Center for Paleoclimatology (paleoclimatology is the study of climate change taken on the scale of the entire history of the Earth) flatly states that existing records show there was no multi-century periods when global or hemispheric temperatures were the same or warmer than in the 20th century.

The World Data Center conclusion dismisses the widely accepted science that confirms the existence of a Medieval Warm Period (approximately AD 800-1300) based on acceptance of the conclusions of the now discredited Mann et al (1999) study that fathered Al Gore’s ‘hockey stick.’

Critical analyses of the methodology used to create the ‘hockey stick’ graph, and comparisons to hundreds of global studies of the period, showed it was a bastard offspring of science resulting from the rape or forced marriage of two unrelated data bases.

This sentence in the Mann et al study Abstract pretty much sums up its low scientific worth towards gaining an understanding of the present compared to the Medieval Warm Period.


Though expanded uncertainties prevent decisive conclusions for the period prior to AD 1400, our results suggest that the latter 20th century is anomalous in the context of at least the past millennium.

The first part of the sentence says it can’t be sure of climate prior to AD 1400; the second part says nevertheless the latter part of the 20th century was warmer than any in the preceding 1000 years. Can science have it both ways? Can such uncertainty lead to such certainty in conclusions?

The graph below shows the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age in relation to today's temperatures. You can easily see why Al Gore and the Deniers need to kill this information, since it doesn't fit their man-made, carbon dioxide driven, global warming scenario.

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As John L. Daly notes, The ‘Hockey Stick’ – A New Low in Climate Science:


Using tree rings as a basis for assessing past temperature changes back to the year 1,000 AD, supplemented by other proxies from more recent centuries, Mann completely redrew the history, turning the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age into non-events, consigned to a kind of Orwellian `memory hole.'

Daly continued:


At that point, Mann completed the coup and crudely grafted the surface temperature record of the 20th century (itself largely the product of urban heat islands) onto the pre-1900 tree ring record. The effect was visually dramatic as the 20th century was portrayed as a climate rocketing out of control. The red line extended all the way to 1998 (Mann's `warmest year of the millennium'), a year warmed by the big El Niño of that year. It should be noted that the surface record is completely at variance with the satellite temperature record. Had the latter been used to represent the last 20 years, the effect would have been to make the 20th century much less significant when compared with earlier centuries.

So there you have it. Al Gore and the Natural Global Warming Deniers excised an earlier warmer period from their study, and graphed to it a temperature record created with a different methodology. A mongrel record, as noted by Daly, that does not even agree with the much more precise and reliable temperature data readily available since 1979 from weather satellites.

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Other studies show that natural global warming has resulted in an average increase in global temperature of 0.6° C each century for the past 200 years. Far from the 1990’s and 2000’s to date being the warmest in 1000 years, they're not even the warmest in the past century. The 1930’s and 1940’s have that distinction.

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The short term temperature increase in the 1990’s was not the most dramatic in 1000 years. Less than 200 years ago, a much larger increase in temperatures took place in 1819 to 1828.

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In the Sargasso Sea, radiocarbon dating of marine organisms in sea bed sediments by L. Keigwin demonstrates that sea surface temperatures were around 2°F cooler than today around 400 years ago (the Little Ice Age), and around 2°F warmer than today 1,000 years ago (the Medieval Warm Period). In addition, the data also demonstrates that the period before 500 BC (the so-called Holocene Climatic Optimum) saw temperatures up to 4°F warmer - and without any greenhouse gas component to cause it.

Al Gore and the Deniers seem to favor science by consensus, rather than by a careful examination of competing claims. In that, they are a lot like historical consensus-based scientists, who at various times held sway with certainty that the Earth was flat, that lack of cleanliness did not cause infections following operations, that man would never fly, and on, and on. In fact, each significant scientific advance appears to have been made in defiance of the consensus of the science community of its time.

A recent Harvard study, 20th Century Climate Not So Hot , of over 240 climate studies (enough for a Gore-ian consensus?) arrived at a conclusion, not a consensus, that:


(T)he 20th century is neither the warmest century nor the century with the most extreme weather of the past 1000 years. The review also confirmed that the Medieval Warm Period of 800 to 1300 A.D. and the Little Ice Age of 1300 to 1900 A.D. were worldwide phenomena not limited to the European and North American continents. While 20th century temperatures are much higher than in the Little Ice Age period, many parts of the world show the medieval warmth to be greater than that of the 20th century.

Al Gore, come out of denial. I know it will be a terrible experience to face the truth after all you’ve preached, but in the end it’s for the best.

Remember, Honesty is the first of the twelve steps, and can begin with one simple admission that you are powerless to prevent the disclosure that natural global warming has been, and will continue to be, the predominant cause of global climate change, just as it has been for over 600 times before.

You’ll feel better for it, once everyone stops laughing.

Just as Paul Ehrlich about “The Population Bomb.”

After almost forty years, most people only snicker at him now.

Please click on the label below to see all my articles on Global Warming.

Global Warming Is Unprecedented Since The Last Time It Happened

My nomination for the most misused and abused word of the global warming era is “unprecedented." At first glance, unprecedented seems a very clear and straightforward word, i.e., "Unprecedented - Having no precedent; having no previous example.” However, now that the "global warming is man made" alarmists have made it part of almost every statement they make about global warming, the abuse of its meaning is rampant.

Of course, they could correctly state that man-made global warming is unprecedented. None of the hundreds of earlier periods of global warming were man made, and the current one seems no exception.

What isn’t unprecedented is the current natural global warming. It has happened at least 600 times before.

Maybe the man-made global warmists should come up with a new phrase combining unprecedented with a time limit. “This global warming is unprecedented since the Medieval Warm Period ended about 1300 AD.”

“The rate of temperature increase is unprecedented since 1819-1828.”

“We haven’t had an unprecedented warm period like this since it was warmer in 1930-1940.”

The problem would be that unprecedented would also have to be limited by the type of observations made.

"The increased surface temperatures recorded only at weather stations located in or near urban heat islands is unprecedented."

"The differences in surface temperature records showing a rapid rise, and the weather satellite records showing no significant increase, are unprecedented."

"The differences in the measured sea level rise of six inches in the past century, the increase of four to twenty inches by 2100 forecasted by the United Nations IPCC, and the 20 feet rise prophesized by Al Gore are unprecedented."

"It is unprecedented to blame higher greenhouse gas concentrations for global warming, when in previous periods of global warming carbon dioxide increases followed, not preceded, the increased warmth."

"The fact that temperature fluctuations of the last 1000 years were in consonance with solar activity is not unprecedented, but crediting carbon dioxide for global warming during that period is, since the carbon dioxide levels were stable."

The fact that the Left is trying to use an issue, like "man-made" global warming to gain power over all the personal and economic activities of mankind is not unprecedented.

The fact that so many scientists have prostituted themselves to subscribe to science by consensus instead of critical research in order to get research grants is unprecedented (I hope).

Please click on the label below to see all my articles on Global Warming.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

Indict Fitzgerald, Wilson, and Plame - Free Libby

What a breath of fresh air Victoria Toensing (Trial in Error) brings to the Fitzgerald Farce!

Way back in October, 2005, in a post I titled, "Keeping it Simple," I wondered:

What am I missing? Back in March (2005) the NY Times, Washington Post, ABC, CBS and about 32 other major news organizations filed a "friend of the court" brief to protect Judith Miller and Matthew Cooper against a charge of concealing the identity of a source responsible for compromising the identity of a covert agent. In essence, when the Intelligence Identities Protection Act of 1982 was reviewed, it became readily apparent that no violation of law had occurred. Simply, Valerie Plame had not meet the criteria to be a covert agent, since she had a CIA desk job at Langley for over five years, and the CIA had not even taken the reasonable minimum steps to maintain her in a "covert" status.

So the question is, how can these news agencies be pursuing "Plamegate" so breathlessly when they already concluded there was nothing there?

For two years since we have watched this drama unfold, like being trapped in an insane dream set in a room filled with 36 people. In the room is one hideous monster, that each of the 36 has previously identified and told you about. But when you point at the monster and scream, "There it is!" they look at you blankly and say, "There's no monster."

So it has been with Joe Wilson and Valerie Wilson/Plame. The media, having proved Plame was not covert, attacks the Bush administration for compromising a covert agent.

The media, having briefly reported that Joe Wilson had indeed found Iraq had tried to purchase uranium from Niger (confirmed by his testimony before the Senate Intelligence Committee), then immediately put this fact aside, and soon every story only mentioned that Joe Wilson “discredited” the Bush administration claims. Strangely, the media never completed the picture by adding what they already knew, that Wilson’s subsequent Senate testimony discredited his public statements about Iraq and Niger uranium.

Rather than this being an insane dream, it’s more like an insane comedy version of “Groundhog Day.” The media are in the bowels of the Earth gathering and assembling the facts, yet no matter what new and illuminating information they receive, the same erroneous story keeps popping out of the hole.

I want a new groundhog!

Please click on the label below to see all my articles on Plamegate.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

Preacher Al Gore and the Global Warming Fundies

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(An "Al Gore Global Warming Fundie" is a true believer that global warming is man made, regardless of all dissenting science. Just as religious believers can’t prove there is a God, and atheists can’t prove there isn’t, Al Gore and followers can’t prove global warming is man-made, so they just accept it as a matter of belief. Therefore, they are Fundamentalists following Preacher Al in the worship of the only God the Left truly believes in, the One that will give them control over the personal and economic activities of all mankind under the banner of "Saving The World." Their motto: "We can't wait until we're certain, because then it'll be too late!")

You had been called to report on a possible murder in a southern state in the early 1960’s. The body of a black man was pulled from the river, where it had been found by some fishermen entangled with their anchor. They struggled mightily to drag the body to shore because it was wrapped in heavy chains. One of the fishermen raced into town and soon returned with the Sherriff and Coroner. The Coroner made a quick examination of the body, noting what appeared to be marks of “blunt instrument” trauma on the head and body.

The Coroner turned to the Sherriff and said, “This looks bad, really bad.”

The Sherriff replied, “Yep, worst case of suicide I ever saw.”

Maybe Sherriff Justice, standing there, sweat soaked shirt, dripping sweat down his forehead, down his nose, dropping onto his cigar, falling finally onto his commodious belly, was looking at the evidence and seeing what he wanted to see.

“Yep, obvious suicide.”

Just like Al Gore and the Global Warming Fundies. Take the widely discredited study by Mann that gave birth to the “hockey stick” graph of global temperatures showing the 20th Century was the hottest in the past 1000 years. Combine it with studies showing the concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide has been rising rapidly in the past 100 years. Voila! You have man-made Global Warming, just what you need to take control of all the personal and economic activities of any and all citizens of the free world.

For a thorough debunking of the "hockey stick," go to The `Hockey Stick': A New Low in Climate Science, by John L. Daly.

Why only take control over the activities of citizens of the free world? Because the governments of the non-democratic countries already have control over their citizens’ personal and economic activities.

Since science is funded based on its “sexiness,” and impending world disaster is sexy as long as 1) it can be blamed on the United States, corporations, or capitalism – if you blame it on all three, then you’ve got sexiness cubed and 2) it’s nothing that can be proven or disproven (unlike the bankruptcy of Social Security in ten years), but it’s something that has to be dealt with now because “if we wait until we’re sure, it’ll be too late.”

Once the link between carbon dioxide and the spurious study that produced the “hockey stick” was established, then the race was on to find anything and everything that suggested global warming was man made.

Were there a lot of hurricanes this year? Man-Made Global Warming (MMGW) had to be the cause.
Some record high temperatures? MMGW, of course.
Sea level was 7 inches higher in 100 years? MMGW, what else could it be?
Violent storms and flooding? MMGW, naturally.
Less Arctic sea ice? MMGW, because who ever heard of no Arctic sea ice?
Some polar bears are thinner, and four drowned? MMGW, and if we don’t do something soon, polar bear extinction, for sure.
Glaciers are retreating? MMGW is melting them all.
Mt. Kilimanjaro is snow free? MMGW. If Hemingway saw it, he’d blow his brains out.
Spring comes earlier to the mountains? MMGW is causing stuff to grow higher and earlier than ever before.
Greenland ice is melting? MMGW. Al Gore says that Greenland melting will cause its ice cap to slide into the Atlantic, then it’ll melt fast and sea levels will be up 20 feet by 2100 AD.
Antarctic ice sheets bigger than Rhode Island are breaking off? MMGW, why ask?

Then the next thing was to dramatize Global Warming, so that all the ignorant and short attention-span peoples of the free world could scream, “We have to do something! Now! Before it’s too late!”

Preacher Al Gore needed something – anything – to bring himself back from irrelevance, and what better for a Democrat than a campaign based on blind faith to save the world from destruction caused by personal freedom, economic growth, and prosperity?

Reverend Al had already laid the basis for his campaign with his scientifically unsubstantiated “Earth in the Balance,” so dull and boring that only the already converted Environmental Fundies could plow through it. It was obvious that the Preacher of Apocalypse had learned something from previous global alarmists, and avoided their cardinal error of making the onslaught of the disaster too imminent.

We all remember the tale of the “Boy Who Cried Wolf.” When the villagers kept answering his cry, and never found a marauding wolf attacking the flock, he soon lost any credibility for future alarms.

Other classic examples of this type of error include Paul Ehrlich and his book, “The Population Bomb.” Ehrlich wrote the book in 1968, forecasting immediate world starvation resulting from a geometrically increasing world population and a linearly increasing world food supply. Ehrlich sold a lot of books immediately, but in less than a decade it was obvious that the opposite had occurred.

Like the boy, Ehrlich kept repeating his warning as the years passed, moving the date of impending catastrophe later as his previous predicted date came and went without dire results.

It wasn’t long before, if Ehrlich was chatting with a friend and said it looked like rain, the friend would laugh and put away his umbrella. (The last part about the chat with a friend is a made-up anecdote which, as Dan Rather said of the forged Texas Air National Guard letters about George Bush, even though they were forged, they illustrated a profound truth. (See "speaking truthiness to power." “Truthiness” means something is known intuitively, instinctively, or "from the gut" without regard to evidence, logic, intellectual examination, or actual facts. It's an inherently Liberal practice.)

Paul Ehrlich is only 74 years old, so for the past 38 years he has weathered embarrassment as people point at him, yell “Boom!” then fall down laughing their butts off. Dr. Ehrlich should have stuck to his butterfly studies, and saved himself and Stanford from ridicule.

Carl Sagan was another afflicted with “premature prognostication.” During Operation Desert Storm in 1991 he debated Dr. Fred Singer on ABC Nightline, and forecasted that the smoke from Kuwaiti petroleum fires would loft into the upper atmosphere, disrupt the monsoons, and lead to ecological disaster. Singer said such a view was ridiculous, that the smoke would go up only a few thousand feet and then be washed out of the atmosphere by rain. Three days later, black rain began falling over Iran, proving Dr. Singer right (and of course, not ever mentioned by the Left, Sagan wrong).

Pastor Al and the Fundies have providentially placed their forecasts of disasters well into the future, so they can claim that just about any quirk in climate is a “sign” of looming global catastrophe, and cut another notch in the global warming headboard.

The only problem is that Soothsayer Al and the Global Warming Fundies can’t make their “science” stand up to scientific inquiry. Want proof? Take a stroll through the European countryside. In fact, go here to start your tour: => Global Warming - A Stroll Through the European Countryside

Better bundle up. It’s still pretty cold this time of the year, not balmy like it was back in Ye Goode Olde Medieval Warm Period, 800 to 1300 AD.

It seems quite odd that Global Warming “scientists” don’t ridicule Al Gore for his ridiculous forecast of sea levels rising 20 feet by 2100. Even the political arm of United Nations scientists, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), only forecasts sea levels rising in a range from 7 to 35 inches, with the most probable rise being about 12 inches (based on today’s rate of 3 mm per year) in the next 100 years. Sea levels rose 7 inches in the past 100 years, and in the 18,000 years since the last Ice Age reversed, sea levels have risen an average of almost 22 inches every 100 years.

However, the increases were far greater in the early stages of ice retreat, and during the past 8,000 years have been much lower. The 7 inch rise in the past 100 years was expected, and was established as the norm a long time before anyone cried “man-made global warming.”

Since the best scientific estimates are for only a sea level rise of a foot in the next 100 years, that leaves Al Gore with about 19 feet in his mouth.

Why are seas still rising? Because although we are in an interglacial period, we are also still coming out of the last ice age.

And the next glacial period will begin soon (soon, that is, in geologic time).

Ecclesiastic Al and His Acolytes sure tried to pull the Global Warming wool over everyone’s eyes, but they couldn’t pressure enough dissenting scientists to stop their quests for knowledge and just shut up to get away with it.

Forinstance, how can you have the “warmest 100 years in the past 1000 years” when the Earth itself provides abundant evidence that it was warmer 1000 years ago? 20th Century Climate Not So Hot, a Harvard study of 240 climate studies.

If high hurricane activity in 2005 proved global warming was coming, did low hurricane activity in 2006 prove global warming had fizzled? Or are weather experts right when they say that climate is highly variable, and that hurricane activity ebbs and surges in Arctic sea ice also moves in cycles corresponding to changes in currents and wind? From 1935-1945, arctic temperatures were much higher than today, and dropped from that peak until about 1960. From 1920 to 1940, the Arctic temps skyrocketed, warming by +/- 4°C in two decades ... about twice as much as the current rise since 1960, and in less time, and all without the benefit of CO2 increase.

All of the concern about the Arctic heating up because of less sea ice, more dark, open water exposed, therefore more absorption from solar heating is totally wrong. Because of the low Sun angle, solar heating of the Arctic is less than 3% of equatorial. Rathre than directly from the Sun, Arctic heating comes from heat transferred from the Equator via atmospheric circulation.

How can the rapid increase in the concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere in the 20th Century prove that man is causing global warming? Bear in mind: 1) Most of the increased temperatures occurred over 50 years ago. 2) Temperatures dropped during the period 1970 to 1975 even as global atmospheric CO2 concentration increased steadily. And 3) the 1930’s were warmer than the recent supposedly warmest decade in 1000 years. See Apocalypse Cancelled for complete analyses.

One of the longest continuous temperature records shows a 0.6°C per century rise which has been sustained for two centuries (since 1790). It shows the highest temperatures were in the 1930-1940 period, not in the 1990’s, or 2000’s, and the greatest decade for rapid temperature rise was 1819-1828, not the current period.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Remarkably, scientists have found a positive correlation for the temperature fluctuations of the 20th Century, but it’s not with carbon dioxide. It’s solar activity, which scientists also find correlates strongly with the higher temperatures of the Medieval Warm Period, and the colder temperatures of the Little Ice Age. The concentration of atmospheric CO2 shows no immediate correlation to either of the earlier warmer or cooler periods, but may in the long run.

Inconveniently for Minister Al and the Fundies, research going back half a billion years shows that increased CO2 concentrations followed, not preceded, increasing temperatures by several hundred to several thousand years. It is possible that the increase in CO2 we see today is due to the Global Warm Period of 800 to 1300 AD. Climate Chaos? Don’t Believe It has more.

Carbon dioxide is highly overrated as a global warming gas anyway. Water vapor has over five times the global warming clout of CO2, and a recent study indicates that solar activity strongly influences cloud formation that is directly tied to temperature fluctuations.

Man only plays a puny part in the Earth’s annual production of CO2 anyway. Each year Nature produces about 180 billion tons of CO2, and mankind only produces 6 billion tons, or about 3% of the total. Since CO2 is only about 15% of the greenhouse gas effect, that makes man’s contribution to the total greenhouse gas effect a whopping less than one-half of one percent! That means that if we cut our CO2 production in half, bringing virtually all human economic activity on Earth to a halt, we will reduce total greenhouse gases almost a quarter of a percent.

So if everyone stops driving, lowers thermostats to 50 and unplugs all air conditioning, and stops making anything that requires electricity or fossil fuels to produce, it would save the world except….

Except, remember that the citizens of the free world are going to be all alone on the kill-our-economy-to-save-the-world bandwagon. China will still be adding one new coal-fired generating plant every ten days big enough to power San Diego. The oil producing nations of the world won’t volunteer to help us cut their economic necks. They’ll invite any and all manufacturers to relocate to rapidly developing countries, and promise a steady supply of cheap petroleum products to ease the transition.

Who will blame the Chinese, Indians, and all the other peoples of the world from doing all they can to improve comfort and security in their life times? The last time I checked, they were only going to have one life each, the same as us. Who are we to say they must suffer and struggle through life because Global Warming alarmists think something bad might happen? Hell, Global Warming might be beneficial to mankind, just like it was the last time around, when it got much warmer.

The most effective way to cope with the effects of natural global warming is through increased world prosperity and technological innovation. During the Little Ice Age, crops failed and the poor starved. If the peoples of the world are allowed to exercise more economic freedom, to accumulate and apply capital to the betterment of their lives, the next ice ages will be accommodated without mankind suffering disasterous deprivation.

As science presses on and it becomes evident that the global warming scare is fraudulent, and calamitous global warming doesn’t happen, Al and the Fundies will join the long list of false prophets.

Just as Muslims, Jehovah’s Witnesses, and many other religious groups and cults constantly predict and joyously await the End of the World, so will Al Gore and the Global Warming Fundies prophesize and await climactic Armageddon, and wait, and wait, and ….

Meanwhile, the Antarctic ice cap is growing, not shrinking, and the average Antarctic temperature is falling, not rising. I’m sure it will not be long before Global Warming True Believers will tell me that a growing Antarctic ice cap and colder temperatures are just what we should expect with man-made global warming. They have already told me that heavier snowfalls and rains are a sure sign of man-caused global warming, just as lighter snowfalls and rains are also a sure sign of global warming.

There are many good reasons why the prophesized global warming disasters won’t occur. One of the most fundamental reasons is contained in the Earth itself. As the Earth warms naturally, and snow and ice melt and expose more land, the newly bare rock begins weathering, causing absorption of CO2. Warm weather and higher levels of CO2 also promote rapid and robust plant growth, which then takes enormous quantities of CO2 from the atmosphere. The vast oceans of the world, covering 70% or its surface and providing over 95% of its useful habitat for life forms, also absorbs gargantuan quantities of CO2. It seems when the Earth produces CO2 in abundance, it also prodigiously increases CO2 absorption.

Wouldn’t you expect Nature to work that way?

It has, for millions – billions – of years.

Puny man can’t change that.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Gun Control Myths

Hutus killed 800,000 of their fellow Rwandans in 100 days with knives and machetes while Bill Clinton and fellow world leaders studiously avoided "knowing" what they knew was happening. The knives and machetes were instruments of murder because they were wielded by murderous people. I doubt they could have killed more effectively if they had guns.

Actually, they probably would have been opposed by Tutsis with guns, and a lot less Tutsis, and a lot more Hutus would have died.

In a recent study in the United States, suicides accounted for about 58 percent of gun fatalities, or 17,000 to 18,000 deaths, in 2001; another 11,000 deaths, or 37 percent, were homicides, and the remaining 800 to 900 gun deaths were accidental.

Although the United States has a lot of guns per capita, there is no correlation between high possession of guns and high suicide rates. The rate of suicides in South Korea soared to 24.7 per 100,000 people in 2005, according to the latest statistics from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development that rank the country at the top of the list.

Others with high rates were Hungary at 22.6 and Japan at 20.3, both using numbers from 2003, the latest available. By comparison, the U.S. suicide rate was 10.2 per 100,000 in 2002, the OECD said.

The countries with higher suicide rates also have strict gun laws and low gun ownership.

The murder rate in the US is 24th in the world at 0.042802 per 1,000 people, with an estimated 2/3 committed by guns (almost always by hand guns, not by such weapons as assault rifles). Columbia has the highest homicide rate at 0.617847 per 1,000 people, over 14 times higher than the US rate. South Africa, Jamaica, Venezuela, Russia, and Mexico have the next five highest homicide rates following Columbia. The Mexico rate is 0.130213 per 1,000 people, three times as high as the US.

There is a strong racial component to murders in the United States. Blacks are about 10% of the population, but commit over half the murders where race of the murderer was determined. Almost half of murder victims are black too.

Studies of immigrant Latino groups also show a homicide rate several times higher than for whites, although only in New York is the Latino homicide rate higher than the black homicide rate.

Homicide is also primarily an urban, rather than rural phenomenon. New Orleans, at 0.577 per 1000 inhabitants (2002 statistics, before Katrina), had the highest homicide rate of large US cities, followed by Washington, DC at 0.44 per 1000, then Baltimore (0.419), Detroit (0.399), etc.

Since the murder rate for the entire US is 0.042802 per 1,000, the murder rate for rural America is obviously much lower than that because of the very high urban rates. For an example, the New Orleans homicide rate is over 13 times the national rate.

Unlike the rationales that advocates apply to gun control, an examination of gun deaths shows them to be primarily a factor of suicides, are heavily influenced by race and living in an urban environment, and not really have much to do with the highly publicized but exceedingly rare shopping center and schools shooting sprees.

Once again, an analysis of factual rather than emotional data shows that guns do not kill people, but segments of populations in urban areas that promote gang-type violence do kill people, usually with pistols, often with knives.

The large population of rifles and shotguns that comprise the vast majority of American firearms play a very small part in deaths, and that part is mostly confined to suicides.

Nations with higher suicide rates have very low gun ownership rates, so if there is a will to commit suicide, apparently a way can be found.

Isn't it better to try to gain an understanding of this by using facts and rational analysis, instead of as one control advocate did, basing her conclusions on the concept that:

"Today in America we have people with the social mentality of a three year old or less who are buying guns and using them in shopping centers and schools to avenge real or imagined grievances."

That's not what we have today in America.

Why are we trying so hard to solve a problem that doesn't exist, and ignoring ones that do?

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Saturday, February 10, 2007

California Senators and Social Security - Tweedle Dumb, and Tweedle Dumber

Today a friend reminded me of how angry I got 25 years ago at a stupid remark by California Senator Alan Cranston. He had decided that a terrible abuse of Social Security was being perpetrated by the military. According to Senator Cranston, the United States military, particularly its officers, indulged in an unethical, if not illegal, practice he called “double dipping.”

He defined "double dipping" as retiring from the military and collecting retirement pay, and then getting a civilian job and paying into Social Security long enough to qualify for payments along with military retired pay. Senator Cranston said this was a terrible injustice, to not pay into Social Security during military service, yet work long enough after retirement to draw both. “This disgraceful double-dipping by the military at taxpayer expense must end,” he said, or words to that effect.

What the idiot senator (or at least his multitudinous inept staffers) should have known, but was too stupid to find out, was that the military have paid into Social Security since 1957. Civilian employees of the federal government, not military, didn’t pay into Social Security, then took early retirement, got a job where they paid into Social Security for at least the minimum required ten years – forty quarters – and then drew both federal retirement and full Social Security.

The strong supporters of Democrats, the federal government employees, were the double-dipping scoundrels! The military, a stronghold of Republican support, were blameless. However, many citizens think it was the other way, and some still think that the military don’t pay into Social Security and can "double dip," even to this day.

My friend was one of them.

Since Cranston made a big stink when he accused the military of double dipping, but never publicly corrected himself, most people never learned the truth.

Pause for a moment and consider these facts. When he made his totally erroneous, thoughtless, and careless statement, Cranston had been a United States Senator for twelve years. He served in the Army in World War II, and one of his Senate positions was Chairman, Committee on Veterans’ Affairs. It seems that somewhere along the line, he or one of his many staff assistants would have discovered what I did when I enlisted in the Air Force in 1962: I only made about $97 a month then, not enough to pay income tax, but nevertheless 3.125% was taken from every dollar I earned and dumped into Social Security.

Later, when Medicare was added, the military got to pay into it just like everyone else, even though when we enlisted we had been promised free military health care for life if we served to retirement. So here we were, paying into a system we would never use (we thought). Then we got the next surprise. No more free military health care for life. As soon as we reached 65, we were to be dumped into the Medicare pool, and be persona non grata at military hospitals.

I hope you don’t have to be retired military to understand what a kick in the teeth this change meant. Many retirees had built their lives around living near a large military installation with, among other things, a large hospital. There they and their spouses received excellent health care for possibly ten to fifteen years after retirement, and then when they turned 65, they were no longer welcome. At that point they might have to travel many miles, sometimes hundreds of miles, to get treated in an equivalent civilian facility. Fortunately the military recognized the injustice this created, and established Tricare for Life, which integrates Medicare with military health care.

Getting back to Cranston, he would have been right about the military if he had been talking about the period 1940 through 1956, because during that period no federal employees including the military paid into Social Security. In 1957 the military came under Social Security, but civilian employees of the federal government didn’t have to pay into Social Security until 1984, and then only if they wanted to or were hired after 1984.

Maybe Cranston finally figured it out and helped make the change to bring federal civilian employees into Social Security after he got my angry letter asking him “how in Hell could a veteran United States senator get such a simple and fundamental fact about who was paying into Social Security bass-ackwards?”

I got a reply from him that indicated he and his staffers either ignored me, or couldn’t understand that I was telling them they screwed up.

His even dumber successor as a California senator, Barbara Boxer, has continued Cranston’s tradition of hiring staffers who reply to my letters without ever comprehending any of my issues. I take that back. Once one of Boxer’s replies actually covered the issue I brought up, but Boxer thanked me for my support when my letter clearly conveyed that I disagreed totally with her position. In fact, like Cranston before her, I don’t think she understands Social Security, even though since 1984 Congressmen have been paying into it.

That’s right. Congressmen, like Cranston, used to be able to practice “double dipping” too.

Maybe the weak brains of Democrats like Cranston and Boxer explains why they can’t understand that Social Security will be bankrupt in a decade. What does “Social Security will be bankrupt” mean? It means in about ten years Social Security will be paying out more cash than it is taking in.

“No problem,” say the Democrats, “Social Security has a $1.7 trillion Trust Fund to draw on.”

Really? What’s in that Trust Fund?

“Oh, the Trust Fund is holding special government bonds.”

Ah so, so Social Security will be able to redeem those bonds for cash and continue to pay all the newly eligible Baby Boomers, right?

“Well, not quite. You see, if the government buys back the Trust Fund bonds with cash to then be distributed to Social Security recipients, that cash has to come from other government sources. The only way the other government sources can come up with the cash is to raise taxes, cut expenses, and borrow more.”

Like robbing Peter to pay Paul?

“Not really. It’s more like robbing both Peter and Paul to pay Paul, because other government services enjoyed by Social Security recipients will be cut, Social Security will be reduced when recipients continue to work, and sales taxes, property taxes, and fees will go up to replace the budget cuts required to continue paying full Social Security benefits.”

Well, at least benefits won’t be cut, correct?

“Sorry, benefits will have to be cut too. Social Security eligibility ages will rise, benefits will be means tested, but even after that it won’t be enough to save Social Security.”

So what happens then?

“Simple. Social Security contributions by younger workers will be raised, and then raised again, and … Do you get the picture?”

Will that save Social Security then?

“Probably not. The higher Social Security contributions will mess up the United States economy really bad. In fact, while the economy is struggling paying the extremely high costs of the fruitless attempts to turn back natural global warming, the increased Social Security taxes will probably administer the coup de grace, the killer blow.”

What do we do then?

“Don’t wait. Head for Australia or New Zealand before the rush starts. Or go to Mexico. Mexico will have a lot of room if you get there before all the illegals head back.”

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Global Warming Consensus is not Science

And Gee whiz. Yesterday 2500 scientists from all over the world said global warming is advancing more quickly than expected and guess what...there's a 90% probability man has caused it.

The above was a reply to a comment I posted on a Forum that a Harvard study of over 200 climate studies had determined that the 20th Century was not the warmest period of the past 1000 years.

Then I penned (actually I keyboarded) the following reply to her reply:

Consensus is not science. Almost all scientists used to think the earth was flat. The consensus didn't believe in any changes until some madman single handedly invented something to bring on the next great advance in science.

"They all laughed at Christopher Columbus,
When he said the world was round.
They all laughed when Edison recorded sound.
They all laughed at Wilbur and his brother,
When they said that man could fly.
They told Marconi wireless was a phony,
It's the same old cry"

Except this time, global warming skeptics have science firmly on their side.

In the beginning I began this Forum topic with a simple statement of facts that have not been refuted at any point in over 100 comments. During the course of this discussion, Liberals centered most of their assessments on personalities, not science, while my points were displayed for all to discuss and refute, and were steadfastly avoided by the Left.

Once again, the heart of this discussion is that Global Warming has been debunked because it is not now warmer than in earlier interglacial periods when the temperatures were warmer, the sea was higher, there was little or no sea ice, and the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide was much higher and followed, not led, the increased warming.

All of this is totally documented and demonstrated through scientific research conducted by a broad array of disciplines. As an example, a Harvard review - that's Harvard, not Major Mike, that did the review - arrived at the following summary of their study:

A review of more than 200 climate studies led by researchers at the Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics has determined that the 20th century is neither the warmest century nor the century with the most extreme weather of the past 1000 years. The review also confirmed that the Medieval Warm Period of 800 to 1300 A.D. and the Little Ice Age of 1300 to 1900 A.D. were worldwide phenomena not limited to the European and North American continents. While 20th century temperatures are much higher than in the Little Ice Age period, many parts of the world show the medieval warmth to be greater than that of the 20th century.

How 'bout dat?

"20th century is neither the warmest nor the century with the most extreme weather of the past 1000 years."

Don't that take the rag off'n the bush?

But there is more. Go to my links below, and then browse. The peer reviewed science is there, thick as Al Gore's head. It is the science of research, not the science of consensus.
Global Warming – A Stroll Through the European Countryside

I titled this discussion I instigated (modestly), “Global Warming Totally Debunked,” and made the Harvard study of 240 climate studies its centerpiece. As I wrote below:"If you have been one of several fortunate visitors to “Strong As An Ox etc.,” you will remember that my post leans heavily on a study from Harvard: "20th Century Climate Not So Hot"

What Liberal can accuse Harvard of being a shill of Republicans?

Unfortunately, the Left thinks that by me bringing up this science, it somehow makes it mine and not Harvard's. That makes as much sense as giving CBS credit for winning the Super Bowl, or the paperboy for the mayor of San Francisco screwing his subordinate, the wife of his best friend and closest advisor (I just threw that in, because now that Mayor Newsom has done the "blame alcohol" excuse, who knows who or what else he may blame. After all, he is a San Francisco Liberal.)

And the Left, as usual, is blaming mankind for something Nature has been doing for millions of years.

Tell me, people of the Left, are you truly ignorant of the climate extremes the Earth has experienced even before man first learned to destroy the planet by burning a mastodon burger over an open flame?

Don't you know North America was partially covered by thick sheets of ice when the first immigrants worked their way across from Asia? Do you think those simple hunter-gatherers did something to heat the place up and get rid of the ice?

No, Nature did it without any help from man, and nothing man is now doing, or not doing, is going to change the current warming trend. Or the glacial period or global cooling which even now is beginning its remorseless, natural return cycle.

Button up your overcoat,
When the wind blows free,
Take good care of yourself,
Before your butt freezes thoroughly.


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War Deaths - A Perspective

A contributor to a Forum of the Contra Costa Times (California, in the eastern San Francisco Bay Area) has a recurring post about the number of average daily American combat deaths, about three per day, during the past four months. I posted a reply to give some of our ignorant and uninformed citizenry an historical perspective on war deaths.

I am guessing that most of them think that sending United States military into harm’s way is a uniquely Republican practice.


Most young Americans would be shocked to find that until the Bush presidencies, Democrat presidents led us into our wars of the 20th Century.

President Wilson, a Democrat, led us into World War I.

Many probably don’t know that World War II was conducted under Democrat presidents Roosevelt and Truman - and for the most part, conducted well, although there were a lot of problems during the Occupation of Japan and Germany after the war ended.

Over sixty years later, and we still seem to have problems with occupations.

Few Americans know the Korean War began under President Truman, a Democrat, and the cease fire was brokered under President Eisenhower, a Republican.

Most of them probably don’t know that the Vietnam War was started and primarily conducted by two Democrat presidents, John Kennedy and Lyndon Johnson, and that the peace agreement came under President Nixon, a Republican, in 1973.


I’m sure a lot don’t know most the war in Vietnam was a Democrat undertaking, because I hear many on the Left trying to rewrite history by calling it “Nixon’s war.”

The following is my post to the Contra Costa Times Forum.

In 1968, the last year of LBJ's pathetic presidency, the war JFK started and LBJ (both Democrats, you know) bungled, reached its bloodiest point for American combat deaths. Each day on average 45 were killed. (An estimated 1500 Vietnamese were killed each day.) In an average six month period in 1968, more US military were killed than the total to date for Iraq and Afghanistan since combat began at the start of the first Gulf War in 1990.

We lost twice as many in a little over a month when we attacked the Japanese on Iwo Jima in World War II. The Japanese lost about 20,000 there, or three times as many dead.

Then we invaded Okinawa, and in 82 days lost 12,000 US (142 deaths per day), and the Japanese/Okinawans lost 250,000 (3,049 deaths per day), a little more than half of them Okinawan civilians.

War is hellish, but there was no war in Rwanda when Clinton avoided acknowledging and doing something about the genocide that killed 800,000 Tutsis in 100 days (do the math, 8,000 deaths a day).

All American war deaths are tragic, and I'll grant that some, but far from all, of the enemy's war deaths are tragic too. But it is interesting how we have lost perspective and context on war deaths over the years. Or on death itself.

For example, each year 40,000 Americans (110 per day) die in auto accidents. How many of you support ending the Driving War?

I'm not callous about war deaths. I served in the Air Force from 1962 until retirement in 1984, and my oldest son did almost a year in Iraq and probably will be going back for another Army tour soon. We know first hand the hardships and tragedies of military service for both the member and the family.

Most Americans don't.

On a very personal basis, I wrote these about military service and my family:

Sober Reflections on Memorial Day - Trying to find my place in Memorial Day.

They Also Served - Marilynn and our three sons were in the front lines too.

Table of American Vietnam War Deaths by year:

Year of Death or Declaration of Death - Number of Records

1956 to 1960 - 9
1961 - 16
1962 - 52
1963 - 118
1964 - 206
1965 - 1,863
1966 - 6,143
1967 - 11,153
1968 - 16,592
1969 - 11,616
1970 - 6,081
1971 - 2,357
1972 - 641
1973 - 168
1974 - 178
1975 - 161
1976 - 77
1977 - 96
1978 - 447
1979 - 148
1980 - 26
1981 to 1990 - 34
1991 to 1998 - 11
Total - 58,193
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Thursday, February 08, 2007

We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period

I sent an edited copy of "Debunking of Global Warming" to our local newspaper. In it I featured how much debunking information could be found by simply Googling "Medieval Warm Period Harvard." At the end of my letter, the editor added a remark, presumably to rally the man-made global warming faithful, that they Google "Medieval Warm Period MIT." Apparently the editor thought that the "real" scientists at MIT would set those Harvard "pretend" scientists straight.

Of course, I rushed to follow his advice, and found almost all the first page of articles Google displayed were great for my purposes, and deadly for the global warming enthusiasts.

The following is the "thank you" letter I sent, expressing how grateful I was for his productive research assistance.

Thanks, Editor, for suggesting I Google “Medieval Warm Period MIT.” When I had previously Googled with “Harvard” instead of “MIT,” I found conclusive proof debunking man-caused global warming in the Harvard study (Dr. Soon, et al) of over 240 climate studies.

However, when I Googled with “MIT,” I immediately found several more debunking studies, and powerful support for current global warming being caused by natural, not human, activities. Several great quotes came from Richard S. Lindzen, professor of meteorology and atmospheric sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), who had participated in the Inter-Governmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Third Assessment Review (2001).

When Professor Lindzen was asked if natural variation would be included in future IPCC reports, he was skeptical: "I have my doubts. I participated fully in the Third Assessment, and it was clear that there were political pressures. Participation was very time consuming and scientifically of no value," commented the MIT expert.

Professor Lindzen also stated: "To the best of my knowledge, Dr. Soon is correct (to state that the 20th century is not the warmest period of the last millennium). The bulk of the literature accepts a Medieval Warm Period, though there is some argument as to whether it was truly global."

In Technology Review, published by MIT, I found the article “Medieval Global Warming,” by Richard Muller, an unabashed man-made global warming enthusiast. Mr. Muller noted that M. Mann and colleagues in 1998 and 1999 published a report and graph (the “hockey stick”), that showed world temperatures had been remarkably constant for 900 years, and then shot up rapidly during the past 100 years coinciding with the rapid increase in industrialization and concomitant increase in fossil fuel combustion.

Conveniently for global warming enthusiasts, the Mann study left out both the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age, even though a previous IPCC study had included both.

Why did they leave them out? Because, if left in, Al Gore couldn’t have a book and movie themed on the 20th century being the warmest period of the last 1000 years.

“We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period," David Deming, a geoscientist at the University of Oklahoma, was e-mailed by a major participant in the IPCC assessments. As Dr. Lindzen confirmed, this was accomplished by the Third Assessment in 2001.

Back to Mr. Muller, who commented: “It was unfortunate that many scientists endorsed the hockey stick before it could be subjected to the tedious review of time. Ironically, it appears that these scientists skipped the vetting precisely because the results were so important.”

The Harvard study by Soon et al soon filled the science void created by Mann et al, and reestablished the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age. It’s conclusion stated succinctly: “(T)he 20th century is neither the warmest century nor the century with the most extreme weather of the past 1000 years”

Mr. Muller then added: “S. McIntyre and R. McKitrick published a paper in Energy and Environment with a detailed critique of the original hockey stick work. They stated bluntly that the original Mann papers contained ‘collation errors, unjustifiable truncations of extrapolation of source data, obsolete data, geographical location errors, incorrect calculations of principal components, and other quality control defects.’ Moreover, when they corrected these errors, the medieval warm period came back strongly.”

Finally, Editor, by following your advice I came across the most thorough and detailed debunking of man-made global warming I have found to date: “Apocalypse Cancelled” and “Climate Chaos? Don’t Believe It,” both by Lord Monckton (Christopher Walter Monckton, 3rd Viscount Monckton of Brenchley).

In 33 pages of data and analyses, and seven pages of references, Lord Monckton shatters the “hockey stick,” confirms the Medieval Warm Period and Little Ice Age, proves they were global, addresses rising sea levels and their relationship to the last Ice Age, reports polar bears are thriving in most of their ranges, finds the Chinese reported no Artic sea ice in the 1400’s, shows that for hundreds of thousands of years increased carbon dioxide levels followed global warming, not preceded it, and demonstrates that solar energy cycles, not greenhouse gases, are the cause of global warming.

Did you know, temperatures went down slightly from 1945 to 1970, matching diminished solar activity, even as greenhouse gas concentrations were steadily rising?

Phew. And there’s more.

Once again, Editor, thank you for your suggestion that led me to such productive research. It’s not often that someone who disagrees so profoundly with me gives me so much help in proving my positions.

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