Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Seek Sea Level Truth, Stamp Out Ignorance


National news services have recently disgorged many articles about Catastrophic Anthropogenic Global Warming (CAGW), and the San Francisco Chronicle has particularly highlighted predictions of sea level rise of five feet by 2100. However, since coastal features look the same now as they did when I came to Point Arena in 1949, I was intrigued to discover what I had missed observing the past 63 years. “The truth must be in the data the eminent scientists have developed,” I commented to myself, and decided to seek their truth.

It was surprisingly easy. I went to the government’s website for the Commerce Department/National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration/National Ocean Service, tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov, clicked on “mean sea level trends for stations in California,” and put the information for the 16 stations on a spreadsheet. Two significant facts were immediately obvious: sea level on the California coast increased at a rate of about seven inches per century, and there has been little or no increase since 1980. Instead of an accelerating rate of increase, there has been deceleration and in some instances, sea level decline, in recent years.

These simple facts, easily determined from government records by any citizen with curiosity and Internet access, are totally at odds with the alarmist press releases. Any “science” reporter could find what I found during a 30-minute coffee break. It took another 30 minutes to scan the records for the 21 other US coastal states, plus 14 Atlantic and Pacific islands.

Conclusions? Sea level rose as much or more in the first half of the 20th Century, and subsidence caused by isostatic rebound from the Ice Age affects some Atlantic coast records.

The information readily available is mind boggling, and it boggles my mind that “science” journalists don’t use it. They must fear what they might find.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

The California Fool's Rush of 2012

Cartoon courtesy of Tom Meyer, www.meyertoons.com
The captions on the whale read:
Unpaid Retiree Pension and Health Care Obligations
Bond Obligations
High-Speed Rail Obligations

“California spends most of its money on salaries, retirement payments, health care benefits for government workers, and other compensation,” said Schwarzenegger, after he replaced Grey Davis as governor. “State revenues are up more than 50 percent over the past 10 years, but still we’ve had to cut spending on services because so much of that revenue increase went to increases in compensation and benefits.”

Still California spends it like it has it, but California is broke. However, that doesn’t stop the super-majority Democrats from looking at Proposition 30 passing as a license to unleash new spending, not to reduce unfunded liabilities.

California has 13% of the nation’s population, but 25% of the unfunded liabilities, thanks to government mismanagement, incompetence and corruption. “A new estimate from Moody’s Investor Services triples national public pension debt from $766 million to $2.2 trillion (and is based on using) an annual earnings forecast based on corporate bonds, 5.5 percent, much lower than the 7.5 to 8.25 percent forecast by pension funds.” And 5.5% is overly generous, since current return on equity is actually under 4%. By denying the truth, government adds to the unfunded liability, which will cause communities to go bankrupt to pay pensions. Already we have Vallejo, Stockton, and San Bernardino, and Detroit is following the California model.

It’s no surprise that two of the strongest public employee union states have the worst unfunded financial problems. Cities are first to feel the pain, because their revenue base is stagnant and almost all their expenses are for personnel. Counties are not far behind for the same reasons, and soon states will follow. The Liberals’ plans to solve the problems by soaking the rich and corporations are bandages on severed arteries, especially since government looks on more taxes as the signal to spend more. 

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Atlantic Magazine Displays Its Climate Change Ignorance


A November 24, 2012 Atlantic Magazine article, ’5 Charts About Climate Change That Should Have You Very, Very Worried’has me very worried. It’s scary to think such natural climate change ignorance can pass even an uninformed editorial review.

One chart showed the top layer of Greenland’s ice melting and refreezing in a four-day period, as it’s done many times over thousands of years. I wonder how Atlantic missed one of my favorite charts showing Greenland warmer than present for over 90% of the past 10,000 years? Ancient Greenland farms are just now reappearing from under ice cover that flourished 1,000 years ago.

The next chart purported to show that America just had its worst drought in over 50 years, but omitted ten that were as bad or worse since 1910, including the protracted droughts of 1953-1956 and 1933-1936.

Then “Coral Reefs are doomed”, which omitted consideration of the Mesozoic Era when atmospheric CO2 was up to four times higher and coral reefs were more widespread and thriving. This is logical, since coral likes long, warm periods (our present warmth and high sea level only began 10,000 years ago at the end of the Ice Age), and recent tests have shown Great Barrier Reef coral likes a CO2-enriched diet.

An Atlantic map of America supposedly showed wildfires are multiplying, yet American and Canadian historical records show this is false.

Finally, Atlantic thinks Civil Wars are Rising, but a chart of death toll from warfare going back over 2,000 years shows that war deaths as a percent of human population have fallen from highs of 10% or more hundreds of years ago, to just a small fraction of a percent, and the number of recent conflicts has fallen 40% since the early 1990’s.

Parading ignorance in an educational forum is stupid!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Climate History Ignorance


“Glacier melting and disappearance in the Arctic regions has created a suspicion that the earth is becoming warmer, so an expedition to the Norwegian section of the Antarctic to learn whether a similar phenomenon is in progress there has been financed by Britain, Norway and Sweden. German aviators reported as long ago as 1938 that certain mountain peaks in Queen Maud Land, previously ice covered, were bare at the top.

“Along the Rift Valley, in Africa, and in Central America, a retreat of glaciers has been noticed, and the signs of a changing climate are reinforced by the migration of fish in the North Atlantic to unusually high latitudes. Cod, for example, goes nine degrees farther north than in the past and the herring travels as far as Greenland.

“Spitzbergen, which was open to navigation only three months a year not long ago, is open for seven months now. To cap it all, land which the Vikings cultivated in Greenland and Iceland (which has been under ice for 1000 years) is bare again.”

This news excerpt was from the Barrier Miner, Broken Hills, New South Wales, Australia, January 25, 1950.

I present this because it is obvious that many of our current “scientists” are ignorant of climate history. They agonize over recent drought, which does not compare to the “Dust Bowl” 1930’s. Hurricanes were stronger and more frequent in the 1950’s, yet a tropical storm striking the East Coast during the longest period in US history without a major hurricane strike is considered a sure sign of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming. Powerful tornados are less frequent, wildfires are less frequent and smaller, drought frequency and severity is lessened, sea level is stable, and global temperature has not increased for over 15 years.

Isn’t no news good news?

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Fracking is our Energy Future


Concerning natural gas and oil freed by fracking, many environmentalists urge that we “Leave it in the ground.” In other words continue energy dependency, loss of manufacturing jobs, and regressive higher energy costs. The following was adapted from a masterresource.org article.
Fracking boosted shale gas production from zero a few years ago to 10% of all U.S. energy supplies in 2012, and increased U.S. oil production 25% since 2008 – almost all on state and private, not federal, lands.
Fracking created 1.7 million jobs in oil fields, equipment manufacturing, and other sectors. It will generate over $60 billion this year in state and federal tax and royalty revenues, reduce America’s oil import bill by $75 billion, and save us $100 billion in imported liquefied natural gas.
A resurgent American petroleum industry could add about “3.6 million jobs by 2020, and increase the U.S. gross domestic product by as much as 3 percent,” says Citigroup’s “Energy 2020” report. Fracking is bringing new jobs and revenues to states underlain by shale deposits, and could give our nation over a century of hydrocarbon energy that will keep prices low for fuel and petrochemical feed stocks.
That means more manufacturing and other jobs for millions of graduates and unemployed workers, and new prosperity for the “Rust Belt” and other areas. “Plunging natural gas prices have turned the U.S. into one of the most profitable places in the world to make chemicals and fertilizer,” says the Wall Street Journal. It’s also “slashed costs for makers of energy-intensive products such as aluminum, steel and glass.”
It could make North America ‘energy independent’ (really energy neutral) and even a net exporter of natural gas. In fact, this amazing new technology could turn the United States into the world’s #1 oil producer just a few more years.

Frack that!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Natural Climate Change Caused Problems


In a previous post I noted that warmist scientist Kevin Trenberth said Sandy was not proof of man-caused global warming, and a reader noted that Trenberth said that climate change is worsening some recent extreme weather events. Since I am not a natural climate change denier, as are Al Gore and many others, I agree with Trenberth: natural climate change has worsened many extreme weather events over millions of years. The worst drought in the US was in the mid-1930s when 24 of 50 state maximum temperature records were set; only 12 state record maximum temperatures have been set since 1960, and none in the 2000’s.

Other examples abound. Natural warming caused sea level to rise over 420 feet in 10,000 years since the end of the Ice Age, inundating much valuable pre-historical beachfront property. Vineyards in England thrived during the Medieval Warm Period only a thousand years ago, perished during the Little Ice Age (1350-1850 AD), and haven’t recovered since. Thriving Medieval Alpine villages were destroyed by advancing Little Ice Age glaciers, and are only now reclaiming their lost real estate just before the next Ice Age glaciers return.

Only 15,000 years ago Detroit and Chicago were under a mile of ice, making Detroit only slightly more habitable than now. During the much warmer than present Holocene Climate Optimum of 8,000 years ago, sea level was about 10 feet higher, and as the world has slowly cooled since then, the drop in sea level left many bustling ancient ports high and dry.

So yes, Kevin Trenberth, natural climate change has worsened some extreme climate events, and always has.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Natural and Human Caused Weather Disasters


Magazines and newspapers are filled with editorial comment and cartoons about Superstorm Sandy being the fruit of man-caused global warming. However, Sandy was a tropical storm, not a hurricane. It unfortunately struck at high tide with a full moon, resulting in a much higher storm surge.

Was Sandy proof of man-caused global warming? Even warmist scientist Kevin Trenberth says no. Are strong storms hitting the East Coast unique? Again the answer is no. The 1950’s saw an exceptional number of strong hurricanes hit the East Coast, and 1954 experienced the worst. First Carol, a Category 3 (H3) hurricane at landfall, crossed Long Island and passed through New England into Canada. Then Edna, also H3, struck New England and became the costliest hurricane to ever strike Maine. Finally Hazel, the strongest at H4, killed thousands in Haiti before hitting the Carolinas, and caused heavy damage and flooding all the way through Toronto, Canada.

In 1955 three hurricanes, Connie (H3), Diane (H1), and Ione (H3), hit North Carolina and the mid-Atlantic states. Then in 1958 Helene (H3), and in 1959 Gracie (H3) struck the South’s East Coast. The grand finale occurred in 1960 when Donna hit Florida as an H4, then passed through every East Coast state as an H3. Donna still holds the record for maintaining major hurricane status (H3 or higher) for the longest period of time.

In contrast to the 1950’s, no major hurricane has hit the US since 2005. That’s understandable, since Global Tropical Accumulated Cyclone Energy for the past five years has been at its lowest level in over thirty years.

“Sandy was a human-caused disaster. We build cities on the coast. We don’t adequately protect them. We don’t heed evacuation warnings. That is where the blame lies for this one, not climate change.” (Eric Berger)

Monday, October 22, 2012

Wasted Effort - Abolishing Corporate Personhood


Don Quixote tilting at windmills makes more sense than Measure F “to amend the Constitution to clarify that a corporation is not a person and money is not speech.” In a previous letter I highlighted facts that corporations do not have the rights of persons, only the rights granted other groups of individuals. The Citizens United Supreme Court ruling was in no way based on corporation “personhood.”

However, there is a simpler more basic reason (beyond the fact that Measure F is only advisory) that it is a waste of time. To amend the Constitution requires: in the U.S. Congress, both the House of Representatives and the Senate approve by a two-thirds supermajority vote, a joint resolution amending the Constitution. Amendments so approved are sent directly to the states to be ratified by approval of three-fourths of state legislatures. Passage in the House would require 290 votes, certainly all of which would have to be Democrats, so Democrats need to pick up at least 96 more. In the Senate Democrats would need 14 more now, or 18 or more after this election.

Ratification by 75% of state legislatures is not a slam dunk either, since Republicans effectively control 30 and 38 are needed. Of course, two-thirds of the state legislatures could ask Congress to call a national convention to propose amendments, and then ratifying conventions in three-fourths of the states could approve it. In this scenario California’s Liberal hordes will have the same number of votes as Wyoming: 1.

Since Romney is heavily favored to win the popular vote, the “grassroots-driven movement” to amend the Constitution has already lost whatever traction its supporters thought it had. Measure F is a foolish and futile effort, as delusional as Don Quixote’s “Impossible Dream” without its innocent charm.
 E

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Smug Leadership


The Obama administration contends that there is no evidence that more security would have thwarted the Libyan Consulate attack. However, Senator Dianne Feinstein, a stalwart Democrat and head of the Senate’s Intelligence Committee, said “there is no reason for us to operate an embassy or consulate without adequate protection…” So what is the story here? Isn’t Feinstein’s statement evidence that she thinks more security can thwart attacks?

Obama’s position is eerily reminiscent of Vice President Biden’s debate argument on Iranian nuclear weapons, that there is no evidence that when Iran has enough enriched uranium to build bombs, that they will have the means to make and deliver them. But doesn’t North Korea provide ample evidence that even the most sanctioned nation on Earth can build a nuclear bomb, and that they are well along in the development of a ballistic missile delivery system? Joe Biden should ask Israel, South Korea, and Japan if they share his smug confidence.

Candy Crowley, The Fly in the Debate Ointment


The Town Hall presidential debate moderator, Candy Crowley, inappropriately “fact checked” falsely about President Obama calling the fatal attack on our Benghazi Consulate an act of terrorism. That was news to competent journalists, since the Obama Administration and its spokespersons spent two weeks after the attack flooding news shows with statements that it was a reaction to a crude video, and not terrorism. However, an inept journalist attempted to rescue an inept President, and Obama was grateful even though he knew she was wrong.

Feminists and Candy Crowley got their wish: Ms. Crowley was not a “fly on the wall.” She was a fly in the ointment.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Obama Wants to Lead Us in the Worst Way


Obama's promises to American voters reminds me of the guy who told his girlfriend that he "wanted to make love to her in the worst way," and then he did.

Just like the girlfriend, voters shouldn't give Obama a second chance either.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Corporate Personhood is Not


Last month at the Gualala Municipal Advisory Council (GMAC), I demonstrated that natural climate change has existed for the Earth’s 4.54 billion-year life. GMAC was largely unmoved by the facts, but I considered it my civic duty to update GMAC on this topic of interest. At their last meeting I documented the lack of rapid sea level rise. The 158-year San Francisco tide gauge record shows average sea level rising 3.5 inches per century, about one-quarter of the lowest estimate of global warming alarmists.

However, GMAC was impatient to address other consequential matters, such as supporting the Mendocino County Measure F advisory-only vote to abolish so-called corporate personhood.  I sensed eagerness to endorse Measure F immediately, but GMAC reluctantly placed it on their November agenda.

Measure F is nonsensical political posturing. The Supreme Court Citizens United ruling was not based on corporate personhood, but on First and Fourteenth Amendment individual rights; corporations do not forfeit rights enjoyed by other organizations.

“Corporate personhood is the legal concept that a corporation may sue and be sued in court in the same way as natural persons or unincorporated associations of persons. This doctrine in turn forms the basis for legal recognition that corporations, as groups of people, may hold and exercise certain rights under the common law and the U.S. Constitution. The doctrine does not hold that corporations are ‘people’ in the most common usage of the word, nor does it grant to corporations all of the rights of citizens.”

Corporations can enter into contracts, be taxed and regulated, hire and fire employees, buy and dispose of property, etc., but corporations cannot claim constitutional protections not otherwise available to persons acting as a group.

These inconvenient facts should prevent the irrational Measure F from passing. Unfortunately, facts always lose to uninformed opinions in Mendocino County. 

Fact checking Liberal fact checkers is a full-time job.

A local writer's letter to our local newspaper, the ICO, and Joe Biden’s debate performance provided enough malarkey for a book, let alone an ICO letter. The writer said that only three of 36 green companies, not half, that received stimulus funds had failed. However, Romney only cited the seven funded in 2009 and 2010, four of which have already failed (over half). It’s too early to judge the ones funded in 2011, although eight more have filed for bankruptcy, and the rest seem shaky.

The writer also wrote that Obama didn’t cut Medicare $716 billion, although Medicare actuaries say he did. Without reinstatement, Medicare reimbursement to hospitals and providers will have to be reduced to below the Medicaid rate, meaning that many providers will stop taking Medicare patients.

Also not mentioned was that Romney’s tax cut will be far less than $5 trillion after some deductions are cut or reduced, and he overlooked that Democrats ran Congress after January 4, 2007 and passed budgets that began the trillion dollar deficits that increased federal debt $7.8 trillion, or almost half (47%) of the current $16.5 trillion total.

Biden malarkey included that the Obama administration didn’t know: the late Libyan ambassador wanted more security; that the Republican budget didn’t specify cutting embassy security; al Qaeda hasn’t been “decimated”; taxes would be raised on families and small businesses making less than $1,000,000 per year (and for some under $200,000); Syria is not five times the size of Libya (it’s one-tenth); Obama hasn’t ordered all American troops from Afghanistan by 2014 (30,000 stay); Catholic institutions are forced to cover contraception; and Joe voted for the second Iraq war and war in Afghanistan, and the prescription drug benefit under Medicare Part D.

Joe was a buffoon lying through his smiling teeth.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Where Were You, President Obama?


President Obama's debate points boiled down to "I inherited a mess four years ago, and I'll fix it when I'm reelected."

Mr. President, so what were you doing to earn your pay the past four years?

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Natural Climate Change Ignorance is not Bliss


Knowledge is based on facts and logic, but is overwhelmed by opinions and emotion. The facts of natural climate change are well known: thousands of times climate has been warmer or colder than now naturally. In the 15,000 years since the end of the Ice Age, there have been five warmer periods, each demonstrated by science studies showing tree lines were further north and reached higher elevations than now; isotopes in ice cores showed past levels of atmospheric CO2 compared to corresponding global temperature; analyses of lake and ocean sediments did the same; and geology recorded sea level rise and fall and glacier retreat and advance.

Science establishes one fact clearly: we are living in a moderately warm period, with a historically low level of atmospheric CO2. During the past million years 100,000-year-long ice ages have been interrupted by 20,000-year-long warmer periods. As oceans warmed, CO2 was released into the atmosphere, and as oceans cooled CO2 was reabsorbed. Changes in atmospheric CO2 then, as now, were caused by warming and cooling which preceded the changes, not were caused by CO2 changes. The 400,000-year record of climate change and CO2 levels contained in the Vostok (Antarctic) ice cores clearly demonstrate this pattern.

Those who believe that increased CO2 causes warming, please answer this simple question: what caused past levels of atmospheric CO2 to increase? We know what caused past warming: changes in the Earth’s orbit and its axis. We know the Earth was much warmer 125,000 years ago during the Eemian, when warming increased atmospheric CO2 and melted permafrost, releasing methane from the frozen tundra. Contrary to warmist predictions, there was no runaway warming, and soon we entered another long ice age that only ended 15,000 years ago.

Earth explains natural climate change to the blissfully ignorant.

Ignorance is not bliss.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012


Recently I invited myself to be the skunk at the Gualala Municipal Advisory Council (GMAC) party to rubber stamp GMAC’s support of the Consensus Statement on Climate Change and Coral Reefs. Before going I did what only one GMAC member did: I actually read the Consensus Statement. Not only read it, I prepared a point-by-point rebuttal complete with graphs copied from published peer-reviewed studies, and provided each GMAC member a copy. As far as I could tell, still only one of them has read the Consensus Statement, but this didn’t stop them from approving it 5-1.

The presentation by the advocate of endorsing the Consensus Statement was not only devoid of its actual wording, it was conspicuously devoid of science facts and studies supporting its need. His presentation included erroneous and meaningless statements, such as “Arctic sea ice lowest in 3 million years.” The rebuttal I presented demonstrated that Arctic sea ice was lower in the 1930’s, during the Holocene Climatic Optimum of 8,000 to 5,000 years ago, and during the much-warmer Eemian interglacial of only 125,000 years ago, when sea level was over 20 feet higher than now. Strangely, in a presentation about man-caused global warming, he presented three items only about temperatures this year, which were not only incorrect, but severely limited in geography and time period covered. His chart forecasted a spring El NiƱo, which are commonplace occurrences that were well known and documented long before we began our CO2 obsession.

I also presented a new study showing that increased atmospheric CO2 is a result of natural climate change, and is negligibly affected by burning fossil fuels since only 3% of CO2 discharged into the atmosphere is due to human activities.

Once again, in a Kangaroo Court ruled by emotions, beliefs trumped facts.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Natural Climate Change Deniers


A friend writes that I am a “climate-change denier”, and during a presentation, another friend angrily accused me of denying climate change. I call them “natural climate-change deniers”.

I often speak and write about five periods of natural climate change with warming greater than the present in the past 10,000 years since the end of the Ice Age. Thousands of science studies bear witness that “the only constant in climate is change”. Al Gore of “An Inconvenient Truth”, and Michael Mann of the “Hockey Stick”, both deny proven climate science: five periods in the recent past had natural warming much greater than now. The warmest was the Holocene Climate Optimum, 8,000-5,000 years ago, followed by the Egyptian, Minoan, Roman, and Medieval Warm Periods, each of which was cooler than its predecessor. Current warming is by far the least warm of the six, and seems exceptional only in light of historical climate science ignorance and the fact that it followed the longest and coldest period of the past 8,000 years, the Little Ice Age (1350-1850AD).

Climate records of the past 900,000 years show long glacial periods (ice ages) surrounding shorter interglacial (warm) periods. The previous interglacial was the Eemian, 125,000 years ago, with sea levels 20 feet higher and temperature 5°F warmer. Nature did then what Al Gore says humans are doing now. However, a Global and Planetary Change paper finds that changes in CO2 follow rather than lead global air surface temperature and that "CO2 released from use of fossil fuels have little influence on the observed changes in the amount of atmospheric CO2.”

Among many errors, my computer-literate friend missed that Anthony Watts won both the 2011 and 2012 Best Science, and 2012 Lifetime Achievement, on the Bloggies.

Natural climate-change deniers prefer their beliefs to the facts I present.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Man-Caused Global Warming Myth


Mr. George Bush of The Sea Ranch, natural climate change denier, chose a cartoon as his response to the science studies I include in my letters. From his description, it wasn’t a particularly clever cartoon. It’s amazing how the myth of the ostrich hiding its head in the sand has been around since Pliny the Elder (AD 23-79, who said it was in a bush, not sand), just as the anthropogenic global warming myth persists even after over 15 years of flat global temperatures, no accelerating sea level increase, and numerous reports of previous warmer periods.

NASA, with James Hansen famously leading its climate alarmism, just released a study of warming in the Arctic during the past century. According to a graph published on the NASA Earth Observatory site, Arctic temperatures were warmer in the 1930's than now. In addition, the graph shows the Arctic warmed 1.6C over the 19-year period from 1918-1937 at a rate of 0.84C/decade, 75% faster than the 0.48C/decade from 1980-2000. Between these two warming periods, Arctic temperatures dropped as CO2 increased. Thus, alarmist claims that recent Arctic warming is unprecedented or accelerating are bogus.

At the European Geosciences Union meeting, Authors Steirou and Koutsoyiannis, reported global warming over the past century was only about one-half [0.42°C] of that claimed by the United Nations IPCC [0.7-0.8°C].

A paper in the Palaeogeography, Palaeoclimatology, Palaeoecology journal finds that the Medieval Warming Period “was warmer than the late 20th century by ~1°C.” The paper adds to the peer-reviewed publications of over 1000 scientists in the Medieval Warm Period Project showing that the global Medieval Warming Period was warmer than the current warming period.

I’m pleased Mr. Bush apparently has accepted the debate offer I’ve had open for over three years. It’s about time.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Obama's Impressive Mediocrity - Leadership


Last week a letter in the ICO mentioned that its author had over four decades of researching and writing in the field of leadership. That reminded me that I have over four decades myself of studying, instructing, and experiencing leadership (and followership) in the Air Force, in business, and in community activities.

Interestingly, the President, the object of the letter writer’s admiration, has demonstrated few attributes of effective leadership, not surprising since as a community organizer and junior politician he had minimal experience leading anything. Instead of examples of effective leadership, the writer provided platitudes; instead of leadership objectives she provided wishful outcomes that haven’t been achieved.

When did the President create a more knowledgeable and participatory electorate? Now Democrats complain that people not understanding Obamacare is the reason huge majorities oppose it. Actually, it should be called Pelosicare because Obama’s vision was so cloudy he stepped aside and let her and Harry Reid create this monstrosity.

The President still blames President Bush and Republicans for his ineffectiveness. His motto: “The buck never got here!” Strange, since Democrats controlled Congress for two years before he was elected, and only lost the House and almost the Senate because of his failures in his first two years. Obama’s recent statement that “the private sector is doing fine” shows a leader out of touch with the electorate (the Misery Index is up 2% since he became president).

The economy has stagnated and the economic growth forecast for the year is under 1.5%, with job growth less than population increase. The chance of recession is 50%, up from 20%. These are not praiseworthy accomplishments.

The writer’s assessment of Obama recalls a performance review of a junior officer commended for using “outstanding methods” while not achieving performance objectives. Translation: he failed, but impressed leadership researchers.

Friday, July 13, 2012

How Insurance Really Works - Not Obamacare


I dislike belaboring the obvious, but often the ICO leaves me no choice. In this instance, it’s the “Shared responsibility” editorial about health insurance, particularly: “The way to pay for it, of course, is for everyone to participate, including those who are currently in good health. That’s how insurance works.”

Except that’s not how insurance works.

Alice and I recently purchased our next 15 years of term life insurance just before our 70th birthdays. Our excellent health qualified us for the lowest rates for our age group, but we are now paying three times what we did 15 years ago. If we smoked it would be four to seven times our current rate. A term life insurance rate depends on your state, age, gender, height, weight, health classification, and if you are a smoker or when you stopped smoking. If your state of health is in the lowest of four classes instead of the highest, your premium increases about 40%. The healthy don’t subsidize the unhealthy.

Auto and home insurance are similarly discriminatory.

The argument that everyone, insured or not, will place demands on the taxpayer funded system is specious. The Los Angeles Times reported (Cash discount for health care, May 28, 2012), that it was much cheaper to pay for health services in cash than through many health insurers. For example, a $6,707 CT scan cost an insured person $2,336, but only $1,054 if paid in cash and not claimed on insurance. A $4,423 CT abdominal scan through insurance cost $2,400, but the cash price was $250.

One of my friends in Fort Bragg has paid cash for health care all his life, saving a fortune while never burdening taxpayers. For more about paying your own way and saving money, see Paying Cash for Healthcare.




Friday, July 06, 2012

Ocean "Acidity" Mythology


Since Mr. Hunt continues citing a “30% increase in ocean acidity” caused by a change in pH from 8.2 to 8.1, in the interest of scientific accuracy this error demands correction. The equation for the pH of an aqueous solution is logarithmic and defined as pH = -log[ H+ ] .  There are 14 orders of magnitude that define the pH scale from zero to fourteen units as per this equation, so a lowering of alkalinity of .1 units pH cannot equal a 30% increase in acidity as claimed. It is actually .1/14 or only 0.7%. The natural variation of ocean pH can be up to 5% in either direction, making meaningless a variation plus or minus 0.7%.

Neutral pH is 7.0, so acidification is not appropriate terminology. A reduction in pH from 8.2 to 8.1 is a lowering of alkalinity, not an increase in acidification.

“There has historically been much more CO2 in our atmosphere than exists today. For example, during the Jurassic Period (200 mya), average CO2 concentrations were about 1800 ppm or about 4.7 times higher than today. The highest concentrations of CO2 during all of the Paleozoic Era occurred during the Cambrian Period, nearly 7000 ppm -- about 18 times higher than today.

“The Carboniferous Period and the Ordovician Period were the only geological periods during the Paleozoic Era when global temperatures were as low as they are today. To the consternation of global warming proponents, the Late Ordovician Period was also an Ice Age while at the same time CO2 concentrations then were nearly 12 times higher than today-- 4400 ppm. According to greenhouse theory, Earth should have been exceedingly hot. Instead, global temperatures were no warmer than today.”

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Man-Caused Global Warming Defectors



The cataclysmic climate changers are casting handfuls of mud at the alarmist wall, hoping something will stick. They have just concluded Rio+20, agreed by one and all to have been a colossal failure. Of course they all agreed that “something must be done”, they just couldn’t agree on what to do, when to do it, and by whom.

Compounding the alarmists’ agony is the steady defection from their ranks. The latest was James Lovelock, “Gaia-ist” theorists, now says that global warming has not occurred as he and others, such as Al Gore, thought it would. In his article in The Telegraph,  Fritz Vahrenholt, one of Germany's earliest green energy investors, reports he is not convinced that humanity is causing catastrophic global warming. He was active on the UN climate change panel and found their science was wanting, cobbled together by activist organizations such as Greenpeace and World Wildlife Federation. Vahrenholt found that climate in the past 10,000 years varied greatly naturally, and that recent temperatures and weather are unremarkable in that context.

Front-page articles this week in The Chronicle and Press Democrat predicted sea-level rise of a foot by 2030, and several feet by 2100. However, the San Francisco tide gauge, the longest continuous tide record in the Western Hemisphere (since June 30, 1854), shows a steady increase of eight inches per century. Arena Cove’s record since 1978 shows a sea-level decline of an inch per century. None of the West Coast records show the acceleration necessary to raise sea level a foot in 20 years.

In the age of the internet, it is easy to find peer-reviewed science showing that our severe weather, sea levels, ocean acidity, temperature, and climate change itself are all well within historical norms.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Obama's Disappearing Magic Trick


In August 1980, Washington Post reporter Robert G. Kaiser described the speech in which Jimmy Carter accepted the Democrat’s nomination. I've adapted Kaiser’s report by substituting Obama for Carter to make the 32-year-old report into a prediction of President Obama’s acceptance speech at the Democrat’s convention in early September later this year. The following is what the future holds for Obama:
“In his acceptance speech, President Obama tried to explain why he had not become the sort of leader Barack Obama promised to be in 2008. Not surprisingly, this 2012 Obama sounded much more defensive. Obama’s 2008 acceptance speech contained no negative references to John McCain. it was entirely a positive statement.

“However, about a fourth of this speech was devoted to lambasting the Republicans and Mitt Romney. If the Grand Old Party should win in November, Obama said, ‘I see despair. I see surrender. I see risk.’ He also sees repudiation, of course, which explains his defensiveness. 

“Obama's acceptance speech in 2008 was a magical moment, easily the high point of his political career. Obama spoke eloquently that night in measured cadences with a sure sense of himself and his message.

“There was no magic in this acceptance speech. Instead, a weary convention heard the sounds of slogging from a worried politician who knows he's in deep trouble.” 

End of report.

Jimmy Carter's been delighted with the Obama presidency: he’s no longer the worst president of the past 100 years. Bill is celebrating Hillary’s revenge, too. And I’m just happy to share these glad tidings over two months before they occur. 

I also feel Ron Lowe’s pain (all the way from Nevada City) as he bemoans Republicans “walk(ing) away with all the prizes” - Wisconsin, San Diego, San Jose - while Democrats dither. And the “magic” disappears.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Driving a Nail into Man-Caused Global Warming


To the man with a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. And so it goes with these tree-ring climate reconstructions: no matter what, you get a Hockey Stick, and somehow the Little Ice Age and the Medieval Warm Period (and the Holocene Optimum and Roman Warming) are relegated to climatic mythology.

That's when I seek clarity and open my volumes of Dr. H H Lamb, in particular "Climatic History and the Future." There I find that indeed these climatic periods had global existence; lives prospered where later they were devastated, crops were introduced during warm periods which failed during cold, glaciers retreated, advanced, and retreated again, tree lines and sea levels rose and fell, and all of this in the brief 10,000-year period following the Ice Age.

Worldwide, scientists have examined and documented thousands of studies that illuminate natural climate change. The chronicles of our ancestors, through such means as records of weather, population growth and decline, tax rolls, commodity prices, deserted cities and ports, famine and plague, and in many other ways, show that the flat Hockey Stick shaft does not depict the reality of the climate of the past 1,000 years (or before and beyond), and yet all this is lost in unending debate about the significance of tree-ring sample selection.

And after all this, nothing is settled, and the debate rages on: the tempest in a tea pot. Sound and fury signifying nothing (Lamb was British, so the Shakespeare is a small tribute to British genius). All sides claim victory, but continue the fight as if victory achieved nothing. And that is the reality of this debate. The tree rings left out of the debate speak as much to the problem of climate reconstruction as the ones included. They tell no tale, because they are as incapable of telling one as are the ones selected. But all that is heard is the yammering of the hammering.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Ocean "Acidity" Myth


Since Mr. Hunt repeats the same two limited studies of Atlantic sediments and Oregon oysters in each of his letters, I’ll provide information about the science involved.
The oceans have remained alkaline during the last 540 million years.
Rainwater (pH 5.6) reacts with the most common minerals on Earth (feldspars) to produce clays, which consume acids, then alkali is leached into the oceans (making them salty), silica is redeposited in sediments, which consumes acid and is accelerated by temperature. Sea water has a local and regional variation in pH  (7.8 to 8.3, but ranging from 7 to 9 in Chesapeake Bay). Since pH is a log scale, there is not enough CO2 in fossil fuels to create oceanic acidity because most of the planet’s CO2 is locked up in rocks. 
In the Precambrian, reactions rapidly responded to huge changes in climate (-40°F to +122°F), large sea level changes (+1,968’ to -2,100’) and rapid climate shifts from ‘snowball’ or ‘slushball’ Earth to very hot. About 750 million years ago life started to extract huge amounts of CO2 from the oceans, life expanded and diversified, and this process continues (which is why we have low CO2 today).
The history of CO2 and temperature shows no correlation. Compared to now: CO2 was 15 times higher in the Ordovician-Silurian glaciation (ice age). Both methane and CO2 were higher in the Permian glaciation. CO2 was 5 times higher in the Cretaceous-Jurassic glaciation. 
The atmosphere once had at least 25 times the current CO2 content, and now CO2 is the lowest it has been for billions of years.
Algae blooms fed by sewage runoff cause increased alkalinity in less salty areas of bays, and higher acidity closer to the open ocean, so atmospheric CO2 is not a factor. Someone should tell those Oregon oysters.

Thursday, June 07, 2012

Inventing the Obama Superhero


Mr. Skibbins is “setting the record straight” about Obama inventively. He said: “Under Obama, Americans now enjoy their lowest tax burden since 1958.” In 1958, Deficit Day was April 5; now it’s May 14. Americans must work 134 days to pay this year’s combined 29.2% federal, state, and local tax bill, plus government borrowing that is not reflected in the tax rate. Deficit Day hasn’t been this late since the end of World War II, when it was four days later.

Skibbins: “Obama created a 20% payroll tax cut for small businesses.” This Republican bill is opposed by Democrats and Obama threatened a veto. Giving Obama credit is like giving Custer credit for Little Big Horn.

Skibbins: “Obama fought (unemployment) down from 10 percent to the current 8 percent and it’s still dropping.” Actually, 8.2% and rising, making this the longest period since the Depression with unemployment above 8%. The labor force is 500,000 workers smaller today than it was when Obama took office.  Counting population growth since then, the economy is actually missing 7.7 million workers, who still exist, and who still don’t have jobs. If labor force participation hadn’t dropped, the unemployment rate would be 11%. That’s the Obama way to fight unemployment – get everyone to stop looking.

Actually, an all time record 5.1 million Americans are suffering long term unemployment for 27 weeks or more, nearly double compared to when Obama entered office in January, 2009.

Skibbins: Bush increased the debt by $5 trillion, Obama $1 trillion. True, Bush increased it almost $5 trillion in eight years, but Obama increased it over $5 trillion in three years, aided and abetted by a profligate Democrat Congress.

Finally, Obama was inexperienced when elected, and it shows. Even New York Times staunch liberal columnist Maureen Dowd has noticed: Dreaming of a Superhero?