Wednesday, October 07, 2009

Thomas Friedman Bombs Out on Global Warming

According to: Our Three Bombs, By THOMAS L. FRIEDMAN, Published: October 6, 2009, The New York Times:

As we continue to build up carbon in the atmosphere to unprecedented levels, we never know when the next emitted carbon molecule will tip over some ecosystem and trigger a nonlinear climate event — like melting the Siberian tundra and releasing all of its methane, or drying up the Amazon or melting all the sea ice in the North Pole in summer. And when one ecosystem collapses, it can trigger npredictable changes in others that could alter our whole world.

The misuse of “unprecedented” by anthropogenic global warming enthusiasts, such as the literate Thomas L. Friedman, the polemicist Al Gore, and many other college educated liberals is unprecedented. So much so that I consulted a dictionary to ascertain whether its meaning had changed, or whether there was a nuance that allowed its seeming perversion. There wasn’t. “Unprecedented” still means what I thought: without previous instance; never before known or experienced; unexampled or unparalleled.

For the current level of carbon in the atmosphere to be unprecedented, it simply means that the current level was never before achieved – or surpassed. Five hundred million years ago atmospheric carbon dioxide was twenty times today’s level. Does that qualify as a previous instance? About 150 million years ago, during the Jurassic Period, it was four to five times as high. Does that qualify as something known before or experienced?

Apparently what should alarm us is not the build up of carbon in the atmosphere, which is obviously not unprecedented, but that it will “tip over some ecosystem and trigger a nonlinear climate event.” Perhaps as happened 10.000 years ago during the Holocene Climate Optimum, when average global temperatures were about 4ÂșC higher than today? Except nothing was tipped to melt the Siberian tundra and release all its methane, the Amazon didn’t dry up, and although all the sea ice at the North Pole melted in the summer, nothing catastrophic ensued.

All that happened is that human civilization prospered and thrived in the warmer, wetter environment. The same thing happened during subsequent warm periods following cold periods in cycles of hundreds of years up to the present. The Roman Warming was good for humanity; the following Dark Age wasn’t. Then about 1200 years ago the Medieval Warm Period began, and mankind again prospered for five hundred years until the Little Ice Age began about 1300 AD. Crops failed, famine stalked the land, glaciers advanced over farms and villages, mighty storms spread devastation, droughts (which are more frequent and last longer during cold periods) added to the misery, and disease and pestilence cut weakened populaces in half.

Happily, the Little Ice Ages ended and our Modern Warming began naturally, just as would be expected, given that similar cycles are not unprecedented.

Tuesday, October 06, 2009

San Francisco Tilts Towards Mass Hysteria

San Francisco may think it is on the cutting edge concerning urban wind farms (San Francisco tilts towards wind power, September 29, 2009), but the idea has long been tried and found wanting in Great Britain. The following critiques of urban wind power were all gleaned from the writings of wind power enthusiasts.

The first problem with urban wind turbines is the urban environment; buildings and other structures cause turbulence which reduces wind speed and causes it to swirl. The only rooftop wind turbines suited to a swirling wind are vertical axis (“eggbeater”) turbines, which are severely limited in size and are subject to frequent – and very expensive – gearbox failure.

Roof mounted wind turbines also are very noisy and produce heavy – and very annoying – vibrations. In an urban setting they may pay off on their investment in twenty years if they’re maintenance free, and none are. In urban settings small windmills usually don’t even pay back their carbon investment and are more likely to be net consumers of electricity than producers, since the inverter uses electricity when the turbine is not generating.

To operate efficiently, the larger the wind turbine the better, necessitating tall towers and long blades which are not appropriate in an urban setting. Manufacturers recommend that even small wind turbines be mounted on 80- to 120-foot towers to clear turbulence since nothing is generated until wind speed exceeds the cut-in rate of 7 to 10 mph. Such towers are unsuitable for installation on most rooftops.

San Francisco’s 44-member urban wind power task force producing a report recommending urban wind power is an illustration of how anthropogenic global warming inspires mass hysteria.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

I Hate White Guys' Health Care Plans

I must confess that I oppose all the health care reform plans that white guys have come up with for over forty years. It all started with LBJ, who gave us a plan which is not only already bankrupt, but which will bankrupt generations not yet born until it is mercifully euthanized. Then Jimmy Carter proposed a health care reform, but he had things so screwed up that America pulled the plug on him and turned the mess over to Ronald Reagan to clean up.

I have to thank Bill and Hillary Clinton for their attempt at health care reform. It was so awful than it brought us the Republican takeover in 1994, which lasted until the Republicans forgot why the American people voted for them to replace the feckless Democrats.

Al Gore had a plan, and John Kerry too, which the voters spared us from suffering.

Now another white guy has a plan, and I now know, thanks to the media, what motivates me to oppose it: racism.

That's right.

All along I thought I didn't like dumb Democrat health care plans, but thanks to the media I see the light.

It was racism all along.

LBJ, Jimmy, Bill and Hillary, Gore, Kerry, Obama - what's the common link?

That's right, they're white!

And I don't like their health care plans because I'm racist.

Of course!