Tuesday, February 21, 2006


Hot tub sales would have been dismal back in the dinosaur era, when the steaming ocean provided a free alternative. In fact, in some places it was too hot to dip a toe. A new study of ancient sediments and fossils indicates tropical Atlantic water ranged from 91 to 107 degrees Fahrenheit between 100 million and 84 million years ago. The same region today is typically 75 to 82 degrees. Hot tubs get very uncomfortable for most people above about 104 degrees.

"These temperatures are off the charts from what we've seen before," said Karen Bice, a paleoclimatologist at Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution. The atmosphere had more heat-trapping carbon dioxide back then. Bice reported the findings today at the annual meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in St. Louis. The work will be detailed in the journal Paleoceanography. Scientists don't know what might have caused ocean temperatures to get so high. Climate models that consider increases in carbon dioxide can't account for it, Bice said.


Pollute the Bible to Save the Earth

Post lifted from Amy Ridenour

Noting that some Christians now are claiming -- literally -- to speak in the name of Jesus Christ ("In the name of Jesus Christ our Lord, we urge all who read this declaration to join us in this effort") when they make pronouncements on global warming, I thought I would direct blog readers to this excellent paper by Samuel Casey Carter, "What Scriptures Tell Us About Environmental Stewardship."

Some excerpts:
Now that secular liberalism has all but driven orthodox religion out of public life, it should come as no surprise that heterodox spirituality has become the latest battering ram of the left. In a time when the Bible has been expunged from schoolrooms as an icon of Western bigotry, biblical arguments are now oddly on the comeback, recast as a fashionable means of pushing a leftist agenda. What is not to be expected is the degree to which well-meaning Christians have become the spokesmen of these distortions. Embracing the tenets of radical environmentalism without an eye to the manner in which these teachings are fundamentally hostile to Christian tradition, a new brand of Christian is out to save the earth, but in so doing he may well flip his faith upon its head...

...A number of Evangelical organizations have recently risen to prominence by popularizing what they take to be biblical mandates for their activist brand of environmentalism. With names like the Evangelical Environmental Network, the Christian Environmental Association, and the Christian Society of the Green Cross, a whole swarm of seemingly mainstream Protestant organizations conjures support for their activist programs through specious readings of disconnected biblical texts...

...But regardless of anyone's support for the Endangered Species Act, Superfund, or any of the programs initiated by the Environmental Protection Agency, the specific manipulation of biblical passages in order to achieve certain political goals is an abuse that must be met head on. If the Bible says anything about man's sound management of natural resources, it does so only in the setting of man's relationship with God...

...The [Evangelical Environmental Network's Declaration on the Care of Creation] sums up this state of affairs with the odd formulation, "because we have sinned, we have failed in our stewardship of creation." As it turns out, the material world is suffering for man's spiritual deficiencies. Make no mistake about it, this way of talking subordinates religious belief to a materialist view of the world... Throughout the Declaration all of the appeals to scriptural authority are a ruse. All of the pious inflections are a sham. The only concern here is for how the genius of human science will overcome the finite limits of God's creation. Interestingly, one of the chief expressions of that genius are the contraceptive methods necessary to "insure thoughtful procreation."

The reference to extending Christ's healing is particularly telling. In the same way Christ redeemed man, now man has to redeem the Earth. Needless to say, in all of man's saving activity, God is made redundant...

...Earth is not the proper object of man's religious longings. But when a man is taught to care for the Earth with a zeal reserved for the love of God, a few things are sure to be misplaced: God and man, for starters...

...Christian environmentalists have turned the world on its head. In using language reserved for God to show their concern for the Earth, they have only bred contempt for man and made a mockery of real religion. What they have not done is to make the Earth a proper object of worship. It can't be. But more to the point, theirs is not a genuine religious concern. They have simply invoked religious rhetoric to give new urgency to their worldly agenda. Sadly, for those who don't discern this agenda, this manner of speaking will make an idol of the Earth...

...When the Lord God revealed himself to Moses on Mount Sinai, he commanded all of Israel to have no false gods before him. In their fidelity to the Lord God, the people Israel kept the Lord's words in their hearts, on their wrists, before their eyes, and upon their door posts. When later they crossed the Jordan to take possession of the land that the Lord God had given them, they were careful to observe all the statutes and decrees that he had set before them.

Should they ever follow false gods, they would lose the land that the Lord God had given to them for their benefit...
These excerpts do not do the paper justice. Please read it all here.

Environmentalist Sports and How They Harm Us

Post lifted from Amy Ridenour

Alan Caruba of the National Anxiety Center sent along thoughts on a polar bear story.

Unfortunately, it is not a story about cute bears, but dangerous ones -- the environmentalists who are using the current unreformed and unsuccessful Endangered Species Act to bludgeon, sue and spend (with tax dollars) their way into controlling so much of this nation's economy Americans may someday almost start wishing they were in Stalinist Russia (another great leftie experiment gone oh-so-predicably and lethally awry).

Says Alan:
What could possibly be more arrogant than to think that humans should determine which species continues and which goes extinct? Or that humans can, in fact, keep a specie from going extinct?

A news item in the February 20 edition of U.S. News & World Report noted, "Citing concerns over climate change, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service last week began reviewing whether polar bears should be declared a threatened species. If they are, federal regulations would be required to considered the impact on the animals before ruling on such matters as industrial emissions or fuel economy standards."

I submit that is such madness and idiocy that the mere stating of the notion polar bears are going extinct or threatened by the alleged melting of the Arctic is too bizarre for rational people to contemplate. That said, the USFW will dispatch people "to collect data on polar bear population, distribution, the effects of climate change, and threats from development, contaminants, and poaching." Guess who set this nonsense in motion?

If you said the Center for Biological Diversity of Tucson, Arizona, you'd be right. Not exactly a hotbed of polar bear activity, the Center asserts that, "Arctic melting could cause polar bears to become extinct by century's end." "Could" is the key word here.

This is a splendid example of the way the environmental movement is forever cozying up to the federal government to get it to spend your tax dollars on projects of such dubious merit that a school child would dismiss it out of hand. Polar bears going extinct? The whole of the Arctic melting?

The last time I checked, the State of Alaska offered the wandering polar bears some 571,951 square miles, surrounded by 91,316 square miles of water in which to frolic. Alaska is the largest of all the U.S. States. Room enough for plenty of polar bears, scads of caribou, all manner of wildlife, and even the occasional oilrig or two with which to extract millions of barrels of oil from ANWR.

Could it be all the worrying about polar bears has nothing to do with polar bears and everything to do with thwarting the effort to reduce our dependence on the Middle East for the oil we consume? The answer is yes!

Environmentalists whose second greatest sport is playing God and whose first is getting laws passed to deprive people of the use of all public and private property in America, have been playing this game for a very long time. As this is being written, instead of just letting the Endangered Species Act go extinct, Congress is wrestling with ways to continue what is arguably the single worst piece of legislation of the past thirty-two years.

How's this for a record-setting level of incompetence? Since its enactment, the ESA has listed 1,300 species as endangered. Only 34 of these species have made it off the list and, of these, 9 are now extinct, 14 are now judged to have been improperly listed, and 9 have been judged to have "recovered" to be delisted. That's less than one percent!

The real story of the ESA is even worse than this appalling waste of tax dollars and the personnel to run about counting the population of these species. The ESA has been used to destroy the livelihood of thousands who worked for the northwestern timber industry, effecting turning some communities into ghost towns. The U.S. actually imports timber from Canada despite having an abundance of it here. The ESA was used to bludgeon the farmers in Klamath Falls, Oregon, when the water they needed for irrigation was shut off to protect a suckerfish! The examples of how the ESA has been used to deprive Americans of the value and use of their private property are endless.

The United States of America has got to rid itself of the folly of "saving" various species while decimating the lives and livelihood of Americans in the name of some fish or some owl, some wolf or some bear.

Ninety-five percent of all the species that ever called Earth home are extinct. Let's show some care for those that share the Earth, but let's not throw millions at their alleged survival because some environmentalists want to ruin our national economy.

America is not Disneyland where all the animals and fish sing and dance. America is the home to people who farm, who harvest trees, who graze livestock, who do all the hard work of providing us the food and other things we need.
See more of Alan's commentaries on a variety of subjects at the National Anxiety Center

Addicted to Nonsense

Article by Alan Caruba

On February 7, I received an email from the office of the House Minority Leader, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, with a headline that read as follows: Pelosi: "It is Long Past Time to Take Action to Prevent Climate Change."

Referencing "a gripping presentation to House Democrats on global warming" by former Vice President Al Gore, Pelosi's office quotes her as saying "The science is clear. It is long past time to take decisive action to prevent climate change. The energy proposals in the House Democrats' Innovation Agenda, which will move our nation toward energy independence, will also help reduce greenhouse gas emissions. And we must do even more."

This is the politics of nonsense. What is needed is common sense. What do you think the Democrats, the Republicans, and the entire U.S. government can do about preventing climate change? Can the government prevent hurricanes? Tornadoes? Blizzards? The next Ice Age? The obvious answer is no. There is nothing any government on the face of the Earth can do about the climate except perhaps to help those affected by it. And, if hurricanes Katrina and Rita are any indicator, it doesn't do a particularly good job, despite throwing billions at the problem.

Then, too, the science about climate is not "clear." The best climatologists in the world have no really good idea why clouds do what they do. The entire "global warming" theory is based on computer models. Ginned up by the UN's International Panel for Climate Control, they have been revised and revised until it is quite obvious their creators and interpreters haven't a clue whether global warming is anything more than a perfectly normal climate cycle. At best, there is no indication of any dramatic change other than whatever the computers calculate. The data they use is, to be nice about it, limited at best.

What is truly remarkable is the way satellite and other data does a fairly good job predicting the weather in any region of the U.S. about a day or so in advance. If you are counting on the accuracy of a prediction for next week, you might as well just roll dice for an answer.

As for Pelosi's lament over "energy independence", someone better explain to her that we are currently importing slightly more than half of the oil necessary to meet our needs and that it comes from sixty different nations. Given the uncertainty of events in the Middle East, any shock to the system will drive up the price, but blame the Islamofascists for that. Meanwhile, the Democrats in Congress have spent the past twenty-five years preventing access to the development of ANWR's oil reserves.

The buzz in the energy industry is something called "peak oil"; the view that the world will be tapping its last barrels by pick-a-date. Rarely is the activation of new oil fields reported, but there are new fields and there are likely to be more in future. If you trust the naysayers, then buy a bicycle. On at least five occasions in the past, the public has been told that the world was running out of oil.

The good news is that the U.S. has huge reserves of coal that account for half of the electricity generated. (Previous efforts to begin coal gasification were dropped when the price of a barrel of oil hit $10, rendering it financially unfeasible.) We need more nuclear facilities to generate the electricity we need. And, after we have accessed offshore and other known oil fields, we may well begin to extract oil from the vast shale deposits in U.S. western states if it becomes economically feasible.

It is sad to hear the House Minority Leader spouting such nonsense and scary if she really believes what she is saying is true. In fairness, the President, in his State of the Union speech, called for energy independence, saying, "America is addicted to oil." No, we are not "addicted." We are, like all industrial societies, dependent. There's a difference. If our political leaders don't know the difference, if they continue to blather about "global warming" and "energy independence", then we all need to worry that our grandchildren could be back to lighting their homes with whale oil or kerosene. And here's where common sense should kick in. We all need to be more confident that the global energy industry is not going to leave us in the dark.


Many people would like to be kind to others so Leftists exploit that with their nonsense about equality. Most people want a clean, green environment so Greenies exploit that by inventing all sorts of far-fetched threats to the environment. But for both, the real motive is to promote themselves as wiser and better than everyone else, truth regardless.

Global warming has taken the place of Communism as an absurdity that "liberals" will defend to the death regardless of the evidence showing its folly. Evidence never has mattered to real Leftists

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