Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Philosophers psychologize climate skeptics

Well, I am a much-published psychologist so let me psychologize the philosophers. If there is "overwhelming evidence" of warming, how come they don't mention any? The latest HADCRUT data (if they know what that is) shows NO warming over the last 16 years. They just assume what they have to prove. Very poor logic, if logic it is.

They clearly don't know what they are talking about. Psychologically they are "deniers" of the facts and dependents on authority: Both are infantile disorders.

There are some facts given in the header to this blog that they might like to consider -- if considering facts is really within their capabilities

And they are obvious scientific ignoramuses anyway. They speak of "pouring carbon into the air". They clearly don't know the vast difference between carbon and carbon dioxide. Let me give them a grade-school type lesson on the matter: Carbon is little gritty bits of black stuff and CO2 is the air you breathe out. That's not precise but it's probably all that their tiny intellects can handle

I have reproduced the whole of their article below so you can see how devoid of information it is. It is just an exercise in hate-speech.

It actually reminds me of psychopathic speech -- and it may be just that. Psychopathic speech sounds sane and reasonable until you check it against the facts. I have a couple of published academic journal articles on psychopathy so I may know a bit about the subject

By Michael P. Nelson and Kathleen Dean Moore of OSU

According to the Yale Project on Climate Change Communication, 14 percent of Americans deny that climate change is occurring. Because it persists in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, such denial might best be understood as an act of will, loyalty or something worse. Is there any logic to this? Actually, there is.

Consider the logic by which people reach policy decisions. Any argument reaching a conclusion about what we ought to do will have two premises. The first premise lays out the implications of scientific research: Unchecked anthropogenic climate change will profoundly harm the chances of future generations, undermining the necessary conditions for human life and liberty. The second premise lays out the values at stake, a culture's collective moral wisdom about what is just and good: It's wrong to violate human rights, condemning all future people to struggle and misery. When you combine these facts and these values, the conclusion is inescapable: We are obligated to act quickly to avert anthropogenic climate change.

If deniers want to reject the conclusion of a valid argument -- which is exactly what they want to do -- they have only two strategies. They could, of course, shrug off the moral principles. "Violating basic human rights of billions of people, present and future? Fine with me." But no one would use this strategy; that would reveal a moral monstrosity or sociopathology of cosmic proportions.

What's left? The only alternative is to deny the facts of the matter, undermining or profoundly misunderstanding the science. To endlessly, mindlessly quibble over the reality of melting sea ice only makes one, at worst, stubborn or stupid; to quibble over whether we should or should not massively violate human rights makes one dangerously immoral. It's an easy strategy decision: Go after the facts. Thus, millions of dollars are poured into attacks on climate science and scientists by those deeply invested in preventing society from drawing any conclusions that might block the unimaginably profitable activity of pouring carbon into the air.

We can learn from this. First, we should not write off climate-change denial as yet more evidence of scientific illiteracy or declining faith in science. That's not what's going on here.

Second, we should realize there's no point in debating the science. There probably is no science, no level of certainty or consensus that will change the denier's mind. That's a smoke screen, a black hole of effort to keep the rest of us busy. The deniers will reject the conclusion of any argument for meaningful climate action, and their professed rejection of the science is merely a means to that end.

There are undoubtedly many hapless people deluded by attacks on climate science. But those who launch the attacks are not deceiving themselves; they know better. For them, climate change denial is not a matter of ignorance or mistake or delusion, but a strategic decision. What they really must believe, but cannot say, is that greed and limitless profit trump the human rights of all future generations.

These are the beliefs requiring a full-blown public debate. Do we have obligations to future generations? Do we have obligations to rescue children in danger? Do we have an obligation to respect human rights? And above all, what are the limits to the values we would sacrifice and the moral principles we would violate in order to make a killing on investments in gas and oil?


“Let’s All Spread Hate Against The Skeptics” – Alarmists’ Panic Confirms Stark Fear Of The Skeptic Invasion

Today I present to you the latest wonderful example of tolerance and open-mindedness from fundamentalist warmist site klimabedwetter.de here in green nutsy Germany.

Nowadays it’s hard to tell what the alarmists are more petrified of: the global climate catastrophe or the skeptic invasion in Europe. They are angry and panicked that the skeptics have succeeded in getting the public in Europe to question the dubious climate science.

It helps to recall that the klimaretter website is run by devout climate catastrophe alarmists who absolutely can’t live without the imminent threat of the end of the world. Don’t take my word for it, all you have to do is read their site. Of course, you may ask how anyone could possibly get so psychologically obsessed with and insistent about the end of the world? I’m afraid you’ll have to ask a psychiatrist that question.

You can be pretty sure that when December 21 passes many of the disappointed Mayan calender kooks are going to be hitching their wagons to the next best thing: the coming global climate catastrophe. But don’t try to tell them that it’s just another hoax. Good news on climate is like holy water to the devil.

I witnessed this first hand at a press conference when a klimabedwetter went into emotional seizures when Fritz Vahrenholt and Sebastian L√ľning introduced their book Die kalte Sonne telling us that there wasn’t going to be a climate catastrophe after all. “Sorry – now go home and do something worthwhile for a living.” That good news was simply too much for the warmists in the audience to take.

So without further ado, here’s the latest spread-the-hate piece by klimabedwetter.de. It’s about the drive-by journalism hit on skeptics by weekly Die Zeit:
The unscrupulous schemes used by certain circles of business and politics to manipulate public opinion on climate change and renewable energies are revealed by a report by Die Zeit: “The Climate Warriors”. It exposes the crusade of these ideologically blinded deniers in horrifying detail. It is really shocking how professional PR strategists, with the help of lots of money and self-anointed climate experts, are hounding renowned scientists. It is of great worry that these well-paid ‘experts’ have in the meantime gotten gotten attention in Europen. Their crude claims have not only been picked up by the major dailies and talk shows, but also by the German parliament.

It is essential for us all to take a stand against these demagogues and to publicly denounce their unscrupulous schemes.

Die Zeit performed an exemplary service here. I really would like to see more of such detailed researched articles.”

What does this tell us about the warmists in Germany? Gandhi says it the best in a nutshell: First they ignore you, then they ridicule you, then they fight you, and then you win.

The skeptics in Europe have made it to step 3 in almost record time. I suspect step 4 will the accomplished even more quickly.


America's hurricane drought continues

The graph above provides an update to data on the remarkable ongoing US "intense hurricane drought." When the Atlantic hurricane season starts next June 1, it will have been 2,777 days since the last time an intense (that is a Category 3, 4 or 5) hurricane made landfall along the US coast (Wilma in 2005). Such a prolonged period without an intense hurricane landfall has not been observed since 1900.

Some thoughts:

Even with hurricane Sandy and its wide impacts, things will indeed get worse. The US coastlines as a whole have actually been very lucky with respect to hurricanes since 2005, with aggregate damage (even including aggressive estimates for Sandy) 2006-2012 falling at or below the historical average. Sandy made landfall as a post-tropical cyclone of hurricane strength -- a phenomena that has only been documented 3 times since 1900 (1904, 1924, 1925 -- later this week I'll have a post on Sandy damage estimates).

The long-term intense hurricane drought means that a mere "regression to the mean" will see more hurricane landfalls and considerably higher damage in the years to come. The fashionable talk these days of a "new normal" is of course utter bullsh*t. Just wait until we return to the "old normal" -- I know that it may be hard to believe, but both hurricane damage and climate hype are set to increase dramatically in the years to come.


Climate change stand-off sparks concern

A stand-off over how many billions of dollars wealthy countries should stump up to help poorer nations cope with climate change over the next three years is prompting concern that fresh UN climate negotiations may be headed for collapse.

The talks in the Qatari capital of Doha are entering their final five days. But they risk collapse, according to some negotiators, unless developed countries formally agree to pledge as much as $60bn in fresh funding by 2015.

If the negotiators fail to reach an agreement in Doha, some say it could unravel the fragile accord wrung out at the last minute at last year’s UN talks in Durban, South Africa, to finalise a new global climate pact by 2015 that would enter force by 2020.
Such warnings are often seen as negotiating stances rather than real threats at this stage of the annual two-week climate talks. But some veteran negotiators said they were unsure if the Qatari hosts of this year’s talks were doing enough to pull negotiators together to iron out a compromise.

Others said developing countries’ funding calls should not be dismissed. “These are not idle threats, these are serious demands,” said Tim Gore of Oxfam, an experienced observer of the UN talks. “Developing countries are determined this year they won’t leave without knowing that finance levels will go up and not down from 2013.”

Wealthy countries agreed at the 2009 UN climate talks in Copenhagen that they would mobilise $100bn a year by 2020 to help poor countries reduce their greenhouse gas emissions and adapt to the impacts of climate change. To prove it, they agreed to put up $30bn over the three years from 2010 to 2012 in what was known as “fast start finance”.

Some studies suggest countries have kept their word on this initial batch of funding. But poorer countries, especially island states most vulnerable to being swamped by rising sea levels, are worried money will start dwindling from next year, rather than getting scaled up to meet the $100bn-a-year pledge by 2020.

A negotiating group of developing countries known as the G77 and China want the Doha meeting to formally agree that industrialised countries produce extra funds totalling $60bn by 2015 to keep financing on track.

Getting some agreement at Doha was a “make or break” issue, according to negotiators from the Alliance of Small Island States, while Pakistan warned the failure to decide on a financing road map could risk the collapse of the talks.

The US and other wealthy countries have assured poorer nations they should not be concerned funding will suddenly dwindle, and it was well understood the need for extra money was enormous. However, these countries argue there is no need for a formal decision on scaling up funding to be made at this year’s talks.


There’s No Chance USA Signing Up To Climate Deal

US climate change negotiator Jonathan Pershing says there is no chance of the USA signing up to a climate deal that requires the country to make substantial cuts in its emissions.

The Times of India has obtained a transcript from a closed meeting with NGOs Pershing attended in Doha on Wednesday evening, where he outlined the USA’s ‘red lines’ when it comes to negotiations on a 2015 climate treaty.

In particular he takes issue with proposals for atmospheric quantities of CO2 to be ‘equitably’ divided among the world’s states, arguing that it would leave the US having to commit economic suicide.

“It’s a vision you can say that the atmosphere can take an X quantity of coal emissions and therefore what you do is you divide that number into percentage,” he said.

“The obligation it states is that you (the US) would have to reduce its emissions down to negative 37% (below 1990 levels).

“And the obligation of China will be a tiny bit, but India can still grow quite a lot. The politics of that quite frankly really don’t work. I can’t really sell that to the US Congress.

“One way to think about it is what you could deliver. You say what you are going to do and you will be held to that. So how do you marry the reality of what you are doing with the reality of what is needed. To me, it’s going to be a hybrid. It’s going to be something between those two.

“If we can’t take it home and sell it at home, in whatever political economy we are living in, we won’t do it.”

While the comments come as little surprise to observers who have followed the USA for many years, they do emphasise the challenge that negotiators will face as they dig into the detail of a 2015 binding agreement.

US President Barack Obama has already said he will only take actions that will boost US jobs: “if the message is somehow we’re going to ignore jobs and growth simply to address climate change, I don’t think anybody’s going to go for that. I won’t go for that,” he said.


Bummer: CO2 emitted in Topeka allegedly threatens "gross national happiness" in Bhutan?

Bhutan measures prosperity by gauging its citizens' happiness levels, not the GDP. Now its ideas are attracting interest at the UN climate change conference in Doha....

As world leaders prepare to meet in Doha on Monday for the second week of the UN climate change conference, Bhutan's stark warning that the rest of the world is on an environmental and economical suicide path is starting to gain traction. Last year the UN adopted Bhutan's call for a holistic approach to development, a move endorsed by 68 countries. A UN panel is now considering ways that Bhutan's GNH model can be replicated across the globe....

Despite its focus on national wellbeing, Bhutan faces huge challenges. It remains one of the poorest nations on the planet. A quarter of its 800,000 people survive on less than $1.25 a day, and 70% live without electricity. It is struggling with a rise in violent crime, a growing gang culture and the pressures of rises in both population and global food prices.

It also faces an increasingly uncertain future. Bhutan's representatives at the Doha climate talks are warning that its gross national happiness model could crumble in the face of increasing environmental and social pressures and climatic change....

In Paro, an agricultural region one hour out of the capital, Dawa Tshering explains how the weather is already causing him problems. The 53-year-old farmer grew up in Paro, surrounded by mountains and streams, but has found it increasingly difficult to work his two acres of rice paddy.

"The weather has changed a lot: there is no snow in winter, the rains come at the wrong times and our plants get ruined. There are violent storms," he says. Around 70% of Bhutan's people are smallholder farmers like Tshering.

Photographer Jean-Baptiste Lopez travelled to the remote and isolated kingdom of Bhutan in pursuit of happiness, a concept the Bhutanese value above all else – and one which is putting this tiny Buddhist state in the spotlight at the UN climate change conference in Doha

The first four episodes of the MTV series made scant mention of the difficult economic and social conditions of the countries visited. Bhutan, a country that received particular praise from Diaz for its environmental policies, has one of the highest infant mortality rates (103 infant deaths per 1,000 live births) and lowest life expectancies (54 years) in the world.

By comparison, the United States, which Diaz described as having too much "convenience," has an infant mortality rate of only 6.6 per 1000 and an average life expectancy of more than 77 years.




Preserving the graphics: Graphics hotlinked to this site sometimes have only a short life and if I host graphics with blogspot, the graphics sometimes get shrunk down to illegibility. From January 2011 on, therefore, I have posted a monthly copy of everything on this blog to a separate site where I can host text and graphics together -- which should make the graphics available even if they are no longer coming up on this site. See here and here


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