Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Now conclusively proven:  James Hansen is a false prophet who  has no idea what he is talking about

The inauguration of Obama's second term seals it

Obama Brings God Into the Climate-Change Fight

More evidence that Warmism is a religion

Climate change and environmental policy have always been on President Obama's agenda. But rarely have they been so central as they were in his inaugural address on Monday, when the environment was the first issue Obama brought up after his full-throated defense of economic fairness.

As usual, and in keeping with the high-minded tone of his speech, there were few policy specifics. (The Washington Post's Brad Plumer has a good rundown of what might be feasible in the president's second term.) What was interesting was how he framed the issue: not just as one of responsibility to future generations, but as one of responsibility to God. Here's what he said:

"We, the people, still believe that our obligations as Americans are not just to ourselves, but to all posterity. We will respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations. Some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science, but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires, and crippling drought, and more powerful storms. The path towards sustainable energy sources will be long and sometimes difficult. But America cannot resist this transition; we must lead it. We cannot cede to other nations the technology that will power new jobs and new industries — we must claim its promise. That is how we will maintain our economic vitality and our national treasure — our forests and waterways; our croplands and snowcapped peaks. That is how we will preserve our planet, commanded to our care by God. That's what will lend meaning to the creed our fathers once declared."

If Obama were just paying lip service to climate change to please his backers on the left—as he has sometimes been accused of doing—the reference to "science" would have been quite sufficient. By bringing in God, he's attempting to reframe the issue as one that transcends not only partisanship but the divide between those who believe in science and those who doubt science but believe in God. Left or right, atheist or creationist—either way, Obama is saying, we've got to do something.


Obama inadvertently got it right

His penchant for vague assertions  betrays him.  Read this excerpt from his speech again:  "Some may still deny the overwhelming judgment of science, but none can avoid the devastating impact of raging fires, and crippling drought, and more powerful storms.'

That is literally true.  None of us can avoid the impact of extreme weather events.  CO2 control won't help.  Nothing will.  The idea of human control over climate is a delusion.

Those with ears of faith will however hear a different message.   They will hear an assertion that "raging fires, and crippling drought, and more powerful storms" have become more common in recent times.  Steve Goddard has the documentation to show that such things were in fact worse in the 19th century.

Aging naturalist doesn't like people

Humans are a plague on the Earth that need to be controlled by limiting population growth, according to Sir David Attenborough.

The television presenter said that humans are threatening their own existence and that of other species by using up the world’s resources.

He said the only way to save the planet from famine and species extinction is to limit human population growth.

“We are a plague on the Earth. It’s coming home to roost over the next 50 years or so. It’s not just climate change; it’s sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde. Either we limit our population growth or the natural world will do it for us, and the natural world is doing it for us right now,” he told the Radio Times.

Sir David, who is a patron of the Optimum Population Trust, has spoken out before about the “frightening explosion in human numbers” and the need for investment in sex education and other voluntary means of limiting population in developing countries.

“We keep putting on programmes about famine in Ethiopia; that’s what’s happening. Too many people there. They can’t support themselves — and it’s not an inhuman thing to say. It’s the case. Until humanity manages to sort itself out and get a coordinated view about the planet it’s going to get worse and worse.”

Sir David, whose landmark series are repeated from Monday on BBC2, starting with Life on Earth, has also spoken out about the change in wildlife documentaries during his lifetime.

The 86-year-old said commentary from presenters like himself are becoming less necessary as camera work is able to tell a story.

“I’m not sure there’s any need for a new Attenborough,” he said. “The more you go on, the less you need people standing between you and the animal and the camera waving their arms about.

“It’s much cheaper to get someone in front of a camera describing animal behaviour than actually showing you [the behaviour]. That takes a much longer time. But the kind of carefully tailored programmes in which you really work at the commentary, you really match pictures to words, is a bit out of fashion now … regarded as old hat.”


The tendency is to believe

And lying Leftists take advantage of that

The National Weather Service called for a moderate snowstorm in the Washingon, D.C. area on Jan. 17.

In the evening leading up to it, I expressed some skepticism as the temperatures were hovering around 45 degrees, and typically for there to be real accumulation on the roadways, there needs to be some subfreezing weather in advance of the snowfall.

However, I was assured by friends that it was going to snow, and the drive home would be miserable, because the government said so.

Thursday morning I awoke and noted that at 7 am, it was still 43 degrees, and expressed my skepticism that we were going to have a major snow event.  Once again, I was assured that the temperature was going to drop precipitously throughout the day, and we were in for it, because the Weather Service had said so.

As I was reflecting on the conversation that occurred with someone who is very conservative politically, I was hit between the eyes with a fundamental challenge facing those who fight for limited government.

Even the most skeptical of big government, believe what the government puts out as data.

If the government says it is going to snow, it is going to snow, no matter what our objective observation might tell us otherwise.

Likewise, if the government tells us that unemployment is getting better, it must be getting better, even if the drop in the unemployment rate is wholly due to people dropping out of the workforce.

And if the government tells us that we had the warmest year in history in 2012, then it must be true, even when we have reason to question it.

Anecdotally, the weather in Washington, D.C. was warm last year, so for people who reside in the puzzle palace that governs our nation, the claim rings true.

But is it?  Maybe not.

Some meteorologists like Brian Sussman, point to changes in how and where data is collected that skew the numbers.

In his book Climategate, Sussman chronicles how concrete jungles that are our nation’s modern cities retain more heat and as a result the temperatures are warmer in those locations than before.

If your temperature data collection points become more urbanized, of course, they should read warmer.  Furthermore, if you disproportionately place your ground temperature sensing stations in more urbanized areas, you can unintentionally create a warming trend.

But climate change by nature is not as simple as a ground temperature reading, and fortunately, we also have satellites which measure temperatures free from the surface vagaries.  If both the satellite data and the ground data match, then you have a headline.

As far as the claim that 2012 was the warmest on history in the continental U.S., the satellite data contradicts the ground data.

In fact, the satellite data shows that the earth’s atmospheric temperatures have been stable over the past decade.  Something even Dr. James Hansen — who served as an adviser to Al Gore on his controversial documentary The Inconvenient Truth — has had to come out and admit: “The five-year mean global temperature has been flat for the last decade, which we interpret as a combination of natural variability and a slow down in the growth rate of net climate forcing.”

Based upon this discrepancy, the question that a thinking person should ask is which data measurement tool is the most subject to outside variables that impact readings rather than giving true data.

Clearly, the ground temperature variables ranging from data collection locations and the surrounding communities increased urbanization as well as the increase in the number of collection locations and the choices for placement of them, provide significant variables making 2012 on ground weather measurements an apples to oranges comparison between the decades of data.

Even Hansen had to include this gem in his recent analysis: “An update through 2012 of our global analysis reveals 2012 as having practically the same temperature as 2011, significantly lower than the maximum reached in 2010.”

While most Americans will just accept the headlines created by the federal government’s declaration of a 2012 heat wave, and the agenda driven global warming pronouncements that followed, sometimes it is good to look behind the data.  Because as Paul Harvey used to say, when you look behind the headlines you learn, “the rest of the story.”


The freezing out of a skeptic

The BBC froze me out because I don't believe in global warming: Outspoken as ever, David Bellamy reveals why you don't see him on TV any more

David Bellamy still has the most wonderful face. He is pink-cheeked and beaming, his nose is impossibly broken and squashed, his eyes are kind, his hair and beard are now white but still lustrous and his vast fleshy ears are bobbing with hearing aids.

‘Come in! Come in! Sit wherever you like, that’s a comfy seat there,’ he booms, waving his hands and pointing with enormous sausage fingers. ‘Rosemary! Can we have some tea, please?

ROOOOSEMARY!’ he roars in the general direction of the kitchen and his wife of 56 years.

‘She’s the love of my life, you know. I adoooore her. We met in Love Lane in Cheam when she was just 17 and I just knew. We used to canoodle on the train together. Ooh, I’m the luckiest man in the world. I married a wonderful woman, I’ve toured the world, I’ve stood on the top of the world, I’ve made more than 400 television programmes and I’ve had one of the most woooonderful lives.....’

Everything about him exudes joy and enthusiasm. He hops from subject to subject like a vast hairy bunny.

So in our first 40 minutes chatting in his cluttered home in the middle of nowhere in County Durham, we cover everything from God (‘It’s important to have something to hang things on’), to his five children, four of whom are adopted (‘Goodness knows how old they all are — you’ll have to ask Rosemary, but we’ve got nine grandchildren and they’re all different colours’).

We take in the Royal Family (‘I worship them — particularly Prince Philip’), his lifelong love of ballet (‘Do you know, I actually wrote a ballet that’s been performed six times?’), his beard (‘I’ve never shaved in my life, never ever’) and his passion for very brief Speedo swimming trunks (‘My children hate them, but I can’t bear anything flapping around my legs’).

He rambles on in that brilliantly distinctive voice, great paws waving, eyes rolling. He turned 80 last week but he is just as he always was — a joy and a treat.

Until, that is, we touch on climate change and the vicious backlash he suffered when, in 2004, and in the face of scientific convention and public opinion, he dismissed man-made global warming as ‘poppycock!’

‘From that moment, I really wasn’t welcome at the BBC. They froze me out, because I don’t believe in global warming. My career dried up. I was thrown out of my own conservation groups and I got spat at in London.

‘And the worst thing that ever happened — I got a letter that said, “David Bellamy is the worst .....”

Oh, what was it? Damn, I’m always forgetting things. Rosemary?!’

‘Are you on about the paedophile thing?’ she says, emerging with tea. ‘Yes! It said: “David Bellamy is a paedophile because he doesn’t believe in global warming and is killing our children.”

‘And it’s just nonsense. For the last 16 years, temperatures have been going down and the carbon dioxide has been going up and the crops have got greener and grow quicker. We’ve done plenty to smash up the planet, but there’s been no global warming caused by man.’

During his heyday as a conservationist and TV personality in the Eighties and Nineties, David was everywhere — peering through palm trees, wading through marshlands and delivering wonderful rambling monologues illustrated with madly windmilling hands.  ‘I never used a script. I didn’t have people sitting in branches for six months to get a shot. I just talked and talked. It was wonderful.’

He made all those TV programmes, wrote more than 45 books, inspired comedian Lenny Henry’s ‘grapple me grapenuts’ catchphrase and starred in a Ribena commercial.

He also had a Top 40 hit with Brontosaurus, Will You Wait For Me? and appeared on Jim’ll Fix It. ‘I didn’t like Savile. He was always telling me I should become a DJ because I’d make a lot more money. And why did he pick his nose like that? He was for ever fiddling with it. Not nice.’

Bellamy also set up endless charities and campaigning groups (he was patron of more than 400 at one time — ‘I helped to start conservation’) and was never afraid to get stuck in (‘I used to play rugby and I’ve always liked a punch-up’), speak his mind  or live with the consequences.

He spent his 50th birthday in prison in Tasmania after blockading the Franklin River in protest against a proposed dam — ‘I had so many letters from all around the world, it was amaaazing!’

And in 1996 he let rip against wind farms (‘because they don’t work’) during one of his regular appearances on Blue Peter: ‘That was the beginning really. From that moment, I was not welcome at the BBC.’

But it was his global warming comments in 2004 that really cut him adrift. The killer blow came when he was dropped by The Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts, of which he was president. ‘I worked with the Wildlife Trusts for 52 years. And when they dropped me, they didn’t even tell me.

They didn’t have the guts. I read about it in the newspapers. Can you believe it? Now they don’t want to be anywhere near me. But what are they doing? The WWF might have saved a few pandas, but what about the forests? What have Greenpeace done?’

‘There are some very strange people out there,’ says Rosemary quietly.

It must have been terribly upsetting, I suggest. ‘Yes. It did upset us terribly,’ she says. ‘But we pretended not to be upset, didn’t we David? The best thing to do was not to talk about it. So we didn’t. It’s been very difficult, because he does feel strongly about things.’

‘I still say it’s poppycock!’ he snorts. ‘If you believe it, fine. But I don’t and there’s thousands like me. David Attenborough used to be one of us on wind farms, but then he changed his mind.’

For years, he and 86-year-old Sir David were peers. Isn’t he just a bit envious that the other David will probably still be churning out award-winning wildlife programmes when he’s 100 while he spends most of his time pottering in his garden, watching Upstairs Downstairs and Dad’s Army box sets and ‘just keeping up with what’s going on’.

‘No, no! You can’t knock him — he’s done a fantastic job of opening people’s eyes, and he has all the gadgets and stuff. But we’re different. He’s a natural history man and I’m a campaigner.

‘And I can’t complain. When I was at the BBC, I could do whatever I wanted. In those days, you could say what you liked. You can’t now.  'The world’s gone bonkers. What about this latest bloody thing — that poor lady who went to court because she wanted to wear a cross? It’s madness.’

It all started at Durham University, where David first studied and later taught botany: ‘Some of my lectures used to go on for hours. In my second year there I thought I should take my students to see a tropical rain forest — I’d never seen one. When I got there the only thing I could name was a cheese plant. So we got a nine-year-old local boy called Boko to tell us all the names and one day he didn’t turn up. He’d died of malnutrition — there was no food. I couldn’t believe it.’

That was the beginning of his environmental campaigning. After the Torrey Canyon oil disaster off the British coast in 1967, Bellamy, who was working on a project in Cornwall, gave a single TV interview on the subject and was spotted as television gold.

Decades of relentless programme-making during every university holiday followed. ‘I only ever filmed in the holidays, so my family could all come with me, which nearly bankrupted me.’

It was quite a family. ‘We were always going to have two children of our own and adopt two, but we lost our first five children before our son Rufus was born — two lived for a day, the others didn’t make it that far and Rufus was in an oxygen tent for six weeks. So we adopted the next four, from all round the world, and they’re wonderful.’

There were also 32 different species of pet, including a crocodile. ‘I bought it back from Australia — you couldn’t do that now.’

Today, David is the first to admit he’s getting old. Physically, he’s in brilliant shape — at 6ft, he’s still an impressive specimen and instantly recognisable. ‘I can’t get on to a train or aeroplane without people coming up and saying: “David  Bellamy! We haven’t seen you on telly — we thought you were dead!”’

But he’s forgetful, is for ever grasping for missing words (which Rosemary patiently supplies), and after years of deafness has recently succumbed to hearing aids.  'Bloody things. But it’s nicer for Rosemary that I’m not yelling all the time.’

Rosemary has always been his ‘pillar’, he says. ‘She deals with everything. For years I didn’t know who my bank manager was. She dealt with all that. And taught full time and brought up five children and bought my clothes. I once had to buy a shirt and tie to get into a club in London and I had no idea how to go about it.’

Does he ever regret his outspokenness and how it might have affected his image and popularity?

‘Absolutely not! Who cares if they’ve put me on the back burner? I can still talk to my flowers, which are all fine and growing amazingly and say, “Thank you very much, David!”’

And with that, we say our farewells. He gives me a warm hairy hug and big wet kiss.

‘I’m the world’s luckiest man — I’ve stood on top of the world and I married a wonderful woman and I’d still die for my country. And the BBC still makes damn good programmes, doesn’t it?’


The usual Greenie exploitation of Australia's Barrier Reef

The GBR has been "threatened" as far back as I remember and I am in my 70th year.  No evidence is needed:  Just a shriek

THE Great Barrier Reef could be stripped of its world heritage status within months if action isn't taken to better protect the natural icon from coal and gas developments, environment groups say.

A coalition of green groups today launched the Fight for the Reef campaign in Canberra, warning state and federal politicians were putting the reef's international reputation at risk.

Last year UNESCO was "sufficiently concerned" enough by proposed developments along the Queensland coast it sent a mission to Australia to investigate, the campaign's director Felicity Wishart said.

It made a number of recommendations to the commonwealth and Queensland governments about how to proceed in the best interests of the reef.

The global heritage body could place the reef - the world's longest coral reef system - on the "world heritage in danger" list if it doesn't receive an adequate response by February.

Ms Wishart said such action would be an international embarrassment that threatened both the reef ecosystem and the $6 billion tourism industry it supports.

"The reef has an international reputation, it is loved globally," she said.

"That's a really alarming international black mark that we could be tracking towards if we don't lift our game."

She said the campaign, formed by the Australian Marine Conservation Society and the World Wildlife Fund, had written to all the major parties in a bid to get the reef on the 2013 election agenda.

At the centre of their concerns are 45 major industrial developments proposed for the coast, including large-scale coal and gas projects that would boost shipping over the reef.

Currently, around 4000 ships make "port calls" through the reef every year, but that number could skyrocket to 7000 if the proposals go ahead unchallenged, the campaign group warns.

The main concern is that the government, which has a "proud track record" of defending the reef, wasn't now taking this issue seriously, Ms Wishart said.

"We're calling on all sides of politics to step up and commit to greater protection for what is the most significant natural icon that Australia has," she said.

"This is something that has to be beyond politics."

The Great Barrier Reef was granted world heritage status in 1981, but has since faced numerous threats from coral bleaching to cyclones, runoff, Crown-of-thorns starfish and commercial activity.




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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