Archive for May, 2011

Things More Worrisome than AGW: Govt- Driven Class Discrimination

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Source: SPPI

by Dennis Ambler

This, from a “Conservative” led government:

Schools win right to turn away middle class children – Telegraph

“Middle-class children could miss out on the most popular state schools under radical government plans to give priority to pupils from the poorest backgrounds.

As part of a sweeping reform of national admissions rules to be unveiled today, hundreds of academies and free schools will be allowed to select pupils based on family income for the first time.

They will be allowed to discriminate in favour of children who are eligible for free school meals — those whose parents earn £16,000 or less — in an attempt to close the gap between rich and poor.”

Global Warming Promoters’ Unsustainable Accusation Tactic

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Source:  Global Warming.Org

by Russell Cook

GlobalWarming.org’s blog features highly credentialed Competitive Enterprise Institute analysts along with a few others of equal caliber. Why is complete nobody like me here? The importance is not who I am, but instead what I represent:  any run-of-the-mill citizen who sees a massively expensive, unsound decision relying on only half the information available. Any rational person seeing such ill-informed decisions feels a gut level urge to yell, “Stop! Are you crazy? What about these (fill in the blank) problems?!” (more…)

IPCC and More of The Same

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Source:  Reuters

Alister Doyle, Reuter’s Environment Correspondent, May 26, 2011

“The U.N. committee of climate scientists will fix any future errors “within a week or so”, its head said on Wednesday, after coming under fire last year for bungling a forecast of when Himalayan glaciers would thaw.”

“I think we now have a firm procedure by which we are going to deal with errors, or alleged errors,” Rajendra Pachauri told Reuters during a visit to Oslo, referring to a set of reforms agreed at a meeting in Abu Dhabi on May 17.

The panel’s 2007 report, the main guide for governments in fighting climate change, included an incorrect projection that all Himalayan glaciers could vanish by 2035, hundreds of years earlier than scientists’ projections.

Pachauri said that a “failure of communication” had contributed to delaying the correction of the Himalayan melt — a scientist spotted the Himalayan error but his doubts did not reach IPCC leaders.” (more…)

US promotes climate aid to skeptical Congress

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Source:  US promotes climate aid to skeptical Congress

by  Shaun Tandon

“WASHINGTON — The US administration said that assistance to poor countries worst hit by climate change was crucial to US credibility as it struggled to convince a skeptical Congress.

Wealthy economies — namely the United States, Japan and European Union — have promised billions of dollars to poor countries in what has become a key component of a future global treaty on climate change.

Chief US climate negotiator Todd Stern on Wednesday told Congress that such investment was “in our national interest” and quoted a World Bank study saying that every dollar spent on disaster preparedness saved $7 in disaster response. (more…)

Nancy Pelosi’s Giant Carbon Footprint

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Source:  SPPI

A few months ago Judicial Watch, which describes itself as a “a conservative, non-partisan educational foundation, [which] promotes transparency, accountability and integrity in government, politics and the law” summarized the results of its Freedom of Information request for records concerning Nancy Pelosi’s use of Air Force aircraft for her transportation while Speaker of the House.

In addition to reporting that over a two-year period Pelosi’s military travel cost the United States Air Force $2,100,744.59, Judicial Watch also reported that during the period March 2, 2009 through June 7, 2010, “Pelosi used the Air Force aircraft for a total of 85 trips, covering 206,264 miles.”

Considering how much of a problem that Rep. Pelosi (D-Calif.) considers carbon dioxide emissions and climate change to be—recall that she led the effort to push the passage of a cap-and-trade bill through the House of Representatives during the summer of 2009—we thought it be interesting to take a look at what kind of a carbon footprint that sort of travel entailed. (more…)

On IPCC “Reforms”

Friday, May 27th, 2011

Source:  SPPI

by Dennis Ambler

The management aspects had already been examined by Pachauri the previous year and he has now got approval for his proposals plus some more funding. They accepted what they wanted to accept and the issue of grey literature remains a grey area, but they obviously intend to carry on using it, whilst attempting better justification for its use.

The public impression is that the IAC was independent and gave the IPCC a kicking, but it is all smoke and mirors as usual. It will now be more difficult to get IPCC criticisms accepted, because they have been “investigated” and given “recommendations”, just like the CRU scientists.

http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/originals/ipcc_endangered_by_iac_report.pdf

Paul Nurse on Climate Science FOI: A Palpable Arrogance

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

Source:  Bishop Hill

The Guardian has one of those articles with no comments thread, usually a sure sign that they have written something…disputable. The subject is an interview they have done with Sir Paul Nurse about FOI and scientific research. You can probably guess the contents.

Freedom of information laws are being misused to harass scientists and should be re-examined by the government, according to the president of the Royal Society.

Nobel laureate Sir Paul Nurse told the Guardian that some climate scientists were being targeted by organised campaigns of requests for data and other research materials, aimed at intimidating them and slowing down research. He said the behaviour was turning freedom of information laws into a way to intimidate some scientists.

Why does he keep repeating things that are so readily shown to be false? Shall we go through this again? (more…)

Things More Worrisome than AGW: IMF Transfers American Wealth To Foreign Dictators and Socialists

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

Source:   Money Morning

By Martin Hutchinson

Dominique Strauss-Kahn’s forced resignation from the International Monetary Fund – and the search for an IMF successor – is a blessing in disguise. Strauss-Kahn’s term in office saw a vast expansion of the IMF’s activities, a fact often used to praise his tenure.

But a close examination yields a very different picture. Under Strauss-Kahn, who took over as the IMF managing director in September 2007, nearly every intervention has resulted in failure: The IMF allocated capital to places it shouldn’t have allocated capital to, and propped up governments that shouldn’t have been propped up.

The ideal IMF successor to Strauss-Kahn would be Ebenezer Scrooge – as a prelude to closing the institution down altogether.

That’s because the IMF is a waste of money … your money.

To understand why, let’s take a look at what the IMF is, and see how it works. (more…)

The Mercury Scare

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

Source:  Power America

by Don Dears

The threat from mercury is being overly hyped by the EPA in its efforts to demonize and close coal-fired power plants. There are two reasons why the threat is far less than the EPA claims.

First, does mercury cause harm?

As reported by the Wall Street Journal, “The gold standard in mercury research is a University of Rochester study that tracked a group of Seychelles Island children from birth to nine years old. While their mothers ate fish similar to that consumed in the U.S., they ate 10 times as much and had an average of six times as much mercury in their bodies. Yet researchers found no negative effects in their children.”

The alarmists refer to a study of Faroe Island children that has been discredited for not having a statistical correlation of test results and because the mothers consumed other toxins such as DDT. The main cause for high mercury levels in Faroe Island women was whale meat – not a likely source of food in the U.S. (more…)

NAS Panel Backs Manufactured Crisis to Tame Climate Change

Thursday, May 26th, 2011

by Chip Knappenberger

House Energy and Commerce Committee members Henry Waxman (D-Calif.) and Bobby Rush (D-Ill.) have requested a climate-science hearing in light of a just-released report from the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). This report, “America’s Climate Choices,” however, presents no new science.

Instead, as climate scientist Chip Knappenberger explains below, the NAS document lays out a strategy for manufacturing a crisis by exaggerating the climate threat and artificially raising fossil-fuel prices in an effort to compel American’s to emit less greenhouse gases.

Congress has heard all of this before and has been unmoved to pass legislation which will raise the price of living and doing business in America by taxing our primary energies–Editor.

Plentiful and inexpensive fossil fuels are the preferred energy source, whether it be to run your car, heat your home, or generate electricity. Oil, gas, and coal are relatively safe, readily portable, fairly efficient, and relatively energy dense. While fossil fuels perhaps are not the perfect energy source, they do go a long way towards meeting our current needs, and the infrastructure (and know how) is in place to allow for rapid expansion into the future. So, all in all, fossil fuels are pretty darn good now–and as far as the eye can see. (more…)

The Myth of Killer Mercury

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Source: WSJ

[SPPI Note:  Numerous SPPI papers expose the EPA's false mercury claims in considerable detail: http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/mercury/

A concise Mercury Fact Sheet can be downloaded here: http://scienceandpublicpolicy.org/images/stories/papers/originals/mercury_fact_sheet.pdf ]

By WILLIE SOON AND PAUL DRIESSEN

OPINION

Panicking people about fish is no way to protect public health.

The Environmental Protection Agency recently issued 946 pages of new rules requiring that U.S. power plants sharply reduce their (already low) emissions of mercury and other air pollutants. EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson claims that while the regulations will cost electricity producers $10.9 billion annually, they will save 17,000 lives and generate up to $140 billion in health benefits.

There is no factual basis for these assertions. To build its case against mercury, the EPA systematically ignored evidence and clinical studies that contradict its regulatory agenda, which is to punish hydrocarbon use. (more…)

University of Virginia ordered to disclose Michael Mann’s emails

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Source:  Washington Examiner

By: Norman Leahy

Could the long-running fight over former UVA professor Michael Mann’s emails be edging toward resolution? Perhaps. Yesterday, a Prince William county judge ordered the University to comply with a FOIA request from Del. Bob Marshall and the American Tradition Institute. According to the organization’s press release, getting the state-funded school to comply with the FOIA law was a test of both patience and will:

Under FOIA the University was required to produce the documents within five days of its receipt of payment for “accessing, duplicating, supplying or searching” for the documents. Alternatively they could have entered into an agreement with ATI on when they would supply the documents, or they could have gone to court to ask for more time. They did none of the above. Instead they promised to provide some of the documents “shortly” on April 6; then specifically on May 6, 2011; and always stated they would get to the others later on. They did none of this either, so ATI went to court to compel production and compliance with the law. (more…)

Things More Worrisome than AGW: Gun Control

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Source:  Hot Air

Obama: We’re working on gun control “under the radar”

I missed this last week, and so may many who didn’t notice Instapundit’s link to the Greeley Gazette’s post on the White House’s efforts to impose gun control through executive-branch regulatory adventurism.  Jack Minor caught this anecdote buried below the jump on a Washington Post Lifestyle profile of Steve Croley, first published six weeks ago.  Described as “the White House’s point man on gun regulation policy,” the Post includes this rather telling quote from President Obama on the issue of gun control from March: (more…)

That Pesky Apocalypse

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Source:  The Positive Brain

by Michael Adam Ferguson

“Our earth is degenerate in these latter days. There are signs that the world is speedily coming to an end. Bribery and corruption are common.” -writings found on Assyrian clay tablets, circa 2800 BC (Book of Facts by Isaac Asimov)

Latter days? Corruption and degeneration? The frequency and ubiquity of this theme in the social milieu of modern conservative religion would be difficult to overstate. Hence my interest at seeing the same sentiment expressed in the ancient medium of clay writing some 5,000 years ago.

In my own relatively short stint in corporeal existence, I’ve heard a constant, rumbling undertone of world-ending, Jesus-coming, apocalyptic anticipation, with occasional attribution to specific world events–from Soviet communism, to Y2K, to the invasion of Iraq, and most recently to the quirky end times predictions of Harold Camping. [Correction: the judgment day did actually occur on May 21, 2011, as predicted by Harold Camping...it was just invisible.] (more…)

Climategate Documents Confirm Wegman’s Hypothesis

Wednesday, May 25th, 2011

Source: ClimateAudit

Lost in the recent controversy over Said et al 2008 is that the Climategate documents provided conclusive evidence of the hypothesis originally advanced in the Wegman Report about paleoclimate peer review – that members of the Mann “clique” had been “reviewing other members of the same clique”.

In today’s post, I’ll examine the origin of this hypothesis in the Wegman Report, its consideration in Said et al 2008 and how Climategate documents provided the supporting evidence that neither the Wegman Report nor Said et al 2008 had been able to provide.

I won’t attempt to analyze the plagiarism issues today (I will return to this on another occasion), other than to say that some recent literature on the topic attempts to distinguish between degrees of plagiarism e.g. Bouville, Clarke and Loui.

In addition, contrary to recent false claims by USA Today, Said et al 2008 was not “a federally funded study that condemned scientific support for global warming”. It does not mention global warming nor even climate. Nor is Said et al 2008 a “cornerstone” of criticisms of either Mann or IPCC as Joe Romm falsely claimed. For example, it has never been referred to or discussed at Climate Audit even in comments. Nor at any other climate blog, to my knowledge. (Update May 24 – Nor is the “cornerstone” included on PopTech’s list of 900+ “skeptic” papers.) (more…)