Unfortunately, some misuse science. Some of their intentions, are far from benevolent. They see science as a mechanism for political power and control. There is great danger from those who would use science for political control over us.

How do they do this? They instill, and then continuously magnify, fear. Fear is the most effective instrument of totalitarian control.

Chet Richards, physicist,


Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Climate Teachers – how do you deal with the fact that there is no evidence that dangerous global warming is occurring?

'...our analysis finds no evidence that dangerous global warming is occurring; nor that human carbon dioxide emissions will cause such warming in future; nor that recent Australian climate-related events lay outside normal climate variability; nor that reducing carbon dioxide emissions will have any discernible impact on future climate.'

That statement above seems clear and explicit enough to be contradicted very easily if the science of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming is truly settled.  But it won't be contradicted because it can't be: there are no observations of temperatures, of storms, of ice, or sea level, etc etc that show cause for alarm over anything extraordinary happening.  [The quote comes from a recently published report,  linked to below, from climate experts in Australia (hat-tip Greenie Watch).]

Given that observations are not there to show dangerous global warming is occurring, what is causing all the fuss?

All we have are computer models programmed to give each additional bit of CO2 a warming contribution at the surface of the Earth, and theory which says that that by itself should produce effects that we would have the greatest difficulty in discerning against the many other sources of variation in the climate system.  

For example, a doubling of CO2 levels might produce no more than 1C increase in the computed global mean temperature, and quite plausibly 0.5C or less.  No cause for alarm there.  In fact, such a modest warming would be overwhelmingly beneficial given what we know of relatively warm spells in the past such as the Medieval Warm Period and the Roman Climate Optimum. 

Now such good news, funnily enough, does not bring with it a need for increased state power, nor more power for the UN, nor more funds for what used to be primarily wildlife conservation or humanitarian organisations, nor more clients for crisis consultancies, nor more platforms for political extremists bent on destruction.

Imagine that!  No starvation caused by using farmland to make fuel  for vehicles instead of food for people, no scary pictures of flooded cities to scare us, no children being told that polar bears will die unless they make their parents turn down the heating, no crippling of industrial development by discouraging conventional power stations around the world, no energy cost increases due to subsidies for renewables and no damaging of the environment to make way for them, make them, and live with them.  And no more jobsworths and consultants going on and on about that bizarre notion, the carbon footprint..

So, given that the actual weather, ice, and sea-level records show nothing extraordinary about the last 50 years or so, and given that the basic theory is for a modest increase in temperatures due to more CO2, where is the problem?

It lies inside those computer models.  They display a positive feedback which amplifies the effect of the CO2 to produce far larger temperature increases.  Far larger than have been observed so far - not least since we have seen no overall increase at all over the last 10 to 15 years, let alone any rising trend in line with model projections.

These models have some practical value in extrapolating from and interpolating amongst observations of existing weather systems over a few days, not least because they can be frequently re-adjusted as new observations come in.  That is weather.  On climate, they have had no practical value whatsoever, and may be so misleading that we'd actually be better off without them.

Even their owners and operators admit they are not fit for predictive purposes, and can only be used to provide illustrations of what might possibly happen under various assumptions.  Illustrations which have failed to reproduce important features of past climates when used retrospectively.  They perform poorly on temperatures, and worse on everything else such as precipitation.  You would not want to bet your shirt button on them, let alone your entire way of life.

But let us go back to Australia, and this recent report (pdf) by Bob Carter, David Evans, Stewart Franks & William Kininmonth published by Quadrant Online.  It is entitled

What's wrong with the science?

They wrote it in respose to some recent reports by government agencies, apparently engaging in a PR campaign to try to increase public alarm over climate.  They write:

Is there any substantive new science in the science agency reports? No.
Is there any merit in the arguments for dangerous warming that are advanced in the reports? No.
Did any mainstream media organisation question the recommendations in the reports in their mainline news reporting? No.
Was there any need for, or purpose served, by the reports? Yes, but only the political one of attempting to give credence to the impending collection of carbon dioxide tax.

They have a government down there whose lies over a carbon tax have been widely exposed, and whose decisions linked to alarmist projections about droughts and rising sea levels have been widely resented for the diversion of resources to build desalination plants and otherwise mismanage water resources.  They have also had green-inspired fiascos over home insulation, and bushfires, both of which also led to tragedies.  A recent election in Queensland saw votes for the party in power plummet very dramatically indeed, and since they seem suicidally committed to the green dogma over climate, they would surely grasp at any PR straws that were presented to them.  

And straw is all they got.  See the report for more details of this, but also for a useful overview of the case against alarm over airborne CO2 as the authors shred, point by point, the shoddy claims being pushed by their government's agencies.  They deal with temperatures, precipitation, sea levels, greenhouse gases, and ocean heat content.  For example, on the last topic, they show this plot:

Note the divergence between models and reality -  a very common leitmotif in climate alarmism.

How do teachers cope with this divergence?  What do you say about the scare stories in the textbooks and websites targeting children about climate change, while news comes in of polar bears and penguins doing very well, of glaciers not disappearing on request, of snows also failing to be a thing of the past, of hurricanes not becoming more frequent or intense, of sea level rises not accelerating, and of the great iceaps and sea ice doing nothing untoward, and of course, of temperatures behaving just exactly as if the additional CO2 of the past 15 years has had no discernible effect on them?

Note added 2nd May 2012: Josh (http://cartoonsbyjosh.com) captures it:

 For some background, see: http://www.bishop-hill.net/blog/2012/5/2/cartoon-the-cartoon-josh-164.html

Tuesday, 17 April 2012

A Child’s Epiphany About Eco-Mania

I wanted to be an eco-nut, just like some of my peers
But everything they told me
Fell down around my ears

They said the world is warming, and that is somehow bad
But when I see what cooling does
More heat would make me glad

They said our fuel is critically low, as you must realise
But all that is clearly based
On many layers of lies

They said more CO2 means more Y, where Y is something scary
Then Mother Nature ups and acts
In ways that are contrary

I used to fret on polar bears, on penguins, and on pack-ice
But now I see how they all thrive
As if my fears were groundless

It’s fracking this and fracking that, will frack us up forever
Our taps will ignite, ground tremors give fright
But reality might differ

My radical chums said religion is wrong, a terrible miasma
But their high priests from computer suites come
And preach their stuff as dogma

Beware the warmth, beware the fire, beware the fuel of fossils
Look at this chart, look at this plot
And tremble ye poor mortals

But I don’t like to shiver, from fear or freezing snow
And as for turning eco-nut
I’ll tell them where to go.

I’ll tell them where to put it, their doom-besotted drivel
I happen to think we humans
Are actually quite special

We deal with things, we find new ways, we add to our great progress
We thrive when challenged but get annoyed
When fed that eco-nonsense

Friday, 13 April 2012

Climate Authorities: they don't need evidence - the debate is over, the science is settled, you must not question them, you are not worthy.


 As showing now on Bishop Hill and on WUWT.

 Greenie Watch compiler J J Ray with a relevant example:
'Warmists normally defend their beliefs by saying "The experts tell us" and speak of "The science" but never mention any actual scientific facts. But surely "The experts" themselves have some facts to put forward? Nope. I reproduce below the full screed put out by none other than "hockeystick" Mann in defense of his position. It too is full of accusations and complaints but references not one scientific fact. He claims that the globe is warming etc. but gives no evidence for that assertion. He can't, of course -- because it isn't. So it's no surprise that he doesn't even give a link to any report that would support his assertions.': http://e360.yale.edu/feature/climate_scientist_michael_mann_fights_back_against_skeptics/2516/

Some alarmist apologists have even argued that the 49 ex-NASA scientists, astronauts, and adminstrators were not qualified to speak out, as they did in their recent letter, about the work of climate alarmists still employed by NASA.  Here is an example in response to a comment on a blogpost: 

'With all due respect, the signers of the letter are not intellectually qualified to critique the work of James Hansen and his colleagues at the NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies, and the rest of the leading climate scientists.'
Of course, if you believe  'the debate is over' and 'the science is settled', then 'you must not question them' is not a big stretch in either moral or intellectual terms.

Three cheers for Josh!  He has their number and no mistake.

Climate Education: why are they lying to our children and terrorising them?

 Herbert London's book 'Why Are They Lying to Our Children' is one I have wanted to post about for a while.  I just came across this article from the Australian site News Weekly of July 2011, and I reproduce an extract from it below.  It gives London's book a prominent mention, and some quotes from it.

The book was published in 1984 (of all years!, Orwell would be horrified at how his book has been used by some alarmists as a manual rather than as a warning).

The Australian writer below observes that 'things have only got worse in terms of Green alarmism' since then.

by Bill Muehlenberg

News Weekly, July 23, 2011
The Greens thrive on alarmist scenarios, hoping to terrorise people — even children — into giving up basic freedoms in the interests of supposedly saving planet earth. They have been doing this for decades now. Indeed, these Chicken Little activists have perfected the art of fear-mongering.

Today it is hyped-up alarmism over global warming. How quickly we forget, however, that a major campaign to convince us that global cooling was underway took place just a few short decades ago. Then there were nuclear winter panic campaigns, world starvation scenarios, and so on.

There are always scary gloom-and-doom scenarios being played out by Green activists who want to terrorise us into their agenda — an agenda which is usually about global governance (as Australian Greens leader Bob Brown reminded us again recently) and the diminution of human freedoms, if not of humans themselves.

I have written before about how many of these radical Green leaders want to cull humans, radically shut down economic growth and turn the West into a stone-age civilisation. Others have documented such social engineering gloom-and-doomism.

In 1984, Herbert London wrote a book entitled, Why Are They Lying To Our Children? In it he looked at how the classroom has become a battleground, as our children are being intimidated and threatened with a lot of Green agitprop.

He began his book in this way: “War, famine, environmental disasters, material shortages, and a declining quality of life — that’s what school children are being taught to expect in their futures. What these grim and mostly inaccurate forecasts are doing to their lives I don’t know for sure. But I do know this: Our children are absorbing excessively negative misinformation.”

It is not just all the gloom and doom that is harming our children. It is what they are not being told which is also so worrying.

London lists important facts left out of the school curriculum, “for example, that the wealthy nations play a constructive role in furthering world economics; that rapid economic growth has changed many non-Western nations from poor to middle-income status; that most resources are more accessible and less costly today than ever before; and that new forms of energy have been created. All these forms of progress are likely to proceed even more effectively in the future.”

In the more than 25 years since London penned those words, things have only got worse in terms of Green alarmism. They are just as anti-free market, anti-growth, anti-business and anti-freedom as ever, and they will latch onto any new scare-mongering pretext to push their agendas.

They really are anti-growth Luddites who want to take us back to a standard of living from which most of us have long ago gratefully escaped. And the developing nations, who want to catch up to the prosperous and free West, are also going to suffer from the Green panic-merchants.

But it is our children I especially fear for. Just as London reported on how our youngsters were being deliberately targeted back in the 1980s, it is the same today, if not worse. Consider a recent headline from a Sydney newspaper: “Australian kids are living in climate of fear”.

The article goes on to say: “Primary school children are being terrified by lessons claiming climate change will bring ‘death, injury and destruction’ to the world unless they take action.'

Emboldening of last sentence by me.  See the original (linked to in title above) for the rest of the article, and for more references.

Note added 16 Novermber 2012
Just seen this blog post from Samizdate which was in response to the above post and which contains some useful observations as well as some comments from others:  http://www.samizdata.net/blog/archives/2012/04/environmentalis_1.html

Thursday, 12 April 2012

Another 'Climate Authority' with a badly blotted copybook: Nature magazine caught campaigning again

How many teachers teach what they teach on climate because their bosses tell them to stick to the curricula?  How many climate curricula creators create what they create because government tells them to?  How many governments insist on what they insist upon on climate because their trusted authorities tell them to?  Authorities such as Nature magazine.

A distinguished climatologist, Dr Pat Michaels, has just published this on WUWT (I added the emboldening at the end):

'This paper marks, in my opinion, the death of credibility for Nature on global warming. The first symptoms showed up in 1996 when they published a paper by Ben Santer and 13 coauthors that was so obviously cherry-picked that it took me and my colleagues about three hours to completely destroy it. Things have gone steadily downhill, from a crazy screamer by Jonathan Patz on mortality from warming that didn’t even bother to examine whether fossil fuels were associated with extended lifespan (they are), to the recent Shakun debacle. But the latest whopper, by Ben Booth and his colleagues at the UK Met Office indeed signals the death of Nature in this field.'

Poor teachers. You are at the delivery end of the chain of intellectual corruption, or at best intellectual incompetence in which publications like Nature play their part.  But let us reserve our greatest pity and compassion for your pupils.

Nature is notorious in enlightened circles for publishing the hockey-stick contrivance by Mann, Bradley, and Hughes in 1998, and a follow-up by Mann in 1999, without following their requirement that authors should make data available on request.  (Further double-dealing by Nature in this area is described in Chapter 5 of Montford's The Hockey Stick Illusion).  The hockey-stick was a contrivance exploited to the full by the IPCC in AR3 a couple of years later.  Now we are a year or two away from AR5, and already authors have been rushing into print with candidate contrivances for similar treatment by the IPCC machine.  The latest is a peculiar (apparently one of the 'our computer says' kind) paper by UK Met Office researchers declaring that an Atlantic Multi-Decadal Oscillation (MDO) whose cycles and surges have been recorded for over 4,000 years in ice-cores, is due to 'dirty pollution and volcanoes' - that word 'dirty' being there presumably to distinguish it from the 'non-dirty' pollution, as the IPCC would see it, of CO2!  Now volcanoes by themselves would not be of any use to the IPCC, but 'dirty pollution'!  What a gift for the PR guys and gals.  No wonder the Met Office issued a press release about it.  No wonder Nature did an editorial around it.  And no wonder that calmer, more independent scientists are looking at it askance.  Another extract from the post by Michaels (emboldening mine):

For instance, Judith Curry had this to say at her blog, “Climate Etc.,”
Color me unconvinced by this paper. I suspect that if this paper had been submitted to J. Geophysical Research or J. Climate, it would have been rejected. In any event, a much more lengthy manuscript would have been submitted with more details, allowing people to more critically assess this. By publishing this, Nature seems to be looking for headlines, rather than promoting good science.
Sic transit another 'authority'!  Or, given the harm that climate alarm campaigners are doing to the world, should I say 'sick'?

Note added 16 April 2012.  A German meteorologist has just expressed his contempt for Nature magazine.  For example 'With climate models one can bring about the end of the world, and at the same time provide a little fun in an otherwise staid science scene. You can get your kicks out of it, generate lots of research funding, and keep the world in suspense through the media. This is what two science teams in the USA have done, and have published their fun-and-games in ‘Nature’, a publication that has long since stopped being a scientific journal and has become a comic book for climate junkies' 
More here: http://notrickszone.com/2012/04/16/veteran-german-meteorologist-nature-journal-a-comic-book-climate-modeling-a-playground/

Note added 18 April 2012.  The investigative journalist Christopher Booker looks with dismay at the collaboration of Nature in climate alarmism over the years: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/comment/columnists/christopherbooker/9204223/In-the-eyes-of-Nature-warming-cant-be-natural.html.  (hat-tip: Climate Science)

Note added 04 May 2012.   The oceanographer Carl Wunsch at Oxford is reported on Bishop Hill as saying 'He seemed faintly disgusted by the lengths to which some climate scientists will go to get published in Nature or Science with the attendant publicity, media appearances and so on.  He sometimes found it difficult to tell which of the Daily Mail and Nature was the peer-reviewed journal and which the tabloid.  Nonetheless, he said, his colleagues  reassure him that just because something appears in Nature doesn't necessarily mean it's wrong.'

Note added 18 June 2012.   More evidence of the moral and intellectual degradation of Nature:
 'Here is an extraordinary example of the depths to which academic journals are willing to go in support of the great green cause.
Count how many times Bain et al use the "d-word" in their paper on attitudes towards AGW - it certainly looks as if the authors intended to generate offence and controversy rather than truth and light. Hilariously, the authors are writing about how to convert people to the green cause!
I think it's pretty interesting that the editors have decided to give their backing to this kind of thing. One almost wonders if they are struggling for readers and need to try to get some attention. Of course it has long been clear that Nature has been so corrupted by greenery as to put a question mark over all of its output. This latest paper is just confirmation of what we already knew.'

Wednesday, 11 April 2012

Intergovernmental Pushers of a CO2 Crisis - the IPCC - in disgrace again over 'profoundly inaccurate' Press Release

You cannot trust the IPCC

How many teachers teach what they teach on climate because their bosses tell them to stick to the curricula?  How many climate curricula creators create what they create because government tells them to?  How many governments insist on what they insist upon on climate because their trusted authorities tell them to?  Authorities such as the IPCC
Evidence mounts but no arrests yet at the IPCC
Donna Laframboise has already exposed severe shortcomings in the IPCC in her book,  The Delinquent Teenager, and now she has published a post highlighting yet more egregious actions which have recently been exposed by Roger Pielke Jr, and an inaction, by that malignant organisation.  Poor teachers. You are at the delivery end of the chain of intellectual corruption that begins in places like the IPCC thanks to a few rogue but influential leaders there.  But let us reserve our greatest pity and compassion for your pupils.

Here is a brief extract from the new post (linked to in the title below):

Disasters and the IPCC 

April 10, 2012 at 3:19 pm

Will a load-of-nonsense IPCC press release be corrected?
A little more than two years ago the UK’s Sunday Times ran a headline that read: UN wrongly linked global warming to natural disasters. (A screenshot may be seen here. The full text of the article is backed up here.)
The very next day, the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) issued a press release. It accused the newspaper of running “a misleading and baseless story” which it further characterized as “a baseless attack” on a section of its 2007 report.'

See the above-linked posts by Donna and Roger for the rest of this story.  In a nutshell:

1. The IPCC lied in that press release three times:
           1.1 It claimed that the relevant 2007 report was accurate when it was demonstrably not
           1.2 It claimed that the IPCC's procedures had been followed when they demonstrably had not
           1.3 It claimed that an unpublished paper said essentially the opposite of what it was found to contain when it was eventually published
2.  The IPCC included, in the 2007 version of its relevant materials (but not in the 2006, nor in the 2008) a graph which seems to have been an invention of IPCC activists and which cannot be found anywhere in the relevant scientific literature.

And the inaction?  The IPCC has not yet apologised, nor retracted the seriously misleading statements.  As Pielke says in his post :

'The IPCC 26 January 2010 press release still sits uncorrected on the IPCC website (here in PDF). If the IPCC has a commitment to getting things right, shouldn't it correct "baseless and misleading" claims that it has made?  '

The harm and loss which the scaremongering over CO2 has already brought to the world is still accumulating and may well do so for many years yet while we wait for politicians to catch up with the reality of what is known about the minor role of this trace gas in the climate system.  They may well wish to direct some of their subsequent anger to the shoddy and rule-breaking way in which the IPCC has been run and directed.  Given the very high stakes involved and the degree of trust accorded it by ill-informed governments, that really does border on the criminal.

Tuesday, 10 April 2012

Experienced Former NASA Employees Unsettled by the Settled Science of Climate Zealotry in NASA

How many teachers teach what they teach on climate because their bosses tell them to stick to the curricula?  How many climate curricula creators create what they create because government tells them to?  How many governments insist on what they insist upon on climate because their trusted authorities tell them to?  Authorities such as  NASA.

Here are some very experienced ex-NASA employees who are clearly pissed-off by the whole silly, unsubstantiated assertions of their former employer.  Poor teachers. You are at the delivery end of the chain of intellectual corruption that begins in places like NASA thanks to a few rogue but influential existing employees there.  But let us reserve our greatest pity and compassion for your pupils.

March 28, 2012
The Honorable Charles Bolden, Jr.
NASA Administrator
NASA Headquarters
Washington, D.C. 20546-0001

Dear Charlie,
We, the undersigned, respectfully request that NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) refrain from including unproven remarks in public releases and websites. We believe the claims by NASA and GISS, that man-made carbon dioxide is having a catastrophic impact on global climate change are not substantiated, especially when considering thousands of years of empirical data. With hundreds of well-known climate scientists and tens of thousands of other scientists publicly declaring their disbelief in the catastrophic forecasts, coming particularly from the GISS leadership, it is clear that the science is NOT settled.
The unbridled advocacy of CO2 being the major cause of climate change is unbecoming of NASA’s history of making an objective assessment of all available scientific data prior to making decisions or public statements.
As former NASA employees, we feel that NASA’s advocacy of an extreme position, prior to a thorough study of the possible overwhelming impact of natural climate drivers is inappropriate. We request that NASA refrain from including unproven and unsupported remarks in its future releases and websites on this subject. At risk is damage to the exemplary reputation of NASA, NASA’s current or former scientists and employees, and even the reputation of science itself.
For additional information regarding the science behind our concern, we recommend that you contact Harrison Schmitt or Walter Cunningham, or others they can recommend to you.
Thank you for considering this request.
(Attached signatures)
CC: Mr. John Grunsfeld, Associate Administrator for Science
CC: Ass Mr. Chris Scolese, Director, Goddard Space Flight Center
Ref: Letter to NASA Administrator Charles Bolden, dated 3-26-12, regarding a request for NASA to refrain from making unsubstantiated claims that human produced CO2 is having a catastrophic impact on climate change.
/s/ Jack Barneburg, Jack – JSC, Space Shuttle Structures, Engineering Directorate, 34 years
/s/ Larry Bell – JSC, Mgr. Crew Systems Div., Engineering Directorate, 32 years
/s/ Dr. Donald Bogard – JSC, Principal Investigator, Science Directorate, 41 years
/s/ Jerry C. Bostick – JSC, Principal Investigator, Science Directorate, 23 years
/s/ Dr. Phillip K. Chapman – JSC, Scientist – astronaut, 5 years
/s/ Michael F. Collins, JSC, Chief, Flight Design and Dynamics Division, MOD, 41 years
/s/ Dr. Kenneth Cox – JSC, Chief Flight Dynamics Div., Engr. Directorate, 40 years
/s/ Walter Cunningham – JSC, Astronaut, Apollo 7, 8 years
/s/ Dr. Donald M. Curry – JSC, Mgr. Shuttle Leading Edge, Thermal Protection Sys., Engr. Dir., 44 years
/s/ Leroy Day – Hdq. Deputy Director, Space Shuttle Program, 19 years
/s/ Dr. Henry P. Decell, Jr. – JSC, Chief, Theory & Analysis Office, 5 years
/s/Charles F. Deiterich – JSC, Mgr., Flight Operations Integration, MOD, 30 years
/s/ Dr. Harold Doiron – JSC, Chairman, Shuttle Pogo Prevention Panel, 16 years
/s/ Charles Duke – JSC, Astronaut, Apollo 16, 10 years
/s/ Anita Gale
/s/ Grace Germany – JSC, Program Analyst, 35 years
/s/ Ed Gibson – JSC, Astronaut Skylab 4, 14 years
/s/ Richard Gordon – JSC, Astronaut, Gemini Xi, Apollo 12, 9 years
/s/ Gerald C. Griffin – JSC, Apollo Flight Director, and Director of Johnson Space Center, 22 years
/s/ Thomas M. Grubbs – JSC, Chief, Aircraft Maintenance and Engineering Branch, 31 years
/s/ Thomas J. Harmon
/s/ David W. Heath – JSC, Reentry Specialist, MOD, 30 years
/s/ Miguel A. Hernandez, Jr. – JSC, Flight crew training and operations, 3 years
/s/ James R. Roundtree – JSC Branch Chief, 26 years
/s/ Enoch Jones – JSC, Mgr. SE&I, Shuttle Program Office, 26 years
/s/ Dr. Joseph Kerwin – JSC, Astronaut, Skylab 2, Director of Space and Life Sciences, 22 years
/s/ Jack Knight – JSC, Chief, Advanced Operations and Development Division, MOD, 40 years
/s/ Dr. Christopher C. Kraft – JSC, Apollo Flight Director and Director of Johnson Space Center, 24 years
/s/ Paul C. Kramer – JSC, Ass.t for Planning Aeroscience and Flight Mechanics Div., Egr. Dir., 34 years
/s/ Alex (Skip) Larsen
/s/ Dr. Lubert Leger – JSC, Ass’t. Chief Materials Division, Engr. Directorate, 30 years
/s/ Dr. Humbolt C. Mandell – JSC, Mgr. Shuttle Program Control and Advance Programs, 40 years
/s/ Donald K. McCutchen – JSC, Project Engineer – Space Shuttle and ISS Program Offices, 33 years
/s/ Thomas L. (Tom) Moser – Hdq. Dep. Assoc. Admin. & Director, Space Station Program, 28 years
/s/ Dr. George Mueller – Hdq., Assoc. Adm., Office of Space Flight, 6 years
/s/ Tom Ohesorge
/s/ James Peacock – JSC, Apollo and Shuttle Program Office, 21 years
/s/ Richard McFarland – JSC, Mgr. Motion Simulators, 28 years
/s/ Joseph E. Rogers – JSC, Chief, Structures and Dynamics Branch, Engr. Directorate,40 years
/s/ Bernard J. Rosenbaum – JSC, Chief Engineer, Propulsion and Power Division, Engr. Dir., 48 years
/s/ Dr. Harrison (Jack) Schmitt – JSC, Astronaut Apollo 17, 10 years
/s/ Gerard C. Shows – JSC, Asst. Manager, Quality Assurance, 30 years
/s/ Kenneth Suit – JSC, Ass’t Mgr., Systems Integration, Space Shuttle, 37 years
/s/ Robert F. Thompson – JSC, Program Manager, Space Shuttle, 44 years/s/ Frank Van Renesselaer – Hdq., Mgr. Shuttle Solid Rocket Boosters, 15 years
/s/ Dr. James Visentine – JSC Materials Branch, Engineering Directorate, 30 years
/s/ Manfred (Dutch) von Ehrenfried – JSC, Flight Controller; Mercury, Gemini & Apollo, MOD, 10 years
/s/ George Weisskopf – JSC, Avionics Systems Division, Engineering Dir., 40 years
/s/ Al Worden – JSC, Astronaut, Apollo 15, 9 years
/s/ Thomas (Tom) Wysmuller – JSC, Meteorologist, 5 years

Source: WUWT
Credit: Bob Ferguson, SPPI

Monday, 9 April 2012

The Environmental Terrorizing of Children

Reproduced here with permission of the author, an article recently published at Canada Free Press by Alan Caruba:

The Environmental Terrorizing of Children

'In many ways, the worst aspect of environmentalism is why Greens not only feel free to terrorize children with doomsday scenarios, but feel compelled to do so.

I have been reviewing books for some fifty years and with the publication of Rachel Carson’s “Silent Spring” in 1962 and books such as Paul Ehrlich’s “Population Bomb” have been offering scenarios intended to move people and governments to take action that, in retrospect, were based on bad “science” and absurd doomsday predictions.

If you were fooled by global warming, they are counting on you to be fooled again by “sustainability”, their reworking of Marx’s communism in the form of a grandiose scheme to control all of the Earth’s bounty. In June the United Nations will hold a Rio+20 conference that will declare that governments exist to ensure “sustainable well-being and happiness.” The Declaration of Independence offers the opportunity to pursue happiness. It does not guarantee it, nor does it suggest that it is government’s job to provide it.

A key element of the Green’s endless indoctrination schemes has been to reach children, the most vulnerable among us and for this reason our schools have been turned into Green prisons where their version of the Earth is pumped into the minds of children here and around the world.

Their primary teaching tool is fear. Fear that the oceans will rise and wipe out entire cities. Fear that the rainforests are disappearing. Fear that entire species are being destroyed by the hand of man. Fear that the use of any kind of fuel, coal, natural gas, and oil is despoiling the planet.

I have reviewed books for some fifty years at this point and I could not put a number on the books for children that hammer home these and other terrifying themes. One crossed my desk the other day, “Our House is Round: A Kid’s Book About Why Protecting Our Earth Matters” by Yolanda Kondonassis and illustrated by Joan Brush. It has been called “the perfect children’s introduction to environmental issues” by Fred Krupp, the president of the Environmental Defense Fund.

The author is not a biologist, a geologist, a meteorologist, or any other kind of scientist. She is a Grammy-nominated classical harpist. A harpist!

Our Earth has gotten messy. What should we do?” she asks her young reader. What does she mean by “messy”? Her answer is that “cars, trucks, and factories make pollution, a kind of dirty gas or liquid that goes out into the air and into our rivers, lakes, and oceans.” This book is written for children age five to nine!

Imagine now what it must be like to be that age and be told that the air is polluted and the water is as well. This verges on child abuse.

Pollution goes up into the sky and forms a blanket of gas that holds heat within Earth’s atmosphere. That makes our whole Earth warmer and leads to unclean air for breathing, melting polar ice caps, rising sea levels, and extreme weather patterns. Scientists call this warming of our Earth’s temperature CLIMATE CHANGE.”

It is a LIE. The Earth has been cooling for fifteen years.

Carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. It is a gas as vital to all life on Earth as oxygen is to the life of living creatures. Without it, not a single blade of grass or tree or the vegetation we call “crops” would not grow. Livestock and wildlife depend on that vegetation. If you are age five to nine, you likely are unaware of this.
This book and all the others that incorporate these lies are a form of psychological terror.

The same week I received “Our House is Round”, I also received “The Big Green Book of the Big Blue Sea” and “Earth-Friendly Buildings, Bridges, and More.” You could stack all the environmentally-themed children’s books I’ve seen and it would reach up several stories.

They are a corruption of geophysical and biological science. They have nothing to do with “saving the planet” and everything to do with distorting children’s understanding of the real world.

It does not matter that the Ms. Kondonassis thinks she is serving humanity. The great lie of communism is that it will create a collectivist utopia. In reality it has always depended on terror to maintain itself and it has failed wherever it has been tried. Environmentalism is its latest permutation.

It is the same reason that communism derides religion for its emphasis on life and morality.

It is the same reason Americans are being subjected to government imposed limitations on energy and transportation, and coerced social change, altering and secularizing our society.

I have devoted my life to freedom of the press, freedom to publish, freedom to speak out, and to urge participation in the life of the greatest nation on Earth, but some books like “Our House Is Round” are the worst kind of mental pollution.

Environmentalism, like all tyrannies, begins by indoctrinating children.'

Editor’s Note: In 1974 Alan Caruba was a founding member of the National Book Critics Circle.

© Alan Caruba, 2012

Environmental scaremongering targeting children is not new.  In 1984, Herbert London published 'Why Are They Lying to Our Children?' about the same issue.  The foreword by Herman Kahn begins as follows:

'War, famine, environmental disasters, material shortages, and a declining quality of life - that's what schoolchildren are being taught to expect in their futures.  What these grim and mostly inaccurate forecasts are doing to their lives I don't know for sure.  ut I do know this.  Our children are absorbing excessively negative misinformation.'

Well, some children born in 1984 are now teaching in classrooms themselves. I dread to think how many of them will welcome books such as those mentioned by Alan Caruba in his hard-hitting article.  It is little wonder that the mass media, for example, have been so supine in the face of environmentalist excesses - it is quite possible that many there actually believe them, and are not merely looking for sales through sensationalism.  Many politicians, locked in an almost closed mutual feedback system with the media, are in the same boat.  What chance have the teachers got to rebel against the misinformation, and what chance have the children got to survive with their minds and spirits unharmed?

Harpist Decides The Children Must be Told: and so another scary climate book for kiddies hits the streets

All sorts of people have been taken up with the great adventure of saving the planet from our CO2.  The idea of a climate crisis has been remarkably productive, providing a stimulating vehicle for politicians intent on more power, insurers intent on more premiums, journalists intent on more readers, scientists intent on more grants, consultants intent on more clients, NGOs intent on more funds and movie-makers intent on more tickets.  And then all sorts of others have found joining-in irresistible, including, presumably, the woman who wrote the book on the left, 'Our House is Round', which is to be re-released on Amazon in the UK later this year.

The book has been read, partly reviewed, and roundly condemned by Alan Caruba:
'The author is not a biologist, a geologist, a meteorologist, or any other kind of scientist. She is a Grammy-nominated classical harpist. A harpist!

“Our Earth has gotten messy. What should we do?” she asks her young reader. What does she mean by “messy”? Her answer is that “cars, trucks, and factories make pollution, a kind of dirty gas or liquid that goes out into the air and into our rivers, lakes, and oceans.” This book is written for children age five to nine! 

Imagine now what it must be like to be that age and be told that the air is polluted and the water is as well. This verges on child abuse.

“Pollution goes up into the sky and forms a blanket of gas that holds heat within Earth’s atmosphere. That makes our whole Earth warmer and leads to unclean air for breathing, melting polar ice caps, rising sea levels, and extreme weather patterns. Scientists call this warming of our Earth’s temperature CLIMATE CHANGE.”

It is a LIE. The Earth has been cooling for fifteen years.

Carbon dioxide is not a pollutant. It is a gas as vital to all life on Earth as oxygen is to the life of living creatures. Without it, not a single blade of grass or tree or the vegetation we call “crops” would not grow. Livestock and wildlife depend on that vegetation. If you are age five to nine, you likely are unaware of this.

This book and all the others that incorporate these lies are a form of psychological terror.'
(hat-tip: Greenie Watch)

The book was published in 2010, and the site promoting it includes an interview with the author, Yolanda Kondonassis, from which I have taken this extract:

'Q: This book is more plain-spoken than most kid’s books about what causes environmental problems. Was that a conscious decsion?
YK: Very conscious. I have a huge amount of respect for the intelligence and capacity of kids. I learned long ago that it’s almost always a mistake to talk down to children. They are refreshingly lacking in agendas so their minds are open in the most productive and observant way. They are also shockingly honest. If something doesn’t make sense, they will usually ask all the right questions and shine a spotlight on the blind spots of adults in about two seconds flat. I love that. Perhaps we should have a kids’ delegation Congress.
Q: In your book, you don’t avoid or tip-toe around the issue of climate change. Tell us about your convictions.
YK: It’s a pretty simple cause and effect equation. The problems facing our earth aren’t simple, but recognizing that we do indeed have problems should be pretty clear. I am big on metaphors so to use another one, I have found that at the beginning of a child’s cold or flu, there is always the temptation for parents to say “it’s allergies,” “he’s overtired,” “she had a long day,” “he’s overheated,” etc. For working parents, a sick child requires scheduling overhaul, missed obligations, and family upheaval. No one wants to admit when these disruptions are imminent. But most moms also know that glassy look in their kids’ eyes that says we’re headed into the sick zone for a few days. Our earth definitely has that glassy-eyed look and we need to admit it so we can get on with solutions. The goal should not be to slow the damage, but to reverse the trends'

Now it is arguable that the earth is far from having that 'glassy-eyed look', but is actually in vigorous good health.  It is not the sickly, vulnerable child that so many alarmed people seemed to suppose, but rather a grizzled, remarkably robust ancient.  As for air quality and water quality,  these have been improving this past century hand-in-hand with industrial progress, and it is the continuation of that progress which holds out greatest hope for further improvements.  The glib 'environmentalism' of such as Kondonassis seems to skip over all that.  Let me finish with a quote from a book which I hope she will read one day if she has not already done so, 'The Rational Optimist' by Matt Ridley:

'The four horsemean of the human apocalypse, which cause the most premature and avoidable deaths in poor countries, are and will be for many years the same: hunger, dirty water, indoor smoke, and malaria, which kill respectively about seven, three, three and two people per minute.  If you want to do your fellow human beings good, spend your effort on combating those so that people can prosper, ready to meet climate challenges as they arrive.  Economists estimate that a dollar spent on mitigating climate change brings ninety cents of benefits compared with $20 benefits per dollar spent on healthcare and $16 per dollar spent on hunger.'

I suspect Ms Kondonassis may not possess this wider perspective.  She, like many other decent well-intentioned people, has probably been scared by the talk of a climate crisis.  And she, like a good many others, has decided to share that scare with children.  Here is how her book presents industrial progress to the very young:

  Negative or what?  And of course, the air and water pollution issues we face are primarily to do with inputs that no-one associates with 'climate change', such as carbon monoxide and sewage, and which have been dramatically reduced in industrialised countries.  Kondonassis' list - whole Earth warmer ... unclean air for breathing, melting polar ice caps, rising sea levels, and extreme weather patterns - is readily Fisked: the slow warming of the past 150 years or so seems independent of CO2 and has recently slowed down despite CO2 levels rising faster than ever, air quality has been improving at least in the developed world, Antarctica - the major icecap is not melting, the slow rate of sea-level rise has become even slower in modern times, and even the IPCC has stopped using extreme weather as a poster-childPerhaps if and when she realises these things, she will stop promoting the facile propaganda of climate alarmism.  If that should allow her more time for playing the harp, the world will become a little better as a result.

Thursday, 5 April 2012

'Trust me' science - is that something teachers could highlight in the classroom when required to propagate alarm over climate change?

North Shore
 Teachers are generally required to stick to curricula, and curricula these days are at risk of containing what is little more than propaganda or conditioning for climate alarmism.  The distribution of 'An Inconvenient Truth' to schools in the UK is an illustration of this.

But a post I was reading today suggests a way in which teachers can at least alert their pupils to intellectual and moral dangers while at the same time sticking to the letter of their climate-related curricula.  The post has a provocative title:

A lot of science is just plain wrong

 It is on a site whose goals I have a great deal of admiration for called Straight Statistics, where they describe themselves as follows: 'We are a campaign established by journalists and statisticians to improve the understanding and use of statistics by government, politicians, companies, advertisers and the mass media. By exposing bad practice and rewarding good, we aim to restore public confidence in statistics.'

Extract from the post (I put it into italics, and added the emboldening):

'Suddenly, everybody’s saying it: the scientific and medical literature is riddled with poor studies, irreproducible results, concealed data and sloppy mistakes.

Since these studies underpin a huge number of government policies, from health to the environment, that’s a serious charge.

Let’s start with Stan Young, Assistant Director of Bioinformatics at the US National Institute of Statistical Sciences. He recently gave evidence to the US Congress Committee on Science, Space and Technology about the quality of science used by the US Environmental Protection Agency.
Some might think, he said, that peer review is enough to assure the quality of the work, but it isn’t. “Peer review only says that the work meets the common standards of the discipline and, on the face of it, the claims are plausible. Scientists doing peer review essentially never ask for data sets and subject the paper to the level of examination that is possible by making data electronically available.”

He called for the EPA to make the data underlying key regulations, such as those on air pollution and mortality, available. Without it, he said, those papers are “trust me” science. Authors of research reports funded by the EPA should provide, at the time of publication, three things: the study protocol, the statistical analysis code, and an electronic copy of the data used in the publication.

Further, he calls for data collection and analysis to be funded separately, since they call for different skills and if data building and analysis are together, there is a natural tendency for authors not to share the data until the last ounce of information is extracted. “It would be better to open up the analysis to multiple teams of scientists.”'

The key is to spot the 'trust me' science. We do need to take a lot on trust, especially in pre-university education where there is neither the time nor necessarily the specialist skills to demonstrate the evidence and the arguments for every assertion.  But when scientific assertions are made which others deploy to produce widespread alarm, and/or to support far-reaching policy decisions, then it would seem obvious that someone somewhere should be able to thoroughly, and independently, check the results and the reasonings.  In fact, the naive observer might suppose that governments would insist upon it under such circumstances.  That did not happen in the area of climate policy.  In direct contradiction to the Nullius in Verba spirit of the original (but not the present) Royal Society, the words of alarmists were taken at face value, not least the Summaries for Policy Makers published by the IPCC.

The flaws of the hockey-stick plot could have been exposed earlier had the methods and the data involved been made available to all.  In fact it took a remarkable amount of determined statistical sleuthing to find the truth, the story of which has been captured for posterity in Andrew Montford's superb book, The Hockey Stick Illusion.  McKittrick and McIntyre's work was inspired by the modest goal of trying to reproduce a dramatic graph which had been pushed through letter-boxes throughout Canada by a government there convinced by the alarming picture it conveyed.  It was phoney.  The government was fooled.  The two part-timers (M&M), not in the climate science field, took several years to overcome the barriers to making that clear.  In the meantime, the huge political impact of this graphic had happened.  The damage was done.

The sorry state of some corners of climate science - those occupied by those most active in steering the IPCC - has been revealed by the release of the ClimateGate materials.  They include this quote by Professor Jones of the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia, a quote subsequently put in a Parliamentary record here by the climatologist, Warwick Hughes, who had requested some data held by Jones, and received this in reply:
"Why should I make the data available to you, when your aim is to try and find something wrong with it."

Jones is clearly of the 'trust me' school of scientific method.  As are any who push the output of complex computer models as 'evidence'.  Mann of the notorious hockey stick plot, was also expecting others to trust him and his co-workers.  We do not have to assign sinister motives to such people in order to be very concerned about this.  We merely have to assign them human fallibility.

So, my tentative suggestion is this.  When you have to display some scary graph projected say tens of years into the future by some hideously complicated software, when you have to refer to unsubstantiated assertions about doomed polar bears, disappearing glaciers, spreading deserts, and so on and on, you can label it 'trust me' science.  And explain perhaps, that our trust should at best be tentative, pending further enquiries.


Tuesday, 3 April 2012

Something for the Climate Classroom Wall: a fine riposte against the scaremongering and negativity of the climate snake oil sales force

Posted on Bishop-Hill, this new work by Josh was inspired by Matt Ridley's excellent book 'The Rational Optimist'.  Imagine the difference in outlook if a book like that rather than the corrupt, misleading, error-strewn, and alarmist propaganda of 'An Inconvenient Truth' had been sent to all schools by those running the Thought-Control (Youth Section) Tendency in the last Labour government?  Inconceivable since bad news and alarmism are what such people thrive on, and are what has allowed a generation of people with the moral fibre of snake-oil salesmen to spread so much fear and deception around climate into our schools.

Well, strike back a little - stick that drawing up on your classroom wall!

Note added later on 3 April: Matt Ridley's post of 21st March gives more details of what inspired Josh's work. WUWT is also carrying the drawing, and someone called Peter S in the comments there is suggesting raising funds to distribute the drawing as a poster to schools.