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Sunday, November 28, 2010


Donald Pay

Where have you been for the last ten years? As always the righty think tanks (bankrolled by the fossil fuel industry) have distorted what's being presented to the dumb, ignorant and ideologically biased.

Climate change is no longer in the realm of something that is questionable. It is happening. The science is clear and the only relevant scientific question is how fast climate change is occuring, what effects it will have and what social and economic resources will be impacted.

It's not so hard to figure out that with the science settled, the real issues at the global conferences on global climate change come down to questions of how the world community responds to the current and future impacts and what economic and social changes should be made.

Anyone who doesn't think that de-socializing the costs of fossil fuels wouldn't have economics impacts is stupid. When you have based much of the world's economic system on fossil fuel socialism, getting to a system where all costs and benefits are rationalized through a free market system has economic implications.


The word "Climate" is even being used incorrectly in this context because it involves an average set of conditions regarding temperature, wind, and so forth.

"Change" is more appropriately used as "weather change" because that's what weather does, it CHANGES. It doesn't stay the same. It can't stay the same, and Earth being what it is, a dynamic planet, it WON'T stay the same. To say that we can or should control the climate is laughably absurd.

It amazes me that the leading atmospheric physicist, Dr Lindzen, can testify in front of congress on November 17th, testify to the fact that AGW is not a threat, testify that the IPCC has "cheated" on their work, and not one major news channel, that I know of, picks it up.

"Perhaps we should stop accepting the term, ‘skeptic.’ Skepticism implies doubts about a plausible proposition. Current global warming alarm hardly represents a plausible proposition. Twenty years of repetition and escalation of claims does not make it more plausible. Quite the contrary, the failure to improve the case over 20 years makes the case even less plausible as does the evidence from climategate and other instances of overt cheating."

Donald Pay

I would like to point out that libertarians and conservatives who are not part of or have not been taken in by the fossil fuel industry propaganda apparatus recognize the fact of global climate change, and are struggling to develop a libertarian approach to this crisis.


Stan Gibilisco

I'd like nothing better than to build a "carbon-neutral" house (I have the lot in Wyoming all ready to use for that purpose). Wind turbine, solar panels, electric car, supply at least as much electricity to the grid as I take out, and so forth. At present, I lack the money -- or more properly put, I am too fiscally conservative to take out the loans I would need -- to pay for it all. (The bank will in fact loan me the money.)

One could argue that I'm simply not motivated enough, that maybe fossil fuels need to get more and more and more expensive to finally force me into action. I'd like the free market to provide the "force" if that's what it takes, and not have the government put the screws to me economically. In that event I could well end up burning wood in some remote backwoods Alaska valley, hoping that "they" don't find me. (Burning wood is not exactly a carbon-neutral activity.)

I won't try to debate whether climate change is taking place or not, or whether human activity is largely responsible for such change if it's happening; I won't try deny those who say that every single consequence of any human activity is ultimately bad for the earth. I reckon all that talk is academic because humankind is not long for this world anyway. Endless growth is not sustainable on a finite planet. Even a mathematician can prove that.

larry kurtz

Stan, my off-grid friends, Dave and Susie, just attended a month-long permaculture conference. This guy blows my mind. 34 years old. ip put up a little post hoping he'll add links.


The question is not whether global warming is happening, or whether we caused it, or what we can do about it. Edenhofer lets die Katze out of der Sack. It isn't about the environment at all, but about redistribution of wealth.

Stan Gibilisco

Ken, I share your revulsion toward the perversion of science for any purpose, political or economic. Science should commit itself to truth-seeking alone, and remain agnostic on external matters.

I would like to see the free market resolve the energy/environment issue. However, I doubt that the free market system, left entirely to its own devices, can serve humanity fairly.

Wealth and power tend to accumulate in the hands of a minority, unless the majority takes some collective action to mitigate the effect. Isn't that so? It's almost like some Law Of Socioeconomic Gravitation; left unrestrained, it leads to Dickensian outcomes.

Maybe we'd all be better off if the "Robin Hoods" among us would, like Candidate Obama did with Joe the Plumber, come straight out with their true intent. If their cause is so noble, what have they to hide?

Donald Pay

KB, the resistance to the science of global climate change has been totally based in the continued redistribution of wealth through a socialized system that externalizes costs of production. Unless you are a kowtower to the fossil fuel propaganda effort, I can't understand how anyone who believes in the free market could support the continuation of socialism for the fossil fuel industry.

Externalizations have environmental impacts and they have economic impacts. There is a reason ecology and economy have the same derivation. The science is well-established, and the environmental damage is being done. We all know that, or at least those of us who pay attention and are not corrupted by the fossil fuel industry. To solve it requires a system which doesn't socialize costs that harm the environment.



It's unlikely you'll get a large enough "buy in" by the industrialized and emerging countries, once the public at large realizes it would require large scale self-impoverishment.


Donald says, "The science is well-established, and the environmental damage is being done. We all know that, or at least those of us who pay attention and are not corrupted by the fossil fuel industry."

I pay attention, and am not corrupted by the Fossil Fuel industry, and I would really like to see you attempt to show everybody that the science is well established in favor of Anthropologic Global Climate Change that is causing measuable damage. I do not believe it is possibly to truthfully take that position, and find your comment nothing more than the typical leftist politically motivated half-truth.

larry kurtz

The Industrial Revolution decimated hardwood populations in Europe and the US leaving pine to easily repopulate vast tracts.

150 years ago aspen was the predominant tree species on the Black Hills and the Rocky Mountain Complex. Populus tremuloides, the most widely distributed deciduous tree species on Earth, is critical to the survival of the Black Hills’ unique ecotones. Beaver communities rely on aspen to slow runoff and store water supplies. Paha Sapa ("hills that are black" may have been a reference to burnt timber instead of the accepted, "seen from a distance") hasn’t been a natural forest since 1859 when a nearly Hills-wide fire (possibly set by humans hoping to clear pine), opened grazing for distinct historic ungulates. Aspen shoots are favorite browse for elk and bison. Brown and Sieg have noted at least 77 instances of human-induced wildfire on the pre-settlement Hills.

The Forest Service manages about 1.25 million acres in the Hills, most of the other 5.5 million acres of the Black Hills hydrologic region are privately held lands whose owners largely blame forest failures on Federal or State mismanagement. Ponderosa pine draws water from deep sources in ore-bearing formations and transpires both water vapor and heavy metal oxides downwind, aspen stores more surface water. Pine needles absorb heat and shed snowmelt, aspen leaves reflect sunlight in summer and hold snowpacks.

Now multiply this history times a million watersheds.

Half of the mercury released into the Earth's biosphere has been through human activity, multiply that by the other symbols on the Periodic Table.

Carry on.



"It is likely that the mid-1700s drought
opened up stands via both direct mortality and possibly
drought-related outbreaks of bark beetles, which then provided
abundant opportunities for trees to establish during the
climatically optimal late 1700s pluvial (Brown, 2003). It is
possible that broad-scale even-aged forest structure in Black
Hills ponderosa pine forests has little if anything to do with
variations in fire severity causing widespread mortality, but
rather relate to climate variations that contributed to episodic
and broad-scale recruitment opportunities (Brown, 2003)."


This occured before the industrial revolution and settlement. Why would you be so quick to blame human influence?

larry kurtz

Also, from the Rocky Mountain Research Station: "Aspen could disappear from the North American continent by 2090." http://www.fs.fed.us/rmrs/aspen/

The Chesapeake Bay estuary had been denuded of native hardwoods by 1900: http://www.chesapeakebay.net/history.htm

Because greed is a human sin.

Bill Fleming

For Jimi:

There is abundant evidence that human beings can have a severe impact on ecosystems, Jimi.

Are you arguing instead that they can't and don't? If so why?


Donald Pay

Jimi quotes a few lines out of an interesting study that looks at fire and climate as interacting to provide the forest mosaic in the Black Hills. The sorts of climatic changes the study describes are (1) a drought that lasted 10 or so years in the mid1700s and (2) a subsequent 40 year wetter period in which fires were much less severe and common (thus leading to a broad-scale even aged forest). In fact this pattern seems to have been general across much of the West. This is a natural climatic cycle leading to fairly broad impact on the environment. Now, place on top of what a natural climatic cycle a pretty substantial change in climate caused by global warming, and you see why scientists are saying that the impacts could be very devastating.


Bill says, "Are you arguing instead that they can't and don't? If so why?"

No....but the securatization of freedom through our founding documents is not a suicide pact. Of course humans should be good stewards of the planet, and the Untied States is not the world leader in that area, but has been asked to do more than their fair share in comparison to the standards set by the rest of the world. This exposes a political agenda focused on the attack of Capitalism, but not a real fear of destroying the ecosystems of the planet.


Donald says, "Now, place on top of what a natural climatic cycle a pretty substantial change in climate caused by global warming, and you see why scientists are saying that the impacts could be very devastating."

The problem here is that scientists now refer to Global Climate Change, because the we are in a cooling trend not a warming trend, and have been for quite awhile. If the premise is that humans contribution outside of ground and water pollution is CO2 output, which caused greehouse gas warming, then all you believers have a serious problem to figure out, before the rest of us are going to get too excited.

Bill Fleming

"but has been asked to do more than their fair share in comparison to the standards set by the rest of the world"

What does that mean, Jimi? Are we not the world's primary energy consumers? And should we not lead by example?

And please... please... give us a break on how everybody just wants to pick on the poor helpless capitalists. Please.

larry kurtz

So, Jimi, you seem to be acknowledging that the TEA movement is really an enabling celebration of consumption entitled by enscribed dogma, where?

larry kurtz




This comment is asking what exactly?

"So, Jimi, you seem to be acknowledging that the TEA movement is really an enabling celebration of consumption entitled by enscribed dogma, where?"

I do not have my translation manual handy!

larry kurtz

Where is it inscribed that Koch Industries has a right to pollute outside the bounds of government?http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/08/30/100830fa_fact_mayer?printable=true

And where is it inscribed that Americans have a right to be obese at the expense of the world's resources?

It is my view that Ken writes as an advocate of American Exceptionalism and that you are defending his argument. No?

larry kurtz

Here is more on my premise that Americans are entitled, spoiled brats: http://www.thenation.com/blog/156770/if-you%E2%80%99re-fat-it%E2%80%99s-obama%E2%80%99s-fault



Just because the article makes the claim that Koch Industries is the nations largest polluters does not mean that it is somehow "out of bounds." The Untied States is not the world largest polluter, and already is the worlds leader in environmental regulation at the expense of our own economy and prosperity.

If you haven't noticed the United States has been keen on preserving it's own resourses, while it "buys" majority of what it needs outside it's borders. It displays how Americas economy drives the world market, and securatizes the wealth of many nations. Americans have just as might right to be obese as the rest of the world has the right to sell us their resources to be obese. The idea of globalization was to spread the wealth of the Industrial Nations, and that is done with the purchase and trade of resources. There is no question that the global community looks to America when there is time of need, and America has never turned her back.

The Leftist anti-Capitalist philosophy that somehow America is the problem in this "Global Community" is a lie, and it's all based a ploy to rob Americas "Sweat Capital" because the Bleeding Hearts of the world want to play Robin Hood, and are allied with the elites of the world who manipulate the debate in search of absolute power.

larry kurtz

Courtesy of Cory at Madville Times: http://motherjones.com/politics/2010/11/tea-party-food-safety-modernization-act

larry kurtz

I missed your "Untied" States spoonerism. Nice touch.

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