|Source: Continuous Improvement Associates|
Exchanges on this article that follow: ______________________________
Exchanges on this article that follow:
It responds to David Pico's portion of Point/Counterpoint: Was President Trump right to withdraw from the Paris climate accord? By: Dave Gardner and David Pico, The Gazette, 6/10/17.
Mr. Andy Pico (on the Utilities Board & City Council) took my presentation as being a "personal attack". Those who hold his misguided views on this issue have attempted to make it "politically incorrect" to call them "deniers" instead of "skeptics".
It is not a "personal attack" to address
Mr. Andy Pico characterized my presentation as being a "personal attack". He is certainly free to take it that way, but I attack statements and views addressed in his son's commentary, not him personally.
Mr. Andy Pico seems to view City Council and Utilities Board meetings to be "safe spaces" from criticism of his views.
They are not.
The fact is that we are all ignorant on some things ... no, on a lot of things ... no, on the vast majority of things. I sure am. Calling out the ignorance of views in the media that detrimentally affect public policy, maintaining there's a imperative for the city to proactively address Global Warming's Existential Threat to Life on Earth, is not a "personal attack".
As I understand it, one is not allowed to ask questions of Utilities Board members in these meetings and expect a response; they are, ostensibly, there to only listen to the views of customers. Yet, Mr. Andy Pico used his position to make statements to which I was given no opportunity to respond.
Mr. Andy Pico made a statement to the effect that those who understand the threat do not have the courage to debate the issue. It appears he wants to be invited to falsely promote doubt about the reality of the threat. He stated that "thousands of scientists refute global warming". That is propaganda designed to obfuscate the threat:
Not All Climatologists, snopes.com
Claim: 30,000 scientists have signed a petition arguing that there is no convincing scientific evidence for anthropogenic climate change.
Rating: Mostly False
More than 30,000 people may have signed a petition challenging the veracity of anthropogenic global warming, but you don't have to be a climate scientist, or even a practicing scientist, to sign that document.
Aside from the potential political motivations behind the petition, the misleading tactics employed to gather signatures, and the lack of verification regarding those signatures, the fact remains that the petition is open to anyone with an undergraduate background in science to sign, and a vast majority of the signatories are not climate scientists.
While some of those who deny the problem are true believers in the magic of the "invisible hand" to solve all problems, many are paid to do that: Climate Denialism’s Star Scientist Exposed, Paid $1.2M By Oil Companies To Deliver Friendly Results, 2/22/15. The New York Times summarizes the findings. Scientists, with extensive political connections, are paid to deny well-established scientific knowledge, mislead the public, and sow doubt.
So-called "conservatives" are so afraid of the term, Global Warming, that "conservative" strategist, Frank Luntz, in a controversial memo advising "conservative" politicians on communicating about the environment, advised changing the term from 'global warming' to 'climate change', because the former seems too threatening and the latter more normal. The fact is that both terms apply: Global Warming Brings Climate Change.
The time for "debate" is over! There is, of course, uncertainty around modeling of temperatures, past and present. But the Physics of the System is as settled as fully as Gravitational physics is settled ... as I explain in The Physics of Global Warming. The fundamentals of both are sound even though there are aspects yet to be "settled".
Note, I am not a "climate scientist"; I am a physicist. The physics of the climate system is the ground on which I stand. The physics is not that complicated. This is profoundly different from typical arguments, pro and con, about Global Warming that get lost in details.
I've been fortunate in my life to obtain a Ph.D. in physics and an MBA; I've also had the opportunity to study and learn about many issues from the systems thinking/system dynamics perspective, including business/organizational dynamics, economics, the "invisible hand" theory of economics, "free market" failures, and specific issues like Global Warming.
Denial of the reality Global Warming, denying its Existential Threat to Life on Earth, and false aspersions on the science, painting it as a "power grab" to install "one-world socialist government", will not go unrebutted.
The Picos also do not understand that there's more than one kind of "socialism." The lesser-known kind is that so-called "free market" theory allows the redistribution of costs of pollution, injury, sickness and death onto the public at large to increase profits. That "freedom" to impose costs on others is the "free" in "free market". That "cost redistribution" is the other kind of "socialism" that's an integral aspect of "free market" capitalism ... socializing costs, privatizing profits. So-called "free market" capitalism is the "other kind of socialism."
Several studies have shown that people who correctly perceive the scientific consensus on human-caused global warming are more likely to support government action to curb greenhouse gas emissions. This was shown in McCright et al. (2013), published in the Journal Climatic Change: people will defer to the judgment of experts, and they trust climate scientists on the subject of global warming.
However, research has also shown that the public is misinformed on the climate consensus.
For example, there's an enormous "consensus gap" between the public's perception of how much agreement there is among scientists that humans are causing global warming (red distribution), compared to the actual 97% consensus among scientists publishing in the peer-reviewed literature (green line) in the image below. Less than half of Americans thought that scientists agreed that humans were causing global warming.
One contributor to this misperception is false balance in the media, particularly in the US, where most climate stories are "balanced" with a "skeptic" perspective. However, this results in making the 3% seem much larger, like 50%. In trying to achieve "balance", the media has actually created a very unbalanced perception of reality. As a result, people believe scientists are still split about what's causing global warming, and therefore there is not nearly enough public support or motivation to solve the problem.
The Picos both deny the threat and, of course, oppose doing anything about it. That is a threat.
Of course, you are deniers, not "skeptics". That is an utterly dishonest characterization of those who deny the reality of the threat of Global Warming.
I similarly characterize the one-quarter of Americans who think the sun revolves around the earth to be "deniers." Both beliefs are equally absurd. You have no right to force the use of the deceitful term, skeptics, which in your view is "politically correct."
Deniers have also pushed the use of the term, climate change, instead of "global warming." So-called "conservatives" are so afraid of the term, Global Warming, that "conservative" strategist, Frank Luntz, in a controversial memo advising "conservative" politicians on communicating about the environment, advised changing the term from 'global warming' to 'climate change', because the former seems too threatening and the latter more normal. The fact is that both terms apply: Global Warming Brings Climate Change.
I attacked your ideas, not you personally as a "personal attack." But as I wrote, you're obviously free to take it any way you wish.
Your son's article is the opposite of factual; it is nothing but propaganda and contains obvious economic falsehoods as I explain in my post on my website.
The time for debate is over. But, if you have the guts to refute the physics, I'd love to hear it.
See The Physics of Global Warming, which contains a link to Cloudy Skies: Assessing Public Understanding of Global Warming by John D. Sterman and Linda Booth Sweeney, System Dynamics Review, 18(2) 2002. John D. Sterman is the Standish Professor of Management and Director of the System Dynamics Group at the MIT Sloan School of Management.
The threat of Global Warming to Life on Earth is totally pertinent to the Utility Board making policy about its use of coal and natural gas. Asserting that the Utility Board Meeting is not the appropriate venue to raise Global Warming as an issue is an obvious attempt to silence opposition to the use of fossil fuels. Obviously, my presentation silenced no one.
Do put my money where my mouth is? Instead of a new vehicle, I installed solar panels on my roof in 2011; see the interactive site. In 2016 I produced 84% more electric power than I used.
Not even most of the Thermaphobes advocate all that.
Your mischaracterization of an article in a liberal magazine as "conservative" is absurd.
The shift to "climate change" instead of "global warming" was a Thermaphobic strategy shift as the average global temperature has not changed in almost 20 years. That is a documented fact that even the more scientifically literate Thermaphobic doctoral scientists have admitted. (We have their emails).
The term "denier" is an intentional and deliberate insult which is intended to deny discussion and silence the freedom of speech and resorted to by those who have neither the intellectual courage or academic integrity to allow a discussion. It is the 21st century version of book-burning and McCarthyism rolled together.
You had your time to speak and will have again. So do I and so does my son and so does everyone else who believes in Freedom.
It's clear you've well-absorbed the propaganda. Your comments clearly show that.
Sections in this response
OMG, I included a link to a portion of a memo produced by Frank Luntz that I found at the (OMG, "liberal") Mother Jones site. Regardless of where I found it, it's by Frank Luntz.
Frank Luntz is a "Republican Party strategist, communication consultant, and political pollster" "best known for developing talking points and other messaging for various Republican causes."
In order that you need not sully your browser with such a link, here it is from Page 142 of "The environment: a cleaner, safer, healthier America" by Luntz Research Companies - Straight Talk, 2003, that I downloaded from this site. Here are the leaked photocopied pages. See p. 142 for Luntz' advice:
"Climate change" is less frightening than "global warming." As one focus group participant noted, climate change "sounds like you're going from Pittsburgh to Fort Lauderdale." While global warming has catastrophic connotations attached to it, climate change suggests a more controllable and less emotional challenge.
George Lakoff points out the objective of this obfuscation: Why it Matters How We Frame the Environment.
Luntz' memo was the beginning of the use of "climate change." The idea was that "climate" had a nice connotation -- more swaying palm trees and less flooded-out coastal cities. "Change" left out any human cause of the change. Climate just changed. No one to blame.
Currently, Republican deniers in government are again attempting to change the terminology! From Global Warming to Climate Change to Weather Extremes. Talk about denial and suppression of facts ...
USDA office told to use ‘weather extremes' instead of 'climate change' BY DEVIN HENRY, The Hill, 08/07/17
Officials at a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) office told staffers to avoid the term "climate change" in their communications and use language like "weather extremes" instead, The Guardian reported Monday.
According to emails obtained by The Guardian, officials told staffers in the USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to change the way they discuss climate change in their work.
According to the office, climate change would become "weather extremes." Climate change adaptation should instead be "resilience to weather," and efforts to "reduce greenhouse gases" should instead be deemed as ways to "build soil organic matter, increase nutrient use efficiency." ...
It is not clear whether the NRCS's use of "weather extremes" instead of climate change is part of a broader shift within the USDA. An official said the directive was designed to allow the office to continue its climate change work while presenting it in a way that would better resonate with the new administration and the agricultural interests with which it works. ...
There have been other signs of a shift from climate change within the administration.
The Environmental Protection Agency in April removed the climate change page from its website, and the White House also deleted its page dedicated to the U.S.'s work on climate change. [emphasis added]
Trump does not believe in the scientific consensus behind man-made climate change, and his administration has taken steps to move away from its messaging on the subject.
As far as "freedom of speech", I haven't noticed anyone shutting down deniers' ability to spread doubt about the clear science. So-called "conservatives" (on the irony) are very active in spreading their misinformation to shift from "global warming" to "climate change" to "weather extremes."
But please, have the "intellectual courage", to explain why the physics, as I have described and in the papers I reference, is wrong. But no, those like you obfuscate by nitpicking at details you do not understand ... as I explain below about the "We have their emails".
Freedom is not simply about "individual freedom", it's also about being free from system failure.
Libertarians and "conservatives" have no idea what "freedom" even means. They have the typical "conservative" mentality that government is bad and that trying to do anything about the problems inherent in "free market" theory capitalism will just make things worse. It's a knee-jerk mantra about government.
That's exactly the 16th century thinking of Niccolo Machiavelli. He wrote:
When a problem arises either from
Niccolo Machiavelli, The Discourses, 1519
Sterman's paper on "Learning in and about Complex Systems" is a must-read for those who wish to even begin to understand the difficulty we have dealing with the behaviors of economic systems. See Sterman's reaction to Machiavelli's assertion at Government Dysfunction: it's now the 21st century and we know how to do better.
Freedom seems a simple concept, but there are different and opposing views of freedom. For some time I've realized that, if people are to be truly free, it's necessary to have a broader view of freedom. True freedom is about more than the ability to take action; it's more accurately about the ability to take effective action.
Unless we understand the structures creating the behaviors we observe, we don't understand reality and are helpless. We are in effect prisoners, "prisoners of our own thinking."
When the system fails, many individuals fail through no fault of their own. Individuals are "free" in a limited sense, but not free to be effective.
A major focus, in both business and in government, must be to create systems that don't set people up to fail, but instead systems that make it easier for individuals to succeed.
This Gardening Analogy conveys another view (from Freedom? Liberal vs. Conservative):
A man was walking by a church parish one day and saw a priest tending the garden beside it. He remarked to the priest what a beautiful garden he and God had created. The priest stood back and looked around, saying, "You know, you're right; it is beautiful. But you should have seen it when God had it all to Himself."
Find versions of this story on the internet.
This is what it means to "promote the general Welfare".
True freedom is about the ability to take effective action. Libertarians and economic conservatives would rather have someone who wants to exit a room be free to run into walls than be truly free and able to find the door.
You wrote: "average global temperature has not changed in almost 20 years. That is a documented fact that even the more scientifically literate Thermaphobic doctoral scientists have admitted. (We have their emails)."
Of course global temperature has changed. Saying otherwise is total nonsense and serious denial. See the graph and what NASA says.
Regarding: "We have their emails." Deniers, who don't understand the science, treat the term 'adjusted' as being a synonym for 'fudged.'
The propaganda by those like Congressman Lamar Smith (R-Tex.) and Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tex.), who are well-compensated by way of campaign donations (bribes) to spread doubt, reveals their profound ignorance and willingness to lie. The well-funded propaganda they spread is paid for by fossil fuel industries, as I documented earlier in this exchange.
The irony of these attacks is that the adjustments being questioned actually have the net effect of showing a slight reduction in the amount of long-term warming that the world has experienced.
Thorough, not thoroughly fabricated: The truth about global temperature data by SCOTT K. JOHNSON, Ars Technica - 1/21/2016
"In June, NOAA employees altered temperature data to get politically correct results."
At least, that's what Congressman Lamar Smith (R-Tex.) alleged in a Washington Post letter to the editor last November. The op-ed was part of Smith's months-long campaign against NOAA climate scientists. Specifically, Smith was unhappy after an update to NOAA's global surface temperature dataset slightly increased the short-term warming trend since 1998. And being a man of action, Smith proceeded to give an anti-climate change stump speech at the Heartland Institute conference, request access to NOAA's data (which was already publicly available), and subpoena NOAA scientists for their e-mails.
Smith isn't the only politician who questions NOAA's results and integrity. During a recent hearing of the Senate Subcommittee on Space, Science, and Competitiveness, Senator Ted Cruz (R-Tex.) leveled similar accusations against the entire scientific endeavor of tracking Earth's temperature.
"I would note if you systematically add, adjust the numbers upwards for more recent temperatures, wouldn't that, by definition, produce a dataset that proves your global warming theory is correct? And the more you add, the more warming you can find, and you don't have to actually bother looking at what the thermometer says, you just add whatever number you want."
There are entire blogs dedicated to uncovering the conspiracy to alter the globe's temperature. The premise is as follows -- through supposed "adjustments," nefarious scientists manipulate raw temperature measurements to create (or at least inflate) the warming trend. People who subscribe to such theories argue that the raw data is the true measurement; they treat the term "adjusted" like a synonym for "fudged."
Peter Thorne, a scientist at Maynooth University in Ireland who has worked with all sorts of global temperature datasets over his career, disagrees. "Find me a scientist who's involved in making measurements who says the original measurements are perfect, as are. It doesn't exist," he told Ars. "It's beyond a doubt that we have to-have to-do some analysis. We can't just take the data as a given."
Speaking of data, the latest datasets are in and 2015 is (as expected) officially the hottest year on record. It's the first year to hit 1°C above levels of the late 1800s. And to upend the inevitable backlash that news will receive (*spoiler alert*), using all the raw data without performing any analysis would actually produce the appearance of more warming since the start of records in the late 1800s.
So how do scientists build datasets that track the temperature of the entire globe? That story is defined by problems. On land, our data comes from weather stations, and there's a reason they are called weather stations rather than climate stations. They were built, operated, and maintained only to monitor daily weather, not to track gradual trends over decades. Lots of changes that can muck up the long-term record, like moving the weather station or swapping out its instruments, were made without hesitation in the past. Such actions simply didn't matter for weather measurements.
The impacts of those changes are mixed in with the climate signal you're after. And knowing that, it's hard to argue that you shouldn't work to remove the non-climatic factors. In fact, removing these sorts of background influences is a common task in science. As an incredibly simple example, chemists subtract the mass of the dish when measuring out material. For a more complicated one, we can look at water levels in groundwater wells. Automatic measurements are frequently collected using a pressure sensor suspended below the water level. Because the sensor feels changes in atmospheric pressure as well as water level, a second device near the top of the well just measures atmospheric pressure so daily weather changes can be subtracted out.
If you don't make these sorts of adjustments, you'd simply be stuck using a record you know is wrong.
[... the article is long and goes on to explain the adjustments.]
Scientists aren't inventing global warming through adjustments. They're just being thorough.
More on the lies ...
Explainer: How data adjustments affect global temperature records by ZEKE HAUSFATHER, Carbon Brief, 7/19/17
Over the past two centuries, the times of day, locations and methods of measuring temperature have all changed dramatically. For example, where once researchers lowered buckets over the side of ships to collect water for measuring, we now have a global network of automated buoys floating around the oceans measuring the water directly.
This complicates matters for scientists putting together a long-term, consistent estimate of how global temperatures are changing. Scientists must adjust the raw data to take into account all the differences in how, when and where measurements were taken.
These adjustments have long been a heated point of debate. Many climate sceptics like to argue that scientists "exaggerate" warming by lowering past temperatures and raising present ones.
Christopher Booker, a climate sceptic writing in the Sunday Telegraph in 2015, called them "the greatest scientific scandal in history". A new report from the rightwing US thinktank, the Cato Institute, even claims that adjustments account for "nearly all the warming" in the historical record.
But analysis by Carbon Brief comparing raw global temperature records to the adjusted data finds that the truth is much more mundane: adjustments have relatively little impact on global temperatures, particularly over the past 50 years.
In fact, over the full period when measurements are available, adjustments actually have the net effect of reducing the amount of long-term warming that the world has experienced. ...
Anyone who expresses no doubt that Global Warming is a HOAX cannot be classified as a "skeptic".
Trump/Republican "true believers" deny the reality that Global Warming is happening, that it is caused by humans, that it is an Existential Threat to Life on Earth, and that anything should be done about it.
In short, Deniers are the Enemies of Life on Earth.
Why is that?
It seems because they worship the failed "invisible hand" theory God of the "free market". When that God is revealed to be a failure because it does not, and cannot, correct for the threat of Global Warming, it means those who worship this God must deny there's a problem.
Deniers are not "free", they are a prisoner of their own thinking.
© 2003 Continuous Improvement Associates
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