Year 3, Month 9, Day 9: Silver Bells Mounted On A String…

Hey, gang! Wanna meet an asshole? Here’s the Las Vegas Journal-Review’s Vin Suprynowicz. What a tool:

Too many “are still calling climate change a liberal hoax,” declared U.S. Sen. Harry Reid as he opened his fifth annual National Clean Energy Summit in Las Vegas on Aug. 7. “They falsely claim scientists are still debating whether carbon pollution is warming the planet.”

“This year alone, the United States has seen unparalleled extreme weather events – events scientists say are exactly what is expected as the Earth’s climate changes. The Midwest is experiencing its most crushing drought in more than half a century – or maybe ever. … Corn crops are withering and livestock are dying. …

“Our nation’s infrastructure is literally falling apart because it wasn’t designed to withstand these conditions,” Sen. Reid continued, just getting warmed up. “Runways are melting, trapping planes. Train tracks are bending, derailing subways. Highways are cracking, buckling and breaking open. … Yet despite having overwhelming evidence and public opinion on our side, deniers still exist, fueled and funded by dirty energy profits. These people aren’t just on the other side of this debate. They’re on the other side of reality.”

Good heavens. And I’ve even left out Harry’s chilling account of the monsoons of Bangladesh. Who ever heard of a monsoon hitting Bangladesh before?

“In the words of one respected climate scientist: ‘This is what global warming looks like,’ ” the senator reported. “Dozens of new reports from scientists around the globe link extreme weather to climate change.”

Responding to this rhetorical version of a Godzilla movie, Norman Rogers, Ph.D. in physics from the University of Hawaii, member of the American Geophysical Union and the American Meteorological Society, and senior policy adviser at the Heartland Institute, posted the following Friday:

“The advocates of global warming are beginning to have the classic doomsday cult problem. The Earth hasn’t been warming for 16 years, and that’s starting to get very embarrassing. The first adjustment to the dogma was to stop talking about global warming and start talking about climate change. The latest version of the party line is that we are going to have more extreme weather. The reality is that the weather is not any more variable or extreme than in the past. But with suitable fishing in the data, it is easy to make a case that this or that weather phenomenon has become more extreme.

“The scientist Richard Lindzen has pointed out that the extreme weather theme is inconsistent with the global warmers’ own theories,” Mr. Rogers continues. “The global warmers have long claimed that the poles will warm faster than the tropics. One of their key scary claims is that vast amounts of ice at the poles will melt and raise sea level. So, according to warmer theory, the temperature difference between the poles and the equator will lessen. But it is that very temperature difference that drives weather, particularly extreme weather. … So the warmers’ claims are fundamentally contradictory.”

(facepalm). Sent September 2, very early in the morning:

Skepticism FAIL.

The science, the source, and the threat of global climate change are very real, and Vin Suprynowicz’ op-ed mocking those who are justifiably concerned about climate change is a gold mine of half-, quarter-, and un-truths. One powerful “tell” is his reliance on Richard Lindzen — the only remaining climatologist of any repute who maintains a contrarian position on the issue, and also one of the only scientists still disputing the relationship between cigarette smoking and lung cancer. Similarly, the analyses of Norman Rogers, Suprynowicz’ other cited authority, have been repeatedly and thoroughly debunked, as a few moments’ research will demonstrate.

Ridiculing the change in nomenclature from “global warming” to “climate change” as a sign of liberal desperation is another standard denialist argument, but nothing could be further from the truth. The term “climate change” was first proposed by Republican strategist Frank Luntz during the Bush administration — as a “less frightening” alternative to “global warming”. It’s a peculiar irony that Luntz’ attempt at deceiving the public is a more accurate way of describing the complex phenomena that so profoundly alarm scientists and environmentalists — perhaps one of the only times that Bush-speak told the truth.

Mr. Suprynowicz’ paper gets an F.

Warren Senders


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