Comment Of The Day: “Open Forum Ethics, Climate Change Thread”

This is the second Comment of the Day that surfaced during this week’s open forum. It was sparked by this comment, changing the subject at hand from the wisdom of training women in the military to that old stand-by, climate change. Slickwilly wrote,

… Global Warming (excuse me: “Man Made Climate Change”) is a hoax, designed to transfer wealth to the Global Elites.

I have proof: the UN has admitted this openly. Given that our press is Elitist themselves, of course this gets little coverage.

Progressive Elites like socialism because they think they will be the rich upper class that always develops, while the masses starve. (Need I point to EVERY place it has been fully implemented?)

Is it ethical to lie about science to further a political agenda?

The climate change fearmongering has ticked up a notch recently, and the rhetoric of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who is essentially arguing that climate change perils demand extensive government control of technology and the economy—that is, socialism, and less freedom— and the U.N., which is increasingly candid about its position that only world government, or at least a significant surrender of national interests and autonomy, can save the planet. These are really political positions rather than ecological ones,  and are germane to slickwilly’s assertion.

That does not mean that climate change is a hoax. It does mean, in my view, that the climate change doomsayers and the scientists who have foolishly allied with them, have permanently, yes permanently, destroyed their credibility and their relevance to policy. The recent government climate change assessment followed the trend.

Also crippling itself as a resource and asset is the news media, which have been in full-throated support of unproven environmental doomsday scenarios for decades, and have been unwilling or incapable of rendering unbiased and apolitical analysis. Instead, they strategically feature deliberately scary pieces like this, aimed at the gullible and scientifically dim:

…If we proceed to use up all the fossil fuels on Earth, it could warm by as much as 17 degrees Fahrenheit by 2300.

As the ocean warms, its oxygen levels will continue to drop. If ancient history is any guide, the consequences for life — especially marine life in the cooler parts of the ocean — will be disastrous.

“Left unchecked, climate warming is putting our future on the same scale as some of the worst events in geological history,” Dr. Deutsch said.

If…could…if…”on the same scale.” ARGHHH! That’s good enough for me! Who’s going to be the wise and benevolent dictator to save us?

Here is Michael West’s Comment of the Day on the climate change thread on the post, Open Forum Ethics

I think “science” benefits greatly from public ignorance of what science is. We have this notion in our minds of lab coated brainiacs running through deliberative experiments to either falsify or strengthen a “guess” (hypothesis) about some process. That’s only one *method* of science.

A lot of science, however, Climate Change Science among them, really consists of gathering VERY incomplete data, running a series of statistical models (all dubious…you know, lies, damn lies and statistics) and methods of “purifying” the data. In the end, those sciences are essentially advanced forms of what the ancient philosophers did: look around the world and try to draw inferences and conclusions from a bewildering amount of information in order for us to make sense of our world.

Knowing this, Climate Science is closer to religion and philosophy than it is to lab-coated men and women running rigorous and repetitive cycles of intentional experiments. At which point, we can only analyze the conclusions of such “scientists” in terms of their own worldview.

1) Climate IS changing.

2) Mankind contributes *some* amount to this change

3) Whether or not the amount of man’s contribution is significant is what is up for debate. I can’t stand when progressives demand that agreement with #1 and #2 compels agreement that man is the primary or even a significant driver of the changes.

4) If mankind is an insignificant tertiary source of climate change…then odds are, our efforts to “fix” the problem will be insignificant.

5) We OUGHT to do something about Climate Change…but those somethings should more or less be anticipating the kinds of demographic and economic shifts that climate change will drive, and how those may impact our strategic outlook.



Filed under "bias makes you stupid", Around the World, Comment of the Day, Ethics Train Wrecks, Government & Politics, Journalism & Media, Research and Scholarship, Science & Technology

51 responses to “Comment Of The Day: “Open Forum Ethics, Climate Change Thread”

  1. Joshua

    I’ve always found it to be extreme hubris to state we as a species have driven and completely altered the climate of our planet. We have proof that Earth has gone through several severe climate changes in its history. None of the changes through history has been at the hands of man and has changed history and evolution.

    I’ve always laughed at the claims. Especially seeing who has championed the global climate change and how it has swapped from global cooling to global warming to, now finally, climate change. Maybe if they continue to alter their words and use as basic language as possible they can continue being right as it changes yet again.

    I don’t deny the climate is changing. It always changes. The Earth is a moving body in space that spins and rotated and changes its path. The South Pole used to be the North Pole. It will eventually be that again.

  2. A recently submitted LTE our local paper chose not to print:

    ​The 11/24/2018 Wisconsin State Journal Section A/front page/above the fold headline blares ominously: NATURAL DISASTERS WORSENING. Writer Seth Borenstein’s approach to the subject is, to put it charitably, consistent.

    A Joshua Emerson Smith article from the 11/17/2018 Journal: CLIMATE SKEPTIC UPENDS OCEAN WARMING STUDY. British climate researcher, statistician, and consensus skeptic Nicholas Lewis’ cursory examination of the study discovered “significant” errors which forced its authors to walk back their claims. Lewis: “The findings of the … ​paper were peer reviewed and published in the world’s premier scientific journal (Nature) and were given wide coverage in the English-speaking media,”

    This is hardly the first instance of published, peer-reviewed Climate Science being debunked. However, the Journal’s reaction conforms with that of most other media outlets: Smith’s article was buried on the last page of the Local & State section.

    • Speaking of the talented Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, whom DNC Chair Tom Perez believes “represents the future of our (democrat) party,” her latest in a seemingly endless string of positively Mensan observations:

      “We Need To Invent Technology That Hasn’t Even Been Invented Yet”

      To which I say: STAY TUNED, you’s ain’t seen nothin’ yet!

  3. 1) Climate IS changing.

    Yes we know this to be factually true based on verifiable collected data. The climate is always changing, the average temperatures go up and down and they’ve done that long before the existence human beings. This has been going on since the planet was formed.

    2) Mankind contributes *some* amount to this change

    Actually we don’t know this to be a fact yet, what we do know is that it is not unreasonable to assume that mankind contributes a very small, likely insignificant, piece to these changes, we just do not know what any of these subtle little things are and how it effects climate change as a whole. I do think that in many ways mankind is a “scourge” upon the earth, but based on historical climate change evidence this “scourge” is not likely to have any direct or indirect affect on climate change.

    3) Whether or not the amount of man’s contribution is significant is what is up for debate. I can’t stand when progressives demand that agreement with #1 and #2 compels agreement that man is the primary or even a significant driver of the changes.

    Progressives and apocalyptic climate change arguments generally are surrounded by the bad science of unproven correlation equal causation argument that CO2 is the root of all climate change evil. They’ve extrapolated their CO2 theories into absurd apocalyptic predictions. It’s all bad science.

    Progressives and climate change activists have backed themselves into a corner and they can’t get out. Their climate change “science” has become almost like a religion to them, they believe it to be true and true absolutely regardless of any facts that contradict it. For a climate change activist to accept anything that contradicts their “settled science” is heresy. The only argument they have now have is that anyone that doesn’t fully believe their rhetoric that CO2 is the primary source of climate change (therefore it’s man’s fault) is a climate change denier, a science denier, and an idiot. These Progressives and climate change activists have Foot-In-Mouth Syndrome and all they seem to be able to do anymore is to attack those that contradict them with ad hominems.

    4) If mankind is an insignificant tertiary source of climate change…then odds are, our efforts to “fix” the problem will be insignificant.

    There is verifiable evidence going back hundreds of thousand of years that mankind is actually NOT a source of climate change. In fact there is solid evidence – real proof – that if you completely removed man from the planet the climate would still change in relatively predictable cycles. Those predictable cycles are in geological terms not narrow tunneled visioned views of a few hundred years like the climate change activists are using to “prove” their apocalyptic nonsense.

    5) We OUGHT to do something about Climate Change…but those somethings should more or less be anticipating the kinds of demographic and economic shifts that climate change will drive, and how those may impact our strategic outlook.

    We cannot control climate change. Any person that claims we can is ignorant of the facts or just a damn fool for uttering such scientific nonsense.

    There is zero evidence that humans can control the changes in climate, let me emphasize that a bit more, THERE IS LITERALLY ZERO EVIDENCE THAT HUMAN BEINGS CAN CONTROL THE CHANGES IN CLIMATE IN ANY WAY SHAPE OR FORM WITH ANYTHING THEY CHOOSE TO DO! With the knowledge base humans currently have, it’s the equivalent to scientific heresy to claim humans can control the climate in any way.

    What we should be doing is finding reasonable ways of cleaning up the environment and keeping it clean for the sake of all mankind but we don’t have to resort to the outright lies of the apocalyptic climate change nonsense.

    The number one way that we as a human race can clean up the environment over time is to encourage overall world population decline instead of population growth. Human existence on the earth is the number one source of pollution and reducing the overall population will have a trickle down effect on cleaning up the environment and it will be good for every living thing on the planet. Less people equals less product usage equals less raw material usage equals less fossil fuels usage equals less pollution across the board, etc, etc. If people across the planet would voluntarily choose to only have one child for five+ generations at the end of that 125+ years or so the population of the world would begin to decrease as the oldest generations die. At the very least if we as a human race chose to not increase the population (only have two children per couple) as we learn more about cleaner ways of doing things the environment “might” begin to become cleaner. Hundreds and thousands of years ago it was perceived to be relatively necessary for some families to have many children to distribute the required labor across a larger work force just to survive decently, this also helped to create wealth, this is simply no longer the case in the vast majority of our world today.

    The human population of the planet needs to decrease.

    • Rusty Rebar

      If people across the planet would voluntarily choose to only have one child for five+ generations at the end of that 125+ years or so the population of the world would begin to decrease as the oldest generations die.

      How did that work out for China? What happened to all those people who wanted a male offspring to bring their bloodline forward? Remember what that resulted in. By the way… how are the demographics of China looking today?

      It is not a pretty picture.

      • Rusty Rebar wrote, “How did that work out for China?”

        My understanding from people I know that grew up in China, China does not restrict the general population to only one child, they only restrict pure blood Mandarins or something along those lines.

        • philk57

          That understanding is not correct. General population was restricted by the one child policy. It was very well enforced for quite a while and has had a significant effect on the demographics of the country. As always, the wealthy and party members were often able to sidestep the requirements. (Family from China)

          • The rules are for the serfs, not for the Elites. Typical of socialism.

          • philk57 wrote, “That understanding is not correct. General population was restricted by the one child policy.”, “As always, the wealthy and party members were often able to sidestep the requirements. (Family from China)”

            It’s quite possible I got it backwards; is it everyone else except the Mandarins or something along those line? It’s a small world, I’ve got family from China too.

          • PennAgain

            It’s not just a problem of population control: As an example (just because a friend of mine looked into it after her Japanese parents scolded her sister for having a third child, even though the couple could afford it, were living in the U.S., and knew the new grandchild would be treasured — which she was.) Due to the post-War food shortages, Japanese citizens voluntarily restricted childbearing to one child, then to two, if they could afford it, and they’ve pretty much kept it there, supporting their population. Their demographics didn’t show any real change and for a long time the population subsisted quite well on the entire landmass of the country, including some very rough mountain terrain. …146,000 mi² as to, for instance, Texas’ 269,000mi².

            This seemed to work, by one set of calculations: In terms of the output value of the nation’s agricultural production, Japan’s self-sufficiency is on a level comparable with those of such countries as Germany and Switzerland. Japan itself, though, uses a more accurate calorie-based self-sufficiency rate which doesn’t look so good. They were at 73% in 1965, but have steadily declined for decades as people’s lifestyles and dietary habits changed (from rice-based). [For those who want meat-on-the-hoof, all feed must be imported]. After dipping below 50 percent in 1989 and experiencing subsequent ups and downs, the rate has largely hovered around 40 percent since 1997.

            So it’s a combination of values and variables … and sometimes, of vegetables. And rice.

            • Thank you for an enjoyable essay in an area I never knew existed: Japan’s postwar discipline. Interesting how an entire country agreed and actually pulled off ZPG.

              • PennAgain

                You’re very welcome. A tad more:
                A huge zaibatsu (pre-War previously family-owned corporation) company I had a teaching contract with for awhile had its headquarters in its own company town. In 1973, in the midst of the oil shortage (some of you may remember), the company’s output (cars, appliances, steel, shipbuilding, chemicals, electronics, mining, etc.,) declined drastically. The mammoth business randomly chose representatives of each department, including janitorial, and proceeded to hold months of conferences — by consensus, which takes longer than our compromise or wrangling with unions since all must be satisfied with the outcome, i.e. no “losers.” The outcome: severely reduced salaries for employees across the board (and no pay for executives), closure or leasing of all vacation or entertainment facilities, . . . This loss to be balanced as far as possible by free rent for the 600+ (extended!) families living in the HQ town (they already had free TV, healthcare, and education through high school) free products, up to and including the automobiles, with raises and percentile shares in the corporation, as the profits returned. If the corporation went under, they all went. There was downsizing of everything that wasn’t human, but all survived – (my fee was taken up personally by the owner of the school I worked for) and we are living with a lot of their products today, from .

                Of course, you realize the downside of that kind of cooperative culture is the ability in the past to back up their military (including sacrificing their sons to kamikaze deaths), and to mass resistance to acknowledging or rewriting the history books regarding their defeat — a defeat that by characteristic shame and rules of honor could have been accompanied by a suicide of the entire population!

                It also includes my having to put up with seven years of what appeared to be ALL girls up to marriageable age wearing Snoopy skirts, dresses and accessories everywhere, all the time (except on national kimono-wearing days). Thankfully, that died out after a decade or so.

                Also the ZPG is all but immaterial now due to the PG in height and appetite.

                As the British say, what you gain on the swings, you lose on the roundabouts.

                • You opens several questions…

                  What is a ‘Snoopy Skirt?’ Google failed me, here…

                  What does ‘PG in height and appetite’ mean? If it means that such have gained recently in japan, can you direct me to a source to read?

                  What company did you describe, if divulging does not break any confidentiality obligations?

                  • PennAgain

                    slickwilly, my friend, your thread:

                    #1 Snoopy skirts Either your appreciation of higher culture is sadly lacking or, seriously, Google is not doing its job these days. Looks like paid advertising has taken over their top search spots. Go here, and then imagine it everywhere on everything:

                    #2 PG My apologies. A poor shortcut and failed smart-ass word-play, sorry. And unfair, since I skipped back to my previous comment, talking about literal population growth in terms of the “calorie-based self-sufficiency rate”. That sense of “population growth” which went out the window when the Japanese went off a universally rice-based diet – and the population began, literally, to grow … taller, fatter, stronger. You can have the same number of people, but unless you have the ability to feed them all the nutrients they need and want and can afford to pay for — such as animal protein (Texans understand this) — the country must import these things, food becomes more expensive. [And of course the population grew: slower than most, but unless you have voluntary or forced sterilization . . . .
                    Americans have this problem to a larger (no pun intended) extent, the result is not so bad economically since we have more self-sufficiency as far as food-production is concerned but, for reasons I am not sufficiently well acquainted with to cover, we have a significant inequality in nutrition. ’nuff said, yes?

                    #3 What company? Nothing confidential, just that I was running out of steam, it wasn’t pertinent, and the same thing happened at almost all paternalistic family-owned companies after the Allied Occupation authorities ordered the zaibatsu dissolved. Stock owned by the parent companies was put up for sale but many families retained a presence in the company, often via employees whose own ancestors had worked with the little shipping company started in 1870, – or even just a legacy of what it meant to BE a company: a conglomeration of individuals working together for mutual benefit. In my case, I had the fun of teaching English via Playboy magazine (sans centerfold and with cartoons heavily inked over by elderly ladies employed for that purpose) to classes of employees who would be doing business with English-speakers in Japan or abroad, and who also needed to learn how to behave socially as well as in different modes of doing business . (Playboy helped greatly to open Q&As about body language in western cultures. It has since been proven that the latter language is more valuable than the former in business as well as social situations.)
                    #3 (finally, you say). Mitsubishi Corporation. In the US today, 2 of its offspring: …Motors: (Outlander, ‘Build your own car.’ etc.); and …Electronics: from commercial hand dryers to display walls (stadium and arena displays), escalators and elevators, and systems for duct-free heating and cooling, ozone water treatment, rail transit and more, as well as something called an “uninterruptible” power system which I shall explore. Thanks for guiding me to catch up what they’d been doing for the past 45 years.

                    • 1. The Snoopy link gave me… tshirts. Oh well.

                      2. Texans do INDEED understand the need for animal protein… and can relate that a country without enough land would have trouble with that, unless they commercially farm ‘fish and rabbits’ in a sustainable fashion.

                      3. I guessed that Mitsubishi was who you were talking about… they are certainly diverse. You missed quite a bit they excel at too. Heavy industrial for power and chemical plants, for example.

      • That graph is meaningless without context. What is the comparable graph for the U.S.? For, say, Iran or South Korea or Uganda or Germany? How does the population growth for China in the past half century compare to what it would have been with historical trends?

        I don’t know the total solution, but I agree with Zoltar that one of the underlying factors in a lot of the world’s problems is that there’s just too dang many people in the world.

      • P.S. Rusty there is a difference between a government imposed mandatory limitation on the number of children a couple can have and that family “voluntarily choosing to only have one child” as I stated. This is a social thing not a government imposed rule/law/etc. I really enjoy children but my plan was to only have one child but I ended up with two because of two separate marriages, then I drew the line in the san ans said, period. Now I enjoy grandchildren.

    • You’re the 2nd person that I wonder whether or not actually read my comments or just wanted to rant.

    • “The human population of the planet needs to decrease.”


      If we are a non-problem for the Climate, when why?

  4. I am adding my abridged replies from the original thread, which align with Zoltar fairly well.

    “If such an effect (CO2 emissions) on climate is true…”

    I dispute that. The ice cores that were used to popularize the concept did not show CO2 levels rising before temperature increases (or the opposite), but that they lagged.

    But if I was to stipulate the concept, how does one account for the fact that volcanoes can dump thousands of times the concentration of CO2 into the atmosphere than man has done in the last 200 years combined? This does not happen every year, either: certain years have higher rates of eruptions, and some eruptions produce more gas. Yet the climate seems to accept the varied input with nary a bobble. I don’t think CO2 is the monster it has been made up to be.

    “The “things” we OUGHT to do about climate change… Climate change DOES affect human movements.”

    Mankind has dealt with changes to regional climate since his creation. You have good points about how some of them did so (conquest) and I could add how others chose a different course (nomadic lifestyles in Africa and the steppes of Asia, tenacious hardscrabble clinging to land in Afghanistan)

    Perhaps we are not really opposed on this point? Man will adapt when the climate changes, and now that we have communications and a community of nations, we should address how the world community handles that. I fear, however, that the adoption of this new religion/scam will hamper or completely derail rational discussion along the vein.

    Please understand I am dispassionately discussing the topic: there is no animus toward you personally or your views. Good discussion!

  5. Dwayne N. Zechman

    This is the thought experiment I use when discussing climate change:

    1) Did we, in history, have periods called an “Ice Age”? (yes)
    2) When was the most recent? (about 10,000 years ago)
    3) Are we still in that Ice Age today? (obviously no: GLOBAL WARMING!)
    4) So how did that happen? Colder, then warmer?

    This is why I often say, only partly facetiously, “Global Warming: I’m FOR it.”


  6. PennAgain

    Why you can’t change the minds of people who “believe in” Climate Change (hint: They speak a different language)

    1. They still confound the words “climate” with “weather

    2. They believe that conditionals, conditional phrases and vague inexactitudes are formed from Playdough which they interpret, at whim, along a +/- spectrum.

    3. They are born (or rendered by educational surgery) with a snap in their synapses which prevents them from making the connection between Big Business/Industry = BAD and High Living Standards = GOOD which correlates to the one being severely inhibited for the enterprising Capitalist whilst the other magically becomes ever more available at lower cost – if not free of charge – to the deserving poo… public.

    4. They live in a circus act where they continuously juggle two conflicting emotions (an extreme form of cognitive dissonance) in which they believe, optimistically, in the unbounded power of humans … oops, almost said “men” there … to simply [“just follow directions, all together now!”], permanently and globally alter natural forces in any positive manner while they simultaneously run and scream in headlined panic at others’ inability to Do Something now and correct Everything Done yesterday.

    4a. Older people of this group have lost faith in the first game and are two tired to run and scream anymore — and they’ve dropped too many clangers playing it — so they’ve taken up the juggling of Guilt and Blame instead.

    5. The hubris of the left. [see the “power” referenced in #4]

    6. (See #1 again. It cannot be emphasized enough.)

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