published Wednesday, February 2nd, 2011

The Winter of 2011

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about Clay Bennett...

The son of a career army officer, Bennett led a nomadic life, attending ten different schools before graduating in 1980 from the University of North Alabama with degrees in Art and History. After brief stints as a staff artist at the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and the Fayetteville (NC) Times, he went on to serve as the editorial cartoonist for the St. Petersburg Times (1981-1994) and The Christian Science Monitor (1997-2007), before joining the staff of the ...

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nucanuck said...

Amazingly,the weather here just above Seattle has been mild,but a little wet at times. We hope to see the crocus (croci?) in the next week or two.

On the other hand,our relatives in Springfield Ma have 10 foot snow walls along many of their roads. The melt may not be complete before May.

SCOTTYM might say it's all because of AGW induced melt in the Artic. He may be right.

February 2, 2011 at 12:55 a.m.
jpo3136 said...

It's always sunny in Chattanoogie.

February 2, 2011 at 1:50 a.m.
fairmon said...

More global warming? The south pole has no melting and lower average temperatures. We need to reduce pollution for health reasons but to think humans can have any affect on what the weather or climate will be is ridiculous. People used to be duped by those claiming the ability to make it rain with their dancing, chanting etc. which they explained convincingly. Hello Mr. Gore, how is the snake oil business doing? Any more award winning movies in the making?

Scientist appear divided on the climate issue but most agree on the health impact of air, water and food pollution. We are killing ourselves is a more convincing argument than we are affecting the climate. Unusual and unexplainable weather events have occurred through out history and will occur in the future. Old timers talk about the time the Tennessee river froze and people walked across it. They recall heat and droughts destroying all the food crops. They didn't blame any human behavior for the climate events. The more we know the more we realize there is much more we don't know.

When watching the polar bear commercial and their possible extinction I can't help but think, so what if my grand children never encounter a polar bear. I also hope they don't encounter a grizzly bear or dinosaur. Millions of people are homeless and hungry while an army of people spend millions and devote their lives to protecting whales and bears, the logic of that escapes me, it must be an ego thing with them.

February 2, 2011 at 6:03 a.m.
MTJohn said...

Harp - you have to understand the theory of climate change, even if you don't agree with it, before you can credibly refute it. There is a difference between "climate" and "weather" and today's weather is consistent with the climate change hypothesis.

Also, please note that scientist do not disagree all that much regarding the fact that the globe is in a warming trend; that polar ice caps and glaciers around the world are melting; that melting polar ice has resulted in changes in ocean currents; and, that ocean currents significantly influence weather patterns. The dispute, to the extent there is one, is about the relative influence of natural variation vs. human-produced green house gasses. Those who discount the influence of green house gasses are in the minority and most of those have been funded by the petroleum industry.

February 2, 2011 at 6:47 a.m.
woody said...

Good morning all!!

Charles Dudley Warner has been credited with the quote, "Everyone complains about the weather, but no one ever does anything about it."

And after seeing Clay's rather explicit weather map this morning I feel pretty sure we could amend that quote with some really colorful language. If we were so inclined.

As for me, I can't wait to see how some here will try to turn this into another 'strike' against the president. Or possibly "Armageddon."

It's with it, Woody

February 2, 2011 at 6:51 a.m.
fairmon said...

Hypothesis is a good description MT since it is akin to a SWAG meaning a scientific wild ass guess. A TV special on the south pole described the opposite phenomenon as the north pole. I do firmly believe pollution must be abated or future generations will face a severely altered existence or extinction. We can't even get people to recycle and quit littering so to reduce air and water pollution is a real challenge.

February 2, 2011 at 7:17 a.m.
MTJohn said...

Hypothesis is a good word choice because it is fundamental to the scientific method - a method not rigorously applied by many of the critics of climate change.

February 2, 2011 at 7:43 a.m.
Sailorman said...

One man's trash is anothers' treasure - or something like that. According to Mr Gore

"increased heavy snowfalls are completely consistent with what they have been predicting as a consequence of man-made global warming:"

He sees renewed hope (as does Goldman Sachs) for his carbon exchange. When copious quantities of money are involved, who can blame them for being hopeful?

February 2, 2011 at 7:50 a.m.
blackwater48 said...


I visited Vancouver years ago and really liked it. We've had a couple of cold snaps here in Florida but it's seasonal. Sat out by the creek drinking coffee this morning hoping to see a gator. The roses and azaleas are still pumping out flowers and the oranges are sweet, but everything else is dormant.

Enjoyed how Harp tried to compare global climate change to a weather forecast. He used two classics: 'if there's global warming why is it snowing in winter?' And, 'scientists are divided on the issue.'

Glad I moved from Buffalo.

February 2, 2011 at 8:01 a.m.
whatsthefuss said...

Funny, I saw this very map on one of the major news spinners. The only difference was that theirs had a letter F in the mix. Perhaps its just a coincidence.

February 2, 2011 at 8:32 a.m.
miraweb said...

Well done, Clay -- I couldn't have said it better myself!

February 2, 2011 at 9:15 a.m.
sandyonsignal said...

Don't know where you are getting your information, Harp, but you are wrong. The Antarctic is experiencing massive ice shelf break offs due to oceanic warming (global warming) . Just google Antarctic Ice Shelf and you will see plenty of evidence of global warming and melting at the South Pole. Here's one from AP, the size of Connecticut that broke off a couple of years ago:

February 2, 2011 at 10:17 a.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

I suppose clay is confused or frustrated because he worships global warming theory and is confounded by all of the contradictions. MTJohn must have a very flexible mind as he is apparently able to accept half-baked explanations for the contradictions as fast as they can dream them up.

JUST LAST NIGHT I saw a 60 minute special that regurgitated the claim about ice loss in Antarctica. Problem is, you have to select a very short slice of time that led up to the original airing of that special and ignore what has happened before and since. Climate Change advocates like talking about the Arctic sea ice and ignoring Antarctica. I am surprised that 60 minutes set themselves up like this. Antarctic ice has been steadily increasing since they started tracking it with satellite measurements back in the 1980. If you have the patience you can dig all the evidence you want directly from the National Snow and Ice Data Center.

I loved the conversation when it moved to the Vostok ice core data. Advocates used to love to throw up that chart until they started being shown how the Vostok data indicates that temperature LEADS CO2 levels, especially on the downswing. It is impossible to explain CO2 as the independent variable once this observation is pointed out. CO2 is the dependent variable to the independent variable temperature. You can generate models using CO2 as the driver and generate charts that look very similar to climate history but in order to accept the resulting model you have to ignore this very important flaw in the output of the model – The lead will now be switched. A very inconvenient truth for Climate Change advocates.

Advocates have demonstrated that they will not hesitate to distort facts and data to support the idea that we have a climate crisis driven by CO2. They are making it almost impossible to develop a responsible energy policy for the country and are helping to hold the economy down by driving up energy costs. The obsession with CO2 is distracting us from real environmental problems like sulfur and mercury emissions that can be much more easily addressed.

February 2, 2011 at 10:42 a.m.
sandyonsignal said...

Time you provided some links, Big Ridge Pat, because you are making up junk.

Climate science has been around for over a hundred years. Svante Arrhenhuis first proved increases in CO2 caused atmospheric changes. Its been solid since then. Where are your claims coming from? I can guess but I shouldn't write it here.

February 2, 2011 at 10:50 a.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: sandyonsignal | On: February 2, 2011 at 10:50 a.m.

On the Vostok data, I would like you to provide the graph from a source that you trust. I can provide lots of graphs, but I notice that it is hard to find on the global warming sites these days. I have a chart that I obtained from a global warming site a few years ago that seems to be impossible to find on those sites now. I guess they were having way too much trouble explaining dependence and independence.

On Antarctic ice extent I have already provided the link to the data from the de facto authority. Enjoy.

February 2, 2011 at 11:19 a.m.
nucanuck said...

The science is solid among more than 90% of lifelong dedicated worldwide climate scientists. For those who wish to not believe the science,Exxon Mobil and the Koch brothers have hired some scientists to find alternative explanations...talking points,if you will...and from that weak position,we have what is loosely called a debate.

The denier position is obviously the easier,more comfortable position because it allows guilt-free continuation of current behavior. Only in the US is the denier position much more than a ripple and it seems to parallel political thinking. Interesting.

February 2, 2011 at 11:23 a.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: sandyonsignal | On: February 2, 2011 at 10:50 a.m.

Sandy, Never mind. I found that old chart on Wikipedia. This is the exact same chart that all of the global warming sites used to tout.

You might want to copy it to your computer and use a graphics program to draw vertical lines through the temperature or CO2 peaks. This will help you see that the peak temperature occurs before the peak CO2. Note also that the CO2 level very clearly falls more slowly than temperature, following the temperature.

Please note that time progresses from right to left on the graph, not left to right as you might expect. I often wondered if the data was intentionally presented that way to make it harder to notice temperature was leading.

February 2, 2011 at 11:30 a.m.
sandyonsignal said...

BPR, I am reading the NSIDC site right now. The page you quoted is about anomalies in ice concentrations data. I don't think you should judge from this one link because we can't read what the study is and why the anomaly. I will spend more time finding out about this today.

If you spend some time at the National Snow and Ice Data Center, there data is overwhelming on the disintegration of sea ice and glaciers. This is the norm not the unusual.

February 2, 2011 at 11:38 a.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: nucanuck | On: February 2, 2011 at 11:23 a.m. “The science is solid among more than 90% of lifelong dedicated worldwide climate scientists.”

These would be the same scientist that get their funding from politically motivated sources and immediately loose that funding when they fail to explain the theory as demanded by politics. The same kind of analysis that we get from the CBO when politicians rig the parameters of analysis.

I am disappointed that you are still resorting to the “settled science” argument. For some reason you embrace science funded by politicians while off-handedly rejecting science funded by interested industries. The opposing science is not all funded by interested industries though, this you have to admit.

Years ago I got tired of the conflicts and dug into what data I could find for myself. You should do the same and quit relying on sources that have been SHOWN NOT TO HESITATE TO DISTORT EVIDENCE to support the theory that provides their funding.

February 2, 2011 at 11:39 a.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: sandyonsignal | On: February 2, 2011 at 11:38 a.m.

Dear sandy. I have spent HOURS on that site and the data supports the claim that you wanted to see a link for support of. If you do not have the energy to look and learn please do not try to draw conclusions or change the subject.

I am looking at a chart from that data right now. It shows a clear upward trend in ice extent.

The link I gave you shows sea ice extent. If you want to see anomalies you have to change the “Map:” type in the header and then hit the “Refresh” button.

Now go back and do your homework or just stop making claims that you cannot support.

February 2, 2011 at 11:50 a.m.
sandyonsignal said...

Look up the word anomaly, bpr.

February 2, 2011 at 11:57 a.m.
nucanuck said...


I think you will find very little connection between the worldwide scientific community and geopolitics.

Nice try though.

February 2, 2011 at 12:44 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: sandyonsignal | On: February 2, 2011 at 11:57 a.m. "Look up the word anomaly"

I am not sure you read my post. You do not have to worry about anomalies as the specific chart I pointed you too covered absolute sea ice extent in millions of square kilometers.

It looks like you latched onto the anomaly thing in the page title and did not know that there were three ways to look at the data on that page, all by selecting a different map type.

February 2, 2011 at 1:28 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: nucanuck | On: February 2, 2011 at 12:44 p.m “I think you will find very little connection between the worldwide scientific community and geopolitics.”

LOL!!! I think you better pull your head out of the snow! Do you watch the news? Even the MSM cannot keep the corruption under wraps. Unlike the industry funded science that you like to discredit the government funded science has been clearly shown to be loose with facts and figures. The end justifies the means!

February 2, 2011 at 1:35 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Notice that no one is screaming for the links that show how politically tied and corrupt climate science has become. Even the advocates know where that will lead.

February 2, 2011 at 1:37 p.m.
blackwater48 said...

Can’t wait for your reply, Ridge. I look forward to your ignorance, unfamiliarity with empirical evidence, and lack of respect for scientific findings. At the same time, be sure to create straw men and argue against things I neither said nor even implied. I assure you, all irrelevancies will be appreciated for their unintended comedic consequences as you predictably repeat themes that have been thoroughly discredited and debunked.

An article written by Naoim Oreskes and published in ‘Science’ in December of 2004 reviewed the scientific consensus on climate change.

“Policy-makers and the media, particularly in the United States, frequently assert that climate science is highly uncertain. Some have used this as an argument against adopting strong measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.”

She cites two examples and points out, “Such statements suggest that there might be substantive disagreement in the scientific community about the reality of anthropogenic climate change. This is not the case.

“The scientific consensus is clearly expressed in the reports of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Created in 1988 by the World Meteorological Organization and the United Nations Environmental Programme, IPCC's purpose is to evaluate the state of climate science as a basis for informed policy action, primarily on the basis of peer-reviewed and published scientific literature. In its most recent assessment, IPCC states unequivocally that the consensus of scientific opinion is that Earth's climate is being affected by human activities: ‘Human activities … are modifying the concentration of atmospheric constituents … that absorb or scatter radiant energy. … [M]ost of the observed warming over the last 50 years is likely to have been due to the increase in greenhouse gas concentrations.’”

She went on to point out that the, “IPCC is not alone in its conclusions,” and cited other organizations that concur, including, “The National Academy of Sciences,” The American Meteorological Society, the American Geophysical Union, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.”

February 2, 2011 at 1:50 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: blackwater48 | On: February 2, 2011 at 1:50 p.m.

You present nothing to respond to. Your precious authority, the IPCC, and the cohorts that you quote are probably the MOST politically motivated scientific group you could ever hope to find. You worship and quote those that agree with your dogma. I can't help who you chose to read and believe.

Notice we are getting no facts to examine from the advocates, only opinions of like minded people.

Personally, I wish we could get beyond this blind obedience of thought so we could get on to the business of drafting a responsible energy policy that supports our economy AND our ecology.

February 2, 2011 at 2:06 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

LOL, I went to search "IPCC" and Google auto-filled "IPCC corruption" for me.

February 2, 2011 at 2:11 p.m.
canarysong said...

We live at over 9000 ft. elevation. When my husband got in the car to go to the office this morning the thermometer in his car read 28 below zero. Our high temperature for the last 2 days was -4. By March we will have at least 3 feet of snow in the yard. Then the serious snowfall starts, with individual snowfalls of up to 6 feet. Par for the course for us. There's nothing really to do but to bundle up and go play in it! (but only when it's above zero!) I wouldn't trade living here for any balmy beach on the planet!

Nucanuck is right, however. Severe weather of every variety is consistent with standard climate change theory. We have several friends who are climate scientists with NOAA (the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration) in Boulder. One of them has done extensive research in Antartica. There is no serious disagreement among climate scientists about the veracity of global warming. If you find information to the contrary, I would suggest that you thoroughly research just who is REALLY behind it. (I'm smelling big oil money!) It can take some digging to uncover the names of the board members of those oh-so-legitimate and innocuous sounding "scientific" organizations.

February 2, 2011 at 2:16 p.m.
steve_smith_tn said...

No one trusts anyone. We are no longer "all in this together." People are so insulated from reality they feel they no longer need one another. People sail through life like they sail through traffic in their hybrid or SUV cage and talk at one another instead of to one another.

There is no allegiance. Loyalty has become an outdated concept. Everyone wants to be correct or right or righteous. Everyone is an advocate for someone or something else. A thirty minute t.v. show or a magazine article or a B.A. degree makes everyone an expert . . . at everything.

DIrect democracy is anarchy.

February 2, 2011 at 2:34 p.m.
blackwater48 said...

BigRidge, thanks for the laugh.

Check out the February 2011 issue of that liberal rag and water carrying shill for the DNC, 'The National Geographic.' The article is entitled "The Big Thaw."

It begins, "It’s no surprise that a warming climate is melting the world’s glaciers and polar ice. But no one expected it to happen this fast."

It's not a matter of who's right and who's wrong. It's discounting scientific findings because you have a political agenda.

By the way, I had no trouble finding it so In case you really are curious, here's the site:

Since you've already dismissed the organization as being intellectually corrupt I'm sure you'll pass.

February 2, 2011 at 3:07 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Everyone on the advocate side seems to continue to be content refer to known global warming, I mean climate change, advocacy sites to try to get us to drink the coolaid.

There has been warming and there has been cooling. That is one thing that will never change. The important question is whether CO2 has any real role.

Do any of you want to talk about that?

For bw, here is a short entertaining read on IPCC corruption. I can throw these at you all day long.

February 2, 2011 at 3:29 p.m.
canarysong said...

steve_smith_tn, re 2:34 post;

That was a great spot-on expression of post-modern existential angst. I don't think you're alone in your frustration.

Thank you for reminding us of some very important things. While the political rhetoric becomes increasingly divisive, the fact is that we ARE all in this together. We DO need each other. What is healthy for one is most often (but not always) a good thing for us as a whole. And what hurts one, usually diminishes each one of us, even if we are not directly aware of it. Likewise, it is our responsibility to remember that our choices, our words, and our actions have consequences for others as well as for ourselves, both now and into the future. None of us is perfect, we can only make a sincere effort to do our best, even when it's hard, and to hope that we have seen things for what they truly are.

The challenge lies in remembering that we are all alike in many more (and more important) ways than we are different. As you pointed out, we all do indeed need to do a better job of talking TO (rather than AT) each other. We need to learn to really listen, as well. We can learn a lot from each other, if we can keep our minds open.

I disagree with you on many issues, but I can tell that you are a good guy. You are one among few on this forum who has the courage to occasionally let their very human vulnerability show. That's the difference between real strength and false bravado.

February 2, 2011 at 3:37 p.m.
nucanuck said...


Which administration has a climate change agenda and why?

Was it Reagan,Bush,Clinton,BushII,Obama...get real,the scientists of the world aren't under the control of some world governmental science directorate. It has taken decades spanning all kinds of political thinking all over the world to arrive at todays climate change knowledge base.

Here at the University of Victoria we have a relatively high profile group of scientist focused climate change and to think they are influenced in any way by politics is a laugher.

The evidence is overwhelming,the deniers are skating on thin ice.

February 2, 2011 at 3:57 p.m.
blackwater48 said...

Gosh Mr. Ridge, I have seen the error of my ways. I was looking at scientific information while you were going straight to source. A unbiased intellectual without a political axe to grind. Here is where you last link sent me:

"Sen. James Inhofe, (R-Okla.), Ranking Member of the Environment & Public Works Committee, today commented on the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) Fourth Assessment Summary for Policymakers.

"This is a political document, not a scientific report, and it is a shining example of the corruption of science for political gain. The media has failed to report that the IPCC Summary for Policymakers was not approved by scientists but by UN political delegates and bureaucrats," Senator Inhofe said. The IPCC is only releasing the Summary for Policymakers today, not the actual scientific report which is not due out until May 2007."


You are beyond reason, beyond hope, to infinity and beyond. I honestly thought you may have found legitimate scientists who were reading the data differently.

No, you're taking the Republican talking points and holding them up as irrefutable evidence that the scientific community is pushing a political agenda. You should be ashamed of yourself. Honestly. Shame.

If I ever vomit the Democratic talking points on any issue you can call me out, too. Good luck with that by the way. Some of us out here still try to make up our own minds.

You're a shill.

February 2, 2011 at 4:12 p.m.
canarysong said...


I'm afraid the deniers don't want to give up their extended cab pick-ups, their power boats, their gas-powered lawn mowers, their dirt bikes, and 72 degree homes in the middle of winter.

February 2, 2011 at 4:19 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: nucanuck | On: February 2, 2011 at 3:57 p.m.

Are we confusing global temperature trends with the CO2 question?

The problem is that people want to blame climate change on the burning of hydrocarbons. Back in the Carter days when it looked like the globe was cooling they cried it was because of oil. Now that they have a warming trend they want to cry that it is because of oil. Now scientists are predicting that we are due to begin the fall into the next ice age and we ALREADY have nut cases running around saying that the Gulf Stream was shut down by the BP oil spill and that Europe is due for a mini-ice age as a result. It is SO predictable. Any observation about the climate will eventually be blamed on oil in one way or another. Don’t you think you might be skating on thin ice when you join that choir?

February 2, 2011 at 4:20 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: canarysong | On: February 2, 2011 at 4:19 p.m. "I'm afraid the deniers don't want to give up their extended cab pick-ups, their power boats, their gas-powered lawn mowers, their dirt bikes, and 72 degree homes in the middle of winter."

Since I am sure you guys would like to label me as a "denier" it would probably shock you to know that I drive a Honda Civic and I also talked my wife into getting a Honda Civic rather than a BMW. Not because of CO2 emissions but for personal finance and national energy security reasons. We also keep the house at 68 in the winter. The wife won’t let me go any lower.

You got me on the lawn mower and the dirt bike though. Tell me canarysong, are you using a push mower?

It aggravates me to no end to hear people proudly defending their right to drive there Navigators and pick-ups for daily transportation when they don’t have a specific need for that kind of vehicle. That is why I have no reservations about a big tariff on non-NAFTA imported oil. The guys that want to drive SUVs can then pay a disproportionate share for consuming too much oil.

Maybe if we could come up with a responsible energy policy our POTUS could challenge everyone to do their part by buying fuel efficient cars. It would be nice if it was “hip” to own a car and live in a house that reflected your needs rather than an image you want to portray.

February 2, 2011 at 4:38 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: blackwater48 | On: February 2, 2011 at 4:12 p.m.

I know you are, but what am I?

Oh brother!

February 2, 2011 at 4:43 p.m.
nucanuck said...


Nobody's going to argue that there is no natural climate change. The scientific facts indicate that human behavior is having an impact beyond what would naturally occur.

Resist and deny,yell and scream,hide behind won't make the truth a lie.

The only argument for doing nothing might be that we are so late and the damage is so extreme,that we may not be able to make a difference. I don't buy that. We need to try even though we won't be here when the final results are in.

February 2, 2011 at 4:48 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Oh, and how about a HUGE tax on disposible containers. Damn I am tired of picking those things up!

February 2, 2011 at 4:48 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: nucanuck | On: February 2, 2011 at 4:48 p.m. “The scientific facts indicate that human behavior is having an impact beyond what would naturally occur.”

I suppose it is also safe to say that very few would argue that human behavior is having no effect. We can agree that human behavior has effects, OK?

You seem bound and determined to hide behind the “settled science” or the “debate is over” and refuse to even look at the possibility that CO2 is not a prime driver for global temperature. I offer the leading argument as I see it and you continue to robotically go back to settled science. It seems to me that about the time that the T = f(CO2) relationship was debunked the climate change advocates stopped arguing the actual science and started with this, “the debate is over”, “all reputable climate scientists concur”, “it is settled science” clap trap in desperation.

Can we agree that sulfur and mercury emissions are harmful? How about we join in support of tighter restrictions on sulfur and mercury emissions? Since we disagree on the CO2 thing, will you at least engage in the discussion before you dismiss an opposing position? That kind of dismissal turns potential allies into adversaries.

February 2, 2011 at 5:08 p.m.
blackwater48 said...

BRP really racked his brain to come up with this blistering retort that so devastated my psyche that I may have to retire to the patio and fix another pitcher of margaritas. It's painful, but here's what BigRidgePatriot nailed me with: "I know you are, but what am I?"

You know what you are.

I was surprised that even you would drag out this old chestnut: "Back in the Carter days when it looked like the globe was cooling they cried it was because of oil. Now that they have a warming trend they want to cry that it is because of oil."

So many errors, so little time. Okay, first of all, I don't recall anyone suggesting oil was to blame for the 'coming ice age.' Back in the 70s scientists claimed they found predictable weather patterns that have been occurring throughout the ages. Based on their findings they believed the earth was entering yet another cooling trend.

Ever hear of ice ages? Yeah, they said that the earth would be cooling. That's why scientists are even more alarmed at this 'Big Thaw' (did you get around to reading that, Ridge? If not, Reader's Digest will surely reprint it soon.)

We're losing glaciers and ice caps at a time when the earth is entering an extended cooling phase.

I'm sure I've muddled up your head, but contact Senator Inhofe's office. I'm sure they'll provide you with the official explanation.

February 2, 2011 at 5:09 p.m.
canarysong said...


Thank you for keeping your thermostat lowered and for driving more efficient vehicles. And in answer to your question, we only mow a small part of our one acre, and that is done with an electric mower; still uses energy, but with less emissions at least. The rest is natural landscaping; it helps the wildlife and reduces the work for us.

To learn more about climate change, a book that has come highly recommended (I am just starting to read it myself) is Thomas Friedman's "Hot, Flat,and Crowded". It looks at global warming, rapidly growing populations, and the "astonishing expansion of the world's middle class". He suggests that stepping up to take a lead in a worldwide effort to replace our wasteful energy practices with a focus on clean energy, efficiency, and conservation can be our best strategy for the renewal of America.

The world simply will not be the place that it was when we were growing up, no matter how much we may wish it to be. We need to try to understand the changes as best we can. Denial doesn't work.

Also worth reading, "Confronting the Climate Cranks", an article by Mark Hertsgaard in this week's issue of The Nation. It might be available for reading online.

February 2, 2011 at 5:14 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: canarysong | On: February 2, 2011 at 5:14 p.m.

And thank you for a reasonable, constructive message.

I have all the time in the world for the promotion of energy efficiency, reduction in waste and living within our means. I see it as a national security issue and I am afraid that some very costly decisions are being made with respect to our energy future based on very bad science that makes fossil fuels into some kind of satanic retch.

It sounds like we can also agree that human population growth is a big problem for the future. It is probably fair to say that on our current trajectory it will soon be harmful to the environment for humans to urinate. Why on earth are we wasting our efforts on CO2?

February 2, 2011 at 5:33 p.m.
LibDem said...

harp3339 adds a little rationality to a debate that will never end. I would like my grandchildren to be able to breathe and maybe drink a little fresh water. The Global Warming debate is a great distraction while we poop in our nest.

February 2, 2011 at 5:38 p.m.
SCOTTYM said...

Got questions about the ice? Graphs running in near real time, built with data directly from the satellites. Much easier to "read" than columns of numbers. I see nothing to be alarmed about.

I don't see anything about AGW in Clay's side-splitter.

Looks like he's spot on, that's why it's funny.

February 2, 2011 at 5:44 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Oops, it is already harmful to the environment for human beings to urinate, even in Chattanooga.

I was wondering the other day if we should be campaigning to stop the practice of cities taking over neighborhoods and forcing household off septic and on to sewer. It seems to me that modern septic system is cheaper for the homeowner and does a MUCH better and more reliable job of keeping human waste out of the water supply.

February 2, 2011 at 5:44 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: LibDem | On: February 2, 2011 at 5:38 p.m. " The Global Warming debate is a great distraction while we poop in our nest."

What a great way to put the current state of affairs!

February 2, 2011 at 5:54 p.m.
hambone said...

Why do so many have their head in the sand, or snow, or elsewhere?

February 2, 2011 at 5:55 p.m.
BigRidgePatriot said...

Username: SCOTTYM | On: February 2, 2011 at 5:44 p.m. "I don't see anything about AGW in Clay's side-splitter. Looks like he's spot on, that's why it's funny."

Absolutely correct, but how much mileage can you get out of discussing the weather?

“clay does not know what he is talking about. This weather has been a pleasant change. It is nice to have all four seasons for a change. I can’t begin to describe how much I enjoyed not leaving the neighborhood for a few days after the 8” snowfall. The boat launch and the woods were absolutely beautiful! Yesterday looked like Winter in Chattanooga!”

February 2, 2011 at 6:04 p.m.
lkeithlu said...

"t aggravates me to no end to hear people proudly defending their right to drive there Navigators and pick-ups for daily transportation when they don’t have a specific need for that kind of vehicle. That is why I have no reservations about a big tariff on non-NAFTA imported oil. The guys that want to drive SUVs can then pay a disproportionate share for consuming too much oil. Oh, and how about a HUGE tax on disposible containers. Damn I am tired of picking those things up!"

I am soooooo with you on these two. Why is everything we buy triple packaged? And why do soccer moms need hummers? And what is this Cadillac SUV thing? A contradiction! Related to the housing bust is the need to own a 6000+ft2 house for a family of four. With five TVs, five computers, and a $50k kitchen to eat take-out in.

February 2, 2011 at 6:10 p.m.
canarysong said...

See, there ARE things we can agree on. Imagine that, it's a start!

February 2, 2011 at 6:23 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...


After reading some of your posts on this subject, one can only conclude that you don’t know the first thing about the chemical and physical properties of any gas, particularly carbon dioxide – the only exception would be hot air, and you do seem to be very familiar with this one.

February 2, 2011 at 6:43 p.m.
Clara said...

Aren't you glad we weren't hit by Yasi? Obama probably caused that and the tremenous snowfall because__________________________

Francis, Daver, et al.?

February 2, 2011 at 6:57 p.m.
Clara said...

Did I do that?

February 2, 2011 at 7:03 p.m.
Clara said...

And, just to end my participation for tonight...

I still believe it is a slight tilt in the earth's axis that causes it one way or tuther.

February 2, 2011 at 7:09 p.m.
canarysong said...

Yes Clara, you broke the Internet, thanks a lot! (just kidding)

February 2, 2011 at 7:22 p.m.
SCOTTYM said...


Are you going to explain to us rubes why you believe that CO2, in minute concentrations, can have significant effects on the energy flows on our planet, or are you just going to engage in ignorant attacks?

You are aware that laboratory experiments in closed systems with limited variables is not the same as the vastly complex, multi-variable, chaotic Earth climate system? Right?

Do you know ALL of the variables involved in the global climate system and all of relative scales of the variables, or even the signs of their effect?

You don't, because no one does, though this doesn't stop many from claiming that the effect of a trace gas, which is vastly overwhelmed by H2O vapor, and has been shown to follow temperature changes with a delay of ~800 years, is THE driver of climate change.

The AGW crew has turned science on it's head.

February 2, 2011 at 7:36 p.m.
SCOTTYM said...


You've broken my interwebs as well.

February 2, 2011 at 7:38 p.m.
Musicman375 said...

Clara, I was thinking about our previous discussion about Earth wobble earlier today too. I wonder how many people ever give that a thought.

February 2, 2011 at 8:49 p.m.
SCOTTYM said...


"And what is this Cadillac SUV thing?"

1959 Caddy Fleetwood vs. 2011 Caddy Escalade EXT Wheelbase: 149.7 in / 130 in
Length: 242.3 in / 222 in Width: 80.7 in / 79.1 in Height: 59.1 in / 74.5 in Curb weight: 5670 lb / 5949 lb Safety features : not much / Lots MPG : 10-12 highway / 17-19 highway

Yup, the 'slade is too short in overall length and wheelbase, to tall, and gets too good of gas mileage to be a "real" Caddy.

I'm just messing with you. I can think of many other things I'd rather spend 65 large on, but to each his or her own. Heaven knows GM needs to make profits somewhere so as to give us our bailout money back, and those big trucks have huge profit margins.

P.S. My car will nearly fit inside an EscaladeEXT/Suburban sized vehicle. :)

February 2, 2011 at 10:35 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...

ScottyM said: "The AGW crew has turned science on it's head."

Please, ScottyM. . . Get serious. . . The energy flows of our planet? . . . the chaotic earth climate system? . . . The AGW crew has turned science on its head?

Sounds like it’s not just BigRidgePatriot that doesn’t know the first thing about the chemical and physical properties of gases – in this case, green house gases.

Tell me, ScottyM, exactly what are scientists referencing when they refer to the runaway greenhouse effect? What are the signs? And how do scientist detect it?

February 2, 2011 at 11:41 p.m.

Oh, you silly, silly progressives!
You whores for Gore. Put down your global warming toys and let go of your greenhouse gas fetish. Deflate those Sarah Palin and Michelle Bachman blow up dolls. There's work to be done!
The Chinese have us by the &#@$%. and terrorists are building dirty bombs and you can only fret about the weather and SUV driving soccer moms.

February 2, 2011 at 11:45 p.m.
nucanuck said...


What's with the progressive stuff? It is pure conservativism to want to protect the planet.

To continue the plunder unchecked is somewhere between radical and putting thoughtless self interest above planetary stewardship.

February 2, 2011 at 11:56 p.m.
canarysong said...

"Whores for Gore"..... I like it! I think I'll put it on a T-shirt and wear it proudly!

February 3, 2011 at 12:56 a.m.
SCOTTYM said...

"Please, ScottyM. . . Get serious. . . The energy flows of our planet? . . . the chaotic earth climate system?"

Yes mtnlrl, keep concentrating on your lab experiments with "green house" gases, and continue to ignore the big picture, i.e. CO2 is a small bit player in a very complex, chaotic system.

No one is disputing the physical properties of CO2. SOME folks do not understand the minutiae of molecular energy absorption and emission, nor the logarithmic nature of the effect at varying concentrations, but those folks are mostly the AGW believers.

Some folks also do not understand that CO2's energy capture profile, at the temperatures(wavelengths) relevant to Earth's atmosphere, overlap that of H2O which is much more abundant and therefore swamps the tiny effects of CO2.

There is a very large difference between what happens in a closed jar of CO2 in a lab, and what happens in a planetary atmosphere.

If you have indeed studied chemistry at the University level and no one explained this simple fact you, perhaps you should request a refund.

Under ideal laboratory conditions a feather and an hammer will fall toward Earth at the same rate. Try it in your backyard and see if it works the same. (Here's a hint, unless you live on the Moon, it won't work the way the physics would lead you to believe.)

"runaway greenhouse effect" - Not possible on this planet. CO2 levels in the deep past have been as much a ten times higher than current levels with no ill effects. Life thrived. This is a fact. You skipped the Geology courses didn't you? (And yes Venus has a "runaway greenhouse effect", but then Venus's atmosphere is 93 bar, or nearly a full order of magnitude higher than Earth's at the surface and is 95% CO2. Earth's atmosphere is ~0.04% CO2 @ 1 bar. Not even close to comparable.)

"What are the signs?" - Signs of what? Scientific ignorance?

"And how do scientist detect it?" - Detect what? Scientific ignorance? Posting silly stuff about a "runaway greenhouse effect" in relation to Earth's climate is a dead giveaway.

February 3, 2011 at 2:12 a.m.
Clara said...

Interweb? Gee! Sorry! I was trying to build a wall to keep the trolls out. C:-)

February 3, 2011 at 2:39 a.m.
mountainlaurel said...

ScottyM said: “And yes Venus has a runaway greenhouse effect . . Posting silly stuff about a "runaway greenhouse effect" in relation to Earth's climate is a dead giveaway.”

Dead giveaway about what, ScottyM? And why do you consider it silly of me to to ask you a few straightforward questions about the subject of runaway greenhouse effect? Clearly, the subject is relevant to this particular discussion about climate. And I posed the questions to you because I thought they might be a good starting point to get a better understanding of your thinking - along with the “unindentified variables” that you continue to reference in your posts.

I’m especially curious as to why you think these “unindentified variables” will negate any increase of greenhouse gases in earth’s atmosphere, and why you think we shouldn’t be concerned about the potenial for a global warming - particularly, in view of the scientific known-knowns about green house gases. By this I mean, we know greenhouse gases effect plantary atmospheres, we know greenhouse gases are responsible for their being warmer, we know the earth has enormous amounts of green house gases including enormous amounts of carbon dioxide, we know carbon dioxide is a major by product of burning fossil fuels, and we know that burning fossil fuels does increase the level of greenhouse gases in our atmosphere.

And I must say it’s intriguing that you should mention Venus, ScottyM. You may or may not be pleased to know NASA has been doing some studies in an effort to better understand how Venus became a 900 degree inferno - work that NASA hopes will help researchers better understand what conditions on Earth might lead to a similar fate - and work that is not limited to a small laboratory:

“A region in the western tropical Pacific Ocean may help scientists understand how Venus lost all of its water and became a 900-degree inferno. The study of this local phenomenon by NASA scientists also should help researchers understand what conditions on Earth might lead to a similar fate here.

The phenomenon, called the ‘runaway greenhouse’ effect, occurs when a planet absorbs more energy from the sun than it can radiate back to space. Under these circumstances, the hotter the surface temperature gets, the faster it warms up. Scientists detect the signature of a runaway greenhouse when planetary heat loss begins to drop as surface temperature rises. Only one area on Earth – the western Pacific ‘warm pool’ just northeast of Australia – exhibits this signature. . ." [TROPICAL ‘RUNAWAY GREENHOUSE’ PROVIDES INSIGHT TO VENUS]

February 3, 2011 at 11:32 a.m.
SCOTTYM said...

"And why do you consider it silly of me to to ask you a few straightforward questions about the subject of runaway greenhouse effect?"

Because the idea of a "runaway green house" scenario on Earth is hyperbole.

Two types of people believe in the "runaway green house" scenario, those who are completely ignorant of the facts, and those who do know a few talking points but who do not understand the relative scales of individual climactic factors nor the actual history of our planet.


"Rabbette and her co-investigators from NASA Ames, Christopher McKay, Peter Pilewskie and Richard Young, used atmospheric conditions above the Pacific Ocean, including data recorded by NASA’s Earth Observing System of satellites, to create a computer model of the runaway greenhouse effect." From the above NASA link.

Did you notice the part about the "computer model"?

It's a pretty uninformed view to think that computer models are actually some type of empirical evidence of AGW.

Also, check the date on your link.

9 years old. Pathetic.

If you have some empirical evidence that CO2 causes the climate to warm, you should share it with the world as no one else has found it yet. This despite the 10s of billions of tax dollars spent by "scientists" looking for it and attempting to convince everyone that they have already found it.

All they have is physically unrealistic conjectures, computer models, very large P.R. campaigns, and a long list of falsified assertions and failed predictions.

AGW is a failed mutation of real science and will be roundly laughed at 20 years from now. Of course the laughing will stop when we think about how much time and wealth we spent on this farce.

February 3, 2011 at 9:16 p.m.
SCOTTYM said...

"As it turns out, the scientific community has been addressing this particular question for some time now and they say that increased heavy snowfalls are completely consistent with what they have been predicting as a consequence of man-made global warming:"

Maybe those in Al's "scientific community" should have called out the elected officials in this video when they were going on about reduced snowfall due to, yup, AGW.

Sorry folks, you can't have it both ways.

AGW evangelists' credibility = ZERO

As it has been since the mid 1990's.

February 3, 2011 at 10:58 p.m.
mountainlaurel said...


As I was trying to read, understand, and sort out what you were saying in your posts, I was suddenly reminded of something that Albert Einstein once said about problem solving – “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

February 4, 2011 at 12:32 a.m.
fairmon said...

It is interesting that no one references reduced forest by clear cutting and removing millions of trees that are not replaced as a pollution cause. I think osmosis is the right word for their role in reducing pollution. We must reduce the polluting of air, water and earth to avoid human extinction, To heck with worrying about the polar bears and whales, it is closer to home than that.

The manipulation of data by relocating sensors and other measurement techniques cast doubt on the atmospheric impact. There have been periods of extreme cold, extreme heat and other unusual weather events through out history and there will be in the future. However, the visible impact of air, water and earth pollution are observable realities that must be aggressively addressed.

February 4, 2011 at 6:36 a.m.
SCOTTYM said...


I can't imagine that Einstein would ever have advocated the distortions, data manipulation, and out right lies being propagated by the AGW industry.

February 4, 2011 at 7:45 a.m.
mountainlaurel said...

ScottyM said: "I can't imagine that Einstein would ever have advocated the distortions, data manipulation, and out right lies being propagated by the AGW industry."

As I said previously, ScottyM, I think Einstein's words sum up what is happening here rather well: “We can’t solve problems by using the same kind of thinking we used when we created them.”

You continue to suggest that some magical “unindentied variables” will resolve any and all climate problems that may develop in the future as result of our dependency on fossil fuels. Now, if there was some evidence these variables actually existed, it might be different.

But we know this is not the case, because there is no evidence - not even a sign - that such variables will resolve the problem, which leads one to conclude that the variables you reference were most likely to have been created by lobbyists supporting the fossil fuel industry.

February 4, 2011 at 3:37 p.m.
SCOTTYM said...

You're not getting it mtnlrl. I'm not sure if you are totally stupid, or just obtuse.

I've written nothing about unknown variables resolving climate "problems". I have written about variables, known and unknown, that are totally ignored when your type goes off on flights of fancy about trace a trace gas causing climate catastrophes.

I've stated repeatedly that the supposed "climate problems" you are worried about do not exist. There is no need to conjure up resolutions to non existent problems.

I've asked you to provide empirical evidence that changes in Earth's climate are caused by CO2, but you nor anyone else can do it, so you just sit with your fingers in your ears and mouth "CO2 bad" over and over.

Here are a couple of the known variables that the climate "scientists" claim have no material effect on climate. Clouds Ocean currents The sun's magnetic field Galactic cosmic rays I cannot, of course, list any unknown variables which may affect our climate as they are "unknown". I am of course intelligent enough to realize that I, nor anyone else, know everything.

To claim that CO2 is THE mover and shaker of climate, one must to ignore the actual evidence that CO2 changes have a very minor, if any, effect on climate (willful blindness), as well as ignore the effects of known variables (more willful blindness), and totally dismiss the idea that we might not actually know all of the variables or how they might affect the climate(pure hubris).

Climate is fiendishly complex. Boiling it down to /more CO2 = warmer temperatures/ is plain ignorant.

You, like many others who believe anything you are told so long as the ideology of the speaker is aligned with yours, look at the whole thing from the starting point of /more CO2 = warmer temperatures/ and all else follows.

It is a most unscientific way to approach the subject.

I'll ask again, please provide some empirical evidence supporting your climate religion. I won't hold my breath(Though maybe I should as it is now officially a pollutant).

As for the oil companies meme, you are aware that oil company profits are X% of the total cost of oil products sold, right? So if the watermelons get their way, and the cost of oil doubles or triples, what do you think will happen to the oil companies' profits? If you answer "double or triple" you'll be right. You really should look into where some of the AGW research dollars originate. Some of it is oil companies. Surprised? Don't be. Lots of folks are making lots of money by pulling the wool over the eyes of suckers like you.

February 4, 2011 at 6:08 p.m.
SCOTTYM said...


I'll make an apology for maybe not being clear.

I'm accustomed to spending most of my time with technical, mathematician types, so when I write "the sign of variables", I'm not talking about "sign" as in something that exposes the existence of the variable or what the variable looks like. I'm talking about "sign" as in positive or negative. In other words, do changes in those variables inhibit energy flows, or enhance them.

This is an important detail.

Maybe that will help.

February 4, 2011 at 6:47 p.m.
fairmon said...


Perhaps if you quit spending time with technical and math types and take something for it the problem will clear up if you also strengthen immunity.

February 4, 2011 at 11:39 p.m.
SCOTTYM said...


I can't shake 'em. Logic has a gravity of it's own.

The operative motto has to be "Check me please".

Sadly, this attitude does not exist in "climate science".

February 5, 2011 at 2:32 a.m.
fairmon said...

I agree SCOTTYM. It is sad politicians don't insist on more proof instead of using suspect data to further their agenda. People conclude that not accepting their climate change hypothesis means reducing pollution for other good reasons is opposed.

When warming seemed to not be the concern the terminology was became climate change. Now that is very predictable, it will change. In this area if you don't like the climate just wait about 24 hours or less and it will change.

I support reducing the pollution I can see, feel, touch, taste and hear and some that I can't but know is there. But, don't try to convince me that humans can determine the earth's climate.Those people would have believed in rain dancers and medicine man magic and consult with astrologist that claim they can predict the future.

February 5, 2011 at 1:26 p.m.
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