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The Week That Was, March 7, 2009

March 9, 2009
 S. Fred Singer

The Week That Was  brought to you by SEPP
Quote of the Week:
 "Truth can only be arrived at by consideration and comparison of opposing ideas. Preventing such
consideration is a suppression of truth." [Al Gore, The Assault on Reason p11 para2]    AMEN
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THIS WEEK

Things are moving fast on the climate front -- in science, the "Antarctic warming" has been exposed as a data problem http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/02/28/steigs-antarctic-heartburn/

In politics
-- Demo senators and now some indudustry are rebelling against the WH Cap&Trade plan
-- rumors are that Sen Boxer may attach C&T to the Budget Reconciliation Bill to avoid a filibuster

But more fundamentally, Obama is in trouble, and climate policy is a factor, as The DC Examiner (March 6) reports: http://www.dcexaminer.com/opinion/blogs/TapscottsCopyDesk/Obama-is-in-trouble-40864502.html

 **Obama remains personally popular with the public, but worries and even outright opposition to some of his cornerstone proposals is growing. Democrats in Congress are even beginning to express in public print their worries that Obama has reached too far with the $787 billion economic stimulus package, the $410 billion omnibus spending bill, and the $3.6 trillion budget proposal (and the trillions more in additional bailouts, loan guarantees, tax cuts that are really just grants, and other spending accountrements).

 ** A devastating conservative case against Obama is coming together rapidly. Two influential columns this week tell the tale: On Thursday, a WSJ piece otherwise devoted to asking why Republicans aren't more eagerly and quickly taking advantage of the fact the Obama Democrats have all but declared war on the 75 percent of the U.S. economy that is private:

Beyond the stock market, there is a reason why, despite much goodwill toward his presidency, the Obama response to the faltering economy has left many feeling undone. There isn't much in his plan to stir the national soul. It's about sacrifice now so that we can live for a future of small electric cars and windmills.

This may move the Democratic Party's faith communities, but it cannot revive a great nation. If the
Democrats want to embrace market failure as a basis for their ideology, let them have it. As politics, it's a downer.

 **The second column appeared today in The Washington Post and was written by Charles Krauthammer.
Obama's mastery of public speaking has served to deflect attention away from the details of what he is actually proposing, which is based, according to Krauthammer, on a fundamental deception: Obama summons vision of catastrophes that are the result of too little government regulation of the financial
markets and he offers as a solution vastly more government regulation of .... health care, energy and education.

 "The day of reckoning has now arrived. And because it is only by understanding how we arrived at this moment that we'll be able to lift ourselves out of this predicament," Obama has come to redeem us with his far-seeing program of universal, heavily nationaliz ed health care; a cap-and-trade tax on energy; and a  major federalization of education with universal access to college as the goal.

Amazing. As an explanation of our current economic difficulties, this is total fantasy. As a cure for rapidly growing joblessness, a massive destruction of wealth, a deepening worldwide recession, this is perhaps the greatest non sequitur ever foisted upon the American people, Krauthammer said.

 Worse, Krauthammer says, is that Obama tries to have it both ways, with the alleged errors of deregulation  being compounded into the worst economic crisis since the Great Depression by Americas failure to  nationalize health care, shift our economy to alternative energy sources, and give everybody a free pass to  college.

In other words, Obama is trying to make the cause and the cure synonymous. Clever politics, but
 intellectually dishonest to the core, Krauthammer said.

I would only disagree that the Obama deception represents a clever political strategy. The deception
 represents the fundamental flaw in the Obama strategy and indeed that of the Washington liberals who are  racing to enact as much of their agenda as possible before the 2010 election.
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SEPP Science Editorial #9-09 (3/7/09)

The sea-ice issue - a ‘tempest in a

teapot.' Conservative columnist George Will is under attack about alleged reporting ‘inaccuracies.' See

<http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/02/26/AR2009022602906.html?sid=ST2009022702494>http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/02/26/AR2009022602906.html?sid=ST2009022702494

The affair - as seen by the Columbia Journalism

Review: But they are wrong; Will is correct.

<http://www.cjr.org/the_observatory/the_george_will_affair.php?page=all&print=true>http://www.cjr.org/the_observatory/the_george_will_affair.php?page=all&print=true

SEPP Comments:

**George Will is a 'big boy' and can take care of himself. He certainly needs no help from me.

**The whole affair seems contrived -- almost like a conspiracy by the AGW (anthropogenic GW) alarmists. By attacking a 'high-visibility'

doubter en masse, they hope to intimidate not only Will but others who don't follow the IPCC gospel that preaches AGW.

**I noticed, and so have many others, that the official source of sea-ice data changed their 'evidence' just after Will's article appeared. They discovered that one of their sensors had gone out of calibration. I don't doubt this fact, but I am curious about the timing of the discovery.

**The funny thing is that the whole issue of the extent of Arctic sea ice is a 'nothing-burger' -- to use the immortal expression coined by a past EPA chief. No one seems to have commented on the fact that sea ice might tell you something about whether the air and ocean is warming or cooling but it cannot tell you anything about the CAUSE of warming/cooling. ANY kind of warming will melt ice. Simple logic. Personally, I prefer to look at thermometers and not at sea ice. And the thermometers (and also ice-core data) tell us that the Arctic is no warmer now than in the 1930s -- and much colder than centuries ago.

**Finally, I want to emphasize that I know of no definitive evidence for AGW. None! But we have strong evidence against significant AGW. See the NIPCC report <http://www.sepp.org/publications/NIPCC_final.pdf>
http://www.sepp.org/publications/NIPCC_final.pdf

I fully believe that science will win out in the end -- although it might be easier to convince the public -- and perhaps even politicians -- if the present cooling trend continues for another decade or more.

A few years from now, when it becomes clear that "Nature, not human activity, rules the climate" a lot of Will's critics are going to look pretty silly.

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1. Senate Democrats Critical Of Obama's Cap-And-Trade Plans

2. The Real Price of Obama's Cap-and-Trade Plan

3. Nuking Clean Power

4. James Hansen's Political Science

5. Clinton Ranks Climate Change More Important Than Human Rights

6. Global Warming is not a Crisis, but it may be Creating a Crisis of Intellectual Integrity

7. The Ongoing CO2 Wars

8. Antarctic Warming and the Projected Disappearance of Emperor Penguins.

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NEWS YOU CAN USE

Climate Conference March

8-10

<http://www.heartland.org/events/NewYork09/newyork09.html>
http://www.heartland.org/events/NewYork09/newyork09.html

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Chris Horner on cap &

trade

<http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?print=yes&id=30891>http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?print=yes&id=30891

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Fred Singer on CO2

Wars

<http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=321228358224458>http://www.ibdeditorials.com/IBDArticles.aspx?id=321228358224458

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The George C. Marshall Institute report <>The

Cost of Climate Regulation for American Households documents the economic burdens a cap-and-trade program to control greenhouse gas emissions will impose on American households.

<http://www.marshall.org/article.php?id=636>http://www.marshall.org/article.php?id=<http://www.marshall.org/article.php?id=636>636

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Richard Lindzen's telling of the story gets better and better.

<http://yosemite.epa.gov/ee/epa/wpi.nsf/09133da7fb9a95db85256698006641d1/>
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Adam Keiper's thoughtful essay

<http://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/science-and-the-obama-administration>http://www.thenewatlantis.com/publications/science-and-the-obama-administration

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Will Happer, Princeton physicist: Serious doubts on CO2 as a climate driver

<http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=5441>http://www.capmag.com/article.asp?ID=5441

http://canadafreepress.com/index.php/article/8937

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Meteorologist John Coleman, founder of the Weather Channel, tells the real story behind Roger Revelle and Al Gore, winner of the Revelle Award <http://www.kusi.com/weather/colemanscorner/38574742.html
>http://www.kusi.com/weather/colemanscorner/38574742.html

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An expose on WH science adviser John Holdren

<http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/Read.aspx?GUID=1FDD71E4-B9E4-4FAD-9868-2936193BF8F1
>http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/Read.aspx?GUID=1FDD71E4-B9E4-4FAD-9868-2936193BF8F1

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EU trade ministers voted Tuesday to apply punitive tariffs to biodiesel imported from the U.S. The measure is supposed to level the playing field for European producers, who complain that U.S. subsidies for the crop-based fuel have led to a 25-fold increase in American biodiesel sales to Europe since 2006.

Like other renewable fuels, biodiesel isn't commercially viable without subsidies. But the combined power of the U.S. environmental and farming lobbies is enormous, so subsidies they receive. And it doesn't stop at taxpayer cash:

Congress, in its wisdom, has also mandated ever-higher biofuel production quotas. The result is a glut of biofuel capacity. So long as oil prices are sky-high, as they were for much of 2008, alternative fuels such as biodiesel didn't look bad to consumers. But now that gasoline prices have dropped sharply, even biodiesel subsidized to the tune of $1 a gallon won't sell.

Enter Europe, which claims U.S. biodiesel makers are dumping their excess fuel on EU markets, taking advantage of U.S. subsidies to undercut domestic firms. If EU environmental policies were really about the environment, this arguably would be a good thing. More green fuel for everyone, and on the cheap to boot.

Not so fast. It turns out that Europe -- which also isn't known for restraint in supporting farmers -- is more interested in protecting its own biodiesel industry than in seeing motorists fill their tanks with low-carbon fuel. Hence the new tariff, which comes out to $400-$500 per ton.

Aside from the costs of all this subsidizing and penalizing, the EU's tariff makes things worse by encouraging its inefficient biodiesel producers to stay in the market. And all of this despite evidence that fuels like biodiesel increase CO2

emissions compared with fossil fuels. And guess who pays for the subsidies?

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US climate negotiator Todd Stern has a habit of talking a big game. This is the guy who said, at his introductory press conference, "The time for denial, delay and dispute is over." But his ideas seem to have more bark than bite when it comes to his approach to climate-change policy. [WSJ]

<http://www.state.gov/g/oes/rls/remarks/2009/119983.htm>
http://www.state.gov/g/oes/rls/remarks/2009/119983.htm

Benny Peiser comments: It would appear that Mr Todd, despite all the rhetoric, realises that political decisions and climate treaties will not be made on the basis of "the science" after all, but on the "art of the possible", i.e. by those in the U.S. Administration whose priority is to safeguard national and economic interests above all. It's called ‘Real Politik.' Which is why Mr Todd is keen to lower green expectations. He has therefore made clear that any Copenhagen agreement "will only be the start of our journey, not the end. It will provide a framework calling for ambitious actions." Note: 'ambitious actions', not Kyoto-style targets. I think China and India and the rest of the G77 might be willing to go along with this approach.

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A dangerous development: Polar bears to limit CO2 emissions?

The recently passed budget by the U.S. House overturns a Bush administration regulation that forbade the use of the polar bear's listing as a threatened species to restrict carbon emissions under the Endangered Species Act. This is so far-reaching that Rep. Doc Hastings (R-WA), ranking member of the House Resources Committee, notes that this is a "dangerous policy rider that could seriously threaten new job creation and economic growth across our entire country. It was slipped into this bill behind closed doors by Democrat leaders as they wrote this massive piece of legislation. It empowers the Interior Department or a federal judge to limit potentially any carbon dioxide or other greenhouse gas emission in all fifty states, using the polar bear and Endangered Species Act as the regulatory vehicle."

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Norm Rogers comments: Global warming is highly political and infested with vested interests.

There is an establishment that has a lot to lose if global warming is discredited and a lot to gain if people become more alarmed and afraid. This is why there are well-financed advocacy web sites like <http://www.realclimate.org/>www.realclimate.org.

The establishment includes not only Al Gore, but scientists, research labs, and environmental organizations. Even though Al Gore is an obvious propagandist who distorts the science I saw him wildly applauded at the AGU meeting a few years ago. This is because his alarmist propaganda has greatly improved funding for scientists in the field. There are many embarrassing and unexplained facts in the field of global warming.

Michael Mann's hockey stick curve that was exposed as bad propaganda was one. Another is the failure of the upper troposphere in the tropics to warm as the models predicted. Another is the 5-year failure of ocean warming. The phony fit to 20th century temperatures by the IPCC multi-model ensembles was achieved by putting in arbitrary forcings differing for each model is truly shocking. All of these can be explained away because the complicated nature of the earth's climate provides plenty of ways to explain almost anything.

I've heard some of the biggest names in climate science admit that they don't know what caused the early 20th century warming or the mid 20th century cooling. Yet we ‘know' that the late 20th century warming was caused by greenhouse gases?

UNDER THE BOTTOM LINE

Inside the Ivory Tower: An exclusive survey of international relations professors reveals they're worried about climate change, Russia's rise, and their own irrelevance - in that order.

<http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=4685&page=0>
http://www.foreignpolicy.com/story/cms.php?story_id=4685&page=0

SEPP comment: Maybe they're right - about being irrelevant

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<http://www.investors.com/editorial/editorialcontent.asp?secid=1501&status=article&id=320893446242107>
http://www.investors.com/editorial/editorialcontent.asp?secid=1501&status=article&id=320893446242107

NASA's James Hansen leads a protest against a District of Columbia power plant in the middle of a snowstorm. Meanwhile, a scientist fired by Al Gore says we need to emit more carbon dioxide, not less. Speaking before Bill Clinton's Global Initiative in New York City last Nov. 2, Gore advocated civil disobedience to fight climate change. "I believe we have reached the stage where it is time for civil disobedience to prevent the construction of new coal plants that do not have carbon capture and sequestration,"

Gore said to loud applause. Following Gore's lead, a group called Capitol Climate Action organized a protest that took place March 2 at the 99-year-old Capitol Power Plant in southeast Washington, D.C. Its Web site invited fellow warm-mongers to "mass civil disobedience at the coal-fired" plant that heats and cools the hallowed halls of Congress. The site features Gore's quote as well as a video by Hansen.

<http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/03/01/hansens-coal-and-global-warming-protest-may-get-snowed-out/#comments>
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/03/01/hansens-coal-and-global-warming-protest-may-get-snowed-out/#comments discusses the "Gore effect" -- a well-known but unexplained weather phenomenon.

"I hope they don't cancel the protest. I want to see these lunatics, schemers, and charlatans standing in the midst of a blizzard declaring that the Earth is dramatically warming." ~ Alan Caruba.

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Obama's Cap and Trade program is a wealth redistribution program and has nothing to do with climate change or with helping the US gain Energy Independence. Jim Rogers, CEO of Duke Energy, describes the concerns well in the

following:

<http://www.cnbc.com/id/15840232?play=1&video=1051238804&__source=yahoo%7Cheadline%7Cquote%7Cvideo%7C&par=yahoo>http://www..cnbc.com/id/15840232?play=1&video=1051238804&__source=yahoo%7Cheadline%7Cquote%7Cvideo%7C&par=yahoo

Per Jim Rogers, President Obama is not in favor of Nuclear, not in favor of drilling for Natural Gas, and plans to take the Cap and Tax money and use it for wealth redistribution. As Rogers paints the picture: Electric rates will rise by 40% by 2012 and nothing about the plan helps the US to have more generation or cleaner generation.

=====================================================

"At last, the tide seems to be turning.

Businesses and consumers are coming to realize that the whole Emissions Industry is designed to deliver money and power to the government. There is nothing in it for taxpayers, consumers or the climate. Even some in the media are becoming sceptics." -- (Carbon Sense

Coalition)

<http://carbon-sense.com/2009/02/27/news-20090227/>
http://carbon-sense.com/2009/02/27/news-20090227/

==========================================================

Senior figures in the UK manufacturing industry do not accept that human activities are driving global warming or that action needs to be taken to prepare for its effects, the UK government's science minister said today. Lord Drayson said recent discussions with leaders in the car industry and other businesses had left him "shocked" at the number of climate change deniers among senior industrialists. Of those who acknowledged that global temperatures were rising, many blamed it on variations in the sun's activity.

--The Guardian, 4 March 2009. SEPP

comments: Sun's activity --eh? Maybe there's hope for Britain

<http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/mar/04/manufacturing-climate-change>http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2009/mar/04/manufacturing-climate-change

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"The 14th and 15th centuries were a period of great cooling in Europe. Witches were thought to control climate, and burning witches was a suggested means of returning to warming. Hundreds, if not thousands, were burned at the stake, and warming did reappear -- four hundred years later. Abandoning fossil fuels will be just as successful in modifying climate today." -- Prof James Rust (Georgia Tech)

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<http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/2009/02/saudi-scholar-nixes-biofuels-as-un-islamic.html>http://www.danielpipes.org/blog/2009/02/saudi-scholar-nixes-biofuels-as-un-islamic.html

Ethanol fuels are not ‘kosher' - Saudi

cleric: Muhammad an-Najimi, a Saudi member of the prestigious Islamic Fiqh Academy of the Organization of the Islamic Conference, issued
a tentative <http://www.adnkronos.com/AKI/English/Religion/?id=3.0.3035220933>personal

opinion (less binding than a fatwa) to Muslims that filling the gas tank with biofuels is

sinful: "I warn Saudis who live abroad and who use alcohol instead of petrol that this case is related and falls within the parameters of what the prophet said." He refers here to a <http://cleantechnica.com/2009/02/20/sheik-says-biofuels-are-prohibited-by-islam/>hadith

in which Muhammad prohibited the buying, selling, transporting, drinking, or manufacturing of alcohol. The Prophet (PBUH) should have included burning.

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