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Thread: Global Warming - Page 46







Post#1126 at 10-25-2007 02:10 PM by zilch [at joined Nov 2001 #posts 3,491]
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Cool The Warming Issue is Man-Made

Quote Originally Posted by Mikebert View Post
The proponents of global warming bear the burden to try to prove it wrong.
Warming is not the issue. The issue is whether warming is a natural occurrence (of which man can do little or nothing about) or is "man-made," for which a massive alteration of human activity must be undertaken to correct. Thus the onus of proof is not upon the accused ("man") but rather upon the accuser. Given the huge stakes involved, I am not prepared to convict the accused on a mere "consensus of either opinion or science.

Obviously liberals obviously feel very differently about this onus of proof. Given your history since the New Deal raped the ideal of "individual liberty," along with your present-day actions, I can reasonably conclude that the issue of "man-made" warming is just the latest choice of the Stalin-like do-gooders to cast their appalling spell upon the world and whip the benighted masses into submission. Totally un-







Post#1127 at 10-25-2007 03:13 PM by Skabungus [at West Michigan joined Jun 2007 #posts 1,027]
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The issue is action

Regardless of what the ultimate cause is shown to be, there will certainly be more to the picture than what we now know. I've heard no discussion of the fires in San Diego on this topic of global warming to date. Seems we need to broaden our perspective. I think folks interested in Global Warming may find the following essay interesting. It's on target and points to a future where action will be required.

http://www.public.asu.edu/%7Espyne/BIGBURN.pdf

Much of this discussion to date seems focused on "I'm right" "you are wrong", "man's fault" "not man's fault" stuff......

The point is, no matter what the complex of causes turns out to be, we'll have to adapt our thinking and our practices to survive. This really, is what life's all about.







Post#1128 at 10-25-2007 03:45 PM by Child of Socrates [at Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort joined Sep 2001 #posts 14,092]
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Quote Originally Posted by Skabungus View Post
Regardless of what the ultimate cause is shown to be, there will certainly be more to the picture than what we now know. I've heard no discussion of the fires in San Diego on this topic of global warming to date. Seems we need to broaden our perspective. I think folks interested in Global Warming may find the following essay interesting. It's on target and points to a future where action will be required.

http://www.public.asu.edu/%7Espyne/BIGBURN.pdf

Much of this discussion to date seems focused on "I'm right" "you are wrong", "man's fault" "not man's fault" stuff......

The point is, no matter what the complex of causes turns out to be, we'll have to adapt our thinking and our practices to survive. This really, is what life's all about.
I'm having trouble opening the PDF for some reason....







Post#1129 at 10-25-2007 04:32 PM by playwrite [at NYC joined Jul 2005 #posts 10,443]
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Quote Originally Posted by zilch View Post
Warming is not the issue. The issue is whether warming is a natural occurrence (of which man can do little or nothing about) or is "man-made," for which a massive alteration of human activity must be undertaken to correct. Thus the onus of proof is not upon the accused ("man") but rather upon the accuser. Given the huge stakes involved, I am not prepared to convict the accused on a mere "consensus of either opinion or science.

Obviously liberals obviously feel very differently about this onus of proof. Given your history since the New Deal raped the ideal of "individual liberty," along with your present-day actions, I can reasonably conclude that the issue of "man-made" warming is just the latest choice of the Stalin-like do-gooders to cast their appalling spell upon the world and whip the benighted masses into submission. Totally un-
I can remember clearly in the 1970s through the 1990s that the debate clearly included whether the Earth's atmosphere was, regardless of cause, significantly warming or not. Now that has become settled even with the most adamant naysayer, the argument has moved on to whether it is anthropogenic or not.

This reminds me of the arguments for the invasion of Iraq. Now that we know these arguments for invasion were based on false information, proponents have moved to different arguments for continuing the occupation.

The common question to both debates is why should we give any credence to the same boneheads that were so wrong on the earlier aspects of both debates

-- particularly since they seem to be the same group of boneheads?
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Post#1130 at 10-25-2007 05:22 PM by pbrower2a [at "Michigrim" joined May 2005 #posts 15,014]
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Quote Originally Posted by Bob Butler 54 View Post
There have been at least three technical attempts by the forum's "skeptics" to use science rather than rhetoric. Just briefly reviewing...

Stellar Cartography. It is broadly accepted that cosmic rays increase cloud formation, that clouds reflect light back into space, with a result of cooling. It is broadly accepted that when the planet is in the galactic arms, we get more cosmic rays than when we are between them.

It has been suggested by skeptics that recent global warming has been in part caused by changes in cosmic ray levels.

Two problems... First, cosmic ray levels can be measured, and they have not changed.
Or, as James Randi puts it in debunking incidents that defy logical explanation:

Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof

Solar Variation : If the sun gets warmer, so does the Earth. The sun's intensity does vary. 'Skeptics' alleged that the standard models emphasize the importance of greenhouse gasses, while not sufficiently crediting the role of the changing sun.

In the first half of the 20th Century, the sun observably increased its output. It stayed steady in the second half. Starting in the mid 20th Century, there was a vast increase in the release of greenhouse gasses. Temperatures have been going up steadily, both during the increasing solar period, and the increasing greenhouse period.
Greenhouse deniers rely heavily upon contentions that solar cycles and the long-term trend can dwarf everything. The long-term trend (that the sun will radiate ever more intensely over time so that (barring the moving of the Earth into a chillier zone due to some gigantic project of engineering) in a few hundred million years the Earth will be hostile to all complex life forms, including us. One hundred years is one followed by two zeros. One hundred million years is one followed by eight zeroes. One hundred years puts us at the time when Model T Fords were innovations; one hundred million years ago has dinosaurs as the dominant large life forms on Earth.

Main line climate science assigns weighted factors to the importance of both solar and greenhouse. If you change the constants that correspond to these factors, you get worse match between theory and data. The main line climate scientists have just come up with much stronger much more robust numbers than anything the 'skeptics' have been able to propose.
Indeed. Scientists are experts at statistical analysis, and they know well how to separate contributing factors of causation. They were able to prove that smoking reduces life expectancy by ruling out other causes or finding them to be correlatives to smoking (for example, personality traits and occupations that might be consistent with heavy smoking).

Geothermal Heating : We just did this one. The 'skeptics' suggested geothermal heat might have melted the Arctic ice caps, without providing much in the way of numbers or sources. The main line advocates think data and sources are important. The stronger weight should not be given to the side with the wilder idea, but to the side which provides the best data and calculations to back up their idea.
There would have to be a lot of geothermal heating and most of it would have to be on land for such to have been the cause of the melting of the polar and mid-latitude ice sheets of the last Ice Age. One would have to see huge expanses of land in which such happened, and that ordinarily requires unstable land masses full of volcanoes and earthquake faults. That obviously isn't happening in Greenland or the Canadian Arctic Archipelago (geologically stable zones) today... and it's hard to imagine any of the Ice Age ice sheets having melted because of underground heating that seared them into oblivion. The Canadian Shield, Britain, Scandinavia, and the Baltic basin have been quite stable since the breakup of Pangaea.

At another level, we have arguments about how to argue. On the table...

Burden of Proof. The bulk of the peer review literature is backing the human influence. As lay people in the field, it would be a lot to expect us to criticize and correct professional work. Zilch just proposed ex cathedra that the burden of proof is on the human causing warming advocates to show that the professional are correct. I would suggest the opposite.

When lots of time, energy and effort has gone into developing a field of science, the way to change the field is with new data the old theory does not explain, or a better theory that better explains the old data. The 'skeptics' are unable to provide the data. I just reviewed three of their top theories. I'm open to more of either theory or data.
If you throw such a phrase as "statistical analysis" at zilch, then expect him to rant that the fault lies in the analysis.

Conspiracy Theories and Ad Homs : The other primary element is to attack the motives of those saying something one doesn't like. This is not entirely a one way street. Skeptics will quote minority scientists opposing the global warming hypothesis. One answer is to 'follow the money trail,' to say said scientists work for such and such a research group, which is finance by yon Big Oil corporation. While following money trails and questioning motivations might need be part of the picture, it doesn't seem to me it should be a decisive element. Simply alleging an academia wide conspiracy theory doesn't seem like much of an argument. Alleging the existence of a vast left wing conspiracy seems a poor excuse for throwing away an entire field of science. Slander should not replace science.
Of course if the supporters of global warming denial get the bulk of their funding from economic interests intent on maintaining some status quo, then such is suspect. If good science -- and that does not mean the scientific conclusions of one's choosing -- establishes that global warming falls short of statistical significance, then one has a refutation. But let's remember that the cancerweed business long tried to show that smoking was an innocuous practice.

I have no doubt that the Oil Cartel will do far better than has the tobacco industry in continued viability. If any industry has incentives to invest in "green energy", it will soon be Big Oil.

Dimming is becoming a significant part of the main line theories. One concern is that it is far easier to scrub out the dimming pollutants from factory emission than the greenhouse pollutants. Developing countries such as China and India are currently using old style factories which release about 2 doses of warming greenhouse gasses for every 1 dose of cooling dimming agents.

But China and India are significantly suffering from the medical effects of the dimming agents. As you say, sulfur dioxide, nitrogen dioxide and the sooty particulates are harmful to children and other living creatures. China, India and similar countries will almost certainly soon start deploying the same sort of stack scrubbers used in the West. When they do this, they will be releasing ever increasing amounts of heating greenhouse pollutants along with decreasing amounts of cooling dimming pollutants.
Indeed -- those pollutants are the wrong way to prevent or mitigate global warming. The damage that nitrogen dioxide and sulfur dioxide do to human health make global warming a triviality. Once countries like India and China get some modicum of economic development, they will surely have to address concerns of quality of life -- which means that contributors to life-shortening pollution will have to be removed, global warming or not. All pollution is a legitimate target of reduction.

That the pollutants are troublesome portends that if rapidly-industrializing countries fail to address pollution, rich countries will have means of addressing those pollutants -- such as heavy tariffs on goods imported from countries that fail to abate pollution. Some countries will have to make the choice between fouling their environments in futile efforts to undercut the competition but being unable to export the stuff and meeting the pollution requirements at the cost of some substantial margins of profitability.

Thus, even with conscious efforts to reduce fossil fuel use, from a global warming perspective, the mix of pollutants being released is very likely to get much worse before it gets any better. The 'skeptics' delaying tactics, effectively delaying and reducing the response to a real concern, are very problematic.
Indeed! I am surprised that they don't begin with the safest of measures to abate resource depletion and pollution (the two are intimately intertwined) with a promotion of Zero Population Growth.
Last edited by pbrower2a; 10-25-2007 at 05:23 PM. Reason: quote formatting







Post#1131 at 10-25-2007 05:40 PM by Child of Socrates [at Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort joined Sep 2001 #posts 14,092]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Rani View Post
(above emphases added)

Or another question ... if local weather changes will be variable and unpredictable, why do we have to undertake this massive alteration of activity at all?
Well, I'd start by not intimidating myself. The "massive alteration" will be a cumulative action involving millions of people making small to medium changes in their consumptive behavior.

Then I'd actually make those small changes, and educate those around me about what they can do.

And I'd always keep in mind that the locals in Venice, Miami, New Orleans -- coastal cities all over the world -- have populations that would be most affected by rising sea levels -- even if I'm 800 feet above sea level here in southeastern Wisconsin.







Post#1132 at 10-25-2007 06:13 PM by Bob Butler 54 [at Cove Hold, Carver, MA joined Jul 2001 #posts 6,431]
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Quote Originally Posted by zilch View Post
Warming is not the issue. The issue is whether warming is a natural occurrence (of which man can do little or nothing about) or is "man-made," for which a massive alteration of human activity must be undertaken to correct. Thus the onus of proof is not upon the accused ("man") but rather upon the accuser. Given the huge stakes involved, I am not prepared to convict the accused on a mere "consensus of either opinion or science.
What level of proof would change your mind? Is there some threshold to be met, some amount of ice that must melt, some threshold of a computer model matching observed reality to so many decimal places, or would only a Deafening Great Voice speaking from Parting Clouds and a Blinding White Light do? Are you open to discussion of fact, data and theory, or is the above a declaration that you will cling to your political values with firm prejudice and bias regardless of science?

Quote Originally Posted by zilch View Post
Obviously liberals obviously feel very differently about this onus of proof. Given your history since the New Deal raped the ideal of "individual liberty," along with your present-day actions, I can reasonably conclude that the issue of "man-made" warming is just the latest choice of the Stalin-like do-gooders to cast their appalling spell upon the world and whip the benighted masses into submission. Totally un-
Huh? This seems to be an clear example of the mixed ad hominem and conspiracy theory form of argument that keeps surfacing on this thread from the "skeptics". All those with ecological values who allege an interest in saving the world, civilization and many human lives are actually power hungry stalinist totalitarians??? Is there any evidence that those holding ecological values tend also towards totalitarian values? (I'll use the blanket term 'totalitarian'. This time, you invoked the name of a communist, but the fascist, Inquisition, totalitarian and religious forms of the argument frequently raised in this thread by other "skeptics" seem essentially similar.)

Again, my belief is that the will of the majority should be checked by the rights of the individual. Unless one argues for a natural right to pollute, if the will of the people is for a healthy decent environment, their will ought to prevail.

No one I know if in the environmentalist movement is advocating totalitarian government as necessary or advisable. (Well, there are likely environmentalists in China that aren't trying overthrow their government at the same time. I'll grant you can find some totalitarian environmentalists if one searches the fringe of the movement sufficiently.)

Still, your basic argument, and that of others who keep coming back again and again to variations of the 'argument by hitler,' seems to be a vile mix of hate and lies backed by froth and global quantities of hot air.







Post#1133 at 10-25-2007 06:21 PM by playwrite [at NYC joined Jul 2005 #posts 10,443]
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Out for a cruise

It's late and our three "deniers" have decided to get out and pick up some action for the evening -

http://img505.imageshack.us/img505/8810/snlha9.gif

(You may conclude that their little problem with denial is not limited to the scientific world.)

I'm just trying to figure out which one is Zilch, but that's got to be Rani riding shotgun!
Last edited by playwrite; 10-25-2007 at 06:24 PM.
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Post#1134 at 10-25-2007 07:36 PM by Child of Socrates [at Cybrarian from America's Dairyland, 1961 cohort joined Sep 2001 #posts 14,092]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Rani View Post
You can make those small changes right now, you know. No need to wait for the denialists to take their meds.
Now we're talking. Even better, we're DOING!







Post#1135 at 10-25-2007 10:58 PM by zilch [at joined Nov 2001 #posts 3,491]
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Cool Consensus = Slavery

Quote Originally Posted by playwrite View Post
It's late and our three "deniers" have decided to get out and pick up some action for the evening...
This much is pretty clear, post-New Deal liberalism is an oxymoron that has redefined "liberty" as meaning "consensus."

Up yours, playdude. I ain't playin' by ya'll's redefined rules.
"More sparingly should this praise be allowed to a government, where a man's religious rights are violated by penalties, or fettered by tests, or taxed by a hierarchy. Conscience is the most sacred of all property." -- James Madison, 1792







Post#1136 at 10-26-2007 12:07 AM by Bob Butler 54 [at Cove Hold, Carver, MA joined Jul 2001 #posts 6,431]
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Quote Originally Posted by zilch View Post
This much is pretty clear, post-New Deal liberalism is an oxymoron that has redefined "liberty" as meaning "consensus."

Up yours, playdude. I ain't playin' by ya'll's redefined rules.
"More sparingly should this praise be allowed to a government, where a man's religious rights are violated by penalties, or fettered by tests, or taxed by a hierarchy. Conscience is the most sacred of all property." -- James Madison, 1792
Again, the basic equation of democracy is that the rights of the individual trump the will of the people, but the will of the people otherwise prevails. Madison's paper is eloquent in extolling both the rights of property and the rights of conscience. He pleas that both are central and important limits on the power of government. I'm with him.

But I am trying to find somewhere in there where Madison says anything to suggest a natural right to pollute, an individual right to destroy the environment. In the Founders time, Nature was viewed as large and robust, immune to the destructive influences of man. Thus, any attempt to read into Madison a position on ecology would be stretching it.

The rights of the individual, the rights of conscience, were written into the Bill of Rights. These include Freedom of Speech, of Religion, and of the Press. Property also cannot be seized without compensation. Madison's paper does eloquently defend these points. I applaud Madison.

In seeking to protect the environment, which article of the Bill of Rights is being violated by the environmentalist movement? Which clause of the Bill of Rights has been "redefined"?

It is you that is blaspheming against the Constitution. You change the basic social contract when you allege or imply a right to pollute. You cannot reasonably assert that the Will of the People, acting through their representatives to protect the environment, are usurping some sort of individual right protected under the Constitution, Bill of Rights, or natural law.

Or if you are making such an assertion, please identify which of the Founder's rights you are reading as a right to pollute. The Bill of Rights is definitely a real limitation on the power of government, but you are not free to invent new rights whenever someone attempts to pass legislation you do not like.







Post#1137 at 10-26-2007 12:35 AM by Zarathustra [at Where the Northwest meets the Southwest joined Mar 2003 #posts 9,198]
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Quote Originally Posted by zilch View Post


Up yours, playdude. I ain't playin' by ya'll's redefined rules.
"More sparingly should this praise be allowed to a government, where a man's religious rights are violated by penalties, or fettered by tests, or taxed by a hierarchy. Conscience is the most sacred of all property." -- James Madison, 1792
The global warming crowd is going to outlaw Christianity? Those devils!
Americans have had enough of glitz and roar . . Foreboding has deepened, and spiritual currents have darkened . . .
THE FOURTH TURNING IS AT HAND.
See T4T, p. 253.







Post#1138 at 10-26-2007 04:17 AM by Justin '77 [at Meh. joined Sep 2001 #posts 12,182]
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What Marc said.

Quote Originally Posted by Bob Butler 54 View Post
But I am trying to find somewhere in there where Madison says anything to suggest a natural right to pollute, an individual right to destroy the environment.
Actually, the Founders' writings come down pretty heavily against polluters. As you mentioned, the understanding of environmental spillover at their time was pretty poor; but the concept of people being directly responsible for harms they cause others resounds throughout. There is no the environment in any meaningful sense (the only place to draw an objective barrier is around the whole of the universe, and that seems counterproductive to me). What there are are several touching -- heck, interacting -- microenvironments on many levels. And an individuals undeniable right to pollute or otherwise change an environment ends where his neighbor's(/s') environments begin. That's pure Madison.
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Post#1139 at 10-26-2007 07:59 AM by Mikebert [at Kalamazoo MI joined Jul 2001 #posts 4,502]
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Quote Originally Posted by zilch View Post
Warming is not the issue.
Warming is the issue. Is warming going to be a big problem? If it is, we have to deal with it, regardless of who or what is responsible.

Take the wildfires currently burning California. Does it really matter whether the fire was started by a campfire or lightning? You put the damn thing out.







Post#1140 at 10-26-2007 09:26 AM by 13rian [at Pennsylvania joined Aug 2007 #posts 151]
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Quote Originally Posted by pbrower2a View Post
I have no doubt that the Oil Cartel will do far better than has the tobacco industry in continued viability. If any industry has incentives to invest in "green energy", it will soon be Big Oil.
and this is why I'm not *too* worried about it all. I have suspected this for a few years. As soon as we hit peak oil, they'll come out and say..."no problem! Here's what the chaps in R&D have been working on..." voila. It's not like the day after peak oil the oil companies are going to hold a meeting and say "well, looks like we're all out of a job. nice working with you fellows...we had a pretty good run there, but who could have seen this coming?"

I saw a Chevy commercial last night touting their "green" cars anf the tag line went something like: "Chevy: from low-fuel (higher MPG) to no-fuel (electric)"







Post#1141 at 10-26-2007 09:29 AM by Mikebert [at Kalamazoo MI joined Jul 2001 #posts 4,502]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Rani View Post
Right. But it needs to be done in an objective way, not by talking about fairies and junk science, or building strawman arguments. Or, for that matter, placing a bet that we'd better believe in it (ala God,) or suffer the consequences.
But you and Justin aren't behaving in an objective fashion. You propose alternatives that if true might falsify global warming, but you don't engage in the subsequent discussion, instead you resort to snark.

Justin proposes that "cosmic topology" could be responsble for recent warming, hinting that climate scientists are simply too ignorant of possibilities like this one to be taken seriously. He doesn't say what this is, he just throws it out there to give the impression that there are mysterious forces that climate scientists haven't checked out and so any conclusions are way premature.

Cosmic topology as Justin used it is a red herring.

As far as I can tell it refers to the flux of cosmic rays (CR) entering our solar system from outside. According to a certain climate theory, a reduction in CR flux reaching the lower atmosphere will produce warming. The strength of this flux depends on our position within the galaxy. For example, if we move 1% farther from a CR source the CR from that source would be about 2% weaker. About a 3% reduction is needed to produce the 0.3 C temperature rise seen since the 1970's that climate scientists believe reflects greenhouse gases. So we would need to move 3% father from the nearest/strongest CR source for this to happen.

The solar system moves through space, and its position wrt to other objects changes. Currently, the nearby star with the largest true velocity (relative to the Sun) is Wolf 424 which moves at 555 km/s. In 30 years, the solar system has changed its position with Wolf 424 by about 0.05 light years. With other objects it has changed its position less, but lets assume this large movement holds for the nearest/strongest CR source. The cosmic topology alternative then has a 3% increase in distance occuring as a result of that 0.05 light year movement, implying that the closest/strongest CR source is 0.05/0.03 = 1.7 light years away and moving away from us at 555 km/s. If the movement were slower its would have to be closer. 1.7 light years (or less) is less than the distance of Proxima Centauri, making it, by far, the closest star-like object to our solar system.

If there was a cosmic ray source this close to us, we would see it. That is, we would observe that a large fraction of the CR (and other radiation) is coming from a single spot in the sky. We don't see that. Instead we see CR coming from all over the sky with no point-like sources, implying many sources many thousands of light years away. For CR sources 1000 light years away it would take about 18000 years for Wolf 424-style relative motion to carry the solar system 3% farther. Since most of the sources are farther its would take much longer than that.

In any case the time it takes for cosmic tolpology to change is much, much longer than 30 years. In fact, the scientist who has written on this (and whom Justin cited) descibes large temperature shifts (several degrees C) due to CR fluctuations over spans of 185 million years.

So you see cosmic topology as an objective cause of climate change only applies over very long periods of time. It is completely irrelevant to warming over the past few decades or centuries for that matter. Justin used it sow doubt, in order to build his case that climate scientists don't know enough. And he hasn't acknowledged that it cannot explain any recent warming. This is hardly objective discussion.

You did the same thing when you suggested that an undersea volcano might be melting the polar ice. Your message was the same, an implication that GW proponents haven't considered alternatives--that they aren't testing their hypotheses as scientists should--that they are close minded. Actually there are very good reasons for concluding that geothermal energy isn't a factor in ice cap melting. But you don't want to go there.

It appears to me that what you wanted was for your comment to remain unchallenged, as so sow doubt about how firm the science is. But then the thread was distracted by the Semo and Pink Splice show. So you asked for a response. But when you got it, you had no interest in discussing the science.







Post#1142 at 10-26-2007 10:16 AM by Mikebert [at Kalamazoo MI joined Jul 2001 #posts 4,502]
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Quote Originally Posted by 13rian View Post
and this is why I'm not *too* worried about it all. I have suspected this for a few years. As soon as we hit peak oil, they'll come out and say..."no problem! Here's what the chaps in R&D have been working on..." voila. It's not like the day after peak oil the oil companies are going to hold a meeting and say "well, looks like we're all out of a job. nice working with you fellows...we had a pretty good run there"
What makes you think they will be out of a job when peak oil comes? Peak oil refers to the point when about HALF the recoverable oil has been recovered. The rate at which the oil is produced reaches a plateau from which no further increases are possible (old fields run dry as fast as new ones can be brought into production).

That is, supply becomes fixed (and eventually goes into decline), while demand rises. This means price increases. Since oil is inelastic, price rises a lot. Because the cost of producing oil is not greatly different after peak oil than before, high prices means that the profits from oil extraction soar. The vast majority of the profits that will be made from oil production will be made AFTER peak oil.

Here's the problem. The US has produced most of the oil that we are going to produce. And we did all of this during the low-profit pre-Peak era. In contrast, Russia and the Middle Eastern states are going to get a big chunk of that post-Peak action. Why do you suppose Justin is over in Russia working in the oil industry?

Perhaps you recall Dick Cheney defending the Bush I adminstration's decision not to invade Iraq during the Gulf War. He argued that had we done that the likely result would be chaos and a possible civil war. That it could become a quagmire. This was in 1994. Yet when Cheney entered Bush II's adminstration his number 1 foreign policy objective was to invade Iraq.

What happened, why did he change his mind?

Between 1994 and 2001 Cheney became CEO of Haliburton, a leading oil services company. As a result, he became an expert on the oil business and knowledgable about peak oil and what that entails.

Peak oil could be very profitable for Western oil companies, assuming the owners of the oil let them play a role. Much of post-Peak oil production will be in the Middle East, overseen by weak, unpredictable states, who could, in an oil-limited world, decide to make their oil unavailable to the US for political reasons. How can the US change the game in our favor?

The solution chosen, it would appear, was to knock off the Baathist regime in Iraq and replace it with one as friendly to us as the Saudis.

But it hasn't worked. Oil prices have risen and profits are up, but the war is domestically unpopular, the US has gained no control over the oil fields, and opposition to US plans has gelled into a stubborn resistance and helped grow anti-American terrorist organizations. Maintaining the war is frightfully expensive and experts now think it could be ten years, if ever, before the intended results might be achieved.







Post#1143 at 10-26-2007 10:34 AM by Brian Beecher [at Downers Grove, IL joined Sep 2001 #posts 2,937]
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10-26-2007, 10:34 AM #1143
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Oil 4T

So, the coming 4T could have its epicenter in Iraq or elsewhere in the middle east, as we continue to use oil as the lifeblood of our economy and society. So far we have pretty much refused to heed the warnings of global warming. Could the devastation fires in CA be a wake-up call for us to pay attention?

The price is now over $90/bbl and rising, and this will soon be felt at the gasoline pumps. Are pleas for conservation going to continue to be nearly nonexistent and fall on deaf ears when they are made? I have said many times that we cannot go on this way forever. But Americans seem to turn a blind eye to making any effort to lock the door until long after the horse has left the barn.







Post#1144 at 10-26-2007 10:39 AM by Mikebert [at Kalamazoo MI joined Jul 2001 #posts 4,502]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Rani View Post
If someone wants to buy up a lot of private property, kill off all the animals, burn off the vegetation, and pollute the living hell out of it, that would be covered under private property rights.
No it wouldn't. Try it and see what happens. It is not possible to buy property that grants absolute property rights. What is meant by owning property? That you have a document issued by the state that gives you certain rights (and excludes others) on the use of that property.

Absolute property rights are gained by conquest.







Post#1145 at 10-26-2007 10:53 AM by Mikebert [at Kalamazoo MI joined Jul 2001 #posts 4,502]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Rani View Post
Or another question ... if local weather changes will be variable and unpredictable, why do we have to undertake this massive alteration of activity at all?
Since terrorist attacks are variable and unpredictable, why try to stop them? Since crime strikes unpredictably, why enforce the law? Why treat disease? Why do anything?







Post#1146 at 10-26-2007 11:09 AM by Mikebert [at Kalamazoo MI joined Jul 2001 #posts 4,502]
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Quote Originally Posted by pbrower2a View Post
I have no doubt that the Oil Cartel will do far better than has the tobacco industry in continued viability. If any industry has incentives to invest in "green energy", it will soon be Big Oil.
I disagree. The same could have been said about old tech "big iron" companies like IBM, Xerox, Sperry-Univac, Burroughs etc. If any any industry had an incentive to invest in the new tech (PCs and the internet) it was they. Yet what happened? They largely were displaced by startups like Intel, Microsoft, Apple, American Online, Dell. Cisco, and Intel, etc.

This is what usually happens. How mainy railroads, or carriage companies made the transition to automobiles. Studebaker did, for a while, but mostly the new industry was dominated by startups: Oldsmobile, Ford, GM, Chrysler etc.

If green energy becomes the next new thing, Big Oil will go the way of Big Iron. The winners of the current fossil fuel paradigm have every incentive to keep it going.







Post#1147 at 10-26-2007 12:04 PM by Mikebert [at Kalamazoo MI joined Jul 2001 #posts 4,502]
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Quote Originally Posted by The Rani View Post
If you don't know for sure whether the effects of something will be positive or negative, it's just plain dumb to put so much "collective effort" into fighting it.
We don't know for sure whether the effects of withdrawing from Iraq will be positive or negative, so it is dumb to leave. We also don't know for sure whether the effects of staying in Iraq will be positive or negative, so is it dumb to stay?

We don't know for sure whether the effects of continuing the War on Terror will be positive or negative, so should be abandon it? We don't know for sure whether the effects of ending the War on Terror will be positive or negative, so should be continue it?

You can say that about doing or not doing everything. What you appear to advocate is indecisiveness.

But that's not really yout point. You have actually made up your mind. You advocate to act as if the result of global warming is benign. You keep open the possibility of changing your mind at a latter date, but right now you are a skeptic.

And this is fine, I was a skeptic for 18 years. And I'm not personally worried about my future, I'm nearly fifty, my only daughter is choosing to live a life in which she is unlikely to outlive me by much. I have no stake in this and am unwilling to adopt a less energy intensive way of life. I like my American lifestyle and will continue to live it. If the government forces me to change my ways through taxes or restrictions on my choices I am not going to like it.

I'm going to bitch and moan about it. I might even end up becoming a Republican, who knows? I am not going to kid myself that such a policy is unnecessary, however.
Last edited by Mikebert; 10-26-2007 at 12:16 PM.







Post#1148 at 10-26-2007 12:22 PM by playwrite [at NYC joined Jul 2005 #posts 10,443]
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Quote Originally Posted by zilch View Post
...Up yours, playdude. I ain't playin' by ya'll's redefined rules
Now I know which one in the car was you.

Hint, this time, you ain't the guy in the middle -

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YKAyhLtiKEA
Last edited by playwrite; 10-26-2007 at 12:25 PM.
"The Devil enters the prompter's box and the play is ready to start" - R. Service

Its not tax money. The banks have accounts with the Fed so, to lend to a bank, we simply use the computer to mark up the size of the account that they have with the Fed. Its much more akin to printing money. - B.Bernanke


"Keep your filthy hands off my guns while I decide what you can & can't do with your uterus" - Sarah Silverman

If you meet a magic pony on the road, kill it. - Playwrite







Post#1149 at 10-26-2007 02:00 PM by 13rian [at Pennsylvania joined Aug 2007 #posts 151]
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Quote Originally Posted by Mikebert View Post
What makes you think they will be out of a job when peak oil comes? Peak oil refers to the point when about HALF the recoverable oil has been recovered. The rate at which the oil is produced reaches a plateau from which no further increases are possible (old fields run dry as fast as new ones can be brought into production).

That is, supply becomes fixed (and eventually goes into decline), while demand rises. This means price increases.
ah...i see. I thought that "peak oil" refered to the point at which extracting the oil becomes more expensive than what it can be sold for, or was it the point at which extracting the oil requires more energy than the extracted oil will produce...







Post#1150 at 10-26-2007 04:09 PM by zilch [at joined Nov 2001 #posts 3,491]
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Cool No One Blames the Arsonist?

Quote Originally Posted by Mikebert View Post
Warming is the issue... Take the wildfires currently burning California. Does it really matter whether the fire was started by a campfire or lightning? You put the damn thing out.
You conveniently left out the arsonist, who would be prosecuted with the onus of proof on the state.

Same goes for the guilty party in the global warming debate: the lifestyles of the [GOP] rich and greedy.
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