"Mistrust those in whom the urge to punish is strong." Friedrich Nietzche

"Any and all non-violent, non-coercive, non-larcenous, consensual adult behavior that does not physically harm other people or their property or directly and immediately endangers same, that does not disturb the peace or create a public nuisance, and that is done in private, especially on private property, is the inalienable right of all adults. In a truly free and liberty-loving society, ruled by a secular government, no laws should be passed to prohibit such behavior. Any laws now existing that are contrary to the above definition of inalienable rights are violations of the rights of adults and should be made null and void." D. M. Mitchell (from The Myth of Inalienable Rights, at: http://dowehaverights.blogspot.com/)

Thursday, February 19, 2009

E pur si muove, and other contradictions

“As most of you have heard many times, the consensus of climate scientists believes in global warming. . . . [T]he work of science has nothing whatever to do with consensus. Science . . . requires only one investigator who happens to be right. . . . The greatest scientists in history are great precisely because they broke with the consensus.” (Michael Crichton speech before the National Press Club, January 25, 2005.)

The “consensus” of theologians, philosophers, and scientists in 1663 was that the Sun, not the Earth, moved. In that year Galileo Galilei was forced to recant his theory that the Earth moved around the Sun. (“E pur si muove!” And yet it moves, he supposedly said afterwards.)

The consensus of scientists, we are told, is that humans are causing global warming by putting too much carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. However, the greatest “greenhouse” gas is water vapor. It makes up 95% of the greenhouse gases. [1] Carbon dioxide, with water vapor factored into the equation, only makes up 0.28% of greenhouse gasses and mankind’s contribution to that small percentage is miniscule. [1]

Dr. Wallace Broecker, a geochemist at Columbia University, in a speech before the American Geophysical Union’s meeting in Baltimore, Maryland, in May of 1996, stated: “I can only see one element of the climate system capable of generating these fast, global changes, that is, changes in the tropical atmosphere leading to changes in the inventory of the earth's most powerful greenhouse gas-- water vapor.”

And how about the planet Neptune? Scientists know that it has been warming since the 1980’s. [2] This can’t be caused by human activity. It is caused by the Sun, the same Sun that warms the Earth—and causes water vapor to evaporate and increase the greenhouse warming trend.

No matter how “green” we go—you, me, all of humanity—we will not be able to stop or control this natural process. According to Jane E. Francis, Professor of Earth Sciences at the University of Leeds, England, “[w]hat we are seeing really is just another interglacial phase within our big icehouse climate." [3] That is, it is well established that the Earth has gone through long ice ages with, relatively short (ten to twenty thousand year) warm periods over the last three million years, or so. We seem to be at the end of such a warming period. We should hope for all the warm greenhouse effect we can get, because it won’t last. The next ice age will come and the first generation of survivors will fondly remember the warm times.

Of course, there is taxpayers' money to be distributed to those scientists who scare the people the most and scientists need money to keep in business, so to speak. "Scientists who want to attract attention to themselves, who want to attract great funding to themselves, have to [find a] way to scare the public . . . and this you can achieve only by making things bigger and more dangerous than they really are." [4] (Dr. Petr Chylek, Professor of Physics and Atmospheric Science, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Nova Scotia.)

All of the above notwithstanding, that doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t take care of the planet upon which we live. It just makes sense to not mess up where you live and to try and clean up what you have already messed up. I like clean air, clean water, and healthy wild lands as much as anyone. But we needn’t beat ourselves up about producing a minute amount of a lesser greenhouse gas—CO2—when the greatest greenhouse gas—water vapor—is beyond our control. The cycles within cycles that cause the climate on our planet to become cold, then warm, then cold again, will continue no matter what we do.


[1] Global Warming: http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/greenhouse_data.html. Also see, Global Warming: A Chilling Perspective at http://www.geocraft.com/WVFossils/ice_ages.html#anchor2108263 and “click” on “A Matter of Opinion”.)

[2] http://www.worldclimatereport.com/index.php/2007/05/08/neptune-news/

[3] Global Warming: A Chilling Perspective, above, at bottom of article under “Stopping Climate Change".

[4] Global Warming: A Chilling Perspective, above, sixth quote after “Fun Facts about Carbon Dioxide.”

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