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Self-described

March 12th, 2007

Apparently Channel Four in the UK has put out a program which, with admirable honesty entitles itself The Great Global Warming Swindle, and offers the same tired set of swindlers we’ve heard for fifteen years or more, although their site breathlessly proclaims

But just as the environmental lobby think they’ve got our attention, a group of naysayers have emerged to slay the whole premise of global warming.

Particularly amusing for those of us who follow these things is the linkup between the US right, represented by Fred Singer, Patrick Michaels and others, and the Revolutionary Communist Party/LM crew at Spiked who put the whole thing together.* George Marshall (no relation to the George C Marshall Institute, which in turn bears no relation to George C Marshall, the soldier and statesman whose name it shamelessly ripped off) details names, track records of and (an incomplete list of) cash payments received by the participants.

*For those who like to keep track of the links between various forms of delusionism, this is the same group that denied ethnic cleansing in Bosnia.

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  1. Simonjm
    March 17th, 2007 at 11:22 | #1

    Majorajam Lib like all hard core libertarians the don’t see any adverse impact by humans on the environment nor any possibility that we can.

    Full steam ahead business as usual it’s just a myth perpetrated by anti-capitalists.

    That’s why regarding anything concerning the environment they can be ignored they cannot escape their cogntive bias. Pretty much like creationists on evolution it is a waste of time saying anything.

    Still it would be interesting to see where they think we will get the natural resources from to give India and China the same 1st world living standards as us. Maybe they have a couple of spare Earths hidden somewhere.

  2. libertarian
    March 17th, 2007 at 11:36 | #2

    Majorajam,
    Reread the thread.

    I made no “wild claims regarding the effect of fossil fuel rationing on economic growth”. In fact, I made no claims about fossil fuels whatsoever. It was you made the (still unsubstantiated) claim and then demanded that I address it.

    Strangely enough, before I put the effort into analyzing your claim, I’d like a more substantial reference than “the IMF”.

    As for my economic ignorance, of which you seem convinced without knowing anything about me (save that I am a libertarian): how about an intellectual arm-wrestle to settle this? Explain the derivation of Black-Scholes in layman’s terms. Then you pick a fundamental theorem of economics for me to explain. We’ll let the readers judge the winner.

  3. March 17th, 2007 at 16:09 | #3

    Global Time to Kill

    * * * *

    You think you’re too early for global warming? You’re just in time. It has already begun. What are your plans for the brave warm world?

    sweet-jane-says

    * * * *

    Top scientists will meet next month in Belgium to update the report on global warming. “Changes in climate are now affecting physical and biological systems on every continent,” the report says. It contradicts a 2001 report by the same international group. The 2001 report said the effects of global warming were coming, but it mentioned only scattered regional effects.

    “Things are happening and happening faster than we expected,” said Patricia Romero Lankao of the National Center for Atmospheric Research in Boulder, Colorado. Lankao is one of more than 1,000 scientists that contributed to the new Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report.

    According to portions of the international scientific draft, tens of millions will be flooded from homes every year as the Earth suffers from rising temperatures and rising sea levels. Currently, people are being displaced in areas from the Arctic to the South Pacific.

    The draft document says scientists are highly confident that many current problems can be blamed on global warming: change in species’ habits and habitats; more acidic oceans; loss of wetlands; bleaching of coral reefs; and increases in allergy-inducing pollen. Tropical diseases like West Nile Virus and malaria are spreading. Pests like fire are thriving in new territory.

    The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report says North America “has already experienced substantial ecosystem, social and cultural disruption from recent climate extremes,” such as hurricanes and wildfires.

    But the present is nothing compared to the future. By 2050, animals like polar bears will be found in zoos, their habitats gone. Terry Root of Stanford University said: “We truly are standing at the edge of mass extinction” of species.

    Global warming soon will “affect everyone’s life … it’s the poor sectors that will be most affected,” Romero Lankao said.

    The report included these likely results of global warming:

    * Hundreds of millions of Africans and tens of millions of Latin Americans who now have water will be short of it in less than 20 years.

    * By 2050, more than 1 billion people in Asia could face water shortages.

    * By 2080, water shortages could threaten 1.1 billion to 3.2 billion people, depending on the level of greenhouse gases that cars and industry spew into the air.

    * Death rates for the world’s poor from global warming-related illnesses, such as malnutrition and diarrhea, will rise by 2030.

    * Malaria and dengue fever, as well as illnesses from eating contaminated shellfish, are likely to grow.

    * Europe’s small glaciers will disappear with many of the continent’s large glaciers shrinking dramatically by 2050.

    * Half of Europe’s plant species could be vulnerable, endangered, or extinct by 2100.

    * By 2080, between 200 million and 600 million people could be hungry because of global warming’s effects.

    * About 100 million people each year could be flooded by 2080 by rising seas.

    * Smog in U.S. cities will worsen and “ozone-related deaths from climate (will) increase by approximately 4.5 percent for the mid-2050s, compared with 1990s levels,” turning a small health risk into a substantial one.

    * The biggest damage is likely to come in ocean and coastal ecosystems, water resources and coastal settlements.

    * The hardest-hit continents are likely to be Africa and Asia, with major harm also coming to small islands and some aspects of ecosystems near the poles.

    “In most parts of the world and most segments of populations, lifestyles are likely to change as a result of climate change,” the draft reported. “Net valuations of benefits vs. costs will vary, but they are more likely to be negative if climate change is substantial and rapid, rather than if it is moderate and gradual.”

    “This is the story. This is the whole play. This is how it’s going to affect people. The science is one thing. This is how it affects me, you and the person next door,” said climate scientist Andrew Weaver of the University of Victoria.

    The United Nations network of 2,000 scientists was established in 1988 to give regular evaluations of the Earth’s environment. The document scientists released last month in Paris concluded with 90 percent certainty that people are the cause of global warming, and global warming will continue for centuries.

    J.

    * * * *

    Literature Cited:
    Climate Report Warns of Drought, Disease
    By SETH BORENSTEIN (AP Science Writer)
    From Associated Press
    March 10, 2007 9:45 PM EST

    On the Net:
    Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change –
    http://www.ipcc-wg2.org/

    * * * *

  4. Simonjm
    March 17th, 2007 at 18:54 | #4

    Sweet jane no matter what you say these guys won’t do anything until there heads are under water and even then it will only a matter of moving or buying scuba gear.

  5. Majorajam
    March 18th, 2007 at 02:24 | #5

    Lib, this: I fail to see the point of hobbling the “developed� nations so the developing countries can continue to emit CO2.- is a claim regarding the effect of rationing carbon on economic growth. I gave you two peices of empirical evidence that contradicts the idea that rationing carbon would hobble our economy. The first is apparently an exception to the rule while the second is beyond comprehension because it requires a few mouse clicks to confirm.

    As to your ignorance, I don’t need to know you to know that someone who is unfamiliar with basic concepts like public goods, or who attests to a particular spending policy without being aware of he’s doing so, or who unwittingly attests to the impact on economic growth of carbon rationing doesn’t have the first clue what he’s talking about. It’s a luxury afforded me by virtue of the fact that I don’t fear information.

    But now that you mention it, let me see if I can’t guess a little about you. You work in finance, most likely back office in an investment organization or in retail. You’re either recently converted to the industry or not far from college and probably the latter. You are doing an MBA or perhaps even studying for the CFA.

    Don’t know if I got that right, but it was considerably more intellectually stimulating than talking about black scholes, and also about as close as you’re going to get me to an on-line intellectual arm wrestle. I don’t do mopes.

  6. libertarian
    March 18th, 2007 at 08:33 | #6

    Maj, your guesses say a lot about you. How about a PhD in a numerate discipline, a small but well-cited publication record from my few years as an academic (H-index of 18 according to google scholar). Now pursuing opportunities in industry.

    We libertarians are not the simpletons you make us out to be.

  7. Majorajam
    March 19th, 2007 at 06:21 | #7

    Lib, you didn’t say what industry. If it’s finance, perhaps my career as a psychic isn’t lost. In any case, we can certainly stick a fork in your future as an economist, even of the armchair variety, (or as a linguist or rhetorician for that matter).

    As for libertarianism, as I was forced to admit, I used to be one before I was liberated. It just goes to show, no one is quite so zealous as a new convert, (you for the investment industry, for example), nor quite so ironically disdainful as the proximally disillusioned.

  8. libertarian
    March 19th, 2007 at 08:50 | #8

    Nothing so banal as the finance industry.

    I was something of a socialist in my undergraduate days. It’s much easier contemplating taking from others when you have nothing to lose yourself.

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