Investor's Business Daily 6/26/13
False Witness: President Obama is being lauded for his plans to restrict carbon dioxide emissions. But the scheme looks more like the last refuge of a desperate movement, because the speech he gave in its defense was full of lies.
Al Gore called Obama's Tuesday presentation at Georgetown University a "terrific and historic speech." It was not an honest message, though.
His text was laden with myths, fables, distortions and outright lies. Here are the top five:
1. "The planet is warming."
Earth's post-1950 warming trend stopped at least 16 years ago. This is an admission made by Britain's Met Office last fall. The media have confirmed the lack of warming, including the New York Times, which says the warming stopped 15 years ago rather than 16.
2. "Human activity is contributing to it."
There is no way that Obama or anyone else can say with any degree of certainty that human activity is contributing to climate change. Weather and climate are complex, are controlled by a multitude of variables, and are only dimly understood.
Scientists are free to claim that man is causing the planet to warm. And of course they do. But if they say it's an indisputable fact, that there is no room for the possibility that humans aren't responsible for post-Little Ice Age warming, then they are being dishonest.
3. "The overwhelming judgment of science — of chemistry and physics and millions of measurements — has put all that (doubt) to rest."
There is dissent in the scientific community, and it's not insignificant.
Consider a survey of 1,077 professional engineers and geoscientists, conducted by academics and its findings peer reviewed. The researchers discovered that 24% of the respondents "believe that changes to the climate are natural, normal cycles of the earth" while another 10% consider the "'real' cause of climate change" to be "unknown" and acknowledge that "nature is forever changing and uncontrollable."
Two of the study's academics reported that "skepticism regarding anthropogenic climate change remains" among climate scientists.
4. "Ninety-seven percent of scientists, including, by the way, some who originally disputed the data, have now put that (doubt) to rest."
This claim is from something called the "Doran Survey," which supposedly found that 75 of 77 climatologists agree that man is causing global warming. But 77 isn't an adequate sample size from which to draw such a conclusion and this group of scientists holds "unknown qualifications," says Lawrence Solomon, a Canadian environment writer. It's a dubious finding.
5. "Americans across the country are already paying the price of inaction in insurance premiums, state and local taxes, and the costs of rebuilding and disaster relief."
If Americans are paying steeper insurance premiums, it's not due to man-made climate change. It's because insurers have bought into the myth. Or found a way to charge more. Or both.
If Americans are paying higher taxes, it's not due to inaction. It's because greedy elected officials have found another pretext for hiking taxes.
Obama's third point is particularly specious. There has been no damage or disaster wrought by global warming. It has not caused storms to increase either in intensity or frequency.
Kerry Emanuel, a Massachusetts Institute of Technology professor and leading hurricane researcher, once believed as Obama does — that man-made global warming will bring stronger and more frequent storms.
But he reconsidered and in 2008 told the New York Times, "The models are telling us something quite different from what nature seems to be telling us."
Even Gore has had to admit that scientists "won't let us yet" link tornadoes to global warming.
An argument that can't stand on its own has to resort to deceit and exaggeration to perpetuate its existence. Such spectacles will only grow worse as the phony debate's last days approach. This is how we know that the great global warming scare is nearing its end.