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The Good Ship AGW Is Sinking; Still the Band Plays On

Abandon the HMS Global Warming? Never! Obama will head to Copenhagen for the UN climate change summit.

by
Dan Miller

Bio

November 25, 2009 - 1:04 pm

The Titanic is remembered for many things. Being unsinkable is one of them, and the dedication to duty of the members of her band who provided musical accompaniment as the ship went down is widely known. The sinking occurred in the dark very early on the morning of April 15, 1912, in a part of the North Atlantic where icebergs are at their worst from April through June. The Titanic nevertheless proceeded at full speed. It has been suggested that the fatal iceberg came from Greenland, “where large ice chunks are known to break off, or ‘calve,’ from glaciers and float south.”

Nearly a century ago, nobody blamed global warming, since the notion had not yet been invented. Nor for that matter had Al Gore gotten around to being born, much less to taking “the initiative in creating the Internet.” It was therefore an ignorant and uninformed age. Now, of course, nearly every social and economic ill, from terrorism down to and including prostitution, has been shown to be caused by global warming. Indeed, global warming may be even worse than the terrorism and prostitution which it breeds, and second only to global nuclear war.

It might be possible to draw an analogy between the Titanic and the United States, or even Western society in general. However, this article merely deals with anthropogenic global warming. Despite the dubious science and the tip of an iceberg of emails and other documents not intended for the public eye which the Good Ship Global Warming has now struck, the band plays on. The almost deafening chorus of affirmers continues to sing; a bit off-key at the moment, but loudly nonetheless.

Undaunted by the cacophony of deniers trying to sink them in a sea of skepticism, the United States still intends bravely to:

propose an emissions reduction target at a UN climate change summit in Copenhagen next month, the White House said Monday.

About the the Copenhagen “summit,” which he will attend, President Obama said:

Our aim there is … not a partial accord or a political declaration, but rather an accord that covers all the issues in the negotiations and one that has immediate operational effect.

The United States will make a meaningful submission — a real plan:

The White House heads into the talks with confidence.

“I think we go into Copenhagen with a very, very strong hand,” said one of the officials. “We have done I think more than anyone could have expected us to do in a short time.” …

“The Obama administration will be able to say to the world we are no longer going to preach temperance from a bar stool. We are now ready to begin to make a commitment.”

Platitudes somewhat divorced from reality, perhaps? Hacked icebergs? Maybe the time when the Good Ship Global Warming sinks is upon us.

The United States and India this week discussed a memorandum to serve as the framework for bilateral global warming efforts. That will be an interesting document, because India has been adamant that developing countries — including, of course, India — must get a free ride in fighting the terrors of global warming. Prime Minister Singh hopes to get lots of U.S. investment in India’s economy while continuing to pump the demon carbon dioxide and its equivalents into the atmosphere. Much of this probably has more to do with the China warming offsets sought to be purchased by the Obama administration than with any realities of global warming, but then that’s smart diplomacy.

And the circus continues elsewhere.

The Italian foreign minister threatened that “[world leaders'] credibility could suffer if they failed to make concrete commitments at next month’s Copenhagen climate summit.”

Central American countries will demand $105 billion “from industrialized countries for damages caused by global warming. … We hope for a deal that is ethical and moral.”

Poland wants to sell $22 million worth of carbon credits to Ireland.

Those examples came from just five minutes spent online. There are many more.

Despite the hockey stick thrown into the gears of global warming by the recent involuntary disclosure of emails and other documents, it remains easy to find paeans to the devil (or god) of global warming. This, from the appropriately named Arizona Daily Sun, makes no note of the impact of the Sun or the recent iceberg of involuntary disclosures of some unfortunate untruths.

Such accounts are ubiquitous.

Some comment threads on blogs generally discount the significance of the disclosures, reflecting a belief that no matter how disreputable the “science” of global warming may be seen to be by some, the faith must be kept. Besides, the “reputable” scientists sort of speak in tongues and must be defended with religious fervor regardless of whether we understand them.

According to the New York Times:

The evidence pointing to a growing human contribution to global warming is so widely accepted that the hacked material is unlikely to erode the overall argument. However, the documents will undoubtedly raise questions about the quality of research on some specific questions and the actions of some scientists. …

Several scientists whose names appear in the e-mail messages said they merely revealed that scientists were human, and did nothing to undercut the body of research on global warming. “Science doesn’t work because we’re all nice,” said Gavin A. Schmidt, a climatologist at NASA whose e-mail exchanges with colleagues over a variety of climate studies were in the cache. “Newton may have been an ass, but the theory of gravity still works.”

If the ObamaCare debacle, the sour state of the economy, and the diminishing adulation now accorded President Obama do not kill cap and trade or any Copenhagen treaty, then the unsinkable Titanic may well be an appropriate metaphor for the United States.

Dan Miller graduated from Yale University in 1963 and from the University of Virginia School of Law in 1966. He retired from the practice of law in Washington, D.C., in 1996 and has lived in a rural area in Panama since 2002.
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