The Hill reports that President Obama wants Congress to give him a $5 billion fund, but does not want to go to Congress to get explicit authorization to fight the Islamic State.
President Obama is pushing congressional leaders to authorize a $5 billion counterterrorism fund that could be used to support operations against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
The president first suggested the fund during a foreign policy address earlier this year at the West Point military academy, but it went nowhere in Congress.
The idea was revisited on Monday by White House press secretary Josh Earnest, who floated it as something that “would strengthen the hand of this president and future presidents for dealing with urgent situations like this.”
“This is a core component of the president’s strategy for dealing with this and other issues like it around the globe — that is, additional resources that can be used by the United States to build up effective partners so that when the United States has to confront threats like this, that we have well-trained, well-equipped, effective partners that we can work with to confront these problems,” Earnest said Monday.
Did you see the part that I put in bold letters there?
That’s some tricksy maneuvering by the White House. The imminent threat, the one that the president is resisting going to Congress over, is IS. But Earnest made sure to include “and other issues like it around the globe.”
Now, what might those be? What else might constitute a looming “threat,” in the eyes of this administration?
If you ask Secretary of State John Kerry, it’s “climate change.”
Former Secretary of State and presumed presidential candidate Hillary Clinton says climate change is “the most consequential, urgent, sweeping collection of challenges we face as a nation and a world.”
Not IS or similar Islamic terrorism. Not Putin, with his designs on rebuilding the Soviet empire.
President Barack Obama: climate change is a “direct threat” to the United States.
Now the president resists consulting Congress on IS, but wants Congress to hand him a check for $5 billion to deal with IS “and other threats like it around the globe.” He wants the money, but no oversight on how it gets spent.
Congress should not write the president a blank check.
They’re not coming back to TV, though, to extend the series from its original 14-episode run. And they’re not making a movie sequel to Serenity. Which is too bad, because that movie was one of the best sci-fi films of the century so far.
The cast — Captain Mal, Inara, River Tam, Jane, the whole gang — are reuniting for Firefly Online, the long-promised MMORPG that carries the ‘verse to PC, Mac, iOS and Android. Even characters who were killed off in the movie have come back for the game set in the Firefly ‘verse.
The news seems to have crashed the game’s site.
Getting the cast together for a full series might be impossible, since most of the originals have gone on to have longer running hit series or promising new series including Homeland (Morena Baccarin), Castle (Nathan Fillion) and The Last Ship (Adam Baldwin). Baldwin also has a solid gaming career going, with voiceover work in major titles including Injustice: Gods Among Us and Batman: Arkham Origins.
Firefly Online will let players captain and outfit their own ships, hire crews, run from Alliance heavies, smuggle stuff, explore worlds and aim to misbehave. With the entire cast reprising their roles, FO is about as close as we’re ever likely to get to more true content. If it follows the lead of other MMORPGs like Star Wars: The Old Republic and DC Universe Online, the series characters will turn up in downloadable content including new storylines.
Energy prices are rising for Americans because Barack Obama wants it that way. He told the San Francisco Chronicle that he would use energy prices hikes to socially engineer energy use, and that is one promise on which he is following through. His EPA’s war on coal alone stands to jack up power prices 70 to 80 percent, according to Dr. Julio Friedmann, of the US Department of Energy.
In recent remarks to the League of Conservation Voters, Obama said that he expects the rest of the world, including developing countries and the largest economies, to do what he is doing to their own energy consumers.
“[W]e’ve got to lead by example. They’re waiting to see what America does.” Obama said on June 25. “And I’m convinced when America proves what’s possible, other countries are going to come along.”
Asia’s two largest economies are not waiting to see what America does, and they’re showing no sign of following Obama’s anti-coal lead.
China says it shares Obama’s goal, but it is following its own lead.
China’s chief climate official Xie Zhenhua said China should not be subject to the same rules for greenhouse gas emissions as the United States and other rich countries, signaling that Beijing will oppose any attempt to impose them at next year’s world climate conference.
“We are in different development stages, we have different historical responsibilities and we have different capacities,” Xie told reporters.
Japan is not only not following Obama’s war on coal, it is increasing coal use in new domestic energy projects, according to Mari Iwata in the Wall Street Journal today.
Japan said Wednesday it would step up support for coal-fired power plants in developing nations, challenging a U.S. policy that seeks to discourage such plants in an effort to fight global warming. […] The move represents a repudiation of the Obama administration’s strict stance of carbon emissions. Washington is talking to members of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development, a club of developed nations, about a rule that would ban national export-credit agencies from financing new overseas coal power plants.
Japan understands that coal can safely power its economy.
Under Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s growth strategy, Tokyo seeks each year to back overseas coal power-plant projects worth about $4 billion. Typically those projects have Japanese investors and use at least some Japanese equipment. While the annual target hasn’t been reached yet, several major projects have recently gotten under way.
Japan has long supported energy efficiency. Unlike Barack Obama, who claims to support an “all-of-the-above” strategy that in reality only supports the development of expensive so-called “clean” or “green” energy, Japan actually does support all-of-the-above.
China and Japan are the world’s second and third largest economies respectively.
They’re not buying the Luddite, anti-energy radicalism that Barack Obama is selling on energy.
If You’re Skeptical of Man-Made Climate Change, Barack Obama (Who Is Not a Scientist) Is Very Unhappy With You
Scraped from Mashable.
In an interview airing on Monday night, President Obama reveals his frustration with lawmakers who question the very existence of manmade global warming. The interview, conducted for the Showtime documentary series “Years of Living Dangerously,” features a revealing exchange between New York Times columnist Tom Friedman and Obama, in which the president admits to having the desire to “unload on” lawmakers, such as House Republicans, who question the existence of manmade global warming as well as its severity.
Excerpts of the interview were published in the New York Times on Sunday, and a video clip was posted to Youtube.
“Look, it’s frustrating when the science is in front of us,” Obama said. “…We can argue about how. But let’s not argue about what’s going on. The science is compelling.
The baseline fact of climate change is not something we can afford to deny. And if you profess leadership in this country at this moment in our history, then you’ve got to recognize this is going to be one of the most significant long-term challenges, if not the most significant long-term challenge, that this country faces and that the planet faces.
Actually, the “how” is a big part of the argument, but Obama (who is not a scientist) just leaps over it. The climate is changing, because that’s what climate always does. It changes. The steady-state universe went out of science fashion decades ago, and scientists are just now really getting a good handle on how variations in the Sun’s energy output impact climate here on earth. But “the Sun has a massive impact on Earth’s climate” is the safe way to bet. It’s just a lot bigger and more consequential than we are.
That’s not the only “how” that’s worth arguing about. Even if you accept that mankind is changing the climate, “how” do we change that — or should we? We are a part of nature, if you believe the godless leftists who are pushing their climate change narrative. If we’re a part of nature, then anything we do is natural, including making Earth warmer (or cooler, as scientists — a community that does not and never did include Barack H. Obama Jr. — thought just a few decades ago) is just part of nature. It would be unnatural to oppose that. So there’s one philosophical argument, and then there’s a practical argument — how do we go about changing the climate back? First, you have to suppose that changing it back (rolling back the clock, liberals would argue in other political contexts) is even possible. Then you have to decide that it’s desirable. Then you have to decide what measures will change it back, and whether those measures are worth it. And whether they’ll even work, as we have no history of intentionally changing the entire planet’s climate. That’s kind of a big job. This administration can’t even take care of sick veterans. Yet Obama believes he’s smart enough to heal the planet? Yes, actually, that’s exactly what he thinks — the arrogant boob. He ought to demonstrate competence in a smaller job first. Like, just to pull something out of the air, building a functional health insurance website…
What I’m saying is, Barack Obama is offering a simplistic, bordering on childish, presentation of all the arguments involved in what we think of as “climate change.” But, as he knows well, childish argumentation is often very effective at generating emotional responses.
It hasn’t proven to be very effective so far, though, in changing votes. Americans tend to rate “climate change” very low in our issue priorities. A majority of Americans are at least somewhat skeptical of “climate change”/”global warming” as an issue that’s worth their time. A 59% majority worries more about jobs than “climate change.” Even as an environmental issue, climate ranks behind air and water pollution in Americans’ concerns. It’s just not an issue that moves a lot of voters, nor is it an issue that causes its strongest advocates to change their lifestyles. Barack Obama still joins the likes of Al Gore in jetting around the world, spewing all kinds of noxious gases (in more ways than one) to lecture everyone else about our carbon footprints. Until these enviro radicals practice what they preach, they earn nothing more than the right to be ignored.
I will admit I’m not part of the space age generation. I wasn’t even alive when the original Star Wars movies were coming out.
I have missed some of our nation’s greatest achievements in space flight—the moon landing and the first Space Shuttle launches—and I’ve also missed some of its greatest tragedies—the Challenger disaster and NASA’s suspension thereafter.
But, I’ve always considered myself an honorary member of that age group. This is both represented by my obvious “old-soul” mental maturity, but also by my undying love for all things NASA and astronaut related.
My mother worked for a NASA contractor, and so I’ve had some tremendous opportunities to, for instance, meet Carl Sagan and attend two Shuttle launches from Cape Canaveral. And my childhood bedroom featured a large Shuttle mural and several mission posters, along with a cute (yes, cute!) Snoopy astronaut stuffed animal.
It seems as though I missed some of the aforementioned highlights of NASA’s exploration, but I have unfortunately lived through some of its darkest moments.
When Columbia exploded upon reentry, I remember figuring that people would give up on NASA and her proud birds of flight, but they didn’t. At least not right away.
President Bush told us that, not only would we continue, but we would actually expand our efforts, to land on the moon once more, and even put a man on Mars. They were going to build a whole new rocket ship and it was going to take Americans to places unimaginable.
Then the confusing years of Obama started.
President Obama defunded Bush’s optimistic programs, and canceled the Shuttle program. He reorganized NASA to be a pseudo-State Department subsidiary, reaching out to Muslim countries, and providing climate and science education around the world. This presents the need for the highly scientific phrase—huh???
Less than a year after this decision, Obama started strongly encouraging science, math, and engineering education. And he redirected tons of Education Department spending to these pursuits. Rather than spend all this money on the education, wouldn’t it make more sense to give students an incentive for studying these things? Um, maybe by continuing to employ thousands of them, and allow them to achieve great things…by continuing NASA exploration.
Now, its not like I’m unsympathetic to the privatization argument. Space X and Virgin Galactic are changing the space frontier in great ways. But I think it’s clear by now that the Obama administration will spend exorbitant amounts of money, in one way or another. I would just prefer if they spent money in ways that expand our scientific horizons, not just train people for how to participate within what’s currently known.
Oh and there’s another thing—
$150 billion dollars is what some medium-sized countries’ GDPs are. In fact, it’s pretty damn close to what Ukraine’s GDP is (but we’ll discuss Crimean politics in a sec).
And this is what our generation’s predecessors spent on the International Space Station. Set up as the pinnacle of laboratories in space, this project was undertaken by many countries as a joint venture. And of course, our old space-race pal, Russia, was a primary partner.
But now all of the Space Shuttles are sitting in museums. Plans to create a new ship have been long on the backburner (if in the kitchen at all). And so we have no means of accessing the Space Station, let alone launching several of our communications and military satellites.
Obama thought his Smart Diplomacy would be the answer. We would pay the Russians, so that they would deliver our researchers to the Station, and would sell us their rockets to launch our satellites.
When Putin led Russia into a Ukrainian invasion, Obama bristled. Leftover from our Cold War days, the US was allied with Ukraine, and this was an affront to our efforts in the region, and an embarrassment for Obama.
Obama sanctioned Russia, and I guess thought that they wouldn’t care. I suppose he figured he was being magnanimous, because he didn’t provide military support for Crimea, and only economic sanctions…but Putin didn’t see it this way.
So now we’re at a standstill in two ways. Putin continues his hostile presence in Crimea. And, his administration has launched an offensive against the US in another way—by cutting off their space exploration systems.
The Russian version of NASA has said they will no longer sell us any rocket parts or engines, to aid in any deemed military use. And they will not transport our astronauts or researchers to the International Space Station. Their Deputy Prime Minister, Dmitry Rogozin, even said “I propose that the United States delivers its astronauts to the ISS with the help of a trampoline.”
I think Obama and his administration have mangled this Russian situation altogether. First upset by their homophobic laws, Obama didn’t attend the Sochi Olympics. Then fearing a hostile takeover of Ukraine, Obama put economic sanctions on Russia. It is important to note that Obama’s efforts have in no way quelled Putin’s advances. But it seems like he legitimately forgot that we rely on Russia, based on his own policies, for space travel. So much for Smart Diplomacy.
Obama’s continued confusion with regard to foreign policy has led us to have trampolines as the only answer. And he has become even more the ‘Huh???’ President.
A new Gallup poll finds that “climate change” or whatever disguise that movement is hiding in lately just is not a top concern for American voters.
On a list of 15 national issues, climate change ranks near the bottom with only 24 percent worrying about it “a great deal.”
About half, or 51 percent, said they only worry about climate change a little or not at all.
The poll comes just a day after Senate Democrats wrapped up an all-night talk-a-thon in which they pushed for Congress to tackle climate change.
The Democrats who organized that talk-a-thon were misguided in thinking that merely talking about something for a long time makes it go viral. They were trying to emulate previously successful talk-a-thons by Sens. Rand Paul and Ted Cruz. But those talk-fests were not creatures of their party; both grew up organically out of the senators’ real concerns over the issues they addressed. The Democrats tried manufacturing a similar event and just ended up wasting their time. No one paid them any attention at all, not even their slavish media allies.
For the Democrats and the climate change panic brigades, their moment may be ending. Concern over the environment peaked in 2007, and Democrats took total control with Obama’s election in 2008. Obama came in pledging to lower the seas and reverse the warming (which wasn’t really happening, according to the data that came out during 2009′s Climategate and afterward). Obama and his cohort had full control of Washington for the next two years yet accomplished little on climate beyond pushing some seriously misguided regulations through the EPA. Now they have lost the House, Obama is discredited and unpopular, and the Democrats are poised to lose the Senate as well. This week’s talk-a-thon, as pathetic as it was, may be turn out to be the high-water mark for “climate change” politics for a generation.
The Environmental Protection Agency’s power to formulate regulations without Congressional authorization is the subject of a case currently being decided in the US Supreme Court. Justices have voiced skepticism that the EPA even has such power. But that isn’t slowing the agency down, nor is the rapidly developing situation in Ukraine. The EPA is reportedly set to announce yet another round of unilaterally-imposed sanctions on the US economy.
The Environmental Protection Agency will reportedly announce a new rule Monday that requires oil refiners to strip even more sulfur molecules from American gasoline blends.
The New York Times reports that the new rule will require oil refiners to install new equipment and carmakers to install newer, cleaner fuel-burning technology in engines. The EPA estimates that the cost of gasoline will be raised by two-thirds of a cent per gallon as a result of the new regulations, while the sticker price of a car will be increased by $75.
The former estimate is disputed by Charles Drevna, president of the American Fuel and Petrochemical Manufacturers lobbying group. Drevna claims that the price of gasoline could rise by up to 9 cents per gallon.
“I don’t know what model [the EPA] uses,” Drevna told The Times. “The math doesn’t add up.”
That’s the story of the Obama administration: The math doesn’t add up.
NakedDC has, um, this.
It’s AlGore’s handout at the 2014 International UFO Congress and Film Festival. The handout highlights the hot conditions on Venus to warn us earthlings. Gore may not be aware that there is no life on Venus. Not indigenous. As far as our probes and Russia’s probes have determined, it hasn’t been colonized by space aliens either. It’s a hot rock.
So, the “reality” in Gore’s “ClimateRealityProject” may not be appropriate.
Plus, how does Gore know that the aliens aren’t coming from a cold place out in space? Why is he a warming chauvinist?
John Bolton is always bracing. Today he appeared on Fox and took Secretary of State John Kerry to task for his “mushy” talk on “climate change.” Kerry gave a speech over the weekend in which he claimed that “climate change ranks right up there” with major threats including weapons of mass destruction.
Wars are fought over WMDs, by the way.
BOLTON: This is mushy thinking at best. People decided global warming was a national security threat. They anyhow they bring to mind the most severe threat that the country faces. Now we compared it to weapons of mass destruction. And nuclear weapons and biological weapons. And I think this rhetorical scare campaign undercuts the point Senator Kerry is trying to make. He is foolish.
Kids of a certain age remember ads for Amazing Live Sea Monkeys. They ran in the backs of comic books. The ads promised that Amazing Live Sea Monkeys would hatch, grow, and become your friends.
Amazing Live Sea Monkeys were supposed to be so amazing that they even had their own Saturday morning show.
And a video game.
When Barack Obama burst into American politics, he promised to be a different kind of politician. He promised Hope. And Change.
The media were smitten.
Hollywood couldn’t get enough of him.
Despite their skepticism of the young, inexperienced senator, many Americans fell in love too.
And he was elected President of the United States. Twice.
Thanks to all who entered our first and very popular photo caption contest of the new year.
Based on all the politically incorrect entries, several of you should follow the lead of our friend “rbj” who entered:
Rendering of the Obama statue proposed by The Obama Temple.
Then, he quickly followed up with this comment:
It was begging to be said. I‘m packing for reeducation camp right now.
Please note that this is an excellent example of pro-active thinking. May I suggest that many of you regular contest goers keep your bags packed as well.
Now let us begin the “hellish task” of announcing the winners of this “devil of a contest.”
There were two writers that stood out Kuce and RockThisTown. Both had numerous entries and several that deserved a place in the winner’s circle.
“If you like your soul, you can keep your soul.”
“Satan visits OK State Capitol; conveys greetings from Timothy McVeigh.”
“Representative of Infernal Revenue Service visits Oklahoma to teach children the dangers of the TEA Party.”
Satanic Temple demands equal representation in Capitol. Satan’s PR person quoted as saying “All politics is Hell – we just want our fair share”
“Satan relocates HQ to Oklahoma after Climate Change adversely impacts Hell”
“Oklahoma children welcome key Obama adviser to the capitol”
The Satanic Temple? You didn’t build that!
“Ahhhh, I love the smell of burning souls in the morning.”
A shoo-in to win a Nobel Peace Prize before he’s seated in the Temple.
“Hello, my name is Satan! Like me on Facebook.”
Hey, where’s my pitchfork? Oh yeah, I left it on Air Force One.
See, I told you to keep those camp bags packed!
Here are a few more winners. (Seriously, this winners post could be three pages long, so better that you just go back and read all the entries.)
DPeterson: “AP: The Democrats introduce their new Official Spokesman…”
wombat1: “If you like the religion you already have, of course you can keep it.”
David77 had two winners:
“Satan, Prince of Lies, …, oh wait, Obama has already received that honor.”
“Satan, Prince of Darkness. Hey, wait, that’s racist.”
Cfbleachers our “Caption King Emeritus” displayed his usual brilliance with these three winners. (Note: As mentioned in the original contest, The Satanic Temple has named that “thing” depicted in the statue, Baphomet.)
Baphomet vs. The Ten Commandments, the final knockout game.
I understand Baphomet has little chance of winning a spot in Oklahoma, but that MSNBC has offered an anchor position as consolation.
“Can I get the internet on my Obamaphone?” Sure, your browser is called Baphomet.
Finally, our contest was missing entries from our 2013 Caption King, Chris Henderson. A signal that he is back in re-education camp (again) likely due to the photo below that he submitted to our last contest.
FREE HENDERSON NOW!
Alert the (Danish) media and see you all next time a photo is worthy of a PJ Tatler Photo Caption Contest.
“As a site, reddit is passionately dedicated to free speech.” Except when it’s not.
The gist at Grist: reddit has closed off comment and posting privileges for anyone who doesn’t toe the global warming line. Their censorship has been so effective at shutting off debate that they’re encouraging all newspapers to do the same thing.
The former Vice President of the United States, a man who once took an oath to defend the Constitution with its pesky guarantee of free speech, thinks this closing of minds is a very good thing.
— Al Gore (@algore) December 17, 2013
As a privately run site, reddit has the freedom to limit discussion as it sees fit. No one is disputing that. But calling for all newspapers everywhere around the country to toe the same line — especially as the evidence or global warming crumbles, and the implications of imposing the warming crowd’s preferred policies needs to be debated openly — is a bit much to take from people who cast themselves as enlightened, open-minded and tolerant.
I blame global warming. Or Bush. Whatever.
The 2013 Atlantic hurricane season, which officially ends on Saturday, Nov. 30, had the fewest number of hurricanes since 1982, thanks in large part to persistent, unfavorable atmospheric conditions over the Gulf of Mexico, Caribbean Sea, and tropical Atlantic Ocean. This year is expected to rank as the sixth-least-active Atlantic hurricane season since 1950, in terms of the collective strength and duration of named storms and hurricanes.
“A combination of conditions acted to offset several climate patterns that historically have produced active hurricane seasons,” said Gerry Bell, Ph.D., lead seasonal hurricane forecaster atNOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, a division of the National Weather Service. “As a result, we did not see the large numbers of hurricanes that typically accompany these climate patterns.”
Or, the climate patterns don’t really exist.
Thirteen named storms formed in the Atlantic basin this year. Two, Ingrid and Humberto, became hurricanes, but neither became major hurricanes. Although the number of named storms was above the average of 12, the numbers of hurricanes and major hurricanes were well below their averages of six and three, respectively. Major hurricanes are categories 3 and above.
Remember when Algore predicted that “global warming,” eventually rebadged as “climate change,” would produce more, stronger, meaner, fatter, more temperamental and less tolerant hurricanes? He made a movie about it and everything.
Heh. Also, LOL. What a duplicitous dope.
This is some lead, Washington Post:
Antarctic sea ice has grown to a record large extent for a second straight year, baffling scientists seeking to understand why this ice is expanding rather than shrinking in a warming world.
The world hasn’t actually been “warming” for the past 15 years or so. But let’s not let reality intrude into “settled” science.
On Saturday, the ice extent reached 19.51 million square kilometers, according to data posted on the National Snow and Ice Data Center Web site. That number bested record high levels set earlier this month and in 2012 (of 19.48 million square kilometers). Records date back to October 1978.
The growth doesn’t fit the models, yet no one is ready to junk or change the models…
“This modeled Antarctic sea ice decrease in the last three decades is at odds with observations, which show a small yet statistically significant increase in sea ice extent,”says the study, led by Colorado State University atmospheric scientist Elizabeth Barnes.
A recent study by Lorenzo Polvani and Karen Smith of Columbia University says the model-defying sea ice increase may just reflect natural variability.
If the increase in ice is due to natural variability, Zhang says, warming from manmade greenhouse gases should eventually overcome it and cause the ice to begin retreating.
“If the warming continues, at some point the trend will reverse,” Zhang said.
Keep the faith!
A long-rumored blooper reel from Star Wars: A New Hope has turned up. The reel, which is silent for its first 48 seconds, features Han Solo chewing on his mic, Ben Kenobi nearly chewing on Chewy, and clumsy stormtroopers falling over themselves. Take a look.
Taken out of context, it may look like video game Bioshock Infinite is an attack on American history, patriotism and the Tea Party. In fact, for the first few hours of play the game does feel like that. You play as Booker DeWitt, a former Pinkerton officer who has a massive debt he can only repay by fulfilling a mission to rescue a teenage girl from a tower prison. There its resemblance to fairy tales ends and its horror story begins.
The game is set in 1912, in a city called Columbia up in the sky. It’s a city of separatists who see themselves as true patriots and their leader as a true savior. A few hours into the game, and I’ll try not to spoil anything until page two, you run into these mechanized boss characters.
If this is an attack on the American founders, it isn’t subtle. Notice the sign behind the beast. Called a Motorized Patriot, it’s a combat robot George Washington wielding a crank gun against the protagonists while he spews phrases that sound vaguely Biblical. During chapter loads, the developers offer a helpful hint for killing them: You should shoot them in the back. How nice.
So is this game, then, an attack on patriotism?
I haven’t played it all the way to the end yet (but I’m very very close), but the answer has to be no. Bioshock Infinite is first and foremost a first-person shooter’s science fiction take on the multiverse theory, with some color taken from the mess that is American politics.
I don’t want to give too much of the story away to those who have not played it yet, so if you’re playing the game and don’t want anything spoiled, don’t click on the next page.
This graph should change the debate over global warming forever.
Pay close attention to what happens to the black line before and after the vertical white line. Everything to the left of that line was pieced together by global warming advocates after the fact. Their predictions going forward — to the right of the white line — have been proven wrong. If they were right, the black line would track with the pink and red areas. It doesn’t.
The source of this graph is the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
The effect of publishing this graph has been swift. Global warming advocates are backtracking.
Academics are revising their views after acknowledging the miscalculation. Last night Myles Allen, Oxford University’s Professor of Geosystem Science, said that until recently he believed the world might be on course for a catastrophic temperature rise of more than five degrees this century.
But he now says: ‘The odds have come down,’ – adding that warming is likely to be significantly lower.
Prof Allen says higher estimates are now ‘looking iffy’.
Yesterday Piers Forster, Climate Change Professor at Leeds University, said: ‘The fact that global surface temperatures haven’t risen in the last 15 years, combined with good knowledge of the terms changing climate, make the high estimates unlikely.’
And Professor Judith Curry, head of climate science at the prestigious Georgia Institute of Technology, said: ‘The models are running too hot. The flat trend in global surface temperatures may continue for another decade or two.’
James Annan, of Frontier Research For Global Change, a prominent ‘warmist’, recently said high estimates for climate sensitivity now look ‘increasingly untenable’, with the true figure likely to be about half of the IPCC prediction in its last report in 2007.
Global warming as it has been sold politically by alarmists like Al Gore is science fiction. He got rich, the rest of us have gotten stuck with the tax and energy bills. Governments including our own have invested vast sums of money imposing a “greener” economy, based on previous predictions that have now turned out flat wrong.
President Obama intends to double down on his bad green investments while he kills off the US coal industry and imposes a regime that, in his own words, will cause energy prices to “skyrocket.” He and his EPA chiefs should be hauled to Congress for hearings, using the graph above as Exhibit A against them.
“FOIA” has harshed the climate hysterics’ mallow again. Wattsupwiththat is scanning the new emails for gems.
Update4: An email showing some insight on the beginning of the use of the word “denier” along with some demonstrated coziness with media activists.
Update5: Mike Mann rages and releases the attack dogs Monbiot, Romm, Media Matters and others in response to a perfectly valid and polite inquiry from the Wall Street Journal, suggesting a smear before the reporter even write the story.
Update6: From Junkscience.com, who spotted this exchange: Wigley accuses IPCC and lead authors of ‘dishonest presentations of model results’; Accuses Mann of deception; Mann admits
Update7: From Junkscience.com, Briffa worries that manmade environmental change distorts tree-ring analysis.
Much more at the link. And away we go…
“FOIA” addresses some of the conspiracy theories behind the Climategates.
I don’t expect these remaining emails to hold big surprises. Yet it’s possible that the most important pieces are among them. Nobody on the planet has held the archive in plaintext since CG2.
That’s right; no conspiracy, no paid hackers, no Big Oil. The Republicans didn’t plot this. USA politics is alien to me, neither am I from the UK. There is life outside the Anglo-American sphere.
“FOIA” is a lone individual, acting for the greater good by exposing the powerful. Once upon a time, Hollywood made movies about this sort of thing. Well, when they acted from a certain point of view, anyway.
America’s top military officer in charge of monitoring hostile actions by North Korea, escalating tensions between China and Japan, and a spike in computer attacks traced to China provides an unexpected answer when asked what is the biggest long-term security threat in the Pacific region: climate change.
Navy Admiral Samuel J. Locklear III, in an interview at a Cambridge hotel Friday after he met with scholars at Harvard and Tufts universities, said significant upheaval related to the warming planet “is probably the most likely thing that is going to happen . . . that will cripple the security environment, probably more likely than the other scenarios we all often talk about.’’
“People are surprised sometimes,” he added, describing the reaction to his assessment. “You have the real potential here in the not-too-distant future of nations displaced by rising sea level. Certainly weather patterns are more severe than they have been in the past. We are on super typhoon 27 or 28 this year in the Western Pacific. The average is about 17.”
The admiral commands an area that stretches from California across the entire Pacific to India. He’s not a scientist.
“The ice is melting and sea is getting higher,” Locklear said, noting that 80 percent of the world’s population lives within 200 miles of the coast. “I’m into the consequence management side of it. I’m not a scientist, but the island of Tarawa in Kiribati, they’re contemplating moving their entire population to another country because [it] is not going to exist anymore.”
As noted, the admiral isn’t a scientist. His strategic thinking is the consequence of junk science, though.
Officers at the level Locklear has reached tend to be political creatures, that’s how they get commands. Locklear’s thinking therefore reflects the Obama administration’s thinking.
h/t Weasel Zippers
The longfaced new Secretary of State, John Kerry, delivered his first major address today. It was not on the recent North Korean nuclear tests or the ongoing strife in the Middle East or the rise of China. It was on global warming aka climate change.
Secretary of State John Kerry gave his first major foreign policy speech today. In his address, delivered at the University of Virginia, he discussed tackling climate change.
“We as a nation must have the foresight and courage to make the investments necessary to safeguard the most sacred trust we keep for our children and grandchildren: an environment not ravaged by rising seas, deadly superstorms, devastating droughts, and the other hallmarks of a dramatically changing climate,” said Kerry, according to prepared remarks.
“And let’s face it – we are all in this one together. No nation can stand alone. We share nothing so completely as our planet. When we work with others – large and small – to develop and deploy the clean technologies that will power a new world, we’re also helping create new markets and new opportunities for America’s second-to-none innovators and entrepreneurs to succeed in the next great revolution.”
Kerry called for collective action to deal with this problem.
And so forth. I’m sure you can imagine his dull tones and his deadman delivery as well as I can. John Kerry is a spectacularly unimpressive man and a dreadful public speaker, easily one of the worst in politics today. The Democratic Party has abdicated American foreign policy, as a party. They’re just not interested in it. It’s hard to blame them, really, since a majority of the American people can’t be bothered with foreign policy either.
As for Kerry’s scientific acumen, a plurality of scientists have pretty much abandoned the idea that humans are making things hotter. Not that we should conduct science by poll, which is itself as much art as science. But politicians like Kerry and his boss apparently never will let go of the idea that they can literally save the world. At least, from the internal combustion engine, if not the mullahs and assorted other madmen roaming the planet.
As predicted, I was correct when assuming that Tatler fans would write a better caption than the Drudge Report for the photo that was the subject of our latest and extremely successful Photo Caption Contest. However, I could not have predicted the huge number of captions that exceeded my expectations!
So to celebrate all your creative energy there are three different categories of winners.
The first category is Politically Themed Captions and here are the winners:
Just imagine what I could do if I wasn’t on vacation most of the time. B. Obama. Submitted by weo
A picture of Barack Obama descending to Earth from Mount Olympus. Submitted by David W
After four years of the Obama economy, the US is no longer able to afford to keep the heavens in repair. Submitted by rbj
Obama: “If I was a planet and had a sun, this is what it would look like.” from RockThisTown (a Caption King)
Meteor strikes Russia – Obama adds the country as a stop on his next apology tour and blames Bush. Submitted by Scottch
And this one submitted by Chris Henderson was not exactly a caption, but a winner anyway:
Let’s see: - Smokes - Very dense - Gives off a lot of hot air - Flashy outside, but not much inside - Leads to the destruction of the local economy – But enough about Obama, a meteorite hit Russia.
Our next category is Just Plain Humor and the winners are:
“Somebody get Bruce Willis on the phone!” Submitted by Alyric
Actual CNN headline: Too much Global Warming in Russia attracts asteroids. Submitted by Adi (a Caption King)
(Adi really was quoting CNN but only added Russia to the headline.)
From that wild and crazy Henderson family (Don the father and Chris the son, both Caption Kings) we have these four winning entries:
Of course it’s a movie. It’s Skyfall! Chris Henderson
I’m from [CRATERS R US,] Is this where I break ground?
I just love crashing a Communist party, Molotov cocktail anybody?
To Russia, with love from the Cosmos. All from Don Henderson
Finally, we have the grand winner’s circle of Heavenly Themed Captions. These submissions deserve extra credit because they actually answer the contest question, “So what is the meaning of it all?”
God is not taking the Pope’s retirement easily. Submitted by rbj
Scottch, already an earlier winner, submitted the greatest number of winning Heavenly captions, so Scottch is our Grand Prize Winner with these fabulous entries:
God is apparently NOT amused.
Lightning striking the Vatican, meteorite hitting Russia, another hitting Cuba………Just my way of saying “Can you hear me now? ” ……God
In other late breaking news, for some reason lots of Russians have suddenly gotten religion!
That whole Book of Revelations thing …….no, I wasn’t kidding.
Congrats to Scottch, our new reigning “Caption King.”
But woe to us if we ignore our first and last Caption King of Kings, cfbleachers who submitted the following winners:
You say you want a Revelation, well you know…
Lent. Fast AND Furious.
Lucifer’s Lightnings and Michelangelo’s Meteors take the field for the final game of this World’s Series.
Apparently, Heaven Can’t Wait.
You know, that crazy guy on the street corner may finally be right.
(Yes, that may be true and perhaps the answer to our contest question.)
Thanks for playing along and we will see you all next time a photo is worthy of a Tatler Photo Caption Contest!
In response to the tragic news that a meteorite struck Russia resulting in damage and injuries, Drudge Report posted the caption, “This is not a movie,” under the photo that is the subject of our latest Tatler Photo Caption Contest.
Now, as always, I am confident that Tatler fans can, and will, write much better ones. However, there is a theme to our current contest.
Besides a meteorite striking Russia, consider all the other cosmic events that have occurred today and in the last few days:
Lightning struck the Vatican just hours after the Pope announced his resignation. (The subject of our last photo caption contest and here are the winning entries in case you missed the post.)
This afternoon, an asteroid had a record breaking pass by planet Earth, the closest and largest ever recorded.
And now, late today, there are reports that a space rock crashed into Cuba.
So what is the meaning of it all?
Are these four events only a coincidence or is there something more. (Cue Twilight Zone music.)
That is the caption theme our VIP judges will be looking for in the winning entry.
(But of course you are free to write whatever you like!) Just abide by our rules of “be nice and stay classy because the media is watching.”
Have fun and don’t forget to look up to the heavens for inspiration.
This is so wrong, but also so funny.
PC Magazine has more:
Was this a viral marketing effort from the producers of The Walking Dead? No, it seems as though some industrious hackers breached the station’s emergency alert system, and sent out the bogus warning about zombies attacking the living.
“Someone apparently hacked into the Emergency Alert System and announced on KRTV and the CW that there was an emergency in several Montana counties,” the station said in a Monday statement. “This message did not originate from KRTV, and there is no emergency. Our engineers are investigating to determine what happened and if it affected other media outlets.”
The message kicked off like any other emergency alert – with the dialup-esque bleeps and tones and an alert crawl atop the screen. But rather than warning about a weather emergency or some other plausible situation, a menacing voice came on to warn people about zombies.
Whoever did this obviously has some braaaaains.
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), who is trying once again this Congress to get her assault weapons ban renewed, said in a tweet this afternoon that more than 10,000 calls were made to senators’ offices yesterday by Faiths Calling to Prevent Gun Violence.
The coalition said Friday that “millions” were set to participate in the effort to call on Congress for stricter gun-control laws.
Participants included the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, the National Council of Churches representing 37 Christian denominations, the Orthodox, Conservative, Reform and Reconstructionist Jewish movements, the National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference, the National Latino Evangelical Coalition, PICO National Network, the Islamic Society of North America, Bishop T.D. Jakes, senior pastor of The Potter’s House, and many others. The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism led the effort.
“On this issue of dire importance to the safety of all of our children and communities, the broadest array yet of faithful Americans is joining together in one chorus to call on Congress to pass sensible solutions to the epidemic of gun violence that has long plagued our country,” said Rachel Laser, deputy director of the Religious Action Center.
Callers were asked to promote universal background checks for all gun purchases, bans of semi-automatic assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, making gun trafficking a federal crime, and improving access to mental health services.
Leaders in the coalition made an appeal to President Obama and Congress on the one-month anniversary of the Newtown shooting to “endorse reasonable steps taken to keep dangerous weapons out of the hands of dangerous people through measures such as ensuring and enforcing universal background checks for gun purchases, collection and publication of relevant data on gun violence, and other constructive measures that will limit gun violence.”
The UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is supposed to be strictly scientific. So why, then, is it accepting financial sponsorships from the activist group World Wildlife Fund?
If only disposal of all tyrants was this voluntary.
Fresh off the Islamic Republic swearing that it really did send a monkey into orbit, Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has volunteered to go to space himself, reports Mehr News Agency this morning.
On the sidelines of a visit to a space exhibition, Ahmadinejad said “sending living things to space is the result of Iranian efforts and dedication of thousands of Iranian professional scientists.”
“I am ready to be the first human to be sent to space by Iranian scientists,” the president said.
“We should admit that some do not tolerate Iranian greatness and growth. Iranians has incited devils’ hatred by Iranian idealism, perfectionism, and being human.”
Yesterday, Mehr decried the U.S. for not believing that it had launched a monkey into space.
“When White House Spokesperson appeared quite nervous and agitated before reporters and expressed US concerns over Iranian astronaut monkey’s health, it was quite revealing,” the Mehr report said, adding illustrative space monkey photos to prove the Iranian government’s point.
Team Obama may want to reconsider their frivolous pursuit in stemming the speed of so-called global warming. On January 23, PR Newswire wrote that, “a group of 20 ex-NASA scientists have concluded that the science used to support the man-made climate change hypothesis is not settled and no convincing physical evidence exists to support catastrophic climate change forecasts.”
H. Leighton Steward, chairman of CO2isGreen.org as well as the educational non-profit, PlantsNeedCO2.org, makes the following comments regarding the TRCS posting, which can be found at www.therightclimatestuff.com:
- The science of what is causing global climate change or warming is clearly not settled and never has been.
- There is no convincing physical evidence to support the man-made climate change hypothesis. The standard test of a hypothesis is whether it is supported by real observations, which seems to have been ignored by climate alarmists.
- Claims made by proponents of catastrophic man-made warming are dominantly supported by non-validated computer models and the output of these models should not be relied upon by policy-makers. Some TRCS team members have been making critical decisions using complex computer models for decades.
- There is no immediate threat of catastrophic global warming even if some warming occurs. The sea level is not going to suddenly begin a steep acceleration of its 18,000-year rate of rise. Global sea level rise is not currently accelerating despite what climate change alarmists claim.
- The U.S. Government has overreacted to a possible catastrophic warming. The probable negative impacts to the economy, jobs and an increased cost of food, transportation and utilities will be severe and hurt the poor and middle class the most. Real experiments show that Earth’s habitats and ecosystems could be damaged if CO2 levels are actually reduced. Environmentalists have been grossly misled to believe CO2 is a pollutant.
- Empirical evidence shows that Earth is currently “greening” significantly due to additional CO2 and a modest warming.
- Money saved by abandoning a premature rush to lower CO2 emissions could be better spent by continuing research on alternative energies that are not currently competitive or reliable.
Legendary teevee man Sir David Attenborough admits that he is a maximum misanthrope.
He said the only way to save the planet from famine and species extinction is to limit human population growth.
“We are a plague on the Earth. It’s coming home to roost over the next 50 years or so. It’s not just climate change; it’s sheer space, places to grow food for this enormous horde. Either we limit our population growth or the natural world will do it for us, and the natural world is doing it for us right now,” he told the Radio Times.
Well if the natural world is doing it anyway, what’s the problem? Isn’t that Darwin in action?
What we see here is both the incoherence and the agenda of the global warming, stop all development crowd. If humans are mere accidents of nature, then anything we do is natural. The left will push that line or a similar one when it comes to sexuality and other social issues. But when it comes to developing the world around us, then they don the moral scold cap and tell everyone how wrong and even evil we all are. Or that we’re a plague that must be controlled. We only become moral agents in their eyes when it’s convenient to use morality as a mace to beat us with.
University of Graz (Austria) professor Richard Parncutt has no training in the hard sciences. He’s a professor of systemic musicology. He also claims that he opposes the death penalty for murderers, on the logic that killing killers does not bring the dead back to life.
But on his university’s website, he wrote out a lengthy and quite logical argument proposing the death penalty for those who hold an opinion that differs from his, on the subject of global warming. Or climate change. Whatever they’re calling it this week.
Parncutt wrote the piece, then heard from critics and lawyers and probably from his employer, the University of Graz. So he retracted it, and replaced it on the university’s web site with an apology intended to make the professor sound harmless as a kitten. His university surely called him into the dean’s office for a chat.
Too late, Professor Parncutt, the Internet is indelible. You may read his proposal to wield the power of the state to kill people over their scientific opinions here. It’s chilling for its cheery call to kill. Parncutt writes:
If my argument is correct, it has clear political consequences. Here is a scenario for what might happen if my argument is broadly accepted, both democratically and politically.
- The universal declaration of human rights and every national constitution would be amended to include the rights of future generations. Incidentally, that would also make national debts illegal, because they oblige future generations to pay them. Getting rid of national debts would in turn solve an important aspect of the “global financial crisis” (more), which currently belongs to the list of common excuses for not investing money in the prevention of GW.
- The proposed legal change would be announced and widely publicized for an extended period before it came into force. During that time, GW deniers would have a chance to change their ways and escape punishment.
- The police would start to identify the most influential GW deniers who had not responded to the changed legal situation. These individuals would then be charged and brought to justice.
If a jury of suitably qualified scientists estimated that a given GW denier had already, with high probability (say 95%), caused the deaths of over one million future people, then s/he would be sentenced to death. The sentence would then be commuted to life imprisonment if the accused admitted their mistake, demonstrated genuine regret, AND participated significantly and positively over a long period in programs to reduce the effects of GW (from jail) – using much the same means that were previously used to spread the message of denial. At the end of that process, some GW deniers would never admit their mistake and as a result they would be executed. Perhaps that would be the only way to stop the rest of them. The death penalty would have been justified in terms of the enormous numbers of saved future lives.
After logically working through the numbers of dead he believes global warming “deniers” will be responsible for, and therefore why said “deniers” deserve to die, Parncutt concludes that future generations will regard him as a hero.
Right now, in the year 2012, these ideas will seem quite crazy to most people. People will be saying that Parncutt has finally lost it. But there is already enough evidence on the table to allow me to make the following prediction: If someone found this document in the year 2050 and published it, it would find general support and admiration. People would say I was courageous to write the truth, for a change. Who knows, perhaps the Pope would even turn me into a saint. Presumably there will still be a Pope, and maybe by then he will even have realised that condoms are not such a bad thing! And by the way 2050 is rather soon. Most people reading this text will still be alive then.
I don’t want to be a saint. I would just like my grandchildren and great grandchildren, and the human race in general, to enjoy the world that I have enjoyed, as much as I have enjoyed it. And to achieve that goal I think it is justified for a few heads to roll.
All this from a gentle music professor. If Parncutt does nothing else with his life, he has solved the question of how the Nazis and the Islamists and the Communists and the eugenicists all became such systematic and successful mass murderers.
To paraphrase the big haired guy on Ancient Aliens, I’m not saying it’s aliens, but…just look at the thing. It looks like something Sigourney Weaver would want to nuke from orbit.
Archaeologists digging near Mexico’s Sonora desert have discovered what appears to be the burial ground of an early Mesoamerican society, including signs of deformed skulls.
According to a story at Past Horizons Archaeology, the burial ground consists of 25 individuals; 13 have intentional cranial deformation and five also have dental mutilation, cultural practices which are similar to those of pre-Hispanic groups in southern Sinaloa and northern Nayarit, but until now, have not been seen in Sonora…. Archaeologist Cristina Garcia Moreno, director of the research project…said that, “Cranial deformation in Mesoamerican cultures was used to differentiate one social group from another and for ritual purposes, while the dental mutilation in cultures such as the Nayarit was seen as a rite of passage into adolescence. This is confirmed by the findings at the Sonora cemetery where the five bodies with dental mutilation are all over 12 years in age.”
The main significance to archaeologists is that the discovery suggests the presence (or influence) of Mesoamerican societies much farther north than previously believed.
And we hear about this just a day before the world is supposed to end. Uh huh.
It’s not the end of the world as we know it, and NASA feels fine.
The National Space and Aeronautics Administration has come a long, long way under the stewardship of President Barack Obama. The agency was once a world changer that put humans on the moon, developed or encouraged technological innovation on a vast scale, and put a collection of telescopes into space that have fundamentally changed our understanding of the universe. It has long been my opinion that the Hubble, Chandra and Spitzer space telescopes are America’s answer to the pyramids of ancient Egypt and will stand the test of time as paradigm-altering pieces of technology and efforts to understand the nature of the cosmos. Long after we’re gone, people will still be learning from the data those telescopes have collected and delivered.
What has NASA done lately, though? Well, the Mars rovers and orbiters are amazing, but the fact is we can no longer even get humans to space without the Russians. And apparently we’re left to see the US space agency gloat over debunking something the Maya may or may not have believed hundreds of years ago.
This, I humbly submit, is sad.
I’m not blasting NASA here. I get what they’re doing with this video — getting into headlines on a story that millions are closely watching, and trying to do science in a cool way in a time when science just is not cool. The agency is doing its best to cope with an administration that has been hostile to its true mission of exploration, discovery, and keeping the United States ahead of everybody else and in the lead to keep hold of the highest hill available. Since its founding NASA has played a vital national security role. Obama tried changing the agency’s missions to some sort of Islamic outreach program, and has scuttled the shuttle fleet without a serious thought to advancing us toward the next human spaceflight platform. His campaign slogan was “Forward,” but under his watch the space agency has gone backward. This is a shame. The moonshot astronauts point out that we’ve lost a great deal of space flight talent along with these decisions, some of which will go into the private spaceflight industry and that’s good, but much of which will just evaporate. That’s not good.
But hey, at least we’ve proven the Maya were all wrong, or something.
The expensive hybrids were parked in the New Jersey port, where Hurricane Sandy turned them into time bombs.
Approximately 16 of the $100,000+ Fisker Karma extended-range luxury hybrids were parked in Port Newark, New Jersey last night when water from Hurricane Sandy’s storm surge apparently breached the port and submerged the vehicles. As Jalopnik has exclusively learned, the cars then caught fire and burned to the ground.
Our source tells us they were “first submerged in a storm surge and then caught fire, exploded.” This wouldn’t be the first time the vehicles, which use a small gasoline engine to charge batteries that provide energy to two electric motors, had an issue with sudden combustion.
The vehicle, despite only being in limited production, has already experienced numerous fires due to equipment failures and electrical shorts. How, exactly, they caught fire after being submerged in sea water is unclear. It’s possible the salt water caused a short that led to a fire.
Calls to Fisker and the Port Newark Container Terminal have not been returned as of publication time.
Fisker released a statement noting that at least there were no injuries. That’s because these cars weren’t sold and therefore weren’t in anyone’s driveway.
Why President Obama prefers hybrid half-coal powered cars to gas powered cars remains something of a mystery.
Subheadline: Meghan McCain, still an idiot.
Political analyst Meghan McCain, daughter of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), is challenging widespread GOP skepticism about climate change in the wake of Hurricane Sandy.
“Political analyst” is being very generous. Meghan McCain’s opinion would not be sought after if not for who her father is, and the fact that she consistently embarrasses him with her ignorant statements, ill-advised tweets and posing as a Republican while in fact being a silly and vapid person.
“So are we still going to go with climate change not being real fellow republicans [sic]?” McCain wrote, via Twitter, around midnight as the storm was slamming ashore.
McCain’s father has advocated for curbing greenhouse gas emissions and co-sponsored cap-and-trade bills several years ago.
However, substantial numbers of Republicans now dispute widely held scientific views about global warming and the extent of humans’ contribution.
It’s not just Republicans who doubt the political taxation campaign that has come to be called “climate change.” (The climate itself does change, as it always has and always will until the Sun burns out. That’s not politics, it’s science. But “climate changes,” as it has become a political issue, is hokum.) It’s people who think for themselves, who doubt “climate change.” People who have kept track of Climategate and watched Michael Mann falsely claim to have won a Nobel doubt “climate change.” People who know who Mann is (I suspect Miss McCain is not among them) and who understand the significance of his easily debunked lie, doubt “climate change.” Mann is the “hockey stick” guy. If he lied about winning Nobel, what won’t he lie about?
Only 18% of Americans even rank “climate change” as their top environmental priority. Meghan McCain is the leftist media’s stooge and useful idiot. Nothing more, nothing less.
After a day in which the president called his rival a “bullsh***er” and in which we learned that the secretary state was part of a plot to scapegoat a filmmaker to distract us from a terrorist attack that killed four Americans, I don’t know about you but I need some reassurance that our future will be brighter than our present.
I’m not sure that this is it. In fact I’m pretty sure that this video is a harbinger of the brutal droid wars to come. In the video below you will see a flying robot organize other robots on the ground into carrying out tasks either by themselves or in groups. It’s equal parts cool and absolutely horrifying.
And of course, I want a bunch of them to use to mow my lawn and things like that. So I’m conflicted.
And the Japan Times is very very enthusiastic about the government’s huge new tax hike.
The new tax covers all forms of fossil fuel including coal, oil products and natural gas. It is designed so that ¥289 will be imposed on one ton of carbon dioxide emitted. The tax rate will be set at a low level at first and then gradually raised in three stages — October 2012, April 2014 and April 2016.
The tax will take the form of a surcharge over existing oil and coal taxes. For example, ¥250 will be imposed on one kiloliter of gasoline or kerosene from Oct. 1, rising to ¥760 in April 2016.
The new tax will increase the costs of doing business and the financial burden on consumers because the increased costs will be passed on to prices of such items as electricity and gasoline.
It is important for enterprises and consumers to realize that they have been responsible for carbon dioxide emissions, the main cause of global warming, and shed the feeling that they are victimized by the environment tax.
The start of the tax should be viewed as a chance for them to participate in combat against global warming. Some industries are against the environment tax. But they should realize that their activities have caused environmental deterioration. It is clear that they should follow the “polluters pay” principle.
And so forth. The editorial never details the drag on the frail Japanese economy resulting from the energy tax. It mentions it, but then quickly scolds everyone engaging in any activity that uses fossil fuels. It never contemplates how a full green regime in Spain helped drive that county to the brink of catastrophe. Instead of considering the economic impact, the Japan Times opines:
The rise in fossil fuel prices due to the introduction of the environmental tax is expected to accelerate energy saving and the shift to renewable energy sources. All revenue from the tax will be used to strengthen efforts to save energy and to promote green energy sources. It is hoped that the tax will facilitate technological innovation by encouraging enterprises to find opportunities for improving energy savings and developing green energy sources. It is estimated that the environment tax will help reduce carbon dioxide emissions by 0.5 to 2.2 percent in 2020 from the 1990 level.
The government should inform the public of the significance of the new tax and its subsequent effects. It should also consider changing oil and coal taxes into a full-scale environment tax based solely on the amount of carbon dioxide emitted.
And solar-powered unicorns will fly out of the emperor’s hindquarters!
Along with South Korea, Japan is the lynchpin of America’s strategy to keep the peace in Asia. America needs an economically strong Japan as a counterweight to China in the Asia-Pacific region. These taxes will weaken Japan.
More: Fed chairman Ben Bernanke hearts the Japanese economic model, which has delivered economic stagnation for about 22 years now. Great.