Feb 19

As the public’s belief in man-made global warming/climate change fades, perhaps the alarmists can heap some of the blame for the failure of the hoax on George W. Bush’s shoulders.  A letter to the editor of The Oregonian:

“Climate change” is politically correct nonsense, but Republican pollster Frank Luntz and George W. Bush are to blame, not Al Gore. Luntz sold the phrase to Bush: “Climate change” is less frightening than “global warming.” While “global warming” has catastrophic connotations attached, “climate change” suggests a more controllable challenge. Bush agreed.

Republican political appointees at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, where I was a biologist, forced scientists to always use “climate change” instead of the accurate and alarming “global warming.”


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Jan 13

From The Akron Beacon Journal:

If Joseph Ortiz, the Kent State University geology professor who wrote the Dec. 7 letter ”Climate change is beyond denial,” really believes that it is time for a serious discussion regarding climate change, maybe he could start by framing the debate more honestly.

He states that ”the climate-change denier’s logic goes like this: There is evidence of natural climate change; therefore, humans can’t be the cause of the climate change seen in the last 200 years.”

This is as absurd as stating that the climate-change zealot’s logic goes like this: There is evidence that human activity has increased carbon dioxide levels in the past 200 years; therefore, humans must be causing the climate to change. It is a cheap debating tactic to state an opposing view in a weak and unconvincing manner, and then denounce that position as a ”badly flawed conclusion.”

I am an environmental geologist, and I am skeptical of the climate-change hysteria because of the daunting magnitude of variables that influence the impact of chemicals when they are released to our environment. Many of these variables are poorly understood, many others have probably not yet been identified, and the complexity of the interactions on a scale as large as the global climate is almost certainly beyond our current levels of scientific understanding.

It is simply not logical that controlling a single (and miniscule, by volume) variable such as atmospheric carbon dioxide will allow us to bend the entire global climate to our will.

I am also skeptical because models used to predict environmental impact, while useful tools, are prone to calibration problems, manipulation and can produce results with little or no semblance to real-world outcomes.

Finally, I am skeptical because climate change is, contrary to the assertion by Ortiz, a political question at the bottom line.

The proposed solutions currently in search of a global warming problem involve enormous (and likely unachievable) alterations to world economies, drastic changes in lifestyles that most people will simply not accept and a redistribution of wealth that would make the most devout communist giddy.

By all means, Ortiz, continue your good research. We need your contribution to our overall understanding of the climate. But please forgo statements such as the evidence of human-induced climate change is beyond denying — it is not.

Determining when evidence is sufficient and if debate should begin or end on a topic of such universal importance is not the purview of you, Al Gore or the Beacon Journal editorial board.
Jim C. Smith

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Jan 11

From The Oregonian:

In a recent How We Live section, many Oregonian employees cleansed their souls by confessing to some little environmental “sins.” Then they all felt better. I’ve got news for you.

The absolute worst, most non-green, planet-unfriendly, end-life-as-we-know-it thing you can do is have a child. The Earth is grossly overrun with humans, has been for decades and it’s only getting worse. Unless we get serious in a hurry about real population control — and that means reduction, not just treading water — you can eat all the tofu and drive all the smart cars you want: It won’t do any good.


Context #1:  Mr. Helwig’s State of Oregon has 35.6 people per square mile (or 1/20th of a person per acre).

Context #2:  Al Gore has four children.

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Jan 05

Via The Oregonian:

Thank you so much for your recent report on sustainability. It has greatly inspired me, up to the point to where I seriously considered cancelling my subscription to The Oregonian. You see, taking the weight of Friday’s paper at 10.7 ounces as an average, I could save a good 244 pounds of paper each year, maybe even more. (I’ll let your green experts figure out how many trees or partial trees that would make).

A lot of us country folks have been “environmentally friendly” as far back as when “green” was simply a color, not a statement. Back then, it was called “common sense,” “saving money” or just “the right thing to do” (a k a “decency”), and nobody bragged about it.

Nowadays it seems to me that everybody recycling an empty toilet paper roll expects to get a Congressional Gold Medal. Naturally, they would then loudly broadcast the fact that they recycled the bubble wrap it came in.


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Oct 05

From The Oregonian:

The environmentalists, whose latest interest in matters of the toilet extends to the satanic pleasure of fluffy toilet paper, are laughable.

There may be carbon-based concern regarding wood-pulp use. If so, add such impacts to a carbon tax that allows fluffy toilet paper to compete with other carbon problems related to human activity.

Global warming is indeed a serious problem worthy of a serious, comprehensive solution. I would hope a more sane approach would build on our creativity, respond to our preferences and allow for differing utilities to be built into a market price.

The latest silly attempt at micro-managing our behavior by regulating the construction of toilet paper, however, reveals a petty totalitarian impulse in the environmental movement.

This impulse will do no good for our economy, our freedom or the environment.

Southwest Portland

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Aug 25

From The Wall Street Journal:

It is is nauseating, not instructive, to celebrate the wealthy individuals who can afford to take advantage of subsidies provided by the rest of us, to build exceedingly expensive “high-efficiency” homes (“The Homely Costs of Energy Conservation,” Currents, Aug. 7).

Energy-saving multipane windows, insulation and appliances have been available for decades but are beyond most people’s means. Meanwhile, solar panels don’t grow on trees; plus, they are very inefficient and their production requires large amounts of energy.

If the wealthy and green-conscious really want to improve efficiency, they would be smarter to promote nuclear power instead. This form of energy inexpensively generates power for domestic and industrial demand, a fundamental component of all manufacturing and of our ability to compete in the global marketplace.

Only nuclear power has the potential to make battery-powered cars practical and at least somewhat “clean.”

Kent Brady

Woodland Park, Colo.

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Jul 26

This is getting ridiculous.

Lately it’s been called “our deteriorating atmosphere“.  Before that it was the “climate crisis”.  Before that it was called “climate change”.  Before that it had been called “global warming”.  Before that it had been called the weather.  Now, Joy Trueblood, of Sandy, Oregon proposes it be called, “man-made atmosphere change”. No doubt because the earth hasn’t been warming for the past eleven years.

From The Oregonian:

The recent letters in your paper disputing climate change show clearly why we need to relabel the problem as “man-made atmosphere change.”

Man-made atmosphere change is real. It’s happening now. It can’t be disputed. It can be measured. All reputable scientists know it’s happening, and most laymen can understand it.

It can be shown in pictures of smokestacks and tailpipes emitting carbon dioxide along with other pollutants. Pictures make it easier for climate change deniers to understand what is happening.

Climate change is just one consequence of letting polluters mess with our atmosphere. It seems incredibly stupid, as well as morally wrong, to change the atmosphere that produced and sustains our life on Earth, especially if solutions are as simple as more emissions controls on smokestacks and cars, driving less, eating less beef and using birth control.


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