Thursday, November 01, 2007

Screaming "fire" in a crowded press room.

Over at the Church of St. Al, also known as Grist, the environmental alarmist site, they unhappy that the Green Left hasn’t been using the wildfires in southern California enough to push warming fear even though “it’s true that you can’t tie any particular climate disaster directly to global warming.” But they argue that one can argue that any climate disaster “will become more frequent and more intense.”

They know this because their models tell them so.

In what can only be taken seriously as satire Grist says “environmentalists have been timid” about using these naturally occurring events to push their political agenda. I never thought I’d see the term timid and environmentalist in the same sentence.

So what if wildfires and drought and the Santa Ana winds have been common in southern California for thousands of years. And why bother with the scientists who say that there are factors totally unrelated to warming that are involved. Grist says: “You’ve got to talk when people are paying attention.” And: “You’ve got to drive the point home while people actually care about wildfires (same true for hurricanes, droughts, etc.).”

Grist want’s a “Climate Disaster Rapid Response Team.” The idea is to go provide some relief to the people effected but “having a crack communications team ready to hook up media with top environmental spokespeople and climate experts. [Note: that means experts who agree with them only.] “The media will lap it up...” The media has been lapping up their scare stories for decades as we have documented here on numerous occasions in the last couple of years.

In reality all sorts of figures on the Green Left have been crying “fire” in a crowded press room. For instance, the Friends of the Earth announced that the fires “illustrate the threat caused by global warming” and that “global warming has already led to incresed wildfire activity in the U.S.”

Over at Salon they make an important point. In dry climates like southern California warmer weather won’t impact wildfires. The issue there is not heat but moisture.

It is the rain which allows a burst of vegetation that provides the fuels for the fires. As I showed in my previous post on this topic, the rainfall in southern California has been higher for the last 25 years than for the previous 25 years. And Salon says: “there is a consensus that one of the major problems was the combination of a very wet year in 2004 and reasonably wet year in 2005, which resulted in abundant growth.” Then last year was dry, which is typical of the region, turning that new growth into fuel for the fires that occur regularly when the Santa Ana winds are whipped up at this time of year.

Basically the Grist advice is to use any tragedy that is climate oriented, no matter how tenuously connected to warming as an excuse to preach their twin messages: the apocalypse is coming and the State is our salvation. If you understood that the end of the world is upon us then you realize that we need state control of all energy (i.e., just about everything that is necessary to produce a living).

The Grist strategy is basically a dishonest one. Long before greenhouse gases became the newest version of original sin climates have changed. (By the way have you noticed the subtle shift in terminology. Where they once preached about warming they are now talking about “climate change”. That is far safer since the one thing the weather is guaranteed to do is change.) Sometimes the shifts are quite unpleasant. Storms arrive and kill people. Droughts arrive and kill people. Windstorms are created which kill people. Flooding can kill people.

When a regional climate suffers a dry period it is attributed to warming. On the other hand when a wetter period happens it too fits other models of warming. Have a hot summer and its warming but have a cooler summer and it can fit warming models as well.

When the U.K. had a dry period it was warming. Then when it had heavier rains that was attributed to warming. Warmer weather was blamed on warming but then so was a cooler period. Considering that climate models are human guesses at how the entire eco system works, with very limited knowledge of huge aspects of the system, it is not difficult to find some climatologist to blame warming for what ever is happening.

Grist says that the political activists on the Left must be prepared to use every single weather story as fodder to push for their economic agenda. Funny thing that Naomi Klein, a rather bad Left-wing researcher, claims that advocates of markets use a crisis to push their agenda and then a major Left-wing outfit turns around demanding that the Left do that very thing. Grist exaggerates when they say the Left has not been doing this. They spread the phony stories about warming causing the melting of the snows of Kilimanjaro. They spread the story that the annual Arctic ice retreat was larger than recent years due to warming though, a NASA study said it was caused by wind blowing ice out to warmer waters instead.

If you listened to the Left then Katrina was the result of global warming. If you listened to hurricane experts it was not. The alarmists said warming was increasing hurricanes yet last year was usually quite and this year has been as well.

Grist says a crisis is a time that people are looking for solutions. True. And the Left has the same solution to any perceived problem: central economic planning, topdown controls, high taxes and plenty of regulations. And they will use any storm in a port to beat the warming drum and advocate some form of state socialism as the solution.

Then tell would-be doom merchants to get make the point that there is no direct link between wildfires and warming but thento hammer on how warming causes such fires and will make them worse.

What the media and the public will hear is that global warming is the problem and the state is our saviour. The Left knows that. The proviso is only stated in passing, if at all.

On the Right the same thing is being done by Bushites and other kinds of statist conservatives. They shout “terrorist” and demand that the public surrender their liberties. Too many teens getting pregnant --- give government millions to push “chastity” education. Similar to their comrades on the political Left their solutions are predetermined and they are looking for any excuse to push their version of controls. Between the likes of Grist and George Bush no freedom is safe. And Grist knows it. Bush, on the other hand, may be dumb enough to believe his own bullshit.

But Grist says this is a strategy. They aren’t shy about pushing this merely as a tactic to achieve a political agenda. They are the ones who ran Al Gore’s admission that it is justifiable to exaggerate the problems attributed to warming in order to get the public to pay attention. When Bush exaggerates threats about weapons of mass destruction to push his agenda it is wrong. When Al Gore, Grist and their allies on the Left exaggerate the effects of warming, in order to push their agenda, it is wrong. Either way individual rights and liberty is getting screwed.

As long as the public continues to think that the solutions to problems, some of them imaginary, lies in either centralized control from the Right or centralized control from the Left, then the world is in a precarious situation.

This sort of false alternative has literally been responsible for major disasters in human history. In Weimar Germany the populace felt that they either had to embrace the Communist Left or the National Socialists of Hitler. The Far Left intentionally destroyed the middle ground in German politics as a way of seizing power. The Liberal alternative was pushed to the sidelines by competing extremisms and political barbarity. And that is happening again.

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