Home > Uncategorized > Roger Pilon states the three dilemmas that the ecozealots have on Global Warming.

Roger Pilon states the three dilemmas that the ecozealots have on Global Warming.

Over at Politico’s Arena:

At bottom, the greens face three basic problems. First, by no means is the science of global warming “settled” — if anything, the fraud Climategate surfaced has settled that question. Second, even if global warming were a settled science, the contribution of human activity is anything but certain. And finally, most important, even if the answers to those two questions were clear, the costs — or benefits — of global warming are unknown, but the costs of the proposals promoted by the greens are astronomical.

For me the second dilemma is the most important because the zealots have never answered a basic question for me: How in the hell does mankind affect the weather, or the climate, or whatever they’re calling it? The zealots can’t point to specific instance where mankind is contributing to global warming (or climate change. The change in terms should tell you enough that something else is going on here), but they speak in broad terms as to how “fossil fuels” are contributing to global warming. Also, as Mr. Pilon said, even IF they are able to prove that mankind is the sole reason for global warming (doubtful), then is it much justification to give trillions of dollars to a single entity (the U.N.) to try and combat something that may or may not be harmful to the planet, especially if anything we do will only have a marginal impact on the planet?

For me, the answer is no, there is no justifiable reason to turn over our current existence to try and combat something that is not even understood by the climate change prophets climate scientists and its current rationale is based on obvious fraud and deceit. It’s a shame that such sharp minds have been wasting away in the cesspool of global warming alarmism. A lot of solutions to our problems depend upon the objectivity and scrutiny of these men, but they allowed short-term gain (government grants and fame) to override their sense of impartiality. I don’t know if climate change IS a problem, but the scientists involved in this scandal have not helped matters by easing people’s skepticism towards this issue.

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  1. December 6, 2009 at 9:01 pm

    You might be right. Humans might not be the ones polluting our air and water.

    But if not, whoever it is has some mighty powerful magic, plus their invisibility.

    But don’t be suckered in by the greens! They are urging us to act to protect clean air and water, to provide enough wild space to protect hunting and fishing and our national psyche in the great outdoors, as Teddy Roosevelt did.

    Don’t be suckered! Health isn’t everything it’s cracked up to be! We have plenty of soap to clean our water now.

    • December 7, 2009 at 3:20 am

      You take a local issue and then try to expand it globally. That is your problem. There is a difference between humans cleaning up behind themselves and humans blowing up the planet. Your overzealousness of the latter is why we have a such a thing as Climategate.

      And spare me the crap about the “greens” wanting to protect clean air and water. We disagree about the method of how we accomplish these goals, not about the end result of them. Unless you’re going to say that conservatives are from Mars and liberals are from Venus.

      But a question for you: which came first, the innovation and inventions that gave us clean air and water or the regulations that mandated these things? I

  2. December 7, 2009 at 11:16 pm

    Air and water pollution cease to be local issues when theyoverwhelm the airshed or watershed into which the stuff is dumped. Plastic goods from Denver flow into the Atlantic Ocean; from Boise, into the Pacific. There they survive for the life of the plastic — 100 years? 1,000 years?

    Here in the U.S. we get viruses from Africa carried in dust storms from the Sahara. We get acid rain, particulates and smog from China.

    I’ve never said anyone will blow up the planet. All I’m pointing out is that poisoning our air and water is stupid. As the Bible says, stay away from people who pee in your general area.

    On air pollution, my experience is that conservatives are generally from la-la land. They said our drinking water could not get any cleaner, and that cleaning up the Cuyahoga would drive GE and others out of business. Turned out that clean water made their operations much less expensive, and clean water is achievable at extremely moderate cost.

    Conservatives said SO2 and NOx couldn’t be cleaned up — but it was. Conservatives said the technology mandating done in the Clean Air Act of 1972 would drive the auto industry into the ground by 1975; instead, catalytic converters were invented, and they cleaned the air. Conservatives said it would be impossible to run the nation on unleaded gasoline; we did it, we improved mileage, and we ended a great deal of lead poisoning. Our national IQ rose by several points.

    Conservatives said the National Forests would prevent the harvesting of timber and spell the end of the timbering industry — today, that timber preserved in National Forests keeps our timber industry going.

    In almost every case, in the U.S., the regulations mandating clean air and water preceded the innovations and inventions that cleaned it up — especially with the Clean Air Act of 1972, and especially with the Clean Water Act Amendments of the 1970s. Catalytic converters are probably the best-known example.

    It’s difficult to think of an example where a clean air or clean water regulation didn’t come in much cheaper than the critics claimed, with benefits higher than expected.

  3. December 9, 2009 at 4:31 am

    First of all, you are going to have to provide proof as to how stuff from Denver flows out to the Atlantic and stuff from Boise flows out to the Pacific. That seems a bit of an exaggeration to me.

    Secondly, viruses are also air borne locally. In order for them to spread it needs to be communicable, i.e., a person carries the virus from a foreign land and brings it back to his country of origin. When China had SARS and avian flu, none of those spread beyond its borders. Also, H1N1 was mostly a local thing (and I doubt that it was anything more than that. Hear any new H1N1 stories lately?)

    Your problem, like so many liberals and Progressives, is that you portray your cause as the only righteous course of action. You impugn conservatives and think that because we believe you shouldn’t use the heavy hand of government to regulate everything in existence as it is counterproductive, you assume our actions to be nefarious and helping out “big business”. We want the same things that you do: clean air, clean water, hospitable environment, etc. However, we disagree on the means with which to get this.

    Which brings me to all of the regulations that you mentioned. For starters, no one said regulation will kill all businesses. For example, you mention GE and clean water. Well, GE is still around, however, GE is a much weaker company than before. It may be because GE took on too many separate ventures, it may be that the regulations that are imposed on it (not just environmental, but financial, accounting, communication, and other regulations) are taking its toll slowly. Whatever the case may be, GE is lining itself up to be a permanent taker of government largesse if cap-and-trade goes through. A healthy company will not go after government largesse unless it knows it will not be around in the long run.

    You also should reconsider trying to make an example of the car companies because regulation is one of the many things that are killing that industry. With CAFE, Clean Air, safety and weight requirements those regulations add costs to final product, which are in turn passed on to the consumer.

    Finally, it sounds as though you may never have worked in an industry that has been heavily regulated as that regulating timber. You should go to Oregon sometime and talk with the many loggers who live there. My co-worker’s father and brother-in-law has seen the adverse effects of excessive regulations up close with many workers being laid off and businesses closing because they couldn’t deal with the regulatory burdens that was placed upon them.

    And actually, it is very difficult to quantify your claim. After all, your goal is simply to get the regulation passed, not to justify whether the regulation has any ground in economic reality.

    By the way, you never answered my question: which came first, the innovation and inventions that gave us clean air and water or the regulations that mandated these things?

  4. December 9, 2009 at 11:20 pm

    First of all, you are going to have to provide proof as to how stuff from Denver flows out to the Atlantic and stuff from Boise flows out to the Pacific. That seems a bit of an exaggeration to me.

    Exaggeration?

    Water flows downhill. Always has. Always does, on a planet.

    Denver’s streams drain into streams that drain into the Missouri, and then the Mississippi, which drains to the Gulf of Mexico just south of New Orleans, Louisiana, which is an arm of the Atlantic Ocean.

    I didn’t check the map, but I’m pretty sure Boise is on the other side of the Continental Divide. It’s wastes drain into rivers that drain into the Snake, which drains to the Columbia, which drains into the Pacific at Astoria, Oregon.

    You were joking, right?

    Your problem is that you assume a level of knowledge far above what you actually know — like whether I’m a liberal or a conservative, where water drains (I mean, really — this is junior high geography stuff), and whether CAFE standards are killing the auto industry (Toyota doesn’t have problems with them — those companies that worked hardest to meet the standards are the most financially sound).

    I’ve never timbered, but I was a member of the Utah Wilderness Committee, advising Gov. Scott Matheson and Sen. Orrin Hatch on the RARE-II evaluation, in which capacity I spoke with and catalogued the regulatory difficulties for every timbering company in Utah and many more up and down the Rockies. I was a member of the Beltwoods Advisory Committee in Maryland, the last old-growth stand of timber in that state. I staffed President Reagan’s Commission on Americans Outdoors, which looked at timbering in all 50 states and the territories.

    And I’ve worked in the airline industry, in accounting, and in telecommunications, where regulatory compliance was my job.

    I appreciate that lumbering has difficulties. Clean Air regulations are generally not among them. One of the larger problems we have is clear-cuts that have not been replanted — I think often of one in Washington, just a few miles north of the Columbia’s mouth. It was logged over in 1912. The stumps of the old Douglas firs measure 20 feet in diameter. They’re somewhat difficult to measure in some cases, though, because the stumps were pulled up. That they are still there is a problem, because had there been and reforestry attempts, the new forest would have created conditions to rot away the old stumps. Worse, it’s possible to see erosion of up to six feet of topsoil as a result of the failure to replant.

    Planting trees for timber is a key part of controlling greenhouse gases, as well as preserving our lumbering industry. You’re not seriously suggesting that your lumber industry contacts are opposed to more trees, are you?

    • December 11, 2009 at 4:54 am

      First of all, yes, I am aware that water flows downward. Second, my question is for you to specifically cite instances of litter in Denver flowing all the way to the Atlantic and litter in Boise flowing all the way to the Pacific. That is an exaggeration and you know it. That is the problem with you greens: exaggeration of local issues to increase their importance.

      That being said, I do comment on things that I don’t know about, same as you. For instance, when you mention CAFE. It is far easier for Toyota to make cars that meet CAFE because Toyota and the other Japanese manufacturers were making fuel efficient cars long before they were being mandated. The oil embargo during the 70s gave the Japanese a major headstart and the big 3, in collusion with the government, supported the CAFE standards hoping that they would be able to strap their counterparts overseas with the same regulations that they are faced with. Unfortunately, that did not work: the big 3 quickly found out that making fuel efficient cars to meet make-believe government mandates is expensive and the margins on making those cars are extremely low. That is why the big 3 made SUVs: the cost of making fuel efficient cars could easily be absorbed in the low-cost production, high-demand vehicles of the SUV. So no, the only reason Toyota, Honda, Nissan and others can meet the requirements of CAFE is because of economies of scale. Also, you’ll dutifully know that one of the reasons it took almost 20 years to get another Japanese sports car over here is because they were incredibly expensive to make to try and meet CAFE. Instead of bailing out the car companies, it would’ve been better for the government to relax the rules of CAFE so that the big 3 could begin to make vehicles that consumers demanded at a price they could afford.

      So, you have experience with the regulatory burdens that are placed on companies, yet you still believe that regulations make us better? Tell me then, why didn’t regulations catch Enron? Bernie Madoff? Exxon Valdez? The GE spill? Three-Mile Island? AIG? The subprime meltdown? Bear Stearns? Capital Asset Management? I could go on, but you get the point. Regulation could not predict these things, let alone prevent them. Regulators are not gods and are the most flawed of men because they have no profit motive. By the way, it was private individuals that caught Enron, Bernie Madoff, AIG and Bear Stearns.

      If you understand, timber, then you should understand that the regulations imposed on this industry has done more harm than good. It is not like the logging company does not have a vested interest in not planting more trees. After all, what good is a logging company if there are no trees to cut? So, no I am not saying loggers are not opposed to more trees, but that without regulation, loggers would recognize that they need to grow trees in order to ensure that when the next logging season comes around, they would ensure that there are trees available to cut and bring to market.

      Oh, and I am sure that a bunch of sick Africans would’ve liked to have that DDT around so that they could help fight malaria. I will have to research this Superfund, but on its face it sounds like it destroyed a viable industry that did a world of good for our country and any country that used its products. Is it possible that there was illegal dumping of the stuff or improper disposal of it? Of course, but I wish that you greens would WORK with industry to come up with solutions to the problems at hand as opposed to SHUTTING THEM DOWN. You guys say that we capitalists don’t like what is going on, but it is always in the capitalist’s best interest to keep the cost of production down so that adverse effects do not come back to haunt them in the form of lawsuits. Consider how much better off society would be if you environmentalists WORKED with the capitalist to help solve the problem as opposed to forever seeing the capitalist as your enemy. MEN that think solve our problems, not politicians looking for votes or bureaucrats seeking to consolidate power.

      By the way, you STILL did not answer my question: which came first, the innovation and inventions that gave us clean air and water or the regulations that mandated these things?

  5. December 9, 2009 at 11:20 pm

    Oops. On Boise, shoulda been “its wastes.”

  6. December 9, 2009 at 11:26 pm

    It’s not difficult to quantify my claims at all. I’m sure you’re having some difficulty doing that, though.

    The biggest example of regulations shutting down an industry, that I can think of, was when the Superfund bill took effect, making companies liable for their own wastes. Across the nation manufacturers of DDT who had been arguing that they had perfect records and no fugitive toxic wastes, declared bankruptcy the day before the law took effect, jettisoning liability to the Superfund. And that is why you pay for DDT cleanups off Santa Barbara, in Los Angeles, in Houston, and almost everywhere else DDT was manufactured. They were stealing you blind, wasting your land, water and air for their own profit.

    Now you’re paying for the clean up.

    That was a good industry shutdown.

  7. December 9, 2009 at 11:27 pm

    Roger should have spent more time with Prof. Arnold Reitze in the environmental law program, you know?

  8. December 12, 2009 at 5:13 am

    Oh, and I am sure that a bunch of sick Africans would’ve liked to have that DDT around so that they could help fight malaria.

    DDT has never been banned in Africa. It’s an implicit claim, true, but even implicit, it is a racist claim that Africans were too stupid to use a chemical to save their children, and I think this is demonstrative of the mean-spirited, ill-informed propaganda that is generally used against science. The “ban” on use of DDT on cotton in the U.S. included language allowing manufacture to continue, for export to Africa or any other place it could be sold. Malaria is a disease, and DDT doesn’t fight disease. It’s a bit of a complex problem, but any way you slice it, you’re accusing Africans of being stupid. They’re not, and your claim is scurrilous.

    Of course, you didn’t think of that. You didn’t have the facts, though they are readily available.

    By the way, you STILL did not answer my question: which came first, the innovation and inventions that gave us clean air and water or the regulations that mandated these things?

    Here:

    In almost every case, in the U.S., the regulations mandating clean air and water preceded the innovations and inventions that cleaned it up — especially with the Clean Air Act of 1972, and especially with the Clean Water Act Amendments of the 1970s. Catalytic converters are probably the best-known example.

    • December 12, 2009 at 2:40 pm

      DDT has never been banned in Africa. It’s an implicit claim, true, but even implicit, it is a racist claim that Africans were too stupid to use a chemical to save their children, and I think this is demonstrative of the mean-spirited, ill-informed propaganda that is generally used against science. The “ban” on use of DDT on cotton in the U.S. included language allowing manufacture to continue, for export to Africa or any other place it could be sold. Malaria is a disease, and DDT doesn’t fight disease. It’s a bit of a complex problem, but any way you slice it, you’re accusing Africans of being stupid. They’re not, and your claim is scurrilous.

      So, then let the Africans use DDT if it is not banned (by the way, you attribute an argument to me which I did not make). Also, I know that DDT doesn’t fight disease, but it does fight carriers of disease (i.e. mosquitoes). Also, I am not accusing Africans of being stupid, although I am making an implicit claim that environmentalists who think that regulations and “banning” of certain uses of chemicals are.

      As for your links, the first one takes me to your “rebuttal” of “Not Evil, Just Wrong”. I am sorry, but I your rebuttal has not convinced me that the movie producers are wrong. In fact, the way you rebutted it makes me more inclined to believe the movie producers, EVEN THOUGH I HAVE NEVER SEEN THE MOVIE.

      As far as Al Gore is concerned, why do you feel the need to defend a pol that has gotten rich off of something that you believe in? Al Gore has been known to be given to exaggeration and his movie, “The Inconvenient Truth”, is loaded with such gross exaggerations. If you believe your science is right, then there is no need to rebut someone who calls anyone who disagrees with him a “denier”. He also does not debate anyone with whom he disagrees with. If he won’t even debate that “bitch” Sarah Palin on this issue, how serious should we take him.

      And as to your second link, it redirects back to our original comments. You have no proof that either of those acts have led to something that society wouldn’t have gotten to anyway: clean water and clean air. Have you ever read Devil in The White City? It is about late 19th Century Chicago. As early as that time period as Americans were getting richer, they were clamoring for cleaner water and more efficient sewage. The city designers and leading minds of the day were bringing that to them. They were doing this before there was such a thing as a Clean Air Act or a Clean Water Act.

      As for the catalytic converter, my friend at work brought up a good point: when people were complaining about “global cooling” during the 70s, the auto manufacturers were forced to put the catalytic converter on their cars to control carbon monoxide distribution. Well, because of that little change, carbon dioxide emissions INCREASED. So, the very thing that you clamor about now, carbon dioxide emissions, is a result of something you clamored about during the 70s, carbon monoxide.

      BY THE WAY, this little jaunt into history only proves my point: innovations and inventions to combat pollution PRECEDE the stupid regulations that MANDATE those very inventions. I am loathe to use it, but Wikipedia has a brief history of the catalytic converter and its application. This little article proves two of my axioms. The first one is that all of mankind’s solutions to problems lead to newer problems. Ours is to determine whether we want to tackle smaller problems or bigger ones. In your opinion, the catalytic converter may have led to a bigger problem, global warming and other environmental disasters. I am still not convinced that that is the case, but in my opinion the catalytic converter has contributed to the overall cost of producing a car as it forced engineers to figure out new ways to get power out of the engine whilst still complying with the mandates of catalytic converters.

      The second one is more ominous: regulations forces men to stop thinking and innovating. It is more than 30 years since the catalytic converter has been slapped onto the car, yet we are still driving around with catalytic converters on our cars. Why? If the catalytic converter forces us to import materials from rogue regimes AND contributes to global warming, then why haven’t we come up with a newer solution? A man, who was concerned about air pollution, came up with the catalytic converter to try and address it. Where are the minds to address how we improve on the catalytic converter or replace it with something else entirely?

      In your second post, you again attribute an argument to me that I didn’t make in this discussion. Perhaps thou doth protest too much? However, I won’t run away from the charge: you tell me how adding more regulation to our society and having to ask the government to produce is not socialism. Further, you tell me how “cap-and-trade” where the government creates the market and then distributes or “sells” the commodity to “market participants” who then in turn trade amongst one another, with the government at the head of course, is not socialism. As I mentioned before, if any of you environmentalists were capitalists, you would come up with a solution to the problem and market it to individuals and corporations WITHOUT GOVERNMENT INFLUENCE. Since your first inclination is to have the government ban the activity or to regulate it to the point that it is not profitable for people to venture into the activity tells me that you are anything but capitalists. If you are anything but capitalists, then what are you? Capitalism is the private ownership of production the distribution of goods and services through mutual trade among individuals (in this case individual is to mean all actors except government). What do you call excessive government intervention into that equation? If you are not a Socialist or a Marxist or (as Mark Levin likes to call you) a statist, then prove it. Several of you Progressives are smart individuals, but you insist on creeping back to tried and discredited eco-political philosophies whereas the one the economic philosophy that has done the most to help mankind – capitalism – you loathe. So prove that you are not Socialist or Marxist or statist because the future of humanity depends on it.

  9. December 14, 2009 at 3:34 am

    So, then let the Africans use DDT if it is not banned (by the way, you attribute an argument to me which I did not make). Also, I know that DDT doesn’t fight disease, but it does fight carriers of disease (i.e. mosquitoes). Also, I am not accusing Africans of being stupid, although I am making an implicit claim that environmentalists who think that regulations and “banning” of certain uses of chemicals are.

    So, if you know there’s no ban on using DDT in Africa, what was the point of your statement? You said:

    Oh, and I am sure that a bunch of sick Africans would’ve liked to have that DDT around so that they could help fight malaria.

    Since it wasn’t banned, why didn’t they use DDT? It has nothing to do with regulation, especially not regulation of DDT.

    • December 14, 2009 at 4:00 am

      You know full well that environmentalists are preventing the use of DDT in Africa. If it isn’t banned, per your statements, and it is available, but Africans are not using it, not because they fear any side effects, but because it isn’t made available to them, then there is only one entity standing between them and the use of DDT: you environmentalists. There are many ways to regulate something without outright writing a law to prevent its use. One other way of implementing a regulation is if you get enough of society to look down on a particular method or product. This is what you guys did with DDT. You try and make the people who stand against this decision look crazy by saying things such as, “We didn’t ban DDT use in the developing world.” If this is so, then let American manufacturers develop it and export it to Africa so that Africans may be able to use it over bed nets.

      As far as insects developing resistance to the pesticide, then this is where human ingenuity comes in. Allow those chemists to test the DDT on insects and find out how they are building resistance to the chemicals in it. If countries are not allowed to use DDT or other pesticides to fight insects, then how are we to know what works, what doesn’t and how to improve pesticides to be used in the future?

  10. December 14, 2009 at 3:36 am

    As for your links, the first one takes me to your “rebuttal” of “Not Evil, Just Wrong”.

    Yeah, that’s the latest in a couple dozen posts on DDT. If you don’t have a scroll roller on your mouse, go to the bar on the right side of your screen and scroll down. There’s more. Much more.

  11. December 14, 2009 at 4:43 am

    Regrets. I just lost a long response. I really don’t have time right now to reconstruct. Maybe later.

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