Townhall.comby Ken Blackwell
Ronald Reagan used to say of the Soviets they liked the arms race a whole lot better when they were the only ones in it. The same could be said of Al Gore and Global Warmingâ€”oops, excuse me: Climate Change. Mr. Gore was very much happier to dash around the world in his water vapor-powered personal jet to preach the green gospel of environmentalism. He would tell us which truths were inconvenient. Any dissenters were shouted down as â€œdeniers.â€ No Pope would ever make claims as far-reaching, as extravagant, as all-embracing as Saint Al did.
But now comes the pushback. Just before the World Summit on Climate Change at Copenhagen last December, several hundred emails from the Climate Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia were leaked. It appeared that Dr. Phil Jones had urged colleagues, including some at Penn State University, to â€œhide the declineâ€ in world temperatures and encouraged others to do some of their usual â€œtricksâ€ to get the right result from ambiguous data. A huge scandal erupted, instantly dubbed â€œClimateGate.â€
Jones stepped down as director of CRU and even went so far, he confessed to the Times of London, as to contemplate suicide. God forbid. Truly, these are serious questions and we have serious objections to what Dr. Jones and his colleagues were caught doing, but we want no one involved in this affair to become so despondent as to take his own life. Dr. Jones says his hope for his five-year old granddaughter is what helped him to banish thoughts of self-destruction. â€œI wanted to see her grow up.â€ Dr. Jones, I pray you will.
If Al Gore has not become any humbler, itâ€™s at least good to see Dr. Jones somewhat chastened by the revelations that some of his data may not be as reliable as we have been led to believe. And it is not only the reading public that may have been misled. Dr. Jonesâ€™ CRU is one of the primary institutions responsible for feeding data to the UNâ€™s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). It was this IPCC that shared with Al Gore the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. (Note: They did not win the Nobel Prize for Science.)
The Left is wringing its hands over the â€œfailureâ€ of the World Climate Summit at Copenhagen to approve a binding treaty. But perhaps they should thank God (or Gore) for that fact. Thatâ€™s because the mere threat of job-killing Cap and Trade legislation has been enough for independent voters in the U.S. to abandon left-leaning politicians in droves.
Along with stiff carbon taxes and straight-jacket regulations comes, inevitably, population control. At Copenhagen, Chinaâ€™s Peggy Liuâ€”chair of the Joint U.S.-China Collaboration on Clean Energyâ€”bragged about Beijingâ€™s brutal one-child policy. That policy, said this winner of Time Magazineâ€™s â€œHero of the Environmentâ€ award, â€œreduces energy demand and is arguably the most effective way the country can mitigate climate change.â€
Soviet Communist Party boss Joe Stalin would be proud. â€œYou have a problem with a man. If you get rid of the man, you get rid of the problem,â€ said the top Communist of the Twentieth Century. (Come to think of it, Uncle Joe Stalin even topped Peggy Liu. He was named Timeâ€™s Man of the Year not once, but twiceâ€”1939 and 1942.)
Thomas Friedman of the New York Times hails Chinaâ€™s one-child policy as â€œreasonably enlightened.â€ He likes the fact that Beijingâ€™s rulersâ€”unburdened by those pesky voters voting out their bettersâ€”can â€œimpose the politically difficult but critically important policies needed to move a society forward in 21st century.â€ Friedmanâ€™s best-selling book is titled The World is Flat.â€ (And liberals accuse us of being the Flat Earth Society?)
Isnâ€™t it really funny how all the â€œerrorsâ€ made by the climate scientists seem to fall on one side of the debate? If the glaciers of the Himalayas are all going to melt by 2035, thatâ€™s a real problem. But if theyâ€™re not expected to melt until 2350, itâ€™s another matter. Guess which date the IPCC chose to publish? Just a typo?
What if the globe is indeed warming but the warming is part of a cyclical pattern of warming and cooling? Thatâ€™s the thesis of Dr. S. Fred Singer. Dr. Singer and co-author Dennis Avery write in Unstoppable Global Warming that â€œevidence from North Atlantic deep-sea cores reveals that abrupt shifts punctuated what is conventionally thought to have been a relatively stable Holocene [interglacial] climate. During each of these episodes, cool, ice-bearing waters from north of Iceland were advected as far south as the latitude of Britain. At about the same times, the atmospheric circulation above Greenland changed abruptlyâ€¦.Together, they make up a series of climatic shifts with a cyclicity close to 1470 years (plus or minus 500 years). The Holocene events, therefore, appear to be the most recent manifestation of a pervasive millennial-scale climatic cycle operating independently of the glacial-interglacial climate state (emphasis added.)â€
Dr. Singer has been abused by Left-wing bloggers, called a denier, and denounced as a tool of industry. He earned his Ph.D. from Johns Hopkins University, worked with NASA for decades and is thoroughly conversant with satellite measurements of earthâ€™s climate. And he taught Environmental Sciences at the University of Virginia for twenty-five years. Dr. Singer might be wrong. He might be seriously in error. But so far, no one has demonstrated that his arguments are wrong. Reviling him, calling him names, trying to shut him up and close him downâ€”none of this is a reasoned argument. It is nothing more thanâ€”in the words of Al Goreâ€”an assault on reason. Stay tuned, folks. The earth may be warmingâ€”but not as fast as the debate over climate is heating up.