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Despite its problems, 2008 was a totally cool year

2008 has been a very frustrating year for everyone, but probably more so for disciples of man-made global warming climate change theories. In fact, Christopher Booker, writing for The Telegraph, went so far as to declare: 2008 was the year man-made global warming was disproved.

"Disproved" is a pretty significant claim, but even if you disagree with Booker's level of certainty you must confess that man-made climate change theories have taken a lot of lumps as of late:

  • Suddenly it's not "global warming" any more. Nor do we see the term "greenhouse effect" used very often these days. Even "greenhouse gas" has been replaced by the much less specific "CO2 emissions." All of it has been tucked under the generic umbrella of "climate change."
  • The infamous Bradley-Hughes-Mann "hockey stick" graph, originally based on data collected from the observation of tree rings and which purports to show that global temperatures remained steady for 2000 years before rising significantly during the 20th century, has been extensively studied and found to be massively deficient. You will recall that the "hockey stick" is the fundamental piece of scientific research supporting most of the claims in Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth.
  • Dr. James Hansen, who by all indications will be President-Elect Obama's new "climate czar," has also come under fire. Hansen is Director of NASA's presumably non-partisan Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS), yet to say that Hansen has been a political agitator would be an understatement. In 2006 he accused NASA, under the influence of the Bush Administration, of deliberately censoring him and trying to stifle public debate on climate change. And in June of this year, he urged criminal trials for the executives of energy companies, claiming that they were "actively spreading doubt about global warming in the same way that tobacco companies blurred the links between smoking and cancer."

    But Hansen has been publicly shamed twice in the last two years. First, his widely-repeated claim that 1998 was the hottest year of the 20th century was debunked by the painstaking research of mineralogist and mathematician Stephen McIntyre. (Incidentally, McIntyre and Ross McKitrick published the first extensive criticism of the "hockey stick" graph.) Then in November 2008 Hansen made the astonishing announcement that October 2008 was the warmest month ever measured. This claim was immediately shot down after investigators discovered that much of Hansen's data from Russia and elsewhere were not real measurement data at all, but estimates derived from carrying over previous month's temperatures.

  • Al Gore is now his own worst enemy. If you scheduled an Al Gore visit in 2008, it was almost a sure bet that your city would also be visited by unusually cold weather. Gore visited Toronto three times during 2008, and Toronto ended up with its heaviest annual snowfall since 1883. This "proves" nothing, of course, but it is genuinely snort-worthy.
  • Every single doom and gloom environmental prediction for 2008 (melting polar ice caps, rising sea levels, numerous catastrophic hurricanes and typhoons) utterly failed to materialize. In fact 2008 may prove to be the coolest year of the past decade. On the other hand, the sun has virtually ceased its normally robust sunspot activity. This has caused a number of scientists to postulate that fluctuations in the earth's climate and sunspot activity may be closely linked.
  • 2008 was also the year that man-made climate change skeptics began to form strong organizations and issue strong statements, such as the Global Warming Petition Project, which has been signed by 31,000 individuals with university degrees in science including 9,000 PhD's. And The Heartland Institute is now forcefully fighting back against climate change hysteria. It features an impressive roster of contributors including Fred Singer, Steven Milloy, and Roy Spencer.

So where does all of this leave us? The case for man-made global warming/climate change has always rested on shaky ground. But in order to preserve their plans for massive fossil fuel taxes and the expensive dismantling of our current energy infrastructure, environmental extremists have turned climate change into a religion, proclaiming that "debate is over," branding anyone who disagrees with them a "denier" (thus invoking Holocaust imagery) and declaring that time is running out and that we must do something now! When that fails to work, there's always the modern academic Inquisition -- ask Bjorn Lomborg for details. And if public inquisition and castigation fails, there is an ultimate solution: threatening uncooperative scientists with the loss of university tenure and precious government research contracts.

Over at his Urgent Agenda blog, William Katz recently referenced President Eisenhower's 1961 Farewell Speech. Liberals love this speech, because it contained explicit warnings about the "military-industrial complex," which has become one of the great catch-phrases of modern anti-war dogma. But Eisenhower, a far more brilliant man than he has been given credit for by the Left, also had this to say:

Akin to, and largely responsible for the sweeping changes in our industrial-military posture, has been the technological revolution during recent decades. In this revolution, research has become central; it also becomes more formalized, complex, and costly. A steadily increasing share is conducted for, by, or at the direction of, the Federal government ... Partly because of the huge costs involved, a government contract becomes virtually a substitute for intellectual curiosity. For every old blackboard there are now hundreds of new electronic computers. The prospect of domination of the nation's scholars by Federal employment, project allocations, and the power of money is ever present and is gravely to be regarded. Yet, in holding scientific research and discovery in respect, as we should, we must also be alert to the equal and opposite danger that public policy could itself become the captive of a scientific technological elite.

With the Democrats and their prophet of doom James Hansen at the helm of our government, bolstered by the anti-capitalist sentiments deeply rooted within our press, I fear that we are headed directly toward that ultimate solution. But our understanding of the Earth's climate is still far too primitive for anyone to declare that climate debates are "over." Now is the time for us to resist political and financial threats and demand to keep the climate debate open and vigorous. After all, we have 2008 on our side. How much does the other side have left?


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Comments (29)

I thought the awarding of t... (Below threshold)

I thought the awarding of the prestigious Nobel Prize to Al Gore would have put an end to this distracting debate once and for all. Of course they awarded one to Arafat.....oh, never mind.

I wonder if it'd be possibl... (Below threshold)

I wonder if it'd be possible for Gore to autograph my snow shovel?

Best summary of the state o... (Below threshold)

Best summary of the state of global warming I've read. Great job!!! By the way, in answer to your question "how much does the other side have left?" I submit the answer - five years. At leat that's how much time they have left.

Al Gore who has long had the luxury of predicting doom and gloom
that might take a hundred years to manifest itself has started
his own countdown to discrace timer ticking
by predicting that the northern polar ice cap would be completely gone in five years. Fortunately there is video footage to hold him accountable.

To see vid, visit
and click on Ozone Man's picture.

Let's make that disgrace.</... (Below threshold)

Let's make that disgrace.

Global warming caused clima... (Below threshold)

Global warming caused climate change is agenda driven. Facts do not matter to liberals on anything let alone scientific methodology. Right now because of Obamalala's election the liberals control the agenda and will make policy based on whatever they "believe" to be right. By the time the Obamalala voters wake up it may be to late to reverse the idiocy.

We could go back to 1989 an... (Below threshold)

We could go back to 1989 and compare the computer model predictions to 20 years of climate fact and show how stupid using computer models as pretend science really is.

Two ways to look at the problem posed by the AGW loons ...

First the scam -- Pay more in taxes to the government so that government scientists can pretend to control the weather. What could go wrong with that?

Secondly, reality -- If the current solar trend continues, it will soon be so cold, the glaciers growing so fast, the sea ice piled so high that everyone on the planet will know Al Gore is a kook, but Al Gore. And that goes double for the polar bears who will soon begin their southward migration.

I think the famous Mann "ho... (Below threshold)

I think the famous Mann "hockey stick" has smacked the loonies in the head this winter.

Global Warming is just a lo... (Below threshold)

Global Warming is just a lot of hot air.

Yeah it's hot air - hot air... (Below threshold)

Yeah it's hot air - hot air driven by ex-communists, communists supporters, and other various socialists who will use any excuse imaginable to drive this country to complete govenment control of all industry. These are today's environmental leaders. If "global warming" and "climate change" doesnt work well enough, they'll use something to scare the populace into letting the government run everything in their lives. Just watch.

"But Eisenhower, a far more... (Below threshold)

"But Eisenhower, a far more brilliant man than he has been given credit for by the Left,..." -- Michael L.

We on the Left don't think it to be all that brilliant to overthrow democratically-elected governments (Guatemala, Iran) and replace them with brutal, murderous military dictatorships, do you, Michael????

Actually, to deny either gl... (Below threshold)

Actually, to deny either global warming OR cooling is foolish.It's a natural phenomonon,and there's nothing to be done about it except ADAPT to the situation.

The laughable part is to decree that a singular species can affect either.

"The goal of the antiscienc... (Below threshold)

"The goal of the antiscience movement is to endlessly cast doubt on legitimate science."

The global warming deniers are:
A) "Flat Earth" Crackpots
B) Scientific ignoramuses
C) Right wing(nut) fanatics
D) Anti Al Gore psychopaths
E) All of the above

And the correct answer for Michael Laprarie is:


Dems can't advance their ag... (Below threshold)

Dems can't advance their agenda without a crisis, real or imagined.

For those interested, Inhof... (Below threshold)

For those interested, Inhofe hasn't stopped fighting just because he's now in the Senate minority. They just released an update to their '400 scientists refute global warming consensus' report. The '650 scientists refute global warming consensus' report is available on his site (I linked to it through my name below).

Oh, yeah. In 2008 we also saw the American Physical Society (the 100+ year old organization of American physicists) officially declare that they could discern no consensus in the penumbras or permutations of anthropogenic global warming. Their announcement essentially renders the 'consensus' argument null and void. If you can't get the leading organization of American physicists to agree there is a consensus, you don't have a consensus.

"There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for the global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution."

He y Herman I agre... (Below threshold)
ex Demo:

He y Herman

I agree if you "liberals", now consisting of ex-marxists of every stripe, inlcude Kerensky's and Kadar's and the Prague Spring and a lot of others too...

Get off your high horse, You fool, no one believes your propaganda anymore.

Applaud the strategy of the... (Below threshold)
Derek D:

Applaud the strategy of the liberals. First they dumbed down the general public with excuse making, affirmative action, and prioritizing political correctness over truth and intelligence.

Once accomplished they feminized us into a bunch of blubbering vaginas whose obligations to our childrens' childrens' children somehow superseded our need to advance our society and put food on our table.

With that phase complete, the final step of brainwashing this new army of brainless vaginas into believing that Global Warming was a threat to all of us was easy. In fact this indoctrination was so successful that no proponderence of scientific fact, nor even real time observations can sway the new nation of brainwashed chimps. Some, like the poster in comment 12, are so heavily indoctrinated that they literally attack the truth with the complete and utter falsehoods they have been indoctrinated with. Al the while seemingly unable to acknowledge the numerous and obvious flaws, shortcomings and contradictions in their attacks.

Yes the liberals have created a monstrous army of mental midgets, armed with advanced cognitive dissonance and eager to forego standard scientific discussion, instead opting for sound-bite suicide bombings. In so doing they have created a formidable enemy. An enemy not only of those who dissent from the popular view of manmade global warming, but also an enemy of truth, progress, and scientific integrity.

The average citizen of the world is a dumb sucker. As many of the rare intellects on this board correctly recognize, the whole AGW scam is nothing more than a play for money and power at the expense of freedom. And sadly, but thanks to decades of foreplanning, the average citizen is ready willing and able to give all three away, with little coercion. Its a sad sick world we live in...

"Climate change" has been t... (Below threshold)

"Climate change" has been the correct terminology since well before I was studying ecology ten years ago!

You can't expect to be taken seriously while quoting the debunked "global warming petition project" (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Oregon_Petition, http://www.skeptic.com/eskeptic/08-11-12.html)

Like the dummies who went u... (Below threshold)

Like the dummies who went up on that mountian in EUROPE naked to call attention to GLOBAL WARMING yeah just showing off for the media as always

This post was linked over a... (Below threshold)
Baron Von Ottomatic:

This post was linked over at Junkscience.com yesterday, FWIW. Welcome to Wizbang, Junkscience readers!

Al Gore has really stepped ... (Below threshold)

Al Gore has really stepped in it this time. He could have spent the rest of his global warming career collecting money by spreading fear over events that were a centure or at least half century in the future. Oh, but that wasn't good enough for Big Al. He's now told the biggest global warming whopper of his alarmist career:


When I heard this I assumed it was a rumor started by skeptics to make Gore look bad. It wasn't until I viewed the video that I realized what Gore had done. Gore has started a five year credibility countdown timer ticking and it's up to all of us to make sure that he is held accountable and proven to be a fraud when his dire prediction aimed at drumming up support doesn't come close to comming true.

The mainstream media isn't going to let this video see the light of day because they, unlike Al, understand the precarious position in which he has placed himself.

It is therefore up to us to spread the word about Big Al's prediction. He must be exposed for the fearmongering opportunist that he has become.

To view the video, please visit the following site and click on the picture of Big Al holding up five fingers.


While visiting this site, you might want to watch a preview of the film "Not Evil, Just wrong" or watch "The Great Global Warming Swindle" which is found in the video section. Happy Viewing!!!

.Throughout h... (Below threshold)

Throughout history cold periods have been the worst times for humanity, warm ones have been better for human prosperity.

The CNN Meteorologist saying that the Man-Made Climate Change theory is "arrogant" is a great advancement in the cause of educating the masses with the truth. Hopefully more of the MSM will start speaking out. The word is spreading, tell all your friends and family, and tell them to do the same.

Gore and his Man-Bear-Pig. The politicians on board with this scam must be simply out of their minds.
For one thing, there's plenty of oil and NG, we just need to drill for it and refine it. Also expand and improve nuclear, wind, hydro, solar and hemp fuel.

Can't anybody talk some sense into Gore, McCain, Bush and Obama about how temperatures rise first, and THEN carbon-dioxide levels rise.
Carbon-dioxide doesn't cause warming, sun activity does, warming causes CO2 levels to rise.
absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
humans' breath is poison

just one child hurts the world
worse than a jet engine

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
don't research all theories

put an end to all debate
silence all your critics

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
spread hysteria

wildly exaggerate
scare little kids not ready

absurd thought -
God of the Universe says
keep people all worked up

about global warming
despite inconvenient facts
All real freedom starts with freedom of speech. Without freedom of speech there can be no real freedom.
The Great Global Warming Scam Movie
Philosophy of Liberty Cartoon


"But Hansen has been pub... (Below threshold)

"But Hansen has been publicly shamed twice in the last two years. First, his widely-repeated claim that 1998 was the hottest year of the 20th century was debunked by the painstaking research of mineralogist and mathematician Stephen McIntyre."

That's not remotely true.

The two principal temperature records are HADCRU compiled by the UK's Hadley Centre, and GISS compiled by NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies.

According to Hadcru the hottest year to date is 1998. According to GISS the hottest year of the 20th Century was 1998, although 2005 was hotter and 2007 tied.

1998 remains the hottest year of the 20th century.

The 'debunking' mentioned refers to something else and even then it's not an accurate claim.

seanie, you are wrong. NASA... (Below threshold)

seanie, you are wrong. NASA backtracked on it's 1998 claim, revising it's data to reflect 1934 as the hottest year on record, look it up, even Gore doesn't dispute that fact now!

Nonsense.1934 is t... (Below threshold)


1934 is the hottest year on record for the contiguous United States. As far as global temperatures are concerned the hottest year of the 20th century on record is 1998. 1934 doesn't come close.

And as far as Hansen and GISS are concerned, 1934 was the hottest for the contiguous United States before McIntyre's supposed 'debunking'.
To sugget otherwise is simply nonsense.

The current NASA/GISS data ... (Below threshold)

The current NASA/GISS data for global temperatures;


The ten hottest years worldwide from 1880 to 2007 were:

2005, 2007, 1998, 2002, 2003, 2006, 2004, 2001, 1997, 1995.

<a href="http://www.cru.uea... (Below threshold)


That's the Hadcru dataset. The first column of temperatures gives the anomaly for each year compared to the 1961-90 average. The second column is the smoothed running average.

Looking at those figures it's easy to see that the warmest years since 1850, according to the Hadcru dataset are; 1998, 2005, 2003, 2002, 2004, 2006, 2001 and 2007, in descending order.

Here's Hansen's original 20... (Below threshold)

Here's Hansen's original 2001 paper.


"The U.S. annual (January-December) mean temperature is slightly warmer in 1934 than in 1998 in the GISS analysis (Plate 6). This contrasts with the USHCN data, which has 1998 as the warmest year in the century. In both cases the difference between 1934 and 1998 mean temperatures is a few hundredths of a degree. The main reason that 1998 is relatively cooler in the GISS analysis is its larger adjustment for urban warming. In comparing temperatures of years separated by 60 or 70 years the uncertainties in various adjustments (urban warming, station history adjustments, etc.) lead to an uncertainty of at least 0.1°C. Thus it is not possible to declare a record U.S. temperature with confidence until a result is obtained that exceeds the temperature of 1934 by more than 0.1°C."

So GISS already recorded 1934 as the hottest on record for the US, although effectively tied statistically with 1998.

McIntyre's supposed 'debunking' didn't change that.

"In 2008 we also saw the... (Below threshold)

"In 2008 we also saw the American Physical Society (the 100+ year old organization of American physicists) officially declare that they could discern no consensus in the penumbras or permutations of anthropogenic global warming."

Oh really?

I wonder what the American Physical Society has to say about it?

"The evidence is incontrovertible: Global warming is occurring. If no mitigating actions are taken, significant disruptions in the Earth's physical and ecological systems, social systems, security and human health are likely to occur. We must reduce emissions of greenhouse gases beginning now."

I'm all for being skeptical... (Below threshold)

I'm all for being skeptical about clilmate change. We definitely need to learn more. It's too bad you had to all turn it in to a political issue.
It seems to me that the incumbents are working on making us less dependent of old school practices and hostile regimes.
It's funny that you think it's the Democrats trying to scare everybody now, after how many years of being afraid of terrorist and not actually catching them?
It'll be great to have a president that is a true leader and not a bully. I think we will all feel safer and more secure in the years to come. Global warming or not.






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