Tuesday, 20 January 2015

Climate Scare Mongers Attack Freedom

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A few days ago, the mass media excitedly reported that the earth’s temperature for 2014 was “the hottest since record-keeping began in 1880.” The New York Times placed its report on page one complete with a colorful graph. These reports further claimed 2014 as the 17th year in a row when the earth’s temperature was hotter than normal. Most reports blamed the heat on human activity, and calls for a carbon tax and reduced reliance on fossil fuels abounded.

Pennsylvania State University climate scientist Dr. Michael E. Mann also claims that the temperature is rising. He attributes the supposedly upward climb to “rising levels of planet-warming gases produced by the burning of fossil fuels.” If he has his way, cutbacks in industry, reduced automobile use, and other drastic measures will be enforced.

Dr. Mann is the creator of the widely discredited “hockey-stick” graph depicting temperatures over the past 1,000 years. Called a hockey stick because of its shape that shows skyrocketing projections of accelerated warming, the graph has helped to spread false alarms about rapidly rising temperatures. His work contributed to dire warnings reached by the United Nation’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the ravings of former Vice President Al Gore — the co-winners of the 2007 Nobel Prize. Fresh from his trip to Europe to accept his award, Gore somberly predicted that “the polar ice cap … could be completely ice-free within the next five to seven years.” But in 2013, precisely six years after his near hysterical announcement, ice in the Arctic expanded by 50 percent. The surge amounted to one of the most dramatic indications of extreme cold since 1979 when such measurements began.

At the University of Alabama in Huntsville, Dr. John R. Christy has become a well-known skeptic of warming claims. He casually commented that the latest figures, even if accurate, amounted to only a few hundredths of a degree, a figure well within the margin of error when taking such measurements. Discounting the recent announcements about worrisome heat rises, he calmly stated, “Since the end of the 20th century, the temperature hasn’t done much.”

Climatologist Dr. Patrick Michaels, formerly of the University of Virginia and currently at the Washington-based Cato Institute, disdainfully shrugged off the latest temperature scare by noting that it is based on a mere “few hundredths of a degree.” He is not alone in stating that “the earth is in its 19th consecutive year of no significant warming trend.”

There isn’t any hard evidence that warming is occurring. And there surely isn’t any reason to cease burning coal and oil to combat a non-problem. The real need is to counter the scare tactics that would have our nation and the American people subjected to changes in our industrial and personal activity. The goal of the scaremongers amounts to an attack on freedom.

John F. McManus is president of The John Birch Society and publisher of The New American. This column appeared originally at the insideJBS blog and is reprinted here with permission.

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