American Elephants

The Era of Climate Alarmism is Ending. It’s Over. by The Elephant's Child

According the Climate Policy Initiative, the world “invested” $1 billion a day last year to “fight” global warming, which hasn’t been happening for over 16 years.

The World Economic Forum said that wasn’t enough, that we needed $700 billion to tackle climate change, but exactly what we should be doing to wage war on a climate that is no longer warming ? Stop all that carbon dioxide that is getting into the atmosphere? The CO² has been increasing even as the climate cools. It has now reached 400 ppm and is encouraging the greening of the world.

The age of climate alarmism is coming to an end. You many not have noticed that the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a summary of its Fifth Assessment Report late last month — criticized and mocked by many leading climate scientists. The distinguished journal Science even editorialized  that this should be the last report issued by the UN body. Ouch.  The UN’s IPCC has been the guidebook for governments all over the world, yet few realize that the IPCC doesn’t do science. They even say so on their website.

Given five tries to convince the world that human activity is causing catastrophic warming of the planet, runaway sea-level rise and various weather disasters, the public still doesn’t buy it.

Country people, farmers, who have to be alert to changes in the weather and the climate in their daily lives are far less apt to buy it than city apartment dwellers who may encounter nature on occasional weekends. The IPCC’s Fifth Assessment Report concedes for the first time that global temperatures have not risen since 1998, despite a 7 percent rise in carbon dioxide.

Nearly all the UN-approved climate computer models were wrong. The attempt to accurately model all of the variables of natural climate in a computer program simply didn’t work. We don’t know enough about climate. And much of what we thought we knew was wrong.  The IPCC admits that the “hockey stick” graph it featured in past reports wasn’t accurate. It looked like a hockey stick only because it ignored the Medieval Warm Period when temperatures were much warmer than today, and a period when Greenland was green and wine grapes grew in England.

Reported temperatures from weather stations across the country turned out to be way off, because of faulty placement of the temperature gauges next to air-conditioner outlets and concrete heat-retaining walls.

Despite Europe’s boom in solar and wind energy, CO² emissions haven’t been reduced by even a single gram, and it’s the EU’s own policies that are to blame. Australia had an election to get rid of the government and the hated carbon tax. Governments are beginning to back off. One billion a day should wake a few people up.

The true believers who have a quasi-religious belief in global warming are not going to give up easily. Their religious faith is more political than anything, and that faith is central to their identity. The European Union will pay £165 billion for its current climate policies each and every year for the next 87 years. Britain’s climate policies — subsidizing windmills, wood-burners, anaerobic digesters, electric vehicles and all the rest —is due to cost them £1.8 trillion over the course of this century. That will, they hope, lower the air temperature by about 0.005ºC — which will be undetectable by normal thermometers. The accepted consensus is that every £100 spent fighting climate change will bring £3 of benefits. Perhaps someone could tell Mr. Obama about this.

This winter is expected to be a cold one. We’ll see what the opinions are in the Spring.

Ozymandius by The Elephant's Child


hu–bris  —  Overbearing pride or presumption; arrogance

         I met a traveller from an antique land
         Who said: Two vast and trunkless legs of stone
         Stand in the desert. Near them on the sand,
         Half sunk, a shatter’d visage lies, whose frown
         And wrinkled lip and sneer of cold command
         Tell that its sculptor well those passions read
         Which yet survive, stamp’d on these lifeless things,
         The hand that mock’d them and the heart that fed.
         And on the pedestal these words appear:
         “My name is Ozymandias, king of kings:
         Look on my works, ye Mighty, and despair!”
         Nothing beside remains: round the decay
         Of that colossal wreck, boundless and bare,
         The lone and level sands stretch far away.

President Obama to Congress: ” I Don’t Want to Hear About Spending Cuts.” by The Elephant's Child


Nancy Pelosi said “the cupboard is bare” — there’s no more that can be cut from the budget. Harry Reid, the disagreeable Majority Leader in the Senate wants to get rid of the sequester and restore the cuts that have already been made. There’s going to be no “Grand Bargain.”President Obama says he doesn’t want to hear about spending cuts.

“Don’t tell me we can afford to shut down the government, which costs our government billions of dollars, but we can’t afford to invest in our kids,” Obama said at a school in Brooklyn. “This obsession with cutting for the sake of cutting hasn’t helped our economy grow, it’s held us back,” Obama said.

“Cutting for the sake of cutting?” You will notice that the Democrats never speak of excess spending. They talk of investments, usually in “our kids.” Government waste? Never mentioned. I knew I had written about government waste several times, so I entered government waste in our own search bar, and I have apparently written about it at least 25 times, to go by the headlines.  From one of the most recent:

•Federal watchdogs have ideas for saving $67 billion a year, according to a report by a House committee. That’s without counting the sequester.

•So who are these “watchdogs”? They are the government’s Inspectors General who police the departments of the government for waste, fraud and abuse. They are the government’s auditors. They suggest ways to make government operation more efficient and to plug money leaks.

•Each year, the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform surveys the Inspector Generals and reports how many of the recommended steps have not been taken and how much taxpayer money has been wasted as a result.

•The 2013 Inspector General’s report was released last week, and said that 16,900 of the IG’s recommendations are yet to be implemented. Using the most conservative estimates, they put the lost savings at $67 billion a year. That’s almost 80% of the sequester cuts that are supposedly causing layoffs, furloughs and general misery throughout the government. Eliminating waste, fraud and abuse as opposed to putting all those government employees on furlough? Such a choice.

•The inspectors general do a fine job of enumerating the waste — but getting it ended is something else again.

•There are 82 programs across 10 separate agencies endeavoring to improve teacher quality — something almost every local school district is trying to do as well. Are teachers improving?

•There are 47 job-training programs —45 of  which overlap. The federal government runs 80 programs for the “transportation disadvantaged.” No bus service?

•There’s an airport in Oklahoma that is kept open simply to collect federal funds. ($450,000) The airport receives one flight a month.

•The robot squirrel  project to see how they interact with rattlesnakes  ($325.000) has received considerable publicity.

•The government pays as much as $2 million annually in monthly service fees to maintain about 28,000 grant accounts that are empty and have expired. Because they have not officially been closed they still are charged service fees. Free money.

A post from 2011 had a list of 8 programs of blatant waste from Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) who noted that his findings would “make us all look like jackasses,” and contain enough actionable information to “keep Congress busy for a year.” That list is here. None of these wasteful programs has been eliminated. We’ve frequently had some brave soul in Congress who, perhaps having majored in math, or economics, or worked in the private sector, regularly comes up with ways to eliminate waste and government sprawl, but seldom does anyone think it important enough to actually get a bill passed eliminating them.

In February, I wrote about “Obama’s Big Government Vision for American Decline” in which I took Obama’s own words to demonstrate the problem. Plenty of material here to write your Congressman about. Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi demonstrate the problem. Neither have ever done anything else but politics and government in long careers. Pelosi talks about how wonderful ObamaCare is going to be for the people. Harry Reid is stymied by the disastrous cuts of the sequester. They just want more money to spend. Politics is about winning, and winning is about buying votes, and politics is life.

And the people? They vote for whoever “cares about people like me.”

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