American Elephants


Assigned Reading by The Elephant's Child

The new American history by Wilfred M. McClay has had excellent reviews and I’m giving it as Christmas gifts, but I haven’t read it yet.

Land of Hope: An Invitation to the Great American Story

Another I like is John Steele Gordon’s

An Empire of Wealth:
The Epic History of American Economic Power

Essential:
The Black Book of Communism
Crimes, Terror, Repression

Communism
A History
By Richard Pipes

The Black Book is huge, over 700 pages, Richard Pipes book is small at 160 pages, but dense. Read both.

It’s clearly time to know a lot more about China than we do. The unknown story of:

MAO
by Jung Chang and Jon Halliday

Two from Bernard Lewis:

The Middle East:
A Brief History of the Last 2000 Years

What Went Wrong
The Clash Between Islam and Modernity in the Middle East

And I like this:
Voices of 1776
The Story of the American Revolution in the Words
of Those Who Were There
by Richard Wheeler

And let me add:
1491
New Revelations of the Americas Before Columbus
By Charles C. Mann



Absolutely Entitled to Be In Charge! by The Elephant's Child

It is certainly clear that Democrats believe they are entitled to run things, to be in charge. Three years later, and they still have not gotten over it. “Entitled” seems to be the key word. They should be in charge – because they are morally superior. They are compassionate. They care.

Republicans clearly do not care. They make it clear every day. Desperate people looking for a better life, and Republicans want to build walls to keep them out. They want to send people to prison just for smoking a joint. They have this cruel police force called ICE that wants to track down immigrants living quietly in this country and deport them. They want to tell women what they can do with their bodies, and deny them health care when they need it most. They clearly do not really care about the people at all.

The earth is facing a horrible doom because Republicans won’t face facts and move to clean renewable energy, and stop the evil oil pipelines that are despoiling the planet, because they favor Big Oil companies instead of clean natural wind and solar energy. It’s very clear that Republican care far more about budgets and big corporations than they do about the American people.

If you just keep their moral superiority in mind, everything will become clearer and less argumentative. They are really trying to improve things. Just see what they are offering to do to improve your lives. Rein in those big corporations that are polluting the planet. Medicare for all, not just the old folks. Compassion for all.  Social Justice for all. More equality. More fairness. What more could you ask?



What is a Fact? Who Says So? Do We Need Fact Checkers? Who Checks Them? by The Elephant's Child

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We seem to be living in a world where nothing is quite the same as it is supposed to be. Ulterior motives, political beliefs, political goals, our view of the world, our understanding of right and wrong, good and evil, true and false. Our news media is failing in its assigned task of informing the public about what is going on, to such an extent that the President of the United States is reduced to calling them “fake news”, and unfortunately, he is correct. They speak and write from a partisan viewpoint.

Susan Crockford is a zoologist who is the world’s greatest expert on polar bears. I posted her State of the Polar Bear Report for 2017 in March last year. Now we find that this accomplished scientist has been stripped of her Adjunct  Professor role by Canada’s  University of Victoria. The problem?
She promotes facts and doesn’t go along with climate activism. When the matter was last considered, the committee voted unanimously in her favour. What changed? Talks she was invited to give to schools in which she probably assured the kids that “the polar bears were just fine and thriving“ generated concern among parents regarding balance.” That concern was “shared with various levels of the university,” according to an April 2017 e-mail from Ann Stahl, then chair of the Anthropology Department.

These vague accusations, leveled by an unknown number of unknown individuals who may or may not have been garden variety climate activists, were first used to expel Crockford from the UVic Speakers Bureau. They then became the impetus to expel her from the UVic academic community altogether. Climate activists come in several guises. Some have become convinced that the climate crisis is a real thing, and we have to do something or the earth is going to end in just a few short years. That’s Greta Thunberg, 16 year-old from Sweden, who just missed getting a Nobel Peace Prize, because someone who actually did something about world peace received it instead.

On the other hand, you have Christiana Figueres, who was
executive secretary of the United Nation’s Framework Convention on Climate Change who admitted that the goal of environmental activists is not to save the world from ecological calamity—but to destroy capitalism. She said, in early February 2015 in Brussels:

This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years, since the Industrial Revolution.

Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) announced that she was entering the 2020 presidential race, during a snowstorm, because it is a known fact that “climate change is happening.” Well yes, dumb statement. The climate has been changing for millions of years, that does not make it an emergency.

The “Justice Democrats” announced the “Green New Deal” back in March. It is an ignorant pack of lies which some people having not done their homework of studying up, belieeeeved. And it’s still going on. Jane Fonda, as always on the wrong side of an issue, got herself arrested in a DC Climate Protest, claiming that she had been a “climate scientist” for years. Elizabeth Warren is calling for “environmental justice” a transition to the clean energy outlined in the “Green New Deal”. No, the Green New Deal will not provide millions of new jobs, and eliminating fossil fuels would put the economy into an enormous recession. Just do your homework and study up. Find out who are our most respected climate scientists and listen to them.

ADDENDUM: Don’t miss what actually happened here. World’s expert on polar bears visits a school, tells the kids that the polar bears are just fine and multiplying and thriving. Kids go home, tell parents that polar bears are just fine, and mommies get all upset because it doesn’t jibe with their own panic about a dying earth, complain to the university, which fires famous scientist. 2019: Planet Earth.



Trump? Expect A Second Great Depression ! by The Elephant's Child

Democrats learn with their mother’s milk that Republicans are basically quite stupid. If they were not they would be Democrats. Republicans give big tax cuts to the rich, and don’t care about ordinary folks, who may need help. They simply do not care about working people.

“[Donald] Trump’s economy is great for billionaires, not for working people,” Sanders likes to say. Meanwhile, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi grouses that under the Trump agenda, “the rich get richer, and everyone else is stuck paying the bill.”

Uh-huh. That’s been the standard liberal riff for the last couple of years as they try to explain how a president who they said would create a second Great Depression has created boom times with the lowest inflation and unemployment in half a century.

The facts, which the Left prefers not to take seriously, show something quite different. According to new Census Bureau data on the incomes of America’s middle class, Census Bureau researchers and statisticians at Sentier Research, the middle class has received gigantic income gains under Trump. The median or average-income family has seen a gain of $5,003 since Trump came into office. Median family income is now (August 2019) $65,976, up from about $61,000 when he entered office in January, 2017.

Under George W. Bush, the household income gains were a little over $400 in eight years. Under Barack Obama,  the gains were $1,043. That was in eight years for each former president. Under Trump, in less than three years, the extra income is about three times larger. They were asked to triple check the unexpected numbers, and in each case the income growth was $5,000. The tax cut added an additional $2,500 to a typical family of four’s after-tax incomes, so after taking account of taxes owed, the income of most middle-class families is up closer to $6,000 in the Trump administration. (Yoo Hoo, Nancy Pelosi!)

Democrats were quite sure that under Trump, the economy was going to create a second Great Depression. Instead, we have boom times with the lowest inflation and unemployment in half a century. Dang.



The Delusion of Diversity Destroys Our Common Humanity. by The Elephant's Child

Heather MacDonald, on how the Delusion of Diversity Destroys Our Common Humanity. Well, yes. “Diversity” has become one of the big judgemental words. You have to measure up! But why and who is doing the measuring?

I would suggest that you can find more real diversity among groups of all one race, or all one ethnic origin than among a university’s sophomore class, But it’s always valuable to question one’s assumptions! That’s one of Heather MacDonald’s greatest skills.



A Query About the “Deep State.” Do These Public Servants Recognize the “Servant” Part of the Designation? by The Elephant's Child

It is becoming increasingly clear that the “Deep State” has some significant problems. Career Civil Servants seem to frequently forget the “servant” part. Kimberly Strassel of the Opinion Page in the Wall Street Journal takes it on:

The “deep state”—if we are to use the term—is better defined as consisting of career civil servants, who have growing power in the administrative state but work in the shadows. As government grows, so do the challenges of supervising a bureaucracy swelling in both size and power. Emboldened by employment rules that make it all but impossible to fire career employees, this internal civil “resistance” has proved willing to take ever more outrageous actions against the president and his policies, using the tools of both traditional and social media.

So are they a problem? Do they understand that they work for us, not for what they think would be good? Highly paid, a “swelling bureaucracy.” Interesting essay, do read the whole thing. Are they our public servants or do they have more elaborate self images?



Climate Panic Is Nothing New, We’ve Been Having Them for Years and Years! by The Elephant's Child

I have mentioned frequently that climate panics are nothing new. The country has been having them for years, every extra cold winter or every hot summer. Perhaps it is just human nature to worry about a changing climate. But it is not a casual matter. For at least 120 years, climate “scientists” have been warning that the climate is going to kill us, but they keep switching from a coming ice age to global warming.

Here’s a timeline of claims just from 1895 to 2014. which doesn’t even include the “1800 and froze to death” Little Ice Age from the early 1800s. Tom Lifson of American Thinker, referred me to Anthony Watts’  WattsUpWithThat.

  • 1902 – “Disappearing Glaciers…deteriorating slowly, with a persistency that means their final annihilation…scientific fact…surely disappearing.” – Los Angeles Times
  • 1912 Prof. Schmidt Warns Us of an Encroaching Ice AgeNew York Times, October 1912
  • 1923 – “Scientist says Arctic ice will wipe out Canada” – Professor Gregory of Yale University, American representative to the Pan-Pacific Science Congress, – Chicago Tribune
  • 1923 – “The discoveries of changes in the sun’s heat and the southward advance of glaciers in recent years have given rise to conjectures of the possible advent of a new ice age” – Washington Post
  • 1924 MacMillan Reports Signs of New Ice Age New York Times, Sept 18, 1924
  • 1929 – “Most geologists think the world is growing warmer, and that it will continue to get warmer” – Los Angeles Times, in Is another ice age coming?
  • 1932 – “If these things be true, it is evident, therefore that we must be just teetering on an ice age” – The Atlantic magazine, This Cold, Cold World
  • 1933 America in Longest Warm Spell Since 1776; Temperature Line Records a 25-Year Rise New York Times, March 27th, 1933
  • 1933 – “…wide-spread and persistent tendency toward warmer weather…Is our climate changing?” – Federal Weather Bureau “Monthly Weather Review.”
  • 1938 – Global warming, caused by man heating the planet with carbon dioxide, “is likely to prove beneficial to mankind in several ways, besides the provision of heat and power.”– Quarterly Journal of the Royal Meteorological Society
  • 1938 – “Experts puzzle over 20 year mercury rise…Chicago is in the front rank of thousands of cities thruout the world which have been affected by a mysterious trend toward warmer climate in the last two decades” – Chicago Tribune
  • 1939 – “Gaffers who claim that winters were harder when they were boys are quite right… weather men have no doubt that the world at least for the time being is growing warmer” – Washington Post
  • 1952 – “…we have learned that the world has been getting warmer in the last half century” – New York Times, August 10th, 1962
  • 1954 – “…winters are getting milder, summers drier. Glaciers are receding, deserts growing” – U.S. News and World Report
  • 1954 Climate – the Heat May Be OffFortune Magazine
  • 1959 – “Arctic Findings in Particular Support Theory of Rising Global Temperatures” – New York Times
  • 1969 – “…the Arctic pack ice is thinning and that the ocean at the North Pole may become an open sea within a decade or two” – New York Times, February 20th, 1969
  • 1969 – “If I were a gambler, I would take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000″ — Paul Ehrlich (while he now predicts doom from global warming, this quote only gets honorable mention, as he was talking about his crazy fear of overpopulation)
  • 1970 – “…get a good grip on your long johns, cold weather haters – the worst may be yet to come…there’s no relief in sight” – Washington Post
  • 1974 – Global cooling for the past forty years – Time Magazine
  • 1974 – “Climatological Cassandras are becoming increasingly apprehensive, for the weather aberrations they are studying may be the harbinger of another ice age” – Washington Post
  • 1974 – “As for the present cooling trend a number of leading climatologists have concluded that it is very bad news indeed” – Fortune magazine, who won a Science Writing Award from the American Institute of Physics for its analysis of the danger
  • 1974 – “…the facts of the present climate change are such that the most optimistic experts would assign near certainty to major crop failure…mass deaths by starvation, and probably anarchy and violence” – New York Times

1975 Scientists Ponder Why World’s Climate is Changing; A Major Cooling Widely Considered to Be InevitableNew York Times, May 21st, 1975

  • 1975 – “The threat of a new ice age must now stand alongside nuclear war as a likely source of wholesale death and misery for mankind” Nigel Calder, editor, New Scientist magazine, in an article in International Wildlife Magazine
  • 1976 – “Even U.S. farms may be hit by cooling trend” – U.S. News and World Report
  • 1981 – Global Warming – “of an almost unprecedented magnitude” – New York Times
  • 1988 – I would like to draw three main conclusions. Number one, the earth is warmer in 1988 than at any time in the history of instrumental measurements. Number two, the global warming is now large enough that we can ascribe with a high degree of confidence a cause and effect relationship to the greenhouse effect. And number three, our computer climate simulations indicate that thegreenhouse effect is already large enough to begin to effect the probability of extreme events such as summer heat waves. – Jim Hansen, June 1988 testimony before Congress, see His later quote and His superior’s objection for context
  • 1989 -“On the one hand, as scientists we are ethically bound to the scientific method, in effect promising to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but – which means that we must include all doubts, the caveats, the ifs, ands and buts. On the other hand, we are not just scientists but human beings as well. And like most people we’d like to see the world a better place, which in this context translates into our working to reduce the risk of potentially disastrous climate change. To do that we need to get some broad based support, to capture the public’s imagination. That, of course, means getting loads of media coverage. So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we might have. This “double ethical bind” we frequently find ourselves in cannot be solved by any formula. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest. I hope that means being both.” – Stephen Schneider, lead author of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Discover magazine, October 1989
  • 1990 – “We’ve got to ride the global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing – in terms of economic policy and environmental policy” – Senator Timothy Wirth
  • 1993 – “Global climate change may alter temperature and rainfall patterns, many scientists fear, with uncertain consequences for agriculture.” – U.S. News and World Report
  • 1998 – No matter if the science [of global warming] is all phony . . . climate change [provides] the greatest opportunity to bring about justice and equality in the world.” —Christine Stewart, Canadian Minister of the Environment, Calgary Herald, 1998
  • 2001 – “Scientists no longer doubt that global warming is happening, and almost nobody questions the fact that humans are at least partly responsible.” – Time Magazine, Monday, Apr. 09, 2001
  • 2003 – Emphasis on extreme scenarios may have been appropriate at one time, when the public and decision-makers were relatively unaware of the global warming issue, and energy sources such as “synfuels,” shale oil and tar sands were receiving strong consideration” – Jim Hansen, NASA Global Warming activist, Can we defuse The Global Warming Time Bomb?, 2003
  • 2006 – “I believe it is appropriate to have an over-representation of factual presentations on how dangerous it is, as a predicate for opening up the audience to listen to what the solutions are, and how hopeful it is that we are going to solve this crisis.” — Al Gore, Grist magazine, May 2006
  • 2006 – “It is not a debate over whether the earth has been warming over the past century. The earth is always warming or cooling, at least a few tenths of a degree…” — Richard S. Lindzen, the Alfred P. Sloan professor of meteorology at MIT
  • 2006 – “What we have fundamentally forgotten is simple primary school science. Climate always changes. It is always…warming or cooling, it’s never stable. And if it were stable, it would actually be interesting scientifically because it would be the first time for four and a half billion years.” —Philip Stott, emeritus professor of bio-geography at the University of London
  • 2006 – “Since 1895, the media has alternated between global cooling and warming scares during four separate and sometimes overlapping time periods. From 1895 until the 1930’s the media peddled a coming ice age. From the late 1920’s until the 1960’s they warned of global warming. From the 1950’s until the 1970’s they warned us again of a coming ice age. This makes modern global warming the fourth estate’s fourth attempt to promote opposing climate change fears during the last 100 years.” – Senator James Inhofe, Monday, September 25, 2006
  • 2007– “I gave a talk recently (on fallacies of global warming) and three members of the Canadian government, the environmental cabinet, came up afterwards and said, ‘We agree with you, but it’s not worth our jobs to say anything.’ So what’s being created is a huge industry with billions of dollars of government money and people’s jobs dependent on it.” – Dr. Tim Ball, Coast-to-Coast, Feb 6, 2007
  • 2008 – “Hansen was never muzzled even though he violated NASA’s official agency position on climate forecasting (i.e., we did not know enough to forecast climate change or mankind’s effect on it). Hansen thus embarrassed NASA by coming out with his claims of global warming in 1988 in his testimony before Congress” – Dr. John S. Theon, retired Chief of the Climate Processes Research Program at NASA, see above for Hansen quotes

Section updated by Anthony:

  • 2009Climate change: melting ice will trigger wave of natural disasters. Scientists at a London conference next week will warn of earthquakes, avalanches and volcanic eruptions as the atmosphere heats up and geology is altered. Even Britain could face being struck by tsunamis – “Not only are the oceans and atmosphere conspiring against us, bringing baking temperatures, more powerful storms and floods, but the crust beneath our feet seems likely to join in too,” – Professor Bill McGuire, director of the Benfield Hazard Research Centre, at University College London, – The Guardian, Sep 2009.
  • 2010What Global Warming Looks Like. It was more than 5°C (about 10°F) warmer than climatology in the eastern European region including Moscow. There was an area in eastern Asia that was similarly unusually hot. The eastern part of the United States was unusually warm, although not to the degree of the hot spots in Eurasia. James HansenNASA GISS, August 11, 2010.
  • 2011Where Did Global Warming Go? “In Washington, ‘climate change’ has become a lightning rod, it’s a four-letter word,” said Andrew J. Hoffman, director of the University of Michigan’s Erb Institute for Sustainable Development.   – New York Times, Oct 15, 2011.

  • 2012Global warming close to becoming irreversible-scientists. “This is the critical decade. If we don’t get the curves turned around this decade we will cross those lines,” said Will Steffen, executive director of the Australian National University’s climate change institute, speaking at a conference in London. Reuters, Mar 26, 2012
  • 2013Global-warming ‘proof’ is evaporating.  The 2013 hurricane season just ended as one of the five quietest years since 1960. But don’t expect anyone who pointed to last year’s hurricanes as “proof” of the need to act against global warming to apologize; the warmists don’t work that way. New York Post, Dec 5, 2013
  • 2014  – Climate change: It’s even worse than we thought.  Five years ago, the last report of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change painted a gloomy picture of our planet’s future. As climate scientists gather evidence for the next report, due in 2014, Michael Le Page gives seven reasons why things are looking even grimmer. – New Scientist (undated in 2014)

Sorry, Greta. Lots of people get fooled by public pronouncements. You are not alone.




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