American Elephants

The Long, Long Story of ClimateGate and Dr. Michael Mann by The Elephant's Child


Back when today’s environmentalists suddenly became anxious about the climate, government agencies began giving grants to those scientists who were studying the climate seriously, and coming up with information to protect the government officials who might be accused of not tending to business and protecting the climate of the earth. ‘

Obviously the scientists who got the good-sized grants were those who could write a good grant proposal, for getting a grant enhanced the prestige of the scientist and the university where he taught, and meant new equipment and perhaps a raise, and maybe even an assistant.  So naturally there was a flurry of grant proposals churned out. Then they had to start producing useful science. Many turned to the computer programs used by Wall Street to predict what the market was going to do. So they entered what they knew about climate, but there was an enormous amount they didn’t know, so they put in what seemed likely, and what they thought was probable and a few wild guesses, and started predicting what the climate would do 20 or 50 years hence. [Please remember that this is a non-scientific estimate of what was going on by a sheer amateur observer.] The point is that there was a lot they just didn’t have any information about, like the action of clouds, and some things that they assumed were correct, like the temperatures at official thermometer sites (though many were located next to air conditioning outlets and heat-reflecting concrete walls, and even next to trash burners.) In other words, the official temperature records were vastly overestimating the warming.

Anthony Watts, proprietor of the valued website, meteorologist and former TV weatherman, became suspicious, and asked his viewers to take photographs of the official thermometer locations, and since many were located where factors other than weather were influencing the recorded temperatures. That’s when the “heat island” notion became common.

Michael Mann (Penn State) came up with was was called “the hockey-stick” graph. Envision a hockey stick. Goes along straight and then suddenly jogs straight up. That’s what his climate graph showed that the heat of the planet was going to do. That got a lot of attention,. Naturally it was called “ClimateGate”) Mann’s graph was featured news, Mann became a recognized scientist, with all the hoopla that entails. Dr. Tim Bell, climate skeptic, from B.C. suggested that Mann was exaggerating and making phony claims, as did Mark Steyn as a journalist. Mann sued for defamation. How dare you criticize my famous hockey stick graph. And the case has dragged on in Canadian courts for nine years. and Dr. Tim Ball won,  Michael Mann deservedly lost and has to pay Dr. Ball’s court costs. Here is Anthony Watt’s story on the whole long, long ClimateGate battle. More interesting because he has long been a participant. And here is the report from Marc Morano at Climate Depot. We are pleased.

If you can, take the time to prowl around and These are excellent websites that will reward your visits.

The Lungs of the Planet are Just Fine. by The Elephant's Child

The panicky people are claiming that the Amazon rainforest is on fire, “the lungs of the planet” are burning,— except that they don’t know what they are talking about. NASA has explained that the current fires in the Amazon are close to normal, but a little below — compared to the past 15 years. The fires are on land adjacent to the rainforest that has already been cleared for agricultural use. They were not caused by climate change. And started purposely by humans to burn off stubble. You can relax, The planet’s lungs are just fine.

The Presidential Campaign Centered on Climate Ends by The Elephant's Child

Today’s good news: Washington State Governor Jay Inslee is dropping out of the Presidential race. He made the announcement on the Rachel Maddow Show on MSNBC. Inslee had made Climate the centerpiece of his campaign, but just didn’t get any traction with voters in the early battleground states. And even more embarrassing, he is unlikely to qualify for CNN’s Climate Town Hall or the third presidential debate to be held next month, anyway.

Today’s bad news: He will announce tomorrow whether or not he will run for a third term.

“I’ve been fighting climate change for 25 years, and I’ve never been so confident of the ability of America now to reach critical mass to move the ball. I believe we are going to have a candidate to fight this battle. I’m inspired by the people I’ve met across the country, the young people in the sunrise movement, the climate strikers, these people give me confidence we can move ahead. I’m not going to be carrying the ball, but we’re going to make sure somebody is.”

Well, whether he wins another term or not, the climate will go on peacefully changing as it has done for millions of years. The idea that the earth is going to end in ten or twelve years if we don’t eliminate a benign gas that is, among other things, what we exhale is, at best, silly.

The trouble is that all the wind farms and “alternative energy” don’t work, and cost the taxpayers a bundle. A bunch of other potential candidates for governor have been waiting to see if Inslee will run again. I simply do not know if voters are particularly fond of Jay Inslee.

It seems that many people just believe because they heard people talking about it, and never, never bother to study up and see if it is true.

Some Remarkably Bad Ideas from Democrats by The Elephant's Child

We are not alone in our annoyance with the Media and the folks producing the news the Media write about. There’s a lot of disagreement. But then the problem is not those who disagree, it is simply the fact that we are all human, and basically hard to get along with. Unfortunately that isn’t really fixable. We have trouble getting along with our own family, let alone a bunch of strangers who are saying and doing things that we disagree with completely.

•Harry Reid, former Democrat Senate Majority Leader says that the Democrats are heading down the wrong path by pushing “medicare for all” and the decriminalization of illegal border crossings.

•James Piereson, writing in City Journal says “Economic indicators point to continued, moderate growth, despite the prognostications of the pundit class. and the volume of these forecasts is driven by partisan hopes that and economic downturn presents the best opportunity to defeat President Trump next year.”

•Conservatives tend to argue that “green” energy (wind and solar) is unreliable, inefficient and virtually useless, even if we accept the climate change gospel. But far from being
well-intentioned, “green” energy is the great corporate scam of our age.

•In a piece titled “The Left’s Vile Smear of America’s Founding,” Rich Lowry takes on Beto O’Rourke for the claim that “This country, though we would like to think otherwise, was founded on racism, has persisted through racism and is racist today.”

• In Issues and Insights, the Editorial Board points out that “Solar Energy is Good for Virtue Signaling and Not Much Else.” New excellent website founded by the former writers at Investors Business Review.

• The Wall Street Journal notes that “more Americans are defaulting on their student loans, and that government budget gnomes have vastly underestimated the future taxpayer charge.” The Congressional Budget Office in 2010 forecast that eliminating private lenders would save taxpayers $58 billion over 10 years.” Pure fantasy.

• And from Victor Davis Hanson: “Progressive Democrats Renounce Their Former Selves.” “Not long ago, the current presidential contenders opposed open borders, sanctuary cities, and federal funding for abortion. Now they can’t move left far and fast enough. Rarely have we seen an entire primary field of candidates scrambling to renounce all their past identities and agendas — and to do so unapologetically, abruptly, and vehemently.

Websites for Those Who Just Want to Know a Little More. by The Elephant's Child

Yesterday, American Greatness (good website) published a directory to good climate information “A Directory of Inconvenient Climate Information Websites” which those of you interested in being informed might find useful. Most of the websites listed in the sidebar on the front page also have long lists of good websites. Possibly they are all hoping that some of our more loudmouthed congressional representatives would notice and decide that they might need a bit more real information, but probably not. Facts are just so inconvenient when you have emotion to wave around instead.

You also might be interested in receiving a once a week email from SEPP, the Science and Environmental Policy Project, ( comes on the weekend with the week’s news. You can sign up there. Read through this week’s, and see if you find it useful.

With the Climate Crisis, Its One Damn Thing After Another by The Elephant's Child

About the time one claim about Climate Change begins to fall apart, they seem to have another one ready. It’s meat! To save the planet we have to stop eating meat. All those animals that we raise for meat, especially cows, have a flatulence problem. A new UN Report takes aim at meat eating. The UN seeks expansion of their climate mandate to regulate what you eat. We have to have enough mandates to make the United Nations a busy and prosperous organization, so lifestyle controls seem worthwhile. Are you ready to give up Prime Rib in the interest of saving the planet? How about Porterhouse? Hamburgers? Bacon? (Yes, bacon comes from pigs.)

Climate activists cheer the UN report. “We need a radical transformation, not incremental shifts, towards a global land use and food system that serves our climate needs” And that will accomplish absolutely nothing. Al Gore, however, is poised to profit. He is the biggest investor in ‘Beyond Meat’. And watch out for Cory Booker, who I believe is a vegetarian.

You need something done, whether it is the need for a government, or an agency, and they need a big bunch of rules, and people to write the rules and administer the rules, and offices and departments, and first thing you know they are trying to control everything and you have to have a revolution to get rid of them, or at least put them under control.

The climate is always changing, as it has done for millions of years. It has been much colder in the past and much warmer as well. Scientists have just confirmed from their separate observations and figures that there was indeed a Medieval Warm Period, when the weather was much warmer than it is today, and wine grapes grew in England and wheat in Norway. In the 1800s  we had The Little Ice Age, when the common phrase was “1800 and Froze to Death”.

CO² is not a pollutant, but a natural fertilizer for plants. Nurserymen pump carbon dioxide into their greenhouses to make their plants grow healthy. The earth is greening, and the increased green can be seen from space.

Forbes Magazine just decided to censor a climate story journalist Doron Levin wrote for Forbes about the scientific research by Professor Nir Shaviv, an Israeli Astrophysicist, and  Professor Henrik Svensmark in Denmark to demonstrate the effect of cosmic rays on cloud formation.

The activists who want us to give up meat seem to be particularly interested in the nutritional value of insects, but have little concern for the birds destroyed by wind turbines and solar arrays.  So that’s the way of the world this second week of August, 2019. Go figure.

The Fact that the United States has reduced our “greenhouse gas emissions” more than any other nation, gets no mention at all.

ADDENDUM: I should probably mention, in case there are any Western ranchers reading this, that the picture is actually of Swiss cows, and  milk cows rather than range cattle, and I don’t know the breed, I just liked the picture. They are not responsible for porterhouse and/or prime rib, in which case you should look for Herefords.

No, The End of the Earth is Not Imminent by The Elephant's Child

I don’t know just what spurred me to visit the U.S. House of Representatives online yesterday, but I did. ( I was curious about what the Democratic House was doing in the wake of AOC’s Green New Deal, and all the Democrat presidential candidates seeming to think saving us from catastrophic climate change was a big electoral issue.

I’m a confirmed skeptic, partly because I grew up in the mountains, largely outdoors, and very familiar with weather and wildlife, and my mother was my Biology teacher. I had a good grasp of photosynthesis. I’d been snowed in, without power, flooded, had lightning strike quite close, killed a rattlesnake and had to deal with a lynx trying to kill my dog, among other events. So don’t try to tell me that the world is ending in just 15 years. Of course it’s an effort to get rid of capitalism. The climate is just fine, warming and cooling as it has done for hundreds of thousands of years.

If you want an interesting exercise, go to the house website, and click on committees, and select the one on climate. Good grief! That is really discouraging.

Here is Dr. Richard Lindzen, one of America’s most revered scientists.

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