the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion

A Big Project

Posted by Jeff Id on February 11, 2014

Brandon Shollenberger is collecting a list of Michael Mann’s screwups.   I’ve thrown in a short thousand words myself.  I could have kept going but I’m showing more restraint in my old age….:D   If you have your own info to add, I’m sure he would be happy to collect it.

The list is intended as support for Mann’s defamation lawsuit – that I suspect may not go as well as he hopes.

A List of Mann’s Screw Ups

I think Brandon may need to pay for more drive-space before this list is over.

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The Future of Weather – Uncommon Sense

Posted by Jeff Id on February 2, 2014

USA today published yet another climate rant on the state of global warming.  This time they tied it to the polar vortex that is still freezing our ___ (insert anatomy here) off.  The article is filled with the ‘local is not global’ and ‘weather is not climate’ (until they say it is) mantra that has been so common in recent years.   The problem that  AGW scientists and left-wing mouthpieces have is identical, while things have warmed a tiny bit, the stupid thermometers are falling well behind the not-so-clairvoyant, modeled projections of planet-wide doom.

What to do

…what to do.

Well the general media seems to have congealed on a temporary strategy at least. The collection of like-minded opinion is not a conspiracy between writers, but rather an obvious shelter during the cold.  Strategically, it is basically a placeholder until something happens that looks politically better for global warming activists.  The formula is to keep repeating that cold is still consistent with models, ignore the fact that a decade ago they were claiming we wouldn’t have nearly as much snow today, and tell people that warm is still coming tomorrow, and scare them that in the future we won’t have snow.  They could almost run the same articles from years ago and just insert new pro-AGW weather events between claims of weather is not climate.

How many weathers does equal a climate?

I’m sure that all of us agree that a single weather event does not define climate, but even the ever-left USA Today needs to recognize that eventually the summation of weather events does equal climate.   I’m sure the progressives™ would be hard to pin down on this particular question but when the summation of weathers doesn’t exhibit the predictions of climate, a little reality check is in order.

The no “good” data quicksand.

This particular pro-global warming article, which was born during cold weather, seemed to take a defensive tone.  With little helpful weather to work from this winter,  they refer to the summary for policy makers of the IPCC AR5 with a “fairly loose” “somewhat speculative” prevaricatory caricature of the IPCC,  in lieu of an actual quotation (my bold):

But climate scientists are 95% to 100% sure that human activity — emission of greenhouse gases — is the dominant cause of dramatic warming.

It makes me giggle.  What can I say.

The dramatic warming of Earth to date is minimally detectable 0.85C since the beginning of the 1900’s (IPCC AR5), it shows no sign of accelerating and falls under half the rate which the average climate model predicted.   The models require not only more warming, but an accelerated rate of warming for the IPCC doom scenarios to become remotely plausible.  Many of us science minded observers, reasonably question the validity of any of the “doom” scenarios themselves, as they are based on what can only gifted generously with the term – speculation.  What’s more is that the speculation, is being published as though it were science.  Science traditionally requires data, so our hapless author teams are oft pressured into statistical falsification of results, aka”scientific speculation”.    See warming attribution sections of various butterfly, sheep, glacier or fish shrinking studies for endless examples.  This tendency to fabricate the supporting data of a study is to be expected when the speculation in question supports and improves the funding which in turn supports the studies.

It seems to me that the USA Today article found themselves in the same boat as our palm-reading climate scientists.   Since the AR5 summary which USA Today linked to is full of big words that don’t say what USA editors wanted, a little caricature of reality was required to support their progressive™ intent.  I wonder how many of the thousands of readers will check the AR5 link for accuracy?

Exxon – send checks ASAP!

USA ends their prayer to the climate model gods (which are apparently different gods from the climate gods) to bring change to the evil right-wing legislators.

The damage will only be compounded if it becomes an excuse for yet another year of denial and delay in addressing climate dangers.

It seems that USA Today is in denial again. As it stands, the EPA and Obama have been proceeding full speed ahead on their insane concept of building windmills, bankrupting coal power, generally limiting combustion energy wherever possible (even beach fires) and increasing usage costs through regulation and governance at a truly unprecedented rate.  It is so bad that despite massive energy cost increases, brownouts are becoming something we are dealing with more often in the US now.  The authoritarian leftists couldn’t move forward with limitation policy any faster if they tried, but for USA Today it still isn’t fast enough.  Meanwhile, the truly dim-witted liberal politician’s attempts to take the lead from global progressive™ reporters, and change global weather by adding costs to combustion energy for only one country on the globe, have scientifically zero chance of success.

The nothing-new-news is that these writers are very, very, ignorant people with strong opinions and big pens.  We are inundated today with so many anti-progress media voices across the planet hollering the same message, that society unwittingly bends to their will.  Eventually, because CO2 emission won’t actually be stopped or slowed appreciably by government, the data will prove out that warming isn’t actually a bad thing at all.  Unfortunately for us, the law and policy, which are likely the true damage of global warming, are being implemented and tightened today.   Equally unfortunate for us citizens, government policy worldwide has proven much more intractable than the CO2 in our atmosphere could ever be.

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I have a blog!

There is little we the oppressed can do to fight the global ignorance epidemic, so I blog. Whether it changes opinions or not, it at least puts a little rebuttal to the near-omnipotent global media in public view.

Predictions.

Since, according to climate scientists, there has been literally zero detected increases in hurricanes, tornadoes, rain, snow, earthquakes, locusts, drought, flood, etc.. and since the polar ice cap didn’t choose to melt …. again….. it seems that we need a more pragmatic and more scientific list of global warming effects than can be produced in aggregate by warming-centric government funded scientists. 

To that end, I have compiled a new list of weather trend predictions for the future.  My list is statistically and scientifically falsifiable and even more appropriately, is one that the common person can really get their heads around.   Think of it as common sense.  This list is unabridged and contains every weather event that will statistically change in frequency and strength, and has an asterisk by those that you will experience or scientists will measure that will be attributable to man made temperature change in the next 40 years.

Jeff’s list:

Read the rest of this entry »

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Isn’t it time we gave a little recognition to our friend – Anthropogenic Global Warming

Posted by Jeff Id on January 26, 2014

photo

Raise the price of energy, we need to save the planet

…My hands are cold

…My fingers are cold

…I can’t see the drive

…I think my nose is actually froze

Turn down the heat, we must conserve

…My neck is cold

…My ears are cold

…My back is hurt

…My cheeks are froze

No incandescent bulbs, we must be efficient

…My eyes are cold

…My legs are cold

…My ears hurt

…My toes are probably solidly froze

We need emissions standards for small engines

…My car is cold

…Our school is closed

…My trees are ice and our yard is snow

…Our squirrels have likely froze

We must stop global warming before the planet burns

…Ice cold hair

…Ice cold nose

…Ice cold feet, especially toes

…Fortunately for me, my brain has still not froze.

——

Even at minus 3 Fahrenheit (-19C) I tell myself that we must thank fossil fuels for providing a fraction of the extra almost 1 degree of warmth we have luxuriated in this winter. Without it, we would have been a numbing minus 4 degrees F and that would have been a disaster!

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Briffa 2013 Satellite Temperature Download

Posted by Jeff Id on January 25, 2014

To look at the local temp data in comparison to the Briffa 2013 polar.mxd data, I downloaded both the RSS and UAH gridded lower troposphere satellite data.   Unlike ground temperature data, the lower troposphere data is a layer of air which extends miles above the surface of the earth (Blue curve in Figure 1).

fu1

Figure 1 – From World Climate Report

UAH and RSS regional trends are shown in Figures 2 and 3.

RSS Degrees C per Decade

Figure 2

UAH Degrees C per Decade

Figure 3

From past posts here, we have discussed that UAH estimates the polar regions whereas RSS leaves them out.   For fun, I plotted the difference of the two series globally and placed a green marker over the Yamal area where the data for Briffa 2013 was taken.

UAH - RSS Degrees C per Decade with Yamal

Figure 4

Data from that single gridcell for each series is sown in Figures 5 and 6.

UAH temperature anomaly yamal trend

Figure 5

RSS temperature anomaly yamal trend

Figure 6

The two series are mostly comprised of the same data.  UAH made the decision to change to station keeping satellites in recent years which eliminates some of the corrections necessary for satellites with orbits that decay over years.   Still the series are very highly correlated with an r^2 of 0.93.  Next,  I will get the ground data series for the region and then we can see how well things match up with the treerings.

I almost forgot:  R sourcecode is below and should be turnkey.

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MXD Age Based Variance

Posted by Jeff Id on January 22, 2014

I woke up the other day wondering if age of a tree would cause a different latewood density response to environmental factors.   I don’t remember reading anything about it so it seemed worthwhile to check.

I am working with 124 tree samples from the Polar.mxd file here.   This is the same data from my previous post.     I took each MXD curve which we showed previously has a long term age related signal and filtered that curve with a 51 year lowpass Gaussian filter.   The top of figure 1 shows the original curve (black) and the filtered curve (red).  Subtracting the red curve from the black curve gives the HF signal in the second pane of Figure 1 immediately below.  Basically a flat squiggly line.

signal removal process

I took all of the 124 trees and did the same thing.   Then I took the average for each year and calculated the confidence interval from the flattened high frequency curves.  The two sigma CI expands in a trumpet bell shape (dark gray) like the previous post so we know that differences in long term trend weren’t causing the whole shape.   The second pane below is the simple standard deviation (blue line).   Visually it has no appreciable trend over time meaning that as the trees age and gain mass, the response to 50 year and shorter signals isn’t a function of the age of the tree.     The trumpet bell shape of the dark gray region is therefore due to less samples in the older years and we don’t need to correct MXD variance for tree age.  It’s kind of a lame result, but at least we know the MXD answer.

signal removal process SD

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Briffa MXD 2013 #1

Posted by Jeff Id on January 20, 2014

I’ve spent a little time compiling MXD proxies from Briffa 2013. I don’t have a lot of results yet but I thought I would put them up. First, I created a simplified reconstruction by centering the proxies and then normalizing by standard deviation and averaging.  That is why Phi claimed to have done, and my data does seem to match his pretty well.   The graphs below have a 21 year Gaussian filter.

basic reconstruction Briffa 2013

Phi stated in paraphrase that no age correction is needed for MXD data.   I took a look at that claim below.  By aligning the trees so that their first ring densities started in year 1 and averaging, I created the plot below.   The two sigma dark gray region assumes a normal distribution of data but you can see the red curve exceeds the no signal confidence interval expected if MXD didn’t demonstrate a signal by age.

growth curve polar mxd

Taking the examination a step further, I was concerned that younger trees or trees from different periods would show a different general trend with age.   Randomly, I split the trees into two groups, those whose birthday was before 1500AD and those after 1500AD.  Both sets of trees exhibited the same initial hump in the first 150 years of growth.  It is a bit concerning that they have such strong divergence in their older years.  If we normalized everything with a spline to figure 2, we might be able to create quite a blade on the end of our reconstruction.

From this, I think it is quite reasonable to make some kind of RCS based correction to the growth curves.  Ignoring that correction would lead to spurious trends as the data does have a strong tree age related signal.  Finding a reasonable sort of correction though is going to be a bit of work.

growth curve polar mxd sorted by age

The source code is below, it is pretty messy so I will clean it up for future posts.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Flexible Thoughts

Posted by Jeff Id on January 19, 2014

I’ve spent a little time over my years studying the math behind neural networks.   I find the self-organization of neural networks to be mathematically interesting in the same way that evolution is.  While we humans can’t claim to understand the whole of the math of even a single neuron, the basic concepts lead toward some interesting conclusions.   I think of a simplified neuron as a device with inputs and outputs that trigger in a binary fashion to analog style weighting of its own inputs.  The binary threshold, no matter what its nature, creates a mathematical stability when presented with a wide variety of simultaneous inputs.   That trigger threshold is known to self adjust as neurons learn and the combination of inputs from different stimuli on the same neuron means that a single neuron is capable of participation in unrelated decisions at different times.   The result is a certain flexibility of thought over time which is beneath the level of our own perception.

Neruons are known to continually change connections (mathematical weights) and have a random physical structure which by feedback grows in a fashion that is mathematically weighted toward non-random (learning).  This means that the comprehension, memory, and decision making environment in your mind is ever-changing.   Sure, some experiences will guide you, but how you perceive things will be guided by a different set of neural connections who’s weighting has taken over your current ones even if the results are the same.  In addition, the math behind the learning process is fully able to accept all kinds of interrelated information with the right kind of input and interpret even the most nonsensical information as truth.

It is particularly important to understand that emotion plays a role in learning as emotions can direct the physical learning process to absorb or reject information.  If  a mind wants to believe something is true, it will find extraordinary ways to rationalize how that information comports with reality and be satisfied for the effort. Perhaps emotion encourages or discourages connections of reason or maybe it just participates in the assembling of incomplete information, the actual function isn’t as critical for this post as knowing of its existence.  Even more than emotion, learning is especially influenced by being exposed to certain facts in repetition.   It isn’t an unreasonable statement that after years of dedication to the study of a particular phenomenon, confirmation bias is one of the greatest hurdles that a scientist faces.

For these reasons, I believe that the human mind has more flexibility of perception than people often realize.  Rather than being more complex and massive, I believe our personalities are actually smaller and more fluid than is often believed and that highly malleable personalities actually drive us.  You literally won’t be the same person in 10 years that you are today.  I don’t have any physiological evidence to support my statement, so perhaps it is what I want to believe, but it does seem to support my general observations.

So it is a common contention that we humans are all susceptible to this kind of bias, I have a few examples outlandish conclusions people have reached based in my understanding of these principles.

- The oft-stated belief by certain climate scientists that skeptics are oil funded.  I like this one because it is relatively benign, but seems to ignore the possibility that oil companies don’t mind the supply restrictions being caused in the energy industry by production reducing regulations.   I’ve often wondered why people like Michael Mann and Stephan Lewandowsky believe that oil companies don’t want supply limitations which cause people to pay more for oil? Paying more per production gallon means more profit.  No, I’m not saying that some money from oil companies isn’t spent in all directions, but it doesn’t take a big leap of understanding to know why the oil companies fund mainstream climate science and promote expensive “green” energy on their signs.

- Belief that industry or capitalism are making people poor.   This is a very common conclusion today and it is no wonder considering the vast repetition of this concept being fed to society, but people are wealthier in capitalist pro-industry society than at any time in our history.  The bifurcation of logic is extraordinary, yet this message has come to be believed by more people than not.   The popular thought today is that it is the fault of business that people are poor, not the fault of the poor individuals who on immediate inspection are not producing anything of value.

- Lewandowsky and Mann “According to the World Health Organization, climate change is already claiming more than 150,000 lives annually (Patz, Campbell-Lendrum, Holloway, & Foley, 2005), and estimates of future migrations triggered by unmitigated global warming run as high as 187 million refugees “   Despite there being literally zero evidence supporting this statement, this is something these authors have come to fully believe.

- Belief that global warming will not only destroy the world but will destroy it soon.  This belief is common among those who are immersed in the field of climate science.  For example, it isn’t hard to visualize James Hanson literally screaming wildly at his keyboard for this old quote from an article which literally compared coal to the “death trains” of humanities darkest history:

“The climate is nearing tipping points. Changes are beginning to appear and there is a potential for explosive changes, effects that would be irreversible, if we do not rapidly slow fossil-fuel emissions over the next few decades. As Arctic sea ice melts, the darker ocean absorbs more sunlight and speeds melting. As the tundra melts, methane, a strong greenhouse gas, is released, causing more warming. As species are exterminated by shifting climate zones, ecosystems can collapse, destroying more species.

The public, buffeted by weather fluctuations and economic turmoil, has little time to analyze decadal changes. How can people be expected to evaluate and filter out advice emanating from those pushing special interests? How can people distinguish between top-notch science and pseudo-science?

Those who lead us have no excuse – they are elected to guide, to protect the public and its best interests. They have at their disposal the best scientific organisations in the world, such as the Royal Society and the US National Academy of Sciences. Only in the past few years did the science crystallize, revealing the urgency. Our planet is in peril. If we do not change course, we’ll hand our children a situation that is out of their control. One ecological collapse will lead to another, in amplifying feedbacks.”

Clearly, while there are climate models predicting warming, there is no evidence of the kind of destruction tormenting Dr. Hanson’s mind.  He clearly believes in what he is saying, yet for those who haven’t been regularly cuddled by “pro-green” message, we cannot see any of these possibilities as rational.  It is my impression that nothing frustrates Dr. Hansen more than humanities refusal to jump off the cliff with him.

Rationalization:

Now clearly, all of the above anti-reason comments can be rationalized by an individual.  I can say that easily because so many people find the above concepts certain and true despite what appear to be such nonsensical roots.  You don’t even have to agree that ALL of the statements are nonsensical, just pick one of them that is nonsense and we can agree that rational irrationality is part of our human nature.  The human ability to rationalize anything is so powerful that entire governments and societies are based on the unprovable certainty of superiority of their deity over another.  Still, the truly brutal impact of those governments on their populations does disturbingly little to perturb their popular beliefs.

We can conclude from this, that it is an unfortunate fact that it isn’t the quality of the information which determines the number or percentage of humans who subscribe to a belief, nor even the difficulty of rationalization, but rather the emotional investment and degree of repetition which makes the final determination of what you believe.  Today, many IPCC climate scientists fret over the fact that so many of us cannot see their version of reality, while simultaneously recommending extremely dangerous economic measures like massive curtailing of meat and energy production, or the use of food for production of transportation fuel.  These extreme anti-industrial measures clearly contribute to impoverishment and starvation of the poorest societies of the world the scientists profess to protect.  Some find the solution to be to give these poor money, which obviously just enslaves them to the payments. All of this rationalization to address a planetary destruction which at this point isn’t even remotely in evidence.  They are completely immersed in the field, with their like-minded peers reinforcing their political and scientific certainty.  For some, it seems that every piece of their self image has become tied up in this certainty of knowledge of the future climate as well as their authoritarian style global government solutions.

The whole situation is crazy at this point but the global political news machine is still repeating the global doom message at top volume, reinforcing all necessary aspects of global climate doom and promoting the wrong-think it supports.   So far there have been a lot of people who have declared the end of the world, and so far they are batting a perfect zero.

So, since climate models are running hotter than measurements by 2X or more, and since not a single destructive change definitively related to climate change has been recorded in the entirety of human history, how about we just settle down for say 20 or 30 years and see where climate is then?    Doesn’t that seem a tweak more reasonable than making regulations which preemptively shut down energy production or drive food and fuel prices through the roof?

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Adaptation to Global Warming

Posted by Jeff Id on December 15, 2013

A look out the back door in mid December.

photo

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Taxes and Society

Posted by Jeff Id on December 14, 2013

There is a lot of dogma in politics regarding tax rates and general government performance. I personally have found that most people make statements about politics with literally zero data.  On thanksgiving, I spent about 4 hours on the government data website – http://www.bea.gov/iTable/iTable.cfm looking at various numbers reported there.   A reader, who shall be unnamed, even stopped by recently claiming that taxes were lower than 1950, conservatives only make decisions with emotion (a common claim applied to today’s Marxist authoritarian-style liberals) and even that we should have an 80% of GDP tax rate to maximize government revenue.

Why maximization of government revenue (and therefore influence) is assumed a positive goal, is something you should ask one of those authoritarians, because it runs counter to everything a government should be attempting to do.   Still, I found some interesting facts about government tax taking and spending.

Are we paying more taxes than before?   Taxes are taken from us in so many ways, it is very difficult to add it up.   It seems from those of us experiencing it, that taxes are continually on the rise and rarely pull back even a little.  Taxes are a financial load, where they are taken from does have an effect, but how much is being paid in total is important when we consider the cost to society. First I looked at the per capita tax paid into government across all sources.

ScreenHunter_02 Dec. 14 10.46

So in 2012 dollars 1950 population paid on average $4000 per person into the US government.  In 1998 that had increased to 14000 per person!   We are definitely paying more tax than 1950.  What it also means is that if you have a family of 4 and you are paying in less than  4 x $14,000  = $56,000 into the government, you are paying less than your share of those taxes and they are being taken on your behalf from someone else.

Most people don’t realize that even if they don’t write 14,000 in checks, they still end up paying that tax in the form of lower salary, higher prices, etc.  and that means they have a loss of influence over cash.  Loss of income (Taxation) in any form, is a strong limitation of behavior and is a general decrease of personal freedom.  Said another way, when money is taken from your employer, that money was something you helped create, yet high corporate taxes mean you no longer have any control for directing the influence of that cash to your betterment.  You are less powerful and free as an individual.

Many would say Jeff, that’s not fair.   You need to recognize that people make more money since 1950.   The GDP corrected numbers are a more fair comparison they say.   This logical fallacy fails to recognize that we are still asking the government to provide 3 times more service per person than we needed only 60 years ago during our best years.   This increased service represents further loss of control through added regulation and compliance with those regulations is a double hit for the economy on the same tax dollars.  Paying our already massive government to create hurdles for the economy is very expensive, and we see results from it all over the country. Do you realize how many businesses have left California, and why? This also applies to the argument about whether we should ever try to maximize government “revenue” as a means to promote general welfare.  Still the GDP graph doesn’t tell that great of a story either:

 ScreenHunter_03 Dec. 14 10.58

I’ve shown this graph before.   Tax rates as a percent of GDP haven’t changed much since 1960.   They peaked in 1999 under Bill Clinton but the percentage of GDP dropped off precipitously in the last two years he was in office.    Combining the first and second graph with the concept that the additional spending per capita by government results in a double-hit on the economy as businesses and individuals invest more money and time toward compliance with EPA, Education, IRS, traffic laws, employment law, and many many other well-known increases in regulation.   As a percent of GDP, it should be obvious even to the left that the total governmental financial load per capita follows the first “total dollars paid” graph, NOT the percent of GDP graph.  This is a very important point that is lost in the discussion of tax rates – this subtlety is often missed with intent.

We are paying much higher dues for our government than we ever have in history.  With each new group’s pet-peeve, excessive regulation has invaded every aspect of American life.  The land of the free can’t make its own decisions even on the size of soda they buy.   Obviously, compliance dollars are much harder to quantify than governmental budget dollars, so we will move on to some other interesting plots.

ScreenHunter_04 Dec. 14 11.12

I’ve shown a version of this plot before also, the 4 years since Obama took office are incredibly stark considering that we are not at war.   Where this money is going is going to be a bit of a surprise to some here.  I found this next plot worthy of writing this blog post.

ScreenHunter_05 Dec. 14 11.17

What this graph is showing is what percentage of government expenditures is being handed out as checks other than pensions or tax returns.   If you get social security, social security disability, medicade, medicare, food stamps, unemployment checks, etc…  this graph shows the total percentage of cash that is being handed to people in the form of checks.

Until 1970, 20 percent of government revenue was used to help those in need.   By the 1970’s we had reached a full 30%   That held flat all the way until Bush junior took office, he managed to jump socialist style payments to 40% of tax revenue.  I haven’t studied which policies did what, but the website I linked has additional numerical detail that could allow us to figure it out.   What is again clear is that when Obama took office, he jumped total payments to “needy” citizens by an overwhelming 15%.  We are now paying 55 percent of total tax revenue as checks to these deemed by government to be in need -- Starting in the first year he took office!

Of the $14,000 taken from every American in some form or other, $7,700 is being handed out to the less successful.   I can imagine no greater danger to economic health than this situation.   Obama told us during the election that this was his intent. Remember the discussion with ‘Joe the Plumber’ where Obama said – “when you spread the wealth around, it’s good for everybody”.   Now you can see the result of new policy in dollars in the graph above, what many aren’t noticing is what these payments to not work, are doing to society.

A large chunk of this money is a massive incentive to single moms to avoid college and have babies.  You can make solid five figures with health care if you avoid education and work while producing babies in the US and it isn’t hard to do.   We have had dozens of employees who  have chosen this rout.  They work for a bit and when the benefits disappear, they go home and get the benefits back.   They don’t make much money and complain that they are underpaid, but the money which used to go for salary 30 years ago, is being taken out the back doors of the businesses to support these massive social bribe programs, and ever greater regulatory costs.

These people are being effectively enslaved, and when they go past child bearing age, they will have no skills, little personal property, and will end up with no ability to get out of the situation that this government created.   Socialism, is universally ineffective at solving the problems it purports to address.   These people, who are dis-proportionally minorities, are being effectively enslaved to low wage jobs and a long-term mediocre economy.

The same programs have reduced barriers to entry for social security disability, allowing functional people to find loopholes to permanent paychecks.  Back pain, mental issues and other problems which people were forced to work through have now become passes to a soft easy life.

Worse, I don’t see many discussing these real and critical issues in a rational fashion.   The media, which used to be the immune system for political corruption, largely believes in the endless flow of government cash and currently takes no time to call out pro-government politicians of any party.   Republicans and Democrats both continue to march in the same direction as evidenced by the first graph in this post.  Bit-by-bit and none too slowly we are reaping the increasing problems caused by these policies.   It is blindingly obvious now that we should reverse course on much of the social spending and enact common sense pro-business, pro-industry reforms.  Our quality of life in the US is being corroded by a bloated authoritarian central government, and is being rapidly replaced with something much, much bleaker.

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In the News

Posted by Jeff Id on December 12, 2013

There has been a ton of interesting activity in the climate world and I’m tired of missing out on it.   In case you haven’t noticed, Nic Lewis has established himself as a top expert on climate model performance. I don’t believe anyone in the climate community is turning out work to the quality and detail level that he is doing and eventually they will be forced to notice.  Just because this is a “skeptic” blog, don’t assume Nic will take any of the opinions here as his own, they are mine.  I’ve learned to trust his work though and that is admittedly the same problem much of the climate community suffers from, although their trust is based on something else.

In other news, NOTHING happened at the poles this year.  Stupid ice didn’t melt enough to drown a single penguin well enough to make the news.  Polar bears moved north and the polar bear waterwing emergency delivery from greenpeace fell from the plane onto hard ice.  SOB, life is tough for the six figure climate scientists.

The IPCC report fell on deaf public ears.  The complete failure of climate models was covered up by some nonsensical graphs and apparently the summary for “policy makers” (money takers) fell well short of Real Climate projections.  Astounding considering there were still plenty of falsely exaggerated climate prognostications written by the now sans-credit IPCC, but we all knew anti-scientific claims were still coming.

I spent 20 minutes explaining to my son today that we live on a peninsula surrounded by fresh water and that it is ok to run the faucet while brushing his teeth.   The water comes from the ground and goes right back into it.  Net zero.   Deprogramming is becoming a significant job as public schools, television and even scouts sells the same nonsensical message to the younglings.   I’m supposed to find ways to save energy as a goal!  Why would we do that when there is more energy than matter?   Shouldn’t we be conserving matter?  Hmm..   Well poop is matter and there seems to be plenty of that to go around.

Europe and Australia are beginning to wise-up that environmental and social costs can actually cause poverty in socialist style government.  It looks like the faux environment laws are the first casualty.   Who knew that if you took enough money from people, they wouldn’t have any left?   Amazing!

So then there is the stupid old denialist temperature.  That thing that won’t rise no matter how much Cialis the global government inspired UN-IPCC feeds the paper stack.  For those who already know the shtick, in recent years it is hard for the Goddard Institiute for Space Studies to update their temperature series to this actual decade.

I suppose we’re the satellite generation anyway:

UAH_LT_1979_thru_November_2013_v5.6

From Dr. Roy Spencer UAH

Apparently the picoseconds of time for global temperature averaging required by Nasa supercomputers in the last 6 years was where sequester cuts were made!  I’ve used older and less amazing laptops than this one in the past so if Gavin would like me to do the work, I would be happy to calculate the graph for them.  They do have to ask nicely though as my vacuum tube is flickering.   Free work isn’t truly free – especially in government.

This is something I found very surprising.   Randy Schekman – THIS years Nobel prize winner for medical Physiology flatly stated that Nature and Cell and Science, are no longer up to par for consideration of his lab’s work.   Interestingly, Nature put Real Climate regulars Steig and Mann’s flawed work right on it’s cover.   For an “in-the-news-today” Nobel scientist with little  future need for money or fame, to take a public political stance against major journals, before even taking possession of his award —is unheard of.   The same Nobel organization gave the peace prize to Obama before he took office, is not well known for its apolitical or anti-establishment nature.  Wow!

Then climate science finally found a new (better) solution for climate models.       The ACTUAL science fiction world – Pure genius.

 

 

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Sausage the Deer

Posted by Jeff Id on December 6, 2013

So I finally got a deer – while hunting!   I’m 44 so most had completely given up hope on me ever shooting one, and the office humor revolved around how much drinking we were going to do and whether I was going to bring the gun this year, but the area we hunt in isn’t particularly easy.  It took me quite a few years to realize some of the tricks to finding the critters in dense human-free woods.

Normally our deer camp has a good sized crowd of die-hard hunters ready to teach me what to do, but this year multiple camp regulars were hit with serious family related problems so the population of our thousand plus acres of Gaia’s wilderness, was approximately two.   Dad and I had a great time but when ‘Sausage’ the deer poked his head from the woods, things got pretty interesting.  Having 6 or 7 hunters to help with some of the inconveniences of shooting deer, is a lot different than two.

Sitting in my ladder stand on opening day this year, the weather was warm and there was a lot of activity in the woods.  If you have ever spent extended time in the woods, you find hours of dead silence and times of amazing activity.  In a tree stand, the wildlife seems to have a hard time recognizing that you are any sort of threat.   After all, there aren’t that many two hundred pound predators lurking in the tree tops.

A red squirrel spotted me at one point, but didn’t know what I was so he ran up the pine tree next to me and ran out on a branch to where I could have reached out and petted him.  Its important to sit still though so the critters don’t cry out an alarm so we just looked at each other for a while until he got bored and left.

Being the natural-born hunter that you know I obviously am from the intro, there were plenty of mishaps during the day.  I dropped a glove, 14 ft down and had to go get it and later on I got so tired I was falling asleep in the stand – not the safest thing to do even with modern harnesses.  I began shooting video of myself in the tree with whispered commentary, because it was keeping me awake.  I was talking about how the deer would wait to come out at dusk and pointed out where they come from and which way they would go.  It didn’t help me completely though because I put my head down on the shooting rail at around 2pm and the next thing I knew the iPhone was on the ground – 14 ft down.

Still, I kept hearing the shuffle step of deer in the woods behind me during the day.   It kept me excited but right-or-wrong I was certain from past years that the critters weren’t coming out in daylight hours.    Deer like to take a few steps then stop.   It takes some experience to separate their sound from the sound of other wildlife.  Red squirrels are actually louder in dry leaves and even snap twigs on occasion.   Deer and large animals snap big twigs.   Then there is the sound of falling logs and breaking branches from the natural processes of the general woods.   You learn to hear the differences though.

Right at dusk, I was 100% awake and heard the shuffle sound followed by a large stick breaking.   It was definitely a deer but bucks are more wary and rare than does.  I was so alert that I saw his head poke out from the trees 60 yards away – right where I had expected!  It was dark enough that it was hard to see if there were antlers but there was a hint of something there- you can’t shoot doe’s in our area during rifle season.   I grabbed my grandfathers 30-06 from the shooting rail as he stepped from the woods and I looked down the scope.  I got the hint of antlers again so I clicked off the safety.   I was excited so the snap was metallic sounding and even from 60 yards the buck was so wary that his head popped up and he did that perfect ‘shoot me’ pose  that you find on the side of every box of bullets or that bottle of Eau-Du-doe —- you know the one:

I wanted to wait for him to walk closer but he was way too alert though so I was expecting that rear-hoof stomp and that would be the last time I saw him.   The antlers were still a hint on his head against the trees behind but I was sure and took the shot.   The whole thing lasted under ten seconds.   Eight years of hunting in the UP of Michigan and ‘Sausage’ and I knew each other for less than 10 seconds.

Unexpectedly, instead of laying down, Sausage decided to run!  He took off into the woods running low and fast like a cat escaping certain vacuum cleaner doom. I wasn’t worried though, he wasn’t going far, I unloaded (removed) the other two bullets from the rifle I normally use and realized that I was shaking like a leaf.   I took 15 minutes getting down from the stand and gradually walked toward where Sausage was standing.  There were hoof prints but no blood or fur!   I spent 20 minutes using my best engineer tracking skills (none!) and Sausage the deer was not there, there was no blood, no fur and nothing to indicate that he had any intention of becoming dinner.   Just to be clear, that is not typical for a shot from a 2700fps 180 grain 30-06.

It was getting very dark and Dad had driven the truck to my pickup spot so I went to him and we tried finding him together in the dark.   No luck, no sign, nothing.   We went back to the cabin and had dinner.  I spent the night worrying about whether I had actually hit him or if a twig had deflected the bullet.   It didn’t make sense.   From the deer’s reaction, I was certain he was hit but there was no blood.  A book in camp called “Finding Wounded Deer” told a story of a double lung shot with no blood so I found that somewhat reassuring.   The next morning we went out in bright daylight and still found no sign that he had been hit.   We followed the tracks into the dense woods and Dad found Sausage right away.   He hadn’t gone even 40 yards.

It took the two of us 2 1/2 hours to get the deer out of the woods.   We had three mechanical problems with the game cart, dense woods to contend with and the fact that Sausage was pretty big for a UP deer!  We were very tired to say the least.   To give an idea of the size of him, this is a shot of my 6 foot tall father standing next to him on the deer pole at camp.

560

We got it done though.   My field dressing skills turned out to be not much better than my 3yo son Ethan on a stick of butter but that got done also.   The bullet entered the right side, snapping the upper leg bone, passed through the chest and exited the left side rib cage.   On expert forensic review, the bullet actually turned immediately after the left side rib cage and traveled outside the ribs and under the skin without exiting.  No external blood whatsoever!  I had actually hit the heart and lungs at a good distance so my night of fretting about a long track or not being able to find Sausage, was completely wasted.

By the time we got him to camp and hanging from the pole, I was very tired.  So when I shot this video and I tried to smile as much as I could, after 8 years of hunting it wasn’t that hard to do.

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Climategate Week 2013

Posted by Jeff Id on November 11, 2013

I’m gone for a week and won’t be blogging after today.   Perhaps Kevin will answer my graph on the previous thread while I’m gone. We will see if he embraces facts as well as he claimed.

As for me, I’ll be lost in the northern woods of Michigan, which means that this is the week climategate broke in 2009.

No people for miles except for our small hunting camp.   I’m looking forward to the break.

Have fun folks.

Posted in Uncategorized | 22 Comments »

Winning and Losing

Posted by Jeff Id on November 9, 2013

Some things in blogland make you smile, others, not so much.   I just answered a comment from a reader which left me cold.  If you want to comment here, bring more than a thimble full of facts with you.   For reference, I am an EVIL business owner with a natural dislike for the authoritarian population.

Unlike Lewandowsky or Michael Mann, I don’t earn a large salary by writing political commentary or by supporting political goals.  I earn my IMHO a far-too-small salary by selling things that work.  And work well.   In fact, unlike the self-promotional aspects of Real Climate, this blog is a major liability to me and our company.  We experienced it first-hand last week, where the top VP level buyer of a major customer that, every single reader here knows by sight, discussed with me — sustainability.  I did not explain my/our (as there are other non-authoritarian partners who were present) background to them, other than the fact that we make the most efficient lighting products in our category.

In my life, wealth was not something my family considered much. It wasn’t important.  In my thirties, a non-work related event which was out of my control, left me far poorer than anyone I have ever actually met.  I am certain that some have had similarly bad or worse money situations, but I just don’t know them.  I was a white male with a very good job, yet still held large debt that could not be reasonably cleared through bankruptcy or reasonably paid off  by any but CEO level salaries.

So having smart friends and no personal property for myself left to lose, I quit my job and we started a company.   The work has been incredibly difficult, and I’ve blogged through more than half of it but we have succeeded in our efforts to date.  I actually remember sitting on the floor of an unfurnished bedroom writing my first posts here back in 2008.  Who knows what tomorrow will bring but last week, I found myself being told yet NOT replying to someone regarding their views of human-causes damage to the environment.  Readers here know that NOT telling someone what I think is not part of my genetic makeup! Instead I listened about discussions regarding sustainability and Clinton and conferences……etc.

In the end, a good company does what is best for itself, and we are by far the best option for this particular group.  They are still working that part out, hopefully to our betterment.  What it means is that as our organization grows, the Air Vent is becoming an albatross which is hard to ignore. Exactly the intent of Lewandowsky’s and Mann’s recent sciencology methinks. We have years of work into this company and won’t take less than perfect results.   If you disagree with my decision to hold back my opinions to this customer (which I doubt), give me a number as to how many years of effort (not money) would you be willing to forgo for the sake of commenting on personal politics?

——

In reality, I’m not fretting about these questions now.  I have reached my decisions long before, and the business is more important than this blog.  We have employees and shareholders that are far more important than explanations to powerful people.  That fact makes me a pragmatic dissenter IMO.  Some who would expect a more idealistic result should re-read my post more carefully.  Still, I wanted readers to know another part of what us business owners go through.  Cost is cost and it is important that this blog not become one.  Our unfortunate curse at my company is that we are a bunch of tea-party conservative, anti-authoritarians who own a fantastically CO2 efficient business.   Our entire business concept (no official plan, just driven engineers) was based on improved efficiency – for better costs.  Environment is a side-benefit!

If we suddenly experienced a multi-million dollar loss because of this blog and its inherent political accuracy ;D , I could (and perhaps should) be removed from the board and my position by our shareholders.   Seeing my name be trashed by Lewandowsky in a printed journal was more flattering than threatening.  How cool is it that your ideas are intentionally misrepresented by what are apparently major psychology journals, on another continent, using other peoples tax dollars!  The problem was the media publicity and the longevity of the fake claims. Imagine dealing with the same falsehoods repeated across the newspapers of this globe for decades on end.   That definitely was something that I was concerned about, and that meant that Lew had to be addressed.

Some wonder what my recent blogging absence had been about.   We have been incredibly busy, no doubt and that was primary.  Still the political situation today means that the Air Vent could become very expensive at any time.   I don’t think that any of us expect this situation to improve either!  How to proceed, when you are being publicly attacked by people with endless flow of government money, and have literally zero respect for free market business owners, even when the product is “green”.  It is very much shocking to see journals publish rants against those who understand capitalism as though it were some kind of defect.  The journal gives up all pretext of an unbiased broker of science, yet they behave as though we shouldn’t notice the editors and authors have a vested interest in expanded authoritarian government.

Marginalization of my opinion was exactly Lewandowsky’s intent, and he and Mann more guilty than those they accuse of being blinded by their belief system.

——–

I did a little editing this morning for clarity – Jeff

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Change and Hope – ($2700/family/year)

Posted by Jeff Id on November 6, 2013

So I’ve got the rest of the health care news for this year.   We’re looking at an 18 percent increase, our previous plan was dropped because it didn’t make sense for the insurance carrier to have different rules for different companies and we have several added coverages which we didn’t need.

- Pediatric vision and dental care are apparently mandatory parts of health care.  The vision and dental coverage is weak but we already pay for that on another plan so it’s only extra cost from our perspective.  Why aren’t vision and dental part of your health?  I often wonder how that got divided out in the first place.

- Obesity surgery is covered now, but only partially, I didn’t know it wasn’t before.  It sounds easier than dieting!

- You can have as much drug rehab as you like apparently.

- No maximum out of pocket limits but they were like 5 million already, and usually if you have that kind of expense, your work insurance is no longer practical.   I like this change in particular.

There are  a few others but that’s about it though.

Excepting the massive cost increase, it isn’t much different for in network coverage.  Out-of-network, our deductibles went up 2X but  the network is the biggest and it is almost hard to go out of it.  The net increase (not reduction in cost per Obama’s repeated prognostication) on a family of four was about $2700/year.  In a 40 employee company, three thousand  here, couple thousand there, pretty soon it adds up to real money.

I do wonder if any government officials were actually dumb enough to believe that insurance carriers wouldn’t drop the old non-complying products when even a mild cost increase would force them to.  Of those who were in charge of this ‘change and hope’ plan, I wonder how many would admit they knew.

Posted in Uncategorized | 26 Comments »

Snipped at Psychological Science

Posted by Jeff Id on November 4, 2013

I seem to have a way with people.  While they did allow quite a bit of critique in the replies, and nearly all were incredibly critical, my comments were snipped.  — The Subterranean War on Science

I’ll just reproduce the critique here then:

I can’t believe the self-righteous tone of these alleged scientists. I also am stunned at the fact that fake work like this continues to be touted as having any foundation in actual science.

Whether you agree with their other work or not, this paper is nothing but government funded pro-government propaganda and they, and their coworkers, should each be ashamed at having their names and institutions associated with it. Completely disgusted.

I take it that means they truly miss me.

Posted in Uncategorized | 7 Comments »

 
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