the Air Vent

Because the world needs another opinion


Posted by Jeff Id on June 9, 2011

There is a basic reality of our modern existence which we ignore at our collective peril.   So eloquently spoken by Dr. Christy.

H/T Brian Hall.

To imagine that our world or our existence is anything other than this, is foolish narcissism.  It is the false educations of our liberal universities which have led our naturally simple minds away from what made our lives better.  We are animals, beasts, things of nature with little more intellect than how to eat, yet through simple technologies we assign ourselves abilities of gods.  En masse, our media assigned  intellect does not sum, but rather subtracts to the average control of low-brow phraseology. This is the present danger of democratically invoked oppression.  Yet, in singularity, our selfishness is even worse, the stuff of dictatorships.

Let us be free to do individually what we can for our betterment – and we shine.

57 Responses to “People”

  1. Thanks, Jeff, for the video.

    I agree with Dr. Christy, but not with Al Gore, the UN’s IPCC and other world leaders that ignored the unstable nature of Earth’s heat source [1] to promote the unscientific illusion of CO2-induced global warming.

    “Vast Solar Eruption Shocks NASA and Raises Doubts on Sun Theory” by John O’Sullivan (3 Jan 2011)

  2. co2fan said


  3. kim said

    Just another BRIC in the wall. The leaders of countries with lots of poor people figured this out well before Copenhagen. CAGW, and the whole green energy shebang, is a War on the Poor.

  4. Brian H said

    plus an attempt to shove as many of us as possible into that enemy camp!

  5. Richard T. Fowler said


    Consider this.

    That it is not selfish to want to understand what others do. And that it is also not selfish to want to understand _more_ than they do.

    Sometimes, in fact, it is the ultimate act of service.

    That we do such things, even despite relative difficulty in succeeding, is not an act of oppression or dictatorship. It is the response of the oppressed to their oppression.

    As I once suggested to ScienceofDoom over at his blog (I’m paraphrasing myself), if you want to advance in knowledge (for whatever reason), you must first admit that there is something you don’t know. The refusal to do that, when you know it’s not true, can feel good. But it leads to stagnation.

    The fact you can build something that works to improve your life does not prove that the theory used to build it is sound. That presumption appears to be the motivation for your statement, “There is a basic reality to our existence which we ignore at our peril.”

    Fundamentally, I agree with your statement. But I question its motivation. Is your expression of it really about avoiding or reducing peril, or is it rather about a fear of what _might_ if you were to admit a weakness?

    Would the weakness be misinterpreted?

    Would the weakness, or the fact of its misinterpretation be used against you, or your friends?

    These are natural, indeed instinctive concerns.

    But I would argue that they have no more place in science than does crankiness. Indeed, these instinctive concerns, themselves, if allowed to dominate one’s behavior, become a form of crankiness, in my opinion.

    It is not a degree, level of education, or even relative knowledge of truth that makes a man scientific. Nor is it acceptance of, or belief in, that which is unproven.

    If none of these things pertain to scientific behavior, then what does?

    I’ll leave that for you to answer, because I’m sure, if you’re honest with yourself, that you can.

    Thank you for reading me.


  6. Jeff Id said


    Each act taken for our betterment by others and enforced with the iron fist of power has consequence. Everyone has their opinions on different matters but when those opinions are acted on the individual loses another piece of their own ability to address whatever situation. Some things are beyond the individual to control, and government is needed but historic America has proven that far less government is needed to achieve individual success and happiness than the rest of the world can even conceive of. Today in the US, I see a world where every group which has a pet peeve attempts to find that peeve in legislation, every nook of our lives sees more infiltration of rules and regulations for behavior. We now have so many nooks, rules and safety nets in America that over half the population doesn’t even need to pay taxes and a substantial portion of those don’t even need to try and work. We have overstretched the money and the global media has invented some imaginary wealthy class which will need to pay more. I read constantly from Europeans how unfairly wealthy a few Americans are, never recognizing that it is the socialist countries with the biggest disparity.

    That loss of need to work is a form of enslavement, it breeds crime and despair. It is the nightmares of Marx embodied piece by piece in an over caring world in which everyone in charge believes they understand more than the individual.

    Bringing the discussion to ‘energy’, we are told we must act to clean up our CO2. I wonder why? Which aspect of a warmer world has caused damage yet? How has it hurt you, I, or anyone else. It is beyond obvious that access to low cost energy has given us lives beyond what even kings could imagine a hundred years ago, yet those who understand are ready to eliminate it – for our own good. Dr. Christy is right that the energy issue is a morality issue, but it is not one which needs to be decided through regulation or fiat and enforced with an iron fist, but rather needs to be regulated only from a production safety standpoint. Those who say we need to eliminate fossil fuels anyway because they are going to run out are experts in sophistry. Those who say we need to do it to save the world are ignoring the benefits. Those who say we just need to give a little more are not understanding the scope of what they ask.

    It is this continuing trend in every government ever to take ever more control over time. There is very little feedback against the continued expansion of policy and control even in a democratic society. The petty zoning issues in local governments, favorite projects, what you can do inside your own industrial buildings, water usage, whether you must wear a helmet on a motorcycle, whether you can drive a car, all of these things have become games for the ever more powerful and connected.

    The frustrating bit of all this overcontrol, lack of energy, and overspending is that the solution is simple. The government needs to stop trying to fix it. Let companies drill for oil. Let schools fund themselves at a state and local level. Let teachers teach and fire the incompetent. Let corporations fire bad or lazy employees, union or not. The examples are truly endless, and they work, because America did it that way only 40 years ago.

    You claim – The fact you can build something that works to improve your life does not prove that the theory used to build it is sound.

    I flatly state that while an individual may make a bad choice or get lucky, on average these things tend toward a normal which is what made America work. Yup we made dirty coal plants, now they are clean. Yup we spilled stuff in the rivers and lakes, but now they are clean. Yes there was a potential for acid rain, but that also has been addressed. Now we are faced with CO2, and this one is much more difficult as the only solutions our technology allows are nuclear at this point and that doesn’t fix the whole problem because of vehicles. The bad news is, we will face that doubling of CO2 (and very likely tripling) no matter how loudly scientists scream — because we simply cannot stop it.

    The good news is as energy storage technologies become workable (they will), and people begin to accept nuclear power, technology will eliminate the problem.

    So in my opinion, the best way to eliminate CO2 production is to develop that storage technology. What is the best system for technology development in human history? Government or private or some combination? I can tell you that it is unlikely to come from a repressed socialist society in the same timeframe that it comes from a free capitalist one.

    Stopping CO2 with unworkable technology is simply adding cost to our world which could be spent other ways – like developing workable technologies. So then you have to ask yourself, how much freedom and strife amongst the impoverished of the earth (because they will suffer most) are you willing to give up today in order to enact policies and power generation which can do nothing to prevent the doubling of CO2 anyway.

    And it is all for a rarefied gas which may not cause any real damage at all.

  7. Richard T. Fowler said


    I appreciate your remarks, and mostly agree with them.

    I just want to say, for the benefit of those who have not been following the recent discussion, I am no socialist or liberal (quite the contrary, I am probably more conservative and anti-establishment than Jeff, as I would define those terms), and I certainly don’t support any of the abuses that he has cataloged in his most recent post above. My prior reference to theory was not meant as a commentary on environmental policy, and I do not support either the “official” scientific view of climate, or the “solutions” being pushed by government. I believe Jeff knows this about me, but since he used my comments as a segue into those topics, I wanted to state all of that for the record.

    For those who would question my putting together of the terms “conservative” and “anti-establishment”, I suggest you have not yet fully perceived the nature of power in the world, including that world’s general contempt for justice, honesty, and morality. A good natural scientist does not want to have to be concerned with these things in the course of doing his job; but because science is a pawn of world leaders, a good natural scientist does so out of necessity.


  8. Anonymous said

    Oliver, you should tell the author of that article that UMR is now MST. I hate the name change, and still say I graduated from UMR, but it ain’t really anymore… 😦


  9. gallopingcamel said

    Very heavy stuff.

    Those who would rule over us (people like Al Gore and Prince Charles) want us little people to cut our energy consumption so that they will have enough to power their multiple huge residences and lavish personal transportation (Gulfstream jet aircraft and luxury yachts).

    Their plans for the even smaller people who do not have electricity yet is to restrict them to “Renewable” sources of power that even wealthy countries can not afford.

    The Warmists set a really high standard when it comes to callous hypocrisy.

  10. The point that should resonate with all of us, liberal,conservative, or in-between, is not just the over control that is now a standard here in the USA, but its effects. Each time a law or regulation is promulgated, it will have an intended effect(s) and an unintended effect(s). But worse, is that whatever medium it uses, it biases the underlying communication structure. An example is RCRA which was to conserve and reclaim resources. It raised the price such that cost avoidance and the expenses of complying precluded what it sought to do: ensure consevation and recycling. By effecting the underlying cost structure, it communicated, as economic parameters will, that cost avoidance, not conservation or recycling, was most cost effective. This effect is well known.

    Look at the IPCC and its claim that the increased demand for “green” technology will cause the price of kWh by green technology to go down. In other words, a confusion of economy of scale and the supply/demand curve. It occurs by way of ignornace or a refusal to look at what happens to the underlying structure. Already from the EU, one can see the structural effects. CO2 and other pollution go up by way of outsourcing to regions that are allowed fossil fuels or unregulated, with attendant economic loss in the regulated or fully regulated areas. As the percent of green energy goes up, the subsidized costs increase as the economy is being squeezed. with present cost of green energy at 3 times convential sources, and the attendant loss of economy, a proper accounting of green energy should indicate a loss of 4 jobs for each subsidized green job, for a total loss of 3 jobs to the economy. If one uses taxes to offset this, the economic multiplier must go from 6 to 3. The problem is not that we cannot afford the energy, we cannot afford what it does to the economy, and what our economic system ends up communicating to us and business.

    It is though the IPCC and the control freaks think money and goods are created by their desires rather than by energy and capital. Even worse, because they figure if it does not work more control is needed not less, their efforts are not directed towards solving the problem. Such a feedback system is unsustainable and uncontrollable.

    The biggest threat I see to sustainability is the thought we must end up with a Soviet style control system because we humans just can not do it on our own. It is an error to think that coersion can. To date, history shows authoritarian structure undermines the economic structure such that gross ineffeciencies are the norm not the exception. That contra-indicates a sustainable system. Unless it devolves into the Soviet implementation where sustainability was about power not production or food.

  11. Jeff Id said

    I think we’re turning John into a conservative.

  12. Brian H said

    You’ve still swallowed a poison pill. The AGW push is worse than you think.

    CO2 does not need to be limited or controlled in the first place. To accept that it does is to grant most of the territory to the power-takers up front.

    Please take time, as an exercise, to contemplate the same material and territory from the POV that CO2 is strongly net-beneficial, especially to global agriculture and food supply (and has already made yeoman contributions in that regard).

    Then re-read what you wrote.

  13. Jeff Id said


    I don’t disagree with you one bit. Sometimes a devil’s advocate approach is worthwhile.

  14. Brian H said

    John P;
    I think you switched these numbers in your comment: “If one uses taxes to offset this, the economic multiplier must go from 6 to 3.”

  15. Dana said

    To bad Christy is screwing his grankid by advocating that we do nothing to mitigate climate change. What an ironic video.

    There’s also no reason that those who don’t have energy should get it from fossil fuels.

  16. Jeff Id said


    There is nothing we can do which will make any difference at all except nuclear. I may re-write that post again sometimes but just as food for thought. If you don’t have energy, that is because you are very poor. These are the best people to get energy from fossil fuels. Especially ones not blocked by ignorant regulations.

    Everything in your thought process is inverted because you are stuck on the massive damage of warming and have improperly low balance against people’s lives – including, food, medicine, water, freedom, jobs and energy.

  17. dana1981 said

    “There is nothing we can do which will make any difference at all except nuclear.”

    I seem to be saying this a lot recently – you’re entitled to your own opinions, not your own facts. That statement is factually wrong.

    Everything in your thought process is inverted because you don’t understand that the damage from climate change will include food, water, freedom, jobs, and energy. Plus you ignore the external costs of fossil fuels in presuming that they’re cheaper than renewables.

  18. Jeff Id said


    It should read

    “There is nothing we can do which will make any significant difference at all except nuclear.” The rest of your solutions are nothing but solutions to prosperity. If you like, I’ll go through it again someday but I’ve done the calculations to my own satisfaction. Wind, solar and biofuels are cost boondoggles which do nothing. Saving energy cannot do enough to make any real difference as population expands.

    We need time for technology to develop good storage, the topic of oiur most recent thread. Until then, the only real dent you can reasonably make is nuclear and your best option for making new technology is not to add huge costs to ‘evil’ industry such that time and research can provide a real solution.

    You can’t stop the usage no matter what you do Dana. It is an idealist’s imagination to think otherwise.

  19. kim said

    Fossil fuels are probably the cheapest, most beneficial, least harmful, most amenable for adaptation, and most predictable method of geo-engineering to battle the cold we inevitably face. And, short of nuclear, they are the least harmful to the environment of all of our energy options.

  20. dana1981 said

    I don’t know how to respond to Kim except – *facepalm* That comment came out of Bizarro World. Jeff is wrong but at least I understand where he’s coming from. I think Kim is living on another planet or something.

  21. kim said

    I’m very sorry to report, Dana, that on this planet there is no evidence yet that CO2 is a powerful enough greenhouse gas to keep us from sliding into the next ice age, let alone warm us through this current cool phase of the PDO or the potential imminent century scale cooling from the Sun’s Cheshire Cat sunspots.

    Show me a warming geo-engineering mechanism safer than CO2.

  22. dana1981 said

    The next ice age isn’t due for 50,000 years, and the solar cycle and PDO only cause a couple of tenths of a degree of short-term cooling (as opposed to the nearly 1°C warming so far from CO2).

  23. kim said

    Dana maunders on. A Grand Solar Minimum may cool by as much as 2 degrees C. You haven’t, nor has anyone, yet shown 1degree C. warming from CO2. You don’t know when the next Ice Age arrives, nor does anyone.

    But more bizarre than your baseless allegations is this. If you can explain Phil Jones’ tortured understanding of statistical significance, I’ll sign you up for my class in linear repression analysis.

  24. Jeff Id said


    “The next ice age isn’t due for 50,000 years,”

    Have you ever -in your entire life – seen an ice core? Jeezus, I don’t like it when painfully non-technical under-read people come by to lecture here. Just tell me it is a typo.

  25. dana1981 said

    Jeff, before you call other people “under-read”, you should really take 5 minutes to do a little research. Just a suggestion.

    “with or without human perturbations, the current warm climate may last another 50,000 years. The reason is a minimum in the eccentricity of Earth’s orbit around the Sun.

    Berger and Loutre (2002)

  26. John M said

    “may last for” = “not due for”?

  27. kim said

    Under or over, it’s the ‘reading’ part with which he has a problem.

  28. dana1981 said

    John M – yes, “the current warm climate” = interglacial period “may last another 50,000 years” = the next glacial period (ice age) isn’t due for 50,000 years.

  29. kim said

    You can lead a horse to culture but it won’t whinny or neigh.

  30. RomanM said

    Dana, so you don’t think that this recent information from real scientists who do real science could not possibly become a major problem for humanity? It’s only the “ice ages” that one should be concerned about?

    Tell me, is all of this substitution of greenie unreliable renewable resources going to leave us at the same level of energy capability for solving current real world problems – hunger, third world poverty, pestilence? What will happen if the reduction of greenhouse gasses is ineffective .. or if some other emergency arises? How will we be able to deal with that after we have we have intentionally made ourselves energy-impoverished?

    Try thinking, not reading. It ain’t Kim that lives in a Bizarro luddite dreamworld.

  31. RomanM said

    [Note to self: Edit comment more carefully after dinner wine… 😉 ]

  32. dana1981 said

    Roman –

    “Dana, so you don’t think that this recent information from real scientists who do real science could not possibly become a major problem for humanity?

    Why would it be a problem? A couple tenths of a degree cooling at most subtracted from the several degrees of warming – no, in fact it would be helpful if a solar minimum slowed anthropogenic warming slightly.

    Nobody is talking about making ourselves energy impoverished. Lay off the strawman arguments please. I’m talking about substituting one energy source (fossil fuels) with another (renewables).

    Maybe ease off the wine a little bit.

  33. Jeff Id said

    Aw, hell. Dana that is the biggest boned up comment I’ve read from anyone claiming to be knowledgeable about climate. Look at an ice core. Call Bart Verheggen. Do 5 to 18 seconds of research.

    I simply cannot believe you didn’t come back with an OOPS..

    There hasn’t been a 50,000 year warm period in the last half million. If you were just another blogger, instead of the one who thought we were all idiots, you might get a pass, but do a little reading man.

  34. RB said

    Dana’s position is the IPCC one : When Will the Current Interglacial End?

    There is no evidence of mechanisms that could mitigate the current global warming by a natural cooling trend. Only a strong reduction in summer insolation at high northern latitudes, along with associated feedbacks, can end the current interglacial. Given that current low orbital eccentricity will persist over the next tens of thousand years, the effects of precession are minimised, and extremely cold northern summer orbital configurations like that of the last glacial initiation at 116 ka will not take place for at least 30 kyr (Box 6.1). Under a natural CO2 regime (i.e., with the global temperature-CO2 correlation continuing as in the Vostok and EPICA Dome C ice cores), the next glacial period would not be expected to start within the next 30 kyr (Loutre and Berger, 2000; Berger and Loutre, 2002; EPICA Community Members, 2004). Sustained high atmospheric greenhouse gas concentrations, comparable to a mid-range CO2 stabilisation scenario, may lead to a complete melting of the Greenland Ice Sheet (Church et al., 2001) and further delay the onset of the next glacial period (Loutre and Berger, 2000; Archer and Ganopolski, 2005).

  35. Jeff Id said

    RB and Dana,

    Wow, I apologize. I had no idea that the IPCC canceled the last half dozen ice ages cycle and not by a few years but tens of thousands.

    I am more than astounded. Looks like I have been reading the wrong stuff.

  36. Jeff Id said

    Hell, I think this may deserve some discussion as the alteration of a multi-million year cycle by a few hundred parts per million CO2 is quite a claim indeed.

  37. Jeff Id said

    Does anyone realize just how good of news that would be?

  38. John M said

    so now “not be expected to start within the next 30 kyr” =
    not due for 50,000 years”

  39. Jeff Id said

    Well, tens of thousands may equal 50,000 but that is one hell of a lot better than the far more likely 2000. Considering that the industrial age is only a hundred years old, that is certainly progress we can be proud of.

  40. RB said

    I read it as stating that the low orbital eccentricity is the primary factor, not the man-made CO2. Prior interglacials are depicted here .

  41. Jeff Id said


    Facetiousness aside, to expect a 50,000 year hiatus in ice ages is a pretty incredible claim.

    I think our plots match well.

    Ain’t buyin.

  42. curious said

    Dana – You are talking about subtsituting one energy source for another. Please can I check out if you have a feel for societal production and use of energy and power?

    Do you know what a horsepower is? Do you know how that compares to the manual work output of a human being? Do you know how many hours equivalent labour can be done by a gallon of petrol? Do you know what your country/states’ daily peak power consumption is in summer and winter? Do you know the time of day it occurs? Do you know what sectors the demand is split across? Do you know what plant services that demand and where it is located relative to the loads? Do you know where it is located relative to its inputs? Do you know how these inputs get to the plant? Do you know how that plant is scheduled and despatched to meet the demand? Do you know what the availability record is? Do you know what measures critical users take to protect themselves against outages? Do you know the approximate gross efficiencies for the various methods of generation? Do you know the approx net efficiencies to end user? Do you know the costs per/kWh for different technologies? Do you know the lifespan of the plant? Do you know its emissions per kWh delivered? Do you have total Life Cycle Environmental Impact Analyses for these plants? Do you know the available energy and power densities renewables could acheive in your geographical area? Do you know out of these how many could replace current technology to deliver the same level of service, performance and cost? For technologies which cannot be replaced at the moment do you know if they could be replaced in the future? If they could how far away is that day? And for those that can’t what options do we have?

    Sorry for the long list – it just gives an idea of what you are basing your views on. No need to reply in detail (unless you wish?) – just a sort of “yep, I know all that” or “maybe I could have a decent stab at 50%” or “hmmm, maybe know 5 – 10%” or “don’t know but I know where to find the facts” or “give me a couple of days and I’ll get back to you”


  43. RB said

    It looks to be the same plot – the previous interglacial seems to be about 20K years in IPCC’s Figure 6.3 and duration seems to be irregular. I gotta sign off for now and let some experts take over ..

  44. Jeff Id said


    When you come back, the longest I see is around 20ish. We’re already 12ish which visually about matched the length of the previous one. To predict 50k more for a total of 60000 years of warmth is pretty good stuff. I hope I’m wrong on this one.

  45. Dana said

    This site is so weird. I’m not used to basically being called a bonehead for referencing peer-reviewed literature. And not even new research, stuff we’ve known for 30 years (I believe Imbrie and Imbrie was published in 1981, but I’m not going to bother looking it up since peer-reviewed research doesn’t seem to mean much to folks here). And not even anything controversial – I don’t know of any “skeptics” who dispute this. So bizarre.

    Curious – I know the answers to some of your questions. I’ve also researched the peer-reviewed literature on the subject…whoops, there’s that bad word again. Sorry.

  46. Dana said

    Oh, I should add that you would be right about us being very lucky to be in the midst of an exceptionally long interglacial, if we weren’t in the process of f*cking up the climate within the next century. That kind of negates our good luck.

  47. curious said

    45 Dana – thanks for replying.

    Can I ask roughly where on the scale of 0 to 100% you lie wrt those questions? The reason I ask is that for this particular area I’d be very cautious about putting too much store on peer reviewed literature. The motivations and experiences of academic researchers are not necessarily compatible with delivering technically feasible and cost effective solutions. A famous example here:

    WRT to renewables – look for actual installed production performance to assess them. In some locations and conditions they have something to offer but extending that to provide the type of power system we enjoy at present is IMO still some way off.

    WRT this site being “weird” – check the reader background tab above! 🙂

  48. curious said

    Dana – Got to go now – but SteveMc is looking at how some of the IPCC renewables scenarios were justified:

    Likely to be worth following.

  49. Kan said

    “…if we weren’t in the process of f*cking up the climate within the next century. ”

    PJ O’Rouke is right, being a progressive is a curse.

  50. Kan said

    As to Christy “screwing his gran kid”. I can absolutely prove that .8C rise in temperature made my life far better than my grandparents (yes, that will stretch back to 1850).

    Would you please prove (not estimate) to me that another .8C rise in temperature will make my grand kids life worse than mine?

    To use the favorite tool of climatology, if .8 C is good, then 3 C is estimated to be 3.75x better.

  51. Kan said

    By the way, my grandparents only source of energy were renewable : wind, solar, and biomass. They rejoiced when replaced.

  52. Jeff Id said


    I’m sorry for teasing you. There are a number of predictions for ice age in literature – as you know. When you state that the next ice age won’t happen for 50,000 years, I wonder just how good the crystal ball you have really is. There are much shorter predictions as well. I am quite skeptical of claims of causation of ice ages. It is almost certainly an oceanic current phenomena in my opinion. We are surrounded by 70 percent water sitting at an average temp of like 3C. Any kind of turnover effect and we get really cold really quickly and orbital forgings are very small, still potentially correct, but very small. So at which point does that really trigger?

    This plot including the lag from insolation, slow rise and sharp drops is informative:

    It looks like insolation does some things but then there is that awful plunge in temp and CO2 that doesn’t really correlate very well.

  53. […] true, since the majority of energy production has historically come from fossil fuels.  Thus, the "skeptics" argue,  transitioning away from fossil fuels to renewable energy will cripple the economic growth of […]

  54. […] true, since the majority of energy production has historically come from fossil fuels.  Thus, the "skeptics" argue,  transitioning away from fossil fuels to renewable energy will cripple the economic growth of […]

  55. […] true, since the majority of energy production has historically come from fossil fuels.  Thus, the "skeptics" argue,  transitioning away from fossil fuels to renewable energy will cripple the economic growth of […]

  56. chenjia said

    Short and to a very good point

  57. […] is true, since the majority of energy production has historically come from fossil fuels. Thus, the “skeptics” argue, transitioning away from fossil fuels to renewable energy will cripple the economic growth of […]

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