Global Warming: ‘Climate of Fear’

By April 13, 2006Global Warming

Another good op-ed in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal on line entitled, “Climate of Fear” about how scientists who doubt global warming are being harassed and criticized by their hysterical (and well-funded) brethren. It’s written by a Richard Lindzen, a professor of atmospheric science at MIT. Says Lindzen:

“But there is a more sinister side to this feeding frenzy. Scientists who dissent from the alarmism have seen their grant funds disappear, their work derided, and themselves libeled as industry stooges, scientific hacks or worse.”

He pretty much hits the nail on the head in pointing out the problem with the current global warming hysteria:

“The public, press and policy makers have been repeatedly told that three claims have widespread scientific support: Global temperature has risen about a degree since the late 19th century; levels of CO2 in the atmosphere have increased by about 30% over the same period; and CO2 should contribute to future warming. These claims are true. However, what the public fails to grasp is that the claims neither constitute support for alarm nor establish man’s responsibility for the small amount of warming that has occurred.”

Right. So what’s all this “ready, fire, am” stuff about? The global cooling folks have a new cause: global warming. And they apparetnly don’t tolerate dissent.

Join the discussion 10 Comments

  • Alex says:

    Several of the stale points made in this thread are addressed at , including about past climate change (which doesn’t mean the current process, roughly in the middle of an interglacial, is mostly natural or a non-issue), the ice age myths, the blending of early-stage anthropogenic warming with natural variability, short-term regional weather vs. long-term climate, and water vapor/cloud feedbacks.

    Overall, it seems to me that the contrarians don’t have a leg to stand on – all I see is the regurgitation of claims that have been thoroughly addressed in a scientific manner.

  • miles tompkins says:

    Professor Lindzen’s findings regarding water vapor were challenged in the same journal that published his initial findings ..Bullitin of American Meteorology, by Dennis Hartman, and from what I read he did quite a good job discussing the misuse of data, and new data sources regarding Lindzens water vapor / cloud absorption.

    My concern is not the fact that there is climate change, that has occurred over time, but the rapidity of the change is not debatable.

    The real issue is that of delayed solar return, changes in thermohaline circulation and less warm water flowing north.

    The economic costs of coastal erosion and destruction of coastal habitat dwarfs the cost of Kyoto.

  • Paul Merrifield says:

    My observations of the cultural phenomenon associated with Global Warming may be a little unappetizing for some but give it a try.

    Kyoto Is A Solution In Search Of A Problem

    Why is Canada spending almost as much on new icebreaking ships for it?s “melting” arctic as it is spending on Kyoto?

    Canada?s Polar Bears were indigenous to as far south as Minnesota USA 300 years ago. (called Yellow Bears due to the summer coats they retained longer but still the same bear) and others.

    The Union of Concerned Scientists is comprised almost entirely of concerned citizens, not scientists at all. They took my money with no questions asked besides; ?Will that be credit card or check??

    Thousands of global warming protestors marched in Montreal Canada last December and seven of them required treatment for frostbite injuries.

    Are all glaciers really melting? All 167 thousand of them?

    Why is there not a shortage of global oxygen if excess CO2 is caused by human combustion that uses oxygen?

    Opening carbonated beverages and exhaling are factors contributing to the melting of the icecaps?

    It can?t be too late to stop global warming because we should be able to stop something we started shouldn?t we?

    Why does Toronto Canada annually have twice as many cold weather alert days as smog advisory alert days?

    2008 will mark the twentieth anniversary of the UN?s global warming THEORY. At their predicted rates of warming we should after 20 years of climate change, drowning in boiling oceans by now?

    It would be hard to avoid the conclusion that we are a society comprised almost entirely of battered wife?s, drunk drivers, molested children, humiliated ethnic groups, exploited workers and other groups despised for their sexual preferences or cultural attributes, all festering in a spoiling environment. The reporters, editors and headline writers do not have a clue about ?global warming? except that it scares the hell out of readers and sells newspapers and or other types of media. Keep in mind that we have reached the point where human induced global warming is proving to be absolutely impossible because the theory insists that CO2 and Methane (comes out of your mouth and your anus), not pollution is the cause. Media suggests that it is a pollution issue despite the under reported fact that our pollution controls have resulted in our atmosphere being cleaner now than in the 1960?s as the atmospheric community, not the media affirm. Those in the scientific community that do endorse human induced global warming are the same benefactors as those in the media, social activism and politics that are all competing for the same audience and money.

    ?There are ominous signs that the Earth?s weather patterns have begun to change dramatically and that these changes may portend a drastic decline in food production? with serious political implications for just about every nation on Earth.?

    Newsweek Magazine, April 28, 1975 an article about the ?Coming Ice Age?.
    Canada?s American neighbors to the south saw snowmobile sales increase by 13% in 2003.

    A new record of 57.6 million skier visits to resorts was set in the 2002-2003 season in the United States.

    Reduced air pollution adding to man-made global warming.
    By Richard Black
    Environment Correspondent, BBC News website, in Vienna

    Record Breaking Low Temperatures Sweep US, Canada
    ‘Deep freeze sweeps US’
    The Sunday Mail, January 18,2004

    Science Magazine (Dec. 10th 1976) warned of “extensive Northern Hemisphere glaciation.” Science Digest (February 1973) reported that “the world’s climatologists are agreed” that we must “prepare for the next ice age.” The Christian Science Monitor (“Warning: Earth’s Climate is Changing Faster Than Even Experts Expect,” Aug. 27, 1974) reported that glaciers “have begun to advance,” “growing seasons in England and Scandinavia are getting shorter” and “the North Atlantic is cooling down about as fast as an ocean can cool.” Newsweek agreed (“The Cooling World,” April 28, 1975) that meteorologists “are almost unanimous” that catastrophic famines might result from the global cooling that the New York Times (Sept. 14, 1975) said “may mark the return to another ice age.” The Times (May 21, 1975) also said “a major cooling of the climate is widely considered inevitable” now that it is “well established” that the Northern Hemisphere’s climate “has been getting cooler since about 1976.

    The Energy Information Administration estimates that United States energy consumption for home heating will increase by 34 percent between 2004 and 2030.

    The Niagara grape growers in Canada received compensation for winter storm damage to their vines in the harsh winters of 2002 and 2003.

    Canada?s Inuit are seeking compensation from the Canadian government for increased skin cancers due to the depleted ozone over the north. Chaching$$$$$$$$ Show me da money!

    CO2 (required by plant life) and Methane are two naturally occurring chemicals that exit our bodies from one of two orifices.

    Climate, the scientists tell us, is very complicated and little understood. So why the certainty about this elaborate theory of global warming?

    Criminologists embarrassingly have no idea why the earth?s climate cycles in patterns of cold and warm over countless millennia.

    If global warming WAS true, why the hard sell? The global warmers behave like it?s the last quota sale day of the month. Proving ounce again that the issue is not climate at all, it is culture.

    Global warming as a cultural issue sets new limits of extreme in social anomalies, otherwise known as urban myths. This however is the granddaddy of all urban myths, for we have absolutely nothing to compare it to both in absurdity and intensity. It wins on both counts.

    Our climate MUST be resilient if it recovers from atmospheric devastations such as large volcanic eruptions. Our atmosphere isn?t like an enclosed fish tank that accumulates algae. Wouldn?t it make sense that our climate filters itself then? It does and we just don?t understand it yet. How dare Mother Nature provide something we don?t understand!

    Consensus is not conclusiveness.

    Independent opinions are from those without a direct financial connection to the science and or media industries.

    The Internet is not a laboratory.

    Political boardrooms are really commodity floors where votes are bought and sold.

    Anyone can make credible data for public consumption simply by pushing the enter key enough times.

    Global Warming and Climate Change are purely dogmatic rhetorical terms that redefine weather. Weather changes but they would have us believe that all changes in weather are somehow permanent due to human activity and not the moon, the sun, gravity or the unknown. We express the unknown in terms of global warming.

    The movie ?The Day After Tomorrow? about a climate going ?cold? due to the effects of global warming, is used by both sides of the debate to justify their opinions.

    How many people would be willing to sign their names to a global warming prognostication and place it in a time capsule to be opened in say, 20 years, 40 years? Are these people willing to look like fools after this silly belief is once and for all put to rest?

    Try the GlobalWarmer vs. the Denier test: Think back to when weather was normal, and if it resembles in your mind anything like the inside of a shopping mall, you are hopelessly converted and you may as go back to having one of your ?Activist/Liberal? nervous breakdowns.

    Global warming may or not be caused by trans-fatty acids, weed killer, gingivitis, red wine, oatmeal and or vitamin E.

    Global warming started with the first cave man passing wind.

    Just remember that when someone uses the term Climate Change instead of Global Warming, it means they are starting to figure out they got scammed but are not ready to admit it yet.

    Since 1980 we’ve also experienced 28 of the 29 most powerful solar flares ever recorded. This just 400 years after a lack of solar flares, which just happened to coincide with the “Maunder Minimum”, otherwise known as the Little Ice Age. In science, that’s known as a pattern.

    1970?s Global Cooling
    1990?s Global Warming
    2000?s Global Change
    2010?s Global Weather

    Global Warming causes hotter weather. Climate Change causes colder weather.

    Polar bears that are stressed and depressed from global warming are now called bi-polar bears.

    Maybe America?s Al Gore and Canada?s Doctor David Suzuki should start a chain of tropical resorts in Canada?s melting arctic regions?

    If global warming increases storms and therefore wind, couldn?t we tap that energy for wind power generation and live like perfect little green elves for ever and ever?


    Global warming is 20 years old. Introduced to the UN in 1988, it declared to the world that the earth had been warming for several years. Twenty years later we are still watching the Winter Olympics, paying the kid next door to shovel the snow, enjoying a crisp sunny winter day, flying south to get warm, driving in snow storms, enjoying the changing seasons and paying heating bills etc. etc etc.. Twenty years worth of global warming would have us sitting around by now, reminiscing about the old days when we used to have some cool weather, not just cooler weather. Our lives have not changed. The effects of twenty years of global warming should look far more dramatic than the normal unpredictable weather patterns that we see now. Perpetuating this mass insanity, is the media. The politicians (Kyoto), scientists, and religious-like environmentalists feed off this mutually beneficial source of empowerment while bewildered citizens are numbed with a now growing cynical fear. Only when our frustratingly misunderstood climate is perfect, like the inside of a shopping mall, will this cultural anomaly fade away. It?s safe to say that Santa Clause will not be drowning after all. Hey, we eventually stopped burning witches and sacrificing virgins didn?t we?

    The Global Warming Chain Reaction: (only in theory of course)

    Scientists To quote Canada?s Doctor David Nutzuki: ?I feel mother earth. I hear mother earth. She is calling me. She is calling for help. She is saying Help Me!? And this, from a scientist. Anyone can join the Union of Concerned Scientists and be a voting member and reflect the ?majority of scientists endorse the global warming theory ? figures. They accepted yours truly as a member without any questions, other than will that be check or credit card and I?m only a tradesperson. And besides, politics permeates everything and years of university will teach even genuine scientists, honest or otherwise to play the game. Education unfortunately does not translate always into sainthood. It is human nature to rationalize deception for personal gain. What makes it easier for even the real scientist is that the public thinks all of their associates believe the theory as well but the media are not interested in those other opinions at this point. Think of it this way; the term ?Global Temperature? as absurd and impractical as it is, didn?t even exist until the theory of global warming necessitated it. Eventually it will all come out in the wash and that is when fun starts; watching the rats jump ship and supporters becoming deniers. Support of the global warming issue from some in the science community is not a conspiracy. It is stupidity, politics, dishonesty and greed.

    Politicians endorse it because it?s an easy way for them to go through the motions of it looking like they have your best interests in mind.

    The media endorses it because they are in the business of selling, not telling. Have you ever known commercial or worse, alternative media to accentuate the negative? They make a living off it. They have crisised and sensitized us with fear to where we can?t even enjoy a pleasant summer day without feeling some caution and guilt. While we still cannot understand climate, we now have more elaborate ways of observing it via the lazy and mediocre media but still are no closer to comprehending weather and climate at all. We are told of the dangers from: UV rays, dry spells described as droughts, smog advisories based on unattainable goals according newly adjusted scales, standards and tolerances. Remember Ozone and Acid Rain? Early explorers described the ?fog? of Los Angeles California but none of it will be tolerated now. Killer Bees, West Nile Virus, save the native tree campaigns, predictions of frog extinctions, the list goes on. Fear the unknown.

    Educators endorse it because it is safe and intellectually trendy, just plain fun and most of all, easier to teach than falling off a horse. The Sierra Club and the other groups supply schools with so-called ?educational packages? to ?inform? the delicate minds of the young. Fortunately this will ultimately back fire on the global warmers as newer generations doubt, challenge and question as every generation does. We will be looked back upon with humor, perhaps similar to disco. What comes to mind are those old black and white pictures of the teacher in the puffed up dress and winged glasses putting the class through an atomic bomb safety drill with the kids sticking their heads under the desks. In the future they will look back upon our generation of pierced, tattooed, baggy panted amusement ride operator look-alikes and see what sheep minded twerps we were. Count me out of this picture. Are you in or out?

    Activists endorse it because it serves as an opportunity for promoting what they view as essential social issues. Smart move, so give them credit!

    All Environmental Issues Have Become Faith-based; with nature being heaven, corporations being sinners, predictions of doom being the judgment day, Rachel Carson and Canada?s David Suzuki as the holy prophets and earth day as the holy day. Just like religion, environmentalism has lots of gullible followers who will easily give up their money.

    Joe Public is bewildered and bombarded with Global Warming fears and has surrendered to the dogma.

    Biological Spring This is so stupid I didn?t know where to put. It?s the latest in the dogma filtering through the media as we speak, like a case of bothulism at a family reunion. We are so full of ourselves that we think that we have somehow changed the earth to the point where nothing is natural, even spring for god?s sake. This is the same society that thinks naturally grown organic food is well, organic, even thought they claim the air is polluted. So how can you have organic anything growing in so-called polluted un-organic air?

    A Response From The EPA:
    Thank you for visiting EPA’s Global Warming Site.

    We appreciate your feedback and are committed to keeping an open-mind as
    we can continue studying this issue.

    There have never been predictions (from scientists) for the end of
    winter. Predictions have called for a gradual
    warming — ranging from ~2 to 10 degrees F over the next 100 years. The
    observed warming rate of the last 20 years has been about .3
    degrees/decade or 3 degrees per century — a bit above the low end of
    that forecasted range (but well within it). The warming rate could
    increase or decrease in the future, depending on a number of complex
    factors (e.g. rate of future emissions growth, environmental policies,

    The bottom line is that the effects of warming may not be that apparent
    over the period of a decade or two, but should become increasingly
    obvious over longer periods. The noticeable changes will likely be
    observations that the REALLY cold winters don’t occur as frequently not
    that there won’t, on occasion, be cold winters.

    Jason Samenow

    Jason Samenow
    Climate Analyst
    U.S. EPA Office of Atmospheric
    Climate Change Division

  • heidi says:

    For those interested in a detailed rebuttal to Lindzen’a fallacious Op-ed piece please click on the following link.

    Posted by: Mark Schaffer at April 13, 2006 05:07 PM


    Unfortunately, functions like a defense attorney for global warming alarmists. They relentlessly defend their client (global warming alarmists) while at the same time attacking anything and anyone who dares dispute the politically correct version of climate change. They are very knowledgeable on the subject of climate change but they are extremely biased.

    This is fair game and they do it well. However, don’t confuse them with being impartial as they claim.

    For a neutral free-for-all between meteorologists, try this site…

    search for global warming or climate change…

    It is less moderated than so it gets a bit stupid at times but at least the debate is free and not controlled by moderators with an agenda.

  • Bruce Richardson says:

    At best, Kyoto would have reduced the worldwide production of carbon dioxide only slightly and the effect on climate change would have been miniscule. It is possible that Kyoto could have actually increased the global production of carbon dioxide.

    But Kyoto was more about the transfer of wealth from “have” nations to “have not” nations anyway. For the United States, Kyoto would have been an economic disaster. The United States Senate (Democrats and Republicans) totally rejected it and they were correct in doing so.

    There is no objective scientific basis for the level of hysteria that exists today on the subject of anthropogenic global warming. It seems to be a belief system. I suppose that is why “heritics” are attacked with such venom.

    I think that we should have a strong scientific basis for any course of action that may involve a hit on the economy that could amount to hundreds of billions of dollars.

  • Mark Schaffer says:

    For those interested in a detailed rebuttal to Lindzen’a fallacious Op-ed piece please click on the following link.

  • Aram Krikorian says:

    Arica’s point is well taken. We really should not be cavalier about our environment. Unfortunately we are losing our perspective of the relative objectivity of science and analysis that is being pulled into the field of policy and politics where reason and debate have been cast aside in favor of hyperbole and political spinning. Look at this “war on terrorism” or the “illegal” worker fiasco. “Global Warming Catastrophe” is also highly politicized and sadly detracts from the real work that we should be agreeing to do as a global community.

  • Arica Reinhardt says:

    Our global political leaders seem to be willing to take extraordinary chances when it comes to the life of our little biosphere. In my mind this out to be a zero-risk situation. How much would it really cost to be more fuel efficient? Why is America not a leader in sustainable energy technologies and exporting that technology to the world, instead of refusing to even sit down at a table in Kyoto? The American I believe in is resourceful, hardworking and willing to tackle difficult problems even if it means a little sacrifice here and there (although that concept has been missing from the political front since WWII as far as I can tell.

    If we fail to act the results may be irreversible. If we wait until there is proof it could be too late and we have doomed the planet with our head-in-the-sand attitudes. If we cut down on fossil fuel and greenhouse gas emissions and possibly save the planet in the process?.how is that bad? Can?t we stop pointing fingers and just do the right thing? If there is a possibility the planet doesn?t face extinction from us staying on a polluting, raping-of-the land and sea path?great?but if it does and we do nothing?not so great and we deserve what we get. Maybe the sea creatures will have a fabulous time of it.

    I’m also deeply concerned by the amount of reading I’ve been doing on Christians who believe that because they will float to heaven in the “rapture” that the rest of humanity and all creatures on the planet can go to hell in a hand basket. I’m not quite sure Jesus would say that but I’m quite sure that God would think it a tad arrogant. But I digress.

  • Bruce Richardson says:

    Jason demonstrates the point doesn’t he. Pat Cleary simply stated the obvious. The climate is always getting warmer or cooler. Climate was changing long before man could possibly be the cause. There isn’t yet any objective scientific evidence that proves that man is significantly changing climate. Yet, when Pat Cleary expressed his opinion, Jason attacked him personally. Jason didn’t engage in debate. He didn’t present an argument to support his position either–probably because he can’t. This is very typical.

  • Jason Varone says:

    Still think the Earth is flat Mr. Cleary?
    History will reveal you to be a colossal buffoon, I am sorry to say. The main reason for Scientists ringing the Alarm is the complete inaction of people to produce less greenhouse gases and pollution. Scientists know more that anyone about the slow and systematic destruction of the planet do to endless growth. The Free Market Capitalists at the Wall Street Journal propogate the plaque that will kill us all – endless growth.

    How does it feel to be an Earth Killer Mr. Cleary?
    When are you going to join the human race?