Tuesday, March 13, 2007

A long winded post about hot air

With Minneapolis thinking about banning circuses, wither shall the ‘three rings’ go? Not to worry! The new DFL-led Minnesota Legislature has pre-empted any venue concerns. A few weeks ago they played host to their own dog-and-pony show on global warming. Eight committees from the two chambers got together and heard from a pre-selected slate of activists in an effort to “reinforce those who worry about global warming and…convince skeptics that it's occurring.”

Senator Jungbauer objected to the one-sided presentation, which has brought derision from the Left side of the state blogosphere. Calling him ‘dimwitted,’ MNpublius took Mr. Jungbauer greatly to task:

…here’s the section where Jungbauer really showcases his alienation from reality:

It’s evident that scientists who are proponents of global warming are well represented; however, no one from the opposing side is on the agenda. When a large group of policy makers are assembled for a conversation on an issue such as climate change where the science, contrary to perception has not been decided and new research is released all the time, it is important that all sides are part of the debate.
What Senator Jungbauer doesn’t seem to understand is that there is no other side! If one goes through the back-log of peer-reviewed, published scientific studies one will not find a single report that refutes the idea of Global Warming. Dissent exists on the degree and the possible solutions, but not the phenomenon. Please, for the sake of humanity, research the topic Senator Jungbauer.

He’s not the only one. “The Voice of Greater Minnesota” also displayed similar juvenile aplomb, but with a heavier hand:
It is a sad day for the state of Minnesota when we have to realize that one of the people elected to represent us and create policy for our state is nothing more than a babbling idiot. State Senator Mike Jungbauer is that idiot! He has sent out an email to his senate co workers complaining that for an upcoming hearing on global warming that [sic] no witnesses are being called that disbeleive [sic] in global warming…

The problem is that there are no legitimate sides to the debate. There has been no credable [sic] research demonstrating that global warming does not exist. The only people don't believe in global warming are those with either a vested interest in destroying the plannet [sic] or people or people [sic] that are too stupid to realize what is going on.

I'm sure this post sounds quite harsh, but I'm ok with that. It is becoming more and more urgent by the day that we act on this issue. So i [sic] think we need to call these people what they are. [sic] A bunch of idiots who are in the same boat as Hallocaust [sic] denyers [sic] and other fringe deviants.

There is much wrong with above responses and it will take some time to sort it all out. But let us start with their non-sequitorial nature. Discussion of scientific topics does not lend itself well to the kind of sand-box tantrums displayed here. Mr. Jungbauer’s objection to the stacked presentation is responded to not with science, but with righteous zealotry. Voice’s idea of action is ad hominem, to “call these people what they are,” not actually examine what they’re saying. When you have to justify your ‘science’ with taunts, do you really have ‘science’ on your side?

Part of the problem is that the two blogsters above are mixing issues in an effort to stifle actual debate. Iain Murray of the Competitive Enterprise Institute presents an excellent break-down of the ‘global warming’ evangelist’s gospel:
1 – The Earth is warming.
2 – The warming is unprecedented.
3 – Man is largely responsible for the current warming.
4 – The current warming will be catastrophic.

Parts 2, 3 and 4 are individually predicated on the part that immediately precedes it, but believing in part 1, 2, or 3 does not require ‘buy-in’ to any which follow it. The Church of Global Warming – Evangelical (CGW-E) plies its rhetoric on the assumption that if you buy into part 1, the rest generally follow like dominoes, and if you don’t buy into 2, 3, and/or 4, you’re a ‘denier’ of some sort.

But for now, let us be clear: contrary to the implications made by MNpublius and Voice, the Legislative presentation was made solely by those who adhere to parts 2 and 3 above, and most likely 4 if I’ve read Mr. Stieger’s prior reflections on the issue correctly. The sermon was delivered without contradiction, justifying Senator Jungbauer’s original concern. Which means it wasn’t a scientific examination at all, but a pep rally.

Truth be told, and contrary to the views of many, yes, there are other sides to the CGW-E ‘gospel.’ I hope to examine them more closely in the coming days.

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