We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
Our Recent Essays Behind the Front Page
Tuesday, January 31. 2012
Why You Should Postpone College
Farmers Making $100 Billion Don’t Need Subsidies to Grow
Has the Higher-Ed Revolution Begun?
Democrats Vs. Republicans: Who's The Most Greedy?
Romneycare and Obamacare Are Identical
Obama's Flawed Case for Insourcing - American workers are losing jobs to machines, not to Chinese workers.
Average Federal Employee Makes Twice as Much as Private Sector Employee & As Much as Microsoft Employee
Like Education, Government is a monopoly service industry, but armed. We'd like to see some competition.
Federal Housing Authority and Freddie Mac: Betting against the homeowner
Dining with Vultures: Rent-to-Own, the Feds, and the Housing Sector
The Buffett Rule Won't Apply to Warren Buffett
Geologist: What should the world’s temperature be?
A little warmer, please. Without that good greenhouse effect, we'd all be dead. Without CO2, we'd all be dead too.
Yuval Levin: Religious Liberty and Civil Society
Tracked: Jan 31, 07:15
Tracked: Feb 01, 10:40
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Bird Dog: Average Federal Employee Makes Twice as Much as Private Sector Employee & As Much as Microsoft Employee
CBO, Comparing the Compensation of Federal and Private-SectorEmployees, 2012: "Overall, the federal government paid 16 percent more in total compensation than it would have if average compensation had been comparable with that in the private sector, after accounting for certain observable characteristics of workers."
Ian Plimer: What should the world’s temperature be?
Humans do best when temperatures are fairly stable. Unstable climate can result in desertification, inundation of arable lands, extinction of species, spread of vector organisms; and this can result in global and regional migration, political instability and human suffering.
Geology indicates that climate change is a natural phenomena, but the current anthropogenic warming is anomalous, and on a densely populated world, it can have a devastating and avoidable impact on human society.
I think it would be welcomed. Humans can adapt to changing climates - always have.
Change is good!
Danger is cooling, not warming. Not that we can do anything to control these things anyway except adjust.
NYC was under a mile of ice just a short while ago. How did people get to the neighborhood bar?
"Farmers Making $100 Billion Don’t Need Subsidies to Grow"
yes, and $75 billion of that are those subsidies... Pure profit, payment for essentially doing nothing.
"but the current anthropogenic warming is anomalous,"
except it's neither anthropogenic nor warming, nor anomalous, nor current...
J.T. Wenting: except it's neither anthropogenic nor warming, nor anomalous, nor current...
The vast majority of climatologists would disagree with your assessment.
This NOAA chart should help clarify matters. It shows data from a variety of sources, including satellite, balloon and ground-based instrumentation. In particular, note that the lower troposphere is warming, as is the surface. Meanwhile, the stratosphere is cooling—a signature of greenhouse warming.
Got that right because I was out on the boat yesterday afternoon for an hour or so - temps in the mid=60's, no wind, water was a beautiful blue. I'd hate to have to return to ice fishing. :>)
This is getting amusing...two "Z's" attempting to use "seriously flawed data" in an attempt to prove something. Zero...he won't get a 2nd term...t' other...time for some "Koolaid"...IMO.
Steady as she runs Skipper. "Ready to come about? Hard-to-Lee!".
I love it - proving a point with seriously flawed data.
Now that NASA and NOAA have "fessed up", the UKMO/CRU data was totally FUBAR (along with the GISS I might add) where are you non-climate change deniers going to go for new data sets to prove your ridiculous assertions?
And then there is this - a perfect bit of scientific "newspeak" in which AGW may cause global cooling. Of course you have to get to the bottom of the article to discover that:
And, inevitably, the discussion turns to people. Does human industry play a major role in warming the Arctic? Could we reverse the trend, if we wanted to? Not all scientists agree. Some argue that the changes occuring in the Arctic are consistent with large, slow natural cycles in ocean behavior that are known to science. Others see a greater human component.
The sea ice thawing is consistent with the warming we've seen in the last century," notes Spencer, but "we don't know how much of that warming is a natural climate fluctuation and what portion is due to manmade greenhouse gases.
If I were a betting man, I'd bet on natural cycles and solar maximums/minimums.
Tom Francis: I love it - proving a point with seriously flawed data.
Even your own biased citation doesn't support your claim—other than the headline, that is. Of course scientists want more and more accurate data. Of course scientists continue to improve their methodologies. In addition, the previous citation included satellite data, and it clearly shows a warming lower atmosphere and cooling upper atmosphere, supporting the finding concerning surface measurements.
Tom Francis: If I were a betting man, I'd bet on natural cycles and solar maximums/minimums.
"Natural cycles" is too vague to constitute a scientific hypothesis, but solar irradiance does not explain a cooling upper atmosphere.
Please explain why Northern European humans did better technologically, socially and politically than the less variable climes nearer the Equator at a time when climate was a more critical factor in human survival?
Climate by its very definition relatively stable over human lifetimes, perhaps you mean unstable weather?
The opposite of the results you list are also equally possible in unstable weather. In fact, increased CO2, which many erroneously blame your projected results, actually facilitates vegetation colonization of desert areas as the plants reduce pore openings for respiration in the CO2 rich environments. This increased uptake of CO2 actually mitigates atmospheric CO2 through increased growth of CO2 consuming vegetation.
What is this arable land bull? It is quite obvious from statements by those pushing this theme, the concern is for possible loss of beachfront vacation home investments. And, of course, the ever lamented inundation of Manhattan. Even this is driven by the erroneous belief the Arctic melting would cause a rise in sea level (See a guy named Archimedes).
But if you are correct and warming does cause human migration, some will be able to move to the new defrosted northern areas which will be ripe for agricultural production.
JKB: Please explain why Northern European humans did better technologically, socially and politically than the less variable climes nearer the Equator at a time when climate was a more critical factor in human survival?
You're not clear on the periods or regions in question. There are a lot of factors that determine technological, social and political progress.
JKB: In fact, increased CO2, which many erroneously blame your projected results, actually facilitates vegetation colonization of desert areas as the plants reduce pore openings for respiration in the CO2 rich environments.
And yet desertification is intensifying due to a number of causes.
JKB: What is this arable land bull?
Sea level rise is already affecting important river deltas, such as in Bangladesh.
JKB: But if you are correct and warming does cause human migration, some will be able to move to the new defrosted northern areas which will be ripe for agricultural production.
Perhaps, though the interior of continents will probably become somewhat dryer. But as you know, immigration often causes political friction. Borders are not generally open, and even liberal and wealthy societies, such as the U.S., struggle with the issue. Poor countries, with starker cultural divisions, often experience political turmoil.
I have farmed for several decades now and I always participated in farm programs because to not do so is simply making a martyr of yourself. That money is built into our cost of doing business, mostly rent. While it did help me get started I have never felt good about taking it and have always supported pulling the plug on the whole thing. Don't get conned into believing that farmers need their crop insurance subsidized, many of us don't even carry it. Crop insurance is crucial to growers in high risk areas, meaning parts of the country that really aren't suitable for growing crops, and huge, high risk operators that are speeding up the demise of small, family type farms. No one is going to go hungry, or pay more for their food if we don't subsidize farmers. No one. Quite the opposite, by supporting a program that encourages putting your food supply in the hands of a few huge operators you are much more likely to get supply control which would lead to much higher food prices.
I agree. The idea that "they" can set up a safety net insurance program just insures that the mean will be pulled lower, thereby needing more "help". Have I been a "successful" farmer because of, or in spite of, government interference in what should be a "free" market? Given the hours of work it took, I would say "in spite of".
Remember the first round of MILC (milk income loss) was "only" supposed to cost 500 million. Actual price tag was $2 Billion. Oops.
I used to say take away the dairy support program, as long as they left the grain subsidy (cheap cow feed). After the ethanol boom? Take it all away, because these grain prices are just a slow bleed out of equity, in combination with all the other inflationary activity the government doesn't acknowledge. I still remember the day a few years ago, when the price of fuel had gone from $2 to $3, and the announcement was made "No CPI Inflation!"(not counting food and energy!)
It sometimes happens that the discussion threads on a nice blog like MF get monopolized or even hijacked by one or two individuals, who may be "trolls" or may be just overly earnest commenters. Either way, I have found it unpleasant to revisit such a blog, and so I go elsewhere. This is not to avoid having to encounter different opinions expressed by other people, which I respect, but rather I prefer to avoid the overbearing zealot who thinks he MUST respond to every comment that is posted by every other reader of the blog. Over the past few years, I have abandoned several blogs that became infected by this sort of virus. What first attracted me to MF was that it seemed to have avoided that curse. Unfortunately, judging by this discussion thread and by other recent ones on the same topic, that may no longer be the case. That truly saddens me.
All things will pass. The directorate, in their hubris, will soon enough detect and direct that MF has been sufficiently addressed so as to become insignificant, so less a threat to the greater good.
Agent x will then be assigned to a more immediate source of concern.
Unless of course, I'm completely wrong. And the directorate instead considers MF a major and continuing threat due to the intelligent reasonableness and logic of its commenter's (excluding myself). In which case agent x will likely become a permanent presence.
Then, should that be so, and I'm guilty of not doing so... we ignore the troll and continue on with our discussion.