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    Next Stop: Recession!

    We've arrived at the end of the line
    by Chris Martenson

    Friday, February 8, 2019, 3:35 PM

We've enjoyed years of “recovery” since the Great Financial Crisis by literally papering over our problems with newly-printed money, instead of addressing their root causes.

But we've now arrived at the awkward part of the story; when all of our prior mistakes finally catch up with us, and the plot heads in a much darker direction.

Despite more than a decade of an “all-hands-on-deck” propping up of the financial markets, all the central bankers have to show for it is the widest wealth gap in history coupled with stagnant wages.

That, and a skyrocketing cost of living.

B.S. From The BLS

Depending on which OECD country you live in, you can take your 'official' inflation measure and multiply it by either a 2x or a 3x to get the true rate.

For example, in the US we’ve been told that inflation is running at just under 2% for years. In reality, it’s been trucking along at closer to 4% to 6% (for rural and urban dwellers, respectively).

To summarize the situation simply: the central banks have been printing up new money and then handing most of it to the wealthy (via QE, which boosts the prices of the assets the rich own). Then they put on a good show of “worrying about inflation being too low” when the government issues its laughably doctored numbers.

Anybody living in the real world (especially those trying to live on a fixed income) already knows that their actual inflation is much higher than 2%.  Ditto for anybody that has bought a car, is paying for college tuition, depends on prescription medication, or has recently been to a hospital.

Here are two examples of how ridiculous the situation is now:

Average New-Car Prices Up More Than 4 Percent Year-Over-Year for January 2019 on Tesla, Full-Size Trucks

Feb 1, 2019

IRVINE, Calif., Feb. 1, 2019 /PRNewswire/ — The analysts at Kelley Blue Book today reported the estimated average transaction price for a light vehicle in the United States was $37,149 in January 2019. New-vehicle prices increased $1,481 (up 4.2 percent) from January 2018.

(Source)

4.2% yr/yr is a pretty hefty increase. But it’s right in line with annual increases stretching back over the past decade:

(Source)

From 2007 to 2017 that’s a +20.4% increase in new car prices.  Combining the data from the above article and chart, between 2007 and January 2019 new vehicles experienced a whopping +29% increase in their average selling price.

As a real-world shopper, that's how much more cash you have to spend to buy a car today vs a decade ago. 

However, according to the BLS, new car prices have only increased by 6.6% over the same time frame(!).  In fact, in the BLS' eyes, prices today are exactly the same as they were 5 years ago (2013 vs 2018):

(Source)

To compare apples-to-apples: the BLS says that new cars are the exact same price, with zero inflation, between 2013 and mid-2018. Yet the real-world data says that new cars went up by +17% in price.

So which is it?  Is it a 0% increase or a +17% increase?

Well, the answer lies in all of the mumbo-jumbo 'adjustments' that the BLS uses, such as hedonics, in attempt to convince us that our pockets are not being picked in broad daylight. (For a refresher in the many tricks used by the BLS, watch Chapter 18 of the Crash Course: Fuzzy Numbers)

The BLS has a lot of fancy explanations for their “math', but the simple fact remains that a new car will cost you +17% more real cash dollars than it did 5 years ago.

The government says $0 extra. The dealership says +$3,000 more. The former is a fake number. The $3,000 coming out of your wallet is a real number.

I could go through example after example of where the BLS undercounts inflation.  They do it with health care especially wildly, telling us that health care is increasing by ~3%-4% per year when everyone’s health insurance premiums are rising by 15% to 25% per year (or more!).

Beyond the direct financial harm that results as Social Security recipients get very low or even 0% Cost-Of-Living-Adjustments (COLA) — which are based on the BLS' reported inflation numbers — there’s an even more subtle and corrosive effect that results from being lied to by those in authority.

With each fib, the populace loses more and more trust. And at some tipping point – bang! – they're suddenly protesting the streets wearing yellow vests.  It may take a while, but eventually folks catch on to the idea that “fairness” and “justice” are merely fantasies of the middle class. 

Both the rich and the poor already know better. But once the middle-class loses its faith in the dream, then it becomes a lot harder to convince them that another massive tax break for corporations is really in their best interest.

The Unease Grows…

As increasing concern spreads across the social landscape, for reasons well beyond the financial fibs outlined above, it's becoming increasingly difficult to follow the competing narratives in play. 

For example: the economy is either doing great, or it's busy imploding.  Technology promises an amazing future, or it's ruining our minds.  The world is awash with cheap fossil fuels, or peak oil is in play and our standard of living is at risk.  Either man-made global warming is an imminent existential threat, or there's nothing to worry about.

Making sense of all these — and many other — competing narratives is a full-time job. Almost nobody’s got the time for that.

Lurking beneath every one of these dueling plot lines is this nasty, inescapable realization: Our entire way of life is unsustainable.

It’s simply not possible to extract exponentially more raw materials year over year, forever.  We all know that. It’s not a difficult concept to grasp.

But the entirety of our political system, the mainstream media, and our economy are all predicated on the opposite being true, that endless exponential growth lies ahead.

Like all delusions, this false belief will have a terminal encounter with the limits of reality at some point.

There will come a time when attempts at further growth are counterproductive and cause more harm than benefit.  In fact, we've already entered that period.

We know that growth is killing the planet. Yet each day we are bombarded with messages imploring us all to invest in and hope for more growth.

Those who have been paying attention know, quantitatively as well as morally, that more growth is not the answer. Yet it's the only path forward offered by those in power.

Stuck between an impossible idea and the strident repetition of its opposite, the populace grows ever more anxious.  We can all see and feel that the end of the growth narrative is near — yet not even the barest glimmer of that inevitability is debated in the news or in any halls of power.

(At least not publicly.  Who knows what they're saying to each other privately? Perhaps something very different, as evidenced by the rise in doomsday prep by the super-rich).

As the social anxiety grows over facing a dimming future, our feckless Western press exploits that emotional tension to sell more consumer products and push political agendas, committing sins of commission and omission in the process. Outright lies are published. Key issues are left entirely out of the conversation (just look at the dearth of coverage on Europe's Yellow Vest protests). And alternative information sources are denounced as peddlers of 'fake news' or Russian agents.

Often it seems as if what’s truly important is intentionally avoided, while that which is absolutely unimportant is minutely examined with excruciating repetition.

As I recently chronicled, the very bottom of the terrestrial and oceanic food pyramids are being knocked out. This is an existential threat to our species, but it's hardly addressed in the mainstream media. It should front page news in a sustained and complete call for action. But it never is.

This terrifying information should be commanding a large share of our attention. But it takes a very distant back seat to utterly meaningless political and social trivia that comes and goes like waves of petit mal epileptic seizures upon the national body.

Next Stop: Recession!

Huge signals of collapse that everybody needs to know about are breaking out with greater frequency and ever-larger and more worrying amplitude. It’s only a matter of time before something truly systemic snaps and we're all forced to contend with terrible ramifications, ones entirely of our own making.

Maybe it will be a nightmare collapse of key ecosystems within the planet's web of life. After all, we're carelessly and swiftly disrupting the interconnected relationships that species took hundreds of millions of years to develop.

Or maybe it will be a political flashpoint resulting in war. A conflict resulting in even a temporary blockade of the free flow of global trade so critical for keeping all of our just-in-time production and distribution systems running smoothly could cause store shelves to go empty in just a matter of days.

More likely in the near term, we'll see an economic/financial meltdown. The third credit bubble of the new century is breaking down just like its predecessors did. Except this one is the and largest and most universal in history.

A recession lies dead ahead. An even though recessions are an inevitable part of the economic cycle, and it's been uncharacteristically long since the last one, we've been operating as if the current “recovery” will last forever. We're woefully unprepared for what's coming.

And this next recession promises to be a doozy. The world is fraught with political and social tensions that were absent in 2008. And it's saddled with many $trillions more debt than existed back then. 

But worst of all?  The public has lost faith in our institutions and political bodies after having been so obviously, comprehensively and repeatedly lied to over the years.

It’s kind of hard to ask people to embrace shared sacrifice during tough times after the political and financial elites greedily lined their own pockets at the expense of everyone else during the good days.

In Part 2: You vs The Recession we scour the multiplying data exposing just how advanced the global recessional already is, how we expect its impact will manifest in the financial markets, and what steps you can take now to dramatically improve your odds of making it through the coming crisis.

The central banking cartel, despite its increasingly desperate attempts, has not and cannot tame the business cycle. Our major concern is that this current credit cycle will burst far more viciously than the prior two — and those were painful enough.  Because its effects are likely to be so damaging, we can't overemphasize the need to prepare prudently now.

Click here to read Part 2 of this report (free executive summary, enrollment required for full access).

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68 Comments

  • Fri, Feb 08, 2019 - 4:26pm

    #1
    Rodster

    Rodster

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 22 2016

    Posts: 27

    Special report: A Plastic Tide | #OceanRescue

    As I recently chronicled, the very bottom of the terrestrial and oceanic food pyramids are being knocked out. This is an existential threat to our species, but it’s hardly addressed in the mainstream media. It should front page news in a sustained and complete call for action.”
    —————————————————————————————————————————————–
    Everyone needs to watch this Special Report from Skynews and pass it on. This is how we are slowy killing our oceans and future generations will have to deal with this, if the oceans don’t die first. Besides plastics, we are dumping toxic chemicals and radioactive waste into our oceans courtesy of Fukushima.
     

     
    “More than eight million tonnes of plastic is thrown away each year and washed out to sea. It takes centuries to break down. It’s eaten by marine creatures. And it’s in our food chain. Your seafood supper may have a synthetic garnish. Scientists just don’t know what effects it has on our health.”

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 1:08am

    #2
    Ejohnson

    Ejohnson

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    Posts: 9

    Assumptions

    Great article. The most useful things I’ve found on the internet over the past year are the crash course, and shadowstats.com. When I introduce someone to the crash course, the first video i show them isn’t the first video (sorry Chris), it’s Fuzzy Numbers. It connects on a visceral, immediate level with everyday experience. If they want more data, I show them shadowstats. Light bulbs generally result.
    Everyone plans. Every plan is based on assumptions. Most people’s plans are pretty good, it’s the underlying assumptions that will get you in trouble. Instead of arguing with people on why they need to change their plans, I try to change their assumptions.
     
     

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 3:23am

    #3

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3146

    recession: I missed it!

    For some reason, I forgot to check my favorite pre-recession indicator after the January Nonfarm Payrolls number was reported last Friday: “Working part time/economic reasons.”
    See the chart below.  its a “quarterly” chart, so the moves stand out a bit more, but Q1 is not looking very good at all right now.  At the moment, it totally agrees with the “impending recession” prediction, and/or that we’re already in one.
    This one is really pretty reliable over the years – as a slightly predictive and/or coincident indicator.
    If I had been paying attention, I could have posted this last Friday!!

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 10:31am

    #4

    LesPhelps

    Status Silver Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 30 2009

    Posts: 475

    Darn

    Can’t say I’ve been looking forward to the end of life as I know it.
    Rodster, I can’t bring myself to watch the video you linked. 
    My wife and I are certified rescue divers, with logged dives in the Caribbean totaling more than two weeks under water.  We saw the plastic problem, up close and personal, 15 years ago, off the coast of Belize.  Where we were, you couldn’t walk on beach sand.  It was completely covered with plastic.

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 2:41pm

    #5
    old guy

    old guy

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    In reference to the inflation

    In reference to the inflation rate, I think it would be much higher but for a mechanism not fully understood that comes into play. As a certain commentator likes to say, ” the money has remained in the canyons of wall street”.
    A major mechanism for goosing consumer spending has been via cheap money that induces borrowing. That mechanism is not functioning well as in aggregate consumers are carrying all the debt they can.
    What I am referring to however is the drag on consumer spending that results from this heinous level of debt. So not only are consumers having difficulty taking on more debt, but the existing debt is exacting debt service requirements, even with the artificially low interest rates, that is emaciating consumer spending capacity. The outlandish spending in the past was spending borrowed from the future and the future is now here with the added cumulative interest burden.
    This presently represents a huge drag on spending and hence has prevented inflation in the consumer price index from being even more. I doubt the central bankers considered this in their calculations.
    This hasn’t stopped inflation in stock and bond prices.

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 2:53pm

    #6

    newsbuoy

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 117

    Viking Economics, Yo

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 2:58pm

    #7
    old guy

    old guy

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    Another extremely deleterious

    Another extremely deleterious effect of all the money printing is the massive waste in resources that it encourages. In an honest money regime resources would be used much more prudently.
    The shale oil boom in the US is a good example. It has been financed with ultra-cheap bank loans and stock issuences based on cheap money being available. Even so, it is a mirage as with the rapid decline rates in the wells the sunk capital costs will never be fully recovered. The up-front cash-flow from newly drilled wells is putting the wool over people’s eyes. Ultimately there will be large losses. This would not have been possible with honest money and honest interest rates.
    Without the abundant freshly created money, as scarcity in resources develops, prices would rise accordingly and work their way into products, thereby discouraging flippant spending and wasteful use of resources. They would be utilized much more prudently and alternatives sought-out.

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 3:04pm

    #8
    old guy

    old guy

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    Good article by Chris

    Many people would agree that the Federal Reserve is making a mess of things. I often come across the notion that this is by design for nefarious purposes. I disagree! To me, the simple explanation is that they really are captive to muddled and wrongheaded thinking. Econometrics is what is taught in all of the major universities and the people at the Fed are steeped in it and genuinely believe in the mathematical equations and the models that incorporate them. And they really think that their equations and modeling allow them to apprehend economic dynamics in a way that gives them a window of understanding not available to the uninitiated. This view also infuses them with the confidence that they have the ability to centrally control the economy through enlightened manipulations; pushing, nudging, touching the gas pedal or the brakes, determining interest rates, buying or selling bonds, etc.
    To one who subscribes to the Austrian economic understanding, the problem is that the people at the Fed lack even a basic understanding of economic fundamentals. Even worse, some of their tenets are the opposite of reality. One of the most misguided underpinnings directing their actions is the belief that spending drives economic growth and prosperity, and savings hinder it. The exact opposite is true.
    These guys don’t even understand what money is.There is a thing called “Say’s Law” which is fundamental to economic understanding, and a critical failing in modern economic policy is the denial of Say’s Law. Keynes and the neo-Keynesians pooh-pooh it because it gets in the way or their theories and inclinations. So they phrase it as “production creates its own demand”. This can be ridiculed because it sounds like a claim that there will be demand for whatever anyone wants to produce in whatever amount. What Say’s Law actually says is that commodities trade against commodities. So if you imagine a barter economy, a farmer who grows corn now has the means to purchase a pair of shoes by using his corn in trade and the shoemaker derives his purchasing power for the corn from the shoes he makes.
    But this is clumsy with inherent problems. A pair of shoes is worth more than a bushel of corn but you can’t cut the shoes in half to equal the amount of corn wanted. That’s where money comes in. Real money that exists in limited amount takes on a value relative to the various commodities in an economy. As the commodities increase relative to a fixed money supply the purchasing power of each unit of the money increases and it decreases if total commodities decrease. The value of a unit of money also changes up or down against individual products as well according to supply. So purchasing power derives from commodities and a person’s production of a product creates that person’s purchasing power either directly via barter or indirectly by first exchanging the product for money. Thus production does create demand.
    In this process you get honest price signals as money is received in exchange for commodities that can then be use to purchase other commodities. So honest money represents something real. A real commodity was produced and exchanged for the money. Money is just a medium of exchange and represents something real that has been produced. Honest money means honest price signals and results in rational organic growth in an economy.
    When a Central Bank prints money nothing has been produced. It is fake. But participants in the economy can’t distinguish between this money and honest money. This creates a false impression of demand and the robustness of the overall economy. It gives false price signals, temporary profits where there shouldn’t be any, excited “animal spirits”; a bubble has been engendered.
    The longer this goes on with ever increasing money printing, the more distorted the economy becomes with mal- investments everywhere and multiplying fragilities that can potentially lead to a cascading unraveling. Also, when the money is injected into the system via debt mechanisms, the huge accumulated debt monster itself becomes the greatest danger.
    This same focus on inducing spending prompts another mistake by the central banks and their economists. Ideally, interest rates should be allowed to find their own natural level and not arbitrarily and artificially determined, but rates below the natural level are actually more destructive over time than rates a couple of points above. Interest rates are a hurdle business projects have to overcome to be successful. Rates that are too low allow otherwise marginal or non-profitable projects to be undertaken. The result is overuse and misuse of resources, and misdirected energy and capital. Conversely, if rates were somewhat above the natural rate only the most productive enterprises could be successful and resources would be used very efficiently. On the one hand you end-up with a sluggish and wasteful zombie economy and on the other a vibrant efficient one. Of course with the present monstrous debt situation created by the central banks, even a move to natural interest rates would now blow the whole thing up.
    The Federal Reserve fancies itself a savior that rescues the capitalist economy from itself by stopping a downward spiral into depression. In reality the extreme highs and lows are always caused by the central banks and or governments. Without the antics of the bankers the natural undulations in a market economy would be very gentle as honest price signals within an honest money regime would allow for self- correction of minor distortions in almost real- time. Any bubbles would happen only in isolated corners of the overall economy and be self-limiting and quickly corrected.

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 6:08pm

    #9
    Uncletommy

    Uncletommy

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    Talk about fuzzy numbers?

    I think you may have used the wrong approach, Chris:

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 8:52pm

    Reply to #7

    Mark_BC

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 290

    old guy wrote: Another

    old guy wrote:

    Another extremely deleterious effect of all the money printing is the massive waste in resources that it encourages. In an honest money regime resources would be used much more prudently.
    The shale oil boom in the US is a good example. It has been financed with ultra-cheap bank loans and stock issuences based on cheap money being available. Even so, it is a mirage as with the rapid decline rates in the wells the sunk capital costs will never be fully recovered. The up-front cash-flow from newly drilled wells is putting the wool over people’s eyes. Ultimately there will be large losses. This would not have been possible with honest money and honest interest rates.
    Without the abundant freshly created money, as scarcity in resources develops, prices would rise accordingly and work their way into products, thereby discouraging flippant spending and wasteful use of resources. They would be utilized much more prudently and alternatives sought-out.

    The problem with ending money printing so as to discourage flippant spending and wasteful use of resources is that unemployment would rise to 70% because most jobs these days are in the service sector (to sell stuff to people to consume via cheap debt), in construction of new homes, in construction of the new infrastructure to support the homes, and in the financial services sector administering all this easy money from thin air. Furthermore, technological automation would remain after the easy money regime ends so the manual labour jobs that have been displaced over the last 50 years would not return. 
    70% unemployment would result in riots. The elites know this and they know that without this easy money driving everything we’d be there. It scares them. The only way to avoid this would be to completely overhaul the taxation and wealth system and give the wealth back to the middle class, so that they don’t have to work 8-5 M-F to pay their mortgage. The eiltes are not going to do this, for two reasons: 1) they aren’t smart enough to understand how to do this (possibly, but unlikely), or 2) they know that the way to do this would be to dramatically lower taxes to the middle class and increase taxes to the elites via a wealth tax to claw back the trillions they have stolen from the middle classs over the previous few decades and could never be repatriated via some clumsy income tax. The elites will not voluntarily do this since their whole focus over the last 100 years has been to get us where we are now, a world of debt serfs.
    Therefore, when the monetary system shifts over and easy money ends, expect 70%+ unemployment and riots.

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  • Sat, Feb 09, 2019 - 10:00pm

    Reply to #7
    old guy

    old guy

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    Mark, I think you are right.

    Mark,
    I think you are right. The central planners have manipulated themselves into the proverbial “between a rock and a hard place”. The problem is that if they keep doing as they have been, the underlying rot in the economy will metastasize until something breaks and  triggers an unraveling. An alternative scenario is that there is an ongoing deterioration in economic vitality and the continual erosion of the greater standard of living, slowly grinding the majority into poverty. I think the first scenario is more likely.

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  • Sun, Feb 10, 2019 - 7:45am

    #10
    derelict

    derelict

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    Posts: 18

    Bad inflation example

    The BLS can be a frustration, but car pricing is not a good example of poor tracking of reported inflation. It clearly doesn’t show a 4.3% inflation rate as the post implies. If you’re going to attack someone else’s statistics, it helps to start with some solid examples, which I do believe are out there. 
    The example of a car going from $28.8K to $37.149 over 12 years! is very much in line with the reported US CPI. Or use an inflation calculator from one of the other central banks, and you’ll find the increase would be below the reported rate of inflation in the UK for example. Car pricing does not make the case for following shadowstats.
    Then there is hedonic adjustment. I greatly dislike the lack of transparency around this. In general there is some merit to the idea that you’re getting more for your money. Even a garden variety auto these days would come with features such as automatic windows and doorlocks, air bag, more sophisticated electronics, that would have been considered luxury or add-ons at an earlier time. And yet, for this thinking to work, for this customer, you’d need to still make a stripped down model of the auto available, which would track the original vehicle, and therefore the flat cost. The purchaser would have the choice of crank windows – lower cost, or add-ons – higher cost. It doesn’t work that way. 
    Nor do you get the option of buying a lower cost computer with a 500 MB hard drive, and it wouldn’t run today’s software even if you did. But it is indeed true that the price of hard drives has declined hugely, along with other components. Tell that to the teenager going off to school with a laptop and an iphone. 
    It is indeed a complicated issue.
     

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  • Sun, Feb 10, 2019 - 8:13am

    Reply to #10

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Online)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4635

    derelict wrote:The BLS can

    derelict wrote:

    The BLS can be a frustration, but car pricing is not a good example of poor tracking of reported inflation. It clearly doesn’t show a 4.3% inflation rate as the post implies. If you’re going to attack someone else’s statistics, it helps to start with some solid examples, which I do believe are out there. 
    The example of a car going from $28.8K to $37.149 over 12 years! is very much in line with the reported US CPI. 

    You are missing how the CPI is constructed and used.
    It is made up of subcomponents, of which vehicles is one.
    What I show above is that while the CPI new vehicle subcomponent sported a 0% increase between 2013 and 2018 the real world experience of people was that new vehicles went up 17% in price.
    That’s not “in line with the CPI” that is a part of the CPI.  One that showed a 0% increase thereby dragging or holding down the reported CPI.  
    Meanwhile, what sorts fo valuable new hedonic adjustments can we point to over that 5 year period that were “worth” slightly more than $3,000 per vehicle?
    Airbags?  Nope.  Those were both government required and standard the entire time.
    Automatic windows?  Nope, standard as well.
    Seat belts?  Sound systems?  Nope, and nope.
    Better engines?  Wipers?  Windows?  I’m stumped.
    It must have been something subjective like “a smoother ride” or a “more pleasing color palette” or something, because the features on my 2011 vehicle are the same ones listed on its exact same 2019 model but for a lot more money.  I’d call that inflation, wouldn’t you?
    Fortunately, using hedonics, the BLS tells us we can all just walk into a store and walk out again with a TV for free, or better!

    [Just kidding.  Nothing can fall in price by more than 100%.  The above chart is from the WSJ and it shows the relative change of components to the overall change in CPI.  Everything below the 0% mark has subtracted from CPI, those above have added since the baseline year.  From memory I think that was 2005, but I could be wrong.]

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  • Sun, Feb 10, 2019 - 11:29pm

    #11
    derelict

    derelict

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    Posts: 18

    Well, you can wring your hands

    or you can dig into the statistics. You clearly state vehicle costs have been increasing at a rate of 4.2%.
    4.2% yr/yr is a pretty hefty increase. But it’s right in line with annual increases stretching back over the past decade:
    But we both know that a $28,800 car in 2007 would cost $47,185 in 2019 if that were true. So I think you’ve made a mistake there, or engaged in a bit of hyperbole. According to your own numbers, new vehicles have been increasing at a rate of 2% over this extended time period.
    So on to the kvetching about what goes into the hedonics on autos. Is it the ride or the color palette, you ask? Why speculate? The BLS publishes the exact composition of the new vehicle adjustments each and every year. I don’t agree with them, and I don’t agree with the whole regime, so I don’t have a dog in this hunt. But it is not a mystery. 
    I drive a Honda CRV with air bags and automatic windows. The newer version has all that and a lot more, including in dash display, back up camera, and on and on with a long list of stuff I don’t want. Like Siri. I couldn’t care less. I really don’t even care if I have automatic windows. A few of the adjustments are a stretch and more in line with your suspicions. One example: to put down the back seat in my CRV, I have to go to both back seats, take off the headrests, fold the seat forward, fold down the back. Both sides It is time consuming – a minute or two! In the new CRV you just pull a lever at the tailgate and the whole thing just happens. It’s brilliant. But what would I pay for the new system, if anything? And worse still, I don’t have the choice whether I want some of these features. They become part of the base model, are therefore included in the BLS pricing model, and you get a corresponding adjustment.
    I suspect that most people are like me – what does it take to buy a car? Period. Don’t adjust anything! But if I want to be honest about what is picking my pocket it’s insurance, property tax, and education, not cars.
     

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  • Mon, Feb 11, 2019 - 1:29pm

    #12
    old guy

    old guy

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    The limits to growth-psychological dynamics

    I think this article accurately mirrors the mindset of people on this site. I am posting it as a description and not as a criticism. When Paul Ehrlich’s book came out in the late 60’s I was taken by it and wrote a college paper based on it. I have since reshaped my thinking.
    by Pierre Desrochers and Joanna Szurmak
    [Note: The following text is adapted from the authors’ recently published book Population Bombed! Exploding the Link Between Overpopulation and Climate Change in which the validity of the belief in the inherent unsustainability of economic growth is challenged more thoroughly.]
    Numerous population control advocates have linked anthropogenic climate change to population growth, or tried to revive interest in invoking anthropogenic climate change as the key negative outcome of continued economic growth linked to, foremost among causes, an increasing population. One pioneer of establishing and cultivating population growth – anthropogenic climate change linkage was the “Population Bomber” himself, Paul Ehrlich, who during a conference in 1968 identified anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions as a “serious limiting factor” to economic growth.[1] By the 1970s, Ehrlich, his wife Anne and his collaborator John Holdren raised fears that carbon dioxide “produced by combustion of fossil fuels in quantities too large to contain” may “already be influencing climate” and, as such, constituted one of the “gravest threats to human well-being. . . [i.e.] the loss of natural services now provided by biogeochemical processes.”
    What motivated the Ehrlichs and Holdren to worry about a looming disaster threatening humanity just twenty years after the end of the Second World War (1939-1945)? After all, the war had brought with it wholesale destruction of infrastructure and loss of life throughout the world on a previously unparalleled scale. Was it the tension of the Cold War? Was it a specific epidemic or a natural event? We argue that no specific trigger events were necessary to spark the anxieties of these activists as they already espoused a neo-Malthusian eco-catastrophist mindset that is part of a wider pessimist perspective.
    Among others, the ecological economics theorist John S. Dryzek recognized at least two distinctive perspectives on the understanding of the nature, role, and future of humanity – the pessimist, and the Promethean or optimist – each possessing a distinct set of assumptions, narratives, values and ultimate goals.[2] The pessimists, like the Ehrlichs and Holdren, apply a limit-driven narrative to define the place and goals of humanity on earth. According to the pessimist view, the earth’s resources are severely limited while the balance between planetary health and disrepair is exceedingly tenuous. The pessimists model people as bacteria that, in their Malthusian exponential growth, tend to quickly outstrip the resources of their “test-tube earth,” swiftly destroying both themselves and their environment. Only – perhaps – the timely intervention of top-down expert planning may avert this preordained debacle. The optimists see resources as limited primarily by human ingenuity and ability to utilize them, and humanity itself as a gathering of creative individuals, each capable of being much more than a mouth to feed. Optimist individuals may be driven by seemingly local needs, such as the replacement of a scarce resource or the improvement of the efficiency of a process, but the outcomes of their individual efforts benefit others in a spontaneous diffusion process.
    Thus, the Ehrlichs’ and Holdren’s preoccupation with human population numbers and their impact on global development or resource use did not need a specific cause or trigger. Population and resource use anxiety were part of their pessimist perspective that had them always on the lookout for humanity’s confrontation with the inflexible natural limits of the finite earth. The late 1960s and early 1970s belonged to an era when other pessimist scientists like the climatologist Stephen Schneider, a Stanford colleague of Ehrlich, were theorizing about impending glaciation caused by anthropogenic atmospheric pollution reflecting sunlight. The Ehrlichs – who, truth be told, were also worried about every possible (and always negative) impact of increasing human population numbers, including, for a time, the effects of population growth on global cooling – were casting about for a development-related scourge of humanity that would be, perhaps, less easy to redress with fundamentally optimist fixes than global cooling was thanks to technologies such as smokestack scrubbers. For this reason, anthropogenic carbon dioxide emissions were the ideal villain – or, pun intended, windmill to tilt at – as their neutralization does require a fundamental reworking and re-thinking of humanity’s key stable technologies – including its electrical power grid – on a scale that, thanks to the quickly mounting “scientific consensus” and political pressure, poses a significant challenge to human innovation.
    While admitting he was not a climate specialist – thus just as “qualified” as Ehrlich, a biologist specializing in entomology, to theorize about climate – the economist Julian Simon suspected over two decades ago that global warming was a dubious pessimist scare mostly rooted in older neo-Malthusian concerns about population growth. He observed then that the “latest environmental justification for slowing or halting population growth is supposed global warming.” Simon cited a World Bank paper on the new “global negative externality” represented by greenhouse gas emissions, which he summarized as follows: “[The] old rationales for World Bank population control programs – economic growth, resource conservation, and the like – having been discredited, a new ‘rationale’ has been developed on the basis of speculative assumptions about global warming’s economic effects derived from controversial climatological science.”
    Simon then summarized the position of most environmentalists as follows: “But isn’t obvious. . . that additional people and additional economic growth will cause us to use more energy and hence emit more greenhouse gases? Therefore, even if we can’t be sure of the greenhouse effect, wouldn’t it be prudent to cut back on growth?” The economist Jacqueline Kasun similarly believed at the time that “by the 1990s the doomsayers had shifted their attack” as they could no longer invoke resource depletion as the key growth-limiting issue. As she wrote, “the alarmists didn’t miss a step. The problem, they now said, was that people were using too much energy and were causing Global Warming.”[3] Both Kasun and Simon thus identified pessimist limits-based thinking as the chief impetus behind the elevation of anthropogenic CO2-caused climate change to the status of a global catastrophe.
    Closer in time to us, retired Canadian academic Michael Hart has commented that “for alarmists, climate mitigation policy is as much a means of achieving their larger goals as it is a matter of addressing a possibly serious issue.”[4] As another retired Canadian academic, historical climatologist Tim Ball, has long argued, the climate change policy agenda is based on certain assumptions ultimately related to a fear of reaching another terrestrial set of limits through overpopulation. Indeed, Dr. Ball goes so far as to argue that while global warming is a “contrived problem,” most of those “who know it is contrived still believe overpopulation is a problem.” It is indeed remarkably easy to find influential climate bureaucrats and scientists who will either admit this much or else acknowledge their neo-Malthusian pessimist stance rooted in enforcing limits to human (population) growth.
    Maurice Strong (1929–2015), who was described by business journalist Peter Foster as “[m]ore than any other individual. . . responsible for promoting the [UN] climate agenda,” is the most obvious case in point. Strong first achieved some degree of notoriety in Canada as young deputy minister – a high-ranking civil servant – when he ended up on the record by stating that “with a growing global population, we will have to recognise that having children is not just a personal issue but a societal issue and at a certain point we may be faced with a need to have a permit to have a child.” He also referred to the need for “national population policies” in his opening speech at the 1972 Stockholm Conference. Strong reportedly stated the following Malthusian prediction at the 1992 Earth Summit: “Either we reduce the world’s population voluntarily or nature will do this for us, but brutally.”
    Having started with the idea of limits to population growth, Strong eventually connected it to the limits of economic growth problem as defined by climate change. At the 2009 Copenhagen Summit, Strong declared: “The climate change issue and the economic issue come from the same roots. And that is the gross inequity and the inadequacy of our economic model. We now know that we have to change that model. We cannot do all of this in one stroke. But we have to design a process that would produce agreement at a much more radical level.” In one of his last extended interviews, Strong said that “growth in the world population has increased the pressures on the Earth’s resources and life-support systems.” He added that “China’s one-child policy is not a perfect policy by any means, but, on the other hand, how do you control growth in your population?” Strong viewed widespread aspirations for a better life as problematic, for if everyone “enjoyed the same patterns of consumption that we in the West do, then we would have an unsustainable situation, and we’re actually on the way to that now. We are in a situation that is unsustainable.” Thus, for Strong, the issue of population growth was clearly part of the pessimist narrative and a clear an issue of limits to growth.
    The first chairman of the IPCC (1988-1997), Bert Bolin, was not only an early convert to the alleged catastrophic impact of CO2 emissions,[5] but also a pessimist on population and resources issues, as evidenced in his stance on the controversy surrounding the 2001 publication of The Skeptical Environmentalist by the Danish political scientist Bjorn Lomborg. Bolin later wrote he “largely share[d] the gist of the . . . analyses” of Lomborg’s critics John Holdren and John Bongaarts.[6] Bongaarts, a demographer long associated with the Population Council and a former chair of the Panel on Population Projections of the National Academy of Sciences, had then opined: “Population is not the main cause of the world’s social, economic and environmental problems, but it contributes substantially to many of them. If population had grown less rapidly in the past, we would be better off now. And if future growth can be slowed, future generations will be better off.”[7] For his part, John Holdren contradicted many of his earlier warnings of imminent resource depletion by arguing that while the word was not “running out of energy,” it was “running out of environment,” by which he meant “running out of the capacity of air, water, soil and biota to absorb, without intolerable consequences for human well-being, the effects of energy extraction, transport, transformation and use.”[8]
    The second chairman of the IPCC (1997–2002), Robert Watson, would later go on the record with the following line of reasoning: “The more people we have on the Earth and the richer they are, the more they can demand resources. There’s more demand for food, more demand for water, more demand for energy. . . So, there’s no question the threats on the Earth today are far more than, say, 50 years ago and in 50 years’ time, there will even be more threats.”
    The third chairman of the IPCC (2002-2015), Rajendra K. Pachauri, was even more explicit when he stated in 2007 that humanity has “been so drunk with this desire to produce and consume more and more whatever the cost to the environment that we’re on a totally unsustainable path.” He was “not going to rest easy until [he has] articulated in every possible forum the need to bring about major structural changes in economic growth and development. That’s the real issue. Climate change is just a part of it” (our italics). When asked why Indians shouldn’t aspire to the same standard of living as westerners, Pachauri answered: “Gandhi was asked if he wanted India to reach the same level of prosperity as the United Kingdom. He replied: “It took Britain half the resources of the planet to reach its level of prosperity. How many planets would India require?” In his IPCC resignation letter (apparently no longer available on the IPCC website) Pachauri admitted that, for him, “the protection of Planet Earth, the survival of all species and sustainability of our ecosystems is more than a mission. It is my religion and my dharma.”
    In Pachauri’s statements, and in others we have quoted so far, there is ample evidence of a passionate commitment towards the protection of the planet,but there is no sign of recognition that humanity can do, and has done, more than simply consume resources. At no point do neo-Malthusians like Pachauri admit the possibility that technological innovations and human creativity have a place among the things that deserve a place on Earth. What pessimist activists desire is a consensus on the classification of humanity as out of control and inherently driven by destructive greed, thus in need of top-down regulation by the few remaining clear-thinking and benign autocrats – that is, functionaries – of the global government.
    Another important figure in the anthropogenic climate change institutional apparatus is former American senator Timothy E. Wirth, one of the main organizers of the 1988 James Hansen hearing on climate change, and from 1998 to 2013 president of the (hardcore Malthusian) Ted Turner-funded United Nations Foundation. While no longer in the news or on the frontlines of the US government, Wirth is still actively promoting a population control agenda. He is on the record as stating in 1993: “We’ve got to ride this global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic and environmental policy.”[9]
    Needless to say, many other influential politicians and bureaucrats share a similar outlook. In 1998 Christine Stewart, then Canadian Minister of the Environment, when speaking before editors and reporters of the Calgary Herald said: “No matter if the science is all phony, there are collateral environmental benefits… Climate change [provides] the greatest chance to bring about justice and equality in the world.”[10] More recently, Connie Hedegaard, European Commissioner for Climate Action (2010–2014), argued that the European Union policy on climate change was right even if the science was not. As she put it:
    Say that 30 years from now, science came back and said, “wow, we were mistaken then; now we have some new information so we think it is something else”. In a world with nine billion people, even 10 billion at the middle of this century, where literally billions of global citizens will still have to get out of poverty and enter the consuming middle classes, don’t you think that anyway it makes a lot of sense to get more energy and resource efficient… Let’s say that science, some decades from now, said “we were wrong, it was not about climate,” would it not in any case have been good to do many of things you have to do in order to combat climate change? I believe that in a world with still more people, wanting still more growth for good reasons, the demand for energy, raw materials and resources will increase and so, over time, will the prices… I think we have to realise that in the world of the 21st century for us to have the cheapest possible energy is not the answer.
    Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, Christiana Figueres, said “We should make every effort to change the numbers… obviously less [sic] people would exert less pressure on the natural resources,” and humanity is “already exceeding the planet’s planetary carrying capacity, today.” She also added that population control was not enough and that fundamental changes need to be made to our current economic system. Figueres, like Strong, Wirth, Bongaarts, Stewart and Hedegaard, was speaking from the depths of the neo-Malthusian pessimist limit-based perspective.
    Professor Hans Joachim Schellnhuber, the director of the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research and an adviser to the encyclical Laudato Si, has long been on the record as estimating the carrying capacity of the planet at “below 1 billion people.” More recently, researchers associated with the Population Reference Bureau and the Worldwatch Institute stated: “Human population influences and is influenced by climate change and deserves consideration in climate compatible development strategies. Achieving universal access to family planning throughout the world would result in fewer unintended pregnancies, improve the health and well-being of women and their families, and slow population growth – all benefits to climate compatible development.”
    Since leaving his academic appointment, prominent Canadian climate scientist Andrew Weaver has become the leader of the British Columbia Green Party. As could be expected from a pessimist activist, Weaver is on the record as stating: “Technology itself will not solve global warming. Individual behavior and consumption patterns will need to change as well. For too long we have lived by the axiom that growth is great. We strive for economic growth year after year. We drive it by increasing population. But infinite growth cannot occur in a finite system. Collapse is inevitable.”[11]
    The late climatologist Stephen Schneider was a leading advocate for major reductions of greenhouse gas emissions. Schneider was sometimes derided by his critics for having switched, almost overnight, from being a major proponent of global cooling, as we mentioned earlier, to becoming one of the most prominent supporters of global warming. Less well known about him, however, is the fact that he never changed his Ehrlich-inspired belief in the existence of a “wide consensus that exponential growth, for both economies and human populations, cannot continue indefinitely,” and that “population growth must ultimately be controlled.”
    Thus, Schneider was a classic neo-Malthusian pessimist thinker. As he wrote in a 1977 popular book mainly devoted to describing the perils of global cooling, the “obvious point about population growth [that] must be stated and restated” is that “population increases will only dilute the effectiveness” of achieving “rapid improvements in per capita living standards for the present 4 billion people on earth.”[12] Twenty years later, having become a major proponent of global warming, he still believed that “control of population growth has the potential to make a major contribution to raising living standards and to easing environmental problems like greenhouse warming.” Not surprisingly, he urged the United States government to “resume full participation in international programs to slow population growth” and to “contribute its share to their financial and other support.”[13]
    Whether its goal was curbing anthropogenic global cooling or global warming, the pessimist narrative’s endgame was always to institute top-down expert controls over population and centrally limit the human impetus to grow, create and aspire to change. In effect, the pessimist goal was to combat and control the optimist narrative through fear and discrediting its foundational impulses.

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  • Mon, Feb 11, 2019 - 4:28pm

    #13
    Uncletommy

    Uncletommy

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    Posts: 524

    The Limits To Growth-Psychological Dynamics?

    Thanks, Old guy for the tumescent narrative on the Ehrlich-ian predicament facing this world. I’m curious to what end all this meanderous documentary is to my day to day existenence. Unfortunately, each one of us is limited to one’s ability to influence the actions of others on the betterment of society and the world in general. So, it seems that the only hope we have to direct the actions of ourselves for betterment. This concept is woven throughout the PP doctrine with its emphasis on resilence. IMHO, our focus must be more local. What are you willing to sacrifice for the greater good? What has that got to do with your relationship with others


     

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  • Mon, Feb 11, 2019 - 5:55pm

    #14

    mememonkey

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    Posts: 101

    Optimisim vs. Reality

    old guy wrote:

    I think this article accurately mirrors the mindset of people on this site. I am posting it as a description and not as a criticism.
    SNIP
     Whether its goal was curbing anthropogenic global cooling or global warming, the pessimist narrative’s endgame was always to institute top-down expert controls over population and centrally limit the human impetus to grow, create and aspire to change. In effect, the pessimist goal was to combat and control the optimist narrative through fear and discrediting its foundational impulses.

    Old Guy
     

    First,  I have to disagree that cut and pasting this long winded article on the inherent “neo-Malthusian pessimist limit-based perspective” of foes of exponential growth and their misguided and interventionist history and ‘observationaly stating it : “accurately mirrors the mindset of people on this site” is “not a critique” is disingenuous at best.  It’s clearly a criticism which is fine, you’re free to criticize, assuming you can defend your position. 
    I suspect your broad brush aspersion more accurately reflects an unfamiliarity with the site and it’s denizens.  It is true that  If there is one unifying precept that there is general agreement on here, it is that  unlimited growth in a finite world is not only impossible it is a bad idea.
     If believing that precept makes me (us) a “neo-malthusian pessimist with a limit based perspective, that I will gladly own that label.  Hell, I would wear it on a t-shirt.
     Beyond that there are a whole range of viewpoints and socio /political persuasions represented here from the from diehard statists who think that voting for this or that establishment politician  within the current system can effect change, to a full range  of ideological beliefs from libertarian  to socialism and points in between. 
    However I suspect there is a larger constituency of open minded  individuals capable of thinking outside the bounds of linear ideologies, aware of the holistic predicaments inherent in Industrialized  civilizational model predicated on continuous growth and who don’t think there are any top down solutions, but remain interested in personalized and localized strategies and in the potential for bottom up mitigation to the consequences of our  emergent predicaments.
    Leaving aside the argument presented in this paper that climate change activism of both the global cooling and  warming varieties was always a stalking horse for top down social control by hand wringing Malthusians pessimists terrified of population growth and it’s environmental impacts, ignores the the more salient  issue of the validity of the the underlying  premise.
    If I were to extrapolate your position as being in agreement with the “Optimists” underlying counter thesis of the authors, i.e. that: economic growth (exponential by definition) on a finite planet is inherently sustainable because of ” technological innovations and human creativity”  Would that be correct?  i.e. in a perfect Ayn Randian world of libertarian free market forces would we  innovate and ‘substitute’ our way to unchecked populations living in a first world techno utopia?  …Would we not have to pay the butchers bill of ecological overshoot?
     

    For what it’s worth I am sympathetic to much of libertarian viewpoint as it resonates with my inherent desire for individual freedom and principles of non aggression.  And in  many ways it mimics natural and necessary feedback loops found in Nature’s own balancing act, as I  view our collective predicaments including the ‘symptom’ of overpopulation from a Natural systems or fundamentally ecological perspective.
    However like all constrained ideologies  it falls down on critical points.  It does not recognize that their is a public commons or good, a ‘social’ right to clean air or water for example or to the extent that it recognizes it, erroneously assumes that right is served by market feed back loops of unfettered individual benefit seeking behavior.
    mm

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 1:57am

    Reply to #14
    old guy

    old guy

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    I seems to me that there is a

    I seems to me that there is a kind of person who is psychologically predisposed to readily latch on to the notion that humans are despoilers of a perfect nature and indeed a disease vector upon the earth. The Malthusian theory of population growth outstripping resources has been around for 220 years now and is also enthusiastically embraced by some. There is a significant overlap between these folks and they take up the belief with a passion that exhibits itself as a religious fervor in various calls to action. I have seen some evidence of what I have just said in some postings here but apologize for the broad brush insinuation.
    Certainly, I accept the concept of the public good and the right to clean water and air and the necessity of agreed upon rational regulations. To the extent that people here are concerned with developing resiliency and bottom-up solutions from within their small groups, that is laudable. But be that as it may, and at the risk of sounding the pessimist, that represents no greater solution as humans, being as they are, and natural momentum will carry things forward the way we’ve been going. Unless you think that you can educate and persuade the great majority to your point of view you will just be crying in your beer. Things will go on until they can’t and then reality will impose itself and force change.
    Now, some people will immediately think that last sentence is callous and glib. But what worries me is the calls to action via government and laws.The changes people want would mean expanding the power of governments well beyond what already exists. That’s a real problem! When people favor strong government action they always imagine that their wishes will be the guiding light of the gov. action. But not so! Even if you formed a government only from people from this site and other like- minded people, within a short time there would be disagreements on action quickly leading to internecine warfare. When the Bolshevics took over Russia it didn’t take long before policy disagreements and power struggles led to people who had been in the forefront of the movement being sent to the gulag or receiving a bullet in the back of the head-committed communists all.
    Governments almost never do things right and as they become powerful they attract sociopaths and ambitious power hungry people and become utterly corrupt to go along with the usual incompetence and wastefulness. Governments throughout history have destroyed countries , empires, and societies, whether through warfare, inflation, debt, or economic interference. Today will be no different.
    I consider Alexandria Occasio- Cortez’s “new green deal” a good example. Apart from the fact that the core of her plan is directed at what I consider a non-problem, her solution would be disastrous beyond belief. It would require government control and intrusion into society and the economy to a totalitarian level. The massive building and rebuilding she proposes over ten years would require more resources than normally used in a hundred years. The despoilation of the environment with her “green” infrastructure would be massive, the economy would be destroyed and people would be lucky to escape the situation in which people today find themselves in Venezuela. The lady has a religious zeal to transform society into her imagined utopia via government power. It’s an old story that never ends well.
    So yes I think that not only is the free-market approach the best, it is the only one that could possibly work. If it doesn’t then there will be no greater solution. Today we have only weak facsimiles of free markets with massive government and central bank intrusions. That doesn’t mean an absence of environmental protection. It also requires discussion and education within that context as well as honest ideology free science.
    By the way, I’m not sure that the notion of a very limited government societal structure is not itself a utopian vision that can never actually endure for reason that is as a law of nature. I consider it a great unsolvable human dilemma and maybe we are just doomed to repeated cycles of the rise and fall of civilizations. But that’s another discussion.

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 10:11am

    Reply to #14

    Matt Holbert

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    It should be about quality

    and not quantity. Malthus was right if you consider all life from a quality standpoint. If you are a quantity sort, you can’t even see the lack of quality and therefore think that Malthus was a loony tune. There are billions of folks around the world that have an extremely low quality of life as the result of folks who make policies and personal decisions based on thinking (feeling?) that Malthus was wrong.
    Note: This applies to other comments that have appeared at PP in the last few hours.

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 12:18pm

    Reply to #14
    DennisC

    DennisC

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    It's All About Choices

    I’ve saved the link to this article (below) for several years and posted it previously as the topic seems to surface on a regular schedule here.  The section below is one of my favorites for a glimpse at different personal thought processes on the topic.  Likely a good probability, IMO, that the problem “will be solved”, with or without our input, in some manner.

    Weisman travels to several countries with moderately to very high fertility rates. When he asks people in these countries what should be done to bring down the numbers, mostly the answer is “Nothing.” In Niger, in the village of Mailafia, he encounters a mother of eight who laments the lack of milk in her town. “All we want is food so we can produce children,” she exclaims. Also in Niger, in the city of Maradi, he meets an imam who tells him, “We know the future is alarming. But man cannot hold back doomsday.” In the Israeli city of Brei Brak, Weisman meets another mother of eight. She tells him she’s not the least bit concerned about the world’s burgeoning population, because “God made the problem, and He will solve it.” At a clinic in Karachi, Pakistan, he meets a technician who refuses to administer the contraceptive injection that one of the clinic’s patients has just been prescribed. “I don’t believe we should practice family planning,” the technician says. “Our community should increase in number.”
    entire article here: https://www.newyorker.com/magazine/2013/10/21/head-count-3#

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 1:24pm

    Reply to #14

    New_Life

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 185

    AOC's green deal

    old guy wrote:

    I consider Alexandria Occasio- Cortez’s “new green deal” a good example. Apart from the fact that the core of her plan is directed at what I consider a non-problem, her solution would be disastrous beyond belief. It would require government control and intrusion into society and the economy to a totalitarian level. The massive building and rebuilding she proposes over ten years would require more resources than normally used in a hundred years.

     
    Ahem (cough), Old Guy, any evidence to back up those rather grandiose claims? 
     
    I thought this summary was interesting…
    https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2019/feb/11/green-new-deal-alexandri

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 1:54pm

    Reply to #14
    old guy

    old guy

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    If you don't see it you are

    If you don’t see it you are beyond hope.
    To understand requires some understanding of economic cause and effect relationships. That seems to be well outside of the Guardian’s grasp.
    You can’t explain university level math to someone who doesn’t know grade 6 math.

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 2:02pm

    Reply to #14
    old guy

    old guy

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    The Green New Deal by william Anderson

    In what its supporters have claimed is “visionary,” the congressional media darling, Alexandria Occasio-Cortez (AOC) has released her short-awaited Green New Deal , and she has called for nothing short of destruction of life as we have known it:
    Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez said she has no qualms about acknowledging a so-called “Green New Deal” will mean unprecedented governmental intrusion into the private sector. Appearing on NPR, she was asked if she’s prepared to tell Americans outright that her plans involve “massive government intervention.”
    On one level, AOC is being honest; such a plan would be unprecedented, at least in the United States, but it hardly would be the first government-led massive intrusion into a nation’s economy. The 20 th Century was full of such intervention, beginning with World War I, and continuing through the years of communist governments. The century was full of intervention, and the earth was full of the dead bodies to prove it. What AOC and her political allies, including most Democrats that have declared they will run for the U.S. Presidency, are demanding is the U.S. version of Mao’s utterly-disastrous Great Leap Forward.
    For all of the so-called specifics, the Green New Deal (GND) reads like a socialist website which is full of rhetoric, promises, and statements that assume a bunch of planners sitting around tables can replicate a complex economy that feeds, transports, and houses hundreds of millions of people. The New York Times declares the plan to give “ substance to an idea that had been a mostly vague rallying cry for a stimulus package around climate change, but its prospects are uncertain.”
    Actually, there is nothing we can call “substance” in this proposal if we mean “substance” to be a realistic understanding that it would be impossible to re-direct via central planning nearly every factor of production in the U.S. economy from one set of uses to another, since that is what the proposed legislation actually requires. For example, the following is what AOC and others call the “scope” of the proposed law:
    (A) The Plan for a Green New Deal (and the draft legislation) shall be developed with the objective of reaching the following outcomes within the target window of 10 years from the start of execution of the Plan:
    Dramatically expand existing renewable power sources and deploy new production capacity with the goal of meeting 100% of national power demand through renewable sources;
    Building a national, energy-efficient, “smart” grid;
    Upgrading every residential and industrial building for state-of-the-art energy efficiency, comfort and safety;
    Eliminating greenhouse gas emissions from the manufacturing, agricultural and other industries, including by investing in local-scale agriculture in communities across the country;
    Eliminating greenhouse gas emissions from, repairing and improving transportation and other infrastructure, and upgrading water infrastructure to ensure universal access to clean water;
    Funding massive investment in the drawdown of greenhouse gases;
    Making “green” technology, industry, expertise, products and services a major export of the United States, with the aim of becoming the undisputed international leader in helping other countries transition to completely greenhouse gas neutral economies and bringing about a global Green New Deal.
    It is hard to know where to begin in analyzing such an ambitious plan, especially when one understands the ramifications of what is in this bill. No doubt, many will believe it to be bold and long overdue. The CNN website breathlessly declares :
    Public investments should prioritize what the resolution calls “frontline and vulnerable communities,” which include people in rural and de-industrialized areas as well as those that depend on carbon-intensive industries like oil and gas extraction.
    And in a move that may draw support from a broad range of advocacy groups, the resolution sweeps in the full range of progressive policy priorities: Providing universal healthcare and affordable housing, ensuring that all jobs have union protections and family-sustaining wages, and keeping the business environment free of monopolistic competition.
    However, CNN adds that the specifics – paying for the whole thing – are not included, at least not yet. In addition, the news organization adds the following for those worried that the entire operation might prove to be prohibitively costly:
    … the New Dealers argue that a federally funded energy transition would stimulate growth by providing jobs, improving public health, and reducing waste. In addition, they argue that the government could capture more return on investment by retaining equity stakes in the projects they build.
    In other words, this whole operation allegedly will generate so much new wealth that it will pay for itself, lift millions from poverty, and transform the entire U.S. economy. The plan is so generous that it promises an income even to people, according to the Democrat’s press release, who refuse to work still will be provided a “living wage” income.
    The plan also is famous not only for what it purports to create (out right utopia) but what it also calls to be banned: cows and airlines. The plan calls for phasing out air travel within a decade to be replaced by a network of high-speed rail, as though this were even feasible. Cows, as the released document acknowledges, have flatulence, so they must be totally eliminated from the earth and meat from the U.S. diet, but there is nothing to address the massive disruption to life as we know it in order to implement such a plan.
    Not surprisingly, The Atlantic is nearly breathless with praise for this monstrosity, but even that publication admits that the scale of AOC’s “vision” is beyond anything we ever have seen before:
    Yet even in broad language, the resolution clearly describes a transformation that would leave virtually no sector of the economy untouched. A Green New Deal would direct new solar farms to bloom in the desert, new high-speed rail lines to crisscross the Plains, and squadrons of construction workers to insulate and weatherize buildings from Florida to Alaska. It would guarantee every American a job that pays a “family-sustaining wage,” codify paid family leave, and strengthen union law nationwide.
    To be honest, “untouched” is not the appropriate term here, as “smashed” or “destroyed” is much more accurate and descriptive. We are not speaking of ordinary government intervention that marks most of the U.S. economy, but does allow for something of a price system to continue to exist. Instead, something of this magnitude would require a complete government takeover with central planning on a scale so huge that it would have to surpass the grandest dreams of the old Soviet Gosplan.
    One of the most-asked questions, of course, is: “How do we pay for this?” Perhaps it is natural to ask such things, but we are not speaking of a particular project for which we have to purchase materials and pay those who create it. Instead, this plan would simply redirect nearly every resource, almost all labor, and every other factor of production away from current uses to something as determined by government planners and overlords. There is no other accurate way to describe what we are seeing.
    The resolution naively assumes that all that needs to be done is for government to “finance” these projects through huge increases in taxes, borrowing, and (of course) printing money, and that such infusions of money will enable the government to “pay” for all of these new projects as though one were building a new skyscraper in Manhattan:
    Many will say, “Massive government investment! How in the world can we pay for this?” The answer is: in the same ways that we paid for the 2008 bank bailout and extended quantitative easing programs, the same ways we paid for World War II and many other wars. The Federal Reserve can extend credit to power these projects and investments, new public banks can be created (as in WWII) to extend credit and a combination of various taxation tools (including taxes on carbon and other emissions and progressive wealth taxes) can be employed.
    In addition to traditional debt tools, there is also a space for the government to take an equity role in projects, as several government and government-affiliated institutions already do.
    Such statements demonstrate a profound ignorance of even basic economic concepts. The authors and supporters of this document believe that all it will take is for the government to direct massive amounts of money toward these new projects, and everything else will fall into line. But that is not even close to reality, as the only way to redirect such massive amounts of money would be to use force, and deadly force at that.
    First, and most important, much of the present capital in the USA is geared toward the kind of economy that AOC and the Democrats demand be made illegal, so huge swaths of the capital stock would have to be abandoned, as little of it could be redirected elsewhere. One cannot overestimate the kind of financial damage that would cause, and it would impoverish much of the country almost overnight.
    Second, the entire economy would be required to pivot toward capital development that would not be possible, given current technologies and opportunity costs, to create, especially in the 10-year time frame that the Democrats are demanding. Diverting new streams of finance toward such projects would be useless and even counterproductive, as the system simply would be overwhelmed. It would not be long before scarcity itself would mean that entire projects either would be stalled (like what we see with the infamous “Bullet Train” in California) or even abandoned. The human cost alone would be staggering.
    As pointed out at the beginning of this article, for all of the “grand vision” rhetoric that accompanies the rollout of the AOC plan, this is nothing less than an attempt to re-implement Mao’s Great Leap Forward, albeit with high-speed rail instead of backyard steel mills. One cannot overestimate the disaster that would follow if this were forced upon the American economy.
    So-called political visionaries rarely are willing to be truthful about the destruction that follows their schemes. When Baby Boomers were in college a half-century ago, many saw Mao as their political hero, a man with great vision who had the political will to do what was necessary to advance the fortunes of his own people. That he was a murderous tyrant who presided over mass death that exceeded even the killings of World War II was irrelevant or even ignored.
    Today, we are told by her adoring press that Alexandria Occasio-Cortez is the New Visionary, a person who is far-seeing and knows what we have to do in order to survive the coming consequences of climate change. That her grand vision is little more than a mass-depopulation scheme is ignored, and we ignore it at our peril.

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 2:31pm

    Reply to #14

    thc0655

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 27 2010

    Posts: 1465

    Overpopulation vs. depopulation

    That was a fascinating read, Dennis!  The overall population of the world is growing, but that masks the fact that some areas are rapidly growing and others are gradually declining.  When overpopulation is discussed as a problem I almost never hear about this.  And to make matters worse, most of the people I read or listen to talking about the problem of overpopulation live in a part of the world that has a contracting birth rate.  So when “those people” (us!) talk about overpopulation they’re talking about a problem their own country is no longer contributing to!  It sure seems a little silly for those of us in the US, Japan, or Western Europe (which have a stable or declining birth rate) to get ourselves all atwitter about overpopulation in Africa or some MIddle Eastern country.  Not counting Africa and a few other places where their population is rapidly growing, most of the developed world has a shrinking population (based on birthrate, not factoring immigration).  If we’re going to be honest and actually address the REAL problem, shouldn’t we be discussing overpopulation, and what to do about it, in Africa and Pakistan?  That would change the whole tenor of the conversation.  Personally, since no one in those parts of the world has asked for my opinion or help with overpopulation, I’m inclined to stay out of that discussion.
    So when we who live in stable or declining birth rate countries talk about overpopulation we should also have the wisdom to tie that in to a discussion on how to manage societies and economies that have a less-than-replacement birth rate, and a declining and aging population.  There are some big, thorny problems there and I don’t know of anybody who has good answers on how to handle the problems that arise in that situation.  Wow, I don’t even hear these things being seriously discussed.  The nearly universal assumption is that returning to population growth and economic growth is the ONLY possible answer.  Japan is probably the preeminent example.  Japan’s birth rate is slightly less than China’s, and they don’t have anything like China’s “one child policy.”  It’s happening naturally there, and observe how mightily The Elite have been trying to grow their population and economy anyway.  
    That brings me to immigration.  It seems to me that “The Elite” are aware of these problems and have decided that the way to solve the problems created when advanced, prosperous countries naturally go in to population decline is to 1) eradicate the whole concept of nations and borders, and 2) take people from “zones” that have skyrocketing population growth rates and re-settle them in “zones” that are shrinking.  That neatly solves the problems created by “zones” which are not growing by skimming off the excess “human carbon units” where it’s too crowded and re-settling them in the shrinking areas. At least that looks like it will kick the can down the road a little longer. If you live in low earth orbit (like The Elite did in the movie “Elysium”) this makes sense and enables The Elite to continue to manage and milk the system as they see fit.  But down on the surface of the planet all hell is breaking loose.  The carbon units who live in relative comfort in the shrinking population zones generally don’t want to be “invaded” by greedy, starving masses from the overpopulating and poor “zones.”  They would rather someone come along and help them manage their declining and aging population with an economic system and form of governance that is NOT built on the assumption of permanent exponential growth.  (I think I’ll go invent that and secure my place in history!)  The average carbon unit in the declining population zones is not thrilled with large numbers of “invaders” especially if they are a drain on the system instead of net contribution to it as a whole.  They probably would appreciate a slow, thoughtful way of metering in carbon units who will legitimately contribute to the society as a whole.  I don’t see anything like that in the US, but some places are starting to apply the immigration brakes and demand a better plan than just dumping excess carbon units from other zones and hoping everyone can get along.
    Diversity is NOT our strength (at least not automatically and without wise planning and control).  I’ve wondered why, if diversity is our strength, no one is demanding that the poorer monocultures of the world become diverse themselves.  You know, like Pakistan and Nigeria, for example.  Why aren’t there any demands that Pakistan take in large numbers of whites or east asians who are not Muslims?  Why aren’t Swedes trying to emigrate to Nigeria?  Why do countries like Pakistan and Nigeria have strict border controls?  Why is South Africa trying to eliminate it’s white population and return to its historical identity as a monoculture, and why are the diversity advocates remaining silent about that?  Why is it that diversity and uncontrolled immigration are only claimed to be an absolute necessity for the more prosperous countries of Europe, the US, Canada, Australia and New Zealand?  That’s a rhetorical question, because I know the answer.  Without asking our opinions or taking a vote, The Elites have decided to rebalance the Earth’s populations as they see fit and in a manner they believe will benefit themselves first and foremost.
    Whatever theoretical solutions we could propose for these predicaments, I’m sure The Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse are going to end up “solving” these problems for us.  The Elites aren’t as smart or as powerful as they imagine, and I’m sure their “project” is going to fail spectacularly eventually.
    Wow, that was dark.  How about this for a little comic relief?

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 2:51pm

    Reply to #14

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 505

    Old Guy, stop being a DB.

    old guy wrote:

    If you don’t see it you are beyond hope.
    To understand requires some understanding of economic cause and effect relationships. That seems to be well outside of the Guardian’s grasp.
    You can’t explain university level math to someone who doesn’t know grade 6 math.

     
    See, it’s that kind of mud-slinging that, you may find, alienates you even from people who might sympathize with some of your views on this site. You pretty much declare that anyone who disagrees with you is simply an idiot, incapable of obviously rational thought. Beyond that, once you sling mud, most PPers will assume you have no real credible argument to make.
     
    Your opinions are welcome here, but you’re going to be asked for detailed evidence-based rebuttals, so get used to it. Notice how few likes your posts have? That’s not because there is an absence of people who might share some of your views, as much as it is a reflection that many people stopped listening to your posts due to the manner you conduct yourself here sometimes.
     
    Stop being a douchebag, brah.
     
    -S
     
    PS- if you just come back butthurt that I said “douchebag” at you, you missed the point.

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 3:06pm

    Reply to #14

    fionnbharr

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 27 2012

    Posts: 63

    The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert

    Hi Dennis,
    thank you so much for your reminder!
    I really should have thanked you for posting this article from the Newyorker back in late March 2016, but, it sent me down a rabbit hole, and it seems I’ve only just arrived back up for air.
    The October 2013 Newyorker article was written by Elizabeth Kolbert, who later won the 2015 Pulitzer Prize in general nonfiction.
    Her book, which I ordered at the time from Amazon was a joy to read, which I almost succeeded doing in a single sitting.
    I have just found a pdf copy I’ll link below of the book from Archive.org, to pay you back a kindness – especially for your very timely humor that’s had me laughing often here at Peak Prosperity : –
    The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert pdf
    Finn

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 4:07pm

    Reply to #14
    robie robinson

    robie robinson

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 25 2009

    Posts: 868

    thc?

    as a teamster/horseman, that was a post worthy of rereading and thoughtful consideration. 
    robie,husband,father,farmer
     

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 6:24pm

    Reply to #14
    ezlxq1949

    ezlxq1949

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 29 2009

    Posts: 222

    Children = Social Security

    DennisC quoting the New Yorker article:

    In Niger, in the village of Mailafia, he encounters a mother of eight who laments the lack of milk in her town. “All we want is food so we can produce children,” she exclaims.

    Time was when I would have thought this an idiotic point of view, but now I see that it’s an entirely rational goal in view of her social and economic circumstances. These people swim in an entirely different cultural river to us, and indeed, an entirely more ancient river. Through much of history the number of one’s children has been crucial in determining whether in old age one dies comfortably or starves miserably.
    I am constantly glad and thankful that I live in a (so far) wealthy country which has systems in place making it unnecessary for me, who lacks children, to dig ditches until I drop dead.

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  • Tue, Feb 12, 2019 - 11:27pm

    #15

    New_Life

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 18 2011

    Posts: 185

    Snydeman wrote: old guy

    Snydeman wrote:
    old guy wrote:

    If you don’t see it you are beyond hope.
    To understand requires some understanding of economic cause and effect relationships. That seems to be well outside of the Guardian’s grasp.
    You can’t explain university level math to someone who doesn’t know grade 6 math.

     
    See, it’s that kind of mud-slinging that, you may find, alienates you even from people who might sympathize with some of your views on this site. You pretty much declare that anyone who disagrees with you is simply an idiot, incapable of obviously rational thought. Beyond that, once you sling mud, most PPers will assume you have no real credible argument to make.
     
    Your opinions are welcome here, but you’re going to be asked for detailed evidence-based rebuttals, so get used to it. Notice how few likes your posts have? That’s not because there is an absence of people who might share some of your views, as much as it is a reflection that many people stopped listening to your posts due to the manner you conduct yourself here sometimes.
     
    Stop being a douchebag, brah.
     
    -S
     
    PS- if you just come back butthurt that I said “douchebag” at you, you missed the point.

     
    Agreed Snydeman, it’s pretty pathetic weak response to a reasonable request for solid evidence. ie Why (so far in his opinion only) will it use up more resources in 10 years compared to the last 100?
    Not cool and certainly not in keeping with the ethos of this site.  It says a lot about the quality of the “facts” supposedly backing up the points Old Guy attempts to make.
    For an “Old Guy”, he certainly displays a distinct lack of maturity and wisdom.

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 6:23am

    #16

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Online)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4635

    Rare photo of Robie in action

    When challenged with the question “how much horsepower can your tractor deliver?” Robie responded by hitching up his team and making a show of it.

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 7:39am

    Reply to #10

    newsbuoy

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 10 2013

    Posts: 117

    Most Recent Inflation Numbers

    * primary rent up 3.4%* medical care up 2.8%* tuition/childcare up 2.8%* drivers’ insurance up 3.4%

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 7:58am

    Reply to #16

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 505

    Woah

    That’s a lot of mares to settle…
     
    ;P

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 8:33am

    #17
    robie robinson

    robie robinson

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 25 2009

    Posts: 868

    The adage is getting legs

    JHKunstler, If I remember correctly, described our time as the remedievalization of modernity. “Settling ones mare” is an active choice to avoid the rush towards collapse.

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 9:04am

    #18
    borderpatrol

    borderpatrol

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 21 2017

    Posts: 8

    There is a plan, their "plan"

    Fed’s plan for the economy, simple and there is only one. Expand the bubble till it pops, it’s the only one in an fiat based banking system. What to do after the pop, easy, when your fiat currency has lost all value,(they all do), replace it with different one, I think it will be based on IMF special drawing rights. Alexandria O-C plan, simple, lie that climate  change is based on carbon, ignoring deforestation and geo-engineering purposely so have even more control and regulations to take away even more of our freedom.  Alexandria O-C plan for health care. Free health care enslaving us even more in the extortion racket of medical care, ignoring the subsidized sickening of the world with corporate food(subsidized GMO grain production) taking away any personal responsibilty from either the corpations producing our frankstein food supply and individual’s personal’s responsibility’s for making the right choices.             With only 3% of our country population producing food and just in time devilery of just about everything, our road will be bumper than we can ever imagine. 

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 10:42am

    #19
    old guy

    old guy

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 16 2018

    Posts: 0

    UN IPCC Scientist Blows Whistle on Lies About Climate, Sea Level

    For anyone interested.
    https://www.thenewamerican.com/tech/environment/item/31472-un-ipcc-scien

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 11:00am

    #20
    old guy

    old guy

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 16 2018

    Posts: 0

    An excerpt

    “By putting so much emphasis on climate alarmism and the alleged dangers of CO2, meanwhile, Mörner said the UN has diverted resources and attention away from “all the real problems” of the world that really do exist. “This is a terrible thing, this is the terrible thing,” he said. It is especially sad because “the world is full of real problems” such as hunger, starvation, killings, natural disasters, diseases, and so much more, he said. Yet because of the incessant focus on demonizing CO2 and trying to control “climate,” those very real problems get ignored.”

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 12:28pm

    #21

    fionnbharr

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 27 2012

    Posts: 63

    Nils-Axel Mörner Interview

    Old Guy,
    I’ll go along with you at this instance and post up an interview I found in PDF of Nils-Axel Mörner, and others here can debate the finer detail within it.
    To save people from stepping over the link, I’ve gone to the trouble of spending 20 minutes of my time over-riding the metadata of the pdf so I can copy and paste below.
    I’d really appreciate that you at least recognise my time by offering a response that involves communication of some higher order than the pre-chewed fodder you’ve been serving up to date.
    I am indeed a real, live, breathing, cognitive, sentient human being behind these words on your screen, and not your mirrored projection.
     

    INTERVIEW: DR. NILS-AXEL MÖRNER
    Sea-level Expert: It’s Not Rising!
    Dr. Nils-Axel Mörner has studied sea level and its effects on coastal areas for some 35 years. Recently retired as director of the Paleogeophysics and Geodynamics Department at Stockholm University, Mörner is past president (1999-2003) of the INQUA Commission on Sea Level Changes and Coastal Evolution, and leader of the Maldives Sea Level Project. Mörner was interviewed by Associate Editor Gregory Murphy on June 6. The interview here is abridged; a full version appeared in Executive Intelligence Review, June 22, 2007.
    Why coastal dwellers should not live in fear of inundation.
    Question: I would like to start with a little bit about your background.
    I am a sea-level specialist. There are many good sea-level people in the world, but let’s put it this way: There’s no one who’s beaten me. I took my thesis in 1969, devoted to a large extent to the sea-level problem. From then on I have launched most of the new theories, in the ‘70s, ‘80s, and ‘90s. I was the one who understood the problem of the gravitational potential surface, the theory that it changes with time. I’m the one who studied the rotation of the Earth, how it affected the redistribution of the oceans’ masses. And so on.
    Sea-level Expert: It’s Not Rising!
    I was president of INQUA, an international fraternal asso- ciation, their Commission on Sea-Level Changes and Coastal Evolution, from 1999 to 2003. And in order to do something intelligent there, we launched a special international sea-level research project in the Maldives, because that’s the hottest spot on Earth for [this topic]—there are so many variables interacting there, so it was interesting, and also people had claimed that the Maldives—about 1,200 small islands—were doomed to disappear in 50 years, or at most, 100 years. So that was a very important target.
    I have had my own research institute at Stockholm University, which was devoted to something called paleogeophysics and geodynamics. It’s primarily a research institute, but lots of students came, I have several Ph.D. theses at my institute, and lots of visiting professors and research scientists came to learn about sea level. Working in this field, I don’t think there’s a spot on the Earth I haven’t been in! In the northmost, Greenland; and in Antarctica; and all around the Earth, and very much at the coasts.
    So I have primary data from so many places, that when I’m speaking, I don’t do it out of ignorance, but on the contrary, I know what I’m talking about. And I have interaction with other scientific branches, because it’s very important to see the problems not just from one eye, but from many different aspects. Sometimes you dig up some very important thing in some geodesic paper which no other geologist would read. And you must have the time and the courage to go into the big questions, and I think I have done that.
    The last 10 years or so, of course, everything has been the discussion on sea level, which they say is drowning us. In the early ‘90s, I was in Washington giving a paper on how the sea level is not rising, as they said. That had some echoes around the world.
    Question: What is the real state of the sea-level?
    You have to look at that in a lot of different ways. That is what I have done in a lot of different papers, so we can confine ourselves to the short story here. One way is to look at the global picture, to try to find the essence of what is going on. And then we can see that the sea level was indeed rising, from, let us say, 1850 to 1930-1940. And that rise had a rate in the order of 1 millimeter per year; 1.1 is the exact figure. Not more. And we can check that, because Holland is a subsiding area; it has been subsiding for many millions of years; and Sweden, after the last Ice Age, was uplifted. So if you balance those, there is only one solution, and it will be this figure….
    There’s another way of checking it, because if the radius of the Earth increases as a result of sea level rise, then immediately the Earth’s rate of rotation would slow down. That is a physical law, right? You have it in figure-skating: when skaters rotate very fast, the arms are close to the body; and then when they increase the radius, by putting out their arms, they stop by themselves. So you can look at the rotation and you see the same thing: Yes, it might be 1.1 mm per year, but absolutely not more. It could be less, because there could be other factors affecting the Earth, but it certainly could not be more. Absolutely not! Again, it’s a matter of physics.
    So, we have this 1 mm per year up to 1930, by observation, and we have it by rotation recording. So we go with those two. They go up and down, but there’s no trend in it; it was up until1930, and then down again. There’s no trend, absolutely no trend.
    Another way of looking at what is going on is the tide gauge. Tide gauging is very complicated, because it gives different answers for wherever you are in the world. We have to rely on geology when we interpret it. So, for example, those people in the IPCC [Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change], choose Hong Kong, which has six tide gauges, and they choose the record of one, which gives a 2.3 mm per year rise of sea level. Every geologist knows that that is a subsiding area. It’s the compaction of sediment; it is the only record which you should not use.
    And if that [2.3 mm] figure is correct, then Holland would not be subsiding, it would be uplifting. And that is just ridiculous. Not even ignorance could be responsible for a thing like that. So tide gauges, you have to treat very, very carefully.
    Now back to satellite altimetry, which shows the water, not just the coasts, but in the whole of the ocean, as measured by satellite. From 1992 to 2002, [the graph of the sea level] was a straight line, variability along a straight line, but absolutely no trend whatsoever. We could see spikes: a very rapid rise, but then in half a year, they fall back again. But absolutely no trend, and to have a sea-level rise, you need a trend.
    Data Fudged
    Then, in 2003, the same data set, which in their [IPCC’s] publications, in their website, was a straight line—suddenly it changed, and showed a very strong line of uplift, 2.3 mm per year, the same as from the tide gauge. And that didn’t look so nice. It looked as though they had recorded something, but they hadn’t recorded anything. It was the original data which they suddenly twisted up, because they entered a “correction factor,” which they took from the tide gauge.
    So it was not a measured thing, but a figure introduced from outside. I accused them of this at the Academy of Sciences meeting in Moscow—I said you have introduced factors from outside; it’s not a measurement. It looks like it is measured from the satellite, but you don’t say what really happened. And they answered, that we had to do it, because otherwise we would not have gotten any trend!
    That is terrible! As a matter of fact, it is a falsification of the data set. Why? Because they know the answer. And there you come to the point: They “know” the answer; the rest of us, we are searching for the answer. Because we are field geologists; they are computer scientists. So all this talk that sea level is rising, this stems from the computer modelling, not from observations. The observations don’t find it!
    I have been an expert reviewer for the IPCC, both in 2000 and last year. The first time I read it [the report], I was exceptionally surprised. First of all, it had 22 authors, but none of them—none—were sea-level specialists. They were given this mission, because they promised to answer the right thing. Again, it was a computer issue. This is the typical thing: The meteorological community works with computers, simple computers. Geologists don’t do that! We go out in the field and observe, and then we can try to make a model with computerization; but it’s not the first thing.
    So there we are. Then we went to the Maldives. I traced a drop in sea level in the 1970s, and the fishermen told me, “Yes, you are correct, because we remember”—things in their sailing routes have changed, things in their harbor have changed. I worked in the lagoon, I drilled in the sea, I drilled in lakes, I looked at the shore morphology—so many different environments. Always the same thing: In about 1970, the sea fell about 20 cm, for reasons involving probably evaporation or something. Not a change in volume or something like that—it was a rapid thing. The new level, which has been stable, has notchanged in the last 35 years. You can trace it so very, very carefully. No rise at all is the answer there.
    The Case of Tuvalu
    Another famous place is the Tuvalu Islands, which are supposed to soon disappear because they’ve put out too much carbon dioxide. There we have a tide gauge record, a variograph record, from 1978, so it’s 30 years. And again, if you look there, absolutely no trend, no rise.
    So, from where do they get this rise in the Tuvalu Islands?
    We know in the Tuvalu Islands that there was a Japanese pineapple industry which extracted too much fresh water from the inland, and those islands have very little fresh water available from precipitation, rain. So, if you take out too much, you destroy the water magazine, and you bring seawater into the magazine, which is not nice. So they took out too much freshwater and in came salt water. And of course the local people were upset. But then it was much easier to say, “No, no! It’s the global sea level rising! It has nothing to do with our extraction of freshwater.” So there you have it. This is a local industry which doesn’t pay.
    You have Vanuatu, and also in the Pacific, north of New Zealand and Fiji—there is the island Tegua. They said they had to evacuate it, because the sea level was rising. But again, you look at the tide-gauge record: There is absolutely no signal that the sea level is rising. If anything, you could say that maybe the tide is lowering a little bit, but absolutely no rising.
    And again, where do they [the IPCC] get it from? They get it from their inspiration, their hopes, their computer models, but not from observation, which is terrible.
    We have Venice. Venice is well known, because that area is tectonically, because of the delta, slowly subsiding. The rate has been constant over time. A rising sea level would immediately accelerate the flooding. And it would be so simple to record it. And if you look at that 300-year record: In the 20th Century it was going up and down, around the subsidence rate. In 1970, you should have an acceleration, but instead, the rise almost finished. So it was the opposite.
    If you go around the globe, you find no rise anywhere. But they need the rise, because if there is no rise, there is no death threat. They say there is nothing good to come from a sea-level rise, only problems, coastal problems. If you have a temperature rise, if it’s a problem in one area, it’s beneficial in another area. But sea level is the real “bad guy,” and therefore they have talked very much about it. But the real thing is, that it doesn’t exist in observational data, only in computer modelling….
    I’ll tell you another thing: When I came to the Maldives, to our enormous surprise, one morning we were on an island, and I said, “This is something strange, the storm level has gone down; it has not gone up, it has gone down.” And then I started to check the level all around, and I asked the others in the group, “Do you see anything here on the beach?” And after a while they found it too. And as we had investigated, and we were sure, I said we cannot leave the Maldives and go home and say the sea level is not rising, it’s not respectful to the people. I have to say it to Maldive television.
    So we made a very nice program for Maldive television, but it was forbidden by the government (!) because they thought that they would lose money. They accuse the West for putting out carbon dioxide, and therefore we have to pay for our damage and the flooding. So they wanted the flooding scenario to go on.
    This tree, which I showed in the documentary, is interesting. This is a prison island, and when people left the island, from the ‘50s, it was a marker for them, when they saw this tree alone out there, they said, “Ah, freedom!” … I knew that this tree was in that terrible position already in the 1950s. So the slightest rise, and it would have been gone. I used it in my writings and for television.
    You know what happened? There came an Australian sea- level team, which was for the IPCC and against me. Then the students pulled down the tree by hand! They destroyed the evidence. What kind of people are those? And we came to launch this film “Doomsday Called Off,” right after that, and the tree was still green. And I heard from the locals that they had seen the people who had pulled it down. So I put it up again, by hand, and made my TV program….
    They call themselves scientists, and they’re destroying evidence! A scientist should always be open forreinterpretation, but you can never destroy evidence. And they were being watched, thinking they were clever.
    Question: How does the IPCC get these small island nations so worked up about worrying that they’re going to be flooded tomorrow?
    Because they get support; they get money, so their idea is to attract money from the industrial countries. And they believe that if the story is not sustained, they will lose it. So, they love this story. But the local people in the Maldives—it would be terrible to raise children—why should they go to school, if in 50 years everything will be gone? The only thing you should do, is learn how to swim….
    Yes, and it’s much better to blame something else. Then they can wash their hands and say, “It’s not our fault. It’s the U.S., they’re putting out too much carbon dioxide.”
    Question: Which is laughable, this idea that CO2 is driving global warming.
    Precisely, that’s another thing.
    And like this State of Fear [book], by Michael Crichton, when he talks about ice. Where is ice melting? Some Alpine glaciers are melting, others are advancing. Antarctic ice is certainly not melting; all the Antarctic records show expansion of ice. Greenland is the dark horse here for sure; the Arctic may be melting, but it doesn’t matter, because they’re already floating, and it has no effect.
    A glacier like Kilimanjaro, which is important, on the Equator, is only melting because of deforestation. At the foot of the Kilimanjaro, there was a rain forest; from the rain forest camemoisture, from that came snow, and snow became ice. Now, they have cut down the rain forest, and instead of moisture, there comes heat; heat melts the ice, and there’s no more snow to generate the ice. So it’s a simple thing, but has nothing to do with temperature. It’s the misbehavior of the people around the mountain. So again, it’s like Tuvalu: We should say this is deforestation, that’s the thing. But instead they say, “No, no, it’s global warming!”
    Question: Here, over the last few days, there was a group that sent out a power- point presentation on melting glaciers, and how this is going to raise sea level and create all kinds of problems.
    The only place that has that potential is Greenland, and Greenland east is not melting; Greenland west, the Disco Bay is melting, but it has been melting for 200 years, at least, and the rate of melting decreased in the last 50-100 years. So, that’s another falsification.
    But more important, in the last 5,000 years, the whole of the Northern Hemisphere experienced warming, the Holocene Warm Optimum, and it was 2.5 degrees warmer than today. And still, no problem with Antarctica, or with Greenland; still, no higher sea level
    Observations Vs. Computer Models
    Question: These scare stories are being used for political purposes.
    Yes. Again, this is for me, the line of demarcation between the meteorological community and us: They work with computers; we geologists work with observations, and the observations do not fit with these scenarios. So what should you change? We cannot change observations, so we have to change the scenarios!
    Instead of doing this, they give an endless amount of money to the side which agrees with the IPCC. The European Community, which has gone far in this thing: If you want a grant for a research project in climatology, it is written into the document that there must be a focus on global warming. All the rest of us, we can never get a coin there, because we are not fulfilling the basic obligations. That is really bad, because then you start asking for the answer you want to get. That’s what dictatorships did, autocracies. They demanded that scientists produce what they wanted….
    You frighten a lot of scientists. If they say that climate is not changing, they lose their research grants. And some people cannot afford that; they become silent, or a few of us speak up, because we think that it’s for the honesty of science, that we have to do it.
    Question: In one of your papers, you mentioned how the expansion of sea level changed the Earth’s rotation into different modes—that was quite an eye-opener.
    Yes, but it is exceptionally hard to get these papers published also. The publishers compare it to IPCC’s modelling, and say, “Oh, this isn’t the IPCC.” Well, luckily it’s not! But you cannot say that….
    When I became president of the INQUA Commission on Sea-Level Change and Coastal Evolution, we made a research project, and we had this up for discussion at five international meetings. And all the true sea level specialists agreed on this figure, that in 100 years, we might have a rise of 10 cm, with an uncertainty of plus or minus 10 cm—that’s not very much. [See Figure 3, p. 32.] And in recent years, I even improved it, by considering also that we’re going into a cold phase in 40 years. That gives 5 cm rise, plus or minus a few centimeters. That’s our best estimate. But that’s very, very different from the IPCC statement.
    Ours is just a continuation of the pattern of sea level going back in time. Then you have absolutely maximum figures, like when we had all the ice in the vanishing ice caps that happened to be too far south in latitude after the Ice Age. You have more melting than after the Ice Age. You reach up to 10 mm per year—that was the super-maximum: 1 meter in 100 years….
    People have been saying, 1 meter, 3 meters. It’s not feasible! These are figures which are so large, that only when the ice caps were vanishing, did we have those types of rates. They are absolutely extreme…. We are basing ourselves on the observations—in the past, in the present, and then predicting it into the future, with the best of the “feet on the ground” data that we can get, not from the computer.
    Question: Isn’t some of what people are talking about just shoreline erosion, as opposed to sea-level rise?
    Yes, and I have very nice pictures of it. If you have a coast, with some stability of the sea level, the waves make a kind of equilibrium profile—what they are transporting into the sea and what they are transporting onshore. If the sea rises a little, yes, it attacks, but the attack is not so vigorous. On the other hand, if the sea goes down, it is eating away at the old equilibrium level. There is a much larger redistribution of sand.
    We had an island, where there was heavy erosion, every- thing was falling into the sea, trees and so on. But if you looked at what happened: The sand which disappeared there, if the sea level had gone up, that sand would have been placed higher, on top of the previous land. But it is being placed below the previous beach. We can see the previous beach, and it is 20-30 cm above the current beach. So this is erosion because the sea level fell, not because the sea level rose. And it is more common that erosion is caused by a falling sea level, than by a rising sea level.

    Finn

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 1:52pm

    #22

    Michael_Rudmin

    Status Gold Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 25 2014

    Posts: 857

    interested to go and start reading it... BUT...

    am highly unconvinced. Given the nature that the glaciers I am aware of are melting, not growing; and given the nature that the Northwest Passage opened up about five years ago (thus eliminating resistance to more glacial seaward travel); and given the nature of the problems polar bears are having; and given the nature of the calving down in antarctica…and given the LOCAL anecdotal evidence (admittedly) that Tangier Island near me is slipping away..
    ..his conclusion that sea levels will drop is QUITE unconvincing.
    NOW….
    Given also the nature that New American is a publication of a political (that is, a government-lobbyist) organization, I refer you back to your own thesis that I identified and affirmed:
    “government can’t do science”.
    Has it never occurred to you that corporations have governance too? And that they, just as parents, act as governments as well? And that they have their own voices, even as the US government has its own media, its own spokes people, and its own politicians?

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 2:32pm

    #23
    Doug

    Doug

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 01 2008

    Posts: 1368

    Nils-Axel Morner

    https://skepticalscience.com/sea-level-not-rising-intermediate.htm

    The claim sea level isn’t rising is based on blatantly doctored graphs and conspiracy theories that are contradicted by empirical observational data.

    Climate Myth…

    Sea level is not rising
    “Together, these two unaltered [sea level] datasets indicate that global mean sea level trend has remained stable over the entire period 1992-2007, altogether eliminating the apparent 3.2 mm/year rate of sea-level rise arising from the “adjusted” data.” (Christopher Monckton)

     
    Most claims that sea level is not rising are based on arguments made by Nils-Axel Mörner (i.e. see here).  Figure 1 shows the mean global sea level data whose accuracy Mörner denies:
    sea level
    Figure 1: University of Colorado global mean sea level time series (with seasonal signal removed)
    Mörner claims that the “true experts” think this data is wrong (emphasis added):

    “The world’s true experts on sea level are to be found at the INQUA (International Union for Quaternary Reseach) commission on Sea Level Changes and Coastal Evolution (of which I am a former president), not at the IPCC. Our research is what the climate lobby might call an ‘inconvenient truth’: it shows that sea levels have been oscillating close to the present level for the last three centuries. This is not due to melting glaciers: sea levels are affected by a great many factors, such as the speed at which the earth rotates. They rose in the order of 10 to 11cm between 1850 and 1940, stopped rising or maybe even fell a little until 1970, and have remained roughly flat ever since.”

    This is quite different from the INQUA official position on climate change, which opens by saying (emphasis added):

    Climate change is real
    There is now strong evidence that significant global warming is occurring. The evidence comes from direct measurements of rising surface air temperatures and subsurface ocean temperatures and, indirectly, from increases in average global sea levels, retreating glaciers, and changes in many physical and biological systems. It is very likely that most of the observed increase in global temperatures since the mid-twentieth century is due to human-induced increases in greenhouse gas concentrations in the atmosphere (IPCC 2007).

    As George Monbiot has documented, INQUA has been trying to dissociate itself from Mörner’s views.

    Current president of the INQUA commission on Coastal and Marine Processes, Professor Roland Gehrels of the University of Plymouth, says his view do not represent 99% of its members, and the organisation has previously stated that it is “distressed” that Mörner continues to falsely “represent himself in his former capacity.”

    Tuvalu is among the various individual locations Mörner focuses on in his attempt to distract from global sea level rise.  However, it is a rather poor choice, since sea level rise around Tuvalu is faster than the global average (Figure 2).
      
    Figure 2: Map of the Pacific Island region interannual sea level trend (linear variation with time) from the reconstruction 1950-2009. Locations of the 27 tide gauges (black circles and stars) used in the study are superimposed. Stars relate to the 7 tide gauges used in the global reconstruction. Dark areas relate to non-significant trends. From Becker (2011).
    So how does Mörner explain the global sea level rise record, in which both satellite altimeters and tide gauges show average global sea level rise on the order of 3 mm per year (Figure 1)?  It’s all a conspiracy, of course:

    “In 2003 the satellite altimetry record was mysteriously tilted upwards to imply a sudden sea level rise rate of 2.3mm per year…This is a scandal that should be called Sealevelgate. As with the Hockey Stick, there is little real-world data to support the upward tilt. It seems that the 2.3mm rise rate has been based on just one tide gauge in Hong Kong”

    Obviously this conspiracy theory is utterly absurd, and is easily disproven by simply examining the IPCC Third Assessment Report (TAR) published in 2001, two years before Mörner’s accusation of falsified sea level data, which shows an approximately 10 to 15 mm rise in average global sea level from 1993 to 1998 (Figure 3).
    ipcc tar sea level
    Figure 3: Global mean sea level variations (light line) computed from the TOPEX/POSEIDON satellite altimeter data compared with the global averaged sea surface temperature variations (dark line) for 1993 to 1998. The seasonal components have been removed from both time-series. (IPCC TAR)
    In short, Mörner’s conspiracy theory and accusation of falsified data is complete nonsense.  It’s also ironic that Mörner accuses others of falsifying data, since he has previously doctored photographs in his own presentations (i.e. see multiple photos of the Maldives ‘marker tree’ spliced together here and here).
    However, even if we disregard the satellite altimetry data and instead examine the tide gauge data that Mörner prefers, his assertions are still clearly false.  Church and White (2011) examined sea level data from both tide gauges (TGs), satellite altimeter data (Sat-Alt), and the estimated contribution to the sea level rise from various sources (Figure 4).  The net estimated mean sea level rise from tide gauges and satellites is essentially the same.
    church white
    Figure 4: The observed sea level using coastal and island tide gauges (solid black line with grey shading indicating the estimated uncertainty) and using TOPEX/Poseidon/Jason‐1&2 satellite altimeter data (dashed black line). The two estimates have been matched at the start of the altimeter record in 1993. Also shown are the various components contributing to sea level rise (Church and White 2011)
    Rather than being flat since 1970, as Mörner claimed in The Spectator article, mean sea level has risen more than 80mm over that period, according to tide gauges.  In fact, not only is global mean sea level data rising, but the rise is accelerating.
    Highlighting the degree to which his arguments are divorced from reality, in testimony to the British House of Lords, Mörner even presented this laughable graph (which was later reproduced by Monckton and the SPPI), simply rotating Figure 1 to produce “the evidence that sea level is not rising” (Figure 5).
    bizarro sea level
    Figure 5: Tilted global sea level data produced by Monckton and Mörner in the SPPI Monthly CO2 Report for January 2011
    Nils-Axel Mörner’s claims regarding sea level rise are the very definition of denial, involving nothing more than conspiracy theories and unsubstantiated accusations of data falsification wich are easily proven untrue.  The mainstream media needs to realize that Mörner is simply not a credible source of information about sea level rise or climate science in general.  One individual’s unsupported conspiracy theories do not trump empirical observational data.
    Intermediate rebuttal written by dana1981

    Update July 2015:
    Here is a related lecture-video from Denial101x – Making Sense of Climate Science Denial

     
    Last updated on 8 July 2015 by pattimer. View Archives

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 5:00pm

    Reply to #23
    Edwardelinski

    Edwardelinski

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 23 2012

    Posts: 324

    Doug

    Try not to go 10 rounds with this guy.Every article he has cited can go back to one place,The Heartland Institute.It is funded by the Kochs,Mercers,Exxon and every other polluting Industry in the country.The tentacles are far,wide and the stakes are high…

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 5:22pm

    Reply to #23
    Doug

    Doug

    Status Platinum Member (Offline)

    Joined: Oct 01 2008

    Posts: 1368

    I agree

    But, other people were discussing the Morner article as if it might have some legitimacy. I didn’t want them wandering down some denialist trail of illogic without fair warning.

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 8:36pm

    Reply to #16
    Belmontl

    Belmontl

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 23 2009

    Posts: 19

    James Howard Kunstler - more modern “ride”

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 8:43pm

    #24

    Quercus bicolor

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Mar 19 2008

    Posts: 190

    Nils-Axel Morner

    Finn,
    With a  quick read I found two glaring errors tells me that either this guy doesn’t know what he’s talking about or is deliberately twisting things:
    “There’s another way of checking it, because if the radius of the Earth increases as a result of sea level rise, then immediately the Earth’s rate of rotation would slow down.” – that’s true if the rise is from thermal expansion due to warming oceans.  But melting ice caps and glaciers would have the opposite effect – taking frozen water at high elevation and bringing it to sea level when it melts – an effective decrease in radius. This is the first sign that he’s just making stuff up to support his claim.
    “In about 1970, the sea fell about 20 cm, for reasons involving probably evaporation or something.”  – where did that water go?  The atmosphere holds on average about 2.5 cm of water equivalent depth.  It increased from just under 2.4 cm in the 80s and 90s to about 2.5 cm today (link).  Accounting for the oceans taking up about 70% of the earth’s surface, there is no way for atmospheric storage to account for more than 1.4 mm of sea level  drop (and probably < 1 mm) without a huge change in precipitation patterns.  The only other place the water could have gone is into ce sheets/glaciers which have been shrinking, or other fresh water.  Other fresh water contains the equivalent of about 100 cm of ocean depth (link). It would have to increase by 20% to drop the sea level by 20 cm.  And – 70% of this fresh water is ground ice and permafrost, leaving less than 30% of for lakes and rivers after accounting for the atmosphere, living things, etc.  His “evaporation or something” claim is clearly total BS.

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 8:53pm

    Reply to #19
    Belmontl

    Belmontl

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Aug 23 2009

    Posts: 19

    Old Guy- no doubt we are all

    Old Guy- no doubt we are all caught in the net/web of our making – confirmation biases etc – 
    and with the Daily combination of google/internet, social media , vested interests anything can (and is) be found and disseminated on the grand World Wide Web , (not to mention Levels of Consciousness /worldviews/Development – Where the “Higher” is Literally Over the heads of The Lower (See Harvard Professor Robert Keegan book Over Their Heads, estimated 65% world , 30% of America at a Pre-Rational level of thinking – Facts/Data literally mean nothing to them – while Facts/Data do have a kosmic address for those with “eyes” (cognition ) to see) 
    your “man” seems to have a  skeptical past 
    https://www.skepticalscience.com/Nils-Axel-Morner-wrong-about-sea-level-rise.html
     
    again I concur with Charles Eisenstein (& premise of his new book – Climate – a New Story) – focusing overwhelming on Co2/Climate change (and regardless of what is causing it … or not) is too narrow a focus for the vast array of interrelated global predictiments upon us (& even IF under the greatest techno-fantasy we could “solve”/mitigate global warming /co2, it still doesn’t begin to address these other array of issues)
    You are sure (like other’s aren’t ) that Nero didn’t drop “the match” and we all argue …. as Rome burns 
     

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 9:53pm

    #25

    Barnbuilder

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: May 07 2014

    Posts: 23

    Said it before, I'll say it ad nauseum

    I tried but couldn’t read all the above comments.  Too many tangents.  I cannot and will not argue about global warming.  I do know that the powers that be are convinced that stratospheric aerosol injection can stop it or slow it down.  I see evidence of it almost daily with my own eyes.  I really don’t know what they are doing or how bad it is.I find it pretty shitty that there has not been a public debate before the all powerful forces decided on what was best for all of us. What chemicals or compounds are they using? What is the possible downside to insects or higher forms of life.  But they know best, they are the government right? So back to my said it before, store more food.  When you think you have enough, double it. Then do it again. Yep I’m a simpleton. 

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  • Wed, Feb 13, 2019 - 11:44pm

    #26

    kelvinator

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Dec 25 2008

    Posts: 181

    No Indication Nils-Axel Morner Was Ever a UN IPCC Scientist

    Old Guy,
    It kind of undermines your argument to kick it off with what appears to be a false statement:
    UN IPCC Scientist Blows Whistle On Lies About Climate, Sea Level
    It’s possible I missed something, but a brief search for Nils-Axel Morner online yields no evidence that he ever was a scientist affiliated with the UN IPCC.  I wondered when you mentioned it because I had the pleasure of meeting Robert Watson, who was chair of the IPCC at the time, in 2002.  I was curious what Nils-Axel Morner’s involvement was in what time frame, and what caused him to disavow IPCC’s work. But it looks like he’s alway only been a critic – at least, that’s my impression.
    Our views on climate – at least mine, anyway – aren’t formed by reading one article or hearing from one person like Nils-Axel Morner or Robert Watson.  For me, it’s formed by decades now of various experiences – including gradual changes in weather patterns over the course of my lifetime in California, many time lapse videos of melting ice over years, reading endless articles, discussion, hearing from a lot of different people about their personal experiences, and so on. 
    And importantly, for me, it involves making judgements about the character and motivations of people who express their views, present studies, or relate their own experiences on climate, or any issue.   Robert Watson, for example, was quite kind, extremely intelligent and down to Earth.  I also heard descriptions (at the same conference where I met Watson) from an Eskimo elder who described how areas now were starting to thaw where he lived that had been permafrost since he was small.
    Nothing is certain in this world, and so we all have to make judgements about almost everything based on the ‘perpondance of evidence’.  As far as climate change goes, for me, it’s not even close. 
    People that are denialists, it seems to me, often have a strong characterological or philosophical reason not to believe in man made climate change.  I’ve noticed that libertarians and others with strong anti-government feelings are (like yourself, Old Guy) very concerned about what urgent climate action implies about the need for synchronized global government action, intervention or control.  It’s pretty clear to me those folks would really like that urgent need for mass collaboration to go away and be found unreal.  It doesn’t compute with the more ideal world they would like to move toward.
    Well, facts are facts – at least, as well as 97% of relevant scientists can determine, whether anyone organizes to do anything about them or not – and I’m not particularly optimistic that humans can organize to field an response that fends off the major climate disruptions that we already see ramping up.  You can find the occasional denialist like Nils Axel, and some of their points may be plausible, but overall, the amount of documentation and data out there supporting human caused climate change is staggering, it seems to me.
    Lousiana Prepares to Abandon Its Coastal Flood Plain (Larger than Delaware to Climate Change)
    http://350marin.org/louisiana-floodplain/
    Antarctic Is Melting Faster Than any Time in History
    http://350marin.org/antarctic-melting-faster/
    etc., etc.
    Glaciers time-lapse melting

    NASA Time-lapse Artic ice-cap disappearing for first time since humans walked the Earth
    https://slate.com/technology/2014/12/the-last-time-the-arctic-was-ice-fr

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 1:26am

    #27

    fionnbharr

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 27 2012

    Posts: 63

    Is This A Consensus Trance Old Guy?

    Old Guy,
    yesterday I chose to set a little experimenthoney trap into play here at Peak Prosperity, and it came out exactly as expected within hours.
    Above me you’ll find – in the most part – free thinking adults who chose the longer, harder path of researching the marrow out of their subject’. This is why I wander within the walls of this little oasis, this font of knowledge, and why people without the ability to think for themselves, don’t last long.
    My thanks to – in order of appearance: – Michael_Rudmin, Doug, Edwardelinski, Belmontl, Quercus Bicolor, Barnbuilder, and Kelvinator, who, in quick succession, mopped the floor with you, tipped your turgid detritous down the toilet, and flushed …
    Finn
     

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 5:15am

    Reply to #27

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 505

    Well done!

    fionnbharr wrote:

    “tipped your turgid detritous down the toilet, and flushed …”

     
    Finn,
    If you’re going to be at the seminar, I’m buying you a beer (or beverage of choice) for using turgid and detritous together, in context no less! 😉
     
    On a more serious note, I noticed your honey trap for Old Guy, but I realize now that it’s pointless. Old Guy is likey a coroporate shiv whose sole purpose is to foment confusion and distract us from focusing on the scientific data (and anecdotal evidence), and he neither listens to nor truly discusses anything with anyone directly. Life is so much better with him on the /ignore list. He will not acknowledge that the sources he draws from are evidently connected with corporate interests, as well as considered outliers by most experts in the field at best, and outright quacks at worst.
     
    Still, it’s fun watching many PPers rip apart his thin veil of untruth and obfuscation.

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 8:13am

    #28

    davefairtex

    Status Diamond Member (Offline)

    Joined: Sep 03 2008

    Posts: 3146

    two thoughts

    1) I don’t think Old Guy is a paid corporate shill.  Or if he is, his hourly rate is dismal and/or the company’s ROI on his efforts is really unfortunate.  He’s far too wordy and ineffective to be a shill.  Of course, I could be wrong.  The shills I’ve seen that visit us here put about 1% of his effort into their responses, and they achieve much the same outcome.  He has triggered the Backfire Effect on perhaps 50% of the people here.
    Hmm.  Something comes to mind.  Perhaps he’s a Climate Change Reinforcer, whose job it is to run around the net triggering the backfire effect on all the True Believers, further nailing their strongly held beliefs in place. Might he be just that good?
    2) I am reminded of a comic that a friend of mine once posted that I never forgot.  I can’t say I always take it to heart, but I think it might apply here:

     

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 8:19am

    #29

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 505

    Good point

    1) A valid possibility. Very sneaky!
     
    2) I often fail at that. Like, daily.
     
    Here’s a post I just saw on a friend’s timeline that I thought was pretty funny and pertinent:
     

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 8:24am

    #30

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Online)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4635

    On Earth's Rotation...and Tasmania

    Quercus bicolor wrote:

    “There’s another way of checking it, because if the radius of the Earth increases as a result of sea level rise, then immediately the Earth’s rate of rotation would slow down.” – that’s true if the rise is from thermal expansion due to warming oceans.  But melting ice caps and glaciers would have the opposite effect – taking frozen water at high elevation and bringing it to sea level when it melts – an effective decrease in radius. This is the first sign that he’s just making stuff up to support his claim.

    I was thinking on that and found it more complex than I could parse out.
    What I mean, is that on the one hand, by definition, any ice-melting that raises the sea level had to be ice that was already above sea level.  So at first blush it would seem that the water mass is being drawn towards the center.  In other words it should speed up rotation, not slow it down.
    However, on the other hand, that ice is also, by definition, at the higher latitudes towards each of the poles.  Because the earth spins about the equator the farther towards the poles one goes the less impact will be registered by reducing peripheral mass and drawing it towards the center.  To make it completely obvious, a gigantic mass found precisely at the poles could be extended or drawn in without affecting rotation in the slightest, unless I am misremembering my physics 101.
    Meanwhile, melted water might be expected to end up at the equator due to the centripetal forces involved.  Hence we might imagine that melted water from a Greenland ice mass would have some positive effect on rotation (speed it up) from that effect, and some negative effect on rotation (slow it down) once it migrated to the equator. 
    So what effect does melting gigatons of ice in Greenland at the 70th parallel at several hundreds of feet of elevation have in comparison to a few millimeters of rise at the equator?
    Net-net, I have zero clue how the equation would balance out because it’s too complex for me.  That’s what I was thinking of as I went to sleep the other night.
    Meanwhile, climate chaos rages on, with this utterly bizarre example courtesy of Tasmania where fires that were raging out of control were brought to heel by a mid-summer snowstorm.  These photo pairs were taken one week apart.

    Oy.
     

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 9:12am

    #31

    Chris Martenson

    Status Platinum Member (Online)

    Joined: Jun 07 2007

    Posts: 4635

    Seas *are* rising

    If the seas aren’t rising, then there’s no explanation for why Miami is now flooding all the time except mass hallucinations by everyone, cameras included.

    And, no, this is not due to land subsidence which is a contributing factor in places like Norfolk VA which is being doubly swamped by higher seas and lower land.
    Miami just floods regularly now and the local sewage and water treatment agencies are busy installing massive pumps to try and push all that sea water back out.
    Perhaps the sea-rise sceptics should give them a call and let them know that the tens of millions of dollars they are spending are due to a massive fraud being perpetrated on them by sceintists with conflicts of interest at work, and not because there’s sea water all over their streets and infiltrating their drainage systems?
    /s
    There comes a time when you either trust your own experiences or you have to rely on the increasingly bizarre and strident proclamations of those who would pretend that business-as-usual is still a workable proposition.

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 10:07am

    Reply to #31

    Snydeman

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    Posts: 505

    Voltaire

    cmartenson wrote:

    There comes a time when you either trust your own experiences or you have to rely on the increasingly bizarre and strident proclamations of those who would pretend that business-as-usual is still a workable proposition.

    Especially if their paycheck depends on them proclaiming it.

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 12:00pm

    #32

    New_Life

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 185

    Tempted to block

    It’s definitely a consideration.
    Peop!e who post overt exaggerations and then blast those that challenge them for evidence has the hallmarks of a classic disorder, which at its extreme is incurable and destructive to those around them.
    Maybe I’ll just consciously ignore anyone displaying characteristics of a misleading energy vampire, certainly expect to be more content as a result.
    Kudos to those of you above that support the scientific spirit of PP, i.e. evidenced based arguements that welcome requests for more explanation.

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 12:30pm

    Reply to #30

    Quercus bicolor

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    Posts: 190

    earth's rotation

    I can do this now, Chris.  I was wrong the first time because the important variable is radial distance from the earth’s axis.  We have:
    Initial location: ice sheets at high latitudes and high elevation, but overall close to the axis of rotation.
    Final location: distributed more-or-less evenly  throughout the oceans.  Yes, water tends towards the equator, but that has already been happening, so the surface of the ocean is at equilibrium between the dominant gravitational force and the minor centrifugal force.  On the net, it has moved farther from the equator.  Since the centroid of the oceans is much closer to the equator than that of the melting ice sheets.

    Result: rotation slows.  Of course, there’s melting glaciers in the Andes and the few other high equatorial mountains, but that’s only a tiny amount of the total ice melt.
     

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 2:59pm

    Reply to #31
    old guy

    old guy

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    Miami flooding

    This problem has nothing whatever to do with sea level rise. It is a civil engineering problem of almost unimaginable magnitude. This city has been built – for all intents and purposes – almost precisely at predictable, recurring sea levels. It is already inescapably flooding from normal predicted tides and it will continue to flood unless sea level drops a foot or two, which is not going to happen during this millennium.—
    Miami Beach is at such grave risk of sea water flooding today that it should preemptively be declared a disaster zone – not because of global-warming-driven sea level rise but due to a seeming total lack of sensible civil engineering standards and sensible building codes.—
    Much of the above-ground infrastructure of Miami Beach was originally built on land in areas known to be below historical highest water levels (Maximum), and some of it built below normal highest tide levels (HAT and MHHW) – to make matters much worse, much of it is intentionally connected to the sea by canals cut for this purpose.
    Almost all of the underground infrastructure is below Mean Sea Level – this means utility cables, water lines, sewer lines, basements and storm drains. All subject to sea water intrusion and the resulting corrosion. Most of these features of a modern city have to be protected by pumps – which must have electrical power to continue to operate. Sewage must be pumped up into sewage treatment plants – storm drain water must be pumped up and back into the sea — it will not move when the power is out.
    Hurricanes, the biggest natural disaster threat to the area, in addition to the terrific damage caused by the forces of high winds and surf, can dump inches-to-feet of rain causing fresh-water flooding, raise sea level with storm surge causing sea water flooding and knock out power transmission lines thus stopping or destroying most of the pumps that keep Miami Beach’s infrastructure going. Auxiliary generators can only keep going for so long before running out of fuel; fuel which cannot be delivered across flooded causeways and through flooded streets.—
    Some areas of Miami Beach (and other seaside cities built on barrier islands, sandbars and/or built on fill in tidal zones) will suffer higher rates of subsidence as soil is slowly washed out from under the buildings and roads by the coming and going of the tides in nearby waterways – a process that can be abated only at great expense.—
    Miami Beach was once a pleasant seaside resort and agricultural community on the sandy barrier island off of Florida’s southern coast. It should have been left that way. If development was imperative it should have been subjected to long-term realistic planning that would have prevented the present-day disaster-in-waiting.
    https://wattsupwiththat.com/2016/12/07/miamis-vice/

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 3:22pm

    #33
    ezlxq1949

    ezlxq1949

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    Posts: 222

    None so blind...

    …as those who will not see.
    My retired meteorologist tells me that he refuses to engage with trolls because they argue on the basis of little or no real knowledge of the topic they’re addressing. To argue is totally futile.
    In spite of its manifest defects, science is still largely a self-checking, self-correcting, peer-review process. As sea levels rise, one might enter into a pier-review process, to find the best haven for one’s boat. (Hey, that was a good pun, wasn’t it!) It is beyond belief that thousands of professional scientists are all duped and in the same manner. Is it not the goal of all scientists to find flaws in established theory and to enhance their reputation by bringing forward a new and better one? Why in the name of logic would they manufacture and cling to falsehoods?
    As I said earlier, it seems that the CC deniers constitute an increasingly desperate set of outliers who for whatever reasons cannot confront reality. This includes politicians and the business community who must be suffering from severe cognitive dissonance as they see their world failing.

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 4:52pm

    Reply to #33
    old guy

    old guy

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    Your retired meteorologist friend

    You mean your retired meteorologist friend that worked for the Australian Bureau of Meteorology?
    This corrupt and scandal-ridden BOM?
    THE BOM LIST grows — Scandal after scandal
    BOM Scandal: One second records in Australia — how “noise” creates history and a warming trend
    Another BOM scandal: Australian climate data is being destroyed as routine practice
    BOM scandal: “smart cards” filter out coldest temperatures. Full audit needed ASAP!
    BOM scandal heats up: Kininmonth, Watts, Nova quoted in The Australian “We audit banks, why not BOM?”
    Scandal: Australian Bureau of Meteorology caught erasing cold temperatures
    On Sunday, Goulburn got colder than the BOM thought was possible (and a raw data record was “adjusted”).
    Two-thirds of Australias warming due to “adjustments” — according to 84 historic stations
    The mysterious BOM disinterest in hot historic Australian Stevenson screen temperatures
    The lost climate knowledge of Deacon 1952: hot dry summers from 1880-1910
    1953 Headline: Melbourne’s weather is changing! Summers getting colder and wetter
    The mysterious lost hot Sunday in Bourke, did it really happen?
    Wow, look at those BOM adjustments – trends up by two degrees C!
    Australian BOM “neutral” adjustments increase minima trends up 50%
    Was the Hottest Day Ever in Australia not in a desert, but in far south Albany?!
    Hottest summer record in Australia? Not so, says UAH satellite data
    Mystery black-box method used to make *all new* Australian “hottest” ever records
    BOMs new data set, ACORN, so bad it should be withdrawn (954 min temps larger than the max!)
    Threat of ANAO Audit means Australia’s BOM throws out temperature set, starts again, gets same results
    Australian Temperatures in cities adjusted up by 70%!?

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 6:02pm

    Reply to #28

    westcoastjan

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

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    Posts: 177

    how about Climate Change 'influencer"

    Hi Dave,
    I think you are on the right track, but maybe used the wrong term. Since we now have “social media influencers” and many other types of “influencers” I think it would be apt to say Old Guy is a “Climate Change Influencer” seeking to sway things in ways that are beneficial to him, in whatever capacity. Not much else makes sense to me.
    Jan

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 6:05pm

    #34
    old guy

    old guy

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    Sea-level rise--causes

    There is dispute as to the amount of increase in sea levels as a number of factors complicate  things but it is very likely less than 2ml/ year and some papers have it at 0.9ml/ year. But what causes it?
    Melting sea ice does not cause it because sea ice already displaces its weight of water. Melting changes nothing–beside the fact sea ice amount is within long-term averages.
    Contrary to media hype, the continental ice sheets over Greenland and Antarctica are not melting and have actually gained mass in recent years.
    It has been thought that thermal expansion in warming oceans could have caused some of the rise but some recent work casts doubt on that and besides the oceans have not warmed in recent years.
    Melting mountain glaciers cannot contribute enough meltwater to cause much rise. Most of the melt from the end of the last glaciation has already happened.
    Sea levels will always rise even with perfectly stable temps and will continue to do so until significant cooling starts to lock-up water in glaciers-mountain and continental. Why?
    One reason is biota. As living things grow and die they become part of the seafloor sediment and are replaced by progeny.
    Another reason is the vast number of underwater volcanoes and vents that pump out magma and ash and minerals to the seafloor.
    Another is the constant sediment washed into the oceans via rivers and streams  and landslides and seaside erosion and dust blown from landmasses.
    Sea level rise is a constant natural phenomenon and natural warming of a degree or two contributes next to nothing. Even in summer the Greenland and Antarctica ice sheets are far below the melting point.

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 6:35pm

    #35
    old guy

    old guy

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    Well Jan, As an old guy I

    Well Jan,
    As an old guy I don’t have much to gain from an agenda. What the future holds for me is a steady decline in robustness until it’s all over unless a sudden health issue or disease hastens the process.
    My motive? I’d like to see western societies avoid a very unpalatable result. That’s all.
    Canada’s most articulate commentator says it well in this article:
    https://nationalpost.com/opinion/murphy-beware-the-green-new-trojan-hors

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 10:16pm

    #36
    old guy

    old guy

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    What Al Gore did

    — Gore directed all funding to ensure that the climate change agenda became a top priority for the United States Government. Gore created the President’s Council on Sustainable Development. The Charter was revised on April 25, 1997, and the “Scope of Activities” was dramatically altered. Gore directed that the agenda was to be EXCLUSIVELY a global warming agenda to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. He claimed there would be NO DEBATE regarding the science behind the new agenda. Gore deliberately silenced all opposition.—

    To pull off the new agenda, Gore’s strategy set out to purge the government of anyone who disagreed or opposed his agenda in any way. He instilled, not the fear of God, but the fear of Gore throughout the high-ranking government officials in the agencies that included the Department of Energy, Environmental Protection Agency, National Science Foundation, Department of Education, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, and National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Their funding would be cut unless they adopted Gore’s agenda.
    When physicist Dr. William Happer, who was the Director of Energy Research at the Department of Energy, testified before Congress in 1993 in disagreement with Al Gore, he was instantly fired. Harper would later comment: “I had the privilege of being fired by Al Gore since I refused to go along with his alarmism. I did not need the job that badly.”—
    https://www.lewrockwell.com/2019/02/martin-armstrong/al-gores-global-war

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 11:05pm

    #37

    New_Life

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 18 2011

    Posts: 185

    Specific Ignorance is bliss

    Yep just scrolling past certain posts works a treat.

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  • Thu, Feb 14, 2019 - 11:19pm

    #38
    ezlxq1949

    ezlxq1949

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 29 2009

    Posts: 222

    The crushing Grip of Reason

    I feel that this Calvin & Hobbes strip is nicely relevant to the state of this comment stream. Not quite sure who of us plays what role, however.
    https://www.gocomics.com/calvinandhobbes/1987/01/18/

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  • Fri, Feb 15, 2019 - 1:54am

    #39

    New_Life

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Apr 18 2011

    Posts: 185

    School children on strike

    https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/feb/15/the-beginning-of-gre

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  • Fri, Feb 15, 2019 - 5:26am

    Reply to #38

    Snydeman

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    Posts: 505

    Need more Calvin and Hobbes in my life!

    ezlxq1949 wrote:

    I feel that this Calvin & Hobbes strip is nicely relevant to the state of this comment stream. Not quite sure who of us plays what role, however.
    https://www.gocomics.com/calvinandhobbes/1987/01/18/

     
    The older I get, the more relevant and poignant Calvin and Hobbes becomes. 
     
     

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  • Fri, Feb 15, 2019 - 5:43am

    Reply to #37

    Snydeman

    Status Member (Offline)

    Joined: Feb 06 2013

    Posts: 505

    Ignore vs block

    New_Life wrote:

    Yep just scrolling past certain posts works a treat.

    The nice thing about /ignore versus /block is that the former allows you to see that a person has made a post, but you don’t see the actual post, whereas the latter eliminates them from your sight. /ignore is highly recommended if you want to keep the stream of the thread intact but wish to not see certain people’s actual posts.

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  • Fri, Feb 15, 2019 - 6:45am

    Reply to #35

    westcoastjan

    Status Bronze Member (Offline)

    Joined: Jun 04 2012

    Posts: 177

    OMG I hope you are kidding

    If Rex Murphy and the National Post are your regular reading choices then that completely explains you and your perspectives. Mr. Pointy Head, paid political journalist and former CBC show host….. yep, very credible source of info lol.
    All you are doing at this point is serving up more evidence that you have not yet grasped the gist of commenting and debate on this site. You might want to give it a rest and ponder what you are trying to accomplish here.
    Jan

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