November 2009 (Vol. 26, #1)
Throughout history, great armies have striven to subjugate all the known world in the name of a leader or movement: Alexander, Caesar, Attila, Napoleon, Hitler, Communism. All failed. The most recent ran into an obstacle called the United States of America. A unified nation, spanning a continent, protected by great oceans, with an impregnable economy, fiercely independent, confident of its destiny.
Is it possible that the Colossus of the North could simply step down, without the need for an earthquake, surrendering its freedom, independence, and sovereignty, with abject apologies to all, dividing up the accumulated wealth–in the name of ending disparities, establishing social justice, and assuring health to the collective hive and the Planet?
The American century could end with a whimper–though there might be an encore of intense flashes and bangs before the lights go out, just to make sure the sleeping giant doesn't wake up before it's too late.
The sappers have been mining away for decades, hollowing out the economy, eroding the currency, dismantling the infrastructure supporting our military, obliterating our history, defaming our culture, blurring our identity, and sowing divisiveness and racial and class warfare.
The treaty of surrender could be signed within weeks by a U.S. President who rose quickly from obscurity, whose empty logo seems to be the focal point of long-converging movements: nuclear freeze, unilateral disarmament, socialized medicine, radical environmentalism, and cultural nihilism.
Yeats's “rough beast,” that “slouches toward Bethlehem to be born” is taking shape. Its minions would be nameless apparatchiks in international agencies, armed with plenary powers to punish, perhaps by slow strangulation, Americans tainted with the collective guilt for planetary woes.
Copenhagen 2009 Treaty
Lord Christopher Monckton, adviser to Lady Margaret Thatcher, explains the treaty world leaders are poised to sign: the framework for a communist world dictatorship. At an Oct 14 speech at Bethel University, in St. Paul, MN, Monckton said that the treaty had three purposes: a world government; wealth transfers from the U.S. and Europe to the Third World to satisfy our “climate debt”; and an enforcement mechanism.
The treaty would override the U.S. Constitution, and we could withdraw, he said, only with the consent of all the parties–who would hardly consent because the U.S. would be the biggest source of the money they would receive.
The draft is 181 pages of bureaucratese. Along with Monckton's full speech and a 4-minute excerpt, it can be downloaded from www.globalclimatescam.com. His elaboration and able defense against the “pants on fire” Truth-o-Meter rating on PolitiFact.com is posted on www.breitbart.tv/.
Provisions include National Adaptation Plans (#46), which would involve, among other things, applying “remote sensing” and establishing “decision-making tools”; “clarifying and securing land tenure and planning–i.e. allocation, ownership and control over lands and resources”; and “strengthening environmental and natural resources management and enforcement.” What does this mean? Confiscating and redistributing property? International environmental protection agencies and forestry and wildlife services? High-tech monitoring and reporting of all carbon dioxide emissions?
The draft “acknowledges” that “current atmospheric concentrations are principally the result of historical emissions of greenhouse gases, the most significant share of which has originated in developed countries.” Never mind Al Gore's elevator next to the graph of prehistoric CO2 levels from ice cores. Or that some estimates of prehistoric peaks were of levels 20-fold (2,000%) higher than at present–compared with a 30% increase between 1850 and now (see p 2).
The draft enshrines the Precautionary Principle as dogma. “Where there are threats of serious or irreversible damage, the precautionary principle dictates that lack of full scientific certainty should not be used as a reason for postponing measures [emphasis added].”
Option 1 is the reduction of emissions by 50% to 85% from 1990 levels by 2050, with the reduction level set on the basis of “historical responsibility and national circumstances.” Option 2 would require a reduction as high as 95%.
The Waxman-Markey “cap and trade” bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives is intended to cut CO2 emissions by 83% by 2050–to the levels seen in President Washington's first term (IBD 10/19/09, cited in TWTW 10/24/09).
The financial price tag for an agreement is estimated by different economists as $100 billion to $1 trillion per year by 2020, to “help developing countries convert to costly but cleaner technologies” (E. Rosenthal, NY Times 10/15/09).
This apparently leaves out the cost of converting our own transportation system–to rickshaws, suggests Jim Simpson, as horses produce methane (American Thinker 10/24/09).
Monckton notes that forgoing the 1 trillion tons of CO2 emissions needed, according to the models, to avert a 1 F temperature rise would require shutting down the entire world economy for 33 years. The treaty cannot be about affecting the climate–as that is simply impossible.
The Real Climate Agenda
“Environmentalism generally and catastrophic man-made global warming specifically,” writes Robert Ferguson, “is a falsified diversionary scare distracting us from the fall of our Republic into the dark, stinking swamp of statism.”
He recalls the crash of a jumbo jet in the Everglades when pilots, distracted by investigating failure of their nose landing gear light to illuminate, didn't notice their gradual descent.
If the Copenhagen treaty is signed and ratified by the Senate, we will have “passed the event horizon,” he said. “It will then be the official, codified policy of the federal government that the present generation must have its liberty and prosperity diminished without limits; and for the next generation, the American dream will become criminalized.” (American Thinker/ 8/7/09). As Vaclav Klaus said, “It is not about climatology; it is about freedom.”
What Does the “Average Temperature” Mean?
To find the average length of some sticks, add up all the lengths and divide by the number of sticks: Length is an extensive variable. Intensive variables do not have this additive property. If you join two tanks of gas pressurized to the same pressure, the pressure does not double. Touch together two identical loaves of bread taken from the oven, and the temperature does not double.
So how would you find an average temperature? The first step is to add the temperatures together, but this sum does not correspond to any physical property. The sum of a set of intensive variables is meaningless. The “average temperature” is not the temperature of anything; it is only a statistic. All weather is local; the “average” is irrelevant to everyone.
Satellite systems measure the average energy per given quantity of air, which is an extensive variable. The air temperature, however, may not be representative of ground or ocean temperature (H. Hayden, The Energy Advocate 9/09).
Non-tragedy of the Commons
The 2009 winner of the Nobel Prize for economics, Elinor Ostrom, analyzed how local institutions and customs avert the “tragedy of the commons,” described and misapplied in 1968 by Garrett Hardin. She also described the damage done by supplanting those institutions: “International donors and nongovernmental organizations, as well as national governments and charities, have often acted, under the banner of environmental conservation, in a way that has unwittingly destroyed the very social capital–shared relationship, norms, knowledge and understanding–that has been used by resource users to sustain the productivity of natural capital over the ages.” She explained the strength of polycentric governance centers in which each subunit has considerable autonomy (NYT TierneyLab 10/15/09, cited by CCNet 160/2009).
Electronic Devices Gobble Power
According to the International Energy Agency, energy used by computers and consumer electronics will double by 2022, and treble by 2030. The projected increase is equivalent to the combined total residential electricity consumption of the U.S. and Japan. It will require the addition of approximately 280 GW of generating capacity by 2030 (NY Times 5/14/09).
Will the abacus make a comeback with energy rationing?
Protecting Electronics from EMP
Assuming there is a source of electricity after an EMP, you might want to have some functional electronic devices. For information on how to build a Faraday cage, see EMP 101, Part IV, at http://preparednesspro.wordpress.com. (Search on “Faraday cage.”) You should at least protect some battery-powered radios–and also a supply of batteries.
The Greater Evil
Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) claims that the White House wants to use the EPA's “endangerment” finding on CO2 to blackmail Congress into enacting “cap and trade.” When Americans find out they are paying about $2,000 a year in taxes (or equivalents) for nothing, the White House would like to be able to blame Congress (TWTW 10/17/09, see www.sepp.org). Note that the EPA's new rules to regulate CO2 as a dangerous pollutant were released on the same day as the Kerry bill. Green czar Carol Browner explicitly said that the EPA rule would “obviously encourage the business community to raise their voices in Congress”–to avoid still worse economic and bureaucratic destruction. “In Sicily..., they call that an offer you can't refuse” (Wall St J 10/5/09).
The EPA is justifying the restriction of its rule to larger emitters than required by the Clean Air Act for real pollutants on the basis of the “absurd results doctrine” (ibid.).
Calculus Problem: Counting Cow Belches
Manufacturers and retailers throughout the world are supposed to be calculating the environmental impact (=carbon footprint) of their products. Tesco, in the UK, prints “900 g” on the label as the CO2 equivalent needed to produce a pint of milk. There is some uncertainty of course; bovine belching is the biggest source of carbon emissions in milk production, and that depends partly on the cow's diet (Wall St J 9/18/09).
The person drinking that milk is thus responsible for about 0.0000000000001% of a hypothetical 1 F increase in the meaningless “average temperature.”
Angels dancing on pinheads, anyone?
The U.S. is spending some $3.4 billion in “stimulus” money to assure that carbon from burning coal gets locked into the earth so it can never be belched by a cow. Otherwise, the process of producing 80% of the world's energy from carbon fuels could have “potential devastating effects,” writes U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu (Science 2009;325:1599).
The Sep 25 issue of Science features the carbon cycle. For eons, “carbon generation has roughly equaled carbon consumption,” until humanity “tipped the scales.” See the graph of “ups and downs” (p 1643), showing a 20-fold variation owing to ice ages, volcanism, asteroid impacts, and the spread and retreat of vegetation, on which scale the impact of the Industrial Revolution is hardly visible.
Work to limit carbon emissions has barely started, writes R. Stuart Haszeldine (pp 1647-1651). “There is a lamentable lack of financial commitment to real construction.” Some methods would consume 25% to 40% of the energy generated by the power plant. Some generate toxic emissions from solvents. Like nuclear waste, repositories are claimed to require decades-long monitoring. Pressurized injections of CO2 into the ground may reopen pre-existing faults and fracture to produce leakage conduits. Each demonstration coal plant requires price supports for many years to capture the $1.5 billion extra costs–and “the pricing provided by the current carbon market is far too low and erratic.” During peak demand, it would be commercially beneficial to vent CO2; thus voluntary codes wouldn't work.
Admittedly even more expensive than capture from power plants, scrubbing CO2 from the air “faster than nature does” is also proposed (pp 1654-1655).
Vast new industries that produce nothing except negative emissions are waiting to be born in Copenhagen.
More “renewables” may not reduce emissions. It takes 2 tonnes of coal to produce a 1-kw solar panel; almost 30 million tonnes of coal, more than 1% of China's output, will be needed to keep the polysilicon ovens hot. The plants look clean but the air is highly hazardous, containing lung-eating trichlorosilane among more than 10 other poisons (TWTW 9/19/09).