Trains, Planes, and Automobiles (and Cows)

There is plenty of material for laughter in the Green New Deal, a 29-year-old self-proclaimed “democratic socialist” congresswoman’s ambitious (to say the least) 10-year plan of national “mobilization” to help halt climate change by drastically reducing carbon emissions. An appropriately green-suited freshman Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-N.Y.) unveiled it last month, with great fanfare, as a nonbinding congressional resolution that aims to replicate Franklin Roosevelt’s efforts to end the Great Depression via a government takeover of large portions of the U.S. economy. (Senator Edward J. Markey, D-Mass., is the resolution’s Senate sponsor. But during the press conference, the 72-year-old stood well behind the photogenic and media-savvy Ocasio-Cortez.)

Consider that this proposal to end all fossil-fuel use by substituting energy from “renewable” and other carbon-free sources, and to retrofit or replace every energy-wasting building in the country, is actually only a tiny slice of a pie-in-the-sky program for transforming America.

No, the Green New Deal isn’t just about global warming. It’s also a vast utopian social program promising:

  • guaranteed “family-sustaining wage” jobs for those who work;
  • guaranteed no-strings welfare for those who would rather not work;
  • guaranteed housing; guaranteed “food security”; guaranteed higher education;
  • universal single-payer health coverage;
  • paid medical leave;
  • paid family leave;
  • paid vacations;
  • paid retirements;
  • an end to racial and sex discrimination;
  • new respect for “migrants” and “indigenous peoples”; and
  • trees planted everywhere.

USA Today editor David Mastio counted 55 separate social and economic problems that the Green New Deal expects to solve by 2030, none of which has much, if anything, to do with climate change. Mastio called this attempt to tackle every “problem you can think of” all at the same time (and all within the space of a single decade) “certifiable.”

President Trump was even more withering, in a speech to the Conservative Political Action Conference over the weekend: “When the wind stops blowing, that’s the end of your electric. Let’s hurry up. Darling? Darling, is the wind blowing today? I’d like to watch television, darling.

Then, of course, there’s the matter of the “farting cows.” They—and the aspiration to “fully get rid of” these gaseous, cud-chewing bovines by 2030—don’t appear by exactly that epithet in the resolution itself, but rather, in a “frequently asked questions” fact sheet that went up on Rep. Ocasio-Cortez’s congressional website and got sent to various news organizations on the morning of the February 7 press conference. The fact sheet was hastily taken down and explained away as an “unfinished draft” after people started laughing.

Nonetheless, flatulent cattle seem to be a major source of methane gas, an even more powerful contributor to global warming than carbon dioxide, so the congressional resolution includes “working collaboratively with farmers and ranchers in the United States to remove pollution and greenhouse gas emissions from the agricultural sector as much as is technologically feasible.” That sounds a lot like getting rid of cows. And indeed, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez declared on a Showtime comedy program that she didn’t quite want to force all Americans to turn vegan, but “maybe we shouldn’t be eating a hamburger for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.”

There was more laughter when, a few days later, a bystander took a picture of the new congresswoman dining out with one of her staffers, who happened to be devouring what looked very much like . . . a well-stacked and beefy burger. Rep. Ocasio-Cortez is not known for her sense of humor, and she lashed out on Twitter against the “stalkerish” “dude” who had “creepily” displayed a cat-may-look-at-a-queen attitude in daring to photograph her in a public place.

Bullet Trains and Boondoggles

And then there is the transportation-transforming linchpin of the Green New Deal: the “clean,” electricity-powered bullet train. “High-speed rail at a scale where air travel stops becoming necessary” was the way the since-removed fact sheet had described this fossil fuel-avoidance measure. Or, to quote blunter language elsewhere in that embarrassing document: we can reach zero net emissions when we “ fully get rid of . . . airplanes.” The resolution’s language is a little calmer: “investing in . . . clean, affordable, and accessible transportation; and high-speed rail.”

Except that, oops—less than a week after the press conference, California’s Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom announced that he was pulling the plug on most of that state’s own high-speed rail project (the only one in the country) owing to huge projected cost-overruns and the fact that hardly any Californians of either political party wanted the thing built.

The bullet train, approved by the state’s voters in 2008, was initially supposed to hurtle passengers from Los Angeles to San Francisco via a two-and-a-half-hour ride at a total cost of $40 billion—all to be completed by 2018. But opposition from the get-go from environmentalists, wealthy coast-dwellers, Silicon Valley tech lords who didn’t want the trains whooshing past their backyards, and Latino activists in Southern California who didn’t want the above-grade tracks planted in their communities, forced the state government to move the train’s initial construction to California’s distant rural inland—where there was plenty of antagonism from farmers objecting to having their orchards sliced in half. But there weren’t that many farmers, and they tended to vote Republican, anyway. So the train’s initial phase wouldn’t link Los Angeles and San Francisco but out-of-the-way Madera and Bakersfield, populations 55,000 and 400,000 respectively, with a spur up to Merced, population 83,000, which isn’t even on the original San Francisco route.

Jokes about “the train to nowhere” aside, repeated construction delays (not a single foot of track has yet been laid), alleged mismanagement, enormous cost overruns (the total projected price of the train shot up to $77 billion), and the fact that massively debt-ridden California has virtually no money for infrastructure of any kind clearly led the new Governor to pull the plug on all but that Bakersfield segment, which is at least partially built.

And then the Trump administration stepped in on February 19 with plans to claw back nearly $3.5 billion in federal funding for the train, canceling a $929 million grant and demanding that California return $2.5 billion that it has already spent. The Trump Department of Transportation seems well within its legal rights: The disputed money is part of an Obama-era stimulus package dating from 2009 that, among other things, required California to put up matching funds on a dollar-for-dollar basis by 2017 in order to qualify for the federal outlays. By doing some regulatory jiggery-pokery in 2016, a train-loving Obama administration extended the deadline and essentially absolved the state from the matching-funds requirement, turning its stimulus grants into an open-ended—and unmonitored—cash advance. Pointing out that California is not expected to meet even a generously extended 2022 construction deadline for the segment of the train that it still plans to build, Trump’s DoT decided to undo the Obama dispensation.

There is now a standoff: Governor Newsom is refusing to return the money, and President Trump is mocking the train project on Twitter, calling it a “disaster” and “out of control.”

The bullet-train debacle in California—an overwhelmingly Democratic state whose elected officials are moving it even farther to the Left than it was in 2008, when then-Governor Jerry Brown started dangling high-speed rail in front of the populace—ought to operate as a metonymic example of what the Green New Deal as a whole is likely to be if anyone tries to implement it. Any program that would scale up an already-failed, and frighteningly expensive, transportation mode to replace the airplane and the motor vehicle as the principal way to get Americans around merits a jaundiced look.

What about China as a model? True, China has something like 15,000 miles of bullet-train track that it was able to build in short order because a totalitarian government can simply bulldoze objectors out of the way. But as of 2017, the state-owned railway company reported a high-speed debt load of more than $700 billion (not even counting some construction costs) since China’s trains, like high-speed trains nearly everywhere else in the world, cannot pay for themselves without government subsidies. An analysis of the Green New Deal’s high-speed rail provisions by the American Action Forum, a center-Right economic policy think tank headed by Douglas  Holtz-Eakin, used California extrapolations to estimate that the cost of building 19,500 miles of rail across the United States—enough possibly to supplant at least some air travel—would amount to $2.5 trillion plus another $167 billion for rolling stock.

And that is just a rounding error for the Green New Deal, which the Holtz-Eakin team estimates could cost from $51 trillion to $93 trillion over its 10-year lifespan. (Annual U.S. gross domestic product is about $20 trillion.) The total cost of eliminating carbon dioxide from the power and transportation sectors would run between $8.3 trillion and $12.3 trillion. This is not even to take into account the bulk of the Green New Deal’s costs, which would come from its non-climate-change economic and social programs: between $42.8 trillion and $80.6 trillion for providing jobs and healthcare for all, according to Holtz-Eakin and company.

Bossing Us in a Socialistic Direction

But of course the Green New Deal isn’t really about building bullet trains, or achieving net-zero carbon emissions, or free healthcare, or government-subsidized college. It’s about a monumental political transformation. And here, the congresswoman is in tune with her generation. An August 2018 Gallup poll revealed that 51 percent of U.S. millennials have a positive view of socialism, which is by its very nature devoted to top-down transformation, with government owning or controlling the means of economic production and making sure those who live under it abide by its rules. It’s no accident that Ocasio-Cortez’s Green New Deal seeks to control private life—hamburger consumption—as well as public structures. Speaking at a recent event, she played to her youthful political base and excoriated critics who deem the Green New Deal vague or unrealistic. They ought to come up with their own climate-change proposals if they don’t like hers, she smirked. “Until you do it, I’m the boss.” That’s quite a message.

Right now, with her social media appeal and knack for putting herself at the center of public attention, Rep. Ocasio-Cortez is the boss. She owns the Democratic Party and its liberal-media camp followers, who hang on her every tweet. Announced and expected Democratic presidential contenders for 2020—Cory Booker, Greg Buttigieg, Kirsten Gillibrand, Kamala Harris, Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders, and Elizabeth Warren—have scrambled to sign on to a measure that all of them must know stands little chance of ever working its way into law, if only because of its staggering price tag. Even so, the Green New Deal has its practical side. It has very effectively demonstrated, and may help accelerate, a radical leftward lurch by a Democratic Party that now seems determined to exercise total social and economic control over the rest of America if it attains the power it desires.

Reader Discussion

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on March 06, 2019 at 10:38:52 am

I find it very hard to believe that any voter over the age of maybe 30 takes the GND or AOC or anything she has to say seriously. Is it really the case that adult Democratic voters in this country will elect additional AOC types, so that all of the POTUS candidates feel they must bow and scrape and kiss her ring? Her, a mental child? Can that really be true of adult Democratic voters in this country?

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on March 06, 2019 at 11:36:33 am

One of my early and not even taken seriously by my grandmother was that we could harness the two Monfort feedlots at Greeley to provide the residential energy needs of the Denver Metro area and possibly all of Colorado. But 90 percent of what is proposed over beer in watering holes adjacent to law schools never makes its way into serious policy discussions in the hallowed halls of the statehouse. Perhaps my progressive creds come into question when it is known
that I was affiliated at one point with the beef industry--or at least had worn an Angus breeder's cap and Nocona boots. I happen to see AOC as a young woman who has ideas that give the old among us cause to to think.At least she has ideas. But it gives us a challenge to figure something out which will work scientifically, economically and politically.

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Earl Haehl
on March 06, 2019 at 11:46:47 am

Sorry Earl. AOC's rantings do not rise to the level of "ideas." They are more like imaginings, as in the John Lennon song of that name.

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on March 06, 2019 at 12:01:46 pm

Why would we expect Democratic voters to be any different than Republican ones?

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on March 06, 2019 at 12:17:04 pm

Take my wife. Please.

But seriously folks, and you've been a great audience, Democrats won't stop telling us how superior they are to Republicans, in every way: intelligence, education, knowledge, reasoning, lifestyle, morality. So if a Democrat is going to liken AOC to Trump, then that is itself an answer to my question.

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Image of QET
on March 06, 2019 at 12:50:39 pm

I am reminded of Edmund Burke and Samuel Johnson.

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Image of Kas Zoller
Kas Zoller
on March 06, 2019 at 14:00:23 pm

"Why would we expect Democratic voters to be any different than Republican ones?"

Chiefly because there is, in fact, a methane gas problem. That pesky gas is resident between the ears of, and emanates not from our bovine friends but rather from the mouths of this gaseous, air-headed cadres of Democratic socialism devotees.

That IS why!

Another reason is simply this:

It is Democrat / Proggies that believe that they are sufficiently knowledge, not to mention morally superior, to control every aspect of human interaction.

After all, "I AM the Boss."

What an idiot!

But what is worse is this. The Democrat Party is in need of some adult supervision. Presently it is commanded by a legion of COWARDS, so fearful of angering any one of their multitude of constituencies that they are forced into passivity.

Bring back the smoke filled rooms. At least, tobacco usage being restricted to those over the age of 18 years, presupposes that SOME ADULTS were in the room.

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Image of gabe
on March 06, 2019 at 15:38:58 pm

The first inquiry for anyone who wishes to seriously engage in the "climate change" debate is not whether CO2 concentrations are increasing, or whether the temperature effects of CO2 are swamped by water vapor, or whether the data upon which climate models are based contain enough information to be useful. The preliminary question is why the scientific discussion of climate change is not scientific. Declaring that the premise of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming is "incontrovertible" is not scientific. Scientific journals publishing sensational rather than rigorous papers supporting the global warming thesis while denying consideration of conflicting views is not scientific. Allowing ad hominem arguments to substitute for analysis of conflicting claims is not scientific. Uncritically adjusting data to conform with preconceived notions is not scientific. The discouraging of and active suppression of skepticism is not scientific. It is rather like the case of the medieval Inquisition pondering the best way to identify witches, rather than questioning whether there were such things as witches; the existence of witches of course being "incontrovertible."

This leaves the Green New Dealer with something of a dilemma. Science "experts" have identified a peril too grave to submit to scientific scrutiny and scientific skepticism. We must believe the scientist when he assures us that the only way forward is to abandon science. Even if one were to overlook this Carollian paradox, one must still contemplate the ecological consequences of the proposed remedies, and cannot help but be puzzled at the rejection of nuclear power to mitigate carbon emissions. If the emergency is the insertion of CO2 into the atmosphere, it seems logical and in fact scientific to embrace processes that produce no CO2.

Of course, one may start with the hypothesis that all things have an explanation, even paradoxes, delusions, and dogmas. It is reasonable to ask what explains political embrace of "climate change" as a basis for policy. It is reasonable to ask if politics affects the state of scientific understanding through selective subsidy and career pressures, skewing the debate for political advantage. It is reasonable to ask what single payer healthcare, or minimum wage laws and family leave have to do with the frequencies at which CO2 absorbs and emits radiation. It is reasonable to ask why any climate change activists themselves use airplanes and air conditioners, or buy products produced in countries where CO2 emissions are increasing. In short, it is reasonable to ask if the people who profess to be most alarmed about climate change, are really more interested in something else.

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on March 06, 2019 at 16:01:59 pm

If flatulent cattle are a major source of climate-warming methane gas, was Global Warming postponed by America's sudden, near-total extinction of American Bison (European bison then already being on their last legs)? If so, then , what does the rest of the human race owe America?

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George Steven Swan
on March 06, 2019 at 16:11:01 pm

It is reasonable to ask if politics affects the state of scientific understanding through selective subsidy and career pressures, skewing the debate for political advantage.


Moreover, anyone who has ever actually been a part of a group effort to reach a "consensus" on any matter knows exactly how any "consensus" is formed. There are in any group persons with stronger wills and persons with weaker wills. The stronger wills dominate--through a combination of sheer natural personal strength or charisma with one or more of the elements you mention--and the weaker wills submit, and not because they arrived at the result urged by the stronger wills independently, coolly and rationally and in isolation from any kind of peer pressure. And once one has allowed oneself to be pressured into committing oneself in such a setting, one rarely if ever denies or retracts it, for fear of being confronted in a hostile manner by the stronger wills (who also usually wield the material weapons you mention) whose desires are presented as the consensus and who are publicly identified with the position taken. This is also why, in the face of contrary evidence, the consensus-formers usually react in a very hostile, emotional, unscientific fashion and double, triple down on their original position. The notion that, because one is a "scientist" or a "professor of something or other", one somehow transcends ordinary human psychic processes so that any skepticism in others is completely impermissible, is absurd.

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on March 06, 2019 at 17:17:48 pm

"It is reasonable to ask if politics affects the state of scientific understanding through selective subsidy and career pressures, skewing the debate for political advantage."

indeed it has; thus the state of the "university". and it has been so ever since American universities and intellectuals fell under the spell of the German School.

This leads me to an anwer to both Z's question:

"In short, it is reasonable to ask if the people who profess to be most alarmed about climate change, are really more interested in something else."

and nobody.really's question:

"“Why would we expect Democratic voters to be any different than Republican ones?”"

BECAUSE the Proggies and the AOC / Climate warriors are concerned primarily with power and aspire to regulate EVERY SINGLE aspect of human interaction. "Give up your Burgers, kiddies. It ain;t good for you or the planet. Meanwhile I will determine what you shall eat, what the caloric content shall be and the manner in which such food shall be raised / provided."

(Borrowing from John Marini's excellent analysis of the origins and effects of the Administrative State, there is this:)

" One important Progressive thinker, Mary Parker Follett [concludes]:
"Democracy has meant too many "natural" rights, liberty, and "equality" The acceptance of the group principle defines for us in truer fashion those watchwords OF THE PAST [caps mine]. If my TRUE self is the group self, then my only rights are those which membership in the GROUP gives me. The OLD idea of natural rights postulated the particularist individual; WE know now that NO SUCH INDIVIDUAL EXISTS. The group and the individual come into existence simultaneously; with this GROUP-MAN comes group rights. Thus man can have no rights apart from society or independent of society or AGAINST society. {don't dare stand in the way of AOC and other airheads, BTW] Particularist rights are ruled out as everything particularist is ruled out...The truth of the matter is that our only concern with "rights" is NOT TO PROTECT THEM buit to CREATE them. Our efforts are to be bent not upon guarding the rights which Heaven has showered upon us, but in creating all the rights we shall ever have."

A tad bit presumptuous on a number of counts, wouldn't you agree?
Follett, incidentally was a rather influential Progressive voice of the time.

Here again, we have Follett making plain the intentions of the new rational scientific elites envisioned:

"... as the group ABOLISHES individual rights , so it gives us a true definition of liberty. We have seen that the free man is he wo actualizes the WILL OF THE WHOLE. I HAVE NO LIBERTY EXCEPT AS AN ESSENTIAL MEMBER OF THE GROUP...to OBEY the group which we have helped to make and of which we are an integral part is to be free because we are then obeying our self. [Orwell must be jealous of Folletts prose]....The State must be no external authority which restrains and regulates me, but it must be myself acting as the State in EVERY SMALLEST DETAIL OF LIFE. [Again, Orwell would be proud of doublespeak predating his own works by several decades].

This is what motivates the Statist such as A(irhead)O(n)C(all) and the rest of the Proggie contingents.
As Z says, it is not about climate so much as it is about the "rational state" (Marini coined the term) presumptuous aspirations to control every smallest detail of life AND convincing you that subjugation is freedom because you are part of a hole. Oops, I must have meant "whole."

Nobody really believes that Republicans and Democrats are similar in intentions, motivations and rationality.

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Image of gabe
on March 06, 2019 at 17:18:19 pm

[…] My latest for Law & Liberty: […]

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Image of Me for Law & Liberty: Green New Deal means no planes, no automobiles, but $2.6 trillion worth of high-speed trains | Stupid Girl
Me for Law & Liberty: Green New Deal means no planes, no automobiles, but $2.6 trillion worth of high-speed trains | Stupid Girl
on March 06, 2019 at 17:33:48 pm

I had never noticed how much the comments here resemble the comments on an anti-vaccination blog. Everything's a conspiracy theory. Can't trust experts. Can't trust evidence, 'cuz it comes from experts.

It's a perspective. It's immune to disproof. And where it leads is clear enough.

Me? I'm just another dupe for inoculation.

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Image of nobody.really
on March 06, 2019 at 17:51:40 pm

Indeed. you DO NEED to be innoculated, Dear Boy.
I fear however that the disease of "statism" may have already to fully permeated your singular biochemistry.

As for evidence, WE welcome real evidence - not the doctored statistices coming from the likes of Michael Mann and others.
You do realize that ALL THE CLIMATE MODELS, and they are, in fact, nothing more than MODELS require a substantail *adjustment* to correct for - well what do they correct for? - they correct for the absence of empirical data supporting the underlying theses.

Check them out one day. Notice also how the climate warriors are rather selective in the data they input - or even the tree rings they include in their studies or the fact that the Meander Minimum is not properly accounted for when graphing historic changes in temperature; or the fact that EVERY SINGLE one of the warriors predictions have failed to materialize.

Yep - you folks do love *evidence* - only that which supports your silly ass and unverified theories.

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Image of gabe
on March 06, 2019 at 18:07:10 pm

Oops, forgot this:

The Statists MUST depict their unsupported claims / charges / assertions and fantastic hypothesis as "science.
Recall that at the advent of the Progressive Era, the new Positivists / Hegelians / Rationalists arrogated to themselves and their new "conception" / role of the State the mantle of "scientific", with near Darwinian explanatory / predictive power (no joke, they actually claimed that Darwins theory fully supported Historicism).
It was, and IS essential to the transformative Progressive task before these statists that they be perceived as defenders of science, rationalism and empiricism. This claim, incidentally, continues to be made notwithstanding the Progressives infatuation with such science as phrenology, eugenics, psychiatry and, (you will get a kick out of this) "social physics", the name originally given to sociology bu August Comte. Notice that at the outset of this pernicious Progressive ideology that the mantle of *science* is indelibly wedded to the cause of Statism

Nobody (see his comment below):

Science REQUIRES a number of things. One of them is "falsifiability" - an element that is apparently missing from the climate theories that are ever changing in scope, methods AND date. How falsifiable is a theory when *polar* (pun intended) opposites are both employed to buttress a theory.
Another requirement is that the theory demonstrate some predictive utility. Every last one of these * scientific* predictions has failed to come to fruition.

I could go on...
BUT, frankly, one grows weary contending with regurgitated, unsubstantiated "sound bites", rhetoric and perennial falsehoods.

Just for the record: Now Norwegian and German scientists have demonstrated that the single biggest component of temperature over time is "radiation from the Sun", the output of which is NOT CONSTANT. Thus, my allusion to the Meander Minim,um, an extended period of dramatically decreased sunspot activity. BTW: It is also known as the Little Ice Age. so much for f'in cow farts and CO2 gas.

Keep doing YOUR science. It does keep me in my preferred state of bemusement!

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on March 06, 2019 at 18:17:18 pm

Oops, again. What a knucklehead I am.

Should be: Maunder Minimum not meander which could conceivably characterize nobody's eclectic approach while slinging the usual Proggie talking points, - Ha! Just kidding, nobody!

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Image of gabe
on March 06, 2019 at 18:21:46 pm

Every generation since the 60's has not known what it is to be poor and have to struggle to survive. They have been indoctrinated that you should not need to work, only be happy. So when someone promises that, its the promise that they vote for. Who wants to worry about Reality. It sucks.

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Image of Ian Hunter
Ian Hunter
on March 06, 2019 at 18:34:07 pm

I’m curious to know if the author thinks it is possible, even if not likely, that human activity influences climate, and if so, what kind of evidence would she find persuasive. Alternatively, what evidence would convince her, if she is not already convinced, and perhaps more importantly, those on the left that it is very unlikely and perhaps even impossible that human activity influences climate.

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Kas Zoller
on March 06, 2019 at 21:46:05 pm

Back off, man. I’m a scientist.

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Image of Peter
on March 07, 2019 at 01:33:31 am

You may recall what socialist guarantees have been worth in the past.

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Uncle Dan
on March 07, 2019 at 08:42:25 am

I think you are missing the point. The issue is not whether it is "possible" that human activity "influences" the climate. Of course it is possible. I don't know of anyone who denies the mere possibility. Everything that has not already falsified is possible. For example: it is possible there are unicorn herds roaming the taiga. And "influence" means what, exactly? A butterfly's wings have been "modeled" as influencing the climate.

More importantly, the reasoning from the premise of "possible influence" to the conclusion of "we'll be extinct in 12 years if we don't immediately do everything in the GND" is what people are, rightly, skeptical of. You may say "science" all you like, and so I will ask you: how will you react to evidence that "science" has often been very wrong before on a host of matters? Also, do you think it is possible, even if not likely, that the "scientists" who say we will all be dead in 12 years are wrong? Alternatively, what evidence would convince you that it is very unlikely, and perhaps even impossible, that they are wrong? Would evidence that "scientists" just 40 years ago predicted an imminent ice age cause you to view their current predictions skeptically? How about when they said 20 years ago that we would all be dead, or our coastal cities all under water, in 10 years' time?

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Image of QET
on March 07, 2019 at 08:53:43 am

Perhaps you are equally a dupe for GMOs? Personally I have had nearly every innoculation available, and eaten many a GMO. But that's just me. However, one thing that the anti-vaxxers and the anti-GMOers (found disproportionately on the climate-enlightened Left, fancy that) do not have in common with the climate zealots, is that the former only wish to be permitted their own personal decisions; they are not seeking to prevent everyone else from being vaccinated or eating GMOs. No Vaccine New Deal calling for the total elimination of all vaccines in 10 years' time.

And as far as your announced standard: science is not a matter of "trust." Trust is synonymous with faith; you know, the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen. Calling a person "anti-science" because they will not simply believe everything that comes out of the mouth of a so-called "expert" (how and by whom is that modern title of nobility awarded, anyway?) is oxymoronic, and I don't take you for a moron.

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on March 07, 2019 at 10:02:05 am

Some fodder for the believers:

"Senator Tim Worth, 1992: "We have got to ride the global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, we will be doing the right thing in terms of economic policy and environmental policy."

Mikhail Gorbachev, former chief communist on the planet, 1996: "The threat of environmental crisis will be the international disaster key to unlock the New World Order."

Richard Benedick, U.S. State Department, 1992: "A global warming treaty must be implemented even if there is no scientific evidence to back the greenhouse effect.""

Yep, there is no doubt that the climate warriors hearts are in the right place! AND they do SO love science.

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Image of gabe
on March 07, 2019 at 12:09:00 pm


Excellent point! It is interesting to consider what the discussion would look like if proponents of vaccination treated the issue like climate change.

1.) There would be serious consideration given to the claim that oxygen is a virus.

2.) People who followed advice and abstained from flu shots due to an egg allergy would be derided as selfish defeatists who cannot see the big picture.

3.) There would be a clique of investigators who, in clandestine e-mails, discuss how to massage the history of the black death to be more narrative-friendly.

4.) If the number of scientific papers discussing the relationship between flu shots and Guillain-Barre syndrome made up only 3 percent of the literature, this would be paraded as proof that the claim that vaccines can cause side effects is rejected by 97% of "scientists."

5.) If some unfortunate soul should die in a skydiving accident this would be seized upon as proof that everyone should have the HPV shot.

6.) If a flu season is lighter than expected, worse than expected, if the vaccines available are less effective, more effective, if more people have side effects, fewer have side effects, if there is an uptick in the incidence of pancreatic cancer, a decrease in the incidence of pancreatic cancer...whatever, each will be claimed to be exactly what was predicted by vaccination proponents.

7.) Researchers who point out that a flu vaccine in a particular year was not 100% effective would be lumped in with people who deny that flu vaccines are effective at all, and those that recognize a risk of rare neurologic complications would be grouped with those who claim that vaccines cause autism.

Fortunately, the sciences of contagion and immunology have a more dignified and credible pedigree than what currently passes for climate science.

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on March 07, 2019 at 12:30:26 pm


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Image of QET
on March 07, 2019 at 12:52:44 pm

Yeah, the next time nobody.really offers another plea of in hoc signe scientiae vincit, I am going to nominate him/her for life membership in the Edinburgh Phrenological Society.

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Image of QET
on March 07, 2019 at 13:11:23 pm

Second QET's comment.

Then again, immunology is a) understood ONLY by scientists, b) is practiced, developed and enhanced by scientists and c) does not enjoy the putative benefits of a rather large contingent of media and social scientists *groupies."

As for climate science, only "c" obtains with the composition of the IPCC populated *primarily* by journalists, politicians and social scientists.

nobody is quite right. this is a questionable pedigree.

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Image of gabe
on March 08, 2019 at 15:19:02 pm

Probably AOC has been influenced by a well-known Caribbean song (“merengue”) which says: El trabajo para mi es un enemigo/ el trabajar yo se lo dejo todo al buey / porque el trabajo lo hizo Dios como un castigo” (Work is my enemy / Work is for the oxen / because God created work as a punishment to mankind).

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Image of Thelmo Vargad
Thelmo Vargad
on March 08, 2019 at 15:23:10 pm

Probably AOC has been influenced by a well-known Caribbean song (“merengue”) which says: El trabajo para mi es un enemigo/ el trabajar yo se lo dejo todo al buey / porque el trabajo lo hizo Dios como un castigo” (Work is my enemy / Work I entrust to the oxen / because God created work as a punishment to mankind).

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Image of T. Vargas
T. Vargas
on March 09, 2019 at 16:34:27 pm

It never seem to amaze me how governments can be so creative when it comes to thinking of new ways to tax people. They talking of having a flatulent tax., $175 for dairy cattle, $87.50 for beef cattle and $20 for pig. My farmer friend said that she would pay more tax over the live of her stock than they are worth.
Here is a thought, why don’t we go over to Africa and kill all the elephants, zebras and any other grazing beasts. Has anyone ever stand behind an elephants when they let it rip?
I have even heard of a solar power tax. Once enough homes and businesses have solar panels, we will have to pay tax on how many square meters of solar panels we have. The reason is the sun is a natural resource like oil and gas. We don’t own the ground below us and soon we won’t own the air above us. It is already illegal to catch rain water.

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Image of Gil
on March 11, 2019 at 13:01:56 pm

Oops, how could I mistake the sanity of Z9 for the usual mush from nobody.really.

"nobody is quite right. this is a questionable pedigree."

Should read: "Z is quite right....."

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Image of gabe
on March 12, 2019 at 13:11:49 pm

No problem. And I forgot to include the most obvious item:

If vaccine experts treated the subject like climate change...

8.) The people who advocate most louldy for vaccines would not get vaccinated.

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