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The scariest sentence I've read today

With one exception, none of the Republicans running for the Senate — including the 20 or so with a serious chance of winning — accept the scientific consensus that humans are largely responsible for global warming.

More here.

By Ezra Klein  | October 18, 2010; 10:18 AM ET
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--*the scientific consensus*--

How many people will swallow that without examining it, eh, propaganda boy?

Posted by: msoja | October 18, 2010 10:35 AM | Report abuse

There is no scientific consensus. And what scientific consensus exists is based on outrageously manipulated and flawed data that cannot be peer reviewed because it has been destroyed.

There are many good reasons for investing in clean and renewable energy. Energy independence, clean air and water, national security, to name a few. We should focus on the goals and solutions we can agree on, and the global warming scientists should purge their ranks of the hacks and set themselves to the task of producing transparent and objective data.

Posted by: bgmma50 | October 18, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

And the beat goes on, the relentless drumbeat of climate change deniers.

Posted by: scudderw | October 18, 2010 11:10 AM | Report abuse

bgmma50: "There is no scientific consensus"

Everything I've seen suggests there really is a consensus among scientists (including a large number of scientists who know no more about climatology than you or I, but I digress) that man made global warming is real, and government monies must be appropriated immediately to help them fight it. /snark

However, consensus is not science. It is an opinion. You don't hear the electron model or the Watson Crick model of DNA described as "a consensus". E=mc2 does not describe the consensus on energy/matter conversion.

@Ezra: "With one exception, none of the Republicans running for the Senate — including the 20 or so with a serious chance of winning — accept the scientific consensus that humans are largely responsible for global warming."

One of the best arguments for voting Republican in this election cycle I've seen. And if that's the scariest sentence you've read today, then you need to spend more time on National Review or at Ace of Spades headquarters. You think you're scared now . . . ;)

As bgmma50 suggests, there are many good reasons for investing in clean and renewable energy that don't require painting doomsday scenarios that demand immediate quadrupling of energy prices and the mandated installation of government-controlled thermostats into our houses. Let's got for energy independence, clean air and water, national security, and the benefits of a homegrown, honest-to-gosh green economy (as opposed to one mandated by government fiat) instead, how about? Give that a try? Whaddaya say?

Sigh. Yes, I know what you say. :)

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 18, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

Personally I don't care if global warming exists. If it does, it does. If it doesn't, it doesn't.

I just don't want to pay more for energy while the Democrats exempt lucky chosen groups like the 'poor' from paying the piper.

Posted by: krazen1211 | October 18, 2010 11:17 AM | Report abuse

There is a consensus that if you take a computer model of the atmosphere and dramatically increase CO2 while holding everything else constant, you will get a different result.

Posted by: tl_houston | October 18, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

what do you expect from a party, who now has its leader, someone who can actually stand in front of an audience, and say this...
"They act like they're permanent residents of a unicorn ranch in fantasyland."

what would any of these people know of science?
they mostly despise scientists and intellectuals.
intellectuals, and thinking people, represent a threatening world, that makes them insecure, and threatens their way of seeing the world.
to them, intellectuals, scientists....are as threatening as "foreigners."
so much easier to deny, or mock, or bully, or rouse the crowds with hateful nonsense.
so they ridicule them, and like bullies, mock them.
the people who are leading the republican party now, who have completely silenced and intimidated any voice of courage or reason , that existed in their own party, are destroying our country, our future....
let them eat hot dogs.

Posted by: jkaren | October 18, 2010 11:39 AM | Report abuse

"And the beat goes on, the relentless drumbeat of climate change deniers.

Posted by: scudderw'

If you are referring to me, scudderw, I'm not a denier, or even a skeptic. I'm willing to be persuaded, but I want rigorous, transparent, objective, and peer reviewed data. We don't have that. Those hacks at East Anglia may have been absolved of outright fraud, but in no way have their data and methodologies been vindicated. And since the original data have been destroyed, there is no way to adequately reconstruct their manipulated analysis.

The warmists are proposing draconian solutions that will have enormous adverse impacts on our economy and life style. At the very least they should be required to prove their case with scientific rigor.

Posted by: bgmma50 | October 18, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

And yet Democrats are furious with Chinese clean energy subsidies...

I'll go ahead and agree with the claim that climate change is a real and particularly serious problem.

We have had Democratic control of the White House and Congress - control that was known at the time to be quite temporary in nature - and *nothing* was accomplished on this front.

The Dems had a chance to work with Lindsey Graham on this issue and they blew it.

"And this is why Graham is angry: He's taken a huge risk to be the lone Republican on climate change. Patrick Creighton, a flack for the conservative Institute for Energy Research, says that Graham's involvement makes him "part of one of the most economically devastating pieces of legislation this country has ever seen, no more, no less." And now it looks like Democrats are going to leave that hanging there, moving to an immigration reform effort that won't pass but might split the Republican Party -- creating massive problems for pro-reform Republicans like, well, Lindsey Graham."

So there goes the 'collective action' rationale for government intervention. Even if there are good reasons for the coercive government intervention, we can fully expect the government to drop the ball for political reasons - nevermind the intrusion against personal liberty such coercive action would entail.

It's the same with the military - national defense is good, but coercive taxation has funneled too much cash into the beast. Our Department of Defense is a trillion dollar enterprise that tries to police the world, creating new enemies by the day. That military, by the way, is probably keeping the cost of oil well below where it would otherwise be by ensuring a stable supply.

You can support doing something about climate change, but you shouldn't trust politicians to get it done for you.

In fact, you can trust the pols to subsidize dirty energy (either directly or through infrastructure spending), carbon emissions from livestock (agriculture subsidies), and to top it off they'll whine and moan over China's clean energy subsidies.

For all we know, a free society would be doing on lot better on the carbon emission front.

Posted by: justin84 | October 18, 2010 11:50 AM | Report abuse

Based on their lack of action, none of the Democrats currently in Congress accept that scientific consensus either. Do you think Barney Frank would fly around on private jets if he thought it would contribute to a climate catastrophe?

Posted by: tomtildrum | October 18, 2010 12:10 PM | Report abuse

@bgamma 11:42

No, there is no problem with the studies. The private emails which were stolen and published it turns out were bad PR, but there was never a problem with the science and that has been verified.

The proposed changes were never draconian, but the changes necessary in the future will be both draconian and insufficient to prevent great suffering. It needn't have been this way. The Republicans chose to demagogue this issue to win a temporary electoral victory.

Bgamma, if you're truly willing to be convinced, seek information outside partisan sources. Try speaking to an actual climate scientist, if only to suss out whether they're all inhuman monsters or just scientists trying to figure out what's true.

This needn't be a partisan issue. Frankly, I don't care which party is in power if real problems are being addressed with real solutions. The refusal of the Republicans to treat anything as serious other than their own re-election chances has turned me into a hardened partisan.

Posted by: dfhoughton | October 18, 2010 12:12 PM | Report abuse

"Denier", "science is settled", "consensus":

All seek to end the discussion without actually having to address any matter of substance, by appealing to authority or questioning the motivation or competence of anybody who doesn't buy the whole AGW hypothesis hook, line, and sinker.

Tell me again about "open minds".

Posted by: tl_houston | October 18, 2010 12:32 PM | Report abuse

I guess it is scary to the climate alarmists that Republicans are not toeing the line that mankind sucks and must be controlled by government, and have their money redistributed.

Consensus is not science. And the original NY Times editorial, which could be considered an "in kind" campaign contribution, actually offers no science.

Posted by: NCDevil | October 18, 2010 1:11 PM | Report abuse

I don't to get into the consensus on climate change, so I'll just agree with Kevin Willis (and other, if I missed them) that we should at least be able to agree that there are plenty of good reasons to support investments in green technology and policies that transition us away from carbon consumption. I'd happily accept the 20 Republican candidates who might win (on this issue at least) if they all made this distinction. Sadly, I think it's probably just going to mean no energy bill. That would likely to be seen as a legislative victory for the Dems, and if there's one thing Republican candidates *do* seem onboard for, it's trying to give legislative losses to the Dems.

Posted by: MosBen | October 18, 2010 1:14 PM | Report abuse

I'm not Republican and have degrees in physics and engineering. In 2007, when I first started looking into he literature for myself when checking into 'skeptic' claims, I was shocked to find a great many papers had been swept under the rug to create and hold the so-called 'consensus' together.

Since then, the case against CO2 being a primary driver of 20th century climate change has only gotten stronger. As James "Gaia" Lovelock said last March, "The great climate science centres around the world are more than well aware how weak their science is. If you talk to them privately they're scared stiff of the fact that they don't really know what the clouds and the aerosols are doing. They could be absolutely running the show. We haven't got the physics worked out yet."

One might wonder why Lovelock's experts are "scared stiff" they've got it wrong while Ezra Klein is so sure they've gotten it right. In 2007, I became convinced that solar and cosmic ray effects on clouds and aerosols were a missing piece of the puzzle, and that IPCC-brand science was doing its best to ignore this possibility for the last two decades.

Left leaning politicians hitched their bandwagon to CO2 command and control years ago; sorry, Mr. Klein, but it's mired in the mud of bad science and is no longer being pulled forward.

Posted by: ggoodknight | October 18, 2010 1:55 PM | Report abuse

One day historians and our grandchildren will be amazed by this era.

Posted by: RichardHSerlin | October 18, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

Yes, there is a consensus:

Yes, it is an appeal to authority, you know, those who are experts in the field and know what they are talking about rather than lame pundits on polically-motivated corporate media.

No, just because you have degrees in physics and engineering doesn't make anyone an expert. In fact, I have yet to meet an engineer who understands anything about the scientific method.

No, "climate-gate" did not stand for the proposition that the science was wrong. It stood for scientists failed to overlook the fact that other scientists, no matter how biased, still have a say. Of course, that didn't make the soundbites.

Yes, global warming is darn near as close to being a fact as can exist. Arctic ice core samples, anyone? And, yes, whether it is man-made is less certain although the weight of the evidence is very strong.

No, there isn't any academic conspiracy behind global warming. In fact, I seem to recall that the US military has long considered it a national threat. Is that an appeal to an authority you can get behind?

Yes, we should keep an open mind when looking at the data rather than concluding beforehand on which side we'll fall.

Yes, I would bet my life savings that none of the Republicans running for the Senate have read any scientific research on the issue, or frankly, any scientific research at all.

Yes, I think science education in the U.S. is pathetic.

And, yes, I think the U.S. is doomed if our voting decisions continue to be based on whether we can see ourselves having a beer or glass of wine with the candidate.

Posted by: Scott85 | October 18, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

"The refusal of the Republicans to treat anything as serious other than their own re-election chances has turned me into a hardened partisan."

Posted by: dfhoughton

And yet you advise me to seek out non-partisan sources. :) Somehow, I suspect that you would characterize as "partisan" any source that reaches a different conclusion than yours.

When climategate broke out, I spent a considerable amount of time reading detailed accounts of those emails and what was in them, including a lot of original text. You don't have to be a scientist to recognize when data and statistics are being manipulated to achieve a desired result.
This Republican already supports the development of clean and renewable energy for the reasons given, but refuses to be stampeded into throwing hundreds of billions of dollars away on the basis of dubious science.

Posted by: bgmma50 | October 18, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

"The great climate science centres around the world are more than well aware how weak their science is. If you talk to them privately they're scared stiff of the fact that they don't really know what the clouds and the aerosols are doing. They could be absolutely running the show. We haven't got the physics worked out yet."

I note that in going right for a personal attack and an attack on all engineers, no matter their training in the physical sciences, Scott85 whisles right past this duesey.

The so-called consensus is paved with relentless attacks on anyone calling the science into question. You might ask yourself what possible motivation Lovelock would have to lie about the private misgivings that senior climate scientists have about their work product, or why those climate scientists would whisper in private what they dare not admit in public.

Posted by: ggoodknight | October 18, 2010 6:53 PM | Report abuse

First, there is no consensus. There is dissent in every scientific body and there is no major agreement on the IPCC report that is finalized by the politically appointed lead authors.

Second, real science requires that all conclusions can be reached independently from the original data and methodology. That is not possible for the global temperature reconstructions because the raw data was destroyed and the algorithms that adjust the data have never been released.

Third, much of the dendro field has been exposed as sloppy and incapable of using the scientific method to reach valid conclusions. Mann, Briffa, Jones, Hughes, Bradley, and the rest of the gang have shown to be incapable of archiving their proxies properly, have not published verification statistics, or disclosed metadata and adjustment algorithms. The reason for this is obvious; no serious physical scientist would be impressed by their low standards and their less than rigorous methodology.

Forth, modelers do not really add much to the scientific discussion because they are not real scientists. They simply play with assumptions and fudge factors in the hope that they could come up with something that could be used to explain the past and make accurate predictions about the futures. So far, the models have had a very poor record in both.

Fifth, the IPCC argument goes like this: 'Because we can't explain how natural factors could create the warming trend that we have seen over the past three decades it must be human emissions of CO2 that is the cause.' The problem with that argument is very clear. Ignorance of natural factors is not proof that something else is causing the variation in temperature trends. Most recently scientists have shown that the solar effect has had an important effect on temperatures. Other scientists have shown that the phases of the AMO and PDO correlate much better to the observed temperatures than CO2 does. Yet other scientists have found that emissions of carbon black have had a significant warming effect in the Arctic. When we examine the actual scientific studies we find that other scientists do not agree with the IPCC that natural factors are not material.

The bottom line is that the IPCC is a political body that does not do science at all and does not review science well. It has been controlled by a small group of lead authors who have often changed the text written by the scientists who contributed to the chapters to the point where they make claims that were not supported by the majority of scientists who worked on the chapter. This makes the AGW conclusions a political construct that is not supported by real science. This debate is very easy to end. All we need to do is to open up the process to external review and end small groups making material changes behind closed doors without actual justification.

Posted by: VangelV | October 18, 2010 7:47 PM | Report abuse

Scott85:"No, just because you have degrees in physics and engineering doesn't make anyone an expert. In fact, I have yet to meet an engineer who understands anything about the scientific method."

Of all the nonsense you posted this one takes the cake. Your words belie your lack of knowledge in all things scientific. Everything, and I mean everything, comes down to physics. I'll take the word of a physicist over a climatologist any day. How does one become a climate expert? Who is the arbiter of such a thing?

Also, I fear you're hanging around with the wrong crowd of engineers because engineers (the good ones, anyway) live and die by the scientific method.

Final question: Do you know what Principal Component Analysis is and how and when it should be properly applied? Neither does Michael Mann. If you're interested at all in what I'm talking about you can investigate at your leisure but be warned, you might not like what you find.

Posted by: Woody7 | October 18, 2010 9:55 PM | Report abuse

Again the author does not even attempt to introduce any evidence that catastrophic warming is taking place, because there is none, & simply uses the "there is a consesus so sgut up" lie. If there were a consensus, or even if the claim were not a piece of big governemnt fascist lying it would be easy for the author to name 2, out of the millions of scientists not funded by government, who support catastrophism. If he can I will certainly publicly apologise to him. If he can't & doesn't retract he is clearly a wholly corrupt hig government fascist.

Over to you Ezra.

Posted by: NeilCraig | October 19, 2010 8:54 AM | Report abuse

Time for Nuremberg Trials for Climate Alarmists!

It will be a glorious day when the Republican controlled Congress begins the Climate Trials.

We will finally see Al Gore, Michael Mann and even Ezra Klein put on trial for fraud, conspiracy and treason.

The Global Religion hoax/fraud/religion is dead!

Posted by: ecocampaigner | October 19, 2010 9:51 AM | Report abuse

The Climate Scientists , Arrhenius, IPCC etc deny reality. They claim that more CO2 or GHGs causes more warming, in spite of the fact that reality proves them wrong every night. In spite of Man producing more CO2 the reduction in the incoming and ground radiated energy photons (used with the GHG in the Greenhouse Effect) causes cooling every night, every winter,, every ice age... Reducing the GHE nightly adds more unused excess GHGs to the air. It is the variation of the energy photons, not the number of excess GHGs in the air that dictates the temperature, and the greenhouse effect. This contradicts the IPCC mantra that more GHGs causes more warming.
Natural changes in the planetary eccentricity changes the amount of energy photons and stored gravitational potential energy that causes the Earth's temperature naturally. The 60 year Jupiter/Saturn orbital resonance causes the 1, 12 (1998 and 2010 peaks)and 60 year Earth temperature cycles (1880, 1940, 1998...) Man has nothing to do with it. see "Gravity causes Climate Change" for more info.
In the air there are excess GHGs and a limited number of photons (1366W/m^2) Adding more GHGs just adds more to the excess. With Excess GHGs there are no excess photons available to produce more warming. Hence adding GHGs just adds more excess GHGs, not more warming. If there were more excess photons available to cause more warming they would just get used and the excess GHGs in the ocean would boil away. News Flash: The oceans have NOT boiled away!!
So called feedback effects where more CO2 causes warming which causes more Water Vapor GHGs which cause more GHE warming, do not exist. There is already excess (20-40,000 ppm) water vapor in the air, when the added CO2 supposedly adds more. Since ground radiation produces about the same number of 15um CO2 absorbable photons as it produces the 20um WV absorbable photons, then we are left with many many more excess GHGs. Man does NOT cause so called feedback effects. Why would Mother Nature wait for man to add more Water Vapor when she can readily use the excess that is already in the air if she wants to.
The so called climate science in the models is a politico-scientific fraud. NASA/GISS is defrauding the public of research money. The NAS is producing fraudulent reports using Government contracts.

Posted by: JDoddsGW | October 19, 2010 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Even a bright highschool student can blow a gaping hole in the very foundation of this global statist War on this building block of life .

Simply adding up the energy impinging on the planet gives a temperature more than 3 times closer to our observed temperature than the impossible 33c deficit it is claimed we would suffer without "greenhouse" gases .

That this fraud could ever get legs shows how pathetic the general understanding of basic physics has become .

Posted by: CoSyBob | October 19, 2010 12:19 PM | Report abuse


I wonder if Ezra is really scared that he will lose his job as a climate change propagandist. Then he might have to work for a living.

Posted by: ecocampaigner | October 19, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

Ezra seems to have decided that he cannot name even 2 scientists, from the large majority not emploted by the state, who support his clearly fraudulaent "consensus".

In which case he would have apologised if had a shadow of integrity.

Posted by: NeilCraig | October 20, 2010 1:05 PM | Report abuse

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