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VIDEO surfaces of Ron Johnson blaming climate change on "sunspot activity"

Ron Johnson, the Tea Party-backed candidate challenging Russ Feingold in Wisconsin, took some flak and generated cable chatter when word surfaced earlier this week that he'd blamed climate change on "sunspot activity."

Johnson originally made the claim to the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel editorial board, and now the paper has posted video on line.

His fuller quote is even more interesting, particularly his evocation of what he called geological time's "sweet spot":

Johnson:

If you take a look at geologic time, we've had huge climate swings. We're sitting here in Wisconsin. Had it not been for climate swings, we'd be sitting on a two or three hundred foot thick glacier. Man wasn't around back then. So no, I absolutely do not believe that the science of man-caused climate change is proven. Not by any stretch of the imagination. I think it's far more likely that it's just sunspot activity, or something just in the geologic eons of time where we have changes in the climate.

The Middle Ages was an extremely warm period of time, too. It wasn't like there were tons of cars on the road. So it always strikes me as a little absurd for anybody to think, Okay, this is the sweet spot in geologic time for climate. And it's such a good place, that we have spent trillions of dollars, and do great harm to our economy, on a fool's errand. I don't think we can do anything about controling what the climate is.

I wonder if the countless scientists studying this issue ever asked themselves whether their scientific models allowed for the possibility that they were erroneously designating this moment geological time's climate change "sweet spot."

Johnson has already made a series of comments that have earned national notice, such as his suggestion that he would only sell BP stock after the market picks up. This latest one is another mark of a phenomenon many have noted: The sudden ability of Tea Party-backed candidates to prevail in GOP primaries has left the national party saddled with candidates whose extreme conservatism and lack of polish threaten the GOP's ability to fully capitalize on the bad environment for Dems.

The GOP's response to that argument has been to ask: Well, why are our candidates so competitive, then? And in this case, it's true that Feingold is locked in an extremely tough contest.

By Greg Sargent  |  August 20, 2010; 1:47 PM ET
Categories:  2010 elections , Climate change  
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Next: Dem candidates balk at ending tax cuts for rich

Comments

Psychotic. Ignorant. Debunked.

But this: "Man wasn't around back then"

Is genuinely stupid.

Man WAS around during the ice age.

And this: "it's just sunspot activity, or something"

Shows he's just throwing keywords out there without having the most basic understanding of what he's talking about.

Another lunatic idiot. 'Lunatic' for believing climate denial conspiracies and 'idiot' for being a candidate for national office and not doing the first bit of fact checking, particularly on an issue with such detailed scientific analysis and a preponderance of evidence to the contrary of his ignorant statements.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 20, 2010 2:02 PM | Report abuse

his general ignorance on the issue is stunning. glaciers were much, much thicker than 'two or three hundred' feet and humans most certainly were around during various glacial periods.

i don't expect him to be an expert, but this level of misinformation is surprising. does he also believe the flintstones is a documentary and cavemen rode dinos?

Posted by: blahgblogwordpresscom | August 20, 2010 2:04 PM | Report abuse

Greg,

See if you can find out what Ron Johnson's energy solutions would look like?

Where does he stand, on ending our dependence on foreign oil, cleaner air, and developing more renewable energy sources.

That is the bottom line on all of this.

Keep it simple and elementary. Arguing science, will go right over the heads of most voters, and make their eyes glaze over.

For the upcoming elections; Democrats need to keep reminding women about which party has delivered for them, on equality in the work place. Court the women's vote, 24/7 from now until election day. Remind them that this President has put two women on the Supreme Court in less than two years, since taking office.

The other big issue that Democrats should push 24/7, from now until election day;

Democrats will protect your social security benefits. Republican want to eliminate them.

Two huge voting blocks. Women and Retirees, plus those nearing retirement age. Win them over, and you will be in good shape.

Keep reminding them which Party has always delivered for them.


Have a good afternoon all.

I have to go pick up some sod. Damn Radical Unitarian gang, burned a question mark on my lawn, last night.


Posted by: Liam-still | August 20, 2010 2:17 PM | Report abuse

"The GOP's response to that argument has been to ask: Well, why are our candidates so competitive, then? And in this case, it's true that Feingold is locked in an extremely tough contest."
---------------------------------------------

One word: Morons. There are a lot more of them than there are of us. Never forget it.

Posted by: CalD | August 20, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

This is the "genius" who thinks it would be just swell to drill for oil under Lake Michigan. (And his stockholdings in oil companies has nothing whatsoever to do with that.)


http://uppitywis.org/ron-johnson-tries-undo-his-accidental-truth-telling-great-lakes

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 20, 2010 2:29 PM | Report abuse

Liam,

For starters, he owns >$100,000 in BP and Exxon stock.

http://www.grist.org/article/wi-gop-senate-candidate-ron-johnson-owns-over-100000-in-bp-stock-supports-g

Also, he supported drilling for oil in the Great Lakes until he realized it was an utterly insane position (so he flip-flopped hard)

http://bloggingblue.com/2010/07/14/ron-johnson-flip-flops-on-great-lakes-oil-drilling/

Here is an mp3 of him evading the question of drilling in the Great Lakes:

http://www.wispolitics.com/1006/100610Johnson.mp3

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 20, 2010 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Feingold's struggles just shows how politically toxic the atmosphere is for incumbents this year. I think he will pull it out, especially against a palinite, teapartier, resident of rightwingnutistan, but people are so frightened about the economy and enraged at the inadequate response from congress and the president (10% unemployment is a national emergency like a flood or earthquake and should be treated as such.).

Many of us DFHs predicted that this would be the outcome of the stimulus that started out too small and was further compromised to squeeze it through the omnipresent repiglican filibuster. Even the messaging was bad. Obama should have kept expectations low and not said that this would "fix" the problem since clearly it has been inadequate to that task. It did stop the slide into depression, but "it could have been worse" isn't much of a campaign slogan. Also, not being aggressive enough on the cramdown provisions of banking reform has hurt the pres with those being thrown out of their homes.

Posted by: srw3 | August 20, 2010 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Oh my. Imagine. Someone disagreeing with the "countless scientists studying this issue"

Just too funny. The CRU emails did nothing to diminish the faith of the eco warriors. But for those of us who aren't Pachuri acolytes, George Karlin's POV is much closer to the mark.

And I love the way Mr Sargent clings to the concept of "models". To many this approach has, rightly in my view, been discredited.

And CalID does wonders. We're seeing exactly how the liberals view Americans. It was ever thus. According to liberals one either accepts their dogma whole or one is called names. Yeah. NO doubt the insight provided by CalID should make its way into campaign spots all over the country.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | August 20, 2010 2:51 PM | Report abuse

Re a discussion from previous thread:

A new poll by Middle Tennessee State University finds that nearly one in six Tennesseans has told a joke about President Obama's race. But 57% of Tennesseans told pollsters they would find such a joke "definitely not humorous."

"It seems that Tennessee is awash in jokes about Obama's race even though most people say they don't tell them and most people say they don't find them funny," says Ken Blake, director the MTSU poll. Blake says he and his colleagues set out to quantify attitudes toward racial jokes in the wake of some high-profile gaffes, such as that of Tennessee Republican Chip Saltsman, who distributed CDs of the infamous "Barack the Magic Negro" song.

Blake's poll report says the gap between racial-joke-telling and racial-joke-enjoying suggests people tell racial jokes about the president even though they consider the jokes inappropriate. Or, Blake tells the Huffington Post, "It is possible there is truly a small core of people who broadcast these jokes to everyone else."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2009/03/03/one-in-six-tennesseans-ad_n_171529.html

Posted by: cmccauley60 | August 20, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

"The GOP's response to that argument has been to ask: Well, why are our candidates so competitive, then? And in this case, it's true that Feingold is locked in an extremely tough contest."

CalD, I don't think most people are morons, although I'm sure tempted to use the word against Ron Johnson!

I just think a lot of people are angry that things haven't gotten better faster. Of course, this would mean they'd have to really consider why, and that's hard when they're worried about jobs, debt, health, etc. "It's taking too long," they say. "Fix everything now! Then talk to me about climate change." They don't think about the connections, not because they're stupid (although I believe they should be able to walk and chew gum at the same time), but because they're so angry and impatient. So when someone points out how ignorant Ron Johnson is, they don't care. I'm not surprised. We don't have a lot of respect for intelligent politicians in this country.

Posted by: carolanne528 | August 20, 2010 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Those darn liberals with their "pro-science" agenda!

How dare 97+% of the worlds climate scientist believe in global climate change? What makes them experts? 97+% of America's hate radio talkers deny climate change, who are YOU going to believe? Personally, I'll take the word of Rush Limbaugh and Mark Leven over that of some stuffy nerd with a doctorate in climate change any day.

Posted by: nisleib | August 20, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

CalD:

"Morons. There are a lot more of them than there are of us."

At last the core doctrine of liberals stated plainly and openly....complete and utter contempt for their fellow citizens.

Run with it guys. Sounds like a political winner to me.

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 20, 2010 3:10 PM | Report abuse

@cmccauley60: "'It seems that Tennessee is awash in jokes about Obama's race even though most people say they don't tell them and most people say they don't find them funny,' says Ken Blake, director the MTSU poll"

I need to get out more. I live here, and I literally have not heard a single one from anyone I have personally encountered. Completely anecdotal (I understand that) and entirely non-scientific. Thus, my personal experience should not color my interpretation of the facts.

That being said, maybe there is something wrong with my math, but doesn't 1 in 6 come to 17%? So, 17% of Tennesseans have told a racial joke about Obama (this certainly seems credible), and Tennessee is awash in jokes about Obama's race?

We're also awash in married cousins, too. And folk who play the washboard in the neighborhood jug band.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 20, 2010 3:12 PM | Report abuse

yeah. At one point I'm sure that 97+% of the doctors in Europe and America thought that human health was governed by humors.

And of course who can forget the ever so insightful believe if "phlogiston"?

The eco warriors would have a better shot at getting something done if all their proposed solutions didn't start with "first give up your freedom".

Life would be even easier for the movement if it wasn't so clear that its leaders are charlatans seeking to cash in on a government boondoogle of enormous proportions. And just imagine how smooth the sailing would be if the claims of doom were based on something other than "models" and those pesky emails were'nt made public.

Why Gore and Pachuri would have it finger licking good. And we'd be in the dark washing our clothes on a washboard in cold water before walking home from the government controlled cistern to our underground hovel.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | August 20, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

At last the core doctrine of liberals stated plainly and openly....complete and utter contempt for their fellow citizens.

No, just the ones that are Morons. Et Tu ScottC3?

Posted by: bmcchgo | August 20, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

skipsailing28 wrote: ...According to liberals one either accepts their dogma whole or one is called names....
**************
Actually, I am what you would consider a "liberal". If someone disagrees with my "dogma" I do not call them names. So, are you wrong?...being hyperbolic?...painting with a broad brush?...or referring to those that disagree with YOU by calling them what you consider to be a derisive name?

Posted by: overed | August 20, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

@ScottC3: "Morons. There are a lot more of them than there are of us.' -- Run with it guys. Sounds like a political winner to me."

Yeah, that's going to help somebody win in November. Not sure if it'll be the Democrats, though.

That being said, I miss the Ronald Reagan "morning in America" style of conservative populism. Heavy on the optimism, confident in the American people, belief in American exceptionalism. The current anti-Mosque, anti-Obama, anti-14th amendment fervor amongst a sizable portion of the Republicans has kind of got me down. And, while I like the idea of the Tea Parties, some of the candidates are kind of less than ideal.

But I suspect more than a few of them will win. After all, who do you want to vote for? The guy whose kind of whacky (or, um, maybe crazy, depending on how you view their politics), or the guy who thinks you're an idiot?

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 20, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

More on the Flat-Earth Party:

Every GOP NH Senate Candidate Is A Global Warming Denier

http://wonkroom.thinkprogress.org/2010/08/20/every-gop-nh-senate-candidate-is-a-global-warming-denier/

Posted by: wbgonne | August 20, 2010 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Skip, you are a very silly person.

"The eco warriors would have a better shot at getting something done if all their proposed solutions didn't start with 'first give up your freedom'."

Yeah, I haven't seen that so much. Care to provide a link?

"Life would be even easier for the movement if it wasn't so clear that its leaders are charlatans seeking to cash in on a government boondoogle of enormous proportions."

Yeah, all the scientist from around the world that study this subject are all a part of a conspiracy! And how do scientist "cash in" on climate change? They don't, except for in your head.

"And just imagine how smooth the sailing would be if the claims of doom were based on something other than 'models'"

Yeah, the deniers get to rely on Rush Limbaugh! That is WAY more reliable than scientific models!

"pesky emails were'nt made public"

You are a tad behind the ball on that one; it has been shown that the scientist that wrote those emails did NOTHING wrong. Do you need a link so you can educate yourself?

"Why Gore and Pachuri would have it finger licking good. And we'd be in the dark washing our clothes on a washboard in cold water before walking home from the government controlled cistern to our underground hovel."

You may want to adjust your tinfoil hat, the crazy is leaking out.

Posted by: nisleib | August 20, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

@skip: "yeah. At one point I'm sure that 97+% of the doctors in Europe and America thought that human health was governed by humors."

And they were right. And there's pretty much nothing that a good blood-letting can't cure. If you don't believe me, try it.

"And of course who can forget the ever so insightful believe if 'phlogiston'?"

And next you're going to tell me you don't think light waves move through an evanescent ether. Clearly, you aren't a serious thinker.

BTW, I'm sure you've read the Eugenics essay by Michael Crichton, but it's worth reading again, if it's been a while. I miss Mike.

http://www.michaelcrichton.net/essay-stateoffear-whypoliticizedscienceisdangerous.html

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 20, 2010 3:25 PM | Report abuse

P.S.: You know that a political ideology is truly rotten when it is incompatible with science. Conservatism has become a religion not a governing structure; that's why the GOP is impervious to science and reason. Voodoo economics was only the start. The Know-Nothing Party rises again.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 20, 2010 3:28 PM | Report abuse

Not so fast, Greg. The Wikipedia page on this shows there's been a robust debate over the relationship between solar activity and climate change.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_variation

To be sure, the prevailing view is that any effect is muted, but it's hardly crazy for a non-scientist who's skeptical of climate apocalyptics to state an alternative vision.

Besides, Greg, where did you get your degree in climatology? (For the record, I don't have one either.)

Posted by: bbqispork | August 20, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Kevin:

"That being said, I miss the Ronald Reagan "morning in America" style of conservative populism. Heavy on the optimism, confident in the American people, belief in American exceptionalism."

I know what you mean. I suspect that after 4/8 years of Obama, the time may be ripe for just such a style.

Posted by: ScottC3 | August 20, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

wbgonne - Spot on.

The whole "anti science" element of the GOP is sad.

It isn't so much that they are ignorant that bugs me, it is that they are so PROUDLY ignorant.

Just sad.

Posted by: nisleib | August 20, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

"That being said, I miss the Ronald Reagan "morning in America" style of conservative populism. Heavy on the optimism, confident in the American people, belief in American exceptionalism."

Yeah, let's get drunk for another 30 years. It's not like we'll miss anything important burying our heads in our wallets for a few more decades.

Drunken Morning in America. Ahh, good times!

Posted by: wbgonne | August 20, 2010 3:44 PM | Report abuse

Ah, Reagan.

He raised taxes four times and tripled the national debt... I, too, miss that kind of optimism.

I jest, Reagan wasn't that bad, but I think H.W. Bush was a much better President, and far more fiscally sane.

Posted by: nisleib | August 20, 2010 3:50 PM | Report abuse

in response to this:
===============
Actually, I am what you would consider a "liberal". If someone disagrees with my "dogma" I do not call them names. So, are you wrong?...being hyperbolic?...painting with a broad brush?...or referring to those that disagree with YOU by calling them what you consider to be a derisive name?
===================

Nah, I'm simply pointing out as are others, that CalID has displayed how many liberals feel about those with whom they disagree.

At this point you sound all reasonable and all. Try reading Ethan or some of the other hot heads here. you'll soon understand why I wrote what I did.

Oh, and spare me the sanctimony.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | August 20, 2010 3:51 PM | Report abuse

"belief in American exceptionalism"

Yeah, sad how it's devolved into American except-them-ism....everyone except blacks, hispanics, the long-term unemployed, gays and lesbians who want to marry or serve in the military, muslims....did I miss anyone?

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 20, 2010 3:54 PM | Report abuse

suekzoo1 - Yeah, you missed anyone who doesn't live "in the Heartland" with the "Real Americans."

So basically you missed most of the country.

And while I do believe that America is exceptional, I don't think that means that America can do no wrong, which is apparently the way right wingers look at it.

But then I live in the reality based community, so take it for what it is worth.

Posted by: nisleib | August 20, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

My question is how does Johnson's doubt of anthropogenic global warming effect his electoral chances in the Senate race?

I say it has little or no effect.

One way to tell if this will have any teeth will be to see if Senator Fiengold increases his pro anthropogenic global warming rhetoric. Because I'm not reading Wisconsin news on a regular basis, is the sitting Senator actively campaigning on this?

Posted by: TrollMcWingnut | August 20, 2010 4:00 PM | Report abuse

@suekzoo1: "Yeah, sad how it's devolved into American except-them-ism....everyone except blacks, hispanics, the long-term unemployed, gays and lesbians who want to marry or serve in the military, muslims....did I miss anyone?"

Well, you're no doubt harder on the GOP than I'm prone to be, but the lack of any kind of agenda other than "stop the Democrats" and now the opportunistic mosque opposition and the birthright citizenship thing . . . I do find very unhappy.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 20, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

now this
=================
Yeah, I haven't seen that so much. Care to provide a link?
==============

Try reading waxman-markey. Then get back to me. The power to tax is the power to destroy. don't you recall Obama's prediction that electricity costs would "necessarily skyrocket". Thanks for playing on this one.

============
Yeah, all the scientist from around the world that study this subject are all a part of a conspiracy! And how do scientist "cash in" on climate change? They don't, except for in your head.
================

Touchy little guy aren't you? I didn't say "scientists from around the world" I said "leaders". I even mentioned two. I understand how upsetting it can be for someone like you when confronting a skeptic. After all, you're trying to save the planet, even if that means taxing me to penury, right? You are saying: "Why don't people like me just shut up and do what the likes of Pachuri and Gore think is right?"
=====================
Yeah, the deniers get to rely on Rush Limbaugh! That is WAY more reliable than scientific models!
================================

How is this a valid response? Pachuri and Gore have both been revealed as charltans. That un report is now viewed as a propaganda tool and Al can't get a decent massage anywhere in the world. He lives in a mansion. We'll live in sod huts. No thanks.
==================
You are a tad behind the ball on that one; it has been shown that the scientist that wrote those emails did NOTHING wrong. Do you need a link so you can educate yourself?
==============

I've seen no VALID exoneration of anybody involved. The emails destroyed the credibility of the CRU and made the recent worldwide meeting a joke.
===================
You may want to adjust your tinfoil hat, the crazy is leaking out.
====================

yes, when someone questions scientific validity, name calling is great response. You go boy

Posted by: skipsailing28 | August 20, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

skippy, you are so dang entertaining, I think we should vote you in as the Plum Line Sunspot! LOL

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 20, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

The earth is round.

Others disagree.

Let's vote on it.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 20, 2010 4:03 PM | Report abuse

Kevin says, "...but the lack of any kind of agenda other than "stop the Democrats" and now the opportunistic mosque opposition and the birthright citizenship thing . . . I do find very unhappy"

I'm with you on that.

I really wish the mosque thing had never come up. No matter what happens, whether it is built or not, we all lose out. There is just no upside to the issue for the country as a whole. Now I'm hearing about churches organizing Koran burnings and that there are several other cities where people are trying to stop mosques from being built. It isn't about 9/11, it is about bigotry, and that sucks.

Posted by: nisleib | August 20, 2010 4:06 PM | Report abuse

Kevin, the GOP has a very well verbalized agenda. Tax cuts for the wealthy, and then the wealthy need some tax cuts, and then another round of tax cuts...for the wealthy. Those tax cuts pay for themselves, don't you know?

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 20, 2010 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Greg,
It would be good to point out that we are currently at a solar minimum, so the sunspot activity is nearly non-existent.

Yes, increased solar activity causes a warmer earth. So, just wait and see in 5-6 years when we're at the maximum of the 11 year solar cycle. We'll see if there are any climate deniers then...

Posted by: mschol17 | August 20, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

We don't need no stinkin' science. Science is for sissies. Real Americans believe whatever they feel like believing. That's what makes us so exceptional. Crazy people like Muslims believe in science ... Oh, wait a minute ... Crazy people like Muslims DON'T believe in science ... Never mind ...

St. Ronnie, beam me up!

Posted by: wbgonne | August 20, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

"Those tax cuts pay for themselves, don't you know?"

Not only do they pay for themselves, they actually MAKE MONEY! And that new money will used for ... MORE tax cuts for the rich, which of course results in EVEN MORE MONEY and -- you guessed it! -- ANOTHER round of tax cuts for the rich. Pretty soon the Middle Class will be writing checks to the Plutocrats. Or maybe we should just have our salaries sent directly to an oligarch of our choice.

Who needs science? Who needs economics? This feels GOOOOD!

Posted by: wbgonne | August 20, 2010 4:15 PM | Report abuse

O&O.

Posted by: wbgonne | August 20, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

OT:

An Evening of Hope with Sarah Palin

http://www.ticketmaster.com/event/22004510B04C4F84?artistid=1464148&majorcatid=10005&minorcatid=104

C'mon people, you know you wanna go!

Moved from a 3,000 person venue to a 600 person venue...

...and it's STILL NOT SOLD OUT!

Hi-Larious.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | August 20, 2010 4:16 PM | Report abuse

All, more Dem Senate candidates are coming out against letting Bush tax cuts for rich expire:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/08/how_many_dems_will_balk_at_end.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | August 20, 2010 4:17 PM | Report abuse

"An Evening of Hope with Sarah Palin"

Moved from a 3,000 person venue to a 600 person venue...

WOW, Ethan! Maybe Colbert sold too many of those Palin 2012 bumperstickers...you know the one... "Palin 2012: Abandon All Hope That Anything Will Change"

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 20, 2010 4:20 PM | Report abuse

Skip

Try reading waxman-markey. Then get back to me. The power to tax is the power to destroy. don't you recall Obama's prediction that electricity costs would "necessarily skyrocket". Thanks for playing on this one.

Oh, so Waxmen-Markey starts off by saying, “'first give up your freedom?” Really? Because that is what you’re first post said. And this is probably one of the dumbest things you’ve said all day, “power to tax is the power to destroy.” Really? Because that seems like the kind of thing only a rightwing know-nothing would say when he had nothing else to fall back on.

================

Touchy little guy aren't you?

Actually I’m what might be considered huge, even by Texas standards. I spent too much time training in my youth.

===============

After all, you're trying to save the planet, even if that means taxing me to penury, right?

Actually no, I’m defending science from know nothing-rightwingers. And I find the fear people like you have of taxes too funny for words.

===========

You are saying: "Why don't people like me just shut up and do what the likes of Pachuri and Gore think is right?"

No, keep talking. Knock yourself out. Your argument is about as good as the rightwing can come up with. You displaying rightwing logic helps me more than you.

=====================

Pachuri and Gore have both been revealed as charltans. That un report is now viewed as a propaganda tool and Al can't get a decent massage anywhere in the world. He lives in a mansion. We'll live in sod huts. No thanks.

No, they haven’t. That is all in your head. And notice the way you bring Gore’s massage issue into it? If you had a scientific leg to stand on you wouldn’t do that.

==================

I've seen no VALID exoneration of anybody involved. The emails destroyed the credibility of the CRU and made the recent worldwide meeting a joke.

Here you go. Don’t say I never gave you anything.

http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2010/07/climate_scientists_vindicated.php

Posted by: nisleib | August 20, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

@sue: "Kevin, the GOP has a very well verbalized agenda. Tax cuts for the wealthy, and then the wealthy need some tax cuts, and then another round of tax cuts...for the wealthy."

That's not an agenda, per se, and even then, it's about preserving existing tax cuts, not doing anything new in the realm of tax policy. Like doubling-down on tax cuts for the middle-class.

Oh, and they want to repeal HCR. Some of them. There's that.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 20, 2010 4:33 PM | Report abuse

There are several points about Ron Johnson that many have missed. While it may be true that sun spot activity has caused temperature variations, Johnson is admitting to and espousing knowledge and facts that are not present in the literal reading of the Bible. While I have no problem with this, how can those who believe in the Christian purity (myth) of Tea Party candidates trust this guy? You either except that the Bible is a closed case for reality or you except that its a jumping off place, from which other knowledge can flow. It's obvious that other knowledge exists, ipso facto Johnson is barking out his hat.

Posted by: abcwrite | August 20, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse

@Ethan2010: "C'mon people, you know you wanna go! Moved from a 3,000 person venue to a 600 person venue..."

There were more people standing in line for the bathroom at the Justin Beiber concert.

That being said, she must be losing her touch. I wouldn't mind showing up for a Sarah Palin show, but I'd never be able to carve out the time.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 20, 2010 4:35 PM | Report abuse

Stacy: Brad, what would you say if I asked you to put these in the trunk of the Cruising Vessel?

Brad: I'd say who the hell is Ron Johnson?

Posted by: Ranchero2 | August 20, 2010 4:37 PM | Report abuse

@wbgonne: "The earth is round. Others disagree. Let's vote on it."

I say it's flat. Stay away from the edge, or you just might fall off.

Here there be dragons. Or, HC SVNT DRACONES.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | August 20, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

kevin: "That's not an agenda, per se, and even then, it's about preserving existing tax cuts, not doing anything new in the realm of tax policy. Like doubling-down on tax cuts for the middle-class."

I do believe Paul Ryan's roadmap calls for tax cuts for the upper classes beyond Bush's, does it not? (I'll check that again...)

Posted by: suekzoo1 | August 20, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

thanks.

Let's see. Two of the "exonerations" listed at the site you offered are by academics. Sorry, there is no reason to trust the Academics when judging other academics. It makes about as much sense as believing the White House when a spokesman says that the Sestak allegations were investigated and nothing improper was discovered. Sorry, credibility matters and the scientists just don't have it anymore.

Then there's the NRC:
The Research Council committee found the Mann team's conclusion that warming in the last few decades of the 20th century was unprecedented over the last thousand years to be plausible, but it had less confidence that the warming was unprecedented prior to 1600; fewer proxies -- in fewer locations -- provide temperatures for periods before then. Because of larger uncertainties in temperature reconstructions for decades and individual years, and because not all proxies record temperatures for such short timescales, even less confidence can be placed in the Mann team's conclusions about the 1990s, and 1998 in particular.


so wow. It is "plausible". good word. Just vague enough to get by on. It is plausible that OJ didn't kill those people either. After all he was aquitted wasn't he?

I have three issues with the "international" report. First it was commissioned by the university. I see no reason to trust them, as I noted above.
Next, they looked at the scientific approach and, among other things said this:
"With very noisy data sets a great deal of judgement has to be used. Decisions
have to be made on whether to omit pieces of data that appear to be aberrant.
These are all matters of experience and judgement. The potential for
misleading results arising from selection bias is very great in this area. It is
regrettable that so few professional statisticians have been involved in this
work because it is fundamentally statistical. Under such circumstances there
must be an obligation on researchers to document the judgemental decisions
they have made so that the work can in principle be replicated by others"

Finally, none of these, that I can see speak to the overt attempt to stifle opposing points of view. Those who believe strongly in their rightness shouldn't need that.

I stand by my contention: no valid exoneration.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | August 20, 2010 4:57 PM | Report abuse

Lets make America great - tax pollution more and tax income less. That should be something that people concerned about national security, the trade deficit, the negative impacts of income taxes on the middle class and poor, and the environment should all be able to agree on.

Posted by: david65 | August 20, 2010 5:00 PM | Report abuse

in response to this:
==========
Actually no, I’m defending science from know nothing-rightwingers. And I find the fear people like you have of taxes too funny for words.

====

Of course smart people fear taxes. Fear and loathing of taxes has a long history. It is part and parcel of mankind's story.

so since you're not afraid of taxes, pay mine too. I don't mind. In fact, why don't you just send another huge chunk of your income off to Obama. he can use it to by "miss me yet?" T shirts on the vineyard.

Posted by: skipsailing28 | August 20, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Skip Says, "Sorry, there is no reason to trust the Academics."

Thanks for proving my point. Case closed on that one.

You really do a better job of proving me right about rightwing know-nothings than anyone on my side ever could.

Posted by: nisleib | August 20, 2010 5:08 PM | Report abuse

Conservatives are such idiots. These people were obviously the D and F students in science class. Those who refute rising temps on earth due to anthropogenic greenhouse gases are simply shooting themselves in the face. The evidence is overwhelming. Exactly how climate will respond (ie, heating rate) is the only unanswered question.

Posted by: citizen4truth1 | August 20, 2010 8:11 PM | Report abuse

I enjoy the stupidity of a citizen4truth and the condescension of ignorant leftards who are unaware of the last two 11-year periods of low sunspot activity, which leveled off the average global warming pattern.

"But the Maunder Minimum and sunspot theory is never, absolutely never taken into consideration by the giant minds at the IRCC who plan on taxing us for breathing, except for Chinese & Indian breaths, something pertaining to yoga? [The Maunder Minimum was the period between 1620 to 1750 when sunspots virtually disappeared and the "Mini-Ice Age" hit Europe, as is well-attested in literature of the period. We have ice skates from the Dutch due to the canals freezing for months at a time & the Thames froze over every few years for about four decades. Samuel Pepys and other diarists record some of the horrific winters of the period."

Ditto the MIddle Age warming period from 1100-1400 which was evened off by the lying IRCC "hockey stick" which is an artifiact of statistical manipulation worthy of Bernie Madoff!

Go back to studying your Alinsky and other Madoff-wannabe leftist scammers...citizen4BS....

Posted by: djman1141 | August 20, 2010 10:10 PM | Report abuse

The current climate can be tied to solar activity, a manifestation of which is sun spot activity. Since you journalists rarely have a grasp on basic college level math and science, let alone the cutting edge of solar physics, etc, I am not surprised you find this valid theory a joke. But as someone who works on NASA missions exploring the Sun, I can confidently say the theory which ties climate changes to solar activity is much stronger than the lousy statistics we have seen from CRU, IPCC, NASA GISS (which is not to be confused with NASA overall) etc. NASA GISS claims a thermometer in LA can indicate temperature in Seattle with a high confidence!

Now THAT is a joke.

Posted by: ajstrata | August 21, 2010 10:13 AM | Report abuse

Discussing the role of the sun is incomplete without remembering what the greenhouse effect is.

Basically, there is no other plausible explanation for the degree and rapidity of temperatures increasing other than the increased presence of CO2.

And to "diss" the four investigations of the
"climategate" by claiming they're biased because it's academics/scientists doing them...first off, academics are probably more ethical in this respect than anything from a group funded by Big Oil. Second, the investigation dealt with not only the validity of the work, but the honesty of the work.

Finally, by now I've decided that any "denier" mentioning Al Gore in his comments, is lacking either in serious matieral or objectivity.

Posted by: donaldnegri | August 21, 2010 7:49 PM | Report abuse

So has anyone ever changed anyone else's mind on one of these comment threads? Not just here at the WaPo, but anyplace anywhere on the Internet?

Raise your hand if you have been convinced by another commenter or had your mind changed about climate science or policy.

Since most of us know going in that we are not going to convince anyone of anything, then why is it that we spend our time posting comments?

Thoughts?

Posted by: capybara | August 21, 2010 11:10 PM | Report abuse

this is to donaldnegri & the capybara:

Russian News Bureau Novosti reports that the Russians are stocking up on fur hats and thick winter clothing, as they somehow haven't swallowed D-Student [in "Science" at Vanderbilt] Al Gore's Nobel-winning vaticinations on Anthropogenic. Dr. Sorokhtin is merely a Fellow in the Russian Academy of Sciences, so he may have to bow to Gore and weathermen like Sam Champion in resume impressiveness---NOT!!!
Earth is now at the peak of one of its passing warm spells. It started in the 17th century when there was no industrial influence on the climate to speak of and no such thing as the hothouse effect. The current warming is evidently a natural process and utterly independent of hothouse gases.

The real reasons for climate changes are uneven solar radiation, terrestrial precession (that is, axis gyration), instability of oceanic currents, regular salinity fluctuations of the Arctic Ocean surface waters, etc. There is another, principal reason—solar activity and luminosity. The greater they are the warmer is our climate.

Astrophysics knows two solar activity cycles, of 11 and 200 years. Both are caused by changes in the radius and area of the irradiating solar surface. The latest data, obtained by Habibullah Abdusamatov, head of the Pulkovo Observatory space research laboratory, say that Earth has passed the peak of its warmer period, and a fairly cold spell will set in quite soon, by 2012. Real cold will come when solar activity reaches its minimum, by 2041, and will last for 50-60 years or even longer.

This is my point, which environmentalists hotly dispute as they cling to the hothouse theory. As we know, hothouse gases, in particular, nitrogen peroxide, warm up the atmosphere by keeping heat close to the ground. Advanced in the late 19th century by Svante A. Arrhenius, a Swedish physical chemist and Nobel Prize winner, this theory is taken for granted to this day and has not undergone any serious check.

So donnie boy, the "hothouse effect" is the sort of theory which has never really been checked out even though the hysterics in labs and climatologists like Sam Champion on ABC preach it like Gospel, heh, heh....!

Choose your poison, negri....

Posted by: djman1141 | August 22, 2010 3:48 PM | Report abuse

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