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Posted at 12:00 AM ET, 02/10/2011

Biblical proportions

By Tom Toles

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Unevolved

Send for the monks. Apparently all we are capable of is copying over received beliefs. Here's a bit of news that is both stunning and unsurprising at the same time: Biology teachers don't teach biology! There are days when one is tempted to just lie down and give up. It's one of those days. We are a nineteenth-century nation.

If the commenters here would like me to provide evidence of why liberal thought in the United States is doomed to fail, there it is. Crank back your lazyboys and revel in it. Evolution is as near-certain a scientific fact as you will find. That it is resisted and obfuscated by the VERY PROFESSIONAL EDUCATORS trained in the subject is about as sweeping a condemnation of the state of scientific understanding in this country as you could hope to find.

Is it any wonder that the phantasmagoripalooza of climate change denial has the run of the land? Except the climate debate has consequences. Go ahead and gloat, commenters. You have my permission. I am going to yield and quote scripture. "They that sow the wind shall reap the whirlwind." --Tom Toles

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By Tom Toles  | February 10, 2011; 12:00 AM ET
Categories:  Foreign Policy  
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Comments

Bertzel, you did indeed ask first.

And I do not know how it all DID begin before the Big Bang. Or where the matter came from, that expanded as a result of the Big Bang... because something had to have been there before the Big Bang, in order for the Big Bang to happen.

"In the beginning..." I'm pretty sure there was nobody around to observe.

Here's a separate-yet-related question: Why does there have to have been a beginning? (I suspect where you may be going with the questions, but am happy to let you lead.)

Posted by: jonroesler | February 11, 2011 2:57 PM | Report abuse

Tom,

I really enjoy your cartoons and rants and most of the time agree with you. I do not care for the term "global warming" especially when its -16 here. Your term "global change" works for me. Keep up the good stuff but try not to be to offended by those that aren't as smart as us.

Posted by: jjbaill | February 11, 2011 10:22 AM | Report abuse

Nobody is denying climate change, but many are not accepting the man-made climate change religion promoted by those who rely on notoriously unreliable computer models.
Global warming can mean colder, it can mean drier, it can mean wetter. No set of facts can disprove the environmentalists' secular religion. Warm trends prove global warming. Cold trends also prove global warming. This is the religion of a madman.

Posted by: DirtFarmer1 | February 10, 2011 10:47 PM | Report abuse

Nobody is denying climate change, but many are not accepting the man-made climate change religion promoted by those who rely on notoriously unreliable computer models.
Global warming can mean colder, it can mean drier, it can mean wetter. No set of facts can disprove the environmentalists' secular religion. Warm trends prove global warming. Cold trends also prove global warming. This is the religion of a madman.

Posted by: DirtFarmer1 | February 10, 2011 10:46 PM | Report abuse

~~~Oh, and on that, "in the beginning..." thing: The religious versions have no answer at all, which do not presuppose the existence of a god of one sort or another. What about before that?
Posted by: jonroesler~~~

Good point....however, I asked first.

Posted by: bertzel | February 10, 2011 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Thou shalt have no other gods before me

Thou shalt not make idols of any kind

Thou shalt not take the name of the LORD thy God in vain

Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy

Honour thy father and thy mother

Thou shalt not kill

Thou shalt not commit adultery

Thou shalt not steal

Thou shalt not bear false witness against thy neighbor

Thou shalt not covet your neighbor’s house


Posted by: obam44 | February 10, 2011 7:37 PM | Report abuse

Dalyplanet

Sorry if I misunderstood your comment on the cold weather re global warming.

I agree, extreme weather should not be cited as evidence of a warming planet, although it is consistent with it, according to the models—in any case, such discussions are fraught with misunderstandings.

I share many of your concerns about what we should “do”:

Food for ethanol clearly seems a mistake and would never have been considered if not for the corn lobby. Bush 2 proposed switchgrass and that was the last we heard of it. Sugar cane seems to work in the tropics, but not if they deforest themselves in the process.

I don’t think pumping into the ocean itself is feasible—a test indicated it could be disastrous, but it might go OK into the oceanic crust—except that is obviously very deep (think BP blowout).

Some AGW adherents think going nuclear big time is the only hope—but probably a very small minority, and they get major flack from their own side.

I agree we are all complicit in CO2 pollution. Fossil fuels are truly wonderful. A gallon of gas is, say, like having 10 or so slaves for an hour (could even 10 men move a 1-ton vehicle 25 miles in an hour?) Graphs show GDP has a strong correlation to C usage, although it seems to me this must most obviously change. (Many might disagree that quality of life is increasing, considering the mess globlalization is making).

However, the coal industry, and to a lesser extend oil and gas, have clearly exerted a major lobbying effort to enhance their respective industries—and why wouldn’t they. What I object to is that they quite obviously engage in deceptive practices which I can only interpret as forestalling change and squelching competion from other/renewable energy sources. This too I would chalk up to normally-expectable competition, except in this case the preponderance of evidence points toward an eventual disaster. Thus competition must be balanced against responsibility. Specifically, I referred to the Heartland Institute and one instance of a bald faced lie, although the web is full of other well-documented cases.

It is to me much more believable that the fossil fuel industry is waging a deliberate campaign of disinformation than to believe that 97% (or so) of climate scientists have fabricated the largest conspiracy in history (especially because I’ve worked in both fields).

Maybe in the end we will have to do as a nuclear physicist working on fusion in Japan told me a few years ago: “burn coal like mad for 50-100 years until we perfect fusion, then hope we can recapture the CO2.” Or maybe we should instead make a big push for breeder-type reactors and hope terrorists don’t mess it all up. But meanwhile I think we should do everything possible to decrease C emissions, attacking on all fronts, with as much help as possible from Congress (get out of the way, Inhofe.)

Posted by: e30m42 | February 10, 2011 7:31 PM | Report abuse

Murbarak calls for civilians to obey the laws of the land and wait until September to elect a new president. Those who wish to drag him out and murder him are the problems not the solutions.
An orderly transition to a new government is the best way to go.

Obama should make that clear finally, instead of playing to the crowds and his liberal base.

Posted by: LETFREEDOMRING2 | February 10, 2011 6:23 PM | Report abuse

@dalyplanet - Even as a kid, I never saw any sense in playing Whack-a-Mole. I've watched you dodge any direct discussion in this forum. When one of your bits of distortion or misinformation is refuted, you just pop up another one, and pretend that was what you meant all along.

Posted by: fbrewer1

----------------------

Not so fbrewer1. I would counsel dalyplanet not to pay any more attention to you but that's me. You could have answered his question (be the big guy here) but - your call kemosabe.

Posted by: pararanger22 | February 10, 2011 6:21 PM | Report abuse

fbrewer1

I think it is you that is dodging and distorting here. I have asked 5 times on this thread and multiples of that before,

DO YOU THINK WE SHOULD BURN FOOD AS FUEL TO SAVE THE PLANET !!!

Yes or No Don't be shy, take a chance, express yourself. But at least start with Yes or No. OK

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Times change? Back in my day of high school and college at Catholic schools, biology was taught as a science. Sometimes bible thumping students raised origin questions. The biology teachers, some of them priests, referred the questioners to the religion and philosophy departments, saying facts fit science classes and beliefs fit in religion classes. I bet that is still happening.

Posted by: Bill_Wade | February 10, 2011 5:54 PM | Report abuse

I dunno. Most of Europe doesn't accept the science of human engineered food and yet I feel like they will be OK -- just more poor. Yes, the ignorance is costing lives, but, hey, our decisions to drive to work in the morning costs lives.

Global warming has a similar feel to me. When the costs really start mounting up and its super-obvious, then people will respond.

On the evolution front, I am a full supporter of evolution theory. That being said, I think that creationists are (sometimes) good at questioning the science -- which is good for the science by the way. Other times, I have to admit, I think that creationists are disingenously trying to game the system. They don't have any science of their own; they just want to pick at the evolution science.

Posted by: scott3 | February 10, 2011 5:52 PM | Report abuse

@dalyplanet - Even as a kid, I never saw any sense in playing Whack-a-Mole. I've watched you dodge any direct discussion in this forum. When one of your bits of distortion or misinformation is refuted, you just pop up another one, and pretend that was what you meant all along.

Posted by: fbrewer1 | February 10, 2011 5:43 PM | Report abuse

Religion, which began really as a way to explain the origins of the universe and the way it works, turns out to explain basically nothing at all that will stand up to any sort of test. Religion is threatened by reason, and rightly so.

And science... Science is the new kid on the block.

Compared to the time religion has had, science is still in its infancy, and yet has answered more questions in the last hundred years than religion in the last five thousand... yet we criticize science for not having ALL the answers RIGHT NOW! Give science a chance.

Oh, and on that, "in the beginning..." thing: The religious versions have no answer at all, which do not presuppose the existence of a god of one sort or another. What about before that?

Posted by: jonroesler | February 10, 2011 4:45 PM | Report abuse

fyi daly, I downloaded it and am currently reading it..I am always open to new information.

Posted by: bertzel | February 10, 2011 4:07 PM | Report abuse

Here is a link to a major study on peer reviewed papers that the IPCC forgot to include.

http://www.co2science.org/education/reports/prudentpath/prudentpath.pdf

If you are at all scientific as compared to dogmatic this is a very good report

fbrewer Mr science as religion, I bet you will not even look !!

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 3:04 PM | Report abuse

Mr Toles

I've been teaching 25 years, in 4 different states - including Georgia - and I've yet to meet a biology teacher who doesn't teach evolution as an established fact. I don't know who those people asked, but I don't buy their results.

Posted by: mwalimu
-------------------------
This is as I suspected. Some conservatives do want intelligent design to be taught. This is not good but it is not clear to me how much actual harm this is doing.

Liberals have an emotional need to blame conservatives for all kinds of things. But if mwalimu is right, then the effect of conservative objections to evolution is actually quite small.

On the other hand, American education is failing in a big way. Only a small minority of children graduating from New York city schools is prepared for college.

And New York is not a state over-run with Christian fundamentalists deciding on curricula. Obviously there is some other problem.

So let us put aside our need to blame conservatives, and address the actual problems, shall we?

Posted by: rjpal | February 10, 2011 2:53 PM | Report abuse

fbrewer1

And I would imagine you are a simple lowbrow pantywaist that has not made it quite as far up the evolutionary ladder if you cannot answer a simple question.

Do you think it is smart to keep burning food for fuel !!! YES OR NO

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 2:45 PM | Report abuse

In the first place, the evidence for evolution is far stronger than the evidence for global warming. It makes no sense to disbelieve evolution. But it is quite rational to disbelieve glabal warming and the two should not be lumped together.

I believe in global warming myself, but I really do not want to diss people who doubt it. The issue is very complex and rational people can disagree.

Secondly, American children are doing pretty badly at arithmetic in particular and at math in general. I doubt that belief or disbelief in evolution affects this issue either way.

We do need to educate American children better. I think evolution should be taught as a matter of course, but I do not think that American education should be held hostage to the emotional need of liberals to blame every single one of our problems to conservatives.

If American kids are doing badly at math, it is NOT because of Sarah Palin or Christian fundamentalists. American kids are doing badly at math and other subjects because they have too many distractions like TV and texting. Let us put the blame where blame lies.

Posted by: rjpal | February 10, 2011 2:40 PM | Report abuse

@dalyplanet - You said, "There are far bigger worries and problems in American education than glossing over evolution in biology."

You are absolutely correct. Chief among those problems are the people who say it isn't a problem to not teach biology in a biology course.

Closely followed by the people who rise up from a contrarian ideology to endlessly repeat out-of-context or distorted snippets of pseudoscience to advance an agenda of denial.

Posted by: fbrewer1 | February 10, 2011 2:14 PM | Report abuse

~~~~ We are regressing as a country because the rich and the corporations can better control and ignorant and ill-informed general public than an intellectual one.
Posted by: alexnyc8 ~~~~


Well what do expect from apes alex? Really.

Posted by: bertzel | February 10, 2011 2:10 PM | Report abuse

As hard as it may be for many to believe, 85 years after the Scopes Monkey Trial, there is still a prevalent anti-evolution ideolgy in the US. The National Defense Education Act of 1958 helped to bring scientific fact to biology text books. And yet here we are over 50 years later allowing creationists to make evolution a debatable topic once again. Anti-intellectualism is rearing it's ugly head in politics, evolution, sex education, climate change, scientific progress, education, and even common sense. George W Bush asked, "Is our children learning?". Hardly. We are regressing as a country because the rich and the corporations can better control and ignorant and ill-informed general public than an intellectual one.

Posted by: alexnyc8 | February 10, 2011 1:41 PM | Report abuse

PrairieDog60

While we may not be in agreement on why to change energy policy I am sure we are in agreement on how to do it.

I am working on REAL solutions not QUICK solutions. The solutions proposed by IPCC the Senate and EPA are not REAL solutions, Believer or Not.

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 1:34 PM | Report abuse

PrairieDog60

Some times stupid seems smart and that is how ethanol came to be.

Burning food for fuel is really stupid no matter what you may believe regarding AGW. Independent of AGW. If these IPCC scientists are SO smart how can they come up with a solution so stupid, and others like it.

Weather I believe in AGW or not is independent of a sane energy policy. Ethanol is an insane energy policy and I hope you and Mr Toles agree with me on this point. This is a drum banging that can have quick results. Stop ethanol subsidies now.

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 1:23 PM | Report abuse

daly,

What you seem to be up in arms about are the POLITICAL solutions being proposed to try to remedy climate change. I've said it before and I'll say it again; much of what is being proposed by POLITICIANS has nothing to do with what science prescribes for what needs to be done. Underground carbon sequestration is unproven and likely dangerous to ground water; cap and trade is a regulatory control that COULD help if done right; and most analysts will tell you that we would have to use every food crop acre in the world to fuel the current fleet of US vehicles as it presently exists. Plus many researchers think it actually takes more energy to produce corn ethanol than it actually makes available as fuel.

This is why it is up to all of us to start decreasing our own ecological footprint, AND pressuring government officials to grow a pair and propose real solutions; not the suite of half-measures that are currently proposed (that are mostly designed to try to appease recalcitrant Republicans who won't go along with them anyway).

You don't appear to believe climate change is real, so why are you arguing about solutions? If you DO believe it's real (and simply keep arguing with people in here for the sake of arguing), then I suggest you quit arguing, and start working toward REAL solutions. I've listed those real solutions for you more than once.

Posted by: PrairieDog60 | February 10, 2011 12:51 PM | Report abuse

Energy policy is up for discussion today in the US, do you got game or just trash talk.

Posted by: dalyplanet


-------------------

Right on dalyplanet!

Posted by: pararanger22 | February 10, 2011 12:29 PM | Report abuse

What are the odds that a climate-change true believer took a college level science class or knows the first law of thermodynamics without having to google it.

I am becoming a true believer that most advocates of catastrophic climate change have an understanding of the science that is less than a mm deep. redhead1990 gave a response to cap and trade that caused me to really look at that model but the rest here spew talking points and parrot 97 of 100 doctors BS. You Libs do not own science only the bulk of the media. Not one of you will comment on food to fuel, lame chicken **it whiners that you are. I am not going to take insults over debate any more.

Energy policy is up for discussion today in the US, do you got game or just trash talk.

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 12:24 PM | Report abuse

Just love your ramblings and caricatures. Please keep pouring it on.

A reader from Haiti

Posted by: PatrickElie2004 | February 10, 2011 12:17 PM | Report abuse

What are the odds that a climate-change denier voted for George W. Bush--twice?

What are the odds that a climate-change denier believes that Ronald Reagan was a saint--including his choice for Secretary of the Interior James G. Watt. (Wikipedia: Watt periodically mentioned his Christian faith when discussing his approach to environmental management. Speaking before Congress, he once said, "I do not know how many future generations we can count on before the Lord returns, whatever it is we have to manage with a skill to leave the resources needed for future generations.") Thus spake the soon-to-be-convicted felon.

What are the odds that climate-change deniers are eagerly anticipating De Lawd's return any day now?

You just can't debate the insane, Tom.

Posted by: abhancock | February 10, 2011 11:56 AM | Report abuse

~~~ A lack of knowledge begets lack of knowledge.
Posted by: ptgrunner~~~

Yep and I also like the phrase by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe...."Doubt grows with knowledge."

Posted by: bertzel | February 10, 2011 11:38 AM | Report abuse


Thank you, Tom, for helping make a decision for me. As stated, my resolution this year was to not comment on your cartoons or rant, but to just enjoy it. That resolution has already been broken so I amended it to I would not comment except when you rant about global warming whereupon I vowed to post “the science of evolution” each time you did.

Well, today you did both. So, two birds with one stone: Tom, “The science of Evolution!”


Posted by: quiensabe | February 10, 2011 11:30 AM | Report abuse

I suppose conservatives will (continue to) mess with our education system until they get the results they want. Other countries around the world must be laughing all the way to the bank. We accuse these countries of somehow "cheating" when all they really do is beat us at education and work harder than we do. Students should be introduced to accepted science as early as feasible...from the evolution and climate change skeptic posts here, you can see that that often has not been done in the past. A lack of knowledge begets lack of knowledge.

Posted by: ptgrunner | February 10, 2011 11:12 AM | Report abuse

The education system in this country is completly controlled by liberals. Why are you complaining, Toles?

I'm also confused about "Climate change". Wasn't it "Global warming" was all we heard about up until we learned the Earth is actually cooling? So now the mantra is Climate change, which can lead to either warmer or cooler. How convenient. You can't have it both ways Tommy boy.

Posted by: Timanddori | February 10, 2011 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Regarding Egypt....I have mixed thoughts. My main concern; Who is going to step up and become their 'Moses'? Perhaps a timely transition is needed...before Mubarak steps down?

Posted by: bertzel | February 10, 2011 11:12 AM | Report abuse

Here we go again...
Toles, It’s not that, “Biology teachers don’t teach biology”.
It is, “Most biology teachers won’t ENDORSE the THEORY of EVOLUTION.
And more to the point, concerning the origin of humans.
Just because they don’t ENDORSE it does not mean it is not being taught.

I also looked into the ENSI/KENSI Papers and Articles/Better Biology Teaching by Emphasizing Evolution and Nature of Science by Nickels and Nelson…interesting and biased to say the least…also didn’t this come out in 1996? So why bring it up now? Hidden Agenda? Oops, showing that paranoia of mine again.

I know for a FACT (not theory) the Public Schools in my area teach the theory of evolution in biology class and yet also teach the different religions of the world in Social Studies class. They do not ENDORSE any of the aforementioned yet at the same time ‘feed the minds’ of these kids with the information needed so they can question and decide for themselves what to believe, dissect, promote or discredit in search of truth.

I would suggest that those who believe in only evolution finish the following phrase….
“In the beginning ---
You certainly cannot come up with any scientific fact to answer that question because scientists are still trying to figure that one out.

By the way for those of you who are confused , Scientific Theories are not quite the same thing as facts, but are often similar…just sayin’.

And Toles, concerning your ‘scripture quote’…I’ll take that whirlwind any day : )

Posted by: bertzel | February 10, 2011 10:59 AM | Report abuse

Two things;

1) It's important to note that only 13% of the biology teachers acutally seemed to be teaching something OTHER than evolution (the whole creationist myth). Granted, this is a bit disturbing in itself, that what they are supposedly trained to teach, is not what they're teaching. (Isn't that some level of fraud? Shouldn't they have to give their diplomas back?) But more important is the much larger percentage that were basically afraid to teach evolution as is. Why? Fear of talk radio, conservative activists, and other nut-jobs raising a stink with the local school board, sueing, getting people fired, reprimanded, etc. It's FEAR that is preventing a lot of biology teachers from actually doing their job. This is what people should be most worried about...a culture of fear among science teachers.

2) From some of the comments here about evolution, it's clear that some people have not been properly taught, or have simply chosen to believe otherwise. Evolution is the cornerstone of all biology. WHY is a cheetah so fast? WHY do humans walk upright? WHY does a giraffe have a long neck? WHY do some plants have showy flowers, burr-like seeds, seeds that disperse in the wind, nitrogen nodules on their roots, etc.? It's because evolution has pushed these organisms in the direction of survival; and natural selection has allowed those organisms with gene mutations that provide the greatest competitive advantage, to survive and pass on their genetic makeup to the next generation. This is evolution. It's not nuclear physics, it's not Darwin making up fantasies, it is THE platform for how living organisms survive.

It's disheartening and a bit disturbing to see that somehow science is to be disbelieved now, if it disagrees with one's ideology. I guess maybe it's time for us to go back a century and start having some more Scopes trials; or perhaps back a few centuries further so we can start executing people for proclaiming that the Earth revolves around the sun. Blasphemers!

Posted by: PrairieDog60 | February 10, 2011 10:47 AM | Report abuse

I see the cost of corn has doubled in 7 months and tripled in a couple of years.

Does anyone here have an opinion on using food for fuel to save the planet? anyone? Burn food=save planet good bad valid ?

How about do you think bury CO2 or pump it into the ocean at a 30% to 40% extra energy cost is a good thing? Use 5 years of carbon in 3 and triple your bill. Good Bad ?

How about burn up our natural gas for electricity so our grandchildren can heat their homed with coal?

Anyone have a thought on this; the consequence of the rush to save the planet. These are real components of the plan. Any of you think this direction is good , bad, anything?

Using the doctor analogy, If 97 of 100 doctors prescribed cutting off the body to save the head I would want to be sure that is the only option.

I have asked this question many times and NO response from any true believer here. Please step up and tell me how this plan of action will work.

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 10:43 AM | Report abuse

Don't give up, Tom. Yeah, it's depressing, it's frustrating, it's nearly beyond belief. And I'm sure you see the worst of the worst in comments here.

But we can't give up, no matter what.

Posted by: billg4 | February 10, 2011 10:35 AM | Report abuse

Well, sorry, Tom.... guess there is finally some sanity coming to the world of true science, after all.???
The fraud that is AGW (anthropogenic global warming, for you scientists , out there) is slowly, THANKFULLY being exposed. What is truly disturbing about this entire issue , is the actual damage wought to the entire concept and basis of credible scientific research, which is the peer-review process. It has been corrupted by bureaucrats and other politically motivated entities (e.g the UN IPCC, et.al.) and significantly damaged many highly-respected institutions.
What needs to happen, is a truthful recognition of how much is NOT known or understood, and a focus on efforts that will yield true benefits that are practical and measurable.

Posted by: Shrimper | February 10, 2011 9:52 AM | Report abuse

Mr Toles

I've been teaching 25 years, in 4 different states - including Georgia - and I've yet to meet a biology teacher who doesn't teach evolution as an established fact. I don't know who those people asked, but I don't buy their results.

Posted by: mwalimu | February 10, 2011 9:49 AM | Report abuse

The word "Consensus" has no business in any discussion of scientific affairs. See Einstein in 1918.

Posted by: jtg24 | February 10, 2011 8:59 AM | Report abuse

Appalling. This is what happens when conservatives "muddy the waters" in science. Of course, one can find the odd scientist who disagrees on evolution and climate change. But isn't it logical to base our decisions on the consensus opinion of the world's scientists? If 99 doctors recommend one course of treatment, wouldn't you side with them over the one doctor who disagrees?

I suppose I will have to take it in my own hands to ensure my children understand evolution and climate change.

Posted by: paul6554 | February 10, 2011 8:36 AM | Report abuse

re: "...VERY PROFESSIONAL EDUCATORS trained in the subject..."

I think you are vastly overestimating the amount and quality of training of the average secondary school science instructor. There are a lot of bachelors degrees awarded in "science education" rather than in the actual scientific fields themselves.

Posted by: tegularius | February 10, 2011 8:10 AM | Report abuse

Before we radically alter our society by diverting vast resources to stop the release of carbon into the atmosphere (overlooking the fact that the technology to do so without reverting to 18th Century lifestyle as of now remains to be invented) perhaps we should first verify conclusively and scientifically that Anthropogenic Global Warming (AGW) is 1. Real, 2. Significant & 3. Able to be reversed without causing even more harm (i.e. coal-fired Power plants release CO2, so no more coal fired power plants!). By scientifically I mean being able to demonstrate through repeatable indisputable scientific experiment that AGW actually exists. Heretofore that has not been demonstrated. Theories have been postulated, models have been constructed, but theories must be proven and models are absolutely useless, scientifically speaking. "But that's hard!" you may say... and you would be correct, but that's what must be done before any rational majority decides to expend many, many trillions of dollars that are desperately needed elsewhere. Until that indisputable replicable evidence is brought forth, all we can do is speculate and offer suppositions - and rightfully so.

As for my personal opinion on the matter... climate is perpetually fluctuating; it always has and always shall, regardless of human behavior. At this point in our technological evolution, without that conclusive evidence, the expenditure of a large part of global GDP to reduce CO2 content in the atmosphere by a few dozen parts per million seems like a rather low return on investment. A fraction of 1 percent of such a sum could provide clean drinking water to the entire developing world. Comparing a potential reduction of atmospheric CO2 from 360PPM to 300PPM against more tangible "good" things will be a difficult sell even with scientific validation of it's necessity. Without that validation, it's simply not going to happen.

Posted by: jtg24 | February 10, 2011 8:09 AM | Report abuse

Very paradoxical that the man who believes so mightily in scientific fact resorts to quoting from a book of fairy tales to buttress his argument.

Posted by: jpost1 | February 10, 2011 7:37 AM | Report abuse

"Those who want to learn will ask questions."

Like "What do we do if the next trend is cooler weather from forces that are astronomical and not in the atmosphere?" Such as an ice age.

"What if those who study only the atmosphere are surprised?"

Just like those who study Egypt?

Posted by: GaryEMasters | February 10, 2011 7:15 AM | Report abuse

e30m42

There are a couple of things in you post today that are not true, you said

~~Yesterday I tried to rib daly and para for "cherry picking": citing a cold winter as evidence against global warming.~~~ but

TT, Al Gore, MSM, and some posters were "cherry picking" recent weather here and Australia as proof OF global warming. I have been saying that it is proof of nothing except perhaps La Nina and the North Atlantic Oscillation. I backed this up with statements from the head of NOAA. I will say it again, recent weather is proof of nothing either way in the CAGW argument. Don't put words in my mouth.

You also state,

~~~Not to mention all the money to be made by pouring CO2 into the atmosphere~~~

What exactly do you mean by this statement? We all use electricity and without a thought so we are all complicit in pouring CO2 into the atmosphere.

Electric utility companies are regulated on both state and federal level. They pay modest but regular dividends to their shareholders and were in serious trouble a few years ago. They pay reasonable wages and have reasonable executive pay and provide a service everyone uses. Very few electric consumers have the knowledge, capital,ability, or location to get off the grid. Government plans currently have no incentive to allow those that can get off to do so.

There are huge costs associated with reducing CO2 output in the US alone. Where will that capital expense come from? There is little or no fat to be cut from electric producers. Consumers will be needing to expect at least a double of their electric cost in today's dollars and likely more. These are real facts that need to be addressed as well as the solutions proposed for reducing CO2. See my prior post for some proposed solutions for reducing CO2 output. There is no magic wand waving to fix this problem. The problem needs to be proven beyond a doubt so everyone, everywhere is in agreement with real solutions available. Carbon is presently the cleanest most dense source of energy we have, and global prosperity on all levels depends on it for improving health and wealth worldwide.

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 1:50 AM | Report abuse

The metaphor of one's own life mirrors evolution:
We start tender-young and end tender-wise.
The young love dinosaurs, the old love the soaring.
From dust we came and to dust we return? Not quite.

As unique souls/spirits evolution of mind is possible.
As with polarization of the hemispheres, there is polarization
among political masses across the globe, throughout the ages.

Posted by: Tony-KS | February 10, 2011 12:35 AM | Report abuse


From NOVA
“It remains to be seen if this amalgam of circuits and silicon can really take us closer to the dream of a fully developed artificial intelligence, a truly "conscious" machine. Win or lose, the difficulty of mimicking the human thought process with software is showing artificial-intelligence researchers that there's more than one way to be intelligent."

Actually, there is only intelligent or not intelligent. If there is intelligence; then it is degrees of intelligence based on the ability to understand reality and do calculations to function within that reality and make rational decisions.
From the basic theory that “things equal to the same thing are equal to each other”; if both Mother Nature and people can understand reality and do calculations to function within reality and make rational decisions then both Mother Nature and people are intelligent.
If Mother Nature is smart enough to build Human Beings with natural Intelligence, then it is ignorance for Human Beings to claim that Mother Nature is not intelligent.
Reality is not a random occurrence; it is a highly developed system of precise laws, interactions and functional developments intended to provide life and that abundant here on earth.
Dave

From NOVA
Scientists are turning to nature in developing such "smart" stuff. Sharkskin, for instance, has inspired a substance that, when sprayed in hospitals, could eliminate antibiotic-resistant bacteria. David Pogue visits a scientist who has even created a material that can render objects invisible. "Smarter" concludes with a vision of the ultimate in "life-like" stuff: programmable matter that could create a duplicate of a human being.”

For our own good, I would think it would be more intelligent to admit that Mother Nature is intelligent and treat her with the respect that she deserves. Our survival depends on her intelligence and her benevolence.
Dave

Posted by: OckamsRazor | February 10, 2011 12:15 AM | Report abuse

~~According to some here, I will have to unlearn everything I know, has a nice ring to it bert. -- daly ~~

Everything daly???
Surely not Everything : )

Posted by: bertzel |

well maybe just rewash my brainwash

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 10, 2011 12:10 AM | Report abuse

Tom,
i can only hope the survey was wrong. as for consequences, a nation that is not taught evolution will not have the scientists needed to develop new drugs and vaccines; all of which depend upon the basic understanding that bacteria, viruses, all life evolves. so there are consequences to this just as there are to the denial of climate change. game, set match?
Posted by: mja6

My Comment on Evolution...
Sure there is evolution; all evolution proves is that there is change.
We live in a space that is in a continual state of flux. Some things are becoming and some things are decaying. Change is what provides the phenomena of past, present and future.
All of the change is regulated by the laws and attributes of cause and effect.
Some cause and effect is intentional and other cause and effect is random.
Some things are in transition (dynamic) and other things are stable (static).
Some thing are stable at one level of reality (what we experience) and also dynamic at the nuclear and molecular levels of reality. There is constant movement of transition and form as reality evolves in a present to future direction that leaves behind a past. The past no longer exists because it has become the present configuration.
When it comes to biology; there are principles of function that make it possible to create a great diversity of creatures. We happen to be one of those creatures. We also have the physical and intellectual capacity to change reality to meet our needs and desires.
Mother Nature had this capacity long before we came on the scene.
We depend on Mother Nature to provide us with the basic conditions to sustain life.
Maybe we aught to show a little respect before Mother Nature decides to end our reality as she has done with other misfits.
Dave (:-)>

Posted by: OckamsRazor | February 9, 2011 11:58 PM | Report abuse

Mr Toles

You just love to exaggerate the little things into big sweeping proclamations. One little piece of curriculum becomes not teaching biology. There is a lot of biology to be taught while skipping the chapter on grandfather ape. Plant genetics do not need evolution to be understood at a grade school level. The carbon cycle and respiration have no need for evolution. There are far bigger worries and problems in American education than glossing over evolution in biology.

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 9, 2011 11:53 PM | Report abuse

Do High School biology teachers still have their students dissect formaldehyde soaked frogs, or is that a thing of the past? The past, like before the Scopes trial past?

God help us.

Posted by: chaunceygardener | February 9, 2011 11:16 PM | Report abuse

Cheer up Toles scientists are predicting an asteroid may wipe out earth on April 26th, 2036. So if the 2012 Mayan calendar prophecy doesn't get us, 4 shopping days before Christmas, think of all the free time you will have.

Posted by: bignoisylawnmower | February 9, 2011 8:23 PM | Report abuse

e30m42

Just for my own clarification, have you been experiencing chinook winds on those warm days mentioned, dweller in the land of great winter darkness.

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 9, 2011 8:09 PM | Report abuse

e30m42

I have been saying for a week that this weather is proof of La Nina according to NOAA and have been getting a lot of ribbing from the CAGW true believers.

My main concerns as we rush to do 'something' are

Should we be using food for fuel?

Do you think bury CO2 or pump it into the ocean at a 30% to 40% extra energy cost is a good thing?

How many Nuclear powerplants should be installed worldwide especially in developing nations?

These items are definitely part of the plan to reduce CO2. Are you sure CO2 will harm us?

Posted by: dalyplanet | February 9, 2011 7:54 PM | Report abuse

Tom, you are amazing. You can turn any subject into a rant about global warming. You are one gifted individual.

Can you turn one about Zildjians into a GM rant? That would be cool.

Posted by: sold2u | February 9, 2011 7:18 PM | Report abuse

Here, I'll partly repeat my post of yesterday, since now it is actually appropriate to today's rant.

Yesterday I tried to rib daly and para for "cherry picking": citing a cold winter as evidence against global warming.

However, here is a much better example: from the Heartland Institute, hot off the web: http://scienceblogs.com/deltoid/2011/02/articgate_now_thats_cherrypick.php

You can follow the links around: Huffington Post story; Heartland's Joseph Bast letter to the editor excoriating a bona fide scientist by name; former astronaut and senator Harrison Schmitt--quite a story--comments on various AGW-denier debunker websites are having a field day with it.

ArcticGate!

Anyway, if the science supporting global warming is so weak ("flawed!"), why do the skeptics continually resort to cherry picking, half-truths, distortions, and outright lies to make their case? Creationists do the same--I was raised one and the rest of my family still is--you could call it "Lying for the Lord". Beliefs and ideology trump evidence every time. Not to mention all the money to be made by pouring CO2 into the atmosphere or power to be gained by controlling young Christian minds.

Posted by: e30m42 | February 9, 2011 6:18 PM | Report abuse

Tom,
i can only hope the survey was wrong. as for consequences, a nation that is not taught evolution will not have the scientists needed to develop new drugs and vaccines; all of which depend upon the basic understanding that bacteria, viruses, all life evolves. so there are consequences to this just as there are to the denial of climate change. game, set match?

Posted by: mja6 | February 9, 2011 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Tom,
i can only hope the survey was wrong. as for consequences, a nation that is not taught evolution will not have the scientists needed to develop new drugs and vaccines; all of which depend upon the basic understanding that bacteria, viruses, all life evolves. so there are consequences to this just as there are to the denial of climate change. game, set match?

Posted by: mja6 | February 9, 2011 5:58 PM | Report abuse

ha, ha and....wow..initial response.
can't wait to comment tomorrow : )

Posted by: bertzel | February 9, 2011 5:31 PM | Report abuse

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