Thursday, October 27, 2005

Dr. Hysteria, or How I Learned to Stop Thinking and Believe in Man-Made Global Warming 

Ever see The Day After Tomorrow? It was that really lame environmental activist propaganda film disguised as a disaster movie written and directed by Roland "I love to destroy New York with computer effects" Emmerich. If you did see it, I sympathize. I sat through the thing too. But if not, let me fill you in:

Everyone will continue to not buy all-important hybrid cars, and those evil V8 engines in everything else will spit up a cloud of Hydrogen Dioxide, which will create a sudden spike in global temperatures. This will make it hail in Tokyo. Afterwards, every one will begin to freeze to death (because the world is getting hotter and all), New York will be destroyed for the 80th time, wolves will suddenly start attacking people, and then we'll fall through some ice. And the survivors will start burning books to stay warm.

Powerful statement, huh? Because believe me, it IS a statement. This isn't just a work of fiction...there are some - nay, many - who actually seriously believe this shit. The popular view of GLOBAL WARMING (to be forever after placed in all caps, to emphasize how scary it is) is that not only is it for real and for true, but people are causing it. Because we drive cars. Environmentalists hate cars, unless they're powered by hybrid drive or solar power.

Ask any liberal (I hate to use the either of the terms "liberal or "conservative" as dirty words, because it makes me sound like I side with one of those groups - trust me, extremists from either end are equally unpleasant people) and they'll tell you that there's a mountain of evidence for GLOBAL WARMING, most notably that something is melting somewhere. That's what it always leads to. Something is melting somewhere, whether it's an iceberg in the North Atlantic, the entire continent of Antartica, or some little girl's ice cream cone in Des Moines. They use the term GREENHOUSE EFFECT sometimes (although not often anymore, 'cause it doesn't sound scary) to describe the hypothesis that our atmosphere traps in carbon dioxide, and that cars produce more carbon dioxide than we can get rid of, since we keep destroying the rainforests. This carbon dioxide will keep building up in our atmosphere and start to raise the temperature of Earth, thus naturally killing everything living on it. There's certainly no statistical evidence for this, but just remember that something is melting somewhere. And if ice is melting in one part of the world, obviously the entire world is getting hotter.

Here's what you don't hear from proponents of GLOBAL WARMING:

1. Climatologists only have just over 100 years of global weather data to work with. You can't predict what's going to happen several centuries from now based off of 100 years of data. You can't even predict what's going to happen 100 years from now based off of 100 years of data, due to the lack of any kind of control group. The question of whether the last century has been typical or atypical in terms of global temperatures is unanswered, as is the question on if there even is such a thing as a typical century, since it could be argued that Earth's climate has been changing nonstop for over 4 billion years.

2. The term "GLOBAL WARMING" itself is misleading, since it does exist, in a sense. If one were to look at the global weather data we have, they would see a warming trend from the 1890s to the 1940s, a cooling trend from the 1940s to the 1970s (which paved the way for "second ice age" theorists, which were just as fanatical and hysteric as GLOBAL WARMING proponents are today), and then another warming trend from the 1970s to today. But even that hasn't remained constant: although the hottest year since the 1970s was 1998 ("a mere seven years ago", proponents like to point out smugly, which by itself chips the credibility of a world constantly getting hotter), the coldest year since the 1970s was 1992...a mere SIX years prior to the hottest year. Oh yeah, and in case you're wondering, this last century has averaged out to a temperature rise of around 2 degrees Fahrenheit. Although some proponents gloat about this fact, it's well within a reasonable scientific margin. When global temperatures are constantly rising and falling, it's a logical fallacy to assume that the overall global temperatures will average out to the same number every 100 years.

3. Although proponents love to point out that the majority of climatologists believe in GLOBAL WARMING (and this may well be so), what's never taken into account is the (sizable) number of them who insist that our current warming period is a part of a natural cycle occurring every 30 or 40 years and is not caused by man. Majority belief is flimsy, anyway: A true inquiring mind doesn't grasp an idea just because it's fashionable, and if the climatologists can produce no evidence for their beliefs, then they're merely personal beliefs. I'm sure most climatologists believe in a god, as well. That doesn't mean theism has been scientifically proven.

4. I hate to take away the GLOBAL WARMING crowd's favorite argument away (no, on second thought, I love taking it away), but not every bit of ice in the world is melting. For example, the sea ice seasons in the southern oceans have been getting noticeably longer over the past 10 years or so. And although proponents constantly bring up the polar ice caps melting, most experts agree that the ice caps have been melting for around 1,000,000 years now...which is a pretty fucking long time before the Industrial Revolution started.

5. Many have theorized that the planet is coming out of the "Little Ice Age", a global cooling period that lasted from the Middle Ages to the early 19th century and making a natural recovery to its previous state, however this theory is hampered by the lack of reliable global temperature data from over 100 years ago.

6. Satellite temperatures have shown little to no warming in the upper atmosphere since the 1970s...and the warming of the atmosphere is crucial to the idea of GLOBAL WARMING.

I honestly hope that our current warming trend is part of a 30-40 year cycle...that way, very soon now, we'll see GLOBAL COOLING. No, make it GLOBAL FREEZING. The hysterics will jump right back to their second Ice Age, and I'll still be laughing at their complete ignorance and lack of research.

So what to do until then? I guess I'll just CHILL for a while. HA, get it? Chill! Because of GLOBAL FREEZING!


Screw you, I thought it was funny.

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