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Global Warming: The Ideal Diversionary Issue for the Left

Commentary by Greg Lewis / NewMediaJournal.US
May 2
, 2007

It would have been impossible for me to imagine if I hadn't experienced firsthand liberals' insistence that man is the cause of the current miniscule warming trend that seems to be occurring on our planet. The operative words in the last sentence are "miniscule" and "seems to be," since the warming is not confirmed by any legitimate evidence (no, a mis-labeled picture of polar bears swimming in the ocean is not evidence that they're going extinct because glaciers are melting due to a planet-wide temp rise) and, if it actually is occurring, it's very tiny and likely to do more good than harm.

This whole issue resurfaced because another mush-brained liberal entertainer Sheryl Crowe declared that we ought to limit our toilet paper consumption to one square per visit to the bathroom. In a related move, the Green Party, which applauded Crowe's suggestion, is considering changing its name to the Brown Party.

The real problem is that, stupid as Crowe's suggestion is, it's not the stupidest proposal environmentalists have put forth. In fact, virtually every week they manage to conflate science with consensus, and, like the Democrats in Congress and the Senate, willfully ignore any evidence or qualified opinion that disagrees with liberal dogma.

If you need further proof, pick up the New York Times from Sunday, April 29. On the OpEd page, you'll find yet another fatuous environmental editorial, this one by a novelist named Deirdre McNamer. Ms. McNamer bemoans the fact that no longer can we throw our hamburger wrappers out the car window and "watch them land on the empty prairie and flutter like tiny flags planted on the moon." That's because, if I've managed to extract her message from some truly murky writing, her home state of Montana has been "touched by the hand of man."

That is to say, we (humans) are "altering the weather." And, we're enduring a "'slow-motion crisis'" (this a quote cited by McNamer from University of Montana climate scientist Steve Running) that was precipitated in the 1980s by a change in ocean temperature in the Pacific Northwest that affected the climate in Montana.

Ms. McNamer manages to disingenuously connect the fact that we should be driving 55 miles per hour instead of 65 and that we should not be throwing our hamburger wrappers out the windows of our cars, with the temperature of the ocean. She also quotes Mr. Running as saying he's "really worried about jet travel," even though it accounts for only three percent of harmful emissions. Somehow the fact that because these emissions occur in the stratosphere and thus have twice the negative impact of emissions produced at ground level makes them much more dangerous. So much more so that by his logic they now account for, maybe, six percent of emissions. But if they're so harmful, tell it to the eight Democrat presidential candidates, who all traveled on separate private jets to an event in South Carolina that was billed as a debate but which came off more like Romper Room, with candidates vying to raise their hands fastest to make their positions on critical issues known.

That's what "the debate" — or lack thereof — has come down to: liberals who aren't even close to having the right answers on any of the important questions we face frantically waving their hands in the teacher's face to make it look like they do.

But the other side of the issue is that global warming is not even one of the truly important issues we face today. In fact, it's way down on the list, behind international terrorism, the terrible consequences of rap music and hip hop culture for African-Americans, the disastrous effects of the left's insistence on banning DDT from use in Africa and thus causing hundreds of thousands of deaths per year on that continent . . . uh, and whether there should be a limit on the amount of toilet paper we use per restroom visit.

And even if global warming were more important than the examples I've listed above, there's not much we could do to change it. If it were actually occurring, and if, as I said, it was of even miniscule importance, no amount of napkin hoarding or jet travel reduction would make a whit of difference.

As to the first, the only reason we think that global warming is occurring is that a group of egghead number-crunchers have put together the flimsiest of models of how our planet's climate systems are supposed to behave and liberals have started calling it "science." It's not science, of course, and no self-respecting scientist would acknowledge that it is. Hell, these climate modelers can't even take their models and project them backward and predict what's already happened, climatologically speaking, over the past several hundred years.

As to the second, it might simply be that the liberals have so bought into the their own humanistic notion that homo sapiens is the center of the universe and the cause of everything that happens that they're unable to comprehend that there may be systems, not to mention a being (as in Infinite Being) larger than themselves and the systems they create. When it comes to the myth they're perpetuating about global warming, it's likely that they've committed the same sin of hubris they tend to commit where so many other important issues are concerned.

By failing to even consider that forces greater than man might be influencing the planet's climate, they've also managed to disregard the likely cause of global temperature fluctuations: increases and decreases in cosmic radiation due to sunspot activity. Increases in sunspot activity increase solar wind, and the resulting increase in cosmic rays bombarding the earth results in greater formation of high cloud cover over our planet. This in turn has the effect of reflecting the sun's radiation back into space, causing global cooling.

The period from 1940 to 1970, when one would think that the earth would have been warming due to the enormous increase in the amount of carbon spewed into the atmosphere, was actually a period of cooling, very likely resulting from an increase in sunspot activity and thus an increase in reflectivity from high clouds. Likewise, the past 30 years or so has seen a decrease in solar wind and sunspot activity. This has resulted in a decrease in high cloud formation accompanied by an increase in cloud cover closer to the earth, which tends to trap heat in the earth's atmosphere and promote warming.

These interesting developments in global climate science — developments based on observation and correlation of data and not on conjectural computer models — have been purposely, one might say criminally, overlooked by those promoting the false notion that human activity is the primary cause of "global warming," which in fact might simply not even be occurring at all.

Liberals seem to be almost proud that mankind is "responsible" for global warming. They certainly need some cause to divert our attention from their egregious failings in the foreign policy arena. But so fatuous and wrongheaded are liberals' prideful conclusions that we're the cause of our own planet's slow death from overheating that they now truly threaten our planet because of all the real threats their concentration on this phony issue diverts our attention from.


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