Archive for May 2011

Can Human Greenhouse Emissions Trump Natural Forces of the Universe?

May 30, 2011

I’m republishing this piece for the readers of this blog hoping they will find it to be of some interest. 

A short reply by Con George-Kotzabasis to:

A Cool Look at Professor Aitkin’s Global Warming Scepticism

By Dr. Geoff Davies

On Line Opinion, May 16, 2008

It would be impertinently impetuous and stupid for a layperson like me to argue with an expert in the field as Dr. Davies is. I am however a skeptic. It might well be scientifically true that human “greenhouse emissions are the cause of the present warming”. But in my opinion the crucial scientific question is whether these negative human actions have the power to trump the positive natural forces of the Universe that determine the intra and inter relations of the planets and the sun in their state of equilibrium. It’s this axiomatic question that the supporters of climate change, like Davies, must answer first.

There has been ample evidence that in Roman and medieval times the earth was warmer. Davies himself admits that there have been “fluctuations in the amount of heat received from the sun (due to the slow gyrations of the earth in its orbit around the sun”). It seems however that natural forces triggered their own “stabilizers” of cooling periods and the earth once again found its viable natural balance and avoided extinction. Further, Nigel Lawson, the former editor of the Spectator and Chancellor of the Exchequer, poses the up till now unassailable question that has not been answered by the climate “gloomies”:“Is it really plausible that there is an ideal average world temperature…from which a small departure in either direction would spell disaster?”   

When one chooses to go on the warpath one must be confident about his position and clear and undeviating about one’s goals. Dr Davies seems like a defeated “combatant” to have abandoned the field of battle and its original goal. It seems that he finds it difficult to prove his case and therefore his goal no longer is to demonstrate that greenhouse emissions cause global warming but to argue, by shifting his position and aims, that by stopping the “over-exploitation of the earth, reducing “energy use and greenhouse emissions”, all of which are easily achievable according to him, the end result will be ‘to improve our lives’, save money, and “allow our grandchildren’s grandchildren to inherit a rich and fulfilling world.”

With this new position Dr Davies has dropped the scepter of science from his hand and replaced it with the staff of the Greek seer Tiresias, predicting generations ahead the fulfilled life of “grandchildren”. But forgetting that the threats to a happy future for mankind might not only arise from the over exploitation of the earth but also from the mutual deadly belligerence of men their religious dogmas and ideologies.

But wait for his zinger: “If we are causing global warming” by “a change in our lifestyle… for reasons other than global warming…it would mitigate that problem too. If not, no harm done.” Hence, there is a great chance that by the Walpolean fairy of serendipity anthropogenic global warming will evaporate. But without for a moment daring to dispute the power of benign fairies, I continue to rest on the oars of my skepticism.

Your opinion…

A reply by Dr. Davies and a counter reply by Kotzabasis

In my challenge of 17 May my intention was to broaden the view to see if there might be some common ground. Evidently Thermistocles (Read Kotzabasis) wasn’t capable of comprehending that.

I’ll broaden it even a little more. If you don’t believe we can endlessly increase our use of Earth’s resources, the implication is that at some time we will have to change the way our economies work, and also stop the increase in population. If you also agree the Earth is showing many signs of over-exploitation (I include global warming, though you may not), then it suggests the time is now. Then, why would you spend so much energy arguing against “AGW”? Why not argue for (or work for) the change we must make?

Clive Hamilton on New Matilda says a better description of many objectors is “contrarian”. Do you just like to object and be contrary? If so, deal with your personal problem instead of spraying it around on everyone else.

If you think we CAN endlessly increase our use of Earth’s resources, I can only refer you to basic physics, starting with conservation of mass. (Note: I said “endlessly increase our use of resources”. I didn’t say “indefinitely improve the quality of our lives”. We can use fewer resources more cleverly than we do now and still live well.)

If you don’t see the Earth showing any signs of stress, I suggest there are none so blind as those who will not see.

I refer everyone to Clive’s article:
http://www.newmatilda.com/2008/05/19/death-rattles-climate-change-skeptics
He does a better job than me of giving a fair portrait of science, climate scientists and IPCC, and contrasting them with the shonky denialists, who of course always claim there’s a conspiracy to prevent them from publishing.

Posted by Geoff Davies, Tuesday, 20 May 2008 10:35:52 AM

Kotzabasis says, 

Dr. Davies

It was evident even to blind Fredie that you broadened your view since you felt you were “narrow” in your arguments to make your case on the original issue of global warming. It’s rather amusing to hear a scientist say that by broadening his view he was seeking to find “some common ground.” Scientists, as you know better than me, are not interested in seeking a common ground but in seeking the truth. And once they are confident that they are close to finding it they don’t deviate from their path. But you did! Without consciously realizing that by doing so you were weakening your original position.

I can assure you I am no Hamiltonian “contrarian”. If you had read my first post you would have seen that. You just gave me the strong impression with your “broadening” post that you were no longer arguing like a scientist but like a seer or more precisely like an ideologue. And your current post with its “common ground” substantiates this impression.

I don’t disagree with you that we “CAN endlessly increase our use of Earth’s resources” without endangering our future well being or that the earth does not show “signs of “stress”. But I thought we were specifically talking about the “stress” of global warming and not the earth’s overall exploitation by man in his foolishness not to use the earth’s resources with Occam’s razor.

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Hate-Riddled Liberal Gusto Indicts Blair as War Criminal

May 18, 2011

I’m republishing the following for the readers of this new blog.

Brits “Play Act” Indictment of Tony Blair for Iraq Related Crimes

By Steve Clemons

Washington Note, July 13, 2007

A brief reply by Con George-Kotzabasis

The political guru of the Washington Note Steven Clemons with a hate-riddled gusto of a liberal, informs his readers of a BBC radio programme that indicts Tony Blair as a war criminal for the killing of innocent civilians in Iraq. Hinting the same fate awaits the Bush administration. In the effusion of his gusto, however, he is completely mindless and cannot foresee that the cause celebre indictment of the twenty-first century will be the liberal intelligentsia’s accountability before history for its play act with the greatest threat Western civilization encountered in our era, i.e., Islamist terror and its state sponsors.

This will be the “Play Act” Indictment of the liberals’ crime for treating this stealthy and ominous danger with derisiveness and facetiousness, as this play act on Blair, and others, illustrates. On this stupendous irresponsibility of the liberals, history will place a gravestone upon their feeble moral and political stand from which they will never be able to disentomb themselves.

The Resiliency of Military Intervention:When to Apply it and When Not

May 11, 2011

By Con George-Kotzabasis

Robert Haddick, the managing editor of Small Wars Journal, argues in his piece in the Foreign Policy magazine, March 4, 2011, of the uselessness of a no-fly zone in the Balkans, as an example that could also apply in Libya. But the ineffectiveness of a no-fly zone in Bosnia cannot be used as an argument in the totally different circumstances in Libya. Milosevic was fighting a nationalist war for a greater Serbia and his relatively powerful military forces were involved ardently in this ‘great’ goal of Serbia. By contrast, Gaddafi is fighting for his own survival with a weakened army, due to defections from its ranks, and compelled to import mercenaries to kill his own people, which in turn increases and exacerbates the divide between the regime and the Libyan people. This is the fundamental difference between Milosevic and Gaddafi. The former was fighting with a united army an ethnic war, whereas the latter is fighting a civil war with a disunited and weak army.

I think the following quote from Charles Maurice Talleyrand depicts, with his customary profound perception in matters of diplomacy, peace, and war, perfectly well the principle of non-intervention:”The principle of non-intervention, very convenient in itself, and very appropriate to a given circumstance, becomes very little better than an absurdity, when regarded as an absolute and when it is desired to apply it under conditions widely different. This principle is a matter of judgment, when to set it aside, and when to apply it.”

As to the concerns of Secretary of Defence Robert Gates, that a no-fly zone would entail the destruction of Libya’s air defences and therefore would involve grave risk to U.S. air-combat missions, a cogent answer is given by British Defence Secretary Liam Fox. He remarks, “rather than taking out air defences, you can say that if your air defence radar locks on to any of our aircraft, we regard that as a hostile act and take subsequent action.” What is more surprising, however, is that the public declaration of Secretary Gates about the difficulties of a no-fly zone and the aversion of the U.S. to countenance them, has unwisely given advance notice to Colonel Gaddafi and his armed forces of America’s reluctance to engage militarily in Libya. This in itself has put wind to the sails of Gaddafi loyalists to sally forth against the insurgents. Gates absurdly and utterly flunked Clausewitz’s principle to keep close to one’s chest one’s response to a situation and never reveal it to the enemy. His predecessor, the too much maligned Donald Rumsfeld, would have never done that.