Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Methane Hoax Cranks Up



By Alan Caruba

Having spent decades trying to convince everyone that carbon dioxide (CO2) was a “greenhouse gas” that was going to cause the Earth to heat up, the same environmental charlatans are now embarking on a campaign to do the same with methane. In the U.S. the first move was announced by the White House in late March.

The carbon dioxide hoax fell apart in the wake of a cooling cycle affecting the Earth that began around 1997 and continues to this day. Warming and cooling cycles are natural events and both are tied to the activity or lack of it of the Sun.  Humans have nothing to do with the climate other to enjoy or endure it.

Why methane? It has a lot to do with the development of hydraulic fracturing, commonly called “fracking”, and the way it unlocks natural gas, aka methane, all of which portends an America that is energy independent, along with its huge reserves of coal and oil. If, of course, the government permits this to occur.

As we know, the Obama administration does not want that. It would mean more jobs, greater prosperity, and the ability to pay down the national debt, not to mention drive down the cost of electricity, gasoline, and everything else that depends on energy.

Despite the cooling cycle that is likely to last for many more years, Steve Hamburg, chief scientist for the Environmental Defense Fund, was quoted by the Washington Post saying that “ounce for ounce, methane is 84 times as potent as a greenhouse gas over 20 years” compared to carbon dioxide. “More than a third of the warming that we’ll see as a result of today’s emissions over the next couple of decades comes from, essentially, methane. We need to remain focused on carbon dioxide emissions, but doing so is not enough.”

Excuse me, but the Environmental Defense Fund and countless other Green advocacy groups have been focused on carbon dioxide for decades and the Earth is cooling, not warming. What part of this does Hamburg not understand?

James M. Taylor, the managing editor of Environment & Climate News, a national monthly published by The Heartland Institute, reported in January that “Natural gas fracking is not causing a spike in the U.S. methane emissions”, citing Environmental Protection Agency data. “Methane emissions specific to natural gas are in a long-term decline, down ten percent since 1990 and down seven percent since 2007 when the fracking boom began.”

The Washington Post, however, asserted that emission levels “are set to rise by 2030 as shale oil and shale gas production expands in the United States.” Do you remember all those predictions about the increase of carbon dioxide emissions and how, in ten, twenty, fifty or a hundred years, the Earth would heat up?

This is not about methane, it is about finding a way to shut down fracking and the extraction of natural gas and oil in the same way the Obama administration’s “war on coal” has caused the loss of over 150 coal-fired plants that until it began, were providing electricity. Reducing sources of electricity drives up its cost to everyone. As more natural gas came on line by 2013 it had become the second greatest source of U.S. electricity, but overall the amount of electricity produced was less than in 2007 before the war on coal began.

A natural component of the Earth, it has a number of sources, but one that has also caught the eye of government regulators involves cow flatulence and belching.

The White House has proposed cutting methane emissions from the dairy industry by 25% by 2020. The Environmental Protection Agency has been tracking cow farts since 2012 and now the dairy industry has to worry along with the oil and gas industry. In addition to the EPA, the Bureau of Land Management will be announcing “new standards this fall to reduce venting and flaring from oil and gas production on public lands.”

It’s often best just to let the Greens speak for themselves, revealing their never-ending efforts to attack the energy industry that keeps our lights on, heats and cools our homes, and fuels our cars and trucks. “President Obama’s plan to reduce climate-disrupting methane pollution is an important step in reining in an out of control industry exempt from too many public health protections,” said Deborah Nardone, the director of the Sierra Club’s Keeping Dirty Fuels in the Ground campaign.

“However,” said Ms. Nardone, “even with the most rigorous methane controls in place, we will still fall short of what is needed to fight climate disruption if we do not reduce our reliance on these dirty fossil fuels.”

What the heck is a climate disruption? A blizzard, a hurricane, a flood, tornadoes? None of these phenomena have anything to do with using fossil fuels. This is the kind of utter drivel we have all been hearing for decades.

It has nothing to do with the climate and everything to do with denying access and use of the greatest reserves of coal, oil and natural gas that exist in the greatest nation on Earth, the United States of America.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Scaring the World about its Climate



By Alan Caruba

Ever since the creation in 1988 of the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), it has engaged in the greatest hoax of modern times, releasing reports that predict climate-related catastrophes as if the climate has not been a completely natural and dynamic producer of events that affect our lives.

The IPCC was set up by the World Meteorological Organization and the United Nations Environmental Program. It has enlisted thousands of scientists to contribute to its scare campaign, but as Joseph Bast, the president of The Heartland Institute, noted in a recent Forbes article regarding the vast difference in the assertions of the IPCC scientists and those of its puckishly named Nonintergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (NPCC), “What is a non-scientist to make of these dueling reports? Indeed, what is a scientist to make of this?”

“Very few scientists are familiar with biology, geology, physics, oceanography, engineering, medicine, economics, and scores of other more specialized disciplines that were the basis of the claims…” The IPCC has depended on the ignorance of those scientists outside their particular disciplines and recruited them to be involved in the UN hoax. The rest of us look to them to provide guidance regarding issues involving the climate and, as a result, have been deliberately deceived.
 
The NIPCC, anticipating the latest IPCC addition to its climate scare campaign, has just issued a new addition to its “Climate Change Reconsidered” reports. The first volume was 850 pages long and the latest is more than 1,000 pages. It represents the findings of scores of scientists from around the world and thousands of peer-reviewed studies. At this point they represent some twenty nations.

I have been an advisor to The Heartland Institute for many years and have been exposing the climate change lies since the late 1980s. A science writer, I have benefited from the work of men like atmospheric physicist, S. Fred Singer, a founder of the NPCC who has overseen five reports debunking the IPCC since 2003.

The Heartland Institute has sponsored nine international conferences that have brought together many scientists and others in an effort to debunk the UN’s climate scare campaign.

I have always depended on the common sense of people to understand that humans have nothing to do with the climate except to endure and enjoy it. We don’t create it or influence it.

The global warming campaign is based on the Big Lie that carbon dioxide (CO2) traps the Sun’s heat and warms the Earth, but the fairly miniscule amount of CO2 in the atmosphere (0.038%) does not do that in a fashion that poses any threat. Indeed, it is the Sun that determines the Earth’s climate, depending where you happen to be on the Earth. Next to oxygen, CO2 is vital to all life on Earth as it is the “food” on which all vegetation depends. More CO2 is good. Less is not so good.

The IPCC has depended in part on the print and broadcast media to spread its Big Lie. It also depends on world leaders, few of whom have any background or serious knowledge of atmospheric science, to impose policies based on the Big Lie. These policies target the use of “fossil fuels”, oil, coal and natural gas, urging a reduction of their use. The world, however, utterly depends on them and, in addition to existing reserves, new reserves are found every year.

One reason the IPCC has been in a growing state of panic is a new, completely natural cooling cycle based on a reduction of solar radiation. As James M. Taylor, the managing editor of Heartland’s “Environment & Climate News”, pointed out recently, “Winter temperatures in the contiguous United States declined by more than a full degree Celsius (more than 2 degrees Fahrenheit) during the past twenty years.” He was citing National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration data. “The data contradicts assertions that human induced global warming is causing a rise in winter temperatures.”

In addition to the recent extremely cold winter, there have been others in 2000-2001 and 2009-2010. There will be more.

The IPCC report is full of claims about global warming, now called “climate change” since the world is obviously not warming. In March, Taylor rebutted an IPCC claim that crop production is falling, noting that global corn, rice, and wheat production have more than tripled since 1970. In recent years, the U.S. has set records for alfalfa, cotton, beans, sugar beets, canola, corn, flaxseed, hops, rice, sorghum, soybeans, sugarcane, sunflowers, peanuts, and wheat, to name just a few.

The Earth would benefit from more, not less, CO2 emissions, but the Obama administration has been engaged in imposing hundreds of new regulations aimed at reductions. It targets the development and expansion of our energy sector. The President has repeated the lies in his State of the Union speeches and we have a Secretary of State, John Kerry, who insists that climate change is the greatest threat to mankind and not the increase of nuclear weapons.

Every one of the Earth’s seven billion population are being subjected to the UN’s campaign of lies and every one of us needs to do whatever we can to bring about an end to the United Nations and reject the IPCC’s claims.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Obamacare is an American Catastophe



By Alan Caruba

If you type in “Obamacare” on Wikipedia you will discover 25,500,000 links. That’s a lot of news coverage and related commentary about the Affordable Care Act. Most of it is negative. The more people have learned about it, the less they like it and, if we had a Congress that could or would do anything about it, it would have been repealed by now.

A March 28 Associated Press poll revealed that only 26% of Americans support Obamacare, a point less than December 2013 and January 2014.

The Republicans in the House of Representatives have voted more than 60 times to repeal or dismantle Obamacare. The Senate, namely Harry Reid its Majority Leader, has killed all efforts to address what is clearly a national catastrophe. When passed in 2009, not one Republican member of Congress voted for it. When it was passed, then Speaker of the House, Nancy Pelosi, famously said they had to pass the 2,700 page act in order to find out what was in it.

In 2010, voters gave power in the House to Republicans, but the Senate remained under Democrat control. The fact that Barack Obama, when campaigning to become President in 2008 and thereafter lied repeatedly to Americans about it has tarnished his reputation and his approval ratings. Since then he has altered the law unilaterally despite the fact that he utterly lacks any constitutional right to do so.

In February the Heritage Foundation’s legal experts put together a list of seven illegal actions by the President that included delaying Obamacare’s employer mandate, giving Congress and their staffs special taxpayer-funded subsidies, preventing layoff notices from going out just days before the 2012 election, as well as non-Obamacare actions that included gutting the work requirement from welfare reform, stonewalling an application for storing nuclear waste at Yucca Mountain, and making “recess” appointments when the Senate was still legally in session.

The first element of the Obamacare catastrophe is an utterly lawless President who Congress has done little to restrain and nothing to impeach.

Another element of the Obamacare catastrophe has been the failure of the mainstream media to address the impact the law has had on America. On March 26, the Media Research Center reported that “They’re just burying the story. They aren’t in denial. They know the truth. They’re just choosing to ignore it. They are pretending there are no broken promises about keeping your insurance plan, or keeping your doctor, or lowering your premium by $2,500 a year.”

An analysis by the Center of the three network evening news broadcasts in 2014 “found only 12 stories on three networks in almost three months.” For example, “NBC Nightly News” broadcast only one story on Obamacare and that was on January 1 when Lester Holt called it “a new era in health care in this country.” ABC “World News” provided only six minutes and 58 seconds on Obamacare and “CBS Evening News” managed to provide only 19 minutes and 17 seconds over the course of three months.

“None of the networks,” said the Center’s analysis, “dared to report the ongoing opposition of the American people to Obamacare in 2014, even when they were the ones doing the polling.”

Sen. John Thune, (R-SD) posted an article from the Washington Free Beacon on his website, “Fourth Anniversary of Obamacare Brings Billions in Costs to Economy” that cited a report by the American Action Forum that concluded that “From a regulatory perspective, the law has imposed more than $27.2 billion in total private sector costs, $8 billion in unfunded state burdens, and more than 159 million paperwork hours on local government and affected entities.”
 
Sen. Thune said, that “Four years after Obamacare became the law of the land, millions of Americans have little but canceled policies, fewer choices, and skyrocketing costs to show for it. From seniors to young adults, to middle-class families, and small businesses, Obamacare has been to be an equal opportunity offender…people living under this law are acutely aware of the harm Obamacare is causing in their lives.”

I have held back from writing about Obamacare because so many others are doing so, but it is impossible to hold back from declaring it the worst law ever passed by Congress and to urge readers to go to the polls in the November midterm elections and remove from office those Democrats who voted for it and are seeking reelection.

There is little need for me to do an Obamacare analysis, but I can recommend one that appeared in The Weekly Standard on February 17. Those who have been following the history of lies and broken promises will find it a detailed study. Is author, Christopher Conover, summed it up saying that “Obamacare has failed miserably on nearly every major promise made about it. The processes used to enact and implement the law have been tarnished by actions of questionable legality and a pervasive lack of transparency.”

The ultimate impact of Obamacare on the economy must wait for a calculation, but the demand for its repeal must increase to a point where a future Congress must respond to the voter’s demand. Without that, we are headed for an economic collapse.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Monday, March 24, 2014

The Green Scam of "Endangered Species"



 
 By Alan Caruba

A recent article in The Wall Street Journal took note of what has occurred since the 1990s when some three dozen gray wolves were captured in Canada and transferred to the wilderness of Idaho. According to federal biologists, this was necessary to restore the ecological balance in a region teeming with elk and other creatures on the gray wolf food chain.

The article noted that more than 650 wolves roam the state today according to the Idaho Department of Fish and Game which has been hearing a lot of complaints that the wolves “are wreaking havoc on Idaho’s prized elk and livestock, and prompted the governor’s office to embark on an effort to wipe out three-quarters or more of the population.”

So the federal biologists bring in the wolves and a few years later the governor’s office says kill them. Why? Because the elk population has fallen about 15% since the wolves arrived, along with 2,589 sheep, 610 cows, and 72 dogs.

Take a moment on contemplate how arrogant and unconscionably stupid it is to take gray wolves from Canada and put them in Idaho in the name of “ecological balance.” The only balance achieved was a significant imbalance in the elk population and witless destruction of sheep and cows which represent a livelihood to ranchers and dinner to the rest of us.

Throughout America we are all paying for the environmental notion of “endangered species” and the quest to “save” some from extinction. The problem with that conceit is that 95% of all the species on Earth have gone extinct over hundreds of millions of years. One paper on this noted that “Mass extinction of biological species has occurred several times in the history of our planet.”

The Endangered Species Act became law on December 28, 1973, just over forty years ago. It’s not about saving species. It’s about providing a vehicle to environmental groups to shut off access to vast areas of the nation in order to prevent drilling for oil and natural gas or mining them for coal and other minerals.

In a December 2013 Wall Street Journal article, Damien Schiff and Julie MacDonald reported that “A law intended to conserve species and habitat has brought about the recovery of only a fraction—less than 2%--of the approximately 2,100 species listed as endangered or threatened since 1973.”

“Meanwhile, the law has endangered the economic health of many communities—which creating a cottage industry of litigation that does more to enrich environmental activist groups than benefit the environment.”

“One reason the Endangered Species Act has spun out of control is that the federal agencies that decide whether to list a species—the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service—no longer based decisions on what the law calls for: data. Instead they invent squishy standards like ‘best professional judgment.’”

The result of that can be seen in California’s San Joaquin Valley where much of the nation’s almonds, broccoli, onions, watermelons, lettuce and tomatoes have been grown. About 13% of all agricultural production in the nation takes place in the region where some 250 different crops are grown. That is, until the Natural Resources Defense Council won a lawsuit against California’s water-delivery system that they claimed was endangering Delta smelt, on the Endangered Species list since 1994. The result was a manmade drought for the valley’s farmers and ranchers. If you wonder why the cost of everything in the vegetable section of your supermarket costs more, you can thank the NRDC.

Lying about animal species is so much a part of the environmental movement that polar bears have become a fund-raising symbol over the years despite the fact that polar bear populations, said to be threatened by melting Arctic ice, have been thriving since the 1970s. According to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, there are between 20,000 and 25,000 polar bears worldwide, living in Canada, Greenland, the northern Russian coast, islands of the Norwegian coast and the northwest Alaska coast. Hunting them was banned in the U.S. and worldwide with the exception of Alaskan Natives for tribal needs.

Currently almost half the land west of the Mississippi river belongs to the federal government and environmentalists want to expand on that to prevent the nation’s booming oil and gas development. That development could make the U.S. energy independent, create many jobs, and its revenues could significantly reduce the tremendous national debt.  At the heart of the environmental movement is an intent to destroy capitalism and reduce the U.S. among other nations to an era before fossil fuels improved life for everyone.

One way to do that is to increase the endangered list by a record 757 new species by 2018. Two species with the greatest impact on private development are range birds, the greater sage grouse and the lesser prairie chicken. Among the environmental groups who specialize in using the Endangered Species Act are the Wildlife Guardians and the Center for Biological Diversity who have been party to more than one thousands lawsuits between 1900 and the present. The Center has made no secret of wanting to end fossil-fuel production in the U.S.

The Endangered Species Act should be repealed because it has a pathetic record regarding its goal over the past forty years and because it threatens the economic development of the nation. Unless or until this occurs, environmentalists will continue their assault on America.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The Path to War



 By Alan Caruba

Having lived through the long Cold War with the former Soviet Union, including the Cuban Missile crisis, my thoughts over those years were that their leaders would not risk war because the outcome would be disastrous for Russia. When it collapsed in 1991, its Eastern Europe satellite states broke free to establish their independence.

Now Vladimir Putin wants them back. The West can be forgiven for abandoning Crimea to the Russians because it was a part of their nation for hundreds of years and they have good reason to want to retain its only warm water ports there. That does not, however, give them a claim on the rest of the Ukraine. It is massing troops along its borders.

Historically, the path to war is often strewn with a failure to respond to aggression or with an over-response.

In the last century, the U.S. resisted involvement in European wars until it was under attack in some fashion. We entered World War Two that had been occurring since 1938 when Germany attacked Poland when we were attacked by the Japanese Empire in 1841 and we resisted getting into World War One for most of it until the very end. Begun in 1914, the U.S. did not enter until 1917 in response to submarine attacks and diplomatic efforts to encourage Mexico to reclaim its former territories. It was concluded in 1918, mostly because Germany had exhausted its resources by then. Barely twenty years later Hitler began World War Two.

Obama keeps talking about the 19th century and international laws, but Russia and other enemies only understand the use of power to secure their expansionist ambitions. Vladimir Putin, now enjoying a renewed popularity at home may conclude he can seize the Ukraine with minimum effort and resistance.

He has reason to believe this given the feeble response of the U.S. and Europe to date. Some relatively minor sanctions have been announced and others are being considered. At this writing those sanctions involve seven Russians and four Ukrainians. There has been no U.S. military aid to Ukraine and only some minor transfers to military assets to Poland.

For Putin, the judgment rests on Obama’s weakness and whether he and Congress would respond more forcefully. He has little reason to believe this given Obama’s withdrawal from Iraq and the U.S. withdrawal occurring in Afghanistan. Add Obama’s continued reduction of the U.S. military budget and its level of power and you have the kind of calculations that can lead to more aggressive action by Russia.

World War One saw the end of several empires such as the Austrian-Hungary and the Ottoman Empire. It launched modern warfare with the introduction of new, more lethal weapons and innovations such as aerial warfare. It began on June 28, 1914 with the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand in Serbia. By August, Germany declared war on Russia, France, and Belgium and on August 19th the U.S. announced its neutrality.

Neither the U.S., nor Europe wants to engage Russia militarily, but neither has either to date demonstrated any intention to protect the Ukraine or other nations that border Russia. That failure has enormous implications and must be reversed with action that includes the transfer of NATO troops and other actions demonstrating the will to resist.

Obama keeps referring to the “international community” but in the real world all nations act to protect themselves despite organizations such as the United Nations, NATO and treaties that promise mutual aid and protection.

Putin knows this even if Obama and his advisors do not. Obama’s actions at home have weakened the U.S. by virtue of our enormous, historic debt and, as noted, his constant reductions to our military strength.

Strong financial sanctions against Russia may give Putin cause to reconsider, but we cannot wait much longer for their implementation. This is complicated by Europe’s and our own financial investments in what was seen as a new Russia.

Europe’s dependence on energy provided by Russia adds to its reluctance. Craig Rucker, the executive director of the Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow (CFACT) notes that “The radical eco-left has gained such powerful sway across Europe that they have cut their nations off from their most reliable domestic sources of energy.”

“The feel-good cover story is laden with pictures of windmills and solar panels, but the hard facts remain that these expensive and inefficient sources of energy are not up to the task of powering a continent. That leaves much of Europe dependent on Gasprom, Russia’s natural gas export company and pipelines through the Ukraine.”

Overall, however, Russia is regarded to have a weak economy and a reliance on Western capital markets. That might be sufficient to forestall any action regarding the Ukraine.

With Putin in charge, we are looking at a former Russia, the Soviet model.

So the world watches as the U.S., its European allies, and Russia close in on a repeat of the last century’s history with the added threat of nuclear arms capable of destroying entire nations.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Relentless Global Warming "Scientists" Continue Their Scams



By Alan Caruba

Despite the growing worldwide recognition that global warming—now called climate change—is a hoax and that the Earth has been in a cooling cycle going on seventeen years, those most responsible for it continue to put forth baseless “science” about it.

The hoax has its base in the United Nations which is home to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and got its start with the Kyoto Protocol in 1997 that went into force in 2005. It limits “greenhouse gas” emissions, primarily carbon dioxide (CO2). It purports that the gases are warming the Earth and many nations signed on to reduce them. The U.S. did not and in 2011 Canada withdrew from it. Europe is suffering economically from the billions it invested in “alternative energy” sources, wind and solar power.

Five years ago, emails between a group of the United Kingdom’s University of East Anglia scientists and others who were generating computer models that “proved” global warming were revealed. It was quickly dubbed “climategate” for the way the emails demonstrated the manipulation of data claiming that global warming was real. They had good reason to be worried, given the natural cooling cycle the Earth has entered, but of even greater concern was the potential loss of enormous amounts of money they were receiving for their deception.

To date, not one of theirs and other computer models “proving” global warming have been accurate.

On Wednesday, March 10, The Wall Street Journal published an article, “Scientists Say Four New Gases Threaten the Ozone.”  It reported on the latest effort of “scientists” at the United Kingdom’s University of East Anglia and it is no coincidence that the university was the center for the original IPCC data created to introduce and maintain the global warming hoax.

“Traces of four previously undetected man-made gases have been discovered in the atmosphere, where they are endangering Earth’s protective ozone layer, a team of scientists from six countries reported Sunday.”

Trace gases are those that represent less than 1% in the Earth's atmosphere. CO2, for example, represents a meager 0.038% of the atmosphere and represents no impact whatever on the Earth’s climate. It is, however, vital to all life on Earth as it is the "food" for all of its vegetation.

“The gases are of the sort that are banned or being phased out under a global treaty to safeguard the high altitude blanket of ozone that protects the planet from dangerous ultraviolet radiation, experts said.” These “experts” failed to mention that everywhere above the Earth’s active volcanoes the ozone is naturally affected by their massive natural discharge of various gases. The oceans routinely absorb and discharge CO2 to maintain a balance. The bans included the gas used primarily in air conditioners and for refrigeration. It has since been replaced.

Another gas that was banned is a byproduct of chemicals called pyrethroids that “are often used in household insecticides.” Banning insecticides is a great way of reducing the Earth’s population as insects spread diseases and destroy property. Ironically, termites produce massive amounts of carbon dioxide.

The means used to detect the gases included comparing “the atmosphere today to old air trapped in annual layers of Greenland snow” and they also studied “air collected by high altitude research aircraft and by sensors aboard routine passenger jet flights around the world.” Not mentioned is the fact that the Earth has had higher amounts of CO2 in earlier times which posed no threat to it, so a few trace gases hardly represent a “threat.”

This kind of questionable “science” was practiced by one of the most well-known of the East Anglia scientists, an American scientist named Michael Mann, who used tree ring data to prove a massive, sudden increase in CO2 in his “hockey stick” graph that has since been debunked by skeptical scientists.

Mann has brought a libel law suit against columnist Mark Steyn, the National Review and the Competitive Enterprise Institute, charging defamation. Such suits cost a lot of money and Robert Tracinski, writing in Real Clear Politics in February noted that “it’s interesting that no one asks who is going to go bankrupt funding Mann’s lawsuit. Who is insuring Mann against this loss?”

Tracinski pointed out that “It is libel to maliciously fabricate facts about someone” but that it is “legal for me, for example, to say that Michael Mann is a liar, if I don’t believe his erroneous scientific conclusions are the product of honest error. It is also legal for me to say that he is a coward and a liar, for hiding behind libel laws in an attempt to suppress criticism.” The East Anglia emails revealed that they were doing whatever they could to suppress the publication of studies that disputed global warming in various science journals.

How specious is this latest announcement about trace gases that they assert are a threat to the ozone layer? An atmospheric chemist, Johannes Laube of the East Anglia group making the announcement, was quoted as saying “We are not able to pinpoint any sources” for the trace gases. “We are not able to point a finger.”

The objective of the announcement is the same as the creation of the entire global warming hoax. It provides the basis for the transfer of funds between developed and undeveloped nations and would grant greater power to the United Nations to reduce the world’s manufacturing base while endangering and controlling the lives of everyone on Earth.

Is the latest “research” a lie? The data it cites has some basis in fact, but those facts are an excuse, like those cited about greenhouse gases, to frighten nations into wasting billions on climate threats that do not exist. The real threats remain climate events over which mankind never has and never will have any control.

© Alan Caruba, 2014

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Some Very Good News About Americans



By Alan Caruba

We are all besieged daily by bad news. It is easy to become depressed about the present state of the nation, but there is some very good news as well.

This is not to say there aren’t legitimate problems and concerns. The last two elections put a President in office that lies all the time. The nation’s economy has been so awful that 100 million Americans are either out of work or have ceased looking for work. Democrat political leaders are actually telling Americans that being unemployed is a good thing because it leaves them free to pursue their hobbies.

The President has been pursuing a campaign to make Americans believe that there is massive income inequality when, in fact, there is relatively little. There has always been a very wealthy class and a very poor one. What there is, however, is a loss of wealth primarily in the Middle Class. As for poverty, America has long provided income mobility to those who wish to study and work hard to improve their status.

What is rarely addressed is the seething power of American entrepreneurship which, at present, is trapped by a largely socialist federal government imposing a mountain of regulations that thwart growth and take money from the private sector that would otherwise be invested in the creation or expansion of business and industry nationwide.

Americans have repeatedly suffered, survived, and overcome financial crises to come back to build the greatest economy in the world. Part of the reason for this are the long established values that Americans of every description embrace.

That is why Wayne Baker’s new book, “United America: The Surprising truth about American values, American identity and the 10 beliefs that a large majority of Americans hold dear” is a welcome review that the author’s extensive research confirms.

The beliefs are:

Respect for others
Symbolic patriotism
Freedom
Security
Self-Reliance& Individualism
Equal Opportunity
Getting ahead
Pursuit of happiness
Justice& fairness
Critical patriotism

A journalist, David Crumm provides an introduction to Baker’s book. “Dr. Baker defines a Core American Value (as one) that is strongly held by a large majority of Americans, stable over time, and shared across diverse demographic, religious and political lines…Here a core value represents an area of deep and broad consensus among American people, not disagreement and division. A core value is not a prescription of what Americans ought to believe, but what Americans actually do believe.”

The research supporting Dr. Baker’s book was conducted over two years by the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research and was funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York and the Institute. The data was analyzed with a battery of statistical techniques to ensure the validity and reliability of the results.

Touching on a few of the values addressed in the book, Dr. Baker starts with respect for others which he describes as “so important that it actually characterizes what it means to be an American…More than 90 percent of Americans in the national surveys I conducted said that respect for people of different racial and ethnic groups is important to them.”

“Respect is given to people who do what they say, who live according to what they believe, who are persons of integrity. A position or title doesn’t necessarily garner respect, but integrity does” says Dr. Baker and that is bad news for those identified as “leaders” or “experts” who do not display integrity. Telling lies undermines everything they say and do.

“We have what appears to be a contradictory situation,” says Dr. Baker. “Politicians, political elites, and party activists are increasingly polarized, moving further apart from one another. Yet public opinion polls clearly show that Americans loathe the divisiveness. And the values of Americans are not polarized.”

“There is widespread agreement among Americans when it comes to core values. Which means our polarizing politicians are becoming less and less representative or our actual views.”

A review of those core values show that Americans love their symbolic patriotism such as our flag and our national anthem. “Love of country is especially strong in America” says Dr. Baker.

“Americans hold tenaciously to the principles of liberty and freedom,” says Dr. Baker. “A 2013 poll by the Pew Research Center shows that 53 percent of Americans see the federal government as a threat to personal rights and freedoms. This is the first time since Pew started asking about this issue in 1995 that a majority felt this way.”

Little wonder when one recalls the assault on the Second Amendment that was launched by the Obama administration and one that failed significantly. Recent news of the Federal Communications Commission’s plans to “monitor” radio and television news judgments evoked a comparable response.

Freedom to participate in politics and elections evoked a response in which 98 percent of Americans agree with this definition of freedom and it stands in stark contrast to the Obama administration’s corruption of the Internal Revenue Service to deny Tea Party and patriot groups non-profit status routinely granted to other groups.

As one reads Dr. Baker’s book, one comes away with a renewed confidence in the judgment of Americans, confirming that their core values are those that have made America a beacon of freedom in the world.

And that’s the very good news!

© Alan Caruba, 2014