Are Socialists Liberals? — OR — Is Liberalism Leftist?

August 12, 2009

Are Socialists Liberals? — OR — Is Liberalism Leftist?

A funny thing happened on the way to an argument.

I was discussing various aspects of socialism and its relationship to democracy and fascism,etc, and someone spoke to me of the writings of F A Hayek.

I’m not a big fan of those who go out of their way to prop up a kind of conservative capitalism while, at the same time, disparaging all socialism as the same thing – lumping together Trotsky, Hitler, Stalin, Mussolini and Eugene Debs into one big socialist totalitarian stew.

At this point, the world still seemed definable into the Left/Center/Right spectrum or continuum. In my mind I sometimes pictured Hitler and Stalin holding hands at the Left and Right ends forming us all into a big circle.

So I did a little research into Hayek. Usually if Conservatives tell you about someone’s writings, they all point to the same work, seemingly unaware of the author’s other works. In this case I stumbled on to Hayek’s excellent “Why I Am Not a Conservative”.

http://www.lewrockwell.com/orig6/hayek1.html

What I came away with was an interesting mental image of the political ‘spectrum’ as a sort of isosceles triangle. With Conservatism in one corner, opposed by Socialism and Liberalism/Progressivism in the top corner. The idea was that the Progressive Liberals are always trying to pull the cart ‘forward’ while the Conservatives resist change. And the Socialists are there trying to collectivise everyone into a totalitarian state.

While reading this, I realised that Hayek, by not differentiating Socialists as Right and Left or Nationalist and Internationalists, had left the idea incomplete. Hayek of course saw all totalitarians the same and all Socialism ended up with Hitler or Stalin and it didnt really matter.

The problem with this is that it fails to recognise and inform as to how those extremes come about from fairly rational and normal populations. We must differentiate them to understand the perils of totalitarianism and we must understand them to seek out the ‘goodness’ that may reside within a movement.

What I came to see was more of a diamond shape, where Liberalism was at the top as a result of progressive interests. Socialism was at the left where social programs protected the individual and the marginalized from the exploiting classes and planted the seeds for equality and internationalism. Conservatism was at the right where the state protected the traditions and intangible ‘values’ and reinforced the ideas of patriotism and nationalism. On the bottom was totalitarianism where one could arrive by corrupting either the right or the left.

But what stared me in the face was this contradiction that only then came to me. Socialists aren’t really Liberals. ‘Liberal’ in the US is almost a negative term. It has come to mean a nebulous ideal that either at one time is anti-establishment or wants to spend all the taxes of the rich on Welfare. In a way, those are both fairly accurate descriptions of the Left and of Socialists or Communists in a capitalist state, BUT, they do not describe LIBERALS.

The real description of a Liberal is someone who wants to maximize personal freedom, personal success and what ever opportunities present themselves. That, however, does not describe Socialism.

A Socialist, at least an honest Socialist, should tell you that true and complete personal freedom comes at the expense of equality. This is not to say that Liberals or Libertarians are wrong, wronghearted or misguided. They simply see the world in more Darwinian terms and they probably enjoy some personal success which they would want to expand. American Libertarians, to me, seek their means through some Conservative routes – they would hold the Constitution or portions of it, maintain Capitalism and the overarching systems of the US. Socialists at the more extreme would arrive at their Utopia without those trappings if necessary. But it may happen through a revolution which leaves those institutions at the side of the road.

Socialists, therefore, seek to mellow this drive to universal personal freedom with a measure of equality. Ensuring universal equality is to some degree an artificial control. It requires a mechanism to ensure equality and opportunity. That mechanism doesn’t need to ensure SAMENESS, just equal opportunity. This means that mechanism or government may need to control, operate or oversee some of the services provided to the populace.

Communism may fall between Liberalism and Socialism, or it may fall between Socialism and Totalitarianism. It depends on what its specific mechanism or government looks like.

So if this is the case then, why would a Liberal want a helmet law? They wouldn’t. Each for themselves as they see fit. Although I cant see why a Socialist would need one either… Why would a Liberal want laws restricting guns or any sports? They wouldn’t. A Liberal would demand that the minority which abuses the right to own guns would be stringently punished but that the actions of a relatively small minority would not affect the rest.

A Leftist Socialist would never favor immigration laws, but what about the Liberal? The Liberal may become protective if true freedom may impact them in the negative. But ideally, why would the Liberal care who came and went, since everyone has the same opportunity.

The average person sits in the middle of the diamond – the Moderate/Centrist who wants things to continue on roughly the same. The Centrist is pulled at times by the Liberal to find more freedoms and less control, pulled by the Conservative to honor values or traditions or patriotism, pulled by the Socialist to care for their fellow man and seek equality. Allowing too much control by the statists on either the Conservative or the Socialist side can lead into the wilderness of Totalitarianism.

So we see that while the Left or the Right may have their Liberals, true Liberalism is progressive and outside of the Left/Right continuum. Complete Liberalism/Libertarianism leads to Anarchy. It could be the quite happiness of a true stateless and free society, or it could be the dark lawlessness where some have and some have not to include security and health.

Extremism at any point is excessive, it is important to continuously find the balance that maintains freedom and equality and honors traditions without xenophobia or paranoia.

-Pasha
@antipov


Abortion? A Question of Rights or Morality?

July 10, 2009

Abortion? A Question of Rights or Morality?

Like any mature issue, the question of the availability of abortions in some situations has lines that are clearly drawn. On the Right, are the foes of allowing abortions who equate the practice to murder. On the Left are the proponents of Choice who feel that preventing access to abortion limits women’s rights to control their bodies.

Are either of these the REAL argument? I will examine three threads – legislating morality; what is behind the Right’s argument; and, who really controls women’s reproductive rights?

We can legislate morality, it is true. But should we? Let’s take two examples – murder/capital punishment and sex/prostitution.

The first problem with morality is that no two people have the same morality. There are certain morals that we think of as universal, murder or theft. But do we codify these behaviors in law because they are immoral or because they break down the proper function of society? Or is that what morality really is? Rather than an inherent evil?

We must regulate murder and not condone or accept it. Not because it is BAD, per se, but because but because it interferes with another person’s right to life, liberty and happiness. Only through due process can those rights be abridged. This is why capital punishment is not equated with murder, because society, through the courts, have taken away the guilty party’s right to their life and liberty (no doubt their happiness too).

Prostitution is against the law in most states because the states have regulated sex trade. Most states’ regulations do not permit the performance of physical sex acts. The sex act between the prostitute and the John is not ILLEGAL. Two consenting adults can have sex legally. It is the introduction of the unauthorized business transaction that constitutes a crime.

So what do we get legislating the morality of abortion? First we have to agree that abortion breaks down the proper function of society. I think the number of abortions over the last 20 years would indicate that abortion has no real effect on society. Certainly it has an effect on women and families that have to choose and deal with that option. But beyond that, there has been no real adverse affect identified to society, except the lost votes, taxes, membership of the non-born.

The Right’s Argument:

Is the Right correct to try to save the innocent lives of the fetuses? Is the goal of the Right to actually save the unborn or protect human life?

In the US about 28,000 to 30,000 babies die before the age of 12 months. Is it moral to let these children die due to inadequate diets, poor health care, poverty? The hue and cry to correct this and improve health care in the US has not been a focus of the Right. One would expect to see strong calls for improvement in health care if there was a real concern about human life. Also perplexing is the total silence on poverty in both the US, Europe and the 3rd world. It would seem that saving the lives of the living would be paramount.

Is a fetus a citizen? We don’t record pregnancies as vital statistics. A spontaneous abortion differs little from an induced abortion. There is no effort to record where a child is conceived or where it travels to on the way to birth, we merely record the birth and the birthplace. Citizenship is an accident of birth not conception. As such, rights and citizenship do not begin to accrue until birth.

So what does concern the Right? The white race in the US is slowly being diminished by the Latin and Asian Americans and their children. We could accuse the Right of trying to impose the birth of more White children. Infant mortality rates in the US support white births second only to Cuban.

Is this silent racism also behind the ignorance of improving health care to the poor and immigrant families? Or even the health care, poverty and hunger of the 3rd world, most of whom are not White?

One would hope that is a misreading of the facts. The proof of the assumption could only come with increased efforts on the Right to cry for the value of ALL human life, born and unborn. That is not happening.

Choice:

Is Abortion then the matter of Choice? What a woman wants to do with her body? Certainly an abortion is an exercise of right and choice. Those rights should not be denied in those cases where the fetus is not self-viable. And in those later cases, there should be checks and balances before late term abortions on self-viable fetus are allowed.

But what this really boils down to is control over women themselves. It is interesting and frightening that the White male-dominated religious groups are the most vocal against abortion. These same groups that have often in the past been the deniers of other rights to women. The bottom line of allowing abortions to be available is allowing women control over their bodies. Laws limiting abortions could also pave the way for the precedent to induce abortions or control reproduction in other ways.

No one is Pro Abortion. The last choice any woman wants to be confronted with is abortion. But if you would LIMIT abortions, look to the causes, but first, let’s help out the living who are in need right now.

@antipov


Time for a New Party?

May 8, 2009

Are We Ready for A Third (or Fourth) Political Party?

It’s Friday, so I thought we could have some fun with numbers. I’ve seen these numbers bandied about the net and on the news media. Their exactness isn’t totally important, it only matters that they are in the ballpark.

This week I have heard the numbers of self labeled Democrats and Republics stands around 39% Demo and 21% Rep. So roughly 60% of Americans identify with one of the two major parties. We are led to believe that the rest of the 40% of Americans belong to either small parties or are not committed to a party.

Now those numbers may worry you a bit if you are a Republican or a Conservative, but let’s look at some other numbers.

Among Americans, those who self identify as Conservatives is about 34%. While those who call themselves Liberals comprise about 7% (seven percent) of the population. Everyone else (~ 60%) gets lumped in as Moderates.

So let’s say, for fun, parties apart, the Liberals and Conservatives both decided to support the SAME candidate in an election and the Moderates all got together and supported someone else. The moderates would win. Hmmm

But wait… If Republicans are Conservative and Democrats are Liberals how come there are a WHOLE lot of Conservatives who don’t align with the Republican Party? More Importantly, who are all these Democrats who aren’t Liberals?

Well, we all know that MOST Democrats would never label or even consider themselves ‘Liberals’. Mostly because they aren’t. Most Democrats, well many at least, see themselves as conservative. Just as many Liberals are probably far more liberal than the Democratic Party sets itself out to be and they would self identify with those smaller parties with more liberal or even radical views.

So what is broken here? Those conservative Democrats want a lot of the things the Democratic Party supports. While they don’t want a bunch of government involvement in their lives, they do like the programs that we have come to enjoy and rely on. But maybe more importantly, these “Conservative Democrats” vary widely on specific issues. But they usually aren’t swayed by individual issues in the ways we think Conservative Republicans are. If you notice even in campaigns, Democrats are much less likely to get tied around individual issues. Democrats often change their views as the times change. That isn’t necessary a bad thing (unless it happens DURING an election). It is a pragmatic thing. It shows someone who is bright enough to change as our understanding of situations and knowledge in general change. These Conservative Democrats also understand that government is a compromise if it is going to work.

The idea that these Conservative Democrats don’t have a real ‘dealbreaker’ stance on most issues is what differentiates them from their more right leaning cousins.

It was these Conservative Democrats who brought Ron Reagan to power. Since most people vote their ‘conscience’ rather than by party ticket. These Moderates have no qualms about voting for the party/candidate which makes the most sense.

This is the same concept that brought Republicans control of Congress in 1995 after 50 years of Democrat control.

The big difference in the 1994 elections was that Clinton helped to mobilize the Religious Right to go to the polls and they greatly boosted the Republican numbers.

And in 2004 there was really no distinction between Kerry’s campaign and Bush’s campaign that would bring those Moderates over to Camp Kerry in big numbers.

Of course, the Republican Party was just the ‘Best Fit’ for the Religious Right. Too many Moderate Republicans have those flexible ‘values’. That really stymies the Religious Right. The Religious Right
have an inflexible and seemingly identical set of base values. They see no reason to compromise those beliefs to support ANY party. Which is why prior to 1994, they weren’t as big a block as they became. Also, Bill Clinton was an easy target for those who could embrace the Religious Right and bring them in against Clinton, and by proxy, all Democrats and Liberals became painted in the same shades.

But the Republican Party allowed the fire and brimstone style of their new best friends to take over the voice of the Party. You see that Farther Right portion of the Conservatives must either Fix the Party or leave.

So what happens is the Far Right’s inflexible rhetoric keeps away the Moderates and pushes away some of the Conservatives. Not to mention those Far Rightist leaving who feel the Republican Party is too Liberal.

So now our Parties are an ideological mess. That Majority of Americans that both sides claim to represent swings back and forth based on the message and outlook of the candidates.

What we need are probably four political parties in America. Let the Democrats and Republicans fight over their 40 to 60 % of the Moderate electorate while the Further Left and the Further Right fight over the other roughly 50%. If this really happened what would it mean? First of all elections would have to be much more issue oriented as the full spectrum of ideas and concerns are faced, rather than just shades of the same Moderate concerns. The Congress would be manned by a variety of representatives for 4 parties –or more– and No One would be assured of any topic passing without much debate and compromise. And more debate and even more compromise is good.

But would we really like 4 parties? We like winners. We like to be on the winning side. With 4 Parties all having 20% of the electorate fighting over the other 20%, there would be no clear party to side with. Are we ready for a political system where the electorates themselves have to understand the issues and make hard decisions?


The RIGHT to Govern

May 2, 2009

The God Given RIGHT

When the GOP forgot they had to answer to the electorate, or, What God has given, the voters have taken away.

They whined and stomped their feet. The democrats were going to run their budget proposals through congress with only a mere acknowledgment of the Right. “What about OUR ideas?” They cried. “They aren’t listening to us!” They screamed. The democrats were bound and determined to push their agenda through and the Right decided it would be best for America if they just sat back while the democrats failed. And the Right still hopes the democrats will fail.

The Right is confused and bewildered. After Gingrich and Dubya, the Right believed that not only were they elected to lead, they were Chosen to lead. The senior George HW Bush described the concept himself in 1990 when discussing the first Gulf War:

“I’ve got it boiled down very clearly to good vs. evil. And it helps if you can be that clear in your own mind.”

Luckily, we filled Dubya’s cabinet and shadow government with folks well versed in Senior’s ideals.

Ashcroft, Cheney and Bush and their shadow minions had that clear in their minds. Many of these people had been heard from before in the Project for the New American Century (PNAC). The PNAC was very clear during the Clinton administration that the US should be the global “constabulary force”, should “control” space and drastically expand the military and its nuclear arsenal. The PNAC’s “Rebuilding America’s Defenses” is a scary, almost paranoid vision of how American needs to militarily expand its presence across the globe and build on its military superiority Far into the Future.

On a smaller scale, we now had official morning prayer groups in the Attorney General’s office and there was a movement to introduce non scientific ideas into state sponsored scientific studies. But of course, only Judeo Christian ideas.

http://usgovinfo.about.com/od/rightsandfreedoms/a/canyonflood.htm

The President established the “Faith Based Initiative”, where the state would hand over taxpayer money to church groups. The President said:

“We want to fund programs that save Americans one soul at a time.”
President George W. Bush, January, 2004,

So, I ask you, what is more arrogant than someone assuming that my soul needs saving and that HE is the one to determine just how it needs to be saved?

This administration was above the law and the judgment of the American People, nay even the World’s Peoples. This administration answered only to its own version of God and Destiny.

Not since Nixon have we seen this kind of arrogance in elected officials. Not since Eisenhower have we so blatantly interfered in the politics of another country. And 55 years later we are STILL paying for that decision.

Because of this arrogance, this administration drew up, in private and in public, programs and policies to:

Justify and conduct criminal acts of torture and mental cruelty — If you want to know JUST how serious this torture was, I refer you to Peter Phillips discussion of ONE of the 44 torture AUTOPSIES reviewed by the ACLU.

http://www.counterpunch.org/phillips12022005.html

Squander the international support after 9/11 and develop a “Go it Alone” attitude.

Declare the “Axis of Evil” (woops there goes that Good V Evil theme again), essentially isolating N Korea, and Iran driving them into further extremism.

Insist that Iran and Syria conform to US expectations before ANY dialog would be established. These are SOVEREIGN nations folks.

Declare unilateral and unprovoked war against the Iraqi regime in order to liberate the Iraqis and bring (American) democracy to them, regardless of if they wanted it.

Take the Iraqis to task, even to war, for failing to abide by UN Resolutions, while Israel ignores dozens of resolutions. But the US backs Israel, attacks Iraq and wonders why the Arab world is so upset….

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_United_Nations_resolutions_concerning_Israel

Deregulated the financial sector, we know what happens from there….

Mission Accomplished

Bring Em On!

No support to the Kyoto Protocols

Illegal wiretapping

Violations of the 6th Amendment of the Constitution

Destruction of public documents

Dismissals of US Attorneys.

And the list goes on.

The Republicans garnered a mandate in the 1994 elections. The American people were looking for something new and also some more narrow interests organized and got out the vote. Little became of that new direction and we saw congressional seats begin to slip back to the democrats as early as 1996. The Republican majority continued to slip until 2002. Even the 2000 elections were split similar to the presidential elections. And don’t forget, Gore won the popular vote. Bush had no clear mandate when he achieved power.

9/11 was the event that solidified Bush’s power and helped justify the RIGHT’s belief that they were fulfilling destiny to defeat the infidel Moslems and bring Judeo Christianity to the world. Kinda like the Crusades. (If we can spark Armageddon and the Rapture, that would be neat too). 911 allowed the RIGHT to bring to the fore those PNAC ideas about US global hegemony. The 2002 elections reinforced that idea in the minds of the RIGHT. The dems, the leftist liberals were no longer fit to lead. They played Satan’s hand and were in bed with our enemies. Actually the gains made in the Senate and the House were relatively insubstantial.

What the American People seemed to be realizing was that the narrow issue focus that brought the Republicans to power, seemed to lack the real depth to lead the country on multiple complex issues. The Bush cabinet was over stocked with big oil, big business and Bush I’s cronies. Every ideal was subservient to the fear of Moslem or Hispanic foreigners bent on destroying our way of life. Every argument was punctuated with fear. Every right was sacrificed for security. And while we yelled voicelessly against FEAR, FEAR, FEAR, the administration went quietly about subtle changes to policies and regulations to further codify their values. For example:

“Instead of taking the Endangered Species Act head on, the administration is working to destroy the effectiveness of it through executive rule changes,” said Brian Nowicki, a conservation biologist at the Tucson-based Center for Biological Diversity, which promotes species conservation. “They can’t just attack it outright, so they try to stop it out of the spotlight.”

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A26242-2004Jul3.html

Much of these differences were apparent in the race between Obama and McCain. McCain seemed to represent not only a kind of status quo, but a very narrow scope of abilities to lead the country.

The massive gains in the Congress and Obama’s popular vote count placed the left in office with a CLEAR mandate.

What God gives, the voters have taken away.

Each party must remember that they must always, at some point, answer to the electorate. The New RIGHT squandered its opportunity to lead. The Left (is it New, or Old?) has been given back the mantle. The minority ( I hate to say ‘losing’ ) party needs to understand that their influence was greatly limited by the last election. That was what the American People decided. It is neither in the RIGHT’s interest for the government to fail, nor is it moral. Everyone has a moral obligation to work for the success of the decisions of the representatives elected by the people.

You can argue and disagree, but there isn’t room for whining and subversion.

Of course, that goes for all of us, for now and in the future.

*** Nationalism and super-patriotism with a sense of historic mission.
*** Aggressive militarism even to the extent of glorifying war as good for the national or individual spirit.
*** Use of violence or threats of violence to impose views on others
*** Authoritarian reliance on a leader or elite not constitutionally responsible to an electorate.
*** Cult of personality around a charismatic leader.
*** Reaction against the values of Modernism, usually with emotional attacks against both liberalism and communism.
*** Exhortations for the homogeneous masses of common folk (Volkish in German, Populist in the U.S.) to join voluntarily in a heroic mission_often metaphysical and romanticized in character.
*** Dehumanization and scapegoating of the enemy_seeing the enemy as an inferior or subhuman force, perhaps involved in a conspiracy that justifies eradicating them.
*** The self image of being a superior form of social organization beyond socialism, capitalism and democracy.
*** Elements of national socialist ideological roots, for example, ostensible support for the industrial working class or farmers; but ultimately, the forging of an alliance with an elite sector of society.
*** Abandonment of any consistent ideology in a drive for state power.

The Hallmarks of Fascism as defined by Chip Berlet in 1992

Taken without permission from:

http://remember.org/hist.root.what.html


Batteries — Our New Foreign Dependence

April 22, 2009

Maybe the welfare of the world is our business.

I have a lithium battery in my cell phone, my ipod, my computer, my games, and maybe soon powering my car.

Electrical power is seen as one of the viable alternatives to fossil fuels, and yet, right now the best technology to support that is the lithium battery.

But where do these come from? Well, China, of course. But where do the actual components come from? That is an even more confusing and scary answer.

Lithium is mined in the US and South America. More than half the world’s lithium is buried in a desert in Bolivia. So part of our bet to reduce foreign dependence on oil makes us dependent on Bolivia, for one.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-1166387/In-search-Lithium-The-battle-3rd-element.html

More disturbing is another key component of lithium batteries and that is cobalt. Most of the world’s cobalt comes from – well, you guessed it – Congo. And if I’m not mistaken, Congo has been in the news recently because it is a tad unstable and MILLIONS of people have died there in civil wars over the last decade. It is interesting to see how control and ownership of these mines carries on behind the scenes in the world of big business. This article talks about the recent acquisition of the largest underground copper mine in the Congo by the Swiss mining giant Glencore International.

http://paguntaka.org/2009/01/13/glencore-wins-control-underground-copper-mine-in-congo/

“Geopolitical risk is embedded into Glencore’s business,” said Henri Alexaline, a credit analyst at BNP Paribas SA in London.

And taking 30,000 tons of cobalt a year out of Congo makes Glencore a big player in the electric vehicle industry.

Let’s think about that risk for a minute. Didn’t we just get through with another round of “war for oil”? Continued dependency on foreign resources, especially in regions like Congo where our influence is questionable, could result in more expeditions in the name of national security. Don’t forget, unlike lithium, cobalt has MANY uses in the US to include military and medical.

Here is an interesting article about the chemistry of conflict, or is that the conflict of chemistry.

http://www.geocities.com/rodneys_geology/Congo-Coltan.html

So where does that lead us? Fighting over resources isn’t new. The fate of Congo may become near and dear to our hearts. The politics of Bolivia may suddenly swerve into view for the US and Europe. But at the core of this is that we are truly interconnected with the world, no matter where we go for our energy. The only way to avoid that is to build newer and better energy cells that we can build wholly at home. And while that would be a great nationalistic goal, it isn’t really practical. Maybe we need to better understand what a small world this really is, and how much we depend, or should depend on each other.

@antipov

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cobalt
http://www.notmytribe.com/2008/congo-cobalt-copper-coltan-2-8704.html


Is the Media Spinning the Global Warming Story?

April 17, 2009

While Nero fiddled…Rome FROZE?

In this case, Nero is all the global warming “advocates” who think action is telling everyone the sky is falling. As I said in a previous post, it isn’t really about who or what causes climate change, it’s about identifying the change and what we should do when confronting the change. So this is a continuation.

Global Warming Advocates – I don’t know who coined that misnomer. Who really advocates for global warming? But the people who want to convince us that global warming is happening are usually those same people that want us to believe that WE caused global warming. (and therefore can CURE it). They take every piece of science and rumor and try to twist in cause and effect relationships about how the causes are man made. I saw a BBC article that said, “…most mainstream scientists believe a human-driven increase in “greenhouse gases” is increasing the effect artificially…” (my emphasis). So anyone who believes otherwise isn’t “mainstream”? A little propaganda for you from the global warming advocates.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/shared/spl/hi/sci_nat/04/climate_change/html/greenhouse.stm

In an article on ‘Megadroughts’ yesterday, the BBC regurgitated a “Science” report about West African drought where they stated, “Writing in the journal Science, the researchers suggest man-made climate change may make the situation worse.” But since that is a pretty hard position for those mainstream scientists to support, the next paragraph went on, “But, they say, the droughts are going to happen again anyway, and societies should begin planning for them.”

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/8003060.stm

So we caused the problem but it would have happened anyway. This sort of double talk goes on everywhere amongst the prophets of doom.

Another article, which I can’t quote, the BBC tells us that flooding in East Africa is also a result of man made global warming.

In the following article, the BBC doesn’t even bother to introduce any science, they just jump right to the point.
“Even modest temperature rises will affect millions of people, particularly in the developing world, they warn. But, they say, most tools needed to cut carbon dioxide emissions already exist.”

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7940532.stm

So we just insert the statement and everyone will go along with it.

In a great story about how 2008 was the coolest year since 2000, you can almost see the pain they are going through to somehow relate this anomalous condition to man made global warming.

“Computer models suggest that natural cycles may cool the Earth’s surface in the next few years, masking the warming impact of rising greenhouse gas levels. “

Again, that is my emphasis. So now the weather is hiding global warming from us…?

In the same article, the Goddard Institute for Space Studies is quoted as saying 2008 was the COOLEST year of the CENTURY. And then quickly covers that with “it still ranks as the ninth warmest since 1880”.

The article closes with the conclusion that mother nature is trying to fight off global warming further complicating matters.

“The question for the next decade or so will be whether natural cycles such as the Atlantic Multidecadal Oscillation continue to moderate the warming effect of rising greenhouse gas concentrations.”

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/science/nature/7786060.stm

We have seen this tactic before on the subject of global warming and the ozone layer, etc. Where there is this constant search for weather statistics that support their claims. What does it really matter that one year is colder or hotter than the next? One of them has to be the coldest in 100 years. The problem is that the climate isn’t acting in a nice reliable pattern for the doomsayers.

The reason their statistics can’t hold is that we just don’t have data stretching back hundreds, thousands or tens of thousands of years. Or do we?

In an article from 1983 by Richard Tkachuck, of the Geoscience Research Institute, the author describes not only how long term weather data is derived as inferential data from other sources. He also goes on to defend the idea that:

“As we examine this topic, it will be seen that evidence for a significant fundamental climatic change is substantial, but — and perhaps more interestingly — the specific reasons for this change are not understood.”

He goes on to describe the “Little Ice Age” 1100 AD – 1300Ad and its after effects. One interesting side note is about sunspot activity:

“An interesting coincidence held meaningful by many is the absence of sunspot activity through most of the latter and most severe period of the Little Ice Age (Eddy 1976).”

http://www.grisda.org/origins/10051.htm

Many of us are aware that we are in a period of almost a complete stop of sun spot activity, if not complete.

There are many indications by examining history that point to the theory that we are about to enter an “ice age” rather than global warming. There was an increase of temperature prior to the last little ice age. The is termed the “Medieval Warm Period”. Temperatures during that time were some of the highest in the past 5000 years. Similar temperature highs were noted in the early 20th century and now we are exceeding those. This again may point to concerns for a new ice age.

http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/paleo/globalwarming/medieval.html

So, again what all this tells us is that there is indeed global warming. But what it doesn’t tell us is what that means to us. There have been a number of book written on how the populations of the world have dealt, historically, with the climate changes between 1000 AD and 1800 AD. We are wasting our time trying to turn the clocks back and ‘REVERSE Global Warming’ as the advocates would have us waste our time doing. We still need to spend all that energy and time figuring out how to DEAL with Global Warming. Historic reactions to global warming have been both tales of human survival and cooperation, and also tales of violence, intolerance and extremism. We must work now to plan for the changes that are likely to come, rather than continue to study WHY the sky is falling.

@antipov


Climate Change – Face Reality

April 15, 2009

In the 60’s and 70’s the message was – “we aren’t taking care of the planet”. An extension of that was that we weren’t taking care of ourselves.

As we began to notice weather and climate trends that seemed to be outside the norms of our recent history. This started the debate as to whether ‘Global Warming’ was affecting our planet. Global warming was a debate because there was evidence for global warming, but we really don’t have enough knowledge of the planet to know what the long term trends were. Also, there were marked changes in the climate and weather as recently as the 13th Century.

The most recent debate became WHY the climate was changing. We looked at carbon monoxide and carbon dioxide and carbon emissions and footprints in general. Our modern oracles are crying and weeping to get us to change our ways and stop the climate change.

There could be a big problem in there.

In the efforts to prove the causes of climate change and to curb the sources of those causes, we are ignoring the stark realities. The doomsayers warn of flooding and drought and desertification and loss of habitat for man and beast. They do this to get us to comply with their agendas – both good and bad. Certainly we need to clean up our acts just because it is good for us and the planet.

But, what we are missing out on, if we truly believe in these omens, is the solution. Not the solution to turning back the climate, but the solution to dealing with impending changes that are occurring. All around us people are explaining the warning signs or the results of climate change. But beyond the identification and explanation no one talks about how we will adapt and cope with those changes. No one seems to be taking it seriously enough to start talking about how we will live in this changing world – what to expect and how to solve the problems that may arise.

I would like to call for a new tack through the rough winds of global warming/climate change. Stop telling us what may/will happen and let’s start talking about how we can and must adapt WHEN the climate changes – which it is already doing. The climate has changed before and people have adapted. It is time we stop denying that it WILL happen and time to prepare so that we don’t end up facing extremism because we haven’t thought out the solutions, or even the questions.

@antipov