Global Warming

Charles Bordelon legitintellexit at
Tue Jul 15 14:35:22 EDT 2003

A few farts here and there don't mean much to me.  The whole thing stinks.  cb
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Patrick Foley 
  To: MWalker at 
  Cc: 'stan_gorodenski at' ; leps-l 
  Sent: Tuesday, July 15, 2003 12:44 PM
  Subject: Re: Global Warming


  We also know that since the industrial revolution , the Earth's atmosphere has increased its CO2 content by about 30%. (1850-1998 28% increase). Atmospheric greenhouse gases methane (118%) and NO2 (14%) also increased during that time.

  We also know that CO2 absorbs infrared energy bouncing from the Earth's surface at a higher rate than N2 and O2, the major components of the atmosphere. As do methane and NO2 and other human released gases.

  We also know that between 1861 and 1997 the Earth's mean surface temperature warmed by about 0.6 degrees C.

  In fact, we know a great deal about atmospheric changes, about the physics of them, and about changes in global temperatures on the land and in the ocean.

  We do not know everything. There are second order effects that could change everything towards greater warmth or greater cold. Once the ocean expands it changes the Earth's albedo, currents etc. As the oean warms, greater cloud cover and greater summer precipitation (especially in the Boreal areas) may have very tricky effects.

  Scientists are busy modeling these second and third order effects. And arguing about them. But it is not a simple matter of two sides with equal interest and equal validity. There are people trying to find out what is happening and people trying to pretend that nothing important is happening. And the second group is being paid explicitly to make the case for the status quo. Who do you trust?

  Patrick Foley
  patfoley at

  Mark Walker wrote:

Stan wrote:

I do not think your statement holds much water, at least with respect to
university scientists. The small pot of money scientists use for research
is allocated by Congress and the executive branch, and the purpose to
which this money is to be used normally has strict guidelines. There is
generally no great monetary incentive for university scientists to lie
because of the small amount of money involved, and if they do lie (i.e.,
falsify results) it could negatively impact on their ability to get future
grants. This is in sharp contrast to executives in private industry.
Executives can realize a great profit (millions, maybe even billions, of
dollars in their bank accounts) by narrow mindedly opposing the research
results of scientists that humans are the cause of global warming. Who has
the greater incentive to lie with respect to global warming? It is obvious
executives in private industry do.

It is obvious to me that both sides are being led more by their convictions
than by fact.  Both personify the villains as nameless, greedy, self serving
entities without providing specific information about any one liar or
exploiter.  It would seem to me that the only thing we may "know" at this
time is that the average temperatures over some relatively short period of
time have been moving steadily in one direction (or not).  It would seem to
me that any and all "explanations" for this phenomenon would be completely
hypothetical at this stage, and that therefore it would be ludicrous to
suggest that anyone is "lying" to anyone.  Do people have economic interests
on either side?  Of course.  Are researchers trying to create false doomsday
scenarios so they can put money in their institutions and stimulate the
preservation of natural resources based on false pretense?  Probably not.
Are wealthy industrial executives gathering around conference tables to spin
lies that will cover up and enable their corporations role in slowly boiling
the planet into oblivion?  Probably not.  In any case, I know of no specific
allegations.  On either side, it probably better serves your position to
refrain from making such blind accusations.

But the dialogue that has been stimulated provides certain entertainment,
for sure.  It's sort of like getting cable network news - without paying for
cable (oh, my cable modem light is blinking to remind me otherwise).

Mark Walker. 


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