Two days ago (1 June 2017), President Donald J. Trump fulfilled one of his key campaign promises. He said the United States would withdraw from the agreement of the Twenty-first Conference of Parties to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC)—the Paris Agreement. The other Parties, and their Mainstream Media and other allies, soon began to bleat like sheep and wail like banshees.
This, of course, should surprise no one. The globalism-collectivism axis can never afford to praise President Trump or anything he does. He declared himself their enemy when he began his campaign, so they returned the favor. But lest anyone really think Trump acted out of spite, thoughtful people should review the history of Conferences of Parties. They should also review Climategate, the scandal that showed up “anthropogenic global warming” as a fraud. The Paris Agreement, and the reaction after Trump abrogated it, together form Climategate 3.0.
What the Paris Agreement says
The Paris Agreement does one thing; the Green Climate Fund does another. President Trump addressed both. Conflating the two becomes easy because “President” Barack Obama committed the United States to both without asking the Senate’s leave.1 Yet honor demands a distinction between the two. The Green Climate Fund agreement says 43 governments must raise $100 billion (U.S.) to “help” developing countries. (How?) Those governments have raised $10.3 billion as of 12 May 2017. $1 billion of that, came from U.S. taxpayers. Obama put taxpayers on the hook for another $2 billion. Now, Trump has quashed that.
Matthew Kotchen, in The Washington Post, misleads his readers when saying “the private sector” will contribute some of that money. The very document to which he linked says nothing about private anything. It says 43 state governments have made pledges. Direct, de jure taxation is only one method available to a “state government.” Governments can extort funds from their citizens in other ways, from fines to empty promises of regulatory relief.
So technically the Paris Agreement does not itself demand the U.S.A. fork over any money. But it does ask individual Americans pay more to live, and leaves them less to live on.
The devil lies in the details
The details come from this report, which the Heritage Foundation released more than a year ago. Everything in the Paris Agreement depends on “contributions” each party “intends” and “determines” to make toward reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Obama offered to reduce American CO2 emissions by 26 to 28 percent from 2005 levels by 2025. Two things become relevant here:
- Each party needed to get the secretariat of the UNFCCC (see above) to sign off on its specific plan.
- The Obama administration already planned a slew of domestic regulations to serve an international agenda.
These regulations include the CO2 regulations that threatened to shut down the coal industry. When Hillary Clinton said she would shut down coal mines, she meant to do it this way. By this means, the federal government would also tell you how to build your house or other building. It would tell you how much fuel to burn in your car or truck as well.
Heritage used some of the government’s own estimates for what the Paris Agreement would do to the American economy.
As a result of the plan, one can expect that by 2035, there will be:
An overall average shortfall of nearly 400,000 jobs;
An average manufacturing shortfall of over 200,000 jobs;
A total income loss of more than $20,000 for a family of four;
An aggregate gross domestic product (GDP) loss of over $2.5 trillion; and
Increases in household electricity expenditures between 13 percent and 20 percent.
The Heritage Foundation, unlike the Obama administration, show their methods plainly for all to see. So anyone who really wants to, can check out whether the Heritage Foundation are right or wrong.
What price must other nations pay?
In some cases, no price at all. President Trump made this abundantly clear while saying why he is pulling out of the Paris Agreement. In fact, the Chinese may increase their emissions for the next thirteen years. (The Chinese say they won’t do that. Whether they follow through, the world shall see.) India demanded a big serving of slush from that Green Climate Fund as its price for “contributing.” And while America, under this agreement, must effectively shut down coal mining, China and India may increase their mining. If fossil fuels must stay in the ground, they must stay in the ground everywhere. The Paris Agreement makes no attempt to accomplish this.
This alone should tell any fair-minded person that the parties to the Paris Agreement don’t even believe their own hype. President Trump laid it on the line:
This agreement is less about the climate and more about other countries gaining a financial advantage over the United States. The rest of the world applauded when we signed the Paris Agreement — they went wild; they were so happy. [They applauded] for the simple reason that it put our country…at a very, very big economic disadvantage. A cynic would say the obvious reason for economic competitors and their wish to see us remain in the agreement is so that we continue to suffer this self-inflicted major economic wound. We would find it very hard to compete with other countries from other parts of the world.
And what is a cynic? It comes from an ancient Greek word for a dog. So a cynic is a dog barking at society.
Arf, arf. With just a hint of a growl.
But would the Paris Agreement do anything for the environment?
No. It would not. The Committee for a Constructive Tomorrow said it best. Even the computer models the United Nations use said the Paris Agreement would do nothing meaningful. And that’s assuming every other country lives up to its good intentions, as they register them with the Secretariat!
Readers need not take only the word of “climate deniers” like CFACT. By all means, check it out with the UN. Then consult some of the loudest climate-change screamers. Last year Senator Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) told The Hill the Paris Agreement didn’t go far enough.
The planet is in crisis. We need bold action in the very near future and this does not provide that.
And now he says President Trump made “a horrific mistake.”
There’s not enough in this deal for the nations and people on the frontlines of climate change. It contains an inherent, ingrained injustice. The nations which caused this problem have promised too little help to the people who are already losing their lives and livelihoods.
Notice: he said nations. Plural. Not merely the United States. But the Paris Agreement laid the burden squarely on America as on no one else. This cynic (see above) is now not only growling but baring his teeth.
What a “scientist” says
James Hansen, once at NASA and now at Columbia University, told The Guardian last year what he thought of the Paris Agreement:
It’s a fraud really, a fake. It’s just [bovine manure] for them to say: “We’ll have a 2C warming target and then try to do a little better every five years.” It’s just worthless words. There is no action, just promises. As long as fossil fuels appear to be the cheapest fuels out there, [people will continue to burn them].
He wants a tax on all carbon emissions, amounting to $15 per metric ton. He then wants to raise that tax $10 per metric ton per year. Without it, he says sea levels could rise by more than five yards by the second half of this century. And he was blaming Obama for wasting an opportunity to sell the concept:
We all foolishly had such high hopes for Obama, to articulate things, to be like Roosevelt and have fireside chats to explain to the public why we need to have a rising fee on carbon in order to move to clean energy. But he’s not particularly good at that. He didn’t make it a priority and now it’s too late for him.
Of course Obama isn’t good at persuading people. He’s good at shaking his fist and bellowing, “You’ll do this because I won, and I say so!” In 2010, the American people said, “Oh, yeah?!? We’ll see about that!” And they said it again last year.
Sheep and banshees
Despite that, the bleating and wailing of the sheep and banshees began swiftly. The new President of France, Emmanuel Macron, made a strange offer. He offered scientific asylum, for lack of a better phrase, to the James Hansens of the world.
President Trump said he would renegotiate the Paris Agreement, if the other parties wanted to. Three of them—Macron, Angela Merkel of Germany, and Paolo Gentiloni of Italy, refused. Will they go on refusing, as their Green Climate Fund dries up? While the United States refuses to “contribute” to CO2 abatement, will they let that stand? If so, they only defeat themselves. But any negotiator knows that when the other parties so quickly say they refuse, all he need do is wait. And President Trump can well afford to wait. The American people gain nothing and lose everything from the Paris Agreement. Furthermore, he knows it, those three heads-of-state know it, and everybody knows it.
Obama joined the banshee chorus, which again should surprise no one.
Even as this Administration joins a small handful of nations that reject the future; I’m confident that our states, cities, and businesses will step up and do even more to lead the way, and help protect for future generations the one planet we’ve got.
Obama likely is talking about Agenda 21. Of course, any State or city government can take any chances they want to take with Paris Agreement-like policies. When they do that, they’ll achieve reduced emissions, all right. Because every American person or business who wants to prosper, will leave. (They can all come to the City of Richmond and the surrounding counties in Virginia, for instance.) The last person out will turn out the lights. Problem solved.
This, of course, is Climategate 3.0. Let’s paraphrase Thomas Jefferson. Sometimes, in the course of a scientific debate, one must denounce a “scientific consensus” as without foundation. A decent respect for the opinions of the lay public demands that one then say why.
CNAV, five and a half years ago, treated Climategate 1.0 and 2.0. Your editor described then why doubts about “global warming” have a solid foundation. Briefly, James Hansen has a counterpart in England. That is Phil Jones, Director, Climatic Research Unit, University of East Anglia, Norwich, England, UK. In 2009, Steven McIntyre of Climate Audit sued Jones and the CRU under the British Freedom of Information Act. Someone at CRU began gathering “correspondence, code and documents” to comply with that request. But Jones tried to stall. So then either the gatherer, or someone else, took the Freedom of Information Act into his own hands.
He took (some say stole) a copy of the file FOI2009.zip from the CRU server. He then shopped this to the site RealClimate.org. They laid information with Jones about what the “thief” had done. So then he placed a copy on an obscure FTP server in a sleepy little town (Tomsk) in Siberia. Then he shopped this link back to Climate Audit and three other blogs. They were: The Air Vent, The Blackboard, and Watts Up With That.
Hide the decline
Had the link remained only on those sites, no one would ever have talked about it. Now enter the Digg Patriots, a group of conservative users of the old site Digg.com. One member of this group, one of Her Majesty’s loyal subjects, saw the links. He immediately alerted the other members. One of them: the future editor and publisher of CNAV. I then had an assignment as the Essex County Conservative Examiner at the now-defunct Examiner.com. I downloaded the archive and examined it.
Imagine my surprise when I found Phil Jones infamous e-mail with these words:
I’ve just completed Mike’s Nature trick of adding in the real temps to the data series from the last twenty years, i.e., from 1981 onwards, and to 1961 for Keith’s to hide the decline.
Hide the decline. So that, of course, is where the phrase came from. We see here a brazen admission of dry-labbing: manipulation of data with intent to deceive. Colleges frown upon this—or they did when your editor was an undergraduate at Yale College from 1976-80.
The practice [of] dry-labbing, constructing observations out of one’s own head or misappropriating the observations of others, is an offense of such gravity that it warrants excommunication from the community of scientists. At Yale the comparable sanction is expulsion.
Worse than that boast was this admission by Kevin Trenberth:
We cannot show a warming trend and it is a travesty that we can’t.
Scientific censorship and rules for scientific radicals
In another e-mail, Jones boasts that he and Trenberth routinely shut-out any scientist who disagreed with their narrative. They do so by applying peer pressure worldwide. Furthermore, they use the site realclimate.org to push the narrative. Perhaps the releaser ought to have known this. If he had, he might not have bothered to shop his file to that site. Or he might have done it anyway, to embarrass them and document their collusion in scientific censorship.
But the archive held more than incriminating statements. Her Majesty’s Government have a Department of Environment, Food and Rural Affairs—their equivalent of the US EPA. Why should that department publish a pamphlet titled The Rules of the Game, that reads like plagiarism of Saul Alinsky? Why did Phil Jones have a copy? Was he applying The Rules of the Game while promoting the narrative of “anthropogenic global warming,” as he called it?
Your editor asked the UK correspondent to prepare to “brief” a barrister if necessary. After all, Phil Jones might sue him or examiner.com for libel. In America, truth is an absolute defense against a complaint of libel or slander. Not so in Her Majesty’s Kingdom. (And with apologies to John Mortimer, your editor would want Horace Rumpole, and not Claude or even Phyllida Erskine-Brown, and definitely not Soapy Sam Ballard!) The correspondent encouraged your editor to show courage in the face of any such threat. And show courage, I did.
The story breaks
This article appeared on November 19, 2009. The page views started to come in swiftly thereafter. In one day it earned thirty-five thousand page views. No less than The Wall Street Journal linked to it. Phil Jones, before the day had passed, had to admit he had indeed written of hiding a decline. He then took a leave of absence pending the findings of a sort of “court of inquiry.” Sadly, that court whitewashed what he had done and said.
Meanwhile, your editor did not stop his research. The archive FOI2009.zip contained Michael Mann’s original set of “temperature anomaly” listings. He based his infamous Hockey Stick on those. I plotted them myself and charted them on a spreadsheet. The resulting graph looked nothing like a Hockey Stick. Furthermore, it missed the Blizzard of 1977. In other words: the Hockey Stick was never accurate, and Michael Mann knew it. So also did Phil Jones and the CRU.
All this broke, of course, before the Fifteenth Conference of Parties in Copenhagen, Denmark in 2009. It also broke during the debate on the Waxman-Markey and Kerry-Boxer cap-and-trade bills, in the House and Senate. Needless to say, those bills did not pass. And COP-15? It deadlocked and failed to produce the international cap-and-trade agreement Obama and others sought. Blame the Chinese in part for that. But maybe also one can blame Rajendra Pachauri, head of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. He earned a nasty reputation for cronyism and the improper seeking of personal advantage. At the Conference, he actually called on hotel owners to meter the water to each guest room. And while he was doing this, he was preparing to cash in on the cap-and-trade deal.
Two years after the first archive came out, came another. Watts Up With That kept up with it in this running entry. CFACT, for their part, had this to say. Briefly, they said the releaser couldn’t have chosen a better time: before the Seventeenth Conference of Parties in Durban, South Africa.
Notice: all links from examiner.com actually come from the Web Archive—the Wayback Machine.
Apologists for Phil Jones, Kevin Trenberth, Michael Mann, et al. make up all manner of excuses. But those excuses are no more than that. They don’t even believe their own narrative. Jim Geraghty at National Review quotes Glenn Reynolds, the original Instapundit, with this pithy remark:
I’ll believe it’s a crisis when they start acting like a crisis.
Which means: set a proper example. Which, as Geraghty demonstrates, they simply refuse to do. Forty-thousand persons attended COP-21, that produced the Paris Agreement. They flew there—aboard private jets.
In fact, delegates to the abortive COP-15 in Copenhagen in 2009 flew there in 140 business jets. When they landed, they rented 1200 limousines with chauffeurs. They rented every limousine on the continent. The Copenhagen city fathers offered to lay on special trains to bring conferees from the airport to the conference venue. And they turned them down.
Furthermore, one hears no outrage over Al Gore’s mega-mansion. Nor that of Tom Friedman of The New York Times. And why do “progressives” routinely sue developers of “green projects” in their back yards? Elizabeth Rosenthal at The New York Times, herself an AGW alarmist, demanded to know six years ago. She looked for a future in which bike paths, wind turbine farms, and bus-only lanes would blend in as well as telephone poles do today. One would expect the “progressive” neighborhoods to lead the way—to make these things their showcases! Why haven’t they?
How to run a climate conference
Glenn Reynolds said it best. All the bleating and wailing in the world will convince no one who lacks an ulterior motive. If anyone really believes in a crisis, let them act like it.
If I were planning, say, the Twenty-fourth Conference of Parties (2018), it might not take place in a physical venue. Instead it would take place on Skype—or on a dedicated server farm running OpenSim. OpenSim is the favorite open-source engine for Massively Multiplayer On-line Role Playing Games. On OpenSim one could design a virtual world. It would offer the same auditoriums, classrooms, and exhibit halls a physical conference venue could offer. It would also offer laboratories that could run simulations of the “do nothing” option or any intervention one could invent. One could even set up “virtual nightclubs” if the conferees wanted their entertainment.
If the conferees insisted on a physical venue, to facilitate public or—er—private meetings, hold it in Tel Aviv. Tel Aviv is the aviation centroid of the world. Flights to and from Tel Aviv would, in aggregate, be shorter than flights to and from any other airport. Then, charter a fleet of Boeing 787 Dreamliners, that have a reputation for sipping fuel. Let each conferee make his or her way to one of a small number of airport. They must get there on foot, by bicycle, on horseback, or by a mass-transit medium. And when they land, a fleet of specially built concept fuel-cell buses will take them to the venue. When the conference ends, various tour agencies will no doubt buy them—especially in Israel.
Bring on the debate
More than that: if anyone still harbors genuine concern about the “cooking of the planet,” let’s have an open debate. Cal Thomas suggests a White House conference on climate change. But Thomas would rightfully exclude those who have been getting government grants for their research. These people, he said (and I agree), have a conflict of interest.
We need more than that. The Senate Department of Environment and Public Works should hold hearings. They should hear evidence both on the climate and on the deplorable state of its investigation. In other words, the Senate should hold Michael Mann to answer for his dry-labbing and collusion in censorship. Let Michael Mann also explain producing a graph that is, to say the least in error, and to say the most a lie. And James Hansen should offer what he has never offered: proof that his apocalyptic vision is at all reasonable. Let him yield up his raw data for dispassionate, impartial examination.
Out of these hearings, might come the basis for re-negotiating the Paris Agreement. More likely we will see abundant evidence of fraud. And if “the globe is warming,” we will find it has been warming since the end of the Ice Age. Furthermore, humans are neither causing it nor able to stop it.
And under no circumstances should the United States wait for some UN bureaucrat to tell it how many power plants to build. The un-worthies at the UN look for a future without a United States. Similarly, the AGW alarmists look for a future in which no person, save an LEO, an active-duty military service member, a VIP and/or his chauffeur or favorite passenger(s), shall own or even so much as get near a private automobile. That is the true motive for their fraud.
Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.
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