Fred LaSor commentary: Climate change — again

For America’s first 210 years the job of her military was to defend our borders. Toward that end the military spent a lot of time training. The mission, tactics, and acquisition of material focused on that and that alone. Such is no longer the case: our military has now been instructed by the White House to include climate change considerations in all future planning, training and acquisition.

The president who gave this order is the same one whose family travels to vacations in matching Boeing 747s burning several thousand gallons of jet fuel per hour and dumping tons of carbon into the atmosphere. That pretty well sums up the hypocrisy of people who insist we lower our carbon footprint: they don’t follow their own advice.

In a column that appeared here several months ago I addressed this hypocrisy as it related to the UN Conference on Climate Change in Paris. I didn’t say I disbelieved man-made climate change, but my agnosticism was evident and one reader replied there was 99.9 percent scientific consensus global warming is real. Such unanimity is usually seen only after North Korean elections.

Two things stand out about strong believers in man-made climate change: they tend toward the left side of the political spectrum, and they don’t easily tolerate any dissenting opinion. But I repeat myself.

Portions of the televised debates between Clinton and Sanders remind me of Al Gore’s book “Earth in the Balance.” Both exhibit unquestioned devotion to the theory waves will soon break over Manhattan and entire islands will disappear in the Pacific. Please don’t tell the Chinese, who are building military airstrips on low-lying Pacific islands. But please do take note of the fact Gore made himself a multi-millionaire with his theory. And he still lives in a huge house with a carbon footprint equal to that of a small town.

Speaking of Manhattan, does anyone remember a time in the 19th Century when an enterprising journalist computed, based on the increasing number of horses on the streets, the city would soon be buried in manure? I’m not making this up. His study claimed the trend line was irrefutable evidence doom awaited the borough unless laws were enacted to limit the importation and use of horses. Al Gore’s predictions have proven about as accurate. Horse manure indeed!

When people tell me the science is settled and all (or some portion of) scientists have reached consensus, I don’t doubt what they say. Rather, I wonder what has happened to science. It’s not the job of scientists to agree. They should question, re-examine old theories, and make a name for themselves by proving someone who came before them was wrong. Science is process, not agreement.

Unless, of course, scientists are competing for government research grants. In that case, orthodoxy trumps science. If money comes from Washington in proportion to the ability to reinforce bureaucrats’ entrenched beliefs, who dares to say the conventional wisdom is wrong?

There are good indications Earth’s temperature is rising — or falling, whichever result you’re convinced is gospel. Temperature clearly rose and fell several times well before man learned to make fire. The glacier-cut mountains around Lake Tahoe are testimony to a much colder period before humans walked the Earth, and records of grapes growing in far northern latitudes show just the opposite.

To say man is responsible for these fluctuations is egotistical. But that’s not to say the oceans will not flood Manhattan. That could be a good thing: it’ll wash away the horse manure.

Fred lives in Minden with his wife and two horses.


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