REBUTTAL TO A HIGHLY FLAWED OP-ED IN THE VA GAZETTE MARCH 11, 2013
This post breaks down an incredibly flawed op-ed that appeared in The Virginia Gazette, a unit of the Daily Press, a Tribune paper, that tried to discredit three very credible earlier op-eds that challenged the methodology of "scientists" at the fore of global warming claims. The author is billed as a retired NASA Scientist who, it would seem, has no experience in the "science" of so-called global warming (or any science ). With years of reading and writing I have never seen such a flawed article. This is my rebuttal that ran today in The Virginia Gazette. Note: Both Mr. Kauffman's and Mr. Brown's articles are posted on this blog on February 7 and 9 under "Climate Change, Questioning The Mantra."
Recently, Steve Kauffman and Michael J. Brown published scholarly work in defining “The Scientific Method” as the bedrock principle for technological research and development. They focused on the violation of the method by global warming “scientists.” Then Dr. Howard Browne wrote an equally scholarly report on the application of the “Method” in medicine. These people gave outstanding insight, into the necessity for properly using the “Method” to establish a conclusive technical data base and for practical use in solving critical real-time problems.
On March 8, a gentleman, billed as a “NASA scientist, retired” attempted to discredit their work asking “when is this travesty of science going to stop?” He only discredited himself. Let's break down the his arguments. First, he asked West Virginians “how wonderful is the coal industry.....” I'm a West Virginian. The answer to his question lies in a majority of West Virginians, long-solidly Democratic, voting against Barack Obama after he assured them that he'd “bankrupt coal-fired power plants“ – hence the coal industry. They voted for their survival – to support families expecting problems to be solved as they have been, since WV's birth in 1863.
Then the gentleman incorrectly characterizes cap and trade policy as a “cave-in to the business lobby.” He ignores that carbon offset trading was a vehicle by which the upfront “leaders” of global warming (Al Gore et al) made millions of dollars until the vehicle collapsed from a heavy dose of reality.
Then he discredited fracking to produce natural gas, again showing no understanding of facts. I'd suggest he go to where the “Marcellus field” is being fracked, especially Pennsylvania, and get facts directly from the thousands working the “fields.” He might also learn how natural gas positively changes the dynamics of the energy industry. But, appreciation of that requires an understanding that the economy of the USA is energy based, as is the world's.
The gentleman then goes off the rails of reality showing no understanding of business in discussing the proposed Keystone pipeline. He says, “when oil reaches Texas and is refined....an oil company will own it.” They would sell it, not to “Americans for $99 per barrel but to foreign companies for $120 per barrel.” What!? True, crude will be refined, some as oil, some gasoline and some into primary chemicals as well as chemical intermediates. Some will be used here and some will be exported, increasing our export revenue thus reducing our current account imbalance. Positive! And, with Canadian tar sands oil, not our reserves!
He then avers that Montana oil wells produce little oil and are “burning gas in tall towers, because gas is worth less than oil.” Fantasy! Ignorance. Montana is part of the Bakken fields that now produce 10% of America's oil creating thousands of jobs. Minor amounts of natural gas (methane) have been “flared” since the very first oil well – environmentally positive in that methane has a greater greenhouse effect than carbon dioxide produced in flaring.
He really goes astray in suggesting that his blood CO2 level is “elevated” from atmospheric CO2. Serum CO2 is metabolic -- produced in the body. The lungs' alveoli remove the CO2 to be exhaled as they process oxygen into the blood. His assertion is beyond pathetic and, at first reading, was thought to be a joke. The gentleman might want to see good pulmonologist.
What we have here is the result of politicians co-opting science and “scientists” – as well as ignorance. Politicians corrupt the scientific process and convert it into a commercial one. They are aided and abetted by “scientists,” some who are ignorant and others self-serving. This is the true travesty. The title "scientist" does not convey credibility to the incredible. Neither does an inch-high headline that headed the op-ed.
Another travesty (tragedy really) is that while all effort goes into support of a flawed analysis, using not the "Scientific Method" but flawed computer models, critical problems go unresolved. Too many people just don't care and accept the mantra. Sad commentary on us!