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On Letter: Nonsense column

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William Enick 10 months, 3 weeks ago

(Oh) Boy Richard...talk about naive... ever hear of existentialism? It's under philosophy at the Library. Take a year (which is what it will take) an read up... For Goodness Sake...

Scott Burkhart 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Ever hear of contingency? Why don't you take a year and read Thomas of Aquinas, Summa Theologica. There's some philosophy for you.

Ken Lassman 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Do you consider 9.6 gigatons (that's a BILLION metric tonnes--2200 lbs, not 2000) of carbon released into the atmosphere in 2012 through human activity a small amount? Enough to raise the percentage of CO2 in the atmosphere another 2 or so parts per million because the natural processes of fixing carbon back into the sea and land can't keep up with the amount of geologically sequestered carbon released through human activity? And that 2013 is estimated to emit 2.1% more than 2012, which is up 58% since 1990 emissions? You can stick your head in the sand: physics doesn't care either way. Alternatively, you can do your homework and realize that we have a real problem on our hands. I suggest you start here: http://www.globalcarbonproject.org/carbonbudget/13/hl-compact.htm

and here: http://www.climatechange2013.org/

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Ken, anthropic catastrophic global warming is a hoax. The models keep changing as fast as they are debunked. Raw temperature data is cloistered by those intent on hiding it. Models and algorithms and extrapolations are contradictory and change shapes faster than a Yehti.

Read Anthony Watts and his award winning hugely read and debated blog. More science and honesty there than in all the so called peer reviewed journals combined. Climategate debunked the notion of Climate science as objective investigation of climate facts.

The Climate change ideologues have postulated CO2 as the driving mechanism for catastrophic global warming. The higher the atmospheric CO2 the higher the earths temperature. The sun is an incidental player in their construct- CO2, especially human liberated CO2 is the culprit. Yet as the current level of CO2 is higher than ever in this present epoch, global mean temperature hasn't risen in years.

Do your own homework Ken. Don't let ideology blind you to empirical facts.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Barbara, global warming is not "totally" beyond mans control, nor is global cooling. The data does not support the notion that man has any significant influence on global temperature at this time. If humans were to launch an all out nucleur war they would produce in all likely a catastrophic global cooling event, but global warming not so much.

Being sceptical of Anthropic catastrophic global warming is neither comforting or alarming. Lunacy, tortured data, restricted data, fallacious models developed by grant enriched ideologues pandering to revenue hungry politicians is not my idea of science. The facts are not supportive of catastrophic mankind induced global warming. They never have been in the past. The future is, well, the future. Currently only ideological enthusiasm and hundreds of billions in affirmation inducing grants has produced speculation of failed models constructed on teased and tortured data.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Barbara, much hotter? We are in a gradual warming trend between ice ages. We are coming out of the little ice age of the middle ages, so yes temperature are rising a little bit as is expected. There is no evidence that mankind is driving the temperature rise in any appreciable fashion. There has been no temperature rise in 15 years globally yet CO2 continues to rise. A bit of that rise is due to man. The failure for temps to rise despite CO2 continuing rise contradicts most established models of CO2 forcing. Most believe the sun has far more to do with global heat content change than CO2. Many believe that temperature increase drives global CO2 increase or at least precedes it.

There have been hundreds of billions of dollars granted to investigators that impute catastrophic man made global warming. Carbon taxes are clamored for to remediate the purported man caused warming. In medicine we use double blind studies to test for biologic change of one sort another because the expectations of the investigators affect the veracity of the data collected and the interpretation of the results. Great heaps of Grant money force far more global temperature change than solar flux or man liberated carbon. It's a hoax, perpetrated by ideological impulse mixed with self serving avarice, naiveté, and band wagon jumping. The hard science isn't there and never has been.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 2 weeks ago

"We are in a gradual warming trend between ice ages." Where did you get this little nugget? Warming out of the last glaciation ended about 10 to 8 thousand years ago, and there has been a gradual cooling since. There is an upward spike that starts at the same time that humans started adding to the CO2 content of the atmosphere. Your assertion is simply not based on reality. http://www.globalwarmingart.com/wiki/File:Holocene_Temperature_Variations_Rev_png

Ken Lassman 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Well, Gerald, let's consider your assertion that climate change is bunk, and that Mr. Watts' blog contains "more science and honesty ...than in all the so-called peer reviewed journals combined."

I'm very curious which one of Mr. Watts' assertions meet this very high standard, i.e. that any of them--you tell me which one, please--is more accurate and trumps the climatological community in its veracity. I eagerly await you to elucidate me, since you have made this claim.

In the meantime, let's look at Mr. Watts' qualifications: he went to school at Purdue University and --whoops: he never graduated? Oh well, he must be qualified as a climatologist to have superior information, correct? Hmmmm....he's never had a paid job as a climatologist??? Just a TV weatherman for a while, and is currently head meteorologist at a conservative AM talk radio station out of Chico, California??? OK, then. Let's look at the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, whose latest Working Group 1 publication was reviewed by 1087 scientists who are experts in the field, from 55 countries and released last September. I HAVE done my homework and have looked over the 1500 page document and read from cover to cover the 33 page executive summary--have you?

So when you tell me not to let ideology blind me to the empirical facts, you leave me scratching my head. The Working Group I used some 9200 peer reviewed empirically based articles for their document, and you're telling me a radio weatherman without credentials has the inside scoop on the hoax, based on data that is better than all of that. Please do point the way to this critical data that trumps the considerable scientific resources that have unequivocally proven that climate change is happening, that humans are the driver of the changes we're seeing, and that it will get worse before it gets better.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Ken, I have never asserted that climate change is bunk, never. I do believe Anthropogenic Catastrophic Global Warming is Bunk as there is no evidence for it.
Anthony Watts is a weatherman, Einstein was a postal clerk, so what? Ad Hominem arguments are weak sauce. Watts runs the most attended and respected web site with news and discussion on climate science. The discussions there are fast and furious and not nearly as biased pro or con as most other sites. Watts was instrumental in reporting during the East Anglia scandal beginning in November, 2009, when The CRU computers were hacked, probably by the Russians, and E-mails released to the public. Those e-mails detailed collusion among climate scientists to withhold raw temperature data from the public and attempting to "hide the decline" in global temperatures (declines which continue to this day) as they did not conform to IPCC and CRU models and theory. Although the Mainstream Media attempted to bury the story many independent sites including Watts got the word out. The freight train of catastrophic global warming myth was derailed by scientists like Anthony Watts.

Ken, I don't know your views on CO2 forcing but I can guess them. There are myths used by pro-global warming partisans to hype man's involvement in recent warming in order to levy taxes for the bankrupt Western Democracy's and empower the liberal green agenda. A key myth used is a supposed 97% consensus agreement with the catastrophic global warming meme among climate scientists. Most studies that reexamine this supposed 97% consensus find no consensus at all. One such study, (Friends of Science Society, Calgary) opines that of the four major studies claiming 97% consensus with IPCC AGW declaration and survey numbers the actual numbers of explicit agreement are much different. Oreskes/Peiser 1.2% explicit agreement; Doran and Zimmerman 3.4% explicit agreement; Andregg et al 66% explicit agreement; Cook et al 0.54% explicit agreement.

The study concludes, "...There is no 97% consensus on human caused global warming as claimed by the studies. None of these studies indicate any agreement with a catastrophic view of human-caused global warming."

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Not big oil exactly but conservative linked groups have supported this society of engineers and scientists. The money to publicize the fallacies and boy are there fallacies regarding Catastrophic Anthropogenic global warming must come from somewhere. Just as Global warming cheerleaders and researchers are funded by debt laden governments hoping to generate enough hysteria for the folks to tax themselves even more. Other supporters include: The Greens, the naive, and the Soros types seeking investment opportunity.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Barbara, far more credible than Hansen' of debunked hockey stick fame, or the IPCC, or the 'hide the decliners' of East Anglia.

Ken Lassman 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Gerald, Albert Einstein wrote papers that revolutionized physics and the way we look at reality and had a long. fruitful career as a theoretical physicist, accepted as a peer by the most brilliant physicists of the time.Andrew Watts never rose above his humble beginnings to be accepted by any professional climatologist or any professional organization either, so I guess they are guilty of ad hominem attacks against Mr. Watts as well. Furthermore, I was bringing up these points merely to mark time as I awaited your superior empirical information provided by Mr. Watts that clearly countered and overturned the collective minds and conclusions of the vast majority of the scientific community (I'll get back to that point in a minute), so let's see what you came up with....

Firstly, you are distinguishing climate change from what you term "Anthropogenic Catastrophic Global Warming," saying that you never said you don't believe in the latter but do believe in the former. Well, that's definitely progress--now you need to define your term more precisely, please. For instance, does including the word "anthropogenic" mean that you don't believe that human activity has been the driver behind the observed changes taking place at all, or just a little, or exactly what? The scientific community has very strong empirical data to back up their conclusion that I'd be happy to role out, but I need to know more about what you and Mr. Watts are claiming so I can dig out the relevant information for you.

The next ambiguity in your undefined phrase is "catastrophic." If you are referring to the renegade scientist James Lovelock's conclusions in his books "Revenge of Gaia" and "Vanishing Face of Gaia," who got way out in front of the rest of the climatological community's empirically based conclusions and declared that most of the planet would become uninhabitable by 2100 and just a few of us would survive around the poles, then I completely agree with you. If, however, you include the predictions of the impacts of a 2 degree Celsius or higher warmed planet, as outlined in the RCP 8.5 "business as usual" scenario developed by the AR5 Working Group I scientists, then you/Watts and I/climatologists will once again part ways and I once again am happy to show you why. (continued below)

Ken Lassman 10 months, 3 weeks ago

(part 2 of response to Gerald) The East Anglia tempest has been very well documented to be evidence of immature behavior from those scientists involved, resulting in uncovered passive agressive behavior that in no way affects the reliability of the data or the pattern of warming that continues to be documented by multiple datasets. This is not my conclusion, rather there have been some six exonerations by various peer and independent reviews of the situation at East Anglia, and while you can come up with some paranoid cover-up explanation that at least in your mind counters their conclusions, the evidence of warming in no way is dependent on this single dataset anyway.

As far as carbon forcing sensitivity, this is one of the most studied topics going. There are indeed complexities in this topic, some of which are not resolved, but what precisely is your point in this arena? Once again, you need to be more specific.

And finally, arguing over the percent of consensus about AGW is akin to arguing over exactly how blue is the sky. Both of the topics are very ill-defined and refer to a topic that is a very dynamic, changing thing. If you have any doubt about the acceptance of AGW in the professional scientific community, I will just refer you to the long list of endorsements by professional organizations here:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_opinion_on_climate_change

and also to the ipcc AR5 report itself, that references thousands of peer reviewed empirically based research. And in order to posit that this is evidence of some grand conspiracy to fleece humanity and bankrupt the West, please provide some hard evidence beyond paranoid thinking that this is what is driving all of this research.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

I could not be more straight forward and explicit in my assertions. Man caused catastrophic global warming is a hoax. A hoax driven by many factors all related to human frailty and self service. I have iterated some of those factors over and over in this thread. I mention deconstruction of the 97% number purported by supporters because it is asserted by many in high places and in many public forums. President Obama and several in his Cabinet and many "experts" as well as every other Hollywood actor shilling for climate change taxes and remediation as well as many peer reviewed studies make this blatantly false claim.
Finally Ken, you ask me to explain why there are naiveté, self interest, ideological greed, and hope for tax revenues, as drivers of this mass hysteria event. I think that is the way we humans act from time immemorial. We act in our self interest. Governments as they gather power and influence have attempted to increase that power over the actions and property of citizens till they are tyrants or become a failed state. The western democracies are broke. They need our money and fear mongering a world on fire is a way to get our money.

Ken Lassman 10 months, 3 weeks ago

I can think of many ways you can be more explicit and straightforward, so let me try again because you are being so ambigious with your assertion of "catastrophic global warming is a hoax" that it precludes further discussion. For instance, where is the hoax: in the observations that unambiguously show increasing sea levels, ocean acidity, and global temperatures, or in the decreasing masses of the antarctic and greenland ice caps, or in the decreased arctic sea ice, or in the poleward shift of growing seasons, or in the increased ocean heat content/sea surface temperatures, or the increased humidity in the atmosphere? Is the Global Carbon Project that has documented the steadily increasing human emission of carbon (currently at 36 billion tonnes annually) a hoax? Or the Keeling Curve that documents the steady rise in parts per million of CO2 in the atmosphere a hoax? Please tell me which of these observations are part of the hoax; that's a serious charge to any of these meticulous measurements that we need to know about if you have some evidence.

Or, are the models that project carbon emissions and temperature changes into the future used by the IPCC AR5 Working Group I hoaxes? You see, you have not provided any specifics about how any of these are hoaxes, so that is why I need to know whether you have some real evidence to share, which, at this point, I'm inclined to say you don't, and it's just your opinion. You are entitled to your opinion, and I'll defend your right to have it. But that is a very different creature than actually having a valid criticism of the ever clearer, ever more detailed evidence that the actions of humanity are indeed changing the climate, and that the consequences of continuing with business as usual or even modest adjustments will indeed be serious, even catastophic. Since these consequences are based on physics, not hysteria as you opine, I sincerely hope that more and more folks look at the evidence and make informed choices based on the best evidence available and tell their political leaders to do the same.

Ken Lassman 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Thanks for the link, Scott; actually, that link says absolutely nothing about the global wealth redistribution scam that you are claiming, but at least it does provide some information that supposedly counters the IPCC, so Iet's at least look at that.

The organization making these claims, the NIPCC, is interesting in itself, since its name is an obvious attempt to steal some thunder of the IPCC. But alas, it is set up by the conservative thinktank, the Heartland Institute which is funded by the Koch Brothers and other fossil fuel special interests. One of the main scientists behind this organization is actually a climate scientist named Fred Singer, but he's made a name for himself by making some interesting claims such as creating a campaign against the link between second hand smoke and cancer, developed a theory that Phobos, Mar's smaller moon, was hollow and made by Martians, and, of course that climate change is a hoax. What is interesting also is that Mr. Singer's second hand smoke campaign was paid for by the tobacco lobbyists, and his early climate denialist campaigns were paid for by Rev. Sung Yung Moon's Unification Church, ExxonMobil, ARCO and the like.

When reading over the article you provided, tho, besides the usual unsubstantiated denials, I managed to find three actual empirical assertions:

1) The ARGO sea buoys deployed that measure ocean temps show no warming since 2003;

2) The 18 cm rise in global sea rise is a "natural rise;"

3) The Cambrian CO2 levels 550 million years ago were 15 times current levels and showed no concurrent rise in global temps.

These can quickly be countered: Here's a chart showing ARGO and other temp summaries during this period:

For 2004–2011, they find the oceans accumulating 0.56 W/m2 (9x1021 J/yr) in the upper 1,800 meters – equivalent to 4.5 Hiroshima atomic bomb detonations per second – during a time when many have argued that global warming has magically 'paused'.

So this assertion is simply not true unless you/they can show that the Lyman and Johnson paper is incorrect. (Let me know if you want references to that piece).

Not sure what they mean by "natural rise" of 18cm other than to say that the oceans do naturally rise when the temperature of the water warms up and the land mass ice volumes melt. No alternative mechanisms are provided.

Finally, I think that you'll find that 550 million years ago, the sun was 4% dimmer, making the impact of CO2 less of a climate driver even though more was present in the atmosphere. We have pretty good data from the past 400,000 years that shows that correlation, for instance:

So thanks for the link, Scott, but it neither proves that there is a global conspiracy nor indicates that the IPCC is incorrect in its observational evidence or projections.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Honestly Scott, why do you believe on opinion piece by a paid denier over the thousands of person years of research that represent the consensus? http://www.sourcewatch.org/index.php?title=Bob_Carter

Scott Burkhart 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Honestly, Chris, how can you believe the thousands of man hours of research that were paid for to prove a result. That is my point, exactly! The doom sayers of global warming would lose their funding and grants would cease if man made global warming were discovered to be false. In your side's defense, it didn't help that people like Al Gore, self appointed guru on global warming, was out there predicting the melting of polar ice caps by a certain date (which has passed by the way). Or if the scientists at East Anglia didn't exchange cryptic like emails with each other, regardless of how innocuously they can be explained away. It doesn't help your cause that scientific models suddenly couldn't explain the flatlining of the Earth's temperature over the last, now, 16 years and the sudden three year increase in the polar ice caps. It doesn't help your cause when the United Nations, an organization that in my opinion is suspect in its own equitable dealings around the world, includes scientists on its IPCC membership roles that later stated clearly that they were not part of it and did not agree with the findings of the committee. You say there is a consensus and I say there isn't. As a matter of fact, I would say there are less scientists on board with the IPCC assertions than ever and many more a defecting daily.

Ken Lassman 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Wow, Scott, you can continue to bring up your opinion as much as you want, and continue to ignore the evidence and claim it is not true, namecalling but without any valid response to the data Chris and I have provided. You are entitled to do that until the cows come in. But without providing anything serious to back up your claims, there's really no response to make to your opinions since that is all that they are.

Do you realize that, for instance, those scientists writing the IPCC document are doing this on their own time and not being paid by the United Nations? Exactly how are they getting rich off of this, and once again, please give some evidence, not just opinion.

Last time I checked, Al Gore was not a scientist, which is why I provided you data above and elsewhere that shows what the scientific community is saying. You continue to ignore the evidence provided you by repeating the mantra that the ice caps are still here and growing, which is ridiculous and you know it and cannot prove otherwise.

Then there is the East Anglia chant, which you continue to sing despite there being at least 6 independent exonerations of the accuracy of the data, despite the immature behavior of the scientists.

Similarly, you continue to chant the 16 year plateau in global temps as a sign that climate change is a hoax despite articulate links that explain why this is not the case, despite the incoming data that clearly shows that ocean temps continue to rise, ice sheet mass continues to decline, sea ice continues to trend downward, plants and animals continue to shift their habitats poleward, and on and on. Once again, your opinions are yours to keep, but they are ringing increasingly hollow when you fail to provide a single reliable piece of empirical evidence to the contrary.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Simple, to believe otherwise is to believe that every scientist since Fourier (1824) who has looked at the earth's energy balance has been part of your wealth redistribution scheme. That seems less likely to me than the idea that molecules absorb and emit energy in specific wavelengths, which can be demonstrated in a physics lab.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Wow, that is a pretty big shotgun blast of bs, but I did find this. It was not Al Gore who made the prediction, it was a researcher named Maslowski. Again, I think you'd be better served to check your facts rather than trusting whatever it is you are reading. Gore cited Maslowski; he did not make the prediction. http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7139797.stm (Turns out I remembered the year correctly, btw.)

If you want to read a more level-headed assessment than Watts (or whomever), here is one from a guy who actually understands something about the science. http://neven1.typepad.com/blog/2013/08/hole.html Turns out scientific peers do critique each other's work and often this is constructive.

Scott Burkhart 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Honestly, Chris, how can you believe the thousands of man hours of research that were paid for to prove a result. That is my point, exactly! The doom sayers of global warming would lose their funding and grants would cease if man made global warming were discovered to be false. In your side's defense, it didn't help that people like Al Gore, self appointed guru on global warming, was out there predicting the melting of polar ice caps by a certain date (which has passed by the way). Or if the scientists at East Anglia didn't exchange cryptic like emails with each other, regardless of how innocuously they can be explained away. It doesn't help your cause that scientific models suddenly couldn't explain the flatlining of the Earth's temperature over the last, now, 16 years and the sudden three year increase in the polar ice caps. It doesn't help your cause when the United Nations, an organization that in my opinion is suspect in its own equitable dealings around the world, includes scientists on its IPCC membership roles that later stated clearly that they were not part of it and did not agree with the findings of the committee. You say there is a consensus and I say there isn't. As a matter of fact, I would say there are less scientists on board with the IPCC assertions than ever and many more a defecting daily.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Gerald, Watts has managed to publish exactly one scientific article, which is a reasonable feat for someone who never finished a degree. His research demonstrated that there was no appreciable difference in temperature trend between poorly cited weather stations and well-cited weather stations. Contrast that with his web site assertion that the temperature increase is largely due to poorly cited weather stations. Then explain to us why you trust him more than every national academy of science on the planet.

Scott Burkhart 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Ken, what about the other 1000 scientists from around the world that question the way the other 1087 scientists arrive at their conclusions. Different agencies colluding with each other and then colluding with the IPCC in advance of the report. Once again, if you enter bad information all you will get back is bad information. There has been too much corruption of the process to take any of them, that have a monetary interest in man made climate change, the UN specifically, seriously as scientists. Not one single model by the "experts" as you call them, can explain why surface temperatures of the world have flatlined over the last 15 years and are expected to do so for the next 20. None of the models by the "experts" can explain the sudden reversal of the increased ice over both polar ice caps in the last two years. 5 years ago the "experts" were claiming that the polar ice caps would be melted by 2014. They just have no credibility outside of the Kool-Aid drinking wealth redistributionists of the world.

Ken Lassman 10 months, 3 weeks ago

OK, Scott, I'll bite.

Please point me to the list of 1000 "scientists" from around the world that question the IPCC--I'd love to see their specialties and the details of their objections, if, indeed they exist.

Which precisely is the "bad information" being entered and the "bad information" coming back in the AR5 IPCC Working Group I report released last September? Inquiring minds need to know; after all there is a lot at stake. For your convenience, here is the link: http://www.climatechange2013.org/

Due to El Nino/La Nina, Arctic Oscillation, North Atlantic Oscillation, etc., global surface temperatures have a variability that if you cherry pick a short enough stretch of time, you can find "stable" or even "cooling" stretches of time. This is a favorite trick of denialists, who neglect to show what the longer trends are. Regarding that, the report I referred you to above documents that the last 30 years--1983 through 2012 has been the hottest period of time in the last 1400 years. Furthermore, 93% of the added heat goes into the oceans, which have continued to heat up.

Polar ice caps have dropped in mass dramatically, much faster than expected actually. The GRACE satellites have documented dramatic Antarctic and Greenland ice mass losses--I'd be happy to provide you with a link. Also, the sea ice "gains" you talk about in the Arctic ocean: take a look at the graph below and with a straight face tell me that there has been a big rebound

A summer with virtually no sea ice is more probable than not within our lifetimes, Scott, I'm sorry to say.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Scott, I think you would be better served to fact check your sources than to trust them because they are telling you what you want to hear.

You are right that most models did not predict the current pause in atmospheric warming, but most models do predict similar periods of low atmospheric warming. Models are intended for the big picture. Kind of like I can model that a pair of dice will roll an average of 7 with occasional 2s and 12s; if my model does not predict exactly when the dice will come up 12, does that mean my model is wrong?Did the laws of physics change in 1998? No? So, quit looking at only the pieces of the picture that you like.

They claim was not that the Arctic ice would be gone by 2014; the prediction from some years ago (2007?) was that it might be gone as early as 2013. Here, let's pretend the year is 2007; in what year would you predict the summer ice will reach zero? http://1.bp.blogspot.com/-nMQg7Pszm8g/TvEb7k6ESJI/AAAAAAAAMdk/QSUS0sKPMk0/s1600/6a0133f03a1e37970b015435379118970c.png

The minimum in 2013 was 5.1 million square kilometers. Put that on the graph and call it it a "sudden reversal". Big whoop.

Scott Burkhart 10 months, 2 weeks ago

That's the pot calling the kettle black, don't you think. Who are your sources but the same wealth redistributionists who use bad science to sell a bad product. You tell me to stop looking at the pieces fit the picture I like? Back at you Chris. You and Ken Lassman spout all of these statistics and they are all based on bad science. I would predict that the arctic ice will never reach zero.

Ken Lassman 10 months, 2 weeks ago

With all due respect, Scott, I've given you what you term "bad science" but then you fail to give me or Chris any reason to think that this is anything more than your personal opinion. For instance, I provided you with a pretty dramatic graph above showing you that your claim that the arctic ice levels are rebounding is simply wrong--they continue to shrink and show no signs of abating in the future. If you have a specific critique of either that graph or the science behind it that clearly counters your assertion, then this is the time to bring it up in as specific detail as possible. Otherwise, as I've told Greg, you are merely stating your opinion, which you are completely entitled to. But name calling with terms like "bad science" without a shred of evidence as to how it is "bad" gets pretty tiresome.

Beator 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Death is inevitable for all and then nothing

I wonder how he knows?

Richard Heckler 10 months, 3 weeks ago

BEWARE of textbook changes that are taking place in the textbook publishing world with regard to this very subject of evolution vs Intelligent Design.

All parents should be advised. A few years back some who represent the fundamentalist point of view such as Dick and Lynn Cheney were of the opinion that American History textbooks should now begin with the Reagan/Bush years.

Apparently Texas is home to a few textbook publishers such as McGraw-Hill….. a familiar name. At this point in history what's changes gets published will largely depend on who has bought up these publishing companies

Texas Overhauls Textbook Approval Systems. http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2014/02/01/269962257/texas-overhauls-textbook-approval-to-ease-tensions-over-evolution

Chris Golledge 10 months, 3 weeks ago

"Without noting that humans contribute a very small percentage to the carbon dioxide level,..."

Yes, and the rate at which we have been adding has been accelerating. Currently we are adding a little under 1% to the atmosphere per year, and a ballpark of about the same to the oceans. Over the last 150 years, we have added about 40% to the atmospheric CO2 content.

Not sure what your point is. The facts are well known; so, it should not be necessary to state them every time.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 3 weeks ago

"Krishtalka believes that rejecting evolution is akin to a denial of gravity."

Let's explain. Both evolution and gravity have been exhaustively studied in the scientific community, and no alternate theory has successfully challenged these. Rejecting either one can only be based on imagination (at this time); there is no reason to reject either based on anything another could observe.

You are free to imagine whatever you like, and there is plenty of unknown still to leave room for a divine entity, but it is difficult to test what lies in imagination. Krishtalka was talking about science, and science depends on measurements. What you are talking about can not be measured; it is metaphysical. I suppose if you could detect or measure an effect the metaphysical had on reality, it would no longer be 'meta'. It is logically incorrect to infer that unknowns imply anything.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Chris, which theory of evolution are you talking about? Classic Darwinian evolutionary theory, i.e., common descent due to natural selection over geologic time has been discredited for over 70 years. The Cambrian explosion with precious few Pre-Cambrian life forms saw to that. Since the Classical Darwinism model has been rebutted there have been innumerable neo-darwinian postulates which so far have failed to survive serious questions regarding the statistical chances of adding significant genetic information by the methods proposed.

At present we don't have much of a clue how the menu of life forms have come to be. Dawkins and some others have postulated seriously that extraterrestrial genetic material has been brought to earth by who? or what? we don't know. It seems to beg the question. Intelligent design and special creation are postulates as well. Perhaps some combination of intelligent design and as yet undiscovered neo-darwinian mechanisms are responsible for the various life forms on planet earth.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Barbara, There are currently myrads of postulates or theories regarding the origin of species. Which one is Chris talking about? Which one of the many current theories do you assume is the current one? In your currently preferred theorey how has genetic informatiion been created to enable newer and more complex life forms to develop?

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

A theory to be taken seriously must hold up to the muster of facts. Darwins theory does not do so and even he was concerned it might not do so. He hoped that exploration of precambrian shales in other parts of the world and sea beds would eventually support his theory of common descent and natural selection. That hasn't turned out to be the case and likely that refutation will endure.

His theory hasn't really been built on but rather replaced. Common descent and gradually evolving intermediate forms preluding new species are not to be found anywhere in the geological record- not in Europe, not in Asia, Not beneath the sea. Thats why abrupt insertion of new and increased genetic information from extraterrestrial venues has been put forth by some scientists, including Dawkins, as a possible mechanisms to explain the geological record and cambrian explosion of disparate phyla without appearant intermediate precursors. All current theories, and there are many, have significant problems attached to them.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Again Barbara, which evolutionary theory are you talking about? Which one explains it all. Whoever has come up with it must have 3 Nobel prizes by now. What? No prizes yet? Then, no theory judged clear and certain enough to explain it all. All of the theory's have flaws Barbara- which flawed theory are you talking about? Which one explains how down through time genetic information is created to create new species? All of the Neo theories have problems in that mechanisms hypothesized take too much time (yes, 4 to 10 billion years is not enough time) to add enough coding of the right kind in DNA to produce the very specific new protein folds required to create new species. Which theory that you posit has solved that as well as other key problems?

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Which of the hundreds of evolutionary theories are you talking about Barbara? It's not enough to talk in vague terms of evolutionary theory. Whose work showing how new protein synthesis creates new non lethal protein folds that are net beneficial to the organism creating new biologic complexity?

I'm not being obtuse. Mother Nature is.

Seth Peterson 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Gerald, you are misinformed. The amount of information is to much to be provided in a forum on a newspaper, but I would suggest studying the matter a bit more. The is only the Theory of Evolution (not hundreds of theories, if there were they wouldn't be theories).

Out of curiosity, and to give you the opportunity to support your claim, can you provide the main sources or researcher(s) for what you believe to be different theories?

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Seth, out of the same curiosity that you describe, and to give you the opportunity to support your claim that I am misinformed, can you show me where it is established or contended that there is only one theory of evolution? Also, what is that one theory? In layman's terms of course. Also please tell me what is the mechanism of building ever more complex genetic information? Also can you further explain your notion that for theories to be theories there must only be one theory? I find that assertion most intriguing.

Seth Peterson 10 months, 2 weeks ago

The burden of proof is on you sir for your claim that there are multiple conflicting theories. Layman terms for the theory of evolution: The change in the inherited characteristics of biological populations over successive generations.

Your remaining questions are irrelevant to my comment, as well as your previous statement that there are multiple theories, so we can put those on hold until we resolve the first problem.

As far as the notion that for something to be considered a theory in the scientific sense there can only be one, you need to have a firmer understanding of the concept of theory. For starters, a scientific theory summarizes a hypothesis or group of hypotheses that have been supported with repeated testing. If enough evidence accumulates to support a hypothesis, it moves to the next step—known as a theory—in the scientific method and becomes accepted as a valid explanation of a phenomenon.

Use gravity for an example, we have a number of observable facts regarding gravity, and using these facts (the lowest standard) we can configure out consistent effects which we can represent through a mathematical law (the middle standard) called the Law of Gravity. Once we have an understanding of these effects we can form various hypothesis and ideas as to why this takes effect and through repeated testing we have found we are able to postulate an explanation of the why this occurs and created the Theory of Gravity: the theory that any two particles of matter attract one another with a force directly proportional to the product of their masses and inversely proportional to the square of the distance between them.

Until reaching this level of consensus regarding an explanation of natural phenomena the information is regulated as a hypothesis. This holds true for the theory of evolution, the theory of gravity, germ theory, atomic theory, molecular theory, and so on for the hundreds of scientific theories there are, each one unique. There are not multiple germ theories, there are not multiple evolutionary theories. Scientifically regarding any of these as theories in and of itself means that there is just one.

Now, your evidence their are multiple "theories", and while you refused to address the questions before and continue to provide evidence I will repeat the previous until you do so:

Out of curiosity, and to give you the opportunity to support your claim, can you provide the main sources or researcher(s) for what you believe to be different theories?

Ken Lassman 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Gerald, you really seem to think that modern evolutionary theory has tied itself up in knots and has nowhere to go. Your perception of how evolutionary theory informs biology is so far from reality that it's hard to know exactly how to point you the right direction in order to give you a better sense of what's going on these days. DNA analysis is quickly transforming our understanding of every living organism, and fields like embryology, virology, bacteriology and microbiology are now some of the biggest playgrounds for evolutionary thinking. There are many places to find more out about this; Science News is always a great layman source and has done some nice synthesis articles on modern biology and evolutionary theory such as the one they did back in 2009: https://www.sciencenews.org/sites/default/files/SN013109_Darwin_Evolutionsevolution_RachelEhrenberg.pdf

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Ken, not knots exactly. It's just that no theory to date can explain the addition of new more complex information to create new species. Evolutionary biologists believe that gene mutations are required to create new folds in proteins, as it is the tertiary structure of the protein most liable to produce the kind of new protein required to build neat new biologic apparatus that creates a new species. Problem is for every positive beneficial brand new type of fold produced (and they are rare as hen's teeth) other folds are covered or distorted. Further the mutation must occur in a cell of reproduction that will be used by that animal in their offspring. Protein fold changes that add to biologic complexity in a non lethal beneficial way are simply thought to be too rare to explain the development of new species.

That does not mean that mechanisms will not be discovered in the future to explain how the Great Designer works magic to create ever more complex life. It's just Barbara and Ken they haven't been found yet and that's why you haven't been able to tell me whose theory explains the development of more complex life forms.

Ken Lassman 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Well, then, you are building a wall and then claiming that the wall you just built is preventing progress of the field of biology. The concern you have just raised is simply not a problem for biology in general and evolutionary biology specifically. There are many ways to approach this, and one way to do this is through something called cladistics--are you familiar with this? It's just one aspect of why the scientific community sees your "problem" as not a problem at all. Here is a relevant quote that may help:

"Cladistic analysis helps to resolve the "problem" of the so-called "missing links" or the intermediate specimens, because it does not require that fossil species evolve into any related species which emerge later. Instead, it represents the evolutionary history of an evolving lineage in terms of a collection of characteristics which can be passed along to descendant populations — or not!" I suggest you read this piece and the links found at http://ncse.com/rncse/19/3/de-riving-force-cladogenesis

There's much more, but I'll stop here.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Gerald, you are still asserting that because not all is known, there must be an intelligent entity driving life. Again, unknowns do not imply anything.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Chris, I believe an intelligent being is driving all life as you put it but I'm not asserting that in this thread at all. I am asserting that there are problems, grave problems with Darwinian type evolutionary theories. I'm asserting that we don't know how life began or how it developed. I'm asserting that gradual development of new species by common decent is not at all apparent in the fossil record and Neo Darwinian theories so far are not close to explaining how new more complex genetic information is acquired or created.

What I'm saying is the data is humbling. How to get protein changes sufficient to drive new species without killing the parent species is so far not explained. The sorts of mutations that are required are exceedingly rare and time scales as we understand them are not nearly long enough to get the job done. We are far from understanding how new species come into being. Barbara cannot define what theory she's talking about because there is no theory that gives the explanation that she desires.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

Barbara, "evolution" as you explain it is so general it explains nothing. It is a general statement to be concretized, fleshed out, by specific postulates that hold up to scientific inquiry. You name none of these, Many have been proposed but so far found wanting. The problem is to find a mechanism that explains the creation of new more complex genetic information in the time alloted. Mechanisms so far postulated do not allow build up of complexity by random chance in the time alloted.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 2 weeks ago

Barbara, you don't know me from Adams house cat. I've never suggested that there is no possible natural explanation of biologic diversity, only that the glib and arrogant think what little we understand explains it all. That is a fools errand Barbara- thus the continual evasions, ad hominems, and vague generalities triumphantly pronounced. The pursuit of truth requires a bit of humility.

Seth Peterson 10 months, 2 weeks ago

"...only that the glib and arrogant think what little we understand explains it all."

That's why we still have scientists who continue to study in these fields and don't all refer to 'a book' that we claim provides the answers.

Chris Golledge 10 months, 2 weeks ago

"I believe an intelligent being is driving all life as you put it but I'm not asserting that in this thread at all." OK, sorry, I missed the point of the last two paragraphs in the OP, which you seem to be defending.

Seth Peterson 10 months, 2 weeks ago

"I'm asserting that we don't know how life began or how it developed."

Good thing neither of those have anything to do with evolution. Clearly you have no idea what you're talking about and you're refusing to listen.

Gerald Kerr 10 months, 3 weeks ago

No Chris, I'm not asserting that at all. I am stating categorically that we do not understand how new more complex genetic information is created in a way sufficient to create new species. Further, to imply that Darwinian or some iteration of Neo Darwinian evolutionary theory explains it is jumping the shark. We don't have an explanation for how life develops at this time. Intelligent design working in tandem with natural process is how I think life does develop. I assume intelligent design as the formal and first cause. It's an assumption Chris based upon experiencing how things come to be made by humans which are then brought to life by human hands and instruments and machines that were themselves designed by intelligent minds (human minds in this case). Yes it is a mere assumption on my part. In regard to life in general- I assume intelligent design brought to fruition through natural process (which process itself was designed). It's the nature of the natural process that is a question that is yet to be answered.

For me the intelligent design I assume. The question to be answered is how that design is worked out in space and time and matter. That is yet unknown.

James Howlette 10 months, 2 weeks ago

I think that actually you're asserting that you don't understand how that happens, and you've ignored everyone who tells you otherwise.

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