Although Earth’s climate really does change, either way — warmer or cooler — it seems we’re all pretty much doomed.
Most recently, "the greatest existential threat of our time," according to President Biden, is global warming. "Unchecked," he said, "it is going to actually bake this planet. This is not hyperbole. It’s real. And we have a moral obligation."
Panicking prognosticators, pundits and politicos have predicted the arrival of a climate Armageddon many times over little more than a century — although often for the very opposite reasons.
On Oct. 7, 1912, for example, the Los Angeles Times alerted readers, "Fifth Ice Age Is on the Way: Human Race Will Have to Fight for Existence in Cold."
By Aug. 9, 1923, the situation had already become desperate, causing the Chicago Tribune to declare on its front page, "Scientist Says Arctic Ice Will Wipe Out Canada." A complementary story posited that huge parts of Asia and Europe were also threatened.
The world soon appeared to be warming again by the 1930s, causing some scientists and news reporters to suggest that CO2 might be the cause.
By the 1940s, however, it became apparent that global mean temperatures had begun to fall once again, which through the 1970s led to concerns that the Earth was once more heading toward a new Ice Age.
Advancing glaciers, experts warned, presented renewed threats to human settlements in Alaska, Iceland, Canada, China and the Soviet Union.
In 1973, Science Digest concluded, "at this point we do not have the comfortable distance of tens of thousands of years to prepare for the next Ice Age," and that "Once the freeze starts, it will be too late."
In a June 1974 article titled "Another Ice Age?" Time magazine observed, "When meteorologists take an average of temperatures around the globe, they find the atmosphere has been gradually cooler for the past three decades . . . and the weather aberrations they are studying may be the harbinger of another Ice Age."
The March 1, 1975 cover of the respected Science News magazine depicted the city of New York being swallowed by an approaching glacier and announced, "The Ice Age Cometh." The threat was clear and urgent, "Again, this transition would introduce only a small change in global temperature — two or three degrees — but the impact on civilization would be catastrophic."
The New York Times followed suit with a headline story: "Scientists Ponder Why World’s Climate Is Changing; A Major Cooling Widely Considered to Be Inevitable."
The prestigious National Academy of Sciences agreed with this view. In 1975, it issued a warning that there was a “finite possibility that a serious worldwide cooling could befall the Earth within the next few years.”
By the late 1970s, rising world temperatures heralded the coming of new and opposite media sensations.
Climate model calculations, including some at Princeton’s Geophysical Fluid Dynamic Laboratory, began to predict that global warming could result from increasing atmospheric CO2 levels.
Although those projections were generally regarded to be an interesting but largely academic exercise, even by many of the scientists involved, the CO2 theory gained worldwide attention in 1988 through dramatic theatrical staging of then-Senator Al Gore’s Committee on Science, Technology and Space.
As later recounted in an interview with PBS's "Frontline" by the event’s co-planner, Sen. Timothy Wirth, D-Colo., "We called the Weather Bureau and found out what historically was the hottest day of the summer…so we scheduled the hearing that day, and bingo, it was the hottest day on the record in Washington, or close to it . . . we went in the night before and opened all the windows so that the air conditioning wasn’t working inside the room."
Incidentally, Al is still cashing in on that Senate room hot air selling CO2 offsets to green energy traders.
The United Nations has a big interest in sponsoring and pushing climate alarm as well.
Speaking in 2010, U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) official Ottmar Edenhofer advised that: " . . . one has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. Instead, climate change policy is about how we redistribute de facto the world’s wealth . . . "
The late Stephen Schneider who had served as a lead author for important parts of three sequential alarmist IPCC global warming reports had previously written a 1976 book, "The Genesis Strategy," which had warned exactly the reverse — that it was global cooling that posed a threat to humanity.
Schneider later explained that "to get broad-based support, to capture the public’s imagination," entails "getting loads of media coverage."
To accomplish this, Schneider said, "we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of the doubts we might have. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest."
No . . . there should never be a need for legitimate scientists to strike a balance between effectiveness and honesty.
That’s not how the scientific method works. It’s much more like how the political science method works.
Plugging the Green New Deal she co-sponsored, Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, D-N.Y., had claimed, "Millennials and Gen Z and all these folks that come after us are looking up, and we're like, 'The world is going to end in 12 years if we don't address climate change … '"
But AOC’s former chief of staff Saikat Chakrabarti told Washington governor Jay Inslee’s climate director about a very different agenda, "The interesting thing about the Green New Deal, is it wasn’t originally a climate thing at all . . . Do you guys think of it as a climate thing? Because we really think of it as a how-do-you-change-the-entire-economy thing."
A certainty is that climate is always changing, sometimes abruptly, in long and short cycles, and for lots of complex entirely natural reasons. Nevertheless, humankind has survived and thrived in conditions that have varied greatly — both warmer and colder — than now.
For that matter, present global temperatures are comfortably similar to those that existed two thousand years ago during the Roman Warm Period, a thousand years ago during the Medieval Warm Period, and far more recently during the 1930s . . . all when CO2 levels were lower.
If any real worry is warranted, think about that next overdue Ice Age that scientific experts predicted only a few decades ago.
I might have mentioned chilling news that the Thames River froze over last weekend for the first time in 60 years . . . or that here in Houston, temps this week are expected to be in single-digits with near-blizzard snow, sleet and ice conditions… but I didn’t want to alarm you.
Larry Bell is an endowed professor of space architecture at the University of Houston where he founded the Sasakawa International Center for Space Architecture (SICSA) and the graduate program in space architecture. Larry has written more than 700 articles for Newsmax and Forbes and is the author of several books. Included are: "How Everything Happened, Including Us" (2020), "Cyberwarfare: Targeting America, Our Infrastructure and Our Future" (2020), "The Weaponization of AI and the Internet: How Global Networks of Infotech Overlords are Expanding Their Control Over Our Lives" (2019), "Reinventing Ourselves: How Technology is Rapidly and Radically Transforming Humanity" (2019), "Thinking Whole: Rejecting Half-Witted Left & Right Brain Limitations" (2018), "Reflections on Oceans and Puddles: One Hundred Reasons to be Enthusiastic, Grateful and Hopeful" (2017), "Cosmic Musings: Contemplating Life Beyond Self" (2016), "Scared Witless: Prophets and Profits of Climate Doom" (2015) and "Climate of Corruption: Politics and Power Behind the Global Warming Hoax" (2011). He is currently working on a new book with Buzz Aldrin, "Beyond Footprints and Flagpoles." Read Larry Bell's Reports — More Here.
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