Wednesday, July 22, 2015


I am personally and highly offended by being called a "climate change denier." That is nonsense.

I am old enough to remember when the scientific world was virtually united in prophesying that Earth was entering a new "little Ice Age," and that Chicago, for instance, would be under probably a mile of ice by the year 2000. Then, later, we were warned darkly that PRIMARILY BECAUSE OF HUMAN ACTIVITY, we were entering a period of serious and severe global warming. Every time you turned on the news or opened a newspaper, some scientist or other warned us ominously that we were headed ever more rapidly the way of the planet Mercury, mainly because we naughty, naughty humans just would not change our habits --- or, at least, the habits they felt we should change. I can't help but notice that very gradually, we've stopped talking so much about "human-caused global warming," and more about "climate change."

NOBODY DENIES THE REALITY OF CLIMATE CHANGE. I certainly don't. Of COURSE there's climate change.

What many people --- DEFINITELY including ME--- are not convinced of is that human activity is the principal driver of this change. Some of us suggest that climate change is probably PRIMARILY a cyclical phenomenon --- and I happen to believe that sunspot activity probably has more to do with it than does human activity.

Admittedly with only my own observation, but with little or no scientific data to back me up (would it even be allowed if I had it?),  what I, personally, maintain is that ONE average-size volcano probably spews more pollutants into the atmosphere in a MONTH than does all human activity in a YEAR. And there are DOZENS of such "average-sized volcanos" erupting around the world at any given moment. Not to speak of the occasional Vesuvius- or Krakatoa-size event. Yes, those definitely HAVE changed the terrestrial climate --- and yet, Earth has survived. We humans simply are not as powerful as some want to believe we are.

I lump this example of (1) the morphing of terms, (2) illegitimate generalization, then (3) labelling the resultant travesty as "THE liberal --- sensible --- position" right up there (or, many of us would say, DOWN there) with such ideas as THE liberal position on immigration, abortion, and especially, black civil rights. For the record, re the last-mentioned: A
gain I say, I am old enough  to remember how the thrust of that very important movement morphed from a push for equal OPPORTUNITY (which had been denied a huge portion of the American populace BY LAW) to a push for some kind of nebulous "equality" (parity). That was wrong, and has led to a whole host of social ills in this country. In my opinion, it was just as invalid as are so many ideas floating around about the subject we're currently discussing.

I DON'T KNOW OF ONE PERSON, SCIENTIST OR NOT, WHO DENIES THE REALITY OF CLIMATE CHANGE. So stop with the idiotic tripe that anyone who challenges the currently "scientific" view that humans are PRIMARILY responsible for global climate change is a stupid, knuckle-dragging "climate change denier." 

NOW: Does that mean that we should just go about our business as usual and make no changes in our behavior? Of course not; who, in fact, said THAT?

Does that mean that Pope Francis was wrong when he condemned those who turn the earth into "an immense pile of filth"? Not necessarily. But, I must point out two things: First, when His Holiness has spoken on this issue, he's never done so ex cathedra, so his pronouncements have never been Dogmas of the Faith. Secondly, and more importantly to me, even if his opinions had been considered Dogmas of the Faith, they would have been such to Roman Catholics. The Roman Catholic Church is not my Church; I am an Episcopalian, a Catholic but not a Roman Catholic. My Church is The Episcopal Church, which is proudly Catholic and Protestant, not the Roman Catholic Church. So, the Pope's opinions on birth control, climate change, and such, are exactly that to me: His opinions. He's got a right to his opinions, as I have a right to mine. While he may be awesomely intelligent, Pope Francis is not my spiritual leader, and our opinions on things may differ. And they do.

It annoys the hell out of me to see us liberals do what we accuse the conservatives and libertarians of doing. We liberals have mastered the art of politically correct generalizing. And it's just as wrong, in my opinion, when WE do it.