Thursday, October 10, 2019

Idiototic Environmental Predictions Walter Williams

The Competitive Enterprise Institute has published a new paper, “Wrong Again: 50 Years of Failed Eco-pocalyptic Predictions.” Keep in mind that many of the grossly wrong environmentalist predictions were made by respected scientists and government officials. My question for you is: If you were around at the time, how many government restrictions and taxes would you have urged to avoid the predicted calamity?

As reported in The New York Times (Aug. 1969) Stanford University biologist Dr. Paul Erhlich warned: “”The trouble with almost all environmental problems is that by the time we have enough evidence to convince people, you're dead. We must realize that unless we're extremely lucky, everybody will disappear in a cloud of blue steam in 20 years.”

In 2000, Dr. David Viner, a senior research scientist at University of East Anglia's climate research unit, predicted that in a few years winter snowfall would become "a very rare and exciting event. Children just aren't going to know what snow is." In 2004, the U.S. Pentagon warned President George W. Bush that major European cities would be beneath rising seas. Britain will be plunged into a Siberian climate by 2020. In 2008, Al Gore predicted that the polar ice cap would be gone in a mere 10 years. A U.S. Department of Energy study led by the U.S. Navy predicted the Arctic Ocean would experience an ice-free summer by 2016.


In May 2014, French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius declared during a joint appearance with Secretary of State John Kerry that “we have 500 days to avoid climate chaos.”

Peter Gunter, professor at North Texas State University, predicted in the spring 1970 issue of The Living Wilderness: “Demographers agree almost unanimously on the following grim timetable: by 1975 widespread famines will begin in India; these will spread by 1990 to include all of India, Pakistan, China and the Near East, Africa. By the year 2000, or conceivably sooner, South and Central America will exist under famine conditions. ... By the year 2000, thirty years from now, the entire world, with the exception of Western Europe, North America, and Australia, will be in famine.:

Ecologist Kenneth Watt's 1970 prediction was, “If present trends continue, the world will be about four degrees colder for the global mean temperature in 1990, but eleven degrees colder in the year 2000.” He added, “This is about twice what it would take to put us into an ice age.”

Mark J. Perry, scholar at the American Enterprise Institute and professor of economics and finance at the University of Michigan's Flint campus, cites 18 spectacularly wrong predictions made around the time of first Earth Day in 1970. This time it's not about weather. Harrison Brown, a scientist at the National Academy of Sciences, published a chart in Scientific American that looked at metal reserves and estimated that humanity would run out of copper shortly after 2000. Lead, zinc, tin, gold and silver would be gone before 1990. Kenneth Watt said, “By the year 2000, if present trends continue, we will be using up crude oil at such a rate ... that there won't be any more crude oil.”


There were grossly wild predictions well before the first Earth Day, too. In 1939, the U.S. Department of the Interior predicted that American oil supplies would last for only another 13 years. In 1949, the secretary of the interior said the end of U.S. oil supplies was in sight. Having learned nothing from its earlier erroneous energy claims, in 1974, the U.S. Geological Survey said that the U.S. had only a 10-year supply of natural gas. However, the U.S. Energy Information Administration estimated that as of Jan. 1, 2017, there were about 2,459 trillion cubic feet of dry natural gas in the United States. That's enough to last us for nearly a century. The United States is the largest producer of natural gas worldwide.

Today's wild predictions about climate doom are likely to be just as true as yesteryear's. The major difference is today's Americans are far more gullible and more likely to spend trillions fighting global warming. And the only result is that we'll be much poorer and less free.

Monday, September 16, 2019

Academic Stupidity and Brainwashing


Aademic Stupidity and Brainwashing

Just when we thought colleges could not spout loonier ideas, we have a new one from American University. They hired a professor to teach other professors to grade students based on their “labor” rather than their writing ability. The professor that American University hired to teach that nonsense is Asao B. Inoue, who is a professor at the University of Washington in Tacoma in interdisciplinary arts and sciences. He is also the director of the university's writing center. Inoue believes that a person's writing ability should not be assessed, in order to promote “anti-racist” objectives. Inoue taught American University's faculty members that their previous practices of grading writing promoted white language supremacy. Inoue thinks that students should be graded on the effort they put into a project.
The idea to bring such a professor to American University, where parents and students fork over $48,459 a year in tuition charges, could not have been something thought up by saner members of its academic community. Instead, it was probably the result of deep thinking by the university's diversity and campus life officials. Inoue's views are not simply extreme but possibly hostile to the academic mission of most universities. Forgiving and ignoring a students' writing ability would mostly affect black students. White students' speaking and writing would be judged against the King's English, defined as standard, pure or correct English grammar.

Professor Noam Chomsky, called the father of modern linguistics, formulated the generative theory of language. According to his theory, the most basic form of language is a set of syntactic rules that is universal for all humans and that underlies the grammar of all human languages. We analyze and interpret our environment with words and sentences in a structured language. Oral and written language provides a set of rules that enables us to organize thoughts and construct logical meaning with our thoughts.
Not holding students accountable to proper grammar does a disservice to those students who overall show poor writing abilities. When or if these students graduate from college, they are not going to be evaluated in their careers by Inoue's tailored standards. They will be judged according to their objective abilities, and it probably follows that if they fail to meet those objective standards, the standards themselves will be labeled as racist.
There's another very dangerous bit of academic nonsense happening, this time at the K-12 level of education. One America News Network anchor interviewed Mary Clare Amselem, education specialist at the Heritage Foundation, about the California Department of Education's proposed ethnic studies curriculum. The proposed ethnic studies curriculum would teach children that capitalism and father figures are racist.
The Ethnic Studies Model Curriculum also includes gross anti-Israel bias and teaches about a Palestinian-led anti-Israel initiative called Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions. The curriculum also has students study issues of police brutality and asks teachers to find incidents of bias by police in their own communities. According to an article by Shelby Talcott in The Stream, California's proposed curriculum called for students to study lawmakers such as Democratic Minnesota Rep. Ilhan Omar and Democratic Michigan Rep. Rashida Tlaib, both of whom have supported the BDS movement and have been accused of anti-Semitic rhetoric.

The proposed ethnic studies proposal has been removed from the California Department of Education website. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., said, “While I am relieved that California made the obvious decision to revisit this wholly misguided proposal, we need to know why and how a blatantly anti-Semitic, anti-Israel, factually inaccurate curriculum made its way through the ranks of California's Department of Education.” He added, “This was not simply an oversight — the California Department of Education's attempt to institutionalize anti-Semitism is not only discriminatory and intolerant, it's dangerous.”
Brainwashing our youngsters is a serious matter. The people responsible for the California Department of Education's proposal ought to be summarily fired.
Walter E. Williams is a professor of economics at George Mason University.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Walter Williams

September 4, 2019 4:59 PM EDT

John Paul Wright, professor at University of Cincinnati, and Matthew DeLisi professor at Iowa State University have penned a powerful article titled “What Criminologists Don't Say, and Why,” in City Journal, Summer 2017. There is significant bias among criminologists. The reason for that bias is that political leanings of academic criminologists are liberal. Liberal criminologists outnumber their conservative counterparts by a ratio of 30-to-1. Ideology almost perfectly predicts the position of criminologists on issues from gun control to capital punishment too harsh sentencing. Liberal criminologists march in step for gun control, oppose punitive prison sentences and are vehemently against the death penalty.

In 2012, the National Academy of Sciences commissioned a study on the growth of incarceration. It showed that from 1928 until 1960, crime rates rose slowly each year. After the 1960s, crime rates exploded to unprecedented levels of violence until the 1990s. Prior to 1980, only 40% of individuals arrested for murder were sentenced to prison and those that were served an average of five years. In 1981, less than 10% of those arrested for sexual assault was sentenced to prison. Those who were sentenced served an average of 3.4 years. Liberal criminologists probably believe that light sentencing for murderers and rapists is just.

If criminologists have the guts to even talk about a race-crime connection, it's behind closed doors and in guarded language. Any discussion about race and crime sets one up for accusations of racism and that can mean the destruction of one's professional career. Wright and DeLisi say that liberal criminologists avoid discussing even explicit racist examples of black-on-white crime such as flash-mob assaults, “polar bear hunting” and the “knockout game.” These are cases where black youth seek out white people to physically attack.
According to Wright and DeLisi: "Disproportionate black involvement in violent crime represents the elephant in the room amid the current controversy over policing in the United States. Homicide numbers from the Federal Bureau of Investigation Supplementary Homicide Reports, 1976-2005 indicate that young African-American males account for homicide victims at levels that are ten to 20 times greater than their proportion of the population and account for homicide offenders at levels that are 15 to 35 times greater than their proportion of the population. The black-white gap in armed-robbery offending has historically ranged between ten to one and 15 to one. For all racial groups, violent crime is strongly intraracial, and the intraracial dynamic is most pronounced among blacks." That means the primary victims of black crime are other black people. In more than 90% of homicides, for example, both the victim and the perpetrator are black.
Between 1991 and 2017, the nationwide violent crime rate fell from 758 cases to 382 cases per 100,000 people. Despite the evidence that higher incarceration reduces crime rates, many criminologists argue that “mass incarceration” has actually “took minority men out of their neighborhoods, stripped them of voting rights, destabilized families, and sapped already-paltry economic resources from struggling communities.” Wright and DeLisi say that “Such claims could seem plausible only if one believes — contrary to evidence and common sense — that career criminals contribute positively to their neighborhoods, enjoy stable and functional families, vote, and work. What they did, in reality, was to prey on their neighbors.”

Crime is a major problem for the black community. But in addition to incarcerating those who prey on the black community, what can be done? The answer is easy, though implementation poses a challenge. We should re-adopt the values and practices of our ancestors. Black families of yesteryear were mainly two-parent and stable, even during slavery. Black people didn't tolerate property destruction. There were few school fights. Disrespect and assaults on teachers were virtually unknown. These are now all too common. The strong character of black people is responsible for the great progress made from emancipation to today. Find a 70-, 80- or 90-year-old black person and ask him whether today's conduct among black youth would have been tolerated yesteryear. I guarantee you that no will be their answer.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Global Warming Hoax

Sunday, August 25, 2019

The Iconic Image of the Global Warming Movement Is a Fraud

Global warming alarmist Dr. Michael Mann of Penn State University has lost his multimillion dollar libel suit in British Columbia. Not only did he lose, the suit was thrown out and Mann was ordered to pay defendant Dr. Tim Ball's legal costs. The judge threw out the case "with prejudice" meaning Mann cannot not refile it. Details here.

This is a huge victory for honesty and ethics in science.

Unfortunately, it is highly unlikely the MSM will cover Dr. Mann's loss in court and its implications for the global warming movement. So, I have put together this background posting to explain what this means. It will be the lead story on the blog the rest of today and Monday.

Dr. Ball was sued because he said, of Dr. Mann's seminal "hockey stick" work, "he belongs in the state pen, not Penn State." While others came to the same conclusion about the hockey stick, Mann sued Ball for libel. After eight years, Mann refused to provide a single document under the court-ordered discovery. It is now reasonable to conclude "the hockey stick" (HS) was a fraud. This is vitally important because it was the HS that directly led to the Nobel Prize for Al Gore and United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). One of the major tenets of the catastrophic global movement has been falsified.

Here is the backstory...

In 1999, the world was stunned when the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change published on the cover of its then-latest report the illustration below. It came to be 
Mann's graph from the ilustration from the
 cover of the 1999 IPCC Reportknown as "the hockey stick." It was a breathtaking piece of science: it showed there was no Medieval Warm Period (~900-1300 AD) and that contemporary temperatures are far higher than anything mankind has previously experienced.

The hockey stick was featured in just about every newspaper, on every newscast, in Al Gore's An Inconvenient Truth, and throughout the scientific community.

It was almost certainly a fraud. 

And, it was scientifically wrong in two ways:

1) The temperature reconstruction for the period from 1000 AD to about 1890 AD was based on tree bark from a number of bristlecone pines that, according to Mann, accurately reflected the temperatures experienced by the tree (a questionable assumption but I will not go into that here). But, there was a huge problem: the bristlecones showed world temperatures declining in the 20th Century!

As Steve McIntyre tirelessly labored to demonstrate (and, he is the person that deserves a Nobel Prize!), Mann's (and Keith Briffa's) data showed temperatures declining in the 20th Century.
Orange line shows 20th Century temperatures declining
in the bristlecone bark data.
From: climateaudit.orgOf course, we had thermometers in the 20th Century and it wouldn't do for the bristlecone data's (BD) credibility to show falling temperatures during the period when global warming activists wanted to show a rapid rise. So, Mann used a "trick" where he decided to "hide the [bristlecone data] decline." He did so by splicing the contemporary thermometer data onto the bristlecone data and deleting the BD after the vertex. Below is one of the key Climategate emails. "Nature" refers to Mann's paper published in Nature.
One of the key Climategate emailsFrom Mcintyre, here is a reconstruction of all of the pertinent data. The BD is pink. Mann deleted the bristlecone data around



year 1500 and the most recent data showing the declining temperatures. In place of the declining contemporary temperatures, he spliced in (in black) the thermometer record. This was known as "hiding the decline."

2) When one fed even random data into Mann's Excel program:
...a couple of Canadian researchers, McIntyre and McKitrick, found that when they ran simulations of “red noise” random principal components data into Mann’s reconstruction model, 99% of the time it produced the same hockey stick pattern

Not only did Mann create this scientific fraud, Climategate revealed him conspiring with Britain's Dr. Phil Jones to reject meritorious papers that cast doubt on catastrophic global warming so as to keep those papers out of the scientific journals. A quote from the Climategate emails:

We “will keep them [papers with differing conclusions] out somehow — even if we have to redefine what the peer-review literature is!”

Which is why global warming alarmists always ask the question, "Has [whomever] published in the peer-reviewed climate journals?" They know they have gamed the process and it is highly unlikely radically opposing viewpoints will be published. Renowned climate scientist, Dr. Judith Curry, recently had a paper rejected. One of the reviewers wrote:

“Overall, there is the danger that the paper is used by unscrupulous people to create confusion or to discredit climate or sea-level science. Hence, I suggest that the author reconsiders the essence of its contribution to the scientific debate on climate and sea-level science.”

Please note: the above rejection had nothing to do with the scientific merit of the paper. It had to do with -- gasp -- casting doubt on the "consensus." Remember: The huge monies that flow into climate study only continue to flow if there is a real or manufactured catastrophe.

So, where are we?

The hockey stick was the major piece of evidence that current temperatures are unprecedented in human history. They likely are not. Temperatures today appear to be similar during the Medieval Warm Period and even warmer during the Roman Optimum (when Jesus walked the earth).

Because those periods were equal to or warmer than today, it calls into question just how much of today's warming is due to CO2 emissions. Mother Nature is apparently able to create current temperature levels on her own.

Still,

There is no question temperatures are significantly warmer today than they were 100 years ago or even 40 years ago. 


Sea level will continue to rise (if temperatures continue to rise). That will, over decades, eventually flood low-lying coastal areas and will worsen the storm surge from major storms. 


While warming eventually may be a (net) plus as parts of Canada and Russia open for farming, there will be some agricultural disruption due to changing temperature patterns.


It makes sense to move to second and third generation nuclear (along with nuclear fusion, if and when available) for power generation. That will lessen emissions of greenhouse gas while allowing inexpensive energy to continue to lift the poor out of poverty. 


In other ways, when it makes economic sense, we should cut greenhouse gases. 


So, while global warming is real and a problem, the scientific case for catastrophic global warming continues to weaken (see new paper, here).

ADDITION, 1:50p Sunday:
To clarify the Medieval Warm Period (MWP) issue, here are the two versions of the climate history of the last thousand years.



Until the hockey stick, the MWP was generally accepted science. The HS is wrong not only because of it eliminating the warm period, it also does not show the Little Ice Age which obviously occurred. As one climate scientist was quoted as saying, "We have to get rid of the Medieval Warm Period." The HS certainly accomplished that goal. 

Sunday, August 4, 2019

Mass Shootings

1. Minimize gun free zones. Over 95% of mass shootings in the United States are in gun free zones.

2. The whole of “mental health professionals” and their schools should be class actioned for inflicting all of the nutso whack jobs on the rest of us. Most of the mass shooters have histories of mental illnesses. These nuts cannot be drugged into sanity. They are put into society by shrinks with little if any supervision and everyone is so suprised that they snap and kill groups of citizens.

Thursday, June 27, 2019

Reparations

By Walter E. Williams | June 27, 2019 9:43 PM EDT

Several Democratic presidential hopefuls are calling for Americans to make reparations for slavery. On June 19, the House judiciary subcommittee on the constitution, civil rights, and civil liberties held a hearing. Its stated purpose was “to examine, through open and constructive discourse, the legacy of the Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade, its continuing impact on the community and the path to restorative justice.”

Slavery was a gross violation of human rights. Justice demands that all participants in the Trans-Atlantic slave trade make compensatory reparation payments to slaves. However, there is no way that Europeans could have captured millions of Africans. That means compensation would have to be paid by Africans and Arabs who captured and sold slaves to Europeans in addition to the people who bought and used slaves. Since slaves and slave traders and owners are no longer with us, compensation is beyond our reach and it's a matter that will have to be settled in hell or heaven.


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Let's pretend for a moment that the reparations issue makes a modicum of sense. There's the question of responsibility. More explicitly, should we compensate a black person of today by punishing a white person of today, by taking his money, for what a white person of yesteryear did to a black person of yesteryear? If we believe in individual accountability, we should find that doing so is unjust. In other words, are the tens millions of Europeans, Asian, and Latin Americans who immigrated to the United States in the late 19th and 20th centuries responsible for slavery, and should they be forced to cough up reparations? What about descendants of Northern whites who fought and died in the name of freeing slaves? Should they pay reparations to black Americans? What about non-slave-owning Southern whites -- who were a majority of Southern whites -- should their descendants be made to pay reparations?

Reparations advocates make the unchallenged pronouncement that the United States became rich on the backs of free black labor. That's utter nonsense. While some slave owners became rich, slavery doesn't have a good record of producing wealth. Slavery existed in the southern states and outlawed in most of the northern states. Buying into the reparations argument suggests that the antebellum South was rich and the slave-starved North was poor. The truth is just the opposite. In fact, the poorest states and regions of our country were places where slavery flourished: Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia. And the richest states and regions were those where slavery was absent: Pennsylvania, New York, and Massachusetts.

The reparations movement would be an amusing sideshow were it not for its damaging distractions. It grossly misallocates resources that could be better spent elsewhere. According to the state Department of Education, 75% of black California boys cannot meet state reading standards. In 2016, in 13 of Baltimore's 39 high schools, not a single student scored proficient on the state's mathematics exam. In six other high schools, only 1% tested proficient in math. The same story of low education outcomes can be told about most cities with large black populations. I'd like to see lawyers bring class-action suits against public school systems in cities like Philadelphia, Baltimore, Washington, Detroit, and Los Angeles for conferring fraudulent high school diplomas. Such diplomas attest a 12th-grade level of academic achievement when in fact those youngsters often cannot perform at sixth- or seventh-grade levels.


Thursday, June 6, 2019

D Day

 As a young Airman in 1966 I was honored to accompany the Color Guard for D Day commemoration services at the resting places for   some of the Americans that lost their lives that day.  It was a moving and life changing experience.
May they find comfort in the arms of Angels...