Monday, November 14, 2016

Trump Appoints Denier Loser Looneytune To Head EPA Transition

Denier dimwit Myron Ebell who will head Trump's EPA transition.

Forget about Trump's appeal to "unity" and "bringing everybody together". After appointing the libertarian looneytune Myron Ebell to head the EPA transition, it's just more hollow bollocks.. Ebell directs environmental and energy policy at the Competitive Enterprise Institute, a libertarian advocacy group in Washington. As we know, and as I've shown, the libertarians almost rival Repukes in terms of their climate science denial and stupidity.

See e.g.

As for Ebell, he clearly prides himself on his climate ignorance and challenging accepted science. This is even as determined groups have painted him for what he is, a renegade and climate dunce. Just like the sundry libertarian climate change deniers belonging to the high IQ societies who believe their status gives them license to bloviate and blurtate about anything when they can't even pass a basic test in thermal physics, e.g.

Ebell's transgressions extend beyond blatant denial of clear, obvious scientific facts to do with warming and include lying about the position of scientists - claiming:

"Most scientists think global warming is silly."

Uh no they don't, doofus, especially the scientists most involved with climate investigations. Specifically, I've referenced the scientific consensus on global warming reported in Eos Transactions, Vol. 90, No. 3, p. 22, by P. T. Doran and M. Kendall-Zimmerman who found that (p. 24) :

the debate on the authenticity of global warming and the role played by human activity is largely non-existent among those who understand the nuances and scientific basis of long-term climate processes.”

In their analytic survey for which 3146 climate and Earth scientists responded, a full 96.2% of specialists concurred temperatures have steadily risen and there is no evidence for cooling. Meanwhile, 97.4% concur there is a definite role of humans in global climate change.

The authors concluded (p. 24) :

The challenge appears to be how to effectively communicate this fact (non-existent debate among real climate specialists) to policy makers and a public that continues to mistakenly perceive debate exists among scientists

In Ebell's case, his  mug-shot appeared on posters, pasted on walls and lampposts around Paris by an activist group during the United Nations climate talks last year, and were hardly flattering. But why should they be when one is an intentional idiot? Would it not be better then to see the likes of this visage applicable to all such morons?

The French protesters have rightfully depicted Ebell, a climate contrarian, as one of seven “climate criminals” wanted for “destroying our future.”  This is not too extreme a characterization given that anyone responsible for creating false notions or sowing doubts of magnitude sufficient to delay effective actions, IS  destroying our future. For they have used their status of voice to delay much needed, or timely action. As before I have put this under the header of "agnotology".

Agnotology, derived from the Greek 'agnosis' - is the study of culturally constructed ignorance- and is achieved primarily by sowing the teeniest nugget of doubt in whatever claim is made (and as we know NO scientific theory is free of uncertainty).  The agnotologist and his ilk succeed once the following trope is emitted and embraced by the power structure or media:

There is still so much uncertainty, we shouldn’t invest money to solve the climate problem,’

This is egregious on so many levels that it boggles the rational mind. First, any modern scientific pursuit must include uncertainty. Uncertainty is acknowledged every time I perform a measurement - say of the solar diameter, or a sunspot's Zeeman effect,  and express it with plus or minus magnitude values. It signifies that final measurement cannot be presumed free of measuring error which is inherent in all our physics, astronomy etc.

The matter of "too much uncertainty" is also the wrong way to look at the issue for any scientific model or measurement, because they can as easily UNDER-estimate a potential threat or occurrence as over estimate it.  In the past thirty years, for example, we have learned we've actually underestimated the intensity of warming by up to one-third because of the fact global dimming had earlier concealed one third of it. Thus, the presence of aerosols and particulates in the atmosphere have diminished radiant heating effects that otherwise would be one-third greater.
Stanford historian of science Robert Proctor has correctly tied agnotology of the type promoted by Ebell and others to the trend of skeptic science sown deliberately and for political or economic ends . In other words, those like Ebell are all committed to one end: destroying the science to enable economic profit and hence planetary ruin. Prof. Proctor also notes these special interests are often paid handsomely to sow immense confusion on the issue. Just a few years ago, in fact, Heritage Foundation offered $10,000 per article written by a "scientist" to try to refute global warming. We don't know how many takers there were, but I've counted over 200 letters or articles (usually op-eds like the one shown) in which either single hacks or groups of them have attempted to disparage global warming or insist "there's no need to panic". Well, there damned well is need to panic, as this year's unfolding weather disasters, including new heat waves and droughts will show.

EBell is so aberrational he appears to be comfortable with how he's been portrayed. According to this misfit. He told an interviewer at the Paris climate talks

I’ve gotten used to this over the years. But I did go out and get my photo taken with my poster, just so I have it as a memento.”

In truth, looking for someone to follow through on his campaign vow to dismantle one of the Obama administration’s signature climate change policies,  Trump probably could not have found a better candidate for the job than Ebell. A non-scientist, proud of his climate ignorance and hostile to reason though he professes to be the opposite, e.g. “I really think that people should be suspicious of authority,” he told an interviewer last year. Adding: “The more you’re told that you have to believe something, the more you should question it.”

Which ought to apply with special force to any economist who couldn't even predict the credit meltdown of 2007-08.   But never mind, Ebell never cracked open an advanced thermal physics book in his life but is quite comfortable taking on the scientific consensus on global warming. 

To review Ebell's background: He got his undergraduate degree at Colorado College and master’s at the London School of Economics, where he studied under the conservative political philosopher Michael Oakeshott. Note that his economics background already places him in the category of an agnotologist who sows doubt and deliberate skepticism in order to undermine trust in science in favor of economic priority.
Ebell also leads the Cooler Heads Coalition, a loose-knit group that says it is “focused on dispelling the myths of global warming by exposing flawed economic, scientific, and risk analysis.”  But people need to know that Ebell's whole organization is financed in part by the coal industry, and has been one of the most vocal opponents of the linchpin of that policy, the Clean Power Plan. Developed by the Environmental Protion Agency, the plan it is a far-reaching set of regulations that, by seeking to reduce carbon emissions from electricity generation, could result in the closing of many coal-burning power plants, among other effects.

Ebell has been one of the nation’s most visible climate contrarians, known for dispensing memorable sound bites on cable news shows and at events like the annual conferences sponsored by the Heartland Institute, a Chicago-based group that rejects the overwhelming scientific consensus on climate change.

All of this confirms what most of us have feared: that having this fool in charge of EPA appointments will set our nation's emission goals back to the metaphorical Jurassic period.

See also:

No comments: