Thursday, March 01, 2007

To Albrecht

Perhaps the funniest article concerning climate change I’ve read for some time was produced this week by lawyer Janet Albrechtsen in the Australian. Yes, the Oz; delusion central. So not surprising really.

Firstly, a little about Janet for non-Australian readers. Janet’s our very own Ann Coulter, only she’s tax-payer funded. No matter what the subject, she’ll take the most right-wing, crazed position imaginable. If she just has to make stuff up to support her position, she’ll do it in a flash. When opining about some gang-rapists who happened to be Muslim, she misrepresented the work of two researchers to claim the gang-rapists did their evil deeds because they were Muslim. Poor old Janet was publicly humiliated when she was caught out by ABC MediaWatch on the misrepresentations. Our lovely government was so concerned about this they appointed her to the board that oversees the ABC, our main public broadcaster. That’ll teach ‘em to investigate whether wing-nuts are telling the truth or not.

Now for the article we’re concerned with today. Janet has taken all her source material from the silly, fully-debunked Duel Critique of the Stern Review. There’s the usual stuff; it’s a Green conspiracy; it’s humanity’s deep-seated desire for doom and gloom etc.. Same old, same old. I do note, however, that it seems it has become impossible for a delusionist to write a story concerning climate change without the words “preaching” and “hysteria” appearing. Original thought ain’t their big thing. Come one, crazies, I’m sure you can think up new taunts!!

Here’s a little something that shows how our Janet’s thought processes work. How she likes to embellish a little for, you know, added effect.

The Duel critique states (wrongly):
If comparison is made with the ‘global average temperature’ statistic since 1860 that is computed from near-surface thermometer measurements, then the late twentieth-century warming is similar in both amount and rate to an earlier (natural) warming between 1905 and 1940.
Why’s it wrong? Earlier warming had a significantly greater 'natural' component than recent warming, but as CO2 and other GHGs had been belched out since the industrial revolution, they had began to play role before 1940 (i.e. relatively small by today’s terms, but not non-existent).

Janet, however, couldn’t help herself. She just had to spruce it up a little. Here’s what she had to say.
The critique of Stern points out that the rate of warming during the late 20th century was similar to an earlier natural warming period between 1905 and 1940, a period preceding industrial-driven greenhouse gas emissions.
There were no industrial green-house emissions prior to 1940?

No power stations? No industry.? Really Janet?

The industrial revolution actually happened in 1941? Or did we once have clean-coal technology and the islamofascists stole it?

Are you really that stupid? The question must be asked.

Janet goes on:
Stern’s most glaring omission is the human ability to adapt to changes.

Technology has transformed the world because people adapt. Ignoring such a basic feature of human history and progress tells you much about the lack of rigour behind the evangelists who preach the global warming message.
Does Janet blatantly lie? You be the judge.

Stern says this about adaptation.
In Chapters 3 to 5 of the report, when highlighting the risks of climate change, estimates of the costs assume individual-level actions to reduce damages from climate change (autonomous adaptation), but little policy intervention on adaptation. All figures are presented on this basis in these Chapters. In Part V, we consider how adaptation policies could reduce the costs of climate change identified in Chapters 3 to 5. In the economic modeling of climate-change impacts (Chapter 6), which contains the estimates of impacts on average world consumption, it is assumed that significant adaptation occurs. The model used (PAGE) assumes that 90% of the impacts are adapted to in rich countries, and 50% in poor countries. Our assessment includes the costs of adaptation in the damages.
Let me get this straight.

Stern says: The model used (PAGE) assumes that 90% of the impacts are adapted to in rich countries, and 50% in poor countries.

Janet says: Stern’s most glaring omission is the human ability to adapt to changes.

Am I missing something here? Or has Janet written this whole article criticising the Stern Review without actually having read the Stern Review?

Shocked, I am!!!!

Janet, stick to destroying our public broadcasting institutions. Whining about climate change just isn’t your thing. But then again, maybe crazies like Janet and Andrew Bolt are doing climate-change realists the ultimate favour by making such outrageous and obviously false claims. Who knows? They sure ain't helping their cause.

N.B. What's 'to Albrecht' mean? MediaWatch again:
The verb "to albrecht" meaning to lift and twist - entered the language a couple of years ago when we reported columnist Janet Albrechtsen lifting and twisting academic sources to suit her purposes.
I've used it in a wider sense; lifting and twisting wing-nuttery rather than academic sources.