[Coral-List] Don't be such a scientist

Michael Risk riskmj at mcmaster.ca
Tue Jan 10 18:17:32 EST 2012

OK Gene, now I have to respond-in order to orient some of your readers to the wilds of Canada.

First of all, the Canadian Senate is nothing like the US Senate, that well-honed efficient policy machine. Its origins are ancient, and the intent was to provide a "sober second thought" to the perhaps rash impulses of elected representatives.

The Senate is by appointment, and very early on, Prime Ministers used appointments as a way to reward bagmen and hacks. The money's great, there is little work, nobody takes attendance-what's not to like? No one in Canada takes it seriously. Other than to complain about it.

The present Prime Minister, a great friend of Dirty Oil, campaigned on a promise either to abolish the Senate or to make it "Triple E"-Elected, Effective, and hmmm something else that starts with E. He has since filled it with: hacks and bagmen.

(Yes, we'd love to get rid of the damn thing, but doing so would take an amendment to our Constitution.)

So testifying before the Canadian Senate, especially given the anti-science attitude of this government, is worth about as much as-in the immortal words of John Nance Garner-"a bucket of warm spit."

Now, Ian Clark. He has a modest record as a paleoclimate guy, and so we should listen with respect. His testimony was in 2011, so we can expect him to be up-to-date. His main points are:
-climate has changed in the past. Sigh.
-coming out of glacials, temp leads CO2. (I thought that was settled years ago. Yes, it does-until the oceans start to warm, and then you get a positive feedback loop.)
-water vapour is a stronger GHG than CO2. (True-but only part of the story. Others explain this better than I, but basically, CO2 drives a slight warming-water evaporates, climate warms-another positive feedback loop.)

The rest of his presentation is glib garbage, same old same old.

One is forced to conclude that he is either ignorant, or he is lying.


Yes. He gets money from the oil companies. Most of these flacks do.


But keep this up, Gene. It keeps us honest, keeps the juices flowing.

Now, on the other hand…someone should convince me that ocean acidification should be taken seriously, as an impact on REEFS (the subject of this list, remember?) when the Caribbean lost most of its corals before the turn of the century.

On 2012-01-10, at 1:35 PM, Eugene Shinn wrote:

> The WSJ and the CO2 Science blogs I posted appear to have stimulated 
> the juices of coral-list readers. Once again true believers attacked 
> the messenger more than the message. Ironically the doom and gloom 
> message was well received when it was delivered by that paragon of 
> science, "60 minutes."  For additional stimulation watch a short 
> YouTube presentation on climate change given to the Canadian Senate 
> by Canadian geologist Ian Clark. You don't need to be a scientist to 
> grasp his message. Gene <http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hDKSkBrI-TM>
> -- 
> No Rocks, No Water, No Ecosystem (EAS)
> ------------------------------------ -----------------------------------
> E. A. Shinn, Courtesy Professor
> University of South Florida
> College of Marine Science Room 221A
> 140 Seventh Avenue South
> St. Petersburg, FL 33701
> <eshinn at marine.usf.edu>
> Tel 727 553-1158---------------------------------- 
> -----------------------------------
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Michael Risk
riskmj at mcmaster.ca

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