Only in academia

Nice fella, Professor Richard Parncutt.

“I have always been opposed to the death penalty in all cases…”

“Even mass murderers [like Breivik] should not be executed, in my opinion.”

“GW deniers fall into a completely different category from Behring Breivik. They are already causing the deaths of hundreds of millions of future people. We could be speaking of billions, but I am making a conservative estimate.”


If a jury of suitably qualified scientists estimated that a given GW denier had already, with high probability (say 95%), caused the deaths of over one million future people, then s/he would be sentenced to death. The sentence would then be commuted to life imprisonment if the accused admitted their mistake, demonstrated genuine regret, AND participated significantly and positively over a long period in programs to reduce the effects of GW (from jail) – using much the same means that were previously used to spread the message of denial. At the end of that process, some GW deniers would never admit their mistake and as a result they would be executed. Perhaps that would be the only way to stop the rest of them. The death penalty would have been justified in terms of the enormous numbers of saved future lives.

Okay, let’s consider this guy’s warped sense of morality. Anders Behring Breivik – the evil who slaughtered 77 innocent people – does not deserve to die, yet those who question the scientific orthodoxy – who speak and write things that others do not like – do. Clearly a sense of moral clarity is required, but perhaps also a sense of history. How many tyrants throughout history, any of those who rule today,  have used their power of life and death to enforce their world view on their subjects? Not only in politics, but such dictators have also sought to apply their ideology to the scientific process. To name a few, there was the persecution faced by Galileo and the institutionalisation of Lysenkoism in the Soviet Union. What about these regimes does Parncutt find so irresistible?

(Via: Jo Nova)

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85% of global emissions exempt from Kyoto

The result of Doh-ha.

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An act of desperation

After imposing a carbon tax and jumping in bed with the greens, now the Prime Minister is concerned about electricity prices.

JULIA Gillard has unveiled a plan to reform the electricity sector, vowing to save households up to $250 a year on their power bills.

Ms Gillard said under the current system there was a “perverse incentive” for electricity companies to keep “gold-plating” or overinvesting in poles and wires in the system and keep passing on the full cost to consumers.

“I will have a Council of Australian Governments meeting at the end of this week and I will be taking there a plan to make a difference, a plan to make sure that families pay $250 less per year for electricity than they would if we just let the current system run,” Ms Gillard told Network Ten’s Meet The Press program.

This is the tricky position that Labor has put itself into. In trying to curb emissions, it has imposed a carbon tax, driving electricity bills up 15%. Barack Obama demonstrated this feeling towards power prices that exists on the left. The average consumer needs to hurt for the sake of the planet. However, politicians exist to win elections, and making a key commodity more expensive tends to alienate a lot of voters.

One wonders why this announcement has come about. Julia Gillard has been under a lot of pressure in recent days over the AWU scandal. This is a perfect distraction and is seemingly an opportunity to try to win back some voters. It can only be an act of desperation. Power prices have gone up 89% under the ALP and they only now take up any sort of concern? And after levelling the carbon tax. They’re not going to be fooling anyone.

The details of the plan fail to inspire any confidence of success:

  1. End gold-plating of electrical infrastructure. This probably would reduce costs, but could it come at the expense of safety (pink batts, anyone?)?
  2. A Consumer Challenge Panel plans to give consumers a say in pricing decisions. Consumers already do get a say. They can simply switch providers. It’s called free market competition. What this panel amounts to is price controls, which do not work because they do not address the underlying problem of supply. All they do is disincentivise producers to produce by reducing the profit motive, which further impacts in supply.
  3. Throwing $23.2million at the Australian Energy Regulator. More price controls.
  4. Smart meters (because they’re so popular).
  5. Paying companies to reduce consumption during peak periods. Why do you have to incentivise companies to cut back on energy wastage? I thought they were selfish and greedy. Any reductions in electricity use will come at the expense of productivity, for which businesses will be duly compensated with redistributed wealth which has already been produced, only to be wasted.

The only way to have any significant positive impact on electricity prices is to allow supply to increase. Ditching the carbon tax is a good start, but we need to lift the toxic regulatory environment that hampers fossil fuel power development in this country. In a nutshell, environmentalism is the problem.


Henry Ergas.

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Developed and Developing countries

Just listening to Mark Steyn talking about the term “developing countries”, which implies that lawless nations such as Yemen are simply in the process of acquiring liberty and prosperity, rather than bogged down in a culture of violence and terrorism, to which there seems to end. What about the “developed countries”? Have we stopped developing or something? Are our economies no longer growing? It sounds like an environmentalist fantasy. I’m not questioning the origins of the term, merely pondering its implications.

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Stupidity from Barney Frank

This is from the man responsible for the housing bubble.

“Climate change — it brought on the endorsement of Mike Bloomberg, because one of the things the storm did was to bring climate change to the fore. So, to that extent, if Republicans got hurt because of the storm, it was because of the abysmal stupidity of their position denying climate change. And yes, so the storm did remind people how wrong they were,” Frank said on MSNBC in a Thursday night interview.

A complete misreading of the electorate – climate change wasn’t even on the agenda – and an abuse of science in labelling Sandy the result of global warming. So, I guess it must have been that key endorsement of Nanny Bloomberg.

(Via: Breitbart)

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No, scare tactics turn people off

What does the next IPCC report have in store for us?

“That report is going to scare the wits out of everyone,” Mr de Boer said in  the only  scheduled interview of his visit to Australia. “I’m confident those  scientific findings will create new political momentum.”

If big scary predictions worked anymore to garner support for global warming mitigation, they wouldn’t need a “new political momentum”. Scare tactics may work at first, but the public will quickly become disinterested. This guy is dreaming.

(Via: Tim Blair)

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Newman on climate

Former head of the ABC, Maurice Newman compares global warming to a religion.

When Mother Nature decided in 1980 to change gears from cooler to warmer, a new global warming religion was born, replete with its own church (the UN), a papacy, (the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), and a global warming priesthood masquerading as climate scientists. Selfish humans in rich, polluting countries were blamed for the warming and had to pay for past trespasses by providing material compensation to poor nations as penance. Cutting greenhouse gas emissions became the new holy grail. With a warm wind at their backs, these fundamentalists collected hundreds of billions of dollars from naive governments that adopted their faith on behalf of billions of people. No crusader was ever so effective.

The message was stark. If the non-believers didn’t convert immediately, our children and grandchildren would face a hell on earth. The priesthood excommunicated and humiliated sceptics and deniers. Alternative views were not tolerated and, where possible, were suppressed. Did someone mention the dark ages?

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