Submitted by Allen on Mon, 09/20/2010 - 15:15
Last week, White House Science Advisor John P. Holdren spoke at a conference in Oslo, Norway where he discussed the case for global warming/climate change and the need for coordinated activity to control carbon emissions. In that speech he also tried to convince the audience that the term global warming is a “misnomer” since the term was too simple and failed to grasp the enormity of the global climate challenge.
So, after Climategate that exposed the lack of intellectual honesty on the part of a number of leading climate change promoters, and the recent admonition of the chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and its report by the UN’s Inter-Academy Council for failure to support many of its conclusions, we now see that the Obama administration wants to change the climate debate terminology. This probably signals an attempt to restart the debate over environmental regulation after the failure of the cap and trade legislation to be embraced by Congress and the sinking support for the Copenhagen climate agreement. In fact, many countries that were leading the charge on carbon emissions regulations are backing away from their commitments due to the cost of the efforts and their sagging economies.
This administration has a habit of changing the terminology of topics and issues they can’t, or won’t, deal with as a way of diverting attention from their failures. Before, it was rebranding the war of terror as “overseas contingency operations.” Following the shooting of individuals on a military base by an Army officer, the government began referring to terrorism as “man-caused disaster.”
The justification for the change in global warming terminology was laid out by Dr. Holdren in a speech at the John F. Kennedy,, Jr. Forum at the Kennedy School last November. In that speech he said: “Global warming is a misnomer.” He went on to explain that “It implies something gradual, uniform, and benign. What we’re experiencing is none of these.” After years of climate change and global warming scientists admonishing people not to confuse weather with global climate trends, it seems like Dr. Holdren now wants us to accept any change in weather to be climate change. I thought that was what climate change was all about.
Trying to understand the impact of weather patterns on climate change is difficult. It seems that global warming supporters only want to emphasize the hot weather and not the cold winters, especially this year in the eastern half of the country. Yes, the eastern U.S. had some record heat this summer, but it also had significant cold weather and snow last winter. But this summer, as the East Coast was experiencing hot temperatures, California and the rest of the West Coast had one of its coldest summers in decades.
What we know about the weather was best summed up by comedian Will Rodgers. "If you don't like the weather in Oklahoma, wait a minute and it'll change." So isn’t weather all about change? Doesn’t change equal disruption of climate patterns? So does adopting global climate disruption mean we should accept the weather? I guess I’m confused, but that’s probably what the White House wants by changing the terminology.