Tuesday, June 13, 2006

A Response

This comment (in italics) was left on my blog in regards to my statement saying I was going to see An Inconvenient Truth. My response is in bold.

While it is clear to me that humans are contributing to a rise in global temperatures it is definitely not clear that they are the main factor. The earth cools, the earth warms...the species that survive adapt.

John, it says in your profile that you're in manufacturing. That is a fine profession but I don't see anywhere else that says that you dabble in meteorology, geology, or evolutionary theory. Therefore, I don't know how you can make such a claim with such bravado. Where is your data? What are your theories on what IS the main factor? If we are contributing wouldn't an adaptation be to stop contributing to the CO2 thats causing the problem so we can survive?

Al Gore, in addition to inventing the internet, is a total boob. (disclaimer, I haven't seen the movie, maybe its ok, but i'm skeptical).

Ad Hominem argument. Please omit next time and bring facts that are relevant to the issue and not attacks on the person presenting them.

While I'm sure he is well meaning I'm also sure that he lacks a fundamental understanding of the climate and our impact on it. He knows what he's been told, and unfortunately he surrounds himself with do-gooder environmentalists that would apparently prefer to sit in the dark and walk to work.

What makes you "sure" that Gore lacks the understanding? Are you in the field? Al Gore has been spearheading awareness of global warming for many years. He has surrounded himself with scientific data and professionals in the field who are taking measurements. Scientists have an obligation to report measurements as they see them and over 928 peer reviewed articles in scientific journals over ten years (1993-2003) (Beyond The Ivory Tower: The Scientific Consensus on Climate Change) all come to the same conclusion that CO2 levels are rising at a more rapid pace than at any other time in the past 600k years and that the climate is changing in a manner that is not consistent for the cycles in the past 600k years. May I remind you that when you don't have a planet to live on you can't sit in the light or drive your car to work.

They offer no workable options (mostly because there aren't any!) but they insist that we "ACT NOW".

Please see the movie or go to climatecrisis.net. There are several workable options that we as individuals can do to stop and even reverse the effects of global warming.

Me-thinks he needs to talk to some people that actual understand energy, global variations in temperature and what alternatives are viable on a truely global scale. Until he does that I think I'll pass on spending my 8 bucks on his movie.

Again, Gore has been tracking this issue since he was a college student, he cites scientific data, and being that he was Vice President he's had experience meeting with energy officials in the past. Not to mention he dedicated much of his senate career to this issue as well. Your Ad Hominem argument of Al Gore being a "boob" doesn't hold water so please I encourage you to write Al Gore to tell him who he should be talking to. I think individual adjustsments in how each person can live are viable on a global scale. Furthermore the rest of the developed world has signed The Kyoto treaty and are dedicated to fighting global warming and reducing CO2 emissions. The US is one of two nations, Australia being the other, to not sign it. Furthermore, fuel efficiency standards for vehicles are significantly higher in other nations compared to the US. This would suggest that the globe already has thought of and acted on viable solutions.

Look people, its good to be skeptical but NOT BEFORE YOU SEE THE DATA. Watch the movie, learn the data, and then address the issue, not the messenger.


Anonymous The Gay Expat said...

"They offer no workable options (mostly because there aren't any!) but they insist that we "ACT NOW".

Oh there are, darlin' – you'll just have to get over the fact that you'd have to sit next to a minority or poor person on public transportation. You'll have to give up the idea of inefficient SUV's. You'll just have to separate your trash, turn off your lights, wait for less convenient flights in larger airplanes,not be so NIMBY about windmills to generate power, put solar panels on your roof, and perhaps – just perhaps – think about something other than yourself and your money.

12:53 AM  
Blogger The_Gay_Dude said...

Wowsie.....I feel as though I walked into the middle of a cat fight LOL.....It's never good to shoot the messenger.....but what do I know.....all's I know is that I enjoy reading your blog :P

1:00 AM  
Blogger VJnet said...

There are workable options. Just because change is not easy, does not mean it can not be done.

2:49 AM  
Blogger Bruce said...

I have to laugh at this for many reasons.

But mostly because when I made a comment about ridding the world of all human beings, all I get in response is save the dolphins. But when someone else makes a different point of view that actually comes from somewhere other than stupidity, his racism and intelligence comes into question.

Now I am not one for being mamby pamby about debates...infact I love them, but when someone makes a comment about another person without knowing anything about him...like the comment... you'll just have to get over the fact that you'd have to sit next to a minority or poor person on public transportation...that just ticks me off.

This person you are referring to has been in the "Clean Air" business for over 12 years, this person you claim doesn't want to sit next to a minority, is probably the lest racist person on the face of this earth. And as far as the SUV comment....I AM the one with the SUV that's heating up the earth....his car happens to be the smallest car you can buy in America.

Now I don't know the difference about CO2 and the hot air that has come from this comment...but none the less, maybe you should talk to the person in question, see what his background is, see where his facts come from and then make your educated guess on his ethics and intelligence.

So before you go off on me for defending him or even the comments that I made....just know I don't care! What I care about is the character of a person.

At least Adam highlighted each point and gave his opinion based on what he knew of the subject, backed up his facts, unlike some people who sat here and pointed fingers and "name called" without facts.

As far as me...I still think Al is not only a boob, but a politcal sock puppet as well.

6:50 AM  
Blogger Rian said...

Adam, first of all, thanks for this post.
There ARE many simple things the Americans could do. Living in Europe and being used to environment protection I realize many, many simple things on each trip to the US.
For example in the US you get a bag in a shop when you're just buying a pack of chewing gum (happened to me a couple times). This is a big waste. Sure, it's a very small simple thing, but there are thousand things like that. The Gay Expat mentioned many other things everyone could do. Here in Germany we do all that stuff. To be honest, once you're used to it it's not a hassle at all.

6:59 AM  
Anonymous Aaron said...

Al Gore did not invent the technology that is behind the Internet, but he spent years in Congress working on behalf of those who did to make sure that their research projects were funded and to make sure that the money and public support were there when it was time to build the infrastructure.

The creation of a nationwide, high-speed data network for computing was Al Gore's project from the get-go. Vinton Cerf and other early networking engineers have all stood up and said that this was so. He was right about the Internet before anyone else was and I'm pretty confident that he is right about global warming.

After all, once again, the scientific community agrees with him.

7:08 AM  
Blogger tornwordo said...

Sounds like a great response. It's so funny how he accuses Gore of just repeating what he's told when clearly, this is what the commenter is doing.

7:34 AM  
Blogger Jason said...

Note to self: Don't piss off Adam!

Important post. Excellent retort!!

8:56 AM  
Blogger john said...

I enjoy reading your blog.
I do like the way you presented your argument against the reader. I've always learned in a debate to attack the argument and not the messenger. This person lost my interest by calling Gore a boob. To me, that has no merit and just causes someone like me to close my ears off to any further arguments.

10:17 AM  
Blogger Bruce said...

Boob or not....how can you ignore someone with 12 years of experience in the field of "Clean Environment" just because some one used the word Boob to discribe someone's idea?

I take back my calling Al Gore a boob because I realize I called his character into question by calling him that based on his creation of the internet and such...but with that said, I would tend to believe 12 years of experience over a 1 hr 40 min movie that could be manipulated to make people believe their side.

The Media, and that's including the news media, manipulates the public all the time to get them to see sides that they want to precieve as the truth.

Adam I said this in an e-mail to you. I do like your style in attacking the issue and not the messenger, that was very professional.

Would all of you discount anything if Adam called Bush a boob? No I doubt that very much...

Just remember what this do the research and come to your own conclusions. If you side with Adam, fine...if you side with the messenger, fine too...but do the research.

That's all I have to say :)

Love to you all :)

10:47 AM  
Blogger Seeker Onos said...

There is much we can do individually to "act now".

The problem is translating this into a massive, grass roots WAKE-UP call: which is what Mr. gore is attmepting to accomplish with this film.

I pray that we do not turn a blind eye and a deaf ear to this as "more environmentalist propaganda" or more "haranguing from the socialist left, yada yada..."

This is serious-as-death stuff.

Ack. I still get ill when I see how much plastic we use... a trip to the grocer's on the weekend and I see carts awash in shrink-wrap plastic, plastic produce bags, outsized plastic boxes with small portions of food in them...

...and then I get funny looks at the checkout when I off-load all my veggies onto the conveyor.

Well, I do bag up small loose veggies like mushrooms and cherry tomatoes, lest they fall through the metal lattice of the shopping cart.

Some things I do to help reduce my ecological footprint (and save some ca$h in the process as well) :

1) Carpool 2/5 days a week, telecommute 1/5 (which means I am only driving myself to work 2/5 days a week). I'd use public transport if it was reliable, but I am kind of out in the sticks.

2) Shop almost exclusively with cloth/canvas bags (plus the grocery store I frequent gives me a discount for using the canvas bags)

3) Shutting off the motor when waiting at a long traffic light or coasting down a major grade

4) Separating my trash (a no-brainer)

5) Buying as much of my food as I can from local sources (I buy my milk from a local dairy in glass bottles that get re-used)

6) Many of my electronic consumer goods are plugged into a switchplate that I can switch off when not in use. Sure, their clocks are all off kilter, but it's not like I actually am bothered to reset them.

7) Combining trips: Being a semi-Japanese family, we tend to prefer getting some Japanese foodstuffs from a market that is a bit of a drive away. So we combine that trip with other things we might need from that area (where the Japanese store is).

Things to I need to do:

a) Find out if my utility company has any plans that use renewable energy sources (wind/hydro/solar etc.)

b) Get solar paneling (a long way off since our current housing situation is not amenable to this)

c) Aquire and upkeep a newer fuel efficient car (not that my Japanese sub-compact is that much of a guzzler, but it is fairly ancient, and I haven't a mind to replace it with some horrid American car)

As far as hybrids or electric cell cars, they are not within my market reach yet... and I seriously hope we get on the stick with flex fuel/E-85 capable motors and the increased distribution of E-85 suppliers.


I am not entirely convinced that our CO2 production (although quite disturbing) will result in a runaway greenhouse.

I believe that left to our own devices, we will ruin ourselves unto extinction before Earth turns into Venus #2.

I'll have to find the resource again, but there is a very interesting argument in favour of global warming reaching a balance correction point that will usher in a new ice age/glaciation period.

Of course, all that presumes that the Lord Jesus doesn't intervene so that "all flesh is not destroyed from the earth" before then.

Regardless of the long term result, our pollution and violation of this world God has given us is not without penalty: the hyperactivity of adverse weather patterns - "acts of God", as some insurance companies might call them - are on the increase.

10:49 AM  
Blogger Jeff said...

Good post Adam. Even with greenhouse problems aside. Doesn't it just make sense to drive less, use less fuel, recycle, be more mindful of the environment? If not for us, at least for future generations. When I look at my friends eight month old daughter and she smiles at me coos and then puts my watch in her mouth, I WANT to leave her with a cleaner Earth.

11:09 AM  
Blogger Jimmi said...

[Popping Gum] Well I don't know about anyone else but I'm going to see the new "Strangers with Candy" movie!

Thanks for the post, and I always love a good debate...

Now smack the bitch!

1:57 PM  
Blogger Daniel, the Guy in the Desert said...

Ideology is comforting. One never has to notice actual phenomena ocurring in front of one's face. Just as the banking industry was largely responsible for the worldwide great depression, it is quite possible that the reigning corporate behemoths in collusion with U.S. gov't. may cause the next ice age. I hope we have a colony on the moon before that happens.

8:57 PM  
Anonymous sam said...

Forget all the etiquette. I'm still stuck on how this guy arbitrarily concludes that Al Gore has no more than an hour and a half of schooling on global warming and is simply pushing an agenda. And that he is also "a total boob." Despite the fact that Al Gore was Vice President for most of a decade and had and has access, most likely, to any and all scientists and research and data. More than we will ever know about.

This isn't exactly one of those types of issues on which you can cherry-pick data. It's simply there, global warming, and for every 10,000 scientists who can call this duck a duck, there may only be 1 who will swear it's a swan.

Most people don't care about the enviroment - at least not enough to be so inconvenienced as to change their lifestyles - so Al Gore has nothing to lose by being out there.

9:01 PM  
Blogger John said...

guys, if you'll re-read my original comments carefully, you'll notice that I did not say global warming wasn't happening. It is. My contention is that it has not been conclusively linked to humans. CO2 is up, that is linked to humans. But increased CO2 has not been linked as the primary cause of the warming yet. It may be in the future.

My other point, and I'l expound on this on my blog this weekend, is that the available solutions today are less than adequate.

Now, as to Al, if I said George Bush was a boob, you'd all be OK with that I am sure. But I attacked a democrat, oh the horror! People use sarcasm and hyperbole everyday in blogs, get over it!

5:20 AM  
Blogger Eric said...

The problem is not that you attacked him. You attacked him using an old chestnut that has already been debunked and you based your opinion of his film and lecture on the idea that he's trotting out half truths and unbased evidence.
Did Gore really say he invented the internet? Already debunked. Check here:

Furthermore, were you to call Dubya a boob, we know you could easily draw up more than previously-debunked, bogus statements.
Start with the recent Federal Marriage Amendment and work your way backwards...

8:54 AM  
Blogger Adam said...

It is pretty well established and accepted in the scientific community that global warming happens because of a buildup of "greenhouse gases" in the atmosphere. One of the most prevalent greenhouse gases is CO2.

When the atmosphere isn't too full of greenhouse gases, heat radiation from the sun that bounces off the earth is able to escape into space. However, when the atmosphere is occupied by more greenhouse gases, the heat radiation is trapped inside the atmosphere, much like a greenhouse, thus heating up the earth.

Over the past 600k years the atmosphere has gone through many cycles of CO2 concentration (Atmospheric CO2 and The Glacial Cycles). This cycling of CO2 is proportional to the temperature fluctuations of the earth over the past 600k years (CO2 and Temperature Records).

Due to industrialization, humans are adding more than background levels of CO2 into the atmosphere. In the past 600k years CO2 levels have not gone above 290ppm, over the past century CO2 levels are at 380ppm. Although many mainstream media sources and policy makers without scientific training in the field purport there is controversy on this matter there is no controversy in the scientific community about the relationship between these data (Beyond The Ivory Tower: The Scientific Consenseus on Climate Change, Science 2004).

9:26 AM  
Blogger John said...

As promised, I did my own research, and have posted it at my blog. Read it if you wish to see other viewpoints.

9:01 AM  

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