Wednesday, May 16, 2007
According to the web site of the U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, a fair number of scientists who had once accepted the idea that global warming was occurring due to human activity have changed their minds after a deeper consideration of the evidence or after new research came to light.
These scientists are beginning to offer counterarguments to the doomsday scenarios being served up by such luminaries as Al Gore -- scenarios that are being used to justify massive government controls on the economy and to circumvent careful debate about said measures via mass panic.
Thirteen scientists are listed, along with their credentials and brief explanations for why they have changed their minds. Here's one example:
Climate researcher Dr. Tad Murty, former Senior Research Scientist for Fisheries and Oceans in Canada, also reversed himself from believer in man-made climate change to a skeptic. "I stated with a firm belief about global warming, until I started working on it myself," Murty explained on August 17, 2006. "I switched to the other side in the early 1990's when Fisheries and Oceans Canada asked me to prepare a position paper and I started to look into the problem seriously," Murty explained. Murty was one of the 60 scientists who wrote an April 6, 2006 letter urging withdrawal of Kyoto to Canadian prime minister Stephen Harper which stated in part, "If, back in the mid-1990s, we knew what we know today about climate, Kyoto would almost certainly not exist, because we would have concluded it was not necessary."The site claims that this is just the "tip of the iceberg" and that a "more detailed and comprehensive sampling of scientists who have only recently spoken out against climate hysteria will be forthcoming in a soon to be released U.S. Senate report."
This is good news, but it would be better news if we had a similar parade of politicians changing their minds about the proper purpose of government -- like Boris Yeltsin once did -- and taking firm public stands against the continued existence of the welfare state.
It is the notion that the government should be doing anything besides protecting individual rights that makes it even possible for the mess that is global warming hysteria to exist. Had the general public the degree of suspicion of intrusive government that it ought to have, Al Gore would have been laughed back into obscurity the moment he ran to Washington. Indeed, even if the scenarios portrayed in An Inconvenient Truth were completely correct, it would be improper for the government to dictate solutions for any of them.
If the scientific tide really is turning against anthropogenic global warming, the efforts of such scientists may help in the short term, but until people no longer seek government solutions for everything, we will remain vulnerable for the indefinite future to what the government might do to us after similar episodes of public hysteria. The only proper purpose of the government is the protection of the individual rights of its citizens.