June 01, 2004


Who’s scared of The Day After Tomorrow? You know, besides Al Gore? The Australian’s Alan Wood theorises:

It will certainly frighten university students and schoolchildren. After all, they have been assiduously prepared to be frightened. According to Mark Latham last week, one of the three issues always raised with him in high schools and universities is the Kyoto protocol.

As Latham said, they have grown up with the issue. It would be more accurate to say they have grown up with teachers pumping ever-so-politically-correct propaganda on Kyoto and climate change down their throats.

Stupid kids. They actually listen to teachers these days?

Posted by Tim Blair at June 1, 2004 07:30 PM

The public education indoctrination campaign has been going on for some time already.

I vividly recall being informed by my high school geography teacher in the late 80's of the greenhouse affect and how this would cause "super cyclones" that would ravage much of the globe and penetrate much higher latitudes by the year 2000. To the effect that cities such as Sydney, Perth and possibly Melbourne would be ravaged by these phenomenon.

Nothing much has changed, carping the same old lies and hyperbole...

Posted by: Antipodean at June 1, 2004 at 07:40 PM

Teachers! Pah. Clowns.

Posted by: Tony.T at June 1, 2004 at 08:42 PM

I told my idiot year 12 english teacher where to shove it on more than one occasion. For some reason, my grades dropped heavily after every altercation.

No, teachers couldn't possibly be that petty!

Posted by: Marty at June 1, 2004 at 08:47 PM

I was in grade school in the early 1970's, during the first round of ecological paranoia. We were fed the full gamut of no resources/completelypolluted world/utter disaster/new ice age coming. The complete failure of any of this to arrive on schedule created a skeptic in me and my friends. The failure of the over-the-top predictions this time around will do the same to these kids. If one is screaming that the sky is falling, one better arrange to have the sky fall before your audience gets incensed at being had.

Posted by: Mike at June 1, 2004 at 10:52 PM

I don't know how it is in the rest of Europe but as far as i can remember i've had non-pc teachers. My Physics teacher actually said, during a discussion about Iraq, the Americans were actually being too nice. If 9/11 had happened while she was the President, the middle east would be glowing at night.
They had to get a forklift to pull my jaws.

Posted by: madne0 at June 1, 2004 at 11:20 PM

Do we have any genuine scientific brains reading these posts?

It is frequently stated that, on a per capita basis, Australia is the highest producer of greenhouse gas in the world.

(Nice to know we lead the world in something!)

So, my question. If Australia reduced its per capita output to Kyoto levels, how much greenhouse gas, per capita, would the Chinese or the Indians have to produce to make up the difference?

I'd like confirmation of my suspicion that, if 20 million Australians committed economic suicide, it would make little difference to the world's total amount of greenhouse gas.

Posted by: peggy sue at June 2, 2004 at 12:18 AM

I am a university student and I do my geology and climatology, can Mr. Latham ask me what I think about greenhouse gas emissions and their relationship to long term global climate change, I could give him an answer involving volcanics, milankovich cycles but I fear it may make his head implode. Maybe he should just interview some members of the Socialist Alliance or Green Left Weekly subscribers.

Posted by: JBB at June 2, 2004 at 12:37 AM

Peggy Sue, that's pretty much the reason why Bush backed out of the Kyoto treaty. Maximum economic damage with minimum environmental gain. Why bother? In the long run, the environment will not be protected, let alone improved.

But, of course, with the environmental scares being thrown the schools around now (and there were some lulus back when in my school days, in the early 1970's), a rational approach to the problem is simply not possible. "The Day After Tomorrow" is yet another chapter in this not-so-thrilling saga of scare tactics and misinformation.

Posted by: The Real JeffS at June 2, 2004 at 12:37 AM

And some of those who were predicting the next ice age when you were in school are now predicting the "global warming disaster".
By their own figures and using their own computer models, the possitive effect of the measures they would like implemented would be comperable to taking a shovel of sand and rock out of the Grand Canyon in order to keep it from filling up.

Posted by: Mike O at June 2, 2004 at 02:34 AM

Well, they got their ice age at last - even if they had to go to Hollywierd to get it.

Posted by: mojo at June 2, 2004 at 03:34 AM

Hell, the US senate voted against ratification by a vote of 95-0. The treaty was never offered by Clinton. Bush essentially said that he wasn't going to offer it to them so they could formally vote it down. Very bipartisan response I would say - which should tell you all you need to know about Kyoto.

Posted by: JEM at June 2, 2004 at 06:09 AM

Isn't it funny that the same peolple that pooh-pooh busines and economic forecasting over a five year period, based upon too many uncertainties, will endorse a "scientific" forecast over a hundred year period?

Yet the whole IPCC exercise to forecast "global warming" is entirely an exercise in economic modeling, as the warming is based upon carbon release that is driven by growth-induced fossil fuel usage. The assumptions produce outcomes such that North Koreans, Libyans, Algerians, and Argintineans will have higher real, per capita incomes than those in the US--and Australia. (So report researchers Ian Castles and Davis Henderson.)

Can you say: garbage in, garbage out?

Posted by: Forbes at June 2, 2004 at 07:10 AM

Remember the "duck and cover" civil defense slogan of the 50's and 60's, so lampooned by liberals? Better to unilaterally disarm, they argued. These days leftists have replaced the fear of atomic bombs and radioactive fallout with hysteria over industrial pollution and global warming (maybe b/c the "bad guys" are mainly ourselves and liberal Westerners love to self-flagellate...)

The specter was a nuclear winter back then; now, it's an ice age, or rising ocean levels and hothouse temperatures- take your pick. Either way, enviro idealogues are going to save the world with "anti-globalization and Kyoto"- the new simplisme. Better to economically disarm, they argue.

Posted by: c at June 2, 2004 at 07:31 AM

"Stupid kids. They actually listen to teachers these days?"

Only the clueless ones, who grow up to be ...you guessed it...teachers!

Posted by: rinardman at June 2, 2004 at 08:38 AM

Thanks, JEM, I misspoke. Bi-partisan non-support for the Kyoto treaty!

Unless you count Algore, who is a party unto himself.

Posted by: The Real JeffS at June 2, 2004 at 08:57 AM

Fact: Kyoto, even if fully implemented, will make no measurable difference to climate and temperature.

Greenpeace et al see it a a stalking horse for even more drastic cuts to CO2.

Naturally, the greenies oppose the only low-CO2 producing methods of generating reliable electricity: Hydro and nuclear.

Posted by: Aaron at June 2, 2004 at 10:58 AM

Bah Greenies,

The biggest worry is idiot Labor State Governments who have taken it upon themselves to get around Federal Government policy on Kyoto to implement their own laws by de facto. For instance the NSW and WA governments are proposing to implement carbon trading with Europe and other Kyoto stooges. The result, higher power bills and job losses in energy intensive industries. Some recent economic modelling was completed on this scenario for the Victorian Government, that was reported in yesterday’s Australian, the result of implementation of carbon trading only would kill a significant amount of economic growth. I have heard it could wipe 1% GDP easily if implemented by the States in Australia.

Posted by: Antipodean at June 2, 2004 at 12:25 PM

Note this article in today's Australian.

I love this bit:

But in the three months from March 1, almost all of the continent recorded daytime temperatures up to 3C above average.

Only Tasmania, the eastern half of Western Australia and pockets of Victoria, north Queensland and South Australia were cooler than normal.

In fact the most of WA was colder than average and significant parts of Australia had average temperatures.

In summary, about a third of Australia had average temperatures, about a third was cooler and about a third was warmer.

The article is a digusting misrepresentation of the facts.

The truth is freely available from the Bureau of Meterology site.


Posted by: Pig Head Sucker at June 2, 2004 at 02:38 PM

Actually, it was the strident environmentalist campaigns I had to endure from my teachers in grade school taught me everything I needed to know about the subject. Eventually I noticed the gap between what I was told and what I saw with my own two eyes was a little too wide to ignore.

Posted by: Sortelli at June 2, 2004 at 03:20 PM

...that taught me...

Geez, if only my teachers had done something about my incredible ability to omit words from sentences instead of feeding me global warming BS I might not make a fool out of myself in uneditable internet posts so often.

Posted by: Sortelli at June 2, 2004 at 03:21 PM

Don't worry, Tim, us kids aren't all like that. I'm a 19 year old and you will be pleased to know that i drive 15 km to work, then drive around all night as a pizza deliver in my 91 ford fairmont 4 litre V6. Likewise, all my friends drive everywhere. The environment I obviously care about, (do lefties think that conservatives HATE trees or what?) yet i could not care less about a silly theory that is not going to happen and would screw us economically if we ratified it.

So basically in closing, I am thoroughly sick of anti-car bullshit (the herald letters page has gone overboard on it over the past fortnight). I love driving, I love 'wasting gas', and most of all I love the feeling of being pushed back in my seat while burning along the Wakehurst parkway at 2 am in the morning.

Rant over

Posted by: Chris Rice at June 2, 2004 at 03:58 PM

The kids who worry about greenhouse gases now are the same type as worried about nuclear holocaust then.

Remember those dorks?

They've all become teachers themselves no doubt.

Posted by: Brian at June 2, 2004 at 04:04 PM

Chris Rice

1991 Ford Fairmont 4 litre V6???????

I think the only 4lt V6 sold by Ford in Australia is in the Explorer. Maybe you should check under the bonnet to see if the motor is really the 4 lt STRAIGHT 6 normally sold in an Australian made Fairmont.

And if you love burning along the Wakehurst Parkway, you may want to have a 5lt V8.

Anyway, just checking.

PS - I believe it was one of Tim's past posts (? months ago) that identified that Germany would NOT need to reduce it's emissions at all.

Following re-unification, the reduction and/or elimination and/or upgrading of East German industry (much of which was filthy emissions wise) occurred as a natural adjunct to the combining of both economies.

However as the Kyoto "base" figures are aged, they could not take the German "improvements" into account, and therefore Germany has already reached the "agreed" targets. Sly buggers!!!!!

Posted by: DaveACT at June 2, 2004 at 11:01 PM