Dixy Lee Ray's Volcano

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Memo
To: Vladimir Putin, president, Russia Federation
From: Jude Wanniski
Re: Global Warming & Volcanoes

Dear President Putin: I've been distressed to learn that even though
your best Russian scientists do not believe that mankind causes
u201Cglobal warming,u201D you have given your government's support to the
Kyoto Treaty. Your Cabinet has approved ratification of the Treaty,
which means it would pass the requirement needed to take effect
for all the countries that have signed on to it. It does seem a
bit daft if this is true, in as much as your finance minister openly
complains this will prevent Russia from achieving the living standards
you have set as a goal in the decade ahead. My friends in Moscow
tell me they are baffled by your action, but perhaps there is a
good explanation soon to come. I can only hope that as you only
promised to set the legislation before the Duma that you will send
word that it will be up to the Duma to debate the issue, and that
if it agrees with your best scientists, it will reject the treaty
and that will be that. I hope so, for if it passes, our own government
in the U.S. will be pressured to join up. President Bush has been
wobbly on the issue and Senator John Kerry, who may become President,
has been even worse, although we can always hope he will flip-flop.

The reason I write to you about Dixy Lee Ray, who I would guess
you never heard about, is that Mother Nature reminded me about her
when it decided to stir up the volcano at Mt. Helens in the state
of Washington. Dixy Lee, who died in 1994, happened to be governor
of that state in 1980 when Mt. Helens erupted. Governor Lee, a marine
biologist by professional training, had been chairman of the Atomic
Energy Commission before she decided to go into elective politics
and had a firm grounding in the physical sciences. What I remember
about her now is a book she wrote, Trashing
the Planet
, which debunked a number of myths about the environment.
In it she had the following line: u201CThe eruption of Mt. St. Helens
in 1980 dumped more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than all
that has been released since the industrial revolution. Volcanoes
have been erupting for millions of years with the same result. If
this really affected climate, don’t you think it would have happened
by now?u201D

This is the kind of straight thinking that your own scientists have
followed. American scientists, on the other hand, have been hung
on what has been termed u201Cthe hockey-sticku201D thesis. This is because
records going back a thousand years indicate to them that the earth's
temperature in the Northern Hemisphere fluctuated around a narrow
band for 900 years or so, but then at the end of the 19th century
headed up to levels never before experienced. On a chart, the line
looks like a hockey stick. You can read about it at here
and even see the chart. Please note the item is dated December 2003.
If the hockey-stick thesis is correct, of course we might take seriously
the idea that the internal-combustion engine causes more damage
than volcanoes. Right?

It just so happens that in today's New York Times, there
is a story tucked away on Page F-2, that at last reports on what
we knew in December 2003, that the hockey stick had been snapped,
u201CNew
Research Questions Uniqueness of Recent Warming.u201D
The Times
reporter, Andrew Revkin, who has been a fanatical advocate of
the global-warming myth, tells his readers two or three times a
week that global warming is u201Cwidely accepted,u201D or u201Cmost scientists
agree.u201D The newspaper's editorial page has been trumpeting this
line for almost 20 years and because it is the most important newspaper
in the world, it has broadcast the hoax everywhere, including Moscow.
Revkin writes:

A
new analysis has challenged the accuracy of a climate timeline
showing that recent global warming is unmatched for a thousand
years. That timeline, generated by stitching together hints of
past temperatures embedded in tree rings, corals, ice layers and
other sources, is one strut supporting the widely accepted
view that the current warm spell is being caused mainly by accumulating
heat-trapping smokestack and tailpipe emissions. The authors of
the study, published in the current issue of the online journal
ScienceExpress, said they did not dispute that a sharp
warming was under way and that its pace could signal a human influence.
But they said their test of the methods used to mesh recent temperature
records with centuries-old evidence showed that past natural climate
shifts were most likely sharply underestimated. Many climate scientists
credited the new study with pointing out how much uncertainty
still surrounds efforts to turn nature’s spotty, unwritten temperature
records into a climate chronology.
What Revkin
fails to tell the Times readers is that the hockey stick
was the last remaining strut holding up the hoax. Your scientists
know this. Just ask them. Please, President Putin. Do the world
a favor. Tell your Duma that it is free to debate the issue and
let the science decide, not whatever the politics you have up your
sleeve. And be sure to also tell the legislators about Dixy Lee
Ray and her volcano.

PS: Here’s
a note I sent to your old friend Al Gore not too long ago, on the
same subject
.

October
6, 2004

Jude
Wanniski [send him mail]
runs the financial/political advisory service Wanniski.com.
(If you subscribe,
and check LewRockwell.com
in the referring website pull-down,
LRC gets 10%.)

Jude
Wanniski Archives

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