Monday, March 3, 2014

Climate Change - A Debate That Misses The Point

I have heard the argument from both sides, I have also looked into the information as much as I can stand, climatology is a really boring subject to me. But so far only the real scientists have said anything that makes any real sense based on everything I have come to understand.

But what do the scientists say? They admit to not knowing the answer, of course, that's the most common answer you will get from a good scientist. When confronted by both sides of this particular debate, climatologists have given one consistent answer: let us finish the work before you do change anything.

Which is actually the best advice in almost any aspect of your life. You need all the facts about something before you can make an informed decision, even with all the facts you can still make the wrong decision but the facts decrease the chances of that decision causing more harm. So why the push from both sides for different actions? Well, money. Specifically people who want to dip their hands into your taxes and take however much they can grab.

If you know me, you know I love capitalism, but admit we do need social programs to keep society moving forward. So why should I care about companies trying to turn a profit? It's not the profit, it's how. Predatory policies that force you to purchase from specific companies is not capitalism, that is closer to communism. This is exactly what the lobbyists are supporting, attempting to make one company's products look like the best idea then outlaw all the competition.

This holds true for both sides though. The telltale sign is the lobbying itself, the quick soundbites that attempt to paint the opposition in a more horrible light without presenting any solid facts on the issue. So yes, again it's how our government works that is the real problem. The facts in this particular case are still showing no causal links, none, that can shed light on the matter.

Yes, we know that carbon can create a greenhouse effect, but life is made of carbon as well. Methane can also create a greenhouse effect, but this is a byproduct of life. As temperatures rise, many such gases also increase as a result of the rise in temperature, making it difficult to draw any solid causal links, you can't tell which is the horse, and which is the cart. This is just the beginning of the problems with both sides of the debate.

Trends, this is statistical information, are not set in stone, they are predictions, and rarely hold true. At best, a trend is used as a starting point for other predictions based on the numerical values of similar circumstances. This does not make their results fact, ever, at all, in any way. They are educated guesses at best. The entire debate started when these trends did not match the reality, which any scientist will tell you is pretty much expected to happen.

That basically means that the side screaming doom and gloom have based everything on something that was expected to be incorrect by the very people who actually do the scientific research. This is where it gets really messy though, because those opposing these people are just as wrong, and just as dangerous. If we act now, without knowing all the facts, we could actually cause a bigger problem, even cause our own extinction. So premature action can destroy us, that's one part missed often.

But action in the reverse is just as bad. For decades we have been working to keep our air clean, and sanely reducing our waste. As a species we have been looking into new technologies and possibilities, knowing our population will, inherently, produce waste we needed to balance our waste so that it would match that of a much smaller, more realistic, population than we actually have. Countermanding all that work would return us to the Dark Age level of sanitation and cleanliness, but on a more massive scale that would destroy us.

So what is the best solution? Business as usual. Neither side need be listened too, both are wrong, both are extremists crying for attention, an advantage for their pet products, and often just because their lives are so boring they have nothing better to do. Yes, companies across the globe have always been looking for better ways to do things, sometimes it's because they think it's what's right, other times because the right thing does improve the bottom line, but rarely do they do the right thing because the government told them to do it.

So yes, keep working toward a better future, but the direction we have been moving is the best for everyone still, we have no facts stating otherwise. Next time someone shows you one of those charts, on either side, ask them a very basic question: Are you a climatologist? If the answer is "no," then tell them their information is invalid.

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