A conservative news and views blog.

Location: St. Louis, Missouri, United States

Sunday, July 30, 2006

Statistical Sampling and Climate Change

One of the tricks employed by Global Warming types (and, indeed, by lefties in general) is to take data sets and point to record-breaking numbers to ``prove`` their particular view is correct. We`ve all heard the panic-cry of the media ``hottest year on record``, ``worst storm on record``, ``record high for this day`` etc. Every time a statistical high (or low) occurs we are told it is proof-positive that Anthropogenic Global Warming is occurring, and will devour us if we don`t euthanize 75% of the population,completely dismantle the military/industrial complex, and shoot Dick Cheney. (Of course, this same reasoning can applied to numerous other causes near and dear to liberal hearts; Dioxin scares, violence against women scares, amateur abortions by teen mothers, etc. etc.)

Of course, this completely disregards the nature of statistical sampling; you are going to have more records when you continually increase your sample pool. With more teen girls getting pregnant you`ll have more back-alley abortions (despite abortion being legal), you`ll have more violence against women if there are more woman now than 50 years ago, you`ll have more cancer in a larger population which can be blamed on dioxin, or DDT, or what have you, and you`ll have more record high temperatures as you continue to add years on top of each-other.

Here is a terrific analysis of this phenomenon; the author illustrates the mechanism as it relates to Academia, and explains why GW (or Darwinism, or Keynesian economics, or what-have-you) flourishes at the University level despite any real evidence.

The irritating thing about the GW record-scares is that they often don`t even claim records, but will breathlessly inform us that this is the hottest it`s been since 1938 or some such, as though a 68 year record high is something that should frighten us! The basic assumption (or the assumption that the Global Warming Harpie wants us to have) is that the last twenty years is somehow unique, and that what occurred through the Billions of years before has no relevance. We are supposed to panic over a record for the last 60 years, and ignore the fact that 60 years ago it was actually warmer.

Were we to get an environmentalist variation of Goldilocks and the Three Bears it would go something like this: Goldy, on taking thermometer readings, would promptly declare that this temperature is too hot, this temp is too cold, and this one is just right-so it must mean Global Warming! The bears would have died, having cannibalized each-other as a result of the scarcity of food caused by Climate Change, and Goldilocks would climb aboard a Greenpeace ship to dedicate her life to fighting evil corporate polluters.

Down in the Ozark town of Glover, Missouri there is a large factory which supplies employment for the few people in the area. Someone noticed that there were higher incidents of Downs Syndrome and cancer than fit the national norm, so the factory was ordered to buy up all of the property for miles and relocate the residents. Why? Because someone misunderstood the meaning of the statistics. Nobody ever bothered to compare the incidents of DS with the rest of the general populace in that region; they simply compared them to the national average. Had anyone bothered to think about it, they would have realized that the locals were decended from a very small genetic pool, and that Downs Syndrome is common among in-bred folk. The stats suggested something was causing these illnesses when, in reality, those illnesses were the result of a genetic wading pool-it was not anthropogenic at all (except when one considers the marriage of first cousins). The statistics were misused.

Numbers Watch also has a review of the death of the Mann et. Al(gore) Hockey stick-which was the centerpiece of the IPCC report urging worldwide draconian carbon emission standards (which itself was the centerpiece of Vice President Ozone`s stupid movie), and an interesting discussion of the `70`s Global Cooling fad. Go here to read them.

Liberals will be liberals, and they will never stop trying to manipulate science to advance their agenda; don`t expect any honesty from them soon.



Blogger jeffox said...

Yep, Tim, been pretty hot, of late, here in Minnesota, too. The weatherman says it's supposed to snow tomorrow, though. :)

8:15 PM  
Blogger Timothy Birdnow said...

Hi Jeff!

Been missing, old buddy!

I was wondering how you guys up in Minnesota have been getting along; I know you`ve had triple digit temps and many of you don`t have air conditioning. I hope you`re hanging in there; five months from now you`ll pine for these days, I`m sure!

5:50 AM  
Blogger jeffox said...

My thoughts exactly, Tim; or to put another way, I'll take temps hot enough to melt cheese over cold enough to freeze purple blood any day. :) While it didn't snow :) last night, it did rain and dropped the temps down about 20 F, for a very nice day, today. We did need the rain, also.

5:25 PM  
Blogger Timothy Birdnow said...

I'll take temps hot enough to melt cheese over cold enough to freeze purple blood any day. :)

Amen, Jeff! You can at least eat your cheese with a spoon when it melts, but it`s difficult to cut it when it`s frozen solid! :) Also, purple blood clashes with most of my shirts...

Glad the weather broke for you guys. We`re being treated to a whole week of 100* temps, so supper is a hunk of meat left in the sun during the afternoon-we have perfectly done potroast by the evening.

It`s good to hear from you!

5:54 AM  

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