Saturday, February 28, 2015

Snowball Fight in the US Senate

In his latest floor speech against climate alarmism, US Senator James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) bagged a snowball from outside the capital, then threw it to the presiding officer Senator Ben Saase (R-Nebraska) during the Feb. 26 Senate session.

The freezing weather assaulting New England is hitting Washington DC, and despite the claims of record heat last year, Inhofe placed those statistics in context, pointing out that the information registered within the margin of error, by tenths of a degree, nothing serious.

US Senator James Inhofe

Inhofe's remarks included:

Mr. President, I am reminiscent with the snow on the ground of about five years ago. The occupier of the chair at this time, Mr. President, was not here, and you don't have the advantage of knowing the story tthat is behind this.

Inhofe motioned to a large photo with a snow pile, featuring his daughter and her children. The record snow fall five year ago was so great then, and yet this year, the inclement weather exceeds that snowfall.

At the time, it got a lot of attention. It [the snowstorm] got national attention. We keep hearing that 2014 has been the warmest year on record. I ask the chair. You know what this is? It's a snowball, just from outside here. So it's very, very cold out.

What was this snowball for? A lead-in to another speech decrying climate alarmism:

We hear the perpetual headline that 2014 was the warmest year on record but now the script has flipped. And I think it's important, since we hear over and over again on the floor of this senate. Some outlets are referring to the recent cold temperatures as "The Siberian Express". As we can see, with the snowball out there. This is today. This is reality.

Evidence in his hand and on record, Inhofe exposes that the heightened concerns about climate change have little heat behind them.

Others are printing pictures of a frozen Niagara Falls, 4,700 square miles of ice formed on the Great Lakes in one night. Never happened before. So, let's talk more about the warmest year claim. On January 16th, NASA's Goddard Institute on Space Studies and the National Atmospheric and Oceanic Administration, concluded that 2014  was the warmest year in modern record, which starts in 1880. NASA relied on over 3,000 measuring sessions worldwide, and found an increase of only two one hundredths of a degree over the previous record.

Inhofe appealed not just to experts, but to their data, and their data was based on an accumulation of information. He also presented live examples, with the snowball, and his humorous jab at the climate change movement hit the Twitterverse briefly.

US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-Rhode Island)

How did Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-Rhode Island) respond? With the Leftist tactics of mockery and appeal to conforming experts and authorities, at the expense of hard evidence or comparable data:

I wanted to complete my remarks in reference to the Senator from Oklahoma and his snowball. I would like to ask for unanimous consent that I show the Earth Now website on the I-pad device that I have.

And if you go to Earth Now, it is actually quite easy to load, and you can see how that polar vortex measurably brings the cold air down to New England where we are right now.

Senator Whitehouse fails meteorology and geography in one sentence. A polar vortex does not support the severe claims of climate alarmists. The US Senate is not in New England, but in Washington D.C., nestled between two mid-Atlantic/Southern states. If the Senator from Rhode Island cannot accurately identify the location of the national capital, perhaps he should retire and return to Rhode Island.

And this is produced by NASA. These are pretty serious people. So, you can believe NASA, and you can believe what their people measure on the planet, or you can believe the Senator with the snowball.

Whitehouse conveniently neglected that Senator Snowball Inhofe referenced NASA and other organizations. At the very least, there is a conflict of opinion, and hardly any consensus, on the causes and consequences of climate change, or global warming.

The United States Navy takes this very seriously, to the point where Admiral Locklear, head of the Pacific command, has said that climate change is the biggest threat we face in the Pacific

Takes what seriously, Senator? An Admiral is not the final say on scientific matters, either. The appeal to authority carries no factual appeal.

He's a career military officer, and he is deadly serious. You can either believe that United States Navy, or the Senator with the snowball.

People can be deadly serious, and still be wrong. "Deadly serious" does not even make sense.

The religious and faith groups are very clear on this, by and large. I would particularly salute the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, which has made very clear, strong statements. We are going to hear from Pope Francis about this when he releases his encyclical, and when he speaks to the joint session of Congress on September 24th.

You can either believe that US Conference of Catholic Bishops and Pope Francis, or you can believe the Senator with the Snowball.

In the Early Renaissance, the Catholic Church taught that the sun revolved around the earth. They also taught as church dogma that heavier objects fall faster than lighter ones. Scientists rigorously tested then disproved this assertions, and were branded heretics. The consensus of church authorities does not determine the error of truth of any matter.

By the way, for a politician who appeals to faith on the matter of climate change, he also argued that "God is not going to help us with climate change." Perhaps Whitehouse should consult with Bishop Tobin and confess his other sins, too.

In corporate America, there is an immense array of significant, intelligent, responsible corporations who are very clear that climate change is real.

The US Senate voted 98-1 agreeing with that perception, which Senator Inhofe deftly explained.

Companies like Coke and Pepsi. Companies like Ford and GM.

Whitehouse recited a litany of companies, the whole cohort of which cannot establish the truth or error of anything.

A first-year English major could take Sheldon to task for this argument based on ethos, or authority.

But for all of the Rhode Island's talk about the different high-ranking and influential political and corporation officials who believe in climate change, there was neither demonstration nor appeal to hard evidence disputing Inhofe's arguments against climate alarmism.

Based on the evidence, factual, personal, and empirical, I believe "Senator Snowball". As for Whitehouse, perhaps his ardent fans (and hardened critics) should call him "Senator Airhead".

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