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UN's New Climate Change Report an Embarrassment, Self-Serving and Beyond Misleading

September 27, 2013 in Economics

By Paul C. "Chip" Knappenberger

Paul C. “Chip” Knappenberger

Friday, the world was treated to the latest, greatest report on global warming from the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) in the form of its Fifth Assessment Report. It is an embarrassment of internal inconsistency, entirely self-serving, and is beyond misleading.

That’s because the IPCC is more intent on maintaining the crumbling “consensus” on global warming than on following climate science to its logical conclusion; a conclusion that increasingly suggests that human greenhouse gas emissions are less important in driving climate change than commonly held.

That’s right, the latest climate science (some 10 studies published in just the past 3 years) indicates that the earth’s climate sensitivity—that is, how much the global average surface temperature will rise as a result of greenhouse gases emitted from human activities—is some 33 percent less than scientists thought at the time of the last IPCC Assessment, published in 2007.

The IPCC misleads policymakers around the world.”

A little climate 101: climate sensitivity is one of the key parameters for understanding the future impacts from climate change.

Virtually all elements of climate are related in some way to changes in the earth’s average temperature.

The less the earth warms up, the fewer the resulting impacts, and the lower the urgency to try to do something to alleviate them.

Meaning, initiatives like President Obama’s Climate Action Plan—the motivation for such things as the EPA’s just-announced effective moratorium on future coal-fired power plants—would be even more unnecessary and ineffective than they are already.

The IPCC is not altogether blind to the new scientific findings indicating a lower climate sensitivity, but it barely pays them lip-service in its new report.

It can’t.

Why?

The meat of the new IPCC report — and the part that politicians predominantly look to for new legislation — is its projections of future climate change.

The problem is that the climate models the IPCC relies upon to produce these projections have a climate sensitivity that averages some 50 percent higher than what the latest science suggests.

This means that the IPCC’s projections of future climate change and the resulting impacts are nearly twice as large as they likely should be. In other words, the models don’t work.

The IPCC can’t very well admit to the fact that observations say one thing, but the climate models say another. If they did, they would have to throw out virtually the whole report.

But just because the IPCC doesn’t admit to it, doesn’t mean …read more

Source: OP-EDS

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‘Reassessing the Presidency’ now an eBook

September 27, 2013 in Economics

By Mises Updates

EBOKB284

Reassessing the Presidency, an 825-page collection of essays from top scholars in the Austrian tradition, is a groundbreaking work that demolishes the court historians’ case for endless president-worship.

We’re happy to announce that the book is now available as an ebook in the Mises Store.

…read more

Source: MISES INSTITUTE

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New Mises View: Peter Klein Explains Blackberry’s Fall, Monopolies, and the State

September 27, 2013 in Economics

By Mises Updates

In our latest video for The Mises View, Peter G. Klein discusses the demise of Blackberry and how the market, not regulators, should pick technology winners and losers.

…read more

Source: MISES INSTITUTE

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Washington Times Op-Ed: Why must the American people suffer when even so many Democrats don’t want Obamacare?

September 27, 2013 in Politics & Elections

Earlier this week, in an effort led by Sen. Ted Cruz, some of my Republican colleagues and I took to the Senate floor with the intent of making D.C. listen. The American people have made it abundantly clear that they do not want Obamacare. In fact, a majority of elected officials, the same officials that voted to implement this healthcare mandate, do not want it either.
Last summer, in a 5-4 decision authored by Chief Justice John Roberts, the Supreme Court wrongly concluded that Obamacare’s individual mandate could stand. As a consequence of the court’s ruling, starting Oct.1, Americans, whether they want it or not, will be compelled to purchase a government mandated product – health insurance – or pay a tax.
But what should infuriate you the most is the fact that the same elected officials who implemented this mandate have recently declared exemption from it. That is to say, these officials are forcing you to partake in something that they themselves are refusing. If Obamacare is so great, why then are federal employees and elected officials getting special treatment and opting out?
If President Obama, Rep. Nancy Pelosi, Sen. Harry Reid and Chief Justice Roberts love Obamacare so much, they should live under it. Their actions speak louder than words and it is erroneous for these leaders to even attempt to claim that Obamacare is a step forward for Americans.
The American people do not approve of the Obamacare mandate and flocked to town halls across the country to let their representatives know it. In fact, only 12 percent of Americans think Obamacare will have a positive impact on their lives, according to a recent poll from NBC/Wall Street Journal.
Headlines across the nation shows the harm Obamacare is imposing on Americans: ‘Georgia Healthcare Company Cuts 101 Employees due to Obamacare,’ ‘Michigan School District Cuts Hours for Employees Because of Obamacare,’ ‘Cleveland Clinic Announces Job Cuts to Prepare for Obamacare,’ and ‘Small Businesses Consider Dropping Healthcare Plans Under Obamacare,’-just to name a few.
Before the Obamacare health insurance exchange opens on Oct.1, we are already witnessing the negative effects this mandate is having on those it intended to help. We cannot even begin to fathom all of the negative impacts Obamacare holds.
Based on separate analyses from Congressional Budget Office (CBO) and Deloitte, as many as 20 million to 65 million Americans could lose their employer-sponsored health insurance policies and according …read more

Source: RAND PAUL

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New Cato Policy Report Looks at Hayek and the End of Communism

September 27, 2013 in Economics

Václav Klaus, former finance minister, prime minister, and president of Czechoslovakia and the Czech Republic, discusses F. A. Hayek in the new issue of Cato Policy Report. Klaus highlights not only Hayek’s role in the fall of communism in Czechoslovakia, but also his relevance to modern Europe: “Europe needs Hayek,” argues Klaus, “and his merciless analysis of the over regulated, controlled, centrally administered European economic system and of the slippery road to serfdom that we have already embarked on.”

…read more

Source: CATO HEADLINES

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Leonard Read on Liberty vs. Utopia

September 27, 2013 in Economics

By Mises Updates

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Writes Gary Galles in Wednesday’s Mises Daily:

Read saw that liberty’s defenders must face the fact that markets are amoral servants which enable people to do whatever they want better. They cannot be relied upon with certainty to only do good and inspirational things. But whenever they enable doing ill, they only reflect the desires individuals have. If we reformed ourselves, markets could do no harm. In contrast, coercively “reforming” ourselves by law does not eliminate the cause of such harm and so does little to actually stop it. Moreover, the restrictions on markets adopted in the process throw out the amoral servant that allows us to accomplish greater good than achievable via any other known means.

…read more

Source: MISES INSTITUTE

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Podcast with Peter Klein: How Online Learning Threatens Traditional Universities

September 26, 2013 in Economics

By Mises Updates

Daniel J. Sanchez interviews Peter G. Klein, Executive Director and Carl Menger Research Fellow at the Mises Institute, about the history of higher education and the prospects for online and market-based education, which are the topics of his recent Lewrockwell.com article “Universities to MOOCs: We Will Assimilate You” (“MOOC” stands for Massively Open Online Course.), reprinted at the Mises Academy blog (academy.mises.org/blog/)

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Source: MISES INSTITUTE

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Syria’s Other Problem: Inflation

September 26, 2013 in Economics

By Steve H. Hanke

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Steve H. Hanke

Wars wreak havoc; life, property, and dreams are destroyed. In the process, wars — including civil wars, like Syria’s— progressively consume a country’s accumulated capital stock, too. In other words, as wars rage on, the destructive war economy gradually eats away at productive assets like land, factory capacity, and raw materials. Just where this process leads was well illustrated by the great Austrian economist, Prof. Fritz Machlup, in a 1935 article about Austria’s World War I inflation:

A dealer bought a thousand tons of copper. He sold them, as prices rose, with considerable profit. He consumed only half of the profit and saved the other half. He invested again in copper and got several hundred tons. Prices rose and rose. The dealer’s profit was enormous; he could afford to travel and to buy cars, country houses and what not. He also saved and invested again in copper. His money capital was now a high multiple of his initial one. After repeated transactions — he always could afford to live a luxurious life — he invested his whole capital, grown to an astronomical amount, in a few pounds of copper. While he and the public considered him a profiteer of the highest income, he had in reality eaten up his capital.

In Machlup’s parable, “copper” represents the capital in an economy. Over time, war consumption and inflation eat up the economy’s physical capital. And, without capital, peoples of war-torn lands face a bleak future. Alas, when the dust finally settles in Syria, new questions will have to be addressed. Indeed, Syrians will be left asking, “where’s our capital?” Yes, Syria’s “seed corn” will be nowhere to be found.

Indeed, Syria’s inflation rate is currently one of the highest in the world.”

Some of the costs of war are hidden under a shroud of inflation. But, inflation, too, is a problem — one that always accompanies civil wars. But, why?

Let’s start with a typical bogus explanation for inflation troubles — one that is often trotted out by governments dealing with civil-war induced inflation — shifting the blame. True to form, the Syrian Deputy Prime Minister for Economic Affairs, Qadri Jamil, claimed that Britain, Saudi Arabia, and the United States were engaged in a conspiracy to undermine the Syrian pound by flooding Lebanon and Jordan with counterfeit Syrian pound notes.

Indeed, a similar claim was made …read more

Source: OP-EDS

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Sen. Paul Appears on Fox's Hannity- September 25, 2013

September 26, 2013 in Politics & Elections

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Source: RAND PAUL

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The IPCC Political-Suicide Pill

September 26, 2013 in Economics

By Patrick J. Michaels

Patrick J. Michaels

On Friday, the United Nations’ Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) is going to release its much-anticipated fifth “scientific assessment” of global warming. Like its 2007 predecessor, the document will be a ready poison pill for those contemplating political suicide.

Each iteration of this document becomes the reigning go-to document for climate pests, including legislatures and governments. For example, the fourth version was cited repeatedly by the U.S. House of Representatives as the putative factual basis for its 2009 cap-and-trade legislation, which passed that body on June 26 of that year.

Whoever legislates or promulgates climate policies based upon the new report will be putting his political career in very serious jeopardy.”

Three days later, Rasmussen’s generic congressional ballot switched from Democrat to Republican, and it remained there continuously through the Democrats’ electoral debacle of 2010, when they lost 65 seats and their majority. Virtually every close race was lost by a Democrat who had voted for the legislation.

Meanwhile, U.S. Senate staffers noticed the polls and wisely counseled their bosses to make sincere noises but no law. In the fall, every close Senate race was won by a Democrat.

The carnage in Australia has been even more serious. In 2009, when the Labor party ran the country, Australia’s Liberal (i.e., conservative) party leader, Malcolm Turnbull, was thrown out on his ear because of his support for cap-and-trade, and he was replaced by Tony Abbott, who is now Oz’s new prime minister. Turnbull was fond of quoting the IPCC’s authoritative “consensus” on climate change.

Two years ago, Labor prime minister Kevin Rudd was deposed for implementing his cap-and-trade program (pretty much the same one that cost Turnbull his Liberal leadership) and replaced by Labor’s Julia Gillard, who vowed to scrap his program and also to never impose the alternative, a tax on carbon-containing fuels.

When I asked Mr. Rudd, after running into him in the men’s room at Washington’s tony Café Milano, why he did what he did, he got all huffy, saying for all to hear: “My scientists told me, I say, my scientists told me that this is a terribly important problem.”

Those “scientists” would include the Aussies on the IPCC, where their membership is as disproportionate to the country’s population as is its quadrennial haul of Olympic medals.

Unfortunately, after the 2010 parliamentary election, the Green party held the balance of power in a divided senate, and it agreed to …read more

Source: OP-EDS