John McCain "is trying to define himself as an environmental Republican, which he is going to use to differentiate himself from his rivals for the (presidential) nomination in 2008," says University of Virginia environmental sciences professor and Cato Institute senior fellow Patrick J. Michael, author of Meltdown: The Predictable Distortion of Global Warming by Scientists, Politicians, and the Media. Michaels argues that claims of human-caused "global warming" are scientifically unfounded. CNSNews reports:
Recent U.S. Senate hearings into alleged global warming, chaired by Arizona Republican John McCain, were among the "most biased" that a noted climatologist has ever seen -- "much less balanced than anything I saw in the Clinton administration," [Michaels] said.
McCain also held a Senate hearing on Tuesday to enlist testimony on the recently released report from an international commission called the Arctic Climate Impact Assessment (ACIA), which warned about rising temperatures in the North Pole.
Harvard Astrophysicist Sallie Baliunas agreed that using the polar ice caps to promote "global warming" did not make sense. "Antarctica has been cooling for the last 50 years. Most of the Arctic has not warmed over long time scales . . . We don't have enough understanding of natural variability and we don't see enormous amounts of temperature change to be alarmed about," Baliunas explained. She also blasted the Kyoto Protocol, the international treaty to limit greenhouse gases, which the U.S. does not support. "The Kyoto (Protocol) does not work, no matter what you think of it because Kyoto won't do anything meaningful."
Michaels lamented that the media are allowing certain government-funded scientists to manipulate science for funding advantages. "Scientists are playing the media because they know the media will publish a story that the world is about to end," he said. "What has happened to the editing process? What has happened to fact checking," he wondered. Baliunas noted that the media like to imply that the overwhelming majority of scientists believe in dire "global warming" scenarios. In fact, she said, "The scientific literature is full of skepticism."
Balianus's work, systematically ignored by the usual MSM suspects since it doesn't support their narrative of choice ("The sky is falling! The sky is falling!" and it's Bush's Fault™), has focused on the correlation between temperature changes on the earth and solar dynamics, including changing magnetism over the course of the sunspot cycle. As she said in a Tech Central Station critique of the media's willful distortion of "Climate Change Science," the National Academy of Sciences study back in June of 2001:
The truth about climate change is that we don't know much about it. The bad news is that a major global warming could do a lot of harm. The good news is that we have ample time to find out if it's on the way, and that so far the scientific evidence does not support catastrophic warming, from any cause, human or otherwise.
The sun is today as magnetically active as it has been in 400 years of direct telescope observations. In other words, the mystery of global warming may have a simple solution -- it's the sun that's heating the earth, with its heat rising and falling in fairly regular cycles. If so, there's nothing humans can do about it.
We suspect that beyond media manipulation for funding purposes, the primal human need to believe we can control nature is what makes the human-causation thesis so appealing to both buyers and sellers of junk science. McCain knows human weakness when he sees it and is all too willing to cynically prey upon it in his grab for the golden ring.