Newman: Climate change is world plot

Goodness me, this is the PM’s senior business advisor, Maurice Newman at Loon Pond media today:

…with such little evidence, [why] does the UN insist the world spend hundreds of billions of dollars a year on futile climate change policies? Perhaps Christiana Figueres, executive secretary of the UN’s Framework on Climate Change has the answer?

In Brussels last February she said, “This is the first time in the history of mankind that we are setting ourselves the task of intentionally, within a defined period of time, to change the economic development model that has been reigning for at least 150 years since the Industrial Revolution.”

In other words, the real agenda is concentrated political authority. Global warming is the hook.

Figueres is on record saying democracy is a poor political system for fighting global warming. Communist China, she says, is the best model. This is not about facts or logic. It’s about a new world order under the control of the UN. It is opposed to capitalism and freedom and has made environmental catastrophism a household topic to achieve its objective.

Was it the PM’s rolling over on the RET that triggered this outburst from Mr Newman? It’s real X-files stuff when all you need is a bit of Occam’s Razor and reason.

To me it’s simply a balance of risks argument. Climate science is well within a compelling statistical probability of being right so it makes sense to act.

If that turns out to be wrong then we’ve paid a few bucks for some cleaner air and the UN can be ignored again.

If it turns out to be right we will have saved civilisation.

Why the mad hysteria?


  1. Give Newman a hat: the comb-over does not protect his head from the sun’s heat.

  2. I have read extensively on the topic.

    Like most here, I am no expert, but am widely read and have uni bachelors and masters degrees.

    There is scientific disagreement.

    Carbon dioxide makes up 0.05% of the atmosphere.

    Volcanoes are responsible for 0.01% of this, the SAME as human impact.

    The climate has ALWAYS changed.

    The period after [email protected], with massive increases in CO2 in the atmosphere, resulted in COOLING, not warming, this is scientific fact.

    is carbon bad? isn’t it essential for life on earth?

    the climate debate is equal to a religious debate atm…just because people disagree with you doesn’t mean that you are right.

    • Dan, Dan…. Dan

      You’re going to make this thread 100 deep by day’s close.

    • Oh dear. Maybe stop reading those whacko blogs for your climate science and read some actual scientific papers.

      Water is essential for life on earth as well. You can still drown in it though.

      • “Oh dear. Maybe stop reading those whacko blogs for your climate science and read some actual scientific papers.”

        The problem is actual peer reviewed scientific papers are not always easy for non scientists to properly understand.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        The problem is actual peer reviewed scientific papers are not always easy for non scientists to properly understand.

        Fortunately there are websites like Skeptical Science that distill them into more readable material.

      • Its also healthy to be skeptical that proposed government controls and taxes are the flawless remedy to the perceived problem of catastrophic man-made global warming.

        I don’t see much skepticism on this blog though. Everyone worships at the alter of statism. Government is a force for good, markets and individuals are inherently evil.

      • “Government is a force for good, markets and individuals are inherently evil.”

        Skepticism is good, straw man arguments not so much.

    • I have read extensively on the topic

      Oh that’s ok then. Dan’s read up on climate change so we can discount the advice of every national scientific institution on the planet.

      • You make a post with ‘climate change’ in the headline, and then you accuse others of trying to stir up controversy?

    • drsmithyMEMBER

      I have read extensively on the topic.

      No you haven’t.

      Every “point” you think you made has already been refuted there, including references to the relevant research and data (at least for the half of them that aren’t just fallacious reasoning).

    • Jonny G Banger

      me thinks your bachelors and masters degrees be in social sciences not physical sciences.
      1.There is always going to be disagreement – people have different views/ objectives etc
      2.its not the % of a substance or concentration its the effects/ properties of the substance i.e. heat retention, acidification of oceans etc
      3. yes the climate has always changed but what is the impact of anthropogenic influences?
      4. how long after [email protected] or for how long…just a blip not really a trend
      5. oxygen is essential for life also but try to breathe pure O2 for more than about 3 days and see what happens to your body… hint…you start to die!
      6. i don’t know how much humans influence the climate but surely a move to more sustainable practices that have less impact allows the world to develop through natural cycles/ systems, systems and processes that have existed for millennia. We have seen time and time again as soon as we start tinkering with something that we think we know how it works we fuck it up and get unintended consequences.

      sorry for the response but that was poor reasoning based on cherry picking some overly simplified “facts”

    • “I have read extensively on the topic.”

      Its called cognitive bias. Instead of running around looking for things which prove global warming is rubbish from crack pots on fringe websites with absolutely ZERO credibility why not read the work being done by the greatest collection of scientists, greatest scientific project ever undertaken by humanity, best funded and best equipped in all of human history which is the collective body on global warming.

      The idea that the argument “the climate has always changed” is so retarded its not funny. Its like saying even though we are heading over a cliff in our car it doesn’t matter, we aren’t going to crash because we have always been moving. It’s beyond moronic.

      You statements and rhetoric are absolutely founded in a total lack of understanding of even the most BASIC elements of what is being proposed and why its happening. Of course the climate has always changed, that has always been the point. We know that. The point is that the output now is changing that balance.

      The long term climate fluctuations are caused by the variations and fluctuations in the earths wobble, rotation, tilt and orbit which over the course of approx 100,000 years combine to move us significantly CLOSER to the sun, and then further from the sun – this is what causes the variations in temp. As has been CORRECTLY pointed out carbon follows temp (the claims that this destroys the global warming myth are based on this moronic idea) – carbon does get released as the earth heats up – HOWEVER – there is a FEED BACK process which continues to release carbon via the green house effect causing the planet to continue to warm and the return cycle of the earth moving away from the sun allows the sequestration to BALANCE the carbon back.

      There have been several cataclysmic events such as India’s impact into Asia, AND the Yukon Peninsula impact etc which have caused climate variations OUTSIDE of that cycle just mentioned which took hundreds of thousands of years to correct.

      Theses processes take HUNDREDS of thousands of years – we are entering a MOVING AWAY from the sun period HENCE the theories in the 1970’s that we would be COOLING. This makes the temperature record even MORE alarming as it means we are in dire DIRE trouble and are overriding the cyclical effect which is abating the problems.

      Volcanoes have always been here – true – but we haven’t. The problem with the climate is that those volcanoes were emitting a BALANCE which was subducted and sequestered in balance with the planet. Now we are adding ON TOP OF THAT a tiny fraction every single year.

      The problem with green house gasses is that it only takes a tiny about to have a massive effect. Its like saying who cares its only 0.005% arsenic – how bad can it be – enough to kill you.

      The net increase in green house gasses vis-a-vis carbon sequestration due to volcanoes was zero – with the ODD radical change which over centuries would balance out.

      Humans have added on top of that a tiny but COMPOUNDING increase in CO2 PLUS a massive reduction in earths capacity for sequestration – that tiny shift is all that is needed to throw the earth out of balance.

      If the earth were to move out of its orbit by .001% degree every day for a year – eventually we would crash into the sun – fly out into space – THAT is the CUMULATIVE EFFECT.

      You WW analogy is moronic and doesn’t deserve a response.

      Is carbon bad – yes too much of it causes global warming – we have known the effects of green house gasses since the 1850’s when their properties were first discovered. It’s not an idea, a hypothesis, a faith – its a scientific fact like all the other properties of the elements we know of – its called chemistry.

    • What bugs me most about the subject is the fact that we have the bloody technologies to fix the problem assuming it exists(Which i do believe it does) and let’s pretend it doesn’t, moving to newer cleaner technology is for the better of the planet/mankind and money can be made out of it while doing so by governments/companies…

    • “I am no expert but”…there is never anything good after a “but”.

      With the utmost respect, I suggest you *become* an expert before posting on this topic. Possession of minor degrees does not qualify you to do so. The world would be a much better place if self-described non-experts would just shut up. Reading the internet, newspapers or Scientific American does not give you the fundamentals needed to understand the deeply complex models underlying climate change research. It takes decades of training and immersion in the primary literature. But you are some guy on the internet who read something somewhere…

      Any one (without overt bias) who is capable of reading & understanding the primary research literature agrees that the current data & models highlight substantial human influence on a warming planet. Those who disagree typically exhibit bias or an inability to comprehend the science.

      Older data does not invalidate the current interpretation of the models. As we collect more data, the models become more refined, altering rates but the overall insights are the same.

      • Trying to shutdown debate by appealing to credentialism will not score points.

        I do not think this debate is the exclusive realm of climatologists and climate modellers. Anybody with a basic understanding of statistics and forecasting can see that there are no accurate climate models in existence.

        The science is real, the forecasting is no better than Wall Street.

      • Shutting down uninformed debate is entirely appropriate. Anyone who leads with “i am not an expert but” deserves only contempt. Credentials matter.

      • Anybody with a basic understanding of statistics and forecasting can see that there are no accurate climate models in existence.

        Climate models predicted a rate of global warming of 0.2℃/decade. The measured rate of global warming since 1974 was 0.171±0.034℃/decade. The climate models are at least as accurate as the measurement.

      • “Climate models predicted a rate of global warming of 0.2℃/decade. The measured rate of global warming since 1974 was 0.171±0.034℃/decade. The climate models are at least as accurate as the measurement.”

        So the models managed to model an outcome where a couple of decades were already baked in !
        Awesome – tell me more about the past

        What about the models actually built in the 70s that predicted cooling?

    • J BauerMEMBER

      Listen to David Suzuki on this topic, is smarter than all of us.

      Its also not all about preventing CO2 emissions, a large part of the problem is destroying the earth’s ability to store CO2 e.g. destroying rainforest and grasslands. Allan Savory is also worth taking a look at.

    • “Like most here, I am no expert, but am widely read and have uni bachelors and masters degrees.”

      Let me guess – a non-science, humanities degree? Where you have no understanding of the Scientific Method and where a ‘good argument’ is normally enough? Where all the anti-vaxxers come from as well? Science is not done via blogs and Andrew Bolt newspaper columns. In Science, if you disagree with a point you do some research and publish the research so other Scientists can ‘pick it apart’ if it is wrong. Unless you have a PhD in a Climate Science then stating ‘facts’ like that (that have all been discredited) is just random raving craziness from someone who is ignorant in the field. What would you say to someone who said to his heart surgeon ‘I read a blog that said that putting stents in after a heart attack will kill me, so I don’t want to to put them in’? You would say they are random raving craziness from someone who is ignorant in the field.

      You are obviously NOT well read. As every one of your points has been proven to be incorrect (backed by peer reviewed scientific papers.) They are neatly packaged at ScepticalScience ( which all cross referenced by peer reviewed science!

    • I have read extensively on the topic.

      Like most here, I am no expert, but am widely read and have uni bachelors and masters degrees.

      While you were reading did you happen to come across the Dunning-Kruger effect?

    • The scientific disagreement is close to the level of scientific disagreement on cigarettes.

      Yeah, you can find some people who’ll say the health effects of cigarettes aren’t that bad, but the overwhelming majority of studies support the idea that an overproduction of human cO2 is causing problems.

      The climate is incredibly complex, and we’re often attempting to break it down to simple cause and effect. We often hear things like “It’s colder this year than last year, so much for global warming” or like you said “the period after ww2 had massive increase in cO2 but no corresponding increase in temp”, but these all come from mistaken assumptions, and thus any conclusions you draw are likely false. The assumption is that the climate is simple, and can be simply explained. This happens, therefore this must happen, if it doesn’t it’s false. But it’s far, far too complex for such simple analysis.

      The problem is that generally people don’t like complex explanations, they want 1 therefore 2. Not some incredibly complex system e.g. 1 + 2 / 3 * sqrt4 *0.3333*5 + 6^2 = p>0.9

    • It’s not so much the rising level of CO2 that is destroying the planet as a place for humans to destroy. It’s more the destruction of the natural water cycles that provide the landscape with sufficient water to allow humans to survive that will do us in first. As happened in places like the Middle East and North Africa millennia ago.

    • @dan the man — Good post & good on you for stating the bloody obvious. Just don’t expect the rest of the “experts ” on this site to agree or even to consider it. They have closed minds despite the fact that there are totally contrary & disturbing evidence against their acceptance of GROUP science paid for with Govt funds to get a Taxable outcome ! I’m all for getting rid of pollution industries & would pay a tax for that BUT don’t tell me that Man can turn around the natural cycles -It’s BS.

      Duke University Disagrees with Global Warming
      The Coming Ice Age – Not Global Warming
      Global Warming Con-Artists will not tell you is that mankind collectively accounts for only about 5% of the CO2 in the atmosphere. There is no money in trying to warn about a natural cycle that cannot be stopped. Blame mankind and then there is a pile of money to be made on research, fines, and taxes. It becomes a industry of scam artists. We are plagued with this type of corruption everywhere.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Generations of science worldwide supporting climate change.

        Those “con artists” sure do play a long game !

      • ’cause people devote their working lives to studying glaciers, rainfall and exotic forms of differential equations for the money.

      • @AURules

        Put down you peer reviewed science everyone. The Scientific Method (which has doubled your life expectancy and allowed us to fly in planes) has stopped working! Youtube, a conservative uk newspaper and a blog run by a bloke who was in jail for conspiring to commit fraud has proven the science is all wrong.

        That plucky band of upstart Billionaires, Mining Magnates and the Fossil Fuel industry has shown up that almost every single climate Scientists (on average wages) in every country, and Every Academy of Science have been conspiring to defraud the world.

        Do you realise how ridiculous your argument is? Pointing us to a few Blog posts? Can you point to a SINGLE peer reviewed science paper that says that there is not enough evidence of human induced climate change that is would not make sense to take some action (like stopping smoking or wearing seat belts kind of action)?

      • @Glamb — –
        ” Youtube, a conservative uk newspaper and a blog run by a bloke who was in jail for conspiring to commit fraud has proven the science is all wrong.”
        You absolute tosser -thinking that you (along with other wankers) have the definitive say on who’s right & who’s wrong — LOL. You obviously don’t know shit from clay re Armstrong either & the reasons he was in Jail & eventually released without conviction. You also believe that the Govt is your friend- right?

      • Biggest hoax ever invented 🙂 , totally agree. Still remember the acid rain stories in the 80s, same bullsh…

      • Still remember the acid rain stories in the 80s, same bullsh…

        Wet scrubber?

      • @AURrules “You absolute tosser -thinking that you (along with other wankers) have the definitive say on who’s right & who’s wrong — LOL.”

        No, you and I have NO say on who is right or wrong. And the thing that you deniers don’t get is that the Scientists and the Scientific Method are the ONLY ones who get to say what is right. And do you know what almost all of the Climate Scientists say? That it would be prudent to take some action on our CO2 emissions.

  3. reusachtigeMEMBER

    I would rather a warmer world than a colder one! People look hotter!!

    • And with rising sea levels creating more waterfront real estate, more property owners will become richer and even better looking!

    • Reus in hot weather wearing sweaty shorts….

      Not better looking at all.

      You’d need a Holywood plastic surgeon with 40 years experience to fix your look.

      Just sayin’

  4. if anything, the biggest impact is MORE PEOPLE….we should globally try and keep the population stable atm

    more people = more carbon

    • Dan. …

      Why do we even look at emissions per capita?

      Shouldn’t we concern ourselves with emissions per km2?

      That way we don’t have to concern ourselves and others can curtail by not populating?

      • Given people are primarily composed of carbon, shouldnt we encourage the production of more people to act as a walking carbon sink? We can then import them into Australia to work in the growing coffee dispensing industry and as construction workers to build the high-rise pigeon coups they will need to live in while we debate the benefits of improved infrastructure and toast how lucky we are to have such visionaries as Twiggy and Tory Rabbit. Simply put, end Global Warming by giving birth to more demon spawn and spread them evenly around the globe the soak up the CO2. Soylent Green springs to mind to deal with the recycling issues. And fix those pesky volcanos by capturing huge ice based comets to cool them down. There, problem solved. And if that doesn’t work, then it is God showing his displeasure with the conservatives lack of belief.

  5. “To me it’s simply a balance of risks argument. Climate science is well within a compelling statistical probability of being right so it makes sense to act.”

    Yes, but the precautionary principle requires a certain level of calm, objective, rational thought. That is something that is in very short supply these days.

  6. If the climate gets warmer, doesn’t that mean more evaporation from the ocean, which means more rain. What does more rain and more warmth create ? More plants, which means more consumption of CO2. It’s a clever little eco system isn’t it.

      • dude, if you want to clear land (the main reason trees get removed) you don’t chop ’em down, you burn ’em.

        Much better at returning the CO2 to the atmosphere where it belongs.

      • Per Carlin… he did say the most likely reason the planet provided our species its time and place was because it wanted plastic for some future event…. and could not accomplish it alone….

    • It’s a shame that it takes far less time to burnt down an entire forest (witness the Amazonas, Borneo, New Guinea, etc.) than it does to regrow it.

  7. That is true loon pond stuff on “One world government”. Abbott should get rid of him.

  8. Newman… cough… noddy is more of an esoteric realist than most would like to accept and neoliberal to the core, more so than even Tone. He was born and groomed to be in authority and anything that keeps him and his stripe out of their rightful place is an affront to their collective beliefs.

    I mean whats up with Climate or other Environmental issues dictating to them how to live or jeopardize their rights – too force – everyone else to live as they see reality.

    Skippy… His disbelief – live on stage – after losing the election was priceless….

    • skippy, newman’s worried the un’s going to put him out of a job. 🙂

      After a shitty day at work I’ve had a bloody good laugh!

  9. drsmithyMEMBER

    If that turns out to be wrong then we’ve paid a few bucks for some cleaner air and the UN can be ignored again.

    Can I get an embedded image ?

      • @8~

        As the government spends money into existence and establishes the frame work required for markets to operate… whats this projection wrt free about?

      • @8~

        You know that’s a loaded question which refers to a hard money scarcity sensibility which does not apply to sovereign issue, yet private issue is another thing all together.

    • You think career politicians and their rich campaign sponsors want to make world a batter place? Is it even possible to do something like this by concentrating more and more power on the top? democracy can only work at local level in small communities where everyone knows everyone and everything.

  10. hence the religious like debate here..

    I am well versed in physical sciences, as are others that disagree

    if y’all want to cut carbon, like you say, go back to getting around on foot and PRACTICE living your carbon free lifestyle

    no cars
    no transport via planes etc
    no electricity apart from solar…tough tit at nite

    but y’all won’t do it because most of you are hypocrits

    • It’s almost like you’ve found every poor argument and put them together.

      No-one doubts the benefits of things like lights, cars, planes, or whatever. But you are making out that because we get benefits from these, there can be no downside. It’s ridiculous binary thinking. No-one is suggesting we get rid of them – just find different ways to generate that energy.

    • Asinine foot stomping or throwing of toys out of ones playpen in displays of hyperbolic black and white statements – only reinforces the contrary opinions of others all ready stated wrt to your stance.

    • HnH, along with other sensible people are suggesting taking sensible precautions just in case climate change turn out to be a thing because the costs if it is and we do nothing are potentially a lot less humans and other life or even no more humans.
      If you want to talk about hypocracy a majority of the ‘climate change is crap’ school are big supporters of defence spending. Why? Were not being invaded now and there is no evidence of anyone planning to invade us, why spend a billions on defence which we probably won’t need? And I bet they wear seat belts too. But then they tell us that because climate change might be wrong we should do nothing.

    • J BauerMEMBER

      The climate change debate is a beautiful distraction/red herring from the real environmental issues faced by the world. Instead of looking at whether we should be polluting our environment, oceans, waterways and cutting down forests etc we are paralysed debating climate change – playing the fiddle while Rome burns!

      • AGW is the reckless by product of all the things you mention, not a separate debate.

    • I think its time for you dan the man to put your butter knives away, as they wont do you any good in this gun fight.
      A bachelor’s degree or (multiple) on non-scientific /engineering field is useless and irrelevant. In fact, even an environmental science/engineering degree is not enough. You’d have to be a researcher on the actual subject (global warming) or a related field of it to even qualify, a lab cleaner ears dropping doesnt count either. I have a couple of “friends” working for the private sector as environmental sustainability engineers and the projects and research they are part taking in are related to the increasing global temperature, basically there is evidence that the climate is changing and companies want to understand any opportunities and impacts it will cause. They didnt have to tell me about their thoughts on “global warming”, the projects they are working on speaks for themselves, some are actually highly confidential as they are very vague in order to protect themselves.

      As a practising design engineer myself, part of my job is to meet regulations and ensure design satisfies current and soon to be announced regulations. The documents I have seen implies to me that the billion dollar companies have their own directions on the changing needs based on environment.

      Putting 1 and 1 together and reading between the lines of ACTUAL paid project work and requirements, its safe to say that the environment is indeed changing and being impacted by the climate change.

      • Similarly I note that a number of reinsurers have increased their provisioning for extreme weather events, based on their internal empirical modelling, and have stated that they strongly believe the root cause is climate change. Seems against their shareholders’ interests unless their is a high probability AGW is actually happening.

  11. every form of energy impacts on the environment

    NO ENERGY is carbon neutral

    so go back to nimbin hippies and live your commune nil carbon lifestyle, remember, lights out at dark, and no MJ, it emits carbon don’t you know y’all

    • Wow your arguments are rapidly getting dumber and dumber.

      The goal is to use energy that produces less greenhouse gases than the planet’s capacity to re-absorb them and convert them into plant matter.

    • NO ENERGY is carbon neutral

      Last time I checked, the big yellow ball of fire in the sky did not emit any carbon. Well at least not on earth.

      • When/if the big yellow ball of definitely not fire starts emitting carbon, we will have bee extinct for a billion years or so.

    • NO ENERGY is carbon neutral

      Really? Must have missed that fourth or fifth law of thermodynamics…

  12. sydboy007MEMBER

    Be interesting to see how the Govt can distance itself from Newman. There’s no way they could argue he wrote this without first getting Abbott’s consent.

    I know how devastating an el nino will be, considering how parched large areas are in Australia, but a few long dry hot years with some country areas turning to dust may be just what we need to remind us of the potential catastrophe coming our way.

    I’m surprised Newman didn’t start talking about operation Jade Helm and the plot from the eastern states to invade and take over WA 🙂

  13. Dan the Man, you’re on the right track. Any kid turning 18 this year has not even experienced global warming. Alarmists are now grasping at the largest number of straws they can by attempting to encompass every weather event under the Climate Change umbrella.

    What do we know? Yes, the climate will change. Some locations will get warmer, some drier, some cooler, some wetter … And the world will go on. We will continue to adapt where ever possible. As we always have. There will be benefits and there will be costs. Such is life.


    EDENHOFFER): First of all, developed countries have basically expropriated the atmosphere of the world community. But one must say clearly that we redistribute de facto the world’s wealth by climate policy. Obviously, the owners of coal and oil will not be enthusiastic about this. One has to free oneself from the illusion that international climate policy is environmental policy. This has almost nothing to do with environmental policy anymore, with problems such as deforestation or the ozone hole.

    • “Any kid turning 18 this year has not even experienced global warming”

      Believing this just proves you don’t even understand basic statistics, let alone climate science.

      Although I’m sure you don’t believe it, you just like getting a pay check.

    • Interesting to see a new study from Harvard reveal that younger demographic in the US is deeply skeptical of the sciences – the validity, the independence, the forecasts – all questioned.

      I reckon the ideologically bound Climate Science alarmists have a lot to answer for. They’ve been out there for twenty years telling kids they’re all gonna die, burn to a crisp, drown in rising seas, starve as warming prohibits food production, nihilism celebrated. And guess what, it’s all been a crock.

      And this new batch of kids are far more skeptical than the boomers and Xers driving the Fear Bus. And they want off.

      • Yes it’s all the scientists’ fault for making people skeptical. Nothing to do with non-experts telling people that the science is wrong.

      • These ‘climate scientists’ have undermined their own cause. Only have themselves to blame. Persistent extreme Armageddon scenarios, persistent extreme forecasts, their World is Rooned and We’re All Gonna Die prognostications have met the limit of sensible acceptance.

        The kids know it.

      • J BauerMEMBER

        I think you’ll find they’re sceptical of the scientists that tell them smoking doesn’t cause cancer and that there is nothing wrong with the world and we can continue polluting without consequence.

      • We all think we’re bulletproof when we’re young, the time to experiment and indulge. I reckon these kids think ‘tackle what we can fix – polluted waterways, airborne chemical particulates, deforestation – real problems what have real impact.’ They’ve had a gutful of the previous generations false forecasts as to their miserable future.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        Interesting to see a new study from Harvard reveal that younger demographic in the US is deeply skeptical of the sciences – the validity, the independence, the forecasts – all questioned.

        Decades of attacking science, intellectuals, education and sowing doubt is finally paying off. You must be so proud !

      • Here 3d1k this might spalne things for you….

        A Neoliberal Economics of Science

        Sheldon Krimsky

        SCIENCE-MART: Privatizing American Science. Philip Mirowski. viii + 454 pp. Harvard University Press, 2011. $39.95.

        Is academic science a public good that should be rationally planned and robustly supported by social resources? How one answers this question depends on several things: the connection one makes between science and economic development; whether one believes that scientific discovery, both pure and applied, is best accomplished through private markets or federal grants; and how effective one believes the government is at planning scientific research and translating discoveries into consumer products and industrial technology. These are the issues, not always explicitly stated, that underlie current science-policy debates about stem-cell research, gene patents, the value of the Bayh-Dole Act of 1980 and the future of the National Science Foundation. For many scientists, including me, the issues have personal meaning: My career began during the Sputnik era with a federal scholarship in high-energy physics and continued with a National Defense Education Act fellowship to study philosophy of science.

        Philip Mirowski, professor of economics and of the history and philosophy of science at the University of Notre Dame, has written an important and intensely provocative book that explores fundamental questions about the political economy of science. Science-Mart challenges us to think more critically, more synthetically and more deeply about the growing commercialization of academic science by exploring the historical and ideological roots of that trend. His main argument is that “much of the modern commercialization of science and the commoditization of the university has followed a script promulgated by neoliberal thinkers.” To argue his case, Mirowski employs bibliometric studies of science as well as methods and scholarship from a variety of disciplines, including economic history, sociology, intellectual-property law and political economy.

        The book begins by introducing the reader to a fictitious academic researcher named Viridiana Jones, who “feels strung out between the Scylla of Disneyfication of higher education and the Charybdis of Free EnronPrise in securing a patron, any patron, to support her inquiries in an era of impending financial doom.” Jones is trying to navigate her way through the miasma of commercial influence in academia (where the phrase “marketplace of ideas” is taken literally) while protecting the integrity of her science. The main theses of the book are that the commercialization of science is the result of a planned, coordinated effort on the part of those associated with a neoliberal agenda and that this commercialization has weakened America’s scientific hegemony.

        The term neoliberal, which arises from the work of post–World War II economists such as Friedrich Hayek, Milton Friedman and others belonging to the “Chicago school” of economics and law, has little in common with what is usually thought of as liberalism. The important tenets of neoliberalism, Mirowski says, include such propositions as the following: “The Market” is a better processor of information than the state; “politics operates as if it were a market”; “corporations can do no wrong”; “competition always prevails”; the state should be “degovernmentalized” through “privatization of education, health, science and even portions of the military”; a good way to initiate privatization is to redefine property rights; “the nation-state should be subject to discipline and limitation through international initiatives”; “the Market . . . can always provide solutions to problems seemingly caused by markets in the first place”; “there is no such thing as a ‘public good’”; “freedom” means economic freedom within the Market. The book examines studies of the economics of science and discusses such topics as the U.S. government’s effort to manage scientific research, the emergence of intellectual property as a raison d’être of university life, the outsourcing of science on the global stage, and the harms that have accrued to academic science from its commercial transmogrification.

        Mirowski debunks the popular view that there is a linear, lockstep path leading from science and technology to economic growth, a claim that served as the mantra of those urging passage of the Bayh-Dole Act of 1980. The Act gave universities, businesses and nonprofits intellectual-property control of discoveries that resulted from federally funded research. In passing the legislation, Congress accepted the idea that American industrial progress was being hampered by the failure of discoveries to enter the marketplace. To allow wealth from discoveries to be realized, the Act turned the principle of capitalism on its head: “private risk yields private loss or gain” became “public risk yields public loss or private gain”—a form of “heads I win, tails you lose.”

        Skippy…. whats with your stripe anyway…. you crapifiy stuff and then point at it… and proclaim… look everyone its crap… always has been and always will…. but listen to us… the helpful people that pointed out all the crap you could have swallowed….

      • Interesting to see a new study from Harvard reveal that younger demographic in the US is deeply skeptical of the sciences

        What are they? Young Earth creationists? If true, go short USA because a country that rejects science is a fucked country.

      • I’m already on to it mate 😉 There goes another Australian tertiary institution that succumbs to the politically correct, the rabble and social media rather than defend freedom of speech, intellectual rigour and embrace scientific endeavour.

        Poor man my country.

      • Has nothing to do with a set of interest groups with vested mouthpieces continually propagating the myth that the “science is wrong” in all the rhetorical glory they can muster. Can’t let logic get in the way of a good eristic.

    • Crikey! Even the Australian Greens have jettisoned the environut wing with the recent decisive move toward progressing their socialist agenda…

      …going to be interesting to see how Labor tackles this direct challenge to secure the vote of much of the ALPs traditional base.

      • Might have something to do with stabilizing society, in the first order of acts, which will then lend itself to more rational and productive outcomes wrt AGW [and assorted issues] mitigation.

        Skippy…. Mitigation being the operative nomenclature 3d1k…

    • We will continue to adapt where ever possible. As we always have.

      Overheard at a Rapa Nui village council meeting circa 1700.

    • Any kid turning 18 this year has not even experienced global warming.

      A bare-faced lie.

  14. the fact that global warming is real does not mean there is no truth that world ruling elite won’t use it to push their agenda. Global warming looks like holy grail for New World Order knights and their plan to take over the whole world.

  15. 3d1k, a moderate voice to this hysteria

    climate science is a religion, denial is heresy

    in the UK in the middle ages, they grew grapes….after that, the climate changed, and they had the Thames freeze over in winter

    climate ALWAYS changes

    if most people on this blog are so concerned, they should stop participating in modern life

    • No “free market fundamentalism” is a – religion – which is based on antiquarian concepts born out of ex nihilo axioms.

      Skippy… Science does not function on such methodology as foundation myths.

    • Stand back…dan the man has a Masters degree and he’s not afraid to use it!

      • whats your qualifications then?

        why are you an expert?

        plenty of experts disagree on any climate change

        show me how many degrees the planet has warmed, and what impact we have had in this

        be specific please

        do you drive? use electricity?

        are you making a personal decision to not use ANY fossil fuels?

        this includes rubber tyres PRODUCED FROM OIL in your electric car

        how do you cook food at nite??

        do you eat any food that has been transported with fossil fuels


      • Getting giggle fits from all the straw men you threw my way. For what it’s worth I have a PhD and hold a Professorial appointment at a key Australian university, after spending the last decade in the US university system. I have published extensively in the primary peer-reviewed literature. I doubt you’ll believe me and don’t really care. Your ill-informed outrage is amusing though. By all means insult me more.

      • presume you took your sailboat to the USA then?? what??? u used a plane???? how selfish of you, all that fossil fuel usage

        do you have solar power at work? how are you typing? is carbon involved in the production of your PC/tablet etc??? fossil fuels used???

        all that CARBON you use is terrible

        did you buy offsets? where were those offsets used??

        did you use candles writing your PhD??

      • Oh god stop it – my sides are hurting from laughter. Serves me right for jumping into an online “debate” where the opinions of Joe Sixpack masquerade as informed discussion!

      • Serves me right for jumping into an online “debate” where the opinions of Joe Sixpack masquerade as informed discussion!
        Unfortunately, it seems to be the way things run online these days eqezyssell. Any post here on the Carbon Economy is usually set upon by astroturfers and their recruits within a matter of minutes. Today they were a bit slow to fire up.

      • More ad hominem attacks? Really?

        In any case, I made a bet with colleagues that you would descend into further abuse & would try to end the discussion with nastiness related to academia. I think Barry Jones once said that “Only in Australia is the term academic a pejorative”. I just won $20 & will raise a beer to you this afternoon!

        To be blunt, dan the man, you write poorly & you communicate sloppily. You have no expertise or qualifications on climate change. Fail grade old chum.

      • Just let me drop some unsubstantiated claims of my own educational background…

        He could literally have crapped out of year 10, he’s going to be trusted on what basis? It’s irrelevant, what he says is unsubstantiated garbage, so point it out as thus and ignore claims of educational achievement.

    • Dan, it may be best for you to refrain from posting on topics you know nothing about. You’ve spent most of your time here bashing straw man arguments and peddling long discredited fallacies and obfuscations. If you can’t be arsed addressing things that are actually being discussed/said by climate scientists and the actual risks they pose, then there’s no credibility issue on the part of the climate scientists or those speaking out against you here.

      • on the contrary, I am well read on this topic…are you??

        what research have you personally done?? tell me, articles, journals etc…be specific please

      • Tell us again Dan about how well read you are. What have you read? Links to peer reviewed papers would be great.

        And also tell us about how you know more about it than actual climate scientists.

      • I am well read on this topic…are you??
        Yes. Unlike you I actually read the info provided by BOM, CSIRO and other credible sources of scientific opinion and make my own mind up. I don’t mind a bit of fiction myself from time to time but on these issues I see more value in credible scientific opinion.

      • “on the contrary, I am well read on this topic…are you??”

        On the contrary, I am the physical incarnation of God. Do you guys believe my baseless claims yet? Especially when all the evidence points to me having no credibility whatsoever and possibly being the total opposite of what is claimed.

    • Dan,
      3d moderate? Don’t answer the door, it’s the men in white jackets coming to take you to a nice quite room. The needle won’t hurt, calm down now, everything will be okay!

  16. Remember when the UN said that IRAQ had WMD.
    Anyone seen Star Wars episode 4.
    Climate change is a scam, and it appears a lot of people on this forum have been sucked in. Thats why the Nigerian scams keep working. Too many suckers out there.

  17. Hahahah, Dan The Man, love your work, you are so right about the religious fanatic responses, to have your own opinion is heresy, like those that once said the world was not flat ….

    Anyway, we should be a lot more concerned about the fact that we are eating and killing everything on the planet that is not human, and polluting the crap out of the place at the same time.

    As you say the fundamental issue which everyone avoids is that there are too many people, simple, just too many people eating consuming polluting.

      • They’re called ‘Scientific laws’, yeah? So it lfollows there must be a group of people who decides on the scientific legislation, presumably by voting…

      • That factious stat, Scientific Laws are not to be confused with Economic Laws nor Government Laws, completely different process, were not living in Spencer’s age anymore imo.

        Skippy…. what I will concede is the observation that Philip Mirowski makes wrt the privatization of academia and its delirious effects on both research and its standing in society. Yet science was not the operative agency in establishing said negative effects.

      • Did you drop an ‘e’ there Skip?

        Hope it was a real one, not a codeine laced fake.

      • Sorry hate codeine or stimulants unless out of medical necessity… look what its done to mig-i.

        Skippy… the gifts of dyslexia…

        Q: What do you get when you cross an insomniac, an agnostic, and a dyslexic?

        A: Someone who can’t get to sleep while pondering the existence of “Dog.”

  18. bolstroodMEMBER

    It really doesn’t matter what we say here. The tide of History is rising. We will have to sink or swim.
    Newman is a lead weight tied to our feet.

    • Best way by a long way is reduce the NUMBER of footprints. Don’t let the liars tell you different.

      • Eugenics making a come back? So what metrics are used to decide the good sorts from the bad sorts? and who decides on those that make those deliberations?

  19. Degrees aren’t what they used to be.
    Hows this for spelling “how do you cook food at nite??” WTF WW

  20. Too funny…. a business adviser… has a tanty about a subject which is more than likely completely over his head.

    Skippy…. the numbers force his frontal lobes to comply… sadly hes looking at the wrong set.

  21. The amount of posters in here that are in serious need of some humble pie is mind boggling…

  22. I have to declare an interest here. I make use of highly subsidised household energy that brings a small income from the power I export plus paying for heating gas consumed. In the present financial environment panels plus batteries are possibly the best investment a risk averse net saver can make. I also happen to be an electrical engineer able to put these systems together for only the cost of the components. Getting in early with solar I enjoy the highest FIT and will do for another decade.

    So I am thankful for the AGW lark. It has certainly accelerated development of technologies I have great technical interest in. On the other hand anyone who understands thermodynamics, which is not many in my experience, knows its a crock of nonsense.

  23. You lot obviously have too much time on your hands.
    If you want to do something useful with it you can assist in identifying every person in this, the most musical superstar packed film clip of all time.

    Wire’s ‘Eardrum Buzz’.
    I can make out John Peel, Bernard Sumner, Bjork, Andrew Fletcher, Jeff Lynne, Karl Hyde or Rick Smith (?) and Peter Cook.
    But there are so many more. One looks like Steve Martin but I don’t think that it would be him.

    As a bonus the song title and the lyrics describe perfectly the nonsense in the above comments thread.

  24. The irony on this site is remarkable. Let’s be rightly skeptical of everything the government says on economics (ie that housing is a good investment, our banks are safe, LNG and iron ore will stay high) yet when government is spending billions annually on a program that does nothing to change the world temperature there is no skepticism. I love how this site berates treasury about their dud predictions and yet excuses all the dud predictions around our impending climate doom. The antonym to being skeptical is to be gullible. You should always question

      • Yer. I try check out this site when I get a chance. I love its commentary around the housing bubble, how the baby boomers are eating the young et al yet the green left stuff is loopy. I am an Engineer and fanatically believed all the CC stuff for over a decade. As I continued to read and learn I came to realise it is a complete scam and goes down with all the other end of the world predictions that go no where (DDT, population bomb, global cooling, nuclear war, peak oil…) I think houses and holes hangs out with Guy Rundle at Crikey too much.

      • the other end of the world predictions that go no where (DDT,

        CFCs and the ozone hole should be on that list too.

    • Skeptic is just a re-branding, for marketing purposes, of the previous failed flat out denial stance, its just a pathetic attempt to garner some sort of reasonableness after that position was no longer tenable.

      3d1k I don’t think you have the slightest clue about what the Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle enfolds and even Heisenberg has publicly stated that its misuse is not welcome.

      Skippy… way to go champ…. your camps insipid Dumbing Down marches forward….

      • Skippy I am certain of one thing. History is littered with charlatans telling us the world is going to end so give me some money. Even the glorious UN concedes their models are not correlating with reality. I cannot believe so many people have lost control of all their senses and refuse to question. Please do not use the denial tag. It is not denial, it is skepticism no one seriously questions that carbon dioxide warms the earth it is the extent to which it does and most effective method of dealing with it. Denial is a gross and unfair reference to holocaust denial it is you who is doing the rebranding

      • Sorry bastardized Heisenberg… your rhetoric is a poor substitute for thousands of years of observable data.

        Skippy… It would be quite funny watching your stripe parade your ignorant – beliefs – if it was not for the damage it does physically and mentally to others. I – think – I’ll use more rigorous means of examining reality – if you don’t mind.

      • So you use despicable terms like “denier” with the un too subtle link to Holocaust denial, yet I am engaging in rhetoric. 1000’s of years of observable data prove how little an effect man has on the climate. I suggest you check the work of Piers Corbyn. Eminently more qualified than either you or I. He makes his living not from government grants but by getting climate predictions right. I was prepared to change my mind on CC after extensive reading. If presented with compelling facts around CC would you ever entertain changing yours?

      • Now your just projecting – holocaust – good grief.

        Let the “market decide” is just another throwaway bit of praseology, markets don’t have any agency, that realm is only afforded to human actors, of which, the most powerful attempt to do the deciding.

        Normally through deception as facts might enable to much introspection.

        Skippy… pro tip the market is not some all knowing super computer which establishes equilibrium and freedom of choice in the most elegant manner possible.

      • Agree the market is not all knowing, however its collective wisdom is greater than yours and the UN and anyother central figure. The market always knows better than a bunch of bureaucrats. For the past 200 years the market has continued to deliver electrical power with lower CO2 per KW. I love how you consider the market a “throwaway phrase” it perfectly illustrates your totalitarian instincts. It is amazing that you are so enamored by climate change that you are prepared to give up your own sovereignty. It speaks to the very heart of this issue. It would not matter what evidence is presented to you, you will simply refuse to ever change your mind. It goes to the heart of Newman’s argument about what makes the CC debate so scary. Whether it be David Suzuki who wants to jail skeptics, Clive Hamilton on the Climate Council who wants to “suspend democracy” or the UN climate chief Christiana Figueres who views CC action as “…a centralised transformation that is taking place.”

        Maybe you can have the humility to have some introspection, entertain that you may just be wrong, that our freedom is everything.

      • Sorry but if your supposition held any water the last 50ish years of increasing neoliberalism would have not gone so horribly wrong in the GFC and resulting after math.

        “Throughout the second half of the twentieth century, the neoliberal project stood out from other strains of right-wing thought in that it was self-consciously constituted as an entity dedicated to the development, promulgation, and popularization of doctrines intended to mutate over time. It was a moveable feast, and not a catechism fixed at the Council of Trent. It is very important to have some familiarity with neoliberal ideas, if only to resist simple-minded characterizations of the neoliberal approach to the financial crisis as some form of evangelical “market fundamentalism.”

        Although many secondhand purveyors of ideas on the right might wish to crow that “market freedom” promotes their own brand of religious righteousness, or maybe even the converse, it nonetheless debases comprehension to conflate the two by disparaging both as “fundamentalism”—a sneer unfortunately becoming commonplace on the left. It seems very neat and tidy to assert that neoliberals operate in a modus operandi on a par with religious fundamentalists: just slam The Road to Serfdom (or if you are really Low-to-No Church, Atlas Shrugged) on the table along with the King James Bible, and then profess to have unmediated personal access to the original true meaning of the only (two) book(s) you’ll ever need to read in your lifetime. Counterpoising morally confused evangelicals with the reality-based community may seem tempting to some; but it dulls serious thought. It may sometimes feel that a certain market-inflected personalized version of Salvation has become more prevalent in Western societies, but that turns out to be very far removed from the actual content of the neoliberal program.

        Neoliberalism does not impart any dose of Old Time Religion. Not only is there no ur-text of neoliberalism; the neoliberals have not themselves opted to retreat into obscurantism, however much it may seem that some of their fellow travelers may have done so. You won’t often catch them wondering, “What Would Hayek Do?” Instead they developed an intricately linked set of overlapping propositions over time — from Ludwig Erhard’s “social market economy” to Herbert Giersch’s cosmopolitan individualism, from Milton Friedman’s “monetarism” to the rational-expectations hypothesis, from Hayek’s “spontaneous order” to James Buchanan’s constitutional order, from Gary Becker’s “human capital” to Steven Levitt’s “freakonomics,” from the Heartland Institute’s climate denialism to the American Enterprise Institute’s geo-engineering project, and, most appositely, from Hayek’s “socialist calculation controversy” to Chicago’s efficient-markets hypothesis. Along the way they have lightly sloughed off many prior classical liberal doctrines — for instance, opposition to corporate monopoly power as politically debilitating, or skepticism over strong intellectual property, or disparaging finance as an intrinsic source of macroeconomic disturbance — without coming clean on their reversals.

        Clearly, neoliberals do not navigate with a fixed static Utopia as the astrolabe for all their political strivings. They could not, since they don’t even agree on such basic terms as “market” and “freedom” in all respects. One can even agree with Robert Brenner and Naomi Klein that crisis is the preferred field of action for neoliberals, since that offers more latitude for introduction of bold experimental “reforms” that only precipitate further crises down the road. Nevertheless, Neoliberalism does not dissolve into a gormless empiricism or random pragmatism. There persists a certain logic to the way it approaches crises; and that is directly relevant to comprehending its unexpected strength in the current global crisis.

        Under that supposition, we endeavor here to provide a necessarily non-canonical characterization of the temporary configuration of doctrines that neoliberals had arrived at by roughly the 1980s. These Thirteen Commandments below are chosen because they have direct bearing upon unfolding developments during the period of the crisis from 2007 onwards.”

        Skippy…. you actually proved my point wrt some thinking “The Markets” were sentient with ability to store knowlage and discern the best possible outcomes.

      • BTW freedom and liberty are completely vacuous terms of art with little flesh on the bone, that has to be quantified and unpacked, yet at the end of the day rights are established by law and whom informs it.

        Skippy…. Seriously your stripe need to go back in time and live the dream, romanticism is such a cheap alternative.

      • Must be incredible to live in a world where everyone’s ideas are so easily compartmentalised into a shoebox of thought skip… it sure makes for robust narrative.

        I guess it is heartwarming to know that if I drop my ‘ignorant beliefs’ the government is going to be there to help.

        Anybody struggling with the guilt in Australia of poisoning the earth with their carbon footprint should take a flight to Guangzhou. Your little problem will soon appear irrelevant. .

      • My own sovereignty {????]…. look if your going to start basing your arguments on supernatural claims your going to need the equivalent to back it up, till then…

        Skippy…. personally I don’t do foundation myths and if I did I would not expect anyone else to adhere to it, that’s a personal matter, to be conducted on ones own personal time.

      • Neo libralism is not freedom I am as against war mongering, insider banking control as what you would be. You are missing the point totally It is your inability to consider another view point. An inability to objectively assess the evidence and the inability to understand the consequences of massive government intervention

      • Great to see you engage the material 8~ with the normal rhetorical flourish sans any meaningful critique save for a passel of personalized projections, feature and not bug amongst certain camps.

        Did you even read the link to Philip Mirowski post, here have a go at this –


        The starting point of neoliberalism is the admission, contrary to classical liberal doctrine, that their vision of the good society will triumph only if it becomes reconciled to the fact that the conditions for its existence must be constructed, and will not come about “naturally” in the absence of concerted political effort and organization. As Michel Foucault presciently observed in 1978, “Neoliberalism should not be confused with the slogan ‘laissez-faire,’ but on the contrary, should be regarded as a call to vigilance, to activism, to perpetual interventions.” The injunction to act in the face of inadequate epistemic warrant is the very soul of the Neoliberal Thought Collective. Classical liberalism, by contrast, disavowed this precept. The neoliberals reject “society” as solution, and revive their version of authority in new guises. This becomes transmuted into various arguments for the existence of a strong state as both producer and guarantor of a stable market society.


        What sort of “market” do neoliberals want to foster and protect? It may seem incredible, but historically, both the neoclassical tradition in economics and the neoliberals have both been extremely vague when it comes to analytical specification of the exact structure and character of something they both refer to as the “market” Both seem overly preoccupied with what it purportedly does, while remaining cavalier about what it actually is. For the neoliberals, this allows the avoidance of a possible deep contradiction between their constructivist tendencies and their uninflected appeal to a monolithic market that has existed throughout all history and indifferently across the globe; for how can something be “made” when it is eternal and unchanging? This is solved by increasingly erasing any distinctions among the state, society, and the market, and simultaneously insisting their political project is aimed at reformation of society by subordinating it to the market.


        Even though there has not existed full consensus on just what sort of animal the market “really” is, the neoliberals did agree that, for purposes of public understanding and sloganeering, neoliberal market society must be treated as a “natural” and inexorable state of mankind. Neoliberal thought therefore spawns a strange hybrid of the “constructed” and the “natural,” where the market can be made manifest in many guises. What this meant in practice was that there grew to be a mandate that natural science metaphors must be integrated into the neoliberal narrative. It is noteworthy that MPS members began to explore the portrayal of the market as an evolutionary phenomenon long before biology displaced physics as the premier science in the modern world-picture. If the market was just an elaborate information processor, so too was the gene in its ecological niche. Poor, unwitting animals turn out to maximize everything under the sun just like neoclassical economic agents, and cognitive science “neuroeconomics” models treat neurons as market participants. “Biopower” is deployed to render nature and our bodies more responsive to market signals. Because of this early commitment, neoliberalism was able to make appreciable inroads into such areas as “evolutionary psychology,” network sociology, ecology, animal ethology, linguistics, cybernetics, and even science studies. Neoliberalism has therefore expanded to become a comprehensive worldview, and has not been just a doctrine solely confined to economists.

        With regard to the crisis, one wing of neoliberals has appealed to natural science concepts of “complexity” to suggest that markets transcend the very possibility of management of systemic risk. However, the presumed relationship of the market to nature tends to be substantially different under neoliberalism than under standard neoclassical theory. In brief, neoclassical theory has a far more static conception of market ontology than do the neoliberals. In neoclassical economics, many theoretical accounts portray the market as somehow susceptible to “incompleteness” or “failure,” generally due to unexplained natural attributes of the commodities traded: these are retailed under the rubric of “externalities,” “incomplete markets,” or other “failures.” Neoliberals conventionally reject all such recourse to defects or glitches, in favor of a narrative where evolution and/or “spontaneous order” brings the market to ever more complex states of self-realization, which may escape the ken of mere humans. This explains why neoliberals have rejected out of hand all neoclassical “market failure” explanations of the crisis.


        A primary ambition of the neoliberal project is to redefine the shape and functions of the state, not to destroy it. Neoliberals thus maintain an uneasy and troubled alliance with their sometimes fellow-travelers, the anarchists. The contradiction with which the neoliberals constantly struggle is that a strong state can just as easily thwart their program as implement it; hence they are inclined to explore new formats of techno-managerial governance that protect their ideal market from what they perceive as unwarranted political interference. Considerable efforts have been developed to disguise or otherwise condone in rhetoric and practice the importance of the strong state that neoliberals endorse in theory.

        One way to exert power in restraint of democracy is to bend the state to a market logic, pretending one can replace “citizens” with “customers.” Consequently, the neoliberals seek to restructure the state with numerous audit devices (under the sign of “accountability” or the “audit society”) or impose rationalization through introduction of the “new public management”; or, better yet, convert state services to private provision on a contractual basis. Here again our commandments touch directly upon the crisis. The financial sector was one of the major sites of the outsourcing of state supervision to quasi-private organizations, such as the Financial Industry Regulation Authority (FINRA) or the credit rating agencies such as Moody’s, Fitch, and Standard & Poor’s. Indeed, the very “privatization” of the process of securitization of mortgages, which had started out in the 1960s as a government function, has become a flash point in explanations of how the financial sector lost its way.

        One of the great neoliberal flimflam operations is to mask their role in power through confusion of “marketization” of government functions with the shrinking of the state: if anything, bureaucracies become more unwieldy under neoliberal regimes. Another is to imagine all manner of methods to “shackle” the state by reducing all change to prohibitive constitutional maneuvers. In practice, “deregulation” always cashes out as “reregulation,” only under a different set of ukases.


        Neoliberals seek to transcend the intolerable contradiction of democratic rejection of the neoliberal state by treating politics as if it were a market, and promoting an economic theory of “democracy.” In its most advanced manifestation, there is no separate content of the notion of citizenship other than as customer of state services. This supports the application of neoclassical economic models to previously political topics; but it also explains why the neoliberal movement must seek to consolidate political power by operating from within the state. The abstract “rule of law” is frequently conflated with or subordinated to conformity to the neoliberal vision of an ideal market. The “night watchman” version of the state is thus comprehensively repudiated: there is no separate sphere of the market, fenced off, as it were, from the sphere of civil society. Everything is fair game for marketization.

        The neoliberals generally have to bend in pretzels to deny that in their ideal state, law is a system of power and command, and is, rather, a system of neutral general rules applicable equally to all, grounded in something other than the intentional goals of some (that is, their own) group’s political will. As Raymond Plant explains, for the Rothbard anarchists, this is something like natural law; for the Buchanan-style public-choice crowd, it is contract theory; for Chicago economics, it is a world where the economy is conflated with the universe of human existence; and for Hayek, it is his own idiosyncratic notion of cultural evolution. In everyday neoliberalism, the Chicago story seems to win out.


        Neoliberalism thoroughly revises what it means to be a human person. Classical liberalism identified “labor” as the critical original human infusion that both created and justified private property. Foucault correctly identifies the concept of “human capital” as the signal neoliberal departure that undermines centuries of political thought that parlayed humanism into stories of natural rights. Not only does neoliberalism deconstruct any special status for human labor, but it lays waste to older distinctions between production and consumption rooted in the labor theory of value, and reduces the human being to an arbitrary bundle of “investments,” skill sets, temporary alliances (family, sex, race), and fungible body parts. “Government of the self ” becomes the taproot of all social order, even though the identity of the self evanesces under the pressure of continual prosthetic tinkering; this is one possible way to understand the concept of “biopower.” Under this regime, the individual displays no necessary continuity from one “decision” to the next. The manager of You becomes the new ghost in the machine.

        Needless to say, the rise of the Internet has proven a boon for neoliberals; and not just for a certain Randroid element in Silicon Valley that may have become besotted with the doctrine. Chat rooms, online gaming, virtual social networks, and electronic financialization of household budgets have encouraged even the most intellectually challenged to experiment with the new neoliberal personhood. A world where you can virtually switch gender, imagine you can upload your essence separate from your somatic self, assume any set of attributes, and reduce your social life to an arbitrary collection of statistics on a social networking site is a neoliberal playground. The saga of billionaires, so doted over by the mass media, drives home the lesson that you don’t actually have to produce anything tangible to participate in the global marketplace of the mind.

        The Incredible Disappearing Agent has had all sorts of implications for neoliberal political theory. First off, the timeworn conventional complaint that economics is too pigheadedly methodologically individualist does not begin to scratch the neoliberal program. “Individuals” are merely evanescent projects from a neoliberal perspective. Neoliberalism has consequently become a scale-free Theory of Everything: something as small as a gene or as large as a nation-state is equally engaged in entrepreneurial strategic pursuit of advantage, since the “individual” is no longer a privileged ontological platform. Second, there are no more “classes” in the sense of an older political economy, since every individual is both employer and worker simultaneously; in the limit, every man should be his own business firm or corporation; this has proven a powerful tool for disarming whole swathes of older left discourse. It also appropriates an obscure historical development in American legal history—that the corporation is tantamount to personhood—and blows it up to an ontological principle. Third, since property is no longer rooted in labor, as in the Lockean tradition, consequently property rights can be readily reengineered and changed to achieve specific political objectives; one observes this in the area of “intellectual property,” or in a development germane to the crisis, ownership of the algorithms that define and trade obscure complex derivatives, and better, to reduce the formal infrastructure of the marketplace itself to a commodity. Indeed, the recent transformation of stock exchanges into profit-seeking IPOs was a critical neoliberal innovation leading up to the crisis. Classical liberals treated “property” as a sacrosanct bulwark against the state; neoliberals do not. Fourth, it destroys the whole tradition of theories of “interests” as possessing empirical grounding in political thought.

        Clearly, we’re not in classical liberalism anymore.



        Neoliberals extol “freedom” as trumping all other virtues; but the definition of freedom is recoded and heavily edited within their frame- work. Most neoliberals insist they value “freedom” above all else; but more hairs are split in the definition of freedom than over any other neoliberal concept. It is a little hard to conceptualize freedom for an entity that displays no quiddity or persistence; and most neoliberal discussions of freedom have been cut loose from older notions of individualism.

        Some neoliberals, like Milton Friedman, have refused to define “freedom” altogether (other than to divorce it from democracy), while others like Friedrich Hayek forge links to Commandment 2 by motivating it as an epistemic virtue: “the chief aim of freedom is to provide both the opportunity and the inducement to insure the maximum use of knowledge that an individual can accrue.” As this curious definition illustrates, for neoliberals, what you think a market really is seems to determine your view of what liberty means. Almost immediately, the devil is secreted in the details, since Hayek feels he must distinguish “personal liberty” from subjective freedom, since personal liberty does not entail political liberty. Late in life, Milton Friedman posited three species of freedom — economic, social and political — but it appears that economic freedom was the only one that mattered. Some contemporary figures such as Amartya Sen attempt to factor in your given range of choices in an index of your freedom, but neoliberals will have none of that. They seek to paint all “coercion” as evil, but without admitting into consideration any backstory of the determinants of your intentions. Everyone is treated as expressing untethered context-free hankering, as if they were born yesterday into solitary confinement; this is the hidden heritage of entrepreneurialism of the self. This commandment cashes out as: no market can ever be coercive.”

        “In the neoliberal pantheon, freedom can only be “negative” (in the sense of Isaiah Berlin), for one very important reason. Freedom cannot be extended from the use of knowledge in society to the use of knowledge about society, because self-examination concerning why one passively accepts local and incomplete knowledge leads to contemplation of how market signals create some forms of knowledge and squelch others. Meditation upon our limitations leads to inquiry into how markets work, and meta-reflection on our place in larger orders, something that neoliberals warn is beyond our ken. Knowledge then assumes global institutional dimensions, and this undermines the key doctrine of the market as transcendental superior information processor. Conveniently, “freedom” does not extend to principled rejection of the neoliberal insurgency. Neoliberals want to insist that resistance to their program is futile, since it inevitably appeals to a spurious (from their perspective) understanding of freedom.


        Neoliberals begin with a presumption that capital has a natural right to flow freely across national boundaries. (The free flow of labor enjoys no similar right.) Since that entails persistent balance-of-payments problems in a non-autarkic world, neoliberals took the lead in inventing all manner of transnational devices for the economic and political discipline of nation-states. They began by attempting to reintroduce what they considered to be pure market discipline (flexible exchange rates, dismantling capital controls) during the destruction of the Bretton Woods system, but over the longer term learned to appreciate that suitably staffed international institutions such as the World Trade Organization, the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund, and other units are better situated to impose neoliberal policies upon recalcitrant nation-states. Initially strident demands to abolish global financial institutions on the part of early neoliberals such as Friedman and some denizens of the Cato Institute were subsequently tempered by others — such as Anne Krueger, Stanley Fischer, and Kenneth Rogoff — and as these neoliberals came to occupy these institutions, they used them primarily to influence staffing and policy decisions, and thus to displace other internationalist agendas. The role of such transnational organizations was recast to exert “lock-in” of prior neoliberal policies, and therefore to restrict the range of political options of national governments. Sometimes they were also used to displace indigenous “crony capitalists” with a more cosmopolitan breed of cronyism. Thus it is correct to observe an organic connection between such phenomena as the Washington Consensus and the spread of neoliberal hegemony. This also helps address the neoliberal conundrum of how to both hem in and at the same time obscure the strong state identified in Commandment 4.

        The relevance of the rise of the neoliberal globalized financial regime to the crisis is a matter of great concern to neoliberals and to others (such as Ben Bernanke) who seek to offload responsibility for the crash onto someone else. Because there was no obvious watershed linking policy to theory comparable to Bretton Woods, and the post-1980 infrastructure of international finance grew up piecemeal, the relationship between neoliberalism and the growth of shadow and offshore banking is only beginning to be a subject of interest. Evidence, by construction, is often inaccessible. However, the drive to offshore outsource manufacturing in the advanced economies, which was mutually symbiotic with the frustration of capital controls, was clearly a function of neoliberal doctrines concerning the unbounded benefits of freedom of international trade, combined with neoliberal projects to reengineer the corporation as an arbitrary nexus of contractual obligations, rather than as a repository of production expertise. The MPS member Anne Krueger was brought into dialogue with her fellow member Ronald Coase, and the offspring was the flight of capital to countries such as China, India, and the Cayman Islands. The role of China as beneficiary, but simultaneously as part- time repudiator of the neoliberal globalized financial system, is a question that bedevils all concerned.

        While freedom of capital flows have not generally been stressed by neoliberals as salient causes of the crisis, they do manage to unite in opposition to capital controls as one reaction to the crisis.


        Neoliberals regard inequality of economic resources and political rights not as an unfortunate byproduct of capitalism, but a necessary functional characteristic of their ideal market system. Inequality is not only the natural state of market economies from a neoliberal perspective, but it is actually one of its strongest motor forces for progress. Hence the rich are not parasites, but a boon to mankind. People should be encouraged to envy and emulate the rich. Demands for equality are merely the sour grapes of the losers, or if they are more generous, the atavistic holdovers of old images of justice that must be extirpated from the modern mind-set. As Hayek wrote, “The market order does not bring about any close correspondence between subjective merit or individual needs and rewards.” Indeed, this lack of correlation between reward and effort is one of the major inciters of (misguided) demands for justice on the part of the hoi polloi, and the failure of democratic systems to embrace the neoliberal state, as discussed in Commandment 5, above. “Social justice” is blind, because it remains forever cut off from the Wisdom of the Market. Thus, the vast worldwide trend toward concentration of income and wealth since the 1990s is the playing out of a neoliberal script to produce a more efficient and vibrant capitalism.

        Here again we touch upon the recent crisis. This particular neoliberal precept dictates that the widely noted exacerbation of income inequality in the United States since 1980 cannot possibly have played a role in precipitating the crisis in any way. Indeed, attempts by the state to offset or ameliorate the trend toward inequality of wealth — especially through attempts to expand home ownership and consumer credit—become themselves, for neoliberals, major root causes of the crisis. This then gets translated into the preferred neoliberal story of the crisis, which attributes culpability to the Democrats by lodging blame for the housing bubble via securitization with Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.


        Corporations can do no wrong, or at least they are not to be blamed if they do. This is one of the stronger areas of divergence from classical liberalism, with its ingrained suspicion of power concentrated in joint stock companies and monopoly stretching from Adam Smith to Henry Simons. Neoliberals set out in the 1950s entertaining suspicions of corporate power, with the German ordoliberals especially concerned with the promotion of strong antitrust capacity on the part of the state. But starting with the University of Chicago law and economics movement, and then progressively spreading to treatments of entrepreneurs and the “markets for innovation,” neoliberals began to argue consistently that not only was monopoly not harmful to the operation of the market, but an epiphenomenon attributable to the misguided activities of the state and powerful interest groups. The twentieth-century socialist contention that capitalism bore within itself the seeds of its own arteriosclerosis (if not self-destruction) was baldly denied.

        By the 1970s, antitrust policies were generally repudiated in the United States, as neoliberals took the curious anomaly in American case law treating corporations as legal individuals and tended to inflate it into a philosophical axiom. Indeed, if anything negative was ever said about the large corporation, it was that separation of ownership from control might conceivably pose a problem, but this was easily rectified by giving CEOs appropriate “incentives” (massive stock options, golden handshakes, latitude beyond any oversight) and instituting market-like evaluation systems within the corporate bureaucracy, rectifying “agency problems.” Thus the modern “reengineering of the corpo ration” (reduced vertical integration, outsourcing supply chains, outrageous recompense for top officers) is itself an artifact of the neoliberal reconceptualization of the corporation.

        This had a direct bearing on the crisis, since it was used to argue against aspersions cast that many financial firms were “Too Big to Bail,” and that the upper echelons in those firms were garnishing dangerously high compensation packages. Nothing succeeds like market success, and any recourse to countervailing power must be squelched.


        The market (suitably reengineered and promoted) can always provide solutions to problems seemingly caused by the market in the first place. This is the ultimate destination of the constructivist orientation within neoliberalism. Any problem, economic or otherwise, has a market solution, given sufficient ingenuity: pollution is abated by the trading of “emissions permits”; inadequate public education is rectified by “vouchers”; auctions can adequately structure exclusionary communication channels; poverty-stricken sick people lacking access to health care can be incentivized to serve as guinea pigs for privatized clinical drug trials; poverty in underdeveloped nations can be ameliorated by “microloans”; terrorism by disgruntled disenfranchised foreigners can be offset by a “futures market in terrorist acts.” Suitably engineered boutique markets were touted as a superior method to solve all sorts of problems previously thought to be better organized by governments: everything from scheduling space shots to regulating the flow through airports and national parks. Economists made money by selling their nominal expertise in setting up these new markets, rarely admitting up front that they were simply acting as middlemen introducing intermediate steps toward future full privatization of the entity in question.

        The fascinating aspect of all this is how this precept was deployed in what seemed its most unpropitious circumstance, the erstwhile general failure of financial markets in the global economic crisis. One perspective on the issue is to recall that, in the popular Hayekian account, the marketplace is deemed to be a superior information processor, so therefore all human knowledge can be used to its fullest only if it is comprehensively owned and priced. This was deployed in a myriad of ways to suggest what might seem a string of strident non-sequiturs: for instance, some neoliberals actually maintained that the solution to perceived problems in derivatives and securitization was redoubled “innovation” in derivatives and securitization, and not their curtailment. Another variant on the Hayekian credo was to insist that the best people to clean up the crisis were the same bankers and financiers who created it in the first place, since they clearly embodied the best understanding of the shape of the crisis. The revolving door between the U.S. Treasury and Goldman Sachs was evidence that the market system worked, and not of ingrained corruption and conflicts of interest.


        The neoliberal program ends up vastly expanding incarceration and the carceral sphere in the name of getting the government off our backs. Although this might seem specious from the perspective of a libertarian, it is central to understanding the fact that neoliberal policies lead to unchecked expansion of the penal sector, as has happened in the United States. As Bernard Harcourt has explained in detail, however much Commandment 11 might seem to suggest that crime be treated as just another market process, neoliberalism has moved from the treatment of crime as exogenously defined within a society by its historical evolution, to a definition of crime as inefficient attempts to circumvent the market. The implication is that intensified state power in the police sphere (and a huge expansion of prisoners incarcerated) is fully complementary with the neoliberal conception of freedom. In the opinion of the neoliberal Richard Posner, “The function of criminal sanction in a capitalist market economy, then, is to prevent individuals from bypassing the efficient market.”

        This precept has some bearing on the unwillingness to pursue criminal prosecution against many of the major players in the global crisis. In this neoliberal perspective, there is also a natural stratification in what classes of law are applicable to different scofflaws: “the criminal law is designed primarily for the non-affluent; the affluent are kept in line, for the most part, by tort law.” In other words, economic competition imposes natural order on the rich, because they have so much to lose. The poor need to be kept in line by a strong state, because they have so little to lose. Hence, the spectacle of (as yet) no major financial figure outside of Bernie Madoff and Raj Rajnarathan going to jail because of the crisis, while thousands of families behind on their mortgages are turfed out into the street by the constabulary, is a direct consequence of this neoliberal precept.


        The neoliberals have struggled from the outset to have their political and economic theories do dual service as a moral code. First and foremost, it would appear that neoliberals worshipped at the altar of a deity without restraints. However, as Hayek once prophesized, “I am convinced that unless the breach between true liberal and religious convictions can be healed, there is no hope for a revival of liberal forces.” But his wish revealed only the antagonisms that percolated just below the surface of neoliberalism. As a consequence, the neoliberals were often tone-deaf when it came to the transcendental, conflating it with their epistemic doctrines concerning human frailty.

        The more sophisticated neoliberals understood this was rather thin gruel for many of their allies on the right; so from time to time, they sought to link neoliberalism to a specific religion, although they only ventured to do this sotto voce in their in-house publications:

        All that we can say is that the values we hold are the product of freedom, that in particular the Christian values had to assert them- selves through men who successfully resisted coercion by government, and that it is to the desire to be able to follow one’s own moral convictions that we owe the modern safeguards of individual freedom. Perhaps we can add to this that only societies which hold moral values essentially similar to our own have survived as free societies, while in others freedom has perished.

        Other neoliberals such as James Buchanan entertained the notion that a certain specific type of moral order would support a neoliberal state, or that morals could reduce the costs of rent-seeking losers throwing monkey wrenches into government. It took a lot of effort, and a fair bit of pussyfooting around the danger of alienating the partisans of one denomination (often in some other part of the world) by coquetting with different denominations or versions of religion, but the project of intellectual accommodation with the religious right and the theocons within the neoliberal framework has been an ongoing project, although one fraught with contradictions that have dogged the liberal project since the Enlightenment.”

        Skippy… its been a most entertaining experience to watch the machinations of above devotes defend the undefendable, eat their own heroes, change the goal posts which sit upon shifting sands, over some time, tho since the GFC is been a cracker.

      • Burg saying a thing like – freedom – does not make it real.

        Skippy… BTW government intervention for some time has been at the behest of the corporatist, you know the ones that sponsored the freedom and liberty shtick. Additionally the NAP in libertarianism has nothing to do with wars, aggression or force, its about property. The aforementioned acts are justifiable under the proviso of said property rights.

      • Well mate you never cease to amaze me!

        “The neoliberal program ends up vastly expanding incarceration and the carceral sphere in the name of getting the government off our backs. Although this might seem specious from the perspective of a libertarian, it is central to understanding the fact that neoliberal policies lead to unchecked expansion of the penal sector, as has happened in the United States”

        Thanks for the heads up on my personal views and their obvious flaws. I tend to disagree – but that would waste all the hard work and effort you have put into your obvious obsession with profiling ‘neoliberals’. Further, you have the gall to call out the’reds under the bed’ panic and constantly cite this nonsense.

        If one accused Libertarian disagrees with the above blurb – does that falsify the point of the rant?

        Or would you just attack his ‘politics’ more?

      • @8~,

        You are aware that post WWII libertarianism is a complete sham financed by corporatist through mouth organs like FEE – Volcker fund in the early stages, which has now grown to ludicrous proportions a la thinktankistan and lobbyists, which have effectively fire walled off the government from its citizens. Not that the old timey sort once contextualized in historical accuracy is any prettier or relevant in this day and age, completely different enviroment and reductive in light of advances in knowlage.

        Case in point, Gillard was caught out at a conference of national and international business representatives and clearly pointed out to the audience that she was “not beholden to populism” as PM. E.g. she had their interests first and foremost in mind, said behind close doors, and noone need to be reminded Tones loud and proud proclamation. Compound those observations by the sitting democratic president of the US trying to fast track the TTP et al with out rigorous examination by congress.

        Hate to be the one to tell you but libertarianism is nothing more than a self serving narrative cobbled together from our dim past, hence the multifaceted and fracture faces it presents, classical, neo, paleo, volunteerism, Marxist, ancap, etc, etc…. Heisenberg’s whole sovereign individual trope can be traced back to early Christianity as is property bequeaths rights by an act of divinity, which is a constant wrt AGW interference, not part of the plan.

        I note you patois and your retort of nonsense – rant as it does not conform to your commonsense.

        Skippy…. Attack? is that some kind of inference to attempted force, so much visceral paranoia its boarders on pathological.


      • Patois.. stop it skip.. you carve me up.

        My sense may be common – but it is my own – I don’t need you to break down its genesis.

        I can’t be the arbiter of who is more paranoid but if I had to bet – I’d be relaxed in my choice.

      • Your complete atomization as an individual is apparent, no need for consensus or checking for bias, ridged Kantian at its most intractable, at least he came out of his tree in the end.

        Skippy…. If information changes, does so your mind sir… [- – – -].

      • Even the glorious UN concedes their models are not correlating with reality.

        Climate models predicted a rate of global warming of 0.2℃/decade. The measured rate of global warming since 1974 was 0.171±0.034℃/decade. The climate models are at least as accurate as the measurement.

      • Agree the market is not all knowing, however its collective wisdom is greater than yours and the UN and anyother central figure. The market always knows better than a bunch of bureaucrats.
        But what is “markets”? what collective wisdom?

        Market based decision making is basically decision making by a large monopolistic market player, similar to decision making by a top bureaucrat. The slight difference between markets and regulatory bureaucracy only comes from appearance: big players are hiding behind the great idea of the invisible hand of market while bureaucrats are hiding behind the great idea of democracy. The first one is created to win over support from people who praise fairness and freedom, the other one to win support of people who praise altruism and humanity but ultimately both of them are created by the same people to setup a mirage of collective decision making. Reality is that ruling class on the top still makes all decisions, when they feel threatened they give a bit more to ordinary people, when they feel safe they take more for themself ….

    • I agree with you, but not in the sense you want.

      I agree that we should be skeptical of government, because honestly, Australia is a 1% emitter. It’s nothing in the pond against China and India (who are fucking disgusting and everyone should be outraged at), and I agree, I think sometimes it’s a waste for us to spend resources merely doing “gestures”.

      BUT – this is different. This is unbelievable ignorance and arrogance, if not flat out lies. Climate change is a real thing, yes, Australia can’t do shit about it, and doesn’t need to cripple itself until China and India start acting responsibly, but we should be doing SOMETHING. We shouldn’t be scientific Luddites, we should be investing in renewable energy so that we can become world leaders when the rest of the world finally switches over.

      When you have idiots who don’t even believe in climate change in charge, how are they going to provide for a future they don’t think is even happening?

      • nice use of language. I look forward to your comment soon being deleted. But you once again prove all our points. It is a gesture and your response is totally based on ideology and emotion – hence the inability to convey your argument without swearing

      • I wasn’t aware that Macrobusiness frowned on “swearing” in comments. If so, I won’t in the future. But to me it’s inconsequential.

        In any case, you said “Prove my points”

        My points were essentially:

        1. Australia is a small contributor to CO2:

        2. China and India – See above source

        3. We should be investing in renewables and not fossil fuels? Does that need a source? Really?

        I feel like your pedantically attacking my use of language, rather than anything I’ve actually said.

      • Hey no argument on points 1 and 2. This is my favorite part of all arguments on CC you just assume everyone thinks like you so therefore you do not have to justify your argument. Here is a novel idea let the market decide. But no you have to intervene because you and your assumptions know better. My personal belief is we will have nuclear fusion nutted in the next 10 to 15 years and we will wonder why we wasted $100 of billions on useless solar/wind/geothermal. Go ask the Spaniards and the Germans how their solar plants worked out for them, the Germans are now building Coal fired power stations again. Staying away from their solar powered disaster now that is obvious.

      • Australia not in the big league of emitters? Well no. All that we Strayans do is contribute to the emissions of others by exporting all that coal. FYI Newcastle port is said to handle more coal for export than any other port worldwide. Ninety percent of coal mining assets in Australia owned by overseas entities. Revenue to the State Government from those exports is said to be less than 3% of overall State revenues. Mines employ about 2% of working population (5% in Hunter Valley supposedly)
        Think about it. Much of the Hunter Valley ag land destroyed by mining. And for what?

    • @Heisenberg — hurray -another sceptic – – join the very small team 🙂

  25. So should we pay attention to this government business adviser’s opinion on science or not? I’m confused.

    Of course, a skeptic would probably go back to peer-reviewed science.

  26. “Why the mad hysteria?”

    Simple: Australia is the 2nd largest exporter of coal in the world, 70% of Australia’s electricity production comes from Coal and the UN is telling Australia it must move away from coal!

    Climate Change directly threatens the ‘Dumb countries’ only currently viable business model!

    • tsport100 you are making Newman’s very point “…the UN is telling Australia it must move away from coal!”
      You guys really make this too easy

    • For Broken Hill in Australia the four hottest in descending order were 1898, 1914, 1898 and 2003. This data straight from the Australian BoM:
      It is reliable data from a location where the infrastructure is largely unchanged since the measurements began. Measurements have been taken since the 1800s.

      You can get similar trends if you look at data from remote locations that are not significantly affected by expanding population.

      Ensure you get raw data. There are some examples where the data has been “corrected” and inevitably the past gets colder when data is corrected.

      It is reasonable that a good deal of the global warming is due to the building of infrastructure around measuring stations.

      In present times it is possible to get satellite temperature data which is possibly more accurate for the entire global average:

  27. I used to believe in climate change but I started questioning it because I couldn’t really find definitive evidence that the artic ice caps are really shrinking over the years. Can someone point me in the right direction and show me actual evidence of shrinking polar ice caps over the last 20 years, preferably photographic? Much appreciated.

    • Why photographic? Were you in the habit of regularly visiting the Arctic circle (conveniently located between…parts and…other parts of this blue marble) at one time, so that you would easily recognise the change, assuming there was one?

      • I just wanted to see an aerial map over time, but Chris’ chart looks more interesting. Chris, do you have a source for that chart?

      • It is more complicated than this. The way the earth sits relative to the sun changes every 300 years. Currently the arctic is closer to the sun than the antarctic, hence the arctic has decreased and the antarctic increased.

      • @Bastardized Heisenberg,

        Temp [energy] is just one feature of AGW, that you myopically focus on this one singular means of observation is evident of your lack of understanding when confronted with the multivariate problem that is AGW.

        Skippy…. self inflicted pigeonholing as it were… when that meme is unmaintainable… whats left… pointy hats in front of an entire world?

      • Currently the arctic is closer to the sun than the antarctic, hence the arctic has decreased and the antarctic increased.

        Antarctic sea ice has increased, but the land-based glaciers are calving at an incredible rate, far faster than has ever been documented before. This is the real danger, and what actually effects sea levels. Glaciers all over the world are melting at unprecedented rates.

      • Take a careful look at the chart and you will see that ice extent has recovered in the last two years. The linked image here is clearer in detail:
        This year sea ice extent is tracking about the same as the last three. That could change because the Arctic temperature has just fallen below the 25 year average for the first time this year:
        I am watching to see if the rate of decline slows this year in response.

        Snow accumulation in Greenland this year is still tracking above the 25 year average:

        None of these measurement matter though because whatever happens, hotter-colder, wetter-drier, more wind-less wind. more snow-less snow, more ice-less ice it will all be caused by the CO2 that humans put into the atmosphere. Not many people understand thermodynamics and that is why the CO2 story is so good. It has enough complexity and plausibility to fool the majority of people.

        Ultimately the only serious damage is being done to science. In my view the accelerated research into renewable energy sources is not a bad thing. I enjoy the benefits of the government subsidies so am not complaining. Australia is in the best possible location on the globe to benefit from these technologies. The greatest opportunity is to be fast followers with renewables. Learn from the mistakes that Germany has made and do it better while using the technology developed there, in China, Japan and the USA.

      • Sea ice and glacial ice are two completely different animals, one is seasonal and the other antiquarian stored water, additionally manifold mass differences e.g. sea ice is more a condition of seasonal weather pattens where glacial is more indicative of long term climatic changes.

        That’s not even getting into CO2 storage in oceans wrt acidity and resulting effects.

        Skippy…. funny how, to a fault, those that spread the denial – skeptic messaging all work for, or are dependent in some manner, to the continuation of such activity’s. Caveat emptor~~~

    • Check this out:

      “WINTER sea ice cover in the Antarctic has grown to its largest extent since satellite records began in the late 1970s, defying most climate models and muddying the waters of the global warming debate.

      The latest data from NASA’s satellites shows the winter sea ice cover around the frozen continent reached a record 19.47 million sq km last month. That beats last winter’s 19.44 million sq km — itself a record.

      According to NASA, it is 3.6 per cent higher than the average maximum between 1981 and 2010, with the sea ice cover in Antarctica growing at 1.5 per cent a decade.

      The data runs contrary to the projections of many climate-change models. It also contrasts with observations of this year’s Arctic summer minimum sea ice extent, which America’s National Snow and Ice Data Centre says was about 30 per cent below levels seen in the early 1980s.”

      • The second word in your cut and paste job is ‘sea’. Refer to Jason’s comment at 2:58pm/

      • @StatSailor, don’t shoot the messenger bro. I’m just trying to understand why contrary evidence exists. It doesn’t make sense to me. If you can explain it to my little brain please do so.

      • This is the difference wrt contribution to sea level:

        “Antarctic land ice is the ice which has accumulated over thousands of years on the Antarctica landmass itself through snowfall. This land ice therefore is actually stored ocean water that once fell as precipitation. Sea ice in Antarctica is quite different as it is ice which forms in salt water primarily during the winter months. When land ice melts and flows into the oceans global sea levels rise on average; when sea ice melts sea levels do not change measurably”

      • @statsailor, I was hoping you could explain to me why the sea ice has extended out.

      • @LemmeC
        @statsailor, I was hoping you could explain to me why the sea ice has extended out.
        Why don’t you read the link info for yourself. I see SS has given you the same link I did – most of the answers are there. All you have to do is read it.

      • @AlexD. Okay, I read it. Sounded convincing but when I tried to look for figure 2, it’s missing.

        “Estimates of recent changes in Antarctic land ice (Figure 2, bottom panel) show an increasing contribution to sea level with time, although not as fast a rate or acceleration as Greenland. Between 1992 and 2011, the Antarctic Ice Sheets overall lost 1350 giga-tonnes (Gt) or 1,350,000,000,000 tonnes into the oceans, at an average rate of 70 Gt per year (Gt/yr). Because a reduction in mass of 360 Gt/year represents an annual global-average sea level rise of 1 mm, these estimates equate to an increase in global-average sea levels by 0.19 mm/yr.”

      • I think there is conjecture why sea ice is increasing but there is no scientific explanation. It makes no sense to me why sea ice should be increasing when land ice is decreasing.

      • That environmental conditions don’t conform to your personal reasoning exercises has more to do with you conflating two different states of matter and their states over time.

        This site might help you in a more granular manner.

      • drsmithyMEMBER

        It makes no sense to me why sea ice should be increasing when land ice is decreasing.

        One reason might be that sea ice comes from seawater freezing and land ice come from snow falling.

        No idea whether or not this is actually true, just trying to highlight different mechanisms for ice formation.

  28. bottom line

    none of the religious fanatics posing as climate change experts forecasting doom and gloom is willing to forgo your own addictions to the modern lifestyle, which uses CO2

    there are bigger issues out there

    eg overfishing of the worlds oceans
    Indonesia ripping down beautiful rainforest at the rate of knots

    I have a different view….

    Not EVERY scientist is in agreement

    its the job of a scientist to be sceptical….

    remember when it was thought NO BACTERIA could ever be found in the human stomach?? it was in text books, proven beyond doubt…until it was proven not to be the case

    I keep an open mind

    • I never mentioned doom and gloom – another strawman. The possible ramifications of climate change are many, and there are numerous possible solutions & outcomes. That is a largely a political debate & one that you could contribute towards. In fact, you’d probably have more insights than me.

      In contrast to your hysterical, keyboard pounding anti-science missives, my point is that the earth is demonstrably warming (with our available data) and that the current scientific consensus is that human activity is strongly linked to that. The data underlying this consensus is some of the most heavily scrutinised data in the world – as it should be. There is no conspiracy. Getting scientists to agree on something is like herding cats…we disagree on many aspects of the data interpretation but almost all agree on the key points re: anthropogenic warming.

      Pointing out that science has been wrong in the past is not evidence for anything beyond the fact that science is, by design, self-correcting (unlike religion or your mindset).

      BTW, I know Barry Marshall & Robin Warren – don’t use H. pylori as a justification for your arguments against science…it actually makes the very opposite point. As technology changes, so does scientific insight. Folks like Barry & Robin are a rare breed that can make connections that ultimately overturn dogma – science is structured so that incorrect dogma *can* be overturned with sufficient proof. It can take time as the more extraordinary the claim, the more extraordinary the evidence needed.

      I’ll go back to my ivory tower now. Perhaps you’d like to insult me again?

      • Excellent post. All of the ‘scientific conspiracy’ types are unable to actually point to any scientific conspiracy that lasted for more than 5 years, anywhere, ever. And even then, the ones that did last for such a short time required the support of governments like Nazi Germany.

        I can imagine these people sitting on steps, saying ‘what did science ever do for us?’.

    • Dealing with climate change is an exercise in risk management. Given the information we have now, it is wise to mitigate. It’s not just me saying this. Major commodities dealers, and reinsurers are taking the same line.

      As for overfishing of the worlds oceans, Indonesia ripping down beautiful rainforest at the rate of knots, and overpopulation, did you know that taking effective action to reduce carbon emissions is not at odds with these otherwise laudable goals; I would go so far as to say it’s in alignment with them. Rainforest destruction removes carbon sinks (and reduces biodiversity, and ruins soils, and wrecks rivers); overfishing is just stupid from any long-term viewpoint no matter who you are; as for overpopulation – why not practice what you preach and top yourself first?

    • Agree with eqezyssell on that. One of the challenges that faces science in any of the base branches is the modelling and computing power to really make sense of the multi-faceted data that is needed to appropriately evaluate any natural system. When I did my PhD, the concept of aerobic-photosynthetic bacteria was considered an anomaly. Researchers in Tokyo and at UQ had discovered organisms (Erythrobacter and Porphyrobacter) that were shown to produce bacteriochlorophyll a under aerobic conditions in the late ’70’s and early ’80’s. It wasn’t until 89 that definitive research emerged to show that these organisms could not only produce bacteriochlorophyll but could utilise light energy through this to support growth. The problem for the research team was that these same bacteria under anaerobic conditions could ferment the exact sugars they produced. Indeed, analysis of a wide section of the anaerobic photosynthetic bacteria showed identical behaviour in the absence of light.

      Science can be viewed as a religion with self-correcting behaviours. My own research on organisms in the Antarctic (based on ice core samples) shows that climate change can and does occur and can occur very rapidly. To correlate it entirely to the actions of man is pushing things to say the least. To say we are having an impact is plausible from any scientific perspective, but to attribute everything we observe to man’s actions is non-sensical. It implies an understanding of the world that is far beyond anything we have thus far demonstrated. Think about our understanding of tornados and their formation. Research has been ongoing for years but we are yet able to accurately predict the exact path or touch down point for a tornado. This is a far simpler problem than understanding all the inputs that impact global climate change.

      That is not to say we are NOT having an impact, just spend a winter in Beijing to understand man’s impact on nature. Every advance in science is made through a constant challenge of the ingrained doctrines of the time and unwillingness to accept the status quo (Coles ads included). That the current discussion on climate change is happening is a good thing. Once a theory becomes dogma and all discussion stops, science and mankind lose.

  29. Ha ha ha ha! This is ‘evidence based policy’ at its best!

    You voted for it, Australia! Now you get to wear it. Let’s see what other bits of comedy gold these fruitcakes come out with. As Australians, we’ll get to know how South Africans felt under Thabo Mbeki.

    The next couple of years are going to be a wonderful opportunity for schadenfreude!

  30. 181 posts and we still have a 100% , cross cultural, cross political peak body consensus.

    Despite the all the money on the table to release the increasingly stranded coal and O&G assets.

    3d & co – has not defense to this – they just ignore specific points and questions. It’s like they just hear crickets when counter points are made.

    The wear fact sensitive sunglasses – that protect them the blindingly obvious counterpoints.

    Why can’t deniers just defend their position rationally and honorably?

  31. This thread’s a scream . Thanks Dan, H’berg, Lemme, 3d etc.& of course Maurice. I needed something lightweight for the evening commute after a long day.

    • It’s all so ridiculous that I don’t bother commenting anymore. Straya is becoming an international laughing stock thanks to this medieval government. Amusing to see all the paid denier trolls active here today … I wonder if their bankrollers realize that the argument is long lost, that it’s all over bar the shouting?

      • An international laughing stock now that one of our sandstone universities lacked the ticker to home the Lomborg centre. Portrays us as the intellectual backwater politically correct groupthink is turning us into.

        I intend to champion anti endowment at every opportunity.

      • It must hurt you that after 25 years you still can’t convince enough people that your cause is worth funding.

        Strange considering the global expansion in wealth and real science over the same time.

      • Lacked the TICKER!!

        The had the ticker to tell Abbot to fuck off with his sham BS discredited academic.

        What would you say if the Med school refused to home a wold renown homeopathy BS artist? Would that be lacking ticker too – or just intellectually rigorous?

        Lacking ticker and succumbing to group think is precise what you do 3d. I ask you a question – you ignore it. Absolutely gutless.

      • Seen Denmark’s energy prices?

        What does this have to do with Lomborg’s errors?

        Are you trying to imply that high energy prices mean you’re an intellectual backwater?

      • For no calculable positive outcome – Yes

        Even less excusable – Australian lives on top of a coal and gas field and it pays more for electricity than its energy export markets.

        An intellectual backwater

      • @8~

        Scale is your problem i.e. 23 million people on a continent comparable to the size of America. The scale up just to provide infrastructure is problematic and acerbated by privatization [bush fires due to poor line maintenance et al just to make pretty numbers for financial reporting].

  32. I ask the global warming religious fanatics this…

    What are you personally doing to change your impact on the environment?

    Do you use any fossil fuels?

    Have you used a plane before? How do you intend to travel in the future given that air travel emits so much carbon?

    Wha are y’all doing about your own little lives to not use any carbon?

    Carbon is clearly pure evil to most of you, so tell the rest of us how u are changing your lives to not use it, otherwise go back to your caves and turn off the lights whilst your at it

    • At $10 per comment, you’ve done pretty well for yourself today, mate. Onyer!

  33. The idea was conceived in the Prime Minister’s Office, with Mr Abbott and chief of staff Peta Credlin personally driving the decision to fund the centre, Fairfax Media confirmed.

    The final dodgy captain’s call? Please let it be so!

  34. Rtm…

    Sorry, I don’t follow the religious dogma of climate change

    I don’t get paid for squat, I just think y’all have been sucked in to this lie

    Why did Europe plunge into the little ice age in the 1400’s?

    And before that, the medieval warm period? What drove that? Vineyards flourished in the north of England. Did humans drive that?
    And before that, in the Bronze Age, the holocene period, where it was warmer than it is today?

    What drove that?

    And before that, in the ice age?

    Please comment specifically regarding these events, as to why these occured

    • Please comment specifically regarding these events, as to why these occured
      I think most would rather discuss this warming episode we’re in now which cannot be explained by solar forcing/Milankovitch cycles (which caused the other events you’ve mentioned).

    • 92bn tonnes of ice per year is a big number by human scale. In terms of the Antarctic it really does not register being approximately 0.00035% of the ice volume.

      When I see values this small I am highly sceptical of the result, knowing that any method of measurement has errors. A little bias here and there and you can get whatever result you want.

      Lets give it a 100 years or even a 1000 years and take another measurement of the volume.

      Change in ice volume is natural variation. Nothing to do with CO2 increasing. That is a well contrived and increasingly embellished fairy tale for the gullible.

      I am not living in hope that my property, presently 30m above MSL, will be water frontage any time soon.

      • I see you never took up the suggestion to seek a more broader investigation wrt arctic ice.

        Skippy…. Temp and Ice are just two variants of a much larger investigation, that some can only focus on the two, indicates a complete lack of perspective. Sort a like neoclassicals and their dramas with capital and labour.

      • From a friend of mine in the states…

        “when the Pine Island Glacier (PIG) uncorks, and it is melting at a faster than previously expected rate, it is what holds back a good part of the western ice sheet. Should be good for several feet of sealevel change. A friend that works various Antarctic camps during the sience seasons is not a big booster for FL coastal real estate.

        This is why PIG is being intently studied. One of those boiling frog stories that isn’t news until it’s spectacular news.”

      • The link you offered confirms the increasing extent of sea ice in the arctic. This data as listed in the link you offered:

        2006: 25,191 km3
        2007: 23,803 km3
        2008: 25,159 km3
        2009: 25,074 km3
        2010: 24,275 km3
        2011: 22,677 km3
        2012: 23,365 km3
        2013: 23,332 km3
        2014: 23,104 km3
        2015: 24,388 km3

        Bottomed in 2011, now increasing. Similar to the Antarctic sea ice, which has been increasing in extent for some years.

      • Your completely missing the wide variances in the composition of sea ice and its seasonal vs glacial’s historical trends and resulting out comes. Your fixation on size alone, in short timelines without inclusion of all the other data points as some qualifier is erroneous i.e. sea ice by its self is not indicative of long term climate factors, its weather only. Glaciers globally are and have been relentlessly on retreat for some time, sea ice is regional.

        Seems you have a bad case of bias conformation seeking, ideologically fueled imo.

        You should have expanded your inquire provided in the post. The first two charts and comments should help you flesh it out more accurately.

        “As expected, there haven’t been any big changes in the past couple of weeks, and so some of last year’s rebound has been transferred to the start of this melting season. Some of it, not all of it, as the difference was much larger at the end of November. It also seems that the bulk of this difference is situated in the Central Arctic.

        This means that we most probably won’t be seeing a complete melt-out this melting season (in case anyone was expecting that), but at the same time heavy losses outside of the Central Arctic are possible, which means 2015 could easily go low and break records. This, of course, depends on short-term conditions, starting with the amount of melt ponds during May and June, followed by weather conditions during July and August.”

        Skippy…. sorry to say but your analytical skills could use some work.

      • I now understand what you getting at – when extent of sea ice is falling in the arctic it is due to me putting CO2 into the atmosphere. When the sea ice is rising it is due to weather.

        The situation in antarctic is different. There when sea ice is expanding it is due to me putting CO2 in the atmosphere causing glaciers to melt, cooling the water thereby increasing the ice extent. When the antarctic sea ice is falling it is also due to me putting more CO2 into the atmosphere. We cannot blame the weather here. No matter what happens it is only the CO2 that I put into the atmosphere that causes these changes.

        I now clearly understand your reasoning.

      • You circular logic is a factor of your inadequate analytical skills – confusing simplistic reasoning as logic when applied to dynamic systems.

        Skippy… Simples for you… temp is energy, physical stuff is themosinks [air, water, land, et al] more energy more stored potential, more potential more stuff happens. Some of this stuff takes awhile do to mass, where in more unrestricted environments the transmission can be sudden and violent. BTW humans have been terraforming the planet since Ag. on an increasing basis, local and regional effects are well documented. So the whole shtick about us being unable to influence climate is cultist wankery.

        PS. 3B on one desalination plant alone is not chump change with expected profits far on the horizon in a 3rd world nation w/ expected social tensions rising.

      • @rick
        Antarctic sea ice has increased in the WINTER months due to climate change in spite of higher mean global temps. The reasons for this include:

        1) Larger summer land ice melt + greater precipitation reduces salinity of the ocean surface. Come winter and 24 hour a day darkness, this fresher water more readily freezes (due to higher freezing point)

        2) A warmer southern ocean causes air to rise and draw cool air from the Antarctic interior over the sea. This is why the Katabatic winds have been amplified and many coastal locations in Antarctica are recording record low winter temps. This further amplifies freezing occurring due to 1)

        3) The southern polar vortex is intensifying and contracting as a consequence of a larger temp differential between Antarctica and the southern ocean + the upper and lower atmosphere. Changes in ozone levels and GHG have been contributing factors to this. As a consequence of the vortex intensifying in the winter months, the strong polar winds are further amplified and this aids in the surface freezing and the accumulation (“piling”)of sea ice in some areas.

        All of this info has been known for years and much of it is in the links I have posted elsewhere in this topic. There is still debate about aspects of these influences among scientists and their relative contributions to the growth of winter sea ice. Hopefully my rushed summary might make sense to those genuinely interested.

      • I was simply restating your logic used in the earlier post. If you view it as circular then so be it,

        When there is more sea ice in the Arctic it is the weather. When there is less sea ice in the Arctic is due to my CO2 production. So weather causes more ice and CO2 causes less ice; simple logic.

        On the other hand whether sea ice is increasing or decreasing in the antarctic it is due to the CO2 I produce. Weather does not play a role in the extent of sea ice in Antarctica. My CO2 production is the only factor.

      • Change in ice volume is natural variation. Nothing to do with CO2 increasing. That is a well contrived and increasingly embellished fairy tale for the gullible.
        Your post to Skippy’s initial post on Antarctica. I think I have spelled out some pointers well enough on how sea ice can increase in a warming world.

        When there is more sea ice in the Arctic it is the weather. When there is less sea ice in the Arctic is due to my CO2 production. So weather causes more ice and CO2 causes less ice; simple logic.
        On the other hand whether sea ice is increasing or decreasing in the antarctic it is due to the CO2 I produce. Weather does not play a role in the extent of sea ice in Antarctica. My CO2 production is the only factor.

        Given Skippy (and myself and many others) have been clear that CO2 influences the climate, can you see the problem with your opaque and wavering position? I can. It is unwise to rely on a small sample of years in a debate like this. Similarly, re the Arctic, an increase in ice over a small time frame from a base that is an all time record minimum is not grounds for chest thumping that all. Your whole argument smacks of confirmation bias and lacks balance.

      • AlexD it is not a matter of you or skippy being clear on CO2 influencing the environment. You need to demonstrate a plausible means of it actually influencing the climate in some way. The models are based on correlations. They are simply projections of a heating period in the global temperature records from the 1950s to the 1990s. These records are highly biased by infrastructure development around weather stations in highly populated locations during that period.

        CO2 has a minuscule impact on the global temperature. All the rest is window dressing for the gullible. Look at skippy’s silly reference:
        “Antarctica is melting faster than ever before — and the result will be devastating

        Read more:”

        You could imagine the response the article would get if the headline read:
        NASA finds Antarctic land ice diminished at an annual rate of 0.00035% over the last decade.

        Instead it is sensationalised to cause alarm. It is aimed at ensuring the ongoing funding for the space mission.

        I know by the information you supply you are regurgitating what you read without actually understanding it. You do not understand what you are posting.

        For you own benefit go to any remote temperature recording location in Australia with a record going back a century or more and look at the trend. I will make it easy for you. Start at this site:
        Select temperature; select a location then find stations. Scroll through those until you see records that go back beyond 1920. Then bring up the table and plot the annual average. If you want to get more serious you can download it and do your own regression as I have done for Broken Hill:
        The data from large population centres is highly influenced by growing infrastructure so the remote locations are more reliable over the long run.

        If these trends were used to correlate the CO2 sensitivity in the models the models would be more accurate in that they would not show any correlation. They would still lack accurate accounting for all the other factors that affect climate. However scientist know a null result spells disaster for ongoing funding. If you want to keep the project going you need to prove the hypothesis at least plausible.

      • I know by the information you supply you are regurgitating what you read without actually understanding it. You do not understand what you are posting.
        Actually I have put what I read into my own words and tried to simplify it as I do have a much better grasp of the science than you.

        These records are highly biased by infrastructure development around weather stations in highly populated locations during that period.
        and you think BOM/IPCC/CSIRO etc doesn’t know this and corrects for it? lol

        The data from large population centres is highly influenced by growing infrastructure so the remote locations are more reliable over the long run.
        As I said above, this is known and corrected for.

        For you own benefit go to any remote temperature recording location in Australia with a record going back a century or more and look at the trend. I will make it easy for you. Start at this site:
        Select temperature; select a location then find stations. Scroll through those until you see records that go back beyond 1920. Then bring up the table and plot the annual average. If you want to get more serious you can download it and do your own regression as I have done for Broken Hill:
        The data from large population centres is highly influenced by growing infrastructure so the remote locations are more reliable over the long run.

        Good lord, that is a deeply flawed methodology. Nice cherry picked data mate. I refer you back to my “confirmation bias” point.

        No offence Rick but, given these comments it is ironic you tell me I know nothing and then spell out a methodology that a) is hopelessly flawed as it essentially lends itself to cherry picking and b) is clearly ignorant about the processes BOM uses to correct for the effects of urban heat islands (which is what you are talking about) and other factors. Your line of reasoning and approach is little different from Dr Marohasy’s long discredited BOM gate hysteria. Like her, I have my doubts that the station you mention (ie: Broken Hill) is selected purely by coincidence. So I will leave you with the letter BOM sent to Dr Marohasy which has links to various resources, data and methodologies used by BOM. . It might interest you to know that there is a homogenisation process that helps corrects for errors and that data from large urban centres is omitted from aggregate calculations due to the effects of urban heat islands. In short, it is the aggregate, homogenised data that gives a more reliable account of the actual temp trends.

        In summary, your approach is deeply flawed. You should leave the analysis of climate data to the pros mate.

      • AlexD you are being roped in by this homogenisation nonsense from the BoM. You can do your own research on actual data but you would prefer to take in the spin from the BoM. Broken Hill was but one example of a long unbroken record. Take some initiative and look through as many remote locations as you can find. It takes maybe 30 seconds a site. You will soon get the picture. It was hotter in the 1880s and 1920 compared with present times across Australia.

        If the climate models were calibrated with “unhomogenised” data from remote sites over a longer time from than 40 years 1950 to 1990 they would be predicting cooling from CO2.

      • If the climate models were calibrated with “unhomogenised” data from remote sites over a longer time from than 40 years 1950 to 1990 they would be predicting cooling from CO2.
        ROFLMFAO. The unhomogenised aggregate data from BOM shows a stronger warming trend.

      • Do your own analysis as I have suggested and you will identify a cooling trend. The BoM homogenised data predominantly cools the past and warms the present.

      • I think I will pass on your dodgy “cherry picking” method. Quite happy with the aggregate approach used by professional forecasting bodies.

      • AlexD In a few hours of your own effort you can verify what I am saying. Of course the raw data will be going up overall because readings are dominated by data from populated areas. The “homogenisation” mainly affects the remote locations where there is little change in surroundings and the “corrections” predominantly make the past cooler and the present warmer. The BoM response does not address this specific issue it is a generalised response. The same homogenisation processes are used worldwide and they invariably produce the same result for remote locations with the past getting cooler and the present getting warmer.

        You need to get a touch of scepticism with information from authorities with a funding interest in hyping climate change. I am locked in for the next 10 years to benefit from the scam so I no longer have any to gain from the scam. As the globe cools with the sun going into low activity the CO2 fairy tale will become increasingly apparent:

      • Rick you really are a troll…

        Nicola Scafetta

        Ph.D., Physics, University of North Texas. [1]


        Nicola Scafetta is a research scientist at Duke University Physics Department. He is known for proposing a phenomenological theory of climate change, claiming that oscillations induced by solar changes and other astronomical influences can affect climate.

        According to his theory, which he presented to the EPA in a presentation titled “Climate Change and its Causes, a Discussion about some Key Issues,” we would be facing an imminent cooling period. [2]

        However, Scafetta’s theory has been disputed by other scientists. [3]
        Stance on Climate Change

        “At least 60% of the warming of the Earth observed since 1970 appears to be induced by natural cycles which are present in the solar system.” [4]
        Key Quotes

        “If climate is as sensitive to solar changes as the above phenomenological findings suggest, the current anthropogenic contribution to global warming is significantly overestimated.” [5]

        Key Deeds

        June 2011

        Scafetta was a speaker at the Heartland Institute’s Sixth International Conference on Climate Change. [6]

        February 26, 2009

        When the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency called for alternative views on climate change, three skeptics presented: Richard Lindzen, Jean Lind and Nicola Scafetta.

        In his presentation, Scafetta suggests that “a significant portion of climate change is natural and linked to changes of solar activity.”and also discusses “the possibility of an imminent global cooling.” [2]

        His findings have circulated through the skeptical science community, and on skeptical blogs such as WUWT (Watts Up With That).

        December 2006

        Scafetta was the co-author of “Phenomenological solar signature in 400 years of reconstructed Northern Hemisphere temperature,” a paper widely quoted by climate skeptics.

        Many researchers (PDF) in the field have viewed Scafetta’s claims as being incorrect, and his papers have also been debunked by scientists at RealClimate. [7]

        It appears that Scafetta refused to release the code to the software he used in this study. This meant that his results could not be replicated by climate scientists. [8]

        Science and Public Policy Institute (SPPI) — Scafetta published his paper, “Climate Change and Its Causes” (PDF) with SPPI.


        May of Scafetta’s skeptical opinion articles and publications were published by organizations known for doubting the existence of climate change (including the Heartland Institute, and the Science and Public Policy Institute).

        Skippy…. every single link and opinion you provided always goes back to some far right wing loon pond ideological think tank like cato or heritage et al e.g. its so biased… its payed for….. i.e. outcome seeking…

      • It’s worse than trolling, skippy, it’s greed. He’s paid by his masters to disseminate doubt, to protect their outsize profits.

        You and I see through it, but lots of punters here cannot. That’s why it continues. 😡

      • As noted many posts earlier I am profiting from the scam. All my household energy for the foreseeable future is free or even making money from it:

        That does not mean I have to believe or promote the fairy tale about man made CO2 causing dramatic warming.

        I understand thermodynamics and the way the atmosphere regulates climate. I also know that solar activity and global temperature correlate well. I know we have just been through two solar cycles of high activity and are now in a lower activity stage. I know that climate models do not make significant provision for solar activity – they only consider the broad spectrum not the high energy component and nothing with regard to solar wind. I know that the model calibrations that assumed CO2 drives climate are based on calibrations done during rising solar activity. I know that globally air temperature has not increased since 1998.

        The climate models have proven to be poor at forecasting temperature. They are primitive in terms of the complexity of climate and incorrectly calibrated for the influence of CO2.

        I have given you sources for temperature data in Australia and globally so you can do your own analysis and draw your own conclusions. With an ounce of skepticism and some analytical ability you soon realise how gullible you are in accepting what so-called authorities promote about climate change. I know a null result ends funding for a scientific study so anyone involved in climate research always want to prove their hypothesis correct. The current hypothesis is man made CO2 causes climate disruption. Global warming is no longer the meme because places have got colder. Climate change is no longer the meme because the weather has become more stable. So we move to climate disruption because it can mean anything.

        Headlines are made to grab attention and scare monger. That is how the authors get attention. I look behind the headlines. Is an annual loss of Antarctic ice of 0.00035% really measurable and if so is it anything like a crisis.

      • I was happily going along with the fairy tale until a CSIRO physicists, who lost his job because his results contradicted the CO2 hypothesis, piqued my interest. I then started my own research and analysis and found the myriad of flawed assumptions that lead to the wrong conclusion.

        Weather models cannot forecast temperature within 1 degree for more than a week ahead. Why would climate models be able to forecast any better a century ahead.

        My suggestion to anyone with analytical ability to look beyond the headlines is undertake their own research and where they have the ability analyse the data.

      • Rick
        I would imagine BOM has better things to do with its resources than to respond to every baseless suggestion that they are manipulating data for devious reasons (sadly I know they do waste resources on this but, that’s life in the web age for ya). I’m sure if the sun did cause the warming they would still be paid to model the effects and likely impacts. This fantasy conspiracy theory you and your ilk have cooked up is rubbish and your reliance on known crackpots and flawed methodologies to attack climate experts illustrates clearly who has the credibility problem.

        My suggestion to anyone with analytical ability to look beyond the headlines is undertake their own research and where they have the ability analyse the data.
        ….and anyone with an ounce of analytical ability can punch a bus size hole in your methodology – not to mention your sources.

        As for your suggestion about looking at the data myself, when I see credible evidence that manipulation has occurred (which you haven’t proven with your cherry picking method), I might. Incidentally, if checking data is what floats your boat, I recommend you randomly pick half a dozen stations that are part of the ACORN network from in and around the Kimberly region and do a comparison of the data sets. I’m sure the problems with cherry picking data will be pretty obvious to you by the end of that process.
        PS: By the way, I have my doubts about what you’ve said about yourself and your friend from the CSIRO. By all means tell me who your friend is though. It would enable me to check up on the story.

      • The physicist is Warren Stannard – not a friend or acquaintance but have mutual connection through a sporting club.

        He has written a short book on his experiences and his work on atmospheric physics:
        “Controlling the Climate, the New Science of Global Warming”

      • When deniers have to cite terminated, disgruntled employees harboring smouldering grudges as their proof of anything at all, you know the game is up. Funny stuff.

  35. Just going to drop in for a shoutout to the paid astroturfers who dump fact free shit on MB daily. You’re part of the reason I hardly read the comments section anymore. I feel justified in my practice of avoiding it now, moreso than before.

  36. What is appalling is that Maurice Newman holds such views, views which show he doesn’t look at the facts or balance of probabilities; and this man holds the ear of Tony Abbott and, presumably, others in the Govt. That Australian Business is burdened with such narrow, prejudiced and uninformed man is shocking. No wonder our economy is performing so badly, with woeful levels of innovation and investment. I suggest everyone contacts their MP, and tells them that they have no confidence in the Govt that engages in such narrow and muddle headed thinking.

  37. This paragraph is off the IPCC web site:
    “The reason the Earth’s surface is this warm is the presence of greenhouse gases, which act as a partial blanket for the longwave radiation coming from the surface. This blanketing is known as the natural greenhouse effect. The most important greenhouse gases are water vapour and carbon dioxide. The two most abundant constituents of the atmosphere – nitrogen and oxygen – have no such effect. ”

    The statement about nitrogen and oxygen having no effect is absolute nonsense. Anyone with the slightest knowledge of thermodynamics will know, or can work out, that the atmospheric lapse rate is primarily determined by the specific heat of all the gases combined, with oxygen and nitrogen dominating, and the latent heat of water vapour under the influence of gravity.

    Look at the diagram on the same page – since when has a colder atmosphere been able to radiate to a hotter earth. So-called back radiation is just more nonsense. Anyone with slightest understanding of thermodynamics can pick these flaws.

    • Comedy gold. Everything you’ve said has already been debunked by scientists. The greenhouse effect is a well know, well studied and can be replicated in a laboratory fairly easily (heck even Mythbusters did it). The confidence of predictions re man made global warming has only increased in recent years because, according to our own Bureau of Meteorology, temperatures are only increasing at lower levels of the atmosphere (troposphere) where the CO2 collects (due to heavier mass than air) and not the upper levels of the atmosphere where it is cooling (see “what is causing warming” here So the empirical data gathered demonstrates current global warming is occurring largely as a result of greenhouse gasses like CO2 and these are a result of human activity.

      Oh I almost forgot Rick, you might also appreciate the BOM link above for another reason. See “Is Australia’s annual mean temperature record contaminated by urban warming?”

    • Now this is just getting sad.

      Nick Anthony Fiorenza lunarplanner. com, the same guy that does –

      Nick Anthony Fiorenza

      I have been drawn to the heavens, the Earth and to the unseen forces of nature since childhood. Spending a great deal of time under the heavens for extended periods throughout my life led me to realize how all life unfolds in attunement to the natural lunar, planetary and cosmic cycles, and how we are not separate from but are an integral part of this grand cosmic symphony.

      I have a background in research, development, engineering and production of diagnostic medical instrumentation, including ultrasound and nuclear medical imaging. I have also worked with alternative healing modalities, light and sound technologies, bio-energetics, astro-cartography, and astronomical earthgrid-mapping. Along with this, I have an interest in music, art, architecture, organic living, technical writing, and graphic design. To me, art and science are inseparable as is consciousness and physical reality.

      All of this led to teaching meditational techniques, nutiritional cleansing programs, how to live in attunement to the lunar cycles, sidereal astrology, and related topics. I published an article in 1995 in a New Sciences Conference proceedings about Earth’s Precessional Cycle and the evolutionary transition occurring now in that cycle revealed by Earth’s Precessional Cross. This led to authoring – an amalgamation of astronomy, sidereal and synodic astrology, esoteric science, and philosophy, which emphasizes the importance of living in attunement to the natural cosmic cycles of life and to Mother Earth.

      Skippy… quite the grab bag of stuff all blended together, astronomy and synodic astrology, esoteric science [head desk]…. or as some called it…. make it up as you go…

    • Newbie, is that not just a little bit kooky? Science it ain’t. Why would you try and seed doubt on the science of august bodies that R2M mentioned, and many more, and instead proffer tragic embarrassments like lunarplanner?

    • Newbie – there is definitely a connection

      “There is a recent report, “The Effects of Solar Variability on Earth’s Climate,” available from the National Academies Press. A NASA press release entitled Solar Variability and Terrestrial Climate provides a good overview. The punchline is:

      There is, however, a dawning realization among researchers that even these apparently tiny variations can have a significant effect on terrestrial climate. A new report issued by the National Research Council (NRC), “The Effects of Solar Variability on Earth’s Climate,” lays out some of the surprisingly complex ways that solar activity can make itself felt on our planet.

      Note, this report was published early Jan 2013. Something else the IPCC ignored.”

      As Newman notes, the overriding ideological imperative of IPCC tarnishes the scientific impulse. I strongly expect the situation to change over the coming years as IPCC will continue to lose credibility if it persists in promoting the more alarmist (and consistently wrong) activist element.

      • What is the “ideological imperative of IPCC” 3d1k? Just popping off with vacuous projections is the realm of the ideologue actually, paint anyone not conforming to your stripes narrative as sneaky deceptive bad sorts. So far on that note your stripe is batting a 100%

        Hay when even large cap corporations are taking action, in “self interest”, the cover is getting pretty thin and at some point anything your stripe says will be ignored – completely out of hand.

        Skippy… if history is any guide… some might just want to hunt such sorts down…

      • I strongly expect the situation to change over the coming years as IPCC will continue to lose credibility if it persists in promoting the more alarmist (and consistently wrong) activist element.

        I’ve logged that one for posterity. I’ll be sure to quote it back to you in a few years, with great satisfaction

  38. actually there are a few of these sites out there … but I don’t know how to tell the truth from the lies….

    • It’s easy to tell truth from lies. For the truth, go to sites like CSIRO, BOM, NASA, NOAA etc.

      Keep away from anyone and anything that tells you there is a conspiracy, the scientists are all wrong, etc.

      Dead simple.

    • The truth is the truth hasn’t gotten out there.

      Population growth is Australia’s biggest environmental issue by a long way. Flannery said we can sustain 12 million maximum yet, all he’s quoted on is carbon. It’s a conspiracy alright, by LNP, Labor and particularly Greens that pretend to champion the environment while doing nothing of the sort.

    • newbie – take a discerning look at actual temperature data. Choose locations that have long records and are in remote locations. They are least affected by population expansion in built-up areas.

      Understand how scientific bodies get research funds and read what they promote with a good dose of skepticism.

      The better educated you become on the topic of climate disruption due to man made CO2 the more you will come to understand it is a fairy tale for the gullible.

      • Understand how scientific bodies get research funds

        Newbie, you are far better off understanding how companies that have anything to lose by emissions abatement are protecting their profits by hiring unscrupulous people to pollute forums like this with conspiracy theories.

        Professor Bardi says:

        ….. you have to understand that in America there are two different types of science. There’s science that is profitable for corporations, which is good and righteous and rock solid. That’s the Smartphone, the water heater, the GPS, the 700 channels on the 62 inch flat screen, the boner pills, and so on and so on. And then there’s the science that costs corporations money, which is fraudulent, con-artist mumbo jumbo. Under that second definition are things like climatology, pollution measurements, oceanography, and other disciplines that might fuck up the profit margins of energy producers and manufacturers.

  39. There is some dedicated trolling and counter trolling going on in this thread.

    One of the reasons I want to stay alive is to see how this global warming malarky turns out: some people are going to end up looking very stupid either way

    • Dedication usually comes at a price, but I’m not paid. Draw your own conclusions about the other side

    • AGW is the culmination of – all human activity – that only a few factors are mainstream talking points has more to do with the MSM and flat out “it ain’t so mobs” [its not in our cannons or does not fit our ideological narrative posses muddying the waters] than it is about the multidisciplinary scientific endeavor to collect and analyze the data, w/ cross referencing and peer review.

      Hence why the “it ain’t so mobs” faux reasonableness wrt pollution et al as their position becomes more untenable, do to the scope and size of the evidence contrary to their opinion. Environmental controls and regulation are easily gamed or down right ignored on a piece by piece basis or politically white washed. What scares them about Temp is it has no boarders or ownership attached, this completely screws with the libertarian mind set and its system matrix, huge spanner in its works. For others more esoterically minded its the same as it diminishes its claims and as such its validity.

      Skippy…. disingenuous dialog should be pointed out and if persistent treated accordingly…. with disdain and given some of its own medicine.

      • Skippy, I suspect there are fewer here motivated by libertarian principles than you think

  40. afreckliMEMBER

    hahaha, nice one Dan the Man, what makes your post so bad, is that you think you’ve read up sooo much, and that your so clever with your uni degrees, when in reality your arguments are flawed and show a pathetic understanding of climate change. So not only do you have absolutely no idea, you unfortunately think you do. I think it’s another case of stupid people not realising that they are stupid.