A Question For Next Debate: How Will the US Catch Up With the Clean Power Plan?

The US is already behind in its agreed to commitment to clean power

A study just out in Nature climate Change suggests that the US is already behind in its commitments to reduce the use of fossil fuel as an energy source, and the concomitant release of climate-warming greenhouse gasses into the atmosphere.

The paper, by Jeffery Greenblatt and Max Wei, says:

Current intended nationally determined contributions (INDCs)are insufficient to meet the Paris Agreement goal of limiting temperature change to between 1.5 and 2.0◦C above pre-industrial levels, so the effectiveness of existing INDCs will be crucial to further progress. Here we assess the likely range of US greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in 2025 and whether the US’s INDC can be met, on the basis of updated historical and projected estimates. We group US INDC policies into three categories reflecting potential future policies, and model 17 policies across these categories. With all modelled policies included, the upper end of the uncertainty range overlaps with the 2025 INDC target, but the required reductions are not achieved using reference values. Even if all modelled policies are implemented, additional GHG reduction is probably required; we discuss several potential policies.

The authors note that we can reach the targets, if we do something about it soon. There is time. The main problem seems to be methane, emissions of which will be higher than previously estimated. Chris Mooney talked to the authors, reports that here, and notes:

Earlier this year, the U.S. EPA increased its estimate for how much methane is being emitted by the oil and gas sector, and by the U.S. overall, in recent years. The new study has more or less done something similar.

“We made some corrections to the 2005 and 2025 estimates for methane,” says Greenblatt. In particular, he said, in 2005 these changes added 400 million additional tons of carbon dioxide equivalents emitted as methane.

Greenblatt emphasized that assumptions of higher methane emissions aren’t the only reason that the U.S. could miss its goals, but that it’s a significant one. “An increasing amount of methane emissions is part of the story,” he said.

Another problem, of course, is the yahoos who live in conservative states, the self-interested fossil fuel industry, and presidential candidate Donald Trump. These nefarious actors are trying to force the US EPA Clean Power Plan out of existence because, well, I guess they want to see all of our children grow up in a post apocalyptic world.

John Upton at Climate Central notes:

Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has embraced the fight against global warming started by President Obama. Republican nominee Donald Trump has vowed to end it, such as by disbanding the EPA and abandoning international commitments.

Polluting industries and conservative states are suing the EPA in an attempt to overturn its new power plant rules, arguing that the agency overstepped its legal boundaries. The rules haven’t taken effect yet, but they’re the linchpin of American climate policy.

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit will hear opening arguments in the case Tuesday, with an eventual ruling likely from the Supreme Court. A judicial appointment by the next president could tip the Supreme Court against or in favor of environmental regulations, such as the Clean Power Plan.

So, the question I'd love to see asked in the next Presidential Debate is this: "A recent peer reviewed study indicates that the US is not on target to meet the promised reductions in greenhouse gas emissions. This is mainly due to methane release being greater than previously thought, but other factors matter as well. What will you do as President to get us back on track?"

More about the Clean Power Plan:

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"How Will the US Catch Up With the Clean Power Plan?" The answer is obvious: it will not. Perhaps you meant "How could the USA....." etc.

This cracks me up:

"Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has embraced the fight against global warming started by President Obama."

Yeah, started by Obama. LOL!

By Desertphile (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

The clean power plan is not authorized under existing law.

This is being hashed out in the courts right now and it is very likely the act will be ruled invalid.

To do what the act wants you need a new law - which President Obama didn't get out of congress - so he instead tried to implement it with an EPA rule, which is probably invalid.

Bottom line - if you want to start regulating CO2 emissions, you need a new law - you cannot just use the old ones.

The clean power plan, no matter how great some think it is, is an invalid plan if it goes beyond the current EPA laws (which I think it does).

With CFC's, there was a treaty, which was ratified, which gave the EPA jurisdiction.

Here we have nothing to support the plan except a naked assertion of power.

We will see if this plan was a good idea once the courts are done ruling on its legality.

I think it would be much better to focus on building as many 4th generation nuclear power plants as quickly as possible to provide baseload power which doesn't produce CO2.

But that is just one person's opinion.

"Bottom line – if you want to start regulating CO2 emissions, you need a new law – you cannot just use the old ones."

Why did the hyper-conservative United States Supreme Court state the existing laws are enough?

By Desertphile (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

In reply to by RickA (not verified)

I'm starting a company. I'll be located upwind of RickA's house. My company will have to release hydrogen cyanide gas as a byproduct, but since there's not a specific law regulating hydrogen cyanide emissions, it can't be controlled by an EPA rule, since RickA says that's "probably invalid".

So RickA will need a new law, and cannot just use the old ones to try to prevent my company from poisoning his family. (In this Congressional environment, good luck RickA. I think it would be much better for you to focus on investing in gas masks.)

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

"I’m starting a company. I’ll be located upwind of RickA’s house. My company will have to release hydrogen cyanide gas as a byproduct...."

And if RickA doesn't like he (i.e., he hates freedom), he can damn well leave the USA!

By Desertphile (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Brainstorms (not verified)

RickA will try to make the bullshit argument that HCN is toxic, and so the EPA can regulate its emissions, then make the claim that CO2 is "harmless" and therefore the EPA cannot regulate it. Of course, the truth is that both these gases will do him and his children harm -- just at different rates -- and the EPA's regulation of CO2 as a "toxic pollutant" is perfectly valid and within their purview.

The difference is that dealing with the CO2 threat imposes an "inconvenience" to him personally, so he'd rather cause millions to suffer rather than have to make a small compromise to his "cherished lifestyle".

RickA doesn't hate freedom, except to the extent that it encompasses anyone else's freedoms: Freedom from gun violence, freedom from environmental destruction, freedom to have a life in the future, etc.

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

Desertphile said "Why did the hyper-conservative United States Supreme Court state the existing laws are enough?"

They didn't.

What they did was rule that the EPA had to decide if CO2 was a pollutant. The EPA ruled it was. This will be overturned at some point - because the EPA relied on other peoples science, when by law they are supposed to do their own.

Also, CO2 is not a pollutant as that term is used by the EPA - in that it doesn't cause medical health harm to humans. Like lead or mercury, etc.

The EPA might as well start regulating O2 or H20 or Nitrogen.

Regulating CO2 because it is increasing sea level is not what the clean air act was designed for. What one president did by executive order, another can undo.

If you want to regulate greenhouse gas emissions you need a new law or a ratified treaty.

Eventually the courts will undo the clean power plan or a future president will undo it, or undo the EPA endangerment finding as to CO2.

Which is why you need a new law if you want to regulate something we all breathe out, and plants breathe in.

"in that it doesn’t cause medical health harm to humans."

I don't know whether you are as stupid as you seem or whether you believe that if you tell an incredibly bold lie you won't get called on it. Despicable, in either case.

http://www.blm.gov/style/medialib/blm/wy/information/NEPA/cfodocs/howel…

http://news.stanford.edu/news/2008/january9/co-010908.html

it is no wonder you lean libertarian: a "philosophy" that has nothing but disdain for education, honesty, and critical thought would die if it weren't for people like you.

the EPA relied on other peoples science

There is only one "science". All else is opinion, fantasy, dishonesty, psychosis, etc.

You don't get to redefine "science" just because it disagrees with your "opinions" and desired outcomes.

Reality: You take what it dishes out. You have no alternative, ESPECIALLY if you don't like it. You change your ideology instead.

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

RickA shares that particular ignorance with Christopher C. Horner, who wrote in 2007, "If the hydrocarbon fuel is incompletely burned, it can give off poisonous carbon monoxide. Ideally, hydrocarbons are transformed entirely into energy and the odorless gas carbon dioxide. (The distinction between CO—poisonous carbon monoxide—and CO2—benign carbon dioxide—is one lost on my hatemailers who urge me to asphyxiate myself with the latter.")

See page 69 of The politically Incorrect Guide to Global Warming and Environmentalism.

Indeed, it is conceivable that a factory emitting HCN could be less lethal downwind than a power plant releasing CO2, although it requires a very unlikely set of circumstances. That sort of CO2 lethality, AFAIK, remains the province of nature, in cases like Lake Nyos.

By Christopher Winter (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

"...as stupid as seems..."

I think we tend to underestimate the role of social intelligence in the ability to form reasoned arguments outside of one's personal silo.

There's probably a reason why someone would gravitate to and perhaps do well in engineering and then patent law while being completely inexpert at handling the lines between rhetoric and logic outside of those areas.

RickA seems to think that since the best he can do is pull ideological 'opinions' out of his arse end, the same must be true for everybody. It's a singular lack of the kind of imagination required for perspective taking needed in many fields.

By Obstreperous A… (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

Given the field that RickA is in (and which is true for politics as well), the matter-of-course distortion of "truth" and "reality" that is perpetuated in order to "win" in the course of one's pursuit of self-satisfaction should not be surprising.

What passes for "logic" in his workaday world is "whatever I can get away with arguing sufficiently persuasively" to get some type of official agreement. He then gets money and and his ego strokes. (Maybe he gets a banana, too.)

RickA's intellectual stumbling block is that he applies this same "logic" to everything in his life, including his morals. (I soooo wanna see him try to argue his way through dem Pearly Gates. Ha ha)

So it's really not surprising that RickA believes that if he has a strong enough / long enough argument about why his opinion of science and reality should prevail, he will actually "win" and get to define scientific truths for us.

Ha ha. No.

By Brainstorms (not verified) on 27 Sep 2016 #permalink

"the US is already behind in its commitments to reduce the use of fossil fuel as an energy source"

The United States has made no commitment. It is possible that a delegate appointed by Barack Obama made a commitment that, unfortunately, is not binding on a few hundred milion Americans.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 29 Sep 2016 #permalink

ron: "How about asking whether or not we’re going to stop Fukushima and clean up the Pacific Ocean?"

Huh? Fukushima has been stopped. As for cleaning the Pacific Ocean, there are huge engineering problems with removing the trash (mostly plastic) from the Pacific.

"http://tinyurl.com/zf97gm4"

Idiot. What the bloody anal fuck does NOAA's tsunami sea level graph have to do with radiation? Good fucking grief.

By Desertphile (not verified) on 02 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by ron (not verified)

ron suggests that someone else ask this question; not him of course: "How about asking whether or not we’re going to stop Fukushima and clean up the Pacific Ocean?"

Should it happen that someone asks this question then I'll point out that there is no "we". Also, Fukushima is a city if I remember right and I am curious how Ron proposes to "stop" a city, or clean up the Pacific Ocean, or what constitutes "clean" (whales pooping in it might not be considered clean). If he wants to do that, well, get out there and do it.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 02 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by ron (not verified)

M2

The United States has made no commitment. It is possible that a delegate appointed by Barack Obama made a commitment that, unfortunately, is not binding on a few hundred milion Americans.

Well, it has ratified, and there isn't far to go before the Paris accord goes into force. At which point, I think, the US commitment becomes binding on the US administration.

Let me explain this to our British friends.

"White House senior adviser Brian Deese said the president has the legal authority to ratify the accord without the two-thirds Senate vote required for treaties. He said the pact negotiated by 195 countries in December is merely an executive agreement."

It is not a treaty and it is not binding on the United States. The agreement is between Barack Obama and whoever wishes to make agreements with him.

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2016/aug/29/obama-will-bypass-senat…

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 02 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

Only the Senate can ratify a treaty.

Obama says he is doing it himself - but I believe that is not permitted under the Constitution.

The way Obama is doing it, the treaty is not binding on the USA.

Rickasshole: "Only the Senate can ratify a treaty."

Who claimed otherwise?

Obama says he is doing it himself – but I believe that is not permitted under the Constitution.

Idiot.

By Desertphile (not verified) on 02 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by RickA (not verified)

The way Obama is doing it, the treaty is not binding on the USA.

Is this official? Is there a government source confirming this?

BBD:

No - this is just me opining based on my knowledge as a lawyer.

Desertphile:

BBD said it was ratified.

Michael 2:

Your explanation is also for Americans.

My comments were assuming this was a treaty, which I now see it is not - it is an executive agreement.

Executive agreements are never binding and do not have the force of law.

RickA writes "My comments were assuming this was a treaty, which I now see it is not – it is an executive agreement."

Yes. The treaty bird was never going to fly; so it is an agreement with the executive branch which in a few months will become a new executive that may or may not honor this agreement, but it is not a "binding" in the sense that BBD thinks the United States has agreed to something.

But it is a lot more than nothing. If you google it you will see that nearly every news story portrays it as a treaty, trying for a "fait accompli" in the minds of the public, as if not only the science but the debate is settled.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 03 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by RickA (not verified)

M2

Thanks for the link.
It continues:

“The president will use his authority that has been used in dozens of executive agreements in the past to join and formally deposit our instrument of acceptance, and therefore put our country as a party to the Paris Agreement,” Mr. Deese said at a White House press conference.

He noted that both presidents announced in March that they “would seek to formally join the Paris Agreement in 2016.”

“That’s a process that is quite well-established in our existing legal system and in the context of international agreements and international arrangements,” Mr. Deese said. “There is a category of them that are treaties that require advice and consent from the Senate, but there’s a broad category of executive agreements where the executive can enter into those agreements without that advice and consent.”

Then there's a collective howl from the usual denier claque (Ebell, Morano, Nova, Inhofe) claiming that this won't result in a legally-binding agreement. But these people lie constantly so it seems at least plausible that they are lying about this now.

Is there no official government source supporting the claim that ratification is "between Barack Obama and whoever wishes to make agreements with him"?

That's what I asked for. I couldn't give a rat's arse what the liars are howling.

I

BBD writes "I couldn’t give a rat’s arse what the liars are howling."

On the contrary. You follow such howlings and so do I; for you cannot be sure who is lying and who is telling the truth so we listen to all of it (but not perhaps in equal amounts) until it becomes a bit more clear who is telling the truth.

But in the end what matters is whether a legislature believes one way or another, or an armed force believes one way or another, for in the end it is guns and butter; mostly guns, that decide whether the United States is going to decarbonize unwillingly.

The Executive can make any agreement he wants; the problems then start with the House of Representatives deciding to pay for Obama's adventures (or not).

As your stories eventually reveal, and you are right about liars but they seem mostly to be the "media", if this is not a treaty then Congress is not bound to it and neither, therefore, the people of the United States. The President of the United States neither neither king nor god; the principle ruler of the people of the United States is Congress. President Obama is merely the CEO of the government; he rules government but not the people.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 03 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

I suppose for discussion a comparison of your Prime Minister versus the President of the United States. My understanding of your PM may be as good, or weak, as yours of the US President.

My understanding of the PM is that he's still a member of parliament; chosen from among his peers. The corresponding position in the United States would be Speaker of the House or so it seems to me. Now in the US, Speaker of the House isn't that big a deal; he's not the Head of State, BUT as the weilder of the Purse quite influential.

The President of the United States is the Head of State, but in truth he's simply the chief executive and governs government itself, not citizens. There's a very large number of things he would do but isn't permitted; and he pushes the envelope regularly trying things that he's not permitted.

For instance, no law allows him to regulate carbon dioxide, but as he is the CEO of government, he can decree that one of his agencies label carbon dioxide as "pollutant" and suddenly it comes under the purview of a law Congress intended for dirty air and dirty water. It's a word game and fairly effective since a government agency can simply re-define any word to be any thing and suddenly it is in compliance with the letter of the law, although clearly not with the spirit of the law.

This necessitates Congress to issue a new law more finely tuned to their intentions hoping that a rogue president cannot twist their words. Good luck with that!

But it seems your Prime Minster has a lot more power insofar as being head of parliament AND head of government; all neatly wrapped into one package with no "checks and balances" to stop really bad ideas.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 03 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

First, there's the compulsion of international visibility, which is not easily dismissed. Second, If the science-denying right obstructs US participation in Paris Accord commitments, it will simply be deepening its grave with its own hands. As climate impacts on US citizens increase in frequency and severity, they will, of course, remember who vetoed action.

It didn't have to be this way, but my sense is that the right signed its death warrant years ago by pursing a policy of science denial. But stupidity has consequences, every time. Just watch the Donald.

BBD writes "my sense is that the right signed its death warrant years ago by pursing a policy of science denial."

There is no "right"; whatever it is (a blend of various not-lefts) are merely the atheists of scientism. As such this coalition of not-lefts regularly morphs as it reacts to the left; drawing in and spitting out various factions.

There is no death warrant nor anyone to serve it but violent metaphors seem to be nearly obligatory for leftists.

Real, honest-to-gosh science is loved by some of the not-lefts. No hero worship. Reproducible measurements. The ultimate in argument settling power.

The left is not really all that interested in science. I cannot think of a single leftist in my extended family (and nearly all of them are leftists) that could name so much as four elements from the periodic table. They tend to be more interested in social phenomena and recreational behaviors traditionally considered harmful or immoral. The not-lefts include those more interested in human reproduction and the survival of the species in that manner; where the left tends to be the empathetic element necessary for societies to form.

So (figuratively speaking) the left went to Walmart, bought some stickers that say "science" and stick it on things they wish society to accept. There was a time when the pope's imprimatur served the same purpose.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 04 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

By happy coincidence, the Paris Agreement crossed the 55% emissions threshold this very day and will go into force in 30 days time:

With today’s European Parliament approval of the Paris Agreement ratification – in the presence of European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, the United Nation's Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the President of COP 21 Ségolène Royal – the last hurdle is cleared. The political process for the European Union to ratify the Agreement is concluded.

[...]

So far, 62 parties, accounting for almost 52 % of global emissions have ratified the Paris Agreement. The Agreement will enter into force 30 days after at least 55 parties, representing at least 55% of global emissions have ratified. The EU ratification and deposit will cross the 55% emission threshold and therefore trigger the entry into force of the Paris Agreement.

If the climate-denying right goes against what is effectively the rest of the world, the climate-denying right will be buried.

BBD writes "and will go into force in 30 days time"

There's the key word: Force!

Maybe.

"the climate-denying right will be buried."

By whom?

For a man that seems to admire science you could and ought to be more precise. I doubt anyone denies "climate".

So you might consider "Some of the people that doubt some of the claims made by some climate scientists are likely to be disappointed by the political outcomes likely to exist in the future."

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 04 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

<blockquote.There is no “right”; whatever it is (a blend of various not-lefts) are merely the atheists of scientism.

Typical rubbish from you. The right is the right and accepting the scientific evidence is *not* scientism. Do you actually know what this word means? It seems not. Either that, or you deliberately misrepresent the situation with the dishonesty typical of the science-denying right.

BBD writes "The right is the right"

And blue is blue. I understand tautology. However, as used in this immediate discussion, the right, while being right, is not a useful description. That is why you chose to write "the right is the right" rather than something more descriptive (and, in your case, probably inaccurate; so stick with the safe tautology).

"and accepting the scientific evidence is not scientism."

To become a Catholic, one of the first things you accept is the Trinity. It isn't yet an "ism" until it becomes a philosophy and you start to make non-related (non-scientific) decisions based on that acceptance.

For over a thousand years the Catholic church was the "science" of its day; there was no other science and serious consequences existed for suggesting otherwise.

The Catholics held, and still hold, a dominion greater than that of the Roman army. The army controlled physical assets; the Catholics control minds. Today, "science" is the religion that controls peoples' minds; but as with God, science does not speak -- people speak for science/god and it is those people that become the prophets of doom. As with various religions, a charismatic and skilled public speaker moves public opinion and belief. That is why the "97 percent" meme was created by a psychologist rather than a scientist. People may or may not believe Kieth Briffa, but huge numbers of people subscribe to charismatic Al Gore (a political "scientist") and Stephan Lewandowsky: Shapers of the Message.

I love science; but it is not my religion. You see, I already have a religion and thus science cannot displace it. But I write as poorly as you; "science" is not a thing. It is a container for claims; some of which are more likely true than others.

Your acceptance seems to be automatic. It is for you as it is with a Good Catholic; what the pope decrees must be true. It is not an option to believe *some* claims of Catholicism and not others while remaining a "good Catholic".

*I* can certainly believe some claims and not others because I have made no claim of being a good Catholic.

I can also believe some scientific claims and not others because I make no claim of being a "good science believer" or acolyte or disciple of "science".

It is this quality of moral virtue being signalled by your acceptance of certain tenets of "science" that makes it an "ism". I see a catechism of science, a priesthood of science, philosophers of science, acolytes and evangelists of science. In what way is this NOT an "ism"?

"dishonesty typical of the science-denying right."

You can do better than that. Even WOW does better than that. Review DailyKOS and Huffpo for some epithetical ideas. Be creative and invent entirely new epithets for people you've never met but wish to deprecate in some way.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 04 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

By whom?

The rest of us.

For a man that seems to admire science you could and ought to be more precise. I doubt anyone denies “climate”.

Away with your nonsense now.

BBD writes: "The rest of us."

For whom do you speak?

Does anyone else on Planet Earth know you have arrogated to speak/write on their behalf?

Probably not. You speak for you. While it is plain to see that a hive exists (many, actually) it is not clear that you are the appointed speaker for it. Still, I've seen the Borg episodes on Star Trek and realize that any of the Borg speak for the entire hive since they have only one mind among them; that of the queen, but there's an emergent property; a collective mind that is created by millions of mini-minds and what this collective mind things tends to drift a bit since it isn't anchored.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 04 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

On a slightly different note, I really do enjoy and appreciate your (BBD's) intelligence and willingness to discuss things. I am fascinated by the hive mind, a thing I see exists and wonder sometimes what it would be like to be enveloped by it. The hive never chose me and I never chose the hive. But as with bees, they have a fine and instinctive sense of who belongs and who does not.

People, or drone bees such as Wow, sense I do not belong in this hive and immediately go on the attack (as he supposes). DailyKOS is an example of a hive; if they sense you do not belong then the banhammer is swift.

So what is interesting to me is not so much the existence of hive, which is obvious, but how its members determine acceptance and what is the optimum size of a hive steering committee.

I see exactly the same phenomena at work with significant consequences of employment to fail to grasp the existence of these little cliques, cabals, gangs, cohorts.

An emergent phenomenon, "groupthink", arises and starts to control the creativity and thought processes of its members. This is very bad in situations calling for creativity. The hive mind is not designed for creativity; it is designed for conformity.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 04 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

I think it will interesting to see if an energy policy based on executive actions (executive orders, executive agreements), will work - or be a waste of time.

We know passing laws "works". But the clean energy plan is under attack in court and may be struck down as not enabled by any law (such as the clean air law). The executive agreement is not binding - and it will be interesting to see how that plays out over the next few years.

"Today, “science” is the religion that controls peoples’ mindsbut as with God, science does not speak — people speak for science/god and it is those people that become the prophets of doom. "

Only a fool asserts that science is a religion.

As demonstrated by the person who made that post.

And stop with the lie that you appreciate science: you've repeatedly demonstrated you do anything but appreciate (or even have a basic understanding of it).

dean writes "Only a fool asserts that science is a religion."

Fortunately you are not the definer of the English language. I wonder how many fools therefore exist?

Google "science is a religion": About 263,000 results

Science and religion have a common purpose: Describe the world and our place or roles within it. Both are container words. You cannot point to science and you cannot point to religion; neither exists of itself but instead are words that describe a class of things considered "scientific" or "religious" and both words are remarkably difficult to define.

Here's a pretty good list of 10 similarities
[http]://listverse.com/2012/12/15/top-10-reasons-science-is-another-religion/

1. Science Requires Faith.

5. Science Has Its Own Priesthood.

8. Science Reveres Its Own Saints

9. It Casts Out Heretics and Persecutes all Other Religions

"And stop with the lie that you appreciate science: you’ve repeatedly demonstrated you do anything but appreciate (or even have a basic understanding of it)."

Telling me what to do or not do is not science; it is religion. Judging me is not science, it is religion.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by dean (not verified)

Followup to Dean.

Consider faith in science. When I measure voltage, I have faith that my DMM is portraying the actual voltage. I also have faith that my understanding of voltage is useful and meaningful.

I have faith that things I cannot see, such as radio waves, actually exist and can be produced and controlled in useful ways.

I have faith that the PN junction of a diode behaves as described by people more expert than me so that I can use diodes without having to make my own.

I have faith that the existence of cone shells in rock means that long ago animals lived in those cone shells and the rock was mud, and under the sea, whereas now it is at 7000 feet elevation above sea level.

II have faith in various dating methods, particular radiocarbon dating and geological dating methods.

So I have a lot of faith in science; but that faith would not exist if I did not have sufficient knowledge to create faith.

Knowledge comes first then faith! It is so with my religion as well. Knowledge came first.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by dean (not verified)

Excessive faith in science leads to fraud. I've been approached by a neighbor trying to sell me a water ionizer. Water doesn't ionize, but how many people know that? I doubt he was deliberately trying to defraud me, he believed in his product and uses it himself not realizing it is a fraud.

I've recently (last week) seen this device that presumably scans your body, senses vibrations and displays on a computer screen vivid images of blood cells, organs and so on as if a pair of headphones could actually do that.

[http]://www.templeofwellness.com/diagnostic.html

[http]://www.seattletimes.com/seattle-news/how-one-mans-invention-is-part-of-a-g…

Generalized science knowledge (broad based) is good protection from these scams; but highly specialized scientific training confers no special resistance to fraud outside of your specialty; and might actually make you more vulnerable since you suppose yourself superior, smart, and invulnerable.

Faith in science is misplaced. Science is about knowledge, not faith. What you know is not the entirety of science. No one person can know "science"; you are compelled to believe in the rest of it if you are a believer (and it seems you are) or skeptical about the rest of it if you are a skeptic (as I am), or say a "pox on all their houses" if you are a denier. But a denier is also vulnerable to whatever is the opposite of science. All people embrace something (in my opinion, obviously) and if it isn't "science" it is going to be something else. But how do you embrace "science"? You cannot; you can embrace a particular discipline, maybe two or three -- and then believe the rest.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by dean (not verified)

m2: "Excessive faith in science leads to fraud."

That is an excellent example of what Dr. Mann described as "bad faith debate." The sub-sub-sub-genius "Michael 2" cannot refute observed reality no matter how desperately he wants to, so he wants to change the subject while pretending he did not do so. This is why science communicators should ignore these cultists.

By Desertphile (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Michael 2 (not verified)

Desertphile writes "no matter how desperately he wants to"

Why do you assume I am a "he"?

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Desertphile (not verified)

You can do better than that.

No, 'exhibits dishonesty typical of the science-denying right' is fine.

BBD wrote "No, ‘exhibits dishonesty typical of the science-denying right’ is fine."

I suppose you proofread your own writing, too. ;-)

In other words, of course you think your words are fine, you wrote them! I'm suggesting they aren't very effective, in addition to having no meaning. You can make them sharp and articulate while still having no meaning.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 04 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

The meaning is crystal clear, M2, and your pretense that it isn't demonstrates the problem perfectly.

BBD writes "The meaning is crystal clear, M2, and your pretense that it isn’t demonstrates the problem perfectly."

Hvað segir þú?

Those words are crystal clear to me, but not perhaps to you. Even if you google translate you will obtain only the translation of the three words but not perhaps what those three mean when strung together in that order.

Effective communication requires clarity, which I interpret as meaning a lack of ambiguity so that it is not possible for me to be uncertain what the words themselves are saying; but that may still not be what you meant.

That aspect is correctness and exists on two levels: One level is whether I correctly understood your meaning, and the other is whether your words are correct, as in having made a true claim.

So let us examine this supposedly clear statement of yours.

"exhibits dishonesty typical of the science-denying right"

The immediate unclarity or ambiguity is the adjective or limiting clause "science-denying". Do you intent to limit your criticism to that subset of the right that denies science? Or is the clause descriptive, a way for you to assert that all of the right is science denying? Perhaps it is simply your way of defining an attribute of the right; whereas my definitions will almost certainly differ.

Your factual problems start with "exhibiting dishonesty". How exactly is that done? How do you discern between people that (1) are mistaken, (2) know the truth but say otherwise? Either way, their words are identical; but the dishonest person knows the truth and chooses to say otherwise. This requires mind reading ability and I doubt you possess this skill.

If your focus is on error, then it is not necessary or useful to invoke "right"; as if science-denying LEFT is exempt from your criticism, and yet, that is very likely exactly the case. Snowflakes, GMO opponents, and so on; all members of the left, deny science. But as they are on your team, you have expressely excused them.

That part of your commentary does seem to be clear. Left good, right bad!

Now then, for the right to exhibit dishonesty, they must know the truth; and that is a fine thing right there. I am glad that you believe the right possesses the truth; for without it they would simply be mistaken, not dishonest.

So the real problem seems to be honesty. Do you agree? All this about "right" is superfluous, science-denying is virtue signaling, and your real concern is about honesty.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

Blah, blah, blah.

BBD writes "Blah, blah, blah."

Now that was meaningless; or was it? Where one blah would suffice, you used three! That's probably significant. Maybe it will become clear as I read the rest of the comments.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

Groupthink, scientism, science-as-religion, the hive, hive mind, the Left

See where it gets you, M2?

BBD writes "See where it gets you, M2?"

In front of a computer.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

Science and religion have a common purpose

No they don't. Science seeks to understand nature as it is; religion is an arbitrary, fictitious narrative.

BBD writes "Science seeks to understand nature as it is; religion is an arbitrary, fictitious narrative."

That is how you define those words; seeking to find differences rather than similarities; which is okay since differences do exist as otherwise we wouldn't have two words for one thing, neither word being a thing anyway.

Religion also seeks to understand nature as it is; but extends the scope beyond that which can be measured by a digital voltmeter (as an example of instrumentation confined to "matter").

As it is used, science provides the foundation for social policy, but so does religion.

Science evolved from religion; it is a different fork of a common ancestor. If it can be measured it is science. Thus science becomes a subset of religion; that portion of "what exists" that can be measured with a manufactured instrument. An advantage of science is that it is difficult (but certainly not impossible) to argue measurements.

Where a thing cannot be measured it is easy to argue; hence we have two main lines of theory in physics but thousands of lines of theory in religion.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

It is so with my religion as well. Knowledge came first.

No, it didn't. You are either lying or confused.

BBD writes "No, it didn’t. You are either lying or confused."

I have written accurately with little chance of confusion. Knowledge precedes faith. Probably in all cases for every person but certainly in my case.

It is your dogmatism that blinds you. You have such strong faith in your belief system that you cannot accept that my experience is different.

You exemplify a point I am trying to make -- dogmatism. Your mind is shut, your eyes are closed. Your cup is full, nothing more can be added. To the extent I feel emotions about other people, for you I feel pity.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

"Google “science is a religion”: About 263,000 results"

Thousands of people believe vaccines cause autism - they take it on faith. Science shows that there is no link

Thousands (probably more by an order of magnitude) believe the earth is only a few thousand years old. Science shows that is not the case.

Many people believe science is a religion, with prophets and has a priesthood (nope) and saints - saints as used in the religous world.

The people who believe vaccines cause autism have no evidence to support their stance.
The people who believe the earth to be a few thousand years old have no evidence to support their stance.
The people who equate science to religion have no evidence to support their stance.

You can say people in each of those groups are ignorant about the nature of the things they believe, or they are lying, or both.

You are in the "both" camp: you have no clue about the functioning of science (or statistics, not surprising for an engineer) and are willing to lie about many other things.

That is how you define those words;

FFS not this again. You do this every single time your rubbish gets called out. The meaning is unequivocal and you can stop pretending otherwise right now.

Religion also seeks to understand nature as it is;

No it doesn't. Science and religion do not have a common purpose and you were wrong the first time.

"Science evolved from religion"

Your monumental stupidity and lack of knowledge of the meanings of words means there is no hope of you ever being a rational person.

dean wrote "there is no hope of you ever being a rational person."

What a relief! Still, it is unlikely we use the word "rational" in the same way. A rational person, to me, does not deprecate other persons -- there is no profit in doing so. It does not improve breeding opportunities or personal security to insult one's opponents and total strangers. Perhaps I have been mistaken all these years and insulting other people is exactly the way to get ahead; but only in certain cultures (hives) of which I am already not a part.

I see you as a person so common on blog comment sections that hasn't really got much to offer and substitutes insulting others.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by dean (not verified)

Science represents a shedding of magical and superstitious thinking in favor of evidence and logIc. So in a sense, yes, astronomy grew out of astrology in the same way that some of us grew out of other childish behaviors and ideas.

By Obstreperous A… (not verified) on 05 Oct 2016 #permalink

Obstreperous Applesauce writes "Science represents a shedding of magical and superstitious thinking"

That is not its purpose. It can be a consequence but not the intended consequence. I have no difficulty possessing scientific AND magical thinking. Very likely so does everyone else here.

"in favor of evidence and logIc."

Evidence foremost. Logic, by itself, is merely a method that can work on evidence *and* magical thinking. Science is thus well suited where evidence is abundant, and useless where evidence is not abundant.

For instance, it is trivial to invoke logic and God; if there's an omnipotent, omniscient God, and he wished us to think a certain combination of things, then that is what we would think, for that is the meaning of omnipotent. In such logic, everything that exists is proof of God since you can reverse the logic (induction) and arrive at "God" as the ultimate unknown cause of life, the universe and everything.

Logic usually (maybe always) contains a conditional, something that must be assumed to be true but is not known to be true. Then you work through the process and out the other end pops a conclusion.

"So in a sense, yes, astronomy grew out of astrology in the same way that some of us grew out of other childish behaviors and ideas."

Once again you insert your prejudice into a circumstance. Astrology was never childish; it was taken with utmost gravity by many ancient cultures. Stonehenge being an example and rather a lot of ancient Sumeria relied upon astrology. From that we get the 360 degree circle, the 60 minute hour, things like that.

There is no "growing out of" astrology; it is a preference thing. If you prefer to know where stars actually are, what they are really doing, why they exist; then you turn to astronomy. It profits little and that's probably why astrologers outnumber astronomers. If my mother was still alive I'd invite you and her to argue your cases. Hers is rich with fantasy and purpose; yours is pretty much confined to nuclear processes of hydrogen fusion and the occasional blast into space of heavier atoms. Her astrology gave her happiness; how much happiness do you obtain from astronomy? If some, good for you.

But it also deprived her of liberty or free will since she believed her behaviors each day were governed by stars and planets. To me that is the pinnacle of absurdity to suppose some star 400 million light years away had the slightest impact on my choice of ice cream.

But you understand my point better than the remaining persons here; Chemistry grew out of Alchemy. Science has evolved but principally through "forking" since astrology still exists and I suspect so does alchemy and some ancient religions are making a comeback which I don't understand but probably relates to failed expectations of "science" as if it also was just another magical thinking designed to create purpose and happiness. It doesn't. Happiness is irrational; you obtain it through irrational means.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Obstreperous A… (not verified)

I have written accurately with little chance of confusion. Knowledge precedes faith.

This was bollocks yesterday and is still bollocks today. You do not know if God exists or not. Therefore your belief is an act of faith. Okay, you are confused, not lying, but you still have your head up your arse on the epistemology.

It is your dogmatism that blinds you.

No, that's you.

You have such strong faith in your belief system that you cannot accept that my experience is different.

Because you are confused (see above).

for you I feel pity.|

GFY.

BBD writes "GFY."

Thanks, not that I needed your permission to do so ;-)

I love you, too. My world would be less without a BBD in it. To think I have to correspond with someone on the other side of the planet to have serious discussions about things. The internet is still amazing to me.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

BBD writes "You do not know if God exists or not."

Sure I know; he's you! Your own omnipotence in knowing what I know and don't know is matched only by God and no one else. While your thoughts may be echoed by others here, they have the good sense not to pretend to their own omniscience.

I don't care to argue the particulars; what I know for sure becomes mere words in a blizzard of words when it crosses the Atlantic arriving in your computer.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

" A rational person, to me, does not deprecate other persons — there is no profit in doing so."

You are mistaking my intent. Your many comments have shown you to be an idiot, a person who denies science and lies about it, and who doesn't show any willingness to either understand complex issues or take responsibility for the grossly incorrect things you repeatedly say.

Those aren't insults, those are facts.

dean writes "Those aren’t insults, those are facts."

Why do you believe a thing cannot be both? All good insults ARE facts (duh). It is the tone and the purpose that turns a fact into an insult; I could precisely identify the color of your hair and turn it into an insult.

But we are discussing rational human beings. What is your rational reason for spending a few minutes of your life issuing insults to anyone, particularly a name on a screen?

in a group setting where mates and food is scarce, you insult others as a way to direct the animosity of the group and kill or exile the designated target thus leaving more food and mates for the remainder. You repeat the process until hopefully you are the only one left with all of the food and mates.

It is your instinct to keep doing this even when no conceivable benefit can accrue to you.

So, I invite to you provide the rational reason for your behavior.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by dean (not verified)

Sure I know; he’s you! Your own omnipotence in knowing what I know and don’t know is matched only by God and no one else. While your thoughts may be echoed by others here, they have the good sense not to pretend to their own omniscience.

I do not claim omnipotence, M2. I simply rely on your own written statements:

Knowledge comes first then faith! It is so with my religion as well. Knowledge came first.

Since you cannot know that God exists then you are... epistemologically confused.

BBD writes "I do not claim omnipotence, M2."

Well that's something!

"I simply rely on your own written statements"

It seems that you do not.

"Since you cannot know that God exists..."

Says the omniscient BBD :-)

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

I see that I used "omnipotence" where I ought to have used "omniscience".

The only person that knows what I know is me. Not you. It is irrational for you to presume what I know and do not know. It would be better for you to simply assert disbelief; that would be rational.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

M2's capacities in reading comprehension, reasoning, and general knowledge are very poor. Factor in his lack of intellectual integrity, his dysfunctional need for attention and control, and his infatuation with the sound of his own voice, and you have someone with whom it's a complete waste of time to engage. He's basically just a wind-up, bullshite engine.

IMO, FWIW, DNFTT.

----

M2,
Just so you know, I check in here on the comments of dean, BBD, and others. What I post are notes intended for them. I barely even skim the comments you address to me-- if I read them at all. The rest of your stuff I now simply ignore.

By Obstreperous A… (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

OA writes "The rest of your stuff I now simply ignore."

As should they. It is disruptive of the hive. But as you can see, their reasons for being here are not your reasons for being here. You wish to tell them how to behave, they, in turn, wish to tell me how to behave.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Obstreperous A… (not verified)

"M2’s capacities in reading comprehension, reasoning, and general knowledge are very poor. "

It even acknowledges that fact itself. Yet it won't stop proclaiming fact or truth despite this self-admitted failure of not understanding anything.

This is why it is a "student" of Brad Keyes, not See Noevo or Chelle (though I'm not definite about the latter...).

Wow writes "Yet it won’t stop proclaiming fact or truth..."</I.

Yep. It is a game. Behavior that persists is being rewarded. What you get out of it is feelings of superiority. What I get out of it is increased understanding of human nature of the more instinctively motivated instances of the species.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Wow (not verified)

“Google “science is a religion”: About 263,000 results”

And google science is not a religion, about 141,000,000 results.

If proof by google count were valid, the conclusion is plain.

Wow writes "If proof by google count were valid, the conclusion is plain."

Indeed it is. Thanks for playing!

But let's test your assertion. Perhaps you forgot the quotes.

"And google science is not a religion, about 141,000,000 results."

With quotes: About 200,000 results

I win!

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Wow (not verified)

#68. +1
What Desertphile said!
That's it in a nutshell: Bad faith.

By Obstreperous A… (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

Obstreperous Applesauce wrote "What Desertphile said! That’s it in a nutshell: Bad faith."

I see that you are still ignoring me ;-)

Now, back on topic. These past few comments should illustrate why the United States is unlikely to "catch up" to goals a few persons set for everyone else. People are not the same. Really, really not the same. The Unitted States in particular was populated from all other nations and self-selected because the ancestors of Americans did not fit into the societies of Europe primarily.

Australia is somewhat similar but drawn primarily only from England.

The result is that insufficient number of "sheep" exist in the United States for a small cabal to control. You can do that in Europe, but not the US. Not yet. Coming soon to a theater near you however.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Obstreperous A… (not verified)

YET ANOTHER FINE EXAMPLE:

----------

Michael 2
October 6, 2016

Desertphile writes “no matter how desperately he wants to”

Why do you assume I am a “he”?

By Desertphile (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Obstreperous A… (not verified)

Desertphile writes "YET ANOTHER FINE EXAMPLE"

Be grateful I am here to give you something to talk about :-)

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 07 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Desertphile (not verified)

Since there is no empirical evidence for (or against) the existence of God, you cannot know that God exists. Your assertion that it does is an act of faith (look up the definition of faith, M2).

Stop posting bollocks.

BBD writes "Since there is no empirical evidence for (or against) the existence of God, you cannot know that God exists."

I see. Do you know what you had for supper yesterday? I will assume "yes". Is there any empirical evidence of it NOW? Probably not. You could perhaps produce some empty packaging, but that is proof only of empty packaging. It is evidence of a meal, but proof only of packaging.

Therefore while you know what you ate you cannot prove it to anyone else. This may be surprisingly normal; how little of everything you know can actually be proved to another person.

I have asked many times but I'll probably die of boredom or old age before an atheist answers the simple question of what exactly would you accept as "empirical evidence" for God? While we are at it, perhaps a definition of God would be appropriate since some are more likely than others. Perhaps a definition is itself not appropriate; it's just a word used to describe the "things not seen" for which evidence exists.

I have in the past used a metaphor of two fish, one arguing for the existence of "water" and the other mocking the first. The one asserting "water" is curious and scientific; accepting the challenge of proving the thing that is everywhere present. The other's purpose in life is to mock. It hardly matters what or who.

"Your assertion that it does is an act of faith (look up the definition of faith, M2)."

Yes, let us look up the definition.

"Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen." [https]://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Hebrews+11%3A1&version=KJV

The evidence of things not seen. The packaging from your last meal is evidence, the meal itself is no longer visible. Scars on a lightning rod are evidence of a thing no longer seen and certainly not presentable to other people.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)

Well, he can't logically know, but he can have belief. There's people out there who KNOW they're Napoleon. They're wrong, but hell, they know different, because they're bloody lunatics.

HOWEVER, what M2 is trying to pretend is somehow that faith that makes you "know" god is real is the same as evidence that lets you "know" that electrons all have the same electrostatic charge. Which is, as BBD says, bollocks.

After all, where would M2 be without the pointless lies to promote more argument for the moronic troll to prattle around in self-resplendant idiocy?!?!

Wow, straining at gnats, writes "There’s people out there who KNOW they’re Napoleon"

Likely so. "There are 9,706 people in the U.S. with the first name Napoleon."
[http]://howmanyofme.com/people/Napoleon_Harris/

"They’re wrong, but hell, they know different, because they’re bloody lunatics."

No, they are simply named Napoleon.

"After all, where would M2 be without..."

No matter where I go, there I am.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Wow (not verified)

Wow writes "Well, he can’t logically know, but he can have belief."

Trivially true. I do not know things by logic. Logic starts with what you know, massages it in various ways, to argue for the existence of a thing you don't know. But logic is not the foundation of what you know to start with.

i believe what I know. The alternative seems to be to NOT believe what I know, and that seems strange to me. Not impossible, but strange. Many of your arguments seem strange.

Knowledge implies or includes belief, but belief does not imply (or exclude) knowledge.

Logic is useful in understanding faith. You start with something you know, and through the processes of logic arrive at something you don't know, but have faith "must be so" because of the proper application of logic to knowledge.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by Wow (not verified)

Therefore while you know what you ate you cannot prove it to anyone else.

A forensic pathologist could confirm the details.

The problem here is that you are flat-out wrong (again) and (again) are too dishonest to admit it in good faith.

As a consequence, your discourse is worthless.

BBD writes "A forensic pathologist could confirm the details."

To some degree, yes, by inspecting residue if any exists.

But that merely moves the point of faith from what you claim to be true to that of the forensic pathologist making claims.

If he saved some samples, then you can inspect the samples, but now you have the problem of having faith that it came from you.

As you can see, it is likely that all people operate on faith regularly; using some things known for sure, by you, to anchor many things accepted on faith.

I sense that we are converging on understanding and that you assume that I am more opponent of your beliefs than is actually the case.

By Michael 2 (not verified) on 06 Oct 2016 #permalink

In reply to by BBD (not verified)