Assorted links

by on June 29, 2009 at 7:22 am in Web/Tech | Permalink

1. Review of North, Wallis, and Weingast.

2. Sunstein nomination still being held up for animal welfare issues.

3. Big subsidies for GE Capital; hey, they're not a bank!

4. Global warming graphs and analysis.

5. History of home ownership subsidies.

6. New economics journal, edited by Kenneth Arrow.

Barkley Rosser June 29, 2009 at 8:41 am

Since Dave Warsh identifies the Journal of Economic Behavior and Organization as a “breakaway journal in its field today” I shall note that the journal’s impact factor jumped between 2007 and 2008 from 0.772 to 1.125.

Jack June 29, 2009 at 9:17 am

Re: #4, between the blogger deleting the entire contents of comments whose authors disagree with him and the repeated use of the inflammatory word ”denialist”, I cannot take any of it seriously. Just as some GW skeptics are loonies, so is (s)he. Too bad, because the evidence is otherwise well presented.

Karoly June 29, 2009 at 10:12 am

Re: #4
The blogger accuses a “denier” of picking a convenient period (1998-present) to illustrate his point about the lack of warming recently. To show how unrepresentative that period is, (s)he steps back and reveals the big picture from 1970 to present, a steady trend of warming on which the last decade is seen as mere fluctuation. In doing so, (s)he happens to pick a lucky year. See
http://wattsupwiththat.com/2009/06/28/nasa-giss-adjustments-galore-rewriting-climate-history/#more-8991
why 1970 is the best starting point for a plot to show as evidence for warming. The link also points out that the GISS data show not only that the last few decades have been warming, but also that the first half of the 20th century keeps cooling to this day.

Michael F. Martin June 29, 2009 at 11:32 am

Woah. The titles to the articles in the first issue of the Annual Review of Economics look really good.

Ben June 29, 2009 at 1:20 pm

#4 accuses GW deniers of cherry-picking data most favorable to their cause then proceeds to…cherry pick data most favorable to his cause

Td June 29, 2009 at 1:55 pm

How about we start in 1934 to show a world, just as warm as now, going into a terrible, unnatural cooling period from which we are just now, mercifully, recovering from.

John Thacker June 29, 2009 at 2:43 pm

No, it was not as warm in 1934 as today, although things did cool off somewhat after that to the 1970s.

In the US alone, it was believed that 1934 was slightly warmer than today. The 1999 revisions to GISS revised our estimates for 1934 temperature down, so that we now believe that today is slightly warmer than 1934. The result may be different for other data sets.

I don’t believe that the facts, which do support a slight warming trend along with a cyclical trend, warrant your dismissal, Barkley. Taking a trend line starting from a local maximum like 1934 is misleading, but so is taking a trend line starting from a local minimum like 1970.

John Dewey June 29, 2009 at 4:18 pm

barkley rosser: “But to assert that everything we see is due to “natural fluctuations” without providing some alternative theory that is agreed upon by at least some noticeable subset of the scientific community (not just one or two folks) is not at all impressive.”

It is not one or two scientists who are skeptical about the strength of the CO2 warming effect.

According to the forum editor for the American Physical Society, the 110 year old association of American physicists:

“There is a considerable presence within the scientific community of people who do not agree with the IPCC conclusion that anthropogenic CO2 emissions are very probably likely to be primarily responsible for the global warming that has occurred since the Industrial Revolution.”>

Canadian scientists do not agree that global warming science is settled:

“A canvass of more than 51,000 scientists with the Association of Professional Engineers, Geologists and Geophysicists of Alberta (APEGGA) found 68% of them disagree with the statement that ‘the debate on the scientific causes of recent climate change is settled.’”

The Polish Academy of Sciences recently expressed skepticism over the concept of man-made global warming.

John Dewey June 29, 2009 at 5:15 pm

Barkley Rosser,

I see no reason why those who are skeptical of catastrophic anthropogenic global warming need to be united in providing alternate explanations for phenomena.

My argument is that we should not implement a GDP-killing, standard-of-living killing cap and trade system unless we are positive we know it will provide more benefits than it costs. The burden of proof should not be on the skeptics who wish to avoid such a massive tax system, but rather on the global warming zealots who wish to impose the tax.

I cannot tell from your comments where you come down on cap-and-trade or on direct taxation of carbon emissions.

Rob June 29, 2009 at 7:05 pm

Last summer when oil prices peaked an interesting thing happened: Very few on the Left cheered. Why not? Isn’t hydrocarbon demand-destruction what they want? No, not if oil companies’ profits increase at the same time. The Left wants less energy consumption AND for oil companies to make less money (so they will die off). So what will happen when energy prices go back up (because of Cap & Trade or simply because the world economy picks back up or both) and people discover that oil companies are still making good profits (since most of the tax will get transferred into retail price)? Will there be more outrage? It is frankly hard to believe the Left really worries more about climate change than they hate the oil industry. And for that I blame Bush and Cheney.

Peter June 30, 2009 at 1:35 am
Td June 30, 2009 at 10:23 am

“Hmmm, Tamino uses GISS charts:”

GISS has A LOT of problems. There is a group going around documenting the sites and 58% of them have major issues. 11% looked good. Things like commercial size air conditioners blowing ten feet from the instruments and the like. You can google to find their site, lots of pictures.

Satellite temps tell a different story. Very slight warming compared to what is expected.

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