Obama Press Conference Address Oil and Renewable Energy

President Obama, 3-11-2011

Earlier today President Barack Obama held a press conference where he addressed the nation on the rapid increase in gas prices caused most immediately by unrest in Northern Africa and more generally as a result of the world slowly emerging from the Great Recession.  After detailing a number of efforts to boost domestic oil production, including encouraging companies to pursue leased lands that are idle and possible new development efforts onshore and off-shore in Alaska, the President explained, “All of these actions can increase domestic oil production in the short and medium term, but let’s be clear: it is not a long term solution.  Even if we started drilling new wells tomorrow, that oil isn’t coming online over night.  Even if we tap every single reserve available to us we can’t escape the fact that we only control 2% of the world’s oil, but we consume over a quarter of the world’s oil.”  President Obama even quoted T. Boone Pickens,saying: “This is one emergency we can’t drill our way out of.”

Let’s put aside discussion of the veracity of whether or not the United States controls only 2% of the world’s oil reserves.  The U.S. has enormous amounts of oil shale.  In fact, the accessible oil shale in the U.S. is estimated at three-times the proven oil reserves of Saudi Arabia.  Of course, converting that oil shale into usable product hasn’t yet been economically figured out, and environmental concerns are real because of concern related to groundwater contamination.  Thus, given today’s technologies the President’s statement about the U.S. having only 2% of the world’s oil resources certainly seems accurate enough in any relevant near-term.

Notwithstanding, the true and undeniable fact is that even if we start drilling today oil will not be produced in any short-term time frame.  As true and inarguable as that is, this fact is exactly why we should have been following an all-of-the-above strategy and doing whatever we could to produce American oil prior to now.  When oil and gas prices spiked in 2008 that should have been a wake-up signal.  Truthfully spikes in the 1970s should have sent the same wake-up signal.  Instead the most recent spike in oil prices, like all other spikes and supply interruptions, was nothing more than an inconvenience.  The sad truth is we have wasted time that could have been put to good use.

I don’t personally know anyone who thinks that the long term strategy for American energy needs is domestically produced oil.  In fact, I don’t know anyone who seriously thinks that the world’s long term energy needs can or will be satisfied by oil period.  Technology and innovation is the solution, but we are no where near the place and time where we can ween ourselves off of oil.  That means political unrest, interruptions in supply and natural disasters can and will cause wild swings in oil prices that filter down to virtually every commodity in the economy.  Given the fragile state of our economy we need action today.

In a continued effort to pursue alternative and renewable energy solutions the Department of Commerce recently announced the opening of a $12 million i6 Green Challenge in partnership with the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Energy, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the National Science Foundation, and Commerce’s National Institute of Standards and Technology and U.S. Patent and Trademark Office. ? Commerce Department’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) will award up to $1 million to each of six teams around the country with the most innovative ideas to drive technology commercialization and entrepreneurship in support of a green innovation economy, increased U.S. competitiveness and new jobs. Its partner agencies will award more than $6 million in additional funding to i6 Green winners.  What a great idea, right?  Right up until you read the part of the press release that says: “The deadline to submit an application is May 26, 2011. Funding is contingent upon Congressional approval of the administration’s 2011 budget.”  So much for that initiative.  There seems little realistic chance that the President’s 2011 budget will go anywhere in Congress.  We will likely fund the government throughout the remainder of 2011 on a series of Continuing Resolutions.

But surely there are some substantial efforts underway relative to domestic production of energy solutions?  Indeed there are, or — sort of are.  Just the other day the United States Chamber of Commerce issued a report that was the result of a year of research on a variety of energy related projects.  Unfortunately, there are 351 projects stalled or canceled for a host of reasons, including regulatory barriers, lawsuits and threats of legal action.  These projects include 140 renewable energy projects, of which 89 projects are wind related, 4 are wave related, 10 are solar energy related, 7 are related to hydropower, 29 related to ethanol/biomass and 1 geothermal project.

The highlights of this depressing research study by the Chamber of Commerce disclose the possible economic these projects could have, including:

  • Planning and construction of the projects would generate $577 billion in direct investment.
  • The indirect and induced effects would generate an approximate $1.1 trillion increase in U.S. Gross Domestic Product (GDP), including $352 billion in employment earnings over an average construction period of seven years.
  • As many as 1.9 million jobs would be required during each year of construction if these projects were pursued.
  • The operation of the projects, including multiplier effects, would yield $145 billion in increased GDP, $35 billion in employment earnings and an average 791,200 jobs per year of operation.
  • The total potential economic and employment benefits of the subject projects, if constructed and operated for twenty years, would be approximately $3.4 trillion in GDP, including $1.4 trillion in employment earnings.

We are not only not aggressively pursuing domestic oil production to get us over the hump and through to whatever alternative and renewable energy future we will have, but we are not pursuing an alternative and renewable energy future thanks to regulatory burdens and legal obstacles.  On top of that, at a time when we desperately need jobs we are basically watching as those jobs that cannot be outsourced are hung up in legal and regulatory limbo.  Talk about not having a coherent national energy strategy!  In fact, it seems we have no national energy strategy.

The United States Patent and Trademark Office has pursued green initiatives, particularly acceleration of patent applications for those technologies that relate to green technologies.  See USPTO Extends Green Technology Pilot Program.  These initiatives seek to foster innovators to develop solutions, so whether the technology produces clean energy or whether the technology reduces energy consumption, there are a host of solutions that when combined can have at least some impact.  We just need to continue to push the envelope in incremental ways, that is how we are going to get to where we need to be.  Little impacts cascading together can have a large impact, but for the time being we need to realize that the technology is not where it needs to be to leverage alternative and renewable energy in an impactful way.  That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try, but it does mean we need to be perfectly honest with ourselves and realize that a silver-bullet green technology is unlikely.  In the meantime as we incentivize innovators we need an all-of-the-above series of solutions.

Eliminating back-breaking regulatory burdens and pushing past legal obstacles to jump start at least some of the 351 projects identified by the Chamber of Commerce seems absolutely essential.  Encouraging innovators and entrepreneurs to pursue alternative and renewable energy technologies and continually improve seems obvious.  Starting to drill oil wells in a safe, responsible way to produce American oil just makes common sense.

And for goodness sake, can we please come up with the $12 million needed for the i6 Green Challenge?  Perhaps we shouldn’t have spent $30 million for new spring training facilities for the Arizona Diamondbacks and Colorado Rockies, or $77 million to renovate 5 seldom-used ports of entry on the U.S.-Canada border in Montana.  See Waste 102.  It is all about priorities, and if we have a national energy crisis, which we do, and a technology solution is likely decades away, which it is, then we need to do whatever we can.


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Join the Discussion

75 comments so far.

  • [Avatar for The Oil Change Dude]
    The Oil Change Dude
    October 20, 2011 12:16 pm

    SO may things about politics. I hope we start to use renewable energy but I doubt it would happen because of all of these people who want to make money off the dirty type of energy.

    When there is so much money being made of something do you really think that something is going to be able to change…I don’t.

    Take care.


  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 17, 2011 02:53 pm


    Your comment at 73 isnice – but it is still based on your earlier wrong and pedantic comments, thus loses its actual import.

    Truly, you are acting as blindly as the anti-software patent (and general anti-patent) factions that my delectable concoctions are intended for. For one who likes to think that he (or she) is grounded in rationalism, your behavior is nothing of the sort.

    You insistence on tossing about “FUD-WOT”s notwithstanding.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 17, 2011 02:08 pm

    FUD-WOTs are as FUD-WOTs do.

    …my mama always used to say

    (Picture Forrest Gump uttering the above; rinse and repeat).

  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 17, 2011 10:21 am


    Now you stoop to being pedantic? I expect better from you.

    The mere use of the term itself does not indicate the “use” of the term as a present construct.

    The point is that that term – as a functional theory – is no longer viable.

    Maybe you need to stop drinking the windshield fluid if you want me to use it on my Deloreon.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 17, 2011 03:48 am


    May I suggest that you need to put more windshield cleaning fluid into your DeLorean?

    You’re simply not seeing clearly through the front portal as you drive your Mr. Fusion powered vehicle through the space-time continuum. Three drops of Kool-Aid per liter usually improves the vision enhancing function of the windshield fluid.

    Once your window is clean you will see that everyone who NOW reads comment #67 is NOW using the term “global warming” at the instant that said term flies up into their eyes. Why just a mere 800 milliseconds ago you were using the term as you read this message.

    Everyone in the future who will be reading comment #67 will in the moment be engaged in present tense usage of the term “global warming”.

    Oops. Sorry there. I made you do it again.

    (You know, use the term “global warming” in a present tense sense of the act.)

    We now have to add WOT to the FUD arsenal that you “skeptics” use in trying to debunk the reality of global warming.

    It therefore now becomes FUD-WOT:
    Waste of Time


  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 16, 2011 09:19 pm

    No step, that was a step into the past.

    I wouldn’t be all tense if you understood the tense you were using.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 16, 2011 09:13 pm


    American Idol starts shortly.
    Put down that 9th inning mug of Kool-Aid and come watch the canaries sing.

    You, my friend, are getting way too tense over this whole discussion.
    Relax. No one is coming to pull away your carbon footprint from your cold dead hands. 😉

  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 16, 2011 07:10 pm


    Your blindness preventing you from seeingthe tense of the usage?

    And now you are LOL’ing? At your own denseness? That tense you quote is past tense.

    You have only proven my point.

    For the love of your credibility – please stop.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 16, 2011 06:07 pm

    NO ONE uses that term [(“Global Warming”)] anymore (regardless of your thinking)

    That’s a good LOL one Dogma. Just last week, a “someone” was using that term: the sciencedaily.com web site:


    Overall, 74 percent of people thought the problem was real when it was referred to as climate change, while about 68 percent thought it was real when it was referred to as global warming.

  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 16, 2011 05:39 pm


    I am truly sorry for you. For every accusation that you hurl at Gene about being closed minded, the exact same sticks to you and your desire to hold onto Global Warming.

    There is a reason why NO ONE uses that term anymore (regardless of your thinking that it was some Bush-Republican conspiracy that “backfired” – how much of a “backfire” is it when it defines the very losing monet for GW?) – that reason is because GW theories could not hold up to the dear scientific inspection you seem to implore – the academics had cooked the books and their predictions simply were not coing true. Switching to Climate Change allows the “canary” to keep on singing, but we are no longer in the coal mine.

    I see why you stay confused and clinging to the notions of GW – Chang is indeed afoot. But I hate to break it to you: change is always afoot. It is more than just a little bit conceited to think that mankind can doom the planet. Yes, we can use up non-renewable resources. Yes we can poison ourselves (in the short term). But revist my elephant herd analogy – these actions by man are like my pushing you relative to the Mother of an elephant herd that Nature throws our way.

    You are focusing on the wrong thing. Yet another clue for you: your inability to separate politics from the discussion.

    I hate to say this – as I generally respect your opinion – but you sound as foolish as the anti-patentists in their prattling.

    Please stop.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 16, 2011 04:52 pm

    Hi Gene,

    I’m back.

    So let’s talk models now, climate models in particular, but first models in general.

    It is well understood that “models” are no substitute for the real thing. You may have all sorts of models for assuring for example, that a specific design of a nuke power plant will be safe. However, in the real world, some Black Swan pops out unexpectedly from no where and hits you between your shocked and awed eyes (Inconceivable!).

    Models are a simplistic and crude way of coming to terms with what the real world is like.
    Most models have a limited range of usability.

    Let’s digress to the field of electrical engineering for a moment.
    If I have a DC analysis model for a given circuit, it would be totally unreasonable of you to demand that the model also show AC behavior of the circuit. That’s not what the model was built to do.

    Even if I have an AC analysis and modeling program for a given circuit specification, it may not be one that goes into the megahertz or terahertz range. Maybe it was only designed to due 60Hz analysis. So again, it would be totally unreasonable of you to demand that the model also show AC behavior into the terahertz range.

    Well same thing kind of applies to climate models.
    Some are designed only to do tomorrow’s weather pattern and only in a particular, well understood locale.

    Now let’s talk about time scales.

    First of all, just a couple of million or billion years after the Big Bang, this solar system was first forming out whatever gathering gas masses happened to be around. There was no Earth. Soon thereafter it was there but not in form we know of today. It was hot, dry, volcanic, had no oxygen in its atmosphere and there was a slight chance of meatballs and meteors striking every so often.

    Well that’s a form of “climate” also. However it is wholly unreasonable to demand that every climate model should be able to back-predict to that primordial state.

    Scientist well understand that over the course of tens or thousands of years, the shape of the Earth’s orbit around the Sun shifts (becoming more circular or more elliptical) and that such drives the Ice Ages and the warm epochs in between. But that is not what climate scientists are talking about when they use the term Global Warming (or Climate Change). They talking only about the next 50 to 100 years.

    So the demands you make of their climate models are sophomoric and ridiculous.

    From around the world, the evidence is pouring in that something unprecedented is taking place. The polar ice caps are melting, tundras are defrosting, the oceans are more acidic than they had been in a very long time, species that relied on certain regularities of climate are going extinct, and so on and so on.

    All these are canaries in the coal mine who are trying to sing out to us. And yet you deny the existence of even a single peep of music.

    I’ve met many a people who simply say, don’t confuse me with facts; I’ve made up my mind.
    When it comes to the Global Warming issue, I kind of get the feeling you are in that crowd.

    Oh well.
    It doesn’t matter.
    We can chatter back and forth all we want. Mother Nature is going to do what she does irrespective of our noises.

  • [Avatar for Yet Another Examiner]
    Yet Another Examiner
    March 16, 2011 04:10 pm

    “First, the Deutsche Bank report that you cite doesn’t say anything like what you want to pretend it says.”


    “Overall the National Academy of Sciences (2006) rejected the claims of McIntyre and McKitrick and endorsed, with a few reservations, Mann et al’s work.”

    Or, take Nature’s synopsis at http://www.nature.com/news/2010/100707/full/news.2010.335.html

    “The “rigour and honesty” of scientists embroiled in the climate change e-mail affair are “not in doubt” — according to an independent review of the matter released today. However, the scientists have been criticized for a lack of openness that risked “the credibility of UK climate science”.

    In November 2009, more than 1,000 e-mails and documents were hacked from the Climatic Research Unit (CRU) at the University of East Anglia in Norwich, UK, and posted on the Internet. They prompted allegations from climate-change sceptics that CRU scientists withheld, concealed and manipulated data in an attempt to boost the case for human-induced climate change. The review, led by Muir Russell, the former vice-chancellor of the University of Glasgow, UK, was charged with investigating the scientists’ behaviour. In a 160-page report, the five-person review committee says that it found no evidence of malicious intent, but rather a “consistent pattern of failing to display the proper degree of openness” both among researchers and in the university’s leadership in handling the affair.”

    “In exploring allegations that the CRU withheld or tampered with data, the committee scrutinized e-mails concerning the selection of weather-station data in research published in Nature1, led by former CRU director, Phil Jones — who stepped down from his position while the investigation was under way.

    To check the paper’s conclusion that rising temperatures could not be caused by the local “urban heat island effect” — in which cities tend to be warmer than surrounding rural areas — but should rather be attributed to global climate change, the review panel downloaded the source data directly from publicly accessible sites. “It became very clear, very early on that anyone can get the data…it took us literally minutes to download,” says committee-member Peter Clarke, a professor of physics at the University of Edinburgh, UK.

    Russell says that the review panel analysed this independently obtained data and produced “essentially the same shapes of graph” as that reported by the CRU scientists, regardless of choice of weather stations — indicating that the reported results can be trusted. ”

    You can spin it any way you like and take out-of-context sentences, but you can’t change what’s clearly written. The conclusions of Mann’s research have been tested and confirmed multiple times by respected scientific organizations.

    “Pure and simple, neither you nor anyone else can explain why the earth’s climate has changed over the history of the earth. If you look at the ice core data, which I know you haven’t if you are arguing about global warming, you would see that there have been times during world history where temperatures have been as high and all those previous times there were no humans around.”

    That is an obvious non-sequitur. Just because the climate has changed in the past does not in any way mean that humans cannot be responsible for changes in the climate we observe today. That would be like saying that forest fires existed before humans existed, therefore there can be no such thing as human-caused forest fires.

    Further, we *can* explain why changes occurred in the past. The changes in climate observed in the Vostok ice core show a direct correlation between CO2 concentration and global temperatures. We humans are mimicking this effect by dumping gigatones of CO2 into the atmosphere. That greenhouse gases increase temperature has been known since the days of Fourier.

    Also, I can’t let this last bit go

    “But let’s take a look at some of the craziest predictions that haven’t come true:”

    Really? After making such a big deal about citations, you’re going to use three unsourced quotes without context and a reference to a 40-year old issue of LIFE magazine?

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 16, 2011 01:43 pm

    Hi Gene,

    I have already responded to you on the following of your never ending list of demands:

    1.1) Climategate and the fact that the scientists were exonerated of substantially all charges;

    1.2) Climategate and the fact that logically speaking, what these small handful of scientists among 1000 say is a complete red herring that proves nothing about whether Global Warming (a.k.a. Climate Change) is true or not true; and

    2.0) The switch in name-calling where what used to be referred to as “Global Warming” is now more popularly referred to as “Climate Change” due to the psycho-linguistic attack operations by GW Bush’s think tank people.

    Additionally, I have posted link-after-supporting link which are chock full of open and transparent information.
    I am vaguely aware that the University of Anglica people (the Climategate handful) admit they lost or destroyed some raw data. However, the data that was lost/destroyed is a mere needle in a tsunami of data being generated by thousands of other scientists in all walks of science from ocean study to plant (foliage) study to glacier study and so on. It is you who wants to ignore the tsunami of supporting results and to keep focusing on this one small insignificant event of Climategate, which as I have patiently tried to explain to you is logically irrelevant to the question of whether GW/CC (in the sense it is meant by the scientists) is happening or not.

    Now you are demanding climate models that accurately predict climate for all time periods from negative infinity and before and to the end of the universe and beyond.

    I’ll try to address that soon. However, I do have a day job to attend to … so later on that one 😉

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 16, 2011 10:57 am


    You say: “Since you have not responded to my point about conceding (#54 & #56) , that point goes unrebutted…”

    Not true. I made clear I was done debating you unless and until you respond to what I have presented. I am not going to continue to prove you wrong and have you ignore what I say.

    So why not enlighten us on the appropriateness of deleting raw data?
    How about you explain in detail why climate models that cannot even predict the past are appropriate to predict the future?
    Why not explain in detail why ALL of the dire predictions have been wrong?

    You are wrong, you know or should know you are wrong, and I am done playing into your delusions… at least until you choose to engage in a debate and respond.


  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 16, 2011 04:21 am

    Gene my response is being “sequestrated” in in the automated censorship room. 😉

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 16, 2011 04:20 am


    1) Since you have not responded to my point about conceding (#54 & #56) , that point goes unrebutted and the jury has to therefore conclude that you do in fact concede to the logic in #54 namely that, irrespective of whether Climategate happened (as alleged by the “skeptics”) or not, such is a total red herring and it has no logical connection whatsoever to the question of whether Gloabal Warming is happening now or not.

    2) Next let’s take on your broo haha about “Climate Change”.

    Please tell me that you are not so simple minded as to not understand that “Climate Change” is a shorthand phrase referring to a complex set of theories. It does not mean that thousands of scientists convened (in your imagined star chamber cabal room) and wrote all manner of complicated papers just to conclude that, “Gee whiskers Mr. Wilson, the weather outside does change!” (said in the voice of Dennis the Menace).

    The switch from “Global Warming” to calling the thing “Climate Change” was not the doing of the climate scientist but rather a back-firing foo-pa by your boys:

    (“Similar to the pairing of “global warming” [as the preferred phrase by the] Democrats, The New York Times matches [alternate use of the more recent] “climate change” [phrase] to Republican forces.” link = http://mediacrit.wetpaint.com/page/Times+are+Changing%3A+%E2%80%9CGlobal+Warming%E2%80%9D+vs.+%E2%80%9CClimate+Change%E2%80%9D )

    Note that the word “obvious” appears in our shared area of patent law.

    If I say “section 103” and you say “obviousness rejection”, we both know –because it is the shorthand jargon of our field– that we are referring to basically the same thing.

    However, a person who has limited understanding of patent law would simply hear two different noises and would conclude that a “section 103 rejection” is an entirely different thing than an “obviousness rejection”.

    You are doing essentially the same thing in the field of climatology by asserting that “they” intentionally started using the noise bite “Climate Change” in place of “Global Warming” in order to further their cabal and hide the fact that GW is not happening.

    You are wrong on all three counts. First “they” are not the ones that pushed the changeover to use of the phrase “Climate Change”. The GW Bush psych op people did that.

    Second, there is no smoke filled star chamber room where all the independent scientists secretly gather and match up their disparate findings regarding changes to ocean (acidification), to air (staircase rise in CO2), to glaciers (receding), to tundra defrosting (and releasing methane burps), to long term weather patterns (changing more rapidly than normal) and to the mean temperature of the planet (still warming when in fact it should have started cooling).

    No. Instead it is the third thing: a big giant message from Mother Nature herself to the effect of: Frankly my not so dear little humans, I don’t care what you think or say or do or if you go extinct or not; I’m going to do what I’m doing regardless. (And by the way if I feel like having a tectonic subduction hiccup, I’m going to do it whenever I feel like it and not at a moment of convenience for you. You are insignificant nothings in this vast Universe. You are no more than little toy boats to be tossed about in a tsunami. The big laugh is that you think you are something else. You think you are the center of the Universe. Then again you should hear the lemmings talking equally highly of themselves.)

    For a listing of some the messages that MN (Mother Nature) is sending from her many different corners of the Universe see this link:


  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 15, 2011 11:33 pm


    One more thing… while your at it responding to the points I have raised (rather than ignoring them)… why don’t you also explain why a serious scientist would delete raw data. I suspect there is a simple answer really, like they didn’t find it useful to keep around given it contradicted the story they decided to tell… but I am anxious to hear you explain the scientific norm that embraces deleting data so that others cannot review, check and verify the raw data.


  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 15, 2011 11:31 pm


    I agree with BD. You are wrong, your position has been thoroughly debunked with fact after fact. I am not inclined to play into your delusions with a ridiculous fact pattern. Having said that… I will play along after you address each and every point I have raised. Why don’t we start with something simple — why do those advancing global warming theories never get predictions right? How about a bonus thing you need to address — why don’t global warming models predict the past?

    If you want to debate let’s have at it, but it is about time for you to address the irrefutable facts/truth I have presented rather than divert, divert, divert, confuse and divert, which is what you have done up to this point.


  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 15, 2011 11:16 pm


    You are wrong.

    It is as simple as that.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 15, 2011 11:02 pm

    I have no idea what that even means.


    OK. Let’s step back to a much simpler analogy.
    Let’s pick a story that you and I may have seen in law school:

    Bernie M. and Kenneth L. are stock brokers.

    One day, while hanging about in their smoke filled office, they throw some darts randomly at a stock listing hanging on their wall. The darts land on the names of GW Corp. and CC Inc.

    Bernie M. and Kenneth L. fabricate a story in their smoke filled office by way of which they plan to defraud a large number of unsophisticated investors.

    They tell the investors, “We have done a lot of fancy scientific computing including analyzing trend trees within the market and there hidden ring factors. We can now tell you with complete confidence that if you buy the stocks of GW Corp. and CC Inc. through us and at the timings we tell you, you will become extremely rich because of that.”

    Of course everything they tell the investors is a lie; a fraud hatched in their smoke filled office.

    Investor Pf reasonably believes what these brokers tell him and he buys the stocks as they had advised.

    Remarkably, both of the GW Corp. and CC Inc. stocks soar in price soon after and investor Pf becomes extremely rich.

    Later, investor Pf learns that the brokers deceived him. Does he have a cause of action in fraud. Discuss.
    (This question counts for 20 points on your torts final.)


    Got that fact pattern in your head?


    But I don’t want you to answer the tort question.
    Instead let us add one more fact to the story.
    The reason that the stocks of both of the GW Corp. and CC Inc. soared in price soon after is because they had secretly entered into a joint venture with Climbgate LLP to develop a break through invention of the latter. It had nothing to do with the lying noises that Bernie M. and Kenneth L. projected into their clients’ ears.

    In other words it was going to happen no matter what.

    So it’s the same with Global Warming.
    Even if Josephson and his cohorts are lying sacks of sh!t, if GW is true it will happen no matter what they say.
    And similarly if GW is not true, it will not happen no matter what they say.

    What they say is irrelevant to the truth of GW itself.

    How hard is that to understand?

    Do we need another law school example?

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 15, 2011 08:21 pm


    You say: “Can we take it therefore, that you concede that Climategate; even if it arguendo was the horrible cabal you claim it was, has no logical relevance whatsoever to the question of whether Global Warming (GW) is true or not true?”

    I have no idea what that even means. Fabricated evidence has not relevance to whether or not the globe is warming? I’m happy to respond if you can explain what you want me to respond to.

    In the meantime, I agree 100% with BD. Even the most vocal advocate seems to have moved from “global warming” to “climate change,” having given up on the story proposed by “global warming.” Like I have said all along, the climate changes. It has changed ever since the beginning of time. That is why dinosaur bones are found in deserts, for example (just reading Scientific American so on the brain). Dinosaurs were not living in the desert, the desert wasn’t a desert back then. We have also gone through multiple ice ages, which requires a sequence of temperatures rising and then lowering, which is what the ice core data shows quite convincingly.

    Science loves a unified theory because it is almost always the case that a simple, unified explanation is correct. Explanations that are isolated and unique for similar situations are a step in understanding but tend not to be correct. So I think we need more research into previous warming and cooling cycles and learn. The “global warming” proponents have never had a theory that took all the data into consideration, and that lack of a unified theory is extremely troubling for an intellectual honest scientist. The failure to even predict the past (or present) quite clearly leads to the inescapable conclusion that there is one or more variables missing. So we need research.

    I spent a lot of time teaching in very liberal environments. Universities are supposed to forward debate and exploration, but tend to really prevent that and demand homage to the orthodoxy. That has lead to the inability of those who question the orthodoxy to actually engage in research, and that curbing of legitimate research, even if proven wacky, smacks of when scientists were vilified for questioning the church. Whenever that happens science stands still due to politics and that is unforgivable.


  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 15, 2011 07:28 pm


    I’ll take my last swig from the Kool-Aid tough and move on.

    Irrespective of whether you believe or not in GW or AGW (Anthropologically caused Global Warming) or CC (as Bush’s psych op people renamed it) or the theory that it is the Sun melting the polar caps on Mars, or whatever; I think most people here would agree that it is not a smart thing to keep pumping all manner of pollutants into the atmosphere such as nitrous oxides from cars or radioactive particulates from half melted nuke plants and therefore “we” need to come up with less polluting and more sustainable alternatives.

    Accordingly I think that, despite our differences over the GW theory, we can all agree that the US patent system needs to be strengthened and that inventors need to be encouraged and helped in moving their “green” technologies into the marketplace because we will all benefit even if some of us are “skeptical” about some underlying GW theory.

    Einstein was “skeptical” about the quantum physics theory. (Something about God not playing dice with the Universe.) So even if you are wrong about the GW theory, you are still in good company and not at all losing of face in that regard. And even if I am right (which I am), it gives me no cause to think the lesser of you or of Einstein.

    Cheers (another round of Kool Aid for all and to all a good night)

  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 15, 2011 06:23 pm

    There are times when Stepping Back is not a good idea.

    One of those is when your back is to the precipice of GW, and still holding out that GW was anything but a modern day witch hunt by academics too in love with their ideal to face reality (Step, the sooner that you learn that academics are very much prone to such failings, the better off you will be).

    Here’s a big hint (hopefully before you start free falling backwards): when the name of the argument switches from “Warming” to “Change”, the argument for “Warming” has been abdicated.

    Funny thing about “Climate Change” is that no one (and I must emphasize no one) has ever argued that Climate Change does not happen. The only constant is change.

    Or, if you like colorful word pictures, GW caused by man is like me giving you a firm push – just before you are trampled by a herd of rampaging elephants. Sure my push probably set you off kilter, but compared to the elephants, my push was nothingn to get excited about.

    The world will move on. The sun will rise again. Put that glass of Kool Aid down and put your concerns in the right area.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 15, 2011 05:15 pm


    Can we take it therefore, that you concede that Climategate; even if it arguendo was the horrible cabal you claim it was, has no logical relevance whatsoever to the question of whether Global Warming (GW) is true or not true?

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 15, 2011 04:24 pm


    You say: “So the whole line of your attack on the correctness of the Global Warming theory is without logical merit.”

    Not really. The real truth is your belief in global warming is what lacks logic. The climate models don’t predict the past let alone the future, the dire predictions are always wrong, the data was fabricated and global warming ignores the fact that the earth’s temperature has fluctuated wildly over the history of earth. So global warming nuts, like you, ignore real scientific principles and short circuit tried and true scientific principles of debate and discovery to forward your political agenda. No serious scientist would ever ignore know facts, but that is what you do when you ignore the fact that temperature has been as high if not higher than presently in the past at times when no humans walked the face of the globe. You ignore the ice core data that seems to suggest there is an absolute maximum temperature before sliding backwards and instead want to believe temperatures will continue to rise despite no proof on the historical record that there is any likelihood that will happen and plenty to suggest it won’t.

    You are the one that is not logical. I have approached this debate logically, provided facts and my analysis. What you do is provide citations to others who similarly ignore the inconvenient facts that suggest what they are thinking isn’t even appropriate characterized as a hypothesis. Yet you act like I am the one not being true to scientific principles of discovery and debate. I feel sorry for you Step.


  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 15, 2011 04:18 pm

    Yet Another Examiner-

    You obviously have much to learn about science and about proof, not to mention appropriate citation. Luckily, I am hear to teach you.

    First, the Deutsche Bank report that you cite doesn’t say anything like what you want to pretend it says. It is a good read, perhaps you should read it. It says: “the methodological errors in the original Mann et al papers had no impact on the scientific conclusion.” So what you say exonerates Mann specifically finds otherwise. What a shock! On top of that, a conclusion that fabricated evidence that everyone relied upon has no impact on the scientific conclusion is asinine. Is that the type of logic that you accept from applicants before the Office?

    Additionally, let’s talk about the citations in the Wikipedia article you cite. You obviously haven’t read the citations because, once again, they don’t say what the article says they say. For example, the article has the following quote: “The investigations concluded that there was no evidence of scientific malpractice and Jones was cleared of any scientific misconduct.” If you actually follow the link that is cited to you realize that there is absolutely no proof for that statement whatsoever. The statement is merely made without citation and comes from Jones himself. See the last paragraph at:


    That is the trouble with relying on Wikipedia. You can count the citations all you want, but a naked conclusion that cites a naked conclusion is still a naked conclusion. Do you allow applicants to support their arguments with links to websites that merely state (or re-state) the argument without any proof or further citation? It would be great if you did because getting a patent would be so much easier if naked conclusions and restatements were proof. The truth, however, is that merely reciting the same thing doesn’t prove the statement. But I suspect you know that, although I doubt you will admit it.

    Still further, the climate change models can’t even predict the past let alone predicting the future. That is 100% fact and unless and until you have a model that predicts the past you can’t have any reason to believe it will predict the future. That is the hallmark of REAL science, not the agenda driven, ideological science you seem to prefer. Global warming isn’t even a hypothesis yet let alone a theory.

    Further still, none of the terrible predictions of the global warming crowd over the last 30+ years have EVER come true. That is yet again proof that what they have hasn’t even reached the hypothesis level. But let’s take a look at some of the craziest predictions that haven’t come true:

    “[By] 1995, the greenhouse effect would be desolating the heartlands of North America and Eurasia with horrific drought, causing crop failures and food riots… [By 1996] The Platte River of Nebraska would be dry, while a continent-wide black blizzard of prairie topsoil will stop traffic on interstates, strip paint from houses and shut down computers.” Michael Oppenheimer

    “By 1985, air pollution will have reduced the amount of sunlight reaching earth by one half.” Life magazine, January 1970.

    Dr. Paul Ehrlich in 1970: “By the year 2000 the United Kingdom will be simply a small group of impoverished islands, inhabited by some 70 million hungry people … If I were a gambler, I would take even money that England will not exist in the year 2000.”

    Dr. Paul Ehrlich in 1970: “In ten years all important animal life in the sea will be extinct. Large areas of coastline will have to be evacuated because of the stench of dead fish.”

    Finally, I have never denied climate change. To the contrary every article I write acknowledges it exists. The trouble is that the fabricated data by Mann et al have focused research on global warming and the academic elite have vilified anyone who dare question the orthodoxy. That is hardly enlightened and smacks of 16th century treatment of scientists. The fabricated data, in part, has lead to no real research being done into alternative theories relating to climate change.

    Pure and simple, neither you nor anyone else can explain why the earth’s climate has changed over the history of the earth. If you look at the ice core data, which I know you haven’t if you are arguing about global warming, you would see that there have been times during world history where temperatures have been as high and all those previous times there were no humans around. Any scientific theory needs to take that into consideration, and global warming never did, simply opting to ignore facts that didn’t conveniently fit into the desired narrative. It seems as if earthquakes and volcanoes have more to do with warming trends than anything else. Have you done any reading on that? NASA has some great information, perhaps you are familiar with NASA. Oh, by the way, they are the ones responsible for the ice core data too.

    Perhaps you should do your OWN research rather than relying on Wikipedia and those who admit the methodology inacuracies of Mann et al and then exonerate them anyway.


  • [Avatar for Yet Another Examiner]
    Yet Another Examiner
    March 15, 2011 03:27 pm

    If you’d bothered to even look at the wiki article instead of dismissing it offhand, you’d see it’s backed by citations from over 100 news reports, peer-reviewed articles, reports from gov’t and scientific organizations, etc.
    We both know that I can spend all day citing study after study that exonerates Mann, and you’ll simply insist that it’s all part of some huge liberal-academic conspiracy.

    How about Deutsche Bank? Are they an acceptably conservative source?


  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 14, 2011 11:03 pm

    “So when the emails say they need to cover up the fact that there is no warming trend …”

    The following words do not appear in the email: “We need to cover up the fact that there is no warming trend”.
    They appear only from your mouth as an after the fact interpretation. Not admissible as evidence.

    “Your religion is the belief in global warming without any proof.”

    Gene I have already pointed you to the realclimate.org site.
    Common sense should tell you that on occasion I have read what is posted there and I don’t take everything on pure and mindless belief.

    The realclimate.org people do post their raw data, for example here:

    At the end of the day there is huge logical flaw in your whole repudiation (reFudiation?) of Global Warming.
    Assume for a moment that the handful of scientists were indeed plotting, caballing and what have you, to fool the whole world and that you did indeed catch them red handed with that one purloined email. Even then, Mother Nature does not listen to the mutterings of a couple of light haired apes. She does what she does irrespective of whether they are caballing or not. So the whole line of your attack on the correctness of the Global Warming theory is without logical merit. Assuming your allegation is true about a smoke filled room and an evil plot, even then you have proved nothing about Global warming itself.

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 14, 2011 09:56 pm


    Seems like you don’t know much about evidence. Believe what you want, but I will stick to the clear meaning rather than relying on after the fact explanations by those with an agenda to defend.

    Awful curious that the raw data was deleted. No self respecting scientist deletes raw data. You never address that. You see, evidence is a funny thing. It tells a story and you want to select the facts that support your side. You can’t pick and choose your evidence though. So when the emails say they need to cover up the fact that there is no warming trend and they continued to refuse to share data over the years and the destroyed the data the story is overwhelmingly clear. Add to that the fact that the ice core data from NASA does not support a global warming hypothesis and the truth is staring right at you. Why you don’t see it is a mystery. You are a true believer and are, in fact, just like the crazy skeptics you so condemn. Your religion is the belief in global warming without any proof. You and others like you only prevent real research into climate change because your whole being requires global warming to be real. Rather pathetic really.

    Sent from iPhone

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 14, 2011 09:02 pm

    p.s. And by the way Gene, I am often myself guilty of making erroneous snap judgments. To err is human. We are all human. We all make many mistakes in life and we all should gracefully forgive one another for being oh so human. No biggy. Let’s move on with more urgent matters. What’s going on with the Japan nukes? Is the jet stream bringing happy trails and glowing tailings my way?

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 14, 2011 08:56 pm


    As a lawyer, you know that a document submitted into evidence is just ink on paper (or in this case digital bits scribed into computer readable medium).

    What exactly the author of the document meant to convey and how exactly the intended recipient(s) decoded the message and came to understand whatever it was that they understood is subject to debate.

    The email was not addressed to YOU.
    It was an email sent in private as between a small group of scientists who claim they had a short hand way of communicating with each other. They all have said they understood the word “trick” to refer to a tree proxy filtering procedure, which procedure has been validated by many a scientist.

    I am not a climate scientist and thus I do not claim to have first hand personal knowledge of what exactly was going on at the relevant time and as between the specific individuals involved who alone were in privity with each other by way of the one purloined email.

    But I do know with some degree of confidence, based on how you have characterized the Climategate email, that you Gene, are no climate modeling scientist either. Thus you are not in a position to fairly interpret what the shorthand used in the private email was intended to convey.

    Here is a link to a site purported to be that of a climatoligist and including the text of the subject email:

    Please read it slowly and carefully and in light of the above rather than rushing to ill advised snap judgments.

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 14, 2011 06:52 pm

    Yet Another Examiner-

    Relying on Wikipedia as authoritative? Interesting.

    Of course, I am correct. I don’t need any investigations to tell me what the e-mails actually said. All you have to do is read the e-mails, which obviously you have not done and neither have the people who wrote the Wikipedia entry.

    As far as there being “no substance,” that is absolute nonsense. I encourage you to do your own research and see what was actually said. The e-mails conclusively prove that they conspired to conceal the fact that their data showed no warming trend.

    As far as doing nothing wrong, I agree. There is no illegality in fabricating data, but pretending that the data wasn’t fabricated is a non-starter and smacks of a true believer who ignores the obvious truth of what really happened.

    You are free to believe in whatever fair tale you choose, but ignoring the smoking guns needs to called out for what it is, and I will continue to actually rely on the evidence rather than unsupported conclusions by those embarrassed by this massive hoax.


  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 14, 2011 06:46 pm


    Quite right you are.
    The “skeptics” base their beliefs on the ultimate bible of science, Michael Crichton’s book: State of Fear.

    Since such is fully explained here:
    I need not stir more my glass full of Kool Aid.

    Bottoms up. 😉

  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 14, 2011 04:53 pm


    Now who has taken two Kool-Aids?

    You jump in bed with YAE, and miss the obvious flaw: “From Wikipedia.” That bastion of scientific and ultimate “peer review” journals…

    When you awaken tomorrow and glance over at your slumbering partner, don’t blame Gene.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 14, 2011 04:49 pm


    Oh come on there Examiner of Another kind, please be reasonable.

    Who are we supposed to believe?
    Dozens of peer-reviewing other-scientists or a single “skeptic” who self levitates with his own handbasket?

    The choice is clear.

    We must choose the more convenient “truth” because anything else is unacceptable.

  • [Avatar for Yet Another Examiner]
    Yet Another Examiner
    March 14, 2011 04:11 pm

    “The truth is the researchers admitted the fabricated data in e-mails and then destroyed the real raw data leaving only their fraudulent, manipulated data. They admitted they needed to cover up the truth to hide the fact that their data showed no warming trend. Yet you defend them and mock me and others who have the audacity to point out the truth and you call me a conspiracy theorist. It seems your true radical is shining through.”

    Sorry Gene, but that’s not even remotely close to what happened. From Wikipedia:

    “The investigations concluded that there was no evidence of scientific malpractice and Jones was cleared of any scientific misconduct.[11] They reported that while sharing of data and methods was in line with common scientific practice, it was desirable that there should be greater openness and information sharing.[12] The Select Committee report concluded that “the scientific reputation of Jones and the CRU was untarnished”.[8] The CRU was commended for their maintenance of temperature proxy chronologies by the Science Assessment Panel, which also found that although some of their statistical methods may not have been the best for the purpose, better methods might not have produced significantly different results. The panel deplored the tone of much of the criticism and said some was “selective and uncharitable”, but believed the questioning would result in improvements to working practices.[13] The question of alleged failure to comply fully with the Freedom of Information Act was left to the third review, published on 7 July, which concluded that the responsibility lay with the university administration rather than with the CRU research unit.[12] It said that there was “unhelpfulness in responding to requests” and that “e-mails might have been deleted in order to make them unavailable should a subsequent request be made for them”.[14][15] A separate review by Penn State University into accusations against Michael E. Mann cleared him of any wrongdoing, concluding that “there is no substance” to the allegations against him.[16]”

    Everyone that’s investigated this, from the UK gov’t, to Penn State, to the journal Nature, to Deutsche Bank has come to the conclusion that he did nothing wrong.

  • [Avatar for Mesion]
    March 14, 2011 02:07 am

    I agree there should be a push to find out more; this is of global importance, despite being on the top of many household economic personal wish lists. However, as I am not a scientist, and rather consider actions and pragmatism, my ‘alert scan’ has not gone to the patent practice nor to the theory of its validity. I am concerned that other countries will be able to use it commercially as per this company that keeps on being mentioned, Defkalion Green Technologies in Greece. Anyway, as per IP issues, I wander if this is true what will happen when the process is replicable by common industry. Does this mean the end of energy at a cost? This will undoubtedly change the value-added of far too many energy contracts!

  • [Avatar for Copyright Litigation]
    Copyright Litigation
    March 14, 2011 02:02 am

    Here is a similar story

    President Obama says he’s prepared to tap the nation’s strategic oil reserve if necessary to deal with any disruptions in the energy supply. Also, the President told reporters on Friday that an increase in research and development into alternative energy sources would continue to lessen U.S. dependence on foreign imported oil.In the meantime, Mr. Obama says, “With drastically increased gasoline prices, the Justice Department will be on the watch for any evidence of price gouging.”

  • [Avatar for Mark Nowotarski]
    Mark Nowotarski
    March 13, 2011 08:00 pm

    should there be a push to at least find out if this is true?


    Andrea Rossi filed a patent application. A copy is here http://www.wipo.int/patentscope/search/en/detail.jsf?docId=WO2009125444

    One of the foundations of the patent system is that the inventor must provide sufficient disclosure so that another person of ordinary skill in the art can make and use the invention without undue experimentation.

    If anyone wants to find out if this process does indeed produce excess heat, they can built the apparatus described in the patent application and try it for themselves. They should do so, however, under the guidance of a skilled engineer for safety purposes. Working with high pressure hydrogen can be very dangerous.

  • [Avatar for Mesion]
    March 13, 2011 06:07 pm


    I read that article on Pesn. I also followed up som exciting reading (a new interest has emerged!) on http://www.lenr-canr.org and http://www.coldfusionnow.com. Both excellent.

    I dont understand what is happening in the US. The Swedish are proposing the Nobel Prize to this guy! One cannot help but wonder if this is the right time for such an invention to make its break. World economic crisis, North African oil producing countries in extreme political unrest, the dangers of nuclear energy as seen in Japan.

    Gene, should there be a push to at least find out if this is true? I did some reading about inventions. The ones that made it through were always debated. Humans are a hard bunch to persuade! But we need this now, dont we?

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 13, 2011 05:57 pm


    Good point. Mea culpa. I’ve gone off topic.

    The real topic (IIRC) is Obama’s speech –what he said about 4 decades of complacency re energy policy and how we are going to become adult about it in our future dialogues.

    It becomes even more of an urgent issue when we consider the near meltdowns in Japan’s recent tragedy and also the fact that their refineries went up in smoke. It’s sort of triple whammy (one TV commentator called it the “Perfect Storm”) because now they are low on electricity, low on gasoline and facing a massive rescue and rehabilitation effort.

  • [Avatar for Mark Nowotarski]
    Mark Nowotarski
    March 13, 2011 04:45 pm

    By the way, should we even be citing reports by the Chamber? The Chamber is a lobbying organization largely funded by business interests. The purpose of lobbying organizations is to promote the agendas of their sponsors, not publish peer reviewed information. I tried to find an independent review of “Progress Denied:…” and couldn’t find one. Until then, as my examiner friends love to say, I don’t think we shouldn’t be giving it much weight.

  • [Avatar for Mark Nowotarski]
    Mark Nowotarski
    March 13, 2011 04:25 pm

    The full chamber report was interesting. http://www.uschamber.com/sites/default/files/reports/PNP_EconomicStudyweb.pdf

    40% of the anticipated economic value was from unbuilt nuclear power plants. (table 10, p 25)

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 13, 2011 04:12 pm


    I can’t unlock any truth from your comments because there are no truths, just denial of admissions of guilt and a tremendous does of ignorance. I have, however, approved the comment.

    Note to everyone, the repeated theme of the automated comment spam filter is that anchor text gets you thrown into the manual moderation queue.


  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 13, 2011 04:10 pm


    Even when there are admissions of guilt you cling to your previously decided outcome. On top of that you continue with the conspiracy theories and act as if those who are familiar with the truth are the skeptics.

    Cling if you must to your erroneous and provably false views, but enough with the asinine and off topic rants about evolution and other topics that have nothing to do with the discussion. If you are going to throw fire bombs do it elsewhere.


  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 13, 2011 03:19 pm


    One of my responses to the Climatgate thing is way upthread at #8.
    Check out the Open Parachute site.

    Apparently I was beyond tired when lumping your reply re Peak Oil with your reply re “Climate Change”. I thought you said Peak Oil is a fraud. My bad. Pls accept apologies oh vendor of the truth soothing Kool-Aid liquid.

    BTW, are rumors true that they are using your product as a substitute coolant in Japan? (I know, bad humor for such a serious calamity. But what have we got to keep ourselves going if not for the gallows humor? Keep it chill.)

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 13, 2011 02:41 pm

    Gene, I used a set of hyperlink anchors in my last comment because otherwise it would look awful. But of course, the spam filter blocked its posting. Please see what you can do to unlock “truth” from the grasps of “automated censorship”. Thanks. 😉

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 13, 2011 02:38 pm

    Dear Gene and BD:

    Chill out guys.

    I think your emotional reactors are running low on coolant.

    “Global Warming”, “Climate Change”, they are the same thing but just coming in under a slightly different noise-making labels.

    Actually I read somewhere that it was George W Bush’s psych op guys who re-labeled “Global Warming” as “Climate Change” in hopes that it would sink the climate scientists and somehow that ploy backfired on the Bush folk.

    Now as for science versus rhetoric, these guys:
    are scientists.

    Pick whatever cup of Kool Aid you want to throw at these guys, be it “Climategate” or the North Pole of Mars or whatever and they try to respond in a cool and professional manner.

    There is no equivalent on the (A)GW= hoax side of the table.

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 13, 2011 01:44 pm


    I agree.


  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 13, 2011 01:08 pm

    Let’s take a careful Step – I would not like to see one of my erstwhile buddies being banned.

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 13, 2011 10:57 am


    Your comment at #20 above hardly requires a response because it is just gibberish. You lose on the facts so you divert to something else and simultaneously denigrate your opponent. That form of commenting is not acceptable on IPWatchdog.com and you know or should know that.

    I know you are a regular, but if you are going to continue to deny facts and truth while at the same time being insulting and condescending you will be banned. You are free to believe whatever you want, and you are free to say what you believe, but when called on the underlying facts and proven wrong it is unacceptable to hijack the debate and turn it into a series of insults to denigrate the person you are debating. I allow those who comment to go hard on issues and get heated, but comments need to be grounded in fact and analysis. Your conspiracy theories and denial of obvious truth ceases to be acceptable when you then stop jousting based on fact and instead turn to insults.

    The choice is yours, but this type of condescending and insulting behavior is not tolerated here.


  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 13, 2011 10:40 am


    Don’t hold your breath for cold fusion. That has been the holy grail of energy research for decades. Every so often a team claims they have figured it out and then no one else is able to reproduce their results. They do not build anything and no energy comes from it. Perhaps eventually we will get there, but cold fusion has been a scientific black hole where claims of success are never backed up with evidence. I’m not saying research shouldn’t be done and we shouldn’t be hopeful, but on the spectrum of alternatives cold fusion seems quite far off.


  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 13, 2011 10:34 am


    You say: “You condemned all regulations.”

    Please provide proof that I have EVER condemned all regulations.

    Simply stated, I didn’t condemn all regulations, but I did observe that the fact that regulations and lawsuits are holding up 351 projects, including 140 alternative and renewable energy projects, is absurd.

    I did not call for unrestrained, China-like, lack of regulation. That is a lie and either you know it or you should know it.


  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 13, 2011 09:41 am


    I’m calling (you out).

    Your post in reply to me is a non-answer. Gene’s point is dead-on (warming v. climate) – academia is rife with those pushing agendas and “truth” is an “inconvenient” causality. Your point (certain resources not being renewable) is also correct. But your attempt at dismissing Gene’s “warming v. climate” is way way off. You indicate that “skeptics operate on the basis of pure rhetorical FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt).,” yet do not realize that it was the academics that pandered the FUD with the “global warming” scenarios, and when the data did not fit the improved models, the data was falsified. Most Dogmatics at that point switched from Global Warming FUD to Climate Change FUD, but guess what – climate change happens (and at a scale that dwarfs our species’ inputs) regardless.

    Do not cry for the planet – the planet will take care of itself. Humanity, on the other hand, well, that’s another story.

  • [Avatar for mtlieb]
    March 12, 2011 09:56 pm

    Mesion –

    I agree!!!! Whoever reads this post please go to the following link.


    If this is true this is THE SILVER BULLET to our dependence on oil. I can’t wait until more news comes out.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 12, 2011 09:46 pm

    You still can’t admit that the hockey stick data was fabricated despite overwhelming evidence it was. Why?


    The difference between the “skeptics” and the global community of real scientists is that the scientists take on all reasonable challenges and answer them because, well because that is the way “science” works. Science requires a falsifiable hypothesis and the taking on of all reasonable challenges to that hypothesis.

    On the other hand, the skeptics operate on the basis of pure rhetorical FUD (Fear, Uncertainty, Doubt). They do not have countering answers to the tsunami of scientific evidence on the other side. It’s basically the same deal as with the Creationists versus those who “believe” in evolution. Creationists keep insisting they are “skeptical” about evolution and their “skepticism” is grounds enough for denying the reality of evolution. Please don’t confuse them with facts. Skepticism alone is good enough for their likes.

    Gene, at least tell us that you do believe in evolution (do you?) and not in the 6-day fairy tale.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 12, 2011 09:31 pm

    Global Warming was a fraud.
    The “PeaK” hypothesis is indeed correct.


    Take two Kool-Aids and call me in the morning.

  • [Avatar for tifoso]
    March 12, 2011 08:39 pm

    Gene –

    It does not matter how burdensome the regulations may be if they prevent a worse evil. You condemned all regulations. Had you stated that some regulations need to be revised or rescinded, your argument may have been valid. However, you condemned them all. Your blanket condemnation called for the example of the polar opposite of the unrestrained situation in China.

    You would have made a stronger case by citing particular regulations in need of review or rescission. Give us some examples.

  • [Avatar for Mesion]
    March 12, 2011 03:11 pm

    Some curiosity about decisions on high politics and the energy crisis.

    Europe (www.nyteknik.se) is going crazy over the new energy era after Italian scientists (Andrea Rossi and Sergio Foccardi) discovered and proved validity of cold fusion. A Greek company name Defkalion (www.defkalion-energy.com) claims it has global rights “except Americas”. Why is no one issuing public statements?

    Such technology will have stupendous effects on our energy legal contracts and above all, will change our energy system “for the better” in that we will no longer have to worry about the cost of energy. America could be self sufficient. Do we have to wait for Europe to pave the way?

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 12, 2011 02:28 pm


    I agree with what you write. I’m not sure what blindness you are referring to in me though. I have always acknowledged the undeniable truth that there is climate change. Climate change is as dependable as death and taxes. It has happened since the beginning. I have repeatedly been upset about the “global warming” matter since well before the fabricated data because the unilateral academic bias against questioning the orthodoxy of global warming prevented real research into climate change, what was causing it and whether humans were responsible for upsetting the naturally predictable balance and influencing swings not anticipated by natural processes. I think the answer is yes.

    I have also written that it should be a fundamental expectation that we work to leave the world better off than we found it, pollution is bad and efforts to move to clean technologies should wholeheartedly be supported. Because for so many generations our leaders have abandoned the future we are at a moment where we need to figure out how to bridge the gap without complete collapse of the domestic and global economic infrastructures. A collapse benefits no one because that just makes clean/green options that much further out of reach because the economy won’t be able to pursue those expensive (at least for now) alternatives in the face of such economic turmoil.

    So the question as I see it is whether we do whatever we can to bridge the gap (I vote yes) and actually in an intellectually honest way pursue clean/green energy alternatives. I do think nuclear needs to be a part of that solution, at least for the relevant future, but nuclear reactors built on the ring of fire seem unnecessarily reckless. What kind of overblown self confidence allows one to think a nuclear plant on a fault line makes any sense whatsoever?


  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 12, 2011 12:14 pm

    Gene and Step,

    It appears that “we” are talking past each other, each with a little selective blindness. Neither of you can hide the slight stains around the lips. I guess that is a hazard from my employing you as tasters of the new concoctions that Stan dreams up.

    Global Warming was a fraud. One only can notice the switch in emphasis from “Global Warming” to “Climate Change” to realize that. Man’s impact to the World is overblown – as far as the world goes. Climate happens and change is the only guarantee.

    Fossil fuels will run out. Before they run out, extraction will get harder and harder to perform. Thus the “PeaK” hypothesis is indeed correct.

    Where these two collide, walk into each other in their partial blindness, is that the ups and downs of climate change, not caring one whit for the species known as humans, will whipsaw regardless of what we do in the geologic snapshot of the next couple of thousand years. If we use up the fossil fuels, the world will not care. If we poison ourselves to extinction, the world will not care (and will recover). We, the ultimate royal we, may not be around to see the recovery, but it will happen. Even the biggest destruction – nuclear pollution – is but a small blip comparatively. Sure, it is a blip that would wipe the royal we out, but the world is a lot tougher than we can imagine (conversely, the royal we think a lot more of ourselves than we should – in the sense of masters of our dominion – the horrible earthquake and tsunami in Japan should remind us of that).

    Understanding that, we should take care not to poison ourselves, and we should realize – that for ourselves – any process that we create will need to deal with the by-products, because all by-products on the scale of serving our little species can create harm to us. The world? That is the wrong focus to take.

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 12, 2011 11:36 am


    Generally speaking, I think you are right about new regulations. The trouble with projects such as this is that many of the regulations relate to whether the project can be built. Is it zoned properly, are there people in the community so opposed they seek to change the zoning to prohibit what would be an otherwise valid use under the laws, are the planning requirements satisfied, etc. etc. In any of these cases there are also environmental issues with building, and in my experience no plan, no matter how comprehensive, is every accepted on the first submission. Government officials always ask for more, sometimes in multiple rounds, and then the legal challenges start. So even if these types of projects go forward there are many years of fighting involved.


  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 12, 2011 10:36 am


    How familiar are you with the enormous regulatory burdens? The zoning challenges? The planning board fights? The “not in my back yard syndrome”? The federal and state environmental regulations? The litigation to address all of the above? Once upon a time at the start of my career I did this type of work, so spare me the lecture on your false choice between enormous regulation that cripples industry and no regulation at all. I did not suggest no regulation and neither dies anyone else despite what your news source of choice may say otherwise to distort the truth.

    Sent from iphone

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 12, 2011 10:30 am


    I feel bad for you. You still can’t admit that the hockey stick data was fabricated despite overwhelming evidence it was. Why? Because it fits with your preferred world view. You are just like the conspiracy theorist you so condemn, but you are blinded by your agenda abd don’t see it.

    The truth is the researchers admitted the fabricated data in e-mails and then destroyed the real raw data leaving only their fraudulent, manipulated data. They admitted they needed to cover up the truth to hide the fact that their data showed no warming trend. Yet you defend them and mock me and others who have the audacity to point out the truth and you call me a conspiracy theorist. It seems your true radical is shining through.

  • [Avatar for Mark Nowotarski]
    Mark Nowotarski
    March 12, 2011 09:11 am

    I think it would be fascinating to look at the correlation between patent activity, economic growth and regulatory changes. People often decry the inhibiting effect of regulations on business, but my experience as an R&D engineer was just the opposite. Whenever a major change in regulation occurred, it gave us clear problems to solve in the lab and our solutions opened up substantial new markets for our products.

  • [Avatar for tifoso]
    March 12, 2011 07:41 am

    You cite “regulatory barriers, lawsuits, and threats of legal action” as if, without more, these are, uniformly, bad things. Do you seriously advocate eliminating all regulations and laws? Of course you do not. Surely, there are regulations and laws that have unintended consequences but we have ample evidence that permitting industry to run rampant can have serious negative consequences as well. We need look only to the many cities in China in which the air is fouled by industry to see that air quality and other environmental regulation is not all wrong, as you, probably unintentionally, imply.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 12, 2011 04:38 am

    Gene, your spam filter is holding hostage my secret “trick” post back to you. 😉

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 12, 2011 04:27 am


    There is a big difference between “ignorant” and stupid.

    “Ignorant” simply means that there are a set of vital facts that one does not know although one might perhaps be able to learn, acquire and retain those facts if one tries hard enough and then use those facts within a rational string of subsequent thinkings.

    “Stupid” means that for whatever reasons (not ascribing blame here) one is incapable of acquiring the facts or understanding them.

    One conspiracy theory that raises its head from time to time is that patent laws are being used to hide from the general public, a magic pill that can be tossed into a car’s gas tank to convert water into fuel:

    Members of the ignorant lay public may find this theory plausible (under “common sense”) simply because they don’t understand science or patent law.

    Surely, if “we” can go to the moon (playing devil’s advocate here), then “we” can come up with a pill that turns water into fuel. And maybe, just maybe, those greedy oil companies are conspiring to keep the pill a secret (and oil prices artificially high) by using the patent laws or some other obscure legal ploy to keep the unobtainium pill away from the general public. Surely all those patent lawyers with their weird secret handshakes and IP jargon talks are all in on the conspiracy and the reason so many of them oppose patent reform is because it threatens to expose the hiding of the unobtainium pill and their part in the whole cabal. Just wait until the public gets its hands on this secret communication between two patent lawyers where one of them admits to the whole thing! OMG. OMFG.

    The above conspiracy theory sounds just as much like “common sense” to a science illiterate group of people as does the theory that thousands of scientists around the world have gathered in a smoke filled room and secretly conspired to come up with the climate change/ global weirding “hoax”.

    And so too does it sound and “feel” like a common sense thing to think that aha! we caught those deceptive, conspiring scientists because one of thousands of private emails between two of them has the word “trick” disposed therein within close proximity with a discussion about using tree rings as temperature gauge proxies.

    You might want to give consideration to the following post that looks at how and why science is now under attack by those who don’t like its recent messages:


    “Common sense” is good enough for common people. But it should not be good enough for people like you and me who are supposed to be trained in scientific technique and scientific reasoning.

    Then again, we are all human, we are all ignorant (about one thing or another, and that includes me) and we are all irrational to one extent or another.

    Have a good and tsunami free weekend.
    Best wishes. 😉

    p.s If you want common sense proof that all those IP lawyers have a “secret” handshake and they are all in on the unobtainium concealment cabal just note that no member of the lay public has seen them performing the secret handshake in public places. See? That proves it’s a secret and that they are all part of the secret cabal.

    /end of sarcasm (just in case you might have thought me to be serious in some of the above insanity weaving)

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 11, 2011 10:39 pm


    Regrettably there was a hoax regardless of the “clearing” you mention. I and others (other than you apparently) can read the emails and know what they said about hiding the truth that there was no warming shown in the hockey stick data, which was fabricated. Real scientists don’t destroy the raw data, which happened. So why must you cling to obvious fraud?

    I would agree that a nuclear plant on a fault line is not a good idea, but it sounds like you want a return to the economy of several hundreds of years ago. No drilling, no coal, no nuclear, and you call me ignorant?

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 11, 2011 09:19 pm


    Are you still hung up on Climategate?

    A panel of peer scientists cleared Mann of any wrongdoing.

    The real hoaxsters were the ones that claimed Climategate was proof of a hoax.

    Regrettably there is no hoax, just a few inconvenient truths.

    One of them is that every time we drill another oil well, dig another open pit coal mine, clear another rain forest; we are actually digging deeper into our own graves. I wish there was some cold fusion kind of easy answer around the whole mess. But so far Pons and Flieshman have not validated their claims.

    I will agree with others here that we desperately need some really smart inventors to come up with sustainable work arounds. Killing the US Patent system with patent Deform (S.23) is not the answer.

    BTW, the 8.9 quake in Japan and its effects on the nuke plants may be one more reason that nuke may not be the best way to go.

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 11, 2011 07:30 pm


    By the way, go ahead and talk about whether “climate chaos” (as you call it) is real or a hoax. Just be sure we differentiate from global warming, which clearly is a hoax. The data was faked and ice cap studies by NASA demonstrate that the temperature of the earth has fluctuated enormously for hundreds of thousands of years, which for your information is well before modern man and fossil fuels.



    So if you want to debate about ignorance perhaps we should start with the facts, shall we?

    Truth: The climate of the earth has constantly changed. That is why deserts today were fertile grounds many thousands, if not millions of years ago. So pretend that the changing climate definitively proofs whatever you want, but for a REAL scientific theory it needs to satisfy the factual record, not some political agenda.

  • [Avatar for Gene Quinn]
    Gene Quinn
    March 11, 2011 07:25 pm


    You say: “If you are among the people who of late have been joining the mob to yell “drill baby drill”, then I feel sorry for you. Not because it is a stupid thing to yell but because it is an ignorant thing to yell.”

    Well you would know something about ignorance it seems.

    Clearly those who advocate drilling are not ignorant. Those who would rather send oil money to terrorist nations seem far more the ignorant actors.

    No where in this article did I take a shot at anyone in particular, choosing rather to spread the blame. Yet you call me ignorant. Quite clearly you need to take a long look in the mirror. I also think you should read the article and work to understand it before you act like you know what it says.


  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 11, 2011 06:57 pm


    A link to Obama’s speech:

    And also a pinpoint to one thing he said:

    But the bottom line is this. We’ve been having this conversation for nearly four decades now. [=40 years, since 1970] Every few years, gas prices go up; politicians pull out the same old political playbook, and then nothing changes. And when prices go back down, we slip back into a [complacent] trance [with our eyes glazed over again]. And then when prices go up, suddenly we’re shocked. I think the American people are tired of that. I think they’re tired of talk. We’ve got to work together -– Democrats, Republicans, and everybody in between –- to finally secure America’s energy future. I don’t want to leave this for the next President, and none of us should want to leave it for our kids.

  • [Avatar for step back]
    step back
    March 11, 2011 06:28 pm

    Starting to drill oil wells in a safe, responsible way to produce American oil just makes common sense [to the common and usually uneducated lay person]

    You know Gene, every time I see the “common sense” nonsense tossed about in the patent law arena, I just cringe. “Common” sense often means no sense at all other than someone blindly following the rest of the herd simply because we are each herd mentality creatures. It’s just mindless and senseless blather.

    If you are among the people who of late have been joining the mob to yell “drill baby drill”, then I feel sorry for you. Not because it is a stupid thing to yell but because it is an ignorant thing to yell.

    The USA passed its “Peak Oil” point some 40 years ago, roughly in 1970.

    Ever since then, for the last 40 years, no matter how clever the petroleum engineers got, no matter what gee whiz brand new technology was brought on board, USA domestic oil production has been declining and declining. It had nothing to do with the tree-hugging environmentalists. It’s the nature of “Peak Oil” that once you pass the peak, unrelenting decline is inevitable. The reasons are complex and have to do with the details of how and where oil comes into being in the first place.

    Economists tell you that there will come, sure as their names start with C for cornucopian, new substitutes, new technologies, or the Singularitized Techno Tooth Fairy, if you dare but to see it that way. They tell you that “corn ethanol” will be our salvation, or “shale oil” or frac-produced “natural” gas. They tell you whatever you want to hear except the inconvenient truths.

    This is probably not the place to start debating whether Climate Chaos is real or a hoax, whether Global Peak Oil (as opposed to domestic PO) is real or a hoax, or whether “necessity” always mothers a just-in-time (JIT) invention to save us from a gathering storm of calamities.

    You are right about one thing though:

    The sad truth is we have wasted time that could have been put to good use.

    M. King Hubbert warned us about Peak Oil way back in 1956 and we laughed at him.
    Jimmy Carter gave us his famous “malaise” speech back in 1979 and we laughed at him.
    Rather than listening carefully and understanding, we put all our Easter Island eggs in the basket carried by the Free Market Pie Piper; and now alas the village of Hamlin and sons faces a grim fairy tale future.

  • [Avatar for Blind Dogma]
    Blind Dogma
    March 11, 2011 04:37 pm

    and environmental concerns are real because of concern related to groundwater contamination.

    Hear me now, fresh water is tomorrow’s Oil (scarce resource).

    And tomorrow is a lot closer than many realize.