Using a tragedy for political point scoring

November 13th, 2013 at 9:00 am by David Farrar

When a natural disaster strikes another country, the House normally grants leave for (mainly) party leaders to express condolences to the country concerned. Yesterday John Key asked for leave in relation to the typhoon in the Philippines. It was granted and both Key and Cunliffe gave excellent short speeches expressing condolences and solidarity.

Then got up and decided that he knew what had caused the typhoon – greenhouse gas emissions, and subjected to the House to a lengthy diatribe about . He spoke for probably twice as long as the Prime Minister and leader of the Opposition combined, and just used a tragedy for political point scoring. MPs got very very grumpy about this, and the Speaker had to intervene to calm things down.

There is a time and a place to debate climate change. It is not during the condolences to a country struck by a typhoon. Norman showed appalling judgement in politicizing what is by convention a non-political series of speeches. Have a look at the Hansard at the link provided. Key, Cunliffe, Martin and Horan all made short non-political contributions. Then read the lengthy diatribe by Norman.

It takes only one MP in the House to deny leave. If Dr Norman continues to use such occasions to grand-stand on climate change, then there is a significant risk than the next the Prime Minister asks the House for leave to express condolences on a tragedy, an MP will say no.

As for Dr Norman claiming the typhoon was caused by climate change. I quote Brendan O’Neill at the Telegraph:

There are two striking things about this nauseously speedy rush to blame every natural disaster on man’s thoughtlessness or wickedness. The first is how unscientific it is. As some scientists have pointed out, there is no “absolute certainty” that climate change causes things like Haiyan. Indeed, the latest IPCC report says: “Current datasets indicate no significant observed trends in global tropical cyclone frequency over the past century.” The ugly urge to say “that storm was caused by climate change”, even before serious studies have been carried out, even before the bodies have been counted, is fuelled by the weirdly self-flagellating moralism of the Green movement, by Greens’ never-flailing instinct to “prove” that modern life kills, rather than by any cool-headed assessment of the facts.

Very true.

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98 Responses to “Using a tragedy for political point scoring”

  1. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

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  2. Keeping Stock (10,299 comments) says:

    Comment from the General Debate re-posted here, but without the link :)

    Audrey Young rips into Russel Norman over THAT speech yesterday (which you can watch on my post, if your stomach is strong enough). And even Annette King has leapt in, saying that “his speech on this occasion was not appropriate”.

    Then again, in an arse-about-face way, maybe Norman did us all a favour by allowing the “nice greenie” mask to slip for nine excruciating minutes.

    It really was stomach-churning stuff from Norman.

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  3. Longknives (4,690 comments) says:

    But has poor Russel got his ‘Fwag’ back yet?

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  4. kiwi in america (2,428 comments) says:

    Actually Judith if you were to go over Hansard when special leave is given in these instances, I challenge you to find a single party leader’s speech of any ilk that was as partisan and political (especially about the event that was the subject of the statements to the House) as Norman’s was.

    He’s a smarmy self righteous tool.

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  5. Keeping Stock (10,299 comments) says:

    @ Judith – all the Green MP’s tweeting about how great Russel was, and how mean other MP’s (from right around the House) were for getting upset suggests that this was a party strategy, so the Greens collectively have to take the criticism.

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  6. thePeoplesFlag (242 comments) says:

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  7. Urban Redneck (234 comments) says:

    And wait for the day when Labour, Norman and their conga line of freaks, geeks and freemartins are running the country.

    Be very afraid.

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  8. BeeJay (72 comments) says:

    When will the Green Taliban dump this Australian wanker. He has an amazing view of his own importance to think that Kiwis give a toss about his grandstanding. You have to congratulate those politicians who accurately reflected the real concern of Kiwis and quite properly passed on our condolences to the Philipine peoples who have suffered this horrendous catastrophe. Have you ever seen another politician who is so far up himself that he has to use this disaster to grandstand and politicize a disaster. Kiwis are quickly coming to the realization that this guy really is a dickhead!

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  9. Pete George (23,476 comments) says:

    Norman keeps demonstrating why he would be terrible in Government. He’s a grandstanding political opportunist totally committed to promoting his own agenda. I don’t see how he could work adequately or appropriately in a coalition, he’s an ingrained opposer.

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  10. jackinabox (776 comments) says:

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  11. Judith (8,534 comments) says:

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  12. dishy (246 comments) says:

    Okay, so if you’re not the first (per Judith) or not the only one (per thePeoplesFlag) that makes everything alright. Silly me for not realising it was that simple. And silly everybody else, for that matter. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have a bank to rob…..

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  13. Pete George (23,476 comments) says:

    All Russel Norman was doing was …

    Wrong tone, wrong time, wrong place.

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  14. eszett (2,401 comments) says:

    I wonder do you think Yeb Sano is also using a tragedy for political grandstanding?

    http://au.ibtimes.com/articles/521404/20131112/yeb-sano-philippines-un-climate-change-warsaw.htm#.UoKLYZQ6XCM

    But I agree with you that blaming Haiyan or any particular storm per se on climate change is unscientific. However dismissing the effects of climate change is equally unscientific.

    http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=did-climate-change-cause-typhoon-haiyan

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  15. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Shorter Judith: Yeah, what Russel Norman did was indefensible, but drawing attention to his indefensible actions is also indefensible. Therefore, to critcise Russel Norman’s bad behaviour is to behave as badly as Russel Norman.

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  16. kowtow (8,323 comments) says:

    Typhoons have swept across and devastated the Phillipines (and lots of other places) sinne Adam was a young lad.

    Te only difference now is with “globa lwarming” instead of blaming the home countries for extreme poverty (building shanties in their path) we can now blame variously the white middle classes or rich western nations.

    The Filipino delegate at the Warsaw conference should hang his head in shame.No doubt he will be from the rich corrupt political class in the Phillipines who live in safe luxury while the majority of his fellow citizens wallow in shit and misery.

    Stop this madness now? Yeah right. Stop a typhoon?

    Stop building shanties in typhoon zones.

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  17. All_on_Red (1,581 comments) says:

    The latest review IPCC AR 5 clearly states that we are not seeing an increase in extreme weather events. These guys are just fucking liars.

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  18. nandor tanczos (75 comments) says:

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  19. jcuk (668 comments) says:

    I have thought for some time now that the Greens are just one step away fom being terrorists.

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  20. OneTrack (3,020 comments) says:

    Russel is just another zealot – he’s right, everybody else is wrong. And anything for the cause. 10:10

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  21. flipper (3,982 comments) says:

    Judith…
    I agree with many of your comments, and I admire you fort your forthright views some issues.

    But in this instance you are just plain wrong.

    I have closely followed Parliament for more years than I care to remember, and I have NEVER, EVER, heard the “non controversial” privilege abused. in the manner that the flag waver did yesterday. It was disgraceful

    The House never forgets such matters.

    Sooner or later Norman and the Greens will seek leave to make “non controversial” comment on some subject or other. The condemnation he is now receiving comes from all sides. The immortal phase “we will remember” comes to mind, as I am sure it will to every National and Labour MP. To add insult to injury, Norman is just, as some folks frequently assert, “just a scum list bludger”.

    Sorry, Judith. But the sooner Norman takes a hike the better.

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  22. jackinabox (776 comments) says:

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  23. ChardonnayGuy (1,199 comments) says:

    Oh, for heaven’s sake. David, Brendan O’Neill is a weirdo ex-Trotskyite given to embarrassing, populist, scientifically illiterate outbursts of all shapes and kinds. As for Norman’s parliamentary speech, he was only repeating what the Philippines delegation said to the United Nations. This short-sighted climate change denialist stance of the New Zealand centre-right may be convenient and temporarily tactically expedient for it, but it will do little to deal with the very real problems that climate change will bring in its wake- disruption of maritime trading routes, destruction of infrastructure and a very real threat to international trade. Not to mention how risky it is to alienate the environmentalist voter share segment, as the Key administration seems hellbent on doing.

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  24. Keeping Stock (10,299 comments) says:

    Judith said

    I’m sure they do, but that doesn’t excuse the fact that this has now become the big issue, and the actual plight of the Phillipines has been forgotten.

    And who is responsible for that Judith? I’ll tell you who; Russell Bloody Norman.

    Watch the speeches that preceded Norman’s effort:

    John Key: http://inthehouse.co.nz/node/21881

    David Cunliffe: http://inthehouse.co.nz/node/21882

    Contrast that with Norman’s effort, and you will see why people are so angry. This was a solemn moment when Parliament should have been unified in sending a message of support to the people of the Philippines, and especially Filipinos in New Zealand. Norman destroyed that.

    I have heard a comment from a NZ-based Filipino woman this morning that she was deeply offended by Norman’s speech. I apologise to her and ask her to understand that Dr Russel Norman does not speak for me, nor for the overwhelming majority of New Zealanders.

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  25. OneTrack (3,020 comments) says:

    “Does slippery when wet actually mean ignore the sign she’ll be right?”

    Does it also mean lets tax the bejesus out of the “rich” white folk and send the money to poor brown countries, so that they can buy cars and coal-fired power stations? Does it mean spending billions of dollars on wind turbines, which pollute the environment ( luckily mainly in China and who cares about them anyway, right?), wear out in ten-twenty years so have to be replaced, generate highly unreliable power which must be backed by “traditional” mechanisms ie gas and coal, and really don’t generate that much power anyway (But at least we are “doing something” ie spending public money – that’s ALWAYS good, isn’t it. ). Does it mean adopting a one-world government because some people cant be trusted to do what the intelligentsia say they should (well they have a political science degree so they “know”) (even though those same intelligentsia are quite happy to fly wherever and whenever they want “for the cause”?

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  26. Urban Redneck (234 comments) says:

    The statement by the Filipino official at the Warsaw convention was unsurprising. All second and third tier nations are eager to jump on the climate change bandwagon – because they want to get money out of it. Climate change is an excuse for international wealth distribution of epic proportions. Global socialism wrapped in environmental righteousness, if you will.

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  27. berend (1,705 comments) says:

    This is the Xth time Russel Norman goes way off rails. I don’t think this will work well for the Greens, or do they actually like such antics? Speaking truth to power, or whatever? Does anyone have an idea what the target audience of the Greens think about Norman? Maybe they never hear any of this, and the many other incidents?

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  28. OneTrack (3,020 comments) says:

    Chardonnay Guy – No warming for at least 16 years. When are they going to sort those models out so they actually predict real world results ie the old-fashioned real science way, not the new-fangled group-think that the global warming science “method” (sic) has become?

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  29. RightNow (6,986 comments) says:

    nandor: “Saying you’re sorry but doing nothing about the problem is hypocrisy.”

    Saying you’re sorry and doing things that won’t make any statistically detectable difference is green.

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  30. Ed Snack (1,849 comments) says:

    And it’s just lies, lies all the way down. Globally there’s been a reduction in Typhoons, Cyclones, and Hurricanes. Those who want to pin this Typhoon and its tragic toll on Global Warming (or whatever political name they wish to apply) are despicable anti-scientific bloodsuckers. People, get a fucking clue about statistics and science before you embarrass yourself further.

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  31. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    Oh for heaven’s sake, ChardonnayGuy, Brendan O’Neill might be an ex-Trotskyite (I mean, what could be weirder than being an ex-communist? I mean, what with international communism going so strong and everything). But why play the man and not the ball?Sure, he’s a contrarian – but so was Christopher Hitchens. Such people play an important role in broadening our minds and forcing us to be honest about our priorities and intentions.

    Last week, I put forward my thoughts on sexual complementariness and male behaviour as you put up a big whiny response about how ‘ad hominem’ is was to have that view.

    I thought it was weird at the time. However, in light of the above I guess I can just conclude that you don’t know what ad hominem means.

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  32. jackinabox (776 comments) says:

    “Saying you’re sorry and doing things that won’t make any statistically detectable difference is green.”

    ‘today’s cranks are tomorrow’s prophets’,

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  33. Ashley Schaeffer (472 comments) says:

    Norman’s diatribe brings to mind a book I read once about the evils of “disaster capitalism”. Same principle at play here.

    That the Green Party itself is a dumping ground for toxic waste is a delicious irony.

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  34. OneTrack (3,020 comments) says:

    “This is the Xth time Russel Norman goes way off rails”

    Won’t it be beyond fun when he is the Minister of Finance for the Peoples Republic of Aotearoa in late 2014.

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  35. Manolo (13,580 comments) says:

    Global Warming, aka Climate Change, the new religion embraced by the communist Luddites!
    Norman is a buffoon, albeit an aspiring one (wants to be Minister of Finance). Doom awaits.

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  36. Ross12 (1,410 comments) says:

    Uber Redneck @ 9.43. You are right about the official’s plea. It is like the Maldives playing on so called dangerous sea level rises as they hold their hands out for the cash. Never mind the fact that they are building a new international airport and new luxury holtel accomodation to meet the tourist demands.

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  37. jaba (2,137 comments) says:

    keep it up Russ .. don’t listen to the anti gween brigade .. we need the voters of New Zealand to know you for what you stand for .. go you good thing.

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  38. jawnbc (82 comments) says:

    The typhoon was a monster storm, but not an unprecedented one. There’s evidence of similar storms may well have occurred before the industrial revolution. The link from global warming to one specific event is stoopid—and does the legitimate issue disservice. What is clear is that rises in sea level make storm surges worse.

    Regardless, what a crappy gesture on the part of Norman.

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  39. Mark1 (90 comments) says:

    thePeoplesFlag – it’s called class pal and Norman just doesn’t get it.

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  40. Yoza (1,815 comments) says:

    Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see.

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  41. Colville (2,261 comments) says:

    Remember the cute lil carved stone sign posts that they showed us up in the hills around Fukushima saying “dont build closer than this to the sea” and they went and built a nuke plant there.
    Surprise surprise. All this disaster shit has happened in the past as well.
    When people build too close to the sea, the sea may well come and fuck them up.

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  42. ross69 (3,652 comments) says:

    I have heard a comment from a NZ-based Filipino woman this morning that she was deeply offended by Norman’s speech.

    She needn’t worry. A blogger will make various phone calls to ensure that Parliament is no longer televised. :)

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  43. Ross12 (1,410 comments) says:

    Don’t you read the IPCC reports Yoza ? You should also look up historical data on hurricanes in the USA , on their extent and their strength. You’ll see you are wrong.

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  44. davidp (3,580 comments) says:

    Norman will have a hard time topping this outrage. Maybe next week he can go to the funeral of an Aids victim and lecture everyone about the evils of gay sex? Altho to be consistent, the victim wouldn’t be gay.

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  45. Sir Cullen's Sidekick (876 comments) says:

    This moron is about to become the Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister of New Zealand. This country deserves these creeps. No sympathies here.

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  46. Keeping Stock (10,299 comments) says:

    berend said

    This is the Xth time Russel Norman goes way off rails. I don’t think this will work well for the Greens, or do they actually like such antics? Speaking truth to power, or whatever? Does anyone have an idea what the target audience of the Greens think about Norman? Maybe they never hear any of this, and the many other incidents?

    Green Party activists will be delighted that Norman has stood up to the Establishment. Here’s what one of them has said on my post:

    bsprout said…

    I think the real assessment of the value of the speeches would be the reaction of the Philippines people if they had been listening. Russel’s reading of the heart felt plea from Philippines diplomat,Yeb Sano, for action on climate change was completely appropriate. Per head of population New Zealand has done more to create this crisis than most other countries. We owe it to the people of the Philippines people to recognise our responsibility and do something about it. Russel’s speech was a humanitarian one and National’s reaction was a political one. Yeb Sano would have been appalled.

    I have replied thus:

    Point 1: I have heard the reaction of an NZ-based Filipino woman this morning who was deeply offended by Norman’s speech.

    Point 2: It wasn’t just National MP’s who were upset; see Annette King’s comments above.

    You’re dealing with zealots here, who refuse to even consider that other people don’t share their worldview, and who believe that they are right, even when proven wrong. Heaven help us that the Greens are ever allowed to govern, or to get their hands on the country’s chequebook.

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  47. Pete George (23,476 comments) says:

    Yes KS. I’m sure the vast majority of people affected by the recent weather in the Philippines have far more pressing concerns than climate change at the moment.

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  48. Ashley Schaeffer (472 comments) says:

    Per head of population New Zealand has done more to create this crisis than most other countries. We owe it to the people of the Philippines people to recognise our responsibility and do something about it.

    Ha ha, so now New Zealand is responsible for the typhoon in the Philippines. These Green loonies have no credibility at all. They truly are suffering from mental illness.

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  49. RichardX (325 comments) says:

    It was as cringeworthy as “Give me back my flag”

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  50. nostrils (53 comments) says:

    @Yoza: “These extreme weather events will soon become the new normal.”

    These extreme weather events have always been the new normal.

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  51. nostrils (53 comments) says:

    Actually, it’s “Gimme my flag back, Gimme my flag back!”

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  52. tvb (4,364 comments) says:

    Russell Norman’s agenda is hard core socialism. And he is using a climate related tragedy to justify wide ranging state control and taxes. Socialism do nothing for climate change and it is not clear climate change had anything to do with this typhoon.

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  53. nostrils (53 comments) says:

    Some facts for Wussel:

    “Haiyan is also by no means the largest tropical cyclone on record, nor the most intense. Super Typhoon Tip in 1979 (when Wussel was still shitting yellow), which holds both those records, was over twice the size of Haiyan and had a minimum estimated central pressure of 870 hPa, compared to Haiyan’s 895 hPa.”

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  54. RightNow (6,986 comments) says:

    Yoza “What global warming ensures is when those typhoons and storms do form they grow to a magnitude of ferocity unseen in the course of recorded history. ”
    Do you have some sort of reference you can prove that with? Perhaps an actual record of typhoons and storms ranked by ferocity?
    I think you’re making shit up, or you’ve fallen for some shit someone else made up.

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  55. nostrils (53 comments) says:

    Yoza is doing a thumbs down on everything :)

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  56. Tom Jackson (2,553 comments) says:

    I have thought for some time now that the Greens are just one step away fom being terrorists.

    Not really. They’re liberal milquetoasts.

    However, you will see the authoritarian face of environmentalism if we continue to stall on climate change. At some point, elected politicians are going to realise that action is necessary whatever the voters happen to think, and that action will probably be quite harsh.

    Every day of right wing intransigence over the climate issue makes ecofascism more inevitable.

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  57. All_on_Red (1,581 comments) says:

    Tom
    What Climate Change?
    Read IPCC AR5 . For years you fucking dumb socialists have been telling us the IPCC is the authoritive source and now that they refute many of the scaremongering comments from liars like Norman the moron you all seem to be denying the IPCC;s findings!
    Cant have it both ways. But hey keep proving to us that you are a stupid denier and are anti science.

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  58. Yoza (1,815 comments) says:

    RightNow (5,921) Says:
    November 13th, 2013 at 12:00 pm

    Yoza “What global warming ensures is when those typhoons and storms do form they grow to a magnitude of ferocity unseen in the course of recorded history. ”
    Do you have some sort of reference you can prove that with? Perhaps an actual record of typhoons and storms ranked by ferocity?
    I think you’re making shit up, or you’ve fallen for some shit someone else made up.

    Well, there is this peer reviewed scientific study that points out the rising surface temperature of the oceans are contributing to the increasing intensity of these storms.

    The increasing intensity of the strongest tropical
    cyclones
    James B. Elsner, James P. Kossin & Thomas H. Jagger

    Atlantic tropical cyclones are getting stronger on average, with a
    30-year trend that has been related to an increase in ocean temperatures
    over the Atlantic Ocean and elsewhere1–4. Over the rest
    of the tropics, however, possible trends in tropical cyclone intensity
    are less obvious, owing to the unreliability and incompleteness
    of the observational record and to a restricted focus, in previous
    trend analyses, on changes in average intensity. Here we overcome
    these two limitations by examining trends in the upper quantiles
    of per-cyclone maximum wind speeds (that is, the maximum
    intensities that cyclones achieve during their lifetimes), estimated
    from homogeneous data derived from an archive of satellite
    records. We find significant upward trends for wind speed quantiles
    above the 70th percentile, with trends as high as 0.36
    0.09ms21 yr21 (s.e.) for the strongest cyclones. We note separate
    upward trends in the estimated lifetime-maximum wind speeds of
    the very strongest tropical cyclones (99th percentile) over each
    ocean basin, with the largest increase at this quantile occurring
    over the North Atlantic, although not all basins show statistically
    significant increases. Our results are qualitatively consistent with
    the hypothesis that as the seas warm, the ocean has more energy to
    convert to tropical cyclone wind.

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  59. Paul Williams (878 comments) says:

    I’m neither a Green member nor particularly a fan of Norman, however I do wonder whether the preciousness regarding Standing Orders is over hyped in this instance. I listened to the speech, I noted that it was more political than normal but I also thought it hardly surprising that a Green Leader would make such a speech particularly in light of what was said by the Fillipino delegate to Doha.

    I don’t think any diplomatic niceties have been particularly offended here.

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  60. All_on_Red (1,581 comments) says:

    From AR5 Oct 2013
    “In summary, this assessment does not revise the SREX conclusion of low confidence that any reported long-term (centennial) increases in tropical cyclone activity are robust, after accounting for past changes in observing capabilities…

    In summary, confidence in large scale changes in the intensity of extreme extratropical cyclones since 1900 is low. There is also low confidence for a clear trend in storminess proxies over the last century due to inconsistencies between studies or lack of long-term data in some parts of the world (particularly in the SH). Likewise, confidence in trends in extreme winds is low, due to quality and consistency issues with analysed data…

    Over periods of a century or more, evidence suggests slight decreases in the frequency of tropical cyclones making landfall in the North Atlantic and the South Pacific, once uncertainties in observing methods have been considered. Little evidence exists of any longer-term trend in other ocean basins… Several studies suggest an increase in intensity, but data sampling issues hamper these assessments…

    Callaghan and Power (2011) find a statistically significant decrease in Eastern Australia land-falling tropical cyclones since the late 19th century although including 2010/2011 season data this trend becomes non-significant (i.e., a trend of zero lies just inside the 90% confidence interval). ”
    Etc etc

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  61. RightNow (6,986 comments) says:

    Yoza, you know the Philippines aren’t in the Atlantic don’t you?
    But to the main point, there are stronger storms on record.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Typhoon_Tip

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  62. All_on_Red (1,581 comments) says:

    Again from AR5. The models are wrong (at last they realise!)
    (c) Model Response Error

    The discrepancy between simulated and observed GMST trends during 1998–2012 could be explained in part by a tendency for some CMIP5 models to simulate stronger warming in response to increases in greenhouse-gas concentration than is consistent with observations… This finding provides evidence that some CMIP5 models show a larger response to greenhouse gases and other anthropogenic factors (dominated by the effects of aerosols) than the real world (medium confidence). As a consequence, it is argued in Chapter 11 that near-term model projections of GMST increase should be scaled down by about 10% (Section 11.3.6.3). This downward scaling is, however, not sufficient to explain the model-mean overestimate of GMST trend over the hiatus period.

    Another possible source of model error is the poor representation of water vapour in the upper atmosphere… However, this effect is assessed here to be small, because there was a recovery in stratospheric water vapour after 2005…

    In summary, the observed recent warming hiatus, defined as the reduction in GMST trend during 1998–2012 as compared to the trend during 1951–2012, is attributable in roughly equal measure to a cooling contribution from internal variability and a reduced trend in external forcing (expert judgment, medium confidence). The forcing trend reduction is primarily due to a negative forcing trend from both volcanic eruptions and the downward phase of the solar cycle. However, there is low confidence in quantifying the role of forcing trend in causing the hiatus, because of uncertainty in the magnitude of the volcanic forcing trend and low confidence in the aerosol forcing trend.

    Almost all CMIP5 historical simulations do not reproduce the observed recent warming hiatus.”

    In a nutshell, they admit that observations are proving the models wrong and that they have over estimated Climate Sensitivity.
    Norman is a denier.

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  63. flipper (3,982 comments) says:

    Vote: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0
    Paul Williams (839) Says:
    November 13th, 2013 at 12:42 pm
    *****

    J H C on a Bike…..
    Three things:

    * The Norman offering, praised by his red melon colleagues and apologists, was a flagrant breach of a never before broken convention. It is inexcusable, but typical of the scum listers with a single Electorate MP.

    * Standing Orders have NOTHING whatever to do with the content of “non controversial” motions moved without notice.

    * All parties were advised (as a courtesy) of the motion prior to the House sitting. Norman’s actions were deliberate, an d deservedly condemned.

    * As DPF stated above:

    ” ….. I quote Brendan O’Neill at the Telegraph:

    There are two striking things about this nauseously speedy rush to blame every natural disaster on man’s thoughtlessness or wickedness. The first is how unscientific it is. As some scientists have pointed out, there is no “absolute certainty” that climate change causes things like Haiyan. Indeed, the latest IPCC report says: “Current datasets indicate no significant observed trends in global tropical cyclone frequency over the past century.” The ugly urge to say “that storm was caused by climate change”, even before serious studies have been carried out, even before the bodies have been counted, is fuelled by the weirdly self-flagellating moralism of the Green movement, by Greens’ never-flailing instinct to “prove” that modern life kills, rather than by any cool-headed assessment of the facts. … ”

    * The weather events claimed to be climate events are every bit as serious a scam, as the rising sea level rubbish. The use of sophisticated BOUYS TO MEASURE SEA LEVELS has disproved that canard. Just a scam.

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  64. Ross12 (1,410 comments) says:

    The USA historical data of hurricane intensity.

    http://wattsupwiththat.files.wordpress.com/2012/11/pdi-1900-20121.jpg

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  65. kiwi in america (2,428 comments) says:

    The Greens are entitled to their world view however wrong it may be. The Filipino delegation to a UN conference are also entitled attribute this horrible storm to global warming no matter how much that is stretching the public record of storm frequency.

    Norman was utterly tone deaf to the norms and conventions surrounding how our Parliament handles such tragedies. The bi-partisan speeches that are given on these occasions are a truly bright spot in the midst of the partisan bickering that is the bread and butter of political life. It enables foes to set aside their differences and turn their rhetorical talents to the honourable task of eulogy, commiseration and the extolling of the good virtues of kiwi character and to express unified sympathy for persons or countries afflicted by tragedy. Norman trampled all over that tradition for nine weary insulting minutes.

    Perhaps Russell should’ve consulted with Clint first – even his super partisan brain would’ve seen this speech as a bridge too far.

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  66. OneTrack (3,020 comments) says:

    Tom Jackson – “Every day of right wing intransigence over the climate issue makes ecofascism more inevitable”

    So it’ll be the “right-wingers” fault when 10 : 10 moves into the implementation phase. We should appease the cuddly Greens before they go postal?

    But it wont be the fault of MPs, such as Gareth Hughes or Graham Kennedy, who spend their lives flying everywhere and anywhere. Because they are burning those hydrocarbons “for the cause”. Four legs good, two legs better.

    I am less worried about the right wing intransigence and more about the science intransigence and how the alarmists appear to have so little real science to call on. “How many climate scientists want unlimited funding? Ok, that’s 97% of scientists believe in global warning – job done. The models prove it.” Maybe when your models can predict something in the real world, I will be more interested. But when it is just a consensus vote, and the result is the same as what the left wanted to do anyway “tax more, spend more, redistribute more and one world government”, then I get more than a little suspicious.

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  67. All_on_Red (1,581 comments) says:

    The Greens are telling lies over the Tasman as well.
    “This is ignorance posing as virtue” – absolutely right.

    The Greens are despicable. They are enemies of reason, and the question is whether their sin is ignorance or deceit.
    Here is deputy Greens leader Adam Bandt today:
    “Well, I think if the Prime Minister is out there referring to the Leader of the Opposition as ‘Electricity’ Bill, then he can be expected to be referred to as Typhoon Tony himself. The head in the sand approach to global warming in the face of the leaders of the Philippines themselves saying this is what we are in store for unless we get global warming under control makes Australia an international pariah and shows that really at the end of the day Tony Abbott does not believe the science.”

    Here is Greens leader Christine Milne yesterday:
    ” In our region Typhoon Haiyan and 10,000 people if not more dead in the Phillipines from a storm with such intensity there is now debate whether it is the strongest typhoon ever. Prof Steffen, one our leading scientists, is out saying that it is the warming of the oceans off the eastern Philippines that has led to the intensity of the typhoon.”

    Almost everything both Greens have said is false, baseless or misleading.
    Fact check.
    Was this typhoon the strongest ever? No. Typhoon Reming, which struck the Philippines seven years ago, was stronger, says the Philippine Met Agency.
    Was this typhoon the deadliest ever? No. The death toll, now estimated by the Philippines president at 2000 to 2500, is dwarfed by death tolls of 300,000 or even more from past typhoons and cyclones. The deadliest 35 cyclones in history all killed more than 12,000 people.
    Does data show we’re getting more or worse cyclones? No, says the latest IPCC report.
    Did this typhoon pass over seas made warmer than usual, thanks to global warming? No. Sea temperatures in the typhoon’s path were at the 30 year average.
    Have more cyclones struck the Philippines over recent decades? No, say experts.
    This was an incredibly strong typhoon, and it has caused a terrible loss of life. But there is no global warming signal here. Nor would anything Tony Abbott did – or failed to do – make cyclones more or less likely.
    Adam Bandt has ignored all the science and all reason to slur Abbott. He shames himself. This is ignorance posing as virtue.
    http://blogs.news.com.au/heraldsun/andrewbolt/

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  68. lyndon (325 comments) says:

    If we’re looking for pointers as to appropriateness, I wonder what the Filippinos think?

    RT @yebsano http://adoptanegotiator.org/2013/11/12/and-they-laughed/ … I salute you, @RusselNorman My deepest appreciation for your heartwarming gesture. I wish you the best.

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  69. scrubone (3,095 comments) says:

    What about TV3’s coverage? That was astonishingly biased.

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  70. Pete George (23,476 comments) says:

    lyndon – that’s what one thinks, and I doubt he knows anything about conventions of the NZ parliament.

    What about the other ninety six million Filippinos? Most wouldn’t know anything about New Zealand, and most probably know little if anything about climate change.

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  71. NK (1,231 comments) says:

    You know it is disgusting, vile and downright ugly behaviour from Red Russell when his biggest cheerleaders, Toad and Phil U, are nowhere on this site defending him.

    Their faces must be a lot redder than their communist leanings.

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  72. jackinabox (776 comments) says:

    A lot you know Pete, try to find a nurse that isn’t a Philippino at your local hospital and while you’re at it tell the Philippino nurses that they are too dumb to understand the in and outs of climate change.

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  73. All_on_Red (1,581 comments) says:

    Kubota, H. and Chan, J.C.L. 2009. Interdecadal variability of tropical cyclone landfall in the Philippines from 1902 to 2005. Geophysical Research Letters 36: 10.1029/2009GL038108.

    “Despite global warming during the 20th century the number of tropical cyclones annually making landfall in the Philippines did not experience any net change. All variability was merely oscillatory activity around a mean trend of zero slope”
    This is also backed up in Weinkle et al., 2012:
    “From currently available historical TC records, we constructed a long-period global hurricane landfall dataset using a consistent methodology. We have identified considerable interannual variability in the frequency of global hurricane landfalls; but within the resolution of the available data, our evidence does not support the presence of significant long-period global or individual basin linear trends for minor, major, or total hurricanes within the period(s) covered by the available quality data.
    Therefore, our long-period analysis does not support claims that increasing TC landfall frequency or landfall intensity has contributed to concomitantly increasing economic losses.”

    It seems abundantly clear then that any claim trying to tie Typhoon Haiyan to a pattern of increased frequency of storms supposedly driven by “global warming” is patently false.

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  74. hj (6,918 comments) says:

    Some of you thumb uppers might want to donate:

    Crusaders of the lost wallet: NZ’s climate cranks lose costs case

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  75. scrubone (3,095 comments) says:

    A lot you know Pete, try to find a nurse that isn’t a Philippino at your local hospital

    Try thinking before you hit “submit”.

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  76. hj (6,918 comments) says:

    L A Times won’t take letters from climate change deniers due to factual inaccuracy,

    http://www.latimes.com/opinion/opinion-la/la-ol-climate-change-letters-20131008,0,871615.story#axzz2kU2DPfp0

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  77. scrubone (3,095 comments) says:

    L A Times won’t take letters from climate change deniers due to factual inaccuracy

    Given it’s the L A Times, is it that they think climate change is true, or is it that they want the letters page to be as factually inaccurate as the rest of the paper?

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  78. hj (6,918 comments) says:

    Skeptical Science Study Finds 97% Consensus on Human-Caused Global Warming in the Peer-Reviewed Literature

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  79. jackinabox (776 comments) says:

    Porter are you scrubone?

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  80. NK (1,231 comments) says:

    Skeptical Science Study Finds 97% Consensus on Human-Caused Global Warming in the Peer-Reviewed Literature

    Skeptical Science Study Finds 100% Consensus on Massive Storms Occurring for Millions of Years on Earth

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  81. scrubone (3,095 comments) says:

    Skeptical Science Study Finds 100% Consensus on Massive Storms Occurring for Millions of Years on Earth

    That’s common sense. This is climate change hysteria. The two are completely different things.

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  82. Yoza (1,815 comments) says:

    Thanks for the laugh, RightNow

    RightNow (5,922) Says:
    November 13th, 2013 at 1:00 pm

    Yoza, you know the Philippines aren’t in the Atlantic don’t you?

    According to RightNow the laws of physics and thermodynamics in the Atlantic are somehow different from the laws of physics and thermodynamics in the South China Sea, genius!

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  83. All_on_Red (1,581 comments) says:

    Yoza
    What physics? We are talking about weather. CO2 doesn’t affect weather. That’s the point you moron. The game is over for you deniers of the science

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  84. NK (1,231 comments) says:

    Science? Who’s fu**ing talking about science? This isn’t science. It was computer models based on a now discredited hockey stick graph.

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  85. Cato (1,095 comments) says:

    It’s unfalsifiable so it’s not science.

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  86. Yoza (1,815 comments) says:

    All_on_Red (640) Says:
    November 13th, 2013 at 4:05 pm

    Yoza
    What physics? We are talking about weather. CO2 doesn’t affect weather. That’s the point you moron. The game is over for you deniers of the science

    NK (672) Says:
    November 13th, 2013 at 4:38 pm

    Science? Who’s fu**ing talking about science? This isn’t science. It was computer models based on a now discredited hockey stick graph.

    Cato (913) Says:
    November 13th, 2013 at 4:49 pm

    It’s unfalsifiable so it’s not science.

    Squealing about it doesn’t alter the measurable reality of anthropogenic global warming affecting the climate and, as a consequence, weather patterns. The US’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration provides data showing our planet’s oceans are warming and as the scientists to whose study I have previously linked point out:

    Our results are qualitatively consistent with
    the hypothesis that as the seas warm, the ocean has more energy to
    convert to tropical cyclone wind.

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  87. ManuT (51 comments) says:

    Green Greens…. OK! Blue Greens…. Better! but Red Greens???… No thanks that’s just dangerous.

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  88. adze (2,105 comments) says:

    The Greens aren’t as nice as the image they project, not even as nice as they themselves believe. People should remember that.

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  89. safesally (47 comments) says:

    Is it just me or could Russell Norman do with a new tie?
    I know what my husband would suggest and it would be made from hemp.

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  90. RightNow (6,986 comments) says:

    Yoza: “According to RightNow the laws of physics and thermodynamics in the Atlantic are somehow different from the laws of physics and thermodynamics in the South China Sea, genius!”

    Oceanic oscillations, not laws of physics and thermodynamics, but I’ll give you half a mark for trying.

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  91. SPC (5,595 comments) says:

    Mentioning what the Philippine government delegation was saying at a world gathering about the event was relevant.

    Was it too inconvenient to hear that global warming has victims, when expressing commiseration?

    The attempt to change the topic is typical of the way people hide on this issue. A bit like the way couples squabble, by making accusations against the other when put under some pressure on something – fortress New Zealand does not want to know about the victims to our north with warming waters and rising sea levels leading to more extreme events.

    Water off the coast two degrees warmer than normal …

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  92. wat dabney (3,724 comments) says:

    Environmentalist Bjørn Lomborg writes:

    The Accumulated Cyclone Energy of all cyclones in the Western North Pacific is below normal…both Northern Hemisphere ACE and global ACE are at the lowest since the 1970s.
    Yes, there are ferocious cyclones in the world, as they always have been. But first, you can’t argue that global warming is making them worse, when the indicators are *lower*.

    http://wattsupwiththat.com/2013/11/10/bjorn-lomborg-on-haiyanyolanda/

    As can be seen on the chart at the above link, Accumulated Cyclone Energy is significantly lower than it was ten or twenty years ago.

    So Russel Norman is talking complete shit.

    Most politicians are happy to boost their careers by kissing babies. Perhaps Russel is unique in seeking to propel his own chances by gleefully spreading lies and scoring points off dead children.

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  93. wat dabney (3,724 comments) says:

    Skeptical Science Study Finds 97% Consensus on Human-Caused Global Warming in the Peer-Reviewed Literature

    Apart from being a completely worthless and fabricated “study” I should point out that that figure should actually be 100%, not 97%.

    You see, it is the skeptical position that CO2 causes some warming.

    That’s all that that “study” claims. Nothing more.

    Where the disagreement lies is in whether the alleged runaway catastrophic global warming scenario is correct or not. Your “study” has nothing to say on that matter.

    Perhaps you should have checked before ignorantly posting that link?

    And in fact the skeptics have been completely vindicated here: The promised warming never materialised, did it.

    Facts trump theory. You alarmists, including the despicable lying Russel Norman, are in the position of shouting angrily to the world that the Titanic is unsinkable; whilst skeptics gently point out that, contrary to your cherished theory, it did in fact sink.

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  94. Johnboy (16,064 comments) says:

    Squinty-eyed, squeaky-voiced, Aussie gingas that are only getting to pose at the tax-payers expense due to a con job by the even more despicable Rod Donald should just pull their bloody heads in on this one IMHO.

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  95. SPC (5,595 comments) says:

    wat, what has failed to materialise is a continuing rise in global temps, the temp has plateaued. For now.

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  96. SPC (5,595 comments) says:

    And what Norman said in the House was repeat what the words of the Philippine delegation to a world gathering.

    They were not trying to exploit the deaths of their children but ask for some reflection on this matter, not just expressions of sympathy and some aid for victims.

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  97. lolitasbrother (669 comments) says:

    Over at the Standard, the gibberish is coming out.
    Anyone who dares give the facts about the IPCC ‘tricks’ gets banned.
    IPCC tricks are
    1.the censorship of the medieval warming. 2 the slopes on graphs positioned over time intervals to show the biggest rise,
    3. the absolute refusal to consider that climate existed before 1965, 4. the hockey stick graphs,
    5., the absolute dogma that Co2 is directly linked to warming .

    But a few comments slipped past the Standards paranoea

    photonz 21
    14 November 2013 at 1:20 am
    World News Australia reports
    “In its most recent assessment on global warming the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change found there were no identifiable long term trends when comes to tropical cyclones, hurricanes and typhoons.”

    and also

    Paul 17 13 November 2013 at 6:21 am
    Audrey Young from the Herald sides with the deniers.
    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/opinion/news/article.cfm?c_id=466&objectid=11155991

    “Norman’s climate change lecture strikes the wrong note.
    Then it was the turn of Greens co-leader Russel Norman, who clearly decided he was not going to let this crisis go to waste, as the saying goes.
    Instead of his own speech, he quoted extensively from Yeb Sano, the head of the Philippines delegation at UN climate change talks in Warsaw.
    It was like getting a long lecture on cigarette-smoking instead of a eulogy at the funeral of someone who had died of lung cancer.”

    and
    charles kinbote 12 12 November 2013 at 8:27 pm
    Its good to have the Climate doctrine dogma preached by Norman. This way the media can see here just what will follow from a socialist Government. Is there any body from the religious branch of Science here who reads the complete screw ups the Bureaucratic IPCC is making. No such thing as medieval warming, the j curve applies here, but not there.Rings in trees signify growth here but hide this stuff over there, pure ideaology. Those of us who are socialists and sociologists are better qualified . Doubt is ignorance. Skepticism is ignorance . We have science and we have IPCC science. One has the objective of fact finding the other fund finding

    [karol: You are on a warning – see here.

    and
    charles kinbote 14 13 November 2013 at 1:35 am

    sorry to be witless people .I couldn’t tell a joke as well as Bill 1.2, 12 November 2013 at 3:37 pm

    ” Was he [ Norman ] not meant to mention global warming in the context of the typhoon….’cause like, that’s political or something? mean, are we to imagine or pretend that the typhoon was an unavoidable tragedy that occurred in a vacuum – meaning that empty and meaningless platitudes are appropriate by way of a response?
    “”
    haha yes thats right Bill joker, all disaster are caused by climate. slow in the cold like the medieval times hidden agenda, Now remember no dirty words believers we are not used to blaspheming believers .

    [karol: You are on a warning - see here.
    Continuing with this line of comment also puts you on a warning for a banning]

    and
    charles kinbote 15 13 November 2013 at 1:42 am

    Believers, believers come see the magic . I will set up a blog site now.
    We will deal with Co2 first. Now you do know that Co2 has been at very low levels for the last few thousand years, don’t you believers. You do know that in Church don’t you.
    CO2 at huge levels right in those ice ages believers , graphics tomorrow socialists .

    believernz.blogspot.com

    Continuing with this line of comment also puts you on a warning for a banning]

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  98. SPC (5,595 comments) says:

    In old times there was a flood and some said it was a judgment against men by the god of nature, but others built systems to protect themselves from floods, demonstrating that there was no need to be a passive victim of natural disasters.

    The same applies to global warming, there are those who see extreme weather events as something we can do nothing about, yet others are aware that a rising sea temperature increases the risk of an extreme event, as does a rising sea level. Add to this, that precipitation is expected to increase …

    Those in any doubt, can check their insurance premiums.

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