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An Inconvient Truth

  1. Aug 2, 2006 #1


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    Has anybody gone to see the movie? What did you think about it? I thought it was an excellent movie of persuasion, although some of the facts seemed wrong to me, and there were a few disappointments with the movie.

    The movie starts off with non sequitorish behaviour. At 57 s, he shows a picture of the Apollo 8 mission to the moon. At 2:37 he shows calving glaciers, then pollution, and a from-space picture of Hurricane Katrinia

    I'll admit the first disappointment was most hardhitting. I don't know what I was thinking. After the introduction, the first thing he said was "I am not going to spend much time on the science of it." Did I expect otherwise? I guess I did because my mouth dropped open. Of course then he went into a little animation explaining the greenhouse effect. It showed sunlight going in then leaving—without the greenhouse effect. Then, with the greenhouse effect—sunlight going in, and bouncing off of the ground, but most of it reflecting off of the atmosphere back to the ground. Interestingly, he showed a little cartoon to appeal to other audiences that broke down the situation well.

    First a little girl's ice cream cone melts suddenly and she starts to cry. A man comes over (I believe modeled after the one from The Twilight Zone). Little Suzie (or whatever her name as) asks him why her ice cream melted. "Global Warming!!" The cartoon goes on for a few minutes showing greenhouse effect in a completely unbiased way.

    Light comes from the sun. The light is illustrated by a chipper, self-confident piece of fire/light that is in the form of a person. He is walking to the Earth through space with a huge grin on his face. However "nasty greenhouse gases" are portrayed as green blobules like amoebas, and are thugs. When the innocent ray of light gets to the Earth, he gets the **** beat out of him by a few greenhouse gases, his money is stolen, and the sunlight lays on top of the Earth, dead. More and more sunlight comes, the greenhouse gases mug all of them, until the entire Earth is covered in their stinking, rotting, dead corpses. "Their rotting corpses heat the Earth."

    Secondly of disappointments, I was surprised to find that a lot of the movie was about him. That's right, about him, not AGW. I guess its his movie and he can do whatever he wants with it.

    There was a pretty cool graph that was a hybrid of The Hockeystick (http://www.junkscience.com/Greenhouse/USAToday060602.jpg [Broken]), and http://www.mwnx.net/users/mac/Climatology/temp%20and%20CO2%20since%20400,000%20vostokjpg.jpg [Broken], quite obviously correlating temperature and CO2 using Vostok ice core data with timespan 0-400,000 yrs (he may have used a 650,000 yr. one, I'm not sure). One of the climaxes of the movie was when he got on some kind of elevator to show the CO2 hockeystick at its current time. Then, following a linear regression, the projected CO2 goes up and up and up off the chart way above where the temperature is.

    At 46 min and 2 seconds, he talks about polar bears drowning, with a helpful illustration of a polar bear working very well entirely on pathos.
    Immediately after this Al Gore explains how fresh meltwater from the last ice age caused floods in the North Atlantic that caused thermohaline circulation to completely shut down. My immediate reaction to this is to think "no freaking way," but I have not read anything about this.

    He showed a graph concerning biodiversity that was pretty interesting. At a southern Switzerland station he graphed the amount of frost days going back some years, and superimposed the amount of invasive species coming into Switzerland. The correlation was astonishing.

    It basically looked like this:

    Code (Text):
    Frost days
             \ /
    ________/   \
    He started talking about his enemies, the anti-global warmers. All I remember are some quotes I wrote down.

    "There is a consensus of global warming."

    "[Skeptics'] objective is to reposition global warming as a theory rather than fact."

    (in a video of TheDr. Hanson): "We already know everything we need to know [to stop global warming]"

    "We have solved an environmental problem before—the stratospheric ozone hole."
    http://junkscience.com/Ozone/ozone_seasonal.htm [Broken]

    "This is a moral issue."
    Can't we just stick with science? "http://www.crichton-official.com/fear/fear_main.shtml [Broken]! Carl Sagan wrote that we should get out of "the demon-haunted world" of our past.

    Here are three other things he said that might start a conversation.
    "Soil evaporation increases dramatically with temperature."
    "Species lost is going up over 1000x faster than current rate."
    "Scientists could predict precisely how much water would break through the levees in New Orleans"
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 3, 2006 #2
    Over one and a half year ago I posted this somewhere:

    Would that explain some of http://www.number10.gov.uk/output/Page6333.asp [Broken]

    Perhaps that that little armchair analyses wasn't that bad in the first place. Would it also explain "An unconvenient truth"? a master piece of demagoguery.
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  4. Aug 3, 2006 #3
    I'll have to make time to see this film. The best this sort of hype can do is reduce dependency on oil and promote an awareness of the global environment. In my opinion whatever changes are taking place are diffucult to reverse. Like trying to correct orbital precession or something just as enormous.

    The worst a film like that can do is freak out a bunch of kids and adults. If kids aren't being alarmed about "global warming" and its implications, real or imagined, there have been lots of wars, diseases, bombs and empty causes to choose from recently.:mad:
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  5. Aug 3, 2006 #4


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    There are always lots of wars, disease, bombs, and empty causes to choose from to be scared of.
    Once I asked how can somebody hate the United States President? He doesn't do anything. Of course he does, for instance he controls the military.. but only 325,000 of them. He vetos bills.. but they can be overridden. He chooses the Supreme Court Justices if any leave office, but usually less than one per President, and any decision on a justice can be overridden by the legislature. It took Nixon three tries before he got Harry Blackmun. Probably the President's strongest power is his power of persuasion. If he wants to say something, people are going to listen to him, and they are going to talk about it. If there is a threat, real or imagined, human, non-human, or abstract, people are going to listen to him and talk about it. The US President, as the highest and most respected person (unless you are blinded by hate) in the entire country, he tells the populus what to choose from. Whether it be wars, diseases, bombs, or empty causes. Iraq, and Afghanastan, AIDS in Africa, Iran's nuclear missiles, or immigration.
    Last edited: Aug 4, 2006
  6. Aug 3, 2006 #5


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    Please note that 400,000,000 and 650,000,000... those are actually 400,000 and 650,000. I fixed them.
  7. Aug 4, 2006 #6
    Please don't mistake frustration for hate. I have not singled out any one head of state, or any single person for that matter, by highlighting the over emphasis on "global warming", disease, bombs and wars that has been capitalized upon by the media. Further to that I tend to hold every adult, woman or man, on the planet responsible for allowing (and promoting) a legacy of land mines, invasions, polluted environments, hatred and empty causes to be left as our heritage for the generations to come. It is you, actually, who immediately concluded that your president was the focus of my frustration and who immediately transformed that frustration into hatred for an influential person that you and I really don't know from Adam.
  8. Aug 4, 2006 #7


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    Oh, no! I did not mean you at all! It was just a situation in which I asked a question and the answer seemed relevant to your post.
  9. Aug 4, 2006 #8
    My mistake. Sorry for any uncalled for ranting and taking up of space! I still have to see Gore's hollywood debut. I actually enjoy Bollywood romantic musicals myself!
  10. Aug 5, 2006 #9
    There are many articles that pick apart Gore's "factual" claims in "Inconvenient Truths." Undoubtedly, at least some of these issues can be debated until the next ice age raises its frosty head. However, in my view Gore tiptoes past the key question.

    Assuming that warming is a reality, what percentage of the change is due to human forcings? What model should one use to zero in on this question given the fact that predictions from the many existing models look like buckshot. Gore does not attempt to address this question and simply states that the driving force is due to two-legged creatures.

    There is a rumor floating around in the best of circles that climate does change. Perhaps in his next movie Gore will tell us how much of the change is due to human activities and how much is natural based on the excellent models that will have been developed by that time.
  11. Aug 5, 2006 #10


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    I think he said "bird" one or two times.

    That would be interesting. If he did that, he would really have done his research. As the physicists say, he may have learned some paleoclimatology and environmental science rather than about paleoclimatology and environmental science.
    Last edited: Aug 5, 2006
  12. Aug 5, 2006 #11
    How convenient that the Earth is warming and Al Gore was precognitive enough to see the future and exploit it for political gain.

    What a brilliant move, he's got my vote.
  13. Aug 6, 2006 #12
    Well as far as I can see he just echeod the retrodiction of others about the warming in the recent past between 1980 and 1998. That's when the warming stopped, however few did notice that.
  14. Aug 6, 2006 #13
    The Junk science website is full of just that, junk science. I suggest you find better sources, there are others available.

    That link describes the process of ozone creation and depletion, implying that the science behind ozone depletion was ignoring this most basic fact. Therefore implying that the bans on CFC's did nothing to effect the ozone cycles. Of course they themselves completely ignore this little scientific tidbit about CFC's and their effect on ozone.


    That link is a perfect example of how misinformation is spread. That site gives the average denialist just enough knowledge to be dangerous, but not enough to be a threat. This kind of politicised science is damaging to the credibility of scientists with valid skepticism, and harming the true debate that needs to be taking place.

    I am not a climatologist, however I do know that the ice is melting, and scientists whom I respect and trust say GW is due at least in part to anthropogenic causes. Therefore I will do my part to reduce my impact on the planet and encourage others by example.

    If Andre's law of conservation of concern is correct, I would much rather see mankind join together in an effort to make the world a cleaner healthier place to live. As opposed to the usual, which is to make war on one another.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
  15. Aug 6, 2006 #14
    Should we expect the warming to be linear?

    World temperature was slightly warmer in 2005 than in 1998. Note the warm extreme anomalies as opposed to cool extreme anomalies. If you compare them with historical extremes these two years are somewhat unique in that there are almost no cold extremes. Also note the number of +5C anomalies in the subarctic northern land temperatures.

    The mean trend has not changed significantly, but it is possible we have reached a plateau and will now experience a cooling as has been suggested by Bill Gray, professor emeritus, who predicts:
    "In just three, five, maybe eight years, he says, the world will begin to cool again."
    http://seattletimes.nwsource.com/html/nationworld/2003040068_warming05.html [Broken]
    http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/oa/climate/research/2005/ann/global.html#Gtemp [Broken]
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  16. Aug 6, 2006 #15


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    Skyhunter, congratulations on 1000 posts!
  17. Aug 7, 2006 #16
    2005 warmer than 1998?

    No, it's not. at least it's 2 to 1. Hansen thinks that's warmer http://data.giss.nasa.gov/gistemp/graphs/Fig.A2.txt [Broken].
    According to http://www.cru.uea.ac.uk/cru/data/temperature/crutem3gl.txt [Broken], 2005 global temps were 0.691 above his average while 1998 was 0.828.
    But the best referee would be http://vortex.nsstc.uah.edu/data/msu/t2lt/tltglhmam_5.2 [Broken], without coverage problems and urban heat island effects. So the average for 1998 here is 0.50025 while 2005 only gets to 0.31225. Please do check the calculation.
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  18. Aug 7, 2006 #17


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    Staff Emeritus
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    Reminder: Folks, this thread is created in a science sub-forum. Let's keep the discussion strictly scientific. Any socio-political aspects of the discussion may be had in P&WA under the AGW thread there.
    Last edited: Aug 7, 2006
  19. Aug 7, 2006 #18
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  20. Aug 7, 2006 #19
    Right, coming to think of that, there are a lot of ad hominems here:

    We should not be shooting the messengers

    Is it misinformation or the moving-the-goal-poles fallacy? accepting anything that comes from the own den and rejecting anything that is not. Wouldn't it be better just to check the sources and the logic and shut up when those happen to prove to be correct?

    Please indicate what is policy and what is merely stating facts?

    Yes, some ice does, other ice don't, but what is the point? that -on the average- the world is a tad warmer than last century? But what does it proof? Does it proof that CO2 did it or the sun? Or the oceanic/atmospheric cycles?

    There are several scientists and others whom I respect and trust since I checked what they were saying, who say that the previous (1980-1998) GW is most likely mainly due to natural causes as well as urban heat island contamination of sources.
  21. Aug 7, 2006 #20


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    that was from http://science.slashdot.org/article.pl?sid=06/06/14/209235

    You know, I must say, ever since frequenting this forum more often, I've realized that I had totally accepted Global Warming as a truth at one point. I'm now totally in no position to judge. Good work, PF!!!
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