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The Dust Bowl of the 1930s was the worst drought in US history
A primary tenet of global warming alarmism is invalidated.

A recurring theme in my past columns is that a moderate degree of global warming is likely to be beneficial to mankind. Al Gore, on the other hand, says climate change is already causing catastrophic results. In testimony before Congress last March, he stated, "droughts are [already] becoming longer and more intense". But the findings of a group of University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers say otherwise.

The scientists, led by Gemma Narisma, examined 100 years of global rainfall data. Using sophisticated wavelet analysis methods, they identified 30 cases of severe droughts lasting 10 or more years. The results showed the number of droughts dropping sharply over time. From 1900-1920, seven droughts, another seven from from 1920-1940, and eight from 1940-1960. But after that, the picture changes. In the period 1960-1980, only five droughts were recorded, and from 1980-2000 (the warmest period of all), only three occurred. Furthermore, of the most severe droughts, none began in the last 30 years..

The researchers found another surprising result. Changes in rainfall levels are not only much more common than previously thought, but they tend to occur in a very abrupt, unexplained manner. More proof that climate change is part of nature.

The work represents the first systematic survey of abrupt climate changes that have occurred in recent history. Professor Johnathan Foley, who also participated in the research, says the study is important, "because previous work largely focused on ancient climates or theoretical changes in future climates".

The findings are published in Geophysical Research Letters.

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RE: History and the preponderance of evidence
By Kuroyama on 9/12/2007 10:52:01 AM , Rating: 2
the fact that the Bush administration is hostile to global warming studies has resulted in a lack of funding for the studies.

Don't know, but I would hope this is not true because their constant excuse to not do anything is that "we need more research".

Researchers in controversial areas such as global warming and sexuality have said that in recent years they are avoiding using certain words because congressman and right wing groups against these topics have been doing keyword searches and then have opposing anything involving stuff they don't like. So I don't really think that article pointed out anything of significance.

This article from a few weeks ago on just that topic has the humorous title Who’s Afraid of Incestuous Gay Monkey Sex?:

From the article:
Nearly half said that they took steps to either lower their profile or to change the language in their projects to disguise those qualities that would attract criticism. As one scholar told Kempner of the change, “I do not study sex workers. I study women at risk.”

RE: History and the preponderance of evidence
By lifeblood on 9/12/2007 1:23:56 PM , Rating: 2
It's rather scary to see the lengths a politician will go to trying to disrupt activities they disagree with. A few years back my states Department of Environmental Quality had a GIS system to track land use near rivers and streams. It was to help in enforcing buffers and no build zones near the water. The incoming Republican governor ordered the GIS system transferred to the Department of Business Assistance where it sat collecting dust. This move made it much harder for the DEQ to find and act against violators.

Although this example was by a Republican, the democrats use the exact same tactics.

RE: History and the preponderance of evidence
By dever on 9/12/2007 2:18:40 PM , Rating: 2
Potentially missing the point. These were politicians who were intelligent enough to conclude that taking everyone's money by force via taxation and spending it on research that inflames many of those same people would not be considered "representation" of their constituency.

By Kuroyama on 9/12/2007 3:33:28 PM , Rating: 2
No, you are missing the point, because probably 100% of government spending pisses off someone.

- Defense spending? plenty of pacifists don't want to pay for it
- Police? plenty of African-American non-criminals don't like the police one bit
- Science? there are still plenty of Luddites left in the world
- etc. etc.

For instance, there was plenty of criticism some years ago on research on "cow flatulism". However, if say a cheap cow supplement could decrease their flatulence then this would do more for global warming than decreased carbon emissions, as Masher points out quite often. However, we spend billions on GW research, and nothing on "cow flatulism", because one sounds serious and the other sounds like a bad joke.

If you want to stop AIDS then you're going to have to study prostitutes, if you want to stop POTENTIAL man-made global warming then study cow flatulence too, and if want to stop teen sex then do a study into whether abstinence-only programs ACTUALLY work, etc etc. Otherwise you're just wasting our tax money.

Politicians should set the ground rules, and then let the scientists decide what research is relevant in reaching those goals (and this applies to Democrat politicians too).

"Intel is investing heavily (think gazillions of dollars and bazillions of engineering man hours) in resources to create an Intel host controllers spec in order to speed time to market of the USB 3.0 technology." -- Intel blogger Nick Knupffer
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