Don’t Believe Everything You See

It is both amusing and scary to see ideology in motion in blatant and evil ways. Reading Google News this morning I came across three articles on global warming commenting on the same report. One article was published by Time, one by ScienceNow, and one by Fox News.

The ScienceNow article describes a  “runaway train of world carbon emissions” and panicked, claims that “greenhouse gas levels are rising even faster than previously feared”.

Time makes similar claims, but avoids the hysterical yuppie soccer mom approach in favor of cold (hot?) hard numbers and factual data, stating that since 1995, worldwide carbon infusion into the atmosphere increased from 6.4 billion tons to 8 billion tons, an increase of 1.6 billion tons or approximately 25%.

Fox News, on the other hand, takes the study and like actual reporters provides the context. In this case, context means everything.

The study authors reported in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences that the rate of man-made carbon dioxide emissions was three times greater during 2000 to 2004 than during the 1990s.

Since increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels allegedly are causing global warming, the new study must mean that global temperatures are soaring even faster now than they did during the 1990s, right?

Wrong, according to the most recent data from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Climatic Data Center.

By overlaying the atmospheric carbon dioxide trend onto graphs of near-surface temperatures, surface temperatures and ocean temperatures, it is readily apparent that ever-changing global temperatures aren’t keeping pace with ever-increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide levels.

I would take this even further. In response to the Time article I would ask how much global output increased during the same period. I’m reasonably certain that global output kept reasonably close pace with carbon output in the same period.

The news media preys on fear. People will pay more an accept more intrusion and control of their lives when they are afraid. This makes particularly powerful the claim that Christians have the God has not given them a spirit of fear, but of power, of strength, of a strong mind. With that strong mind we can analyze the data ourselves and see, as Fox News did, the truth is out there and we only have to look to find it. Very often the truth is just what we not supposed to see.

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