Analysis and rationality in a nonrational world

June 29, 2006

Pollution policy weirdness

Filed under: Energy — analysis @ 8:58 pm

Today’s thought comes to you from an apparently very old and abandoned site called Drivers Central. They talked about the issue of how auto pollution is measured – that is, in percentages. It’s an odd idea when you think about it, because the entire idea of emissions regulation is to reduce the total amount of emissions, not to alter percentages. Global warming does not stop if you get a slightly lower percentage of carbon dioxide created per car, but double the number of cars (though apparently it did slow quite a bit when we stopped relying on coal for heating and moving trains around). Therefore, it would seem the logical approach would be to regulate the total amount of pollutants created per mile travelled.

The outcome of this approach is fascinating, really. Suddenly, SUVs and trucks would need to all satisfy ULEV requirements while cheap economy cars would have barely any emissions apparatus at all, aside from the de rigeur catalytic converter. Cheap cars would become cheaper, while luxury cars, pickups, and SUVs would become more expensive. Minivans would overnight become much more attractive because it would be easier to get them through emissions and cheaper to design and produce them. Best of all, there’s some justice to making the bigger polluters (in absolute terms) pay more of the cost of pollution reduction than those who are barely using any fuel at all.

I’m sure there are problems with this scheme, but none that we couldn’t fix, and it seems more logical than the current mess.



  1. I am still waiting to hear a Green-Fascist come up with a scheme to stop vulcanism, which I read (20 years ago) chucks out 100 times the muck that human activity does.

    Comment by Cy — September 19, 2006 @ 9:06 pm

  2. Yeah, yeah, yeah. Like we haven’t heard this before. Like all scientists, including 60 Nobel Prize winners, haven’t thought of volcanos. I think it telling that the first thing you did was not use critical argument to debate, but throw out one of your favorite insults, namely calling everyone who disagrees with you – which is MOST PEOPLE by the way – a fascist. Why not bring up eco-terrorist, econazi, or any of the other little insults you people love so much? And why didn’t you try one of the other usual arguments, like “by eliminating so many species, we’re really cutting down the CO2 we produce,” or “air doesn’t retain heat, everyone knows that!,” or “it doesn’t matter because we have ice ages every so often and we’re due for one now, so the ice age will cancel out the global warming.”

    As George Carlin said, the Earth will do just fine – once it shakes off that infestation of people it developed.

    Comment by analysis — September 19, 2006 @ 9:11 pm

  3. We, as Americans need to be concerned about the type of cars we drive and on our fuel consumption.

    Comment by Jack Walsh — October 19, 2006 @ 2:08 am


    Hi analysis, you seem to be usurping my role. I am the outraged one, justified in screaming insults without arguments. I am in the persecuted minority. I do not have the arguments at my fingertips.

    I suggest that the fact that politicians are now flocking en masse to embrace the Green view is a reason to be very doubtful about it.

    The Green doom-saying is what we have always had. It bears all the hallmarks of theism. All the juggling with figures that pro-Green scientists do is to accommodate a case that they have already conceived to fit their anti-Capitalist, anti-consumer, anti-affluence, prejudice.

    There are authors who present the anti-pollution, green case (which I agree with) as opposed to the Green-Fascist anti-human case, and I accepted whenever I read the moderates that they are the sane people and the Greens Party types are the nutters.

    The very fact that Greens regard humanity as vermin, says it all. They are dysfunctional and have never grown up. They carry chips on their shoulder and never see it.

    The fact that Earth survived until now as a habitat despite vulcanism vastly in excess of present human emissions in the industrial world is enough to indicate that Greens are selling a crock. But pro-Green scientists do not deal with that which is observed, they deal with computer models.

    The models are based on a prejudiced selection of the statistics. The models are false. They will admit that previous models were fase but never that the latest fashionable model can possibly be anything other than gospel.

    That is not the worst of it. They are certain of themselves and in a completely fascist way (I use the term in its meaning, not in a sloppy way) they propose to impose their will on us all. There would have been a motorway across the South of England from Dover to Penzance. The fascists stopped it in the 1970-s. The provision of good roads was halted in its tracks.

    In a similar way, if places that sentimentalist preservationists now fawn upon, Clovelly, Portofino, Stonehenge, you name it, were to be planned to fill some green place today, the Greens would wage war against it. Everything moulders and becomes familiar with time. But they do not wish to see a single clean brick or stone. This is all part of their anti-progressive illness.

    Cheers, Cy

    Comment by Cy — October 24, 2006 @ 4:23 am

  5. I find it amusing that you, who have no arguments and can only call people fascists and make hackneyed Fox-News comments about volcanos that have already been dismissed or taken into account by all reputable scientists in the field, are claiming to have been usurped in your role as self-righteous name-caller.

    Your arguments are flimsy in that you claim that if volcanos have not destroyed the Earth, then nothing man can do will destroy it.

    Supposing I take a natural rock formation that forms a jutting ledge, and then I park a Hummer H1 on top of it. Will that break the rock or not? If it does, then you have a nice illustration of why your argument is faulty.

    Do you really think that 60 Nobel Prize winning scientists had never heard of volcanos? Or the thousands of other scientists in the field? Or for that matter the CEOs of a number of automobile companies?

    Are you really saying that environmentalists and fascists are the same? Or that all environmentalists stopped a highway in England that I, for one, had never heard of or cared about? Or that environmentalists really have that much control over the world? I honestly think that if they did, the United States would look far different.

    Calling people fascists without any real cause simply marks you as an idiot or a loon. When you have some sensible, rational arguments, come back.

    Comment by Analysis — October 24, 2006 @ 12:37 pm

  6. Thanks for deleting my mess up. I apologise again.

    The term I used was volcanism, which includes fissures, both small and large, on both land and sea-floor. The word volcano commonly refers to a conical mountain formed by material thrown out.

    Apparently you buy into the idea that a large number of people chorusing the same theme cannot be wrong. Yes they can. The idea that humans cause the current warming phase in the climate of Earth, is a superstition. But it is one that seduces the anti-establishment and pro-anarchy element in society.

    Volcanism-as-a-whole spews out various gases, including the SAME gases that human activity emits, but in far LARGER quantity, and it always has. Obviously, the idea that our relatively minor sum of emissions CAN do what volcanism has NOT done must be a crock.

    The Nobel-Prize-Winning scientists (check out the men who win that thing just because they suddenly stop committing mass murder) are fake scientists WHO USE COMPUTER MODELS NOT RATIONAL ARUGUMENT TO ‘PROVE’ THEIR ASSERTION have never, to my, knowledge deal with the volcanism point.

    I used to buy The Ecologist magazine in the early 1970s. I read ‘Limits to Growth’ (1968 I think), the report from the Club of Rome. I gradually sussed out these extremists (as opposed to moderates) for what they are: fascists. A fascist is a person who is certain of a cause that is based on nothing more than prejudice, and believes he has a right to impose it upon other people. My use of the term is technical, and accurate. Your perception of the term has been that it is a mere common insult. Wise up.

    Their whole argument seizes upon the chance coincidence that, over the same period that human-made emissions have been rising, the climate has been in a warming phase. Climate variation has always gone on; up and down. It is PURE CHANCE that the current up-tick (not yet benign enough to grow wine grapes as far north as my native Vale of York as it was in the Middle Ages) coincided with the Industrial Age.

    Those who CAN do useful science, do. Those who can NOT, develop a perverse vengeance scenario. The ‘Human-Cause to Global Warming’ is just the latest example of that type of thing. As time goes by, half-baked minds, seeking to join the holier-than-thou club, flock as to the vile Hell-raising doomsayer on the evangelical fund-raising circuit. Preaching doom is journalist-friendly. Money is to be made.

    The people have an axe to grind. Their agenda is to stop industrial activity. This dates from Waldo Emerson and Yeats and the whole Romantic age of music and poetry when middle class wives and effete sons of rich men had nothing to do but indulge in fantasies of the noble savage.

    There are two sorts of greens, the members of the Green Party and ordinary environmentalists also known greens. Ordinary greens or environmentalists, including me, are practical people who see that we can have an industrial civilisation with responsibility.

    I was ten when I first saw the slag heaps of mining towns in the West Riding of Yorkshire. I was shocked and horrified that they could just dump this ugly stuff over the land and not return it underground or make it look nice. In 1966, about 160 people, mostly children suffocated under a tip-slide over the Junior School in Aberfan.

    The moronic National Coal Board managers had ordered more waste be tipped on the already permitted configuration tip, above the school. Local employees pointed out the spring and stream at the proposed site. They obeyed rather than strike on an issue not related to money but public safety. Nobody was penalised for what I consider to be murder.

    I am a green Since I have not joined the Green Party, I am NOT a Green. The leadership of the Green-fascists are regularly interviewed on TV about any environmental issue, spreading their misanthropic bile. The voter-hungry, moron-pleasing politicians (who could not recognise the anti-West theist enemy before the attack and still fail to see the need for a total-war response) do not recognise the fake contrivance of Green propaganda either.

    Yes, an economically vital link to complete the motorway network in UK was stopped when a law was passed enabling Greens to stop the go-ahead through planning public-enquiry courts. After a decade of wasting public money slowly caving in to demands to detour around insects and lizards and birds nests, construction had become too expensive because of risen oil costs.

    Yes, drilling for oil on the continental shelf and new fields in Alaska was stopped by the extremists, fundamentalists or fascists (as opposed to sane progressive environmentalists who want to make more with less, and keep it clean, but not stop raising the standard of living). USA is consequently dependent upon foreign oil, up to the owners of which we are expected to suck.

    I indeed refuse to engage the fake-scientists in their COMPUTER MODEL GAME. Similarly, I refuse to engage the doorstep evangelist on his own turf comprising ancient theist scripture offering wild salvation package deals. If I have 8 apples and eat 2, then write down 8 – 2 = 6 and the equation reports reality. But if I write down 6 – 8 = (-2) this does not prove that minus apples exist, it is simply a silly game.

    Finally, let me share something with you. Yes, I cast insults and generalise. This is because I get incandescent with fury as some well-paid Green-Fascist with a grimace of triumph yet disappointment on his kisser spouts the old bullshit “WE HAVE SINNED! PREPARE TO MEET THY DOOM!” However, I hope you have been able to divine my position from these remarks. I am using some of the text in the post on the issue in cyquick.

    Comment by Cy — October 25, 2006 @ 8:13 pm

  7. Hmmm. Lots of fake scientists winning Nobel Prizes. Lots of “real scientists” coming from bible schools to refute this theory. CEO of Toyota thinks it’s real.

    Volcanism has been taken into account.

    Do you suggest that scientists not use computer models?

    Should they ignore rising temperatures too?

    Do you think that perhaps, if there’s even a 20% chance they’re right, that maybe we should do something about it? You should consider what the consequences are if YOU are wrong.

    Are you suggesting that if we allowed oil companies to drill everywhere they wanted, that we would then not rely on foreign countries? Because even the oil companies don’t claim that.

    Those who believe that government has a responsibility to protect its citizens through laws appear to be fascists by your definition.

    Well, your opinion’s out there, and I do mean that as a double entendre.

    Comment by Analysis — October 25, 2006 @ 8:32 pm

  8. I hold anyone coming from bible schools (theist-fascists) in the same contempt as I do Green-fascists.

    Volcanism has NOT been taken into account, nor have wild fires, other than to be dismissed carelessly. This is called “wilful ignorance” (to borrow a phrase misapplied in scripture but useful here).

    Yes, I suggest that scientists observe reality when studying climate, and save computer models for the purpose they were developed for: proving of engineering design to save money in building test rigs.

    No, they should not ignore rising temperatures. They should regard present slightly rising temperatures as being the same sort of thing Earth has seen countless times before, and which is shown in the mud cores, the rock strata, the ice cores and the tree rings. Temperature always does rise in a sudden spurt.

    The present (very peasant) up-tick will NOT keep on up. But humans of the excitable type, certain that they are the centre of the cosmos, prefer sexy lies to mundane facts so people like me are voices crying in the wilderness. Whereas I am not an expert, Doctor James Martin is. I am having a bad time financially right now, but as soon as I am straight, I will be down in Borders and cop a copy of The Meaning of the 21st Century -A Vital Blueprint for Ensuring Our Future in Transworld £20. You might like to check it out too.

    Yes I suggest that oil companies be allowed to drill where they have reason to believe that oil is available, and required to keep the place clean and tidy avoiding pollution.

    Yes, I am certain USA could become self-sufficient in oil. I am willing to look at ways to cut out unnecessary consumption. Motor racing is a crime in my book. It is possible that we could find other wastes unrelated to people’s going about their daily business.

    No, I do not believe that those who believe that governments have a responsibility to protect their people are fascists. I believe that those who not only believe bullshit but then proceed to impose their bullshit and its extrapolations upon the general population are fascists.

    Thankyou for taking what I say a little more carefully this time. I am flattered by your kind compliment that my opinion is out there. Indeed it is, outside the stampeding bellowing herd.


    Comment by Cy — October 26, 2006 @ 7:52 pm

  9. If you read the studies you will find they have taken volcanism into account. Did you think people get Ph.D.s out of crackerjack boxes?

    Doctor James Martin…his bio is “James Martin studied physics at Oxford, served in the British Army and then joined IBM in Paris as a systems engineer.” How is his background relevant to global warming?

    If you trust computer models to design cars and oil wells, why do you think they suddenly become inaccurate for climate research?

    Did you know that not all scientists use computer models in climate research and still come up with the same conclusions?

    How do you plan to make oil companies “keep the place clean and tidy avoiding pollution” when we can’t even do that now at refineries?

    I am also certain that the USA could become self sufficient in oil but we’ve tried the “non-fascist” route of voluntary compliance. It didn’t work.

    Comment by Analysis — October 26, 2006 @ 8:19 pm

  10. All theists use ancient writings to study life the universe and everything and still come up with the same conclusion: guy in the sky made it all. They are still wrong. Actualy, it is NOT all scientists but the ones that disagree are shouted down because catastrophe and human perfidy are more sexy. Even scientists lust after being in the majority. Those that live long enough will be embarrassed at their sheep-like behaviour.

    Computer models cannot be trusted to predict climate variation because climate is immensely more complicated that the simple mechanics of cars and oil wells, with unpredicatble inter-reactions.

    Perhaps Doctor Martin is PRECISELY the best one to see through the foolishness of using computer models to predict climate variation because of his computing expertise and insight.

    It is because the voluntary system of good behaviour by oil companies did not always work (perhaps, never work in Africa) that I used the word ‘required’. Sorry, I thought that made it clear that I was talking about compulsion. You do not REQUIRE someone to VOLUNTARILY do something, you ASK. I did not say ASK.

    Actually these days big companies involved in emmissions and land messes are beginning to behave far better. The Green-Fascists have terrified them. Research is way of earning trust again.

    Yes crackerjack boxes (I have no idea what those are but it sounds right).


    Comment by Cy — October 28, 2006 @ 10:33 pm

  11. PS

    Sorry, forgot a point: volcanism has NOT been taken into account. It has been DISMISSED. I say again: the fake-scientists who blame human activity for natural climate variation are BIASED. They see what they want to see. They discount what does not fit into their pre-conceived structure. Cy

    Comment by Cy — October 28, 2006 @ 10:37 pm

  12. Dr. Martin said we should turn to nuclear to avoid global warming. That indicates perhaps he thinks global warming is a real issue.

    Comment by Analysis — October 29, 2006 @ 2:16 pm

  13. Hey, nobody is perfect. The fascist have got to him too, poor guy! If going nuclear reduces pollution that is fine, that is what I want too. But I will not be told that climate variation is HUMAN CAUSED, it is NOT. But I would like a direct quotation of the wording from Martin. I cannot afford the book. I search on the web for him. If he uses the phrase ‘global warming’ suggesting that he gives credance to “we have sinned” bullshit, I shall never speak highly of him again. Hey, doc, say it is not so!

    Comment by Cy — October 29, 2006 @ 5:58 pm

  14. You haven’t read the book, and yet you’re using him as your sole piece of evidence that global warming is a conspiracy of thousands of scientists who have actually studied the problem with real facts and stuff?

    Comment by Analysis — October 29, 2006 @ 6:27 pm

  15. Let me rephrase that – your authoritative source of information is a book you haven’t read?

    Would you mind citing some evidence of your other claims just so the studio audience will understand where you pull your arguments from?

    BTW, if everyone who forces others to change their behavior is a fascist, isn’t it fascism to outlaw murder?

    Comment by Analysis — October 29, 2006 @ 7:24 pm

  16. No, it is my 35 years experience since 1970 waiting for the Club of Rome book ‘Limits to Growth’ (which I did read) to come true, hearing green issues discussed on radio and TV, reading some more recent newspaper reports by some geek on the ludicrousness of using computer models to predict climate variation, and watching current bitter, grimacing Greens on TV do the Pharasee act and telling consumers that The Wicked West must stop consuming and be frugal.

    It is a people thing. The Green Party spokespeople are wankers, therefore they cannot be right. Theist-Fascists are also wankers. They are also wrong. Conspiracy theorists are wankers to. They are wrong. Pacifists are wankers. With violent Theist-Fascist in the world, forcing their bullshit upon us, a sane nation, however imperfect, has to wage war.

    I ask your studio audience to set aside the introverted, self-referencing, academic entrails-scrabbling of the nest Green propagandist or running-dog politican they encounter and engage the instinctive, jungle-sense, hunter-gatherer common-sense detector and ask themselves:

    “Wait a minute, would I buy a second-hand (anything) off this guy? Does he come over as a straight guy or a wanker?”

    Yes, passing laws by decree is fascism even “thou shalt not kill, steal, covet, or bear false witness” although the aforementioned ones are positive, healthy, pro-life ones. Others are bad, of course. Thou shalt worship the guy in the sky and so on, are obviously flawed.

    But reviewing the negative, diseased, anti-life laws, once free-elections to form governments come into being, is not fascism any longer. Laws such as “serfs are the property of the Lord of the Manor” can be revoked (as they have been) and fascism no longer reigns.

    Sadly, some of the laws passed onto the parliamentary statue book might be termed a sort of fascism of the Moronic-Majority, if they happen to be based on vestigial bullshit such as the puritanism that spawned Prohibition of mind-altering substances.

    For me to provide evidence would require me to engage in an academic study of the views of the computer model experts, plus the functioning of the pre-1750 terrestrial climate as recorded in tree rings, ice cores, and mud cores, contrasted against the years since the steam engine was invented.

    I will be delighted to undertake this task! I appoint you (since you appear to dwell in Academe) to be my fund-seeking agent (if you will have the job). I shall need at least 10 million quid (you keep 1%) and a nice white coat (110cm chest, 90cm drop). I look forward to your reply with the good news that one of your mates has come up with the finance.

    Comment by Cy — October 31, 2006 @ 3:49 pm

    para 2, make ‘to’ too;
    para 3, make ‘nest’ next.

    PS: I keep forgetting to mention bush and forest fires. I have never read a figure (like the 100 times vulcanism figure) but it has to be way over human production. They are natural.

    Comment by Cy — October 31, 2006 @ 3:56 pm

  18. Fires are also figured into the models.

    Everyone you disagree with seems to be either a fascist or a wanker. I love the name-calling. Don’t bother to argue facts. Just call people a bunch of names.

    Sorry I have a college education. I realize in your eyes that makes me unable to think. Funny, we were taught to do research properly, to get facts, to avoid and eliminate bias, and to know what validity is. I realize none of that is important to you since you Know What The Truth Is.

    I don’t really think there’s anything to be gained here, since I’m obviously a wanker and you’re equally obviously not going to actually go to the lengths of READING any of that research. You may be unaware of this, but scientists who publish their results are required to publish their methods in great detail, along with their assumptions. If you wish to spend a few hours in a university library, you can learn exactly what is included in the global warming models, and what is excluded. You can learn what the real scientists, who I realize are wankers because they have college degrees and training in research, which obviously makes them incompetent, have thought and done, and decide for yourself. But that would be work – getting facts instead of throwing around insults and names and making up straw-man arguments.

    Comment by analysis — October 31, 2006 @ 5:04 pm

  19. You do not come across as a wanker at all. I am aware of the Scientific Method, observation, experiment, postulation, testing, peer review, continued until a tentative conclusion is possible, and publishing. I applaud it.

    As a member of the non-academic public I have to rely on my own ability (that everybody has if they trust it) to detect a supercilious, prim, egoistic, dysfunctional wanker. I have yet to see a Green on TV that I did not spot as a hobby-horse-riding ideo-centric closed-minded wanker.

    It takes one to know one. It took me a long time to emerge from supporting the Vietnam War. It took me a long time to recgnise that Enoch Powell was right in being alarmed about permitting (actually ecouraging) a South Asian community to be established in UK after WW2. I was the racist, not he.

    It took me a long time to admit my own psycho-sexual dysfunction. It took me a long time to understand that the instant dislike other men took to me in the workplace was justified. I was a wanker. Laides were always kind. They were misled. They ought to have trusted their instinct.

    Call it instinct, but I do not trust the Green spokespeople I see on TV. I spot a wanker. You are correct in thinking that there is nothing to gain from continuing this exchange. I ask just one thing:

    (Assuming you are as young as you sound) set a date in your diary for 1 November 2040 to review the progress of the catastrophic tip-over. Is it still balanced on the pivot OR HAVE THE WANKERS MOVED ON TO A NEW EGO-TRIP WITH OUT EVEN APOLOGISING FOR THE FACT THAT THE MODELS WERE BULLSHIT AND CLIMATE VARIATION IS PERFECTLY NATURAL?

    Thanks for your very kind patience and generous allocation of your time. Good luck.

    Comment by Cy — November 1, 2006 @ 9:57 am

  20. A few questions from a blog idiot

    How do you keep the spammers from eating you alive? i\’ve seen blogs with nothing but spam postings.

    How do you keep some left wing extremist from posting racist or defamatory rhetoric? and if you cant stop them, what are you legally liabel when they do?

    can viruses be posted to blogs?

    Comment by Fundraiser — January 18, 2007 @ 9:08 pm

  21. 1) Akismet!
    2) So far hasn’t happened. (How many left wingers are posting racist rhetoric (outside of that weird affinity for the PLO?))
    2a) I don’t think so
    3) I don’t know. Doesn’t seem likely.

    Comment by Analysis — January 18, 2007 @ 9:13 pm

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