Rick Santorum's dirty words

November 7, 2006 was a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day for a lot of Republicans. It's the day the Democrats won the majority in the US Senate and House. Über-conservative Republican Senator Rick Santorum was one of the Republicans who lost his seat that day; it was the “largest margin of defeat for an incumbent Senator since… 1980.” Ouch .

Determined not to be relegated to the “where are they now?” column, Santorum has been keeping his conservative fan club happy with his semi-regular opinion pieces in the Philadelphia Inquirer. He pontificates on his favorite subjects, like “family values ” and “evildoers “.

However, today Santorum digresses, and puts on his “clean coal” salesman hat. 

Santorum's column is a train wreck, full of inept comparisons and non sequiturs. Writing and composition instructors, as well as logic and rhetoric teachers, beware. Rick Santorum will make your blood pressure go up.

'Coal' is not a dirty word if we are realistic about saving the Earth

[A]ccording to a recent ABC News poll, only 33 percent of Americans believe man-made global warming is the world's most serious environment crisis.

How is a poll from a year ago “recent”? Not only that, but Santorum apparently missed the part of the poll that said 56% of the people polled thought temperatures around the world have risen. The poll result negates what he says next:

This finding comes after years of global-warming propaganda, the “conclusive” evidence in news reports, Al Gore's Nobel Prize, claims of melting ice caps endangering polar bears, and the hysterical drum beat from UN scientists and liberal politicians around the world.

But then he contradicts himself and says “the hype” is working, and that he's kinda buying into it. Aw shucks:

The media hype has had an impact - environmentalism is in. Most of us skeptics are perfectly fine with the going-green movement's practical side. I recycle. I constantly turn lights off around my house (although I think that is just a dad thing). I bought a fuel-efficient car, and I am more conscious of taking care of God's creation.

He continues with how the hype really isn't working. Oh, and yawn, here comes the predictable Inhofian Science:

I think most Americans don't believe Al Gore and the hysterics (good rock band name) have made the case.

Could it be that Americans know that over time the Earth goes through natural cooling and heating cycles?

Could it be that they recognize that most of the doomsday scenarios are not scientifically supported and that even the “consensus” projections are just that - projections based upon highly interactive questionable assumptions over long periods of time?

FAIL (as the kids on the internet say ). Wrong. Someone's been looking at cooked graphs .

Finally, after sixteen paragraphs of tired rhetoric, he gets to his point:

Why not use technology to lower carbon emissions? And we can by building more nuclear power plants and developing and deploying clean-coal technology, which has already reduced emissions by 70 percent since 1970.

There is that dirty word: coal.

Those lumps of carbon turn the lights on in 50 percent of American homes.

In an age when energy independence is not only important for our economy, but also vital to our national security, we can't afford not to use this plentiful domestic resource.

Yes, indeed. Rick has joined the fantasy world of the “clean coal” promoters. He doesn't make his point very well, because he suddenly muddles his point by bashing Barack Obama:

If [the Democratic candidates] would stop reflexively bowing to the anti-fossil-fuels crowd, we could boost investment in carbon capture and storage (CCS) technology that captures and stores carbon dioxide from coal-powered electrical plants.

CCS separates and captures carbon dioxide at the power plant before it is emitted. It is then liquefied, transported by pipeline and injected deep underground into geological formations for permanent storage.

Contrast this down-to-earth, commonsense approach with Barack Obama's other-worldly proposal. He's calling for a mandatory 80 percent cut in carbon emissions by 2050.

Let's recap what Rick's trying to say:

  1. Global warming is not real.
  2. The media makes people think it is, or maybe not (?), but at least Rick recycles.
  3. Coal is clean. CCS works. Seriously, for reals!
  4. Barack Obama is lame and unrealistic, because he doesn't believe in “clean coal” as an energy source.

FAIL, Rick. Here's reality:

Global warming is real. A 2008 poll shows that nearly half of Americans believe humans cause global warming, although this percentage is down from a previous poll.

Coal is not “clean”. And Barack Obama actually promotes “clean coal”, so Rick's just plain lying.

I'd like to suggest some reading material for Rick, although I think he's beyond hope.

But we have faith in the the reality-based community (both online and off).

We're counting on you to see through the “clean coal” spin . It's your future - and the Earth's - that's at stake.


Paul S/G said: “Insecure people need the certainty of being absolutely right and you have found it in the AGW issue”.

Paul, it is about honesty and knowledge. If you had even a little bit of either you would see that deniers, liars, distributors of misinformation, cherry pickers et al. are doing their best to influence politicians to make things easy for the polluters of this world.

It is not just companies who are producing large amounts of carbon dioxide who are using these dishonest techniques but it includes many large corporations who put their own bottom line ahead of the health and well being of ordinary citizens.

It is gladdening to see the many people who are now understanding the damage people like you are doing with your dishonesty. Fortunately, the world is changing and the polluters and their supporters (the various trolls who pollute this site) will soon be long gone.

Ian Forrester

Ian, of course you are for “honesty and knowledge”, I mean, how couldn’t you be? You have to be. Of course it is you yourself who has decided that (surprise) you just happen to stand for “honesty and knowledge”.

What I call it is “smug self-righteousness”. Enviros are much too smug for their good or our benefit.

Knuckledragger said, “…deniers, liars, distributors of misinformation… grunt, snuffle, snort.”

We sure are lucky to have this intellectual giant to keep us informed about all the latest scientific truths.

That you have to resort to schoolyard behaviour?

If anyone wants to find out the intellectual level of the deniers they can do no worse than visit this site and they will see just what a low level of intellectual honesty is exhibited by the resident trolls on this site.

I can have more in depth discussions with the residents of our local zoo.

Ian Forrester

“I can have more in depth discussions with the residents of our local zoo.”

That figures! You can exchange pleasantries with your fellow knuckledraggers while playing on the swings. While you’re there, perhaps you can teach your peers some of the finer points of entrepreneurial biochemistry.

That was one of the best Cultish rants in a long time.
Very entertaining, Ian.
Really makes you case.


“I can have more in depth discussions with the residents of our local zoo.” - Ian Forrester

Ha. And I’m sure you do Dr. Doolittle. ;)

“I can have more in depth discussions with the residents of our local zoo.”
–Ian Forrester

For God’s sake, leave those sheep alone, Ian.

Just FYI;
Here is the support for the statement that Hansen’s work has now been discredited.


There is no debate about Mann’s work so I won’t post that again.

There are 4 main temperature records for the period 1979 to present, GISS, HadCRU, RSS and UAH. Since they show temperature anomalies, not actual temperatures (AGW deniers cannot understand the difference) the absolute temperature anomalies will be different due to the differing base periods used for the data sets. GISS uses the period 1951 to 1980, HadCRU 1961 to 1990 and RSS and UAH 1979 to 2000.

So if all four measured the actual temperature as being the same, the temperature anomalies would be different since the earth has been warming since 1951. Thus GISS has the largest anomaly since the 1951 to 1980 period had the lowest average temperature.

The AGW denier crowd, not understanding this simple scientific basis for this, crows that “GISS temperature data has been manipulated to show higher temperatures”.

This is complete rubbish. To verify this just examine the following graph, where Tamino has plotted the four sets of data based on the same base line:


You will see that the four sets of data are almost identical.

This is discussed in full at:


So Gary, how can you say that Hansen’s work has been discredited when it agrees almost exactly with the other sets of data?

Ian Forrester

The article I posted was merely one in a long line of articles showing the GISS “Adjustment” mothods.
All anyone needs to do is spend a bit of time at the ClimateAudit.org site to see how biased Jimmy’s manipulations are.
Or have a look at his absolutely comical Sea Level Rise predictions if you just need a laugh.
The man is a paid shill for the multibillion dollar AGW industry.

If the Facts don’t fit the theory, change the Facts.
Albert Einstein

Here is a warning to all followers of this blog. Spending too much time on climatefraudit will completely frazzle your brain; just see what has happened to Gary, Paul S/G, Rob, HP Jnr et al.

They do not have two neurons to fire to complete a neural circuit, they are brain dead. Stay away from climatefraudit and other such sites e.g. “wattsupdoc”.

Ian Forrester

“Global warming is real. A 2008 poll shows that nearly half of Americans believe humans cause global warming”

So, if a large enough number of people believe something is real, it must be real?

Another 2008 poll shows 95% of six-year-olds believe Santa Claus lives at the North Pole.

Glad we cleared that up.

Where do you guys come from? This thread has nothing to do with the original post, and the idjits who have commandeered the commentary don’t seem to have the barest grip on the facts. Don’t bother responding to them, Kevin. It’s a waste of time & effort.

Then again, maybe it keeps them busy and prevents them making trouble elsewhere …

Big Bad Oil sent us Marian. We are people without conscience, morals or feelings for others. We are part of the global conspiracy involving the Illuminati and paid by that soulless corporation Exxon to paralyze the public into inaction on AGW by simply offering up a different opinion. We may not be your worst nightmare but we’re pretty darn close.

Now tell us a little about yourself.

I’m just a random visitor to this site. One of reasonable intelligence and a passing knowledge of the subject matter.

The Illuminati? Soulless corporations? Well, whatever turns your crank. Actually, MY worst nightmare is all about stupidity. About folly. About having the information we need to make it right, and ignoring it.

But that’s just me.

Since we have so many comments here about truth and honesty and morals etc.
I propose we start a new Movement.

Lets do something for the starving people of the world.

Produce MORE CO2…. NOW.

Since it is now clear that CO2 has only a minute effect on temperatures, we can now “Move ON” to embracing the benefits.
A concentration level of 1000 ppm would enhance crop production enough to solve most of the food shortage problem. That level can’t be reached for hundreds of years but if we start now we can make huge improvements in just 50 years.
The Chinese and Indians are doing their part. We need help. Be to be part of solution instead of the problem.
As a side benefit, we may be able hold off Global Cooling a tiny bit with our efforts.
Save the Planet; Buy a Hummer!

How about it?

Here is a link to YET ANOTHER scientist with GOOD scientific evidence that AGW is a non issue.
And this one (Stephen Wilde)is a Fellow of the Royal Meteorological Society since 1968. http://co2sceptics.com/news.php?id=1396

Hi Steve.
I would like to submit this link to our discussion.
I think it speaks well to the relative infleuences of CO2 and the sun.

I know it proves nothing, none of the compiled work proves anything yet, but I believe it make very sound logical sense.

What do you think?

It doesn’t look like there’s any science in there. I think the problem with these links you are posting is that they do nothing to address the question of what it would take to change your mind. I could look up a hundred links (to actual scientific papers, even) about CO2 and post them in comments addressed to you, but what’s the point? You’ve written before that belief in AGW is a ‘religeon’ but if your mind couldn’t be changed on the basis of evidence, it is you who is religious on this matter. I’m currently away on business and don’t have time to look at this more carefully. Perhaps you can tell me specifically which claims you find compelling.

You seem to be wanting me to do the work of convincing myself that AGW is valid.
Since my starting position is that it is not, I believe it is for you to provide arguments that support it.
The links I have posted are intended to illistrate why I have been convinced as I have.

Back to the premis:
Man made CO2 will cause global temperatures to rise 2+ degrees this century and cause harm to the human population.

I have shown (in the posts) that this is not possible, it is now up to you to show that the science in those posts is incorrect.

That may go some distance toward shaking my resolve.

It is only one piece to the puzzel but an important one.

This entire discussion began with me asking you what would convince you. It’s important to determine whether or not one’s mind could be changed, no? The question is, What would change your mind? What evidence would you require? If you’re not religious regarding AGW being a false religion, then you should be able to identify which specific findings would overturn your interim conclusion. You have provided links to things, and I’ve looked at them trying to find out what it is about them that compels your belief. But it would be easier if you stated what it is instead of leaving it up to my interpretation. Gotta go for now.

More on the benefits of higher CO2 levels:

Surprise: Earths’ Biosphere is Booming, Satellite Data Suggests CO2 the Cause http://wattsupwiththat.wordpress.com/