How XR shows nihilism leads to power issues

XR are a subset of the group “… who have the widespread conviction of the futility of [their] actual, experienced life; and a hatred of that nation and civilization which imposes such a life upon [them]; and the inner blankness, fear and despair resulting from such convictions.”

From Bruce Charlton. He then explains why, like polar bears or pandas in a zoo, they lose the desire to reproduce. What he does not say (in that particular post anyway) something important: that power relations take the place of the desire to have a biological family.

I would say it does, and that would be why for the new Left who rules is everything. Their nihilism reverts them to being un-civilized, and worse.


In absolute contrast, normal people largely think it should barely matter who governs in what should be a peaceful world, and progress should comprise of an increase in competence and prosperity.


Charlton goes on to say “Ultimately, the captivity of Modern Man is self-chosen, self-imposed; which is why they cannot see the obvious.” I would further, and get quite crass: XR and the new style bureaucrats are political allies (their motivations largely overlap), and therefore — both being new Left — have the urge to form a new couple. But what kind? What about those other expressions of power? Since their boundaries – self vs non-self – are damaged.

  • XR seem to unconsciously want pure tyranny. Over themselves. Some seem to want to be grabbed by the police. Some of them chain themselves to things. No question their mime is weird.
  • Meanwhile the latter are trying for two things. Control of everything in a sweet, bureaucratic type of way. And actually are trying to save the planet, albeit delusionally. Carrying off XR to make XR happy isn’t necessary to those ends.

In other words together they are like some asexual S&M couple with the bondee more enthusiastic. XR does resemble Fellini’s Satyricon images.


This may be why regular people on the sidelines just shake their heads at the oddness. Asking both ‘Why is XR doing that?’ and ‘Why aren’t they being arrested?’

So, yes, what they do is partly bullying, an infantile tantrum to get what they want, partly a way to kill time, but that is not the entire story.

clouds mucking up consistent range of ECS

More on CMIP6 in ScienceDaily two days ago, kind of about clouds. But first their jibber-jabber about ECS

Through the decades, the range of ECS values has stayed remarkably consistent — somewhere around 1.5 to 4.5 degrees Celsius (2.7 to 8.1 degrees Fahrenheit) — even as models have become significantly more complex. For example, the models included in the previous phase of CMIP last decade, known as CMIP5, had ECS values ranging from 2.1 to 4.7 degrees C (3.6 to 8.5 degrees F).”

Ooh, they are so smart the range was consistent. Not the value. They are nothing if not vain. ‘remarkably’ my ass.

The CMIP6 models, however, have a range from 1.8 to 5.6 degrees C (3.2 to 10 degrees F), widening the spread from CMIP5 on both the low and high ends. The NCAR-based Community Earth System Model, version 2 (CESM2) is one of the higher-sensitivity models, with an ECS value of 5.2 degrees C.

Wait, you mean the one that uses ‘community’ in their name has one of the highest values? A ludicrously high value. And this one is singled out for mention? I am shocked, shocked I tell you 🙂

What does this small army turn to? Well it turns out they have been separately trying to model clouds. One group be like ‘model the noctilucents like this’, and another ‘do the cumulonimbi like this’ … Of course it all has to be hindcast, right?

GHGs & what equilibriums are

There are a small minority who say GHGs are impossible. Not just that they don’t happen, or have limited effect, but actual violation of the laws of physics.

This has all been debated before. Many times. The side I agree with, often with more skill or eloquence than I will now manage.

With any theoretical GHG all that happens is the equilibrium changes.

Here is an analogy. An empty kitchen sink. We turn on the faucet a little bit and all the water immediately goes down the drain. Then we turn the faucet more, just enough so the level starts to rise even though it is still draining. This rise will stop, because the water pressure at the bottom has gone up due to the weight of water. A new equilibrium has been reached.

The sink has three theoretical phases a) when all the water immediately goes down the drain. b) when it rises until reaches a new equilibrium c) when the faucet is putting out so much water pressure cannot increase at the drain and the sink overflows.

Phase b especially will be affected by the viscosity of water. You put something in the water to increase its viscosity. The water level will start to rise, until it reaches a new equilibrium. There is no water invented… no physics violation.

That’s the GHG claim, no heat is created – it’s just retained longer. That something has been put in to decrease the emissivity.

Everything is about the equilibrium. Not about flux, or linear correlations between anything. You put a coat on, you get warmer (it’s phase 2 – only up to a new equilibrium), heat is not created. The alarmists are right about that (and very little else). In my humble opinion.

The above argument does not mean GHG necessarily do this – it means if they do that would not be a violation of thermodynamics.

possible future topics: the multiple reasons why I am a very much a lukewarmist; PCAGW vs CAGW vs AGW; and maybe some impressions of highly technical material, like optical saturation, and pressure broadening.

And because it’s interesting, a very short video on CO2 vibration modes.

Tolkien, science, and the name of this blog

Some scientists these days are Smeagols. Like in the book (or the movie). They had a birthday moment and they suddenly wanted not The Ring of Power but the equivalent in their world. Which was a big grant and fame.

Amazingly, this can come out as a coveting, not just a desiring. Usually in the idiotic, unwholesome environment of academia. Yet much of the time, even there, they aren’t a Gollum. Their covetous alter ego is not sitting on their shoulders – instead it is back in the recesses somewhere. You can tell which they are by how much they seem to love humanity.

A spur for him to reappear can be when the news comes, the grant is not forthcoming. the public has refused them money they feel was rightfully theirs. Suddenly they hate humanity. How dare ordinary taxpayers hold the purse-strings! And, nowadays, How dare the public burn fossil fuels!

Of course they rarely say this out loud. That’s the point of Greta Thunberg – she does it for them. [Can I say she physically resembles a Gollum?]

Sometimes Smeagol and Gollum work together and produce garbage science that says ‘we are all going to die!’ Then the Gollum goes back to the recesses and they are all sweet again.

tldr: This is the context for this blog’ name’. Gollum, Smeagol, and hobbits all knew what taters were. “Po-ta-toes”, as Sam explained. Also maybe the children’s game ‘hot potato’. Don’t hold it too long! Finally, potatoes are mostly of carbon. It is not just a tater – it’s a carbontater.

Okay, the real reason was I had trouble finding a name that was not already taken.

It’s black inside of red inside of green

I still hold that it isn’t just Greens as ‘watermelons’ (Delingpole), red inside of g reen. Of course the Green is a dodge. Guess what? The red is, too. There is another level – which requires another color. I will use the color of nothing: black. This is not usual political use. My reason will be obvious.

Today’s climateers are black inside of red inside of green. Yes, the Green is a front for communism/socialism, but that goal is itself a front for nihilism (and was from its beginning). The attitude that life is meaningless. I have asked two progressives “Does life have meaning?” Both quickly responded, “Of course not.” This is why I could only choose black as the third color.

quick aside: as far as I know today’s ‘blackpilled’ don’t say this. It impossible to follow everything going on but I think those folks say it is themselves who are black-pilled.

I posted a version of this on reddit this morning. A few hours later a post appeared on the Orthosphere blog saying much the same thing, and lots more. btw, that blog has a great subtitle: Wherever an altar is found, there civilization exists – Joseph de Maistre. I am pretty darn sure that is true. Here are a few quotes. [I don’t understand why WordPress makes quotes so big, sorry about that]

Some among the scientistic rejoice in their nihilism, while others are not aware of the vacuity of their own views. … [they are sure] there is no God, no morality, no freedom, no creativity, and no reason for our existence. .. The modern fascination with science and its social prestige … confers in-group belongingness and the easy adolescent pseudo-superiority of the cynic.


 They know the nihilistic truth, they think, and thus have reason to envy and resent the ignorant. The rest of us continue to live under the illusion that life has meaning and this enables us to bear our suffering with greater fortitude because we consider it to have a purpose.

Yup. The same people progressives condescend to, they envy.

I have to agree with Mr Ortho on a third point, that part of growing up is realizing life has meaning. He borrows half a quote:

 Mark Twain sums up the situation in his amusing comment, “When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to twenty-one I was astonished at how much the old man had learned in seven years.” The nihilist never makes it to the twenty-one-year-old perspective.

If I had to I would peg it as the ’35yo perspective’.

After that the post compares progressives to sociopaths, and so on. I will just say as long as these people think life has no meaning (or only Gaian meaning), they will have the urge to stuff the metaphysical hole inside of themselves with other people’s money/consumer goods, want power over others and so on.

John Cook is still at it

I am constantly amazed when I finally see interviews of these influential alarmists that they are as crazy as the stuff they write. I guess I just instinctively think ‘they can’t be serious’ when I just read them.

Cook is one of the co-authors of the [retracted] ‘conspiracy ideation’ paper. Which was long ago. I guess it’s his gig. Maybe he has no real skills. Denouncing conspiracy theorists is a nice career on the public dime as a panderer to the PTB.

Btw one of the deep implications of those selling ‘conspiracy ideation’ is that truth is not necessarily what is real but is instead who are the reliable personalities. It’s a big issue for statists, not so much for normal people. Via their dismissal of family values, statists long for role-models. “Not that person, he thinks the virus was made in a lab!” is typical emotional currency with them.

I can’t stress this enough: when truth is the issue it does not matter what someone thinks about A when the topic is B.

They are getting so close to self-awareness, yet remain so far

The following possibly is too reductive. Also too artsy. Sorry. This is about a long-standing opinion of mine, about the lower brain’s attitudes to the infinite and the finite.

Imagine a square. Let’s say a small field of land (or something analogous, an academic field). Two groups contemplate this field. One group will feel the mathematically infinite number of points. The other group will just see a finite place.

Climate alarmists are in the first demographic.

About 15 minutes ago I read someone’s tweet about a BBC radio program I never heard of called The Infinite Monkey Cage (the show just had their first zoomed virtual audience). Damn, I thought, that name sounds exactly like what I meant.

Sure enough, they got one. The show is co-hosted by a fairly famous UK media darling climatology opinion person. I can’t remember his name (despite having just read it for the twentieth time 15 minutes ago), but he’s an idiot, a world-class poser.

I save the most boring bit for last. My point is that it is not enough to say these people are in that demographic, but that they are in a double way, one reversed (the lower brain typically has a dualities like this). Here, their love of the infinitude of a small finite coexists with their exaggerated concerns about a larger finitude (here: the planet’s climate).


The future of climate alarmism, coming about quite slowly, might be funded baby-boomers zooming from home, with shrinking audiences. With their self-described ‘infinite monkey cage’, becoming increasingly less influential. And talking less and less about the climate. As on this episode, apparently.

re: the current snow cover on Hardangervidda, Norway

I am a AGW lukewarmist. As far as the alleged catastrophes and the proposed solutions I am more skeptical. But still I don’t rule out being wrong.

There is something which might augur global cooling, namely a decrease in insolation. I have decided middle of July to check a webcam how much snow is on the ground in Hardangervidda, a plateau in southern Norway.

If the snow cover sticks around all summer that would be the place. ASFAIK typically there are only a few stubborn patches.

Here is a post on that glacier (where I got the link). From May. He titled it “The Return of the Scandinavian Ice Sheet”. I am skeptical of that claim, as well.

right now

Carbon capture & Betteridge’s law turned into a funhouse mirror

Yahoo asksWill the World’s Biggest Carbon Capture Facility Work?”

Am I allowed to answer ‘no’ without even reading it?

Just for fun, “Betteridge’s Law of Headlines“, since we seems to have an excellent test case. Wikipedia defines it as

an adage that states: “Any headline that ends in a question mark can be answered by the word no“.

They have a source, coined in 2009 by a tech journalist in a short blogpost. They say the law is intended to be funny. Any normal person would notice it’s funny because it’s surprisingly often true (just like in this case, today). But not Wikipedia, they say the law is funny “rather than true.”

Before I get to the geeky part, it is worth mentioning Betteridge probably did not get to write his own headlines (this would explain why, after noticing editors often produced highly misleading ones, he made up a sardonic ‘law’).

The Wikipedia author wants to parse that important phenomenon out of existence. First with a compound sentence that puts the major part second, stressing instead that something about the law ‘fails to make sense’.

The adage fails to make sense with questions that are more open-ended than strict yes–no questions.

Betteridge was motivated by the second part. From the source, not Wikipedia

[the ‘law’] is built on the idea that news outlets place these crowns atop stories that don’t have the facts required to buttress the nut graph.

They shoved that to the backburner to discuss ‘open-ended questions’. Their example is “Will humans will destroy the earth?” – which is not one. Compare “what is your favorite color?” Which is.

Theirs is a question about the future. And, yes, the future is open-ended. But it is not a open-ended question. My future belongs to me. It is not a ‘question’ for them.

I suggest that both of these wonderful journalist-types have gotten so fixated on the contingency “if people like us are in charge” they change the normal meaning of ‘open ended question’. Additional evidence is their example: “will humans destroy the earth?” not even ‘make weather worse’.

Betteridge had as an open-ended question Is this deep-fried Big Mac completely disgusting or absolutely wonderful?” (a tad less Armageddonish). That’s right, as recently as 11 years ago there were quite a lot of individuals who made their own choices and formed their own opinions. About their lives and their diets. Say, their choice of hamburgers.

IMO not only does that have value, but also the danger of losing it is greater than the danger from trace CO2.

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