Billionaire polluter David Koch: Global warming is good for you

But why does NY Magazine reprint his disinformation without question?

Global warming could be good for the planet, Koch says. “A far greater land area will be available to produce food.”

David KochThis is the big pull-out quote from a profile in New York Magazine of the billionaire polluter behind the Tea Parties, whose family outspends Exxon Mobil on climate and clean energy disinformation.

NY Mag gives Koch free rein to spread that disinformation, with not a single quote by any scientist disputing it.  Of course, if conservatives continue to listen to Koch and the groups funded by him, like the Cato Institute and Heritage Foundation — and block all efforts to get off our current emissions path — then we are headed towards very high concentrations of carbon dioxide, which will dramatically reduce the land available to produce food, even as we add another 3 billion mouths to feed (see “Intro to global warming impacts: Hell and High Water“).

Rising sea levels will wipe out some of the world’s richest agricultural land, which is near the coast and deltas, while forcing more than 100 million people inland.  At the same time, the inland glaciers will shrink sharply, reducing the flow of rivers to tens of millions of people in Asia.  And then we have projections of moderate drought over half the planet (at 850 ppm).  A NOAA-led study similary found permanent Dust Bowls in Southwest and around the globe on our current emissions trajectory (and irreversibly so for 1000 years).  Future droughts will be fundamentally different from all previous droughts that humanity has experienced because they will be very hot weather droughts (see Must-have PPT: The “global-change-type drought” and the future of extreme weather).

That’s why Scientific American asks “Could Food Shortages Bring Down Civilization?” But NY Mag doesn’t ask any such questions.  It just reprints his nonsense without question.  Brad Johnson of Wonk Room has more:

In a recently published New York Magazine profile, pollution billionaire David Koch lies about his support for tea-party radicalism, cracks racist jokes, and denies the threat of global warming. One of the wealthiest men in the world, Koch has used his billions for decades to promote the extremist, anti-regulatory, right-wing political groups like Americans for Prosperity that now organize under the Tea Party banner. “I’ve never been to a tea-party event,” Koch told reporter Andrew Goldman, even though he hosted AFP’s “Defending the American Dream” tea-party hoopla in Washington, DC, last year.Fueled by his fear that the greenhouse gas pollution generated by Koch Industries might be limited by government regulation, Koch promotes a fantasy about benefits of a changing climate:

Koch says he’s not sure if global warming is caused by human activities, and at any rate, he sees the heating up of the planet as good news. Lengthened growing seasons in the northern hemisphere, he says, will make up for any trauma caused by the slow migration of people away from disappearing coastlines. “The Earth will be able to support enormously more people because a far greater land area will be available to produce food,” he says.

Unfortunately, Koch’s pollution really is heating the planet, and the consequences are grave. With less than one degree C of average warming, heat waves, extreme storms, droughts, sea levels, ocean acidity, wildfires, and flooding are already on the rise. In the unregulated world of global warming pollution envisioned by Koch, the planet’s average temperature will increase five to ten times more than existing warming, with a significant chance of a runaway greenhouse effect. As warming passes 7 degrees C, possible within this century, half the world’s inhabited area will become uninhabitable, literally too hot for the human body to survive. The world’s coral reefs will go extinct, as will about fifty percent of the species on the planet.

The IPCC analysis of global warming’s impact on agriculture found that even if destructive changes in extreme events or the spread of pests and diseases are ignored, agricultural yields will decline in the poorer regions of the world under relatively minor warming. Events like the record Russian heat wave that has destroyed 32 percent of its wheat crop and sent global prices skyrocketing will become commonplace. As temperatures increase more than 3 C, global productivity will decline, the American heartland turned to a permanent Dust Bowl, coastal areas consumed by rising seas, the world’s glaciers melting into memory. As the David Koch-funded Smithsonian Human Origins Initiative warns, global warming is an “experiment” that is “likely to create entirely new survival challenges” for the entire human race. Quite simply, Koch’s happy scenario of a greenhouse planet comfortably sustaining human civilization is not based in fact.

Koch’s sense of humor is as regressive as his politics. “I played basketball when you could be white and be good,” Koch joked about his college days, though he made sure to tell the reporter, “I’m not a racist. I’m very broad-minded.”

Remember that Koch funds the Smithsonian exhibit that whitewashes danger of human-caused climate change.  But as the NY Mag profile makes clear, such greenwashing was desperately needed by poor victimized David Koch:

Earlier this year, he found himself attacked for being the financial engine of the largely white, largely male, very angry crowds that were gathering in towns across the country””a few waving overtly racist or menacing anti-Obama signs””to protest the president’s proposed health-care bill and other issues. Koch denies being directly involved with the tea party”””I’ve never been to a tea-party event. No one representing the tea party has ever even approached me”””but he and his brother Charles were being accused of supporting the group through an affiliated conservative organization. Rachel Maddow had effectively called Koch the tea party’s puppet master. “The radical press is coming after me and Charles,” he said. “They’re using us as whipping boys.” Burnishing his reputation was no longer his concern; now, it seemed, he needed to save it.

Shame on the Smithsonian for taking his dirty money — and especially for such a dreadful exhibit.

Related Posts:

64 Responses to Billionaire polluter David Koch: Global warming is good for you

  1. Peter Smith says:

    Koch is an MIT grad. That is the worst out there.
    MIT grads need to be waterboarded.

  2. Rick Covert says:

    Global warming is good for you the way toxic sludge is good for you. I remember my first job in the oil industry back in 1979. The oil companies were “experimenting” with spraying oil on the soil and growing corn on that land because they believed it would increase soil fertility. Just goes to show your commitment to your own ignorance will be reinforced if your income depends on that selective ignorance.

  3. Peter Smith says:

    I suspect there is a lot of envy that is behind smearing the Kochs.
    Fred, the dad was a nice guy also.

  4. BrockSamson says:

    I suspect there is a lot of greed behind the Kochs’ sleaze.

    No matter how nice his dad may have been.

  5. Prokaryotes says:

    Put oil firm chiefs on trial, says leading climate change scientist

    · Testimony to US Congress will also criticise lobbyists
    · ‘Revolutionary’ policies needed to tackle crisis

  6. catman306 says:

    Thanks for the picture of Koch, it goes in my rogues gallery. Maybe I’ll do a deck of playing cards.

    Peter, there are more deadly sins than just envy at work here…
    See for yourself:

  7. Joe, the link to the “Must have PPT” appears to be dead. The one above takes you the page where you describe it and the related report, but when you click on the link there to get to the presentation it says “file not found”.

  8. David Schonberger says:

    Be careful what you say, Peter. Joe is an MIT grad. :-)

  9. Dave E says:

    Peter Smith #1–Koch is also a white male, should all white males be waterboarded as well? Studies at MIT have warned of the consequences of continued business as usual, so I don’t think vilifying MIT is the answer (although I must admit that I expect your comment was meant tongue in cheek–it’s just that one can never be sure these days since so many outrageous statements get made in all seriousness)

  10. Colorado Bob says:

    Moscow made 104 F degrees today –

    The monthlong heat wave, with record temperatures reaching 104 degrees Fahrenheit, has caused a number of fires, including peat fires, creating heavy smog throughout the region, RIA Novosti reported Wednesday.
    Reading these comments from the Russian officials about their fires , as the same feel as BP saying there’s nothing to see at our broken well.

  11. Lewis Cleverdon says:

    Koch shares with Inhofe a particularly vacuous look –
    one that hints strongly of advancing senility –
    whose classic symptom is of course to cling on to comforting fixed ideas.

    At what point can he be declared unfit to manage his resources,
    as evidenced by his wild fantasies over climate destabilization ?

    Soon I hope.



  12. PSU Grad says:

    From the article:

    “Koch says he’s not sure if global warming is caused by human activities, and at any rate, he sees the heating up of the planet as good news.”

    If nothing else, Koch is absolutely acknowledging that the planet is warming. He’s just “not sure” about the human part.

    So the next time some contrarian says it’s a “hoax”, or Cavuto talks about how “cold” it is out there, or Inhoff directs his grandchildren to build an igloo, remind them that even David Koch thinks the planet is warming.

  13. Michael Tucker says:

    So their you have it recent college grads, especially MIT grads, the NY Mag article is proof you do not need to be intelligent to become rich; you do need a healthy dose of greed and a complete lack of any moral character. Luckily though it may turn out that those qualities are contagious as the Smithsonian’s actions have demonstrated.

  14. Great posting. Koch should be at the top of the list of Climate Villains.

    Watching NOVA on PBS, I note that this award winning science show is heavily sponsored by Koch and by Exxon-Mobil. This explains the token examination of climate science, and the less than memorable coverage of the greatest science issue of all time.

    Koch can control the message, just by targeted funding. I wonder what it is about his personality and psychology that requires blinders to the science – answer: it is a business requirement to ignore science.

    We can observe people like Koch, but we cannot change them. They are the equivalent of the insane, hearing voices, hallucinating their own message. Megalomaniacally driven. How long does one argue with someone about a hallucination that only one of them sees?

    We may not ever be able to convert a denier into a rational person.

    We might have to accept them. This is a form of grief that we have to carry. But the name Koch will not be remembered fondly.

  15. Prokaryotes says:

    Justice Department Probes Relationship Between Oil Companies and Federal Regulators, and More

  16. Bob Wallace says:

    Global warming will drive agriculture toward the poles.

    Don’t know if he noticed, but both Africa and South America taper as one approaches their pole.

    As for us in the ‘upper part’, you’re not going to find a lot of good soil in Canada’s rocky northlands. It’s grasslands that build top soil.

    And farming that soil-less rock called Greenland?

  17. SecularAnimist says:

    Joe asks in the subtitle: “why does NY Magazine reprint his disinformation without question?”

    Why? I would suggest that the answer to your question is the first word of the title of this article: “Billionaire”.

  18. Ryan T says:

    Even if a loss of prime coastal farmland and the infiltration of sea water into fresh water supplies weren’t in the cards, the question remains: How much more “available” land will actually be arable? Increased drought and the poor/glacier-scoured soils covering large swaths of Northern territory might be a bit problematic…

  19. Prokaryotes says:

    he made a $20 million gift to the American Museum of Natural History, creating the David H. Koch Dinosaur Wing. He made a contribution of $15 million to the National Museum of Natural History in 2009 to create the new David H. Koch Hall of Human Origins … A city park is named after Koch in Placentia, California.

  20. Jeff Huggins says:

    Yes AND … Money Speaks

    Although I appreciate the article/post, and I appreciate the comments above, one thing is missing, as far as I can tell:

    Money speaks. Please, let’s prominently list the brands that we can all AVOID BUYING (and tell others too) in order to speak with our pocketbooks, which is just about the only language that some of these folks understand.

    Koch Industries owns Georgia-Pacific. The Georgia-Pacific brands (many of which most of us probably buy) are:

    Quilted Northern

    Angel Soft



    Soft ‘n Gentle

    Mardi Gras

    Vanity Fair


    These are mainly toilet paper, paper towels, picnic supplies, paper cups, and related stuff.

    If you want to try to have an influence on Koch, then DON’T BUY THESE Georgia-Pacific PRODUCTS, and tell your friends too. Even if he doesn’t care “directly”, the Georgia-Pacific employees and execs, and their retailers, will begin to care, and their caring will ultimately cause the Koches to care, or at least to pay attention.

    We aren’t going to get much of anywhere unless we are willing to speak — loudly, in large numbers, and responsibly, with our pocketbooks and with boycotts — in response to folks who are harming the long-term interests of the public and the planet. That’s the reality of the matter.

    My advice would be, don’t buy Georgia-Pacific products. Send a signal. When we talk about people like Koch, and about companies that are the largest culprits, we need to start talking IN THESE TERMS.



  21. Prokaryotes says:

    David H. Koch Dinosaur Wing, this explains everything!

  22. Jeff Huggins says:

    Correction to my earlier comment: It’s Dixie, not Dixy. Ooops.

  23. The ironic thing about the “global warming is good for plants and humankind” meme is that it involves the denialists in a contradiction:

    * On the one hand they insist that global warming isn’t happening …
    yet on the other they concede that global warming is happening but it isn’t so bad after all.

    Anyone carefully reading though the skeptic-denialist material will find plenty of contradictions of this sort scattered throughout their arguments. The pollution defenders live in a perpetual state of cognitive dissonance.

    What is unavoidable, by the way, because science has already settled the global warming controversy. The global warming debate ended a long time ago and the skeptics lost.

    But these skeptics-denialists do believe in recycling so you’ll hear the same old tired discredited argument parroted a thousand times after they have been refuted. The denialists deny the science and then they deny the refutation and then they attribute science’s conclusions to a grand global anti-capitalist conspiracy.

    The capitalists who lead the Pollution Defenders Movement know that they are peddling lies and propaganda for the uneducated masses. The capitalists concede that global warming is occurring and that humans are responsible. It doesn’t matter to them, though, because they plan to collecte their billions and enjoy life until they die, leaving the next generation to suffer the consequences.

  24. Peter Mizla says:

    My cold hardy palm collection here in Connecticut is growing and thriving- I guess global warming is good for some plants ;-)


  25. Prokaryotes says:

    Peter, do not let David know this: “Avatar Trees Found on Earth”

  26. Leland Palmer says:

    Are we headed for an ocean anoxic event?

    In his book Under a Green Sky paleontologist Peter Ward talks about the great mass extinctions of the past, and ties many of them to ocean anoxic events, which are in turn tied to global warming, and an overturning of the global ocean circulation system. He talks about oceans full of purple bacteria, producing hydrogen sulfide, during these ocean anoxic events.

    From wikipedia:

    Oceanic anoxic events or anoxic events occur when the Earth’s oceans become completely depleted of oxygen (O2) below the surface levels. Although anoxic events have not happened for millions of years, the geological record shows that they happened many times in the past. Anoxic events may have caused mass extinctions. These mass extinctions were so characteristic they include some of those which geobiologists employ to serve as a time marker in biostratigraphic dating. It is believed oceanic anoxic events are strongly linked to lapses in key oceanic current circulations, to climate warming and greenhouse gases.

    Analysis of the geologic records occurring before and after the affected ages are that onsets are rapid and so are recoveries. Both sets of data suggests that a sudden climate threshold or tipping point occurs at about four times the Earth’s mean carbon dioxide levels relative to the baseline concentrations of about 280 ppmv in circa 1750. This date is significant in that it is regarded as the beginning of the Industrial age.

    Strata analysis suggests that in the era when Earth had a predominantly overheated climate,[1] with heavy daily rains and violent storms,[2] the relatively fierce global climate resulted in far heavier erosion which in turn fed more nutrients into the world’s waters. At the same time it caused deep water circulation between the poles and the equator to stop in a cataclysmic fashion.[3] This obstruction in oceanic circulation led to ‘death in the depths’ from oxygen deprivation. The stagnation caused by this lack of circulation could not be offset by natural processes and became a source of mildly poisonous hydrogen sulfides. The stratified waters would support life in the oxygenated surface layer but the deeper layers became a lethal mixture where life was impossible. The toxic lower layers halted scavenger activity along the organically rich ooze, or sapropel, and all creatures that died in it drifted down and accumulated on the abyssal basins and bottoms. All these life forms unwarily drifting into the anoxic or toxic layers would have died and contributed to the continual accumulation of unicellular microorganisms. The surface layer benefited from an explosion in life, spurred by the increased nutrients from the super-greenhouse conditions, which was then killing itself in waste products.

    Ironically these deposits of sedimentary organic materials may have accumulated into lipid rich deposits. It is now widely believed that most of today’s fossil oil reserves formed in several distinct anoxic events in earth’s geologic history.

    As oceanic deposits of methane hydrate dissociate, most of the methane will remain in the oceans, where it will be oxidized into CO2, at least in the near term, according to what I’ve read. This will add to ocean acidification, which is occurring so rapidly that the buffering capacity of sediments is being overwhelmed.

    If Koch gets his way, kiss the oceans goodbye, IMO. Say hello to bark beetle epidemics and dead forests. Say hello to melting permafrost, skyrocketing methane and CO2 levels, and a potential methane catastrophe like the End Permian or Paleocene/Eocene thermal maximum.

    Really, the fossil fuels are just not so valuable that we have to risk all of this.

    What we need is a legal mechanism to charge such polluters with the full social and ecological costs of their businesses.

    If that were the case, the fossil fuel industries would be instantly bankrupt, it appears.

    We ought to just nationalize Koch Industries, and force its conversion to a more carbon neutral form. And we ought to charge David Koch damages for what he is doing to our climate and ecology. Those damages are so massive that this would instantly wipe his fortune out, IMO.

  27. kochsucker PNAC says:

    @ comment #2, that was my favourite part of “Fight Club”. The world of the future is going to remember who caused runaway warming if it is allowed to happen. America does not have respect for human rights necessary to prevent participatory panoptican.

  28. Peter Mizla says:

    Scientists say global warming is continuing

    (AP) – 1 hour ago

  29. Bob Wallace says:

    Peter – enjoy that new warmer climate while you can. That climate will be moving further north and a much hotter, more uncomfortable climate will be coming your way.

    And plant those palm trees the right distance apart so that the climate heating refugees coming north will have places to hang their hammocks.

    I’m sure you’ll welcome lots of people moving into your area in order to escape the newly formed deserts and flooded lowlands….

  30. Bob Webster says:

    Have any of you considered the importance of understanding historic climate change in order to put whatever it is you’re so concerned about into proper perspective?

    Do you understand that all of human history has existed within a tiny slice of an ice epoch within an ice era?

    Do you understand that ice eras such as the current one that began about 60 million years ago are atypical of Earth’s climate?

    Do you understand that the typical climate of Earth is vastly warmer than the global warming you fret about?

    Have you stopped to consider that Earth endures the much colder ice eras infrequently and they are well outside the normal environment for Earth? Are you aware that more than 90% of the time since living organisms have developed on Earth the climate has been substantially warmer to levels where there is no permanent ice anywhere on the planet at sea level? Do you know that that 90% of time has only been interrupted seven times by ice eras?

    For a more recent historical perspective, have you ever examined the climate of the past four interglacials that represent breaks in ice ages (which are within the current ice epoch; which is within the current ice era)? No? You really should. If you did, you’d note that the peak temperature of the current interglacial is cooler than that of each of the peak temperatures of the past four interglacials. If you took the time to look, you’d notice that the warm phases of the current interglacial are getting progressively COOLER with each cycle (the Medieval WP was warmer then the current WP; the Roman WP was warmer than the Medieval; the Minoan WP was warmer than the Roman; etc.).

    How can anyone try to attribute any component of climate change to anything when climate change science is so poorly understood? If you don’t know what changed climate in the past, how can you be so certain you know what is happening today? Particularly when today’s “science” is so full of assumption and theory that it is far from settled.

    Do you know what causes cycles of warm and cold during the current interglacial?

    Do you not find it odd that greenhouse gases have never been a significant climate change force throughout Earth’s long and radically changing climate history?

    Why do some (including the current) interglacials have a “plateau” style peak period while others have a single sharp peak then decline rapidly to the next ice age cycle?

    What is the mechanism that begins interglacials? What mechanism terminates interglacials?

    What mechanism begins ice epochs? What mechanism ends ice epochs?

    What mechanism begins ice eras? What mechanism ends ice eras?

    I’m not looking for hypotheses or theories. I’m looking for KNOWLEDGE!

    Yes, there are theories, but no real knowledge upon which a reliable long-range prediction could be made. There is an important distinction between knowledge and theory.

    Until climate change is far better understood, self-serving hypothesizing and demonizing those with whom you disagree will not improve knowledge one iota.

    And without knowledge, you have nothing.

  31. Ryan T says:

    Peter, it might be good for some temperate region weeds that are less limited by soil nutrient and moisture availability. I’m sure they’d do alright with a bit more CO2, fewer cold snaps, and perhaps further range extension.

  32. Peter Mizla says:

    #31 Bob

    The idea of climate refugees coming to New England is something I believed was possible- it now appears likely.

    #33 Ryan

    In Connecticut we have a potent poison Ivy now (that I have suffered from various times as a gardener)

    As for my palm collection; I grow Trachycarpus Fortunei (windmill palm-Asian origin) And A Rhapidophyllum hystrix (Needle Palm) Origin the American southeast-both are very cold hardy fan palms. I have had them in the ground here several years- I cover them with no heat.

    This year they are exploding with growth ;-)

  33. Lou Grinzo says:


    “Do you understand that all of human history has existed within a tiny slice of an ice epoch within an ice era?”

    Do you understand that this is precisely the problem — we’ve built an entire civilization on one set of rules, and now the rules of the game are changing. Those rules control what kinds of temperatures we’ll see, where and how much rain fall we get, the frequency and strength of storms (tropical and otherwise), etc.

    We’re sawing away at the tree limb we’re sitting on, and some people are telling us not to worry because of all the times in the past when branches we weren’t sitting on broke without the aid of our saw.

    As for the plethora of other questions you ask: If you can’t use Google and the ‘net (I’d suggest you start with the latest IPCC report; it’s a lot of reading but well worth it), plus read a few books, you’ll be able to answer them on your own.

  34. Prokaryotes says:

    Sen. Jay Rockefeller: Inaction on greenhouse limits a ’sound idea’ with ‘bipartisan support’

  35. Prokaryotes says:

    State of the Climate Report: Unmistakable Signs of Warming, Decade to Decade
    Best evidence yet from 11 different indicators measured by multiple data sets stretching back to 1850s

  36. villabolo says:

    Bob Webster says:

    What mechanism begins ice epochs? What mechanism ends ice epochs?
    What mechanism begins ice eras? What mechanism ends ice eras?
    There once was a man named Milankovitch, who … :-D

    You’ve got to be kidding Bob.

  37. Ryan T says:

    Bob, as Lou suggests, it’s exactly the point that societies have benefitted greatly from this relatively long, mild, biodiverse interglacial. One that the science on Milankovitch cycles indicates will persist for thousands of years more (potential growing up time for humanity). So it might be something worth holding onto as long as possible.

    This has never been about climate change per sé, but the risk of accelerated HOLOCENE climate change, and it’s impacts on today’s ecology and large human populations. If you don’t think the attribution case for rapid CO2 accumulation and it’s feedbacks is strong enough to at least err on the side of caution, I have to wonder what you’re reading. I question that even more when you make assertions like the medieval warm period was warmer than today, when all the vetted proxy studies (evidence of regional warmth aside) suggest otherwise. And considering that much of the present trend has occurred over mere decades, yet it’s likely just the beginning, considering inertial lag and the apparent dominance of amplifying feedbacks.

  38. john kearns says:

    Second-hand smoke is good for you. Weapons test radioactive fallout is benevolent. DDT puts hair on your chest(oh, not you, ma’am!. Asbestos tastes good, as a carcinogen should. Acid rain, coal smoke, mining waste, yada,yada yada.

    Once we kill this planet, we simply colonize another. Plus, if we spoil this one, the outer space baddies will leave us alone.

  39. Prokaryotes says:

    “Second-hand smoke is good for you”

    Climate change is good for Dinosaurs.

  40. Arkitkt says:

    Koch makes a lot of money trading carbon on the EU-ETS. His motives, though murky, are pretty clear; profit from climate change at any cost. It is then understandable that he would prefer a climate change scenario as the one he describes, controlled by him and his cronies.

  41. Michael Tucker says:

    And don’t forget: Guaranteed weight loss with Cancer!

  42. Prokaryotes says:

    Seabirds at risk as populations decline by half

    Climate change is starving Scotland’s seabirds into a drastic population decline that leaves some species dangerously close to extinction, the RSPB has warned.

    But, but David Koch says Global Warming is Good!

  43. SecularAnimist says:

    Bob Webster wrote: “And without knowledge, you have nothing.”

    With all due respect, you really, seriously DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE TALKING ABOUT.

    Your comment is a litany of your own ignorance.

    That’s not a problem with climate science — it’s a problem with you.

    You need to do some serious work to educate yourself, and then maybe you will be equipped to discuss this subject.

  44. Craig says:

    “But why does NY Magazine reprint his disinformation without question?”

    Because it is a profile of the man, not a piece about global warming. To understand the man, you need to understand what he believes, regardless of the truth behind his beliefs. Repeating what he believes to facilitate that understanding does not mean the paper has endorsed his beliefs.

    For this kind of article, I think it is silly to expect the reporter to be responsible for vetting all the opinions expressed, or to act as a global warming truth cop, flagging and punishing every unacceptable utterance.

  45. Mark Shapiro says:

    Lou Grinzo @ 35: good limb – branch – saw analogy.

  46. dhogaza says:

    villabolo says:

    Bob Webster says:

    What mechanism begins ice epochs? What mechanism ends ice epochs?
    What mechanism begins ice eras? What mechanism ends ice eras?

    There once was a man named Milankovitch …

    Who solved the mystery for the heck of it …

  47. Windsong says:

    Prokaryote, #5, that’s an extremely important point– about putting industry leaders who spread disinformation on trial! They really should be put on trial! They’re the ones who constantly impede progress. They need to be “taken out” one way another. (Not to encourage any mischief-doing). Our “war cry” should be something related to this.

  48. Windsong says:

    Prokaryote, #45, Not only sea birds will become extinct but at 1.5 degrees of warming trees will start dieing off in a rush, according to the book, “World On Fire”.. and then there’s us too…

    My roommate commented that GW will be good for some areas also… (Grrr!)

  49. Leif says:

    Any time someone says, “Global Warming will be good for some areas”, I would take them to a map, have them pick an area and google the effects of climate on that area. It should be quite enlightening.

  50. Bill Waterhouse says:

    Heard on NPR this pm – current ocean phytoplankton levels have decreased 40% below 1950 levels due to climate change.

  51. donovan 2012 says:

    What is causing the heat wave?

  52. Prokaryotes says:

    Climate Change Scepticism Could Soon Be a Criminal Offence
    People who are sceptical of climate change could soon be facing criminal charges in the European Court of Justice, British National Party leader and MEP Nick Griffin MEP has said.

  53. Anna Haynes says:

    David Koch, from a 2008 profile (link):

    “I’d like to be known in the future as someone who’s not just a wealthy, successful businessman but someone who really cared about the well-being of others”

  54. Prokaryotes says:

    This is of epidemic proportions today, partly because of environment pollution.

    The Dunning–Kruger effect is a cognitive bias in which an unskilled person makes poor decisions and reaches erroneous conclusions, but their incompetence denies them the metacognitive ability to realize their mistakes. The unskilled therefore suffer from illusory superiority, rating their own ability as above average, much higher than it actually is, while the highly skilled underrate their abilities, suffering from illusory inferiority. This leads to the perverse situation in which less competent people rate their own ability higher than more competent people. It also explains why actual competence may weaken self-confidence: because competent individuals falsely assume that others have an equivalent understanding. “Thus, the miscalibration of the incompetent stems from an error about the self, whereas the miscalibration of the highly competent stems from an error about others. -wiki

  55. Prokaryotes says:

    Dunning–Kruger effect

  56. Neil says:

    Somebody the other day compared Canada’s wealthy to America’s. Canada’s are obnoxious. America’s are vicious. Koch is a scary Religious Right thug.

  57. GreenReality says:

    That New York published a biased piece makes all the sense in the world, when you consider the immense influence of David Koch in that city, and the exclusive audience of the magazine’s subscribers. Speaking of influence and power, it’s quite ironic that the Tea Party-promoting Koch dynasty gained a meaningful portion of it’s wealth from the success of the patriarch’s oil business ventures with Stalinist Russia, of all places.

    Mr. Smith, envy has nothing to do with their being called out. As nice and generous as the Koch’s may be in some circles, if you consider the negative side effects of their style of wealth accumulation on the natural world, they may have no equal in all of human history. Then again, are not the vast majority of us in the developed nations due a share of the blame for the climactic unbalance we are passing on to future generations?

    Therein lies the difficulty of the task humanity has before it.

  58. JK says:

    Daddy Fred Koch (who was also educated at MIT) may have found Stalinist Russia to be the land of opportunity for his American engineering company, but he was horrified by Stalin’s regime and hated communism. He was a founding member of the John Birch Society.

    Check out the Koch Industries web site: plenty of greenwashing. (Never mind the long string of environmental protections violations at the Koch facilities.)

    Other Koch products to boycott along with Koch’s Georgia Pacific products (see comments by Jeff at #21): Koch’s Invista products, which include Stainmaster, Lycra, Cordura, Tactel, and Antron. Koch Industries owns EVERYTHING. . . . (And Charles and David Koch own more than 80% of Koch Industries.)

  59. Russell says:

    re 1.

    It didn’t do Hitch much good, so why tempt Anthony Watts to apply it to Jim manzi ?