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Pope Francis and the politicized science of “Climate Change”

Pope Francis and the politicized science of “Climate Change”

Pope set to deliver summer encyclical

As I noted with the report on Chile’s Earth Day volcanic spectacular, the prime cause of climate change is Mother Nature.

And while the eco-activists continue to gin-up man-made fear about “climate change”,  it appears that a new study, conducted by Duke University that looked at 1,000 years of temperature records, supports my assertion.  The analysis shows that the climate models, the holy grail of climate change science, are…less than completely accurate.

The study compared its results to the most severe emissions scenarios outlined by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC).

‘Based on our analysis, a middle-of-the-road warming scenario is more likely, at least for now,’ said Patrick Brown, a doctoral student in climatology at Duke University. ‘But this could change.’

The Duke-led study says that variability is caused by interactions between the ocean and atmosphere, and other natural factors.

They claim these ‘wiggles’ can slow or speed the rate of warming from decade to decade, and exaggerate or offset the effects of increases in greenhouse gas concentrations.

If not properly explained and accounted for, they may skew the reliability of climate models and lead to over-interpretation of short-term temperature trends.

LI #26 Global Warming

Meanwhile, discussions among client scientists have recently included one of the leading religious figures in the world, Pope Francis. The pontiff is slated to give a much anticipated “climate change” encyclical this summer, to the delight of progressives everywhere.

…This is the basis of the moral cause of climate change, and why Francis’ encyclical has the potential to catalyze a great deal of action across the world when it’s issued.

So what is the encyclical likely to say? What is its basis, its foundation? And what right does a pope have to weigh in on what looks, on its surface, like a business and political issue?

For starters, the pope is likely to use his letter to more than 1 billion Catholics to explain the basics of what climate change is in plainspoken language that makes the issue available and relevant to everyone, rich and poor, and explain why we need to care about it.

Given that Francis selected his name for St. Francis of Assisi, who is the patron saint of ecology, a love-the-planet approach is unsurprising to those of us who are Catholic. Pope Francis is expected to use the summer encyclical as the basis for his address before the United Nations in September.

But I suspect this encyclical will make as much difference as the one issued by John Paul II, Evangelium Vitae/The Gospel of Life, which addressed the immorality of murder, directly willed abortion, and euthanasia. I am still waiting to read how vital this encyclical was to world opinion in a progressive publication.

However, Catholics opposed to policy based on the politicized science of “climate change” are preparing to address the fallout from the upcoming papal work.

Samuel Gregg, research director of the conservative Michigan-based Catholic think tank, the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty, said he doubts that the pope will weigh in on the science of climate change or on any particular political course of action.

“Individual Catholics—lay people, as well as bishops—have a variety of views on the science of climate change, and as citizens, they’re quite entitled to hold those views,” he said. “It’s not the church’s responsibility, nor does it have the authority to say that Catholics must support this treaty, that treaty, or any treaty. It doesn’t fall into the area of faith and morals. And this is often a distinction not understood outside the Catholic Church, or even by a good number of Catholics themselves.”

…Kishore Jayabalan, director of Acton’s Rome office, already has laid the groundwork for courteous disagreement with Francis. “It is one kind of problem if a Catholic disagrees with papal teaching on the Trinity or abortion; that Catholic’s eternal soul would be considered at risk,” he wrote in a recent blog.

“It is an altogether different kind of problem if a Catholic disagrees with the pope on his diplomatic efforts or environmental views… The Church wisely respects differences of opinion on such matters.”

Leftists are in a tizzy that the dreaded Koch brothers are trying to give Pope Francis a slightly different set of data points:

A US activist group that has received funding from energy companies and the foundation controlled by conservative activist Charles Koch is trying to persuade the Vatican that “there is no global warming crisis” ahead of an environmental statement by Pope Francis this summer that is expected to call for strong action to combat climate change.

The Heartland Institute, a Chicago-based conservative thinktank that seeks to discredit established science on climate change, said it was sending a team of climate scientists to Rome “to inform Pope Francis of the truth about climate science”.

Frankly, if I had an audience with the Pope, I would respectfully ask him to enhance focus on the dangers of Islamic terrorists to Christian faithful and promote warrior saints. A well placed attack, such as at the Vatican, has much more potential to change the global climate than any other man-made activity.


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The pope advocates on the side of the scientifically challenged warming alarmists at the risk to his and the Church’s reputation and authority. But, this pope has already done that repeatedly. I see another crisis brewing for the Church. The Galileo debacle demonstrated how unwise it was for Urban VIII to take a stand contrary to empiricism and logic; Francis is poised to demonstrate the folly of taking a stand in support of elite corrupt technocrats.

    Milhouse in reply to Skookum. | April 26, 2015 at 12:07 pm

    Um, Urban was on the side of empiricism and logic. At the time those were against Galileo. The Church had no problem with Galileo publicising his theories, so long as he made it clear that they were merely theories, and that the weight of experimental evidence thus far was against them. But Galileo insisted that his theories were the absolute Truth™, and the Church’s view was that Truth could only come either from experiment and logic or from Divine revelation; since Galileo had neither, they could not allow him to make this claim.

    That later experiments, with more sensitive equipment, confirmed that Galileo was right (about most things) just means he was lucky, not that the Church was wrong. He should still have presented his theories as only that. It also teaches us that the science is never “settled”.

      Ragspierre in reply to Milhouse. | April 26, 2015 at 3:28 pm

      Milhouse is right here, though that might gore some of your oxen.

      Old Galileo just couldn’t resist a swipe at the faction of the clergy that opposed him, and he slipped a totally unnecessary allusion into his writing, despite being warned by his benefactor Urban, to avoid being political.

      I cannot imagine anyone acting like that (snorkle, choke, snaarfle)

      Skookum in reply to Milhouse. | April 26, 2015 at 3:48 pm

      Um, Urban was on the side of empiricism and logic. At the time those were against Galileo. The Church had no problem with Galileo publicising his theories, so long as he made it clear that they were merely theories, and that the weight of experimental evidence thus far was against them. But Galileo insisted that his theories were the absolute Truth™, and the Church’s view was that Truth could only come either from experiment and logic or from Divine revelation; since Galileo had neither, they could not allow him to make this claim.

      If Urban was on the side of empiricism and logic, why did John Paul II, after a lengthy and thorough review of the evidence, acquit Galileo in 1992? Galileo never claimed to have a lock on divine truth; he merely put forth his arguments in an entertaining way in the common language, which encouraged his work to be widely read. With regard to Urban, falsely assigning literal truth to scripture has been a common errand of fools for ages in addition to being heretical in any reasonable interpretation of Judeo-Christian philosophy in which only God is to be worshipped, not the writings of unknown men.

      Galileo had logic on his side in the form of Occam’s Razor. A Copernican heliocentric solar system was far simpler that a geocentric Ptolemaic solar system when Galileo’s telescopic observations of the moon, Jupiter’s moons, and Venus were taken into account. If he had factored in Kepler’s refinement of planetary orbits being elliptical instead of circular, there would have been little room for argument against him.

      While science is indeed never settled, there are certain topics not worth debating. Heliocentrism was still debateable in Galileo’s day, but he was a great scientist and put forth a vigorous defense of Copernicanism based on sound science. If the Church can admit it was wrong, I think it’s safe for you to agree with them.

      The Church’s admission of wrongdoing came less than a quarter century ago. Francis would be a fool to venture into the realm of science so soon after such admission, especially on a topic that is so hotly questioned, except by the close-minded elitists who stand to benefit from a manufactured global crisis. How much of a donation to the Clinton Foundation would I need to make to earn a nice income off anthropogenic global warming?

      Barry in reply to Milhouse. | April 27, 2015 at 2:05 am

      “…just means he was lucky, not that the Church was wrong.”

      Luck had nothing to do with it. He studied and observed. He was right and the church was flat out wrong. Are you really going to insist the church was not wrong? Do you think the earth is flat?

The Church has a history of co-opting pagan religions.

This anti-science druidic religion of the Collective might just be the next target.

But most Americans will chose to continue to live under the Enlightenment.


PoliticiansRscum | April 26, 2015 at 10:43 am

If he were a Marxist stooge, would he be doing anything differently?

Henry Hawkins | April 26, 2015 at 10:46 am

Heh. If the Pope endorses global warming it will put a bind in the plans of those pro-AGW leftists who are also seeking to marginalize religion in pursuit of secularized rule.

No offense to the Pope or Catholics, but I place as much value on his scientific opinions as I place on a physicist’s religious opinions.

In case the pope missed the current slaughter of Christians in the world, someone should remind him that climate change isn’t beheading and enslaving his followers.

Noblesse Oblige | April 26, 2015 at 11:31 am

This Pope is a fairly typical Latin American Jesuit, filled with all kinds of redistributionist ideology. The question I have is how did the College of Cardinals make such a terrible mistake after the great John Paul II and the kindly intellectual Benedict?

littlebeartoe | April 26, 2015 at 11:53 am

This pope is an ass.

Midwest Rhino | April 26, 2015 at 12:23 pm

Al Gore’s mentor came up with the theory of carbon dioxide influencing climate, but he rejected the politicized side that Gore started. The theory never became fact, was never settled at all, more rejected by science than accepted. But it nonetheless became Gore’s cornerstone for “All Truth” in the realm of hysteric political rhetoric.

So it’s wrong in a sense to say AGW (anthropogenic global warming, now renamed “Climate Change”) was ever “Science” as it was really only ever hypothesis, not advanced theory, and certainly not the next step, scientific Law. Gore skipped all the testing and declared “settled science”, a purely manufactured belief supported only by faith, rooted in opportunism.

So I’m arguing “Climate Change” is not “politicized science”, as even that label is ambiguous. AGW was a politically manufactured crisis from the get go, established as religion with Gore’s full of lies movie, “An Inconvenient Truth”.

The movie title itself labels his movement as a religion, in that he doesn’t call it FACT, he subjugates his alleged science to being locked in as “settled”, because Pope Gore declares ex cathedra … “The Truth”, not to be messed with by mere mortals. Even his imagery portrays himself as a sort of Lord of the Earth.

As to the Pope, I’m not sure if he’s joining forces with the commie warmists, or trying to co-opt some of their zeal. In any case, he seems to be trivializing the alleged purposes of the church. Of course the SJWs have been infiltrating the churches for some time, so this perhaps mollifies them a little.

    Midwest Rhino in reply to Midwest Rhino. | April 26, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    oops .. I needed to change my first line .. Gore’s mentor came up with the “hypothesis”, I don’t believe it reached “theory” level. They did some testing, but mostly decided they had far too little data to make any conclusions.

Leslie, from all of my own reading and research I would agree with your assessment that “the prime cause of climate change is Mother Nature” happening over millennia. Man’s input is miniscule but should always be tempered (via self-control) not to pollute.

I am glad that the Heartland Institute is getting involved. I have listened to many of their YouTube videos.

I think the pope can cope and desires not to be a misanthrope.

The real problem is that the Catholic Church can not advocate the elimination of the poor which is the end game of global warming advocates. Does anyone think that Jesus or Francis would attack the poor?

In this article the “scientist” uses the term “greenhouse gas”, so he is not actually a scientist. “Greenhouse Gas” is an oxymoron. Greenhouses allow radiation and inhibit convection. Any gas that inhibits convection is by definition, not a gas.

It is true that atmospheric gases average the temperature, but water vapor is almost all of that effect. Carbon Dioxide contributes about 3% to averaging and 95% of Carbon Dioxide is from plants. So a 50% reduction of Carbon Dioxide would only affect the temperature a fraction of a degree for a few hours.

If that is not enough, all living things benefit from temperature averaging. For example, wild swings in temperature are used to pasteurize milk. If you want to kill something, wild termperature swings are pretty effective.

CO2 tracks temperature (not vice-versa). More plants grow when it is warmer, and plants account for 95% of the Carbon Dioxide. Scientists have used that fact for decades to determine the temperature of the Earth thousands of years ago. You don’t want to be against science, do you?

Anyone who knows anything about science knows that there is no scientific fact that supports man-made global warming.

Science runs on facts. People should too. Including the Pope

There are some crucial, verifiable facts – with citations – about human-generated carbon dioxide and its effect on global warming he and other people should know at

The discussion is too long to post here, but is a quick and easy read. I recommend following the links in the citations; some of them are very educational.