Climate of Confusion – Part IV Scientific and Logical Case Against Manmade Warming

Occam’s Razor: The simplest explanation is most likely the correct one.
Climate of Confusion – Part IV
Scientific and Logical Case Against Manmade Warming
By: George Noga – October 30, 2019

         This is the fourth of seven parts; prior parts are on our website:  We begin by summarizing the case against manmade warming made in prior posts.

  • Proponents consider manmade warming an existential threat but do not oppose secular warming. This is illogical and calls their motives into question.
  • There is no scientific consensus that warming is anthropologically caused.
  • The IPCC has stated that moderate warming is a net benefit to humanity.
  • Unadjusted satellite data show temperatures nearly unchanged for 20 years.
  • Weather-related insurance claims show no increase in extreme weather.
  • Icecaps are increasing in some places (Greenland) and decreasing in others.

Following are other compelling scientific and logical arguments in the case against manmade warming. They are not listed in any particular order.

Warming throughout the solar system: NASA has documented warming on 11 planets and moons in our solar system but not a single instance of cooling. The odds are over 1,000 to 1 against this occurring randomly if temperatures on Earth were rising mainly due to human activity. See our post of 12/8/13 (on website) for NASA sources.

Argument from authority: Citing a (false) scientific consensus, IPCC and media reports is the weakest form of argument. Authorities must prove claims like anyone else.

Warming and human welfare: During the past 200 years, a warming climate has been accompanied by the greatest increase in human welfare of all time.

Occam’s Razor: The simplest explanation is most likely the correct one; solar warming is a much simpler and less convoluted explanation than an anthropological one.

Failure of predictions: Warming predictions have been spectacularly wrong. Gore predicted Manhattan would be under water by 2010. The IPCC predicted entire nations would be wiped away and there would be 50 million climate refugees by 2010.

Science is never settled: To avoid debate, warming proponents argue the science is settled. So was gravity and heliocentrism until Einstein and Galileo.

Junk science: Our 11/25/18 post (see website) listed 50 recent instances of junk science promulgated by alleged experts and hyped by the media – all debunked. This creates a presumption of doubt for manmade warming. Remember acid rain and global cooling?

Politicization of science: Government funding, along with political  correctness, biases climate change research. Government funds $3,000 for every $1 from others.

Carbon dioxide sensitivity: New research shows the effect of CO2 on temperature is much less than earlier believed. Circa 2000, a doubling of CO2 was believed to raise temperature 3-6 degrees. By 2010 this was reduced to 3 degrees; now it is 1 degree. Models continue to use 3-5 degrees – explaining, in part, why they are so wrong. Mt. Pinatubo in 1991 spewed more greenhouse gasses than the entire human race ever has.

Failure of computer models: They have failed spectacularly. The logical explanation (Occam) is warming is not significantly anthropogenic and hence cannot be modeled.

Other scientific explanations: Climate is affected by changes in solar irradiance, sun spots, eccentricity of Earth’s orbit, obliquity (axial tilt) and position at perihelion.

Refusal to debate: If the science truly was settled, scientists and politicians would be eager to debate and to trounce their opponents. The simplest explanation (Occam) is they refuse to debate because they know they would lose – and likely be embarrassed.

Singapore: The average mean daily temperature in Singapore is 55 degrees warmer than the global average; yet, it is modern, clean, rich, high-tech, diverse and peaceful.

Fraud: Proponents of manmade warming repeatedly have engaged in fraud on a massive scale. Examples include the infamous hockey stick graph, UK deleted emails, adjustments to past temperatures and flagrant chicanery and flimflam by Al Gore.

Look for Part V in our series on November 3rd.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

Climate of Confusion – Part III Remainder of the Case for Manmade Warming

There are numerous and serious flaws with reported terrestrial temperatures. 
Climate of Confusion – Part III
Remainder of the Case for Manmade Warming
By: George Noga – October 27, 2019

        This is the third of seven parts; you can read the first two parts on our website: In this part we address the UN-IPCC, US National Climate Assessment, rising temperatures, extreme weather, rising sea level and melting icecaps and glaciers.

           UN-IPCC: Other than the putative 97% scientific consensus described in Part II, the IPCC is the most frequently cited authority for anthropogenic warming. The IPCC has made many alarming, dire and even apocalyptic pronouncements; but they also have stated that “Moderate warming is a net benefit to humanity“. The IPCC, in its most recent report, simply states: “Human interference with the climate system is occurring and climate change poses risks for human and natural systems.” This hardly rises to the level of a clarion call for drastic action to fight an existential threat.

         IPCC reports, glommed onto by the media, are summaries of thousands of pages of raw data; they are written by politicians (not scientists) and often are at variance with the underlying data. As a governmental body, the IPCC is inherently political and its scientists are compromised by lucrative grants and cowed by political correctness. A recent IPCC report described a worst case scenario in which manmade warming would lower global GDP by only 14 one-hundredths of one percent per year to 2100.

        US National Climate Assessment: The most recent assessment stated that in the worst case, the GDP of the US would be 4% greater in 2090 if there were no human effect on climate. This is a nothing burger.

         Rising Temperatures: Frenzied media reporting of high temperatures makes this the third biggest reason people believe in manmade warming. But there are numerous and serious flaws with reported temperature data; the top ten are listed below.

  1. We are in a 200-year secular warming cycle independent of human causation.
  2. Temperature has not increased in 20 years except for a few El Nino years.
  3. Human adjustments to terrestrial data explain almost all the increase because prior years were adjusted downward to make it appear warming is increasing.
  4. Many terrestrial measurements are taken in UHIs – urban heat islands.
  5. Satellite data (which are unadjusted) show no significant recent warming.
  6. Record temperatures occur in normal years; there’s always a record somewhere. Days over 100 degrees have not increased in the US.
  7. Of all twentieth century warming, 75% occurred from 1910 to 1945.
  8. Cooling was the norm from 1946 to 1975; remember the global cooling panic.
  9. Warming resumed from 1976 to 1998 and has paused from 1999 to present.
  10. Temperature increases in fits and starts with pauses and intervals of cooling. This pattern is inconsistent with manmade warming but not secular warming.

Extreme Weather, Sea Level, Icecaps, Glaciers: These are the remaining reasons people believe in manmade warming. As with temperature data however, there are troublesome flaws and contradictions; the main ones are listed below.

  1. Reinsurance leader, Munich Re, analyzed weather-related losses and found: “No statistically significant trend for weather-related losses in the last 20 years.
  2. Harvey in 2017 was the first hurricane to hit Florida in 12 years, shattering the prior record of 5 hurricane-free years that had stood for 165 years.
  3. Until very recently, the Arctic icecap had been shrinking but the Antarctic icecap, which is ten times larger, had been increasing.
  4. Greenland has been discharging ice into the sea setting off a media frenzy. Per NOAA and Danish Meteorological Society, Greenland’s ice mass is increasing and it is this ice buildup that is pushing peripheral ice into the sea.
  5. The net effect of fires in the Amazon rainforest on oxygen is zero – per National Geographic. Thanks to CO2, Earth is the greenest it ever has been.
  6. Gore’s film cited Glacier National Park (adjacent to our Montana summer home) as ground zero for melting glaciers. Some GNP glaciers are growing again. GNP officials are busy replacing signs saying “Glaciers will be gone by 2020″ with new signs that proclaim: “Glaciers may disappear in future generations“.

Even if global temperatures were rising, there was more extreme weather, more record high temperatures, rising sea levels, shrinking icecaps and receding glaciers, there is no way to determine what, if any, part is the result of anthropological causation instead of the 200-year secular warming cycle.

Evidence of manmade warming is, at best, dodgy, leading us to ask where the burden of proof should lie? It can’t be with those who believe humans are not the cause, if for no other reason, because it is impossible to prove a negative. Logically, if believers in manmade causation want 8 billion humans to make enormous sacrifices, shouldn’t they be required to prove their case with clear and convincing evidence?

Next on October 30th is Part IV of Climate of Confusion – Don’t miss it.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

Climate of Confusion – Part II Case for Manmade Warming – 97% Scientific Consensus

What are the sources for the 97% metric; is there really any scientific consensus?
Climate of Confusion – Part II
Case for Manmade Warming – 97% Scientific Consensus
By: George Noga – October 23, 2019

        This is the second of seven parts; read the first part on our website:

The most frequent, and likely strongest, argument by believers in manmade warming is the existence of a near-unanimous (97%) consensus of climate scientists. It is therefore critical to deconstruct this assertion, including its origin, accuracy and scope.

        The original and most referenced source is a 2013 study by John Cook, who runs a website promoting catastrophic climate change. Cook wrote that 97.1% of the papers he surveyed agreed the earth is warming and human emissions of greenhouse gasses are the main cause. Cook took data, much from non-scientists, from the internet using the search phrase “sea ice climate change“. Cook counted papers stating there was manmade warming but not how much and included papers he believed implied it. Only 2% of the papers explicitly stated humans were the main cause of warming.

        Cook’s work was reviewed by four professors who read the same papers; their findings, published in Science and Education magazine, concluded only 41 of all 11,994 papers (0.3%) endorsed the claim that human activity causes most warming. Many scientists Cook included protested and asked their papers not be counted.

       The National Academy of Sciences published a survey by Stanford University student William Anderegg, who used Google Scholar to survey the 200 most prolific authors on climate change. He determined 97% to 98% believed man was responsible for most warming. His survey included only 200 out of many thousands published.

         NASA’s website cites Cook and Anderegg for its 97% scientific consensus claim, thus lending its imprimatur. The media then glom on repeating the claim as coming from NASA. After that meme is repeated year after year by government, politicians, media and educators, many people (especially youth) unquestioningly adopt it as their mantra. Nonetheless, those who cite NASA really are relying on Cook and Anderegg. Note: NASA has also stated that changes in the solar orbit of earth, along with alteration to its obliquity (axial tilt), are responsible for changes in climate.


        There are a few other sources alleging scientific consensus. A two-question online survey published in Eos claimed 97% of climate scientists agree temperatures have risen and humans are a significant contributing factor. Only 79 of 3,146 respondents claimed to be climate scientists. Last, in Science Magazine Naomi Oreskes alleged 75% of abstracts in scientific journals supported the view that human activity is responsible for most warming. However, many dissenting articles were excluded and the methodology was flawed. When subsequent researchers (Peiser, Schulte, et. al.) attempted to replicate the study, they found only 33% and not 75%.

         Readers can judge the veracity of the 97% scientific consensus, which alleges only that the planet is warming and man is the main cause. That the earth is warming is uncontested and hence meaningless. Man as the main cause means only at least 51%. Thus, the putative consensus, which includes only a tiny number of climate scientists, extends only to humans causing at least 51% of warming – no other consensus.

        It is imperative to understand what is not included in any claimed consensus: there is no scientific consensus about whether or not: (1) benefits from warming outweigh the harm; (2) warming is an existential, or even dangerous, problem; (3) we should attempt mitigation; (4) more CO2 is harmful; (5) CO2 significantly affects climate; (6) combatting warming is a high priority; (7) mitigation is preferable to adaptation; and (8) we should spend trillions today for uncertain and infinitesimal benefits in the distant future. None of these things are part of any claimed consensus.

Many Scientists Reach a Different Consensus

          The Environmental Science & Policy Journal published a study reporting most climate scientists question climate data and computer models and believe climate science can’t predict future climate change. An American Meteorological Society survey reported that only 39% believe manmade global warming is dangerous.

           In a particularly damning riposte, 31,487 physicists, 9,029 with PH.Ds, signed a petition stating: “We urge the US to reject the Kyoto Protocol. The proposed limits on greenhouse gasses would harm the environment and damage the health and welfare of mankind. There is no convincing scientific evidence human release of CO2 is causing, or will, in the foreseeable future cause catastrophic heating of the Earth’s atmosphere. Moreover, there is substantial scientific evidence that increases in atmospheric CO2 produce many beneficial effects upon the plant and animal environments of Earth.”

           The 2018 Nobel Prize in Economics was awarded to William Nordhaus for his work on the economics of climate change. His work demonstrated economic policies necessary to limit warming do far greater harm to humans in reduced economic output and that it is better for governments to do absolutely nothing about climate change.

        Finally, progressive arguments for scientific consensus ring hollow. Progressives embrace science when it suits their purpose but cynically deny science when it doesn’t as in, inter alia, nuclear energy, rent control, and minimum wage, all of which enjoy a genuine scientific consensus well above 90% opposed to their policies.

Next on October 27th is Part III – other arguments for manmade warming.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

Climate of Confusion – Part I

If manmade warming poses an existential threat, why isn’t secular warming existential?
Climate of Confusion – Part I
Introduction – Anthropological vs. Secular Warming
By: George Noga – October 20, 2019

        Welcome to Climate of Confusion, our most ambitious effort ever. Our first posting in 2007 was about global warming and we have written about climate change more than any other subject. Despite harboring strong opinions, we tried hard to present an objective, fact-based, principled and logical analysis. We ask readers similarly to suspend their opinions and to consider climate change on a de novo basis as they read this series, presented in 7 consecutive parts over the next 20 days.

Part I        Introduction and Anthropological vs. Secular Warming

Part II       Case for Manmade Warming – 97% Scientific Consensus

Part III      Remainder of the Case for Manmade Warming

Part IV      Scientific and Logical Case Against Manmade Warming

Part V       Economic, Political, Religious Case Against Manmade Warming

Part VI      Global Scope, Green New Deal, Green Energy, Adaptation

Part VII     It’s Not About Climate; It Never Was

        We titled our series Climate of Confusion because many people are confused. Climate change is complex, involving science, economics, politics and religion with existential overtones. Manmade warming proponents rely heavily on the existence of a scientific consensus, UN-IPCC pronouncements and media reports. They also cite temperature data, extreme weather, shrinking ice caps and receding glaciers.

      Manmade warming opponents cite the failure of myriad climate scares to materialize and the computer model debacle. In 30 years of apocalyptic predictions, nothing dire has occurred and all scares proved exaggerated and unfounded. Opponents cite different data, which conflict with those of proponents, whose data they assert are politicized, biased and even fraudulent. They argue that spending trillions now for uncertain and infinitesimal benefits in the distant future makes no sense.

        Let’s establish a few basic truths. Yes – climate is changing, but it always is changing; climate change is a fatuous tautology intended by proponents to transform every weather event into a proof. Yes – global warming is real and has been occurring for nearly 200 years. Yes – mankind can affect climate, such as in urban heat islands. Yes – carbon dioxide is increasing and can affect temperature, although current research shows a much smaller effect than earlier believed. Yes – warming may be caused in part by man; it is impossible to prove a negative. And yes – a moderately warmer climate with more CO2 is a net benefit to life on Earth.

Anthropological or Secular Warming: What’s the Difference?

        We begin by posing a profound question we never have seen asked. Believers in manmade warming argue it is an existential threat justifying unlimited spending and regulation at the expense of all other human and environmental needs even if it entails sacrificing our lifestyle. The most ardent believers state we have only a few years remaining to avert Armageddon. In a gross misapplication of the precautionary principle, they demand we act immediately even without certainty about causation.

      This begs the obvious question: if warming is the greatest calamity in human history, does it matter whether its cause is secular, anthropological or a combination? Won’t the harm be just as existential? Shouldn’t we combat warming  just as vigorously regardless of cause? If humans can mitigate manmade warming by reducing CO2, shouldn’t we also be able to mitigate secular warming? If warming truly is a threat to life on Earth, why not focus on it instead of debating its causation?

        Yet, manmade warming proponents never argue warming per se is the problem. They oppose only manmade warming, even while acknowledging warming is, at least in part, attributable to solar activity. Could it be that it really isn’t about climate?

Look for Part II of Climate of Confusion in just a few days – on October 23. 
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

Happy Columbus Day 2019

Progressives weaponize history and use holidays to riddle Americans with guilt.
Happy Columbus Day 2019
By: George Noga – October 13, 2019

        TRIGGER WARNING: This post is beyond politically incorrect; it is radioactive! We at MLLG unabashedly wish you a happy Columbus Day – and not Indigenous Peoples Day, Aboriginals Day, Native Americans Day, First Nations Peoples Day or any other such PC claptrap. This post is the antidote to the progressives’ weaponization of history and to their mantra that western civilization (and therefore you) is hateful and genocidal and that all indigenous people were peace loving and noble.

          What happened following Columbus’s discovery of America was the same thing that occurred throughout human history whenever any aboriginal people encountered a more technologically advanced society. Through a 21st century prism this is seen as evil; but it is manifestly unfair to single out Columbus or western civilization for condemnation of a human behavior unchanged since men lived in trees. What would happen even today if we encountered a primitive people on a resource rich planet?

      Let’s address liberals’ favorite “G” word. Most native deaths resulted from infectious diseases brought from Europe, many of which first migrated from Asia; yet, no one accuses Asians of genocide. There were many one-sided beat-downs and brutal battles, but never any American or European government policy of genocide. What you learned in school and from the media was fake, weaponized PC history. Let’s look at just one  example – the progressive shibboleth that Wounded Knee was a massacre.

          The Indians suffered 197 casualties (146 killed, 51 wounded); the US Cavalry 64 casualties (25 killed, 39 wounded), for a ratio of 3 to 1. In the Iraq War, 50,000 Iraqis died to only 4,421 for the US – a ratio of 11 to 1. History is chock full of battles with far higher ratios. Henry V at Agincourt lost only 400 men to 6,000 French dead (ratio: 15 to 1). You decide: was Wounded Knee a massacre and, if so, why did the cavalry care for the 51 wounded Indians? Were Iraq or Agincourt massacres? For the record, real massacres were committed by the Apaches, Comanches and many other tribes.

        How do you believe a tiny number of  Europeans was able to conquer vast territories? Columbus allied with the Arawaks against the Caribs, who were vicious cannibals. Cortes, with only 500 conquistadors, conquered the Aztecs because he had 50,000 allied natives who feared the Aztecs’ ritual human sacrifice and enslavement. To be fair, the Europeans carried out their share of lese majeste acts, but it is dishonest to focus on those while ignoring the equal or worse atrocities of indigenous peoples.

Without Columbus There Would Be No Latinos

       Although the latte-left regards Columbus as an oppressor, he remains highly esteemed throughout Latin America. In Puerto Rico, Columbus is celebrated twice each year – on the federal holiday and again on November 19th commemorating his second voyage when he landed on that island. While his statues are being defaced or torn down in the USA, new ones are being erected in the rest of the hemisphere. In 2016 Puerto Rico erected a new Columbus statue taller that the Statue of Liberty.

         Throughout Latin America, the day Columbus landed is celebrated as Dia de la Raza, or Day of the Race. Without Columbus and the Spanish colonization of Latin America, Latinos as a people would not exist. The rich Latino culture incorporates skin colors and physical characteristics of Spanish, Africans and the indigenous people. By honoring the courage and daring of Columbus, Latin Americans celebrate their own place in a world he made possible. Without Columbus there are no Latinos.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

           Christopher Columbus is not the issue; he never was. The circus surrounding Columbus Day is a campaign by progressive Svengalis to indoctrinate your children to despise America and all of western civilization. Happy Columbus Day 2019!

Next week we begin our blockbuster multi-part series on climate change.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

California’s Condor Cuisinarts

Birds provide a gripping illustration of the hypocrisy of progressivism.
California’s Condor Cuisinarts
By: George Noga – October 6, 2019

        Progressivism is a bundle of inconsistencies, contradictions and outright lies, often taking opposite sides of the same issue when suiting its narrative. We have written on this topic before; visit our website to see our posts of December 2, 2018 entitled Liberals Believe the Strangest Things and, if you have time on your hands, see our May 8, 2014 post, Liberalism is for the Birds. Many other issues showcase liberal intellectual bankruptcy, but none finer than birds.

        Libs go gaga over birds whenever it suits their purpose. The Audubon Society estimated 2,300 birds were killed from the BP accident during which the media saturated us with photos of a pelican dripping with oil, only to later find the photo had nothing to do with BP. They hyped bird safety to try and kill offshore drilling.

        A pipeline leak, which killed a handful of ducks, became a progressive feeding frenzy to stop all new pipelines. Bird safety was a major part of the latte-left effort to halt the Keystone XL Pipeline and to oppose every fossil fuel project including fracking. Activists used the Endangered Species Act to list the prairie chicken and sage grouse as threatened species to try to stop all drilling on federal and private land.

          Now, let’s see how liberals regard birds when they don’t fit into their narrative.

         Saving the California condor was the holy grail of avian causes until condors ran afoul of an even holier progressive shibboleth – green energy. Over half the condors released in the wild have been killed, most by wind turbines; they are part of the million birds killed yearly by turbines, including bald eagles, hawks, golden eagles and owls. California wind farms have become veritable condor cuisinarts.

Liberals argue we must kill 126,000 eagles in order to save them.

        Just one wind farm (Altamont Pass near Oakland) kills 80 golden eagles each year. Progressives support the issuance of a federal taking permit to allow wind farms legally to kill 4,200 bald eagles each year for the next 30 years; that’s 126,000 eagles. In support of the taking permit, environmentalists argue climate change ultimately will kill even more eagles; therefore, we must kill eagles now in order to save them.

          In contrast, all fossil fuel activity kills about 1,000 birds a year versus 1 million for wind energy, i.e. 1,000 birds are slaughtered by wind farms for every bird killed by fossil fuels. Nonetheless, the Obama Administration filed criminal indictments against three oil companies for inadvertently killing 6 ducks. Liberals give the wind industry a get-out-of-jail-free card, while criminalizing oil companies for infinitesimally less.

          Solar energy projects also exterminate birds. The Ivanpah project, which covers five square miles (350,000 mirrors) in California’s desert, scorches birds, including peregrine falcons and great hawks, that fly overhead with its 1,000 degree heat. Solar farms also end up killing huge numbers of threatened desert tortoises. Just as with wind farms, progressives acquiesce while threatened species are savaged.

         Earlier this year in Scotland, a white-throated needletail was sighted for the first time in 22 years. Excited birdwatchers flocked to the Hebrides to catch a glimpse. While they were watching, the rare bird flew into a wind turbine and was killed. No doubt, progressives view this as a necessary avain sacrifice on the altar of wind energy. Imagine how they would have reacted if the needletail was killed in an oil spill.

         Progressivism is a lie and birds are but one way to showcase its hypocrisy.

Next up is our gloriously politically incorrect post honoring Columbus Day.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

Greatest Social Thinker of the 20th Century

“There is no such thing as a mixed economy midway between capitalism and socialism.” 
Greatest Social Thinker of the 20th Century
By: George Noga – September 29, 2019

           Today marks the 138th birthday of Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises, who died in 1973 at age 92. I have read economics for over a half century and von Mises has influenced me more than anyone.  I consider him not only the best economist, but also the greatest social thinker of the last century. I honor his birthday by presenting a small sample of his writings, very lightly edited for modernity and length.

        Sovereign consumer:The common man is the sovereign consumer whose buying, or abstention from buying, determines the quality and quantity of what is produced, and who in preceding ages were serfs, slaves and paupers. They are the customers for whose favor businesses compete and who always are right. Wealth is only acquired by serving customers in a daily plebiscite in which every penny gives the right to vote.

       Anti-capitalist mentality:Laissez-faire capitalism has raised living standards to unprecedented levels. A nation is more prosperous the less it puts obstacles in the way of free enterprise. The US is more prosperous than all other countries because its government embarked later than others on policies that obstruct business. The bias and bigotry of public opinion manifests itself by attaching the epithet ‘capitalistic’ exclusively to things abominable but never to those of which all approve.

      Socialism: “The champions of socialism call themselves progressives, but they recommend a system which is characterized by rigid observance of routine and by a resistance to every kind of improvement. They call themselves liberals, but they are intent on abolishing liberty. They call themselves democrats, but they yearn for dictatorship. They call themselves revolutionaries, but they want to make government omnipotent. They promise the blessings of the Garden of Eden but they plan to transform the world into a gigantic post office – every man a clerk in a bureau.”

       Foreign aid:Making underdeveloped nations more prosperous cannot be solved by material aid. It is a spiritual and intellectual problem. Prosperity is not simply a matter of capital investment. It is an ideological issue.”

     Von Mises Sampler:If history teaches anything, it is that private property is inextricably linked with civilization. . . . All rational action is in the first place individual action. . . . Every government intervention creates unintended consequences which lead to further interventions. . . . Every socialist is a disguised dictator. . . . Tyranny is the political corollary of socialism as representative government is the political corollary of a market economy. . . . . Worship of state is the worship of force. . . . . . Socialism is not what it pretends to be. It is not the pioneer of a better world, but the spoiler of thousands of years of civilization; it does not build, it destroys.

Following is the conclusion of von Mises’ magnum opus, Human Action

     “Economic knowledge is an essential element to human civilization; it is the foundation on which all moral, intellectual and technological achievements of the last centuries have been built. It rests with men whether they will use this rich treasure, or leave it unused. But if they disregard its teachings and warnings, they will not annul economics; they will stamp out society and the human race.”

Note: The Ludwig von Mises Institute is an outstanding source of information; it has a free daily email newsletter (available at to which you may subscribe. It is one of only a very few publications I read every day. Try it; you will be glad you did.

Next on October 6th is “Condor Cuisinart” or, liberalism is for the birds.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

Principles for Peace in the Middle East

“Peace will come when Arabs love their children more than they hate us.” (Golda Meir)
Principles for Peace in the Middle East
By: George Noga – September 22, 2019

          The Trump Administration is poised to reveal its much ballyhooed peace plan for the Middle East now that the September 17th Israeli election is history. Not to be outdone, MLLG has its very own plan for peace between Israelis and Palestinians.

          All prior wannabe peacemakers have gotten everything wrong, especially US presidents with visions of Nobels dancing in their heads. Israel has been pressured into ever more concessions despite it being incandescently obvious that the Palestinians would never take “yes” for an answer. The US and Israel wanted to make a deal (any deal) so badly that the Palestinians simply pocketed the cascade of concessions, justifiably believing they would only accrue interest and improve over time.

           Learning the lessons from the failure of all past peace efforts, MLLG identified five key principles that should form the basis of an enduring Mid East peace.

         Principle #1 – Benign neglect: Ignore Palestinian political leaders, who know they can have a reasonable peace deal anytime they want it. This means no more offers, negotiations, kow-towing, recognition, honors or state visits. Israel, with help from its friends including its Arab friends, should work to create conditions that cause the Palestinian people to choose peace. If their political leaders never opt for peace – it simply won’t matter. In the end, peace can be achieved with or without them.

         Principle #2 – Make time an ally: There is a pervasive sense that time is on the side of the Palestinians due to external pressure on Israel to make a deal. This must be reversed so that time works toward peace. Peace terms should be less favorable going forward, increasing pressure on Palestinian leaders. There must be adverse consequences to doing nothing and the status quo should be the enemy of peace.

        Principle #3 – Business and not charity or government: Peace ultimately has economic and political dimensions. Trump’s $50 billion Peace to Prosperity plan is a good start on the economic part. The Marshall Plan succeeded spectacularly because it was focused on private business – not charity or government. The Trump plan provides Palestinians access to capital and infrastructure. Importantly, it seeks to make it easy to start a business, employ workers, enforce contracts and to protect investors.

           Principle #4 – One state solution: A Palestinian state and peace deal are not what Palestinians want. There is an economic principle, revealed preference, that posits you can know what people want by the choices they make. Palestinian leaders constantly choose the status quo over sovereignty; they prefer victimhood and martyrdom over statehood. A single state with reasonable autonomy for Palestinians should be the goal.

          Principle #5 – Achieve peace unilaterally: Make it clear that the 1967 borders are not sacrosanct; annexing the Golan Heights was a good start as was moving the US embassy to Jerusalem. Continue annexing West Bank settlements while developing public facilities in the Palestinian areas. Focus on prosperity and good government.

        Implementation of these principles changes the calculus in the Middle East and puts time firmly on the side of peace. There already are signs Palestinians are beginning to see a brighter future with greater prosperity, freedom and security as an autonomous part of Israel and that they love their children more than they hate Israel.

Next on September 29th, we celebrate Ludwig von Mises’ 138th birthday.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

Happy Constitution Day 2019

Over 50% of  constitutions fail within 20 years; ours is 232 years old Tuesday. 
Happy Constitution Day 2019
By: George Noga – September 15, 2019

          How well do you know our Constitution? Read on and you may be surprised. First off, it is the oldest charter of government in force; the next oldest is Norway’s, 38 years younger. Over 50% of constitutions fail within 20 years; ours is 232 years old Tuesday. It is pure genius because it embodies a fundamentally correct understanding of human nature and includes effectual checks and balances on the use of power. It is the best document ever created to define the relationship between man and the state.

          The Declaration of Independence established the moral foundation of our nation by asserting that governments are instituted to secure the rights of the people; the Constitution’s raison d’etre is to protect those rights. Since man first walked upright, fewer than 1% of the 115 billion humans who have trod this earth lived in liberty. Here are ten things you may not know or fully appreciate about the Constitution.

1. We the people: The most extraordinary words in the Constitution are the first three, which are the only ones in supersized script. In an era of monarchs and despots, nothing was more radical than the notion that all power flowed from we the people.

2. Coining money: Article I, (section 10) authorizes states to coin money provided it is in gold and/or silver. Private banks and even individuals can issue currency; hence, cryptocurrencies and private currencies like Libra pass constitutional muster.

3. Impeaching justices: Justice Kavanaugh cannot be impeached for conduct before his confirmation. Article III (section 1) states judges hold their office during good behavior. They can be impeached only for crimes committed in office. Moreover, Congress has no constitutional oversight over the judiciary except for impeachment.

4. Counting slaves: The Constitution always refers to slaves as “persons“, not 3/5 of a person. Southerners wanted to count 100% of slaves to achieve equal representation in the House. Northern abolitionists didn’t want to count any – hence, the three-fifths compromise; it had nothing to do with the putative human worth of a slave.

5. Firing government workers: Article II (section 2) implicitly gives the president power to remove executive branch employees. This does not conflict with civil service laws, none of which challenge a president’s powers. Madison said: “If any power whatsoever is in its nature executive, it is the power of controlling those who execute the laws“. Recall that President Reagan once fired nearly all air traffic controllers.

6. Trump and treason: Article III (section 3) specifically defines treason as “only in levying War against [the United States], or in adhering to their enemies, giving them Aid and Comfort“. This constitutional definition rules out treason by Trump.

7. Electoral College: The founders established an Electoral College to: (1) reduce fraud by containing it within small jurisdictions; (2) reduce federal power over elections; and (3) discourage regionalism. They created it to achieve stable government that protects our liberty. They well understood that a popular vote can better actualize the people’s will – just like in the French Revolution. How did that work out for the French?

8. No debt default: The 14th amendment (section 4) forbids any default on federal debt. In the recent past, a president and treasury secretary (neither of whom I will name) threatened to default – disregarding their oaths to uphold the Constitution.

9. Constitutional republic: The United States is a constitutional republic. The word “democracy” appears nowhere in either the Declaration or the Constitution. We don’t pledge allegiance to the USA and to the democracy for which it stands; we don’t sing the Battle Hymn of the Democracy; and we don’t have a Statue of Democracy. Article IV (section 4) guarantees every American “a republican form of government”.

10. Unamendable: There is only one part of the Constitution that cannot be amended. Article V states: “No state without its consent, may be deprived of its equal suffrage in the senate.” This means there is no way to change the structure of the senate – despite the babbling of certain young congresswomen and other know-nothings.

      After signing the Constitution, Franklin was asked what form of government had been established; he famously quipped, “A republic, if you can keep it.” And so it remains today. The Constitution is 232 years old but it will survive only if it remains in the hearts and minds of the American people. Happy Constitution Day!

Next week, we present our first ever plan for peace in the Middle East.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –

MLLG Back-to-School Special Shattering the Myth About Teacher Pay

We debunk one of the most vacuous myths of all time, i.e. that teachers are underpaid.
MLLG Back-to-School Special
Shattering the Myth About Teacher Pay
By: George Noga – September 8, 2019

           We are fortunate to have many readers who teach or have family members who teach; hence, we derive no pleasure whatsoever from any negativity about teachers. Unionized teachers are paid primarily on longevity, not merit; therefore, truly good teachers are underpaid while poor teachers are vastly overpaid. Nonetheless, when taken in the aggregate, teachers are not underpaid for the following reasons.

1. Logic: Underpaid teachers is a canard promoted by the liberal media. No other job in America has been so consistently asserted to be either overpaid or underpaid. Such a systemic imbalance simply cannot persist for long in a market economy.

2. Apples-to-apples: Those claiming underpayment use false comparisons. They disingenuously assume STEM degrees, earned by students in top deciles of their class, are worth the same as education degrees earned by those mostly in lower deciles.

3. Not results oriented: Teacher pay is based on seniority, not merit. All teachers from best to worst are equal – as is the case in most unionized jobs. In the real world, pay is tied to results. Union rules severely penalize the best teachers and reward the worst. Moreover, what value do unions add if its members truly are vastly underpaid?

4. Private school salaries: If unionized public school teachers truly were underpaid, we should expect to see private school teachers earning more. Instead, nonreligious private school teachers earn 15% to 20% less than their public school counterparts.

5. Objective surveys: Studies document teachers are not underpaid. The BLS National Compensation Survey showed no underpayment. Forbes listed the 25 most underpaid jobs in America; teachers were not among them – same with most other surveys.

6. Post teaching pay: When teachers quit to accept non-teaching jobs, their pay does not increase; this seems to make a prima facie case that they were not underpaid.

7. Lifetime employment: Teachers have guaranteed lifetime employment, a perquisite no one in the private sector enjoys. They can’t be fired for incompetence or even if they are a danger; instead, they are put in rubber rooms with full salary and benefits.

8. Overpaid government workers: Study upon study shows public sector workers are paid about 25% more for the same work than those in the private sector. Since teachers are government workers, it stands to reason they also are overpaid by that amount.

9.  Benefits: Teachers receive lifetime health care for their entire family, uber-generous government guaranteed pensions paid early, and lots of vacation and holidays.

10. Public sector unions: Teacher pay is set by public sector unions based on highly coercive bargaining, is paid with tax dollars and is not driven by markets. As is the case with public sector unions, the pay is higher than comparable private sector jobs.

             Stories about low teacher pay are mostly promulgated by the liberal media that are allied with public unions and government. All objective data and logic point to the opposite conclusion, i.e. teachers actually are somewhat overpaid. To repeat, the pay of good teachers is dragged down by the larger cohort of not so good teachers.

         In an ideal world, all parents would receive vouchers to choose any school. Teachers’ compensation would be determined solely by markets – not tenure. Teachers would be paid according to individual merit, with truly outstanding teachers richly compensated. Poor teachers would be fired and all rubber rooms abolished.

Our next post honors Constitution Day, which is September 17th.
More Liberty Less Government  –  –