Author Archives: Steven Hayward

Global Warming More Moderate Than Worst-Case Models

Featured image That’s the headline from a press release earlier this week from Duke University’s highly regarded Nicholas School of the Environment. Here’s the lede: DURHAM, N.C. – A new study based on 1,000 years of temperature records suggests global warming is not progressing as fast as it would under 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 »

Gallipoli, 100 Years On

Featured image Today marks the 100th anniversary of the beginning of the Gallipoli campaign—ANZAC Day in Australia and New Zealand, since they provided the bulk of the troops for this ill-fated venture that became known as “Churchill’s Folly.”  Anyone who has seen the early Mel Gibson film, Gallipoli, will know that the operation ended up with the same kind of trench warfare and appalling slaughter that characterized the Western Front.  The British »

The Week in Pictures: Hillarypalooza, The Sequel

Featured image Look, if the old Chevy Chase National Lampoon Vacation films can be rebooted, why can’t we continue to give the boot and reboot to Hillary, who is the gift that keeps on giving (though like the Vacation sequels, less and less satisfying every time)? Maybe her fundraising strategy should be called “Cash for Clunkers”? And finally. . . »

Shakespeare: The Ultimate Dead White Male?

Featured image In my first public lecture at the University of Colorado at Boulder in 2013, perhaps no passage excited a more furious response from some members of the audience than this: It turns out that at a shockingly high number of universities—though not this one—it is possible to take a degree in English without having to take a single course on Shakespeare, which strikes me as absurd as taking a course »

Reformicons: Civil War on the Right?

Featured image There’s the old story about the Michigan state senator who said one day on the floor of the legislature, “Some of my friends are for this bill, and some of my friends are against this bill, and I’m going to stick with my friends!” That’s how I feel about the back-and-forth playing out in the latest Claremont Review of Books over the subject of “Reform Conservatives,” aka, “Reformicons.” The estimable »

Another Establishment Voice Slams Obama

Featured image Michael Mandelbaum of Johns Hopkins University is a certified member of the foreign policy establishment, and therefore no partisan conservative. He writes lucidly in the latest issue of The American Interest about the fundamental differences between arms control with the Soviet Union during the Cold War and with Iran today. Today’s arms talks with Iran are more significant than our talks with the Soviets, which is why Mandelbaum is dismayed with »

Clinton Cash—The Russia Connection

Featured image The New York Times reports tomorrow on multi-million dollar donations from a Canadian company anxious to sell American uranium mines to the Russians, which required State Department approval while Hillary was secretary of state: [T]he sale gave the Russians control of one-fifth of all uranium production capacity in the United States. Since uranium is considered a strategic asset, with implications for national security, the deal had to be approved by »

Civil War on the Left: Decline of the West?

Featured image I have to confess to having a soft spot for Cornel West, the radical chair of black studies at Princeton (formerly of Harvard, before Larry Summers kicked him out). West team-teaches a great books course with conservative Robert P. George at Princeton, and goes around doing joint events with George at other campuses, rather than demanding that Robbie shut up or something like the rest of the trigger(warning)-happy left. He »

From the Oldies File: George Carlin on Earth Day

Featured image This old George Carlin (RIP) routine about environmentalism has been around a while, but since it’s Earth Day, time for an encore. One thing I noticed upon watching again recently is that it seems you can make out a few disagreeable people in the audience heckling him for transgressing the Party Line: »

Happy Earth Day, Hypocrisy Edition

Featured image Is it Earth Day again? Why yes, yes it is. (It’s also Lenin’s birthday. I’m sure it’s just a coincidence.) I’ll be having a Green Weenie roast on my charcoal grill.  Now, where to start? How about with Obama jetting off today to the Everglades in Florida (estimated jet fuel burned: 9,000 gallons) to use that famous overgrown swamp as a backdrop to warn us of the peril of climate »

The Ugly Side of the Gay Marriage Campaign

Featured image It is extraordinary how having the exact same view about marriage that President Obama and Hillary Clinton professed until very recently now gets you cast into outer darkness as a vile bigot and reprehensible human being. What explains this? I have my own theory, but take note of Damon Linker, a long-time gay marriage supporter, writing in The Week about the “ugliness” (Linker’s term) of the demonization of gay marriage »

A Spindle-Full of Weird

Featured image Scott clears his spindle from time to time, and I have my own spindle of weird but oddly compelling news.  Like video of Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott downing a beer in seven seconds at a victory celebration of an Aussie soccer football team. Good on ‘ya, mate!  I knew there was a reason I liked Abbott. Speaking of consumption, any traveler along Interstate 40 or the old Route 66 »

Deep Behind Enemy Lines Again

Featured image While John was off visiting his home town in South Dakota, an inter-dimensional crossrip in the space-time continuum found me today, April 20th—better known to potheads as 420—back in Boulder: However, there was no second-hand smoke of any kind (no 420 on 4/20!), because the university has cracked down on the large smoke-ins of previous years, with the simple expedient of police tape—plus a whole lot of police on hand »

Climate Science: Only True Believers Need Apply?

Featured image Almost 10 years ago one of the major figures in the “mainstream” climate science world confided off the record to me that the biggest problem at his prestige graduate department of physics was convincing first-rate students to take up climate science as their specialty field.  The best students were avoiding the subject precisely because it had become too politicized and too conformist—a career dead end.  And so the field is »

Give Obama the Hook

Featured image I made the horrid mistake of channel-surfing to C-SPAN Senate coverage a couple days ago just in time to catch Sen. Babs “Don’t-Call-Me-Ma’am” Boxer bloviating about some public letter by “very smart people” backing up Obama’s Iran negotiations. Just then the batteries on my remote conked out, and I had to get up and walk over to the TV to change the channel, just like our great grandparents had to »

The Week in Pictures: Hillarypalooza Edition

Featured image Has there ever been a more bizarre and more feckless presidential campaign launch than Hillary 2016? The nation might—might—be “Ready for Hillary,” but Hillary doesn’t look ready for us. Democratic elders must be privately in a state of panic: at least when Howard Dean melted down (or Ed Muskie in 1972—recall that he had the nomination locked up too, according to all the experts), there was a bench of other »

A Note on Coal

Featured image A commenter on the India story posted up this morning wonders why anyone should be “pro-coal,” because “By any standard, coal is horrible for the environment. New Delhi’s air is the most polluted in the WORLD. More coal won’t help. Coal releases mercury in the environment, creates acid rain, etc. Climate change aside, coal is awful and should not be celebrated…” First, it is not about being “pro-coal” or any »