Restraint and the tornado tragedy

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Some politicians and government officials can’t let a crisis go to waste. In the matter of the tornadoes that devastated parts of Arkansas, Illinois, Kentucky, Tennessee and Missouri, restraint was called for, but went unanswered.

Asked about the cause of such devastation, President Biden said, “We all know everything is more intense when the climate is warming.” He later walked back the comment to a “wait and see” position. Federal Emergency Management Agency Administrator Deanne Criswell also blamed climate change, saying such disasters will be the “new normal” from now on.

Neither the president, nor Criswell are meteorologists, but Chris Martzis. On Climatedepot.com, he writes that there has been “no overall trend in U.S. tornado activity since 1954.” He cites the National Weather Service’s (NWS) EF scale, which is used to measure the power of storms. That scale shows tornado intensity is down 50 percent in nearly seven decades. This tornado was a rare event.

Another meteorologist, Paul Dorian, is quoted on climatedepot.com: “Tropical cyclone activity across the Northern Hemisphere has been below-normal in 2021 in much the same way as it was last year. Specifically, while the Atlantic Basin featured above-normal tropical activity in this year and last, the Pacific Ocean experienced below-normal conditions in both years leading the way to below-normal levels across the hemisphere as a whole. In terms of tornadoes, it has been another below-normal season in the US with no EF-5’s recorded.”

Politics, not unbiased science, appears to be behind much of the faith in “climate change.” As with COVID-19, “experts” have regularly contradicted themselves and others when offering their conclusions and advice.

A 1974 story in the Lincoln (Nebraska) Journal Star blamed severe weather on “global cooling”: “Droughts, floods, blizzards, tornadoes, typhoons, and hurricanes have plagued much of the nation and the world in recent years. Most people considered these weather conditions to be abnormal and temporary, but instead, climatologists now believe the first half of the 20th century was blessed with unusually mild weather and that the global climate has begun returning to a harsher -- but more normal -- state. For the long run, there is mounting evidence of a worldwide cooling trend.”

Climate analyst Paul Homewood notes: “Provisional data from the NWS indicates that the tornadoes which hit Mayfield, Kentucky and Edwardsville, Illinois were both EF-3s. Although most tornadoes occur in spring and early summer, strong tornadoes are not unheard of in winter. Indeed, on average since 1950 there have been five tornadoes every winter of EF3 and greater strength. And the official data shows that these winter storms are not becoming more frequent.”

The response to those earlier “sky is falling” assertions included demands to alter our way of life if the planet was to be saved. More recently we have had ludicrous predictions by nationally known figures (most of them associated with growing government and more state control over our lives) that the planet will cease to exist if we don’t follow the advice of politicians and “experts” about climate change.

(C) 2021 Tribune Content Agency

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