Opinion — Smoke, mirrors and climate change

Published 5:06 pm Friday, December 3, 2021

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For those of us who came up in the age of Johnny Carson, one of his frequent guests talked about the changing temperature of our Earth. Then, however, the issue was a cooling climate. From the 1950s until the mid-70s, the fear was that we were approaching a new ice age in a thousand years. In 1974, Time magazine ran an article titled “Another Ice Age?” An April 28 1975, article in Newsweek magazine was titled “The Cooling World.” It pointed to “ominous signs that the Earth’s weather patterns have begun to change” and pointed to “a drop of half a degree in average ground temperatures in the Northern Hemisphere between 1945 and 1968.”

The timing of those respected news magazines occurred right when the three-decade cooling period was ending. On Oct. 23 2006, Newsweek issued a correction, over 31 years after the original article, stating that it had been “so spectacularly wrong about the near-term future.”

Since the mid-1970s, there is no question that the earth has been warming. In the early 2000s, it was called “global warming.” Several studies appeared in the early 2000s that were said to show how drastic the situation was. Many, such as former Vice President Al Gore, ran around much like Chicken Little, declaring that life as we know it is doomed. Many PHDs (not specialists on the issue) signed letters attesting to the need for immediate action. If anyone questioned the conclusions of these studies, the immediate response was “it is proven science.” For them the debate was over.

To cover themselves, however, they morphed the phrase “global warming” to “climate change.” The fact is that there are a number of scientific experts in this field that understand that the conclusions arrived at by the one or two studies need to be considered more carefully. Yet the ball had started rolling, demanding action. Currently, there are too many politicians who have staked their careers on fighting climate change. Likewise, there are too many fortunes to be made by requiring our world to change.


Some politicians want to appear to be accomplishing things that the public wants or thinks they want. Often, when those politicians do not have the ability or real desire to accomplish their goal, it is called using “smoke and mirrors” to fool the public.

A perfect example has been the effort of President Biden and Governor Northam and many of his allies in the Virginia General Assembly. They want the world to believe that they have the ability to end global warming. They are blaming it on the use of fossil fuels to heat our homes and to run our factories, ignoring all other factors. The professors that are molding the minds of our next generation are aiding and abetting this effort by reinforcing this way of thinking as fact rather than theory.


While the burning of fossil fuels may have an impact on our environment by reducing carbon dioxide, it may not be the only factor or the main factor. Considering America only, think about how much cleaner our air is today compared to the fifties and sixties. The amount of pollution has dropped drastically in the last two generations.

Their current effort is to end the use of all fossil fuels. This is unattainable with our current technology. Solar and wind are currently the “green” energy that is expected to provide most of our power needs. Currently, about 10% of the world’s power needs are derived from these sources. To change that percentage will require many, many of our agriculture and woodlands to be turned into solar farms. Destroying the foliage needed to convert carbon dioxide into oxygen.

Meanwhile, our international competition, China, is winking and assuring us that in a dozen years they will stop adding to the world’s climate warming pollution. For now, however, they are continuing to build several coal-fired plants annually.

It might be a good time to consider the issue more seriously. How many industries and jobs will we destroy before we wake up? We are on the same globe; how will our actions change anything if our competitors do not? Do your own research. You might be surprised. Smoke and mirrors only work when you let them. Watch a video on green energy at this link: https://www.prageru.com/video/whats-wrong-with-wind-and-solar.

Frank Ruff Jr. represents Charlotte in the state Senate. His email address is Sen.Ruff@verizon.net.