Thursday, November 8, 2007

Taranto Channels Aristotle

If my memory of the trivium; grammer, logic and rhetoric, can come back to me as I type, I won't be skewered by James Taranto for the logical fallacies that he takes Hillary Clinton to task for.

Here's part of Tuesday's Best of the Web Today:

Do They Believe the Hype?
This column is highly skeptical of global warmism, and we wonder if those who claim to believe in it really do. An example of why is this BusinessWeek story titled "Clinton Sees Opportunity in Climate Woes." That's Hillary Clinton, of course:

Global warming hits particularly hard at the poor, she said.

"One in four low-income families have already missed a mortgage or rent payment because of rising energy costs," Clinton said.

This is a complete non sequitur. Rising energy costs are supposed to be a solution to global warming, not a problem caused by it. What's more, if temperatures rise in winter, that ought to reduce the amount of money low-income families would have to spend heating their homes. Mrs. Clinton seems to be invoking "global warming" here just as a politically correct slogan, devoid of meaning.

Higher oil prices, by the way, don't necessarily mean less carbon dioxide emissions. Bloomberg reminds us that there are other fuels:

Now that the price of coal is at a historic low relative to oil, there's no stopping consumers and producers alike from embracing Al Gore's nightmare.

A ton of U.S. coal is so cheap at about $47 that European utilities will pay $50 to ship it across the Atlantic, according to Galbraith's Ltd., a 263-year-old London shipbroker. While oil and coal cost the same as recently as 1998, West Texas Intermediate crude is five times more expensive after climbing to a record $96.24 on Nov. 1....

Either our schools have failed: a Poli. Sci. honors graduate of Wellesley, Yale J.D. and law school professor uses a non-sequitur to make a fallacious argumentum ad populum.
Or a politician is speaking and the "...their lips are moving" observation is operative.
And I kinda like Hillary.