Climate Change A US Political Issue More Than 200 Years Ago

Here’s a must read.

German blogsite Ökowatch here brings our attention to a report appearing in the Smithsonian: America’s First Great Global Warming Debate.

Even Thomas Jefferson was worried about man-made climate change. The Smithsonian writes:

The date was 1799, not 1999—and the opposing voices in America’s first great debate about the link between human activity and rising temperature readings were not Al Gore and George W. Bush, but Thomas Jefferson and Noah Webster.”

Thomas Jefferson, we find out, was a  warmist (who probably had not yet figured out how to make tons of money like Al Gore has done). According to the Smithsonian, Jefferson wrote:

Snows are less frequent and less deep….The elderly inform me the earth used to be covered with snow about three months in every year. The rivers, which then seldom failed to freeze over in the course of the winter, scarcely ever do so now.”

The cause of the climate change back then was man, though not from CO2 emissions, but through deforestation (ironically, today’s efforts to regulate climate are resulting in accelerated deforestation).

Author Samuel Williams claimed  climate change back then was “so rapid and constant.” Unfortunately Williams’ observations are not reflected by Mann’s Hockey Stick chart, which indicates very little climate change back then.

Like today, there were skeptics too, with Noah Webster being among the most vocal  in claiming that the conclusions were mainly based on anecdotes. The Smithsonian writes that Webster eventually prevailed, and quotes Kenneth Thompson, a modern environmental scientist from the University of California at Davis, who praises Websters saying:

,,, ‘the force and erudition’ of Webster’s arguments and labels his contribution to climatology ‘a tour de force.’

The same can be said about today’s skeptics.

8 responses to “Climate Change A US Political Issue More Than 200 Years Ago”

  1. Bernd Felsche

    So we can blame this epidemic of climate scares on Daniel Fahrenheit. 😉

    Measure what is important. Don’t make important what you can measure.

  2. DirkH

    The (incomplete) history of warming and cooling scares, starting at 1895. It looks like mankind ALWAYS extrapolates linearly from short term trends.

  3. DirkH

    The warmists have invented a new scare: Melting arctic ice sets free old industry pollutants stored within.

    Of course, this is ridiculous; most of the melting ice is young ice; and the article doesn’t mention dosage. With todays spectroscopes you can detect single molecules of anything… but it’s a new inventive twist by our rent-seeking scientists.

    1. Edward


  4. DirkH

    This year, a lot of German home owners are forced to isolate their buildings. Often, this is done by mounting polystyrol panels on the outside. Problem is, a green algae called Fritschiella loves to settle on poystyrol (as anyone who has seen a pond with some old polystyrol swimming in it can attest).

    You would think that our political overlords have thought of a solution, but no, people stand helplessly in front of their greening buildings…

    Makes you wanna go “doh”! Getting more green than you wanted… and all organic!

    1. KuhnKat


    2. Joe

      Think for a moment how inane it is to force property owners (who pay for the fuel that heats that property) to insulate. Were it cost effective for them, they would do this on their own.

  5. Joe

    And to think that if Jefferson had only traded in his SUV, none of that would have happened.

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