First, they concur with the believers that the Earth has been warming since the end of a Little Ice Age around 1850. The cause of this warming is the question. Believers think the warming is man-made, while the skeptics believe the warming is natural and contributions from man are minimal and certainly not potentially catastrophic a la Al Gore.
Second, skeptics argue that CO2 is not a pollutant but vital for plant life. Numerous field experiments have confirmed that higher levels of CO2 are positive for agricultural productivity. Furthermore, carbon dioxide is a very minor greenhouse gas. More than 90 percent of the warming from greenhouse gases is caused by water vapor. If you are going to change the temperature of the globe, it must involve water vapor.
Third, and most important, skeptics believe that climate models are grossly overpredicting future warming from rising concentrations of carbon dioxide. We are being told that numerical models that cannot make accurate 5- to 10-day forecasts can be simplified and run forward for 100 years with results so reliable you can impose an economic disaster on the U.S. and the world.
Life or death matter in Cliff Claven's hands:
If we suffer an anthrax attack, everyone who's been exposed will need antibiotics within three days of the attack. That's within two days of our discovery of the attack, if we're lucky. Every day of delay after that is a death sentence for roughly five or ten percent of those exposed.
How will we get antibiotics in the hands of what could be hundreds of thousands of really worried people? The Administration's answer is contained in an executive order released quietly last week: We'' get the Postal Service to do it.
Whether in Washington, Chicago or Kailua - The situation is being monitored.
It speaks eloquently to the Obama administration's priorities that it took the White House four days to acknowledge the "catastrophic breach of security" that led to the failed bombing of a US-bound jet on Christmas Day - but a scant four hours to accuse Dick Cheney of coddling terrorists.