In this era of increased harassment and persecution of people on the basis of political viewpoints and…
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First Amendment Rights: Good News from the IRS on Donor Privacy

In this era of increased harassment and persecution of people on the basis of political viewpoints and First Amendment expression, there’s actually good news to report.

In fact, that positive development comes from none other than the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), which few people typically consider a font of good news.

Specifically, the IRS just announced a proposed rule to stop requiring nonprofit organizations to file what’s known as a Form 990 Schedule B, which exposes sensitive donor information not only to the federal government and potential rogues like former IRS official Lois Lerner, but also people who seek to access and use that information to target people on the basis of political belief.

As we at CFIF have long asserted, this welcome move will help protect the…[more]

September 12, 2019 • 11:07 am

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Two New “Inconvenient Truths” for Climate Alarmists Print
By Timothy H. Lee
Thursday, August 22 2019
The climate is changing, as it always has and always will. What people question is the way in which the climate-industrial complex conveniently sounds the alarm when the news fits their agenda, but disappears in moments like this.

This week delivered two new inconvenient truths for climate alarmists, to employ Al Gore’s own smug, profiteering terminology.  

The first, as reported by USA Today, is that we’re experiencing a hurricane hiatus unlike anything we’ve witnessed in almost four decades: 

If you think it’s been an unusually quiet hurricane season, you’re right.  The last time we’ve gone from July 15 through August 19 with no named storms in the Atlantic was 1982, according to Colorado State University meteorologist Phil Klotzbach…  [T]he latest hurricane forecast released Monday shows the rest of August appears to favor a quiet pattern for tropical storm and hurricane development in the Atlantic Basin, according to Colorado State. 

So why is that notable? 

Because every time a hurricane hits, or we experience a moment of higher hurricane frequency, we’re lectured again about how it reflects anthropogenic (man-caused) global warming. 

Just two years ago, for instance, Scientific American asked, “Was the Extreme 2017 Hurricane Season Driven by Climate Change?” 

Predictably, it answered, “Global warming already appears to be making hurricanes more intense.”  It continued, “Summer and fall 2017 saw an unusual string of record-breaking hurricanes pummel the U.S. Gulf Coast, eastern seaboard, Puerto Rico and the Caribbean.” 

And before that, we were infamously warned in the wake of Hurricane Katrina in 2005 that we should expect more frequent hurricanes of similar magnitude because of global warming. 

Instead, we proceeded to experience the longest stretch in recorded history without a major-category hurricane hitting the United States. 

That contravened everything that Al Gore and other scolds told us, of course.  In typical fashion, Al Gore cast it in self-assured and moralistic terms during a speech in San Francisco on September 9, 2005: 

Now, the scientific community is warning us that the average hurricane will continue to get stronger because of global warming…  The waters in the Gulf have been unusually warm.  The oceans generally have been getting warmer.  And the pattern is exactly consistent with what scientists have predicted for twenty years.  Two thousand scientists, in a hundred countries, engaged in the most elaborate, well-organized scientific collaboration in the history of humankind, have produce long-since a consensus that we will face a string of terrible catastrophes unless we at to prepare ourselves and deal with the underlying causes of global warming… 

Ladies and gentlemen, the warnings about global warming have been extremely clear for a long time.  We are facing a global climate crisis.  It is deepening.  We are entering a period of consequences…  The scientists are telling us that what the science tells them is that this – unless we act quickly and dramatically, that is – in Churchill’s phrase, is only the first sip of a bitter cup which will be proffered to us year-by-year until there is a supreme recovery of moral health. 

So much for that “scientific consensus.”  It’s all become a thirty-year “Boy Who Cried Wolf” saga. 

George Will once sardonically recalled an Oxford gathering at which Isaac Deutscher posited, “Proof of Trotsky’s farsightedness is that none of his predictions have come true yet.”  Well, climate alarmists are approaching a similar state.  All that’s left is for them to assure us that the absence of hurricanes only offers further proof of anthropogenic global warming. 

In a second inconvenient truth this week, The Wall Street Journal reported that California is experiencing an unusually slow wildfire season: 

California is off to one of its slowest wildfire seasons in years, giving firefighters and fire-prone communities a much-needed break after last year’s huge and destructive infernos.  As of August 18, just 24,579 wildland acres have burned so far this year, compared with 621,784 at the same time last year, according to the most recent statistics by the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection, or Cal Fire.  Emergency officials attribute the quieter year, in part, to a wet, cool spring that has tamped down wildfire activity across much of the West. 

One year ago, in August 2018, ABC News ran a very different headline:  “Undeniable Link to Climate Change in California’s Fire Season, Expert Says”: 

Experts have said that rising temperatures linked to climate change are making the fires larger, more dangerous and more expensive to fight.  After several record-breaking wildfires in California this year, Gov. Jerry Brown said the severe fires were the “new normal” for the state, and said that years of drought and rising temperatures from climate change contributed to the worsening fire season. 

That’s some “new normal,” Governor Moonbeam – not even lasting one year. 

Climate alarmists love to mislabel climate realists as climate change “deniers.”  But that’s inaccurate.  The climate is changing, as it always has and always will. 

What people question is the way in which the climate-industrial complex conveniently sounds the alarm when the news fits their agenda, but disappears in moments like this. 

That’s why alarmists have only themselves and their mendacity to blame for the pushback. 

Question of the Week   
On September 11, 2001, the United States was attacked by terrorists using which one of the following?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"There's an old joke often expressed well into banquets and conferences, where a speaker says, 'We're at the point where everything that needs to be said has been said, but not everyone has said it.' We're already at that point with the Democratic primary debates. Tonight was a three-hour ordeal, and candidates largely repeated the arguments they made in the previous two debates. There's not much…[more]
 
 
—Jim Geraghty, National Review
— Jim Geraghty, National Review
 
Liberty Poll   

Is the desire to withdraw American troops from Afghanistan in conflict with the lessons of September 11, 2001?