COULD, MIGHT, MAY.
“Two people out of three MAY get cancer by 2060,” says one report. “Deaths on Irish roads COULD rise by as much as 150%,” says another. The Earth MIGHT not be able to sustain life in one hundred years,” is yet another prediction.
What these three headlines have in common is computer guesswork. Let me put it this way. Could modeling and simulation software tell you the correct numbers in tonight’s Lotto draw? Like hell they could. What it could do though is offer up seven numbers adding that these MAY/MIGHT/COULD be tonight’s winning set. But isn’t that what you already do each time yourself?
Take the weather as another example. The Met experts often get tomorrow wrong, never mind next week. In this country they’d be safe enough predicting rain sometime during next week but otherwise it’s guesswork. The weather-woman last night went through the usual waffle about today and tomorrow and then she waved at a blue blob on the map behind her, somewhere halfway between America and here. The blue blob represented a shed-load of rain and the best she could say was if it didn’t change course it might land here sometime next Thursday. But if it just fucked off and pissed on France instead we might have a nice weekend coming.
So it is my belief that you can simulate all you like with as many computers as you wish and you still won’t have a snowball’s chance in hell or being accurate. The future is the great unknown whether that is the near future or further away. Will Donald Trump still be in the White House this time next year, next month or even next week? What prompts me this morning to consider this is the headline, “Death toll from extreme weather in Europe ‘could rise by factor of 50 by 2100”
You can read that mush yourself if you want to be shocked and terrified but what the geniuses behind this new study published in the journal The Lancet Planetary Health are really saying is, if you built your house on a flood plain then from time to time you’ll get flooded. That’s why it’s called a flood plain after all. We have always had ‘extreme weather events.’Back in 1963 Ireland had its coldest snowiest winter ever. I was seven and my memory is of having no school for ages. I remember also growing up in Cork we had whole weeks of non-stop rain and floods in the City Centre were an annual occurrence at least once. There were a few heat waves also over the years, icy roads featured often enough and high winds that lifted slates off the roofs were not uncommon.
The difference then was you just looked at the weather, cursed a bit and got on with life. Even then it could get better, might get finer, may get warmer and so on. We didn’t have computers to ‘simulate’ us. My Dad was an avid gardener who was oft to comment that his precious plants needed water, (rain), and the sun made them grow. Most vegetables on the Mallon table came from the back garden as a result.
While we in Cork were grumbling about rain in July 1974 the Spanish were cooking themselves in forty degree sweltering heat. Side columns in our newspapers referred to deaths in the heat wave. I remember torrential flooding in Italy in the seventies, incredibly deep snow reported in Germany and everything in between everywhere else. What was different in those days is that we didn’t make a song and dance of it. When it was sunny you took your shirt off and got burnt and when it was rainy you put your coat on and got drenched. You see, we knew the weather was always changing. We didn’t need anybody with a study spewed out of a computer to tell us.
But the difference today is that spewing these kind of studies out of computers is a big money business. The green taxes extorted from all of us are paying these study guys to make their particular brand of shit as scary as they can make it. What the article doesn’t say is just how much money the lead author, Dr Giovanni Forzieri, of the European Commission Joint Research Centre in Italy pocketed for his predictions. Indeed it doesn’t tell whether Giovanni has a long term vested interest in the CO2 racket in general. His dire predictions are for 2100 and my computer predicts that Giovanni won’t be around to answer to anyone when his predictions fail to materialize.
A ‘prediction is defined as a ‘forecast’ and the weather men are in the business of making weather forecasts, are they not. There is no guarantee from them that any of it is right and you have no come back if you pack for sun and it rains instead. So if Giovanni is in it for the money and if his computer simulations are as reliable as he claims, then why doesn’t he have a shot at the Lotto?
Yup! It’s all just modern day witchcraft and it’s costing us a bomb to have it.