Climate change hoaxes (2)

Date:        7 Oct 16
By:             Frank Gue, B.Sc., MBA, P.Eng.,
2252 Joyce St., Burlington, ON Canada L7R 2B5
For:           TVO and whom it may concern
Re:            Climate change – Steve Paikin today

Preamble: Facts are facts and are not arguable. Here are some facts:

0. The climate is changing because the climate is always changing.

1. CO2 is not a pollutant but is a vital plant nutrient upon which all life, including ours, depends directly or indirectly. Some scientists believe we are suffering a shortage of CO2.

2. There is no scientifically rigorous proof that man-made CO2 is contributing to climate change.

3. Several important geologic influences, such as the huge crustal Atlantic Rift that extends from Antarctica to Greenland, that is spewing trillions of litres of scalding water into the ocean every day, have not been evaluated for their contribution to ocean warming and acidification. Likewise vulcanism.

4. Many gases and particulates for which humans are responsible should and could be controlled rather than concentrating on CO2, which anyway would come along for the ride. Examples: dioxins, soot.

5. Water vapor (clouds) is a gas that is from five to 20 times as powerful a GHG as CO2, we are not responsible for it, and furthermore we do not yet know how to analyze and quantify its albedo. We do not, for instance, even know the algebraic sign of its albedo (whether it adds to or subtracts from warming.)

6. The often-cited target of 2 deg. C temperature rise came as a hunch out of one man’s head; there is no rigorously scientific cause-effect chain that leads to it, much less a mathematical formula leading to the precise mathematical result of 2 deg. C.

6. Humans could make a very large impact on the environment by concentrating on the obvious and provable rather than the indefinite and arguable. Example: Withdrawal of vast quantities of ground water to bottle threatens our aquifers; and the decomposing debris from the trillions of plastic bottles is threatening wild life worldwide.

I could go on and on. But I will stop and summarize by saying that we have our supposedly scientific environmental/climate change priorities hopelessly confused and unsupported scientifically. We suffer from the 180 degree syndrome (180DS), which states that sound principles are often reversed and applied backwards disastrously.

Frank Gue

Professional Engineer

Low grade China – Letters, Sept 3

Date:       12 Sept 16

By:          Frank Gue, B.Sc., MBA, P.Eng.

2252 Joyce St, Burlington, ON Canada L7R 2B5

905 634 9538

For:         Editors, The Economist, London, U K

Re:          Low grade China – Letters, Sept 3

Dear Editors:

Writer Flyvbjerg (Letters, Sept 3) has put his finger squarely on the fragility and unreliability of some of the numbers economists and politicians use routinely to develop such things as fiscal and monetary policy.

Example:  Qatar, per Wiki, has a per-capita GDP of $102,900.  Now, by no stretch of any imagination has anyone in Qatar “produced” $102,900 per year of anything; most of it is crude oil revenue.  The problem: a “product” is, per Merriam Webster, something that is made or grown to be sold or used.  Thus crude oil is  not a “product”, but a resource.  Only the costs of finding, recovering and processing it are authentic components of a “product”.

This line of thought suggests some logical conclusions:

1.  The above defined “cost” of crude oil should doubtless include a charge for the depreciation of this diminishing capital resource and,

2.  We should include in GDP not only Mr Flyvbjerg’s “decent assets that contribute positively to the economy” but also recognize that some expenditures destroy, rather than create, economic value.  Thus GDP should, quite arguably, be the net of Value Added (VA), minus Value Neutral (VN), and also minus Value Destroying (VD) elements.  Eg: High Frequency Trading (HFT), is clearly a VD element that should subtract from any declared GDP, and,

3.  Many, perhaps most, financial transactions, representing financialization (finance financing finance rather than finance financing production which was its original, proper function), should be seen as VN or VD, therefore also netted out of GDP.  We would thereby rid ourselves of the fiction that financial transactions are productive; because over 95% of them are not.*

– end –

*  Foroohhar, Rana, Makers and takers, Crown Business, NY, NY, 2016, and Stewart, Walter, Bank heist, Harper Collins, Toronto, ON, 1997, and other similar books; and also the daily media.

Brexit: not just a story

Date:     15 July 16

By:         Frank Gue, B.Sc., MBA, P.Eng.,

2252 Joyce St., Burlington, ON Canada  L78R 2B5    905 634 9538

For:       Editor, The Spec, Hamilton

Re:        Brexit: not just a story …. today’s Spec

Dear Editor;

Columnist Hunter identifies Britain’s deeply rooted island psche as being the source of her global reach and strength.  Perhaps.  But we might well consider an even more vital wellspring for these powers.

In a closed-door meeting of a certain think tank, we discussed the ground-breaking book by Hernando De Soto, Why capitalism succeeds in the West.  I asked the speaker, a prominent and respected politician who is neither Jewish nor a professing Christian, to put his finger, if he could, on one single socio-economic factor without which that success would not have been possible.  Without a moment’s hesitation he responded, “The Judaeo-Christian ethic.”

With due respect to other beliefs, we must think carefully about the politician’s instant and unqualified response.

The British globalized before globalization.  From Hudson’s Bay to Tasmania, Britain established missions, hospitals, and schools that were needed for the spiritual and material good of far-flung people.  Her traders established a network of land and sea routes that enabled free trade before there was free trade.

Britain covered the globe with English, a  flexible, graceful, cultured language that welcomes contributions from other languages, Sanskrit to Swahili.  It is linguistic free trade, in which is written the Magna Carta, one of the mightiest documents ever to issue from the minds of men.

Of course, as Ms. Hunter says, Britain at times also brought brutality, theft, exploitation and slavery.  But  in every society there are evil men in all professions from shoemaking to the priesthood; and when based on Judaeo-Christian ethics, that society can ultimately get rid of them as we did slavery (yes, Canada had slavery).  Read the papers: you will find that societies not based on Judaeo-Christian ethics or its equal are drowning in – guess-what? – brutality, theft, exploitation and slavery.

As a child, attending a church school, I started my day with the principal leading us in ten minutes of Bible reading and prayer.  He stood under a vast world map that stretched from corner to corner on the wall above his head: it was, of course, extravagantly pink everywhere, to illustrate the truth of its caption; “The sun never sets on the British Empire.”  I can feel still today the security, warmth, and comfort that crept in as I understood that I and my country were parts of such an Empire.  Help, Britain, help!  Where are you when we need you?


Free speech

Date:          26 June, 16
By:              Frank Gue,
                   B.Sc. (Engineering, U of A, ’51), MBA, P.Eng.
For:             Dr. David Turpin, President,
                   University of Alberta,
                   116th St. & 85 Ave.
                   Edmonton, AB T6G 2R3
Re:             Free speech
Dear Dr. Turpin:
On a certain website, I find a long article headlined:
Student group takes University of Alberta to court over $17,500 “security fee” demanded in order to express views on campus 
If this article is accurate, I find it deeply disturbing.  As reported, it is a direct attack on free speech.
You may know that the world-renowned economist Hernando de Soto, in a book The mystery of capitalism, identifies free speech and private property rights as the two foundation stones of successful democracies.  The case for this is difficult to dispute.
I have today mailed a check for $1,000 to the organization opposing in court the University and its Students Union in this unpleasantly surprising and profoundly disappointing action.
Other related actions will be considered as events unfold in the immediate future, as in my discussions with Mr. Morrel Wax, Regional Director, Office of Individual Giving of the UofA, who visited me again last Monday.
Yours truly,
Frank Gue.

IT System design

Date:       24 June 16
By:           Frank Gue, B.Sc. MBA, P.Eng, Professional Engineer
                Burlington, ON, Canada L7R 2B5
For:          Editors, The Economist, London U (I hope) K
Re:           “Risks and rewards”, June 18, page 29

Dear Editors

Once in the dear dead days beyond recall, system developers demonstrated a sense of responsibility to their users by providing manuals explaining how to use their systems.  In one of the best of these manuals, on System Design. on Page 1, Chapter 1, the first instruction was, “Turn off the computer”.
This wise instruction highlighted the existence of two vastly different processes, the first of which is ignored routinely by most, if not all, IT writings since then, including your article, viz: system design and programming.
Your article repeatedly refers to “programming” and “coders”.  The ancient manual I refer to dealt first with the design of the system, an essential preliminary usually mistaken for, confused with, and left half-undone in the process of, coding and programming.  In its purest form, system design needs boolean logic etc. but needs no coding knowledge whatever.
As a result users are left  having to cope with systems which, clearly, were not thought out nor tested to see whether they actually did what they were supposed to do.   A classic example was a certain month-end statement that demonstrated that:
*  the programmer hadn’t the vaguest idea of double entry bookkeeping, e.g. it showed a sum at the bottom of a column containing no entries;
*  it required the user to do a hand-computation, using what he hoped and assumed were the correct numbers from the statement, to get the answer he needed (it didn’t);
*  the user could not learn nor compute from the computer-produced figures what his cumulative pre-authorized payments were;
*  the programmed logic was incorrect, and the company involved owed him $742 in accumulated prepaid fees, not shown on the statement.  He was able to learn this by calling the customer service number and having a human being do the required computation while the computer sat idle.
This, though it was a particularly glaring error, is not unusual.  Blundering misuse of coding without proper system design is quite common.  Arguably it is one component of our puzzlingly slow recovery from 2008 and one or two other disastersbecause it cost the user several no-value-added hours away from productive work.  The world is simply plugged with rotten software of this kind that has resulted from plunging into coding without having done proper system design involving logical menus and logical processes.  Yes, with paper and pencil!
– 30 –

“Teacher voice is set to mute”

Date:        2 May 16
By:            Frank Gue, B.Sc., MBA, P.Eng.
                 Burlington, ON     905 634 9538
For:           Letters The Spec
Re:            “Teacher voice is set to mute”,  today’s Spec
                  215 words


Dear Editor:
Writer Ken Durkacz  (“Teacher voice is set to mute”,  today’s Spec.)
is spot-on when he blames the “Inquiry” (or “discovery” or “con-
structivist”) teaching method for Ontario’s worsening math scores.
The disastrous so-called “Progressive” education system, of which
“Constructivism” is a key element, began in the 19th century and was
installed in Ontario beginning about 1967, nearly 30 years before
Mike Harris.
There is an increasing trickle of Letters to the Editor blaming Ontario’s
curricula for our poor math (and other) results.  Clearly, Ontario’s
parents, employers, and University presidents are increasingly
identifying the right villain in this sad melodrama.
The failure of Constructivism as a teaching tool is dramatically illustrated
when one encounters retail sales people who cannot confidently add
up a handful of change, never mind do any mental arithmetic with the
Writer Durkacz is correct when he comments that “You need to
clearly grasp basic tools (such as the times table) in order to do more
sophisticated work”; but the “discovery” method gives the struggling 10-year-
old, who may well be in tears of frustration, only a ladder with the  bottom five
rungs missing.  It must have been devised by educators who were told to
create a model guaranteed to teach children (and their mystified parents)
to hate math.
– 30 –

Don’t stop believing (in structural reform and austerity)

From:            Gue Frank []
Sent:              Tuesday, April 19, 2016 3:01 PM
Subject:         Don’t stop believing (in structural reform and austerity), Apr. 9


Dear Editors:


Most would agree that properly directed stimulus and

properly directed austerity are both good things.

Then why is there a “debate” between them?


It’s because many – perhaps most – politicians don’t

understand “properly directed” .


Example:  Expenditure is mistaken for stimulus,

which must be directed toward productive ends.

What is sometimes called “stimulus” is often

merely a process of scattering currency to the

winds.  Any “stimulating” government must ask the

question:   What improved tooling, process, or

product can be financed with my “stimulus”?


There is a direct link from this question to the

current handwringing over the steadily falling

numeracy in the Western economies.  Many

politicians now in high office were victims of

so-called “Progressive” education.   Starting

in the 60s, this has turned out grown adults

some of whom cannot even count, much less

do arithmetic, less yet understand discounted

cash flow and similar analyses that tell a private

firm whether some project is productive or not.


Modern education systems like “Discovery”

math actually train students to become

innumerate and to hate math.  When this

can be corrected, the debate between

“stimulus” and “austerity” will vanish.