Unfortunately, theory is now postulative fact in liberal academia. The Scientific Method has been tossed in the trash. Whatever serves the political party of choice, and drives millions into the "underpaid" salaries of quirky, misfitted professors.
The difference is that one group says we don't know enough about this so let's learn more about this while another group is saying we don't know enough about this so let's run of half cocked and change the world even though it might not do anything productive or corrective.
Climate change denialism is a rightwing meme, fostered and paid for by Big Carbon, and activiting the conspiratorial part of the tea party brain, such as it is. Progressives listen to scientists and try to make rational policy based on the best science.
It's sort of funny to hear you defend you position by claiming falsely that some liberals are as irrational as you are.
I will add to my comments in Message #2. Three quick thoughts before posting some of the draft report's key findings:
1. It is astonishing that the whomever wrote the news story cited at the beginning of this thread never read the IPCC report.
2. The news story is an example of confirmation bias at its worst. It latches onto a piece of information that is taken out of context and assumes that the draft report has retreated on the findings of earlier IPCC assessments.
3. Perhaps the two points above explain why the news organization that disseminated the story and the bloggers who have latched onto the incorrect story, were so far off the mark when it came to the 2012 U.S. Presidential election.
In general, in a free society, people need reliable information to make rational choices. The above story is not an example of reliable information. Public policy that is based on such flawed information is not optimal, as it misses the actual problem at hand (assumes that it doesn't exist). Hence, one can't proceed to the necessary discussion of costs and benefits, even as the opportunity costs associated with that flawed assumption could be rising.
As for the leaked draft report, these are its major conclusions as it relates to AGW:
Globally, CO2 is the strongest driver of climate change compared to other changes in the atmospheric composition, and changes in surface conditions. Its relative contribution has further increased since the 1980s and by far outweighs the contributions from natural drivers. CO2 concentrations and rates of increase are unprecedented in teh last 800,000 years and at least 20,000 years, respectively.
I underlined the text related to natural drivers, as solar activity is a natural driver. The report makes unambiguously clear that the forcing related to CO2 far exceeds the impact of natural drivers, including the solar component, when it comes to ongoing climate change.
The report adds:
There is consistent evidence from observations of a net energy uptake of the Earth System due to an imbalance in the energy budget. It is virtually certain that this is caused by human activities, primarily by the increase in CO2 concentrations. There is very high confidence that natural forcing contributes only a small fraction to this imbalance.
Notice again that natural factors explain only "a small fraction" of the earth's ongoing energy imbalance, which is leading to heating. Indeed, the earth maintained a sizable energy imbalance even during the recent solar minimum, which was the longest and deepest solar minimum since at least the early 20th century.