So after a whole year, I’ve just realised the blindingly obvious. When two parameters are each increased by the other, it doesn’t matter which rises first; both will rise. That’s the very essence of positive feedback, so Rhys Jaggar’s opening remark…
– “The evidence is absolutely clear that atmospheric carbon dioxide follows temperature increases with a lag of 700 years as oceanic-atmospheric carbon dioxide equilibria adjust themselves. Temperatures go up: carbon dioxide is released from the oceans. Temperatures go down: it is reabsorbed”
…tells us nothing about CO2 from fossil fuels increasing the temperature.
To put it as an analogy, say that poverty causes crime and crime causes poverty. Law-and-order politicians may cite historical examples of crime causing poverty to argue for better policing, and social justice politicians may cite historical examples of poverty causing crime to argue for better wages and welfare, but neither of them would be honest in citing their examples to argue against the other’s policy. Both should realise that they’re attempting to stabilise a system that exhibits positive feedback, and external influences that increase either poverty or crime could send the system spiralling out of control.