One interesting point from this article is this image:
We can see that since the Jurassic period (the one with the big dinosaurs), where the temperature took one dip, things have been about ten degrees Celsius warmer than today.
In fact, we are today at sort of a historical "low" in terms of temperature.
Lots of other information confirms this general chart. For example Wikipedia:
So the real question to me is why has, over the last ten million years or so, the temperature dropped so significantly.
The drop cannot be attributed to human's since presumably human's did not exist during the drop.
Our data for these many millenia is I am sure poor - but since climatologists are willing to work with it we must as well when discussing it.
More recently we a more detailed decline in temperature:
We can imagine a sort of middle line of a "running average" temperature through the above data (which is noisy).
What we would see, at least in my mind, is a line which was declining but is now leveling off or perhaps just beginning to rise.
When we look at the millenial chart (top most) we that this makes sense. The global "temperature" has just started to again rise from a typical "low."
And in fact we see articles today, in places like Ars Technica, about how volcanism affects climate and, in fact, confirms recent observations.
Again, and as always, we are left to ask why the climate temperature going "up" at this point is one of major concern.
Clearly we are currently at an millenial climate temperature "minimum."
There is no place to go but up really.
In fact, if you compare the "warm" times with the "cold" times on the top chart we see that, on average, and according to the very same climatologists, the world is much colder than usual historically.
Do we know why it got colder in the last, say, five million years?
The answer is, of course, no.
No climate models exist for this time because we really know very little about it.
So if we don't know why its colder then how can we know why its getting warmer?
Again we see how modern "education" works.
Degrees and science today are about careers and money - not about knowing the difference between what is known versus what can be known and what cannot be known with the data we have.
While climate predictions seem troubling today - they are much less so given are more historic view.
We see that temperature now is in fact far colder than normal.
So we can hope only that it does warm up.
Humans have built their culture in a world where average global temperature is at a low point.
A low point we have no real mechanism to understand or explain.
And as small variations appear with an upward trend we panic.
We panic because we have invested a lot of resources in stupidly believing that the world is a static place - that oceans never rise and fall, etc.
The only certain thing about global "temperature" and climate is that it does change.
Little is known about the historical past - the past astronomical and well as geological past of the earth.
Sure there are Discovery channel specials - but they are simply marketing and speculation.
We have traded pure research for careers and grant money and Andy Warhol fame.
Research is about having the guts to say "we don't know" and about not acting like a "chicken little" without really understanding how or why or if the sky is falling.