Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Why Global Warming is Political Suicide

Why Global Warming is Political Suicide, by me.

Global warming, and the latest geopolitical fads that it is inspiring, is a surefire way to tank your political career. There are many facets to why its simply not going to pay off for anyone; I will discuss a few of them here. Bear in mind that this is only an article for freethinkers, those who are willing to ignore the flashing signs and smoke that the opposition will put up; do not be blinded by phrases like "consensus" and "climatologists"; shy away from the glamorous, the powerful; do not be distracted by the vocal minority. All of these are evidence of the pending failure of this policy.

Global warming is a fad. Fads are, by their very nature, temporary. There is no fad that will continue forever. This is true for modes of speech, dress, lines of thought, and every other aspect of human life. We are a transient species. Furthermore, fads are soon forgotten. What was the latest global initiative in the 1920's? How about the 1890's? What were the "Who's Who" of the 1860's worrying about? Short, fast gains can be helpful in politics -- unfortunately, they will not sustain a long-term position.

Global warming is at its climax run now. Much like stocks in the market, fads will build slowly (the global warming initiative started in the late 80's), run for a while, have a few ups and downs, and then have a frenzy of action just before the hoopla dies down. The current agitated state of those who are pushing the Climate Change Express are shoving harder than ever in order to tip the scales past what they call "critical mass". Even now, they are struggling; only approximately 50% of the population believes that there is a "scientific consensus," whatever Al Gore will tell you. Even so, the transient property of this fad alone is not enough to sink a political boat. Indeed, many politicians run on one issue this term, another the next. However, a large enough gaffe will always set the record straight. The problem with global warming? Its not cheap.

Global warming policies, such as the one signed by the Governator (who is fast becoming a RINO) demand cuts in CO2 emissions. These sort of things cite polluters such as refineries, cars, factories, and other politically fat targets (oil companies are particularly ripe for nailing right now). However, most people don't realize that every single product in the world has some component of CO2 byproduct, whether in the making of the item itself (chemical processes, heating, cooling, or otherwise treating the product), the transportation of the product, or the use of the product. Rather, they don't realize it yet; if these sort of things keep happening, everyone soon will, because they'll be paying for it out the nose. CO2 limitations have the potential of obliterating our economy, assuming anyone will actually follow the laws that will possibly be passed (an unlikely scenario).

Other trendy solutions, such as hybrid vehicles, really demonstrate this well. They don't get the mileage they advertise, they never pay for their own cost, and -- the kicker -- they don't even save C02. Truly, the amount of carbon that goes into making a car (the steel, the paint, the seats, all the plastics, the electricity to assemble, etc) is much larger than the amount of CO2 produced each year by driving one. Its a matter of a point-source of carbon emissions rather than a diffuse effect.

It really doesn't end there, though. People are a tough crowd; they actually want a return on their political investment. Unfortunately for the climate change clique, the laws they propose have no discernible ability to affect the problem for which they are written. Seriously. The much-touted Kyoto policy, if implemented fully, would only prevent .07 degrees Celsius of climate change by 2060. That's right -- a little over one twentieth of a degree. The latest from California? So small that it is immeasurable, and not in the good way. That's so minor especially considering that the global surface temperature fluctuates about three times that much from year-to-year.

Politicians are also using scare tactics to get support -- this, too, is a recipe for failure. People who think that current weather patterns (heat waves, hurricanes), glacier and arctic ice changes and other things are linked to global warming will likely expect some return for their troubles. They won't get it. People will die from hurricanes every year. People will get heat stroke without fail. The temperature of the earth won't change. People will see absolutely no change in current weather that could possibly be ascribed to this policy. Then they're going to look back at their votes, and feel their pocketbooks, and get angry. Rule #1 of politics -- be behind the pitchforks and torches, not in front of them.

So-called "Green" companies and politicians should take note. As far as I can tell, global warming's hold on the world is tenuous at best. Scientists are having to take more and more convoluted positions in order to keep explaining the data into their theory. It is a veritable game of scientific Twister, which can only have one outcome.


Matt said...

I don't agree that politicians should use scare tactics either. I think politicians saying, "vote for us because we're the only ones that are capable of keeping you alive" is ridiculous. And the republican leadership is the BEST at it. However, global terrorism and climate change both have the potential to threaten our livelihood. In my personal opinion, climate change has a greater POTENTIAL to harm society's as a whole (read Collapse by Jared Diamond, great book) than terrorism (read my post by deepak chopra). There is so much evidence out there that lead SO MANY scientists to the conclusion that we could be headed for catastrophic changes in our climate. A change in even a few degrees could devastate crops and bring famine and hunger around the world which in turn would generate complete and utter chaos and a collapse in society (read about easter island). Of course, these are all POTENTIALS. Just as your fear of islamic fascism and it's potential to "take over the world" is also a POTENTIAL and not a fact. No one can see what tommorow is going to be like... but based on the evidence that we have today and what we know about the Earth's climate in the past, we can make an educated guess using our logic, and super-computer models to tell us what MIGHT happen tommorow. This isn't a fad, it's part of a larger problem. We as a species, run on petroleum... it's our societies life-blood. We know that fossil fuels are drying up, we know that pumping CO2 in the atmosphere CAN have a negative impact on temperature and on ocean acidity. We KNOW that melting glaciers can possibly reduce the solidity of the ocean and bring a halt to ocean currents (and have done so in the past many times). Can we survive a drastic change in temperature? The answer is a resounding no. Our planet is like a drunk person. You leave them alone and the just sit there and do nothing. But when you give that person a shove, he's going to stumble and possibly fall over. Our planet is a living, breathing organism and we MUST take heed to it's warnings, and we MUST be constantly worried about the repercussions of our actions.