Combating the spread of green hysteria
September 16, 2008
Usually when delusional people start saying crazy things, they are kept marginalized and fail to receive the attention they so desperately want because rational people realize the irrationality of their ideas and refuse to have anything to do with them. There is the small group of people who buy into the crazy idea, but the rest of the population generally ignores them.
Such has not been the case with global warming alarmism. When I say alarmism, I mean the underwater cities, category 20 hurricanes and general all out destruction that comes with these Gore-esque visions. Last week on his show David Letterman went on a long winded rant saying that we are all “dead meat” and “screwed” before bringing on fellow alarmist and New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman promoting his new book about the subject.
So are we “screwed?” Are we in fact “dead meat?”
The Earth did show a warming trend beginning in 1980, but three of the four widely used sources for global temperature data show temperatures have remained steady for the past decade. The one source that shows an increase in average temperature in the past decade is NASA’s Goddard Institute, which is headed by James Hansen, science advisor to Al Gore and the original alarmist. Hansen has staked his entire reputation on this along with Gore, so a wise person would be wary of data he has influence over. Also, a recent article in Nature states that surface temperatures aren’t likely to increase over the next decade and will probably cool. The IPCC has stated that the Earth will warm anywhere from 1.4 to 5.8 degrees Celsius in the foreseeable future, and this is presented as irrefutable fact and “scientific consensus.” Of course, 30 years ago, scientists were predicting massive global cooling for the foreseeable future. But the drumbeat for the march to apocalypse goes on.
All of this hysteria is used to advance an agenda, which is dangerous, and a lot of times ridiculous. The primary goal of their agenda is to do away with fossil fuels immediately and move to carbon free energy. Al Gore says that we can be carbon free in 10 years, even though right now we are 85 percent dependent on fossil fuels and there is no economic alternative. Domestic drilling induces spasms in environmentalists, but why can’t we work to become less dependent on foreign oil by exploring our resources here? Besides, which country would have better environmental oversight, Saudi Arabia or the U.S.? Fossil fuels are used because they are cheap and reliable, not because of some big oil conspiracy. They let their shibboleths of environmental mysticism and fossil fuel hate overrule any common sense.
James Hansen exemplified this perfectly last week when he testified for six Greenpeace activists in the UK for causing approximately $50,000 worth of damage to a coal-fired power plant. They were acquitted on the basis that global warming justified their actions. Hopefully, I don’t need to point out the incredibly dangerous precedent that the verdict sets. Now, vandalism toward anything in the UK that is deemed to contribute to global warming can be justified. Al Gore better hope that such a verdict isn’t issued in the U.S., otherwise, his Nashville mansion, which used 20 times the national average in electricity last year, might be next.
They look for a “green revolution” to do away with fossil fuels. They hope to do this through governments imposing cap-and-trade schemes, taxing fossil fuels to keep them expensive and giving massive government subsidies to renewable energy sources, which aren’t economically viable without them. They also hope this promotes ingenuity in the field. Yet government has never brought about great ingenuity. The industrial revolution, PC revolution and explosion of the Internet were all brought about by innovative individuals in a free market, capitalist system, not by governments. Markets respond to great products, and when better energy technology comes along, there will be no stopping it.
I want to help the environment as much as the next person, and I believe that we should strive to minimize our impact on it as much as possible, but at the same time not hinder our own economic progress and well-being. This global warming cataclysm that is being preached is irresponsible and inane. In reality, it’s people that need to cool down more than the Earth does.
Jordan is a junior in MCB and doesn’t really mind the new Facebook.