A lot of people thought that the scandal at the University of East Anglia’s Climate Research Unit in 2009 would end the political/academic fundraising schemes that center around the theory that anthropogenic global warming will cause imminent disaster. It didn’t turn out that way. AGW was such a perfect narrative for motivating left-wing activists/donors that no revelation of concealed/manipulated data or the coordinated silencing of dissenting scientists could bring progressive politicians to back away from this theme. The left would continue to flog this dead horse through several more elections in several western countries.
Last week, however, President Obama may have finally ended this charade by making it abundantly clear to even the most rabid leftist that he doesn’t really believe any of this nonsense. The President has decreed his imperial permission for Shell to begin drilling for oil in the Arctic. The President, of course, still claims to believe everything he said about global warming in the 2012 campaign. He has attempted to reassure his base that he is only allowing Shell to drill because someone is going to drill for oil somewhere and it may just as well be Americans.
This, as his jilted supporters have pointed out, doesn’t make any sense. If you really believe that the extraction and burning of fossil fuels is about to cause irrevocable damage to the entire planet you can’t justify extracting more fossil fuels by pointing to national self-interest. If you really believe that nonsense you have to do everything in your power to end, rather than expand, the extraction of fossil fuels.
“If we keep digging up more coal, gas and oil, it will get burned, if not here, then somewhere else. This is precisely the conclusion that a study in the journal Nature reached in January: If we’re to have any chance of meeting even Mr. Obama’s weak goal of holding temperature rise to 2 degrees Celsius, we have to leave most carbon underground. That paper, in particular, showed that the coal reserves in the Powder River basin in the West and the oil in Canada’s tar sands had to be left largely untouched, and that there was no climate-friendly scenario in which any oil or gas could be drilled in the Arctic…
This is not climate denial of the Republican sort, where people simply pretend the science isn’t real. This is climate denial of the status quo sort, where people accept the science, and indeed make long speeches about the immorality of passing on a ruined world to our children. They just deny the meaning of the science, which is that we must keep carbon in the ground.”
One can’t help but feel for McKibben and whatever other true believers are left. It’s going to be hard for them to accept that most of the political support behind Cap & Trade never had anything to do with saving the planet. It was always about shifting even more money and power towards Washington DC and away from the rest of the country. But, according to Gallup, most Americans have already caught onto this scam as concern over climate change is at a record low.
With even President Obama now throwing in the towel it is hard to believe that this hoax will long remain a political weapon for the left.