Green economic thinking: revenge not economics

Guest Post by Barry Woods

TATA recently announced the loss of 1500 jobs in the steel industry in the UK, with the explanation that this was at least in part because of a price on carbon announced in the setting of Carbon Budgets which are a requirement of the 2008 Climate Change Act in the UK

Bryony Worthington founder of Sandbag (a carbon trading think-tank and campaign group), formerly a  Friends of the Earth campaigner, and a 10:10  campaigner and board member (No Pressure video) twittered it was ‘revenge’ for Carbon Budgets part of the Climate Change Act.

So what? You might well ask, yet another green ‘climate change’ lobbyist with no concept of business or economics. But, the concept of Carbon Budgets were Bryony Worthington’s own idea.

The idea of national carbon budgets, now in law, was hers. Her earlier career was as an environmental campaigner, heading Friends of the Earth’s climate change campaign.

She studied English literature: “very useful,” she jokes.” – The Guardian

This simple tweet of Bryony’s perhaps encapsulates a worrying mindset of a complete lack understanding of the economics of business. Only in an environmental green lobbyist mind, fighting for a noble cause, does businesses have the luxury of playing games of revenge against environmental legislation and governments.

The fact that a lobbyist like Bryony Worthington had a major role in writing the UK Climate Change Act, indicates to many that ‘green climate change’ thinking, has taken a firm grip on the political/media establishment in the UK and throughout Europe, as the priority of governments over all other issues in their economies.  Far from fighting the establishment as is their romantic self-image, greens, environmentalists are now an integrated part of the political and media establishment. No more so, than in Germany where green thinking will close ALL nuclear power stations in a few short years.

Perhaps it is not ‘revenge’ Baroness Worthington, perhaps it just the hard economics of the real world, where these new unilateral carbon taxes to be introduced in the UK (which go beyond even the EU carbon penalties), will make it even more uneconomic to produce here than the already CO2 obsessed EU.  These jobs amongst others will be just the first of jobs and industries that will simply relocate abroad taking their CO2 emissions with them.

“The continuing weakness in market conditions is one of the main reasons why we are setting out on this difficult course of action. Another is the regulatory outlook.

EU carbon legislation threatens to impose huge additional costs on the steel industry. Besides, there remains a great deal of uncertainty about the level of further unilateral carbon cost rises that the UK government is planning,” – The Guardian

Bryony Worthington you might notice, is now Baroness Worthington, elevated to the House of Lords for her instrumental role in writing the UK Climate Change Act – 2008, where all of these taxes and economic consequences arise from.

“The House of Lords became a far greener and better place today with the appointment of the climate change policy expert and campaigner Bryony Worthington as a Labour peer.”

“…..I am very flattered and very excited,” she told me this morning. First on her agenda will be the energy market reform planned by the coalition government, “unfinished business” from the Climate Change Act which she was instrumental in writing, such as setting stronger carbon caps in the UK, and how to boost investment in green projects.” –The Guardian

To the activist/lobbyist, it is ‘saving the planet’ from climate change (man-made presumably) that is the highest, noblest political cause and the only reason that they can seem to contemplate that someone says they are wrong, is because ‘evil’ business just seeks to make a profit and does not care about anybody.

Whereas the simple explanation that the proposals may not even achieve what they aim to do (actually reduce GLOBAL CO2 emissions) just relocating jobs and industries and of course, the CO2 emissions abroad, when any unilateral green economic policy is made.

Heavy manufacturing companies are penalised by European laws forcing them to buy carbon permits costing about £15 per tonne of emissions.

While energy companies can pass on the additional costs to domestic bill payers, manufacturers have to compete internationally with places like Asia, which don’t have a carbon trading system.

Companies operating in the UK will be hit even harder when the UK sets a higher price for carbon permits than the European market price. – The Telegraph

There was (unsurprisingly) intensive industry lobbying (unelected) against the setting of the next Carbon Budget at the levels recommended by the Climate Change Committee, the Business Secretary and the Chancellor of the Exchequer were at odds with their cabinet colleagues in a bitter cabinet discussion about risks to a fragile economy.

This was only resolved when the Prime Minister stepped in agreeing with the toughest recommendations of the Climate Change Committee.

“The deal was hammered out after tense arguments between ministers who had disagreed over whether the ambitious plans to switch to more green energy were affordable. The row had pitted the energy secretary, Chris Huhne, who strongly backed the plans, against the chancellor, George Osborne, and the business secretary, Vince Cable, who were concerned about the cost and potential impact on the economy.

However, after the intervention of David Cameron, Huhne is now expected to tell parliament that agreement has been struck to back the plans in full up to 2027.” – The Guardian

All the environmental lobby groups had also been campaigning hard and the carbon budgets only went ahead because the (equally unelected) environmental lobby groups threatened a Judicial Review.

“I understand that a key factor in the decision to go with the carbon budgets advisers recommendations was a threat by Greenpeace to take the government to judicial review if it gave way to business lobbying.” – BBC – Richard Black

Baroness Worthington was no doubt lobby hard for her Carbon Budgets and was twittering away in support and confirmed this whilst in the House of Lords (17th May)


But what does Baroness Worthington (with her English degree) know about the economic consequences of Carbon Budgets, Ed Miliband (now Labour party leader, former Minister for Energy and Climate Change) appointed to Bryony to the House of Lords, for her work on the Climate Change Act, allowing her to continue to lobby at the highest political level in the House of Lords.

“…Bryony Worthington’s appointment as a peer at such a young age was something of a surprise to her — even though she knows Ed Miliband, the Labour leader, well and played a key role helping him, as energy secretary, write the 2008 Climate Change Act….

“….I think Ed Miliband wanted to do something different and I was glad to accept [the working peerage] but it’s not something I was expecting,” she said. “Most things you really strive for in life but this just sort of landed on my plate and it’s great privilege.” – Telegraph

The green social/media/political network

A few climate connections to ponder upon:

Bryony Worthington is the founder of Sandbag and has Tony Juniper as Sandbag advisory board member,  Tony Juniper also sits alongside Bryony at the 10:10 Campaign as the chair of the advisory board  of the 10:10 Campaign.  Tony Juniper like Bryony was at Friends of the Earth, as a long term Director of FOE and Vice Chair of Friends International, whilst at FOE Tony led the campaign for the introduction of the UK Climate Change Act, which Bryony according to Ed Miliband (then Energy and Climate Change Minister, now Labour party leader) was instrumental in writing.

Small wonder perhaps, that Ed Miliband and Gordon Brown, were speaking of  ‘behind the times’, anti-science, flat-earthers, climate sceptics, climate change deniers and more worryingly  (if possible) climate saboteurs in all their political rhetoric about ‘climate change’ (man-made) pre and post Copenhagen.

This insular green social network also extends into the media, where they will rarely (if ever) come across any sceptical voices amongst the like-minded people that they associate with, as they operate in the totally self reinforcing virtuous circle of a righteous elite political/media establishment.

As a media example of green cheerleading, Bryony Worthington ‘s 10:10 colleague and friend Franny Armstrong (founder 10:10, who also knows Ed well )was scooped by the Guardian, in the launch of the 10:10 ‘No Pressure‘ video campaign last October.

The scoop perhaps comes as no surprise when the Guardian’s very own Duncan Clark is also Bryony’s and Franny’s 10:10 Campaigns Strategy Director.

The fact that this video was produced at all, should be the only additional evidence required to demonstrate the existence of the closed mind green ‘climate change’ bubble surrounding the media and politicians in the UK, because so many people involved with the best media, environmental, political connections in the UK, failed to see the reactions (here, here, here, here,  amongst hundreds of others, even other environmental groups)that this video would provoke which lost the 10:10 Campaign 3 out of 4 its major sponsors within hours.

What a small insular world, do these environmentalists and politicians ever have come have across anybody that is even mildly sceptical of man-made climate change in the small social network that they exist in.

Without Tony Juniper and Bryony Worthington and Ed Milliband, I have no personal doubt that the UK would ever have had a Climate Change Act.

Of course, it is not just the ‘old’ economy industries at risk like steel production (needed for wind farms?), but the new economies as well (even the green ones), with energy intensive data centres, or any big business with an electricity bill, they are also at risk of unilaterally higher bills  in the UK and these will also simply relocate to a lower tax regime. Even universities, scientists jobs and scientific research is now threatened in the UK because of these consequences.

“Some facilities must find hundreds of thousands of pounds to settle green tax bills, putting jobs and research at risk.

The unexpected impact of the government’s carbon reduction commitment (CRC) scheme is so severe that scientists and research funders have lobbied ministers for an exemption to reduce the bills.

Among the worst hit is the Culham Centre for Fusion Energy in Oxfordshire, a facility for research into almost limitless carbon-free energy.” – The Guardian

This is an inevitable consequence of a unilateral tax in a global economy, it pity that very few Members of Parliament MP or lobbyist seems to realise it. David Cameron, Chris Huhne and even Vince Cable and George Osborne mentioned above, were amongst the Climate Fools that voted for the 2008 Climate Change Act in the UK.  Over 600 Mp’s  voted for the Act, only 4 MP’s voted against the Act, only one MP Peter Lilley queried the costs at the time:

“Neither Parliament nor most of the media bothered to discuss the cost of one of the most immense projects ever adopted in this country” – Peter Lilley, MP – in 2008

Over the last 20 years there has gradually arisen a green minded political, lobbyist, media social and business establishment, wrapping themselves in a green protective bubble with the noble and no doubt sincere and honest intentions of ‘saving the planet’, (50 days to save the planet’ said Prime Minister Gordon Brown pre-Copenhagen) proponents of this noble cause, then reject all criticism as ‘denial’ or even ‘double deniers’ and denigrates criticism or concerns,  as from those with suspect capitalistic motives,  always failing to ask themselves, what if we are wrong?

This fact that ‘climate change’ and environmental thinking has such an unquestioned grip of the UK and European political establishment, causes great concern to me. As the political thinking (sic) in the EU, with the failings of Copenhagen and the abandonment of the Kyoto protocol, seems to be to leading the EU politicians and economies off a cliff of their own rhetoric. By way of attempting to lead the world by example, with ever tougher unilateral CO2 emission cuts and taxation.

Interesting times ahead.

Links – My original thoughts on the appointement of Baroness Worthington to the House of Lords

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bob sykes
June 7, 2011 1:12 pm

The only rational response to the nonsense of carbon dioxide taxes is to let it play out and hope the consequences come quickly. If they result in 20 to 30% unemployment, widespread shutdowns of industrial firms, bread lines, riots, etc., so much the better. Sacrificing the UK on the altar of reality will be a wake-up call to the rest of the world, which might then avoid the greater disaster of a world-wide depression.
On second thought, only the West would collapse; India and China, being rational, would survive and prosper.

Pull My Finger
June 7, 2011 1:27 pm

She probably envisions an England with Hobbits about the Shire, Robin Hood fleecing the evil industrialists, and a ruling intelligensia of poets and proles prancing around in Shakespearian leotards.

June 7, 2011 1:31 pm

People like Baroness Worthington are totally divorced from reality.

Dr T G Watkins
June 7, 2011 1:31 pm

It really is frightening that these people are running our country. There is nothing so bad that the interference of government cannot make worse.
Slightly off thread, I listened to Cowper- Coles (recent UK Ambassador to Afghanistan) at the Hay-on-Wye Literary Festival on Saturday last. Amongst many other revealing facts about the last British administration, he told of a Minister for Defence of three years standing who asked to be reminded of the difference between a Brigadier and a Colonel and also the difference between a platoon, battalion and a brigade! It sums up the ignorance of our political rulers – of every party – whether it be Defence, Foreign Affairs, Education, Economy, Health and of course Energy.
Maybe it is time for direct action (non violent) against our incompetent rulers.

June 7, 2011 1:32 pm

The UK is doomed. Private jets from all over the world and limo fleets emitting “carbon” for the royal wedding, but we can’t save jobs. Absurd.

June 7, 2011 1:37 pm

Thanks. For a moment, this makes me think German policies are sane in comparison. Feeling better now. I know this feeling will wane come tomorrow, though…
Good for the Baroness that the treason act has been changed…

June 7, 2011 1:46 pm

It doesn’t seem unlikely that this may be related to this:
The acquisition of Corus by Tata which appears to have completed in late 2010. The job losses were foreshadowed as far back as 2007, so this should come as no surprise and most likely has nothing to do with carbon budgets.

June 7, 2011 1:58 pm

Most of the rabid greens in the UK have no relevant qualifications at all. Our one Green party MP, and head of the Green Party has a PhD. She was often wheeled out as Dr Caroline Lucas “an acknowledged expert on Climate Change” – until the truth came out that her Doctorate was in Elizabethan Romantic women’s literature.
She has never had a job of any sort – always being an activist and anti anything and everything.
Have a look at her published biography:-
She appears as “Dr Caroline Lucas” of course – and is quoted as :-
“Caroline is an acknowledged expert on climate change, international trade and peace issues.”
But not a word on exactly what she gained her doctorate in.
Sadly – you could not make it up. But we have to live and deal with these idiots.

June 7, 2011 1:59 pm

This is what happens when idiots are allowed to make policy decisions….

June 7, 2011 2:00 pm

I’m glad I live in semi tropical Australia – east coast. We hardly ever have temperatures below 10 C (50F) and above 30 C(86F) – average around 25 C( 77F).
Either way I don’t see too much to worry about – at worst I may have to rethink some air-conditioner use in peak summer if our government decides on a carbon tax – which is a vote changer for me – I’ll vote against it any way I can because I don’t think it is warranted.
I’m awaiting an ever increasing rush of migrants from the UK when their loopiness starts to bite – where would you rather live – a cold rainy island not far from the Arctic circle or semi tropical beach resort. I thought the UK’s “monster raving loony party” (an actual political party which satarised politics in the UK) was created out of the unique sense of humour in the UK – I see the afflication has spread and it is no longer funny.
Thank god I had the fortune to be born here – at least I will never freeze – unlike the poor in the UK appear doomed to endure.
I’ve lived in the tropics before so I can handle what little extra heat CO2 can produce (negligible I think).

Leon Brozyna
June 7, 2011 2:04 pm

How apropos … the UK, home of the Industrial Revolution is now at the cutting edge of the Anti-Industrial Revolution. Let us mourn their passing.

Jack Maloney
June 7, 2011 2:09 pm

Isn’t TATA connected to TERI, Rajendra Pachauri’s pet “charity”?

June 7, 2011 2:13 pm

Caroline Lucas, the UK’s sole Green MP, holds a PhD with Eng Lit as her subject.
The big question, of course, is why anyone should imagine even for a nanosecond that either of these two wimmin would be worth listening to on any subject except English Literature.

Randy Links
June 7, 2011 2:17 pm

I’ve always wondered what went through the mind of the first lemming to lead the rest over the cliff. I’ll ask a resident of the UK in another year or two and get the scoop.

Adam Gallon
June 7, 2011 2:20 pm

Rattus, that’ll be Tata, as is the employers of Raj Pachauri?

Randy Links
June 7, 2011 2:22 pm

Perhaps the UK will become the Mecca of all the World’s radical environmentalists. Every person thinking otherwise can leave the shores and we will be left with a wonderful “Lord of the Flies” experiment in communal lifestyles free from CO2 pollutants, nuclear energies, fossil fuels and mechanised vehicles.

June 7, 2011 2:22 pm

The race is on to see which Western, formerly civilized country can force the majority of its citizens back to the standard of living of the 1880s (the “elite” will not be affected)!

June 7, 2011 2:35 pm

It’s obvious that the UK government body gets up every morning and overdoses on STUPID pills.

Dr T G Watkins
June 7, 2011 2:35 pm

Quite right ,Barry, these people are not in any way evil just profoundly ignorant in any form of science or maths (sums). Ultimately, the politicians are to blame as they are fixated with re-election and always listen to those who make the most noise. The silent majority are ignored and only those with a fundamentalist belief – in anything – achieve their aims.
Scottish Power (Spanish owned) have been the first to declare 20% hikes in energy bills.
Time for coordinated action.

David Falkner
June 7, 2011 2:35 pm

Want to drive the point home? Plenty of mid-western US states have no carbon tax and plenty of steel workers looking for jobs.

Rosy's dad
June 7, 2011 2:38 pm

I have to agree with bob Sykes that the best thing would be for this nonsense to quickly run it’s course and provide an object lesson to say, California.

Theo Goodwin
June 7, 2011 2:38 pm

“What a small insular world, do these environmentalists and politicians ever have come have across anybody that is even mildly sceptical of man-made climate change in the small social network that they exist in.”
Sounds to me like several people whose pathological paranoia has driven them to depression and who meet regularly to discuss their suffering and their hatred for those who cause it, namely, the rest of the world.

June 7, 2011 2:53 pm

The voters need to vote them out, and scientists need to face the fact that the proper Venus/Earth comparision, as I have done, completely and definitively invalidates the “greenhouse effect” as the driver of global warming — the effect does not exist., as should have been recognized nearly 20 years ago. Throw out the “lukewarmers” along with the “alarmists”, because they are all incompetent in the face of the definitive Venus/Earth analysis. If science can get behind that, and make it known, the politicians will have to cease and desist.

June 7, 2011 2:54 pm

A very useful and important description of the handful of people with a crucial role in the absurd Climate Change Act. That such a grossly short-sighted and foolish piece of legislation could pass all but unopposed is one of the most astonishing political triumphs I have ever come across. What will folks in the future make of this period of shameful, superficial science when spin has displaced deep thought, and organisations such as the Royal Society rather than defending us against the pompous self-serving excesses of such as the WWF and Greenpeace, actually join in and help them? Possibly in the hope of acquiring a share of their influence on policymakers? Yesterday’s cranks and go-gooders have transitioned into policy creators and trusted advisors. Good for them. Very bad for the rest of us. The post above will contribute to our improved understanding of just how we came to this sorry pass.

Brent Hargreaves
June 7, 2011 3:03 pm

“The elite will not be affected”, writes Jae. “…so severe that scientists and research funders have lobbied ministers for an exemption to reduce their bills”, writes the Guardian.
This is so reminiscent of Soviet Russia where Communist Party members had special shops with western goods unavailable to the deprived masses. Now, as then, the wicked elite screw it up for their fellow citizens and manage avoid sharing in the pain.

June 7, 2011 3:05 pm

Truckers face tough new ‘green’ tax
June 7, 2011
An EU plan to charge road hauliers for pollution and noise has been approved by the European Parliament, despite strong opposition from Ireland and other peripheral member states.
Under the so-called “Eurovignette” rule which aims to divert haulage from road to rail, drivers of trucks of over 3.5 tonnes could be charged up to 4 cents extra per kilometre in a “road use” charge.

June 7, 2011 3:07 pm

Possibly most of Western Europe England, France, Germany, ect could collapse economically along with Australia the dumbest of them all when it comes to AGW, if they implement Cap and Trade. I don’t think the European Latin countries such as Italy and Spain (already has tried it and failed so not again please!), East Europe, Russia or any of the Americas, India or China, Africa, Israel or Arab nations will any C02 emission reductions for AGW theory.

June 7, 2011 3:08 pm

More alarmist rhetoric from those who preach doom and gloom will be upon us if pollution is reduced. Do these alarmists really expect us to buy into their hype?

June 7, 2011 3:10 pm

What an excellent article.
As to my comment on its content MMMMWWWWaaaaaahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahhahah.
Since there is absolutely nothing I can do about the Green insanity in the UK I may as well fix a silly grin on my face and laugh my sock off as the place self destructs. It is way beyond worrying or dangerous now. It is firmly in Monty Python territory so I plan to sit in the sun drinking red wine and chuckle.

June 7, 2011 3:10 pm

More than likely she does not care. The “revenge” justification merely serves to allow her to further demonize industry. And note the eviros confidence that the Judiciary will exact its own form of revenge on industry.

Robert E
June 7, 2011 3:12 pm

What about this story then? Has it been refuted?

June 7, 2011 3:13 pm

Road charging rules (Eurovignette)
Missed opportunity means trucks will fail to fully pay their way
The European Parliament today voted on a final agreement, revising EU legislation on road charging for heavy goods vehicles (the so-called Eurovignette). The Greens have called the legislative revision a missed opportunity for failing to truly include environmental and climate change costs in road charging for trucks. After the vote, Green transport spokesperson and shadow rapporteur for the Eurovignette directive Eva Lichtenberger said:
“The EU has missed an opportunity to truly reform road charging for trucks to ensure that the real costs of road transport on the environment and climate are included. The Greens voted for the proposal today, as the principle of charging for ‘external costs’ has been included for the first time in EU legislation, but we do so reluctantly, as the final legislation has been watered-down beyond all meaning, with a raft of external road transport costs excluded from the Eurovignette. On top of this, the legislation is riddled with loopholes, notably the exclusion of all vehicles below 12 tonnes.”
Green transport spokesperson Michael Cramer added:
“While the costs of noise and air pollution will be included in the Eurovignette charging, other crucial ‘external costs’ of road transport have totally been left out. It is baffling that the costs of road accidents will be excluded from the charging. The environment also gets short shrift, with the costs of landscape and biodiversity damage, as well as climate change and oil dependence costs, also ignored. Crucially, the revised charging will be left to member states to apply voluntarily, which will ensure road transport continues to have an unfair advantage over rail transport. The final result is an excessively complicated legislative compromise, which will fail to ensure that real polluters are properly charged for the damage they cause and will fail to provide sufficient protection for sensitive areas, notably mountain regions.”

June 7, 2011 3:18 pm

The infection is spreading. It has already claimed many states in the US and a couple of provinces in Canada. It has metastasised and will ultimately spread to the entire west — destroying and maiming as it goes. And they wonder what could have possessed a people to give rise to the Third Reich. We are witnessing the early stages of exactly the same thing. I wonder how long we have before they come for us? Will they be content with re-educating us, or will they go straight to the ovens like before? We are all Winston Smith now.

June 7, 2011 3:27 pm

When they realise the folly of the climate change act the only option left will be to lower costs to the industries of the UK and get the sheeple to pay even high bills but thats ok there only humans.

June 7, 2011 3:33 pm

This potentially bodes well for the USA. If we can run our own nut jobs out of office in 2012, and take an axe to the Gordian knot of EPA regulations and all the other impediments to progress (don’t misunderstand me: some of the regulations are good. However, probably 80% of the benefit comes from 20% of the regs. Get back to those that are useful, and trash the rest, and fire all those responsible for the useless or even harmful stuff).
Then, following Pawlenty’s advice today, shoot for the moon. Develop the massive energy resources here that can compete in the energy market, reopen our doors to industry, and take away everything in Europe that is languishing because of the described insanity. While they’re wallowing in the “flight” of industry, we can build our way out of this economically depressed state that we’ve allowed our idiotic environmentalists and politicians (Dems in particular) to land on us.
Failing that, better learn to speak some Asian languages.

June 7, 2011 3:40 pm

I personally agree with this minister. I further believe the UN should quickly recognize Britain as a refuge for worldwide eco-loons so the rest of us can ship our fantasy dopes over to this Island Paradise. PS: All Canadian dope excel in the “arts and crafts” a boon to island residents in need of creative economics classes for the educationally challenged.

mike g
June 7, 2011 3:47 pm

I view the Baroness as evil incarnate. Hitler only killed a few million. She seems to be aiming to kill billions.

Atomic Hairdryer
June 7, 2011 3:50 pm

Tata hasn’t taken revenge on carbon trading, it’s exploited the system again by mothballing rather than closing the plant. If it closed it, it would not then be entitled to the carbon credits it’ll still be able to get free and sell on, or transfer to it’s other plants. Because the policies were designed by highly competant economists like Ms. Worthington the systems she’s helped create have been widely exploited. For this, she gets promoted to a more senior lobbying position.

June 7, 2011 3:51 pm

It is amazing how myopic and narrowminded these people are. Because they are petty and hold a grudge, they assume everyone does. Because “Bryony Worthington” would have taken revenge for an action she didn’t like, she assumes a corporation does too.

June 7, 2011 3:55 pm

Very interesting article.
The introduction of a cheap, clean and abundant energy source has been put back decades by these idiots, Even if there was such an energy source available and ready to go into operation tomorrow, it would be lobbied against for various reasons, one being that it would collapse energy markets world wide and destroy this “green economic fantasy”. One single hint of Cheap clean and abundant energy and a lot of these fraudsters are out of business for good. I believe there is some deviousness behind what seems to be willful stupidity from a bunch of “concerned” environmental activists.

June 7, 2011 4:00 pm

As always, follow the money
“In every year from 2003 through 2009, Friends of the Earth Europe was awarded operating grants from the European Unions’ Environment DG representing anywhere from 40 percent to 53 percent of its annual budget. Friends of the Earth Europe has been receiving EU subsidies since 1997.”
This is a direct quote from
The EU Connection in Climate Research by John Rosenthal
The best summary I’ve read so far about the politicised spin surrounding AGW and how most of it, from Pachuri (TERI) to CRU to WWF et al get the lions share of their funding from the non-elected “civil-service” side of the EU.
Thats right EU taxpayers’ money is being used to bank-role special interest groups whose main activity is to produce the “science” to support CO2 based taxation.
Its amazingly effective too. For a few hundered thousand you get a “peer” in the British 2nd house.
The EU apparatchiks can now influence policy from afar. How is that in the interests of democracy?

Steven Kopits
June 7, 2011 4:04 pm

May UAH is out.

Julian Williams in Wales
June 7, 2011 4:12 pm

About two years ago Dr Richard North (Eureferendum blog) flagged up the carbon credit aspect of TATA’s investment in the UK steel industry and predicted the carbon credits would pay for the British Steel industry to be closed down and moved to India. I think this story then led Richard to look at Pachauri’s involvement with TATA, which led to the discovery of Pachauri’s Green charities and eventually a lot of dirt about Pachauri’s role as a big receiver of green grants and money.
Here are 22 posts on the TATA TERI Pachauri story
Sadly the media have simply ignorred what has been going on in front of their eyes.

D. J. Hawkins
June 7, 2011 4:15 pm

Dr T G Watkins says:
June 7, 2011 at 2:35 pm
Quite right ,Barry, these people are not in any way evil just profoundly ignorant in any form of science or maths (sums). Ultimately, the politicians are to blame as they are fixated with re-election and always listen to those who make the most noise. The silent majority are ignored and only those with a fundamentalist belief – in anything – achieve their aims.
Scottish Power (Spanish owned) have been the first to declare 20% hikes in energy bills.
Time for coordinated action.

How many malefactors have appeared before a judge or magistrate pleading ignorance of the law? The answer is always the same: “Ingnorance of the law is no excuse.” A good burning at the stake or two might sober up this crowd – maybe.

June 7, 2011 4:39 pm

It’s back to the Dark Ages – all superstition, mythology and the equivalent of witch burning – if this nonsense takes a normal course where no one is allowed to tell the truth.

June 7, 2011 5:03 pm

Western Civilization will come undone as it’s economic/industrial base is ripped apart.
In to fill the vacuum will come the neighboring civilizations.
Ages do not tolerate the inept or the cavalier for long, and that goes double for the defenseless.

June 7, 2011 5:07 pm

“The Commanding Heights” was a phrase coined around 1922 and used by Lenin as a reference to controlling the means of production–agriculture, utility power, transportation and transportation fuels, mining, heavy industry, banking, etc.
Between 1924 and 1953, 20 million Russians died.
The U.N. Rio Earth Summit “Agenda 21” (led by Maurice Strong in 1992) is a reference to controlling international and national plans and policies to ensure that all economic decisions fully take into account any environmental impact. In other words, the U.N. led “environmental movement” or “Agenda 21” or “Rio Earth Summit” was precisely what Lenin prescribed almost exactly 70 years earlier.

Geoff Sherrington
June 7, 2011 5:08 pm

In my younger days, a high British peerage was rarely awarded afresh (not hereditary) for acts or performance far beyond the normal. The honoured person was customarily seen to be worthy by the majority of citizens who felt national pride of the achievement of the person.
Many a high Honour has now been debased to a payoff for toeing the Party line doggedly, which has completely prostituted to system. I suspect that Royal approval, when needed, is influenced by Chukka who has shown the world the heart on his sleeve. He is the one who lists homeopathy as his first choice for medical attention and had a flirtation with tampons. He appears to deplore nuclear energy and makes a handsome profit by leasing his land to windmill farmers.
This is a microcosm of the decline in Briain. It’s stupidity in aligning with the European Union has allowed the hardened nutters from Germany to infiltrate, but that’s OK because the Royals have long and close family ties to Germany through 2 world wars and before.
Painting themselves into a corner, the EU will become increasingly irrelevant. They might do trade anong each other in future years, but they will isolate themselves from the rest of the world, creating the makings of further serious warfare. This goes beyond dogma about carbon pollution. it sets the stage for major global tensions.
Menawhile, money that could be spent to raise living standards in poor counties is being peed against the blades of wasteful windmills and so forth.
Here is an indication of looming tension. Early this week German Chancellor Angela Merkel announced a reborn nuclear phase-out based on an “ethics report” that seems to have disregarded practical aspects of power supply and said it was possible for Germany to avoid restarting the seven reactors shut during the recent moratorium and to close the rest by 2022. Meanwhile, Electricite de France (EdF) has announced to its shareholders that it will emphasize its “core expertise and industrial knowhow” in nuclear energy as part of its goal to operate 200 GWe of generating capacity worldwide by 2020. (Sources: World Nuclear Reports 26 May and 2 June 2011.) What happens when France starts to screw Germany on exported nuclear electricity prices? Tension?

June 7, 2011 5:14 pm

jae certainly has it right. If they are successful in this endeavour to turn back the clock on industrialism in the UK , then the House of Lords may actually have some sort of meaning again! I imagine many of the greens would like to fancy themselves landed gentry with large estates filled with plenty of trees (CO2 capture devices) and serfs (green biologic workers) to work it. Ah, the life of a Lord is a green life indeed.

June 7, 2011 5:22 pm

We should call her for what she is. She’s a misanthropist. And, she cares not about the economy nor the state of affairs of Britannia. But, this isn’t unique. Here in the states, we have our share of the same Malthusian types in our upper house, too. As is true in Canada and Australia. A type of anti-patriot which delights in the demise of the nations that bore them.

June 7, 2011 5:42 pm

Some interesting links in this article:

Rick Bradford
June 7, 2011 5:56 pm

I have some advice for the people of the United Kingdom.

June 7, 2011 6:33 pm

What she – and others- fail to realise in their celebrations is that globally, they haven’t changed a thing. Sure, the UK might close the plant and those people lose their jobs. But the steel will get made somewhere else. That somewhere else is likely to be India. And India has much higher emissions intensity – meaning this will just cause more co2 to enter the atmosphere.
Ultimately the only way to stop the emissions is to stop the steel getting made at all. But nobody is mad enough to try and ban steelmaking outright. So this shell game of shifting emissions out of one’s own backyard in order to prance about at UN conventions and declare your per-capita emissions is now lower seems to be the primary driver.
It just doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. All this churn, economic damage and political fighting – and for what? Even if you’re a paid up believer in big warming – these actions make no difference to the global picture whatsoever. The only thing that will cut co2 emissions is new technologies, widely deployed and developed and promoted by free capital markets. But the greens are hell-bent on stopping that from happening as well.
I guess the only bright side to all this is that when the full idiocy of these policies is revealed to a sober (and cold) public it will finally all go away. But communism as practiced by the Soviets took 70 years to die, and was fully supported by the useful idiots of the free countries up until the day of it’s demise – and even now, they just disassociate themselves with Stalin rather than the idea of communism. So I’m not hopeful of the green utopian, anti-human dream ever dying soon, because it’s so attractive for the self-hating underachiever to blame ‘the system’ for their unhappy lives. I guess these utopian visions and delusions of grandeur are just part of the modern world with state eductation, and it’s a bug in the system we will have to work around. Certainly while the majority of public educators are paid-up closet trotskyists sanity is unlikely to prevail. I just wish the green Utopians would just go and live in their self-sufficient communes and stop bothering the rest of us with their fantasies while we go about building a better, safer, more enjoyable world for our children.

June 7, 2011 6:40 pm

“‘revenge’ for Carbon Budgets part of the Climate Change Act.” Revenge?? what a load, just read todays news, It should hit home what they’ve been doing very soon with the Uk’s public.
“£200 shock on your power bill: Biggest squeeze on families since 1920s as fuel …”—electricity-10-too.html
“Families stunned as power bills soar to £1391”
“all 319 news articles”

Berndt Koch
June 7, 2011 7:27 pm

OTT maybe… Baroness (Mullah) Worthington and the rest of the Mujihagreens are determined to introduce a Green Caliphate across Europe and as much of the world as possible.. starting in the UK. Maybe the British troops in Helmand should be fighting on their own doorstep to stop religious zealots taking over…

John David Galt
June 7, 2011 7:31 pm

The allegation that Tata is cutting jobs for “revenge” makes about as much sense as the Obama NLRB’s claim that Boeing wants to shift production from Washington to South Carolina to “retaliate” against unions.
The simple truth, in both cases, is that companies do what is best for their shareholders because that’s their job. If state or country A enacts senseless punitive taxes or regulations that cost companies money, they will seek to avoid the problem by moving operations to place B.
The fact of globalization, which prevents countries from closing their borders to trade and thus preventing their consumers from benefiting from this ability of companies to move, is not a problem, it’s a wonderful thing. But the public needs to be taught to understand its implication, which is: those who enact excessive taxes and regulations are responsible when our jobs move overseas and don’t come back. Hold them accountable!

June 7, 2011 7:41 pm

“…perhaps it just the hard economics of the real world…”
To a liberal, there’s no such thing as ‘the real world.’

June 7, 2011 7:42 pm

This could be good for the rest of the world. Perhaps they will learn from these mistakes.

Doug Badgero
June 7, 2011 7:46 pm

Someone in the old world please enlighten me. I watch the British Top Gear all the time and the hosts all seem to be reasonable logical people that see carbon regulation for the stupidity it is. Why is it that the British people are letting this occur……….in particular, what is it that allows this to happen in the UK but the nutters cannot get traction in the US? What is so different between our systems of government?

June 7, 2011 7:51 pm

Geoff Sherington “What happens when France starts to screw Germany on exported nuclear electricity prices? Tension?”
France, the new European Energy Superpower.
When the Rhine ices over and England and Spains’ wind powered money shredders are frozen solid too, France will rightfully reclaim her position at the centre of Europe. Who would have predicted that France, FRANCE!!!, would be a bastion of common sense in a Europe gone mad.
Vive la France.
(Churchill must be spinning in his grave, maybe he can be harnessed as renewable energy and he won’t be stopping anytime soon)

B. CH.E.
June 7, 2011 8:13 pm

The entropy (extent of disorder) of the human race seems to be increasing, just as it does in physics. We suddenly have demonstrations and unrest all over the world. Even our own Congress can’t get together to solve the budget problems or much of anything else. I wonder if the appeal of the AGW crowd is that they can separate themselves emotionally from the turmoil and concentrate on one “do-good” project, unsound though it may be. Let’s face it; the great majority of the world’s population has no concept of science or how the business world actually operates, so they are easily led by the Pied Pipers promising a better world. I despair of how this situation can be fixed short of Armageddon.

Gary Krause
June 7, 2011 8:16 pm

Many policy makers are so enamored with their C taxation policy that they could be sinking with the Titanic and be in denial.
Mr Sykes has the right idea, but it only applies to those of us who still have a clear mind.

Brian H
June 7, 2011 9:26 pm

Excellent developments. The much higher CO2 output per ton of steel made in India is exactly what the world needs. My Motto: “2,100 ppm by 2100 or Bust!”
Those darn flora have eaten themselves into borderline starvation; time for we fauna to pick up our game!

Brian H
June 7, 2011 9:34 pm

There’s enough “slack” in the US system for determined coalitions of common-sensical people to occasionally break through and jerk on the electoral choke-chains of the rabid political class. This is explicitly what the Tea Party has been successfully attempting to do. And they recognized that the way to do it was from the local nominating committee level on up: take over the local executives, put their own candidates in place within the party most like their own position, and PUSH.
They flipped the House, and have become the king-makers there. That blood in the water has energized them even more. The core shield they have against power corruption is that there is no central co-ordination. Just masses of people determined not to see their lives and country destroyed by ideologues.

June 7, 2011 9:55 pm

The Baroness claims it’s ‘revenge’ for Carbon Budgets part of the Climate Change Act.
No, the idea is either a considered demonization of Marx’s “Big Industry” as a cynical tactic to further her own attempts to rule [“You know sometimes Satan, he comes as a man of Peace”, Bob Dylan] or else only her own psychological projection and paranoia, based upon her knowledge of how she would act were she Tata – that is, as an equally bigoted and unhinged Zealot. She might even imagine that Tata is specifically targeting her. Therefore she essentially ends up talking about and targeting herself, while the rest of “us” have to suffer the consequences, or perhaps relocate to Texas.
But, imo, it’s all the same when it comes to the matter of Evil: everyone should know by now that good intentions don’t count, as in, “The road to Hell is paved with….” Remaining within a “saving the World” comfort bubble instead, without making the effort to get outside when you know it’s there, is also the result of an “intention”.

Roger Knights
June 7, 2011 11:05 pm

jorgekafkazar says:
June 7, 2011 at 7:41 pm
“…perhaps it just the hard economics of the real world…”
To a liberal, there’s no such thing as ‘the real world.’

Correct: it’s all socially constructed—and so they can construct socially anything they want. Wishes rule & beggars ride.

Phillip Bratby
June 7, 2011 11:17 pm

How Can We Get Out of This Mess?
It used to be that in the UK we could be proud of what our scientists and engineers had achieved over the last few hundred years. We had produced scientist and engineers such as Newton, Darwin, Brunel, Watt, Faraday – the list is endless. The list of technologies invented is also seemingly endless, from the steam engine to the jet engine, to radar, penicillin and the computer. Most importantly our scientists and engineers gave the world the industrial revolution. What the industrial revolution did was provide an unlimited supply of cheap energy. This freed the bulk of the population from the grinding poverty and dawn-to-dusk labour needed to provide sufficient food, clothing and fuel for cooking and heating to survive. Abundant energy with new technology meant that man power, horse power, wind power and water power were replaced by far more efficient engines using initially steam power produced from burning coal. This enabled huge improvements in productivity and freed the population from grinding poverty. It made possible clean water, ended food shortages and allowed huge improvements in health and life expectancy and gave us leisure time. In a word, copious cheap energy makes for a clean and prosperous society.
So why is it that those in power over us and making decisions about the future of our country are ignoring the lessons from the past? Why are they trying to limit our energy consumption by restricting its availability and driving up its cost? Do they really want to return the UK to the sort of country that existed before the industrial revolution? With the much larger population that we have today, millions will have to die if that is the case. The scientists and engineers who gave us copious cheap energy would be horrified to learn that the results of their efforts over 300 hundred years being discarded. Intense forms of energy are being ignored in favour of diffuse and intermittent sources of energy – and the technology of wind power is being imported from places like Denmark. The sheer incredulity of the situation beggars belief.
We are in the situation where, because of Government policies over the last 15 years or so, we are about to suffer from a shortage of electricity. And we are seeing the cost of energy rocketing. What the combination of a shortage of power at a higher cost means is that manufacturing will leave the country to where energy is reliable and cheap – downwards spiral
Looking back over time, one can imagine the horror of those scientists and engineers who brought us copious energy, who eliminated intermittent diffuse energy sources such as wind power. What would they think if they knew we had gone back to using wind power with technology imported form Denmark? The lessons from over 200 years discarded by technologically challenged politicians.
One can postulate that the situation arises as the result of a generation of technologically illiterate politicians. We have been led by a generation of politicians who have never worked in the real world but are just career politicians. In 14 years have had over a dozen energy ministers who have no scientific or engineering training. The last two (since energy policy has become subservient to climate change policy) have been even more divorced from reality than their predecessors. But why haven’t the politicians been getting sensible advice from their scientific advisers?
The answer to that question is that the advisers are not giving unbiased advice but are giving a false message. Scientific advice has come from the Ivory Towers and from serial bureaucrats, again people with no real-world experience. The establishment has become riven with a one-sided and biased coterie which has, unquestioningly insinuated its way into all walks of life. Why have politicians not sought out alternative information? Why has establishment accepted unquestioningly the political statement from the IPCC that “it is very likely that …..” when the IPCC produces no evidence to support this political opinion? It has produced no evidence linking global temperature to carbon dioxide concentration. It has ignored all evidence and theories to the contrary. Why does the current Coalition Government use the same advisers appointed by the previous government?
We are in the situation where all of the establishment (this includes civil servants, NGOs, the media etc) has been infected with the belief in the false science of the “greenhouse effect” theory. Why have dissentient voices been ignored; or worse why have dissentients been labelled “deniers”?
What does it mean if we continue government energy policy prescribed by The Climate Change Act 2008 and EU renewable energy targets? A return to the dark ages is inevitable.
In the UK we must:
1. Repeal the CCA
2. Drop all renewable energy targets
3. Remove all renewable energy subsidies
4. Stop all funding of man-made climate change activities – new researchers to look at natural climate change only
5. Stimulate cheap energy
6. Have long term energy research

JB Williamson
June 7, 2011 11:49 pm

Dr T G Watkins says:
June 7, 2011 at 2:35 pm
Quite right these people are not in any way evil just profoundly ignorant in any form of science or maths (sums).
Ahh yes Sums 🙂 – I vaguely remember doing them at school.
Some time ago we went into a shop to get some curtains cleaned as cleaning was 10% off that week. We had 3 curtains, so naturally the assistant gave us 30% off. I wish I had taken 10 curtains in now – maybe we could have had them done for free. With that level of understanding its no wonder we are in the pooh. (True story too).

June 7, 2011 11:49 pm

Noted on my gas bill this quarter:
Note the 24% item.
Green thinking, or politicians using green to tax ?
or both !

June 8, 2011 12:26 am

brc says:
June 7, 2011 at 6:33 pm
It just doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. All this churn, economic damage and political fighting – and for what?
The economic damage is being cause to the US, UK, UK, Australia.
Industry and money are flowing to India and a number of other developing nations.
It makes a lot of sense if your name is Rajendra Pachauri and you are employed ultimately by the likes of Tata.

June 8, 2011 12:27 am

That should have been: US, UK, Europe, Australia.

Alexander K
June 8, 2011 1:12 am

Excellent Post!
The UK has struggled for generations with nonsensical ideas imposed by the ruling elites and Baroness Worthington is merely the latest and most obvious of a long line of the barking mad who rule and have ruled with no idea of how the world actually works. Marxism has been overtaken as a threat to the Western world by the Green form of Socialism, which recognises no logic, no science and no authority except for an addiction to silly Malthusian predictions in its mad drive for Man to be returned to a primitive state, and in much smaller numbers. Make no mistake, this new elite, of which the mad Baroness is a leading member, hates humanity with a passion, evidenced by the vile and very telling video featuring the sweet young teacher exploding children who declined to be her enthusiastic followers.

June 8, 2011 2:06 am

Sometimes I entertain myself with the idea of taking one of Stalin’s speeches, replacing all instances of “proletariat” with “people of the Earth” and all instances of “trotskyists” with “climate change deniers” and see what happens. 🙂
Or even better, if I can get the resulting article published on some green site. 🙂

John Marshall
June 8, 2011 2:43 am

TATA is an Indian company so we have UK jobs being exported to the sub-continent. India will ignore all calls to reduce CO2 output.

June 8, 2011 2:50 am

Sounds to me that she is intending to make lots of money out of carbon trading. Maybe she has a better business head on her than you think.

June 8, 2011 3:00 am

Sadly, we have a media here that pays more interest in the financial dealings of FIFA corruption than that of the EU funded green movement’s influence on the poor policies of the government they elected to fix the country. The media will always blame greed/warming/drought/co2 for an rise in prices, and they will always accept the word of an ‘expert’ because it says so in their biography regardless of any lack of applicable evidence of any expertise in anything. We have a media that is only interested in soundbites, actually doing an investigation into it would be far too much like journalism. Besides, it would be off message.

June 8, 2011 3:05 am

We have had a period of debt-fuelled wealth where the population has been less concerned about public waste and more concerned about getting on with thier own lives. The cost of these measures – which generally tend to funnel a lot of money to believers or to purchase followers are now starting to bite. Europe is basically bankrupt, but the politicians are spending our grandkids money to try and keep the pyramid scheme going. When they run out of borrowed money these schemes will start to collapse, the economy with it. Democracy is dying – every single political party believes in ridiculous global warming solutions, supporting the unsustainable EU, mass immigration and grovelling to islamic fundamentalists. Fariness – or running around blind spending taxpayers money trying to deal with unintended consequences of previous leglislation – is the main business of politicians and the courts. So much money is being directed by these muppets that the press seems to be almost under government control. It won’t be until the money runs out that we can start to rebuild, and that is not looking too far away. We have spent the last few years redirecting cash to bankers which has not been used to deal with the bad credit problem. The money they were spending was not really there, and it can only be a few years before these governments become unable to fund themselves. Almost nobody in the state sector seems accountable to anybody anymore. This is going to turn really ugly.

June 8, 2011 3:57 am

A very good post Barry. Thank you

Andrew Zalotocky
June 8, 2011 4:12 am

Global warming is the new religion of the elite. Like all such religions, its main purpose is to protect their power and privilege.

J. Watson
June 8, 2011 4:13 am

Apolgies to Phelim McAleer and Ann McIlhenny, but these alarmists ARE EVIL AND WRONG, and the frightening thing is, politicians are in league with these doom-mongering human haters, and boy, are we going to pay for it in the years ahead.

June 8, 2011 5:50 am

Perhaps the folks who lost their jobs will find new work in the government. They could then be counted as as green jobs.

Barry Sheridan
June 8, 2011 5:51 am

This sort of economic illiteracy has spread wide and far, a corruption I refer to as the California Syndrome for obvious reasons. It is a route to substantial hardship for the general public, the elites protecting themselves as they always have. The resolution, and yes there is an answer, will establish itself once the ordinary of the affected nations find they can no longer indulge themselves in excessive waste and mindless distractions. Ugly realities forcing the many to finally pay attention to what is going on, of course this will have unpleasant consequences for those who have brought us to ruin.

Vince Causey
June 8, 2011 7:37 am

Doug Badgero,
“.in particular, what is it that allows this to happen in the UK but the nutters cannot get traction in the US? What is so different between our systems of government?”
Well, the political system for one thing. The British PM has more power over the legislature than the President of the US does over congress. This is due to the parliamentary system which means the government is formed from the largest party in the commons. Hence, you have an endless deluge of utterly mad and despised legislation. Only back benchers are able to provide a counter weight by breaking the party whip. But even this weak check is being attacked by party headquarters interfering in the rights of local party members to choose their own MP’s – the so called A-lists. Never has democracy been more under threat than it now is.

June 8, 2011 8:59 am

Barry Woods says:
June 7, 2011 at 2:17 pm
please note.. I do sincerely believe they all have the very best intentions, fighting for what they believe is a noble cause, just very insular and have no mechanism to contemplate that they might be wrong.

Sorry but they know full well the likely consequences of their actions. Be it excess Winter deaths or jobs lost. I’m sorry but you can’t reach green utopia without sacrifices. Normally, having been responsible for killing thousands of people you would be classed as a terrorist, here you get a peerage and lots of funds to play with.
As to having “no mechanism to contemplate that they might be wrong” – we’ll see.

M White
June 8, 2011 11:09 am

According to Wikipedea she has a degree in English literature,_Baroness_Worthington
Someone should explain it to her. It doesn’t matter how many windmills there are, you need carbon to reduce iron ore into pig iron

June 8, 2011 10:50 pm

Larry says: June 8, 2011 at 3:05 am
Very well put Larry, and I agree entirely. I do think coming out the otherside of the UK debt/growth based economy and moving towards a more sustainable system (I agree with the ‘greens’ to this extent at least.) will be a good think in the long term. Though the period between the 2 may not be that great for a lot of people though.

June 9, 2011 12:40 am

Bryony lives in greenie land and she has fairies living at the bottom of her perfect little Eden or garden, she doesn’t need to worry about keeping the wolf from the door, the UK taxpayers can do that – it’s is her rightful stipend for being such a good and righteously eco aware girlie.
Trouble is Bryony, when the industry closes and there is no manufacturing left, there won’t be any employment, meaning no jobs, no taxes and consequently free loading Socialist nutters like you will be destitute – because the only real skills you possess, will be more than useless in your new ‘back to the dark ages’ green Utopia.
Larry 03.05 = you are so right.

June 9, 2011 6:26 pm

Here is a good article about California’s craziness:

June 11, 2011 3:47 am

Our Rt. Hon’s want us all to get on our push-bikes and turn off our heating and shut down our industries and pay massive tax increases to subsidise uneconomical energy production.
However, “the four ministers in the Department of Energy and Climate Change, which he (Huhne) runs, ran up a total bill of more than £176,000 (on chauffeur-driven cars and taxis) since they took office last May”. That is about
$ 285,850.00 .
“In the year between May 12 2010, when the Coalition took over, and April 30 this year, Chris Huhne spent £46,194 on taxis and private hire vehicles.
“Two junior ministers racked up even more: Gregory Barker’s bill was £47,650 and Charles Hendry’s was £48,895, while Lord Marland spent a relatively modest £34,021.”
Hendry is my MP. I met him once. I never want to meet him again and hell would have to freeze (the devil believes in global warming by the way) before I put an x beside his name.

June 11, 2011 4:48 pm

mfosdb says:
June 11, 2011 at 3:47 am

Your “x beside his name” suggests an upgrade of the ballotting process to me. You’d have a choice: either a check-mark beside someone you wish to vote for, or an X beside someone you want to vote against, to be counted as a minus-vote. It would functionally mean “Anyone but this guy!”

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