Obama’s global-warming folly

I’m amazed this made it into the Washington Post – Anthony

by Charles Krauthammer

The economy stagnates. Syria burns . Scandals lap at his feet. China and Russia mock him , even as a “29-year-old hacker” revealed his nation’s spy secrets to the world. How does President Obama respond? With a grandiloquent speech on climate change .

Climate change? It lies at the very bottom of a list of Americans’ concerns (last of 21 — Pew poll). Which means that Obama’s declaration of unilateral American war on global warming, whatever the cost — and it will be heavy — is either highly visionary or hopelessly solipsistic. You decide:

Global temperatures have been flat for 16 years — a curious time to unveil a grand, hugely costly, socially disruptive anti-warming program.

Now, this inconvenient finding is not dispositive. It doesn’t mean there is no global warming. But it is something that the very complex global warming models that Obama naively claims represent settled science have trouble explaining. It therefore highlights the president’s presumption in dismissing skeptics as flat-earth know-nothings.

On the contrary. It’s flat-earthers like Obama who refuse to acknowledge the problematic nature of contradictory data. It’s flat-earthers like Obama who cite a recent Alaskan heat wave — a freak event in one place at one time — as presumptive evidence of planetary climate change. It’s flat-earthers like Obama who cite perennial phenomena such as droughts as cosmic retribution for environmental sinfulness.

For the sake of argument, nonetheless, let’s concede that global warming is precisely what Obama thinks it is. Then answer this: What in God’s name is his massive new regulatory and spending program — which begins with a war on coal and ends with billions in more subsidies for new Solyndras — going to do about it?

The United States has already radically cut carbon dioxide emissions — more than any country on earth since 2006, according to the International Energy Agency. Emissions today are back down to 1992 levels.

And yet, at the same time, global emissions have gone up. That’s because — surprise! — we don’t control the energy use of the other 96?percent of humankind.

At the heart of Obama’s program are EPA regulations that will make it impossible to open any new coal plant and will systematically shut down existing plants. “Politically, the White House is hesitant to say they’re having a war on coal,” explained one of Obama’s climate advisers. “On the other hand, a war on coal is exactly what’s needed.”

Net effect: tens of thousands of jobs killed, entire states impoverished. This at a time of chronically and crushingly high unemployment, slow growth, jittery markets and deep economic uncertainty.

But that’s not the worst of it. This massive self-sacrifice might be worthwhile if it did actually stop global warming and save the planet. What makes the whole idea nuts is that it won’t. This massive self-inflicted economic wound will have no effect on climate change.

The have-nots are rapidly industrializing. As we speak, China and India together are opening one new coal plant every week. We can kill U.S. coal and devastate coal country all we want, but the industrializing Third World will more than make up for it. The net effect of the Obama plan will simply be dismantling the U.S. coal industry for shipping abroad.

To think we will get these countries to cooperate is sheer fantasy. We’ve been negotiating climate treaties for 20 years and gotten exactly nowhere. China, India and the other rising and modernizing countries point out that the West had a 150-year industrial head start that made it rich. They are still poor. And now, just as they are beginning to get rich, we’re telling them to stop dead in their tracks?

Fat chance. Obama imagines he’s going to cajole China into a greenhouse-gas emissions reduction that will slow its economy, increase energy costs, derail industrialization and risk enormous social unrest. This from a president who couldn’t even get China to turn over one Edward Snowden to U.S. custody.

I’m not against a global pact to reduce CO2. Indeed, I favor it. But in the absence of one — and there is no chance of getting one in the foreseeable future — there is no point in America committing economic suicide to no effect on climate change, the reversing of which, after all, is the alleged point of the exercise.

For a president to propose this with such aggressive certainty is incomprehensible. It is the starkest of examples of belief that is impervious to evidence. And the word for that is faith, not science.

Source:  Washington Post

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TRBixler

Even with this scathing article he buys the B.S.
“I’m not against a global pact to reduce CO2. Indeed, I favor it. But in the absence of one — and there is no chance of getting one in the foreseeable future — there is no point in America committing economic suicide to no effect on climate change, the reversing of which, after all, is the alleged point of the exercise.”

Kaboom

It’s not faith if core tenets have been disproven. It’s superstition.

Chute Me

So, he’s against unilateral economc suicide, but “indeed”, he favors it if it’s global?

dejavu

follow the $$$$$$

GlynnMhor

As more and more years pass with no sign of a return to the halcyon days of rapid global warming typical of the end of the the 20th century, more and more people of the 21st century are turning away from the fear mongery of the AGW alarmism movement.
But politicians seem to be a bit slow at the best of times, and it will take another lustrum, or maybe even two, of no warming before the panic stricken carbon strangulation policies we see today are finally reversed.

George

Guess which journalist just rose to the top of the IRS audit list.

I wondered what Joe Romm at Climate Progress was whining about:
http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2013/07/06/2252281/media-still-overlooks-90-of-global-warming-washington-post-still-wont-fact-check-colummnists/
His response was to cross post Nuccitelli nonsense.

Nice summary: It is the starkest of examples of belief that is impervious to evidence. And the word for that is faith, not science.”

Jimbo

The war on climate is a diversion away from the concerns of most Americans. You could say it’s deliberate. The problem is most American don’t care about slight warmth, the greening of the biosphere.

Otter

‘the other 96 percent of humankind’
If he’d said 97%, he’d have gotten more attention.

DC Hammer

Well said Dr. Krauthammer. And we’re turning over this job killing, economy busting “carbon pollution” end run over to the fake-e-mail-sue-and-settle-cozy-up-to-Big-Green EPA? Come on America, stand your ground and fight!

Ed Reid

GlynnMhor @ July 7, 2013 at 9:34 am
It’s not hard to understand the politicians. They smell a revenue stream. The same is true of the bureaucrats at the (dis)United Nations. After all: “Climate is de facto how we redistribute wealth.” (Ottmar Edenhofer, UN, IPCC) Surely they can take some “off the top” in the process.

Mike M

Wow! Imagine what Krauthammer will write when he finally realizes that human CO2 has a ZERO measurable affect on earth’s temperature?

Just Steve
Gareth Phillips

Syria? If he keeps you guys out of another Iraq, Afghanistan or Vietnam he will have been one of your best Presidents ever and will have saved countless lives of young Americans. This site may hate his politics with a vengeance, but you could have done with him in the run up to the pointless wars both our countries have become enmeshed in. Don’t focus on Syria Mr.President, just stay out of it. If climate change distracts you so much the better, it may be expensive, but not as expensive in money and wasted lives as war. I”l go and get my tin hat.

Neill

Gareth Phillips says:
July 7, 2013 at 9:53 am
A two-fer: so simplistic as to be meaningless, as well as wildly off-topic.

Jeremy

The article fails to point out that the biggest democratic party campaign donors and the powerful are all on the green gravy train (Goldman Sachs etc etc). All Obama cares about is money and votes and a great job upon retirement, It has nothing to do with doing the right thing for America.

David, UK

I’m liking that this reporter is using the more honest term global warming instead of the catch-all, meaningless climate change (climate disruption seems to have never got off the ground – it was too stupid of the US government to think the general public would embrace such a term).
Whatever this journalist’s general beliefs – e.g. that the whole planet would benefit from reducing CO2 plant food – I nevertheless salute his honesty. The debate is not over climate change, it is over global warming.

Anthony Scalzi

In my local paper, The Waterbury Republican-American, the OP-ED page regularly features columns from James Barrante, a local college chemistry professor, dismantling various AGW arguments.
http://www.rep-am.com/shared-content/search/index.php?search=go&o=0&l=25&s=&r=&d1=&d2=&q=barrante

DirkH

Gareth Phillips says:
July 7, 2013 at 9:53 am
“Syria? If he keeps you guys out of another Iraq, Afghanistan or Vietnam he will have been one of your best Presidents ever and will have saved countless lives of young Americans. This site may hate his politics with a vengeance, but you could have done with him in the run up to the pointless wars both our countries have become enmeshed in.”
What war did Obama stop? See, Gareth, the drone strikes in Pakistan, Somalia, Yemen, etc go on. The “most transparent administration in history” only has a while back declared that they won’t be reported any more. Oh you didn’t know that? maybe got your information from MSM? Yeah ok, crawl back under your rock then.

ckb42

Gareth: If Chamberlain were alive today he could well have written your post.
Ask Iraqis and Kuwaitis if they think the Gulf War was pointless. While America cannot police the world we can pick our battles carefully. Where fanaticism is in play it is folly to now think we can cover our eyes. Isolationism delays the inevitable conflicts or trades the liberty of Western Societies for the liberty of others. It is a trade our leaders are usually unwilling to make – at least those who know their history.
If your point is to keep your head down until the fight is at your door, I can at least understand that. If your point is that you keep your head down thinking the fight will never come to your door – I hope the tin foil hat protects you.

Steve Oregon

I see no mystery here.
It’s worse than faith or superstition. If the perpetrators were merely pretending it was their faith it would be less offensive and not so dastardly.
However we are witness political chicanery of the worst kind commingled with and exacerbated by the many interests and causes benefiting directly and indirectly from institutionalized advocacy by and for government influence, revenue and control .
Obama is mendaciously attempting to firm up this mega global warming mission in order to stabilize and preserve the countless other parasitic causes, influence and revenue streams.
Even from cold blooded party interests the Democrats cannot afford the calamitous embarrassment and systemic implosion from a AGW collapse.
If AGW collapses they and many other interdependent groups will not be able to avoid being branded as fraudsters and shamed by millions. They will lose their credibility, their donors and their votes.
There is no level of massive self-inflicted economic wound they will NOT view as preferable to their own demise.
This is the most expansive and corrupted self interest story in the history of human kind.
It has infected government and academia at every level in every location.
Without some miraculous cure the parasitic perpetrators will choose to suffocate the human experience before surrendering.
War is hell. For mankind this is worse.

Mike Kelter

Anthony, why are you surprised that Krauthammer’s essay got published in WaPo?
WaPo’s adoring liberal readers have been starved for red-meat with all the attention being given to Obama scandals with the NSA, IRS, DOJ, HHS, and other three-letter government words that garner four-letter words from the American public, both left and right. Judging from the reader response, the WaPo alarmists got exactly what they wanted, short of publishing an article by Anthony Watts. They got fresh meat to devour.
Can’t say I agree with all that Krauthammer said in the article, especially with respect to “not opposing a CO2 pact. . .” I reckon he needed to make that statement so that he could still attend Washington cocktail parties and so that Steve Zwick followers don’t burn down his house. Considering the climate in Washington–which needs changing badly–this is an understandable caveat.
Members of Congress and their staffers read WaPo paper edition–it is important that they periodically see articles opposed to the current regulatory proposals. These are being “fast-tracked” for a September 20, 2013 EPA rule revision. I’ll guarantee that EPA, OMB, and OIRA review of these regulatory changes will have as much transparency as FISA, NSA, ObamaCare, and ObamaCare combined. Since the new regs will fall under the Clean Air Act duly passed and amended by Congress, I would think that Congress needs to be aware of how the Act is being administered.
WUWT is read by many smart people. Maybe some of these smart readers can help me with a few questions:
1. What provisions in the CAA allow Presidential authority to modify emission standards for existing power generation plants?
2. What processes must the EPA undertake to get new rules approved in a manner that has reasonable Benefit/Cost ratios.
3. What scientific proof must the EPA provide that CO2 must be regulated?
I thank anybody in advance for their kind assistance.

I let out a cheer that astonished my cat, when I read, “It is flat-earthers like Obama,” but then let out a sigh when he temporized with, “For the sake of argument, nonetheless, let’s concede that global warming is precisely what Obama thinks it is.”
For the sake of argument? We have been arguing this over and over for fifteen years! It’s fifteen years since Mann produced his “hockey stick.” It has been debunked over and over and over, up, down and sideways. For the sake of argument? I’m sorry, but the argument is over. Briffa’s recent graph was just one more nail in the coffin. What do we have to do to bury the darn thing? A stake through it’s heart?

Ian W

The net effect of the Obama plan will simply be dismantling the U.S. coal industry for shipping abroad.
For a president to propose this with such aggressive certainty is incomprehensible.
Unless the aim is the destruction of US industry and nothing to do with ‘global warming’.

Latitude

Global temperatures have been flat for 16 years…….
I’m not against a global pact to reduce CO2. Indeed, I favor it.
and there is no chance of getting one in the foreseeable future —
====
what is it with these loons….that they feel they have to placate

focoloco

That country is famous for religious cult suicides… I guess this fall in the same category?

Stephanie Clague

What is CO2, a natural component of the atmosphere and a harmless trace gas and plant food. There is no real evidence it does or indeed can influence the climate in the way and to the degree the alarmist eco corporate side asserts, its is a political tool to forcibly reduce consumption and manipulate demand for fossil fuels. The alarmist side has been very successful in falsely accusing CO2 and it has since been accepted as true in the collective mind of the MSM.
That and only that is the real reason why CO2 has been systematically demonized and set up as a pollutant by a political class genetically unable to tell the truth. The only viable method of weaning ourselves off fossil fuels would be to exploit them to the fullest while new technology driven by a vibrant free enterprise economy moves forward to exploit new technologies and methods of energy production.

csanborn

My understanding is that CO2 emissions are a boon to mankind. As we increase our emissions, mankind will benefit ever more. CO2 is one of the currencies of one of our planet’s life-cycles.

OldWeirdHarold

People surprised that a politician will actually go ahead and destroy the economies of entire states aren’t looking at the precedent for all of this: the Northern Spotted Owl decision, and the destruction that rained on certain logging communities in the Pacific Northwest.
This led directly to the suicide cult of Curt Cobane, who was from the post-spotted owl town of Aberdeen, WA. Aberdeen is still a rusty dump, 2500 miles from the midwestern ‘rust belt’. It’s a has-been hole that’s never coming back. It’s an eyesore for Seattlites on their way to the ocean resorts.
West Virginia, I’ve seen your future, and it looks like Aberdeen. Brought to you by Environmentalism, Inc.

Kevin R.

And when the United States impoverishes itself this WILL ruin national defense. Our natural resources will still be there ready to be exploited and other countries will want those abundant resources. An self-impoverished United Stated is a vulnerable United States. By hook or crook other countries will swoop in like birds of prey or like vultures.
What Obama is doing is terrible for prosperity and our national defense, too.

Tom J

‘I’m not against a global pact to reduce CO2. Indeed, I favor it.’
I’m not sorry to say that Krauthammer completely loses me with that statement. A conservative supporting international governance in energy rationing? Wow!

DaveF

Why don’t you want America to commit economic suicide just like us Brits?! We’ve just opened a £1.9 billion offshore 175 turbine windfarm near the Thames estuary that produces – wait for it – 630 Megawatts when the wind is blowing! Suicide is painless; come on in, the water’s lovely.

Reblogged this on If You Voted For It — You Own It and commented:
Charles Krauthammer is one of my favorite pundits for giving his readers significant insight into the political problems of the day, and potential solutions. He has not disappointed me on global-warming, but I do not understand why he supports CO2 reduction when it so important to plant growth and increased productivity.

Justthinkin

“is either highly visionary or hopelessly solipsistic”
How about simply assinine and narsissitic? He can vote present for this,but not Syria,Egypt,Somalia,etc. So’s how that 100 mil for his vacation working out? This guy isn’t even a politician.A blatant psycho out for himself,and his following Agenda 21.

Actually the Wash Post includes Krauthammer’s column, once a week. They can’t be too happy about the things he says in it, though.

TeeWee

Solipsistic: What a great word.

Jim G

“Which means that Obama’s declaration of unilateral American war on global warming, whatever the cost — and it will be heavy — is either highly visionary or hopelessly solipsistic. You decide:”
Neither, he is being intensionally destructive of a country, economic system and culture which he intensely dislikes. It is obvious from his personal history, past associations and most of the actions he takes as president.

What [are] billions in more subsidies for new Solyndras — going to do about it?
—————————————————-
It will syphon off money for his friends. They erect Potemkin-village factories, call them “green”, apply for and get gov’t funding, then declare bankruptcy and evaporate with the money.

Jim G

Tom J says:
July 7, 2013 at 10:43 am
“‘I’m not against a global pact to reduce CO2. Indeed, I favor it.’
I’m not sorry to say that Krauthammer completely loses me with that statement. A conservative supporting international governance in energy rationing? Wow!”
Being right on some things does not preclude being an idiot on others. Not sure if he has any scientific education but, after all, there are plenty of supposed scientists who would agree with him about CO2, that 0.039% of our atmosphere without which the Earth would be a dead planet.

Charles Krauthammer is a featured columnist for the Washington Post. He is their pet conservative, so he has to temper his comments, or they will get someone more malleable.
I don’t think Krauthammer is doing anything more than throwing a sop to the newspaper with his ‘global warming’ comments. His main thrust in this article was not over global warming, it was at the ineptitude of the Obama Administration, and Krauthammer is right on target.
As for global warming, readers here know where the planet is, where it has been, and where it is likely to be again — all despite any input from human activity, which is so minuscule that its effect cannot even be measured.
The central problem is having a president who has never held a real job, or met a payroll, and who has had everything handed to him on a silver platter. Someone like that cannot help but make serial bad decisions, because he has been protected from the repercussions of life experiences that the rest of us have had. Obama has never been made to pay for his mistakes.
I wonder why no reporter has ever investigated Obama’s shady background? No one at Columbia can even remember him being a student there. No one! And how did he get into Harvard? What about questions surrounding his Social Security number, and his obviously fabricated birth certificate? Why did he Abstain from almost every vote in Congress? Where has he ever worked in the private sector? And what law authorized him to spend $200 million of taxpayers’ money on an African trip — only the latest jaunt, out of his continuous foreign travels, in which he takes along his extended family members and various free riders, all expenses paid by the taxpayers — people who hold no official positions in government?
And no one investigates how his Administration got to Chief Justice John Roberts — the one solid vote that everyone knew would go down against Obamacare? They flipped Roberts, it is glaringly obvious. Roberts consistently gave clear messages that he believed Obamacare was unconstitutional, even during oral arguments. His flip-flop was a total surprise to everyone. They got to Petraeus, and they got to Roberts, no question. The only question is: how?
There is a wealth of opportunity for any investigative reporter worth his salt. Someone could make a real name for themself; become a household name world-wide. So why has no one — no one at all — taken on that challenge? There is a huge story there, for anyone who wants to be the next Woodward/Bernstein. Have they all been intimidated?
Inquiring minds want to know.

Joe in Biloxi

I check to see what Krauthammer has to say every day. Stop by WUWT as often.

Neill

dbstealey says:
July 7, 2013 at 11:17 am
Stanley Kurtz wrote “Radical-In-Chief” about Obama’s history – extremely well-researched. Otherwise, the Left has a hammer-lock on our media, the public sector and the academy.

Gunga Din

TeeWee says:
July 7, 2013 at 10:56 am
Solipsistic: What a great word.

===================================================================
I had to look it up. Yes, it is a great word to describe the CAGWers.
I can understand the “For the sake of argument” approach but I don’t understand his welcoming a Global solution to solve a problem which does not exist.
I hope that when he said he favored CO2 reduction was still in “For the sake argument” mode but wrote it poorly or, perhaps, someone edited his text.

Tom J

Jim G says:
July 7, 2013 at 11:13 am
‘Being right on some things does not preclude being an idiot on others. Not sure if he has any scientific education…’
Charles Krauthammer is trained a a psychiatrist. That’s not quite the same as a scientific education but he should have a technical medical knowledge. So I would think he would have at least a rudimentary knowledge or awareness of CO2 in nature’s life cycles.
Thanks for your insight.

Theo Goodwin

“I’m amazed this made it into the Washington Post – Anthony”
I get your point, Anthony. Krauthammer is the best analyst among the few conservative journalists that remain and he continues to have a lot of clout. That is why the article was published. That said, the Washington Post does offer some regular conservative voices that are first-rate, including Jennifer Rubin and George Will.

johnnythelowery

If O’Bama buys it then it’s nothing less than the foundation of a war with China seeing as they are on a coal-firing plant-opening tare that will bring about our demise. And as for bringing to a halt the developmental aspirations of the 3rd world; when they ask “hey, what about us”, we can answer, as maybe once heard at a Navajo breakfast..”piss on the fire, we’ve made out toast!”

As far as being genuinely conservative you never can really trust Krauthammer. Like in August 2009 he said he was “shocked” by the Tea Party protests and that there would certainly be a backlash. Or worse I think, during the gas price spike of 2008 he came out for a national 55mph speed limit. That, Jimmy Carter’s prime achievement, was horrible. By the time of repeal even the Democrats were mostly on board.
I don’t mind a soft conservative. But Krauthammer’s positions are just too erratic or unpredictable. There’s plenty of better and more reliable talking heads that Fox could put on. And he’s obviously on board with Chris Christie and Jon Huntsman in believing the leftist global warming scam. No, we don’t want an international agreement to limit CO2. That’s the whole point of what we are fighting. Geez. That’s exactly the globalization of govt and the curtailment of industrial society that the warmist loons want. Krauthammer should be ashamed, and perhaps should be off the air.

Just Steve: Thanks for the link. That was an enjoyable read.

“I’m not against a global pact to reduce CO2. Indeed, I favor it.”
Uh, why?
If our CO2 emissions aren’t causing a detectable problem, why worry?