Foreign Policy: Democracy is the Enemy of Climate Action

Man standing up to a Tank in Tiananmen Square
Brave Man standing up to a Tank in Tiananmen Square. By Published by The Associated Press, originally photographed by Jeff Widener, Fair use, Link

Guest essay by Eric Worrall

h/t Dr. Willie Soon; According to Foreign Policy, moving “beyond Democracy” towards an authoritarian Chinese system would allow governments to override the climate obstructionism of older voters, but they have concerns about the societal disruption the transition to authoritarianism would cause.

DEMOCRACY IS THE PLANET’S BIGGEST ENEMY

Young people care a lot about climate change—but most of them can’t vote. Here’s how governments can adapt to accommodate them.

BY DAVID RUNCIMAN
JULY 20, 2019

In today’s Britain, a rare public figure can bring together Brexiteers and Remainers, Conservatives and Labour. Yet the teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg did just that on a visit to London in April, when she was feted by British politicians from across the political spectrum.

It would have taken a very brave politician to downplay the stark moral power of this message. None of her British interlocutors—from Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn to would-be Tory leader Michael Gove to the speaker of the House of Commons, John Bercow—dared. Instead, they all accepted the charges laid against them and promised to do better.

If democratic politicians are to make good on their promises to Thunberg and her peers, one of the largest barriers in their way are their own electorates. And citizens may become more antagonistic as governments push forward on new policies. Tackling climate change is going to require significant behavioral change: in what we eat, where we live, and how we travel. Current patterns of food and energy consumption are unsustainable. If we and the planet are to survive, that will mean less meat, smaller homes, and fewer cars.

If electoral democracy is inadequate to the task of addressing climate change, and the task is the most urgent one humanity faces, then other kinds of politics are urgently needed. The most radical alternative of all would be to consider moving beyond democracy altogether. The authoritarian Chinese system has some advantages when it comes to addressing climate change: One-party rule means freedom from electoral cycles and less need for public consultation. Technocratic solutions that put power in the hands of unelected experts could take key decisions out of the hands of voters.

But there are two reasons to doubt that this is what the climate emergency needs. First, any transition from a democratic to a post-democratic system would be massively disruptive. The barriers in the way of action on climate are also barriers to other forms of radical political change. There would be resistance, including from older generations. Second, it would not satisfy Thunberg’s generation either. She was not asking for less democracy. She was asking for a democracy in which she could be heard.

Channeling more energy into these other forms of democracy—into citizens’ assemblies and civil disobedience, rather than elections and party-building—will change our politics drastically. But it may be the only way to ensure our planet does not change beyond recognition.

Read more: https://foreignpolicy.com/2019/07/20/democracy-is-the-planets-biggest-enemy-climate-change/

Entertaining as it is to watch a supporter place Antifa and Extinction Rebellion style protests on the spectrum of political activity which leads to Chinese style authoritarianism, I think we need to challenge these ugly climate activist attacks on representative democracy.

Organisations ranging from the Australian Government Broadcaster to former NASA GISS Director James Hansen, to Bill Gates to high profile university academics have praised totalitarianism as the solution to getting their own way on climate policy. Climate activists might be slowly losing the battle for hearts and minds, but they don’t plan to go down quietly.

I remember when one of my teachers taught us about the convenient crisis, the excuse which is used by power crazed murderers to sweep freedom aside, and install themselves as tyrants. But this was only one day of one class, and the teacher who provided that lesson left the school soon afterwards.

Nobody knows what happened to the brave man who stood up to the tank in Tiananmen Square. The story is two men ran out of the crowd and dragged him away from the tank, and bustled him off somewhere, though witnesses disagree whether the two men were worried bystanders or Chinese police.

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144 thoughts on “Foreign Policy: Democracy is the Enemy of Climate Action

  1. The Chinese government doesn’t give a SNIP about your “climate emergency.” They do what all totalitarian governments always do; whatever they can get away with.

    The Chicoms are going to have to kill a whole bunch of Hong Kong residents to bring formerly free people in line. Will other free peoples let them get away with it? Don’t bet the rent money.

    • The left don’t want to eliminate democracy to save us from ‘the climate emergency’. They want to push ‘the climate emergency’ to eliminate democracy.

      Democracy has allowed them to gain power, and now they have it they don’t want to give it up just because the people vote against them.

      • I think that antifa/brownshirts have been primed to be a tool at some point in time. Perhaps by some hand like Soros/like minded billionaires. Then there is that occasional news item where some politician or media type personaility broaches the concept that Trump is ready to take the presidency by force, if he loses in 2020. Those are not randomly made off the cuff remarks, imo. The comments are meant to inflame the minds of the antifa types. Some of them will take that message to heart like a mantra. That is where someone can become highly radicalized to the point where they may get the desire to act first to their perceived danger to the nation.

        • Nope, Antifa is the same Antifa that existed back in those days as well. They were always violent revolutionary types.

      • Orwell knew this as it was apparently openly touted by the big banking families at one time and he felt that even after two disastrous attempts to create their superstate world they would try again. Unfortunately once the date passed people forgot that big state sized projects are usually very late and very over budget but trudge on regardless without very firm action to stop them.

          • It took two weeks to clean the ground-in flesh from the streets of Beijing after Tiananmen. Tanks had turned people into mush. Many thousands were killed.

            That’s what happens when people currently directing Antifa are running a country.

    • The threat of totalitarianism is so much more real and imminent to the passengers of planet earth than Man Made Climate Change ever could be.

      All these elitists promoting this Political Science called Global Warming see themselves as part of the ruling bureaucracy when their evil plans have been carried out. They will of course be supplied with all the fossil fuel energy required for all their wants and needs.

      • The very fact that China, Russia, India, and all of Southeast Asia don’t give a RIP about the fake “climate emergency” tells me all I need to know. The lefties’ fever dreams are now morphing into full-on delirium, they’re incoherent and internally inconsistent now.

        • It’s interesting that Lefties automatically assume that a totalitarian government will have views consistent with what they believe. I’d say that’s true for everything except climate change dogma.

        • The mob won in 2016 …. a minority mob, with massive help from Russia’s absolute dictatorship.

          The battle will be re fought next year.

          • If’n you’re relying on the Massive Russian Help aspect, best not be hoping for a different result in next years battle ? 🙂

          • PS: A minority wins every time, since most people either can’t or don’t bother to vote.

          • “Duane July 29, 2019 at 4:34 am
            The mob won in 2016 …. a minority mob, with massive help from Russia’s absolute dictatorship”

            Patent absurdity.
            Prove your claim,both about the minority mob and help from Russia.
            Break the “help” from Russia down to dollars per capita.
            N.B. Facebook posts in Russian definitely do not count.

          • LOL. If Facebook ads were able to outplay all of western world media, all of hollywood, and all the institutions telling people to vote for Clinton — you have more problems than just Russia.

          • How so? The only Russian interference I’ve seen was with their involvement in the anti-fracking and BLM movements.

          • Duane – any statement along these lines simply reveals yourself as a total fraud, who supports an abuse of power on the part of Democrats that pretty much amounts to treason.

          • The battle will be re fought next year.’

            Yeah – you progressives are getting your seditious lies out early this time.

          • MarkW — hard to guess which was first for Duaney-boy, the hatred or the rotted brain….

          • No…the democrat mob was in the streets tearing things apart…because they couldn’t accept the election results….to all Leftist a democratic republic is a threat to their utopianism.

    • Tombstone

      Good comment. We already seem to have Plato’s ‘Philosopher Kings’ running govts and all types of ‘woke’ organisations.

      tonyb

    • Told you so…

      On July 4, 2019, I published the article
      “THE COST TO SOCIETY OF RADICAL ENVIRONMENTALISM”.
      https://wattsupwiththat.com/2019/07/04/the-cost-to-society-of-radical-environmentalism/

      There was a reason why this article was published on July 4. My article begins:

      Ever wonder why extremists attack honest scientists who oppose global warming and climate change hysteria? Ever wonder why climate extremists refuse to debate the science?

      IT IS BECAUSE GLOBAL WARMING AND CLIMATE CHANGE ALARMISM WAS NEVER ABOUT THE SCIENCE – IT WAS ALWAYS A FALSE NARRATIVE, A SMOKESCREEN FOR THE TOTALITARIAN OBJECTIVES OF THE EXTREME LEFT.

      The novel “Nineteen Eighty-Four”, written by George Orwell in 1949, foresaw a time “when much of the world has fallen victim to perpetual war, omnipresent government surveillance, historical negationism and propaganda”. It now appears that Orwell had remarkable foresight.

      Here is the real “Nineteen Eighty-Four”, an interview that year with ex-KGB officer and Soviet defector Yuri Bezmenov, who described their long-term program to ideologically undermine the western democracies. Jump to 1:07:30 for Bezmenov’s discussion of “ideological subversion”. It is all about manipulating the “useful idiots” – the pro-Soviet leftists within the democracies.
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y3qkf3bajd4&feature=youtu.be

      One commenter on the video wrote: “this is crazy, almost everything predicted by this guy is already happening.” Bernie Sanders, AOC and other socialist-Democrats are openly saying what Bezmenov predicted decades ago. The last democracies are under attack by leftist extremists.

      All over the world, countries that once had a future have fallen into dictatorship, poverty and misery. It is notable that of the ~167 large countries in the world, most are totalitarian states, and all but “the chosen few” citizens of these countries suffer under brutal leftist dictatorships.

      Radical greens have used wildly exaggerated stories of runaway global warming and climate change to stampede the gullible, in order to achieve their political objectives. The greens claim to be pro-environment, but their policies have done enormous environmental damage. Radical greens have also been destructive to humanity, causing millions of deaths. I wrote recently:

      “Modern Green Death probably started with the 1972-2002 effective ban of DDT, which caused global deaths from malaria to increase from about 1 million to almost two million per year. Most of these deaths were children under five in sub-Saharan Africa…”

      “…radical greens (really radical leftists) are the great killers of our time. Now the greens are blinding and killing babies by opposing golden rice…”

      “The Green movement is really a smokescreen for the old Marxists – and they are the great killers of our age.”

      [end of excerpt]

          • Kevin wrote about Justin Trudeau:
            “But then he’s got the brain of a pea.”

            Apparently so Kevin – but now think about all the pea-brains who voted for him!

            I’m going to start an election campaign aimed at those who voted for Trudeau:

            It will have a big poster of Justin, and the statement:

            IF YOU VOTED FOR JUSTIN TRUDEAU, DO YOUR COUNTRY A HUGE FAVOUR:
            STAY HOME NEXT ELECTION! YOU’RE ‘WAY TOO STUPID TO VOTE!

    • Funny you say that … the world’s oldest continuous Republic was born as a democracy too – a democratic republic. The United States of America made the mold.

      Republics cannot last anywhere near as long as the USA has unless it is also a democracy. Republics without democracy always morph into dictatorships – which are essentially monarchies – the diametric opposite of a republic.

      • The USA is essentially a modified version of what the founders knew at the time, that is to say the British system but with a written Constitution, and what is essentially a monarch who is regularly selected by public acclamation ?

        So with all due respect to the Cousins, the mold that was made was hardly ground breaking, merely a sensible modification to a system that had been shown to work reasonably well 🙂

      • Not exactly. The Founders had earlier examples of representative government to examine. They were trying to avoid the arbitrary and unjust nature of crown government and at the same time avoid repeating the mistakes that had doomed earlier experiments at representative government. It is no accident of speech that Franklin, when asked what form of government we were to have, replied “A republic if you can keep it.” He said nothing about democracy.

      • One of my learned friends recently suggested that the USA Declaration of Independence was derived in part from Scotland’s Declaration of Arbroath, written in 1320.
        [excerpt]

        “For as long as but a hundred of us remain alive, never will we on any conditions be brought under English rule. It is not for glory, nor riches, nor honours that we are fighting, but for freedom — for that alone, which no honest man gives up but with life itself.”
        _____________________

        As the saying goes “If it’s na’ Scottish, it’s crap!” 🙂

        • ALLAN MACRAE

          Wha’s Like Us – Damn Few And They’re A’ Deid

          The average Englishman, in the home he calls his castle, slips into his national costume, a shabby raincoat, patented by chemist Charles Macintosh from Glasgow, Scotland.
          En route to his office he strides along the English lane, surfaced by John Macadam of Ayr, Scotland.

          He drives an English car fitted with tyres invented by John Boyd Dunlop of Dreghorn, Scotland, arrives at the station and boards a train, the forerunner of which was a steam engine, invented by James Watt of Greenock, Scotland. He then pours himself a cup of coffee from a thermos flask, the latter invented by Dewar, a Scotsman from Kincardine-on-Forth.

          At the office he receives the mail bearing adhesive stamps invented by James Chalmers of Dundee, Scotland.

          During the day he uses the telephone invented by Alexander Graham Bell, born in Edinburgh, Scotland.

          At home in the evening his daughter pedals her bicycle invented by Kirkpatrick Macmillan, blacksmith of Dumfries, Scotland.

          He watches the news on his television, an invention of John Logie Baird of Helensburgh, Scotland, and hears an item about the U.S. Navy, founded by John Paul Jones of Kirkbean, Scotland.

          He has by now been reminded too much of Scotland and in desperation he picks up the Bible only to find that the first man mentioned in the good book is a Scot, King James VI, who authorised its translation.

          Nowhere can an Englishman turn to escape the ingenuity of the Scots.

          He could take to drink, but the Scots make the best in the world.

          He could take a rifle and end it all but the breech-loading rifle was invented by Captain Patrick of Pitfours, Scotland.

          If he escapes death, he might then find himself on an operating table injected with penicillin, which was discovered by Alexander Fleming of Darvel, Scotland, and given an anaesthetic, which was discovered by Sir James Young Simpson of Bathgate, Scotland.

          Out of the anaesthetic, he would find no comfort in learning he was as safe as the Bank of England founded by William Paterson of Dumfries, Scotland.

          Perhaps his only remaining hope would be to get a transfusion of guid Scottish blood which would entitle him to ask “Wha’s Like Us”.

          “nemo me impune lacessit” which translates to “no one provokes me with impunity” the motto of the Order of the Thistle first used on the coins of King James VI. of Scotland.

          • Excellent post, HotScot my friend.

            Suggested reading for all Scots, and all the rest – who wish they were: 🙂

            How the Scots Invented the Modern World: The True Story of How Western Europe’s Poorest Nation Created Our World & Everything in It
            September 24, 2002
            by Arthur Herman
            An exciting account of the origins of the modern world

            Who formed the first literate society? Who invented our modern ideas of democracy and free market capitalism? The Scots. As historian and author Arthur Herman reveals, in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries Scotland made crucial contributions to science, philosophy, literature, education, medicine, commerce, and politics—contributions that have formed and nurtured the modern West ever since.

            Herman has charted a fascinating journey across the centuries of Scottish history. Here is the untold story of how John Knox and the Church of Scotland laid the foundation for our modern idea of democracy; how the Scottish Enlightenment helped to inspire both the American Revolution and the U.S. Constitution; and how thousands of Scottish immigrants left their homes to create the American frontier, the Australian outback, and the British Empire in India and Hong Kong.

            How the Scots Invented the Modern World reveals how Scottish genius for creating the basic ideas and institutions of modern life stamped the lives of a series of remarkable historical figures, from James Watt and Adam Smith to Andrew Carnegie and Arthur Conan Doyle, and how Scottish heroes continue to inspire our contemporary culture, from William “Braveheart” Wallace to James Bond.

            And no one who takes this incredible historical trek will ever view the Scots—or the modern West—in the same way again.

  2. “…but they don’t plan to go down quietly.”

    No they don’t, by Jove.
    I, for one, intend to enjoy listening to them go down very noisily.

  3. A transition from a democratic to a post-democratic system was a feature of the Third Reich and we saw how well that turned out. Things could be done fast in Post=Democracy, and damage from unchecked power could follow equally fast.

  4. When Greta Thunderbox, a mentally unbalanced Swedish teenager, commands the attention of elite tyrants at Davos, anything is possible.

    • Don’t be forgettin that it was a 2 or 3 year old pretty little girl picking Daisies in an open field ……. that got LBJ elected POTUS.

    • In addressing our UK MPs she had a bunch of the most ignorant people in the country gathered together. No chance of any challenging questions from them.

  5. Yeah, China is Soooooo concerned about the climate. How many coal fired plants do they have these days and how many are they adding on a month basis? And soooo concerned about the environment – look to their destructive practices WRT rare earth mining.

    They aren’t hiding their agenda any more – they want western style democracies/republics destroyed. And once that happens we won’t hear peep out of the AGW crowd.

    • “And once that happens we won’t hear peep out of the AGW crowd.”

      Aye, because then it would be mission accomplished.

      Not without a fight mind you. They might lose too and the payback will be rather epic. I look forward to the pathetic whinging….” we were doing what we did for the good of all, especially the cheeeldren”.

      Democrats care so deeply about children after all……………….

    • The AGW crowd if they attempted what they are doing in the western democracies would be sent to re-education camps or run over with tanks.

      Could you imagine how long the extinction rebels would last in China 🙂

    • Rhoda R

      I believe China is either building, planning or financing somewhere between 1,000 – 1,200 coal fired power stations as we speak, some 700 in China itself.

      And can we blame China for their endeavours to improve the lives of its population? Not really. We are the masters of our own destiny, as are they theirs.

      We stand by and watch as China grows like topsy. It’s Belt and Road initiative whilst, ostensibly, unethical is probably no less questionable than British Colonisation centuries ago.

      If Belt and Road is unethical then we have no one to blame but ourselves for not fully engaging in competition to combat it. Instead, we choose to hamstring ourselves by wringing our little handises over a phenomenon which has singularly failed to appear. Many listen to an unscientifically trained, obsessively coached, autistic child, who because of her condition is prone to obsessive behaviour.

      Honest, courageous scientists who are merely saying “let’s think about this climate change thing before going off half cocked” are routinely hounded and vilified by a baying mob, complete with pitchforks and torches, unwilling to accept an alternative.

      As much as these people believe they want socialism, they want it on their terms, and I’m afraid, socialism just doesn’t work like that, ever, particularly in the face of a totalitarian giant like China.

      • The “China Miracle” so beloved by the left could never have happened without a $Trillion a year customer…US….and also without stealing and implementing another $Trillion worth of our patents and technology.

        Chinese economic growth without the USA would have been pathetic.

        China will lose out to other countries in Asia and South America in the coming decades. And China will lose out to increasing automation in the USA. China’s economy will stagnate. (Compounded by serious demographic problems through 2050.)

        • China benefited greatly over the last decades through its mercantilistic, beggar-thy-neighbor economic system. That is at an end. Various other low-cost countries have developed efficient industrial systems and automation has helped Western democracies to up low-cost industrial output. Additionally, the U.S. (through President Trump) is no longer acquiescing to lopsided trade and technology transfers.

          China will never again obtain the past growth rates that placated their populace. Their autocratic leaders are staring at a Soviet Union-type ending. It won’t be pretty because they will use force to stay in power.

          Hong Kong is the bellwether. If the Chinese autocrats use force to stay in charge, it will cost them greatly and tie down their large armies. I assume that Western democracies will take economic and diplomatic measures. This will not end peaceably.

    • Rhoda R July 28, 2019 at 11:32 pm

      Yeah, China is Soooooo concerned about the climate. How many coal fired plants do they have these days and how many are they adding on a month basis?

      Get educated, ….. Rhoda R, ….. study some factual science.

      Iffen China built 20,000 “CO2 belching” coal fired power plants during the next 10 years it would have no effect on earth’s climate.

      But it would surely help China feed its population because gardens grow better and faster with increased atmospheric CO2 ppm.

  6. Nobody knows what happened to the brave man who stood up to the tank in Tiananmen Square.
    Maybe nobody at Wikipedia knows what happened. My understanding is that he was arrested, tried, convicted, and executed.
    For decades, there was a history and current affairs blackout on Tiananmen Square. It could not be mentioned for any reason in any context. The blackout was total.
    Then, seeming inexplicably, government controlled media started producing media news items on Tiananmen Square, just like any other location in China. It turned out that the blackout had been so complete, that a whole new generation of news reporters had never heard of Tiananmen Square. They had no idea that there ever was a blackout, much less that it was still in effect. Obviously, they had never heard of the events there.

    • My understanding is that he was arrested, tried, convicted, and executed.

      That seems likely doesn’t it? But as far as I know, the people who know aren’t putting their name on the record.

      • As an acquaintance of mine put it:
        Those who know, don’t talk.
        Those who talk, don’t know.

    • “The story is two men ran out of the crowd and dragged him away from the tank, and bustled him off somewhere, though witnesses disagree whether the two men were worried bystanders or Chinese police.”
      I don’t know, but my best guess of the chances of each is 0% and 100% respectively.

      I highly recommend this book, written by an eyewitness to Tiananmen Square:
      Red China Blues, by Jan Wong.
      https://www.amazon.com/Red-China-Blues-Long-March/dp/0385482329

      Most massacres are forgotten quickly. Who remembers the Tlatelolco massacre?
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tlatelolco_massacre

  7. It is sickening to see a western educated writer advocate for a totalitarian government as if all the barbarism of totalitarian governments had suddenly been washed from history. For the writer to advocate in favour of China’s version of barbaric totalitarian government further sets aside the fact that China is ramping up CO2 production both within its own borders and around the world at a pace that makes all of the western worl’d attempts at CO2 reduction irrelevant.

    Advocating for China’s form of government to fight climate change renders the definitions of barbarism and hypocrisy as meaningless terms in an increasingly mindless debate.

    • Nothing New, remember “the usefull fools” in many western countries during the Cold War.

    • They either believe that the tales of death and hardship are just lies put forth by those who oppose their vision of a perfect system, or they believe the deaths are an acceptable price.

      After all, they are implementing heaven on earth.

      • Oh, it’s worse than that. Many on the left lie awake at night fantasizing about murdering everyone who opposes them.

        Of course, those also tend to be the first ones lined up against the wall when the revolution comes; the Great Leader doesn’t want those who worked tirelessly to overthrow the previous government around now he’s in charge. They’re far too dangerous to his new-found power.

      • That was Eric Hobsbawm’s view. A famous British historian, rose-tinter of the Soviet Union, and a faithful communist to the end.

        Eric Hobsbawm said that mass murder of 15-20 million is an acceptable price to pay if it produced a workers paradise.

        Progressives always have, and still do today, valorize agents of Hobsbawm’s paradise.

  8. “None … dared … they all accepted the charges laid against them and promised to do better …”.

    How could these politicians so humiliate and debase themselves, it’s inconceivable that past comparable office-holders would have allowed it.
    Little Greta is reminiscent of Dickens’s ‘infant phenomenon’, daughter of Mr and Mrs Crummles, who was supposedly ten years old dressed such, but actually closer to eighteen:
    Crummles: ‘… the idol of every place we go into, sir. We have had complimentary letters about this girl, sir, from the nobility and gentry of almost every town in England’
    Nicholas: ‘she must be quite a natural genius’
    Crummles: ‘… language was not powerful enough to describe the infant phenomenon. I’ll tell you what, sir … the talent of this child is not to be imagined. She must be seen, sir—seen—to be ever so faintly appreciated’.

  9. One problem is that authoritarianism has always led to worse outcomes than democracy whatever the issue at hand.
    Whatever the question, history shows that authoritarianism is never the answer yet we have so many in positions of influence who have never learned that lesson.
    Maybe they deliberately ignore history since it encourages opposition to their thirst for power.

    • Those in charge made out pretty good, and these people are convinced that their crowd will be the ones in charge.

  10. “The authoritarian Chinese system has some advantages ”

    One of the main advantages is that it has a free pass to do whatever it wants to do under the Paris “Agreement”.

    It is only the countries “hindered” by democracy which have adopted suicidal commitments to destroy their own life styles for no good reason.

    The naivety of the left
    , which is so frustrated at not getting their own way that they are ready to be subjected to authoritarian rule in the delusional idea that this will mean they then will get their own way, is astounding.

    If they are so keen on the chinese form of government, maybe they should go and live there for a few years. See how good it really is.

  11. Either these people are ignorant of the real world outside their urban comfort zone or they have an agenda. History tells us that the first to be swept up and taken away in the three ton truck are the intellectualist activists, piled in clutching their spectacles and overnight bags by brutal peasants with guns.

    • …… exactly, and where do they think they would be in this heirarchy? Up against a wall would be my best guess.

    • Once the useful idiots have outlived their usefulness, they’re gotten rid of before they figure out how much they’ve been used.

  12. Who in the hell is the nitwit who wrote the Foreign Policy article?

    Professor Runciman became was Head of Department in October 2014 to October 2018. He gave his Inaugural Lecture on “Political Theory and Real Politics in the Age of the Internet” on Tuesday 24th February 2015, which can be viewed online here.

    Current research projects:
    Conspiracy and Democracy: a five-year Leverhulme-funded research program based in CRASSH

    http://www.conspiracyanddemocracy.org/

    https://www.polis.cam.ac.uk/Staff_and_Students/professor-david-runciman

  13. Mr David Runciman effectively calls for the overthrow of a democratic order forged by centuries of struggle and for which many have sacrificed themselves. He ought to be arrested for high treason.

    • No just send him to China and tell him to try protesting or speaking out against the government there.

    • WW1 & WW2 spring to mind, when Britain, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, the “Free” French, & of course the United States of America (who supplied most of the men, guns, tanks, aircraft, ships, munitians, via that evil wicked free-enterprise capitalist system), got together to prevent such an occurrence twice last century! If what Mr Runciman says is so, then all those lives, all that sacrifce, all that suffereing & misery, the mamed & wounded physically & mentally, were all for nothing, & we will have learned nothing! He reminds me of all knowing all wise Vladimir Illych Ullyanov, who never fired a shot in anger, just ordered some useful idiots to do it for him! AtB

  14. Say hello to the UN’s next attempt to gain control over national governments. All in the name of saving the world from the Climate Emergency.

    Last time they were going to use America’s cash to buy that influence but thankfully President Donald J Trump told them to take a hike.

    They have fallen back on that old favorite, fear. Fear marketed by the media with the never ending stream of “extreme weather” reporting and stories from scientist activists. They will use this fear to take away our democratic rights because President Trump won’t be in office after 2024.

    As they say, buckle up, it is going to be a rough ride.

    • War was the mother of UN. It must attend its honour to mama. Welcome big three.

      This crazy, crazy world…

  15. “If electoral democracy is inadequate to the task of addressing climate change, and the task is the most urgent one humanity faces, then other kinds of politics are urgently needed”

    It’s really hard to tell three lies in one sentence. Bravo.

    • …. these people spend months thinking about this kind of stuff and it comes naturally to them. Don’t give them any further credit for their lying abilities.

    • Once you consider the truth of the first word imposed on the rest of that sentence, you can stop right there. There IS no “catastrophe,” there WILL NOT BE any “catastrophe,” so all the blather that follows the “IF” is meaningless.

  16. The World is still largely Tribal in its thinking. The USA to a outsider has a slow notion Civil War.

    Any hope for a intelligent conclusion over something as simple as the
    properties of a life giving gas to one group of people, but to the other group its a pollutant.

    As said on a number of occasions we will just have to wit until the
    lights and Industry cease to function , and even then expect our so called leaden to smoothly take up new positions on the matter.

    Its all about control and thy will do their bet to continue this using the
    modern tools of a Media that they can control.

    Expect other things which thy will use to frighten us with, I se plastic being the next big thing. Never mind that fighting plastics uses is far more than shopping bags, straws and coffee cups. Its now a fully integrated part of our modern society, with connections to fossil fuel chemistry.

    I recall a very good film “”Seven Days n May””. It may well be that
    something like this will finally happen as Democracy sadly appears to be failing us.

    MJE VK5EL:L

    • “The World is still largely Tribal in its thinking. The USA to a outsider has a slow notion Civil War.”

      Yes, the USA is in a slow-motion civil war. At least, the Left is on a full-war footing. The Right is just starting to get up to speed, with the exception of Trump who has been full speed since he came on the scene. Trump’s spirit of fighting back is starting to rub off on more and more Republicans, and it couldn’t come too soon.

      Fortunately, if my guess is correct, the 2020 elections will settle a lot of this civil war because I believe the Democrats are going to suffer a huge defeat at the polls and are going to realize they and their radical positons don’t have near as much public support as they think they do.

      If I’m wrong, and the Democrats win, then we will probably lose our country to the authoritairans and criminals in the Democrat party who will continue the undermining of the U.S. Constitution and our freedom of choice, started by the Obama administration. A new, dishonest Democrat president will not make the same mistakes Obama made and will use the power of the federal government to take away our voting preferences by hook or by crook and the public will never be the wiser Had Hillary been elected, all the criminality perpetrated by the Obama administration on her behalf would never be known because she and her cronies would be in charge of what is known and what is not known..

      So I would suggest that any U.S. citizen concerned with the future should get out and vote in the coming elections. Let the voice the Founding Fathers gave you be heard. The Democrats will take away your voice if given the chance. Don’t give them the chance.

  17. “as Democracy sadly appears to be failing us.”

    Eh? The US voters and the UK voters? Seems to be working to me.

    • 30 years ago, the press and media just brainwashed the public into voting for the politicians they wanted. The press and those like the climate protestors had very much the same outlook. And if any politician or party ever emerged that the press didn’t like, then they were ruthlessly destroyed by a tirade of ad hominem attacks which could only be countered …by getting the press to write their side (which they of course never did).

      Then along came the internet, we suddenly got to hear what “public opinion” really was and it wasn’t what the press had been telling us, the press couldn’t play their old trick of attacking a politician like Trump and never letting the public hear from them and suddenly the people started voting for politicians we want, rather than the press (and their buddies) told us we should have.

      And now the press and their buddies just want a return to the “good old days” — when they, and not the voters, decided which politicians got to power.

      • Mike Haseler (Scottish Sceptic)

        I think the advent of internet politics was kicked off, well and truly, by Trump.

        He was the first politician to really recognise the power of social media. He, of all Democratic politicians, suffered the worse negative press in the MSM and decided to fight back using the tools he had to hand.

        But more than that, in very few words on Twitter he expressed what many were thinking but daren’t articulate in our obsessively left wing PC environment. He gave us all the courage to say that objecting to an immigrant condemning the country that made her welcome, sheltered her and helped her succeed, is not racist.

        • And Trump’s use of that medium has kicked off the greatest expression of pure hate I have ever seen in the leftist media. Everyday without fail one can find examples of the hate the leftist media not only aimed at Trump and nearly every thing he does, but at anyone and everyone that voted for him. The veil of plausible deniability of bias has disappeared.

          As for Foreign Policy? Paul Homewood had a recent post on the relative decline of wealth of the EU. Of course his post limited it’s scope to the economic effects of the massive investment in “green energy”. But IMO there is much more to it that that. What we are witnessing is Trump flexing the economic muscles of the US capitalist system in a way no post WW II president ever has. He is playing economic hardball. Trump is ending the far too long extended era that began with the Marshall Plan where the economic and trade playing fields have been tipped not only in favor of Europe but also Japan and then later China. He is trying to end the disproportionate costs for defense of Europe and Japan and others that we US citizens have borne during that era. In short he is ending the proportion of US subsidization of the socialist European countries. If Trump is reelected to a second term and there are not major changes in those countries that are the economic base of the EU the decline of relative wealth in Europe will start to increase and will most likely result in social/political revolts that will make BREXIT and the yellow vests look like a tempest in a teapot.
          And of course China’s economic rate of growth will be stopped and start to decline.

  18. Power corrupts. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

    Corruption is probably the greatest enemy of civilization. link It absolutely kills economies.

    Democracy provides a safety valve. We have President Trump because the people voted against the corrupt Democrats. He won the nomination because people voted against the corrupt Republican party machine.

    China has not stamped out corruption, so don’t use that as your model.

    Whistle blowers in America don’t thrive. They are usually punished somehow. In China, they really don’t thrive. Nobody finds out about them and they just disappear. We aren’t there yet. Whistle blowers protect us against corruption. They should be celebrated and given medals. Obama’s idea was that such people are traitors when they expose government criminality and should be in jail.

    Marxism has killed maybe a hundred million people in the twentieth century. link How about Venezuela … need I go on?

  19. if they dont make plastics then theres a LOT of byproduct going to pile up…
    and replacing plastics with wood ceramics etc will also mean using fossil fuels to run the machinery or kilns etc
    but then we’re supposed to be running out of sand for glass too.
    tsk tsk whatever will they do?
    back to eating off of slabs of bread with a wooden spoon soon?

    • Having thought about and observed environmentalists long and hard for a very long time, I think they more or less fall into three camps: the puppet masters getting stinking rich off it (globalist power brokers, governments, environmental NGOs); the delusional Marxist/anarchist greens (Sea Shepherd, Greenpeace, Earth First! Extinction Rebellion, antifa, etc.) who will go to any length to push their agenda, not excluding mayhem; and the useful-idiot sock puppets, who cover every imaginable demographic from the Harrison Ford types to the witless youths canvassing your block to your dumbass coworker chatting politics around the water cooler.

      Of these, the ideological greens really do want us to go back in time to some imaginary golden age where we all grubbed roots and berries and lived in harmony with our animal friends. They genuinely believe the only path to “saving the planet” is to return the human species to a relict population suffering the way our ancestors did – and the poorest people in the developing world are suffering right now – and have not been backward about saying so. Because of this they are extremely dangerous. Do you think the plots of novels like “Kalki” or movies like “12 Monkeys” came out of thin air? There really are a lot of people like this, right here and now.

      It’s going to get a whole lot worse before it gets any better; on my less optimistic days I tend to think this is just a natural historical cycle: that we are inevitably headed toward civil war and the possible collapse of what we think of as western civilization, to be followed by another dark ages. The left certainly is behaving as if they want that. The puppet masters are too financially invested, and their puppets too emotionally invested, to allow rationality to enter the arena.

      Time to go do some rowing and guitar playing, this is depressing!

  20. Isn’t it strange!

    When the climate cult want to ignore the evidence they make “science” a democracy where a 97% consensus against the evidence becomes the truth.

    But when the climate cult want to ignore the will of the people, then “democracy” becomes a dictatorship.

    What do they want? The dictatorship of the evidence (aka science) or the democracy of the people?

  21. David Runciman’s thought processes would probably have led him to signup to the Gestapo organisation some 80 years ago. It is difficult to make out whether he is innocent or malevolent.
    Whatever: He should be put in the bin; preferably airtight so the smell is kept in check.
    I speak metaphorically.

  22. To reduce emissions we all need to adopt the same political system as the country that emits 30% of atotal global emissions.

  23. “First, any transition from a democratic to a post-democratic system would be massively disruptive. ”
    No sh*t Sherlock!

  24. Converges towards socialism. No lie is too bold to achieve that most desirable goal. Only then can utopia emerge. Only then can humanity realize the perfect society.

  25. Once in a while, they are stupid enough to announce what their real objective has been all along.

  26. Funny how authoritarianism is a it less attractive if they are not the ones to be put in charge.

    Somehow they never get around to specifying the means nor justification for their ascendency.
    Strange that. Somehow, not one o the post-democratic goons we’ve seen take power in the 20th or
    21st century has seen fit to put academic environmentalists in charge of things.

    Least of all the Chinese, as many have noticed; or are those surgical masks folks wear from time to time in
    Beijing a fashion statement?

  27. No one in their right mind would turn the running of their household over to their teenagers, or even to their college aged kids. But people seriously contemplate turning over the economy and government to them?

    If we had to depend on people under, say, even 30 years of age to run everything, the grid would have collapsed
    in about 8 hours, and in two days our cities would resemble the scene from Lawrence of Arabia where Lawrence runs desperately around the hospital looking for a tap that actually runs water. There is simply no critical mass in the lower age brackets who can keep a modern society running.

    • cities would resemble the scene from Lawrence of Arabia where Lawrence runs desperately around the hospital looking for a tap that actually runs water.

      And, of course, the Arabs couldn’t keep the electricity going.

      The postmodern Neo-Marxist SJW man hating feminists had better learn some history. If you collapse civilization, things become very miserable until it gets going again. I had friends who survived Germany at the end of WW2. I would say their situation was much more dire than that of the people I know who survived the dust bowl … and that, dear friends, is saying a lot.

  28. Of course.
    Progressives are all about tyranny to pursue social justice.
    Climate justice is merely one of all issues needing progressive authoritarian regimes.
    They know best what is for the greater good.
    Noble cause corruption is now an epic progressive plague.

  29. Tom Friedman approves this message:

    One-party autocracy certainly has its drawbacks. But when it is led by a reasonably enlightened group of people, as China is today, it can also have great advantages. That one party can just impose the politically difficult but critically important policies needed to move a society forward in the 21st century. It is not an accident that China is committed to overtaking us in electric cars, solar power, energy efficiency, batteries, nuclear power and wind power. China’s leaders understand that in a world of exploding populations and rising emerging-market middle classes, demand for clean power and energy efficiency is going to soar. Beijing wants to make sure that it owns that industry and is ordering the policies to do that, including boosting gasoline prices, from the top down.
    Our One-Party Democracy, The New York Times, 8 Sep 2009

  30. I have nothing more to add to this, except maybe: if it’s got to come to war to retain what freedom we have left, so be it.

    • “Michael H Anderson July 29, 2019 at 8:18 am
      I have nothing more to add to this, except maybe: if it’s got to come to war to retain what freedom we have left, so be it.”

      The majority of guns are owned by Trump supporters.
      The majority of the U.S. police forces support Trump supporters.
      The majority of the U.S. Border Patrol supports Trump supporters.
      The majority of the U.S. military support Trump supporters.
      Etc………
      ALL of the above support freedom over tyranny….
      If it came to war, the fanatical left would last maybe 2 days. (depending on how long it takes them to unglue themselves from whatever object they decided to glue themselves to..Republicans and Conservatives are patient. They will wait until the idiots unglue themselves before irradicating them…Fair is fair…LOL

      • It’s true that conservatives have been patient – much too patient for much too long if you ask me, because once the left got the thin edge of the wedge in they just kept shoving. Enough of this latter-day hippie $hit informing everything in our society!

  31. To show much he believes in these “Greenie Weenie” fairy tales, President Trump is now selling plastic “Trump Straws”. Made from 100% American Carbon ! Just gotta love his sense of humor…..MAGA !

  32. “Channeling more energy into these other forms of democracy—into citizens’ assemblies and civil disobedience, rather than elections and party-building—will change our politics drastically. But it may be the only way to ensure our planet does not change beyond recognition.”

    BAHAHAHAHAHAHA! Yeah, good luck with that nonsense. “Citizens assemblies”? What the frack are those? Oh wait, we already have ’em – they’re called “town meetings”. And as far as “civil disobedience”, there aren’t too many people who have the time/inclinitation to possibly being teargassed, firehosed, and/pr arrested, but yeah, go ahead and see how far that gets you.

  33. ‘the stark moral power of this message’

    These types ALWAYS attempt to claim the moral high-ground while they consistently trash any legitimate morality.

  34. So Agenda 21 has gone from conspiracy manifesto to road map with little recognition as most people aren’t aware of it or the fact it’s being driven by AGW. The easy part is over for the UN and the hard part is convincing successful Western Democracies to forgo their lifestyles so the rest of the world can better theirs. Not to catch up, maybe incrementally get better if at all. Which is doubtful given past Marxist attempts. Good luck with that.

  35. In theory a benign, intelligent, beneficial authoritarian rule is possible.

    Let’s say Trump had absolute power in the United States (the Leftists are fainting right now). He would have this country straightened out in about 18 months with good, workable programs for defense and healthcare and border security and inner-city development zones and about a million other projects to benefit everyone in the United States. A benevolent dictatorship could get things done much more efficiently by focusing the nation’s energies in those directions. He wouldn’t have to put up with small-minded, delusional people in order to get things done.

    I believe Trump would do exactly that under those circumstances because I think Trump is a person who genuinely puts the U.S. before himself, so I think his policies would benefit us and not him. I know the Democrats would take a different view, but that’s my view. Their TDS view is completely delusional.

    The only problem with benevolent dictators/Kings is they are very, very, very, few, and far between, and we can’t count on that being the case so the next best thing is to have a Republic like the United States that was created specifically to prevent dictators, benevolent or otherwise, from gaining power.

    The Obama administration almost succeded in undermining the U.S. Constitution and the U.S. electoral process in their pursuit of power when they used the full power of the federal government to attack Trump and their other political enemies.

    The only cure for this is to seriously punish those who tried to overthrow our form of government. If these criminal actions are not punished, then they will be repeated in the future and they might be successful the next time.

    Trump needs to be reelected if this is to be done. If Trump is not reelected, then the new Democrat president will proceed to stop all future investigations of the Obama administration and the Deep State and the Authoritarians will have won.

    Then our only hope will be that they are benevolent dictators. There’s not much chance of that though, considering the currently insane behavior of the Democrats.

    • “The only problem with benevolent dictators/Kings is they are very, very, very, few, and far between”

      Kings may not be benevolent, but they want to leave a viable, rich country for their kids. And, if they don’t, one of those kids will probably put a knife in their back.

      Elected politicians don’t have to care about anything beyond the next election, so many just take all the ‘contributions’ they can get before they’re kicked out. It requires a strong social moral compass to prevent them abusing their power to the limits of their abilities… and we no longer have one.

    • In theory a benign, intelligent, beneficial authoritarian rule is possible…The only problem with benevolent dictators/Kings is they are very, very, very, few, and far between…

      They don’t exist. Human ones, anyway. Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely.

  36. The planet is in no danger, but these nitwits keep wringing their hands and carrying on in such a theatrical way that it almost makes me laugh.

  37. Room for one more honey……in the Muslim detention facilities in western China. Twenty more compounds are planned or under construction.

    WSJ
    Chinese officials have applied the term vocational training broadly, including for detention camps where Uighurs say they were tortured and forced to renounce Islam.

    Adrian Zenz, who researches Xinjiang’s camps, said the detention centers and shorter term job-training programs form a continuum of coercion. “In either case, these types of training are not really voluntary but government-mandated.”

  38. “The authoritarian Chinese system has some advantages when it comes to addressing climate change…”

    Mos def. That’s why China is the world’ largest emitter of CO2.

  39. Excellent post, HotScot my friend.

    Suggested reading for all Scots, and all the rest – who wish they were: 🙂

    How the Scots Invented the Modern World: The True Story of How Western Europe’s Poorest Nation Created Our World & Everything in It
    September 24, 2002
    by Arthur Herman
    An exciting account of the origins of the modern world

    Who formed the first literate society? Who invented our modern ideas of democracy and free market capitalism? The Scots. As historian and author Arthur Herman reveals, in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries Scotland made crucial contributions to science, philosophy, literature, education, medicine, commerce, and politics—contributions that have formed and nurtured the modern West ever since.

    Herman has charted a fascinating journey across the centuries of Scottish history. Here is the untold story of how John Knox and the Church of Scotland laid the foundation for our modern idea of democracy; how the Scottish Enlightenment helped to inspire both the American Revolution and the U.S. Constitution; and how thousands of Scottish immigrants left their homes to create the American frontier, the Australian outback, and the British Empire in India and Hong Kong.

    How the Scots Invented the Modern World reveals how Scottish genius for creating the basic ideas and institutions of modern life stamped the lives of a series of remarkable historical figures, from James Watt and Adam Smith to Andrew Carnegie and Arthur Conan Doyle, and how Scottish heroes continue to inspire our contemporary culture, from William “Braveheart” Wallace to James Bond.

    And no one who takes this incredible historical trek will ever view the Scots—or the modern West—in the same way again.

    • You forgot about golf and Donald Trump, who is presently trying to preserve Western Civilization.

  40. The next big problem will be the simple fact that automation of industry, and computers in officers will result in far fewer real jobs.

    Solution, well there are two basic ones, make it law that a husband wife household only one can be the breadwinner.

    Second, reduce the working week to 20 hours, but the snag will be with the present high cost of living, and the way of life which is a cost factor, the persons working the 20 hour week will demand the present wages or even more.

    The present crop of politicians simply refuse to face up to this coming situation.

    MJE VK5ELL

  41. I just had an absolutely brilliant idea! Instead of ditching democracy, just restrict the vote to those paying net income tax. That gets rid of most meat-eating, fuddy-duddy over 65s who think they can still drive a motor, AND excludes most teen-aged totalitarians.

  42. Governments can be compared based on one metric. How well the government serves the people, compared to how much the people are forced to serve the government.
    Progress is made through competition for customers by suppliers. Without competition we get a reduction in value, because human nature chooses leisure over work, if given the choice. Without the incentive to better your own life through diligent effort, systems of limited or non-existent competition fail to deliver increases in value to customers who have no choice of suppliers.
    This is true for the free market of goods and services, and is also true for choices in government. No choice in government means no incentive to rule in a way that is beneficial to the public. And even if you wanted to be a “benevolent dictator” you cannot possibly predict the same choices that millions of free people will choose when given the freedom to do what is in their own best interests.
    If economics is boring to you, and you still think that socialism is good for the poor, here is a good read for the Joe Six-packs of the world:
    https://www.amazon.com/gp/new-releases/books/4221/ref=zg_b_hnr_4221_1

    • Russ, yours is one of the best descriptions of why a free person would never accept socialism. No competition equals no advancement. Do any of you remember Ma Bell?

      If one has no desire to improve, socialism works great to allocate shortages. Be very afraid of those voters that want government to provide for them. Free stuff come with bills.

  43. I think we need a proof of concept to be done before we give up representative democracy.

    Our climate agitators should move to China and agitate there. They when China has stopped building coal plants and started replacing them with wind turbines and solar panels I will climb on board the totalitarian bandwagon.

  44. The Watermelons have been slobbering for Soviet and CHICOM totalitarianism for a long time. The New York Times oped section being in the “vanguard” as usual. My message to them is simple: the “transition to a post democratic society” will indeed be “disruptive”. To your heartbeats and brainwaves. Don’t try that in the USA, folks.

  45. “Nobody knows what happened to the brave man who stood up to the tank in Tiananmen Square. The story is two men ran out of the crowd and dragged him away from the tank, and bustled him off somewhere, though witnesses disagree whether the two men were worried bystanders or Chinese police.”

    What’s the difference – any way we would know / not know how the story evolved. Let’s assume a diplomatic ending.

  46. Never going to happen though. In the end, majority of the voters aren’t going to commit suicide or voluntarily live in poverty and the radical left will not and can not force the public to do what they say. People will talk about the coming apocalypse because it’s a popular thing to do, but in the end, they will not do anything meaningful about it because they do not truly believe it. Eventually this whole extinction and climate change scare will die out and most people will forget it ever existed. We will just become another page in the history book. Until the tactic will be discovered again and the cycle will repeat itself.

  47. In 1989, the Iron Curtain fell and with it the communist tyranny of the Soviet Union and its client states. Borders opened, people started to travel and we Westerners could have our first real view of what the Red empire was on the inside. We were appalled. Life conditions there were extreme. People stood in line for hours in order to get basic food, the environment was a sham, everything was downtrodden and grey. The more you went East, one felt as if one was in the Middle of Africa minus the weather. A hermetically controlled society where every fart anyone made was controlled just threw its entire environment to the dumpers. That’s what China does today – don’t believe it: Go to a bigger city and take a jog on a normal day. Or drink from one of the rivers. At the same time, the democratic West had cleaned up its sins of the past to a degree our forefathers did not even dream of. Dictators are no environmentalists, they are just tyrants.

  48. Sandy Cortex is obviously the Pied Piper of the college crowd, all primed from kindergarten with fear propaganda to vote for the hippest climate change Authoritarian. Also explains the attempts by democrats to lower the voting age to 16.

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