Commentary: Don’t pretend carbon reduction won’t change lives - Richard Tracy

Many activists have been sounding the alarm over Earth’s changing climate. “Scientists,” they say, are in agreement that the climate is changing and that it’s mankind’s fault. It’s not a unanimous agreement, but that doesn’t matter. It also doesn’t matter that Earth’s climate has always changed, and for a variety of reasons. 

Even long before homo sapiens arose as the dominant species on the planet things like solar flares, volcanic activity, and collisions with meteors had significant impact. While we haven’t been clobbered by a large meteor lately, climate change elitists ignore solar flares and volcanic activity as current factors.

Suppose American skeptics grant that climate change is real and that it’s humankind’s fault. Where’s the perspective? With roughly 331 million people the United States has 4.3 percent of the world’s population, while Vermont with 623,989 has less than one-tenth of one percent of our national population. Ergo, relative to the entire planet, Vermont’s tiny population is statistically irrelevant. Put another way, Vermont (and New Hampshire for that matter) could evaporate tomorrow and the planet wouldn’t notice, the global climate would be unaffected.

The dominant ideological mindset in the Vermont legislature is unmoved by such arguments. Elected officials seem determined to foist upon Vermont taxpayers plans that will have a heavy cost in both taxation and adverse economic consequences. Depending upon such plans’ severity, it wouldn’t surprise me if a mass exodus arose that could severely disrupt property values. We must not pretend that a carbon tax, coupled with the demonization of fossil fuels, and heavy taxation thereon, won’t change lives. Frankly, one of the biggest reasons I moved to New Hampshire was because I could see that train coming and with the one-party rule that Vermonters have accepted, derailing that train just wasn’t going to happen.

A similar reality exists at the national level. As mentioned, the USA has about four percent of the world’s population, whereas Red China has about 18.5 percent and India has 17.5 percent. It therefore must be recognized that whatever the USA does or does not do about climate change will be dwarfed by the action or inaction of our two largest economic competitors. Note that China, in particular, uses a tremendous amount of coal to generate electrical power while the US, under Obama-Biden, essentially regulated several coal-fired electric plants out of business. It is crucial to recognize and accept that both China and India compete with American enterprises for market share, and have been constantly undermining what was once the American economic powerhouse. Inside-the-beltway politicians and the Federal Reserve have been propping up our national economy with the band-aids of deficit spending and monetizing the debt, that is, by creating currency out of thin air with no underlying increase in market production of goods and services.

Climate change cultists don’t care about any of the above. They embrace the crusade as it will win them elections and power: power to control our energy usage, power to dictate which industries are acceptable, power to shut down energy sources they don’t like in favor of those which are politically correct, such as wind and solar. Reliance on the latter sources has already led to rolling brownouts in California. Such phenomena could easily be in the future of the northeast according to some analysts.

Among the Johnny-come-lately politicians who are suddenly concerned about the alleged climate emergency is Basement Joe Biden, who spent four decades-plus in D.C. as a “go along to get along” kind of politician. Now he deems it to be politically expedient to embrace the Green New Deal. Estimates about the total cost of the GND vary widely (upwards of $50 trillion), but for D.C. Democrats, money is no object. Who cares if the United States is already the largest debtor nation in existence? There are votes to buy.

In the name of climate change should Americans allow their standard of living to nosedive while the worst polluters on the planet do little to nothing? I think not.

You can reach Dick Tracy at [email protected].



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  • Richard Tracy
    published this page in The News 2020-09-25 16:31:50 -0400