An exploration of the radical reworking of our daily lives environmentalists strive to effect through extensive governmental regulation.
by Austin Raynor
Anthropogenic global warming—the scientifically questionable climate trend propounded with near-religious zeal by environmentalists—is a complex and poorly understood threat that may well be more effectively combated by flexible, market-driven innovation than by cumbersome and expensive government regulation. It may even be the case that atmospheric conditions can be altered simply and cheaply.
Consider, for instance, the suggestion by Dubner and Levitt, authors of Superfreakonomics, that we pump sulfur dioxide into the atmosphere through a hose attached to a fighter jet in order to mimic the effects of Mount Pinatubo’s massive eruption in 1991, which shot so much sulfuric ash into the atmosphere that the earth’s temperature cooled an entire degree for several years.
Unsurprisingly, climate elitists are unimpressed with any solution that does not demand a reorganization of our lives along new lines dictated by the government. The environmental elite aim at governmental micromanaging of the minutiae of daily life—a natural position given the claim, according to the U.N. Population Fund, that “no human is genuinely ‘carbon neutral.’”
Nearly every aspect of modern life is deemed harmful by this coterie of tyrants who would design our lives for us; according to the U.N. Biodiversity Report, ski runs, allowing livestock to graze, plowing soil, building fences, single family homes, paved roads, logging, dams and reservoirs, and power line construction are all not sustainable.
Maurice Strong opened the UN’s Rio Conference (Earth Summit II) in 1992 by saying, “Current lifestyles and consumption patterns of the affluent middle class—involving high meat intake…use of fossil fuels, appliances, home and work air-conditioning, and suburban housing—are not sustainable.”
The fervor with which certain scientists and public figures advance the environmentalist cause is indicative of the disturbing turn, from the scientific realm to the political one, this debate has taken. Global warming proponents increasingly demand, not grassroots activity, but mass governmental organization.
As F.A. Hayek pointed out, in a planned society (the type the environmentalists favor), truth is subordinated to the government ordained “purpose” (in this case, preservation of the environment) around which the life of the people and the layout of industry is organized.
The willingness on the part of certain climate scientists to sacrifice truth to political ends was made clear in the emails hacked from the Climatic Research Unit of the University of East Anglia in Britain, which exposed global warming researchers’ willingness to manipulate data and suppress opposing viewpoints.
To further illustrate the zeal of global warming proponents: a judge in Britain recently ruled that “a belief in man-made climate change ... is capable, if genuinely held, of being a philosophical belief for the purpose of the 2003 Religion and Belief Regulations.”
Those who question the massive regulatory scheme and the infallibility of climate scientists are invariably referred to, derogatorily, as “skeptics.” Researchers who question the ballyhooed scientific “consensus” are blacklisted from peer-reviewed journals, physically intimidated, and have their integrity questioned. Often their motives are criticized: it is regularly pointed out that certain skeptical scientists receive funding from Exxon and the like.
However, is the case not parallel with those researchers who are funded by the government? Most of the prominent global warming proponents are employed by government institutions or receive government grants; in turn, they advocate expansion of government in the form of higher taxes, increased regulation, more bureaucrats, etc.
Academics aren’t the only ones seeking to profit from the environmental movement. If cap and trade were to pass, entire companies would arise merely to assist in the brokerage of carbon credits. Environmentally-oriented venture capital firms stand ready to receive windfalls from both regulation that discourages the use of fossil fuels and subsidies granted to environmentally-friendly products.
Is it any surprise, then, that such a leading “environmental” advocate as Al Gore also is a partner at Kleiner Perkins, the ecoventure capital firm? Perhaps we should look upon such crusaders as what they really are: lobbyists eager to suckle at the teat of government.
Environmentalist leaders stand ready to enact cumbersome regulations, impose exacting costs, and condemn large sections of modern life all in the name of a cause built on neither scientific nor popular consensus. They serve as confirming evidence of the perception of 71 percent of Americans who, according to a recent Rasmussen poll, “believe the federal government has become a special interest group that looks out primarily for its own interests.”
Global Warming and Government Regulations - Austin Raynor
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Tom, on 1/11/2010 at 5:50pm, said:
Who says you don't already live in a planned society, and that it hasn't been such for at least the last hundred years? While ecomaniacs may seem to be the first obvious case of 'them' trying to control your lives, perhaps you're just too blinded by your current society and political beliefs to see society for what it already is: perfectly designed to keep you in debt and enslaved for the rest of your fucking lives, and making the world greener ain't gonna help you... But at least we'll breathe a little easier while we're busy being drugged, brainwashed and beaten into submission. Fight the real threat and stop complaining about environmentalist. They're simply a fabricated distraction.
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