Lieberman/Warner and Global Warming
Who was it that claimed that conservatives always tend to flock together? The flock is breaking apart John McCain, Newt Gingrich, and more Republicans jump on the establishment’s man-made global warming bandwagon. America’s Climate Security Act (ACSA), sponsored by US Senators Joe Lieberman (Independent) and John Warner (Republican), has been around for about a year now, and will be debated in June in the Senate. Just in time to impress you with how dead you’re going to be if you don’t support this government takeover of the economy, the Natural Resources Defense Council released its most recent research.
In much the same way that conservatives claim that liberals coddle terrorists, liberals claim that conservatives don’t care about the environment. Both claims are not very truthful. When it comes to the environment, however, conservatives temper respect for the environment with an understanding of the facts that (1) a lot of the fear of global warming is based on estimates and computer models, (2) human ingenuity can solve such problems if they ever really become problems, and (3) ACSA will become a huge economic detriment to American society.
ACSA, if implemented will cause a sharp increase in energy prices. It has always been relatively straightforward to indicate what the costs will be if certain governmental regulations are put in place. Now, not to be outdone in forecasting economic catastrophe, the Natural Resources Defense Council and Tufts University, catalog the costs if we don’t do something about man-caused global warming. Interestingly, the alleged costs of doing nothing, which ascribe many costs to rising sea levels, fiercer storms, and higher temperatures, are just about the same as the alleged costs of doing something.
More importantly, over half of the NRDC-alleged costs will be due to increased cost of scarce water as a result of drought conditions. None of the costs factor in the change in human behavior that would occur if these scare-tactic scenarios were to actually occur.
The timing of the NRDC/Tufts study seems suspect, coming just days before Senate debate will begin on ACSA. The report admits that the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report for 2007 is
the most pessimistic of the business-as-usual climate forecasts considered “likely” by the scientific community
which pessimistic projections never seem to factor in human ingenuity. Nonetheless, to ensure that you are still scared out of your pants and will not give up your support for future, greater government domination over your life, NRDC states that the IPCC 2007 report “is still far from the worst case [global warming] scenario”.
NRDC continues its gloomy forecast
Droughts, floods, wildfires, and hurricanes have already caused multibillion-dollar losses, and these extreme weather events will likely become more frequent and more devastating as the climate continues to change.
Many economic models have [unsuccessfully] attempted to capture the costs of climate change for the United States
NRDC claims that it has come up with the model to end all models, a model which is completely accurate (and a model that naturally claims that the costs of not acting are much higher than we first thought). To ensure that we feel sufficiently guilty in order to believe their estimates, NRDC reminds us of the plight of the poor
many of the poorest countries around the world will experience damages that are much larger as a percentage of their national output. For countries that have fewer resources with which to fend off the consequences of climate change, the impacts will be devastating.
NRDC fails to point out that most people who are poor in the world today are poor due to government oppression (ironically the “solution” to the current “problem” from NRDC’s perspective), and that they will have absolutely no chance of pulling themselves out of poverty as government restrictions make it more costly to do so.
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