by J.C. Phillips
Speaking of noble lies told by philosopher kings-or at any rate by career politiciansâ€¦
Congressman for life Henry Waxman (D-CA) chairman of the house committee on Energy and Commerce has promised that he will move quickly and decisively to move climate legislation out of his committee before memorial day.Â
The Associated Press quotes Waxman as saying, “Our environment and our economy depend on congressional action to confront the threat of climate change and secure our energy independence.” Waxman continued, “U.S. industries want to invest in a clean energy future, but uncertainties about whether, when and how greenhouse gas emissions will be reduced is deterring these vital investments.”
Waxman envisions that industries are looking to Washington for leadership.Â Nothing could be further from the truth. If left to their own devices, industries will do what they ought to do and what share holders need them to do â€“ expand, become more efficient and make profits.Â Nor do investors need Waxman to guide them.Â To paraphrase a line from scripture, where profit is so will their money be also. Once â€œclean energyâ€ offers a better return on investment, they will have more money than they know what to do with.Â
Waxman, of course, like most new liberals, does not trust markets; he trusts government, which is why he is chomping at the bit to use the power of government to force the energy sector to do what the market has heretofore done much more slowly.Â
Enter global warming.Â
Global warming has become the boogie man hiding under every bed and thus the perfect excuse for new liberals like Waxman to raise taxes, regulate business and nationalize industry — all for our own good of course.Â The fact that much of what we are being told are nothing but theories, half truths or outright lies is why we are told the debate is over and that government fixes must be rushed through the legislative process. Climate change is the means to a political end that could care less about the science.
Consider the alarmistsâ€™ warnings that changes in the concentration of C02 levels are having a devastating effect on temperatures.Â These claims have softened largely because as Christopher Mockton writing for Science and Public Policy.org points out, â€œThe peer-reviewed literature is full of papers questioning the IPCCâ€™s estimates of climate sensitivity to changes in CO2 concentrationâ€¦ Indeed, low, harmless, beneficial climate sensitivity is almost becoming a consensus in the scientific literature.â€Â
Or the admonition that our production of C02 would cause the seas to rise.Â Patrick J. Michaels, senior fellow at the Cato Institute observes that more recent science has â€œdemonstrated that the outflow of Greenland ice sheets is unlikely to dramatically speed up as a result of surface warming, thus countering the claims of rapid sea level rise this century.â€Â
Green house gas emissions were also supposed to influence tropical storm activity.Â Michaels further observes that subsequent to those warnings studies have presented a â€œpicture of future Atlantic tropical cyclones that is not unlike that of todayâ€”with natural cycles dominating the patterns of variability.â€
And what of all the sea life that was supposed to die off?Â Dr. Craig Idso writing for the â€œCenter for the Study of Carbon Dioxide and Global Changeâ€ and the â€œScience and Public Policy Instituteâ€ writes that â€œclimate-alarmist claims of impending marine species extinctions due to increases in both temperature and atmospheric CO2 concentration are not only not supported by real-world evidence, they are actually refuted by it.â€Â
Waxman might find all of this interesting, but ultimately irrelevant.Â The crisis has been identified and the trumpet sounded.Â Our economy, our environment â€“ our very civilization depends on our stopping the production of carbon dioxide.Â Here come Henry Waxman and the rest of the new left to the rescue.Â God help us!