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Al Gore Op-Ed: We Can't Wish away Climate Change

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Source: http://www.nytimes.com/2010/02/28/opinion/28gore.html

 

It would be an enormous relief if the recent attacks on the science of global warming actually indicated that we do not face an unimaginable calamity requiring large-scale, preventive measures to protect human civilization as we know it.

 

Of course, we would still need to deal with the national security risks of our growing dependence on a global oil market dominated by dwindling reserves in the most unstable region of the world, and the economic risks of sending hundreds of billions of dollars a year overseas in return for that oil. And we would still trail China in the race to develop smart grids, fast trains, solar power, wind, geothermal and other renewable sources of energy — the most important sources of new jobs in the 21st century.

 

But what a burden would be lifted! We would no longer have to worry that our grandchildren would one day look back on us as a criminal generation that had selfishly and blithely ignored clear warnings that their fate was in our hands. We could instead celebrate the naysayers who had doggedly persisted in proving that every major National Academy of Sciences report on climate change had simply made a huge mistake.

 

I, for one, genuinely wish that the climate crisis were an illusion. But unfortunately, the reality of the danger we are courting has not been changed by the discovery of at least two mistakes in the thousands of pages of careful scientific work over the last 22 years by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. In fact, the crisis is still growing because we are continuing to dump 90 million tons of global-warming pollution every 24 hours into the atmosphere — as if it were an open sewer.

 

It is true that the climate panel published a flawed overestimate of the melting rate of debris-covered glaciers in the Himalayas, and used information about the Netherlands provided to it by the government, which was later found to be partly inaccurate. In addition, e-mail messages stolen from the University of East Anglia in Britain showed that scientists besieged by an onslaught of hostile, make-work demands from climate skeptics may not have adequately followed the requirements of the British freedom of information law.

 

But the scientific enterprise will never be completely free of mistakes. What is important is that the overwhelming consensus on global warming remains unchanged. It is also worth noting that the panel’s scientists — acting in good faith on the best information then available to them — probably underestimated the range of sea-level rise in this century, the speed with which the Arctic ice cap is disappearing and the speed with which some of the large glacial flows in Antarctica and Greenland are melting and racing to the sea.

 

Because these and other effects of global warming are distributed globally, they are difficult to identify and interpret in any particular location. For example, January was seen as unusually cold in much of the United States. Yet from a global perspective, it was the second-hottest January since surface temperatures were first measured 130 years ago.

 

Similarly, even though climate deniers have speciously argued for several years that there has been no warming in the last decade, scientists confirmed last month that the last 10 years were the hottest decade since modern records have been kept.

 

The heavy snowfalls this month have been used as fodder for ridicule by those who argue that global warming is a myth, yet scientists have long pointed out that warmer global temperatures have been increasing the rate of evaporation from the oceans, putting significantly more moisture into the atmosphere — thus causing heavier downfalls of both rain and snow in particular regions, including the Northeastern United States. Just as it’s important not to miss the forest for the trees, neither should we miss the climate for the snowstorm.

 

Here is what scientists have found is happening to our climate: man-made global-warming pollution traps heat from the sun and increases atmospheric temperatures. These pollutants — especially carbon dioxide — have been increasing rapidly with the growth in the burning of coal, oil, natural gas and forests, and temperatures have increased over the same period. Almost all of the ice-covered regions of the Earth are melting — and seas are rising. Hurricanes are predicted to grow stronger and more destructive, though their number is expected to decrease. Droughts are getting longer and deeper in many mid-continent regions, even as the severity of flooding increases. The seasonal predictability of rainfall and temperatures is being disrupted, posing serious threats to agriculture. The rate of species extinction is accelerating to dangerous levels.

 

Though there have been impressive efforts by many business leaders, hundreds of millions of individuals and families throughout the world and many national, regional and local governments, our civilization is still failing miserably to slow the rate at which these emissions are increasing — much less reduce them.

 

And in spite of President Obama’s efforts at the Copenhagen climate summit meeting in December, global leaders failed to muster anything more than a decision to “take note” of an intention to act.

 

Because the world still relies on leadership from the United States, the failure by the Senate to pass legislation intended to cap American emissions before the Copenhagen meeting guaranteed that the outcome would fall far short of even the minimum needed to build momentum toward a meaningful solution.

 

The political paralysis that is now so painfully evident in Washington has thus far prevented action by the Senate — not only on climate and energy legislation, but also on health care reform, financial regulatory reform and a host of other pressing issues.

 

This comes with painful costs. China, now the world’s largest and fastest-growing source of global-warming pollution, had privately signaled early last year that if the United States passed meaningful legislation, it would join in serious efforts to produce an effective treaty. When the Senate failed to follow the lead of the House of Representatives, forcing the president to go to Copenhagen without a new law in hand, the Chinese balked. With the two largest polluters refusing to act, the world community was paralyzed.

 

Some analysts attribute the failure to an inherent flaw in the design of the chosen solution — arguing that a cap-and-trade approach is too unwieldy and difficult to put in place. Moreover, these critics add, the financial crisis that began in 2008 shook the world’s confidence in the use of any market-based solution.

 

But there are two big problems with this critique: First, there is no readily apparent alternative that would be any easier politically. It is difficult to imagine a globally harmonized carbon tax or a coordinated multilateral regulatory effort. The flexibility of a global market-based policy — supplemented by regulation and revenue-neutral tax policies — is the option that has by far the best chance of success. The fact that it is extremely difficult does not mean that we should simply give up.

 

Second, we should have no illusions about the difficulty and the time needed to convince the rest of the world to adopt a completely new approach. The lags in the global climate system, including the buildup of heat in the oceans from which it is slowly reintroduced into the atmosphere, means that we can create conditions that make large and destructive consequences inevitable long before their awful manifestations become apparent: the displacement of hundreds of millions of climate refugees, civil unrest, chaos and the collapse of governance in many developing countries, large-scale crop failures and the spread of deadly diseases.

 

It’s important to point out that the United States is not alone in its inaction. Global political paralysis has thus far stymied work not only on climate, but on trade and other pressing issues that require coordinated international action.

 

The reasons for this are primarily economic. The globalization of the economy, coupled with the outsourcing of jobs from industrial countries, has simultaneously heightened fears of further job losses in the industrial world and encouraged rising expectations in emerging economies. The result? Heightened opposition, in both the industrial and developing worlds, to any constraints on the use of carbon-based fuels, which remain our principal source of energy.

 

The decisive victory of democratic capitalism over communism in the 1990s led to a period of philosophical dominance for market economics worldwide and the illusion of a unipolar world. It also led, in the United States, to a hubristic “bubble” of market fundamentalism that encouraged opponents of regulatory constraints to mount an aggressive effort to shift the internal boundary between the democracy sphere and the market sphere. Over time, markets would most efficiently solve most problems, they argued. Laws and regulations interfering with the operations of the market carried a faint odor of the discredited statist adversary we had just defeated.

 

This period of market triumphalism coincided with confirmation by scientists that earlier fears about global warming had been grossly understated. But by then, the political context in which this debate took form was tilted heavily toward the views of market fundamentalists, who fought to weaken existing constraints and scoffed at the possibility that global constraints would be needed to halt the dangerous dumping of global-warming pollution into the atmosphere.

 

Over the years, as the science has become clearer and clearer, some industries and companies whose business plans are dependent on unrestrained pollution of the atmospheric commons have become ever more entrenched. They are ferociously fighting against the mildest regulation — just as tobacco companies blocked constraints on the marketing of cigarettes for four decades after science confirmed the link of cigarettes to diseases of the lung and the heart.

 

Simultaneously, changes in America’s political system — including the replacement of newspapers and magazines by television as the dominant medium of communication — conferred powerful advantages on wealthy advocates of unrestrained markets and weakened advocates of legal and regulatory reforms. Some news media organizations now present showmen masquerading as political thinkers who package hatred and divisiveness as entertainment. And as in times past, that has proved to be a potent drug in the veins of the body politic. Their most consistent theme is to label as “socialist” any proposal to reform exploitive behavior in the marketplace.

 

From the standpoint of governance, what is at stake is our ability to use the rule of law as an instrument of human redemption. After all has been said and so little done, the truth about the climate crisis — inconvenient as ever — must still be faced.

 

The pathway to success is still open, though it tracks the outer boundary of what we are capable of doing. It begins with a choice by the United States to pass a law establishing a cost for global warming pollution. The House of Representatives has already passed legislation, with some Republican support, to take the first halting steps for pricing greenhouse gas emissions.

 

Later this week, Senators John Kerry, Lindsey Graham and Joe Lieberman are expected to present for consideration similar cap-and-trade legislation.

 

I hope that it will place a true cap on carbon emissions and stimulate the rapid development of low-carbon sources of energy.

 

We have overcome existential threats before. Winston Churchill is widely quoted as having said, “Sometimes doing your best is not good enough. Sometimes, you must do what is required.” Now is that time. Public officials must rise to this challenge by doing what is required; and the public must demand that they do so — or must replace them.

 

Personal response:

 

In his Op-Ed Al Gore seems to be directly responding to the recent failures of the climate-change movement, referring to climate-gate and what he labels "climate-change deniers". I personally am not a denier that our environment is suffering at the hand of mankind, and I do believe that we as a society are in dire need of some drastic changes to the way we treat our planet. There is without a doubt a necessity to move towards alternative energy, cleaner resources, and become a more environmentally aware society living off the land and contributing to nature instead of like parasites, sucking the life out of our planet and abusing it.

 

However, Al Gore makes no mention of those of us who disagree with the regulations and political movements towards adapting this change in society, rather then denying the environmental issues altogether, yet instead groups the entirety of the opposition into the label "climate-change deniers" which is suggestive of such a label as holocaust-denier that doesn't bode well with people today. Many of those who oppose the carbon taxes, and the cap-and-trade system are doing so under the pretense that these are in fact frauds perpetrated on the people, not because they deny our planet is undergoing environmental abuse or severe "climate-change". It is clear to me just by the daily weather that our climate is undergoing severe physical changes when we have several snow storms during the end of February and into March when November, December, and January had days that felt like Spring.

 

The issue here is not with whether or not there is a serious crisis at hand environmentally on this planet, and whether or not this threat poses a risk to humanity. The issue the people have with these political resolutions to our environmental problems is with those who are presenting the solutions, and what they have to gain from the solutions presented.

 

But, Al Gore makes no note of this or even considers this as a factor in the opposition towards climate-change. In fact, many of you who vehemently advocate on behalf of the environmental movement make no reference whatsoever to the rights of the individuals who will bear the responsibility of affecting this dramatic change in our society towards improving the way we treat our planet. You simply accept the solutions posed on face value, and attack or ridicule those of us who are skeptical of also accepting these solutions just as quickly. For someone who was a presidential candidate, and came very close to becoming President of the United States, it is interesting to see how basic American values of Freedom, and Liberty are completely absent from this man's rhetoric when he addresses his fellow citizens on the necessities of making changes for the betterment of our environment. These values are just as, if not even more important to our survival on this planet. We can live in a clean, safe, environmental friendly world yet still be faced with tyranny and oppression from global institutions.

 

I know the conspiracy theories out there, I listen to and am aware of the information. No, I don't believe Al Gore is doing this to profit personally, although I'm sure he has made motions towards this which I don't think is necessarily wrong either. I believe Al Gore is legitimately concerned for the well-being of humanity, and for the well being of our planet Earth. However, I don't believe Al Gore is taking into consideration that there are those who would use this as a means towards profiting personally, and politically. Al Gore mentions China as "the world’s largest and fastest-growing source of global-warming pollution", and without a doubt China just like America emits tons of pollution, yet there is no consideration for what the people of China feel towards these resolutions that could severely cripple their economies and lower their current standards of living. In the long run, we may have a cleaner and safer environment, but for the time being they will be under the thumb of global institutions rather then being their own sovereign nation. This is something I believe many "climate-change deniers" also share sentiments with here in America, and don't appreciate the idea of global regulators taxing the people and setting the rules.

 

There are also references here towards the science of climate-change, which Al Gore repeatedly states is a consensus of agreement and that there is no dispute. This is just not true whatsoever, as there is a substantial amount of scientific data that disputes the Carbon-pollution data. We could sit here all day in these forums arguing back and forth about this, supporting our arguments with data from both sides, yet we have Al Gore stating that this is indisputable and contrasting it to Tobacco junk science.

 

My question is; How is any of this helping? We don't debate anymore, we simply say "There is a crisis! We have to do something NOW, or the world will end!". Those in advocation for the posed resolutions say, the debate is over we are moving forward. I've even seen one person go so far as to relate it to the Bush administrations stance on whether or not Saddam had weapons of mass destruction, stating that the risk posed of not acting would be greater then to just invade and take him out. This is just absolutely ridiculous. If Al Gore really wants to bolster support for a real environmental movement, address the issues raised by American citizens towards carbon emissions, cap-and-trade, our basic American values which we hold dear, the scientific data that is in opposition to the movement, and work with your opposition in consideration rather then deflecting the entirety by labeling them "deniers".

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Al Gore probably rides around in limo's and flies in private jets leaving an enormous carbon footprint.

Aside from a photo opp. I can't picture him doing anything significant other than spew his bullshit.

 

 

Gore2.gif

 

 

 

It's a shame something this important gets a face like this.

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Dude rocks out on a houseboat that burns more gas than an average family in a year....I've heard his house resemebles a college campus, he finally got some work done to it, to make it more "green" after catching a lot of flack. Fuck Al Gore.

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Al Gore probably rides around in limo's and flies in private jets leaving an enormous carbon footprint.

Aside from a photo opp. I can't picture him doing anything significant other than spew his bullshit.

 

 

Gore2.gif

 

 

 

It's a shame something this important gets a face like this.

 

Using this logic, because I use toilet paper I’m just as culpable for ancient-growth deforestation as the CEO of Pacific Lumber.

 

The job of an activist is to bring attention to the cause and take down that force, not remain morally pure. Purity doesn't change shit my friend.

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I'm sorry but that's funny.

 

Neither does telling the world to do one thing, while you do another.

 

It's nice and all talking the talk, however if you can't walk the walk. What exactly is the point?

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The point is Al Gore addresses issues at the level of industry/government. If he was some grassroots community organizer trying to get his neighbors to ride bicycles and compost, then he would be a huge hypocrite. But Gore is a big name on the big stage, trying to support sustainable energy and environmentalism on a global scale.

 

I'm not gonna get into whether dude is "right" or not in what he's doing, but calling him a hypocrite is some pretty watery mud to sling.

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Fact: For any outcome of any given world situation at any given time, there will be a group of people who will benefit and profit from it. Being against climate change because a group of people (who remain much less numerous and influential than the opposition) stand to profit is completely ridiculous to me.

 

It's also ridiculous to me when people keep whining about how much more important it is to be allowed to play freely inside their house when the issue at hand is that the house itself is in danger of collapsing. You have been kindly asked for years to stop fucking around and pick up a hammer and do some work. You have refused to do so willingly, and now you're upset cause someone wants to make you do it. Fuck off.

 

And I won't even get into how infuriating it is for me to witness how science is interpreted by people, especially those who keep insisting that opposing evidence is even remotely close in scale and importance to the supporting one. It is tremendously impressive how the counter-movement has convinced so many people not because of possessing solid and substantial objective evidence, but because they enjoy the advantage of appealing to people's natural inclination towards agreeing with the "everything's gonna be fine" mentality, which heightens the perceived importance of said dissenting evidence.

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The point is Al Gore addresses issues at the level of industry/government. If he was some grassroots community organizer trying to get his neighbors to ride bicycles and compost, then he would be a huge hypocrite. But Gore is a big name on the big stage, trying to support sustainable energy and environmentalism on a global scale.

 

I'm not gonna get into whether dude is "right" or not in what he's doing, but calling him a hypocrite is some pretty watery mud to sling.

 

 

Yep, and Blood & Gore will be selling us the carbon credits.

 

The man is a fearmonger intent on making money while

dancing on the backs of the working man.

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I'm sorry but this is like Marion Barry being the face of an anti crack campaign.

Seeing these celebrities talk the talk and not make any effort to lead by example just annoys the shit out of me.

His hypocrisy pisses me off as much as the others in denial.

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Yep, and Blood & Gore will be selling us the carbon credits.

 

The man is a fearmonger intent on making money while

dancing on the backs of the working man.

 

This is a ridiculous attack. Gore has identified a cause and positioned himself to benefit financially from it. This is not conspiratorial, it is simply capitalism at work.

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alls I know is that it never says the words 'climate change' in the BIBLE so y'all can gone to hell, whatever.

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i think it is interesting some of peoples reactions on here to al gore. i think i have the same kinda fuck you attitude towards him because he is a hypocrite.

 

however, our method of expressing this is quite futile and highly ironic, because it is over an electronic device. i dont know about you guys and your method of using the internet, but most likely it contains coltan or some other resource that bloody massacres were carried out for.

 

just saying.

 

this doesn't make me any better. in fact, it is real fucking hard to live a productive life in relation to how our society has manifested itself without being a cause of destruction towards it.

 

but like El Mamerro was kindly pointing out, we gotta wake the fuck up. no more of this petty squabbles shit.

 

 

It's also ridiculous to me when people keep whining about how much more important it is to be allowed to play freely inside their house when the issue at hand is that the house itself is in danger of collapsing. You have been kindly asked for years to stop fucking around and pick up a hammer and do some work. You have refused to do so willingly, and now you're upset cause someone wants to make you do it. Fuck off.

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This is a ridiculous attack. Gore has identified a cause and positioned himself to benefit financially from it. This is not conspiratorial, it is simply capitalism at work.

 

 

 

More like he's selling a problem and a solution.

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It's OK to admit you're wrong sometimes, casek. Though I guess they say conspiracy theorists tend to be too narcissistic for that...

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This is a ridiculous attack. Gore has identified a cause and positioned himself to benefit financially from it. This is not conspiratorial, it is simply capitalism at work.

 

To me this isn't the problem.

 

If anyone legitimately comes up with a solution to what is/could be a catastrophic problem, good for them, and thank you for it.

 

However this man is in a financial position to walk the walk. He doesn't plain and simple. To say how he is different or on some other playing field than some grassroots organizer or basically a regular guy is completely ridiculous. If anything my standard is higher for him. He is in a position to actually make significant change. Most of us really aren't. We are forced to live by certain restraints. IE: Financial income, what is available to us via local markets, etc and etc.

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however, our method of expressing this is quite futile and highly ironic, because it is over an electronic device. i dont know about you guys and your method of using the internet, but most likely it contains coltan or some other resource that bloody massacres were carried out for.

 

holy shit i wasn't even aware of coltan. pretty interesting.

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coltan

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If anyone legitimately comes up with a solution to what is/could be a catastrophic problem, good for them, and thank you for it.

 

Al Gore is a politician. He is not a scientist. Nor is he exactly a businessman. He does, however, travel the world researching and raising awareness of environmental issues he believes to be absolutely critical as well as emerging sustainable technologies.

 

However this man is in a financial position to walk the walk. He doesn't plain and simple.

 

I keep hearing vague allusions to Gore having a "big house with all the lights on" and "flying in personal jets" etc. etc. blah blah blah. I suppose it's a question of moral purity (which in my opinion is beside the point), but you can frame it this way: would you kill one man to save millions of lives?

 

Gore probably sees his own resource usage as a necessary evil in his goal of spreading the gospel of sustainability. In terms of resources he counts as much more than one person, since he is such a figurehead. His resource usage comes with the territory. He could not accomplish his goals without flying around in jets.

 

Also, if you really care so much about the guy's house, you can just do a little internet search and find out that the Gore's installed solar panels and a geothermal system along with some other stuff to make it more efficient. I personally don't give a shit how big of a house he's got.

 

To say how he is different or on some other playing field than some grassroots organizer or basically a regular guy is completely ridiculous.

 

Nope. He ran for president. He has a shitload of money and global clout. That sure as hell sounds like a bigger playing field than us regular guys are on.

 

If anything my standard is higher for him. He is in a position to actually make significant change. Most of us really aren't. We are forced to live by certain restraints. IE: Financial income, what is available to us via local markets, etc and etc.

 

Now you contradict yourself. It sure seems like he's trying to make significant change. People are talking about him and what he's doing all over the world.

 

Knocking public figures might make you feel smart, but get your head out of your own ass and give the guy the benefit of the doubt. He's not that bad.

 

Edit: Also, Gore doesn't primarily preach individual action to live sustainably. Like I said before, he is involved at the level of government/industry. I agree with this approach, I think reform must be primarily top-down. He is trying to help pass legislative reform and help emerging 'clean' energy industries get a leg up. This is something you small-government types might not understand.

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You over analyzed everything I just said.

 

It's not about me feeling smart either. lol.

 

I don't care to go back and forth on such a stupid issue.

 

You like this guy, good for you.

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It's also ridiculous to me when people keep whining about how much more important it is to be allowed to play freely inside their house when the issue at hand is that the house itself is in danger of collapsing. You have been kindly asked for years to stop fucking around and pick up a hammer and do some work. You have refused to do so willingly, and now you're upset cause someone wants to make you do it. Fuck off.

 

Since you're using a metaphor, our homes are in danger of more then just collapsing (I guess you mean that the environment can become so severe that our homes would be in danger.) We are also in danger of having our homes robbed (economically), and losing our privacy, and our liberty when in the safety of our homes. It is said that a man's home is his castle, and therefore you have the right to protect your home with lethal force if necessary. Yet we constantly allow more intrusion into one of the most sacred private properties we hold by government and authority.

 

I haven't seen anyone respond to anything I said. This isn't about Al Gore, I could care less if he is morally pure or not. Is he a hypocrite? Yes, absolutely. But, so are probably 99% of people who advocate this entire environmental movement, because I can guarantee you most of them still use an air-conditioners (omg it's killing the earth!), still waste energy, and do plenty of wasteful things in their own personal lives. That's the point, we have oil companies... oil companies, promoting this green agenda. The people behind advocating this entire movement, are the same people behind economic bailouts and the like, it's ridiculously obvious that they are doing it for personal and political gain and it has nothing to do with really helping the environment. Should I name a few? Ok, BP, Exxon Mobile are throwing their weight behind carbon emission taxes. Exxon Mobile is owned by the Rockefellers... Royal Dutch Shell defends cap-and-trade, claiming it is the most effective way of reducing emissions worldwide. If you didn't know, Queen Beatrix is a majority shareholder of Royal Shell (hence, Royal.)

 

So here is the lot of you, believing foolishly that the big bad oil companies which are spewing out this "deadly horrible" life producing "pollutant" carbon dioxide are actually against these new proposed solutions and regulation, and that they would oppose them, when meanwhile they are promoting, advocating, and in support of them. Why? Why would they be so interested in seeing these kind of global regulations be put into place when they themselves will be the institutions and corporations being regulated? Because the taxes are being paid to them, the very same international banking oligarchs.

 

So, respond to this. Don't deny it, don't call it conspiracy, don't call me a tinfoil hat wearer, don't insult me, because this has NOTHING to do with me personally, this is NOT "theory" this is FACT, and this is the kind of information that you simply don't want to address.

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Since you're using a metaphor, our homes are in danger of more then just collapsing (I guess you mean that the environment can become so severe that our homes would be in danger.) We are also in danger of having our homes robbed (economically), and losing our privacy, and our liberty when in the safety of our homes. It is said that a man's home is his castle, and therefore you have the right to protect your home with lethal force if necessary. Yet we constantly allow more intrusion into one of the most sacred private properties we hold by government and authority.

 

You can't get robbed, lose your privacy, or your liberty in a house that just collapsed. All of that stuff is meaningless if you've lost your home to begin with. Ask a crushed Haitian about how he feels about his privacy and property right now.

 

I did reply to the rest of the stuff you said and re-said on this post, mainly with the fact that THERE WILL ALWAYS BE SOMEONE WHO BENEFITS TREMENDOUSLY by any given situation, at any given time. Of course people are gonna look for ways to get rich off environmentalism. It's called fucking capitalism, it's how our entire society works. If shit doesn't make money, shit doesn't happen. If we want to fix the world, well damn right we have to figure out a way to make money doing it.

 

It's like standing on the edge of a cliff, with a tiger running straight towards you, and refusing to jump off the cliff cause there's a guy on the bottom that wants to charge you for landing on his mattress. And dude is holding a megaphone screaming THERE'S A FUCKING TIGER COMING, JUMP ONTO THIS MATTRESS!, and you're like "Well he's just saying that for his own economic benefit, I'm not falling for this nonsense".

 

And clearly you are not familiar of the concept of corporate social responsibility and why companies put effort and money into causes that appear to be opposed to their interests. It's not as clear cut as you lay it out, there's several layers of strategic thought involved that in the end do serve the company's interest, however opposite it may seem. Also, energy companies are wising up to the fact that there's money to be made in green technology, so they will definitely want to dip their toes in it while still holding on to their bread and butter.

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You can't get robbed, lose your privacy, or your liberty in a house that just collapsed. All of that stuff is meaningless if you've lost your home to begin with. Ask a crushed Haitian about how he feels about his privacy and property right now.

 

I did reply to the rest of the stuff you said and re-said on this post, mainly with the fact that THERE WILL ALWAYS BE SOMEONE WHO BENEFITS TREMENDOUSLY by any given situation, at any given time. Of course people are gonna look for ways to get rich off environmentalism. It's called fucking capitalism, it's how our entire society works. If shit doesn't make money, shit doesn't happen. If we want to fix the world, well damn right we have to figure out a way to make money doing it.

 

It's like standing on the edge of a cliff, with a tiger running straight towards you, and refusing to jump off the cliff cause there's a guy on the bottom that wants to charge you for landing on his mattress. And dude is holding a megaphone screaming THERE'S A FUCKING TIGER COMING, JUMP ONTO THIS MATTRESS!, and you're like "Well he's just saying that for his own economic benefit, I'm not falling for this nonsense".

 

And clearly you are not familiar of the concept of corporate social responsibility and why companies put effort and money into causes that appear to be opposed to their interests. It's not as clear cut as you lay it out, there's several layers of strategic thought involved that in the end do serve the company's interest, however opposite it may seem. Also, energy companies are wising up to the fact that there's money to be made in green technology, so they will definitely want to dip their toes in it while still holding on to their bread and butter.

 

No, first of all are you insinuating that Global Warming / Climate change caused the Haiti earthquake? because it seems that way. If not I apologize, but it does seem like that is what you are claiming. Second of all, this is not simply fucking capitalism. What is being established globally is something more severe then simply capitalists profiting or placing themselves in profitable positions. I understand what you mean that in order for us to get things done, it must be profitable. The question is; Is it profitable to the people to improve the way we treat the environment, or are these Co2 taxes profitable to international bankers and globalist institutions for not only profit but political gain. I'm familiar with corporate social responsibility, I understand that corporations have to be morally responsible, I also understand that coal mines and oil drilling in this country already undergoe harsh regulations which it seems like some of you may believe don't exist.

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Carbon Taxing and Cap and Trade are different but you speak as if they are the same. Cap and Trade isn't the answer but its definitely a small step in the right direction.

 

watch

 

http://www.storyofstuff.com/capandtrade/

 

they are both based off of co2 emissions

 

i've already seen that very website, and no i don't believe it is a step in the right direction.

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No, I didn't mean to imply it was caused by global warming, though I kinda see why it was taken that way. Just extending the metaphor and linking it to a real world event... liberty and privacy is useless to a Haitian crushed under the rubble of his own house.

 

Doing something for the environment will be profitable economically and politically to someone. It will probably be people you don't like very much. There is simply no way to avoid this, given the way we have structured our society and the way we have taught everyone to pursue goals within it. So again I say, disliking the people who have cleverly positioned themselves to benefit from changes to our environment is in no way a tolerable excuse to sit back and refuse to take necessary steps. It's not gonna make the tiger magically disappear.

 

I'm a definite non-fan of cap and trade as well, but it's a first step into integrating environmental concerns into a capitalist system that has absolutely no incentive whatsoever to give a damn about it. It's a model that needs to be refined and most likely completely tossed out, but it gets the ball rolling and gets the money people involved in environmental affairs they've been ignoring for far too long because the market will never demand it.

 

And corporate social responsibility is not about companies being morally responsible, it's about companies giving the impression they are being morally responsible. The sincerity of any company decision and effort that fits the CSR schema is to be taken with a grain of salt.

 

And finally, sure there are some regulations being exacted on big coal and oil. Harsh enough? I don't know. But we also need to get behind a SERIOUS push towards stronger incentives for companies working on more sustainable energy production. The market will NEVER demand clean energy. We need to work out alternate means to push our economy in that direction, and it'll most likely involve the consumer public having to sacrifice some things they have taken for granted.

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