Melting pot?

Posted May 15th, 2008 by Sylvia S Tognetti and filed in Ignorance of Ignorance

Stephen Colbert weighs in on the McCain’s “better way” of addressing human induced climate change, which may literally turn the entire world into a melting pot. It is indeed, a national, or what I would call human security issue, but, as Stephen so eloquently points out, if calling it that would bring it into McCain’s domain of expertise, lets call some more things national security issues (e.g., the economy – which he admitted to not knowing much about, and the sociology of Iraq – where he does not know the difference between Sunni and Shia).

For a more detailed analysis of McCain’s speech, see Romm’s 4 part series, in which he reminds us also that it is because of McCain and his fellow conservatives that the United States is now a bit player in the wind industry that the United States invested in heavily in the 1970s, which is presumably why McCain made his climate speech in front of Danish wind turbines:

President Reagan cut the renewable energy R&D budget 85% after he took office and eliminated the wind investment tax credit in 1986. This was pretty much the death of most of the US wind industry. While President Clinton worked to increase funding for wind, the Gingrich Congress blocked that effort beginning in 1995. President Bush is another conservative who fail to see the importance of wind power in the need for consistent support of the tax credit.

(Note to the youth climate movement: please stop blaming boomers and environmental groups. Howz about “we” work together on this…)

And that McCain’s pledge to support an adaptation strategy is at odds with his small government rhetoric. Romm also argues that his proposed offsets approach would not accomplish very much. I personally think it depends on how it is done, and think carbon credits can be an important way to generate the kind of revenue that will be needed to support a transition, and development strategies that incorporate adaptation and help to reduce poverty. Lastly, (part 4) McCain doesn’t seem to be able to bring conservatives along with him, so it is unlikely he would actually be able to do anything if elected.

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