Blame It All on Global Warming
- 4 May 2008 by Author 0 Comments
Blame It All on Global Warming
By Richard Larsen
Published – Idaho State Journal, 05/04/08
Last week in celebrating Earth Day, I mentioned that many of the tenets of the environmental movement make sense. Recycling and conservation of nature are logical activities that we should all be engaged in. Moreover, reducing our dependence upon foreign sources of carbon-based fuels is consistent with our national security interests.
Since we have no viable option now available to supplant our dependence on oil, all we can hope to do is reduce our consumption, and do all we can to expand supply by accessing the resource everywhere it is feasibly possible. If we don’t, the amount we pay for gas every month may soon rival our mortgage as our largest monthly budgetary outlay.
Energy independence and finding alternative means to quench our thirst for energy to maintain our high standard of living is prudent. But to mistake such individual or collective prudence for “saving the planet” is a non sequitur. There is no scientific basis for equating riding bikes to saving the polar bears.
If “going green” were less a matter of politics and religious zeal and were based more fully on science and economics we could all collaborate more effectively. Instead, it seems to be more founded in a “feel good” mentality that makes people who drive hybrid cars think they are saving the planet, or that by banishing the incandescent light bulb people are staving off the destruction of the planet due to global warming.
Our energy challenges are actually exacerbated by those who sensationalize the issue of global warming. They are compounded by a nearly universal effort on the part of media to make an illogical connection between proper and wise use of natural resources, and saving the planet from the global warming threat. By making that connection, the discussion of wise use of such resources is corrupted, as well as solutions to real problems that we can address.
Climate change has always existed, and will always be here, whether we’re here or not, or whether we’re emitting 34 parts per million of CO2 into the atmosphere or not. But when the cadre of global warming alarmists claims the debate is closed, and threatens us with cataclysmic events if we don’t change our consumption habits, the issue passes from the realm of possibilities to the realm of the absurd. Those who claim we have to limit our “carbon footprint” to save the polar bears fall into the same illogic of absurdity. We exhale CO2 for heavens sake! If they are so worried about their carbon footprint they should make the ultimate commitment to save the earth and just stop exhaling.
As if the missing scientific proof wasn’t enough, the cacophony of media reports ascribing natural anomalies to global warming is enough to turn daily news reports into funny papers. I recently came upon a website that includes hundreds of links to media stories blaming everything under the sun to global warming. It’s as if the mainstream media has finally realized the George Bush is not going to be on the ballot in November, so they’ve decided to blame everything on natural global temperature fluctuation instead of him.
Following is an abbreviated list of such anomalies and natural conditions that have recently been blamed on global warming: acne, end of the American dream, amphibians breeding earlier, amphibians breeding later, anaphylactic reactions to bee stings, animals head for the hills, Antarctic ice grows, Antarctic ice shrinks, anxiety treatment, Atlantic ocean less salty, Atlantic ocean more salty, Atlantic ocean cooler, Atlantic ocean warmer, attack of killer jellyfish, avalanches reduced, avalanches increased, Baghdad snow, bananas growing larger, bananas growing smaller, beer shortage, better beer, bird distributions change, bird visitors drop, birds confused, blackbirds stop singing, blizzards, brains shrink, bridge collapse in Minneapolis, buildings collapse. The list goes on and on.
In short, it’s very hard to take seriously a movement that ascribes every anomaly, aberrant behavior, global crisis, and unique occurrence to one cause, namely, global warming. But even the name had to be changed since the earth has cooled over the past 10 years. Now they call it climate change, even though it’s all still blamed on global warming. Those who buy in don’t seem to care whether their explanations are logical or not, but it fits the narrative for a sense of self-importance to “save the planet.”
A reality based discussion of energy usage is critical in our time. To cloud this discussion with unviable emotional and unscientific theories does nothing to lower the cost of gas or the cost to heat our homes. Our strategy for future energy usage must be based on economic realities of current available energy sources not on unviable or hypothetical non-existent technology. A healthy dose of reality must be infused into the discussion if we’re going to make it through this together.
Richard Larsen is President of Larsen Financial, a brokerage and financial planning firm in Pocatello, and is a graduate of Idaho State University with a BA in Political Science and History and former member of the Idaho State Journal Editorial Board. He can be reached at email@example.com.