Laboratories for Democracy Killing Their Rats

by Paul Chesser, Heartland Institute Correspondent on June 10, 2008

Paul Chesser, Climate Strategies Watch

Last Monday I wrote about a new Web video (and was remiss in crediting a hat tip to Capital Research’s James Dellinger) produced by Sea Studios Foundation/Sea Studios Inc. that, more or less, was a propaganda piece for the work of the Center for Climate Strategies. The production, “Ahead of the Curve: States Lead on Climate Change,” purports to show how governors are “leading the way” in the effort to thwart predicted devastation from global warming. These state efforts are almost always controlled by CCS, which is chiefly funded by the alarmist Rockefeller Brothers Fund, the foundation that also paid to have Sea Studios make this film.

As promised last week, here select segments and quotes from the promo piece (italicized) with my (often sarcastic) commentary interspersed:

INTRO: (Daunting background music) Over an image of parched, cracked soil, we read: “30 of the world’s 75 biggest greenhouse gas emitters are U.S. states. Now, many are looking to change that.”

So how are we identifying greenhouse gas emitters? By population? Land mass? Territorial borders? Genius – find the most arbitrary, undefined measurement and lay a guilt trip on Americans based on apples-to-oranges. So who are the other 45? India? China? Ontario, Canada? Fairfax County? Los Angeles? Way to deceive by fraudulent comparisons.

Minn. (Republican) Gov. Tim Pawlenty (pictured): “It’s a win, win, win, win, win proposition, if we do it right.”
Fla. (Republican) Gov. Charlie Crist: “You know if you aim low, you get low. If you aim high, you might hit it.”
Ariz. (Democrat) Gov. Janet Napolitano: “We actually grow our economy through making these changes.”

“These changes” are many of the same ideas in economy-wrecking Lieberman-Warner. Did these people take economics in college? Delusional.

Terry Tamminen, New America Foundation: “By the end of 2007, more than 27 U.S. states will have taken comprehensive climate action, setting aggressive targets for reducing greenhouse gases, having a comprehensive and credible plan to achieve those targets, and then putting those into law.”

Aggressive targets such as eliminating affordable coal-fired power generation and $8-per-gallon gasoline. Equivalent naked aggression can cause riots and wars in other countries. Will it here?

Tom Peterson, Center for Climate Strategies: “It takes time (about a year or so), it takes expertise (Tom Peterson’s!), but every one of the states that has gone through a deliberative public policy development process (controlled by Tom Peterson and CCS) has found a way forward that resolves the vast majority of conflicts (What conflicts? Members chosen for state climate policy panels are required to “support the process” and not debate global warming science) and creates tremendous economic opportunity (like increasing regulations, raising energy taxes and costs, and destroying jobs).”

Peterson continued: “Unfortunately there’s a disconnect between what’s happening in the states and what’s happening in Washington.”

Tell them how you really feel about the Bush administration, Tom!

Peterson: “All across the country people recognize the urgency, they recognize their responsibility, and they really believe that there’s a way forward. They’ve been finding that way forward, and that story needs to be made more clear to our national policymakers.”

What people? The ones who are ticked off every time the fill up their gas tanks while you want prices to continue moving upward? Or the ones who are paying more and more at the grocery store while CCS continues to push biofuels? Oh yes, you mean the ones who overwhelmingly in polls say they do not want to pay a penny more for a gallon of gasoline to address global warming. Those people have got our attention – why haven’t they got yours?

Title scene: What does lightning striking skyscrapers have to do with global warming? And for that matter, why the emphasis on billowing clouds from smokestacks when we are talking about an invisible gas?

Pawlenty: “I don’t think many people would disagree with the fact that what we’re doing is unsustainable, environmentally, economically, and from a national security standpoint. But we have a chance to try to make a difference and to do good.”

“When we say things like we want to have 25 percent of our energy from renewable sources by the year 2025, that’s a goal or a strategy, but you also have to make sure those goals are realized, and that’s what we’re working on as we speak.”

Yes, set a goal without regard to feasibility, effect on climate, or cost – damn the torpedoes and full speed ahead.

Jan Callison, Mayor of Minnetonka: “We’re looking at the whole range of options…how many miles people drive, the fuel they use, and can we make cars more efficient?”

We turn our lonely eyes to you, oh auto-efficiency experts…

Callison: “Once we’ve identified something that should be studied – it might be the speed limit should be 65 instead of 70 – then we go to the consultant, and they calculate the savings in greenhouse gases over 15, 20, 30 years…whatever it is, and we add up those numbers, and we say oh, you know, we’re close to this target, or uh-oh, we’re really a long ways away. These strategies aren’t enough. We have to add something else.”

You’re really winning over the common folk – higher gas prices, higher electric bills, raising auto insurance rates, and now lowering the speed limit…that went over so well in the 70s!

Pawlenty: “States can be laboratories for our ideas, and that’s a role that we’re excited to play.”

The rats aren’t so excited.

Pawlenty: “The beauty of state action is we’re smaller than the federal government, and we tend to be at least somewhat less partisan than the Congress is, so we can be a little more nimble. And the public, they’re kind of ready to go, at least 70 or 80 percent of the public is, and in politics that’s a good number. (Images of windmills) And so that’s wonderful, there’s a lot of excitement and a lot of energy.”

Does he ever leave the office? Does he live in a bubble? Do his people let him read his critics?

Mike Malinoff, Annapolis Dept. of Neighborhood and Environmental Programs: “If we don’t do something, the state (Maryland) I love is going to be lost.”

Better to save the state than its people I guess!

Karen O’Regan, Office of Environmental Programs, Phoenix: “And the miracle about this (Arizona) effort is that we ended up with 49 recommendations and out of those 49 recommendations, 45 of them were unanimous.”

A miracle replicated in roughly two dozen other states where CCS pushed their agenda, in which approximately 50 recommendations were pre-paid for by the Rockefeller Brothers Fund and rubberstamped by gubernatorial yes-men. Indeed a miracle.

Peterson: “Bottom line, this group of people found a way to cut pollution and save cash in a really big way.”
Napolitano: “Over the course of the next five to ten years, we think that adopting these climate change recommendations will be a net at least $5.5 billion into the Arizona economy.”

Great! Tell me how to save cash myself with $8-per-gallon gas and $5-per-gallon milk too! I’m all ears!

Peterson: “The states have demonstrated that they have the power of innovation and consensus building to really find the things that work the best back home.”

Thanks to CCS telling them what those 50 things are!

Napolitano: “People want change, and they want this thinking not just of this generation, but generations to come.”

I submit that they want change like more coal-fired power plants to lower electricity costs, more drilling for oil and natural gas on our own lands and coasts to meet demand and reduce dependency on foreigners, and more freedom to live our lives in places where we want. The failure of Lieberman-Warner last week suggests that’s the case. That states are “ahead of the curve” by advocating economy-killing measures shows that these governors, and CCS, are more out of touch than the U.S. Senate.

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