Julie Walsh

I think some environmentalists, such as Lawrence Solomon, foresee it but not many do: there may be a day that the global warming issue comes back to bite them.
In a national atmosphere requiring global warming alarmism and "energy security”, a phrase even enviros use when convenient, McCain is calling for 45 new nuclear power plants.  And Governor Crist of Florida, a strong proponent of global warming alarmist policies, is now considering allowing oil drilling off his coast. I can hear the greens wailing from here.
Did they really expect to run the United States of America off of windmills and corn cobs?
Prague- Czech President Vaclav Klaus will visit the United States next week and meet Ben Bernanke, chairman of the Board of Governors of the U.S. Federal Reserve, and Edwin Feulner, head of the conservative think tank Heritage Foundation, in Washington. During his four-day visit, Klaus will promote his book Blue, Not Green Planet, campaigning against what he calls "climate alarmism." Klaus, who is sceptical of the global warming theory, has been engaged in the global discussion on the climate for a long time.

From The Reference Frame

There seems to be one question in which the green advocates and climate realists agree, and it is this. Green advocates are failing in the climate debate.

Mark Seal is concerned about the climate. So he decided to create the TalkClimateChange forums where all the fantastic green arguments will be collected. He was afraid that there would be no skeptics. Finally, he summarized his experience on La Marguerite.


"When I launched the TalkClimateChange forums last year, I was initially worried as to where I would find people who didn’t believe in global warming. I had planned to create a furious debate, but in my experience global warming was such a universally accepted issue that I expected to have to dredge the slums of the internet in order to find a couple of deniers who could keep the argument thriving.

The first few days were slow going, but following a brief write-up of my site by Junk Science I was swamped by climate skeptics who did a good job of frightening off the few brave Greens who slogged out the debate with. Whilst there was a lot of rubbish written, the truth was that they didn’t so much frighten the Greens away – they comprehensively demolished them with a more in depth understanding of the science, cleverly thought out arguments, and some very smart answers. If you want to learn about the physics of convection currents, gas chromatography, or any number of climate science topics then read some of the early debates on TalkClimateChange. I didn’t believe a word of it, but I had to admit that these guys were good.

In the following months the situation hardly changed. As the forum continued to grow, as the blog began to catch traffic, and as I continued to try and recruit green members I continued to be disappointed with the debate. In short, and I am sorry to say it, anti-greens (Reds, as we call them) appear to be more willing to comment, more structured, more able to quote peer reviewed research, more apparently rational and apparently wider read and better informed.

And it’s not just TalkClimateChange. Since we re-launched the forums on Green Options and promoted the “Live Debate“ on Nuclear Power, the pro-nuclear crowd have outclassed the few brave souls that have attempted to take them on (with the exception of our own Matt from TalkClimateChange). So how can this be? Where are all these bright Green champions, and why have I failed to recruit them into the debate? Either it’s down to poor online marketing skills, or there is something else missing. I’ve considered a range of theories as to the problem, none of which seem to fit – such as:

Greens are less educated? Nope.
Greens have less time? Nope.
Greens are a little reticent? Nope.
Greens are less intelligent? Definitely nope.
Greens are less passionate? Absolutely nope.]
Greens have less at stake? Clearly not.

The only feasible explanation that I can come up with so far is that perhaps Greens are less invested in the status quo, and therefore less motivated to protect it? The other possibility is that we are all completely wrong and we’re deluded – please tell me this isn’t so. So I am hoping that La Marguerite, with its insightful host and enlightened readership may be able to help shed some light on this peculiar phenomenon?"

Sounds reasonable, doesn't it? Via Tom Nelson.

Let us try to figure out what are the main reasons why the skeptics are more well-informed and better debaters. Here is a poll that will expire in 2 weeks, around May 24th. Incidentally, if you want to answer that the Greens are bad in these exchanges because they are religiously motivated, you should vote for "Greens are overwhelmed by their big plans that don't allow them to see the details." If you think a bit, I believe you will agree it is essentially the same thing.

(See http://motls.blogspot.com/ for the poll.)

While no one knows who first uttered the sentiment "It’s better to say nothing and seem a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt," Republican presidential hopeful John McCain’s speech this week on climate change certainly supports the phrase’s validity.

McCain spoke at the facilities of Vestas Wind Technology, an Oregon-based firm that manufactures wind-power systems. The irony of the setting was rich given McCain’s outspoken opposition to pork-barrel spending.

Evangelicals and other religiously-inclined are now uniting their voices against ruinous policies on climate change. The We Get It!” campaign seeks one million signers to their declaration and will probably get it with such illustrious partners as Dr. James Dobson, Family Research Council, WallBuilders, Concerned Women for America, Janet Parshall, senators and congressmen, and nearly a hundred pastors, Christian leaders, policymakers, theologians, and state organizations.
Their press conference yesterday included choice comments. Cal Beisner, the leader of the campaign and the national spokesman of the Cornwall Alliance, believes there have been attempts to portray a major shift of evangelicals towards embracing catastrophic global warming, which is simply not true. Representing the Southern Baptist Convention, Barrett Duke asked, “How can you create policy on unsettled science?” He also pointed out that, more than on any other issue, polls show evangelicals aren’t following the US mainstream on global warming—they are rejecting the alarmists’ predictions.
Tony Perkins (Family Research Council), a white Republican, and Bishop Harry Jackson (High Impact Leadership Coalition), a black Democrat, were promoting their new book Personal Faith, Public Policy and suggesting that one can be green without being gullible. Jackson called global warming a civil rights issue because the poor have “no microphone and their interests are considered last.”
The declaration can be signed at www.We-Get-It.org, and may also be forwarded to interested friends.

Striking Out on Energy

by Julie Walsh on May 19, 2008

in Blog

Congress seems ready to spend billions on a new "Manhattan Project" for green energy, or at least the political class really, really likes talking about one. But maybe we should look at what our energy subsidy dollars are buying now.

From Planet Gore, National Review Online

The NRDC has a full-page ad in the New York Times today hailing "The Economic Stimulus Plan that can Save the World."  This miracle piece of legislation is none other than the Lieberman-Warner global warming bill.  NRDC's premise is put quite simply in the ad — Jobs! Jobs! Jobs!  In other words, shifting over from old-energy technology to new-energy technology will create jobs aplenty.

This is hooey, of course.  Don't take my word for it, here's resource economist Billy Pizer:

"As an economist, I am skeptical that [dealing with climate change] is going to make money. You'll have new industries, but they'll be doing what old industries did but a higher net cost…. You'll be depleting other industries."

As James Pethokoukis points out in the surrounding commentary, the Jobs! Jobs! Jobs! hype is just a re-run of Bastiat's obviously-not-famous-enough Broken Windows Fallacy — by breaking a window, I am contributing to the economy by providing work for a glazier! (Of course, all you've done is cost the economy one window). By this reasoning, the devastation in Myanmar is a boon for its economy. Note furthermore this interpretation of the parable:

Austrian economists, and Bastiat himself, apply the parable of the broken window in a more subtle way. If we consider the parable again, we notice that the little boy is seen as a public benefactor. Suppose it was discovered that the little boy was actually hired by the glazier, and paid a franc for every window he broke. Suddenly the same act would be regarded as theft: the glazier was breaking windows in order to force people to hire his services. Yet the facts observed by the onlookers remain true: the glazier benefits from the business at the expense of the baker, the cobbler, and so on. Bastiat demonstrates that people actually do endorse activities which are morally equivalent to the glazier hiring a boy to break windows for him.

This is close to what NRDC is lobbying for. They are urging Congress to break windows to advance their own policy goals.

At least they don't go quite as far along this line of argument as Barack Obama:

Barack Obama also believes the transition to a clean energy economy holds special promise for low-income communities and families, which are poised to shoulder a disproportionate share of the burden of global climate change. To combat this problem, Obama will create an energy-focused youth jobs program to invest in disconnected and disadvantaged youth. This program will provide youth participants with energy efficiency and environmental service opportunities to improve the energy efficiency of homes and buildings in their communities, while also providing them with practical skills and experience in important career fields of expected high-growth employment.

Yes, he's going to train disaffected youngsters who could have gone into the steel mills or auto plants to change twisty lightbulbs for people.