If you were a Leftist or a global climate change cultist…I mean protester, June 1, 2017, was a day that will live in infamy. For everyone else, it was Thursday. President Donald Trump announced we would be pulling out of the Paris Agreement that former President Barack Obama gave a verbal commitment to as a means to combat global climate change. And as you might expect, the Left handled it with their usual sober maturity.
They lost their minds.
Twitter exploded with Leftist rage and dire predictions that would make even the most dystopian writer seem like Dr. Seuss. The air and water will be poisoned! We’re killing the planet! Future generations will suffer! We’re all gonna diiiieeeeeeee!
I’ll take Unnecessary Hyperventilation Over Bullcrap for $200, Alex.
Whenever I want to figure out my position on a controversial subject, I like to see where some people come down because invariably these people will become the center of attention. If there is an issue involving race, I will look for Jesse Jackson, Al Sharpton, Shawn King, or Rachel Dolezal. If it’s an issue involving homosexuality, I look for Dan Savage or George Takei. Sexism? Look no further than Anita Sarkeesian, Gloria Allred, or Brianna Wu.
Once I identify the issue “lightning rods”, I can figure out my position (usually in opposition because these folks tend to be denser than a gold covered block of granite). It’s a short cut, I grant you, but it does at least give me a framework by which to build. From there, it’s a matter of sifting through the available information and thinking through the issue.
When it comes to the Paris Agreement, the issue is pretty cut and dried. Under the terms of the agreement, we would be paying billions of dollars to fight climate change while allowing countries that pollute more, like China, to let us pick up the tab for their clean-up efforts. And really who but the evilest climate change deniers would object to that? (Well, people like me who understand we can’t afford to spend money we don’t have to fight a problem we can’t even be sure is happening or that we can affect one way or the other, for starters.)
The people caterwauling about the climate agreement need to take a step back and look at some of the details of the agreement. For one, it’s non-binding. That means there really isn’t any enforcement mechanism, aside from having the world try to shame non-signatories into compliance. Normally, this tactic might work on us, but with Donald Trump at the helm, it’s about as likely to work as Kathy Griffin after this week.
Another element of the agreement is it allows current big polluters like China and India to keep doing what they’re doing. What’s more, they will both be increasing the number of coal plants they’re building. And I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say they may not be the clean coal plants we have here in America, meaning these coal plants will create more pollution, thus negating the very reason the Paris Agreement was even introduced. Brilliant!
The biggest stumbling block for the eco-Left is the fact President Obama didn’t go through the proper channels to bind us to the Paris Agreement. The Constitution states any treaties (and I presume agreements like this one) must go to the Senate to be ratified. Obama decided to go it alone and say we would agree to the Paris Agreement. Yeah, that’s not quite good enough. Funny that a Constitutional lawyer/scholar like Obama forgot about that little part in the Constitution…
Smart Leftists (a paradox, I know, but go with me on this) think there might be a loophole that will prevent Trump from withdrawing from the Paris Agreement. Under the terms of the agreement, member nations would not be able to request withdrawal until 2019, and would need to wait until 2020 for the withdrawal request to be granted. According to these smart Leftists, that means Trump couldn’t pull out until right around Election Day in 2020. That’s all well and good…until you consider the whole lack of ratification I mentioned earlier. Without the Senate’s approval, any agreement the President makes is worth less than VHS copies of “Glitter.” (If you don’t know the reference, be glad you don’t. Ignorance truly is bliss in this case.)
At the end of the day, the Paris Agreement was a bad deal. It does nothing to prevent pollution, costs rich countries (mostly us) money and jobs, and is as enforceable as a kiss-cam violation. But that doesn’t matter to the Left. They care more about appearing to do something about the environment than actually doing something about it. Even some of the most vocal proponents of manmade global climate change still buy beachfront property while painting a picture of the coastlines getting flooded to the point Omaha becomes our east and west coasts simultaneously. But after the third or fourth time the dire predictions don’t come true, most people stop listening. (The converse of this is more people listen to Nickelback after their promises to make good music doesn’t come true.)
But you global climate change folks keep doing you. The rest of us will be elsewhere doing something productive. Like listening to Nickelback.