Tuesday, September 12, 2006

The Economist On Global Warming

Two more are throwing their names into the increasingly unlikely group of conservatives calling for action on global warming.

The cover story of this week's issue of the The Economist addresses the threat of climate change from a decidedly conservative standpoint, and draws the same conclusion as the scientific community - that global warming is a serious threat that merits our attention. In essence, they do what almost no conservative minded think tank, politician, or media outlet has done. They rationally address the risk of climate change, based on scientific evidence, and make recommendations based on that analysis.

So is it really worth using public resources now to avert an uncertain, distant risk, especially when the cash could be spent instead on goods and services that would have a measurable near-term benefit?
If the risk is big enough, yes. Governments do it all the time. They spend a small slice of tax revenue on keeping standing armies not because they think their countries are in imminent danger of invasion but because, if it happened, the consequences would be catastrophic. Individuals do so too. They spend a little of their incomes on household insurance not because they think their homes are likely to be torched next week but because, if it happened, the results would be disastrous. Similarly, a growing body of scientific evidence suggests that the risk of a climatic catastrophe is high enough for the world to spend a small proportion of its income trying to prevent one from happening.

Lest we forget, the traditional definition of conservatism is not a synonym for irrationality (though their modern leaders do their apparent best to leave that impression) and the editors of this article do an excellent job of proving that point.

Joining The Economist is the American Christian right, who are rolling out a new documentary film for the expressed purpose of influencing Washington to reduce greenhouse gases.

Coming soon to a movie screen near you: prayers, politics and a feature-length film, united in an effort to mobilize religious groups around global warming concerns in time for the U.S. midterm election.

With a new documentary titled "The Great Warming" as their chief campaign tool, a coalition of religious leaders, environmentalists and businesses are spreading copies of the film into churches around the country. Voter guides and themed sermons are also part of the plan.

The aim of the screenings, like one held in Kansas last week, is to turn the large and powerful conservative Christian constituency into a voting block united behind making the reduction of greenhouse gases a top priority among politicians.

Right wing pundits won't be able to so much as think of swift-boating the messengers of this climate campaign. To do so would leave the Republican officials they support hung out to dry in front of their bread-and-butter voting constituency.

So in the past couple of weeks we've had a Republican Governor, an oil company president, a leading conservative publication and the voter backbone of the Bush administration, the Christian right, call on the President for action on global warming.

Any comments from the right? Anyone?......Bueller......Bueller.......

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Got to LOVE the lack of comments from the fringe radical convervative anti-science nut cases out there.