Tumblr Icon RSS Icon

After Sanders Compares Climate Deniers To Nazi-Era Isolationists, They Deny There’s A Threat

By Brad Johnson on February 26, 2010 at 11:50 am

"After Sanders Compares Climate Deniers To Nazi-Era Isolationists, They Deny There’s A Threat"

Share:

google plus icon

Earlier this week, the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works considered the 2011 budget request for the Environmental Protection Agency. During the questioning of EPA administrator Lisa Jackson, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) responded to the litany of Republicans denying the science of global warming:

The reason that this debate is so important is that it reminds me in some ways of the debate taking place in this country and around the world in the 1930s. And during that period with Nazism, fascism growing — a real danger to the United States and democratic countries around the world — there were people in this congress and the British parliament saying don’t worry, Hitler is not real. It’ll disappear. We don’t have to be prepared to take it on. Fortunately, there were other people in this country, Roosevelt, Republicans who said, “You know what, we are going to have to be prepared for a war.” Winston Churchill in England led the effort there. But because we were as slow as we were, millions of people probably died unnecessarily. Global warming is real. If we do not get our act together there will be devastating impacts for our kids and our grandchildren, causing among other things trillions of dollars in order to repair that damage if it is repairable at all. And the longer we delay, the longer we have this senseless debate, the less prepared we will be.

Watch it:

Right-wing climate-conspiracy bloggers called Sanders’ remarks “completely irresponsible rhetoric” from the “climate change cult.” Fox News jumped in, Tucker Carlson telling Sean Hannity that “real questions have been raised about global warming”:

It’s so . . . The truth is people denying the Nazi threat in the late ’30s were the left, for whatever that is worth. This is a classic — rather than engaging the other side, the other argument, you write them off as bigots or racists. This is a sign of weakness not strength. He knows that real questions have been raised about global warming.

Watch it:

Following World War I, isolationism drew supporters of all political stripes , although hard-left Communists and Socialists with ties to revolutionary Russia were, unsurprisingly, among the loudest opponents of fascism in the 1930s. After Hitler invaded Poland, however, the leading isolationists were right-wing opponents of President Franklin D. Roosevelt like Charles Lindbergh, Chicago Tribune publisher Robert McCormick, the segregationist Rep. John Rankin (D-MI), Sen. Robert Taft (R-OH), and former president Herbert Hoover. As Sanders noted, the mobilization against the threat of fascism involved both parties — confronting the climate threat must as well.

Despite the efforts of Fox News to promote conspiracy theories about climate science, their unrelenting attacks have no relation to the fact of manmade global warming, which indeed will bring more devastation the more we delay.

Transcript:

SANDERS: . . . from the very conservative editorial page, the Washington Post, yesterday. This is what is said:

“The earth is warming. A chief cause is the increase in greenhouse gases accumulating in the atmosphere. Humans are at least in part responsible, because the oil, gas and coal that we burn releases these gases. If current trends persist, it’s likely that in coming decades the globe’s climate will change with potentially devastating effects for billions of people. Contrary to what you may have read lately, there are few reputable scientists who would disagree with anything in that first paragraph. Yet suddenly we’re hearing that climate change is in doubt and that action to combat it is unlikely. What’s going on? ”

And there’s another paragraph, interesting — let me get to the last one that I’m going to read.

“Politicians nonetheless have seized on both the trivial mistakes” — trivial mistakes — “and the complexity of the science to cast doubt on the underlying and unrefuted truth of human-caused greenhouse gas accumulation. In many cases, it is hard to know whether they are being obtuse or dishonest, and hard to know which would be worse.”

End of quote.

The reason that this debate is so important is that it reminds me in some ways of the debate taking place in this country and around the world in the 1930s. And during that period with Nazism, fascism growing — a real danger to the United States and democratic countries around the world — there were people in this congress and the British parliament saying don’t worry, Hitler is not real. It’ll disappear. we don’t have to be prepared to take it on. Fortunately, there were other people in this country, Roosevelt, Republicans who said, “You know what, we are going to have to be prepared for a war.” Winston Churchill in England led the effort there. But because we were as slow as we were, millions of people probably died unnecessarily.

Global warming is real.

If we do not get our act together there will be devastating impacts for our kids and our grandchildren, causing among other things trillions of dollars in order to repair that damage if it is repairable at all. And the longer we delay, the longer we have this senseless debate, the less prepared we will be.

From an economic perspective, China is not delaying. They’re going forward in wind. They’re going forward in solar. Spain is. Countries all over the world are investing heavily in efficiency and sustainable energies, creating in the process millions of jobs.

And I suggest that if we do not act, and we do not act boldly, it will be harmful for our kinds and harmful for our economy as well.

‹ PREVIOUS
Michael Mann responds to the “false and misleading claims” in the error-riddled, defamatory WSJ piece by Jeffrey Ball and Keith Johnson

NEXT ›
Energy and Global Warming News for February 26: Goodbye, Hummer; Olympics going for the green

Comments are closed.