The conservative movement stagnation has never had a serious strategy for responding to major global environmental problems (see “Hill conservatives reject all 3 climate strategies”). Two decades ago, Secretary of the Interior, Donald P. Hodel proposed a “personal protection plan,” at a meeting of President Reagan’s Council on Domestic Policy, suggesting that “hats, sunglasses and sun screens could be effective alternatives to an international treaty as a way of protecting people from the ultraviolet radiation reaching the earth because of depletion of the ozone layer.” Guest blogger Satyam Khanna has news on a modern-day Hodel in a post first published by Think Progress. I add comments on the GOP’s “expert” witness, The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley (aka TVMOB) at the end.
In a hearing Wednesday on adapting to climate change, Rep. Joe Barton (R-TX) denied the consensus on man-made climate change, saying it is “natural.” His solution to the warming planet? Just get some “shade”:
BARTON: I believe that Earth’s climate is changing, but I think it’s changing for natural variation reasons. And I think man-kind has been adopting, or adapting, to climate as long as man has walked the Earth. When it rains we find shelter. When it’s hot, we get shade. When it’s cold, we find a warm place to stay. Adaptation is the practical, affordable, utterly natural reflex response to nature when the planet is heating or cooling, as it always is.
“Nature doesn’t seem to adjust to people as much as people adjust to nature,” he added. “Adaptation to shifts in temperature is not that difficult.” Watch it:
Last year, Barton — known as “Smokey Joe” for his efforts on behalf of big polluters — stalled congressional efforts to decrease power plant emissions.
JR: Amazingly, Barton had called as the GOP’s expert witness The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley, as he prefers to call himself, or TVMOB, as I will call him because, damn, the acronym is just too sweet. Barton says (here) “I especially want to thank Lord Monckton for testifying. He is generally acknowledged as one of the most knowledgeable, if not the most knowledgeable, expert from a skeptical point of view on this issue of climate change.” For a different view of TVMOB, see “How to diss-a-peer: Real Climate Scientists take on TVMOB” and “Irony-gate: Viscount Monckton, a British peer, says his paper was peer-reviewed by a scientist.”
[Please note that the picture above is not TVMOB nor do I think he would ever participate in this.]
Related head-in-the-sand conservatives:
- House GOP pledge to fight all action on climate.
- Virtually every conservative in the Senate voted against the Boxer-Lieberman-Warner climate bill even though that bill was inadequate to stopping catastrophic warming.
- James Sensenbrenner (R-WI) believes a cap & trade bill will return GOP to power “in 2010”³
- Grover Norquist asserts that calls to take global warming more seriously will be “cheerfully ignored”
- 64% of GOP voters say global warming denier Palin is their top choice for 2012,
- “Several prominent party officials said they believe the GOP’s message is fundamentally sound when it comes to energy policy, pointing to that issue as one of the few political bright spots in recent years.”
- The Heritage Foundation even opposes energy efficiency
- The American Enterprise Institute is still crazy with denial and delay after all these years
- The Cato Institute believes adaptation is cheaper than mitigation.
- Columns by Charles Krauthammer and George Will and John Tierney have become science-free zones that demand more climate research while inveighing against all serious climate action and against all non-nuclear clean tech.