State, national columnists

The political climate needs a change

By From page A11 | June 05, 2014

Food stamps have never been more popular, economic growth is in the doldrums, average household income remains in a slump, the work force is still shrinking, a third of everyone between 18 and 34 is living with parents, often as a means of rent rescue, and President Barack Obama wants to make things worse.

The issue for him is climate change, but the issue for the rest of us should be political change. Focus on November, everyone, as you contemplate a new directive dictating to states that, for the sake of a cooler future, they must vastly decrease the use of coal in electric plants. The states are given some options about how they go about it, but the sure-enough facts are that none of the allowed steps will do boo to budge global warming a fraction of a degree downward even as they visit the nation with dour economic consequences.

Obama himself once conceded that measures of the sort he is now dictating would send electric rates skyrocketing, an instance of candor now in remission. The Environmental Protection Agency says rates will sit there as if nothing is happening. My own observation is that when the government mandates changes that must at least initially be expensive, as some of these absolutely will be, the costs are passed on to consumers.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce says the hit will be $51 billion and 200,000 jobs a year, and if you want to reply, oh, well, that’s just greedy business noodles talking, consider the bureaucracy-bound, fiercely anti-warming European Union that fairly recently said it was putting higher emission-reduction goals in place even as it was going to ease up on how members get there. The issue, you see, is that Europe, too, is in a bad way economically, discovered that its anti-warming regulations were leading to deindustrialization, as one German official put it, and is now backing off of them, choosing to mouth lofty aspirations instead.

Of course, what the Europeans know is what everyone who knows anything at all about global warming knows. There are lots of countries but just one global atmosphere, and what is done across the Atlantic or in the United States will make not a smidgen of difference if the rest of the world does not join in. Much of it will not. China, for instance, may have rescued hundreds of millions of its people from destitution, but 900 million are as bad off as communism once helped to ensure, and China will never, ever sacrifice them for the sake of warming worries.

Some analysts contend otherwise. If the United States gets out front, leads the way with self-abnegating boldness, others will line up and salute with cheery smiles on their faces, they say. Do you suppose they’ve noticed that China is now strutting its bullying power internationally as much as anytime in decades, might every now and then say something meant to mislead people about its noble intentions, but then shows by its actions that it meant not a word of it?

A final argument may be that we should begin the good fight even if it won’t help right off the bat just on the chance China and others do eventually come along, and the answer is we are. Through the technological genius of the free market system, we have reduced carbon emissions significantly.

It is also the case that the EPA intervention will get lots of things wrong – that’s a governmental certitude – and that additional technological breakthroughs will supply more lots more solutions over time. Some of the worst warming scare talk is scientifically disputable, by the way, and some of the economic concerns are worth listening to. Lend an ear.

Jay Ambrose is an op-ed columnist for McClatchy-Tribune. Readers may email him at [email protected]

Jay Ambrose


Discussion | 22 comments

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  • SalJune 05, 2014 - 4:38 am

    What is your opinion on Bush and Cheney leading the country to the disaster which has had continuing ripple effects to date, and the damage control Obama has had to do, despite Congress? Numbers don't lie. Bush inherited a surplus and by the end of his term we were in a trillion plus dollar deficit. Obama isn't a magician.

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  • patrickJune 05, 2014 - 1:56 pm

    SAL we are now at $17,000,000,000,000,000 and getting deeper in debt every day.1 trillion bush spent , the rest Obama ran up----that's magic?????

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  • Danny BuntinJune 05, 2014 - 9:51 pm

    Do you really believe the statement you just made?

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  • 2realJune 05, 2014 - 5:46 am

    I dont recall a bushcare ... thanks obama. And regardless sal, even if your comment were true, "firefighters inherit disasters too, ever see one put gas on it?

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  • Debbie GanthnerJune 05, 2014 - 8:12 am

    Don't worry Sal, 2real does not have a clue....

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  • 2realJune 05, 2014 - 8:35 am

    Debbie after two terms and still not on track? Some clue you got! Good thing its over in two years, hopefully you dont vote to elect another problem. O.ne B.ig A.$$ M.istake A.merica=obama

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  • CD BrooksJune 05, 2014 - 8:54 am

    notso2real, you're still lying. No name no facts, nothing. Zero credibility.

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  • rlw895June 05, 2014 - 9:43 am

    I stopped reading with "and President Barack Obama wants to make things worse" because it told me this column wasn't trustworthy.

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  • SalJune 05, 2014 - 10:56 am

    Seems any moron can get published here. after all we do live in hickville.

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  • SalJune 05, 2014 - 10:58 am

    These repubtards dare compare Obamacare to trillion dollar fake wars which caused debt and death of unmitigated proportions, while Obamacare saved millions of lives by providing hitherto scarce health care....what is wrong with these people?

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  • rlw895June 05, 2014 - 12:06 pm

    They're irrational.

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  • Salty DogJune 05, 2014 - 10:53 pm

    Sal they published you comments here so what does that make you

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  • 2realJune 05, 2014 - 10:59 am

    You really are stupid arent you? Or do you just play dumb?

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  • CD BrooksJune 05, 2014 - 11:45 am

    notso2real, YOU calling people stupid? Hilarious! Zero credibility.

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  • 2realJune 05, 2014 - 12:29 pm

    CD CROOKS, if i wanted to hear from an a$$hole id fart. Everyone knows your views on life are sickening. Its a wonder god gives you another day. Your president sucks! Hes a mistake and nothing more! You got what you wanted, 8 years of hell. Now its time for a real american to take back our country. IN GOD WE TRUST!! ONE NATION UNDER GOD!!

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  • CD BrooksJune 05, 2014 - 12:36 pm

    notso2real, HA! HA! You're still lying, what a p*thetic person you are. No name no facts, nothing. Zero credibility. If some god is your only argument, then you don’t have one.

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  • 2realJune 05, 2014 - 2:44 pm

    If some god didnt create human beings, you wouldnt be here! Go google your president, all the facts are there. I cant understand how you blatenly support things when id think someone couldnt possibly be stupid enough to.gay is wrong obamas wrong and your wrong. The summerof love is over guy. Fairytale life is over

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  • Danny BuntinJune 05, 2014 - 2:57 pm

    Do you have anything to bring to the discussion, other then the ramblings of a fourth grader? Your predictable knee jerk responses about your beliefs and others is a waste of hard drive space. You are clearly someone with very low self esteem, by the fact that you use nothing other then god, gays, and guns as your constitution.

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  • CD BrooksJune 05, 2014 - 3:03 pm

    NOT-SO-2REAL, HA! HA! HA! It didn’t, yet here I am! This has been a blast. Your god has been busy ignoring you so you probably aren’t aware the cave man disappeared long ago and there are no more dinosaurs. I’ll get moderated and this will be pulled but you are by far a l*oser of the maximum order. You offer nothing zero, you’re just a punk. I won’t waste any more of my time responding to your completely id*otic comments. Imb*cile! Laughingly good time for me though. Hilarious!

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  • PornacJune 05, 2014 - 4:53 pm

    Pornac a fool, 2real just dumb.

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  • SalJune 05, 2014 - 5:33 pm

    Going on a limb here, but do you think 2real voted for Bush? LMAO!!!!!

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  • JagJune 05, 2014 - 9:27 pm

    Maybe my ADD kicked in because I could not follow this article at all this guy seem to be all over the place,

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