My windy pal, Mark Draughn, parsed the “New Green Disaster” put forth by the AOC Committee in the newly woke House of Representatives. After running through some of the wish-list of irreconciliable, unrelated and impossible aspirations, he comes to an important point.
I don’t actually believe global warming is a myth. But after reading the Green New Deal, I find it easier to be sympathetic with people who believe it is, because it must seem awful convenient to them that the biggest proposal to fight global warming…is a giant wish-list of progressive policies.
And I find myself wondering…does Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez believe in global warming? She seems quite happy to use it as an excuse for everything in the Green New Deal, but if she really believed global warming was a disaster, wouldn’t she have proposed a better solution?
On the climate change side of the equation, the United States certainly has things it can do to significantly help to save the environment. But it can’t save the environment, because we’re not China. We’re not Russia. We’re not India. Some may believe passionately in a global community, but China doesn’t care what you believe, stupid Yanqui.
For all its flirtations with the environment, perhaps this proposal reflects the tacit recognition that it’s an emotional hook to enable a laundry list of dream outcomes bearing no connection to climate change at all. Perhaps the reason for throwing in the kitchen sink is because, as Mark ponders, they know the US isn’t the problem and can’t be the cure, given that the rest of the world isn’t interested in sacrificing its status to progressive causes.
If progressives cared about climate change, why burden the Green New Deal with their other aspirational causes, dooming it to failure? It would be great if everyone could ride a unicorn, but somebody has to sweep up the unicorn poop, unpleasant as that may be.
So is climate change merely the new hook upon which a new world order will be born?
In 2010, Naomi Klein published The Shock Doctrine: The Rise of Disaster Capitalism, in which she argued that the evil advocates of free-market capitalism have been taking advantage of national disasters in places like Latin America and Eastern Europe to spread their ideology. She called this “disaster capitalism.”
I bring that up because the Green New Deal is basically disaster socialism: The authors are using the climate crisis to stir people to action, to justify a massive government response, but then they are cramming a crapload of unrelated policies and social programs into their proposed response.
This is, by their own standards, reprehensible.
Like Mark, I don’t doubt that humans have done terrible harm to the environment. That’s not to say that we’ve got 12 years before life on earth ends, but that we have been careless stewards of this planet. The problem is that undoing our damage will require great sacrifice rather than the inane non sequitur of making free health care, universal unionization, free college and a corner office for everyone. Making a laundry list doesn’t mean it makes any sense at all.
But even if we suck it up, that doesn’t mean the rest of the world is willing to take the hit. Go ahead, call the Chinese and Russians bad names, because Xi Jinping and Vlad Putin certainly care deeply about being liked by American social justice warriors.
We cared about murdering small critters for luxury coats, but now we learn that black women get to wear real fur because they were oppressed before and couldn’t enjoy it when white women did. China makes a similar argument, that we enjoyed an industrial revolution and now it’s their turn. We got ours. Isn’t it their turn?
If Mark is right, then this isn’t really about climate change at all, but about using the fear of climate change to drive a tangential agenda forward if the useful idiots don’t start adding the number and come to the epiphany that “free”* medical care has nothing to do with global warming. But then, what would happen with this agenda if the AOC wing had the capacity to make it a reality? Or would it not matter because human life on earth will vanish in twelve years anyway?