How we got here

The short version:

We’ve known about carbon-based greenhouse gases (CO2, methane, etc) for 150 years, global warming for over 100 years, solar and orbital influence on climate for 68 years. Scientists started warning us about bad things coming more than 50 years ago. Presidents Johnson, Nixon, Carter, and Bush (senior) all warned us about the dire consequences. The US Senate was unanimous that we must address Global Warming before the threat became too high. Right up until it looked like it might cost something.

In 1997 the US Senate gave us the Byrd-Hagel Resolution (S. Res. 98). Suddenly it was important that all the poor nations of the world had to have the same carbon caps, timetables, and goals as the US. Even though the poor nations couldn’t afford to meet those goals… something the US Senate already knew.

It was like a clarion call. You would have thought that the Government and the People of the United States were suddenly on a cheap energy binge… From 1997 to 2007 we expanded our carbon output 26%.  The “leader of the free world” was on carbon based energy spree like frat boys out on the town with daddy’s credit card. And literally getting fat doing it.

So here we are, we’ve got an energy hang over, and we’ve made a wreck of the place, and now our roomies want us to clean up our act. What’s our response? “It’s not our fault! …. Nothing happened and you can’t prove it! … We didn’t do anything.  Why worry, nothing’s gonna happen. …  How come China doesn’t have to do it too?!?! …. It’s not fair!”  This mostly comes from a group who averages 60 years of age (the US Legislature).

Recent polling from Zogby indicates that the majority of the American people want things to change, things to be fixed:

“Majority Favors Clean Energy Bill and Wants Senate to Take Action

Survey finds likely voters connect reducing global warming and promoting clean energy to new American jobs”

Our elected representatives don’t seem to want to hear this from us. They seem to be listening to their pocket books, and their re-election funds, instead of their constituents.  We should make the effort to get their attention and make sure they understand, the “Silent Majority” is watching, and Mid Term elections are fast approaching.

So, Republican’s get a clue, take your party back from the extremists and tell your representatives what the real Republicans want.

Democrats, grow a pair. You’re in the majority, you have the ball, why the hell are you sitting on it? Take action. Tell your “leaders” to either lead or get the hell out of the way!

People, this is our country… wake up! Clear your heads, and take charge! It’s the most Patriotic thing you could ever do!

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One thought on “How we got here

  1. Transferring this comment over from the old blog: An insightful comment from macaaron

    I think we’ve both agreed via Twitter exchanges that cap-and-trade isn’t the answer either. It’s untenable. It’s a big scheme to make Al Gore and his buddies rich (including King Obama).

    What we need is a fundamental shift in the way we think. A change in how we view consumerism, “wealth,” etc. World poverty numbers are, to me, useless figures because they’re all based on relative “income” (money). That means nothing. My wife and I are Americans living in the U.S. and have an income at less than half the average. Yet I would never claim “poverty.”

    We have good health care (self-provided, thank you), a comfortable lifestyle, and interesting lives. All we did was cut the crap. We don’t have $1500/month mortgage payments, $800/month car payments, $1200/month grocery purchases, $500/month utility bills, etc.

    We use about 1/3 of the national average in electricity and gas for a home our size (and we live in Wyoming, where it’s COLD). We grow and swap for a lot of our food. We have good vehicles that are well-maintained and that are paid for. Our gardening and as much of our produce and meat purchasing as possible is done through local supply from sustainable methods: grassfed beef, ranged pigs, yard chickens, organic/sustainable farming, etc. We do our primary shopping at thrift stores and we own a sowing machine and other tools. We compost. We recycle much of our garbage… None of this cost us any extra money to accomplish either. In fact, it SAVES money.

    I could keep going, but the point isn’t to say how great our household it. It’s to show that “going green” doesn’t mean you have to be hermits or live in a cave and eat refuse.

    If everyone in America figured out how to cut their energy consumption by 25% and their garbage output by 10%, we would see a huge turnaround in a lot of the calamities facing us in the immediate future. Cutting back by that much isn’t hard. In fact, for most people, it requires only that you lower the thermostat and plan your driving habits better and that you get a 5 gallon plastic bucket and compost your kitchen wastes. That’s it. Nearly everyone I’ve talked to who’s done this has found themselves saving around $100/month. SAVING

    What more incentive do you want?

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