Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Is this the end of "never let a good crisis go to waste?"

The WaPo reports that the BP spill has failed to give environmental demands a boost in Congress. I think the rubes are catching on.
Traditionally, American environmentalism wins its biggest victories after some important piece of American environment is poisoned, exterminated or set on fire. An oil spill and a burning river in 1969 led to new anti-pollution laws in the 1970s. The Exxon Valdez disaster helped create an Earth Day revival in 1990 and sparked a landmark clean-air law.

But this year, the worst oil spill in U.S. history -- and, before that, the worst coal-mining disaster in 40 years -- haven't put the same kind of drive into the debate over climate change and fossil-fuel energy.
The whole attempt to associate CO2 with runaway global warming has developed a whole as big as the housing balloon, but it's not re-inflating. The dishonesty behind the claims, which were never all that believable in the first place, has hurt the credibility of people peddling theories that depend on carbon dioxide being a pollutant and "carbon footprint" part of new jokes. We still dislike pollution, but CO2 isn't one we're willing to worry about any more. At least I'm not. I've looked at the problem and decided that correctly predicting climate over decades and centuries is a long shot, and I'm not willing to do further damage to the world economy for it, especially in its current condition.

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