Sunday 4 June 2017
In the aftermath of calamitous decisions made by politicians who disregard the counsel of science and the wise, we are apt to find reasoned and thoughtful commentary.
I was going through a number of online publications looking for commentary that might be sympathetic to my recent piece for The AIMN; Trump and Turnbull confirm their Lunacy when I came across a piece by Richard Dennis titled Donald Trump is more honest about climate inaction than Malcolm Turnbull. Dennis wrote that:
”There is a depressing honesty about Donald Trump’s announcement that the United States will withdraw from the Paris climate agreement. It stands in stark contrast to the hypocrisy of Malcolm Turnbull’s big talk on climate change, which is accompanied by a $1 billion subsidy for the enormous new Adani coal mine. At least Trump is doing what he said he would do.
Trump shows his contempt for the world’s problems by withdrawing from a global agreement on the basis that he doesn’t think it’s in his nation’s interest, while Turnbull shows his contempt by remaining in that same agreement while funding the construction of a new coal mine that will still operate in 2080. Which is worse?”
When Richard writes it is always illuminating and to the point. In this instance he reveals with explicit clarity the deceit of Malcolm Turnbull. The truth of it is that on the one hand Turnbull is playing the role of Paris Agreement advocate while on the other he outrageously promotes coal. He continues:
”To put Turnbull’s coal expansion plans into context; Australia is already the world’s largest coal exporter. At 388 million tonnes in 2015-16, we have a larger share of the traded coal market than Saudi Arabia has of the world oil market. And the Australian government hopes to facilitate a doubling of our coal exports.”
With a range of fraudulent words and actions designed to destroy the delivery of truth as we know it Turnbull and his Ministers are promoting a non-existent product called clean coal.
”Think about that. Australia is a signatory to an international agreement to reduce greenhouse gas emissions to zero in 33 years’ time. And Turnbull wants to subsidise the opening-up of a new coal basin in the hope that it will export an extra 300 million tonnes of coal a year. I’d take Trump’s denial over Turnbull’s deception any day.
The Coalition clearly takes the adage that, if you are going to tell a lie, tell a big one quite seriously. Having decided to adopt a bizarre “pro-coal, pro-climate” public position, it has set out to abuse language, policy and taxpayers’ money to design a bridge between the multiple sandcastles it is building in the air. Take this week’s announcement that more taxpayers’ money will potentially be invested in “carbon capture and storage.”
This ”carbon capture and storage” theory has been around for generations and has come to nothing. For Turnbull to promote it as being viable is shameful. It’s akin to him promoting the Snowy Mountain Hydro water recycling suggestion as being viable when a feasibility study hasn’t even been completed.
Richard Dennis makes some astute observations. You can read them here.
”Power is a malevolent possession when you are prepared to forgo your principles and your country’s wellbeing for the sake of it.”
Around the world the reaction to Donald Trumps announcement that the USA would not honour its Paris Agreement obligations was one of Universal condemnation.
As former President Barack Obama stated in a press release:
”The nations that remain in the Paris Agreement will be the nations that reap the benefits in jobs and industries created. I believe the United States of America should be at the front of the pack. But even in the absence of American leadership; even as this Administration joins a small handful of nations that reject the future; I’m confident that our states, cities, and businesses will step up and do even more to lead the way, and help protect for future generations the one planet we’ve got.”
The leaders of all the major nations reiterated their obligation to the Paris agreement. China has now replaced the United States as the leader of the world for reducing harmful emissions. America’s reputation has been damaged beyond repair.
Why a US President would willingly capitulate Global leadership is a mystery only known to the Donald. Even his withdrawal speech was a bunch of lies and distortions that have been pulled to shreds.
As Katharine Murphy said in the Guardian:
”The US president’s willingness to surrender global leadership on important issues is, from this distance, truly unfathomable. Even his withdrawal patter on Friday morning was pathetic. America was out, but would come back in if it could get a better deal. America was out, but possibly back in, because the citizens of Pittsburgh apparently don’t care about climate change.”
The Vice President was bemused by the reaction to the Presidents decision:
”For some reason or another, this issue of climate change has emerged as a paramount issue for the left in this country and around the world,” Pence said during an appearance on Fox & Friends.
So what if man-made global warming is already wreaking havoc around the world?
Next Friday with the release of the Finkel review the focus will return to Australia’s efforts on the environment. Currently many would argue that we really don’t have a Climate policy.
Richard Dennis in the same article says:
”Speaking of defending that status quo, on the domestic front, the Coalition’s direct action plan is reaching its use-by date and the Turnbull government is faced with the impending arrival of a new report by Chief Scientist Professor Alan Finkel. It’s the latest in a string of government reviews of the need for a long-term climate policy that can actually put some pressure on polluters to reduce their emissions rather than put putting pressure on the budget to buy emission reductions.”
The problem for Turnbull is that given the Chief Scientist is likely to put forward the same solution as he did in his last report that being the introduction of an effective carbon tax he has, given that the deniers in his party oppose it, he has no option but to reject his findings.
Richard Dennis again:
”Obstacle No. 1 is that the Coalition can’t possibly introduce a simple and effective carbon tax. The idea that a government would introduce a tax to discourage a harmful activity has become anathema to the “good economic managers” in the Coalition, even if it is economics 101. And even if Tony Abbott increased tobacco taxes to discourage smoking.”
We simply have to face the fact that the real and absolute truth is that the Coalition is and always has been a party of climate change deniers and coal-mining advocates. This is proven beyond doubt when you look at their actions and policies.
Why would you on the one hand cynically say that you want to reduce your country’s carbon emissions and simultaneously on the other want to build the worlds biggest coal mine?
My thought for the day.
”The purpose of propaganda is to make you feel good about the wrongs being perpetrated on you”
PS: Would it be a stretch to far to suggest that the decisions of Trump are about nothing more that the destruction of Obama’s legacy.