Poor Joe Biden. On top of everything else there is not to like about him, he now has to defend himself on the charge that he’s too sane on the matter of global warming.
It’s so bad that’s reduced to citing an article on PolitiFact that presumes to confirm that he was a “climate change pioneer.” That seems like an awfully subjective thing to “fact-check,” but that actually makes it a perfect fit for this particular journalism genre as it’s been twisted by modern-day media.
Supposedly Biden proposes a “middle ground” on the issue, which is making him a target for other Democratic presidential candidates who recognize that the left-wing base wants no hint of sanity whatsoever in their candidates’ approach to this issue.
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But this is the problem with accepting the premise that so-called “climate change” is an issue to be addressed via politics at all.
Look what happened when John Kasich tried to make the case that Republicans have to get on board with the issue, but that they should do so with “free-market solutions.” None of Kasich’s ideas can be described as free-market at all. Every one of them is a big-government solution.
And it cannot be otherwise. There is no market-based demand for the things that are supposed to reduce global warming. You can only manufacture demand for them through political intervention in the market, by imposing mandates that punish you if you don’t seek out carbon reductions or whatever else.
Left to the sheer discretion of the market, no one would want these things, because despite the media-generated hysteria over global warming, sane people don’t believe we are going to die in 12 years or that Miami will soon be under water. That is in large part because we’ve been hearing these predictions for more than 30 years and they always turn out to be nonsense.
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So a politician seeking a middle ground on this is putting himself in a heck of a spot. It didn’t work for Kasich because conservatives recognize his ideas are not free-market ones, and liberals don’t want anything but massive government intervention. He pleased no one and gained no traction, and his ideas made no sense.
If Biden presumes to accept the global warming orthodoxy – that it’s an urgent emergency and the lives of all of us hang in the balance – then it doesn’t make much sense for him to seek out a “middle ground.” A real emergency calls for bold, decisive action.
Does a "middle approach" on global warming make any sense at all?
That’s why AOC’s “Green New Deal” got some traction on the left. It didn’t get much because it’s completely bonkers, but at least it was big enough and ambitious enough to track with the notion that global warming is about to kill us. That’s why some were willing to excuse how idiotic it was. At least she was trying to make a big impact, they would say.
The only real alternative to the global warming extremism on the left is to posit that, if there’s a need for reduced carbon emissions, then the market will step up and meet it in response to demand. The clear and obvious solution is for the private sector to develop cleaner burning technology, and when someone comes up with that technology and can produce it affordably and to scale, the market will be interested.
Right now, politicians are trying to manufacture the demand. They may succeed at intimidating some companies into saluting, but that’s not the same as real market demand. Politicians simply aren’t the ones to make that happen, and that’s hard for politicians to accept.
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