Thomas Friedman on the Failure to pass an energy/climate bill: We’re Gonna Be Sorry

Posted by Kendall Harmon

We’ve basically decided to keep pumping greenhouse gases into Mother Nature’s operating system and take our chances that the results will be benign — even though a vast majority of scientists warn that this will not be so. Fasten your seat belts. As the environmentalist Rob Watson likes to say: “Mother Nature is just chemistry, biology and physics. That’s all she is.” You cannot sweet-talk her. You cannot spin her. You cannot tell her that the oil companies say climate change is a hoax. No, Mother Nature is going to do whatever chemistry, biology and physics dictate, and “Mother Nature always bats last, and she always bats 1.000,” says Watson. Do not mess with Mother Nature. But that is just what we’re doing.

Read it all.

Filed under: * Culture-WatchLaw & Legal Issues* Economics, PoliticsEconomyCorporations/Corporate LifeEnergy, Natural ResourcesPolitics in GeneralHouse of RepresentativesOffice of the PresidentPresident Barack ObamaSenate

17 Comments
Posted July 26, 2010 at 5:54 pm [Printer Friendly] [Print w/ comments]



1. Steven in Falls Church wrote:

Remember folks—the guy who wrote this column lives in this structure.  Conservation . . . it’s for the little people.

July 26, 7:39 pm | [comment link]
2. paradoxymoron wrote:

An excellent comment, Steven!

July 26, 8:34 pm | [comment link]
3. AnglicanFirst wrote:

For a loooong time ‘wise people’ thought that the earth was flat and that the universe revolved around the Earth.

Folk lore says that boiling water will freeze faster than room temperature water.

Until about 40 years ago, the ‘wisest men’ thought that the Universe was continuous in its time line and then along came the Big Bang.

And now, a bunch of politically active so-called scientists and even more non-scientists are trying to convince us without any conclusive proof other than some very attractive hypotheses, attractive to some, that global warming is an imminent danger.

Tell me what does Chicken Little have to say?

July 26, 9:48 pm | [comment link]
4. Chris wrote:

whenever Tom is sorry, I’m generally happy…..smile

July 26, 9:51 pm | [comment link]
5. William P. Sulik wrote:

Right on Steven.  I’ll believe its a crisis when Mr. Friedman starts acting like it’s a crisis.

July 26, 10:31 pm | [comment link]
6. Chris wrote:

which will be never, William.

July 26, 10:42 pm | [comment link]
7. Albeit wrote:

Four known major Ice Ages (the last occurring over 20,000 years ago) not to mention an untold number of mini-Ice Ages says he is being less than honest regarding the many and varied causes associated with extreme climate change. And who would he blame for the nearly three mile thick ice sheet that covered a good share of the Northern Hemisphere before humans became a significant factor on the face of the planet?

Incidentally, note his repeated assumption that there is some super intelligent parent entity, “Mother Nature,” who is going to chastise her earth children for their unforgivable behavior. Talk about being hooked on some primitive myth.

I’m not opposed to exercising good stewardship over God’s creation, however, I find the level of arrogance behind this sort of pseudo-intellectual nonsense a bit hard to swallow.

July 26, 10:57 pm | [comment link]
8. Mark Johnson wrote:

Wow, I didn’t realize so many esteemed scientists read this blog.

Really?

98% of the world’s scientists (that’s WORLD’S not just “America’s”), including every Nobel Prize winning scientist of the past 50 years (who is still alive) claim global warming is occurring and that humans are partly responsible. Yet some want to claim this as a “liberal conspiracy”. Come on people, does it really seem logical to you just on a “common sense” level that we can pollute the earth as much as we want and there will be no long term consequences from it? Not to mention the mounds and mounds of scientific proof that credit what is happening. Yes, you can do a google search and find a few random scientists who state to the contrary, but for every one report of a scientist denying global warming, there are 1000 with facts to support it.

July 27, 12:24 am | [comment link]
9. paradoxymoron wrote:

An excellent argument from authority, Mark Johnson.  Ironic, that your embrace of the scientific method is due to a logical fallacy on your part, and a rejection of evidence in favor of assumptions.  The great thing about empirical science is only one person is required to discover the truth, despite however many Scholastics you may assemble.

July 27, 1:18 am | [comment link]
10. RichardKew wrote:

Even if global climate change is some dastardly hoax by thousands of scientific wackos, that still does not make it right to continue burning carbon-based fuels instead of seeking and using alternative, cleaner, more renewable methods.

1. Scripture teaches us in Genesis 1 that we are entrusted with the stewardship of the earth, so part of our creation obedience is to look for every way that cares for the planet rather than having the capacity to do damage to it. So, it is part of our discipleship to be as   cautious as we can to use raw materials (including oil) wisely and well.

2. The rest of the world is forging ahead exploring all sorts of energy-saving technologies, as well as developing alternatives to carbon-based fuels and energy production. The USA is going to slip far behind in these fields if it does not take seriously the need to invest in them and to use the technologies when produced. It is sheer laziness to do otherwise.

3. It is also strategically short-sighted. Surely it is far better to have smaller imports of oil and other carbon fuels than to fork over billions every year in funds that go into unstable parts of the world upon which the US is ever-more dependent, and which can turn of the tap whenever they want.

4. Countries like China, Germany, and many others already see that they can leap-frog the US by becoming the world’s leaders in alternative technologies. This does little for America’s role in the world that is emerging.

Wanting to cling to oil-based technologies may be comfortable right now, but as we do so we have to accept that we are living on borrowed time.

July 27, 5:04 am | [comment link]
11. azusa wrote:

“Back off, man, I’m a scientist!”

July 27, 5:45 am | [comment link]
12. Capt. Father Warren wrote:

#10 wrote,  “The rest of the world is forging ahead exploring all sorts of energy-saving technologies, as well as developing alternatives to carbon-based fuels and energy production.”
Ask them how that is working out in Spain, where every “green job” has cost two other jobs.
It has worked pretty well in France where they generate about 80% of electricity with NUCLEAR POWER…..invented in the good ole USA I might add.
And don’t forget that tax-subsidized and tarrif protected ethanol thing.  How brilliant, burn your food crops in your gas tank!
This is a capitalist country, if someone has the better alternative energy mousetrap he/she is free to make all the billions they can by saving the world.  What the world has rejected is the psuedo-science babble of Al Gore who wants to do nothing but be the king of trading energy credits which in the end produces no energy at all and reduces not an ounce of pollution.

July 27, 7:33 am | [comment link]
13. DonGander wrote:

10. RichardKew:

You fail to recognize the possibility that burning carbon may be a GOOD thing for the Earth and our stewardship of it. At one time ALL the carbon that is currently in the ground was at one time in the atmosphere. Shouldn’t we, as good stewards of God’s creation, put some of it back where it came from?

Don

July 27, 7:49 am | [comment link]
14. Capt. Father Warren wrote:

Question:  what element of the Periodic Table are we based on and need for our existance?

Answer (in reverse): nobrac

July 27, 9:05 am | [comment link]
15. Sarah wrote:

RE: “98% of the world’s scientists (that’s WORLD’S not just “America’s”), including every Nobel Prize winning scientist of the past 50 years (who is still alive) claim global warming is occurring and that humans are partly responsible.”

Lol.  No they don’t.

July 27, 9:55 am | [comment link]
16. paradoxymoron wrote:

#12: Al Gore who wants to do nothing but be the king of trading energy credits . . .

No, he also wants to cheat on his wife and sexually assault masseuses.

July 27, 10:34 am | [comment link]
17. azusa wrote:

#16: I think you’ll find he wants to free us from harmful energies by releasing the chakras.

July 27, 4:42 pm | [comment link]
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