"So, the ice sheets are shrinking. We can't change the weather, so what would you suggest we do about it, buy a 3 pack of CFL bulbs and a Prius so we can at least assuage our guilt? Maybe we should sign a petition in support of the extermination of ¾ of the globes population to get back to a sustainable number as some population control types like Bill Gates and Warren Buffet suggest? How about writing our congressman in support of a UN mandate prohibiting with immediate effect, all the countries that aren't yet civilized from ever emerging from their Hobbesian existance? I certainly don't want to be the one [Ed: to] inform the Chinese and the Indians, "sorry chaps, game over, you missed your chance at a better life because we got there first and ruined it for you. We've got to "save the planet", so back you go, off to your mud hut and please stop burning that cow dung!".
"In my part of America - Portland, Oregon, we are overrun with Global Warming fanatics - they are all hypocrites. These same people that want to "fight global warning" don't have the first clue about what it takes to lower the temperature of the planet one degree, and furthermore would never make the sacrifice to get us there if they did. I think the minute you tell them they have to give up their 5000sqft McMansion and move into a studio flat, that they are limited to one child, that they can't fly the family to Disneyland next summer-or for that matter fly anywhere ever again, that they have to stop eating beef, and that they have to give up their cars and use public transportation, you'll have a riot on your hands.
"It strikes me as somewhat optimistic that the same Americans who don't have the discipline to curb their junk food intake and get regular exercise to prevent their premature demise, are going to lead the charge to a greener lifestyle. Call me crazy, but I just don't see them altering their lifestyles completely for an abstract societal goal that will only benefit future generations.
"Anyway, not to worry, government has all the answers and will solve this problem for us. I'm quite confident that Barack Obama now that he's been re-elected, is on the case. As soon as he's done transforming the 1/6th of the economy that is responsible for healthcare into something akin to the NHS, he can "solve" global warming by taking over housing, transportation, and agriculture for the greater good of mankind. The same government that brought you AMTRAK, the US Postal Service, and the TSA will solve this inconvenient truth. All we have to do is sit home, and wait for our check. Hope and change! Hope and change!"
David Fuller's view I thoroughly enjoyed this, as you described
some of the proposed policy choices with considerable humour. You also touched
on the impossibility of securing global cooperation for any draconian "solution"
to the risk of global warming. That is sensible because the "solution"
proposed by some impractical types would most likely be worse than the global
warming problem during anyone's lifetime, assuming it continues.
I maintain that the best chance of a successful humanitarian solution to the apparent risk of global warming will evolve from sensible and practical policies. These are evolving because we are fortunate to live at a time when technological innovation is occurring at an accelerating pace.
We need smarter solutions and will discover them, provided the pace of global warming does not increase too rapidly in our lifetimes. So called "solutions" to global warming such as turning back the clock with regressive policies, vary from the unimaginative to sadistic madness.
Lastly, see also Eoin's "supremely ironic" comment on 31st October, in response to the article he posted: "Gas Golden Age Darkens in Europe on U.S. Coal".