Straw Men in Warm Phone Booths

Colorado State Representative Kevin Lundberg said that Governor Bill Ritter’s Climate Action Plan is “predicated on junk science,” according to The Denver Post.

It would be somewhat easier to take Lundberg’s pronouncements about science seriously had he not also claimed that “most of our laws” have a “religious foundation.”

Nevertheless, the environmentalist response is no more persuasive. The Post continues:

Jim Martin, executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and one of the plan’s authors, said the carbon dioxide/global warming connection is widely accepted as scientific fact.

“You could have a convention of all the scientists who dispute climate change in a relatively small phone booth,” he said.

Martin has created a straw man. Nobody disputes “climate change.” Everybody grants that the earth’s climate has long cycled between warm and cool periods. Nor does anybody doubt a “connection” between carbon dioxide and warming. However, one point in serious dispute is whether increased carbon dioxide causes or follows warming. Another point in serious dispute it to what degree industrialization has contributed to modern warming.

However, even if Martin were correct that human activity is primarily responsible for global warming and that the trend will eventually generate serious problems, his “solution” — to further socialize the economy — is hardly defensible (though it’s terrific if you’re a special-interest group looking to line your pockets with tax dollars and political favoritism). The best way to enable people to cope with nature, and to promote the sorts of technological innovations that will eventually create serious alternatives in energy production, is to achieve a free market.

One thought on “Straw Men in Warm Phone Booths

  1. severin

    I dislike this phrase “climate change”. I can’t imagine any scenario where government intervention could be justified to try and prevent “climate change”. At least with global warming, there was a specific symptom that can be monitored to see if it actually mirrors the climate models that the doomsday computers predicted. Then we could change our behavior as needed (however I don’t believe in government forcing change, I think if the situation warranted, people would voluntarily change their habits).

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