Monday, June 24, 2013

Fear & Loathing Climate Change Version...

Tomorrow (Tuesday) President Barack Obama will deliver a major speech on his plan for the United States to address Climate Change. I know that in some circles, there is great doubt as to the  existence of climate change and global warming. There's also plenty of skeptics who dispute the alleged cause and impact of both as well. I'm not even going to try and convince anyone who doesn't believe in the science to change their minds. Full disclosure, I haven't followed it that closely but the arguments and articles supporting its existence impress me more than the arguments and articles that doubt it.

The Speaker of the House, John Boehner (R-OH) is out with comments in advance of the President's speech“I think this is absolutely crazy,” Boehner said at his weekly press conference. “Why would you want to increase the cost of energy and kill more American jobs at a time when American people are asking, 'Where are the jobs?" I am stunned that Mr. Boehner isn't supporting Mr. Obama's plans to address this issue. 


 I'll let the President explain in his own words:

I suspect when I turn on the Conservative channel on Sirius XM today and especially tomorrow, I will hear nothing but fear and loathing for whatever it is that President Obama says on Tuesday at Georgetown University. We can't afford it. The science is "shaky". Its all a hoax. Etc, etc., etc.  Its laughable to think that the House will approve ANY proposals sent over by the White House regarding climate change. Its only slightly less laughable to think the Senate would be able to pass anything either. So, how will President Obama get anything done? Executive order. The Atlantic has a nice write up on what's expected to be announced.

Obama will please many on the Left who have felt he's dragged his feet and not provided the global leadership he should have from his position of power. I think given the issues he assigned more importance to during his first term (health care reform, the economy) there just wasn't the political capital to be spent on environmental issues. Nothing happens by accident in this administration. Remember how President Obama finally got around to endorsing gay marriage as we approached the last election? Coincidence, you say? C'mon, lol...

Keep in mind over the next few days there are big limits on what Obama can really do via executive actions. he can not command Congress to sign any news laws into effect. He can't compel them to spend a single dime on any of this. And, what can be created and enforced by executive orders can be un-created and unenforced by the same office in the future. If you're looking for the BFD that health care reform brought, this ain't it.

There is a debt ceiling fight coming up later this year and its possible that the President wants to potentially use climate change as a chip in that poker game. Hard to say, I think the first thing on the list would be to work with him a teeny bit more on the rollout of the Affordable Care Act. As in perhaps releasing some funding to train and educate people on the new insurance exchanges that are supposed to open in October.

I doubt he'll see any cooperation from the right on that front either.


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