Saturday, August 15, 2015

Worst Nightmares by Naomi Orestes: The best explanation for Republican climate change denial leaves out one critical observation ... by gimleteye

For TomDispatch, Naomi Orestes writes a cogent summary of climate change deniers in the GOP. : "Why Climate Change Deniers Are Their Own Worst Nightmare". It is a must read.

Orestes leaves out a critical observation: among top GOP funders in the war against climate science there are no disbelievers on climate change. Companies like FPL and its top executives, for example, are not stupid. They not only read the science as well as anyone, they have invested hundreds of millions in so-called sustainable energy like solar and wind without affecting their profit or personal wealth at all.

There is the crux of it.

The GOP clown car is filled with Republican presidential candidates who are attempting (poorly) to finesse their climate change denial (cf. Marco Rubio, Jeb Bush). But it is purely show. A performance to animate the GOP base: frustrated, angry white voters who see the promise of democracy under threat from every angle.

In fact, the Exxons of the world don't misinterpret climate change science. Their only concern is profitability. The worst of it, as Oreskes does note, is that climate change in its efflorescence does promise the consolidation of government power and authority over people. Exxon knows this perfectly well. This conclusion is well within the reach of any informed observer.

In Florida, Governor Rick Scott is the great example of gaining extraordinary wealth by understanding, first, government regulations (on health care reimbursement policy to corporate providers) and then building a business model to exploit its weaknesses in protecting the public welfare. For Scott, as for energy producers and the supply chain, gaming the system is just another term for smart business.

On climate change, the big polluters and their top shareholders have fallen into line: climate change is real and a very profitable opportunity at least until the wheels come off the wagon. Denial is a simple tactic to delay until unassailable power is consolidated.

Orestes doesn't say that in her excellent summary, but the road ahead is clear. It is paved with earnest faith that the arc of justice is long and democracy will prevail in the end.

1 comment:

cyndi said...

wow interesting. I'm watching this documentary called "Flow" they are saying the same thing about water. Make it a commodity. People get rich. screw the poor. Let them be dehydrated.