04 November 2010

The Republican Party - the greatest threat to American security?

A loss of seats in Congress to the opposition in mid-term elections is not uncommon for a sitting U.S. president, so the results of Tuesday's election are not surprising. Presidents from Roosevelt to Truman to Reagan and Clinton took significant hits. Therefore, my reaction to Tuesday's results wasn't concern about Obama and his Democrats but rather for the environment.

Among the Republican winners are some of the most virulent climate change deniers in the country, led by the new speaker of the House, John Boehner, who once said, "The idea that carbon dioxide is a carcinogen that is harmful to our environment is almost comical." Boehner's comment would be comical if it hadn't been made by an American in a position of great power. In one sentence he combines the loopy idea that the concern about carbon dioxide is that it's a carcinogen with a profound ignorance about its contribution to global warming. This is a very dangerous man.

A leader who denies the reality of climate change is a much greater danger to the United States than a leader who denies the existence of al Qaeda. A Congress with a pack of like-minded Republicans is a very serious threat indeed.

In 2007, a report by the CNA Corporation, a Pentagon-funded think tank, authored by 11 high-level retired military officers, termed climate change a dangerous "threat multiplier." The report warned that global warming could lead to resource wars, environmental refugees and failed states in already vulnerable regions of Asia, Africa and the Middle East, areas where American troops currently operate. All this could pose much greater danger to the United States than anything bin Laden has up his sleeve. And this just covers external threats.

The Republicans are not alone in their benighted approach to climate change, of course. Democratic Congressmen, particularly those from the fossil fuel states, can be equally intransigent toward environmental progress. But the Republican Party easily includes the most and the loudest deniers, and therefore poses by far the greatest threat to American security. And, of course, to ours. The United States is the world's second greatest polluter and where they go environmentally so go we. House Leader Boehner and his colleagues pose a very great threat to all of us.

1 comment:

  1. Oh well, Boehner's a chain smoker but I'm sure he'll scoff at the hoax linking cigarettes to lung cancer. I mean, cigarettes/lung cancer, carbon emissions/global warming. It's so obviously a scam, right?

    Boehner is the guy who was caught red-handed putting envelopes on House Republicans' desks just before a vote on tobacco subsidies. He later admitted the envelopes contained campaign contributions from tobacco lobbyists.

    C'mon, Bill. What's not to like?