12 Feb 2006 Independent Finds Yet Another “Unprecedented” Global Warming Challenge
The article begins:
Starving polar bears are presenting an unprecedented challenge to George Bush’s refusal to take action over global warming – and may succeed where environmentalists and other governments have failed in getting him to curb pollution…
Thoughts on the opening sentence:1) Can “a refusal’ be “challenged”? President Bush can be challenged, but “a refusal” isn’t responsible for itself. What would be the point of challenging it?
2) If this particular global warming challenge is “unprecedented,” how do we characterize the 999,999 other articles in the Independent crying about global warming challenges? Were they secretly about something else?
3) The Bush Administration (correction: U.S. taxpayers) spent $10 billion since 2001 on clean energy research and Bush proposes increasing this by 22 percent. The UK Independent may call this “a refusal to take action,” but you can be sure the Independent’s stalwart commitment to whining about Bush would not keep them from utilizing whatever benefits may come from this spending.
4) “Getting him to curb pollution.” Does this even need to be fisked? Americans in the private and public sector have spent billions curbing pollution (primarily not a climate change issue anyway, even if one accepts the environmentalist notion that carbon dioxide is a pollutant, which it is not), and Bush has not stopped this. In fact, despite what one hears from often politically-motivated environmentalists, Bush has added to these regulations. (Take, for instance, environmentalist complaints about Bush’s mercury regulations. Bush, unlike Clinton, acted decisively on mercury, but MoveOn.org nonetheless ran an ad campaign attacking their design — featuring the Clinton Administration’s EPA director. Shameless.)
I could go on fisking this piece, but fisking its first 35 words took me 298 words. At that rate, fisking the entire thing would take 3,900 words. The article doesn’t deserve that kind of attention, and, besides, I promised my kids I would take them out to play in the snow.