Month 2, Day 24: Backward Ran Senators Until Reeled The Mind

I read this piece in Time, noting that the hope of having an unfettered EPA with the power to regulate carbon emissions is now in danger, thanks to a bunch of coal whores moderate Democrats who are joining Lisa Murkowski’s bill to cripple the Agency.

I swear, I just want to throw something across the room some of the time. Our elected representatives can’t make rational decisions about anything further away than Washington, DC (in space) or the coming election (in time). And that is precisely the wrong sort of thinking for dealing with the climate crisis. We need global thinkers who understand the concept of centuries. And what have we got? A collection of ADHD-addled lobbyist-lickers.

It is unfortunate that President Obama’s hoped-for spirit of bipartisanship should take the form of multiple Democrats joining Lisa Murkowski in hopes of preventing the EPA from regulating carbon. America’s only chance to regain the initiative in coping with the impacts of global climate change lies in swift action; alas, the only thing our paralyzed and dysfunctional Senate seems to be able to do quickly is to prevent things from happening.

While we dither, greenhouse gas emissions accelerate; the planet warms; arctic reservoirs of frozen methane are beginning to melt and enter the atmosphere. If you like the greenhouse effect from higher CO2, you’ll love what happens when methane gets into the atmosphere. Climatologist James Hansen describes the worst outcome in a single word: Venus.

There is no doubt that global climate change is the greatest existential threat that humanity has ever faced. How does our broken political system face it?   By building igloos, by mocking Al Gore; by substituting short-term calculation for long-term vision; by sacrificing the lives of our grandchildren and their grandchildren for political expediency.  Since the Senate is incapable of responding to a clear and present danger with any sort of alacrity, we need the EPA to operate without restrictions; Senator Murkowski’s proposal is a disgrace to our present and a danger to our future.

Warren Senders

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