It seems to me that Tom McClintock cares more about billionaires getting richer than he does about our grandchildren having a habitable planet.
Responding to my e-mail criticizing his support of Trump’s intention to withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord, McClintock made the following statement: “President Obama bound America to the Paris Accord by executive fiat.”
That statement is deliberately misleading.
McClintock used the term “fiat,” which means “an authoritative or arbitrary order,” as though President Obama woke up one morning and decided all by himself to join the Paris Climate Accord.
In fact, the Accord is a continuation of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change, which was transmitted to the Senate by Republican President George HW Bush and ratified in October of 1992.
That Convention created a series of non-binding goals for reducing global warming. Mr Obama used his executive authority to ratify the Paris agreement, which is not a treaty and therefore does not require Senate confirmation. In May of 2017, seventy percent of Americans were in favor of the US remaining in the agreement. In June, Trump announced his intention to withdraw.
McClintock went on to reference a Heritage Foundation report as follows: “. . . adhering to the accords would destroy 400,000 American jobs and forfeit $2.5 trillion in lost productivity by 2035 . . .”
The Heritage Foundation, it should be noted, is arguably the most conservative organization in the United States. Their Paris report was thoroughly debunked by FactCheck.org, a project of the non-partisan Annenberg Public Policy Center.
Given a choice between a rabid right-wing mouthpiece funded entirely by ultra-conservative billionaires and a reliably non-partisan website associated with an award-winning bastion of reason, I’ll go with the neutral guys every time.
So why, one might ask, doesn’t McClintock? Why does he so resolutely refuse to acknowledge that climate change even exists?
The answer is simple, and utterly predictable. Money.
According to the Center for Responsive Politics website (opensecrets.org), McClintock accepted a $10,000 donation from Koch Industries for his 2016 re-election campaign. Koch Industries is owned by the Koch brothers, legendary supporters of ultra-conservative causes, who hope to become even more obscenely wealthy as Trump reverses environmental regulations.
Ninety-seven percent of climate scientists agree that global warming is a proven threat to the future of our grandchildren’s planet. To their everlasting shame, science deniers like McClintock just don’t care, as long as billionaires get richer.