Saturday, March 17, 2007

Ecological Indulgences

"Ecological Indulgences" That's what Charles Krauthammer called the practice of the rich buying "carbon credits" in offset their wasteful lifestyles. God forbid the wealthy actually ride a bus to get anywhere, or turn off their heated pools, or sweat at any time except when they work out on their expensively produced and energy consuming exercise equipment! Perish the though of Gore cutting back the energy consumption of his own home (one month's energy bill for him is about 20 times one of our energy bills for a YEAR).

The Carbon Credit business is a total scam that is thriving on the guilt of the wealthy. They can somehow "buy" their way out of global warming. HA! All the while the real work of ecological change is being done by those who live the simplest - the poor. It's hard to waste energy when you can't afford to keep your lights on for long. It's mighty hard to blow horrible carbon dioxide into the atmosphere when you can't even afford a car and have to walk, bike, or ride a bus everywhere.

Krauthammer's article also demonstrates the negative effect "carbon credits" have on developing countries, citing the forcible taking of farmland so "carbon credit" trees can be planted. From the article:

GreenSeat, a Dutch carbon-trading outfit, buys offsets from a foundation that plants trees in Uganda's Mount Elgon National Park to soak up the carbon emissions of its rich Western patrons. Small problem: expanding the park encroaches on land traditionally used by local farmers. As a result, reports the New York Times, "villagers living along the boundary of the park have been beaten and shot at, and their livestock has been confiscated by armed park rangers." All this so that swimming pools can be heated and Maseratis driven with a clear conscience in the fattest parts of the world.

The liberal infatuation with environmentalism is proving to be a hypocrisy. And why should concern about the environment be an exclusively liberal issue. I'm an unabashed conservative - in our household we use a wood stove for heat so we don't burn too many dinosaurs, we ride our bikes, live simply and are not consumed by greed and "keeping up with the Jone's". My kids don't vegetate in front of video games, nor are they inoculated from life by i-pods and other such devices. We use an energy efficient evaporative cooling system, and recycle cans. All this while the liberal wealthy purchase and travel to excess and buy 'carbon credits' to "offset" their indulgent lifestyles.

If they want to spend their money on excesses, let them go ahead. But puh-leeze don't put on the self righteous pall of concern about the environment while you do. BE HONEST!

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