Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Why did Copenhagen fail? 

The BBC lists eight reasons why the Copenhagen climate regulation conference "failed," and it is well worth reading if only to remind yourself how foreigners see the United States and its system of government. We note with some satisfaction that the BBC mentions a point that we have been making for years, that North America has not suffered from climate change the way Europe has, and that difference in the weather affects the politics.

In any case, the BBC misses the most important reason why the Copenhagen conference "failed": Greenhouse gas regulation is far too complex a subject to be negotiated in a short summit over a period of days or weeks. Compare it to the Paris Peace Conference of 1919, which divided up the post-war world among a few European empires and the United States, a mere 30 countries in all, most of which did not count. The Paris Peace Conference lasted a bit more than a year, and it included extended "summit" meetings between the leaders of the great powers, all to resolve issues that in the end were far less complicated and involved much lower stakes than the regulation of greenhouse gases demanded by the advocacy arm of the warmist community. Woodrow Wilson spend six months in Paris in 1919 hammering out the various treaties to come out of the conference; one can argue whether he chose his priorities wisely, but it is certainly one measure of the sheer time it takes to negotiate complex multinational treaties. I would be surprised if a substantive climate treaty took less time. Even if in today's world no president would be expected to devote six months to negotiating a treaty, surely it requires more attention than a good speech and a few back channel telephone conversations.

If Barack Obama and his fellow travelers want to get a climate deal done in anything like the way environmentalists say it ought to be done, they need to make it their top priority for the better part of a year. We know this, because we know how much "senior time" was required to get the Paris conference done with fewer countries and, frankly, smaller stakes.


By Blogger JPMcT, at Tue Dec 22, 11:00:00 PM:

My read on these Eight reasons:

1. "Key Governments" do not want a "deal" that damges them and responds to the extortion of developing countires that will take their money and NOT participate in Carbon limits.

2. The US political system is a representative republic. Yes, we ARE sorry for the holy mess that Europe has created with the EU, but that does not mean that we are willing to be part of the mess. Thank God we have restraints...even on our president.

3. The only "bad timing" was the release of the Climate Gate e-mails and the massive cold weather that has been making warmists look like even bigger fools than they actually are...actually, I'n not sure that is possible.

4. The host government merely displayed the socialist chaos that more rational people in more rational countires have come to expect.

5. I guss if we in the US could TRUST the temperature measurements in other parts of the world, and be able to filter out the hysteria, then maybe that statement would mean something...besides...I thought Climate was NOT weather...heh???

6. So, we are blaming the new media and the "24 hour news cycle" for Obama's inaccurate and misleading speech? How about a simpler explanation...he is a lying sack of bat guano!

7. The EU are vapid and ineffective negotiators. Look in any encyclopedia under "Vapid and Ineffective" and the EU banner appears. What is the lesson here??

8. They got their message wrong??? I think when they gave Hugo Chavez an ovation...there message was crystal clear...crystal clear....

The Lesson to be learned: When insipid, unprincipled fools gather in public and attempt to make a proclamation...it's time to go home and do something mor significant in your life...like organizing your sock drawer or alphabetizing your spices.  

By Anonymous MarkJ, at Tue Dec 22, 11:14:00 PM:

Well, Obama has definitely accomplished one thing of substance: he's already risen to the top of the short list of faces that will appear on the "Anti-Mount Rushmore" of rotten presidents. I daresay His Vapid Majesty's stony mug will look impressive next to those of James Buchanan, Herbert Hoover, and Jimmy Carter.  

By Blogger Purple Avenger, at Tue Dec 22, 11:23:00 PM:

A real shocker that developed nations are somewhat hesitant to be robbed by 3rd world nations for bogus reasons using slippery methods.  

By Blogger Don Cox, at Wed Dec 23, 04:48:00 AM:

"The EU are vapid and ineffective negotiators."

If the EU was run by an all-powerful dictator, he could no doubt negotiate conclusively. The same applies to the US.

Let's be thankful that neither region speaks with a single voice. I just wish the EU had a proper constitution, with checks and balances written in, rather than the present mess - which does, however, have a similar effect.  

By Blogger redleg, at Wed Dec 23, 06:32:00 AM:

Global Warming was the excuse, it was about extorting as much as possible from the "haves". It was about global governance with the EU and UN setting such fine examples. I just wish Europe would decline without trying to drag us into it and we would stay out of said decline.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed Dec 23, 10:25:00 AM:


"Global cooling for the next fifty years?"


By Anonymous Anonymous, at Wed Dec 23, 10:38:00 AM:

Why did Copenhagen fail? Because no one outside of Europe shares their affection for government by administrative fiat. It's really that simple. The issue of GW is just a trojan horse for the same old same old socialist world government meme. Thankfully, the Chinese and the Russians aren't interested.  

By Blogger Simon Kenton, at Wed Dec 23, 10:49:00 AM:

"Qui verbum dei contempserunt, eis auferetur etiam verbum hominis."

You attempt to construct a Tower of Babel, the curse of Babel comes upon you.  

By Blogger Ray, at Wed Dec 23, 12:26:00 PM:

You simply don't hold one of these conferences without agreements in hand from most of the major actors.

We don't live in the 1800s or early 1900s anymore - nobody can afford to put first-rank statesmen in a summit for the months on end it takes to negotiate things clearly.

Clearly, the prep-work for this summit was not done.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Thu Dec 24, 02:37:00 AM:

BBC blames the "split" US government for the lack of a binding agreement out of Copenhagen. But they fail to note that the President's party has majorities in both houses of the US Congress in addition to having their man in the White House. So you can't blame "veto power" this time.  

By Anonymous Anonymous, at Fri Dec 25, 09:34:00 AM:

I hope you are happy? A deputy assistant to the associate under-secretary of a UN subcommittee of a regional commission, a man who, BTW, makes USD 150,000/ year, lost his deposit on a 3 million dollar Miami condo because he didn't get the check he had coming when he returned from Copenhagen. This is the true terrible effect of global warming. And, the only good news is that he didn't lose his house on the Island nor the properties in Hawaii or on the Adriatic.  

Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?