President Obama. By Official White House Photo by Pete Souza – P120612PS-0463 (direct link), Public Domain, Link. President-elect Trump. By Michael Vadon – →This file has been extracted from another file: Donald Trump August 19, 2015.jpg, CC BY-SA 2.0, Link
Guest essay by Eric Worrall
Ex-President Obama seems to have suggested in a speech that tearing up the Paris Agreement is a symptom of “an aggressive kind of nationalism” which threatens Democracy. My question – why doesn’t Obama mention all the greens who seem to think Democracy is an impediment to environmental progress?
Obama warns against ‘aggressive’ nationalism, leaving Paris climate agreement
BY ALICIA COHN – 07/01/17 07:41 AM EDT
Former President Obama on Saturday issued a strong warning against the new trend toward “an aggressive kind of nationalism” and emphasized the importance of the Paris climate agreement, which the U.S. plans to break.
Obama called out at least one of his successor’s policy changes without mentioning President Trump by name.
Otherwise, he warned, “We start seeing a rise in sectarian politics, we start seeing a rise in an aggressive kind of nationalism, we start seeing both in developed and developing countries an increased resentment about minority groups and the bad treatment of people who don’t look like us or practice the same faith as us.”
He went on to note “the temporary absence of American leadership” on fighting climate change.
“In Paris, we came together around the most ambitious agreement in history to fight climate change,”
“If we don’t stand up for tolerance and moderation and respect for others, if we begin to doubt ourselves and all that we have accomplished, then much of the progress that we have made will not continue,” he said.
“What we will see is more and more people arguing against democracy, we will see more and more people who are looking to restrict freedom of the press, and we’ll see more intolerance, more tribal divisions, more ethnic divisions, and religious divisions and more violence,” he continued.
Can anyone think of a single mainstream climate skeptic who opposes Democracy?
Unfortunately I have not located a copy of ex-President Obama’s full speech. But even if my impression of what Obama said is wrong, it seems pretty cheeky for Obama to mix opposition to climate advocacy and accusations of threats to Democracy in the same speech, given the number of prominent greens who seem to think Democracy is not up to the job of saving us from Climate Change.
- June 2017: Maryland Professor of Philosophy Firmin DeBrabander claims “climate change is not liable to be solved by democracies. Autocracies might do better”
- April 2017: Neil DeGrasse Tyson claims elected “science deniers” are a threat to Democracy
- March 2017: Disgraced Identity Thief Peter Gleick claims Democracy is under assault from [climate] liars
- May 2016: Mark Diesendorf, Associated Professor University New South Wales, claims “Governments may need extraordinary emergency powers to implement rapid mitigation”
- November 2015: Bill Gates, Founder of Microsoft Corporation, claims “If you’re not bringing math skills to the problem, then representative democracy is a problem.”
- April 2015: Two University of Melbourne (Australia) Professors claim “the failure to tackle climate change speaks to an overall failure of our liberal democratic system”
- January 2011: Former NASA GISS Chairman James Hansen praises the Chinese dictatorship’s ability to take “the long view” on climate change.