It's Bush vs. Humanity at UN Climate Change Convention
Since the beginning of the month I've been in India and Thailand, reading local newspapers, talking with people and watching local TV (in India, where it's in English), as well as the BBC World Report. I'm not sure how U.S. mass media is covering the Bali conference on global warming that is seeking an international blueprint for a post-Kyoto way forward. Remember, Kyoto was the first, though no no means the last, treaty unilaterally trashed by the illegitimate Bush Regime as soon as it was installed by the partisan Supreme Court. Relative to the rest of the world, coverage of global warming as a crisis has been very, very muted in the U.S. Corporately-owned media has gone right along with the Bush Regime and the Republican Party in playing it down and deluding Americans into thinking everything was still being debated by scientists. I suspect-- and I would wager-- that coverage is extremely modest-- at best. If India, Thailand and the BBC are any indication, however, it is far and away the #1 story of the month in the rest of the world-- bigger than Iraq, Afghanistan, Islamic terrorism, the subprime mortgage meltdown, impending recession, rising inflation or American sports figures on dope. And the subtext is bad... for America.
A simple version of the story is that the rest of the world realizes mankind is nearing an existential tipping point and that if really serious measures aren't taken to combat man made global warming, humanity itself will be in jeopardy-- facing the most difficult challenges it's faced since Adam and Eve first encountered Dick Cheney in the Garden of Eden.
Meanwhile, other countries have been taking all this far more seriously than the U.S. While American students and a handful of environmentalists and hipsters on the American East and West coasts buy more (over-priced) hybrids and try to remember to use energy-saving light-bulbs, I noticed, somewhat shockingly, that New Delhi has gone from a nearly uninhabitable stinking hellhole of filthy, cancerous pollution to a city with virtually none of the noxious black emissions that used to make we want to wear a gas mask there-- and this despite massive growth in traffic volume since my last visit. No more black emissions belching out of vehicles. Even the buses, taxis and tuk-tuks us clean-burning gas and although noise pollution is still deafening, everyone has a CNG sticker on his vehicle indicating that they are using clean-burning gas. While this was happening in India, toxic emissions in the U.S. have risen by 20%! The news out of Bali reads like this: the whole world has come together to collectively try to solve mankind's biggest looming problem while the most selfish, greedy power on the globe, the U.S., sabotages every effort. The hatred being generated towards America is unlike anything I have ever seen in my travels, which started in 1969 and have included 4 filled-up passports, almost 100 countries, and over 6 years of living abroad. I'm actually meeting people in India and Thailand who know who James Inhofe is and who identify him as an enemy of mankind's survival! I bet that outside of Oklahoma and the Beltway, there are very few Americans who have ever heard of him!
Today's Bangkok Post highlights the absolute fury Europeans are expressing towards the Bush Regime's foot dragging and sabotage. The E.U. has declared that if Bush and his lackeys don't shape up on climate issues immediately, they will boycott the face-saving environmental Bush is convening in Honolulu in January. Portugal holds the rotating E.U. presidency right now and Humberto Rosa, Portugal's chief environmental negotiator, spoke for all of Europe when he said, "If we would have a failure in Bali it would be meaningless to have a major economies' meeting [Bush's MEM] in the U.S... We're not blackmailing. If no Bali, no MEM."