Who do you think tweeted this?
“Earth saw clmate chnge4 ions;will cont 2 c chnges.R duty2responsbly devlop resorces4humankind/not pollute&destroy;but cant alter naturl chng”
No, Rush Limbaugh’s tweets are more polished, and Glenn Beck’s more apocalyptic. This one was from the Tweet-friendly Sarah Palin, who has more time for twittering now that she’s finished her book and is out of office. Around the time of the Copenhagen climate talks, she also sent out this broadside:
“Copenhgen=arrogance of man2think we can change nature’s ways.MUST b good stewards of God’s earth,but arrogant&naive2say; man overpwers nature.”
In both cases, she seems to be saying we can’t affect the “natural” climate, and shouldn’t even try. There’s a reason she arrived at these positions, and it’s richly detailed by essayist Michael T. Klare in the new attack book Going Rouge, which could be subtitled Palin’s Reign of Error instead of "An American Nightmare." For an online account of mistakes of fact in Going Rogue, visit here.
Alaska, her employer until recently, produced 719,000 barrels of oil per day in 2007 — an output on par with Egypt, Oman and Malaysia. About 75 percent of Oman’s export earnings are from oil, which makes an interesting comparison to Alaska (especially if you treat it as a separate country). Some 42 percent of Alaska’s annual revenue comes from oil rents, and if you throw in the state’s bloated federal energy subsidies, oil jumps to 53 percent. Alaska is the only state with such a skewed economy: Even Texas (which still produces more daily oil than Alaska) is much more diversified.
Palin became governor of Alaska in 2006 and, as Klare puts it, “devoted herself to a single overarching objective: increasing Alaska’s income from oil and gas.” Specifically, she worked on getting a natural gas pipeline built between Alaska’s North Slope and Canada (and eventually the lower 48 states), and a bigger tax on oil companies operating in the state. During her time in office, she was relentless in trying to increase oil drilling, including in sensitive environmental areas such as the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR).
And if some polar bears are gored in the process, that’s just a distraction. As she said in a Washington Post op-ed piece, “[W]e have more desire and ability to protect the environment than any foreign nation from which we purchase energy today … Our 3,000-mile natural gas pipeline will transport hundreds of trillions of cubic feet of our clean natural gas to hungry markets across America. We can safely drill for U.S. oil offshore and in a tiny, 2,000-acre corner of [ANWR] if ever given the go-ahead by Washington bureaucrats.”
Palin pays lip service to renewable energy, but she argued against subsidizing it at a meeting of the National Governors Association last year, concluding that “the conventional resources we have can fill the gap between now and when new technologies become economically competitive and don’t require subsidies.” No wonder the reality of climate change drives her wild, because it’s an inconvenient truth that supports solar and wind development.
But Palin also wants it both ways, and went after ABC-TV anchor Charles Gibson when he asked in a 2008 interview about her views denying global warming. “I think you are a cynic,” she shot back, “because show me where I have ever said that there’s absolute proof that nothing that man has ever conducted or engaged in has had any effect, or no effect, on climate change.”
Palin's exchange with Gibson is contained in this report from Democracy Now:
Note that she said in the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, “I’m not a doom-and-gloom environmentalist like Al Gore, blaming the changes in our climate on human activity.” Gore, in turn, called Palin a “climate change denier,” and on the basis of this it would seem an accurate-enough charge.
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