Saturday, October 13, 2007

What do Al Gore and “Fighting” Global Warming have to do with Peace?

I have long pondered what the Nobel Peace Prize had to do with peace.

Yasser Arafat received one, for what? For encouraging terrorism and the destruction of Israel in Arabic, and talking about peace in English? The last time I checked the news, Gaza was a terrorist platform to rain rockets down on Israel, and most of the money the Palestinians received to relieve their suffering was squirreled away in numbered Swiss bank accounts for the benefit of Yasser’s comely widow and friends.

Oh, right, she married him for love, not the money.

Silly me.

Jimmy Carter received one too, apparently for getting cozy with all the world’s totalitarian megalomaniacs. Jimmy never met a dictator he didn’t think was a better world leader than any Republican president. The Kims of North Korea, Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz, Muammar Abu Minyar al-Gaddafi, Yasser Arafat, et al.

Mohamed ElBaradei. What did he do to win his Nobel Peace Prize? Does anybody know? Stopped India and Pakistan’s nuclear programs? Prevented North Korea from testing its nuke? Got Iran to quit nuclear enrichment?

Oh, I know.

He criticized President Bush.

Slam dunk, as far as the Nobel Peace Prize Committee is concerned.

Kofi Annan and the United Nations? Oh, yeah, they mismanaged the Oil for Food program, and made Saddam the wealthiest dictator who didn’t have enough sense to take the money and run when he had the chance.

Saddam, even an idiot like Idi Amin knew when it was time to boogie out.

Isn’t that the same United Nations, and isn’t he the same Kofi Annan who was in charge of the UN peacekeeping forces during the 1994 Rwanda genocide? The consequences of that “peacekeeping” are still fueling violence, particularly against women, in the Congo, Uganda, Somalia, Burundi, and even Kenya.

What did the UN and Kofi Annan do after Rwanda to earn a Nobel Peace Prize? Again, only the Nobel Peace Prize Committee knows.

And now Al Gore gets a Nobel Peace Prize.

Before we get to the question of what Al Gore did to win it, shouldn’t we ask the question what does climate change have to do with world peace?

I will be the first to admit that the world has known a lot of warfare.

I will also admit that the world has experienced hundreds of periods of natural, dramatic climate change, just as it is now.

What I won’t admit is that any scientist, historian, or etc. has proven any previous wars were due to climate changes.

The Nobel Peace Prize Committee doesn’t even try:

In awarding the prize Friday to climate campaigner Al Gore and the intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, a U.N.-sponsored network of scientists, the Norwegian committee said the stresses of a changing global environment may heighten the "danger of violent conflicts and wars, within and between states."

Those … who study the issues point particularly to the impact of drought and altered climate patterns on food and water supplies, leading to shortages that could spur huge, destabilizing migrations of people internationally.

A 2003 report commissioned by the Pentagon warned that abrupt climate change "could potentially destabilize the geopolitical environment, leading to skirmishes, battles, and even war due to resource constraints."

(Highlighting added by me to emphasize the “may” and “could” aspects of the award, and the total absence of “has” or “would.”)

I will, however, admit that many wars have been caused by poverty and living lives of unremitting misery, degradation, and deprivation.

However, that lack of historical perspective hasn’t stopped the Nobel Peace Prize Committee from supposing climate change could cause strife, and then supposing that what Al Gore has done could solve an as-yet nonexistent problem.

All the Nobel Peace Prize Committee offers is a paean to the precautionary principle; if something may possibly occur that might have significant consequences, then everything should be done to prevent its occurrence, unless the problem was identified by a Republican.

According to the Nobel’s interpretation of the precautionary principle, the impoverished of the world should be maintained in their miserable circumstances if there is the slightest chance that the energy consumption necessary to increase productivity and alleviate their suffering might cause climate change. However, apparently the precautionary principle does not take into account that increased economic productivity alleviates human suffering, and that a vain fight against climate change only prolongs that suffering.

Just one of many instances of that sort of economic misery already has caused a lot more warfare and human suffering than all past climate changes combined.

You doubt me?

Past economic hardship primarily resulted from political oppression, not climate change. Those periods of oppression caused political upheavals, which in all but the rarest circumstances (the American Revolution), resulted in even more political oppression. This in turn culminated in the phenomenon of citizens primarily being killed by the actions of their own governments.

Such democide has been far more prevalent than people have believed, even several times greater than the number killed in all of this century's wars. Just consider that alone 61,911,000 people were murdered by the Soviet Union, 38,702,000 by the Chinese communists, 10,214,000 by the Chinese Nationalists, 17,000,000 by the German Nazis, and 5,890,000 by the Japanese militarists during World War II. This does not even exhaust the list of this century's mega-murderers, which also would include the past governments of Turkey, Cambodia, Pakistan, Yugoslavia; nor does it include the lesser killers responsible for hundreds of thousands of corpses each, such as past governments of Uganda, Indonesia, Albania, Burundi, Czechoslovakia, Ethiopia, Hungary, Romania, Spain, and Vietnam. Then there are the numerous third-class murders who have "only" killed in the tens of thousands. In sum well over 100,000,000 people have been murdered by their governments since 1900, several times greater than the 35,654,000 battle-dead from all the foreign and domestic wars fought in these years, including World Wars I and II.

Therefore, Al Gore should be applauded for receiving the Nobel Peace Prize. He fits right in with the incompetent and ineffectual leaders, primarily fixtures of the United Nations, that the Nobel Peace Prize Committee honors in its quest to register its animosity towards President Bush and the United States.

The United Nations long ago degenerated into a forum to give legitimacy and a platform to undemocratic regimes.

The Nobel Peace Prize Committee has done the same.

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