Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Unintended Environmental Consequences of Liberalism

The world is filled with solutions to human suffering that Liberals won’t allow. In fact, many of Liberals' pet programs add immeasurably to human suffering.

Examples abound. The most recent is rampant world hunger. What have Liberals done to make it worse?

Liberals vain fight against global warming is the prime self-inflicted wound on the poor people of the world. The quest for alternative fuels is literally taking food out of the mouths of babes, while at the same time causing a net increase in greenhouse gases that will take a century or more to overcome. Biofuels are a horrible idea whose time should never come.

The only reason that Liberals are so hot to find alterative energy sources is because they are totally focused in opposition to the only viable, nonpolluting, environmentally friendly answer to world energy needs, nuclear power. Solar, wind, wave, hydroelectric, biomass – most of these generation methods require huge government subsidies, and even then are only marginally economical when the price of oil is at record highs.

(UPDATE: Greenpeace founder Patrick Moore agrees we must develop nuclear energy, and that alternative power generating systems can't satisfy world energy needs.)

Beside high costs, the alternative energy sources are also incredibly polluting to the environment. I laughed when I read of environmentalists protesting fencing along the United States/Mexico border, and not the plans for huge solar and wind power installations in pristine desert and mountain habitats. The only nonpolluting power source that is economical without massive subsidies is hydroelectric, and it causes unbelievable damage to fisheries and loss of natural rivers and habitat.

Besides diverting government resources from better uses and increasing environmental pollution, the environmentalists’ opposition to nuclear energy has had an enormous unintended consequence: an enormous increase in burning coal, oil, and natural gas to meet the phenomenal growth in world energy needs. If nuclear energy was given the political and economic support it deserves, there would have already been great progress in design improvement and the construction of nuclear power plants. In the absence of support for nuclear energy, the only feasible option for meeting world power requirements has been the wholesale addition of coal, oil, and natural gas generating plants.

Liberals have shown the same genius for fouling things up with food itself, the shortage of which is now causing hunger and death daily at an ever increasing rate. Their opposition to genetically modified foods is a marvel of ignorance and shortsightedness. Plants have already been modified for greatly increased yields per acre, using less water, less fertilizer, and less pesticides, while also providing essential nutrients that eliminate serious health problems like child blindness.

European Liberals, exercising their misguided elitism, call them “Franken foods” and ban them from both production and consumption. How does that protect the environment? Liberals say it prevents the genetically modified plants from crossing with native or natural species, as if species purity was sufficient justification for the ban.

However, besides worsening world hunger, their ban continues the pressure on burgeoning water shortages, causes more air pollution from using natural gas to make fertilizer, requires the use of pesticides and chemicals because natural plants are not as insect and disease resistant as genetically modified ones, and increases water pollution from the pesticide and chemical runoff from farms into streams.

Liberal efforts to combat global warming provides material for a large book to chronicle the messes it is creating for current and future generations. Laying aside the fact that global warming is natural, not caused by man, the solutions that Liberals propose all arrive at the same end: enormous amounts of resources are expended in a doomed, vain attempt to reverse natural climate change. The bottom line on such efforts is very clear. The climate will change, just as it has hundreds of times before for hundreds of thousands of years. Along the way, the economic progress of billions of poor people will be slowed or reversed, and they will be constrained to living short, brutish lives of poverty and deprivation. In turn, this will create more social and political unrest, with resulting wars of revolution fueled by inequality and discontent.

If those same resources were consumed in increasing economic activity, and resultant prosperity and accumulation of wealth, the formerly poor of the world would be able to adapt readily to warming, cooling (very likely, and much more damaging), or any thing else that nature throws their way.

With prosperity, and abundant energy from nuclear power, the formerly poor can do what the citizens of the developed world already do: modify their environment to fit their needs and desires, just as Americans have been doing for decades.

Why are the populations of the southern parts of the United States increasing faster than the more northerly? Because Americans have been voting with their feet for “warmer” ever since air conditioning made comfortable living further south possible. At the same time, better heating, insulation, and air conditioning have also made living and working in the more extremely variable northern climates more bearable.

These are just a few of the many ways Liberal policies create enormous unintended negative consequences, and the ways that economic progress and resulting prosperity would solve even the messes Liberalism causes.

Even as Liberals work their butts off to try and really foul things up.

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