Right now on CSPAN-2, Sen. Kerry is giving a presentation on Global Warming. He had a long bit that was ‘channeling Muller’ via the newspaper article. Now he’s gone on to the usual list of Horror Stories (from pine beetles to coastal flooding to ice calving).
Hearing him attempting to describe sunlight reflection off of light objects and absorption in dark ones was painful. His direct equating of “The Greenhouse Effect” and real greenhouses showed complete lack of understanding of real physics. Among other humorous bits was the assertion that “there was no internet prior to” the mid-90s. ( I think he said 93-94; and he did tack on a ‘being commercialized’ at the end – probably suspecting he was being a bit bogus). Guess all those leased lines I bought in the ’80s and all those email and internet “netnews” servers being set up and all was just not “commercial” (despite what my boss said when I brought my budget for approval..) Guess in his “mind” the internet began with the founding of Amazon and nothing came before.
At any rate, most of his rant seems aimed at justification of a “price on carbon” and the fantasy that somehow this would reclaim the solar market from China. He spent some length of time going on about how China has risen from about nearly nothing to dominance of the solar market in the last few years and how the USA is now single digit percents (though he gave numbers to them). So he has discovered that Chinese Merchantalism lets them dominate and consume any manufacturing market it wishes. He lamented the transfer of technology we created to China and the loss of jobs. All well and good. Then he asserts that a “price on carbon” would fix it as the whole reason we don’t have our fair share of this multi-trillion $$$ market is only due to not taxing our energy supplies more. Just crazy talk.
(I got the impression that he and / or his friends were surprised that their solar investments had not been the expected cash cows and were looking for a way to juice them… at tax payer / rate payer expense…)
Mr. Kerry: Raise the COSTS of doing business here, more business goes to China. Raising the costs of energy will send things, like silicon refining and fabricating that are energy intensive, to markets where energy costs are lower. Your proposed cure is, in fact, the poison.
He then went on at some more length about how important it was to address all the usual litany of Global Warming.
His portrait of Muller was as a converted skeptic. Lots of emphasis on his degree and position. Lots of emphasis on the number of peer reviewed papers. Exhorting his colleagues to “read the peer reviewed” literature. Just soo “drink the cool-aid”…
That these kinds of folks want MORE power and control, not less, is the problem. Somehow we need to find a way to quarantine them away from control over commerce or our economy is doomed. “Tax beatings will continue until business morale improves” is just broken.