Mexican unproductive talkfest.
Another hugely expensive, international conference has concluded in Mexico. Better stage managed than Copenhagen, but just as unproductive and pointless!
These talkfests are just an excuse for various politicians to look like they are doing something while actually achieving zero!
Like a scene from a Kafka novel, 'Environment Ministers', attendant public service courtiers, (all looking important and pretending to be very, very serious), revolve around the world on tax-payer funded aircraft to exotic luxury locations. (I would be more impressed if the next conference was held in a polluted, Rustbelt city located in the grim despair of the UK Midlands, US, Russia etc, or even the Gulf, opposite the BP spill! The locals could do with the trade!) ,
The Mexico conference, attracted the usual gaggle of Government funded Climatologists', 'Experts Speakers', 'Delegates' (from increasingly dubious and obscure organisations), demonstrators, crazies, (that category includes the delegates from Bolivia and Venezuela, as well as the less harmful species), and a burgeoning contingent of media, security analysts, etc.. all flown in at taxpayer expense (and harm to the environment),to achieve an inane result, everyone knew before the conference commenced!
One blessing this time was absence of the odious little Australian Ex-PM , thereby removing one grandstanding megalomaniac and giving the Bolivians a chance at crazydom!
Sigh, is this really the best we can do?
Platitudes and inaction give opponents of such conferences, including increasinly vocal sceptics, credibility when they claim the whole thing is beat-up, and such conferences are just gravy trains and photo-opportunities.
The lack of interest by the general public in this latest talk-fest is profound. It's evidence that Joe Public is losing interest in GW/CC. Although curiously, Joe Public still seems to accept the science of GW/CC in a detached manner, but is cynical about any ability to effect change.
In my own small nation of Australia, the Green Party seems to have reached a Zenith of influence with the last election, when due to voter dissatisfaction with major political parties, the Greens were able to secure a deal to support the centre-left Labour party in a minority government.
Since then the Greens have proved to be pests, forcing an increasingly desperate Prime minister to alienate her own supporters in order to pander to the whims of two 'Green' politicians, representing a tiny constituency, simply maintain a slender majority in parliament.
Having learnt a lesson, in the following Victorian State election, the centre-right Liberal Party, refused to seek any support from the Greens, and attacked the Greens head on, highlighting socialist aspects of the 'green' agenda. The centre-left Labour Pparty also abandoned the 'Greens'. As a result, voters rejected the 'Greens' and the Green vote disappeared s a cogent force. If that trend continued in the federal election, the "Greens third force' will become once again a marginalised party of protesters,idealists and cranks.
This trend is occurring all over the Western World.
It is a natural result of a concept/movement becoming trendy and fashionable as a protest vote among youthful voters, but as economic factors regain importance and the hyperbole dies away, the voters move back to support issues self-interest.
The heroic Green rebel, evolves into just another cynical politician.
Good grief, there is more support and interest for the circus of 'Oprah on tour', than for the Mexico talk-fest.
The spectacle of a formerly respected Green political leader, star-struck at being included in a photo-op with the American TV talk show host, Oprah. The fact that this US celebrity arrived with a fleet of aircraft, with a huge contingent of utterly unnecessary people, to participate in an environmentally harmful and extremely wasteful extravaganza,for no valid purpose, shows the level of 'Green ideological bankruptcy!
Cheap popularity, and the trappings of office, are always the baubles that corrupt radical politicians.
Manufacturers and investors in 'green' technology, must begin to consider what sort of of investment environment will exist, if as a result of the publics lessening interest in 'green' politics, governments begin to reduce (or fail to increase) subsidies for green technology.
Competition between PRC and the West, may prove the spur to 'green' investment. The PRC is uncompetitive in many areas, yet has enormous supplies of rare earth and a population willing to buy products considered unsafe or too crappy for West standards. But these products may evolve into the innovations of the future. With a huge and largely closed domestic market to fund the lead time in development, the PRC may force the West to invest in new technology just to remain competitive.
Trade issues, including currency reform, increasing competition between the US/Europe led west, and the PRC, for third world resources, and markets, are far more relevant to the planets health, than talk-fests in Mexico.
From the neoliberal market-fundamentalist religion that you preach, I would have assumed that you were a USAn of the Tea Party persuasion.
It seems the Ghosts of Ronnie Raygun, Ayn Rand, and Thatcher (yeah I know, the latter is technically still alive) are stalking the rest of the English-speaking world big time...
Sorry, probably a cultural misunderstanding here. In the US, it is the right who are the um-pragmatic ideologues.
In the US, the "left" (which is rendered invisible in our news media) proposes pragmatic things like public provision of health care for all (an estimated 35-40K USAns die each year due to lack of medical care because they can't afford it), a secure public retirement system, a livable minimum wage, the right to organize a union, public transportation and intercity rail service, carbon taxes, at the wellhead and tipple, to limit CO2 emissions (NOT the cap-and-trade shell-game and commodification of the atmosphere), constant improvements in environmental regulations to reflect the state of knowledge. We can pay for this with a steeply progressive income tax, which has the side benefit of removing the social inequities that are at the root of violent crime.
Also, abolish the death penalty, and rehabilitate our prisoners through education, jobs, and enforcement of anti-racial discrimination laws. Right now, the US has 25% of all the incarcerated persons in the world - a prison population 1.5 times larger than China. Most are in prison for things like possession of small amounts of marijuana, while black (whites just pay a fine or get probation).
And, almost forgot; get out of Iraq, Afghanistan, and the 700 other places the US has a military presence. Dismantle the near-trillion dollar US military-machine.
I suspect that in Australia, there is nothing controversial about much or most of the above list, but up here, anyone proposing such things would be regarded as a socialist-extremist. At any rate, the news media keeps the public from ever even hearing the above proposals.
The right's obstinate ideology is dragging the US back to the robber-baron era.
The climate conference was held in Cancun because Cancun put in the winning proposal to hold it there. The presence of a remotely located resort where the immense security needed that so the economic elites and technocrats can keep civil-society out, and would not paralyze the city, as the G20 did in Pittsburgh in 2009 and Toronto in 2010. They also like the sunny climate.
As far as a lack of accomplishments, that is easy to do when the by-far largest emitter of CO2 per capita basically boycotts the conference.
Thanks for the response, but I can't let these items go by:
"just that an idealist approach winds up delivering very little at a prohibitive cost when delivered by the government."
The totally private system of medical insurance used by the US, is, by far, the most expensive in the world. Per capital medical expenditures ($7400 per year) in the US are more than twice those of Australia or Canada and 2 1/2 times those of the "socialistic big-government" UK system. And yet, 50 million USAns have no coverage of medical expenses at all, and up to 40,000 die because of it and the next of kin or survivors face bankruptcy.
Also, as far as you "socialism" never works, why are all the nations with the highest UN Human development rankings invariably rather "socialist" ones like Norway, or Sweden?
What has changed so that progressive tax rated no longer work. In the booming 1950's, the US's top marginal income tax rate was 91 percent, through the booming 1960 it still was 70%. What has changed? the stupendous power wielded by The Wealthy, that's what.
It is shame to see so many people outside the US - notably Canada and Australia - falling for the "libertarian" gospel of the capitalists, when they can see for themselves how well it works by where the US itself is headed. Where are they headed? Go visit some unregulated capitalist oligarchies like El Salvador, Honduras or Colombia. Or save the carbon emissions, and in the spirit of the holidays, just read some Charles Dickens.
Thanks for the rejoinder.
But, they were rejoinders to some other imagined person's points, not mine.
I tried to point out that the US's totally privatized, every man-for-himself health care system is both the most expensive in the world, and yet yields mediocre outcomes overall. I specifically stated that it was 2.5 times more expensive, per person, than the British NHS. Yet your response seems to imply that the NHS is more expensive, with poorer outcomes. This is not correct.
I understand that under the prevalent CA, AU, NZ, JP, EU syatems the health care itself - hospitals and doctors - are private businesses (but must accept government-set fees for payment), and even the insurance providers may be quasi-private (in the manner of regulated electric or water utilities here in the US). That is not the issue. I am a proponent of single payer tax-funded, public health insurance for all, or as US conservatives call it, "socialistic" health care insurance. It seems we are in agreement about this. The Australian or Canadian Medicare systems would indeed be denounced as "socialism" in the US. And, as the zeitgeist of market-fundamentalism moves even more deeply into your country, it will come to be called "socialism" in Australia too, and will be dismantled in the form of tax cuts, funding-starvation, and "austerity" measures. But by that time, you and your friends at the country club will be in full agreement with its dismantling.
And as a final note, you seem to have a condescending style of rhetoric that I find quite maddening - the same "air of superiority" style that seems endemic among The Rich.
That is all for this discussion. Good day!