Tuesday, November 17, 2009

"Obama has failed the world on climate change" by Christian Schwägerl

Via Common Dreams, originally from Der Spiegel:

"Only if the US manages to reduce its excessive energy consumption, commit itself to mandatory CO2 emission reduction targets and help finance the move away from oil for poorer countries, is there still a chance that countries like China and India will do the same and that a dangerous warming of the Earth can be stopped. On the weekend, Obama announced that there would be no agreement on binding rules in Copenhagen. It was the admission of a massive failing -- and the prelude to a truly dramatic phase of international climate policy.

...

Dreamt Up by Hollywood

For most Americans, the world beyond the US's borders is nothing more than an irritating nuisance. Hence arguments based on appeals about drowning Bangladeshis, starving Africans and flooded islands in Indonesia have little effect. In Hollywood, the United States has an industry that continually pushes the materialistic ideal of Western prosperity to billions of people around the world, while at the same time bombarding them with apocalyptic visions in the form of disaster movies.

Many Americans clearly also believe that real climate change is just something dreamt up by the entertainment industry.

Obama has proven himself to be unable to put an end to the lies that modern American society is based on. He is unable to overcome the entrenched lobbyists of the oil and coal industries and make the reality clear to his compatriots: They are the worst energy wasters on the planet -- and are thus indirectly a major threat to world peace in the 21st century. Although they do not enjoy a higher quality of life than Europeans, Americans consume twice as much fossil fuel per capita. Their cars are too big, their homes are not energy efficient and they have yet to focus their talents for innovation away from trivial entertainment gadgets and toward renewable energy technologies."

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