Rarely do I find myself in a position to be thankful toward China. And yet, it seems that the communist state may be responsible for realizing my hopes that the Copenhagen climate talks will fail to produce any significant policies (read: significant damage to our economy). Among other obstacles at the summit, China [which the article cites as a "superpower," alluding to a conventional knowledge of which I was unaware] has refused to allow independent international verification of its compliance with carbon-emission cuts. In response, the U.S. has refused to cut emissions until China repudiates.
Note the honesty which accompanies Senator Kerry's defense of U.S. hesitancy:
"To pass a bill, we must be able to assure a senator from Ohio that steel workers in his state won't lose their jobs to India and China because those countries are not participating in a way that is measurable, reportable and verifiable."
Nations adopting the measures proposed in Copenhagen would so hinder their domestic economies as to become non-competitive in a global market populated by countries refusing to inflict such harm upon themselves. The hope, then, of these environmentalists is to reduce all economies equally - a sort of self-imposed recession, in case the one from which we're just now pulling free wasn't sufficient for everyone.
It seems Copenhagen may be scrapped and a planned Mexico City summit will be held next summer (several months ahead of schedule). World leaders are about to arrive in Copenhagen without the benefit of an agreement of any sort. The likelihood of assembling a deal at the eleventh hour is looking ever-more elusive. Climate change alarmists seem to have been defeated.
Of course, the summit has provided great insights into the nature of the climate change community (beyond those offered by the climate-gate e-mails). Al Gore admitted to lying about the science of global warming, Hugo Chaves received "deafening applause" for denouncing free-market capitalism and favoring global socialism, and massive police forces, originally assembled to repel skeptics of climate change (with their long history of violence), were instead forced to repel rioting supporters of climat change policies (professional demonstrators, no doubt - it's all process for these folks, not substance).
Further, criticism of Copenhagen is becoming more pronounced. Like the health-care bill currently languishing in the U.S. Senate, it seems that the more people are informed about climate change policies, the less supportive they become. Anne Applebaum, sympathetic to the climate change cause, calls the current climate of environmentalist's rhetoric to be "anti-human," Ed Miliband, Britain's climate secretary, warned that the summit was in danger of becoming a "farce," and Britain's Daily Express has published "100 reasons why climate change is natural and not man-made." Also see this clip on ice core studies in Greenland and Antarctica.
Like many conservatives, my hope on the great initiatives of the moment (from climate change to health care to spending) is that they simply stall, without inflicting too great a harm upon private enterprise or public institutions, until more sober minds are again at the helm.
UPDATE: Let's hope that Secretary Clinton's pledge of $100 billion to help poor contries adapt to climate change will be swallowed up by the condition of "transparency" in China.