Posted in Library of Congress, Undogegorized by chamblee54 on June 2, 2017

As you may have heard, “President Donald Trump proclaimed Thursday he was withdrawing the US from the Paris climate accord.” CNN and Fox are critical of the decision. For poetic bluster, another headline takes the prize:  “Trump Echoed Hitler in His Speech Withdrawing From the Paris Climate Accord.” Godwin’s law was satisfird early.

The Paris Withdrawal is the most recent chicken little moment of the Trump regime. The twitterati is having a national hissy fit. One twitterphile sees things differently. @oren_cass I have been writing about the Paris Accord since before it was negotiated, so I am issuing myself a waiver from my no-tweetstorm rule. 1/ ~ The Paris conference itself was largely a collation and stapling exercise. Of course they reached an “agreement.” 4/ ~ But this agreement came at the expense of acknowledging or addressing the actual tradeoff at the heart of climate policy: 5/ ~ Unsurprisingly, these developing countries made Paris commitments to continue with business as usual. And then everyone applauded. 9/ ~ Strangely, climate activists seemed enthusiastic — almost as if they cared more about the optics of agreements than climate action. 13/

@oren_cass “Senior Fellow @ManhattanInst. Domestic Policy Director @MittRomney 2012” is not a fan of the Paris Accord. Here is a piece he wrote in 2015, when the Accord was coming together, and BHO was POTUS: Why the Paris climate deal is meaningless. Apparently, the Paris Accord is an agreement to meet every few years, and give an unverified report of the progress you are making. It is more style than substance.

The American decision to withdraw is also style over substance. It is tough to see any real impact of this decision, other than making the United States look bad. In effect, we are saying that we are not going to even pretend to care. NYmag is slightly more concerned. “The Trump administration’s decision to pull out of the Paris climate agreement will not end the global effort to limit the effects of climate change. In the immediate time frame — say, Trump’s first term — it will have little effect, and may even spur a backlash as the rest of the world redoubles its commitment to action (China and the European Union have already taken steps to do so). It will, however, slow and impair international diplomacy. The next American government that tries to negotiate on climate change will be handicapped by the suspicion that it won’t abide by its commitments, undercutting American leadership and making it more difficult to secure cooperation from other countries.”

There are more questions. Does it really make any difference to the rest of the world? There are reports that China is making serious progress on carbon pollution. This is tough to verify from this side of the Pacific. It could be that China, and the European Union, see clean energy as being in their own best interest. Technology is catching up to demand. Whatever the Americans do is seen as irrelevant… which is not how you make America great again.

Legally, “Trump also can’t technically withdraw from the agreement until November 2019. It’s possible he could speed things up by abandoning the underlying Senate-approved climate treaty that the agreement is linked to.” Snopes, who is never wrong, has some information about the treaties linked to the Paris Accord. The spell check suggestions for Snopes: Scopes, Snipes, Snores

This decision was announced yesterday, and will get the nation’s attention until the next chicken little moment. The Paris Accord seems to be more form than function. The parade of American cities, announcing their attention to stay in the agreement, is a cute photo op. Stay tuned for the next chapter. Pictures today are from The Library of Congress.


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