Choosing America's future
By Henry Lamb
It is impossible to overstate the importance of the climate change treaty now being negotiated for adoption at the Copenhagen, Denmark U.N. meeting in December. The Kyoto Protocol was bad enough. It required the United States to reduce its carbon emissions by 7-percent below 1990 levels by 2012. When fully implemented, the Kyoto target was supposed to reduce global carbon emissions by 5.2- percent. Thanks to George W. Bush, the U.S. did not participate in the Kyoto accord.
According to the World Bank, global emissions have risen by 19-percent since 1990. U.S. emissions have risen 20-percent since 1990. India's and China's emissions have risen by 88-percent and 73-percent respectively. Neither of these countries was bound by the Kyoto Protocol
The new treaty now under negotiation seeks to impose an emissions reduction requirement on developed countries of as much as 45-percent below 1990 levels by 2017, and by as much as 95-percent by 2050. (Read paragraph 31 on page 16 of the 181-page negotiating text here). These numbers are completely ridiculous; compliance would require a return to the Stone Age.
The ongoing negotiations include whether developing nations will be required to reduce emissions, and if so, by how much. China, a so-called developing nation, has now surpassed the United States as the world's number one carbon emitter.
Regardless of the final numbers the negotiators decide upon, it will make no difference to the climate. It will, however, make an enormous difference to people, especially the people who live in the United States and the other developed nations.
This treaty will create an international bureaucracy with the authority to regulate energy use. This entity would, in fact, be a political institution with the power to govern. In other words, the treaty will create a world government to administer global governance.
Lord Christopher Monckton created a tidal wave across the Internet with excerpts from his October 14 presentation to the Minnesota Free Market Institute. He too, has read the negotiating text, and says without hesitation that this treaty will create a world government. He goes further, much further, to explain that while this treaty will have no impact on global climate, it will have a great impact on the global economy.
The purpose of the treaty is, and has been since the very beginning of negotiations in the early 1990s, to transfer the wealth from developed nations to the developing nations – under the supervision of the United Nations. Treaty negotiations justify this action because developed nations have spewed more carbon into the atmosphere than the developing nations. Therefore, according to U.N. reasoning, it is the developed nations that caused the global warming. Therefore, the developing nations are entitled to compensation.
Go figure. Or better yet, go wade through the negotiating text, but only if you have a strong stomach. It will make a non-Marxist throw-up.
Monckton rightfully says that President Obama will sign the treaty. It will take more than his signature to make the treaty binding, however. It will take the affirmative vote of two-thirds of the Senate to ratify whatever comes out of Copenhagen.
That is, unless the politicians resort to procedural hanky-panky. The Convention on Desertification was ratified by a show of hands – no recorded vote – on October 18, 2000 when the chamber was mostly empty. To avoid the two-thirds vote requirement, the World Trade Organization was presented as a trade agreement instead of a treaty. A trade agreement requires only a majority in both houses of congress. This hurdle is much lower than two-thirds of the Senate. Or, Congress could simply impose the treaty requirements as domestic law. The Waxman-Markey bill (HR2454) which passed the House by only two votes, is a major step toward this option.
The treaty negotiators in Copenhagen will also have to decide how to enforce whatever emissions reductions they eventually decide are appropriate. In the past, negotiators considered using the International Criminal Court. The World Trade Organization has also been considered; the WTO has the authority to levy sanctions for various forms of misconduct. But now, a new possible enforcement mechanism is in the wind: a new international monetary policy mechanism that has been under development for the better part of a year. Obama gave his blessing to the G-20 recently, and this group is working toward controlling the global economy, much like the Federal Reserve controls the domestic economy.
Negotiators have talked openly about requiring developed nations to contribute two-percent of their GDP to the new U.N. climate change mechanism. To put this in perspective, total U.S. defense spending reached 3.9 percent of GDP in 2005. Imagine paying what amounts to a U.N. tax roughly equal to half our total defense budget for redistribution to developing nations. This would satisfy what the U.N. calls the "carbon debt" owed by developed nations to the rest of the world.
The only way to insure that this treaty will not by imposed upon every American is to change the majority in congress to people who pledge to reject all forms of international control. There are only 53 weeks before voters will choose America's future. It's time to get started.
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