Global Warming and Progressive Days of Inaction

A recent Gallup poll that measured Americans’ opinions on climate change was summed up thusly by The Week:

Obama’s climate change challenge: Americans just don’t care.

…which led Mark Steyn to remark:

According to this guy’s Gallup poll, the number of Americans who do “care” is as flat as Mann’s hockey-stick handle. And I would wager significant numbers of them are sentimentalists, who support “climate action” in the sense that it’s something to do with Jessica Alba saving the polar bear. Once it’s about them paying higher energy bills to heat a smaller home and drive a lousier car, even that sentimentalized solidarity will head south. As it is, like the dead-cat bounce of the IPCC report, this is another dud.

That would be eminently unsurprising. Modern liberalism, at its core, is an ideology of talking, not doing: that is why it finds such purchase in universities and colleges and public school systems. That is why events like, say, Occupy Wall Street are such a big draw to progressives of all stripes: they promise lots of talk and little to no action, though I suppose, to a liberal, the definition of action is flexible:

What: Thousands across the country are stepping up to help create a better future and defend our communities against pipelines, dirty oil projects and runaway climate change. Almost 100 events are taking place from coast to coast as part of the Defend our Climate, Defend Our Communities – National Day of Action

Who: Diverse grassroots groups are organizing and participating in events such as walks, rallies and concerts and calling on government to reduce climate pollution, transition off fossil fuels and commit to a clean energy future.

“Walks, rallies and concerts;” a “National Day of Action:” these techniques are not the sole province of progressives—indeed, conservatives can be remarkably effective at getting their message out in such fashions—but they are, at the end of the day, the only type of “action” the Left really believes is necessary: “calling on government.” That’s it; that is essentially their whole ball game. And when the bill finally comes due—when the interminable “days of action” finally pay off—the Left has no desire to labor under its own ridiculous ambitions:

Pam Kehaly, president of Anthem Blue Cross in California, said she received a recent letter from a young woman complaining about a 50% rate hike related to the healthcare law.

“She said, ‘I was all for Obamacare until I found out I was paying for it,'” Kehaly said.

Of course you were, and of course you now are. Progressivism, or at least its braindead American strain, has no desire to live up to its own inane demands. Progressive policies are meant for other people, not them. This is why we have a president who complains about income inequality yet who spends forty million dollars on vacations during his tenure. And it’s why global warmists and climate change fanatics from sea to acidified sea would be utterly hostile towards any of their pet environmental policies if they were actually enacted. Higher prices and a lower standard of living are not for their kind; they’re all for climate change action now, but when they have to pay for it, you won’t see many of them “stepping up.”


  1. Friendshatehim

    Great article. Mark Steyn led me here. You have a new reader and follower. Keep up the good work.

  2. John Gadway

    I was driven to Mark’s site by my sister, the mother of the blogger Mark referred to. I am not a liberal or a conservative, but an independent. It’s almost a curse. I can hear both sides of pretty much any argument. What I hear here from both sides is a lot of unwillingness to hear the other side.

    • Marlene Langert

      John Gadway, I will get that if you stop and look at both the liberals and the conservatives, you will find that it is the libs who do not want to hear anything. Most of them want to stay low information and receive money from the government. I do not mean just low income people. I have been a member of four different current event discussion groups. Since I live in the DC suburbs, a huge portion of well educated people worked for the government and retirees just want to keep getting their generous pensions. You cannot fire a goveeernment worker nor stop their pensions. I am getting close to 80 yrs old and my first professional job was for the government. I got out of there and never returned because the employees there did their best to do as little as possible as they knew even back in the ’50s that they would keep their jobs. THe retirees are still that way.No one in those groups and many of my so called friends did not want to hear the info I had. I begged to hear their info and reasons for being libs. Not one person ever responded to my plea. THey just wanted to live in their lala land. I hope you will take another look.

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  9. NikFromNYC

    I have developed an almost morbid curiosity about how recent very clear proof that peer review in climate “science” is fully corrupt doesn’t seem to phase activists whatsoever, and is also not being hammered home by active skeptics either. Skeptics seem happy to do a definitive blog post and let it gather dust in their archive. So far of thousands of skeptics populating the main related blogs, I’m the only one who ever posts the most damning evidence on news sites, which is the bladeless input data of the latest hockey stick. So here in lonely spirit, I offer it up, once again, while its still relatively fresh from 2013:

    The authors bizarrely re-dated some low lying proxy series, affording a blade as a pure artifact of sudden spurious data drop-off at the end of their averaging. A weasel phrase about statistical significance was included so, no, the headline-grabbing paper hasn’t even been retracted. Instead, a coauthor described it with a swoosh gesture as a “super hockey stick” to NY Times reporter Revkin.

    I’ve sent this information to Steyn via Twitter but it has so far made none of its own skeptical headlines.

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  12. Idaho fogey

    A married woman goes to a gynecologist, who, after her examination, expresses surprise that the marriage has not been consummated. The woman explains: “You see, my husband is a staunch liberal, so all he does is just sit next to the bed and tell me how great it’s going to be.”

  13. Hoed

    Yep, mark steyn’s fault I’m here too. Good stuff, will be checking back in regularly.

  14. Will

    “Modern liberalism, at its core, is an ideology of talking, not doing”

    Yeah, like that talker FDR just talking about the Nazis, or that wimp Harry Truman going weak on the Japanese Empire, or that limp Johnson taking a pass on the Vietcong, or that draft-dodger Clinton leaving the Kosovars at the mercy of Milosevic, or that Kenyan Muslim Socialist Tyrant Weakling Obama inviting bin Laden to his daughter’s birthday party. All talk, no action from these liberals.

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  18. almondleaf

    IF “Modern liberalism, at its core, is an ideology of talking, not doing” then Modern Conservatism is an ideology of tough action as long as it’s SOMEONE ELSE who puts his /her life on the line! And in the case of military action that is usually the poor! What else have you done lately?

    • Al Cat Razz

      In that the last arguably Conservative President was Ronald Reagan, that would be the death of the Soviet Union. Of course since then, liberals and near-liberals have screwed it up to where the Cold War’s back and better than ever . . .

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  22. John the Econ

    I’ve always argued that modern liberalism is the lazy ideology; a coalition of the of the unwilling and unable imposing themselves upon the willing and able.