November 30th, 2009 - 3:54 am
The data-manipulating emails of Climategate have made a splash, with damning implications for the UN’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. But is this just the tip of the UN climate con iceberg?
Shepherding, rewarding and promoting global alarm about “climate change” is a whopping beneficiary of this movement (bigger even than Al Gore) — the United Nations global system. Failing to achieve forward motion for peace or nonproliferation, Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has been grandstanding for more than two years about the UN’s war on the weather — and has made it his chief mission to persuade developed nations to “seal the deal” on a “climate” pact that would constrict production, transfer vast amounts to wealth to some of the worst governments on the planet, and put the unaccountable, opaque and too often self-serving bureaucracy of the UN at the switch. The UN’s IPCC collected the other half of the Al Gore Nobel Weather Prize, but do UN insiders really believe the IPCC is a bastion of untainted science? (If you want to check out who’s providing “guidance” for the IPCC, check out their web site – some of my favorites on the current roster are Iran, Cuba and Sudan).
Climate bureaucracy has become a major aspect of employment throughout the UN system, with almost every UN agency and program enlisting fresh bevies of staff to work the climate angles. On its climate “Gateway” web page, the UN lists more than three dozen UN-system “partners on climate change,” from the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights to the UN Development Program (star of the Cash-for-Kim scandal two years ago in North Korea) to the International Telecommunications Union. On the basis of calculations performed deep within the entrails of UN bureacracies that thrive these days by attributing the world’s troubles to climate and then allocating blame, penalties, bonanzas and UN commissions on the basis of the IPCC “scientific consensus,” this same UN climate Gateway web page informs us that “Seven of ten disasters are climate related.” To fix this, the UN tells us, we need only trust to the UN’s guidance. That would be the same UN that not so long ago dealt with its own propensity for corruption by disbanding its anti-corruption task force; the same UN that once claimed Oil-for-Food was the most heavily audited program it had ever run; the same UN that can’t tally its own global budget.
And of course, just ahead lies the Copenhagen climate summit, with Ban calling for a deal to be sealed which, with great pain for the world’s most productive societies, and great gain for the UN’s expanding empire of carbon-0-crats, ”satisfies the demands of science.” That would be the UN version of science, which, if it bears any resemblance to the UN version of book-keeping, should give great pause. The UN has immense vested interests here, and is clearly prepared to roll right over the disclosures of climategate. These are decisions which within the UN go way beyond the IPCC, and involve UN officials — all the way up to Ban Ki-moon — ignoring any genuine scientific dissent that doesn’t fit their plans, or fill the UN coffers. What would we see were we able to peer into the “climate” emails exchanged throughout the UN system over the years? Just asking.
November 26th, 2009 - 6:12 pm
Thanksgiving is a day to count what’s right with America. That’s easier to do when Washington is slightly less packed with politicians who seem intent on trashing the freedoms on which this great nation is built, But, casting about for an upbeat way in, I pulled a book of old American poems off the shelf and got a running start with the thrill of re-reading “Paul Revere’s Ride.” If you’re looking for something to do after dinner, I recommend reading it aloud to anyone in earshot, and if you’re alone, read it aloud anyway. It’s a good old, unabashed celebration of the American spirit — and the kind of thing we could stand to hear a lot more of these days.
So I had some fun quoting from it in my column this week for Forbes.com , along with some thoughts on just how wonderful a country this is, and why.
November 24th, 2009 - 12:22 am
[Ed. note: My mistake below — President Obama’s state dinner for India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was scheduled not for Wednesday, but for Tuesday. Apologies for the mix-up, and now you know, I’m not on this year’s White House A-list).
Wednesday, on the eve of Thanksgiving, President Obama will host his first state dinner, and – throng of Hollywood glitterati notwithstanding — there will be at least one voice of sanity on the premises: the guest of honor, India’s Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
Singh is already making the rounds in Washington, where he spoke Monday at the Council on Foreign Relations. I dropped by, and found myself part of an overflow crowd. Singh is a big enough draw so that the later arrivals had to be funneled to a side room to watch the doings on big flat screen monitors. No matter. The messages came through – and rather than preening and obfuscating as official Washington is prone to do these days, the 77-year-old Singh greeted the crowd with humility and thanks for coming to hear him. He then spoke with refreshing clarity.
Singh did not talk about “violent extremists.” He calls them “terrorists,” as in his statement that “Terrorism poses an existential threat to the civilized world, and it must be defeated.”
Defeated where? On this, too, Singh was clear: “We should not harbor any illusions that a selective approach to terrorism, tackling it in one place while ignoring it in others, will work.”
November 17th, 2009 - 10:50 pm
Every time it seems he’s said much, much more than enough, Jimmy Carter is back in the news — this time defending his handling 30 years ago of the Iran hostage crisis. Speaking while on a visit to Thailand, Carter told reporters that when the hostage crisis began in 1979, ”My main advisers insisted that I should attack Iran.” Carter says he decided not to risk the loss of life (there’s no reference in this latest story to the American lives lost in the botched rescue attempt he authorized and then aborted).
The result was the gross humilation of the U.S., as the hostage crisis dragged on for 444 days — until Ronald Reagan took office. And from those beginnings on Carter’s watch came an emboldened Islamic Republic of Iran, a terror-based regime which for 30 years has been brutalizing its own people, setting up global networks of terrorist finance, weaponry and murder, and is now closing on the nuclear bomb. How many lives has this cost already? How many more will this cost in times ahead? There may be no way to assign a precise number, but the answer is definitely “many” — including Iranians themselves, among them the five now sentenced to death for their roles in the June pro-democracy demonstrations. As Iran continues to export its message and tactics of terror, possibly soon to be turbo-charged with a nuclear arsenal, the odds keep climbing of devastating tolls to come.
All of which puts me in mind of what might sound like a non sequitur: The weird formulation put forward by the Obama administration about jobs “saved or created” by the titanic stimulus plan. For the U.S. job market, this has proved a bizarre label. Not only has the U.S. economy on balance been shedding jobs since the $787 billion “stimulus” was zapped into being, but news keeps bubbling up that some of the jobs “saved or created” are listed by the administration as located in congressional districts that don’t exist.
November 13th, 2009 - 9:52 pm
“Troop morale is down in Afghanistan,” reports the Stars and Stripes, citing Army findings in a new survey that showed ”dramatically decreased unit morale compared with previous years.” According to the study, a major factor in keeping up morale is the amount of “dwell time” spent at home between deployments.
But there’s another factor worth considering — though I base this not on a study, but on a hunch. When was the last time that Barack Obama, as president and commander-in-chief of these troops, dropped by Afghanistan to do his part to buck up morale?
The answer is: Never.
During the presidential campaign last year, trying to burnish his foreign policy credentials, Obama went to Afghanistan as part of a whirlwind nine-day trip to eight countries. He began with Afghanistan because — according to the New York Times account of July 20, 2008 — “he was seeking to highlight what he says is its importance as the key front in the fight against terrorism.”
By now, Obama has been president for almost 10 months, and during that time U.S. troop fatalities in Afghanistan have soared. Last month was the deadliest since the war there began. On Obama’s presidential watch to date, more than 270 U.S. service members have been killed in Afghanistan, and many more have been wounded. While that’s been going on, what’s been on the travel itinerary of the commander-in-chief? He hasn’t been back to Afghanistan since his campaign stop there in the summer of 2008. He has been to Cairo to “reach out” to Muslims. He has been to Copenhagen to lobby for Chicago’s (failed) Olympic bid. He has been to France to commemorate D-Day 65 years ago. He has used his presidential traveling prerogatives for such matters as family time in Chicago, a vacation on Martha’s Vineyard,and a “date night” in Manhattan with Michelle. He is expected to go to Oslo next month to accept the Nobel Peace Prize.
But since becoming president, he has not been to Afghanistan.
November 11th, 2009 - 7:22 pm
“Obama must choose — Israel or Iran,” is the gist of the latest message from Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, according to today’s Jerusalem Post.
Ahmadinejad’s actual words, as quoted by Iranian state media, and translated into English in the Jerusalem Post, were: “The support of both Israel and Iran can’t go hand in hand… No change is made unless great choices are made.”
What’s interesting here is not that Ahmadinejad would be issuing swaggering ultimatums to Obama, but the assumption by Ahmadinejad that Obama would be open in any way giving to “support” to an Iran ruled by the likes of Ahmadinejad, Supreme Leader Ali Khamenei and the rest of the messianic thugs who bestride what was once Persia — now officially a land of no homosexuals and no usury; and slightly less officially a land of terrorist training camps, prison torture, murdered dissidents, juvenile executions, an illicit nuclear bomb program and the origin of the Francop cargo vessel’s recently confiscated shipment of 500 tons of arms bound for the terrorists of Hezbollah in Lebanon.
Surely it’s a joke even to suggest that any American president would support this gang. Or has Obama by now offered them so many rounds of “mutual respect” that Ahmadinejad thinks he really does have a blank check from the White House?
November 10th, 2009 - 3:22 pm
The Fort Hood shooting, the goverment and mass media denial that this was jihadi terrorism, while President Obama urges us not to rush to judgment, dithers over Afghanistan, declines to attend the 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall, panders to Iran, and astride an exploding federal budget and tanking dollar is busy pushing socialized medicine…. So, what next?
Right on cue, here comes the United Nations, with its “climate change” plans to operate as the global toll booth for the process of combustion itself — never mind the questionable and politicized science, the Nobel-bedecked quackery, and the UN’s chronic tendencies toward corruption, nepotism, bad ideas, abused mandates, feather-bedding bureaucracies and stages and sugarplums for tyrants. Hoping to lock up your right to exhale, the UN is peddling the costliest hocus-pocus in the history of the known universe, promising against all odds to fine-tune the climate of the planet around the precise global temperatures and sea levels that applied as Al Gore embarked on his movie-making career– give or take a few climate conferences in places like Bali and Rio. The big moment looms with the UN’s climate conference in Copenhagen next month, where UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon hopes to achieve a binding deal that would first and foremost soak U.S. citizens — lopping off human productivity and potential, and requiring the transfer of enormous wealth chiefly from free nations to some of the world’s worst-governed states (think North Korea, Burma, Sudan, Zimbabwe, Laos….).
So, trying to move this project along, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon is reportedly making the rounds in Washington today – lobbying Congress to support plans for this UN command-and-control extravaganza. When Ban made a similar pilgrimage to Washington back in March, he accused the U.S. — the UN’s main sugar-daddy — of being a “deadbeat.” That was a breath-taking display of arrogance. But it pales to nothing compared to the arrogance, intrusions and costs we can expect if the UN climate deal goes through. For Ban to be lobbying Congress may also be a violation of the UN charter, which in Article II, clause 7, forbids the UN from intervening “in matters which are essentially within the domestic jurisdiction of any state.” Is anyone minding this store?