What's with Kerry and Climate Change?
It’s not enough that John Kerry's diplomatic plate is overcrowded with unpalatable menaces like ISIS/ISIL and an epidemic of Ebola that could mushroom to pandemic proportions. As busy as Kerry is, flying around the globe and assembling a coalition of supporters to push back against a terrorist group more vicious and well-funded than any in recent history, he still manages to get his licks in about global warming.
In a recent speech before an assemblage of foreign ministers, he urged that the threat of climate change must be addressed with the same ”immediacy” as terrorism and Ebola. The same immediacy? I hadn’t noticed that this administration has been rushing to take any “immediate” measures with those concerns, either.
John Kerry has even coined a new phrase: “climate refugees,” ostensibly meaning that populations are being driven from their homes because there is no water, food, etc. He refers vaguely to “challenges to food security and … to the ecosystem.” The last most publicized exodus of that general type likely took place during the time of the Dust Bowl. Nature wasn’t wholly the villainess in that drama, either. Unwise farming practices had failed to prevent prairie topsoil from being blown away in menacing clouds of black dust that traveled a thousand miles eastward. As a result, the “climate refugees” headed for the most part to the promised land of California.
By contrast, within the past few months, upwards of 130,000 refugees have fled Syria because of ISIS, and the Turkish prime minister warns that this man-made disaster could result in hundreds of thousands more. Meanwhile, the Obama administration is poised to send 3,000 troops into Africa to help manage the logistics of the Ebola epidemic, while somehow escaping the likelihood of becoming victims themselves.
So what’s Kerry up to, aside from sounding high-mindedly patrician? I detect a whiff of political ambition commingling with the scent of his pomaded pompadour. Even as he studiously jets around the world like his predecessor, it is not lost on John Kerry that the Democratic nomination for president might yet be up for grabs. He observes Hillary’s uneven meander toward a decision to run again. He sees slim pickings in the Democratic field. Encouraged by his outsized ego, he senses an opening for himself.
So if you were courting the Democratic vote, what would you hype? It was not a coincidence that Kerry’s remarks coincided with global warming demonstrations held around the world. Recruitment to fight ISIS may not be going over all that well with the base of the Democratic Party, but you can bet they’re plenty enthusiastic about doing battle with the nebulous concept of global warming,
The difference, perhaps, is that fighting an enemy like ISIS demands – at least for purposes of victory – that dreaded four-word phrase “boots on the ground.” There were likely plenty of “boots” and other footwear in evidence at the global warming rallies. But it’s easier to embrace a battle when there’s no personal sacrifice involved.
A few years back I wrote this bit of Earth Day doggerel:
They pledged to keep our planet green
Our world pollution free,
Then left behind them at the scene
A mountain of debris.
Those mountains have been manufactured in commemoration of every Earth Day since.
Our secretary of state is at it again.
John Kerry isn’t scoring any points when he grapples with the real possibility of yet another war. Who knows what the political and/or other climates will be like in 2016? Our secretary of state is hedging his bets by standing tall as the self-proclaimed foe (faux?) of global warming – or climate change, take your pick. If and when Hillary stumbles or Biden bumbles, Kerry will remind Democrat voters how deeply and nobly he has always cared for the environment, and how he deserves the votes of those who share his dedication.
Seems like a far-fetched scenario? So did ISIS!