The woolly rhinos climate change cult
To begin, a statement: Yes, climate change is genuine, and I think human activity is having an impact on the phenomenon. The idea that climate change is a subject of "settled science," however, is ridiculous, and the cockamamie solutions being put forth by the left are exposing their concern for the climate as just a façade for their broader socialist agenda.
In a recent article from CNN titled "Climate change spelled doom for Woolly Rhinos 14,000 years ago," author Ashley Strickland explains that new DNA evidence shows that the furry beasts met their demise around 12,000 B.C., not because of overhunting by Stone Age man, as previously believed, but due to prehistoric climate change. (Refreshingly, an article from CNN mentions Russia, considering that the animals lived in Siberia, yet somehow avoids bringing up President Trump and election interference.) The long extinct mammals, Strickland explains, were the victims of "a sudden but brief period of warming temperatures" at the time, which ultimately resulted in their demise. This news reinforces a long known fact: our planet's climate has been constantly changing since it came into existence 4.6 billion years ago.
Clearly, 14,000 years is a long time when considering that interval from a human perspective. Geologically speaking, however, it is the blink of an eye. To put that amount of time in context, if the entire 4.6-billion-year lifespan of Earth was equated to a 365-day year, then 14,000 years ago happened at approximately 11:25 p.m. on New Year's Eve. Additionally, we should consider that only 8,000 years ago, Great Britain was still connected to mainland Europe; there was no English Channel prior to the end of the last Ice Age. Indeed, a Woolly Rhino, if so inclined, could have walked from Siberia to Scotland without so much as dipping its toes in the ocean.
In my view, it is incontrovertible that humanity has had an effect on Earth's climate, but the extent of that impact is still very much up for debate. Though not mentioned specifically in the CNN piece, we can reasonably conclude that the climate change that killed the Woolly Rhino 14,000 years ago was not of the "man-made" variety. The planet had not been warmed due to the Flintstones' affinity for Brontosaurus Burgers and some subsequent onslaught of methane gas. Our climate has been changing on its own for much of human history, including "The Little Ice Age," which saw a remarkable drop in temperature of 3.5°F and ended only 450 years ago.
To illustrate the uncertainty of science's grasp on the issue, consider former vice president Al Gore, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007 for his movie An Inconvenient Truth — a film that took dead aim at the fossil fuel industry and made some alarming predictions about the planet's future. Gore had enlisted several climate scientists as consultants for the film, but shortly after he won the esteemed award in 2007, a U.K. High Court ruled that if the movie was to be shown in school, it had to be shown with a guidance note in order to prevent political indoctrination. The judge cited nine specific instances of inaccurate or exaggerated assertions that Gore had made in the film. As the years have passed, many of his predictions have proven to be wildly inaccurate. Gore predicted that, by now, the ice in the arctic would melt every summer, but in reality, the ice is now at record-high levels. He also predicted that Mt. Kilimanjaro's famed peak would be totally free of snow and ice within ten years, but that has not happened. Gore and others are undaunted, however, as they continue to assert their data, models, and projections regarding climate change, without even pausing to reflect and address their previous miscalculations.
It is often said that there are two characteristics that distinguish a cult from a legitimate organization. The first characteristic is the way in which the particular group treats dissent and departure. A reasonable group reacts to disagreement or withdrawal with well wishes and a nod, whereas a cult will curse and attack. We see evidence of the climate change cult's vitriol toward opponents constantly. Previously, anyone questioning the issue would be called a "skeptic," but such people are now declared a "denier." Bill Nye — who claims to be the "Science Guy" but who has only a bachelor's degree in engineering — directed a scream of "you idiots" at anyone who happens to disagree with him on the issue. A nd the Miami Herald points to any politician reluctant to sip the climate change Kool-Aid as "useless."
The second characteristic typical of cults is the type of extreme actions and solutions put forth by their leaders. When the walls were closing in on Jim Jones at Jonestown in 1978, he fed his followers cyanide, opting for his own suicide and the deaths of 917 followers instead of accountability for potential crimes. Marshall Applewhite, leader of the infamous cult Heaven's Gate, which also ended in mass suicide/murder, had preached avoiding sex to its members and (give him credit) he certainly walked-the-walk by having himself and other members castrated; which brings us to the climate change cult and some of their solutions, including the Green New Deal.
Though Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) no doubt continues to be proud of her proposed legislation, others on the Left would like us to forget about the specifics detailed in the much-ballyhooed and since-deleted fact sheet that accompanied the announcement of the Green New Deal. Some of the more outrageous elements of that proposal include the plan to "to fully get rid of emissions from farting cows," eliminating all air travel, and requiring the retrofitting of every building in the country to meet their standards. These are not the actions/solutions that are proposed by a serious organization, these are the ideas of a cult.
What ultimately exposed AOC and her minions was the decision to include in their fact sheet proposals not even remotely related to the environment, including universal health care and ensuring "economic security to all who are unable or unwilling to work." The Green New Deal, like much of the rest of the climate change cult's agenda, is less about climate change and more about Socialism; maneuvering for the redistribution of wealth and increased government control over our lives, while disguised as well-intentioned activists striving for cleaner air. Will the news that climate change killed off the Woolly Rhino, long before the first Subaru with a "Bernie" bumper sticker came on the scene, dampen their enthusiasm for their sectarian dogma? Doubtful. But for those of us not yet sucked in, we must call them out for what they are.
P.F. Whalen is a conservative blogger at www.TheBlueStateConservative.com. Follow him on Twitter @pf_whalen.