Everybody knows what the G20 is about. Everybody, that is, except high-ranking members of the Democratic Party, the “establishment” branch of the Republican Party, the mainstream press, and the U.S. State Department career bureaucracy. Those people somehow think that what the G20 is about is reasonable people trying to work together in good faith to solve the world’s problems. Really! (Could anybody be that dumb? Yes. In fact, the “smarter” they appear to be from their credentials, the dumber they prove to be when it comes to understanding world affairs.)
And by the way, I don’t mean particularly to single out the G20, other than by the fact that they were just holding their annual meeting last week in Japan. Essentially all major international organizations, from the UN on down, are about the exact same thing.
And here’s the thing that all those organizations are about: They are about trying to disadvantage the United States in international competition, and to hit up the United States for big money to be redistributed by the international bureaucrats. But then, I think you already knew that.
So there was President Trump over at the G20 meeting in Japan last week, and they present him with a draft of a so-called “Joint Statement” that everybody is supposed to sign. A lot of it is the usual anodyne diplomatic bafflegab. But then there is the section headed “Climate Change” (starting at paragraph 35). “Climate” is the issue on which the international bureaucrats have come to believe that self-respecting Americans can be made to feel so guilty that they will give you anything you want, and pay any number you might name. So here are a few of the things that they have thrown in under the heading of “Climate”:
[W]e strive to foster inclusive finance for sustainable development . . . as well as innovation in a wide range of areas for low emissions and resilient development. Climate actions at all levels with broad participation, including by non-state actors, will be the key to realizing such a paradigm shift. . . . [W]e will look into a wide range of clean technologies and approaches, including smart cities, ecosystem and community based approaches, nature based solutions and traditional and indigenous knowledge. . . . Signatories to the Paris Agreement who confirmed at Buenos Aires its irreversibility and are determined to implement it, reaffirm their commitment to its full implementation. . . . By 2020 we aim to communicate, update or maintain our NDCs, taking into account that further global efforts are needed. We emphasize the importance of providing financial resources to assist developing countries with respect to both mitigation and adaptation in accordance with the Paris Agreement.
There is to be a “paradigm shift” to “low emissions and resilient” development. The Paris Agreement is “reaffirmed.” And of course “we” must provide “financial resources” to developing countries. Translation: The U.S. is to hobble its economy by closing down a perfectly functional and inexpensive energy infrastructure and replacing it with pie-in-the-sky; and the U.S. will also send a few additional tens of billions annually to third-world kleptocrats. Meanwhile the EU will set emissions reduction targets that it will not come close to meeting, and the rest of the world will go right ahead building its 2000 or so new coal plants.
Could there be any doubt that Barack Obama would have signed this? Or Hillary Clinton? Or, for that matter, a Bush or a Romney or a McCain?
You would think that anybody representing the United States at one of these meetings would be alert to the fact that everybody else’s game is to disadvantage the richest and most successful member of the club and hit it up for a bunch of money. It’s really not that complicated. But here it’s 19 of them against just one of you. Somehow the desire to get along and appear decent and moral completely overwhelms basic common sense in just about everyone, most especially any member of the political elite.
Not Trump. Trump directed his people to say no, and make the “Joint Statement” a 19 to 1 proposition. At the insistence of the U.S., paragraph 36 was inserted. Excerpt:
The United States reiterates its decision to withdraw from the Paris Agreement because it disadvantages American workers and taxpayers. The U.S. reaffirms its strong commitment to promoting economic growth, energy security and access, and environmental protection. The U.S.’s balanced approach to energy and environment allows for the delivery of affordable, reliable, and secure energy to all its citizens while utilizing all energy sources and technologies, including clean and advanced fossil fuels. . . .
On Saturday, Trump answered questions from the press, and in the process made this statement:
It doesn’t always work with a windmill. When the wind goes off, the plant isn’t working. It doesn’t always work with solar because solar [is] just not strong enough, and a lot of them want to go to wind, which has caused a lot of problems. . . . Wind doesn’t work for the most part without subsidy. The United States is paying tremendous amounts of subsidies for wind. I don’t like it. I don’t like it. . . .
OK, he could have been more articulate there, but he’s definitely got the basic idea down.
Meanwhile, put aside the fancy countries in the G20 (EU members, Canada, Australia, UK) who will go along with any G20 or UN idiocy, and consider some of the others among the 19 signing the Joint Statement — countries like Russia, Saudia Arabia, Brazil and Mexico. They are all big fossil fuel producers. Russia and Saudi Arabia in particular are completely dependent on oil and gas for almost all exports and government revenues. Brazil’s new president is supposedly a climate skeptic in the Trump camp. What are these guys doing going along with this “paradigm shift” that would in essence put them out of business?
The answer is that they know this is all baloney. They can sign this nonsense, and then pay no attention to it, and nobody will care or remember. The United States is the only one that would be held to account for failure to achieve promised emissions reductions. Again, the whole game is about disadvantaging the United States and hitting it up for some money.