economics of environmentalism

James Kunstler: When the Can Kicks Back

Broadcast Running Time: 43:55

John Loeffler

July 19, 2022

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For years congresses and presidents have been 'kicking the can down the road' when it comes to fiscal responsibility, always putting off to the future making hard economic and political decisions required to rein in runaway spending, taxation, and inflation. Now they've run out of kicking room, inflation is soaring and energy costs are going crazy, and reality is becoming real. Whom will they blame when the music stops this time? Certainly not themselves. What's our society going to look like as all sorts of things Americans expect to have no longer materialize? Time for a six-month checkup with futurist James Kunstler (kunstler.com).

If we're going to talk about climate change and the myriad of issues surrounding it, we must first understand it from a 30,000-foot view. John opens the program this week framing the issue, pointing out the players involved and the arguments they make.

We then welcome to the show UK-based Rupert Darwall (realclearfoundation.org), policy analyst and Senior Fellow at the RealClear Foundation. He examines how the climate change ideology has invaded the business world, largely through ESG scores. He calls it the socialization of capitalism. Many people are rolling with the narrative right now, but soon conditions will begin to deteriorate and it's only when reality becomes harsh that people wake up and start pushing back.

But can you even push back right now? Debate and dissent have been shut down by the powers that be controlling the climate narrative. John welcomes to the program Gregory Wrightstone (co2coalition.org), geologist and Executive Director of the CO2 Coalition. He shows how scientific studies, charts, and models are often manipulated to both further the narrative and stifle debate. If you try to debate, and you use facts and data to back up your assertions, the party of science will shut you down.

Finally this week, we take a look at the real world costs to the climate agenda – fuel costs rising, expensive electric cars, etc. – and ask: is this being done on purpose? Wrapping up our guest list this week is Levi Russell (levirussell.com), Assistant Teaching Professor of Applied Economics at the University of Kansas. He discusses the practicality of trying to achieve what the climate alarmists say they want. It all looks pretty impossible. Could it be that the real plan is to make energy so costly that we won't use it?

An HSBC executive made the "mistake" of telling the truth about climate change in a presentation he was giving; he was subsequently suspended for doing so. Joining us from the UK is Rupert Darwall (realclearfoundation.org), policy analyst and Senior Fellow at the RealClear Foundation. This example with the HSBC executive points to a larger problem of climate change ideology invading the business world through ESG scores. He calls it the socialization of capitalism. As we've always said, reality wins out in the end. Only when reality becomes so harsh that people begin insisting on debate and change, will this country – and the rest of the world – get back on track.

With fuel costs up and electric cars expensive to make and to purchase, you have to ask yourself: is this all happening on purpose? And if so, why? Joining us today is Levi Russell (levirussell.com), Assistant Teaching Professor of Applied Economics at the University of Kansas. He looks at the problems associated with obtaining rare earth metals now and in the future and the sheer impossibility of achieving what the climate alarmists say they're trying to achieve. Could it be that the plan all along was to make energy so expensive that we just don't use it?

America's energy strategy is failing under the Biden administration. Is there a realistic solution? Joining John today is Greg Kozera (shalecrescentusa.com), Director of Marketing for Shale Crescent USA. He draws on his decades of experience in the industry, showing that the U.S. has cleaner methods of energy extraction and cleaner fuel. Since the current administration is seemingly doing nothing to fix our energy problems, Greg offers several solutions. One answer is for companies to manufacture here – cleaner energy and cheaper transportation – and for consumers then to buy American goods.

I know, I know, it's election day, but we don't know the outcome yet, so let's talk about the consequences behind green energy.  Joining us is environmental consultant Steve Milloy (junkscience.com), founder and publisher of JunkScience.com.  He looks at the realities of eliminating fossil fuels and going with green energy.  Some of the metals used in green energy are mined by children in horrible conditions.  The technology is very expensive and itself cannot survive without fossil fuels.  So we have to be smart about how we approach this and think of the consequences before moving forward.  Sound environmentalism has to be based on sound science and sound economics.