In a recent talk reminiscent of Joseph McCarthy’s famous Lincoln Day speech of 1950, The British Viscount Christopher Monckton revealed that climate change and the upcoming UN talks in Copenhagen are all a part of a gigantic communist plot. According to Monckton:
“So at last the communists who piled out of the Berlin Wall and into the environmental movement and took over Greenpeace, so that my friends who founded it left within a year because they’d captured it, now the apotheosis is at hand. They are about to impose a communist world government on the world. You have a president who has very strong sympathies with that point of view….It is a privilege merely to stand on this soil of freedom while it is still free. But in the next few weeks, unless you stop it, your president will sign your freedom, your democracy, and your prosperity away forever.”
The video is available below.
It is eerily similar in language and tone to this McCarthyism:
“You are seeing today an all out attempt to marshal the forces of the opposition, using not merely the communists, or their fellow travelers-the deluded liberals, the eggheads, and some of my good friends in both the Democratic and Republican Parties who can become heros over night in the eyes of the left-wing press if they will just join with the jackal pack”
The Viscount has been a high profile climate skeptic, using a combination of what I would call psuedoscience and articulate rhetoric, and what others have called “hacked-out, far-right ideology, combined with an ego the size of the Antarctic ice sheet.” After this speech in Minnesota, Glenn Beck had Monckton along with John Bolton on his Fox News show, and I rather enjoyed watching Bolton forced into the role of a moderate, backtracking from Monckton’s hyper-extremist positions.
Monckton’s statements are meant to fan fears that global cooperation is somehow global socialism. Perhaps the Viscount longs for the jolly old days when the sun never set on the British Empire, and ‘global cooperation’ meant that the world existed for the economic benefit of the Kingdom. How bizarre and ironic that he uses a form of “taxation without representation” as his line of reasoning here in the colonies.
There are many examples of necessary and successful international cooperation…from the Montreal Protocol dealing with ozone, to nuclear non-proliferation, to the Convention on the International Trade in Endangered Species. Some issues cross borders and require global commitment and multinational cooperation. Climate change is one of them. Even noted Ayn Rand disciple Alan Greenspan conceded – just last year – that his exuberant embrace of free market ideology was misplaced, and that in some cases pursuit of self interest can be bad for the collective good. Perhaps they should both read up on The Tragedy of The Commons and The Prisoner’s Dilemma both of which demonstrate why this is the case.
Monckton has raised some important issues, such as the need for China and India to participate in a climate treaty, and the potential scope creep in the agreement. And we do need a vigorous debate on both US cap and trade and the UN treaty, to avoid disastrous agreements filled with loopholes and unintended consequences. But what a shame that he needs to resort to McCarthy era scare tactics to get attention. And what a shame that it still works.
Photo Copyright: Library of Congress