|Originally posted by aussiemum
I mean, why can't having a large family in Mali or China or Paraguay be considered an environmental choice then, because people living in these countries would have (I am assuming again!) a smaller ecological footprint per capita than either the US or Australia. Why shouldn't we all have large families then???? Do we really want to find out just exactly how many people we can pack onto this planet?? These are things I can't seem to resolve...
Well, if you can't resolve them, nobody can, because they are entirely your own construction. They were not postulated by anybody here. I'm rather flabbergasted that you would ask why people in mali or China shouldn't have large families, as though anybody who believes that their family size is a personal, free-will choice has denied that freedom to anybody else. Where on earth would you get that idea? Family size is a personal decision. If you don't want children, don't have them. If I do, I will. The size of my family or your family (Unless you live in China) is utterly outside the control of anybody else, and that's the way it should be.
The only way to control family size is through facist eugenics policies, and that's a very ugly place to go.
"So we want to find out how many people we can pack into this planet" is a total strawman. Nobody has said that is their goal for having children.
Other points: I have a computer. It's used. A computer geek friend was upgrading, and he offered us his for free. So the computer on my desk is one less computer in the landfill.
Computers are also, in this country, the best answer to the mass transit issue. Mass transit simply won't work in a country like ours. Working at home or schooling at home via computers will.
America is different from Europe in ways that Europeans just don't seem to be able to grasp.
The state of Texas is one and a half times larger than the country of France- but Texas has only 1/3 the people. Montana is bigger than Germany, and Germany has 160 times more people than Montana. They don't have a clue what it is like to live in a large, sparsely populated state. Mass transit simply does not work in large areas where people are few and far betweenwhich describes a large portion of the United States. But computer commuting will.
Kyoto- Oh, puleeze. There are many good reasons for us to withdraw from Kyoto. First of all, it was obviously economically rather than environmentally motiviated. It was a direct swing at America, or else large polluters like India, China and other countries would not be exempt from Kyoto's provisions. Putting a cap on the US's emissions that does not apply to other countries is a reasonable effort from those other countries. It makes good economic sense, for them, as it will enable them to compete for US businesses hampered by environmental restrictions _here_ to countries not so hampered. But I see no reason to just roll over and concede.
If Kyoto was about enviornment over economics, then we wouldn't have the strange provision that allows countries to simply play a shell game with their carbon dioxide emissions, by allowing the industrialized signatores under their quota target to sell or trade their surplus brownie (or should that be greenie?) points to countries that are over their target.
Then there's the issue of just how accurate the 'science' behind Kyoto is.
Dr. Bjorn Lomborg, a Danish environmentalist, wrote in the New York Times, "All current models show that the Kyoto Protocol will have surprisingly little impact on the climate: temperature levels projected for 2100 will be postponed for all of six years."
19,000 scientists have signed a declaration stating that there is no evidence for global warming, and the predictions of the global warming advocates are consistently proved false. Grapes once grew in Greenland. The MIddle Ages were warmer than the current age. What data there is that seemingly supports global warming is data that ignored weather satellites, an odd omission.
When so many scientists disagree with it, I see no reason to subject our country to a compact clearly designed to single us out. The science ought to matter more than it does.
Kyoto singled out carbon dioxide, and ignored black carbon, or diesel as a pollutant. Why? Because Europe uses more diesel.
And what do you make of the issue of CO2 versus non-CO2? Water vapor is a larger greenhouse gas than CO2. For some reason, however, Kyoto didn't address that, choosing rather to single out CO2, which is not so costly to Europe as it is to the US, since Europe has higher levels of non-CO2 (and worse greenhouse-effect) gases.
Kyoto was less about protecting the environment than giving Europe the right to meddle with the American economy. Can't blame them for trying. They've hobbled their own economies to the point that the only way to compete with ours is to hobble us as well, but while it makes good economic sense for them to try to blame us for the world's problems and bog down our economy in a quagmire of excessive regulation that really does nothing for the environment, I'm not going to apologize for my government seeing through it and saying, "Nope."
Then there's this little irony:
"In 2001, total U.S. greenhouse gas emissions were 6,937.7 teragrams of carbon dioxide equivalents (Tg CO2 Eq.) (13.0 percent above 1990 emissions). Emissions declined for the first time since the base year 1990, decreasing by 1.6 percent (110.3 Tg CO2 Eq.) from 2000 to 2001, driven primarily by decreases in CO2 emissions from fossil fuel...."
Compared to this:
BRUSSELS, Belgium, May 6 (UPI) -- European Union greenhouse gas emissions rose for the second year running in 2001, the European Environment Agency said Tuesday in its annual report on the bloc's strategy to curb global warming.
Ten of the EU's 15 states overshot national targets, increasing total emissions by 1 percent in the last year for which data is available.
The figures threaten to blow a hole in the EU's ambitious climate change strategy, which has been sharply criticized by the United States and sections of European industry.