By Eric Zuesse
U.S. President Donald Trump announced, on Thursday, June 1st, that “We’re getting out” of the global agreement on limiting the amount of greenhouse gases pouring into the Earth’s atmosphere. Trump’s predecessor, Barack Obama, had described the agreement (which he had signed), by saying of it: “I believe the Paris agreement can be a turning point for our planet. It’s the biggest single step the world has ever taken toward combating global climate change.” Trump doesn’t place a high priority on the issue, and he says that to adhere to the agreement would hurt America’s economy, which he obviously cares about much more than he does about the planet’s climate.
According to the vast majority of climate-scientists, there will be no way to avoid this planet’s climate-burnout unless the promises of the Paris Climate Agreement are kept. It therefore needs the support of the world’s second-biggest national emitter of greenhouse gases; it needs U.S. President Trump’s support. The world’s biggest emitter, China, is unwavering in its commitment to the agreement. So too is virtually the entire planet — except the U.S.
In 1992, the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change was approved by the U.S. Senate, and as a consequence of that, no new legislation is required in order for the U.S. to participate in this Agreement, which has since become a part of that Framework Agreement.
The only other gigantic national contributor to global warming gases (20.09% of the total), China, signed the Agreement on 22 April 2016, and is not threatening at all to back out. The United States, the second-biggest emitter, accounts for 17.89% of the total, and likewise signed on that date. But President Trump is withdrawing the U.S. That, however, could lead ultimately to the collapse of the participation of the other 194 countries, maybe even of China’s participation — unravel and destroy the entire global effort to save this planet (from its humans, who thus are obligated to do what we can to reverse our destruction of the planet).
Any intelligent person knows that abandoning this agreement wouldn’t merely be an insult to those other 194 nations; it would also be an insult to our planet. Our grandchildren should hate us if we do that. Unless this nation quickly reverses the course that Trump has chosen, they will hate us for it.
Therefore, I propose a global boycott against the U.S. aristocracy, the U.S. billionaires who control U.S.-based international corporations (the people who control the U.S. government). The way to do this would be for an international conference to be held, under U.N. auspices, in order to determine which U.S.-based international corporations are to be boycotted in the first phase, which will be be added in the second phase if need be, etc.; until the U.S. government complies with its global obligation and rejoins the Paris Agreement and is monitored strictly for its compliance with that commitment. If the U.S. then vetoes such a resolution at the U.N. Security Council — since this matter has already been officially recognized by the U.S. government as being crucial to international security — then yet an additional phase of the boycott should kick in, until the U.S. aristocracy buckles.
The alternative to such a boycott will be planetary burnout. Which of the two alternatives is preferable? Is the answer to this question not clear?
In any event, the alleged reason why Trump decided to end U.S. cooperation with the rest of the world on this, was:“Compliance with the terms of the Paris Accord and the onerous energy restrictions it has placed on the United States could cost America as much as 2.7 million lost jobs by 2025 according to the National Economic Research Associates. This includes 440,000 fewer manufacturing jobs.”
The appropriate way for the planet to respond to that concern would be to continue the boycott of the products of U.S. headquartered international firms until at least that number, 440,000, of U.S. manufacturing jobs, would be hit by it.
However, that ‘440,000 fewer manufacturing jobs’ was the estimate of NERA, which gets its money from the coal, and liquified natural gas, and nuclear, and other established energy-creation industries — all of the dying ones, none of the ones that are becoming increasingly cost-effective, which are the types that would be soaring if the Paris agreement doesn’t break apart. NERA is no scientific information-source; it’s a propaganda-source. Desmog blog reported: “NERA” is shorthand for National Economic Research Associates, an economic consulting firm SourceWatch identifies as the entity that published a June 2011 report on behalf of coal industry front group American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity (ACCCE). ACCCE’s report concluded, “clean-air rules proposed by the Obama administration would cost utilities $17.8 billion annually and raise electricity rates 11.5 percent on average in 2016.”
That report went so far to say that Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulations of the coal-generated electricity sector would amount to some 1.5 million lost jobs over the next four years.
NERA was founded by Irwin Stelzer, senior fellow and director of the right-wing Hudson Institute’s Center for Economic Policy. In Oct. 2004, The Guardian described Stelzer as the “right-hand man of Rupert Murdoch,” the CEO of News Corp., which owns Fox News.
A NERA report from earlier this year provided the basis for the popular King Coal refrain that the EPA’s Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) Rule would cost the U.S. tens of billions of dollars and “kill” 180,000-215,000 jobs.
These figures were picked up and cited by climate change denier U.S. Sen. James Inhofe (R-OK) in June when he spoke out against President Barack Obama’s mythological “war on coal,” as well as by the Republican Policy Committee in a May policy paper titled, “Obama’s War on Coal.”
So, that provides a good indication, as to which types of U.S. international companies would especially need to be included in the first phase of the international boycott. Basically, it’s the type that pay Republican politicians more than Democratic politicians.
What other approach than an international boycott, can be effective in order to force such an extremely corrupt nation to do what it must do, for the entire world — to join the rest of the world, in salvaging the entire planet?
Investigative historian Eric Zuesse is the author, most recently, of They’re Not Even Close: The Democratic vs. Republican Economic Records, 1910-2010, and of CHRIST’S VENTRILOQUISTS: The Event that Created Christianity.
Featured image: The Atlantic