Wednesday, December 02, 2009

Well I beg to differ Mr Davis

I see Dave Davis former Tory front-bencher and ex-SAS hard man has made a scathing attack on the greens. You see, because he hasn't read the Stern Report he thinks taking measures against climate change is going to 'cripple' the economy rather than save our collective asses.

He "warned of a public backlash if more unpopular "green" measures were imposed". Which measures would these be? Well, David explains he means the "hair shirt policies on the public – taxes on holiday flights, or covering our beautiful countryside with wind turbines that look like props from War of the Worlds".

So basically he means that people are sick of policies that have not actually been imposed. Aviation fuel is still ludicrously exempt from excise duty, so driving to the countryside for a weekend break in the UK is still taxed more heavily than flying to Spain.

Also, I don't know which country's countryside he's referring to but it can't possibly be the UK because precious little of it is "covered" in wind turbines. He makes it sound like you can't turn round for seeing them. If only.

Anyway, he's missed the basic point that investment in green jobs, with a program rolling out loft insulation, renewable energy technologies and energy saving measures isn't a hair shirt measure if you're one of the growing numbers of people on the dole and in need of a wage - or for that matter if you're on the recieving end of having your drafty old house refitted.

He may also like to address how measures to hold off the effects of peak oil are anything but attempts to prevent the impoverishment of billions of people. He might think steering us towards oil bankruptcy is a good idea, but most us see that the effects of this will be rather unpleasant for everyone.

Perhaps he comes closer to stating his real objections when he says "Many of the people signed up to the green movement instinctively believe in statist, regulatory, dirigiste regimes."

I think he might mean the (whisper it) Green New Deal. Well, he could be right. We are a bunch of communists really. First they came for your cheap holiday flights and the next thing you know they've nationised the nation's pets.

Anyway, I'll hold my hands up, I don't think the market will magically solve climate change if left to its own devices. I also think we need meaningful international action at a government level - Mr Davis clearly does not.

His last substantive point is that "We often worry, properly, about the potential effects of global warming on the poorer parts of the world. We should also worry that cutting the world's growth will condemn millions of people to continuing poverty in the decades to come."

Mr Davis, please, read the Stern Report. He's not a woolly liberal. You'd like him. He also sees very clearly that climate change is going to cost the economy a lot of money if we don't address it. That's right - it's hard to shop if you're three foot under water.

He's like the man who doesn't want to fix his leaky roof because it's not raining. It'll cost money and effort to fix that roof... but only a fraction of the time, effort and misery that you'll have to put in after the first bout of heavy rainfall.

Of course, he's not speaking for the Tory Party itself, Cameron's shirt-sleaved luvvies are all very eco-PR-friendly, but I bet he's taken note of the recent events in Australia. He wont be putting his bid for Tory leadership in again any time soon, but he's a useful reminder that even Tories who can be quite good on some issues, like civil liberties, can still be irresponsible bastards at heart.

more Tory sceptics come out of the woodwork in The Independent.


Matty said...

He's not that good on civil liberties, he's just done a good job of making people think he is. He's pro the death penalty for a start, he also voted to reduce the abortion time limit, no to mention he's anti gay marriage, was anti lowering the age of consent for gay sex and anti ivf for non male/female couples and that's off the top of my head.

Jim Jay said...

All good points!

Matty said...

I've got a thing about him. Civil liberties my eye, he just knew he was being politically sidelined and made a break for notoriety and poster-boy ism. Yet he gets trotted out by Privacy Int and Liberty et all as if he wasn't just another Tory one rule for me dipstick.

Doubting Richard said...

Where have you been? Anthropogenic climate change has been exposed as a fraud. There is no unprecedented rise in temperature, the data were crap, the models uncertain, error-ridden and fraudulent. The peer review process was corrupt.

So why should we destroy the economy for this farcve?

Spartan said...

l remember a saying of my grandmother ... 'lf l told you to stick your head in the oven, would you?'

Please get your head out of the oven and wait to see results of Climategate ... then you can put it back in.

Natalie Bennett said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jim Jay said...

(as me rather than my girlfriend this time)

a) its the unregulated banking system that is destroying the economy

b) some inappropriate emails from one dept. does not invalidate either the data or basic observation.

El nino and El nina are both getting stronger, we're having once in a thousand year weather events in the UK, the ice caps are disappearing, meanwhile australia is baking and drying up, the great lakes of africa and eastern russia are disappearing - and so on.

Oh no, but someone sent an email so all of that isn't really happening.