May 3, 2009 in Opinion

Smart Bombs

Truth is out there
By The Spokesman-Review
 

The Spokane County GOP platform is worried about sovereignty and so it demands that this nation withdraw from the United Nations. The local party’s Web site also carries a warning that a Sustainability Action Plan put together by a wide-ranging group of local citizens must be opposed. The report is filled with common-sense suggestions for City Hall to conserve energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. There are no mandates. If the city wants to ignore the report, it can, though it would be counterproductive to do so.

But some Republicans, including City Councilwoman Nancy McLaughlin, smell an attempt to please U.N. overlords, and so they’ve stitched together flimsy suspicions that the world body will soon dictate local decisions. Did you know that “sustainability” has its origins in the U.N.? Good thing capitalism didn’t start there, or we’d have to try something else.

Others say the task force might be responding to a phony problem. Cindy Zapotocky, who is the GOP county chairwoman, says some scientists believe the Earth is actually cooling. Must be all that oil drilling that lets the heat escape. The task force’s suggestions have been called “environmental extremism,” which makes me wonder what moderate environmentalism looks like. Compact fluorescent bulbs in every other fixture?

Look, the science is solid and has withstood rigorous peer review. Every relevant scientific academy agrees that global warming is under way and humans are the chief culprits. The Green Party has not taken over the world’s laboratories. Sure, there are scientists who challenge the consensus, but many of them are not climate scientists, and they have failed to convince their peers. As part of the U.S. Climate Action Partnership, corporations such as General Electric, ConocoPhillips, General Motors, Caterpillar and Duke Energy are working with environmental groups on climate-change solutions.

The truth is out there, but you don’t have to be Mulder or Scully to find it.

Special rites. While reading the county GOP’s platform, I also noticed these related tenets about human rights:

1) “It is wrong to grant special legal privileges based solely on sexual preference or conduct.”

2) “Support the traditional family as the basic unit of society, and oppose same-sex marriage, or legal equivalent.”

So if they are true to the first tenet, then Republican legislators must’ve overwhelmingly voted for the “everything but marriage” bill, which erased the special legal status accorded married couples when it comes to child custody, worker benefits, inheritance, hospital visitation and many other matters. But they were pretty much against the new equal-rights law.

Then again, that aligns them perfectly with the second tenet, which contradicts the first.

Smart Bombs is written by Associate Editor Gary Crooks and appears Wednesdays and Sundays on the Opinion page. Crooks can be reached at garyc@spokesman.com or at (509) 459-5026.


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