You get thousands of talkers and watchers gathered to discuss a potential disaster and what do you get? Real humanity. Cupidity. Stupidity. Duplicity. Greed, of course. Anguish. Ambition, competition and tradition. Sincerity. Fear and loathing. Posing and posturing. Mendacity, rapacity, chicanery and clarity. The clarity shows us that there will be no agreement supported by anybody who doesn't perceive a win for his side in these Copenhagen capers.
Tiny Tuvalu wields a big club, accusing the rest of the world of nationicide. I've blogged before how Tuvalu sees it self as the likely first national fatality of rising sea levels. On a raw power basis the average Tuvaluan right now appears to have about 14.9 times as much political power as the average American. And 4986.3 times as much power as the average Chinese worker. I know, I worked it out using a complex algorithm.
Ultimately the Tuvaluans have no power because they are poor and we Americans can always borrow more money from China and Japan. If we need to sacrifice Tuvalu to save corporate earnings and the status quo, there'll be plenty of folks ready to kiss Tuvaly by-by. And those would be folks with real power. MONEY, MONEY, MONEY
The European Union has just pledged a total of over $10-billion for the next three years, to go into fund to help poorer nations cope with global warming and reduce their emissions. Immediately it was greeted with raspberries by some poor nations. Not nearly enough. And don't imagine everything's in accord within the EU. Poland says it'll not be able to cut emissions until after 2020 as it needs to convert fromold So viet-era coal plants to modern nuclear plants.
How much is $10 billion as we look at energy policy and land use? The US spends over $13 billion every year on farm subsidies, much of it for corn, soybeans, cotton and rice. Exxon made a record profit of $36 billion in 2006 and should return over $20 billion in the most recent four quarters even with depressed oil prices. And I wouldn't expect Exxon shareholders to donate much to saving tiny Tuvalu, would you?
The U.S. is saving any hint of money giveaway for Obama's end of Copenhagen speech, I presume. Meanwhile, the U.S. head negotiator says he rejects any theory of "carbon reparations." That could be seen as guilt money for rich nations dumping greenhouse gas emissions into the globe's only atmosphere, shared by rich and poor alike. Or it could be seen as only fair. Depends on your politics, and how much land you own at sea level.