Seriously, conservatives who scream “American exceptionalism” don’t even know how right they are. When America leads on humanitarian and progressive issues the world does follow. After the EPA announces their new rules to cut carbon emissions 30% by 2030, the Chinese announced a similar effort.
But the fact that the two biggest emitters of greenhouse gases made unprecedented announcements on climate within 24 hours of each other sparked optimism among observers hoping to see the decades-old deadlock broken. The steps come ahead of a global meet on climate change starting on Wednesday in Germany.
It was always a childish bullshit argument to say that we shouldn’t so anything to limit our carbon emissions if the rest of the world won’t – like saying we should continue to jump off the Empire State Building if everybody else is. In the meantime, while our Republican Party stands athwart history yelling “stop”, the coal industry that we bend over backwards not to offend is shrinking because of the doomed economics of coal extraction and burning – whether we clap louder for 19th century energy technology or not. Shhhh, don’t tell Mitch McConnell or Alison Lundegan Grimes but there are already more people employed by the solar power industry in the U.S. than the coal industry.
Coal mining and burning needs to stop, everywhere, as soon as humanly possible and I think, even in Kentucky, acknowledging that out loud might just make you seem smart and leaderlike, but what do I know?