Senator Lee gave a speech delineating his opposition to the Green New Deal today as part of Senate Majority Leader McConnell’s attempt to put the Senate Democratic caucus in a bind by making them take a stand either for or against one of the House Democratic caucus’s signature issues. Fortunately for us all, Senator Lee is, well, Senator Lee, which is sort of the Congresswoman Virginia Foxx of Senator Ted Cruzes. Or something… Even more fortuitously, Senator Lee posted a YouTube video of his remarks and posted a transcript of them at his Senate website. He’s so considerate!
Senator Lee’s major proposal for resolving the problem that is climate change is to have more babies*, because one of them might actually come up with a good idea to resolve the problem at some point in the future.
This, Mr. President, is the real solution to climate change: babies.
Climate change is an engineering problem – not social engineering, but the real kind.
It’s a challenge of creativity, ingenuity, and technological invention.
And problems of human imagination are not solved by more laws, but by more humans!
More people mean bigger markets for innovation.
More babies mean more forward-looking adults – the sort we need to tackle long-term, large scale problems.
American babies, in particular, are likely going to be wealthier, better educated, and more conservation-minded than children raised in still-industrializing regions.
As economist Tyler Cowen recently wrote on this very point, “by having more children, you are making your nation more populous – thus boosting its capacity to solve [climate change].”
Finally, Mr. President, children are a mark of the kind of personal, communal, and societal optimism that is the true pre-requisite for meeting national and global challenges together.
The courage needed to solve climate change is nothing compared with the courage needed to start a family.
The true heroes of this story aren’t politicians or social media activists.
They are moms and dads, and the little boys and girls they are, at this moment, putting down for naps… helping with their homework… building tree houses… and teaching how to tie their shoes.
The planet does not need us to “think globally, and act locally” so much as it needs us to think family, and act personally.
The solution to climate change is not this unserious resolution, but the serious business of human flourishing – the solution to so many of our problems, at all times and in all places: fall in love, get married, and have some kids.
I yield the floor.
This, however, wasn’t the most batshit insane part of Senator Lee’s audio-visual extravaganza. Pride of place for that honor goes to the graphics and images he used to help make his point.
President Reagan on a velociraptor wielding a machine pistol while the velociraptor carries a tattered American flag – this is apparently big on one of the Chan boards/sites:
A still image from The Empire Strikes Back of Luke Skywalker riding on a tauntaun on the ice planet Hoth:
A still image from the Hannah-Barbera Saturday morning cartoon series Superfriends of Aquaman on his seahorse Storm from the early 1970s (in the earlier 1960s Filmation Aquaman-Superman Adventures Storm was white with gold ears – do not ask how I know this…):
A picture of a bunch of babies (awww!):
This is stupidity, disingenuousness, and bad faith on par with Kyle Reese’s description of the Terminator:
Listen, and understand. That terminator is out there. It can’t be bargained with. It can’t be reasoned with. It doesn’t feel pity, or remorse, or fear. And it absolutely will not stop, ever, until you are dead.
I don’t care if you’re Senator Booker who is claiming one of his key strengths is that he can, because he has in the past, work effectively across the aisle or Howard Schultz who keeps stating that as an independent centrist that he can work with both sides, THERE IS NOTHING HERE TO WORK WITH!!!!! There’s no difference to split here, there’s no accommodation that can be made here, and there is no compromise that can be reached. Right now, whether you agree, partially agree, or disagree with what the Democrats are proposing, you’ve got one party actually proposing solutions that have been thought through and one party that proposes the same four things no matter what is going on: 1) cut taxes, 2) cut regulations, 3) gut the social safety net and undo the New Deal, 4) and allow unlimited amounts of money in politics because money equals speech and corporations equal people. And, if there’s a crisis involving brown people with funny accents: 5) deploy troops to deal with them. The shame that is the United States in 2019 is that there is one party, the Democratic Party, that is dealing with reality, even if you don’t agree with what they’re proposing and then there’s this insanity being peddled by the Republicans.
At this point I’m about two weeks away from declaring myself Sub-Commandante Citizen-Leftenant Zero and storming a radio station… **
Which leads to one of my favorite political cartoons of all time:
* I’m sure at some point this will be rolled into an argument why Roe V. Wade must be overturned and abortion made illegal so we don’t accidentally abort the baby that will save us from the climate change crisis that Senator Lee doesn’t actually believe exists.
** This is SARCASM, lest someone eventually show up or use this to claim I’m advocating the overthrow of the US government or endorsing the use of low intensity warfare and political violence.