Skip to comments.Need source of quote by Tim Wirth (Even if global warming is a hoax - lie about it)
Posted on 02/08/2003 7:59:30 PM PST by StopGlobalWhining
I made a posting to a website Denmark's Ministry of Truth where I cited a quote by former Colorado Democrat Senator Tim Wirth where he said
What we've got to do in energy conservation is to try to ride the global warming issue. Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, to have approached global warming as if it is real means energy conservation, so we will be doing the right thing anyway in terms of economic policy and environmental policy.
Shortly afterwards I received an e-mail from a Danish journalist saying he might want to use that quote in an article, but only if he could verify the source. I had saved that quote years ago and never questioned it, since it sounds like something Wirth would say. He was a Clinton Undersecretary of State and was expected to be algores representative at the Kyoto conference in 1997, but he resigned at the last minute to administer Ted Turners $1 billion "gift" to the UN to reduce 3rd world population.
So I e-mailed Henry Lamb to see if he might be able to help. Here is his response:
I used the quote in a column I wrote in 1996. I took it from Michael Fument's "Science Under Siege," p. 362. His footnote (#82, Chapter 12,) reads as follows:
"Dwight Lee, "The Perpetual Assault on Progress," Contemporary Issue Series 42 (St. Louis: Center for the Study of American Business, Washington University, May 1991), p. 14; citing Robert James Bidinotto, "Environmentalism: Freedom's Foe for the 90's," The Freeman, November 1990, p. 418"
Then I hunted for Robert James Bidinotto, and found an e-mail link for him at the Objectivist Society, asked if he could verify Wirth as the source of this quote, but haven't heard back from him.
So I am appealing to fellow members of FR, if you can help me get in contact with Robert James Bidinotto, or if you can verify Tim Wirth's quote, please get back to me.
Here's a beaut that has been verified. By the source himself, as given in an infamous 1989 Discovery Magazine interview. The source is Steven Schneider, a climatologist at Stanford and the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) in Boulder, CO. Schineder told Discovery:
[We] are not just scientists but human beings as well. And like most people we'd like to see the world a better place?. To do that we need to get some broad-based support, to capture the public's imagination. That, of course, entails getting loads of media coverage. So we have to offer up scary scenarios, make simplified, dramatic statements, and make little mention of any doubts we might have?. Each of us has to decide what the right balance is between being effective and being honest."
Again, if you can help me validate Tim Wirth's quote cited above, I will really appreciate it.
One has to know the truth before they can tell it.
By BY ROCHELLE L. STANFIELD, National Journal
© National Journal Group Inc.
Saturday, Aug. 13, 1988
Whether it is George Bush or Michael S. Dukakis sitting in a hearth-side easy chair in the White House next January, the next President probably won't wear a heavy sweater and tell us to turn down our thermostats as his predecessors did in the late 1970s. But that doesn't mean he won't talk about the need to save energy. If environmentalists have their way, energy conservation, after being submerged in the nation's political consciousness for nearly a decade, will resurface as a high-priority cause early in the next Administration. This time, energy conservation is likely to reappear as "energy effiency" -- a no-tears, high-technology solution to a multitude of environmental problems. And it may pop up as a partial cure for such disparate ailments as the U.S. trade deficit and the shortage of affordable housing. When the oil shocks of 1973 and 1979 caused oil prices to shoot up and long gasoline lines to form, Presidents Ford and Carter responded with austerity programs. Now, energy conservation advocates agree that sacrifice won't sell politically in this era of moderate prices and plentiful supplies. "In the mid-1970s, conservation connoted sacrifice to people -- sitting with a sweater on," said James L. Wolf, executive director of the Alliance to Save Energy, a coalition of government, business, labor and academic members. "For the time, it was perhaps appropriate because we were in a crisis," Wolf said, "but, over all, it gave a very bad feeling." "We think it's much more effective and accurate to talk about energy efficiency because what we are after is to provide a high quality of life that is sustainable," said Nicholas A. Fedoruk, director of the Energy Conservation Coalition, which speaks for a number of environmental and consumer groups. "We're saying, get more productivity from less energy, not use less energy by doing without." One possibility, for example, is solar-powered air conditioning for cars that, because it would operate independently of the engine, would save gasoline and would keep the car cool while it is parked in the sun. The energy-conservation programs of the 1970s were designed mostly to cut back on Americans' use of oil, but the energy-efficiency campaigns of the 1990s will also involve, as critical components, the generation of electricity and the power requirements of electrical appliances. An indication of energy conservation's rebirth is the resurgence of organizations that were formed in the 1970s and lay dormant for years, such as the Alliance to Save Energy and the Solar Lobby (renamed the Fund for Renewable Energy and the Environment). Energy conservation, its advocates say, is the answer to a host of environmental questions, particularly those related to air pollution. "Clean air policy and energy policy have collapsed into the same issue," said Jessica T. Mathews, vice president of World Resources Institute. The most dramatic example is global warming, also called the greenhouse effect, in which carbon dioxide is a major villain. Because carbon dioxide is created by burning fossil fuels, the world's major energy sources, the most immediate way to curtail carbon dioxide emissions is to consume less energy. "What we've got to do in energy conservation is try to ride the global warming issue," said Sen. Timothy E. Wirth, D-Colo., the Energy and Natural Resources Committee's point man on that issue and chairman of the Alliance to Save Energy. "Even if the theory of global warming is wrong, to have approached global warming as if it is real means energy conservation, so we will be doing the right thing anyway in terms of economic policy and environmental policy." Wirth introduced legislation on July 28 to establish a national energy policy that would, among other things, "increase energy efficiency in all sectors of the U.S. economy." Energy conservation advocates also say that increasing the efficiency of electric power plants could lower the cost of acid rain control, that operating more fuel-efficient autos, trucks and buses could reduce urban smog and that energy saved through higher fuel efficiency represents an alternative to drilling for oil in untouched areas of the Outer Continental Shelf and in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge. Energy efficiency advocates also justify placing a high priority on conservation as a way to reduce the U.S. trade deficit. The nation's $ 40 billion-a-year oil import bill accounts for about a fourth of its merchandise trade deficit. And the U.S. position is likely to get worse in relation to its industrialized trading partners, which are far more energy-efficient in terms of energy expenditures per dollar of gross national product. And at the family-budget level, where energy accounts for a major monthly expense, many Members of Congress, including Wirth, want to increase the efficiency of household insulation, heating, cooling and electric appliances. They plan to bring up a six-point program to lower residential energy costs by 25 per cent, drafted by the Alliance to Save Energy, as part of a housing authorization bill next year. And national security is a perennial reason for energy conservation. "The Strait of Hormuz $(in the Persian Gulf$) is just as narrow today as it was 20 years ago," Wirth said. "Something's going to happen, and we'd better start being prepared for that." Most energy efficiency advocates agree that the next round of conservation will require a clever mix of subtle government signals to direct market forces. "The debate this time is going to be much more sophisticated," said Ken Murphy, executive director of the Environmental and Energy Study Institute. "The whole notion of giving the private sector the right signals so they will do the right things for themselves and for society is an important development in the emerging debate." Some conservation advocates are optimistic about the outcome. "There is a lot of technological momentum at work now," said Christopher Flavin, vice president and senior researcher of the Worldwatch Institute in Washington. "New technologies are appearing all the time that are more efficient than the old ones. Research and development processes that got under way in the 1970s are continuing to bear fruit." Others are less sanguine. "There's not been a will to do anything in the Reagan Administration, and there's been very limited support in Congress," said Howard S. Geller, associate director of the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. "That's the challenge we see for the new President and the Congress." MARKET MANIPULATION Energy efficiency or energy waste, whichever occurs, will happen in the marketplace. The question for federal and state policy makers -- and the advocacy groups that try to sway them -- is whether and how much to try to manipulate market forces. The Reagan Administration generally has stood against government intervention -- even in cases in which industries would have welcomed it. Domestic oil producers, for example, wanted a fee placed on oil imports, and appliance manufacturers favored federal efficiency standards. "I don't think $(market manipulation$) makes a great deal of sense," said Donna R. Fitzpatrick, associate Energy undersecretary and assistant secretary for conservation and renewable energy. "I don't really understand the rationale for trying to do to ourselves what we're afraid the Arabs might do to us." Significant energy conservation has taken place over the past 15 years, with total consumption of energy staying virtually even while the economy registered substantial gains in real growth. "Energy use per unit of gross national product dropped nearly 27 per cent between 1973-87," Geller said. "Conservation is the big success story of the past 15 years." Conservation occurred during the Carter Administration's heavy-handed regulations on fuel use: It also took place under the hands-off policies of President Reagan, who relaxed auto fuel economy standards, vetoed legislation to impose appliance efficiency standards and cut federal spending for research and development on energy conservation. The experts disagree on the relative importance of market forces and government policies in saving energy since 1973. However, advocates of intervention conceded that at least part of the savings resulted from the high cost of oil and the economic restructuring that led to the decline in basic industries, such as steel, that are big energy users. The industrial sector accounted for more than 60 per cent of the energy saved from 1973-87. Devotees of the free market are loathe to credit government regulations with positive results, but many of them acknowledge that the Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards, part of the 1975 Energy Policy and Conservation Act, sped the doubling of auto fuel economy -- from an average of 13 miles per gallon for a new car in 1973 to 26 mpg in 1987. But they also insist that market forces alone eventually would have achieved the same results. "I think a good case can be made that the levels at which our members are at now would have been achieved anyway, that the transition to building more fuel-efficient cars was the result of the price of gasoline going from 40 cents a gallon to $ 1," said Timothy MacCarthy, director of federal liaison for the Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association. "The rapidity with which it happened was the result of two oil crises in the 1970s. Would that have happened without CAFE? The result would have been the same. How fast it happened could have been different." Those who support energy regulations argue that the CAFE standards saved the American auto industry from being totally eclipsed by European and Japanese auto makers. They say that because of its short-term, bottom-line focus, American industry has been slow to take advantage of long-term market focus, American industry has been slow to take advantage of long-term market forces such as the need for more fuel-efficient cars. "CAFE standards are saving jobs in this country because $(they$) keep small-car production here," said Clarence M. Ditlow III, executive director of the Center for Auto Safety. "We have lost 30 per cent of the domestic auto market, not entirely due to higher mileage, but mostly," said Mathews of the World Resources Institute. "That $(fuel economy$) was the $(foreign auto makers'$) way in. "Right now," Mathews said, "there are more than a dozen high-mileage cars -- above 70 mpg -- in prototype and they are made, without exception, by European or Japanese manufacturers. Energy-efficient devices and processes and technologies are going to own the future, and if our economy $(won't invest in them$), then others will." ENCOURAGING INVESTMENT Whether they insist on a free market or demand government intervention, those who advocate energy conservation have the same goal: to encourage all sectors of the American economy to invest in energy efficiency. They all recognize the difficulty of the task, which will require fundamental rethinking of some industrial processes as well as large, long-term capital investments with sometimes questionable near-term paybacks. "We're talking about raw economic efficiency here -- how much you get out of your energy -- and it is a costly thing," said Rep. Philip R. Sharp, D-Ind., chairman of the Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power. "It takes time to turn over the capital stock so it's more efficient in the future. And the marketplace doesn't always advise you, at the moment, what the most efficient thing will be in the future." To justify such investments, business managers will need a "broader version" and a "new investment calculus" that factors in long-term energy costs and availability, said Murphy of the Environmental and Energy Study Institute, and not succumb "to pressure for the quarterly bottom line." The domestic paper industry has developed such a calculus, according to Carol Werner of the energy study institute. "The paper industry changed their industrial process so they get a superior product and use less feedstock as well as less energy, so energy efficiency ended up being a great idea for them," she said. Foreign auto companies, also have adopted the new energy math, discovering that they can build high-mileage cars using expensive materials for the same cost as current autos by using new production techniques. "The Volvo LCP $(a prototype car that gets 81 mpg on the highway, 63 mpg in city traffic$) was designed so that increased prices resulting from the use of new technologies would be offset by reduced fabrication and assembly costs," writes Deborah Lynn Bleviss in her forthcoming book, $IThe New Oil Crisis and Fuel Economy Technologies: Preparing for Light Transportation Industry for the 1990s$N (Greenwood Press). "As a result, its developers believe that, despite the 'exotic' materials and technologies used in the prototype, the vehicle could be produced at the same cost as today's subcompacts." Energy-watchers disagree as to why foreign auto companies seem to be operating on the new energy math while domestic automakers are not. A reason may be that gasoline is much more expensive in Europe and Japan than it is is in the United States, and so foreign manufacturers put higher priority on making fuel-efficient cars than American firms do. "The problem, basically, is that $(U.S.$) gasoline prices are so low and cars so significantly more efficient than they were that the price of fuel in cars is something that people hardly even notice," Flavin of Worldwatch said. "Of the cost of operating a car now, insurance costs for many people are higher than the cost of gasoline." And McCarthy of the auto manufacturers said: "Big cars are selling again. A company like Ford can't build enough $(big luxury model$) Town Cars right now." Because technological improvements lead to increased energy efficiency, energy conservation specialists agree that research is vital -- not only to discover efficient new products and processes, but also to lower their price. "$(Energy Department$) research on energy-efficient buildings, automobiles and industrial processes is trying to make them economically competitive, and we're having a good deal of success in doing that," Fitzpatric said. "You don't have to take an economic hit to improve your energy efficiency. There's lots that can be done, even at fairly low prices. If energy prices were high, people would be much more interested in energy conservation, but we don't need to have high energy prices to improve energy efficiency." Research is about the only government involvement in energy conservation that the Reagan Administration has sanctioned, and it has done so reluctantly. The Energy Department's conservation research budget has dropped by more than 50 per cent, from $ 399.5 million for fiscal 1980, the last year of the Carter Administration, to $ 156.2 million for fiscal 1988. Those involved in these programs say that even the diminished research budget has paid off in energy-efficient products, particularly in the building area. "There are many, many famous examples of research and development projects paying off, and each one justifies the government program by 100-1," said Arthur H. Rosenfeld, director of the Center for Building Science at the Energy Department's Lawrence Berkely Laboratory in Berkeley, Calif. For example, Rosenfeld cited a five-year, $ 5 million project to develop a fluorescent light ballast (the box that makes the light work) that cuts energy use by a third. "These ballasts are so successful we are sure they will take the market over," Rosenfeld said. "And when they do, savings to ratepayers all over the U.S. will be about $ 5 billion a year. And they also save the market from being taken over by the Europeans and Japanese." Rosenfeld projects a $ 3 billion a year saving in energy costs from another product of his lab, a transparent heat mirror film for windows to reflect heat. "It makes double glazing as good as triple glazing or even better," he said. The problem with these and other energy-saving innovations is getting them into the marketplace at a time of low energy prices. The free market works wonderfully in theory, energy conservation advocates say, but it doesn't work in practice in the energy area for several reasons. In some cases, the person who has to make a capital investment is not the one who would get the long-term savings. In others, the up-front costs are obvious -- $ 15 for a fluorescent light -- but the savings of pennies a month, buried in an electric bill, are not. "There are clear barriers in a lot areas in the market place," said Geller of the Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy. "There's the landlord-tenant problem. The landlord passes through energy bills to tenants. The developer buys the refrigerator and decides how much insulation to put into housing, and then doesn't have to pay the energy bills." In the case of the developer, he said, "Your refrigerator conks out, and you don't pull out $IConsumer Reports$N to do life-cycle costing on an efficient model. You call up Sears and tell them to bring out whatever they have on hand, quick." TAXES AND REGULATIONS Government intervention is necessary to counter market imperfections, many energy efficiency advocates insist. "Government can't make it happen, but it can provide some leadership," Geller said. However, today's energy conservation advocates don't recommend a return to the massive programs of the Carter Administration -- some of which, such as business and residential tax credits, were, they concede, ineffective. "We don't have to go back to Carter," Geller said. "We need to learn from the experience of the last 15 years and not repeat the mistakes." Government intervention in this area may take the form of increased federal support for conservation research, new taxes or new regulations. There is little disagreement among those who favor an activist government that all three must take place and even on what kinds of federal taxes and regulations are needed. To increase auto fuel economy, advocates of a strong government program generally favor a combination of higher CAFE standards, and a higher gasoline tax. In its recent booklet, "Energy Efficiency: A New Agenda," the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy calls for raising the CAFE standards on cars to 45 mpg and on light trucks to 35 mpg by 2000. Wirth's bill would double the current 26 mpg standard by 2010. Any increase in the standard would represent a reversal of recent policy: The Administration rolled back the standard, from 27.5 mpg to 26 mpg. "The real battle has been trying to stop them from gutting the CAFE standards," Ditlow of the Center for Auto Safety said. "But I'm beginning to sense the momentum shifting." A necessary companion measure to a higher fuel-efficiency standard, these advocates believe, would be increased gasoline taxes. "We are the only industrialized country in the world except Canada that is still running on cheap gasoline because the other countries have realized what the real costs of gasoline are," the World Resource Institute's Mathews said. "People are talking about a 15-cent-a-gallon increase -- that's a waste of time and the political effort it would take to do it," Mathews said. She has suggested increasing the gasoline tax by 10 cents a year for 10 years. "It gives the economy and the industry time to adjust," Mathews said. The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy book suggests that the federal gasoline tax, which is now 9 cents a gallon, be raisedby 10 cents a year for three years. Meanwhile, the energy conservationists have high hopes for the efficiency standards on residential equipment, such as refrigerators and air conditioners, that Congress mandated in 1987. They project that more efficient appliances will save 22,000 megawatts by 2000, the equivalent of 22 large power plants. In June, Congress amended the 1987 law to set similar national efficiency standards for fluorescent lamp ballasts. The new ballasts are expected to cost about $ 3.50 per lamp more than the old ones, but still should save about $ 10 billion in electricity costs from 1990-2000. The biggest energy savings could come from more-efficient generation of electricity, and that would require major changes in federal and state regulation of the electric power companies. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is overhauling its regulatory scheme. But state utility commissions set the rules that determine to a large degree whether most utilities stress conservation. "Under the current system of regulation employed by the state and federal regulators, there is a very strong disincentive" for utilities to adopt energy-saving practices, David Moskovitz, a Maine Public Utilities Commission member, testified at a June hearing of Sharp's subcommittee. Moskowitz said: "In the current scheme of regulation, utilities make money in only one way -- selling kilowatt-hours. Utilities lose money when customers engage in conservation." Spokesmen for the investor-owned utility industry agree. "The northeast sector is about the only area interested in straight conservation," said A. Joseph Van den Berg, director of technical services for the Edison Electric Institute. "They $(electric companies$) will talk energy efficiency, but the old energy conservation isn't that interesting to very many, even in the Northeast." Moskowitz and others say that innovation regulatory schemes can be developed to encourage utilities to conserve energy themselves and to promote efficiency among their customers. "It will take a whole new approach to how you construct a market, to somehow create an artificial market in an industry which is monopolistic," Flavin said. Most of the energy conservation advocates are optimistic that their cause is making a comeback and that the next Administration will take a more active role. "The efficiency stuff is, to my mind, a really big issue right now," Mathews said. "I think we will have to undergo a sea change $(to accomplish the improvements required$). But I think the greenhouse issue will force us to do for that reason what makes sense to do for other reasons." Sharp doesn't expect major initiatives. "We have to take the little things we can get and go for them, hope they can help us -- like the lighting ballast bill," he said. "That's a good solid development -- but it's not something everybody is going to be bowled over by."
Second, I'd like to thank Robert James Bidinotto, who was one of the first people to actively publicize the Wirth quote cited here in "Environmentalism: Freedom's Foe for the 90's," The Freeman, November 1990, p. 418". It was he who pointed me to the original source of the Wirth quote in The National Journal.
Robert James Bidinotto's web site is The Objectivist Center.
Many thanks to these freedom loving Americans.
Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said in a statement that Wirth "will leave a big hole to fill" and said, "It is some consolation that Tim will be working closely with Ted Turner to support and help explain the importance of the United Nations and the causes that it serves."
Wirth Walks---State official will leave global-warming effort to work with Turner's UN money
WASHINGTON (AllPolitics, Nov. 20) -- Global-warming treaty talks begin in Kyoto, Japan, next month, but the head of the U.S. delegation has turned in his walking papers.
Undersecretary of State Timothy Wirth, a former Democratic senator from Colorado, has decided to leave the State Department at the end of the year. He'll instead head up the foundation that will administer the $1 billion that Time Warner executive Ted Turner has pledged to the United Nations.
Turner pledged in September to give the money over the next ten years to support U.N. programs. Time Warner Inc. is the parent company of AllPolitics.
Wirth's departure may make the delicate negotiations more difficult. He has been the United States' lead negotiator on the climate issues, but will probably not lead the delegation to Kyoto given his lame-duck status.
About 160 nations will gather in Japan to hammer out agreements to restrict emissions of greenhouse gases that many believe are causing the Earth to warm.
Secretary of State Madeleine Albright said in a statement that Wirth "will leave a big hole to fill" and said, "It is some consolation that Tim will be working closely with Ted Turner to support and help explain the importance of the United Nations and the causes that it serves."
Speaking to The New York Times, Wirth dismissed suggestions that he was unhappy at State, calling Turner's offer "an incredible opportunity."
"People care a great deal about these new issues, the new global issues, post-cold-war issues," he said, which includes immigration and population growth, the environment, terrorism, narcotics, international crime and the world economy.
Keeping you up to date on our future rulers....Posted by: Brian Mosely (firstname.lastname@example.org)
11/20/97 17:18:19 PST
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