Scott McConnell has pointed out how Michael Bloomberg has cited the damage inflicted by tropical storm Sandy as a good reason to endorse President Barack Obama. But it seems odd that other Democrats nationally have avoided using Sandy as a club to beat the GOP, possibly because they consider it unseemly. The Republican Party platform expresses a clear reluctance to do anything to reduce greenhouse gases:
We also call on Congress to take quick action to prohibit the EPA from moving forward with new greenhouse gas regulations that will harm the nation’s economy and threaten millions of jobs over the next quarter century. The most powerful environmental policy is liberty, the central organizing principle of the American Republic and its people.
It does not take a climatologist to appreciate that “liberty” does not represent a coherent environmental policy. I am far from the expert on the subject, but it seems to be established that weather patterns are becoming more severe, possibly linked to global warming. If one assumes that global warming is at least in part attributable to the actions of mankind, efforts to reduce its impact would appear to be warranted lest Sandy become an annual occurrence along the eastern seaboard. Republicans appear to be reluctant to make that effort.
Admitting that climate change is taking place and is being caused by human activity does not necessarily imply any government policy, which would have to be carefully considered based on actual evidence and the options available. It seems that the GOP’s stubbornness on this issue is linked to a broader antagonism toward science, which possibly derives from its pandering to Christian evangelicals. Certainly if I were a Democrat I would be pointing to Sandy as one possible consequence of Republican unwillingness to be realistic or even “modern” in its policy prescriptions relating to the environment.