On climate change Trump is acting as he was always going to

On “climate change” and much else, I have never understood the reluctance to support Trump from people who declare themselves on the right. So on climate change, let me point out that Trump has form. This was my post on March 14, 2016. There are few others assuming there are any others, who would have stood up to the mob the way he has done, and it’s only because he thinks they are idiots. But the politics here are brutal and very difficult to negotiate. There is much more about Trump in my The Art of the Impossible which will be launched in Melbourne next Tuesday. The details of the launch are here. And even if you can’t make it to the launch, you can still buy the book from here. The rest of this is from my post in March last year.

trump on agw

To run for high office you have to at least pretend to care about global warming. There are too many voters on both sides, even on the Republican side, who would make disbelief in AGW the single issue that determined their vote. For me, belief in global warming is as clear a sign of anti-capitalist ideologically-driven wishful thinking as I would care to choose. It may be a reality, but it is one for which the evidence is virtually non-existent while the costs of trying to contain our carbon footprint so immense that skepticism is the only answer that makes sense. I therefore googled “Donald Trump and Global Warming” and the following article, from MSNBC, seems to be representative of his views. And what makes this article so fascinating is that the article is trying to prove that Trump really thinks acceptance of AGW is utterly without merit although he is now beginning to pretend that he actually thinks it is important even though he doesn’t really think so. The article was published in February. Here’s the start.

Something unexpected is happening in the Republican presidential field.

Leading GOP candidates once denied the reality of manmade climate change, but now they seem to be softening their posture and subtly embracing it.

Democratic candidates Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders have long pledged to deepen President Obama’s climate commitments if elected to office. The Republican candidates are still far from believers or political backers of the president’s agenda. But a close parsing of their comments suggest the party of no is becoming the party of maybe – or perhaps even the party of yes.

Take the case of Donald Trump, the billionaire contrarian and big winner of the New Hampshire primary on Tuesday. His denial of climate change has been a centerpiece of his act for years.

Naturally, this is taken as a sign of ignorance and a lack of seriousness about dealing with one of our most important contemporary problems. But even though he is now trying to be more political in how he expresses his views, the folks at MSNBC are not going to be caught out in accepting his more recent statements as his real beliefs.

In tweets between 2012 and early 2015, he called climate change a “con job,” a “canard,” a “hoax,” “bulls**t,” and a concept “created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive.”

Now, however, Trump wants to be president so has begun to reverse course.

But as his political star has risen, he’s changed his tune on global warming.

He’s walked back his wildest conspiracy theories and toned down his claims that cold weather somehow disproves global warming. He’s also retired some of his most incendiary language (“con job,” “canard”) and wrapped what remains in strong qualifiers.

In January, for example, after relentless mockery from the Sanders campaign, Trump told “Fox & Friends” that his tweet about climate change as a Chinese plot was a “joke.”

So what does Trump say now?

“Obviously, I joke,” he said. “I know much about climate change. I’d be — received environmental awards. And I often joke that this is done for the benefit of China.”

The Republican front-runner still uses the word “hoax,” deploying it on December 30 at a rally in Hilton Head, S.C. But he bookends it in un-Trump-like uncertainty. “A lot of it is a hoax,” he said, according to ThinkProgress, a left-leaning news site “I mean, it’s a money-making industry, OK? It’s a hoax, a lot of it.”

You can trace the change to September, when Trump delivered his most expansive comments on climate change. Speaking with conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt, he criticized Obama for trying “to solve a problem that I don’t think in any major fashion exists.”

And that is their last word on Trump. The rest of the article shows similar lack of belief on climate change by the other leading Republicans. Trump, however, has been the most consistent and hardline of the lot. Whatever he ends up saying from this point on, you may be sure what he really thinks is what he has most consistently said. If he thought global warming was a con job and bulls**t a year ago, there is nothing that has happened since to have changed his mind. You may be sure that if Trump becomes the candidate this will become a major issue in the campaign.

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