Blame the Bovines

By December 18, 2006Global Warming

San Francisco-based columnist Debra Saunders takes note of the recent U.N. reports casting doubt on the “science” wielded by global warming alarmists like Al Gore, using the news to profile S. Fred Singer, who keeps fighting the good fight in favor of facts instead of fear?

Two British news reports could not have come at a better time for Fred Singer, a scientist and global-warming denier, who has incurred the wrath of global-warming guru and former Vice President Al Gore.

The Independent reported Sunday that a new U.N. report found that livestock is responsible for 18 percent of global greenhouse gases. In other words, in the universe of global-warming alarmism, cow gas does more damage to Mother Earth than SUVs. (American cars are responsible for some 6 percent of greenhouse gases.)

Cow flatulence is always good for a few laughs, usually in the interests of pointing out the complex, non-human contributions to climate change.

On the other hand, noting the same U.N. study, Minneapolis columnist James Lileks suggests that the anti-cow campaigns serve another, more pernicious purpose — blaming humankind for being consumers, especially of MEAT.

Obligatory serious-face moment: It is bad that poor farming practices damage the Earth. It is wise to manage livestock pollution well. Introducing aliens is not wise, especially if they’re Klingons and Vulcans, who never get along.

But if you think the purpose of such reports is to underscore the need for reasonable approaches to feeding the increased demand for meat, you have a fine opinion of our betters.

America is not their model; America is the example of what is wrong with progress. The idea of people living in large houses with nice lawns, driving a personal vehicle (by themselves, on the route of their choosing) to the store to buy big steaks subsequently cooked on a carbon-emitting outdoor grill — well, who wants to live like that?

About 6 billion people, if you give them the chance. But forgive them, Kofi; they know not what they do.

We’re not so sure whether to trust Lileks, though. After all, he’s accepted Oil Money in the past.

And all this talk about cows worries us. What if they get guns?