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Ancient Gaseous Emanation
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Discussion Starter #1
Andrea Widburg
January 18, 2020

Although Greta Thunberg is the most prominent youthful climate change activist, she was not the first. In 2015, twenty-one children filed a lawsuit in a federal district court in Oregon demanding that the President and Congress redraw the U.S. economy to bow down to the climatistas’ demands.

The children, of course, were proxies for others -- Our Children’s Trust, an Oregon non-profit invested in the whole anthropogenic climate change madness, and Earth Guardians, another activist group that gives children nightmares worse even than the ones young people had in the early Atomic age.

Earth Guardians, in turn, seems to be a proxy for the mellifluously named Xiuhtezcatl Roske-Martinez, a hip-hop artist and environmental activist who was fifteen when the suit was filed. Reading his bio, it appears that he could have been Greta Thunberg before there was a Greta. Perhaps he lacks that angsty little shrew’s unique charisma.

The basis of the lawsuit was an imagined dystopian future the children feared:

The youth plaintiffs were bringing several novel legal claims against the federal government. They argued the federal government had violated their constitutional right to a livable climate by taking actions that supported fossil fuels. If recognized by the courts, that would have been a new constitutional right.

Their lawsuit also brought federal public trust claims, arguing the federal government was neglecting its responsibility to hold lands, waters, and wildlife in trust for its citizens. The youth plaintiffs argued that public trust also included the climate.​

The district court ruled that the children had raised a viable cause of action and refused to dismiss the case. However, the Trump administration appealed that ruling and, on Friday, a three-judge panel on the Ninth Circuit reluctantly reversed the trial court ruling and dismissed Juliana, et al v. United States of America.

What’s striking as one reads the decision is the anguish that the two judges writing the decision felt as they dismissed a manifestly invalid lawsuit. (The third judge dissented from the dismissal.) Judge Hurwitz’s first paragraph breathes the desolation of a man surveying the end of the world:

In the mid-1960s, a popular song warned that we were “on the eve of destruction.”1 The plaintiffs in this case have presented compelling evidence that climate change has brought that eve nearer. A substantial evidentiary record documents that the federal government has long promoted fossil fuel use despite knowing that it can cause catastrophic climate change, and that failure to change existing policy may hasten an environmental apocalypse.​

Despite accepting uncritically, the “scientific” basis of the children’s claim, Hurwitz was forced to acknowledge, “reluctantly,” that “such relief is beyond our constitutional power.” Hurwitz, however, did advise the children that their “impressive case for redress must be presented to the political branches of government.”

Much of the decision is given over to repeating the usual climate science, almost as if Hurwitz thinks he understands it. (To appreciate how little Hurwitz probably understands, if you are a VIP member at PJMedia, I highly recommend reading Charlie Martin's article in which he does actual math to expose the nonsense behind the latest claims regarding the atomic bombs allegedly exploding every minute in the earth’s oceans.)

At bottom, though, the Court simply could not avoid the fact that, despite believing that the children were suffering an existential injury, the fact remained that they had failed to claim that the government had committed a specific, remedial wrong. Instead, they broadly claimed a “constitutional right to a ‘climate system capable of sustaining human life’….”

Even the Ninth Circuit had to agree that this kind of remediation was beyond the government’s purview. Worse, the plaintiffs were seeking through their lawsuit to deprive both the President and Congress of their constitutional authority to manage the country.

Although the court ultimately reached the correct outcome, it’s a painful decision to read, mired as it is in apocalyptic fears. As an antidote to this kind of panic based purely on predictions, I recommend Michael Crichton’s superb 2002 speech asking, “Why Speculate?,” which explains how foolish predictions are whether guiding panic or policy. The Obama appointees on the Ninth Circuit might benefit greatly were a copy sent to them.

705 Posts
Everyone should read this and THINK------Woulda--Coulda--Shoulda None on Earth is God almighty and can't predict anything as you are guarantied nothing in life.
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