Guest Viewpoint:

The abdication of the West

From The Viscount Monckton of Brenchley

Cancun, Mexico

I usually add some gentle humor to these reports. Not today. Read this and weep. Notwithstanding the carefully-orchestrated propaganda to the effect that nothing much will be decided at the UN climate conference here in Cancun, the decisions to be made here this week signal nothing less than the abdication of the West. The governing class in what was once proudly known as the Free World is silently, casually letting go of liberty, prosperity, and even democracy itself. No one in the mainstream media will tell you this, not so much because they do not see as because they do not bl**dy care.

The 33-page Note (FCCC/AWGLCA/2010/CRP.2) by the Chairman of the “Ad-Hoc Working Group on Long-Term Co-operative Action under the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change”, entitled Possible elements of the outcome, reveals all. Or, rather, it reveals nothing, unless one understands what the complex, obscure jargon means. All UNFCCC documents at the Cancun conference, specifically including Possible elements of the outcome, are drafted with what is called “transparent impenetrability”. The intention is that the documents should not be understood, but that later we shall be told they were in the public domain all the time, so what are we complaining about?

Since the Chairman’s note is very long, I shall summarize the main points:

Finance: Western countries will jointly provide $100 billion a year by 2020 to an unnamed new UN Fund. To keep this sum up with GDP growth, the West may commit itself to pay 1.5% of GDP to the UN each year. That is more than twice the 0.7% of GDP that the UN has recommended the West to pay in foreign aid for the past half century. Several hundred of the provisions in the Chairman’s note will impose huge financial costs on the nations of the West.

The world-government Secretariat: In all but name, the UN Convention’s Secretariat will become a world government directly controlling hundreds of global, supranational, regional, national and sub-national bureaucracies. It will receive the vast sum of taxpayers’ money ostensibly paid by the West to the Third World for adaptation to the supposed adverse consequences of imagined (and imaginary) “global warming”.

Bureaucracy: Hundreds of new interlocking bureaucracies answerable to the world-government Secretariat will vastly extend its power and reach. In an explicit mirroring of the European Union’s method of enforcing the will of its unelected Kommissars on the groaning peoples of that benighted continent, the civil servants of nation states will come to see themselves as servants of the greater empire of the Secretariat, carrying out its ukases and diktats whatever the will of the nation states’ governments. Many of the new bureaucracies are disguised as “capacity-building in developing countries”. This has nothing to do with growing the economies or industries of poorer nations. It turns out to mean the installation of hundreds of bureaucratic offices answerable to the Secretariat in numerous countries around the world. Who pays? You do, gentle taxpayer. Babylon, Byzantium, the later Ottoman Empire, the formidable bureaucracy of Nazi Germany, the vast empire of 27,000 paper-shufflers at the European Union: add all of these together and multiply by 100 and you still do not reach the sheer size, cost, power and reach of these new subsidiaries of the Secretariat. In addition to multiple new bureaucracies in every one of the 193 states parties to the Convention, there will be an Adaptation Framework Body, a Least Developed Countries’ Adaptation Planning Body, an Adaptation Committee, Regional Network Centers, an International Center to Enhance Adaptation Research, National Adaptation Institutions, a Body to Clarify Assumptins and Conditions in National Greenhouse-Gas Emission Reductions Pledges, a Negotiating Body for an Overall Level of Ambition for Aggregate Emission Reductions and Individual Targets, an Office to Revise Guidelines for National Communications, a Multilateral Communications Process Office, a Body for the Process to Develop Modalities and Guidelines for the Compliance Process, a Registry of Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions by Developed Countries, a Body to Supervise the Process for Understanding Diversity of Mitigation Actions Submitted and Support Needed, a Body to Develop Modalities for the Registry of Nationally Appropriate Mitigation Actions, an Office of International Consultation and Analysis; an Office to Conduct a Work Program for Development of Various Modalities and Guidelines; a network of Developing Countries’ National Forest Strategy Action Plan Offices; a network of National Forest Reference Emission Level And/Or Forest Reference Level Bodies; a network of National Forest Monitoring Systems; an Office of the Work Program on Agriculture to Enhance the Implementation of Article 4, Paragraph 1(c) of the Convention Taking Into Account Paragraph 31; one or more Mechanisms to Establish a Market-Based Approach to Enhance the Cost-Effectiveness Of And To Promote Mitigation Actions; a Forum on the Impact of the Implementation of Response Measures; a Work Program Office to Address the Impact of the Implementation of Response Measures; a Body to Review the Needs of Developing Countries for Financial Resources to Address Climate Change and Identify Options for Mobilization of Those Resources; a Fund in Addition to the Copenhagen Green Fund; an Interim Secretariat for the Design Phase of the New Fund; a New Body to Assist the Conference of the Parties in Exercising its Functions with respect to the Financial Mechanism; a Body to Launch a Process to Further Define the Roles and Functions of the New Body to Assist the Conference of the Parties in Exercising its Functions with respect to the Financial Mechanism; a Technology Executive Committee; a Climate Technology Center and Network; a Network of National, Regional, Sectoral and International Technology Centers, Networks, Organization and Initiatives; Twinning Centers for Promotion of North-South, South-South and Triangular Partnerships with a View to Encouraging Co-operative Research and Development; an Expert Workshop on the Operational Modalities of the Technology Mechanism; an International Insurance Facility; a Work Program Body for Policy Approaches and Positive Incentives on Issues Relating to Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Forest Degradation in Developing Countries; a Body to Implement a Work Program on the Impact of the Implementation of Response Measures; and a Body to Develop Modalities for the Operationalization of the Work Program on the Impact of the Implementation of Response Measures.

The world government’s powers: The Secretariat will have the power not merely to invite nation states to perform their obligations under the climate-change Convention, but to compel them to do so. Nation states are to be ordered to collect, compile and submit vast quantities of information, in a manner and form to be specified by the secretariat and its growing army of subsidiary bodies. Between them, they will be given new powers to verify the information, to review it and, on the basis of that review, to tell nation states what they can and cannot do.

Continuous expansion: The verb “enhance”, in its various forms, occurs at least 28 times in the Chairman’s note, Similar verbs, such as “strengthen” and “extend”, and adjectives such as “scaled-up”, “new” and “additional”, are also frequently deployed, particularly in relation to funding at the expense of Western taxpayers. If all of the “enhancements” proposed in the note were carried out, the cost would comfortably exceed the annual $100 billion (or, for that matter, the 1.5% of GDP) that the note mentions as the cost to the West over the coming decade.

Intellectual property in inventions: Holders of patents, particularly in fields related to “global warming” and its mitigation, will be obliged to transfer the benefits of their inventiveness to developing countries without payment of royalties. This is nowhere explicitly stated in the Chairman’s note, but the transfer of technology is mentioned about 20 times in the draft, suggesting that the intention is still to carry out the explicit provision in the defunct Copenhagen Treaty draft of 15 September 2009 to this effect.

Insurance: The Secretariat proposes, in effect, to interfere so greatly in the operation of the worldwide insurance market that it will cease to be a free market, with the usual severely adverse consequences to everyone in that market.

The free market: The failed Copenhagen Treaty draft stipulated that the “government” that would be established would have the power to set the rules of all formerly free markets. There would be no such thing as free markets any more. In Cancun, the Chairman’s note merely says that various “market mechanisms” may be exploited by the Secretariat and by the parties to the Convention: but references to these “market mechanisms” are frequent enough to suggest that the intention remains to stamp out free markets worldwide.

Knowledge is power: The Chairman’s note contains numerous references to a multitude of new as well as existing obligations on nation states to provide information to the Secretariat, in a form and manner which it will dictate. The hand of the EU is very visible here. It grabbed power from the member-states in four stages: first, acting merely as a secretariat to ensure stable supplies of coal and steel to rebuild Europe after the Second World War; then as a registry requiring member states to supply it with ever more information; then as a review body determining on the basis of the information supplied by the member states whether they were complying with their obligations on the ever-lengthier and more complex body of European treaties; and finally as the ultimate law-making authority, to which all elected parliaments, explicitly including the European “Parliament”, were and are subject. Under the Cancun propsoals, the Secretariat is following the path that the plague of EU officials here have no doubt eagerly advised it to follow. It is now taking numerous powers not merely to require information from nation states but to hold them to account for their supposed international obligations under the climate-change Convention on the basis of the information the nations are now to be compelled to supply.

Propaganda: The Chairman’s note contains several mentions of the notion that the peoples of the world need to be told more about climate change. Here, too, there is a parallel with the EU, which administers a propaganda fund of some $250 million a year purely to advertise its own wonderfulness to an increasingly sceptical population. The IPCC already spends millions every year with PR agencies, asking them to find new ways of making its blood-curdling message more widely understood and feared among ordinary people. The Secretariat already has the advantage of an uncritical, acquiescent, scientifically illiterate, economically innumerate and just plain dumb news media: now it will have a propaganda fund to play with as well.

Damage caused by The Process: At the insistence of sensible nation states such as the United States, the Czech Republic, Japan, Canada, and Italy, the Cancun outcome acknowledges that The Process is causing, and will cause, considerable economic damage, delicately described in the Chairman’s note as “unintended side-effects of implementing climate-change response measures”. The solution? Consideration of the catastrophic economic consequences of the Secretariat’s heroically lunatic decisions will fall under the control of – yup – the Secretariat. Admire its sheer gall.  Read More.