Friday, April 4, 2008

Is That Your Final Answer?

[Note: Yes, I like to quibble with statements in commercials. What of it?] A group called "We Can Solve It," which advocates action on global warming, has a commercial (see below) that makes two incredibly dubious statements:

"We didn't wait for someone else to storm the beaches at Normandy."
I think our European allies might disagree. Britain and France declared war on Germany in September of 1939. What did we do to help? Enacted the American Neutrality Act of 1939. France surrendered to Germany in 1940, and we didn't invade Normandy until 1944. So I think it's fair to say that we did, in fact, "wait for someone else to storm the beaches at Normandy." The second dubious statement in the commercial is:
"We didn't wait for someone else to guarantee civil rights."
Really? Again, I think any African American who lived in America prior to the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 would strongly disagree. The 14th Amendment was ratified in 1868, so we waited almost 100 years to "guarantee civil rights." I'm not favorably disposed toward global warming activists in general, because I find their holier-than-thou moralizing extremely grating, and because many of them seem to lack the intellectual capacity to understand that acting to mitigate the effects of global warming will have negative consequences as well. (Would not acting on global warming be costlier than actually acting? Probably, yes. But at least recognize that there are trade-offs!) Now it seems like some of them also lack the intellectual capacity to read a history textbook.

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