Finley: Want to fight warming? Just do it

Nolan Finley
The Detroit News

The confrontation between California Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein and a group of sassy brats is telling for a couple of reasons.

A line where newspaper is separated on its way to be bundled. Resource, Recovery and Recycling Authority of Southwest Oakland County in Southfield, Michigan on September 15, 2016. (The Detroit News/ Daniel Mears)

First, even a liberal senator from the most liberal state in the nation isn't pure enough on global warming to satisfy the climate change cultists.

Second, it exposes the new tactic of the enviro-socialists: brainwash kids into believing the world is ending, and no measure to save it is too extreme. And then deploy them in a children's crusade on behalf of radical green policies. 

The kids who engaged Feinstein were rudely parroting their adult handlers. The run-in followed days of demonstrations by schoolchildren in France, who left their classes demanding their government "do something" about global warming. Hundreds of Kentucky kids also flooded the office of Republican Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell with a similar request.

Presumably, all those children are looking for sweeping government mandates, like those included in the Green New Deal. Their adult indoctrinators should be honest with them. Doing something means they'll have to significantly change their lives and lifestyles. 

And they don't have to wait for new laws curtailing human activity.

Nothing is stopping anyone, in the absence of a global climate accord, from voluntarily downsizing. We could go back to living as we did 50 years ago, when homes were half the size of today's 2,300 sq. foot average and kids were stacked two to three — or more — to a bedroom.

The children who say they're terrified the world will be unsalvageable in a mere 12 years could walk or bicycle to school. That would keep carbon belching buses off the road, and the family SUV in the garage.

Their parents could do the same. They could get by with one vehicle per household, used sparingly. And make sure that vehicle is small and electric. 

The whole family could unplug their screens — is having an iPhone, iPad and laptop for every person and a TV in every room worth the damage power plants are doing to Mother Earth? 

Proponents of the Green New Deal fret about the greenhouse gases released by "farty cows" and want tougher agricultural policies to curb bovine and swine emissions. But who's stopping them now from giving up their sirloins and cheeseburger Happy Meals? Pass the broccoli and hold the beans.

We could stay-cation instead of piling the family onto an airplane for a visit to Disneyworld. We could give up our office and factory jobs and repopulate the small farms of rural America, raising just enough to feed and clothe our own families.

There are any number of individual sacrifices, large and small, we could make to reduce our carbon footprint, if we believe doing so is necessary to preserve the planet for future generations. 

But don't kid yourself. There's no pain free route to a carbon free society. 

If that's what we want, we shouldn't need the government to force us into an austere lifestyle.  Nor, if we feel so strongly about the existential threat, do we need to wait for the whole world to reach agreement. Be an example. 

If you want something done about climate change, just do it.

Catch “The Nolan Finley Show” weekdays 7-9 a.m. on 910 AM Superstation.