FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

Bush and the Floods of Europe

by Jerre Skog

Sorry to say, the USA is losing its friends in Europe at a much faster rate than it can ever hope to win new ones. Since WWII, Europeans have, in general and when not following world politics too closely, been good friends of US. Many have seen the big nation across the Atlantic as a champion of good things. After this week’s catastrophical rains and floods, hitting large parts of south-east and east Germany, Czechya, Austria and other areas in the region, a change is very likely to occur as knowledge of the cause for it is spreading.

So far, and it’s not over yet, 200.000 are estimated to have been evacuated from their homes, damages for $ billions have to be taken care of and to save what can be saved, citizens of many cities are working around the clock to fill sandbags, distribute food and uphold some rudiment of emergency assistance. In some places, the waters have reached levels some 33 ft above normal. The death toll is nearing 100. The human tragedies are impossible to value! We have seen it before. In Bangladesh, in China and in South American countries. Now it has hit Europe.

The TV channels are filled with reports and the experts, unanimously, are of the mind that we have to expect these freak conditions to be increasingly frequent and Europe is likely to be worst hit, followed by Asia. The reason is the global warming from emitting GHG (greenhouse gasses), produced by industry and traffic, into the atmosphere. Europe has been well aware of this danger for a long time and some steps have been taken in the right direction, but as usual too few and too small. Compared to year 2000, the GHG levels have to be reduced by 50% JUST TO STOP THE SITUATION GETTING WORSE. To make real improvements the GHG have to be reduced by much more, and even then it will take decades if not centuries, before we can notice the positive effects.

Climatologists very clearly point out, that what little have been done, including the Kyoto Treaty, have been constantly opposed and sabotaged by the world’s biggest polluter, USA, and that the present administration in the White House has no interest whatsoever in introducing limits, forcing industry to work in the right direction or cooperate in international regulations. Even the ignorants in Europe get that message. The TV channels distibute blame justly. Most of it lands in Washington DC and rightly so. In Europe, Asia and South America, peoples’ lives are ruined by freak weather conditions, while the egomaniacs in the Bush Jr administration plan to sacrify tens or hundreds of thousands Iraqis to continue its disastrous course into total oil-gobbling dependency.

In Germany, the people and the leaders understand the situation, and new cars are constantly reaching higher efficiency levels, consumption of fuel in new cars presently averaging 40 mpg and getting better, some as good as 60-70 mpg. Recycling is commonplace and industry has to live with some stringent regulations, so far too few and with too many exceptions, when it comes to pollution. All in all we are, but only slowly, on the right way and so is most of the other European countries. The big stumbling block when it comes to correcting the problem is, since GHG have a tendency not to stay over the country that produces them, USA. Now we know who is largely to blame for this and future flood catastrophes. And the patience is very easily wearing thin when you’ve had to remove two tons of mud and filth from your ground floor and most of the furniture is destroyed.

Many industrial leaders, while always grumbling about state meddling and higher production costs, can in spite of coming sharpened regulations see a bright future ahead. After the initial restructuring period with higher costs, the German industry will have a very strong upper hand being able to deliver top of the line products, using environment-friendly techniques and recycled material to very competitive prices. The same applies to other progressive countries.

Sooner or later, of course, USA is bound to get political leaders whose intelligence and concern for future generations manages to override their and their friends’ greed and shortsighted egoism, and these people might be prepared to introduce regulations and limits and start to steer away from the total oil dependence that has caused so much harm to the world. The question is, will it be too late for the American industry? And will it be too late for the world? Will it be too late for the beautiful old town of Prague?

International Terrorist #1, George W. Bush, your lies and your cliches don’t cover your indecency. The world knows the emperor is naked!

Jerre Skog is a Swedish writer, musician and alternative observer living in Germany since 1999. More articles, political and satirical can be found on: Jerre´s Thinktank www.skog.de

Comments are welcome at: jerre@skog.de New Print Edition of CounterPunch Available Exclusively to Subscribers:

War Talk As White Noise: Anything to Get Harken and Halliburton Out of the Headlines; First Hilliard, Then McKinney: Jewish Groups Target Blacks Brave Enough to Talk About Justice in the Middle East; Intimidation is the Name of the Game; Smearing “Insane” McKinney As Muslims’ Pawn; The Missing Terrorist? Calling Scotland Yard: “Where’s Atif?” They Never Booed Dylan!: Tape Transcript Shows Famed Newport Folkfest Dissing of Electric Dylan Not True. The Catcalls were for Peter Yarrow! New Shame from the Liffey Shrike

Remember, the CounterPunch website is supported exclusively by subscribers to our newsletter. If you find our site useful please: Subscribe Now! Or Call Toll Free 1-800-840-3683

home / subscribe / about us / books / archives / search / links /

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

Weekend Edition
April 28, 2017
Friday - Sunday
Paul Street
Slandering Populism: a Chilling Media Habit
Andrew Levine
Why I Fear and Loathe Trump Even More Now Than On Election Day
Jeffrey St. Clair
Mountain of Tears: the Vanishing Glaciers of the Pacific Northwest
Philippe Marlière
The Neoliberal or the Fascist? What Should French Progressives Do?
Conn Hallinan
America’s New Nuclear Missile Endangers the World
Peter Linebaugh
Omnia Sunt Communia: May Day 2017
Vijay Prashad
Reckless in the White House
Brian Cloughley
Who Benefits From Prolonged Warfare?
Kathy Kelly
The Shame of Killing Innocent People
Ron Jacobs
Hate Speech as Free Speech: How Does That Work, Exactly?
Andre Vltchek
Middle Eastern Surgeon Speaks About “Ecology of War”
Matt Rubenstein
Which Witch Hunt? Liberal Disanalogies
Sami Awad - Yoav Litvin - Rabbi Lynn Gottlieb
Never Give Up: Nonviolent Civilian Resistance, Healing and Active Hope in the Holyland
Pete Dolack
Tribunal Finds Monsanto an Abuser of Human Rights and Environment
Christopher Ketcham
The Coyote Hunt
Mike Whitney
Putin’s New World Order
Ramzy Baroud
Palestinian, Jewish Voices Must Jointly Challenge Israel’s Past
Ralph Nader
Trump’s 100 Days of Rage and Rapacity
Harvey Wasserman
Marine Le Pen Is a Fascist—Not a ‘Right-Wing Populist,’ Which Is a Contradiction in Terms
William Hawes
World War Whatever
John Stanton
War With North Korea: No Joke
Jim Goodman
NAFTA Needs to be Replaced, Not Renegotiated
Murray Dobbin
What is the Antidote to Trumpism?
Louis Proyect
Left Power in an Age of Capitalist Decay
Medea Benjamin
Women Beware: Saudi Arabia Charged with Shaping Global Standards for Women’s Equality
Rev. William Alberts
Selling Spiritual Care
Peter Lee
Invasion of the Pretty People, Kamala Harris Edition
Cal Winslow
A Special Obscenity: “Guernica” Today
Binoy Kampmark
Turkey’s Kurdish Agenda
Guillermo R. Gil
The Senator Visits Río Piedras
Jeff Mackler
Mumia Abu-Jamal Fights for a New Trial and Freedom 
Cesar Chelala
The Responsibility of Rich Countries in Yemen’s Crisis
Leslie Watson Malachi
Women’s Health is on the Chopping Block, Again
Basav Sen
The Coal Industry is a Job Killer
Judith Bello
Rojava, a Popular Imperial Project
Robert Koehler
A Public Plan for Peace
Sam Pizzigati
The Insider Who Blew the Whistle on Corporate Greed
Nyla Ali Khan
There Has to be a Way Out of the Labyrinth
Michael J. Sainato
Trump Scales Back Antiquities Act, Which Helped to Create National Parks
Stu Harrison
Under Duterte, Filipino Youth Struggle for Real Change
Martin Billheimer
Balm for Goat’s Milk
Stephen Martin
Spooky Cookies and Algorithmic Steps Dystopian
Michael Doliner
Thank You Note
Charles R. Larson
Review: Gregor Hens’ “Nicotine”
David Yearsley
Handel’s Executioner
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail