Apart from their ongoing difficulties delivering Brexit, by far the biggest worry about Boris Johnson’s Conservatives is their craven subservience to the green sky fairy.
I’ve just been watching one of their panel discussions on energy and environment, broadcast from the Tory conference in Manchester, and it made me feel quite ill.
Even MPs that you know are secretly sound on green issues and know the whole climate change scam to be hogwash have to go through the motions of pretending that Net Zero — decarbonising the UK economy by 2050 — is a practical, achievable and conservative policy. And it is, of course, none of those things.
Kwasi Kwarteng: “Too often the green agenda is seen as at odds with the economic agenda.”
That’s because, Kwasi my petal, the green agenda totally is at odds with the economic agenda. To claim otherwise is the purest sophistry.
Brexit Party MEP Parodies Greta at London Rally, Tells Anti-Brexit MPs ‘You Have Stolen My Dreams!’ https://t.co/icVxAqBivW
— Breitbart London (@BreitbartLondon) September 30, 2019
The green agenda involves embracing renewables which — certainly in the case of wind and solar — are intermittent, unreliable and expensive. They make the cost of energy more expensive which in turn makes everything else more expensive. Meanwhile, they make UK domestic industry less competitive in an international market where other countries — e.g. China and India — continue to rely on cheap, abundant fossil fuels.
By embracing the decarbonisation agenda when more sensible countries — e.g. the U.S. — are not, Boris Johnson’s Conservatives are effectively committing economic suicide.
They are also rejecting that most important of things, something that ought to be core to any conservative philosophy, freedom of choice.
Consider, for example, Boris’s bonkers boilers ban.
According to the Express:
Ministers will rush forward the deadline for outlawing central heating systems based on fossil fuels, previously set for 2025. The measure was announced last night in a wide-ranging package of proposals designed to signal Boris Johnson’s commitment to protecting the environment ahead of next week’s Tory conference in Manchester. It is designed to help the country reach the target of zero carbon emissions by the middle of the century.
But what about the many of us who prefer to have gas-powered boilers in our homes? And what about all those of us who prefer cooking on gas hobs to electric ones? And what happened to the UK shale gas revolution which could have made this cheaper and more viable yet?
The late Christopher Booker warned us that this was coming.
Back in 2014, he warned in the Mail:
Householders across the country will be horrified to learn that, over the next decade or two, the Government plans to phase out all our gas-fired cookers and heating systems —forcing us to replace them at a cost of untold billions.
Official documents reveal the Government is seriously contemplating that, within 25 years or so, gas will be all but banned — along with petrol and diesel.
The intention is that not only our cooking and heating but much else, including our cars and most of the vehicles on Britain’s roads, will have to be powered by electricity.
But that was in the grim era of Dave ‘Greenest Government Ever’ Cameron. You might have hoped that under the sounder leadership of a Conservative Prime Minister like Boris Johnson who actually believes in conservatism, this disastrous policy might be changed.
Apparently not. Which is crazy when you think about it. What it shows is that for all their talk of delivering Brexit, Boris Johnson’s Tories have still failed to understand one of the main reasons people voted for it.
Ben Pile spells it out here in this brilliant piece for Conservative Woman:
If the vote to leave the European Union meant anything, it meant that voters were tired of identikit parties with identikit policies, handed to them by special interest blobs, over which they had no control, all of which were manifestly indifferent to the voter’s needs and wants. If the voter wants radical climate action, it is available from the Labour, Liberal Democrat, Scottish National and Green parties. At best, then, the ‘choice’ available to the voter is only a choice between slightly different speeds towards what very many of them believe is economic suicide and deaths from cold and poverty.
Net Zero comes from exactly the same remote, ignorant and intransigent political imaginations as the European Union. It will be a far greater imposition than anything the EU has yet imposed. Any policy created under the Net Zero agenda will be created from the wrong side of the still widening, still deepening, and ever more dangerous democratic deficit. Brexit was supposed to close it, but the voter has not been given the opportunity to express a view on the most drastic, onerous and regressive policy agenda in the country’s history.
Precisely. In their pathetic desperation not to have too many horrid things said about them by the BBC, to try to heal the rift with the left of the party (all those closet Lib Dems who should never have been selected as candidates in the first place) and to win over an irrelevant handful of wavering Green voters, the Conservative party is yet again selling its base down the river.
Boris Johnson’s Conservatives are touting a bright, optimistic vision of Britain’s prosperous post-Brexit future while simultaneously setting the framework for future economic chaos which some hapless future administration – Conservative, I’m guessing – will eventually have to unravel.
The fact remains that very little of the Net Zero agenda has been costed or assessed for practicality, let alone democratic legitimacy. The Committee on Climate Change, which supports the government’s Net Zero fantasy (and which is stuffed with the most unregenerate anti-democratic Remainiacs) has been unable or unwilling to say how it is possible, or to show how it arrived at its estimates of cost. Meanwhile, Britain’s shale gas reserves remain unexploited – gas which would be of much better use in boilers than in the ground, but which remains there because the government is terrified of threats from Caroline Lucas and Extinction Rebellion protesters.
I just hope, for karma’s sake, that plenty of the “Ooh look at us. See how much we worship Greta Thunberg” Conservative MPs now embracing this nonsense will still be around in government to witness – and suffer for – the consequences of their idiocy.
And what about the Conservatives’ conscience, the Brexit Party? Surely we can rely on them to set a better example?
I’m afraid not.
Paul Homewood recently wrote a piece headlined ‘Brexit Party Deceived By St Greta’.
It quoted an email circular sent out by one of the Brexit Party’s prospective parliamentary candidates, outlining the party’s ‘stance’ on energy and environment:
I asked the party for a response to this. Initially, it was claimed that the story was fake news and that the party had never said any such thing. Then they changed their tune. The party’s chairman Richard Tice told me that this was merely a discussion document which had accidentally been put out as if it were policy – but which it now planned formally to withdraw.
When I suggested to Tice that if the Brexit Party wanted a sensible energy and environment policy there were plenty of wiser heads it could consult — the Global Warming Policy Foundation, say, or Paul Homewood, who had offered his services but been rebuffed — Tice got testy and defensive.
“I’ve had 50 different people calling me up to offer their views on what our environment and energy policy should be,” he said.
This was not, he insisted, a “left/right issue” but one on which all sorts of people, not least his party’s own MEPs, have different views.
Had I been thinking on my feet, what I should have said is, “Not a left/right issue, maybe. But definitely a right/wrong issue – and the Brexit Party should be setting an example by taking the right side.”
But I didn’t.
The distinct impression I got was that Tice was rather hoping for the issue to disappear. I sympathise, up to a point: the Brexit Party has one real job – to keep Boris Johnson’s Conservatives honest on Brexit and to ensure they don’t try to fob us off with a warmed over version of Theresa May’s Withdrawal Agreement.
At the same time, though, I can’t pretend I’m not slightly disappointed that the Brexit Party is either too frit – or too ill-informed – to take a principled stand on this most important issues.
What it means is that of all the political parties in Britain right now only one tiny fringe party — UKIP — has a sensible, science-driven, economically practical policy on energy and the environment. By ‘sensible’ I mean the one both truest to the evidence – and also the one most likely sympathetic to the majority of British people. Truly, this is a crazy state of affairs. But such are the times we live in.