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WSJ editorializes about Trittin today.

I didn't realize that Jürgen Trittin is an expert on hurricanes or the weather cycles of the Gulf of Mexico. Boy, he really gets around!

As if hurricanes didn't exist before Global Warming. Hell, they existed before man did!

Also, from a comment in a previous post:

"the NOAA states very directly:

This confluence of optimal ocean and atmosphere conditions has been known to produce increased tropical storm activity in multi-decadal (approximately 20-30 year) cycles. Because of this, NOAA expects a continuation of above-normal seasons for another decade or perhaps longer. NOAA's research shows that this reoccurring cycle is the dominant climate factor that controls Atlantic hurricane activity. Any potentially weak signal associated with longer-term climate change appears to be a minor factor. [emphasis added]"

In short, hurricane strength and severity are mostly due to cyclic climate conditions.

A little knowledge is a dangerous thing; Trittin is a perfect example.

"The most important thing is that we do something."

No - the most important thing is that we score a few cheap points in our desperate attempt to cling to power

Trittin's "I can't understand why Americans are so upset at me" is based in a very European view of the relationship between citizens and our government. In Europe, the citizenry is basically viewed as property of the government, to be led by whoever is in charge at the moment. If there is a disagreement between countries, then the disagreement is confined to the leadership elites. The citizens take no part in it, nor do they have any influence over the direction, because the whys and wherefores of what the government does are not theirs to question. Their function is to simply do as they are told.

In America, the citizenry owns the government. The government's job is to respond to the will of the people, as expressed through elections and their elected representatives. If an American president pursues a particular policy, it is not because the leadership elites have decided that this is what is best for the people; rather, it is because a majority of the people have informed the government that this is (more or less) what they want. It follows, then, that Trittin's criticism of American policy cannot be confined to some particular politician. It cannot be anything other than a criticism of all Americans.

This is a point that a lot of Europeans miss, when they rip on Bush or some other American politician, and then they can't understand why an American would be upset with him. Whether it be Bush or Clinton, to borrow a phrase, the President may be a bastard, but he's *our* bastard. Europeans may think that the President is acting against the will of the people, but it is not Europe's place to decide -- it is the will of America until we, Americans, decide otherwise. If you strike at him, then by definition you strike at all of us. Trittin will probably never understand it, but his comments were not just a hit on a particular President -- they were, prima facie, anti-Americanism at its worst. In the context they were spoken, without qualification, they can be no less.

@Cousin Dave
All right,
basically you are saying that there is no way to criticize the American President without critizising the American people. That's a smartass move to label any negative comment about Bush as Anti-Americanism.
Let's stay serious: Maybe the Germans feel less "responsible" for their democratically elected leadership than the Americans do. But in now way the citizenry feels as "property of the government".

@ Cousin Dave

" In Europe, the citizenry is basically viewed as property of the government, to be led by whoever is in charge at the moment. If there is a disagreement between countries, then the disagreement is confined to the leadership elites. The citizens take no part in it, nor do they have any influence over the direction, because the whys and wherefores of what the government does are not theirs to question. Their function is to simply do as they are told.

In America, the citizenry owns the government. The government's job is to respond to the will of the people, as expressed through elections and their elected representatives. If an American president pursues a particular policy, it is not because the leadership elites have decided that this is what is best for the people; rather, it is because a majority of the people have informed the government that this is (more or less) what they want."

Excellent! If only more americans would notice this difference. Europeans and Americans are so different - just think about why certain kinds of european people emigrated to America while other kinds preferred to stay here. The Individualists, the Poor and thoser belonging to oppressed minorities chose to leave, while the conformists and those who belong to our homogene societies decided to stay.

So in the end there HAS to be a grand difference between the two continent's societies.


As regards the blaming of Trittin, I can only say that the people in my social environment dont blame Bush and his climate policy at all for what happened. This is really leftist bullshit.

We rather think this enormous damage results out of the american law system, which is considered to allow its people to settle everywhere with "paper" houses that are damned to be destructed by any exceptionary bad weather.
In Germany instead, there are libraries full of rules only about how and where which kind of houses are permitted to be built and (much more often) where they are not allowed to be constructed.

So in Germany, a city beneath the water surface like New Orleans might have never been built at this location at all.

@ Zyme

Statistically speaking, how many times has New Orleans been nailed by such a vicious storm? I can't recall any.

And the last thing we need are "libraries full of rules". That is one reason why Germany has at least 5,000,000 unemployed.

I bet if I were to look back I would not see such a statement about the residents of the tsunami-struck regions who lived in shacks along the coastal regions.

Bottom line is where people want to live is their business. But, since it is their decision on where to live, I also don't feel that any government is compelled or "obligated" to help these victims. That's what insurance is for....to be paid by the individual, not the State (ergo, my tax dollars).

@Zyme

You really need to educate yourself about the laws in the US. Most Germans have absolutely no clue.
Paper Houses? You won't see that regardless what your media says. Well, every state has building codes. In Florida where I live a roof has to withstand wind of 150 miles per hour. That doesn't mean that debris and water coming at you at that speed can't damage a home, even made of concrete. Building codes are very rigid and tough in most states.
Our States are sovereign and each one has it's own law. The federal law only comes into play when a situation crosses the border and thus would be covered by different rules.
Local Government makes the rules according to their needs rather than one size fits all.

On the West coast, wooden buildings are preferable, since the numerous Earthquakes don't do as much damage than they would do to stone houses. Wood bends, Stone doesn't, etc.

@ Zyme
I have owned many Houses in Germany as well as here in the US. Believe me, not everything that glistens in Germany is Gold........................................

@ Zyme
Another silly statment from you: "So in Germany, a city beneath the water surface like New Orleans might have never been built at this location at all."

Well Ever been to Bremerhaven and Hamburg? For that matter, the Netherlands could never have been created either. Good for them that they aren't located close to the Equator. No Soccer matches between Germany and Holland could ever have taken place.:(

Well Hamburg was founded in 810, barbarian settlements dating back into the 4th century.
By contrast, New Orleans was founded in 1718, so almost 1000 years later.

While I dont think barbarian tribes / the christian church in the 9th century had any construction laws, the French might have had in the 18th century. And after they left, there was no need to allow the city to grow to the size it has today.

And have you ever heard of a hurricane moving through the north sea?
Water needs to have at least 27 degree celsius for a hurricane to develop - the north see is far from such a warm temperature.

But of course in America, its all about personal freedom and so on - everyone may move where he likes to - and that might be the reason why so many houses are swimming in the sea now..

@ Zyme,
I didn't realize how profoundly immature (See, I didn't say stupid) you are.
1) What the hell do the barbarians and the time in history have to do with anything?
2)Have you ever heard of a Hurricane moving through the north sea? Well yes , what's left of it. You can't compare a full flrdged hurricane to the remnants of one in the cold waters of the north sea. Most Hurricanes develop in the "richly polluted, industrialized " area of Africa and move across the Atlantic. Many also spawn in the carribean like Katrina did. However, it doesn't matter where they start.
3) The reason so many houses are swimming in the sea now is because of personal freedom? Yes..........you are a typical German.
Oh, by the way, have you heard the latest? President Bush detonated the levies for personal glory. I'll watch the German papers tomorrow.

@Zyme
what ever you think, we will take care of our own. you people would just be in the way. i have lived in your country and ours and had similar circumstances. people like you we do not need. thanks for asking.........
This is from Mrs Americanbychoice.
I had to contribute my two cents worth.
German by association and experience

"So in Germany, a city beneath the water surface like New Orleans might have never been built at this location at all."

Wasn't a good portion of Southern Germany just under water not too long ago?

@Cousin Dave

>>"Europeans may think that the President is acting against the will of the people, but it is not Europe's place to decide -- it is the will of America until we, Americans, decide otherwise. If you strike at him, then by definition you strike at all of us."

This seems a little over the top. You don't necessarily "strike" someone by criticizing them. A person who criticizes the President, our country, or me personally is not necessarily "striking" me or any other American. It all depends on the motive for the criticism, and that motive is usually not too hard to detect. In 1786 Lafayette wrote a letter to Washington that included some rather harsh criticism of the United States. However, it was not hard to see that the great French hero's criticism was motivated by love of America, not hatred, envy, or contempt. Why? Because he bore wounds suffered while he stood in the thick of battle facing British fire in the cause of American freedom. Because he led a charge of his countrymen at Yorktown armed only with bayonets mounted on unloaded muskets against a heavily fortified British redoubt to serve that same cause. Because he spent a large portion of his personal fortune to clothe and feed our soldiers at Valley Forge, and for countless similar reasons. I should think we could probably set the standard for acceptable criticism rather lower than that set by our great benefactor, Lafayette. We might, for example, relax the requirement to charge British guns. However, if the criticism comes from someone who, like most of the "objective journalists" in the German mainstream media, has apparently never noticed anything positive about America, who goes out of his way to search out the negative in her history and her culture, without ever telling the whole story, or suggesting there might be another side to the story, who always and in all cases portrays America as the archfiend, intent on destroying the environment, promoting war, and generally oppressing people everywhere, then the motivation of that person is obviously not love for America or a sincere desire to make her better, but rather hate, rancor, envy and malice. Unfortunately, most of the criticism of the US coming from Germany and the rest of Europe today comes from the latter class of people, and their disingenuous claims that they are really the former when, like our "friend" Olaf, they are challenged, are transparent and obvious lies. Many Europeans seem to have created what Solzhenitsyn called a "sharashka," a lie so big you believe it yourself. They have convinced themselves they are not motivated by hate, rancor, envy and malice when they so clearly are, when it's so transparently obvious that they rejoice at every American disaster or setback, and would clearly like nothing better than for her to curl up and die.

If I were a European I wouldn't be afraid to criticize Bush or America, but, given the present circumstances, I would be very, very circumspect about doing it, and carefully consider my real motives for that criticism. I would be careful that the criticism is accurate. For example, I would not lecture America about the superiority of German building codes if I had no clue about the extent or rigor of building codes in America. Finally, I would go out of my way to note and mention extenuating circumstances, arguments for the other side, and any information that might call into question the justification of my criticism. Given those caveats, by all means, fire away! I, for one, am certainly not too sensitive to hear any criticism. I am, however, quite capable of distinguishing my country's friends from her enemies.

@Zyme-

why are folks still living in Venice? How about Passau? How often has Koeln and the Rhine region been flooded? Many of those people could easily move up into the hills instead of living directly on the banks of the Rhine.

He also said that though he does not see Bush or American policy as to blame for Katrina, he does believe that the hurricane "was stronger because of climate change."

But of course. It's an article of faith in the High Church of Euroleft.

@Zyme:
So in Germany, a city beneath the water surface like New Orleans might have never been built at this location at all.

It was not built beneath the water surface (I think you meant "sea level"?). New Orleans literally sinks - the land drops between 1 cm and 3 cm per year. Nor was it originally built by Americans, it was built by the French. Had it been Germans, they would have built there too - a sea port at the mouth of America's largest river? Yes, in a heartbeat.

FYI, the American continent simply receives more natural fury than Europe, no matter where you choose to live. If it's not hurricaines, it's earthquakes, tornadoes, ice storms, blizzards, wild fires, etc.

"Statistically speaking, how many times has New Orleans been nailed by such a vicious storm? I can't recall any."

I can. Hurricane Betsy for one, in 1965.

http://www.usatoday.com/weather/resources/askjack/2003-10-09-hurricane-betsy_x.htm

For those who think Katrina was unusual, I refer you to a list and descriptions of Atlantic hurricanes dating back to 1577.

http://www.keyshistory.org/hurricanelist.html

This will come as a shock to a ghoul like Trittin, who uses the dead to advance his career, but massive hurricanes have existed for millions of years.

Stick a fork in Trittin he is done.
Be glad the US is not like Iran or Venezuela the offical governmet spokesman would be demanding his head on a Pike and denouncing the German government and threating dire revenge.

Why isn't Trittin railing against the Clinton Adminstration, Bush was not President when the Senate voted 95 to 0 NOT to ratify the Kyoto Treaty as it was writen BEFORE Al Gore went to Tokyo. The Clinton Adminstration never even sent the Treaty to the Senate for ratification after that. So of COURSE everything is Bush's fault? This German Logic? ;-)

http://www.angelfire.com/ky/kentuckydan/CommitteesofCorrespondence/index.blog?entry_id=1076365

Here'a a short list of just a few of those Senators,

Massachusetts:
Kennedy (D-MA)
Kerry (D-MA)

Illinois:
Durbin (D-IL)
Moseley-Braun (D-IL)

California:
Boxer (D-CA)
Feinstein (D-CA), Not Voting

South Dakota:
Daschle (D-SD)
Johnson (D-SD)

@ Zyme --

Barbarian tribes? GEEEEEEEEZUS, give me a break.

@ Dan Kauffman --

I have posted that little "tidbit" a few times myself. Thanks for mentioning it. Truly amazing how that that fact (95-0 in Clinton's time) NEVER gets mentioned in the liberal/leftist media.

@ LouMinatti --
O.k., that's one. Any others?

@ Dan Kauffman --

Forgot to mention...what a Rogue's Gallery you cited, LOL!!

This wasn't so much a catastrophe of nature, as it is even more a failure of human bureaucracy. Nature may have destroyed property, but it is the utter failure of institutions that claimed the mantle savior-of-the-governed that has made this a tragedy in every way.

If there is a worthy retort to the inappropriately considered comments by Trittin it is that the enlightened institutions of government he surely has high faith in (Kyoto would have solved this! How else could Kyoto be implemented than by a government of fallible humans!) has yet again made a bad situation worse... just like it would have if America actually signed Kyoto. Maybe if he can take his smug grin off his face long enough and suppress his schadenfreude long enough, he could use his enlightened intelligence to explain the scientific facts, numbers, and data, of just how much the hurricane would have been lessened had America signed Kyoto and met the obligations it would have expected?

Let's see it Trittin. Environmental Minister, indeed. Back up your statement with the scientific facts your ministry surely has at your disposal. I dare you. Give us the numbers you must have that prove Katrina would have been lessened had Kyoto been signed.

After we hade a bad flood in Sachsen in 2002, how can Mr. Trittin make statements like that. I am ashamed of him.

After New Orleans was hit by hurrican Camille in 1969, everybody knew, it will happen again, but when. Like everybody in San Francisco knows, the next earthquake will come, but when. The people are living there. What they are supposed to do? Move? Where? There is no place in the world, were you could be totally shure that nothing will happen.

My sorrow and my prayers go out to the people in that region right now.
Sorry if my english is not all the way correct.

@Motorhead

>>"Barbarian tribes? GEEEEEEEEZUS, give me a break."

Hey, anyone who has the nerve to use a word as un-PC as "barbarian" in this day and age can't be all bad.

@ Helian

LOL

Maybe the weirdo PC types will come up with a new pronunciation for the word Barbarian as they have for the country of "Niger".

I want to puke every time I hear "nee-ZHER"

With the miracle of the internet it is getting harder and harder for the mainstream media to hide their worldwide, lemming-like leftist ilk and all of their shared hateful orthodoxies.
The funny thing about the inane comments of the more "euro-sophisticated" Mr Trittin or Reinhard Buetikofer is, since Germany (like all of old europe) has never met it's Kyoto Protocol emission standards, either they are, by their own standards equally responsible for the Katrina disaster . . . or they, in their more nuanced understanding of the world, think it was the lack of George Bush's ink on the document that has caused this environmental catastrophy!
Of course, if they really knew what they were talking about they would be blaming the clinton administration and it's congress, but hey . . . that just doesn't fit into their agenda of
'GEORGEBUSHISSOSTUPIDANDDESTROYINGTHEWORLD' PARTY line.

There isn't much coming out of the loony left worldwide these days that stands up to much if any sort of scrutiny. I guess Herrs Trittin und Beutikofer and their cogent intellectual insights are, like a John Kerry or Al Sharpton, just ~ the best the German "progressives" have to offer.

If you want to see how lemminglike the orthodoxy of this ilk is, check out the comments made by the best and brightest from the equally "progressive" American DNC. The Trittin/michaelmoore/Zarqawi/ Kennedy cabal . . . and am I the only one who finds it "interesting" that the "progressives"
and the extremist Islamic terrorists are all singing off the same sheet of music!

Things that make you go HHHhhhmmm... . .


Tyranno

Carsten Voigt, the German government's coordinator for German-American relations, is apparently completely ignorant of US climate policy: "When the US has a better plan (than Kyoto or anything else currently being suggested), then please, we'd like to hear it"
He should inform himself. The US has had a better plan for years. Here is just a little bit to help him get started:
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2002/02/climatechange.html
http://www.whitehouse.gov/infocus/environment/key_bush_environmental_accomplishments.pdf
http://www.whitehouse.gov/news/releases/2005/05/20050518-4.html
Umweltminister Trittin should inform himself too, since he seems to "have had his eyes shut" to the US efforts to reduce greenhouse gasses. As Trittin said: "Treibhausgase müssen radikal reduziert werden, und zwar weltweit. Vor dieser Notwendigkeit haben die USA bisher die Augen verschlossen."
I cannot believe that Trittin is completely ignorant of the US climate policy. Instead, I believe that he just thinks that his own policy is better.
Unfortunately, Trittin does not say that he thinks the US efforts to globally reduce greenhouse gasses are not good enough; instead he ignores the US efforts to globally reduce greenhouse gasses, and misleads people into thinking that the US does not have a plan.

The problem with Trittin and his likeminded disciples is that facts are always irrelevant to them. They are not expected to notice, let alone acknowledge other opinions.

Take the test and have an expert quote facts about hurricanes and climate change. He will be laughed at - at best.

P.S. An outstanding German language website (and email newsletter) on relevant matters which are purposefully omitted in German media is tageskommentar.de

Thanks John for quoting us. Please note that our site has since moved to tageskommentar.net - where you can still subscribe to our free newsletter. Another very interesting website in this regard is stefan-prystawik.de

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