Tucson CitizenTucson Citizen

Conservatives and liberals should unite to save America and the world

The United Nations conference on global climate change gets underway Dec. 7  in Denmark, guaranteeing that the media and blogosphere over the next two weeks will be filled with competing rhetoric about how either we’re all doomed or that it’s all a big hoax.

Tragically both sides of this debate are so deeply dug in they can’t see the common ground lying before them. There is an opportunity for liberals and conservatives to unite and solve each other’s problem with neither having to admit the other is right.

Conservatives have a unique opportunity to vastly improve America’s national security by ending our self-defeating subsidy of radical Islam paid for through the hundreds of billions of dollars spent each year on foreign oil.

Every time Americans pay for a tank of gas or an electric bill they put money in a round about way into the bank accounts of terrorists hell bent on killing them.

It doesn’t have to be that way. By investing in alternative energy – nuclear, wind, solar and more – we can end our dependence on foreign oil in a decade.

If Europe and Asia followed our lead it would mean the Middle East no longer being awash in hundreds of billions of petro dollars. That would mean Saudia Arabia, Kuwait, Iran, Iraq and the others becoming no more important to the world than Ethiopia.

And the world doesn’t give two shucks about Ethiopia. Why? No oil.

America also would keep its world lead in science and technology and thereby maintain our economic dominance, which also is key to our national security.

America can’t be the world’s superpower if its economy is not the world’s leader.

If we don’t gain control of our energy future, we risk falling behind China and possibly Europe, which have made massive investments in alternative energy the past few years.

For liberals, what difference does it make whether the nation admits to human-caused global warming? If the net effect is that America helps save the world’s climate by drastically cutting its carbon emissions, then bully for America.

America, for the time being, is the world’s largest emitter of carbon dioxide. We could cut that in half or more in 10 years. Isn’t that what Al Gore said we needed to do to keep Florida from disappearing under the Atlantic?

Other than helping slow or halt global warming, by reducing the amount of fossil fuels we burn the nation will reap other benefits such as cleaner air and water and reductions in lung disease and cancer. That’s liberal nirvana.

Some compromises will have to be made by each side. Conservatives will have to forgo using coal as part of the energy independence solution and liberals will have to give up their objection to nuclear power.

And it won’t be free. Both sides will have to agree to pay for it. But if we’re willing to spend billions on planes, tanks and bullets shouldn’t we be wiling to make a similar investment in clean energy if it meant cutting off our enemy’s primary source of funding?

And if we’re willing to spend billions on treating lung disease and cancers caused by pollution, shouldn’t we be willing to spend billions on alternative energies that eliminate or reduce the incidence of those diseases and the costs of treating them?

What’s more, we’re eventually going to have to pay to do this anyway. The world will run out of oil before this century is out, which means we’ll have to pay to convert our nation’s energy grid to something other than fossil fuels.

Why wait? Lets do it now. We can save America and world at the same time. Who cares if neither side agrees with the other’s reasons, the result is the same.

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