As climate change denying EPA administrator Scott Pruitt and fascist puppet master Steve Bannon wipe Ivanka Trump and Secretary of State Rex Tillerson off the bottoms of their shoes, President Trump’s move to take the USA out of the Paris climate change agreement is isolating him both inside the USA and on the global stage. The agreement was non-binding so can’t be viewed as a “treaty”. Therefore there was nothing in it that compels a “re-negotiation”, despite his provably false rhetoric to the contrary. To underscore this, French President Emmanuel Macron, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Italian Prime Minister Paolo Gentiloni released a joint statement saying, “We deem the momentum generated in Paris in December 2015 irreversible and we firmly believe that the Paris Agreement cannot be renegotiated, since it is a vital instrument for our planet, societies and economies.”
In a show of solidarity, countries across the planet as well as cities within the USA itself lit their buildings and landmarks green last night. Trump (falsely) claimed that our participation in the accord would hamstring our corporations and economy and that he was taking this step to “put America first”. This was proven to be a bald-faced lie that only true believers will swallow when two of his top business advisers resigned from his business advisory council. Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Disney CEO Robert Iger both departed:
Am departing presidential councils. Climate change is real. Leaving Paris is not good for America or the world.
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) June 1, 2017
As a matter of principle, I've resigned from the President's Council over the #ParisAgreement withdrawal.
— Robert Iger (@RobertIger) June 1, 2017
Adding to the corporate outrage, Apple CEO Tim Cook slammed Trump’s decision in an email to his employees:
“I spoke with President Trump on Tuesday and tried to persuade him to keep the U.S. in the agreement. But it wasn’t enough,” Cook wrote.
He added in the email that climate change was real and that everyone had a shared responsibility to fight it. He assured employees that Thursday’s decision will not affect Apple’s commitments to protect the environment.
“We power nearly all of our operations with renewable energy, which we believe is an example of something that’s good for our planet and makes good business sense as well.”
Cook doubled down on Twitter:
Decision to withdraw from the #ParisAgreeement was wrong for our planet. Apple is committed to fight climate change and we will never waver.
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) June 2, 2017
The only people who appear to be supporting Trump on this are the most ardent climate deniers in our country along with spineless Republicans who support Trump no matter what he says or does because they are counting on him helping them in their effort to slash taxes for the super-wealthy.
The good news is that America will still largely live up to its commitments established in the Paris accord because (a) businesses and state governments have already taken steps to do so and (b) these businesses and state governments know that Trump is likely to be a one-term president and his anti-environmental policies will not sustain once he’s gone.
With this move, Trump has shown that he doesn’t represent mainstream thought on climate change. He’s shown the world that he’s little more than a petulant narcissist who acts impulsively to satisfy his shrinking base. He has also proven that much of his impetus for pulling out of the Paris agreement is little more than a “fuck you” to our European allies:
Pressure from leaders abroad also backfired. One senior White House official characterized disappointing European allies as “a secondary benefit” of Trump’s decision to withdraw.
The more Trump isolates himself, the less he’ll be able to accomplish during his remaining time as president. That, I suppose, is the true “secondary benefit” of this, his latest disgusting and anti-American act as president.
[CC image credit: Dota 2 The International | Flickr]