Brown’s real political future is apt to mirror Al Gore’s.
Shortly after Donald Trump was elected President, I noted that California Governor Jerry Brown essentially designated himself as President of the Left Coast.
So it is with some amusement that I noted the headline in Politico discussing Brown’s European “Climate Change” tour: Jerry Brown, President of the Independent Republic of California.
…In the raw balance of power between a governor and a president, Brown has almost no standing abroad. What he does have is a platform, and a proposition: Crusading across Europe in his Fitbit and his dark, boxy suit, Brown advances California and its policies almost as an alternative to the United States—and his waning governorship, after a lifetime in politics, as a quixotic rejection of the provincial limits of the American governor. In the growing chasm between Trump’s Washington and California—principally on climate change, but also taxes, health care, gun control and immigration—Brown is functioning as the head of something closer to a country than a state.
Based on these points, Brown is experiencing far less success than President Trump. While the President has managed to score several critical wins (e.g., an outstanding address in front of the South Korean Parliament, China signing a series of multibillion-dollar business agreements that bring jobs back to America), Brown is meeting robust and crippling resistance to his apocalyptic, anti-carbon message.
In Brussels, he struggled to handle “denialists”.
Gov. Jerry Brown, arriving in Brussels after collegial events in Germany, sparred publicly with British politicians when confronted over his climate change record at the European Parliament on Wednesday.
Steven Woolfe, a British politician on the parliament, was first to pierce the pleasantries, accusing Brown of supporting state intervention “at a huge scale” and spending and increasing taxes “like it’s going out of fashion.”
Brown’s climate change policy, he argued, isolates the state from much of the U.S. Woolfe dismissed California’s cap-and-trade carbon market as a “tax-and-spend” policy. And he teased the governor as potentially being interested in joining the European Union.
“I am sure you are well-meaning in wanting to protect the environment,” Woolfe said. “But do you not recognize that the policies you are implementing help the rich more than the poor, and make the poor suffer in the long-run?”
After California’s “President” insulted Woolfe and asserted the man was shedding “crocodile tears” for the poor, the meeting’s presiding officer banged down his gavel and ordered the politician not interrupt Brown.
In Bonn, he was met by eco-activist extremists who wanted to eliminate the state’s fracking industry, which actually brings in revenue to finance California’s many social justice programs.
Opponents of a controversial form of oil extraction repeatedly interrupted California Gov. Jerry Brown’s speech pledging support for the Paris agreement on Saturday, unfurling signs and arguing that his refusal to ban hydraulic fracturing was a stain on his environmental record.
About a dozen protesters chanted “carbon trading is no solution,” a criticism of his cap-and-trade system, and “poisoned wastewater” and “keep it in the ground,” shots at his permissive stance on fracking, at an event with Brown and former New York City Mayor Mike Bloomberg called “America’s Pledge.”
…Despite being held up as an environmental leader and championing environmental causes going back to his first time as governor, from 1975 to 1983, Brown’s refusal to ban fracking has prompted protests for years.
Then, Brown brought the #WarOnTrump to Germany:
But the protests continued for much of Brown’s address. At one point, when some in the crowd of hundreds rallied behind the Democratic governor, he led a chant of “We’re still in.”
Brown, improvising, added his own twist: “Trump’s still out. Trump is still out. Trump is still out.”
I will simply point out that Trump is out only of the economy-crippling Climate Accord, and that was the will of the American people. It’s also worth noting that Brown will be out—of office and of his hubristic “California Climate Accord”—in 2018; whereas, Trump will be in until at least 2021 (I think his chances for re-election are astronomical).DONATE
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