I might embarrass myself with this, but nonetheless I have an admission to make: I came of age, politically speaking, during the presidency of Jimmy Carter.
Oh sure, I have plenty of memories (both good and bad) of Nixon and Ford. But my experience of the ways in which White House policy can impact one’s day to day life first emerged while Carter was in office.
Much of this experience was garnered through observing my own parents. I remember very well their shame over the Iranian hostage crisis; their anxiety over the economic stagflation of the times; and perhaps most vividly, their worries over the threat of future Soviet domination.
Fortunately the world changed, we learned how to grow our free-market economy, and the threat of Soviet domination dissipated. But the earliest years of my childhood and the influence of my parents left me with at least two profound convictions about the world: A) the grip of communism is a tight one; and B) the future of free, virtuous, and prosperous societies is anything but guaranteed.
Because of these convictions, I tend to view the former Soviet Bloc nations with tremendous hope, but also with a tentative, “let’s wait and see” kind of outlook.
And given all this history that has unfolded just within my lifetime, it’s a bit amazing to me that I must now make this admission: my worldview and sensibilities more closely resemble those of a current Eastern European head of state, than those of many of my fellow Americans.
Vaclav Klaus, the President of the Czech Republic, has weighed-in on the notion of “global warming.” Unlike many people here in the United States who unquestionably accept the dogma of it all and participate in the frenzy over the alleged “crisis,” President Klaus has the good sense to ask questions, and to put it all in perspective.
He quite correctly relates the proposed weather “remedies” to a concept that, unfortunately, is quite abstract for many in the contemporary Western world - - the concept of personal and economic liberty. But because he makes this connection, he ends up saying many of the same things that I’ve been thinking - - and that really amazes me.
Writing in The Financial Times journal, President Klaus noted some objective facts about the weather - - the fact that during the past century the average global temperature increased only .6 percent, and the fact that “all of us have noticed that even during our life times temperature changes occur (in both directions).”
Austin Hill is an Author, Consultant, and Host of "Austin Hill's Big World of Small Business," a syndicated talk show about small business ownership and entrepreneurship. He is Co-Author of the new release "The Virtues Of Capitalism: A Moral Case For Free Markets." , Author of "White House Confidential: The Little Book Of Weird Presidential History," and a frequent guest host for Washington, DC's 105.9 WMAL Talk Radio.
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