One of my many detractors recently favored me with a copy of Kevin Ellis’ lengthy and indignant objection (June 27) to my June 22 commentary on the steady conversion of the Transportation Fund from maintaining our roads and bridges into a weapon in the enviros’ never-ending war against the menace of “climate change.”

Kevin first indignantly objects to my “sarcastic labeling of boogey men and women as ‘enviros.’” For over 20 years I have casually used “enviro” as a contraction of “environmentalist,” an appellation which many of Kevin’s persuasion have long used to describe their virtuous selves. It’s just like “kleptos” as a contraction for kleptomaniacs. Long ago, one such enviro complained to me that the use of that term made him feel unsafe, or some such. So I kept using it for its apparently powerful effect on the persons described, saying to that green snowflake of yesteryear, “It’s a cruel world out here, pal. Toughen up.”

From now on I may discontinue using “enviro” in favor of Kevin’s recommended alternative, “boogey men and women,” although I don’t see why that is somehow more respectful.

Kevin objects that I described David Blittersdorf as a “solar mogul.” Gee whiz, the guy has made millions financing heavily subsidized solar projects all over Vermont, taking advantage of all the sweetheart deals VPIRG pushed into the utility regulation laws while Blittersdorf was its co-finance chairman. I can imagine that something more pejorative than “solar mogul” could be justified.

If Blittersdorf, his troops at VPIRG, and lobbying legends like Kevin Ellis succeed in suckering the state into holding the bag on a 7-mile commuter rail project from Barre to Montpelier, using the five Budd cars Blittersdorf picked up at a yard sale, his claim to mogulhood will certainly be beyond question.

Kevin sees, “the asteroid of climate change headed straight for us.” Two years ago, in a column worrying about four serious threats, I identified an asteroid impact, along with an unpayable $23 trillion national debt, an ElectroMagnetic Pulse (EMP) attack and an epidemic impervious to current medicine.

Compare an asteroid impact with the current Big Idea for defeating the menace of climate change, the Paris Climate Agreement. Its partisans tell us that if faithfully observed by 195 countries over the next 80 years (fat chance of that), it will leave the planet less warm by three-tenths of a degree Fahrenheit (using the MAGICC projection used by all five IPCC assessment reports). That doesn’t strike most normal people as worthwhile enough to justify spending trillions of dollars to make it happen. Only the boogey men and women.

As for Kevin’s insults, hey, it’s a cruel world out here. I can take it.

John McClaughry writes for the Ethan Allen Institute.

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