Arthur Schaper: Whitehouse’s GOP Forecast: Sunny Skies

Friday, February 21, 2014


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Arthur Schaper asks: Why can't Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse let the climate change movement die a natural death?

Climate change is real: it’s called spring, summer, fall, winter.

Seriously, the world has gotten a little warmer the past few years. In Southern California, one skittish beach resident dipped in the ocean four times last year, even though for years she had avoided the water, and walking on the sand burned a little more than expected.

Then again, you New Englanders may have noticed, with all those polar vortexes and the rest. Don’t feel so bad, though. Here in California, we could use the rain, snow, sleet, hail, as the Central Valley dries (er, dies) of thirst. But that’s not climate change, that’s political change, and not the one I was hoping for. After supermajority Dems played water politics in Sacramento, a Republican cherry farmer from Hanford won a state senate seat in two-to-one Dem territory last year. Now that’s climate change I can believe in, a change in the political climate, that is. By the way, I just gotta rain on the liberal-progressive-statist-crypto-fascist parade with this one. A GOP took the mayor’s seat (San Diego!) in a lean-Democrat city, too. Cheer up, Rhode Island GOP, demographics are helping Democrats less and less these days.

Now, back to climate change.

Well, there actually are a few Rhode Islanders who may not have noticed. There’s US Senator Jack Reed, up for reelection in 2014. He visited Afghanistan fourteen times during his tenuyre, but as for Rhode Island, one only wonders (or wanders). Get out of Afghanistan, and get back to Rhode Island, Reed!

And then there’s US Senator Sheldon Whitehouse. Oh brother (sun, moon, and stars). This guy will not let the climate change, er alarmism movement die a natural death.

Last week, he announced the following:

"Republicans have to produce a presidential candidate and I think if he's a denier, he's finished," Whitehouse said Wednesday. "Which means they will have to trek a little bit towards the middle to cover their presidential candidate."

All Rhode Island (and national) Republicans (yes, I know you’re out there), raise your hand if you give a shell what Whitehouse thinks about anything.

. . .*cricket*. . .

But let’s have some fun, shell, er shall we?

Republicans have to produce

Mommies and Daddies (and snails and puppies) produce. Political parties nominate, select, (or quietly stab in the back) their candidates. 2012 was how not to nominate, and in 2016 the GOP will vet a reformed primary process: short, sweet, and send ‘em to the White House (not to you, Sheldon!).

I think if he's a denier, he's finished

As I wrote above, climate change is real, both the seasonal and the not-so-reasonable. Am I worried about it? Two recent phenomena dispute the gravity of climate change: polar vortexes in New England 2014 and an unprecedented, freezing point in Southern California 2013, along with older records dating back to the 1800s. The United States endured a mini-ice age in the Los Angeles area them, and New Englanders are experiencing one now. Climate change in terms of higher or lower upswings takes place over decades, and they are nothing to get chilly or burned up about.

See what went on there? I resorted to something called “science”, which in and of itself proves nothing, but reasoned inferences suggest that climate alarmism is just that: an “ism”, and for those addicted to it, they should seek a sponsor and work a Twelve Step Program.

Besides, the rest of the industrial world, from China to Australia (the recently installed conservative majority Down Under pledged to scrap the carbon tax), have quit drinking the climate-change kool-aid, with economic growth to follow.

Furthermore, for a confirmed progressive like Whitehouse to say “he” without including a possible “she” is very disconcerting. Then again, one should not be surprised by such gender-biased language from a wealthy politician who demonizes other wealthy people, i.e. the ones who actually earned it by working for others and providing them a worthwhile good or service.

Which means they will have to trek a little bit towards the middle to cover their presidential candidate."

“A trek?” Beam me up, Sheldon. “Make it so, Number One!” The second phrase comes from Star Trek, The Next Generation, (no climate problems in Warp Nine).

Trek: to go on a long arduous journey, typically on foot.

Now, even if one implies that there is a vast difference between the center and the right in the Republican Party (there isn’t), to suggest that the 2016 GOP candidate will have to trek “a little bit” suggests that Whitehouse has lost track of proper diction, or the dictionary.

The 2016 Republican primary will be much shorter (and decisive), a June convention, and more time to shake hands, kiss babies, and raise money..

As for Democrats, Whitehouse just called out embattled Senate colleague Mary Landrieu as a climate change buddy, but she’s running (not trekking) a red-as-possible campaign this year, with strong support for coal and oil. With Democrats like Whitehouse, Republicans won’t have to fight for the Senate this year.

Whitehouse’s climate alarmism is real: sunny skies for Republicans in 2014 and 2016.


Arthur Christopher Schaper is a teacher-turned-writer on topics both timeless and timely; political, cultural, and eternal. A life-long Southern California resident, Arthur currently lives in Torrance. Follow him on Twitter @ArthurCSchaper, reach him at [email protected], and read more at Schaper's Corner and As He Is, So Are We Ministries.


Related Slideshow: Is Clay Pell the Next Lincoln Chafee?

Privileged bloodlines, prestigious prep schools, lofty political ambitions.  Is Clay Pell the next Lincoln Chafee?  

Below is a look at the similarities -- and differences -- between Governor Lincoln Chafee  and likely gubernatorial aspirant Clay Pell.  

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Family Legacy - Chafee

Lincoln Chafee is the son of John Chafee, the former Governor of Rhode Island, U.S. Senator, and Secretary of the Navy, who was a decorated WWII and Korean War Veteran, and posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom.  

Named in his honor include the USS Chafee (DDG-90), the John H. Chafee Blackstone River Valley National Heritage Corridor and the John H. Chafee National Wildlife Refuge.

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Family Legacy - Pell

Grandfather Claiborne Pell was Rhode Island's longest serving Senator, having served six terms from 1961 to 1997, whose legacy includes the Pell Grant, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.  

A decorated coast guard lieutenant in WWII and foreign service officer, Pell's Rhode Island legacy includes the Newport Bridge being renamed the Claiborne Pell Bridge, as well as the Pell Center of International Relations and Public Policy established at Salve Regina University.

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Money - Chafee

Both Chafees and Senator Pell had to disclose as members of the U.S. Senate personal financial information -- and both a considerable net worth.  

The U.S. Senate is known as the U.S. Millionaires Club -- in 2005, while Chafee was still in the Senate, Open Secrets pegged Chafee's wealth at between $40 and $63 million dollars.  

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Money - Pell

In a Time piece entitled "The New Limousine Liberals", the magazine pegged grandfather Pell's net worth at $12.7 million -- in 1992.  

The website Celebrity Net Worth puts wife Michelle Kwan's personal wealth at $8 million. 

While Pell's first campaign finance report has yet to be made public, records show Pell gave Democratic challenger Gina Raimondo $250 during her bid for General Treasurer in 2010.  

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Education - Chafee

Chafee was educated public schools in Warwick, and attended private schools Providence Country Day, and Phillips Academy before graduating from Brown University.  

Chafee then attended the Montana State University in the horseshoeing school.

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Education - Pell

Pell attended the private boarding Thacher School in California for high school, graduating in 2000.  The school's noted equestrian and outdoor programs require that students ride and care for a horse during their first year.  Current tuition is over $50,000
Pell, a JAG who graduated first in his class from Coast Guard Direct Commission Officer School, has a JD from Georgetown University and graduated from Harvard University with high honors in Social Studies and a Citation in Modern Standard Arabic. 
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Early Career -- Chafee

Chafee served as a delegate to the Rhode Island Constitutional Convention in 1985, and was elected to the Warwick City Council the following year.  

He was Warwick's mayor in 1992 until 1999, when he was appointed to the U.S. Senate in 1999 when his father passed away while in office.

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Early Career -- Pell

Named to the 2011-2012 class of White House Fellows, Pell served as Director for Strategic Planning on the National Security Staff prior to his appointment by President Obama as Deputy Assistant Secretary for International and Foreign Language Education last April.

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Wife - Chafee

Chafee's wife, Stephanie Danforth Chafee, holds a B.S. in Nursing from Boston University, an MBA from the University of Connecticut, and an Honorary Doctor of Humane Letters from the University of Rhode Island, helped found the Rhode Island Free Clinic in South Providence, and was featured as one of the ‘25 Models of Promise’ in Shirley Sagawa’s The American Way to Change. 
Mrs. Chafee was a co-founder of Women Ending Hunger and has served on advisory boards for Miriam Hospital, Rhode Island Hospital, the Rhode Island Zoological Society and the Rhode Island Foundation.  Last April, she was recognized as one of the YWCA Rhode Island's Women of Achievement.
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Wife - Pell

A decorated Olympic figure skater and world champion, Michelle Kwan went on to pursue a career in public service, serving as an American Public Diplomacy Envoy as well as on the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports -- and was recently inducted into the U.S. Figure Skating Hall of Fame.


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