An article in Vice denounces the new Ford Bronco as sinful. Parenthetically we wonder whether a publication called Virtue might be better placed to tell people not to misbehave. But the headline “The New Ford Bronco Is An Obscene Monument to Climate Denialism” pretty much says it all. Including that a lot of people show by their choices that they don’t really believe everything they tell pollsters they believe about climate.
In the Vice piece Aaron Gordon makes a valid point that for most consumers, the extraordinary off-road abilities of the vehicle are not a practical issue. (Years ago P.J. O’Rourke pointedly skewered the whole “Lawrence of Suburbia” phenomenon.) And Gordon is not entirely wrong in saying “For John and Jane Q. Commuter, the only thing you need to know about the Bronco… is that it does not come with a hybrid or electric version. In the year 2020, this is tantamount to climate denialism.” But he’s fairly wrong, because John and Jane will either (a) know it going in or (b) discover it when they say “Where’s the electric version?” and the person of sales responds “There isn’t one.”
Consumers are not fools. But they are frustrating to climate alarmists. They regularly tell pollsters they believe in manmade climate change and want something done. They increasingly tell therapists they cannot cope because civilization is going to be destroyed by climate change. And yet when asked to make real sacrifices, they vote with their dollars that there is no climate emergency. (Incidentally a new paper out of the Global Warming Policy Foundation warns that getting the UK to “Net Zero” will require among other things digging up nearly every street in Britain in order massively to expand the electric grid including creating sufficient charging points for electric vehicles; when citizens wearing their voter hats assume green solutions are a lot more costly than their boosters let on, they are again not fools.)
Companies, too, are not fools. They make wokeness a key marketing tool with more cunning than one might want. But when they roll out this vehicle you know that hypocrisy is the tribute vice pays to virtue or, in this case, to Vice and its fellow travellers. And forcing hypocrisy into the climate debate mix is not a triumph. So we may have found the fools.