It’s not that children don’t have the right to have their opinions.
It’s just that children who speak on matters of which they’re largely ignorant and completely unschooled shouldn’t expect to order sovereign countries around and tell U.S. leaders what to do and dictate radical policies to the world. Or at least, they shouldn’t expect the sovereign countries and U.S. leaders to listen to them when they try and dictate.
That’s all U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin was trying to say about 17-year-old Swedish climate alarmist Greta Thunbuerg.
When asked at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, if America should immediately divest from fossil fuels — as Thunberg had hours before demanded and scolded and chided — Mnuchin said, CNBC reported: “Is she the chief economist or who is she? I’m confused.”
He then added that he was joking — that he was only making “a joke, that was funny.”
But then he chimed in with this: “After she goes and studies economics in college she can come back and explain that [demand] to us.”
After all, Thunberg’s scientific credentials are — well, none. But she does have parents who are theater people. And she does have a background that involves acting. And she does have that particular quality of the left that allows for speaking boldly, without regret, and with complete passion on topics about which she knows little. And she does have that double-whammy combo of youth plus Asperger’s that makes her a magnificent tool for the left because it sets her as untouchable — it allows her supporters to label her critics as cruel child haters.
She’s the perfect voice of the environmental movement, in the eyes of the left, anyway.
“[The world], in case you hadn’t noticed,” Thunberg said at Davos, “is currently on fire.”
And, Thunberg suggests, fossil fuels are to blame; drivers are to blame; developers are to blame; those darned politicians and Americans who won’t listen to these facts, facts, facts of the world “on fire” are to blame.
Then again, there’s this, from CNBC: “Thunberg was catapulted to fame for skipping school every Friday to hold a weekly [climate] vigil outside the Swedish Parliament in 2018. It sparked an international wave of school strikes — also known as ‘Fridays for Future’ — with millions of children taking part in rallies around the world.”
Maybe she should have stayed in school.
Maybe, as Mnuchin suggested, she should head back there before making more demands of the world.
• Cheryl Chumley can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter, @ckchumley. Listen to her podcast “Bold and Blunt” by clicking HERE. And never miss her column; subscribe to her newsletter by clicking HERE.
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