Bush Has Senioritis

Each year the G-8 goes into its meeting with preposterous and/or impossible solutions and goals with respect to climate change. Each year, Bush talks or bullies them out of it (I don't know which, perhaps both), but allows them to claim otherwise to save face. You have to read the documents and pay no attention whatever to what anyone says.
  • In 2005, for example, The President allowed Jacques Chirac to crow about bringing intransigent America around, but what actually happened was Bush got exactly what he wanted.
  • In 2006, an accidentally hot mic deliciously picked up what the Prez. really thinks about G-8.
    Someone, probably an aide, asks Bush something, evidently whether he wants prepared closing remarks for the end of the summit. Bush: "No. Just gonna make it up. I'm not going to talk too damn long like the rest of them."
  • In 2007, Bush allowed Angie Merkel to take credit for saving the planet, but what actually happened was he & Stephen Harper saved the world economy.
This year is no exception. Details at the link, but the main thing, in spite of the vaunted "halve emissions" headlines, is
The EU and Russia are now supporting President Bush's persistent demand that any new climate deal include China and India.
Bush wins, saves world economy again, for the 6th year running, headlines as per usual notwithstanding. He seems to have had enough of the pretense this year, though. His closing remarks at G-8 according to the Telegraph:
"Goodbye from the world's biggest polluter."
He then punched the air while grinning widely, as the rest of those present including Gordon Brown and Nicolas Sarkozy looked on in shock.

As Gateway Pundit points out, actually it's Hu Jintao who should have been fist-pumping, but I am nonetheless amused. Canada's National Post concludes bitterly:
There is now growing concern among environmental campaigners that the momentum for radical climate policies may have been lost, at least for the foreseeable future, if not for good. These fears are fully justified. In the absence of sustained temperature rises and in light of deepening economic problems, the green enthusiasm of Western governments and opposition parties appears to have been suspended, at least for the time being.
Well done, Sir.

Update: From the WSJ's excellent editorial on this topic.
In other words, the G-8 signed on to what has been the White House approach since 2002. The U.S. has relied on the arc of domestic energy programs now in place, like fuel-economy standards and efficiency regulations, along with billions in subsidies for low-carbon technology. Europe threw in with the central planning of the Kyoto Protocol -- and the contrast is instructive. Between 2000 and 2006, U.S. net greenhouse gas emissions fell 3%. Of the 17 largest world-wide emitters, only France reduced by more.
So despite environmentalist sanctimony about the urgent need for President Bush and the U.S. to "take the lead" on global warming, his program has done better than most everybody else's. That won't make the evening news. But the fact is that the new G-8 document is best understood as a second look at the "leadership" of . . . you know who.
Next point is very important:
The G-8 also tends to make grand promises that evaporate as soon as everyone goes home. This year, picking up the "accountability" theme pressed by the U.S., envoys grudgingly accepted a plan that will track -- and publicize -- how well countries are living up to their word.
Which means we've likely heard the last of the matter, as criticism of Eurohypocrisy or frank admission of American success doesn't make headlines.