This repost at Yahoo! News from the AP contains the following quote:
"The biggest single step to curbing global warming, cutting America's oil dependence and saving consumers' money at the gas pump is making our vehicles go further on a gallon of gas," said Dan Becker, director of the Sierra Club's global warming program. "Automakers who live by the gas guzzler may die by the gas guzzler."
The biggest problem I have with this guy's statement, other than it's outright wrong, is that he goes out of his way to ignore the simple facts of pollution on this planet. You see, the US over the past couple of decades has significantly reduced the amount of air pollution we produce out of our social NEED to sate the myriad dissenting voices backed by lawyers and junk science.
More to the point, it's been proven we do not pollute near as much as China does. While I'll have to admit we have quite a bit more cars on our roads than they do, the potential for their automotive might in the world economy is unmistakable. Think about it this way... We have less than a third of the people they have. Even if every American had 3 or 4 cars each, we would not be able to meet their possible number of automobiles by having each of their citizens with just one car each. I know these are not realistic numbers, but the fact still remains they still pollute more than we do. Why, you ask? Because they're developing, and because they don't really care what happens to the environment. They have over a billion people to rule over, after all.
So while people take pot shots at our country's not signing the Kyoto Protocol think about this: China is 60 years out from not being considered a "developing" country. Because of this they do not fall under the same rules we do should we have signed the protocol. So, since we are modern in most cases we'll still be punished for working at a measured pace toward clean living while a country which is "developing" is allowed to pollute as much as they like with no restrictions at all. So everyone go spend at least $10k more on a car to save the world!