Like Dan Calabrese, I’ve taken my bike out of the garage several times this warm winter. Since the first snowfall, I’ve been my skis once, my snowboard twice, and my bike six times.
While I find the brown landscape depressing, I’m probably in the minority. After all, the warmer weather means no “winter driving,” no shoveling, no ice dams, and being able to wear shirts and shorts outside. (OK, I’ve seen that last one just once, and it was done by a 13-year old.)
But as I have suggested, there is a constituency for cold weather: skiers, snowboarders, ice fisherman, and pond-rink hockey players.
I don’t know much about ice fishing or hockey, but I will tell you that the ski industry is on the stop-global-warming bandwagon, and for obvious reasons. Oh sure, resorts can and do make snow (and I’m thankful for that). But when the grass is brown at home, people tend to not buy lift tickets, skis, ski clothing, and so forth.
So I’ve been to meetings of the ski industry where we are earnestly implored to do something about global warming. I usually keep my mouth shut because I’m interested in skiing and snowboarding, not politicking–and because global warmism is something approaching a religion.
Skiing isn’t cheap, and people who ski tend to have higher-than-average incomes. A season pass to one of the mini-hills in the Metro area is $300-$400 per person, and the cost of outfitting a skier with skis, boots, poles, clothing, and whatnot can easily reach $1,000. After spending that much money, and getting some psychic benefit out of skiing, skiers are (understandably) frustrated at seeing dirt rather than snow.
But the campaign to “save our snow” (as one industry effort is called) is another example of a prosperous interest group eager to use government to inflict the costs of its pleasures and preferences on everyone.