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CLEVELAND

Night two of the Republican convention was themed “Make America Work Again.”

Hmmm. If one were a slave to literalism, “MANY MORE SPEECHES ABOUT WHY WE HATE HILLARY, plus a thought or two on jobs” would be a more precise summation of the evening presentation.

Fortunately, however, politics is a horseshoes-and-hand grenades affair, where close enough is good enough. Still, contemplating Clinton through the GOP’s Tuesday looking glass called to mind Alice’s protestations to the White Queen.

“One can’t believe impossible things,” Alice objected when the queen urged her to do just that. “I daresay you haven’t had much practice,” replied the Queen. “Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”

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And when it comes to merely improbable things, and you’ve got the entire day to go about that mental task? Why, the possibilities are endless!

But back to jobs and work, which was, after all, the night’s nominal topic. It’s important to understand the unstated assumption of the Trump Republican Party’s economic plans: They are premised on disregarding any and all concerns about climate change.

Now, no one stated it quite that baldly. But one didn’t have to be a climate scientist to understand what was afoot.

What else, really, could Donald Trump Jr. have meant when he uttered this line about the prospect of a Clinton presidency: “Rather than being energy independent, our country will be forced to remain beholden to her buddies in the Middle East”?

Fortunately, US Senator Shelley Moore Capito of West Virginia cleared up any lingering doubt when she unloaded on the Obama administration’s efforts to combat carbon dioxide emissions, which are a major factor in global warming.

“The greatest obstacle for West Virginia families . . . has been a president that places left-wing priorities and campaign promises over their livelihood,” she said. Translation: A president who believes in global warming and thus has taken action to reduce the use of coal.

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Of course, Capito herself never acknowledged the point of those regulations. This is as close as she came: “He introduced and implemented sweeping environmental regulations without Congress’s approval and without any consideration for the economy. These unilateral actions are ill-informed and frankly unconstitutional.”

Clinton, meanwhile, “has already promised to put a lot of coal miners and coal companies out of business. ”

Why? Hmm. No reason given. A naïf would have been left thinking that Clinton simply has an irrational hatred of hard-working coal miners, and thus is gleeful at the thought of long unemployment lines in coal country.

In a perverse way, the decision not to acknowledge the climate concerns behind the Obama administration’s anti-coal efforts could be considered good news. Climate-change denial has apparently become a mindset that dares not speak its name.

Instead, the climate science and the climate-change consensus — credited by most governments, including conservative-led ones, around the globe — have morphed into “left-wing priorities.” (And while we’re at it, it’s also worth noting that the biggest blow to coal has been the abundance of cheap natural gas made possible by fracking.)

No, none of this was stated outright. And yet that’s the lamentable obscurantism that underlies the Republican Party’s economic prescriptions.


Scot Lehigh can be reached at lehigh@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @GlobeScotLehigh.