Wednesday, June 14, 2006

Al Gore wants to save the world

I haven't seen Al Gore's "docuganda," and I doubt I will. I do, however, know a good deal about the global warming debate, having researched the issue several years ago for a cover story I did for BrainstormNW Magazine.

I did read Al Gore's book, "Earth in the Balance." I'm pretty sure, from the reviews of his movie that I have read, that it is a movie version of his book. His book was scary. Al Gore is a true believer.

At one point in his book he actually said that he believes that every one of our cultural institutions, from schools and churches to industry and commerce, should make eliminating man’s effect on the earth its single overriding goal.

This means, he wrote: "embarking on an all-out effort to use every policy and program, every law and institution, every treaty and alliance, every tactic and strategy, every plan and course of action to preserve and nurture our ecological system."

If we don't, he warned, there will be "terrible moral consequences". In the ultimate non-sequitir he compared the western ethic of production and consumption (that is, capitalism) to the totalitarian Nazi Germany war machine.

Does that sound like an extremist to you?

HL Mencken, the curmudgeonly journalist from the early part of the last century, has a couple of quotes that I think apply to Al Gore and all the environmental groups that are trying to whip up hysteria over the global warming issue:

"The urge to save humanity is almost always a false front for the urge to rule."

and

"The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary."

Both of these, right on the mark.

7 comments:

Mick said...

If the consequences are an unliveable planet in the future, I would call that a terrible moral consequence. Wouldn't you?

Dare!PDX said...

The real issue is the Republican party has ceeded the middle ground on the environmental issues.

We need to be more pragmatic about environmental issues and take our place as the real stewards of both the economy and the environment.

If we don't we will have forest that are to dangerous to live near, unsolvable and persistant pollution problems (usually caused by poorly implemented and costly regulations), and worst of all scare mongering that will solve few problems but instead create a negative apathy in those most needed to solve the issue.

Chris McMullen said...

"Carter does not pull his punches about Gore's activism, "The man is an embarrassment to US science and its many fine practitioners, a lot of whom know (but feel unable to state publicly) that his propaganda crusade is mostly based on junk science."

from here:

http://www.canadafreepress.com/2006/harris061206.htm

Great article.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I guess that article in the Canada Free Press is the tool Du Jour being used by the conservative megaphone to sow and doubt and confusion on the global warming issue.

This the 2nd blog on which I have seen it referenced this morning,.

Now I am not a tree hugger or one of the Earth First lunatics who believe we should go back to living in caves so we don't pollute or change the status quo in any way.

But I am someone who appreciates real information and objective analysis.

And as such, I have to ask you:

Do you really take an article written by an Energy Industry Lobbyist as objective and free from bias?

The fact that he is an energy lobbyist by itself does not render any statement he makes automatically wrong, but it certainly calls into question whether he is a credible commentator on the subject.

Neither Al Gore nor any of the thousands of committed scientists whose climate models or meteorlogical data suggest that global warming is something the world needs to at least consider relatively low cost changes to behavior to avoid a worst-case scenario make any momey or have any financial incentive to make the stuff up.

However, energy lobbyists and the handful of scientists who take the funding from energy companies DO have a financial incentive to try and slow to stop action on global warming. As a matter of fact, most are being paid to say what they say.

As such I give them much less credibility.

If Dick Cheney took the same approach to his heart problems that he does to global warming, he would tell his doctor:

"Doc, unless you can say definitively that the steaks I eat are causing my heart troubles, and unless you can tell me defintiively that if I don't stop stop eating steaks I will get a heart attack, and unless you can tell me the exact date I am going to get my heart attack, and unless you can gaurantee that if I stiop eating steaks I won't get a heart atatck,then its all too unsettled and I am going to continue eating steaks."

It would be ludicrous to do that, but that is exactly the argument the Bush administration makes on global warming.

By holding out for indisputable, date certain, unquestioned 100% agreement among every single living scientist in the world before they agree to so much as lift a finger or consider changing behavior, they are acting in a very unconservative, imprudent manner that could jeopardize the U.S.A (right now the US is in the heart of the temperate zone with sufficident rainfall and fertile soil to be self sufficient and a huge global exporter of food, what if that changed, we wouldn't have to worry about send troops overseas for oil, b/c we would be sending them overseas to get bread...) and cause agreat deal of disruption toour grandchildren and greatgrandchildren.

I am still evaluating the whole isue, but it does not seem illogical to me to start doing some cost benefit analyses on various behaviors and seeing whether we can at least take advanrage of the low haging fruit as far as reducing carbon emissions.

The conservative thing to do is to minimize risk, and plan for potential catastrophes, regardless of whether we are certaqin they will happen, but by doing nothing the Bush admin and its defenders are being very unconservative and exposing America to potential weakening.

Rob Kremer said...

Anon: What article are you referring to in the Canada Free Press? I didn't make any such reference.

Chris McMullen said...

Anon:

Save the Greenie talking points. The enlightened majority doesn't buy into the "evil Bush administration ruining the planet" line from the fringe left.

The Kyoto treaty was voted down 99 to 1 in the Senate. It was and is a bad idea.

Bush just signed on to protect the world's largest marine sanctuary off Hawaii.

Bush has pushed for alternative fuel use.

Bush has pushed for tightened control of mercury emissions from power plants.

The EPA is still enforcing air and water standards.

People blame Bush for high gas prices, isn't driving less a good thing?

Moreover, global warming is a little tough to swallow when Oregon's having one of the coolest, wettest springs on record.

Dare!PDX said...

By the way Anon. I believe the lobbyists from the energy industry providing research that is varifiable are just as credible (and just as biased) as Al Gore. Al Gore is a loybbyist now as well and makes alot of damn money pitch ideas that hit a constituency. Don't think that anyone on a camera pushing an agenda that is political isn't biased.

Al Gore's message about global warming is directly linked to specific policies that have a heavy role for government, taxation, and many other new-deal era style programs. In essence he is using global warming as a reason for democrat policies.

I personally believe that global warming and climate change models are something that we address as the stakes are so high. Regardless though many of the proposals I've seen come from Gore over the last few decades are bad ideas period - he's just connecting global warming as an excuse to invent elaborate political systems way beyond the scope of curbing CO2. There are many proven ways to curb these emmissions below 1991 levels pragmatically without huge wholesale government intervention.

The biggest being calling many third world nations on their unfair trade and production practices. Something Al's never really been seen doing (Gore being mr. chinese donor scandal and all).