Democrats & Liberals Archives

Have You Heard the Inconvenient Truth?

The Democratic man of renown, Al Gore, is causing a big buzz with his new documentary called “An Inconvenient Truth” that does a gripping job of demonstrating that global warming is real and that we must face it and do something immediately if we are to save ourselves. The revived Al Gore is so convincing that Big Oil will be running ads to counteract his efforts.

Although I have not seen the movie, Franklin Foer, editor of The New Republic has. And he gushes:

"I hope this doesn't sound too Arianna-like. But last night, I went to a screening of the Al Gore movie. And I found myself walking out in a strange mood. I had just seen a movie featuring a politician ... and there wasn't a trace of snark or cynicism coursing through my body. The film has genuine rhetorical power. It builds an incredibly frightening case without hints of fear-mongering or over-wrought moments. Because Gore is truly self-deprecating, the movie doesn't ever feel like an ego-trip--although it does occasionally look like a giant product placement for Apple. At any rate, I walked out of the movie and decided to sell my car and begin otherwise preparing for our planet's impending doom. I know this praise isn't so unexpected coming from TNR. But I think the movie has the potential to become a seminal political document--a cinematic Silent Spring. It will certainly change elite opinion."

The film's praise by Arianna Huffington, to which Foer refers, was indeed effusive. It appears that practically everyone who sees it sings its praise. Except Republicans. Republicans do not believe that there is such a thing as global warming, do not believe that man has anything to do with the melting of icebergs and that Gore is presenting a hoax.

The Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI), to which ExxonMobil has contributed over $1.6 million since 1998, is fighting Al Gore with advertising. According to ThinkProgress:

"Today, the Competitive Enterprise Institute (CEI) will unveil two 60-second TV ads focusing on what it calls 'global warming alarmism and the call by some environmental groups and politicians to reduce fossil fuel and carbon dioxide emissions.' The ad, which will be aired in more than a dozen cities across the country, is being released just a week before the May 24th opening (in LA and NYC) of Al Gore’s new movie on global warming, An Inconvenient Truth."

Tom Cirigliano, a spokesman for ExxonMobil, tells us why the company supports CEI:

"We want to support organizations that are trying to broaden the debate. … There is this whole issue that no one should question the science of global climate change that is ludicrous. That’s the kind of dark-ages thinking that gets you in a lot of trouble."

Broaden the debate? There is no longer any debate among scientists. Practically all agree that the burning of fossil fuels is causing global warming whose effects will be devastating. I'm afraid that ExxonMobil is using "dark-ages thinking," not Gore.

I plan to see the movie and I hope you do too. Even if we find the truth inconvenient, we must face it.

Posted by Paul Siegel at May 19, 2006 5:55 PM
Comments
Comment #149561

First, anytime a pollitition is involved, I’m wary.
Second,not all Republicans disagree with the idea that fossile fuels contribute to global warming.

The idea that it’s the only cause is silly. Large cities that have reduced emmisions (such as LA) have seen a reduction in air polution. But the ice burgs are still melting. Air standards in this country have improved dramaticly but still the earth’s temperature continues to rise. Other countries have far worse records when it comes to air standards. There are theories that suggest that the earth goes through cycles and that warming is one of them as is global cooling - resulting in ice ages.

The point is, Al Gore is impassioned. That’s alright. But that doesn’t mean that his movie is the only truth or that he is even completely correct. If a Republican had done the same movie, I wonder how you’d review it…if you’d even see it…Politics should be left out of this. It is possible to have an opinion on scientific theory that is not based on your political agenda. Give it a try.

Posted by: Ilsa at May 19, 2006 6:16 PM
Comment #149562

“Large cities that have reduced emmisions (such as LA) have seen a reduction in air polution. But the ice burgs are still melting…”

And this exactly proves what?

1 - it’s not a simple city by city problem - it’s global (ie, global warming)

2 - the effects do not dissappear overnight… green house gases dift and collect… and they stick around for quite some time.

3 - you are also referring (as far as I know) to the emissions of cars, which is a large, but by no means the largest contributor to green house gases.

Posted by: tony at May 19, 2006 6:29 PM
Comment #149567

The real problem with global warming is that most people don’t see it as a problem at all. If it doesn’t effect them in their day-to-day lives, they simply don’t care. America is the most irresponsible, me-first, instant gratification addicted society ever. This applies to everything: finance, environment, equal opportunity, everything. This works for both parties. Tella bunch of lefties out in L.A. that we’re building a governement drug rehab in Beverly Hills and se ehow supportive they are. Tell the richies in Houston that we need to put a refinery up next door to their mansion and watch them turn into environmentalists. It is a very slim minority that actually votes and lobbies towards the ideals that they think will better the whole, whether they believe in a conservative or liberal standpoint. Most people vote their personal interests, and it is destroying this country.

Posted by: David S at May 19, 2006 6:51 PM
Comment #149569

Higher prices for energy and more nuclear power. If you are not willing to take these steps, you are not serious about global warming, no matter how much you like Al Gore.

The “big oil” companies don’t use the energy - you do. You demand cheap energy and then try to pass your guilt feelings on to others.

You cannot legislate a solution. Or more correctly, any legislation that works WILL raise the price of energy and use more nuclear energy.

So this Republican believes the evidence supports the idea of global warming and the probability the humans have causes some of it. The question is what are we gonna do. Talk does nothing.

Higher prices and more nuclear power is what you DO.

Posted by: Jack at May 19, 2006 7:09 PM
Comment #149575

“You cannot legislate a solution. Or more correctly, any legislation that works WILL raise the price of energy and use more nuclear energy.”

You can legislate PART of the solution, Jack.
It’s called CAFE standards. Simple math, (just a hypothetical example), if you double the average MPG, you’ll halve the emmisions created by passenger vehicles.
The republicans have dropped the ball on CAFE, and passed tax breaks encouraging large SUV ownership.
Sorry, it IS a partisan issue when one side is pushing AGAINST a solution.

Posted by: norby at May 19, 2006 7:24 PM
Comment #149594

>>Higher prices and more nuclear power is what you DO.

Posted by: Jack at May 19, 2006 07:09 PM

Or…not…

Posted by: Marysdude at May 19, 2006 9:04 PM
Comment #149599

Marys

Then you don’t care about global warming and/or would rather blame someone than solve the problem.

implementing solutions sometimes are harder than talking about solutions.

I am calling the blue bluff and I find few takers.

Posted by: Jack at May 19, 2006 9:14 PM
Comment #149602

Norby

The price will cut it too and much faster. I know liberals like to think there is a painless solution. If WE can just make THEM do something WE will be fine. Not true. Face the reality of the situation and we will all be better off.

Price worked last September. It worked last month. It worked since the first oil crisis.

When prices fell during the 1990s, consumption went up. People drove more. In fact, if everyone drove only as much now as they did in 1970, we would not have much of a problem.

Posted by: Jack at May 19, 2006 9:20 PM
Comment #149618

Car and truck exhaust is the #1 contributer to global warming in America.

Since the early 90’s the overall miles per gallon have gone down. CAFE standards have been lowered and simply ignored by this administraition year in and year out. It’s all part of the strategy. The strategy of consumption.

Since Bush took office the price of oil has DOUBLED. What a shocker!! An failed oil man? Bigger profits for oil companies? Bigger profits for the Saudis? You can see how much he is broken up about it. He simply had to force himself to add more tax breaks and handouts to the oil companies in the last energy bill. Another shocker!!

Bush starts a war in Iraq. We all the know the reasons he wanted this war. Of course, in those many reasons is oil. Some say the 2nd largest reserves are under that country. But Bush didn’t invade to TAKE the oil supply from Iraqis. Bush invaded to CONTROL the oil supply. By controlling I mean shuting it way down. By doing so he has made every other country’s oil more valuable, thereby the overall oil prices will rise. In Iraq, 3 years later, they are barely pumping half as much oil as they did before the war. So don’t be fooled, the mission was accomplished!!

Solution: Sorry, there will be no short term solution. Bush and the his rubber-stamp Congress made sure of that. They would like to suggest some more tax cuts. How’s an extra 40 bucks a year grab ya?? Don’t worry the CEOs will be getting a lot more than that.

So, sell the SUV, get on the waiting list to buy a hybrid. Drive less. Dare I say, conserve. It’s going to be a long, hot and expensive summer.

Posted by: Matthew at May 19, 2006 10:20 PM
Comment #149622

Jack your right higher energy prices will only help at this point. Nuclear must be seriously considered as well as wind and solar. Personally I would like to get off the grid so solar would do for me. Im hoping now that China is involved with solar the costs will come down.

Posted by: j2t2 at May 19, 2006 10:29 PM
Comment #149623

Mattew

You are right about the prices. We will conserve when it costs more. We will use alternatives when oil is NOT the cheapest alternative.

But you cannot blame THIS administration. The big drop in effieciency growth came in the 1990s. Who was president back then? It is a bipartisan problem. Energy efficiency comes with price.

J2

Prices for wind and solar are becomming more competitive, but they will never be that cheap. These things require maintenance.

An interesting “new” fuel is methane

Posted by: Jack at May 19, 2006 10:38 PM
Comment #149632

>>Then you don’t care about global warming and/or would rather blame someone than solve the problem.

implementing solutions sometimes are harder than talking about solutions.

I am calling the blue bluff and I find few takers.

Posted by: Jack at May 19, 2006 09:14 PM

Please don’t speak for me on this issue…you don’t have a clue.

I suspect every parrott who dittos Cheney/Bush. Nuclear Power may very well be the wave of the future (until there is no more future), but that may not be the best alternative at this point. Thinking up new and better ideas is a though job, but American ingenuity may triumph in the end (if Cheney/Bush hasn’t completely distroyed our education system yet). Please remember that when fuel prices rise the only people who can’t drive are the servants, and the only people who freeze in winter are the poor and elderly.


Posted by: Marysdude at May 19, 2006 11:02 PM
Comment #149635

There is a great deal of debate among scientists about global warming. Since global warming changed from science to religious dogma, dissent is death to a scientists career and the news media give it short shrift.
Nothing stays the same forever, including the earth’s climate. The geologic record shows that climate has changed drastically, both warming and cooling, many times in history. The Medieval Warm Period (1000-1300AD) was much warmer than it is now or is projected to be by the chicken littles. Must have been all those cars and heavy industry. Climate should be expected to warm, considering the fact that we are at the tail end of an ice age.
We have barely begun to learn the different mechanisms and cycles that control climate and how they work together. The sun, ocean and atmospheric currents, even the moon all affect it.I have no doubt that there are many more to be discovered.
Now CO2 is being called a pollutant. It is not. It is a nutrient. Even with the slight increase in CO2 levels that have been measured, trace gasses, which is anything not oxygen or nitrogen, are still about 2% of the atmosphere. Hardly a thick, heat trapping blanket.
Global warming is a hoax. When you look at the anti industrial, socialistic and authoritarian “solutions” being proposed, you see the motivation for it. Global warming isn’t about “saving the planet”, it’s a misanthropic effort to control the people.

Matthew,
Congress passes laws, not the president. Study the Constitution sometime.
The increase in oil prices isn’t being caused by a reduced supply. In fact, Saudi Arabia had to cut production because we couldn’t use all the oil they were pumping.

Posted by: traveller at May 19, 2006 11:11 PM
Comment #149636

Jack,

“But you cannot blame THIS administration. The big drop in effieciency growth came in the 1990s. Who was president back then? It is a bipartisan problem. Energy efficiency comes with price.”

All I know is both policies were bad and I do know the price……. it’s $3.65 a gallon! (Actually I’m with you about how higher gas prices are a good thing in the long run.) But the office that could do something about it now is the current one. Even up to today, they’ve turned their back on any changes to their efficiency polices.

But the thing is, that they don’t beleive global warming is a bad thing. So maybe that’s the problem right there.

Posted by: Matthew at May 19, 2006 11:11 PM
Comment #149638

Its not just the dittoheads that think nuclear power is appropriate for the forseeable future, it may help the poor and elderly to keep from freezing in the winter. While not perfect it is an answer and could be implemented. If we are to get over our oil addiction what other energy source will do it, coal?

Posted by: j2t2 at May 19, 2006 11:15 PM
Comment #149640

traveller

“Congress passes laws, not the president. Study the Constitution sometime. The increase in oil prices isn’t being caused by a reduced supply. In fact, Saudi Arabia had to cut production because we couldn’t use all the oil they were pumping.”

1. This Congress is a rubber stamp for this President. You know that. He gets everything he wants in the laws he signs. And if he doesn’t, he just adds a signing statement to say he doesn’t have to follow this law.

2. Saudi Arabia cut the production alright. That’s an insurance measure to keep the price up. If there’s a drop in the system, having little in the reserves, is a good way to keep the price nice and high.

Posted by: Matthew at May 19, 2006 11:34 PM
Comment #149653

This is from the “Gore power” discussion in the Independent column. It’s soooo good I’ve got to repeat it - thank you Vihar Sheth

Gore thinks nuclear energy won’t play that large of a roll in our future. Why? He says:

There are serious problems that have to be solved, and they are not limited to the long-term waste-storage issue and the vulnerability-to-terrorist-attack issue. Let’s assume for the sake of argument that both of those problems can be solved.

We still have other issues. For eight years in the White House, every weapons-proliferation problem we dealt with was connected to a civilian reactor program. And if we ever got to the point where we wanted to use nuclear reactors to back out a lot of coal — which is the real issue: coal — then we’d have to put them in so many places we’d run that proliferation risk right off the reasonability scale. And we’d run short of uranium, unless they went to a breeder cycle or something like it, which would increase the risk of weapons-grade material being available.

When energy prices go up, the difficulty of projecting demand also goes up — uncertainty goes up. So utility executives naturally want to place their bets for future generating capacity on smaller increments that are available more quickly, to give themselves flexibility. Nuclear reactors are the biggest increments, that cost the most money, and take the most time to build.

In any case, if they can design a new generation [of reactors] that’s manifestly safer, more flexible, etc., it may play some role, but I don’t think it will play a big role.

After hearing that nuclear energy isn’t going to provide the boon so many people had hoped, Roberts asked for Gore’s opinion on ethanol.

Cellulosic ethanol. Different from corn-based ethanol. I think it is going to be a huge new source of energy, particularly for the transportation sector. You’re going to see it all over the place. You’re going to see a lot more flex-fuel vehicles. You’re going to see new processes that utilize waste as the source of energy, so there’s no petroleum consumed in the process — that makes the energy balance uniformly positive, so you can regrow it and it does become, in a real sense, renewable. You may also begin to see a new generation of fuel cells that run on cellulosic ethanol, where you can grow your own electricity. I think it’s going to play a huge role.

The post also goes into why corn-based ethanol won’t work, and is really a political play, not a working alternative energy solution. Sorry to re-post it, but it seemed germane.

Posted by: Max at May 20, 2006 12:09 AM
Comment #149655

The nuclear thing is really a business thing too, not a real solution, and we’re at the point where we need that. We need politicians to tell us realistic solutions that will actually be good for this country. Fat chance that will ever come from Bush.

Posted by: Max at May 20, 2006 12:12 AM
Comment #149656

Gore should do ads. “Brought to you by the guy more of you voted for president.” Seriously, every time someone says that the Democratic party is weak, they should remember Gore actually won, and the next time Bush was a war-time incumbent, historically unbeatable.

Posted by: Max at May 20, 2006 12:14 AM
Comment #149658

>>and the next time Bush was a war-time incumbent, historically unbeatable.

Posted by: Max at May 20, 2006 12:14 AM

A war of his own making, I might add…

Posted by: Marysdude at May 20, 2006 12:21 AM
Comment #149670

I agree with Max and Gore: nuclear power is not the ultimate answer to all our (energy) questions.

1.) Uranium sources are as limited as oil sources are. I’m sure I’m still alive when both runs out.
(Only ultra pure uranium orc can be used for the complicated enrichment process. enrichment needs a lot of energy. only top level orc can be processed without spending more energy on enrichment than actually can be produced by nuclear fission)

2.) For every 100 watts energy produced in an nuclear power plant 40 watts energy in from of fosil fuels are burned. (mining the uranium orc, purefying it, trasporting it and of course the expensive enrichment process)

3.) Only 7 countries mine 90% of the worlds uranium:
Australia, Canada, Kazakhstan, Niger, Russia, Namibia, Uzbekistan.

I’m kinda worried about the relyability of the later 5.
Not a really good base to build a countries energiy policy on.

Posted by: Simon at May 20, 2006 12:45 AM
Comment #149680

Actually, I think nuclear is the correct short-term solution for power generation. We need to stop emitting greenhouse gasses right now, and nuclear is the only viable alternative right now.

But here’s the problem: nuclear plants are expensive and the clean infrastructure to replace it ASAP has a hefty initial price tag as well. Because of that, the market will never move us beyond petroleum until it’s far too late.

The market isn’t going to solve our global warming problem. Global warming will not generate a market force until after the effects become catastrophic.

If we’re going to significantly reduce greenhouse gasses in time to moderate the draught, famine, flooding, disease, and massive population shifts that global warming will bring, then the market needs to be directed. Right now.

That means higher CAFE standards, mandating flex-fuel capability for cars, subsidies for electric, flex-fuel and hydrogen transportation infrastructures, etc. — AND, it means building nuclear power plants as a stop-gap measure for the power industry while subsidizing development of large-scale solar, wind, wave, geothermal, and hydro power plants to get us beyond nuclear, petroleum, gas and coal plants.

But, that — like any alternative solution you want to propose — is just dreaming while Republicans control the government.

Posted by: American Pundit at May 20, 2006 1:15 AM
Comment #149684

There is hope.

International cooperation through the Montreal Protocol substantially slowed the introduction of CFC’s into the atmosphere, which seems to have saved the ozone layer. It was a very close thing. Chlorine was slightly more economical to Bromine, so DuPont produced chlorofluorocarbons instead of bromofluorocarbons. Turns out bromine was much, much more reactive with ozone. Had DuPont chosen bromine, they might have ended life on earth.

And Traveller, ozone exists in concentrations of less than 10 parts per million.

Fortunately, DuPont turned out to be a relatively responsible corporate citizen. No one knew about the reactive nature of CFC’s in teh atmosphere. But when it was understood, international cooperation occurred through the Montreal Protocol.

Exxon is a considerably different story.

AP, agreed, we will have to wait for Bush to leave. This is a fossil fuel administration in every sense of the word, and we are all cursed by Republican support for this Worst of All Presidents.

Traveller, Exxon thanks you. Bush thanks you. Their goal is not to disprove Global Warming.

“Pollutant” is a correct term in a scientific discussion, when a gas is added to the atmosphere. Do you remember that lake in Cameroon about 10 years ago, when 2000 people next to a lake mysteriously died? The lake released a huge bubble of carbon dioxide, so much that it displaced the oxygen, and everyone perished.

Carbon Dioxide concentration has increased from an average of 280 parts per million to 380 parts per million today, and that is enough for this greenhouse gas to cause a predictable increase in heat retained. CO2 concentrations are the highest in over 600,000 years, and CO2 persists in the atmosphere for decades, up to a century.

So it is already done. The only question is, how much more gas do we want to add to the fire?

Posted by: phx8 at May 20, 2006 1:49 AM
Comment #149686

To complete the thought, Exxon and the Bush administration do not need to disprove Climate Change. They seek to prevent actions which might interfere with profits.

Posted by: phx8 at May 20, 2006 1:53 AM
Comment #149695

Jack:

The “big oil” companies don’t use the energy - you do. You demand cheap energy and then try to pass your guilt feelings on to others.”

What kind of a crap argument is that?! That is sheer sophistry—of course they don’t use the energy, they just dictate the energy policy through their Republican mouthpieces in Washington. And have been for the last 30 years!
We as a nation are in this fix because the oil companies have throttled any alternative policies because of their almighty profits. Capitalism for the few, democracy for the powerful.
For this lack of foresight history will lay on the altar of free markets and greed the carcass of civilization—with a lot of indifference and laziness thrown in by the great unwashed, the American electorate.

Posted by: Tim Crow at May 20, 2006 3:46 AM
Comment #149696

I’m not sure I understand the Gore quote regarding nuclear proliferation. Building nuclear, non-breeder reactors in the U.S. will cause us to proliferate nuclear weapons to terrorist states? Huh??

Newsflash: we don’t dictate energy policy to other nations.

Posted by: gergle at May 20, 2006 4:39 AM
Comment #149705

>>Newsflash: we don’t dictate energy policy to other nations.

Posted by: gergle at May 20, 2006 04:39 AM

NEWSFLASH: We, because of our world economic domination, dictate a lot more than energy policy to other nations…

Posted by: Marysdude at May 20, 2006 7:00 AM
Comment #149706

NEWSFLASH: What do you think we’re doing in Iraq, if not dictating energy policy? Just how much more dictatorial can it get? Nuke ‘em?

Posted by: Marysdude at May 20, 2006 7:02 AM
Comment #149710

phx8,
I couldn’t care less about oil company profits or George Bush. I care only for the answer to one question-What is the truth?
Al Gore, the inventor of the internet and the inspiration for “Love Story”, has no crediblity. He’s a credulous boob prone to exaggeration. There have been climate scientists who say it’s ok to falsify results and exaggerate the effects of so-called greenhouse gasses to promote the global warming hypothesis. In the present politicized climate truth and integrity take a back seat to keeping one’s job.
CO2 is being labeled a pollutant as a general condition, not as in a freak occurence under very specific and rare circumstances.(btw- it was 1200 people at Lake Nyos)
An essential condition for life on Earth is called the carbon cycle. 186 billion tons of CO2 are cycled through the air, water and land every year in the carbon cycle. Of that amount, 6 billion tons is believed to be from human activity. CO2 doesn’t “persist” in the atmosphere, it cycles through it. All life would cease without it. The only measurable effect of the increase in CO2 concentration (it’s less than 100 ppm) is an increased rate of plant growth. This is a good thing.

Posted by: traveller at May 20, 2006 8:12 AM
Comment #149716
Car and truck exhaust is the #1 contributer to global warming in America.

Wrong. Have anything to back that up? No? Didn’t think so.

It might be the #1 ‘HUMAN’ contributor, perhaps. But since Humans account for about 3% of all greenhouse gasses, I don’t see any logical way that it can be the #1 contributor.

Get your head out of your partisanship behind.

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 9:09 AM
Comment #149717

“America is addicted to oil,” stated the (failed)ex oilman/decider drunkenly.Seriously,he sounded wasted when he said those words.Funny thing is,he was right.So why is he focusing on backburner issues?I’m sure he has lots of kick-the-habit tips for the American public…let’s hear ‘em!Oh right,he’s gonna go out and buy a Hybrid and spread the word.

Posted by: Theresa at May 20, 2006 9:11 AM
Comment #149731

I can’t wait to see this film. Al Gore has really come into his own as a public speaker since 2000. Despite the way that hard core conservatives always mock him, he’s become even more well liked in America than he was when he won the popular vote (and the election). I think it’s entirely possible that he’ll be a political force to be reckoned with again.
As for our energy problem:
No nukes people. Get real, please? If that is where we start, you know that “short term solution” is only going become a long term problem later. IMO it’d be better if we were open to EVERYTHING else but that — and we should be willing to heavily fund innovation across the entire spectrum of sensible alternatives.

Posted by: Adrienne at May 20, 2006 11:49 AM
Comment #149732

Let me say up front that I am no scientist and this is not a scientific post.

Several times over the past few years, the Science Channel (owned by the New York Times) has aired programs on the causes and affects of global warming. They have brought top scientists, including a couple of Nobel Prize winners, into the discussions.

Their conclusions so far?

1. Warming and cooling are part of the planet’s
natural cycle.

2. They all agree that human activity has contributed to this latest warming cycle, but cannot agree on the extent of that contribution.

3. There is no definitive method for determining the impact of the human contribution on future weather patterns. Current computer technology simply cannot produce a dependable weather model that far out. There are just too many variables.

But one of the most startling conclusions, at least to me, is that the destruction of the tropical rain forests may produce the most dramatic impact on the world’s weather than any other single human activity, and in a much shorter period of time.

Simply put, trees draw carbon dioxide from the air and return oxygen. The fewer trees, the more carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, the greater the greenhouse affect, the warmer the planet.

In short, the rain forests are the earth’s lungs. And without them, the earth will become very ill and that spells trouble for those parasites, including humans, who depend on her for survival.

Traveller is right about carbon dioxide cycling through the atmosphere.

The problem is that we are destroying the filter.

Posted by: ulysses at May 20, 2006 11:50 AM
Comment #149736

We should call global warming gay warming that way even the conservitives would be willing to do something for mother earth,or if we could fix it with big tax breaks for corperations.

Posted by: chris at May 20, 2006 12:18 PM
Comment #149738

I’m not sure I understand why people question whether humans are the cause of green house gases…??? Of course we don’t create all of the green house gases, but I don’t understand your point.

We live in a contained ecosystem - where everything is balanced. Green house gases are produced to allow our rock to maintain a very constant temperature. So, to a certain level, green house gases are good - and are provided by natural causes. The issue is that we humans have created huge sources of “unchecked” green house gases, and the problem is there is nothing to balance out this increase.

Also, I haven’t seen much discussion about our indelible surfaces. The largest human construction is our road system… second is probably our cities. This new surfaces hold in huge amounts of energy from the sun, and while they don’t accumulate enough to alter the overall temp. of our planet - they do create vast changes in our weather patterns. This, along with the heavy concentration of green house gases around our cities and roads create other major disruptions to our weather and our environment. Deserts are growing and rain forests and shrinking (and being depleted.) We are destroying are planet’s ability to cope with these increases - as well as creating problems with the general increase of global warming.

People who fail to be concerned with the issues we face no also fail to see who monumentally fast these problems might escalate. In math, they call this geometric progression. In other words, by the time you know for a fact that global warming is messing everything up and can notice the changes… we’re basically screwed (too late to fix it.)

Posted by: tony at May 20, 2006 12:25 PM
Comment #149739

“face no also fail to see who monumentally “

sorry - that should read

“face now also fail to see how monumentally”

Posted by: tony at May 20, 2006 12:31 PM
Comment #149740

Traveller,
According to Wikipedia, 1700- 1800 died in the Lake Nyos gassing. Another article by a geologist suggests 1700. I saw a source estimating 2000. Yet another says the official count was 1746. You say 1200.

“There have been climate scientists who say it’s ok to falsify results and exaggerate the effects of so-called greenhouse gasses to promote the global warming hypothesis. In the present politicized climate truth and integrity take a back seat to keeping one’s job.”

Cite an example. That is a dare. Most likely anyone making that claim is receiving more money from Exxon than any government job or research institute offers. What is the truth, Traveller? What is the truth?

You might save yourself some embarrassment by checking sources making such claims, if you can find one. Check the site www.exxonsecrets.org
then crosscheck with other sites. So-called scientists on the Exxon payroll are reluctant to admit just how much they take, but at least some of the pay-off is public information. Fair warning, Traveller- Watch out for names like Steve Milloy & Patrick Michaels. I have a field day when those names come up, and will hit that one out of the park.

The most recent findings by a Bush appointed panel of scientists find Global Warming is occurring, humans are contributing, and climate models appear to be correct.

Ulysses,
Look into the TRIFFID model from the Hadley Centre. The amazon rain forest more or less creates its own climate through transpiration. Global Warming will actually cause plants to have fewer stomata, or pores. Because of this, Global Warming will have the opposite effect expected; instead of spreading, the best guess is the amazon will collapse by mid-century.


Posted by: phx8 at May 20, 2006 12:39 PM
Comment #149741

” I know liberals like to think there is a painless solution. “

Should have known you’d be incapable of responding without the usual stereotyping tactics. The “FACTS” are that if CAFE regulations weren’t introduced, forcing manufacturers to raise MPG, we’d still be driving the boats of the 70’s.
Regulations drive innovations when the market isn’t set up to encourage them.
Price of gas going up will discourage driving, but will also hurt those that have no choice. Goods have to be trucked around, no avoiding that. People HAVE to drive to work since we’ve completely dropped the ball on mass transit. (my option would be to walk a mile, take 4 bus transfers and spend over an hour each way instead of 14minutes).
How bout you try responding to me without using a “liberal” stereotype accusation? IF your capable.

Posted by: Norby at May 20, 2006 12:59 PM
Comment #149743

“Al Gore, the inventor of the internet and the inspiration for “Love Story”, has no crediblity. He’s a credulous boob prone to exaggeration.”

Oh, the old tired Al Gore lies.
Traveller, why don’t you do a little research into both of these myths and you’ll realize that they were made up crap by the right wing political destruction machine and propogated by a lazy media. He never said either.
This board isn’t your typical Yahoo mouth breather site. This crap wont fly here.
You guys crack me up. The message scares you so much all you can think to do is attack the messenger.

Posted by: Norby at May 20, 2006 1:04 PM
Comment #149746

Marys

If you are for higher price and nuclear power, I am not speaking for you. Otherwise, whether you know it or not, I am.

Your paradigm is flawed. When prices go up, most people use less. When prices go up individuals have incentive to try new alternatives. When prices go up firms have interests in developing new technologies. Price is the means by which we allocate resources. If you don’t want that, you might consider rationing. That distributes resources “fairly” but does little to increase supplies or diversify demand.

Matthew
The prices create the incentives for efficiency. Energy intensity (use of energy per unit of GDP) has improved faster under Bush than under Clinton. You don’t recognize that the “policy” is the market, but that is what works.

Max

On the other side in my sources I have a post about methanol. I agree that corn based ethanol is probably not the way to go and methanol, with the use of new biotech enzymes, will be a big fuel in the future. But it will not replace nuclear power, which will need to take a bigger role. The French get 78% of their electricity from Nukes. We can do as well as the French, cant we?

Re Gore

He won the most votes in a very close election in 2000. But he didn’t win the electoral votes. That is our system. Besides, he did NOT win a MAJORITY. Neither did Clinton in either race. Bush in 2004 was the first to win a majority since … well Bush I.

Tim

You demand cheap fuel (maybe YOU don’t, but consumers do). Think of all the crying about the high prices. What do you think Kyoto or other similar things would do. They will raise prices. Everything else is sophistry.

Norby

We are not drive boat because the prices are higher. Why do people buy hybrids today? Why did SUVs become so much more popular in the 1990s? The answer to most questions is price.

And Gore as a messenger is not good. Usually attacking the messenger is not a good idea, but in Gores case, his credibility is so low that it makes little sense to listen to much of what he has to say.

Posted by: Jack at May 20, 2006 1:29 PM
Comment #149749
The “FACTS” are that if CAFE regulations weren’t introduced, forcing manufacturers to raise MPG, we’d still be driving the boats of the 70’s.

No, we drive cars with better gas mileage because people want them. CAFE standards also do nothing to prevent SUVs. The way the standards are written, they only pertain to the average MPG of all of the vehicles a car maker makes. So they just have one or two very high gas mileage models and still sell the lower gas mileage models. If the higher ones don’t sell the standards are no good at all.

It’s because we WANT higher gas mileage cars that they sell and the result is that over the past 30 years the emissions from our vehicles have dropped dramatically. There is really not much more to do there using current technologies, we need to find better ones and make them cost effective and practical. And companies are working on these issues now. You know, the evil companies that are the ones who discover these things, not the government…

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 1:40 PM
Comment #149752

Jack,

The French use nuclear energy? Then it must be for pussies, I’m totally against using it now.

No seriously… that’s your response? That answer makes me wanna barf my freedom fries. We should use it because the French do it? Isn’t their country a little smaller than ours? It reminds me of the Republican response to the lockbox idea - “Invest and save our money?!? Boring! Give it away as a handout to rich people!”

Gore’s reasons: security, that we’d quickly run out of uranium, that the risk of proliferating weapons would be too high, are so good that I’m convinced no one’s going to try the nuclear path, except maybe in a limited way.

Posted by: Max at May 20, 2006 2:18 PM
Comment #149753

“Why do people buy hybrids today? Why did SUVs become so much more popular in the 1990s? The answer to most questions is price. “

Answer to both questions is “MARKETING”. Period.
People buy SUV’s because they can’t bring themselves to buy what they really need, Minivans.
People buy hybrids for the sake of saying the drive a hybrid. It takes 5 years to save enough on gas to pay for the hybrid premium.

“but in Gores case, his credibility is so low that it makes little sense to listen to much of what he has to “

That’s the right wing’s view of Gore. If you actually listen to him speak, he’s very credible, articulate, and speaks from his heart. A refreshing reminder of what it was like to have qualified humans in the White House.
Too bad your bias doesn’t allow a valid opinion.

Posted by: Norby at May 20, 2006 2:27 PM
Comment #149754

I’m glad to see that most of you think we have a problem with global warming. Except for a few who rave against liberals and Democrats.

I, for one, am against nuclear power because of its potential, as Gore says, for proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Peaceful and military uses of nuclear energy are linked and even when “protection” is supplied a good technologist can get around the “protection.”

With nuclear energy we save our energy and kill our lives.

For the short term, we must reduce our dependence on oil through CAFE standards and through an integrated program of conservation. For the long term we need a 10-year Apollo-type program to develop new and decentralized energy sources. How can we get a guy like Bush to do such a thing?

Posted by: Paul Siegel at May 20, 2006 2:27 PM
Comment #149757

“No, we drive cars with better gas mileage because people want them”

Rhine, sorry, but your wrong. Gas mileage is a concern to about 20% of car buyers. Image is a concern of about 90%. THAT is why SUV’s sell. They are minivan surrogates. They project power and appeal to the vain.
MPG went up because of government mandates. Each accompanied by cries from the auto industry that the new regs were unattainable and would cause them to go bankrupt.

“It’s because we WANT higher gas mileage cars that they sell and the result is that over the past 30 years the emissions from our vehicles have dropped dramatically.”

Sorry, not really accurate. Emissions have dropped BECAUSE of gov. regulations mandating them, mostly from California’s lead. And mostly from the benefits of computer controlled ignition systems making combustion more efficient, and more effective catalytic converters.
Mileage averages have actually gone down in recent years because of the SUV craze.
And yes, I’m in the car business.

Posted by: Norby at May 20, 2006 2:57 PM
Comment #149760

LOL,

Paul,

First, Nuclear bombs and Nuclear energy are completely and totally different. You aren’t going to go into a nuclear power plant and turn it into a ‘bomb’.

Secondly, as typical, you ignore the ability of buisness to deal with, figure out and provide the solution. As they have almost all major inventions in the past. It’s an old song that I am amazed the democratic party still sings.

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 3:10 PM
Comment #149761

Norby,

I’m going to have to disagree a bit.

People who aren’t concerned about gas mileage are never going to buy a higher mileage vehicle. Until those vehicles are also powerful, functional and look good. CAFE standards won’t prevent that because as I pointed out before they are ‘averages’. The car companies can just make a few more models of cars, sell 10 a year and meet the new standards and do NOTHING to help prevent emissions.

And yes, when Japan started selling smaller cars with better gas mileage in the US, it was the American Car makers that wanted high tarrifs put in place to prevent their businesses from going under because … people were BUYING them. That’s when the gas mileage got better, through innovation of the Japanese car makers. It was the government, as usual, coming in on the back end of discovery and technological advances to mandate something that the industry was moving towards already, as they do in just about every case. The government does very little to ‘innovate’ (except perhaps in the case of NASA and mostly because scientists were left alone by the politicians) and are simply a reactionary force best served to protect our rights and otherwise get out of our way.

If you want lower gas mileage, why not just make it illegal to sell a car that has less than 25 MPG? Why call for an increase in CAFE standards that will do NOTHING to achieve that goal? OH yeah, because the democrats want nothing to do with solving problems, just making people think they will while leaving them in place to use for next election, all the while blaming the republicans for being the cause of the failures.

(And yes, the republicans do it too on their pet policies, it’s why this country has barely moved foward for the past 20 years.)

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 3:18 PM
Comment #149763

NOrby


Remember a couple things about marketing: New Coke and Edsel. In both those cases, some of the most powerful marketing firms and smartest marketing minds spent millions of dollars to market something people really want. Those products flopped. The late John Kenneth Galbraith asserted that firms controlled the marketplace and could sell what they wanted. He was wrong.

If you are in the car business, you may remember Edsels. You also know that marketing is a necessary but not sufficient ingredient in any sales. Does GM spend so much less than Toyota on marketing? How does that affect sales?

The price of oil clearly effects how much people drive even in the very short term of weeks and the type of vehicle they buy in the slightly longer term. Do you think a person should pay more if he/she wants to drive a “gas guzzler”. They do. And they pay more as the price rises.

Re Gore – I think he is sincere. He may have correctly diagnosed the problem. But he is the wrong messenger.

Beyond that, if you cost out what he advocates you will come back to what I am saying: the price of energy WILL rise. That is what Al Gore advocates. I agree with him. I just would prefer to do it more directly and in ways that allow more choice.

Paul

Synfuels. You remember the 1970s. We are already spending billions to develop alterative energy. We ALREADY HAVE alternative energy. The problem is that oil is currently one of the cheapest alternatives. That is why I really hope oil stays high. The price is on the way down. If it drops below $60 a barrel we will once again screw up the development of non oil alternatives. This happened before. During the CLINTON/GORE administration, we saw a renaissance of OIL because oil reached an ALL TIME LOW PRICE IN 1998. We should have taxed it up then.

CAFE standards are BS feel good. They do some good, but price would do the same thing a lot faster and more directly with a lot more flexibility. They also DO NOT ADDRESS HOW MUCH PEOPLE DRIVE. I drive a hybrid. I get 42 miles/gallon in the city (the EPA numbers are never right). What if I just choose to drive twice as much because I get such good mileage? If prices are low, I might choose to take more trips. A house far away from town becomes much more attractive. Only price will tell me (and make me pay) the real costs.

Rhinhold

Generally a agree with your post and I even agree about NASA except that it doesn’t really do very well anymore. It was an exception for a while, but think of all the big time NASA failures?

Posted by: Jack at May 20, 2006 3:47 PM
Comment #149765

It’s good to see the real winner of the 2000 Election back in the news. His SNL skit was great. Things really would be a whole lot different if he had been Pres the last 5+ years.

Posted by: PoliticalCritic at May 20, 2006 4:18 PM
Comment #149766

To generalize, most folks try to boil this argument down to Public Sector vs. Private Sector. In general, dems think that Corporate America is the entire problem, while the government is the entire solution; GOP’ers think that government is the entire problem, and Corporate America is the entire solution.

Guess what - neither is entirely correct. Corporate America is NOT trying to erode the quality of our environment as their raison d’etre. They are trying to make a profit, and will do everything permitted by law and by the consumer in order to make that profit. They do this very well. It is up to government to 1) allow corporations to continue to make a profit but 2) structure the system so that they can make a profit without degrading the environment. Some firms already try to do this - a lot of financial services firms (Bank of America, JPMorgan) have well-articulated environmental policies. Companies like Exxon, however, instead of putting their corporate muscle into developing an environmentally sustainable business, are putting their brainpower to work defending their legacy investments in polluting technologies (hence their investment in CEI and weasels like Steven Milloy). This is an opportunity for the consumer to send companies like this a message - Dont’ buy gas-guzzlers. Don’t fuel up at Exxon stations. Fuel up at companies that are at least trying to invest in a green future. Oil companies like Chevron and BP, while far from perfect, are at least trying to shift their businesses in positive directions and are far more worthy of your consumer dollar than Exxon.

There is no one answer to this problem. Unless we cut through the partisan nonsense and get the public sector, private sector and individual consumers working together, the problem will never be solved. Unfortunately we have career politicians on both sides of the aisle who are more concerned with getting re-elected than working towards workable solutions, and we have a public press more concerned with fomenting rancorous debate than with educating the public about these important issues.

Posted by: Jim at May 20, 2006 4:41 PM
Comment #149768

“The car companies can just make a few more models of cars, sell 10 a year and meet the new standards and do NOTHING to help prevent emissions.”

The CAFE standards are sales weighted, meaning that your above scenario isn’t accurate. It DOES mean that if no one buys the fuel efficient models, the manufacturer faces penalties. The incentive is to increase MPG across the board on all models. New technology CAN make that happen. The new Corvette, for example, gets 28mpg on the hiway.

“If you are in the car business, you may remember Edsels.”
I’m not NEARLY that old!


“You also know that marketing is a necessary but not sufficient ingredient in any sales. Does GM spend so much less than Toyota on marketing? How does that affect sales?”

Toyota sells several models of SUV. Including some large, ineficient ones.
The SUV marketing trend was industry wide. When I talk to people hell bent on getting a large SUV, they usually are impossible to switch to a car. The reasons they give are usually illogical. They think they’re safer. They aren’t.
They think they need the room. Minivans and Station wagons have as much or more usable room.
They think they need it to tow their jetskis, etc. Usually it’s total overkill. Most minivans will tow 5000lbs.
I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen people drive off with payments they can’t afford just because they HAD to have a Tahoe, or Expedition, when a nice Windstar or Caravan would have met their needs at half the price and 50% better MPG.


Posted by: Norby at May 20, 2006 4:56 PM
Comment #149769

“Why call for an increase in CAFE standards that will do NOTHING to achieve that goal? OH yeah, because the democrats want nothing to do with solving problems, just making people think they will while leaving them in place to use for next election, all the while blaming the republicans for being the cause of the failures.”

Rhiney,

CAFE standards are SALES WEIGHTED. That means they are based on average sales of each model. You cant make a single model that gets 90mpg and have it fulfill your CAFE requirements unless it actually sells in large numbers.
Thus, raising CAFE WILL force mfrs. to produce more fuel efficient models that people actually want to buy.
Your petty partisan shots are getting tiresome.

Posted by: norby at May 20, 2006 5:03 PM
Comment #149770

Jack,

Yes, that’s the price for more and more government involvement into the progams. When it was just the scientists trying to make the impossible possible, it worked well. Once the contractors and politicians got involved… *sigh*

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 5:13 PM
Comment #149771

Jack,

I agree with some of what you are saying here. Higher prices and free market economics would drive alternative energy and conservation. Two points that I would like to correct… President Carter passed and funded an alternative fuel bill. Reagan and the “Reds” (Repubs) defunded it. We would be far ahead of where we are now if the “Reds” would have left it alone. Number two: The problem with depending on the free market to fix this (and all other) problems, is that there no way to expense the real cost of fossil fuels. For example, the price of gasoline does not reflect the cost of maintaining an oversized military in order to protect America’s “vital national interest” in maintaining access to oil. The price of gasoline does not reflect the cost from global warming related massive hurricanes - like Katrina. There is of coarse, no scientific way of knowing that any particular hurricane was the direct result of global warming. But we do know that global warming will cause a greater number of massive hurricanes - so which ones and how much damage - what percentage of flood insurance should be paid through gasoline taxes? What percentage of our home owners insurance for tornadoes should be paid from gasoline taxes? What percentage of our military should be paid for through gasoline taxes? What percentage of our health insurance for cancer and asthma should be paid for through gasoline taxes? So, my point is, if the price of gasoline was going to reflect the real cost of gasoline, the price should probably be $15 to $20 dollars per gallon. Since we have no way of assessing the real cost of gasoline, it is appropriate for the government to step in and protect the real interest of the American people through its regulatory powers.

Posted by: Ray Guest at May 20, 2006 5:17 PM
Comment #149773

Petty partisan? What partisan do you think I am? If I am wrong about something, that’s entirely different than being partisan, don’t you think?

Or is it just that I disagree with you that you have a problem with?

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 5:23 PM
Comment #149779

“OH yeah, because the democrats want nothing to do with solving problems, just making people think they will while leaving them in place to use for next election, all the while blaming the republicans for being the cause of the failures.”

That’s being partisan - even if you use it as a generalization or simply to attack. You are being partisan. (No one said you were a Party man… just that you speak from a partisan point of view.)

Posted by: tony at May 20, 2006 6:26 PM
Comment #149783

No, that’s a perception of the party based on decades of observation (and former membership).

I can give, and have, given detailed examples of how the current leadership of the party does this. And in the same breath I pointed out the Republicans doing it as well, with the same firsthand knowledge.

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 8:53 PM
Comment #149786

Again - I never said you supported a particular party, but you attack based on certain parties - and that is being partisan.

Posted by: tony at May 20, 2006 9:28 PM
Comment #149788

phx8

How reliable a certain model is depends on who you are talking to. The model you cited is just one of many.

The Scripps Institution of Oceanography website has some excellent data on climate modeling and how reliable the science is.

But one thing we can agree on is that the planet is getting warmer and the destruction of the rain forest is real.

The results for all living things on the planet will be nothing less than catastrophic.

Posted by: ulysses at May 20, 2006 9:41 PM
Comment #149792

traveller,

Al Gore, the inventor of the internet and the inspiration for “Love Story”, has no crediblity.
Wow. Two lies in one attack.

1. Al Gore never claimed that he invented the internet. The internet grew from Arpanet. And Gore championed that growth. As a US Senator, he fought for the funding that caused Arpanet to grow into what is now the internet. Oh, by the way, the “invented the internet” smear came first from a Repugnican press release.
2. Gore never claimed that Love Story was based on him and Tipper. He told a reporter from Time Magazine that he’d read an interview in a Nashville newspaper with Eric Segal, the author of Love Story. The paper quoted Segal as saying that Love Story was based on Gore and his wife Tipper. But the paper got the quote wrong. Segal ACTUALLY said that the lead character in Love Story was based in part on Al Gore and in part on Gore’s college roommate, Tommy Lee Jones. The hatemonger wrong wing attack machine twisted Gore’s truthful statement about something he’d read into yet another libelous smear.

It’s you who has no credibility, traveller.

Posted by: ElliottBay at May 20, 2006 10:34 PM
Comment #149797

I talked about this in great lengths in other posts , the bromochlrodifluoromethanes, are used for fire prevention, they are not used as a refrigerant. also they do not remove as much heat, and that is what the name of the game is, now freon 12 or dichlorodifluoromethane is a true refrigerant, and has been used for over fifty years, and has a ozone depletion factor of 0.82. very high . the safer r134a is the replacement for r 12.and that is great. it is used in all new cars. but the real problem, is that still today 90% of walk in freezers and commercial and office buildings and rail cars and everthing big, is still on r12 . r134a does not remove as much heat as r12, so the whole system has to be replaced from the ground up! r12 is still recyclable .also they buy it from third world countries , these old systems leak. fact is, it is going to take much longer to replace r12. than you realize. and the cost to retrofit to r134a will be out of this world.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at May 20, 2006 10:54 PM
Comment #149798

Ray

Carter’s synfuel debacle was enacted before we worried about greenhouse gases. They were working mostly on things like developing oil shale or making gas out of coal. Even if they had succeeded, we would still have the same general problem we have today. Maybe even more intractable since if successful we would have lower cost high carbon fuels.

And Katrina was NOT caused by global warming for the simple reason that it has not yet warmed the ocean waters enough yet. I have heard NO scientist claim the hurricanes were caused by warming, although lots of pundits and politicians have done. Greater hurricanes are still a potential problem, one for tomorrow not yesterday.

As for asthma and cancer, the air is cleaner, much cleaner, now than it was 30 years ago. So we need to explain why asthma has risen when the air quality improved. I am for higher prices and I understand the externalities, but we cannot blame oil for everything. Replacing coal with oil was a big improvement in our air.

Norby

Read about the Edsels. You probably actually remember New Coke. It was not that long ago. There are many cases of marketing muscle not selling product and many others of product selling w/o marketing muscle. You remember the Four Ps of marketing. Product, Price, Place & Promotion. All four are important. Promotion alone will not do it.

Posted by: Jack at May 20, 2006 10:55 PM
Comment #149801
Again - I never said you supported a particular party, but you attack based on certain parties - and that is being partisan.

Err, no, attacking a party is not partisan. Supporting a particular party is.

adj 1: devoted to a cause or party [syn: partizan] [ant: nonpartisan] 2: adhering or confined to a particular sect or denomination or party;

So, attacking someone or something because of my ‘party beliefs’ only is a partisan attack. Pointing out a flaw in a political party, unless I was doing so ONLY because of MY political beliefs, is not.

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 11:09 PM
Comment #149802

For example the writer of this article states:

Republicans do not believe that there is such a thing as global warming, do not believe that man has anything to do with the melting of icebergs and that Gore is presenting a hoax.

Now, this is partisan. He is presenting this straw man because he believes it to be true because of his partisan beliefs. Defined as such, global warming exists. It has to or we wouldn’t be here. It is usually a good thing. Had the author been more select in his wording, like saying ‘Republicans do not believe that the cost to this society to attempt to stave off the increase in global warming recently is worth the results that it would achieve’ then he would be making a criticism of a party. But he overstates and misrepresents the facts in order to expand his own political view.

I hope the difference is clear now, if not let me know and we can continue to debate it. :)

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 20, 2006 11:12 PM
Comment #149815

Owl Gore wouldn’t know anything about truth if it bit him in the face.
In fact it did in 2000 but the idiot still thinks he was elected.
The inconvenient truth for him is he wasn’t. But then ALL truth is inconvenient for him.

Posted by: Ron Brown at May 21, 2006 12:05 AM
Comment #149816

sorry if i missed it somewhere, in these posts. but close to 40% of our oxygen comes from those rainforests, we all know that many thousand of acres are cleared everyday from this planet never to be replaced. this is not the movie total recall.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at May 21, 2006 12:14 AM
Comment #149821

You all know that all the regulation on big business with the tall smoke stacks had been canceled out by bush and co. to help big business. The EPA has fought long and hard to keep those regulations in place.They fought for rain forests and national parks for the wild life, that helps keep a balance in the world.
Now they are to start drilling for oil in Alaska. Oil drilling rigs are some of the most earth killing things there are. Leaving their salt water lakes and causing nothing to grow there again.I grew up and lived in Texas where a lot of oil is producted. Nothing grows again where the oils wells have been drilled. the land round them is dead. Bare earth , and pump after pump is all you see in oil country after the oil co. leaves. That adds to global warming in the worse way.

Posted by: Suzieq at May 21, 2006 1:00 AM
Comment #149827

Rhinehold,

First, Nuclear bombs and Nuclear energy are completely and totally different. You aren’t going to go into a nuclear power plant and turn it into a ‘bomb’.

To quote my previous post:

We’d run short of uranium, unless they went to a breeder cycle or something like it, which would increase the risk of weapons-grade material being available.

All you’ve got to do is read.

Posted by: Max at May 21, 2006 2:27 AM
Comment #149832

Marysdude,

dic.tate v. dic·tat·ed, dic·tat·ing, dic·tates v. tr.

1. To say or read aloud to be recorded or written by another: dictate a letter.
2.
1. To prescribe with authority; impose: dictated the rules of the game.
2. To control or command: “Foreign leaders were… dictated by their own circumstances, bound by the universal imperatives of politics” (Doris Kearns Goodwin).


v. intr.

1. To say or read aloud material to be recorded or written by another: dictated for an hour before leaving for the day.
2. To issue orders or commands.


n. (dktt)

1. A directive; a command.
2. A guiding principle: followed the dictates of my conscience.

We may force choices through economics, but we do not command policy. Even in Iraq there is choice on energy. We may not agree to finance other choices. I agree Iraq amounts to Imperial rule at this point, but I don’t see where we dictate energy policy there or anywhere else. If you have examples, please elucidate.

My point was China and India are the up and coming major polluters. We definitely don’t dictate their policies.

Posted by: gergle at May 21, 2006 2:51 AM
Comment #149850

phx8,
One scientist who has advocated lying is James Hansen.
The articles detailing the advocacy of lies and exaggeration that I was going to reference are no longer accessible. As I cannot cite the specific information I must cede the argument.
I had no intention of citing Steve Milloy or Patrick Michaels but I am curious why you tried to intimidate me regarding them. Please cite whatever scary stuff you were referring to.

Elliot,
When did Time magazine change from leftist bastion to right wing smear machine?

Posted by: traveller at May 21, 2006 5:30 AM
Comment #149854

>>My point was China and India are the up and coming major polluters. We definitely don’t dictate their policies.

Posted by: gergle at May 21, 2006 02:51 AM

No, we led by example, and created an envy pool. How else would we expect envious nations to act, when they have our history to study?

Posted by: Marysdude at May 21, 2006 8:09 AM
Comment #149861

Elliot & Norby,
“During my service in the United States Congress I took the initiative in creating the Internet”
Al Gore, March 9, 1999 interview with Wolf Blitzer on CNN
FYI-The Internet was in use before Gore was elected to Congress.

“Around midnight, after a three-city tour of Texas last month, the Vice President came wandering back to the press compartment of Air Force Two. Sliding in behind a table with the two reporters covering him that day, he picked slices of fruit from their plates and spent two hours swapping opinions about movies and telling stories about old chums like Erich Segal, who, Gore said, used Al and Tipper as models for the uptight preppy and his free-spirited girlfriend in Love Story; and Gore’s Harvard roommate Tommy Lee Jones, who played the roommate of the Gore-like character in the movie version of Segal’s book.” (Time, 12/15/97)

Posted by: traveller at May 21, 2006 8:52 AM
Comment #149862

“So, attacking someone or something because of my ‘party beliefs’ only is a partisan attack. Pointing out a flaw in a political party, unless I was doing so ONLY because of MY political beliefs, is not.”

No - you attack based on generalizations and assumptions based on a preset prejudice against a particular party. You also attack one party while giving the opposing party a pass on the exact same issues. That makes you partisan.

(It’s like being racist - you can either hate a specific race or soley support a specific race, you’re still a racist.)

Posted by: tony at May 21, 2006 8:53 AM
Comment #149878

To the people who think Al Gore was elected in 200,
After the 2000 election with all the controversy about the results, I was curious about who was right. I knew from civics class in grade school that the president isn’t elected by popular vote; he is elected by the Electoral College.
I then did something that is apparently a radical, almost incomprehensible feat. I looked it up.
First, I went to the U.S. Constitution to see what it said.
Article II, section 1 and the 12th Amendment state how the president shall be elected. There is no mention of a popular vote.
The laws of each state govern the elections in that state and with Florida being the battleground, I looked up Florida election laws in effect on the day of the election.
Title IX governs elections in Florida. Sections 101, 102 and 104 are relevent to the dispute.
Under the law in effect on the day of the election, George Bush was legitimately elected president in 2000.
Don’t take my word for it-look it up yourself, if you can remove your partisan blinders.

Posted by: traveller at May 21, 2006 10:21 AM
Comment #149899
No - you attack based on generalizations and assumptions based on a preset prejudice against a particular party. You also attack one party while giving the opposing party a pass on the exact same issues. That makes you partisan.

1) You need to reread my statement, in the next line after your original quote of mine I say “And the Republicans do the same thing with their pet issues which is why the country hasn’t moved forward in the past 20 years.” I would love to have you explain to me how that is ‘giving the other party a pass’?

2) I am making no ‘generalizations’, I am explaining how the party works, through the leadership. As I said before, we can cite example after example of this, just as we can with Republicans using fear as a tactic to get elected. If I had made that assertion would you be so willing to call me partisan or just ‘wise’?

3) You can’t recreate the word partisan to fit your own definition. Words have specific meanings and to try to change them muddies the conversation. Partisan, as I explained by using the dictionary, does not mean being critical of a political party.

4) My criticism of the Democratic party is not ‘present’ or a ‘generalization’. I speak from having BEEN a democrat, as I pointed out and you fail to read or acknowledge.

5) Why can’t you just admit that in this case you are wrong to try and label me with a ‘partisan’ brush when I am clearly not based on the meaning of the word? Or are people just not allowed to criticize the democratic party these days?

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 21, 2006 12:02 PM
Comment #149904

Jack et al
For the reasons others have posted nuclear power is NOT the best solution to the energy problem. Its big advantage for the powers that be is its requirement for major capital to develope. On the other hand ,and this should appeal to your conservative heart,most alternatives pencil out on a smaller scale. For example,solar panels on the roof allow more freedom from the utility company. Bio-mass conversion works most efficiently on a community basis,useing yard waste etc. that has to be disposed of anyway. There needs be no Wright brothers here. No great inventions but the developement of existing technologies.
We have at this juncture of history a great opportunity to not only help the environment but achieve independance from oil with all its geo-politcal negatives. We cannot expect this from the current leadership obviously.
An interesting read in Natioal Geo. was a research project that measured the total carbon realease from North America. After calculating all sources reasearcers found that there should be higher levels. Where was it going? They found a carbon sink. When the country was moving west from the east coast massive logging occured in the region of Kentucy,West Virginia etc. Since agriculture moved furthur west to the plain states the forrest have been growing back,locking up carbon on a grand scale. Mature forrest are a wash,as one might expect. They give off as much carbon as they lock up. Growing forrest,however, lock it up on a grand scale. Therefore, and many will find this conter-intuitive, a substantial increase in logging and re-planting,with the products used for things like construction that lock up carbon, has the potential to decrease carbon-dioxcide levels globally.
Jack,another note. All these solutions will create more useful jobs than nuclear power by far.As too wether this can be legislated look at history. Insulation is mandated in building codes. How much energy is saved by that alone?

Posted by: BillS at May 21, 2006 12:19 PM
Comment #149942

Traveller,
If you care about being taken seriously on this forum, drop the stupid right wing noise machine ditto talk.
What Al Gore meant, which is easy to see if your not a hater, was that his committee took the initiative in expanding the then limited Internet to wide spread civilian use. Before then it was limited to university and military scientists.

http://www.snopes.com/quotes/internet.asp
http://www.firstmonday.org/issues/issue5_10/wiggins/

I’m getting really tired of Yahoo type trolls ruining real discussion on this forum.
Grow up.

Posted by: Norby at May 21, 2006 3:49 PM
Comment #149960

traveller,
Gore’s statements were both factually correct. The fact that you don’t understand that (or don’t care) proves that you’re just a Gore-hater.

By the way, your claim that “the Internet was in use before Gore was elected to Congress” is just plain stupid - Gore was elected to Congress in 1976.

If you can’t even get your facts right, why on Earth should anyone be interested in your opinions?

Posted by: ElliottBay at May 21, 2006 5:46 PM
Comment #149965

Norby,
Your childish digs at anyone with whom you disagree makes your silly admonition to grow up laughable. “Real discussion” is disagreement in a point-counterpoint format, which is what this forum is. The name calling shows a lack of maturity and a childish disposition. If you want to be taken seriously on this forum stop figuratively sticking your tongue out at people with whom you disagree. This forum is for grownups sonny.

Posted by: traveller at May 21, 2006 6:02 PM
Comment #149969

Elliot,
The internet WAS in use before Gore entered Congress. It was very rudimentary but it did exist. It’s kind of hard to take the initiative in creating something that already exists. The committee he was on did take actions that helped the internet expand to be more widely used but that isn’t what he said.
“Gore-hater”? No, I think he’s a pompous, moralistic, elitist snob who’s full of himself pushing a dangerous, authoritarian and misguided agenda, but I don’t hate him.
Just because I disagree with someone doesn’t mean I hate them. I’m not a liberal.

Posted by: traveller at May 21, 2006 6:22 PM
Comment #149977

A THREE WAY catalytic converter, the thing on your car and truck and giant SUV,! has three simultaneous tasks: no 1. reduction of nitrogen oxides to nitrogen and oxygen: no 2. oxidation of carbon monoxide to CARBON DIOXIDE!: no 3. oxidation of unburnt hydrocarbons to CARBON DIOXIDE!and water. btw my new diesel with pure bpodiesel fuel, emits 79% less co2., CARBON DIOXIDE.

Posted by: Rodney Brown at May 21, 2006 7:31 PM
Comment #150007

BillS

We should use a diverse mix of fuels and we do. The problem is that oil is currently the cheapest and easiest alternative. The other things you mention still cannot pick up the slack the we will create if we want to get reduce oil and coal.

Posted by: Jack at May 21, 2006 10:30 PM
Comment #150032

“The name calling shows a lack of maturity and a childish disposition. “

I didn’t call you any names. I said that “yahoo type trolls are ruining this board.
If you assume I was reffering to you, you must recognize yourself in that description.
As for the rest of your post, you merely repeated my comments reffering back to me. Hardly impressive sparring.

“The internet WAS in use before Gore entered Congress.”

It wasn’t called the “internet”. It was the “ARPANET” and it wasn’t accesible by civilians. Your entire supposition is based on the word “created”, when the obvious meaning of his statement was correct.
You want to start quoting stupid statements by major politicians, I’ll start listing bush’s. Unfortunately, my DSL connection has inadequate bandwidth for that post.

“No, I think he’s a pompous, moralistic, elitist snob who’s full of himself pushing a dangerous, authoritarian and misguided agenda, but I don’t hate him.”

Yeah, your really one to discuss Gores merits fairly with.


Posted by: norby at May 22, 2006 2:05 AM
Comment #150034

Interesting timeline of the evolution of the “Internet/ARPAnet”.
It wasn’t called the Internet till 1990.

http://www.jmusheneaux.com/21bb.htm

Posted by: norby at May 22, 2006 2:10 AM
Comment #150036

What Al Gore’s led committee did that made the internet what it is today:

http://www.nitrd.gov/congressional/laws/pl_102-194.html

What the scientists that “invented” the internet had to say about Gore:

But as the two people
who designed the basic architecture and the core protocols that make the
Internet work, we would like to acknowledge VP Gore’s contributions as a
Congressman, Senator and as Vice President. No other elected official, to
our knowledge, has made a greater contribution over a longer period of time

The full text:

http://www.interesting-people.org/archives/interesting-people/200009/msg00052.html

More quotes from Internet Founders:

the general consensus is that Al Gore said he “invented” the Internet. This is not correct. ‘Founding Father of the Internet’ Vinton Cerf has personally thanked Al Gore for his help in passing legislation in the late 80s that allowed the Arpanet (Internet) to grow by releasing military control and allowing commerical access. Sure, Al Gore could have worded his statement a little more carefully but he has never taken credit for what Vinton Cerf and the other Founding Fathers of the Interrnet accomplished.

Posted by: Norby at May 22, 2006 2:22 AM
Comment #150060

The price of gas is drifting DOWN at the start of the summer driving season, when it usually goes UP because demand is flat due to a high price. A good lesson in supply and demand and a problem. If the price of gas drops too far, alternatives and conservation are once again ruined. We have been there before. Remember 1998? Let’s keep the price high. It is the one place I think we could usefully tax.

Posted by: Jack at May 22, 2006 7:40 AM
Comment #150065

LOL,

Fission Power is B*A*D, and there are a whole Compost Heap full of Solutions which are not only Economical, but which could create Growth Industries by themselves.

That is, if Big Auto, Big Oil, Big Banking, and Big Business in general allow them to come to fruition. Which they have so far been loathe to do.

Hmmm, details? Or are you ‘loathe’ to present them because as you know your assertion would be blown out of the water?

‘Big Oil’ is not trying to squelch these technologies, the people running those companies are (for the most part) smart enough to identify those new areas and become the leaders of them, if they were economically viable. Unfortunately, ‘all of these alternatives’ come with their own issues, either technological or economical or political that will not allow them to provide a fuel that is cheaper than our current methods.

And while someone COULD make the point about ‘Big Oil’ not wanting these alternative fuels, because of the few companies who are morons and unable to evolve to them, where is the evidence that ‘Big Banking’ and ‘Big Business’ would be concerned about preserving a method of energy like oil if ‘better, cheaper and more self sufficient fuels’ were available now? That goes against their bottom line and the notion that there is a conspiracy in place that COSTS businesses more money is absurd and such an assertion really requires hard proof if you expect it to be believed.

Rather, use the terms ‘big xxxx’ display a lack of understanding and hatred of ‘the man’ without any real understanding of what you are discussing.

Posted by: Rhinehold at May 22, 2006 8:21 AM
Comment #150066


The Democratic man of renown, Al Gore?????

Its worse than I thought. If you want that moron leading the democratic party, the republicans will want to personally thank you.

Posted by: jwl at May 22, 2006 8:27 AM
Comment #150081

I don’t care what party anyone belongs to you must notice that the WEATHER has changed. Guess what- lilacs in my yard have bloomed a week earlier consistantly over the past 12years. Maple Farmers in the area are collecting sap a week earlier consistantly. Argue how you will whether or not this is a natural or man made phenomenon. Even if it is partly nature - why would you want to contribute to these effects when clearly trouble is not just on the horizon but actually here? Calling it “natural” isn’t going to change the fact that huge areas of land will be covered by water. That climate change will affect our ability to produce food on the scale it had been before. The availibity to find fresh water is changing. All of these things will change our quality of life and the lives of our children. Why not focus on being able to quickly adapt to whatever things are coming our way rather than bitching and moaning about what to name it or who caused it?
How many times have you been sitting in a meeting discussing some marketing “challenge” ex.(I think we need to change the packaging color) rather than scrapping the program and making something better? Too many people don’t want to see the red ink that comes with accepting that an idea was not what you thought it was, cutting your losses and moving on.
Put the blame where it belongs - on people refusing to accept that the status quo isn’t working anymore and it’s time to move on. Let’s stop pointing fingers and just move on.

Posted by: kp at May 22, 2006 9:08 AM
Comment #150255

Norby,
The word internet wasn’t coined until 1990 but the internet did exist in its early, rudimentary form when Gore entered Congress.
Gore’s committee was instrumental in expanding the internet and should be lauded for it, but that isn’t the claim he made. He said he “took the initiative in creating the internet”, something altogether different. His statement was intentionally misleading and exaggerated his role. The obvious meaning of his statement was a lie.
Your reference to “yahoo type trolls” in that context was name calling, not that it really bothers me. I’ve learned to expect it from liberals.
Quote all the Bush faux pas’ you wish. I can’t stand the SOB anyway.
So, you figuratively stuck your tongue out at me and now you’ve hit me with the dreaded “oh, yeah?!”. What’s next, “sez you!”?

Posted by: traveller at May 22, 2006 4:24 PM
Comment #150278

kp,
You made some good points in your post. The weather has changed considerably in my lifetime, (I’m 50) and I’m glad it has. I work in industrial construction and milder winters are much easier to get through.
Like I said in an earlier post, nothing stays the same forever, including the earth’s climate. I disagree with the assertion by many that that the changes will be catastrophic and cause wholesale death and destruction. Some coastal areas are seeing a rise in sea level but in others it’s actually dropping. The types of food grown in some areas will change and some areas where food is grown now will one day no longer support large scale agriculture. Other areas that don’t support agriculture now will in the future.
I agree that we must adapt to the changes. Wasting resources by trying to change something we can’t control anyway will make the gloom and doom claims a self fulfilling prophecy.

Posted by: traveller at May 22, 2006 4:54 PM
Comment #150373

traveller,

I have been a data processing professional since 1976, and I can tell you from experience that there WAS NO SUCH THING AS THE INTERNET at that time. The name didn’t exist until much later, and neither did the functionality.

If you have any proof that the internet existed BEFORE 1976, post it. Otherwise, what littlw credibility you have will completely disappear.

Posted by: ElliottBay at May 22, 2006 9:10 PM
Comment #150441

I keep hearing increased buzz about Gore as a presidential contender, but everyone should remember that if you get Al, you get Tipper too. Tipper “invented” the current CD warning label system. How much more invasive would she be if she was the President’s wife?

Posted by: goodkingned at May 23, 2006 1:14 AM
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