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Ear to the Ground

Gore: America in ‘Category 5’ Denial on Global Warming

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Posted on May 25, 2006
Al Gore
Courtesy Paramount Classics

Al Gore works on the documentary about his campaign against global warming, “An Inconvenient Truth.”

Al Gore, in an interview with The Nation, says that no meaningful change will happen on the global warming front until the public starts demanding it of their leaders. And right now, the people have other things on their minds.


The Nation:

In the middle of the 2000 presidential campaign, Vice President Al Gore was worried. He was trailing George W. Bush in the polls, and he was looking to define his candidacy in a big way. His idea was to deliver a major speech on global warming. There was probably no other issue he knew as well and felt as deeply about. As a Harvard undergraduate he had studied with Roger Revelle, one of the first people in the world to monitor carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and to predict that the increasing human-produced emissions would lead to disruptive climate change. After being elected to Congress in 1976, Gore had held the first Congressional hearings on global warming. And in 1992 he had written Earth in the Balance, a passionate, fact-flooded bestseller that detailed the dangers of global warming. “We must make the rescue of the environment the central organizing principle for civilization,” he proclaimed in that book. So a speech in which he would declare global warming the top priority of a Gore presidency would be in sync with his past and his soul. It would be highly authentic.

But his campaign consultants were not keen on turning global warming into the organizing principle of Gore’s presidential bid. As political journalist Joe Klein points out in his recent book, Politics Lost, their advice to Gore was simple: Don’t do it. Global warming did not poll as a top concern for voters, and anyone who cared about it was already with him.

Gore proceeded with the speech. But his staffers did nothing to highlight it, and the address barely registered. Gore’s concern for this serious matter was deemed inconvenient by the people he’d hired to win him the election. What he cared about most was marginalized by his own campaign—and he didn’t protest.

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By Steve Tateossian, June 27, 2006 at 5:34 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I just think it’s fascinating to sit and think that a former U.S. Vice President is now fully engaged in global environmental issues and the ramifications of our choices, made day in and day out, as American consumers. Consumers who arguably drive the world economy and aid in the spearheading of Corporate growth and expansion at the price of millions of other human beings. And yet Al Gore has taken the time and energy to immerse himself in media projects that will supposedly edify people and make a difference now - not back then as Vice-President - when he had a viable post to make such a difference. I’m not saying that this film won’t “make a difference.” I truly believe it may inspire many-a-someones to in-turn make a real difference. But global warming is not a cause, it’s an emergency and you don’t alleviate and eliminate the threat of an emergency with a film.

Is this a last-ditch effort to redeem himself from the guilt he so deservedly feels for not making this as pressing an issue during his political tenure? And I assure you, it was as pressing as it is now. This is a common case of too little, too late from a man connected to Global Transnationalists; A Man Previously Committed to Corporate Expansion at Whatever Cost. Do your Homework, People. Know whom you’re championing. 

I love it when rich people choose to “make a difference,” in their twilight years; with their pathetic attempt of redemption from knowing that they had the chance to truly make a lifetime of difference but rather are guilty for the pursuit of the ALmighty Dollar. 

Maybe a message board isn’t the proper avenue for such dissent, or maybe it’s one of the few places left.

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By Karen M, May 26, 2006 at 7:13 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

“Save the Planet—Re-elect Al Gore!”

Perhaps if we just keep repeating this phrase, as if it were both meme and mantra… we, too, can have an effect.

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By C Quil, May 26, 2006 at 9:10 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

If climate change issues aren’t addressed, nothing else really matters. The natural disasters will cause havoc among the remaining people of the world.  Some of the conflict in Darfur can be traced to people with a traditional herding background being forced to move onto the agricultural territory of others when their grazing land was turned into desert.

Do these guys have an ark or a private mountaintop to bolt to?

Or maybe they just don’t care. They don’t care what happens to their offspring (if they have any) and certainly not to anybody else’s.

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By Talcott, May 26, 2006 at 1:24 am Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

I saw it with a Bro at the Arclight on the 24

Must see imho….....

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By Ben Hammett, May 25, 2006 at 9:47 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

Gore was a student of science and independent thinker, ahead of his time. History has been made by many such courageous people. Now global warming has hit Alaska and Montana, and the effects are likely to move southward. I strongly suggest that those who read this see the movie: “An Inconvenient Truth” and follow the reports on the website of Alaska Conservation Solutions: http://www.alaskaconservationsolutions.com .

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By Jeronimo, May 25, 2006 at 4:59 pm Link to this comment
(Unregistered commenter)

That was six years ago & Gore can be forgiven if he makes global warming (along with troops home now and universal health care) his main campaign issues.  Surely, if his passion for saving this planet is real, he has no other choice.  These lying conservatives who deny that global warming is manmade are,  for purely ideological reasons, putting all life on earth at risk.  What worth will their so-called free-market capitalism have at the end of this century when the Arctic and Antarctica are the only habitable places on earth?
Keep hammering away on global warming, Al. The lives and well-being of many of us (not to mention the generations yet to come) are at risk.  We can do this!

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