On the heels of the amusing spectacle of global warming marchers in Denver huddled against icy blasts of Spring snow, and New York Times readers losing their collective mind after new-to-the-Times columnist Brett Stephens raised delicate questions about how far the settled science actually reaches (“Burn the witch!” is how David Harsanyi sums up the mob of commenters) it is useful to take stock.
The chasm is growing wider between activists who demand urgent action to reduce carbon, and the general public who places predicted warming somewhere on a spectrum of other immediate challenges, from the economy to health care to mushrooming world tensions. The certitude and rigidity with which some activists and politicians demand Americans surrender their comforts and freedoms to sweeping “green” political demands is racing far ahead of what any reasonable body of science supports, and more to the point, is racing far ahead of the public’s willingness to comply or to elect politicians who will enact. It is driving the climatistas bonkers.
What explains this widening chasm? It might have to do with the Left’s poor 50 year record at predicting anything about the climate with anything resembling accuracy. New Ice Age! No, warming. The glaciers and poles and polar bears are about to disappear! Fires, and flooding, no bears!
Every measurable predicted catastrophe failed. The hard sell hasn’t worked. So the activists pound harder. More green bell! We need more green bell!. Eventually average citizens with real lives to live tune out the hyperventilation.
This clip from Good Morning America in 2008 is a classic of the genre. If you are reading this post, it must be from a survivalist bunker in the high ground somewhere well inland and away from combustible forests, while you’re rationing $12 milk and $10 gasoline. Enjoy.