Let me regurgitate: a simpler America where we ate our meat off the end of a sharpened stick


Allow me to preempt the Al Gore haters by bringing the definitive contrarian position from Stephen Colbert:

I don’t think Nobel Prizes should go to people I was seated next to at the Emmys.

I should state for the record that I don’t agree with this sentiment. I’d be more than happy to see a future Peace Prize go to Jeremy Piven or, failing that, Joey Fatone.

The Colbert quote comes from a giggle-worthy New York Times column he wrote as a stand-in for Maureen Dowd. He’s doing his usual schtick as the human möbius strip of mock punditry, and, as usual, he manages to raise a serious question: why doesn’t the New York Times replace Maureen Dowd with Stephen Colbert?

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  1. Dave Beck - October 17, 2007

    Ed. — Sorry, Dave. Tolerance for lies about Gore at a low ebb right now. Here’s a direct quote from the UK judges’ ruling on An Inconvenient Truth:

    It was essential to appreciate that the hearing before me did not relate to an analysis of the scientific questions, but to an assessment of whether the ‘errors’ in question, set out in the context of a political film, informed the argument on ss406 and 407.

    Please note that the term “errors” is in quotes, meaning that they are alleged, not actual. The reference to 406 and 407 is British legal jargon for statues pertaining to political content, not scientific content.
    Much more on this non-issue here.

  2. Anonymous - October 17, 2007

    Actually, one father sued the UK government over the showing of An Inconvenient Truth in schools there. And the judge has not ruled on whether the science in the movie is accurate. He only ruled that it did contain political viewpoints and therefore required a warning. If you have seen the movie, you know that it contains the story of Al Gore’s loss to George Bush in the 2000 election, which is certainly political. As for the science, leading scientists agree that, while there are some mistakes in the film, overall it presents an accurate picture of the dangers we face if we do not take the threat of global warming seriously. Go to the link following for a clear-eyed assessment of the science in the movie, by real scientists, not bloggers. http://www.newscientist.com/blog/environment/2007/10/al-gores-inconvenient-truth.html

  3. Monty - October 17, 2007

    The mantra ‘An Inconvenient Truth contains lies’ really has nothing to do with the movie. Anyone who complains about the movie being shown to kids is highly politically charged and is doing so to avoid their kids from getting a perceived left-wing influence. I am not saying there is anything wrong with that, mind you, I am merely stating the fact: The reason people do not want this movie shown is because it has Al Gore in it. Is there any question that were Bush to do the exact same movie (don’t laugh) that it would be a completely different group of people complaining?
    It is unfortunate that we are all so politically charged that we can not watch a movie objectively, but that is the state of our world, I am afraid.

  4. Anonymous - October 17, 2007

    One’s opinion of Al Gore is irrelevant. Whether the movie is 100% scientifically correct is irrelevant. What’s relevant is whether climate change is real, whether it’s a problem, and whether human beings can and should do something about it.

  5. Karen - October 18, 2007

    It would be a dream come true to see Maureen Dowd replaced….and by Colbert!

  6. Aaron A. - October 19, 2007

    Is there any question that were Bush to do the exact same movie (don’t laugh) that it would be a completely different group of people complaining?

    In all likelihood, that’s exactly what would happen. And just as Gore-bashers overlook the fact that Gore’s environmental record extends back to the 1970’s, the Bush-bashers would overlook Gov. Bush’s work to expand wind power in Texas.

    Oh yeah, Governor Bush was big on wind power, and turned West Texas into a wind-power juggernaut. President Bush… not so much. I think Thomas Friedman tends to spout more hot air than actual economic sense, but I can certainly appreciate this comment he made in 2006:
    [T]here are many things that baffle me about Bush, but none more than how the same man who initiated one of the most effective renewable energy programs in America has presided over an administration that for six years has dragged its feet on alternative energy, used its regulatory powers to weaken efficiency standards for major appliances and stuck its head in the sand on global warming.[1]

    But I digress. When any politician, current or former, takes a stand on an issue, there will inevitably be a dozen pundits clamoring for TV time, waiting to decry the politician as a liar, a flip-flopper, a shameless campaigner, or some other accusation irrelevant to the issue itself.

    — A.
    [1] http://tinyurl.com/2jvknz (.pdf)
    See Also:
    [2] http://tinyurl.com/3csxy5 (streaming audio)
    This NPR story also talks briefly about Bush-inspired wind power in West Texas.
    [3] http://tinyurl.com/3bkvtj
    A NYT article on wind power during the 2000 campaign. Both [Bush and Gore] support tax incentives to promote the use of wind over the more polluting fuels, so most experts believe that no matter who ends up in the White House, the trend is unlikely to wane.