[Coral-List] La Nina and global warming

Steve Mussman sealab at earthlink.net
Sun Nov 14 13:39:52 EST 2010

  Got to admit, Gene's climate change "pokings" can sometimes be disquieting.
But at the same time this discourse should be vigorously encouraged. 
The positions that he conveys, though inciting consternation, stand as a 
reminder of the extent and complexity of the task at hand.
  No one seriously involved in the debate relating to anthropogenic 
climate change is suggesting that the skeptics are "dummies". Quite the contrary,
one of the most disturbing aspects of this discussion is the fact that many 
contrarians are scientifically literate and most certainly capable of complex 
intellectual analysis. Though Gene seems to preclude many members of congress
from this group, politicians will simply continue to do what politicians do. 
That is to say, they will position themselves on the issues based on what is
most likely to result in prolonging their incumbency. 
 Again this realization prioritizes the need for more effective communication
by the scientific community directly designed to affect public opinion.
If the best climate science becomes more clearly expressed, it will change public
opinion and the politicians will follow. Expecting insightful political leaders 
to courageously rise up and advance the fight on principle will likely prove futile.
But don't underestimate them, our politicians can understand the science.
Its just that first and foremost their interests lay in the next election cycle,
not in the ramifications of policy positions that may not damage their prospects
for decades. 
    As Gene mentioned, the political winds have recently changed.
Perhaps he is spot on to suggest that the focus of concern should be to assure
that pure science weathers this storm. For although there is little evidence of 
adequate resolve, I hesitate to envision the resulting turmoil engulfing future
generations if science surrenders. 


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