Wednesday, December 15, 2010

The New King

In Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's novella The Little Prince, there appears a character, the King, who insists that he can "'control' the stars but only by ordering them to do what they would do anyway." (Quoted passage is from the wiki, not the book.)

When it comes to global climate change, there seem to be quite a few people who have mastered half of the King's notion: they are willing to order the Earth's climate to do what they want, or what is expedient to them in selling, e.g., products that are toxic to Earth's atmosphere. The other half of the notion... that they must order the climate to do only what it would do anyway... seems to be beyond their grasp.

Among these are Fox Noise D.C. Bureau Chief Bill Sammon...

Fox News D.C. Bureau Chief Bill Sammon e-mailed staffers last December to instruct them not to assert that the "planet has warmed (or cooled)" without "IMMEDIATELY pointing out that such theories are based upon data that critics have called into question."


... and activist Virginia AG Ken Cuccinelli...


Last month, reports The Hook of Charlottesville, the AG requested "a sweeping swath of documents" from the University of Virginia, relating to the climate research work -- funded through state grants -- of Michael Mann. 

Mann worked at the university from 1999 to 2005, and now runs Penn State's Earth System Science Center. If he were found to have manipulated data, Cuccinelli could seek to have the research money -- plus damages -- returned to the state. 

There are many legitimate reactions to climate-change deniers... assertions that they are religious extremists or tools of business interests that would be affected by any sensible legislation responding to climate change... but the one thing I perceive in common among all the deniers is that they are almost unbelievably arrogant: they are convinced they can order the climate to do something other than what it would do anyway, for no better reason than that global climate change inconveniences them.

And that is nothing more than foolishness. Their climate will change, no matter how many times they deny it. Unfortunately, it happens to be our climate, too.

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