Tuesday, April 11, 2006

The Trailer for "An Inconvenient Truth" is Up

Fresh up at Quicktime.com is the trailer for the new global warming documentary called An Inconvenient Truth. It's a documentary about Al Gore's travels around the country telling Americans about the growing threat of global warming. I'm looking forward to the movie, but the trailer's a little heavy with the title cards and the faux Day After Tomorrow weather footage for my tastes. I'll be seeing this when it comes out in May, but I'd really like to see a documentary in which both sides of the global warming debate lay out their views, and each side has a chance to debunk the other. If the debate on global warming is truly over, as some have said, than why are there smart people in the world who still believe it's bogus? Why hasn't the work of all of these Nobel prize winning climatologists been enough to convince the doubting conservatives? I think a good hour and a half on Frontline would do the trick for me. Put George Will and Michael Crichton and Dr. Lacy in front of a camera and ask them, "Why do you think this isn't happening?" And then put in some of the luminaries like Gore, the guy from NASA who thinks we have 10 years to stop the slide before it's too late, other leading lights from the climatologist community, and see what they say to refute these other guys. Or, hell, put them all on Oprah in the same room and see what happens. Anyway, enjoy the trailer.


blankfist said...

Yeah, I'm with you, Crane. I really wish we'd give all the non-beleivers and the belivers of global warming a chance to debunk each other's theories, too, but I'm not sure having them duke it out on Nightline or whatever would do it for me, because I feel like it would be nothing more than watching a silly debate on one of those silly news shows on CNN or FOX NEWS or whatever.

I'd like to see them use definitive, scientific proof bolstering their opinions as opposed to them making quotes about statistics we have no way of proving. In the end, I really do not know which side to side with. I want to think global warming is real so we can get off our ass and react to changing it, but the skeptic inside me wants to disbeleive anything that may be politically driven.

I guess I'll wait for Penn & Teller to run a Bullshit on it.

harwell said...

I'm with you Crane in that I think that trailer could stand to lay off the Fear Factor. Holy wow are they trying to scare the crap out of you. It's like watching a commercial for the evening news touting their new dopplar radar system. Without it, you could die. Before radars, people DIED!!

To me, that really confuses what ultimately should be a simple argument that needs no very special episode of Nightline to resolve: do you want to do nothing and hope there is no such thing as global warming, or do you want to make an effort just in case? It's like buying renter's insurance. Most folks who have it probably don't get robbed or burn their houses down (knock on wood). Yet, it's comforting having it and it's the very least you can do to protect yourself, and generally speaking, cheaper than buying a gun. This isn't like the "What if" Saddam has nukes, or South Korea gets crazy, or foreigners are saying anti-American things over their phone. No one dies or gives up comforts protecting (or not protecting) the environment. This is more like a what if you could drink your tap water without a filter? Does anyone do that anymore? Anybody? Why not? Without the filter it tastes like shit. Why does it taste like shit? Hmm, I wonder...

Pollution is real, and we know this because we can see it. Whether global warming is real doesn't so much matter to me. I'd rather look out a window and see mountains than look out a window and see smog (I'm talking to you Pasadena). And who wouldn't? Well, the only answer I can come up with is those who make money off the things that make smog. I can't help but think these are the same people planting the idea that taking the risk of protecting the environment is somehow a BAD thing, something NOT worth investing in. The only way this can be convincing to people is that somehow fighting global warming will hurt them economically. And I think that kind of fear is just as bad as the fear used in that trailer.

We don't need a real debate, because there shouldn't even be a debate! Special interest groups have made a no-brainer decision into something that somehow makes people conflicted...

blankfist said...

We don't need a real debate, because there shouldn't even be a debate!

What? Are you insane? Then who, pray tell, should be our deciding voice on this, if we remove discussion as a recourse to decision making? Our government? Who do we give absolute power to make decisions without debate?

No one dies or gives up comforts protecting (or not protecting) the environment.

Some people do give up comforts when you let bureaucrats dictate absolution in lawmaking in the name environment protection. How about those who lose their homes because of an arbitrary EPA standard of protecting endangered species based on low species counts in areas of residency? How about taxpayers being forced to pay absorbant amounts for recycling "replenishable" assets (such as paper) when landfilling is a third cheaper (with our tree population being higher now than it's been in nearly a hundred years)? The list goes on and on.

Why destroy debate? Why not listen to the facts and make a logical, rational choice based on them? Why rush to judgement? And worse, why give some bureaucracy absolute power to make decisions for us on this without even hearing what the facts are? No debate? Are you insane?

I'd really wanted to continue this further, but I have a meeting to go to. Maybe next time, Gadget, I could take the time...

Anonymous said...

haha democrats trying to scare me hahahah

Nathan said...

The funny thing about it is...who is going to be doing this logical debating? In an ideal world, the people who would debate any issue would be the "experts". The people who know what the fuck they are talking about. But with global warming, the "experts" all seem to be in agreement. We're fucking ourselves with a big spiked dildo.
It's the politicians who are representing the companies who are making money off of us fucking ourselves that are perking up and saying "Now...wait a minute. I'm just not sure we have enough evidence....because the guys that funded my last campaign said so."
Now, don't get me wrong. I am all for making money. Big oodles and gobs of filthy, dripping cash to stuff into my pockets until they burst, and enough overflow to wallow in like a fattened sow.

However, we're talking about our planet....which is kinda the only place we have to live. Now, if we want to get off our asses and Star Trek it to some distant worlds and colonize like a virus...awesome. Fuck the Earth then. But I don't see that happening before we've fucked ourselves here..... but then, my opinion is not really worth anything since I'm not an expert.

Heath...you mentioned that it's politically driven. For Gore...sure it is. However, I've read up a bit on it (but am sadly, still, no expert) and it's not politically motivated for any of the scientists who are screaming at the top of their lungs that this is happening.

Besides...republican or democrat, libritarian or independant...NO ONE wants to go around saying "we need to do something that is probably going to cost thousands of people their jobs..not to mention a likely raise in taxes."

That shit is just not popular on the campaign trail.

But we're talking about survival of the species. (i'm not so worried about the planet, if we could find another one)

But the problem is, it's not a dramatic effect, like the tsunami a year and a half ago. It's just this slow creeping death that is easy to ignore...so we ignore the shit out of it. It's silly.

harwell said...

I'm with Hinesy. If we gather all the scientists and politicians and let them duke this subject out, all you're going to do is take away what you wanted to hear in the first place. Political "debate" in this country doesn't exist anymore in a public forum, dude. Didn't you watch the Presidential debates? The candidates can't even speak to each other! Doing it this way allows Fox News to proclaim a Republican victory and Air America to claim a democratic victory, all from the exact same debate, and you know what? They're both right. Because nobody wins OR loses in a debate like this.

Heath, you say "I'd like to see them use definitive, scientific proof bolstering their opinions as opposed to them making quotes about statistics we have no way of proving." But what do you think will happen if this so-called debate takes place? The EXACT scenario you just described. Hell, there are scientists who say the evidence that smoking is linked to cancer is inconclusive. And what the hell do I know about it? I'm no scientist. You get these guys on stage and you'll hear exactly what you want to hear and little else. I'd all but bank on it.

So when I say there shouldn't be a debate, this is what I'm talking about. What good is it going to do? Why do you need some scientist to say global warming is myth or fact when you can look out your window and see pollution? I feel bad for anyone who loses their home for ANY reason against their will and I don't like increased taxes either - but these are economic comforts, and they are immediate comforts. The question then is if these financial risks are worth the risk of what could happen if we do nothing?

I also think it's suspicious that an issue that has GLOBAL in the freaking name somehow seems to be an American debate. Aren't we the only major nation not to have signed the Kyoto Agreement? Is this debate not going on in Japan, Brazil, Canada? Are their scientists smarter or dumber than ours? I've heard this administration say that the reason they won't sign the Kyoto Agreement (or is it an Accord? I forget) is because "they want to be sure that it does enough." Right. Good one. Doing nothing is better than doing something which might not be enough. That's like saying "I'm just going to sleep under this bridge instead of rent that apartment, because I might get married and have kids one day, and it just might not be a big enough space." It's the same crap reason they touted for being against stem cell research: They don't want to give "false hope." Well, excuse me for wanting to have a reason to live, but I'll take the false hope of stem cell research and I'll take the false hope of trying to counter Global Warming over the NO HOPE of doing nothing any day...

Seriously, Heath - honesty time. No bloops. Why do you think our country isn't leading the world in coming up with an answer to the even remote possibility that the theory of Global Warming is real? Really, why do you think that is? What is it about us that is making us drag our feet??? Do you sincerely believe it's because we want to be patient in our pursuit for the truth and facts?? I just don't understand your side, dude - help me suss it out. I'm listening. (For what I want to hear)

Anonymous said...

Honestly, there should be an end to the idea of progress through development or growth at all costs. I think this is the greatest problem that the 21st century will have to grapple and understand. How to make things sustainable with low emissions. How to build societies and create jobs without furthering the exploitation of people and much needed resources. Even more important, since we now have an abundance of resources that aren't used in certain sectors, we need to figure out how to create new methods for proper management.

Technically, people should not be building homes on areas that are habitat for endangered species because they are part of a greater living system that keep the evolutionary chain moving. If you destroy diversity of species then you kill of a part of human development and survival.

Example: when Betina was working for the Dept of Fish and Game she was studying Coho Salmon Habitat restoration in Humboldt County. The population was dying off and the fisherman were complaining to the State and Local Governments. Why? They discovered that this was directly caused by clear cutting of virgin timber by a paper company (Georgia Pacific). Betina said that the trees on the edge of the river give the salmon just enough shade and sunlight to allow them to spawn and swim up river to mate and die.

Once the trees were cut, the overabundance of sun caused the salmon eggs to burn up and die.

Another example is the hunting of Great White Sharks. The beauty of these creatures is that they keep seal populations down. Fisherman have been complaining about an overabundance of these critters and a lack of fish population for their livelihoods.

You must ask yourself - what is most important - a solid food chain or a momentary consumptive need?

Moreover, most pharmacueticals and other chemicals are derived from natural materials from the earth.

Everything we use, own, etc. comes from nature. A lack of stewardship could mean a wrench in the plans of human survival and that is fact.

I believe that there is definitive proof that the polar ice caps are melting and that warmer temperatures are a result of overproduction and overdevelopment of industry and other factor (like agricultural pollution and overpopulation). This inevitably leads to an abundance of storms and cataclysmic weather events that can destroy habitats and enganger the world.

The proof is in the facts that scientists from both sides have determined through hard research in the last 50 years. Even the Pentagon has created a military contingency plan for the eventual chaos created by its deleterious effects.

How politicians play this is a different ballgame. I believe they are very biased and on one end side ideologically with industry and on the other play Cassandra without hard data and stats to show the ignorant public.

This must be a partisan issue. Humanity could be at stake.

We are the world's largest polluter - we take up 5% of the population and consume 30% of the earth resources. That is a crime pure and simple.

Not to mention, our greatest asset to the world is weapon manufacturing - which adds to world pollution and poverty exponentially.


blankfist said...

My take on this is simple. I'd simply hate it if an undisputed hypothesis leads to a bureaucratic, lawmaking entity. It's really that simple. If global warming is real, and I still think it is, then I want a true debunking of the false science and the false truths. Why should I allow my government the absolute power to spring blindly into legislation that could encroach on my liberties? Because Shawn says this isn't something the people could be responsible for without a wiser, smarter big brother telling us how we will be responsible? I mean, you did, after all, say there should be no debate, right? And, I read that to mean "people are dumb cows that shouldn't be given the right to hear all sides when there's ever a potential for an unsafe environment."

Here's a tangent. 139 people have died from Mad Cow's Disease (MCD) since 1996. Yeah, 139 since '96 in a world full of 6 billion people. 139? That's less than the amount of people who die daily in this country alone from automobile accidents.

Remember the hysteria behind this MCD [cough] epidemic? And, on top of that, they haven't ever proved a positive link between those 139 people and cows infected with MCD. It's true. Those 139 people died from "something" that was a distant cousin to MCD, and no one, to this day, has an inkling where it came from. But, we're forced to think it's a nightmare, and it was... for farmers and taxpayers. Once the news came out it was spreading from cows to humans, the British meat department collapsed. Fueled by hysteria, [cough] scientists started looking at genetically-engineered Bovine Growth Hormone (rBGH), which they lobbied against saying it was the cause of MCD. Yeah, even without proof. And as a result, the FDA & USDA have gotten tough with the farmers and agriculturists, thanks to tax dollars, and doubly thanks to absolutely no proof whatsoever.

But, there's an impending fear that MCD could be a real threat, so why shouldn't we (using Harwell's logic) remove debate altogether and create laws (at taxpayer's expense) that combat MCD even without proof. I mean, after all, [quoting Harwell] "what good would [debate] do?"

This would lead to science stopping at hypothesis, Harwell, without ever an honest, truthful conclusion. So, I could say the 'eating of meat was the cause of cancer', if I was a member of PETA. I could say 'the lack of Christianity in schools has been absolutely proven to reduce the intelligence of children', if I was a right-leaning asshole. Or, I could say the world is warming if I was some myopic left-leaner.

It may be true. I believe it is. I just don't want to go rushing into lawmaking without undisputable proof and... wait for it... debate. The government should never exclude the people from lawmaking, Harwell... never. When interest groups are using fear to persuade you to give up your liberties in the name of safety, you should challenge them. Always.

Craig Moorhead said...

Again, I skipped a bunch of posts to get down here where no one will read anything anymore, but I gotta put in my two cents.

Harwell is right. There should be no debate. Pollution is bad, whether or not it's starting hurricanes and whether or not doom is imminent. Let's clean it up, a-holes.

blankfist said...

Again, I skipped a bunch of posts to get down here where no one will read anything anymore, but I gotta put in my two cents.

Yes, why read other people's point of views when you have your own? Good point. Solid advice.

[blank stare]

Why have the Dems and Repubs adopted this umovable stance of unawareness. No one wants to listen, reason and deduce, which kind of goes against the entire ideology of our consitution that puts the people (all of us) at the center of reason. It's absurd to cling blindly to a party's beliefs in absolution without listening, without debate, without hearing the facts. Pollution is bad? Yes. But, what's the measuring stick we're using to evaluate the notion that pollution is bad. If you just think it's bad, Craig, Harwell, Nathan, Crane, then do something about it and stop driving your cars. Don't be hypocrits. Don't use any products known to cause some degree of pollution (not just CFCs), such as any type of paint (such as house paint), dyes used in the clothes you're wearing, and, hell, even boycott whipcream. Are you using a computer right now? Chances are the factories used to create the plastics, metals and circuitry produce pollution.

My point is, if the lines being drawn on what is considered adequate and accepted amounts of pollution, which they most certainly are, who gets to decide. You know, I've heard answer number zero everytime I ask this, yet I see everyone tap dancing around it while flaunting their ideas of absolution. Then who, pray tell, decides? WHO?!

Shannon said...

Dude, need new blog.

JudgeHolden said...

I have a question for you, Heath: are you for or against the Americans with Disabilities Act? The Act requires businesses to be handicap-accessible, which includes providing a certain number of handicap-only parking spaces. What do you think? I'm not trying to pick on you, I'd just like to hear your views on this issue.

blankfist said...

No, pick away, I don't mind. No worries. I don't see an issue one way or another whether the current implementation of handicap-accessible work ares is working or not, fair or not, and so on. My breadth of knowledge on this is limited, but in my heart it would seem the current system is correct in providing reasonably ample accommodations for the handicap. I'm curious why you'd ask me that, to be honest. My beef isn't about helping those which are in need of help, because if you pull that "but aren't all men created equal" garbage, I'd have to argue that this doesn't apply. They are equal as humans, in the same way pregnant women are equal even if our social conscience can not or should not expect them to operate at full dexterity.

I think were I might have an issue is where the line is being drawn between handicap and capable. And, in no way do I think a grossly obese people should use the discrimination card when they cannot fit in theatre seats. It's insulting to people who have handicaps that reach outside the realm of choice. If you cannot put the hoagie down, then you have to suffer the consequences, no?

Anyhow, my previous question still stands. I'm awaiting a final answer to my question you seem so dead set on avoiding. Please answer that one. Please.

JudgeHolden said...

Totally answered it in today's post. And the reason I asked you the Disabilities Act question is not because I think you hate cripples, but because the Disabilities Act seems to be the very thing libertarian-leaning people despise: government intruding on private enterprise for altruistic purposes. Just testing the depth of your Liberty-or-Death philosophy.

blankfist said...

I'm not a libertarian.

blankfist said...

But I am a moron.

blankfist said...

Wow, for a second I thought that was really me, then I saw there wasn't a picture (like the one to my right here). Nice try, liberal douchebag.