Monday, February 26, 2007

Letter to the Editor - Southern Style

Snow job | | Times Daily | Florence, AL

To the editor:

Rising global temperatures and an El Nino system contributed to the warmest January ever recorded. Warmer air holds more moisture, and with no ice on the Great Lakes the Arctic air blasting south in February picked up even more moisture. The result was a record snowfall in New England and the upper Midwest.

Yes, the world got hotter, and it snowed.

For the anti-intellectuals and global warming deniers, more snow means the world is not getting warmer. The vast majority of climate scientists, meteorologists, and all their conclusions, are proven wrong by a single snowfall.

As I've demonstrated, the opposite is true. But to understand a problem as complex as global warming requires knowing, not just pretending to know, and we Americans would much rather have things made simple for us.

That is the problem with global warming: it isn't simple or sexy. It doesn't "sell." And it is a slow disaster. We know it's bad, but we don't want to make the hard choices our descendants are depending on us to make.

Make no mistake: this is about our choices. So far, the world's leading polluter -- that's us -- has chosen to do nothing and conserve nothing. Instead, we extol the virtues of unfettered, free-market consumerism and say "let our grandkids worry about it."

Not only will our descendants curse us for our shortsightedness, they may well curse everything for which America stood -- including that unfettered free-market capitalist consumption.

Wouldn't that be ironic? A retrenchment of state-centered economics and totalitarianism. Marx vindicated by the failure of markets, Stalin vindicated by the failure of free peoples.

It's a vision scary enough to make me buy a hybrid.

Matt O*******

Florence, AL

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