WASHINGTON, DC – Senator Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) rebuked alarmists Thursday for “doing more to create global warming than carbon dioxide.”
Fresh off his impassioned defense of a constitutional amendment to ban flag burning this week, Senator Hatch raised the growing global warming debate yesterday. “Before alarmists started to wage their information campaign, we were pretty much in the dark about rising sea levels and melting ice caps. All of this un-American doom and gloom,” said Hatch, addressing his colleagues in the Senate. “But now, by pushing our faces in the preponderance of scientific evidence, reality itself is struggling for legitimacy in this debate, threatening to wash over our populace like a plague of truth. And I’ll tell you this,” he promised, his finger raised defiantly, “I will do everything in my power as a United States Senator to prevent that from happening."
Senator James Inhofe (R-Oklahoma), Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, followed Hatch’s statement with his own tough stance. “We will not cut and run from our oil industry coffers,” Inhofe pledged. “We will bring the fight to these global warming alarmists. These tree-hugging, enviro-fascists who’d like us to drive around in Fred Flintstone cars, powered by our feet.”
At a time when Al Gore's movie An Inconvenient Truth is bringing the message of a potential looming environmental Armageddon, and a growing number of Americans feel a crisis might be afoot, Hatch's words were a timely lightning rod for fellow conservatives and heads of big oil in their ongoing battle against incontrovertible truth.
The strategy has already put Democrats on the defensive.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-California) said, "The Democratic Party is a responsible steward of the environment. We will continue to back science over propaganda. We will continue to champion reality over ideology.” Pelosi added, “Unless in cases when it is politically unfeasible." Senator Joe Lieberman (?-Connecticut), fighting for his political life against upstart Ned Lamont, said, "I need contributions. This is a free market economy. Would Hadassah and I prefer fresh drinking water and a future without our house floating away like a bagel chip? Of course. But first I have an election to win." Asked if he'd seen Gore's movie, Lieberman, not backed by Gore during his '04 presidential bid, replied, “Oy, really, who has the time?"
Conservatives took their sharpened message to the airwaves last night. On Scarborough Country, guest John Stossel of ABC News, promoting his new book Myths, Lies and Downright Stupidity, called global warming alarmists "little Stalins who want to take away the blind ignorance and mindless gluttony guaranteed all Americans." Stossel explained, “Look, Gore and his alarmist friends are socialists who’d have us banning corporations from dumping toxic sludge into our waters, when I’ve proven in my special report, “Is Toxic Sludge Really Bad for You?” that its effect is negligible. In fact, you’re more likely to die from a kayaking accident than from cancers caused by toxic sludge. Besides," he added, "in the end, it is the wealth of the richest 1% of our population, as evidenced by the end of world poverty in the ’80s, that will once again save us from any global warming.”
The anti-alarmists do seem to be making inroads with their latest offensive.
In today’s ABC News/Washington Post poll, 76% of Americans said they were tired of hearing about global warming, with 65% annoyed it hadn’t already been solved; 59% credit anti-alarmists for helping them refocus their lives solely on financial gain, reality show gossip and increasingly fetish-oriented pornography; and an overwhelming 95% would be happy if their deli meat were just sliced the way they'd asked.
Boarding Air Force One tonight, President Bush said he hadn’t seen Gore’s movie, but did drag Dick Cheney to see Nacho Libre. “I’ll take Jack Black over Al Gore any day,” the president joked with reporters. “But, seriously, there was, uh, um…lots of grass and trees – you know, open spaces of nature in the movie. In between the joviality. You might say it’s an environmentally savvy film. And that it promotes Mexican pride. Plus, you got, uh, my favorite Mexican dish in the title. You see, in other words, I like nachos. So if you can, uh, um, take them and combine them with an environmentally responsible, uh, cinematic experience, then I’m there. Even if Dick Cheney hogs the armrest."