Sunday, March 25, 2007

Al Gore goes back to Congress

I was going to do a big long post on how the media covered Al Gore's day of testimony to both the House and the Senate. But Media Matters did a great job covering the subtle and over-the-top smearing of Gore in various media outlets, including NPR, here and how coverage of his confrontation with Senator Inhofe was mis-handled here.

Basically the hate-hate relationship the media has with Al Gore continues more or less unabated and hopes for rational coverage of climate change issues may be a casualty.

(For a primer on the media's War on Gore, see this article at Consortium News)

Some comments on the NY Times main story on Gore's testimony by Felicity Barringer and Andrew Revkin. We first encountered Ms. Barringer in her condescending profile of Bill McKibben. In the opening sentence, Gore's appearance is described as "part politics and all theatre". We are told he arrived in a hybrid S.U.V. and was later "whisked" out. You know, like Elvis. Why do we need to know what he arrived in, hybrid or not? Is it because Gore is viewed as a hypocrite? The constant references to Gore's Oscar and description of him as film star are not complimentary. They serve to trivialize him: "How can this movie star tell us how to reconfigure our energy system?".

Update: Media Matters also flagged Ms. Barringer's uncritical citing of debunked global-warming denier Bjorn Lomborg.


Michael Tobis said...

Great stuff, on the whole.

I think you dismiss Lomborg too easily though. He is not a denier in the usual presudoscience sense. He refers to IPCC WGI as authoritative.

As far as I know anything controversial he says has to do with impacts and economics.

Rob said...

You're right. I shouldn't lump him in with the science-denier crowd. But, according to the links provided by Media Matters, there's a lot of holes in his statistical arguments which he hasn't addressed.