Weekly Full of Hot Air
Thursday, August 30, 2001
The cover story in the August 16 issue ("96° in the Shade") is as deplorable a piece of so-called journalism as I have read. Its author sets the tone with "there are still a handful of industry-paid scientists--and one world leader--who dispute [that CO2 is producing global climate change]."
The truth is that it is far from "irrefutable" that the Earth''s temperature has risen 1 degree in the past 140 years (and even if it had, that''s an insignificant increase), and there are many independent scientists, and others, who recognize:
1. That the case for CO2-caused global warming is unproven (despite the rising temperatures recorded at terrestrial sites where plants are steadily being replaced by concrete, satellite measurements of actual global temperatures show no statistically significant increase).
2. That, ceaseless propaganda to the contrary, thanks to its agriculture, the U.S.A. is a net CONSUMER of CO2 (the atmospheric concentration of CO2 downwind of North America is lower than it is upwind).
3. That there have been periods in the Earth''s history predating the Industrial Revolution, i.e., before CO2, during which global temperatures have risen very quickly.
4. That the impetus behind the "global warming" issue is publicity-seeking politicians and so-called scientists, and a calculated effort on the part of foreign governments to hamstring the U.S. economy.
Were it not for the cataclysmic effect of implementing the Kyoto accord on the U.S. economy, the nonsense being spouted by incompetent reporters (and editors!) who don''t understand the importance of balanced reporting and fact checking would be merely laughable. As it is, it should be of immense concern.
Andrew Allison, Carmel
What''s World Coming To?
A couple things struck me in your August 16 edition. First, I of course noticed the cover article with the headline "Global Warming: Local scientists work to save the world." Another contrasting headline lay just below saying, "The Coolest Cars On Earth Come to Town." I myself was not delighted to have these gas-guzzling symbols of conspicuous consumption invade my downtown. What makes these global warmers so "cool"?
Next, I read that a few health club owners are complaining about the Monterey Sport Center. The sport center provides a valuable community service with programs serving babies, children, adults, the disabled, and seniors not available at other gyms in our area. If that service makes a few private club owners nervous about their personal profits, so be it. Anyone who''s spent even an hour in the packed sports center knows that the expansion is desperately needed and long overdue. These whining private health club owners threatening to sue the city are as ridiculous as private school directors suing public schools for having unfair competitive advantage over private schools. Don''t they have something more important to worry about?
Celia A. Bosworth, Pacific Grove
Straight and Narrow-minded
While it may be true that Dr. Stachowiak has every right to declare that Black Rock City is not his hometown ideal (Letters, 8/9), I for one take issue with his self-righteous tone. Since when should society compel all recreational events to become humanitarian programs as well? The good doctor''s thinly veiled contempt for Bman is, I believe, because it is an alternative leisure event where the bizarre is celebrated; otherwise, why not decry the billions spent on other recreational sports and pastimes, including golf and arena sports? Unlike Bman''s "leave no trace" policy, these events permanently gobble up untold amounts of land and resources. As for objecting to the bonfires, why not go after big-time polluters instead, or at least find out more about Bman''s burn policies before condemning them?
Although I''m sure that the author and the Weekly had good intentions, Bman doesn''t want or need this kind of small-town media attention because marketing it to a generally narrow-minded John Q. Public typically results in exactly this kind of misunderstanding and scorn from people with no first-hand knowledge of the facts. The writer''s disjointed and emotional ranting reinforce this impression. It''s too bad that writers don''t place more emphasis on Bman''s efforts at conservation and safety rather than focusing on appealing to the prurient interests of outsiders for the sake of good copy.
Loretta M. Ruch, Monterey
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