Incredibly powerful ad campaign reminds swing state voters of Romney’s dismissive comments on global climate change prior to Hurricane Sandy

    As we’ve discussed before, during the Republican National Convention, Mitt Romney took the stage, and, pandering to the far right of his increasingly anti-scinece party, made a dismissive joke about extreme weather brought about as a result of global climate change. Romney, pointing out to his fellow Republicans that Obama not only believed in global climate change, but that he wanted to actually do something about it, got a big laugh from his predominantly white, male audience. “President Obama promised to slow the rise of the oceans,” Romney said, pausing for a moment to bask, with a smirk on his face, in the uproarious guffaws of his fellow Republicans. The wealthy venture capitalist then went on to say that, when he took over the White House, he wouldn’t be addressing climate change, but, instead, pushing an agenda of deregulation intended to increase short-term corporate profits. For those of us who understand the very real risk posed by climate change, it was a ridiculously offensive statement, and, thankfully, it’s come back to haunt him in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, in large part due to the folks at ClimateSilence.org, who have created an incredibly powerful ad, which has already been viewed by over 300,000 people online… Here it is.

    If you like this ad as much as I do, and would like to contribute toward getting it on television, the folks at ClimateSilence.org are accepting donations here.

    And, before you say that this most recent hurricane had nothing to do with global warming, you might want to read this clip from the New Yorker, which references several recent scientific studies which would strongly indicate otherwise.

    A couple of weeks ago, Munich Re, one of the world’s largest reinsurance firms, issued a study titled “Severe Weather in North America.” According to the press release that accompanied the report, “Nowhere in the world is the rising number of natural catastrophes more evident than in North America.” The number of what Munich Re refers to as “weather-related loss events,” and what the rest of us would probably call weather-related disasters, has quintupled over the last three decades. While many factors have contributed to this trend, including an increase in the number of people living in flood-prone areas, the report identified global warming as one of the major culprits: “Climate change particularly affects formation of heat-waves, droughts, intense precipitation events, and in the long run most probably also tropical cyclone intensity.”

    Munich Re’s report was aimed at the firm’s clients—other insurance companies—and does not make compelling reading for a general audience. But its appearance just two weeks ahead of Hurricane Sandy seems to lend it a peculiarly grisly relevance. Sandy has been called a “superstorm,” a “Frankenstorm,” a “freakish and unprecedented monster,” and possibly “unique in the annals of American weather history.” It has already killed sixty-five people in the Caribbean, and, although it’s too early to tell what its full impact will be as it churns up the East Coast, loss estimates are topping six billion dollars.

    As with any particular “weather-related loss event,” it’s impossible to attribute Sandy to climate change. However, it is possible to say that the storm fits the general pattern in North America, and indeed around the world, toward more extreme weather, a pattern that, increasingly, can be attributed to climate change. Just a few weeks before the Munich Re report appeared, scientists at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, in New York, published a study in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences on the apparent increase in extreme heat waves. Extreme summertime heat, which just a few decades ago affected much less than one per cent of the earth’s surface, “now typically covers about 10% of the land area,” the paper observed. “It follows that we can state, with a high degree of confidence, that extreme anomalies”—i.e., heat waves—“such as those in Texas and Oklahoma in 2011 and Moscow in 2010 were a consequence of global warming because their likelihood in the absence of global warming was exceedingly small.” It is worth noting that one of several forces fuelling Sandy is much-higher-than-average sea-surface temperatures along the East Coast…

    [note: Thanks to Jim Egge for bringing this to my attention.]

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      22 Comments

      1. John Galt
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 8:28 am | Permalink

        The only thing that’s powerful in all of this is Obama’s secret weather machine.

        Alex Jones has been saying that the government could use HAARP and CHEM trails to deliberately create a horrific devastation in order to achieve political gains, and it looks as though he was right. Obama knocked out the northeast with his FRANKENSTORM and now he’ll use the devastation to “postpone the election, create more gun control laws after the looting, obtain more money to try to control the weather to help especially farmers, milder winters, cooler summers and rain for the crops so there will be a more abundant food supply, etc.”

        I want you to watch this unique take on the hurricane in video form and after you see it, I think you’ll agree to pass it on to your friends who would like to see this graphic information.

        The video is entitled “HAARP Engineering ‘FRANKENSTORM’ Hurricane Sandy – CAUGHT on SATELLITE and RADAR!!!” It is about 11 minutes long. The video starts with news coverage of the hurricane. At about 1:35 minutes into the video the audio coverage stops and another person starts explaining what we are seeing in the weather satellite view and points out and explains the chem dumps and infrafrequency spots (read HAARP array events) and points them out as they are firing again and again. She even points out where there seems to be a persistent stationary chem trail. There is more. The link is:

        http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o4P7Kr17RX8

        This video corroborates what Alex has been explaining all along but in a way the viewer can see how satellite views are interpreted. IT CANNOT BE QUESTIONED because you believe what you see.

      2. Posted November 4, 2012 at 9:23 am | Permalink

        Is that what HAARP is about? I kept seeing it but wasn’t aware of its meaning.

        People seriously believe this, don’t they.

      3. anonymous
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 10:52 am | Permalink

        The interesting this is that elections always happen this time of the year, during hurricane season. That, I think, is a very good thing. I don’t know how it will play out, but I think it’s possible that we’ll see global warming play more of a role in presidential politics from now on as a result. No one will want to be in the position that Romney is in now, again.

      4. Robert
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 11:30 am | Permalink

        There is only one swing state where this is likely to have any impact on the presidential race, and it is Virginia, which I believe the Obama campaign organization already has a pretty good shot of holding.

        However, this may hurt the Republicans running for congressional and state seats all across the impacted areas.

      5. Posted November 4, 2012 at 12:30 pm | Permalink

        Hey, I saw a sign in Jackson that said “Who is John Galt”? and I knew who he was thanks to our poster John Galt!

      6. EOS
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 12:55 pm | Permalink

        Hurricanes happen. They happen less frequently recently than in past history. There isn’t a shred of scientific evidence that Hurricane Sandy was caused by any human activity. Even anonymous is confused and mistakenly called it global warming rather than climate change. Hard to hold a belief in global warming when the evidence shows cooling.

        One thing that is constant is that FEMA is doing as bad a job in the aftermath as it did after Katrina. This is a bigger negative for Obama than it is for Romney. The hurricane problems were exacerbated by the high density populations and their reliance on mass transit.

        Please – put the ad on TV. Any man who thinks he can control the level of the oceans and heal the planet is delusional.

      7. Robert
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 1:16 pm | Permalink

        I have to agree with EOS on many points. Obviously, hurricanes happen, and I wouldn’t be surprised if they happen less frequently recently than in past history.

        Unfortunately for EOS, most people operate on just about the same level of critical thought as they do. Many millions will attribute it to climate change without evidence or any genuine understanding.

        It’s funny, I never see EOS complain about that sort of ignorance when it seems to benefit their agenda.

        EOS is right that FEMA is overwhelmed with Sandy’s destruction. The obvious detail EOS doesn’t really address is of course the enormous difference in population density between the area hit by Katrina, and this one impacted by Sandy, and the difference that makes in the ability to respond adequately. But of course, EOS is not too good with numbers, as we’ve seen over and over in past posts, or inconvenient details. EOS tends to avoid very glaring facts completely, and seemingly without any sense of doing it. Those tend to be serious problems in real discussions which take place in the real world.

        Unlike what EOS says, the only way this might be a negative for Obama is that his popular vote nationwide may be considerably lower due to the difficulty of voting in these heavily Democratic areas hit by the storm.

        I just wish all GOP campaign strategists were as deluded as EOS. They’d get walked over without effort.

      8. Bob Krzewinski
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 1:26 pm | Permalink

        As a 28+ year airline pilot, it is almost funny that there are so many delusional, proud-to-be-stupid people in the world that believe aircraft contrails are really “chemical trails”, spraying the world on a daily basis with chemicals that cause weather changes, mind control, birth defects, etc. YouTube is full of these people who give a whole new meaning to the word “idiot”.

        Want to duplicate a “chemical trail”? Go out side in cold temps and exhale. What you are seeing is the same as a contrail, on a much smaller scale. Go to more about this at http://www.airspacemag.com/flight-today/Flight_Lines.html.

        One time I talked to someone in person who believed big-time in “chem-trails” and begged to have him tell me where the “chem” tanks were on an airliner, how they were filled and who was controlling them on an airliner since we obviously did not have an “chemical” on-off switches up front. He just could not come up with any answers and then started to rant how my airliner could be taken over by remote control at any time. Sure, right.

        PS – Hey EOS, just curious why you don’t have the backbone to use your real name to stand behind you statements? I don’t know, maybe you are 15 years old or something and afraid of being “public”. Sorry, that was not meant to insult 15 year olds.

      9. EOS
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 1:37 pm | Permalink

        Bob,

        My parents don’t allow me to use my real name on the Internet. That you put “Bob Krzewinski” on your posts really doesn’t mean anything if the reader hasn’t met you personally and you are not a public figure.

        Robert,

        I thought I did mention the fact that the high density population and its reliance on mass transit made the problems with Sandy worse.

      10. Robert
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 1:48 pm | Permalink

        EOS, FEMA is not nebulous. It is a government agency with a determinant set of resources and employees. Mentioning mass transit doesn’t equate with addressing this.

        Bob, EOS doesn’t live as he espouses. That is why he remains anonymous. It is very common among those types. I do respect him for being consistently stupid however. That is how low my expectations of people have gotten.

      11. Posted November 4, 2012 at 2:21 pm | Permalink

        EOS can’t use her real name here. It would mean she would have to be accountable for the ignorant drivel she posts here.

        As for Bob Krzewinski, he’s pretty easy to find. EOS’ computer skills must be pretty limited.

      12. Robert
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 3:38 pm | Permalink

        Peter, I am not as sure as you seem to be that EOS is female.

        I am usually pretty good at picking out more feminine patterns in word usage and such, from those which tend to indicate a male is writing them.

        If I absolutely had to make a bet, I would bet on male. However, I believe EOS is a personality that almost rides the fence between what are typically masculine expressions and what are typically feminine expressions. So, I would guess that EOS is either a somewhat masculine woman, or a somewhat feminine man.

      13. EOS
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

        Nobody cares what you two fantasize about who I am. I’m not saying.

      14. Posted November 4, 2012 at 7:07 pm | Permalink

        EOS once claimed to be “hotter” than a famous female celebrity.

        Either she’s a woman, or a man who fantasizes about being one.

        Either way, the claim to be “hotter” than a woman, or even make any reference to hotness at all, should violate EOS’ fundamentalist form of Christianity.

        Jesus spoke very clearly against lust:

        “”Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not commit adultery: But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.”"

        Also, Deuteronomy 22:5 is fairly explicit on the problem of cross dressing. Assuming EOS is, in fact male, and referred to himself as “hotter” than a woman, he would be, in fact, assuming the female form:

        “A woman shall not wear a man’s garment, nor shall a man put on a woman’s cloak, ufor whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God.”

      15. Posted November 4, 2012 at 7:10 pm | Permalink

        Of course, I find nothing wrong with either being a woman or fantasizing about being one, though I’m sure that EOS has serious problems with both.

      16. anonymous
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Permalink

        Peter, you’re so obsessed with EOS (aka Rodney) it’s marvelous.

      17. EOS
        Posted November 4, 2012 at 8:15 pm | Permalink

        Most people on this blog don’t use their real names. I’m just the only one who gets called out for it.

      18. Posted November 4, 2012 at 8:21 pm | Permalink

        Not true. I call Thom out on it all the time.

        Unfortunately, his real name cannot be expressed using any existing alphabet.

      19. Posted November 4, 2012 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

        I must admit that I never cared about EOS’s sex or secret identity. But I do prefer it when people use their real names — it shows more responsibility and personal accountability, don’t you think?

      20. Posted November 4, 2012 at 10:10 pm | Permalink

        People who won’t use their real names online are weak and afraid.

        Small people.

      21. Posted November 5, 2012 at 10:26 am | Permalink

        “Hurricanes happen. They happen less frequently recently than in past history. There isn’t a shred of scientific evidence that Hurricane Sandy was caused by any human activity.”

        Well, yes and no…

        Most climate models do suggest that man-made climate change (e.g. “global warming”) is probably reducing the global number of tropical cyclones (although North Atlantic tropical cyclones seem to have increased). But the same models also suggest that the same climate change is intensifying and prolonging the storms that do occur. Because the storms are relatively infrequent and show a high degree of natural variability, it’s difficult to determine the magnitude of the change, but most climatologists who’ve studied the question agree that it is happening and will continue. It’s also considered likely that climate change will alter hurricane tracks, as large-scale patterns like the North Atlantic Oscillation change, but the exact effect of this is uncertain. (Science writer Mark Fischetti draws a direct line from man-made climate change to arctic ice melt to NAO change to Sandy’s intensity and tracking, but the science is out on that one.)

      22. Mr. Y
        Posted November 5, 2012 at 10:44 am | Permalink

        The Republicans used to claim that there was no such thing as global climate change. Now that the evidence is indisputable, they say that, while the earth is getting hotter, there’s no evidence that it’s due to the activity of humans. They will always adapt their arguments to serve their goals. And, in this instance, their goal is to push the highly profitable “drill baby drill” agenda of corporate America. Personally, I don’t care if it’s proven that there’s a tie between the burning of fossil fuel and global warming. Given the severity of the problem, we don’t have the luxury to wait. Katrina and Sandy have shown us that. We need to make a significant move toward renewables, and we need to do it now. In the unlikely case that we’re wrong, and global warming continues anyway, what would the down side be? Less pollution? Energy independence from the Middle East? More jobs at home?

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