Monday 28 August 2006

Al Gore

So much for the UK (or Scotland) being anti-American. Last night Al Gore was welcomed by the assembled ranks of Friends of the Earthers, Liberal Democrats, BBC journalists, pro and anti-independence Scots and assorted members of the Edinburgh Great and the Good, as if he were Mick Jagger over at Hampden Park. The Sunday night whooping and hollering must have caused a mass outbreak of birling in the graves of deceased local Presbyterians. However, unlike at the Glasgow gig, there was no smoking or inhaling by Mr Gore in Edinburgh. He did however appear to be enjoying a wee dram during the book signing session. (Look carefully at the photo below.)

Gore was introduced by Herald political writer Iain MacWhirter, who seemed quite beside himself with joy at sitting beside the great presence - "a man who could be the next President of the USA, because, after all, he’s already been elected to the position!” Except it ain't true.

MacWhirter (a Herald political "expert") told us that if Gore had been President the US would have signed up for Kyoto. "Not true," I whispered to Mrs F&W. To his credit, Gore pointed out MacWhirter's error. In the American system it's the Senate and not the President that ratifies treaties and they voted against Kyoto by 95 to 0. Gore didn't think it too likely that Kyoto would pass now even if he were President.

Gore had lost any sign of the woodenness that I'd read about during his presidential campaign. He spoke very competently and without (apparent) notes. He started with a series of one-liners: "For eight years I flew around in Air Force 2 and now I have to take off my shoes and belt before I can get on a plane." Tough, Al. Welcome to the real world.

MacWhirter asked about Global Warming and it's "human causes". We got the full Gore spiel. As far as can be discerned, according to Al, the scientific community is unanimous that it's all our fault. Except, once again, it ain't true. But the Edinburgh audience weren't told about any modern dissenters although I was sorely tempted to give a good old traditional shout of "Daur ye say nonsense in ma lug?" Of course, Jenny Geddes (*) didn't have the Secret Service to worry about. I presume that Mr Gore did have his own security but the two heavies at the book signing session were Scots and I'm damned sure that one of them does duty outside a well-know local pub on football Saturdays. I'm suspect that keeping Hibs and Hearts fans apart is an excellent training for protecting the former VP.

Mr Gore seemed to enjoy himself immensely. I thought that his answer to a question on Scottish independence might cause a mild panic over at Number Six. But if Scotland were to become the 51st State, Mr Gore could count on ten Electoral College votes for the Democrats. On last night's evidence at least.

(* Vegetable seller Jenny Geddes, attending morning service in St Giles, the High Kirk of Edinburgh, on 23 July 1637, is said to have picked up her stool and hurled it at the minister. That flying furniture led to the Scottish National Covenant, the English Civil War, the execution of Charles and the conquest of Scotland by Cromwell.)

1 comment:

David Farrer said...

Comments made on previous template:

Sandy P
Via Instapundit, silencing of an MIT professor: 
...While vacationing in Canada, I spotted a newspaper story that I hadn't seen in the United States. For no apparent reason, the state of California, Environmental Defense, and the Natural Resources Defense Council have dragged Lindzen and about 15 other global- warming skeptics into a lawsuit over auto- emissions standards. California et al . have asked the auto companies to cough up any and all communications they have had with Lindzen and his colleagues, whose research has been cited in court documents. 
``We know that General Motors has been paying for this fake science exactly as the tobacco companies did," says ED attorney Jim Marston. If Marston has a scintilla of evidence that Lindzen has been trafficking in fake science, he should present it to the MIT provost's office. Otherwise, he should shut up. 
``This is the criminalization of opposition to global warming," says Lindzen, who adds he has never communicated with the auto companies involved in the lawsuit. Of course Lindzen isn't a fake scientist, he's an inconvenient scientist. No wonder you're not supposed to listen to him.

30 August 2006, 20:38:28 GMT+01:00
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Sandy P
Via Tim Blair: 
“How can you tell who someone’s god is?” asks Orson Scott Card. “You look to see whose name they invoke as the cause of all things, good or bad. By that standard, the god of the devout Left is Global Warming.” Here’s Orson’s Psalm of Al:  
1. Great storms ravage our cities, and the wise man saith: Global Warming hath done this.  
2. Drought keepeth all storms at bay, and the wise man saith: This also hath Global Warming done.  
3. Global Warming maketh the oceans rise; it maketh deep snow to fall;  
4. Flood and fire, feast and famine, typhoon and tornado, hail and lightning, all things good and bad that come from sky or sea, Global Warming hath made them all.  
5. And when our homes are beneath the waves, we shall know that Global Warming in its wrath hath seen our sins.  
6. For our vehicles that glut themselves on oil, for the trees we cut and land we clear,  
7. For the cooling and heating of our houses, for the plowing and harvesting of our fields, we are punished.  
8. Whenever we burn carbon and release it into the air, we shall know that Global Warming seeth it, and is wroth.  
9. O man! Thou hast flouted the great god of the sky, and by three degrees of temperature we shall be burned,  
10. For Global Warming is a jealous god, and small and annoying is man.  
(Via Daniel H.)

30 August 2006, 16:08:10 GMT+01:00
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Sandy P
You're being too kind. 
Once again late to the party, seems a Russian scientist said we're heading for global cooling.

30 August 2006, 15:52:38 GMT+01:00
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David Farrer
I think the Americans still refer to them as Mr President and Mr Vice President even after leaving office. But perhaps not. Now amended to "former VP".

29 August 2006, 12:46:11 GMT+01:00
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Andrew Duffin
"keeping Hibs and Hearts fans apart is an excellent training for protecting the VP" 
Just remind me again, what is it that Al Gore is VP of?

29 August 2006, 12:22:00 GMT+01:00