Thursday, March 19, 2015

The whole big ball: An open letter to Ted Cruz

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Dear Mr. Cruz:

It's official: Earth is finishing up its warmest winter since warmth began being recorded.

Even ultra-righty Newsmax acknowledges it, although it ends the coverage in classic let's-kill-our-own-story fashion by saying that "Twitter users had mixed reactions." (No one can say that Newsmax doesn't know how to undermine a serious story that goes against its politics.)

Forget about your mythical "satellites" that you claim haven't seen any data of warming for 17 years. You're making that up, because you're an amoral asshat in service to the denial industry.

As a leader, you should lead a drive to get a definition of "Earth" out into the wider Congressional consciousness, since your Republican colleagues seem to genuinely think that "Earth" means Washington DC. And maybe a little bit of Virginia, across the river. But that's incorrect.

Earth: a big ball with two hemispheres - winter in one, summer in the other, and then reversed. Not just Boston with its record snowfall.

Earth: home to seven billion people. Not just the families and corporate owners of you and your friend James Inhofe of Oklahoma, who somehow managed to pervert irony so thoroughly that he became the U.S. Senate's earth-hating Chair of the Environment and Public Works Committee.

Earth: the place that Seth Meyers rightly described to you as "literally on fire" now that it's warmer than it's ever been, only to have you counter that "New Hampshire is covered in snow and ice." Just as Inhofe "proved" that climate change was a hoax by bringing a snowball to the Senate floor. (Again, that whole-big-ball thing defies the Republican mind's ability to comprehend.)

On Seth's show you also pulled out that favorite new talking point from the Republican Denial Club's grab bag of tricks: "Remember how it used to be called global warming? And then magically the theory changed to 'climate change'?"

Yes, Ted, we do. Even though you deniers are trying like hell to pin the language shift on liberals, here's how the "magic" happened: It was Republican Party advisor Frank Luntz who recommended the terminology change, in a memo prepared for George Bush the First: "It’s time for us to start talking about 'climate change' instead of global warming and 'conservation' instead of preservation. 'Climate change' is less frightening than 'global warming.'"

The whole memo is here. (The Internet is a wonderful thing, sometimes.)

Just recite: Big Ball. Many continents.

And then tell your friends. Before you manage to kill us all.

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