Year 3, Month 10, Day 12: Whenever I Want You, All I Have To Do Is Dream…

U.S. News and World Report asks “Why have Obama and Romney ignored global warming?”:

For an hour and a half Wednesday, Mitt Romney and Barack Obama talked about jobs, the economy, and more jobs—but they didn’t touch on the environment or climate change. A new study suggests maybe they should have: Undecided voters seem to care about global warming as much as Democrats do.

With polls showing a dead heat in the race to woo independent voters and neither candidate doing a great job on climate change (a prominent climatologist told the San Francisco Chronicle earlier this week that “the silence of Gov. Romney and President Obama on climate change is deafening”), could the issue break the tie?

According to a poll by Yale and George Mason Universities, 80 percent of undecided voters believe that global warming is happening and only 3 percent actively deny it. Two thirds of undecided voters say the federal government should do more to address climate change, and 61 percent say it’s an important issue they consider when voting for president.

Both candidates have already acknowledged they believe the earth is getting warmer and that humans are causing it, but neither has campaigned much on the issue. Ed Maibach, the George Mason professor behind the poll, says it’s about time they started to.

About time, indeed. Sent October 5:

The candidates’ extraordinary reluctance to offer the issue of climate change anything more substantial than snarky remarks or cameo appearances is a distressing reminder of the degree to which the interests of fossil fuel corporations coincide with those of the American media establishment. Any American politician who correctly notes that the threat posed by (for example) an expanding budget deficit is miniscule compared to that of a rapidly metastasizing greenhouse effect would be immediately pilloried and ridiculed by print and broadcast journalists, as witness the irresponsible treatment meted out to Al Gore over the past decade.

But these corporate interests’ slavish devotion to the bottom line is ultimately self-defeating. A short-term focus on quarterly profits occludes the key fact of the climate crisis: unless we address the problem both rapidly and responsibly, none of the other issues currently commanding the attention of our media and political establishments will matter.

Warren Senders

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