Ive been maintaining blog-silence this month while I get this years Index of Leading Environmental Indicators in the can (bonus: this years edition will include a short film on DVD starring Yours Truly), but a couple of things compel me to pop my head above the parapet to comment.
Yesterdays Wall Street Journal carried an op-ed column (not available to non-subscribers so Im skipping a link) from Bjorn Lomborg recounting how Al Gore had ducked out of a previously arranged interview with a Danish newspaper when he found out that Lomborg would be doing the interview. As chance would have it, I spent the afternoon with Lomborg just last week in Zurich going over questions he should ask Gore. (What were you doing in Zurich?--Ed. Lomborg and I were stuffing our Swiss bank accounts with all the ExxonMobil moolah theyve been shoveling our way. . . Just kidding. I couldnt resist the thought of NLT trolls heads exploding. Bjorn and I were speakers at a conference sponsored by this Swiss think tank.)* Im not surprised Gore backed out; he is not very good at answering challenges to his extreme climate gore, so he ducks more debates than Jimmy Carter.
Word around Hollywood is that "An Inconvenient Truthiness" is a shoe-in for the Oscar for best documentary. Which leads me to wonder: rumors are going around Washington that Gore is quietly contacting key Democrats to sound them out about running. Might Gore use the Oscar microphone to announce his candidacy? Where can you have a bigger audience aside from American Idol? Think of how the Hollywood crowd would go nuts if Gore did it. It would also be a way of eclipsing Obamamania. Id almost be willing to quote odds on this idea.
Meanwhile, Rich Karlgaard points to a possible problem for Gore: his involvement in whitewashing Apples options backdating problem. Now, this is one of those lovely "hoist-by-their-own-petard" situations, since the people who froth the most about this problem are Gores constituencies. Couldnt happen to a more deservedly unctuous person.
Finally, is Al Gore actually a harbinger of a new ice age, or is he the Real Mr. Freeze of Batman comics? Several journalists have noted that everywhere Gore goes, he seems to bring record cold temperatures with him. Theres now even an entry about "the Gore Effect" in The Urban Dictionary (a kind of alternative Wikipedia), defined as "The well documented phenomenon that leads to very low, unseasonal temperatures, driving rain, hail, snow or all of the above whenever Al Gore visits an area to discuss global warming."
*P.S. I regaled my Swiss hosts with Robin Williams old jokes about how wonderful it is that the basic weapon of the Swiss army--the famous knife--comes with a corkscrew. (Their marching chant goes: "I dont know but Ive been told/Chardonnay should be served cold.") I was archly told that only officers are issued Swiss army knives with corkscrews. Which makes it even funnier if you ask me.