Global warming: The new Golden Idol*

(Cross posted at Say Anything: Reader Blogs.)

There's a new "controversy" brewing over NASA Administrator Michael Griffin's comments about global warming in an interview on NRP yesterday.

NASA Chief Questions Urgency of Global Warming. I listened to this interview yesterday and again today. The exchange about global warming was only a part of the interview aired but this is the only text up on the NPR website. You can still click on the listen link to hear the whole broadcast of the interview. Here's a part of the NPR text:
Do you have any doubt that this is a problem that mankind has to wrestle with?

I have no doubt that … a trend of global warming exists. I am not sure that it is fair to say that it is a problem we must wrestle with. To assume that it is a problem is to assume that the state of Earth's climate today is the optimal climate, the best climate that we could have or ever have had and that we need to take steps to make sure that it doesn't change. First of all, I don't think it's within the power of human beings to assure that the climate does not change, as millions of years of history have shown. And second of all, I guess I would ask which human beings — where and when — are to be accorded the privilege of deciding that this particular climate that we have right here today, right now is the best climate for all other human beings. I think that's a rather arrogant position for people to take.

That seems like a reasonable response to me but at least one scientist is calling for him to resign because of his responses to the questions about global warming.
NASA Administrator Assailed for Climate Comments
Policymakers and scientists are strongly criticizing comments by Michael Griffin, the head of NASA, who has said he didn't think global warming was something necessary to wrestle with. He made the comments on Thursday's Morning Edition, saying that it's arrogant to assume that the climate we have today is the best climate for all people.
You can just imagine people carrying on this way when scientists started theorizing that the world wasn't flat or that the earth wasn't the center of the solar system or that our solar system wasn't the center of the universe. They were wildly out of step with the mainstream scientific views of their time too.

These scientist all sound scared that they might be found out for not believing in global warming, particularly the more outrageous claims such as sea levels rising by hundreds of feet (someone actually mentions this in the story above), hook, line, and sinker. They seem quite willing to throw Griffin into the firey furnace for his transgressions.

This all started with an interview with Greg Easterbrook where he criticized NASA for just about everything under the sun (pun intended).
Does NASA Still Have the Right Stuff?
NASA wants to build a new base on the Moon, but some argue it is costly and unnecessary venture. Spending taxpayer dollars on programs that are of little tangible value only hurts the agency in the long run.

Gregg Easterbrook, a contributing writer for WIRED magazine speaks to Steve Inskeep.

Somewhere in there he complained about NASA not doing enough to battle global warming which set us on the road to this current "controversy."


*No I'm not talking about American Idol. I'm referencing the story of Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego from the Old Testament. Their colleagues were none to pleased that they wouldn't go along to get along either.

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