Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Dialogue with Tom McClintock on Climate Change

It was a very brief dialogue.
And I confess: like an idiot, I did not have my voice recorder turned on, so this is from memory and likely has some inaccuracies on details.

McClintock was up in town tonight, to speak along with Mark Meckler at a Tea Party Patriots meeting. (McClintock aide Igor Berman said the only Town Hall meeting per se that McClintock's holding this week will be down in Lincoln Friday night).

Afterward, I was able to speak one-on-one with McClintock for, it turned out, a very brief time.
I showed him & started to narrate the "change in average global temperature 1920-2010" image:

...which he did not want to look at, jumping in with "But it's been warming since the end of the Little Ice Age" (to which, alas, I did not give the correct "that was the sun, and this is fossil fuels" response, instead a less correct "no, we've been warming since we started burning fossil fuels" (note to blogger: practice with those flash cards!)); he countered "50 thousand years ago there was ice all over the northern hemisphere & we've been warming since then"; I countered "actually, that's due to the Milankovitch cycles & we were actually cooling [slightly & gradually, before the start of the Industrial Revolution]"

I noted that he'd voted against this amendment:
"Congress accepts the scientific findings of the Environmental Protection Agency that climate change is occurring, is caused largely by human activities, and poses significant risks for public health and welfare."
...and asked which one(s) of these 3 findings he disagreed with; by that point he'd had enough & said "you know my views", then "I will not be monopolized by this" (this after he'd spent, oh, 20 minutes talking to others) & walked out.

(So I'd infer that he's sure it's natural, and not risky. But it would have been better to get explicit answers.)

What struck me (as bizarre) was how, in delivering his climate talking points, he appeared utterly without doubt; which may bolster the "reasoning is for argumentation" hypothesis ...or perhaps just the "I can't tell when people are bluffing" hypothesis.

Next time: video, or audio at least. And better preparation.


Don Pelton said...


Thanks for the only report anywhere on the McClintock meeting last night (did you see any reporters there?).

While other Republicans elsewhere nationwide have been getting trounced because of their (and McClintock's) vote FOR the Ryan draconian budget plan, he comes here and hides out among his safe TP audience (am I getting this right?), just as he appeared in our county last time at a small meeting with another supportive audience at an ERC meeting.

Your McClintock experience sounds entirely predictable, considering his closed mind, but kudos to you for making the effort and putting it on record.

McClintock is hopeless. We have to work to defeat him in the next election.

Anna Haynes said...

More to come, Don (I got digressed earlier in the evening, then ran out of productive steam)

And I should clarify that unless McClintock&staff read NCVoices (or my recent letter to him), my Qs likely came as a surprise to him; especially since it wasn't billed as a Town Hall Meeting proper (NCTPP called it a "NCTPP Special Town Hall Meeting" - as did The Union's notice, and said the topic would be economics&budget, fwiw)

Whether it would have made a difference if he'd been less blindsided, I won't speculate.

Another variable: people are more prone to accept new/contradicting info (rather than adopting a pose of Hedgehoggian "I know it all and will now explain it to YOU") if the info comes from a) one from their tribe, b) an alpha male, and most particularly c) not a mousy "leftist"(their perception) wimminfolk.
I'm not sure what I can do to examine this influence.

Curtis Walker said...

I just put up a link to a ten minute video that has to be from last night. Get barf bag before watching and have a hot shower ready afterwards. Read the silly post and comments as well, if you can.


Anna Haynes said...

Intriguing; thank you Curtis. (although I'd skip the accoutrements)

Intriguing, because the video (link) - although posted just a couple hours after McClintock's meeting here, & accompanied by text saying "The American People did it again! ...", is actually old - it's from a meeting back in Sept 2009 (it shows the Vets hall not Horseman's Assn, and I remember the video clips; this was the meeting that had the stage management (post w/video)))

Why would it be presented as if it were from Wednesday's event?
(or am I missing something, & it's not)
I just now left a comment there, noting that it's from an old meeting.

(fwiw, here's Curtis's Posterous link to it )

Anna Haynes said...

Oops, false alarm - that video's newly posted on a spam blog, it looks like they pulled video & text from this Sept 2009-era video+comments on YouTube (link)

Anna Haynes said...

(I should also say, my bad; I should have spent a few more minutes looking into it, before commenting.)