You know it’s a bad sign when the comedy host is a tougher “journalist” than the actual reporters. But that’s what played out as The Daily Show and CBS This Morning both featured interviews with Al Gore. The ex-Vice President is promoting his new climate change documentary and endured this softball from CBS’s Charlie Rose on Wednesday: “So, tell me, in ten years, what has changed that alarms you?”
As for climate skeptics and those who think solving the problem isn’t worth the financial cost, Rose offered this easy query: “What is it that drives the opposition, you believe?” The journalist even helped Gore with talking points. Highlighting EPA administrator Scott Pruitt, the journalist scolded, “... The EPA has people who have been opposed to the EPA running it.”
At no time in the eight and a half minute segment did any of the CBS journalists mention the errors or distortions of Gore’s original film, An Inconvenient Truth. The politician now goes around pretending that the 2006 movie claimed only that parts of New York would endure tough storms. As the National Review explained, this is just false:
In An Inconvenient Truth Gore didn’t say anything about lower Manhattan getting inundated because of a passing storm. He showed the tip of the island disappearing underwater because of melting ice in the North Atlantic, not because a hurricane happened to strike the area at high tide and during a full moon. There’s a fairly critical distinction between the two scenarios: One is permanent. Lower Manhattan may someday be uninhabitable by anyone who doesn’t have gills...
In contrast, Daily Show host Trevor Noah at least offered some skepticism when he talked to Gore on Tuesday night: “This is a strange film for me to watch. Because I go, the first film was almost the world is ending and now there's a sequel?”
Allowing that there could be another side, the comic explained, “Essentially the President argues that the cost to the United States far outweighs the benefits of going up against global warming.” Noah challenged:
When we speak about meeting commitments, the one thing that many skeptics raised, the one point is, even if the U.S. and all the other countries around the world meet the commitments, the magical number of two degrees Celsius will still be reached in terms of climate change and the rising temperatures around the globe. So there are many people who say there is no point because, regardless of what we do, the temperature will change and it will rise to that two degree point where the oceans rise and then Miami is no longer a thing.
To be sure, the Comedy Central host offered sympathy to Gore’s perspective. But at least he pushed the climate activist and challenged him. That’s more than could be said for the fan boy journalists at CBS.
To see how CNN promoted Al Gore and climate change as comparable to civil rights go here.
A transcript of the CBS questions is below:
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CBS This Morning
CHARLIE ROSE: Our series Issues That Matter continues this morning with a closer look at climate change. Former Vice President Al Gore has spent decades working for decades on this global problem. He won a Nobel Peace Prize for his work. He has made two movies on the subject. An Inconvenient Truth in 2006 and this year’s An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power.
[Clip from documentary.]
ROSE: Al Gore is here with us in Studio 57. We're pleased to have you. Welcome.
GORE: Thank you very much.
ROSE: So, tell me, in ten years, what has changed that alarms you?
ROSE: Is there a will reflected by the Paris Accords, by governments around the world, to do something?
GORE: And even though President Trump announced he is going to pull out of the Paris agreement, the very next day the rest of the world doubled down on their commitment. And here, governors and mayors and businesses —
ROSE: People like Mayor Bloomberg. Initiate something on a local level.
ROSE: So, your worst fears may not happen?
GORE: Well, even with all the commitment in Paris put together, it’s still not enough. But it lays a strong foundation to build stronger action.
MARGARET BRENNAN: Now, the Pentagon has called climate change urgent and growing threat to national security, specifically citing refugee flows. On this national security kind of theme, do you think there’s sort of a foothold to have a message to persuade President Trump or persuade those who are so skeptical about the science here?
BRENNAN: France’s president has issued an invitation to American climate scientists to come and work there. And he phrased it, in some ways, as a hit against President Trump, saying, “You are not welcome in your own country. Come to mine.” I mean, is this just political or is there something that is truly underway in France about fighting what you are talking about?
VLADIMIR DUTHIERS: Mr. Vice President, I want to drill down on this national security. Many of the countries who list climate change as a national threat are in Latin America and Africa. Link that for us, the threat to national security and climate change and some of these other countries.
ROSE: So, what is it that drives the opposition, you believe?
ROSE: And, if in fact the EPA has people who have been opposed to the EPA running it.
GORE: Yeah, it’s horrible. The President has surrounded himself with a rogues gallery of climate deniers.
ROSE: But does that mean it has some political play in America. I mean, President Trump won the election.