Exclusive Interview With Invisible President Obama On Global Warming

JR: Invisible Obama, I must confess that all these years I was eating lunch at home between blog posts I had no idea you were sitting right next to me. But Clint Eastwood opened my eyes — and ears — and for that I’m grateful.


JR: I’m sorry. You’re right.  You’re very busy. You have a big speech tonight and President Clinton is a tough act to follow so let’s get right to this. First, what did you think of Clint’s decision to interview you at the RNC?


JR: Quoting Magnum Force, that’s funny. I’ll post the video:

And what did you think of Mitt Romney’s mockery of your pledge to “slow the rise of the oceans and to heal the planet”?


JR: Well, I can’t print that….  Just kidding. Yes, it’s true Romney’s policies would speed the rise of the oceans and slow the healing the planet. Yes, he apparently believes that rising seas lift all yachts. But your clear understanding of the problem raises the question: Why have you and your administration been treating climate change like Voldemort — “The Threat-That-Must-Not-Be-Named.”


JR: You can’t be serious. You can’t say you have been talking about global warming the whole time, but it has fallen on deaf ears. It wasn’t in the State of the Union address.


JR: It was in your State of the Union address, the one no one heard? I’m puzzled. So you’re not really Barack Obama?


JR: Oh, you’re Obama’s conscience. Well, that explains a lot…. But not everything. Given that the Democratic platform correctly asserts — “We know that global climate change is one of the biggest threats of this generation – an economic, environmental, and national security catastrophe in the making” — tell me why in over 80 speeches in the first two days of the convention there has been so little attention drawn to this threat posed by unrestricted carbon pollution, just a couple of oblique references.


JR: Very funny. Yes, carbon pollution is invisible, just like you. But its effects have become painfully visible now — a climate system on steroids with record-smashing extreme weather, including droughts, heat waves, wildfires and deluges. Why is no one talking about that?


JR: Just as I suspected. I knew the White House communications team had muzzled just about everyone in the administration on the subject — and had been telling major progressive political leaders not to talk about climate change during the debate about the climate bill. So they still are. As you must know, however, that’s just nutty. Pretty much every major poll and every major social scientist makes clear that climate action and clean energy are wedge issues, ones that split the tea party extremists from Independents  and even many moderate Republicans:


JR: Tell you about it? Are you saying White House comms muzzled you, too, Obama’s conscience, which is why only Clint Eastwood and I can hear you?


JR: I feel your pain. Let’s have a drinking game for tonight’s convention speech. The same one I proposed for the State of the Union:

  1. The first time the President uses the phrase “climate change” or “global warming,” down the drink of your choice.
  2. The second time, empty out the liquor cabinet.
  3. The third time, it’s a weekend in Las Vegas with Charlie Sheen or Chelsea Handler.


JR: No worries, neither do I.

10 Responses to Exclusive Interview With Invisible President Obama On Global Warming

  1. Merrelyn Emery says:

    Obama is playing Wei’chi not chess, that’s why he has gone out for clean energy, higher fuel standards etc plus ‘all of the above’ to keep them guessing, as you would expect from the strategy of the indirect approach. You will see direct action on climate change after the election, ME

  2. Joe Romm says:

    let’s hope so for all our sakes.

  3. Pete Helseth says:

    Off to the liquor cabinet, at least for that first round…

  4. Carol says:

    Thank you for this and all you do! This is a perfect read (hilarious/brilliant) after a surreal week filled with more bad news.
    In spite of all the gloom, laughter is essential to keep on keeping on.
    Wish we could see you on The Colbert Report.
    The reality of AGW could use “the Colbert Bump”.
    Like Pete—off to the liquor cabinet. Wish I were as optimistic as Merrelyn.

  5. John McCormick says:

    ME, I take that as fact. And thank you for pointing out that we “will see direct action on climate change after the election.”

    President Obama is surrounded by a team of brilliant strategists. The Convention team tore the rethugs apart. Everything the rethugs did and said wrong, the Dems did the opposite. Giving huge tribute to our soldiers and veterans where the Rolls Royce team ignored them was just one of the many knee-cappings the Dems delivered.

    When I hear the death wish platform of the rethug party I get another anxiety attack thinking what America will be like if those fundamentalists might win by denying Americans the right to vote.

    I give President Obama and his team all the freedom they need to win.

    America’s politics is also at a tipping point moment and there will be no going back to sanity if the kroch bros and their paid mercenaries take over the White House and the Congress.

  6. Michael Glass says:

    I think we should consider a “net metering” drinking game. With every mention of a policy that promotes global warming you lose one drink.

    My recollection—prompted by Joe Romm’s “sobriety game”—is that Obama mentioned global warming exactly once in this year’s SOTU. He brought it up to solely to say that there was no political will to deal with it.

    It was a statement about global warming that did not deny it, so it maybe warranted a drink. On the other hand it was a statement that the deniers would agree with, so it should not.

  7. Dan Ives says:

    “You will see direct action on climate change after the election” – Based on what? For a blog that deals so often with science, it’s readers sure are willing to believe things absent of any evidence whatsoever.
    We know for a fact that “all of the above” will lead to climate disaster, because to avoid catastrophe, we need to leave a lot of fossil fuels in the ground, not use them up with a little wind and solar sprinkled on the side.
    Obama is fooling you progressives just like he did in 2008, and apparently you haven’t learned a thing.

  8. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Mao Ze-dong was a wei-chi player, and based his guerilla strategy on it. Your optimism is a tonic.

  9. Merrelyn Emery says:

    There’s plenty of evidence if you know how to play Wei’chi – have a look at the stones on the board and their positions. In his second term, he has nothing to lose (except his life) and can start playing the end game, ME

  10. Y. says:

    Second-term presidents also have that unfortunate tendency to lose authority the further they get into their term, and are surrounded by people who do worry about future employment. An examination of the second terms of all of the other recent second-term presidents all show a retreat from their domestic agenda and concentration in foreign policy (which is usually ineffectively pursued as well).