Andrew Sullivan writes that Al Gore’s claims about global warming are irresponsible, just like Vice President Cheney’s claims about weapons of mass destruction:
It occurs to me that the global warming debate is not unlike the WMD-terrorist debate, except the sides are reversed. Accrding [sic] to Ron Suskind, Dick Cheney’s “one percent doctrine” means that if there’s a one percent chance that a terrorist could have access to a WMD, we must act as if it were a certainty – because the outcome, however unlikely, would be too disastrous to risk. On global warming, Gore expresses a not-too-dissimilar equation: if there’s a small chance that human behavior could lead to environmental catastrophe, we should act as if it were a certainty – because waiting too long is too big a risk to take.
Except Gore’s claims are based on scientific research that has been rigorously peer-reviewed by thousands of scientists. Cheney’s claims were based intelligence he manipulated and cherry-picked to reach a predetermined result.
There is a scientific consensus (not a “small chance”) that global warming is real and driven by humans. Even most skeptics (maybe even Cheney) would acknowledge, if the earth is going to keep getting warmer and warmer, we are in for serious trouble.