Monday, October 15, 2007

The "Gore Derangement Syndrome"

The sheer tonnage of invective hurled at Gore and the Nobel Committee in the last few days leads one to wonder, what is it that drives the right batty when it comes to Al Gore?
Holding forth on Fox News, Weekly Standard editor William Kristol disparaged the honor, calling it "a prize given by bloviators to a bloviator for nothing." Locally, Hube joins the fun by declaring that
"the Nobel Peace Prize is now a sad joke." New York Times columnist Paul Krugman calls it the "Gore Derangement Syndrome."
On the day after Al Gore shared the Nobel Peace Prize, The Wall Street Journal’s editors couldn’t even bring themselves to mention Mr. Gore’s name. Instead, they devoted their editorial to a long list of people they thought deserved the prize more.
And at National Review Online, Iain Murray suggested that the prize should have been shared with “that well-known peace campaigner Osama bin Laden, who implicitly endorsed Gore’s stance.” You see, bin Laden once said something about climate change — therefore, anyone who talks about climate change is a friend of the terrorists.
Of course, speaking of Al Gore in disparaging terms became an occupation hazard among the sophisticated media stars who treated us to endless coverage of his earth tones and his sighing during the 2000 campaign. George Bush, you see, was so much more authentic, as Bob Herbert pointed out in the NYT:
Mr. Bush came to mind because, for all of the obvious vulnerabilities he exhibited in 2000, it was not him but Mr. Gore who was mocked unmercifully by the national media. And the mockery had nothing to do with the former vice president’s positions on important policy issues. He was mocked because of his personality.
In the race for the highest office in the land, we showed the collective maturity of 3-year-olds.

Mr. Gore was taken to task for his taste in clothing and for such grievous offenses as sighing or, allegedly, rolling his eyes. It was a given that at a barbecue everyone would rush to be with his opponent.
We’ve paid a heavy price. The president who got such high marks as a barbecue companion doesn’t seem to know up from down. He’s hurled the nation into a ruinous war that has cost countless lives and spawned a whole new generation of terrorists. He continues to sit idly by as a historic American city, New Orleans, remains wounded and on its knees. He’s blithely steered the nation into a bottomless pit of debt.

In 2000, the presidential campaign was reduced to an election for senior class president, with the egghead pitted against the genial frat boy. The invective heaped on Gore cannot erase the uncomfortable truth that throughout his career, he has been right more than his critics, including the senior and junior Bush, as Krugman points out.
The worst thing about Mr. Gore, from the conservative point of view, is that he keeps being right. In 1992, George H. W. Bush mocked him as the “ozone man,” but three years later the scientists who discovered the threat to the ozone layer won the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. In 2002 he warned that if we invaded Iraq, “the resulting chaos could easily pose a far greater danger to the United States than we presently face from Saddam.” And so it has proved.
But for some, a know nothing is preferable to a know it all.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just as an antiseptic stings when used to clean a wound, any mention of Gore to those who staked their own credibility and reputations on Bush 2000 and were proven wrong, smarts.

What does a little kid say when you clean his wound? He says, "Ow, That Hurts."

So it is with republicans.......the more they chastise Gore, the deeper they dig their party's grave in future historical opinion.........

If such venting, ranting and railing continues to diminish what little credibility the republicans once had, then one could say perhaps, such acrimony directed at Gore is indeed a "good" thing....


2:40 PM, October 15, 2007  
Blogger mmahaffie said...

It's just so... predictable. Ad Hominem attacks. demonization. denial. What a load of crap it has all become.

7:53 PM, October 15, 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heh. This is great. But, it's what makes politics fun. Like Mike -- is it "predictable" that the Left constantly spews ad hominems, demonizations and denials at Bush and the GOP? Of course it is. But it's less annoying when you're left of center, right? Of course it is, like the reverse is true.

And Tom: I didn't disparage Gore. I disparaged the notion of why he WON it. There is a difference, after all. Like, y'know, Yassir Arafat helped lessen what the prize means.

4:49 PM, October 16, 2007  
Blogger Tom Noyes said...

First, I'm glad you're having fun, Hube.

As for the prize itself, coming environmental problesm that could disrupt agriculture and water supplies for millions of people. Calling attention to the threat of global warming could prevent population upheavals, wars over water rights and the need to accomodate millions of environmental refugees.

9:01 AM, October 17, 2007  

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