The way Scott Harper begins his story proves that he had correctly identified the speaker he was covering.
"U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher was in a froth . . ."
Anyone who has witnessed the Mouth That Rohrabachered whip up the party faithful at GOP election night shindigs over the years knows that froth oh so well. But Harper was not at a swanky Republican fiesta nor a pity party like the Nov. 3 morgue scene that found a supremely pissed-off Dana scolding his brethren for having veered off the path of fiscal conservatism. No, Harper was covering the International Conference on Climate Change, not the be confused with the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Indeed, it's the melting polar opposite.
First, to give credit where credit is due, Harper writes for the website Climate Realists (formerly "CO2sceptics"). The third annual International Conference on Climate Change was presented June 2 mere blocks from the U.S. Capitol by the Heartland Institute, a conservative think tank. Besides summing up the words of Rohrabacher and other speakers during the day-long event, Harper lamented the lack of mainstream media coverage they drew.
By the way, the complete first sentence to his story "Global Warming? Not So Fast, Skeptics Say at Meeting" reads: "U.S. Rep. Dana Rohrabacher was in a froth, and his audience loved it." And how could they not? It was vintage DR, barely containing his disgust--you know that smelled-a-fart look he gets--as he spewed like a smoke stack.
"Al Gore has been wrong all along!" he yelled. "This is outrageous! All of this is wrong! The people who have stifled this debate have an agenda that is just frightening!"
When no one is listening to you, yelling is all that is left.
For the record, the International Conference on Climate Change did receive mainstream media coverage, or at least Rohrabacher's keynote address to that august body did. It just didn't show up until Thursday, or more than a week after Harper's post. Staff writer Gene Maddaus of the Daily Breeze, which distributes in the LA County portion of the congressman's gerrymandered district (otherwise known as "The Hinterlands"), began by noting Rohrabacher "has emerged as a leading climate change skeptic in Congress, and is well known for colorful jokes on the topic."
Cue the funny:
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"Most of the polar bears are OK," Rohrabacher told the crowd. "I understand there's actually a huge increase in the population of polar bears. A significant number of the polar bears are basically procreating because they don't have to stay in their hole asleep most of the year."
Guess it's one of those jokes where you had to be there.
Maddaus goes on to report that scientists have felt the need to debunk the polar bear argument, a more rigorous version of which maintains the mammals, which depend on sea ice to hunt for seals, will adapt to life on land as the ice melts away. "Bear scientists counter that polar bears cannot subsist on berries, and that their population will in fact decline as sea ice declines," Maddaus writes. "As far as Rohrabacher's particular argument goes: Polar bears don't hibernate."
But I betcha they froth.