We used to argue that climate change was a tough political question because its effects were so distant in the future. But that case no longer holds. We are clearly living through those effects right now. So how does the president respond?
One of the problems that a lot of people like myself — we have very high levels of intelligence, but we’re not necessarily such believers. You look at our air and our water, and it’s right now at a record clean. But when you look at China and you look at parts of Asia and when you look at South America, and when you look at many other places in this world, including Russia, including — just many other places — the air is incredibly dirty … if you go back and if you look at articles, they talked about global freezing, they talked about at some point the planets could have freeze to death, then it’s going to die of heat exhaustion. There is movement in the atmosphere. There’s no question. As to whether or not it’s man-made and whether or not the effects that you’re talking about are there, I don’t see it …
What’s going on here, if you can penetrate the word chowder, is not just abject willful denial of reality (that is routine for Trump). It’s also a sense that energy innovation is for suckers and pansies and pussies. (This is one of the very few areas in which I will concede such a thing as literally toxic masculinity.)