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Jewish World Review
Nov. 4, 2008
/ 6 Mar-Cheshvan 5769
A candidate's threats of bankrupting an idustry isn't news?
On October 28, the British parliament began debating a bill to create a massive
bureaucracy to deal with global warming. It snowed that day. It was the first
snowfall in London in October since 1922.
The day after the snow fall in London, Tibet experienced its worst snowstorm ever
recorded. In the U.S. on October 29, 115 communities set or tied records for low
temperature on that date, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)
Average global temperature peaked in 1998, and has been cooling since 2002. Global
warming, apparently, is not all that it has been cracked up to be.
This is important, because of the draconian measures global warming alarmists are
urging that we take to combat what may be a phantom problem. They blame warming on
emissions from our automobiles and factories. They want virtually to end the
burning of fossil fuels, in particular coal and gasoline.
Barack Obama is among the global warming alarmists, he made clear in an interview
with the editorial board of the San Francisco Chronicle Jan. 17.
"What I've said is we would put a cap and trade policy in place that is as
aggressive if not more aggressive than anyone out there," Sen. Obama told the
Chronicle's editors. "So if someone wants to build a coal-fired plant, they can.
It's just that it will bankrupt them because they are going to be charged a huge sum
for all that greenhouse gas that's being emitted."
His cap and trade policies would generate billions of dollars in revenue from taxes
on coal producers that could be invested in "green" technologies such as solar or
wind, Sen. Obama said. But the burden would fall heavily on the 57 percent of us
who get our electricity principally from coal-fired plants, he acknowledged.
"Under my plan of a cap and trade system, electricity rates would necessarily
skyrocket," Sen. Obama said.
It's remarkable for a presidential candidate to say he plans to bankrupt a major
industry, and to send skyrocketing the rates consumers pay for electricity. But in
the lengthy story political writer Carla Marinucci and staff writer Joe Garofoli
wrote about Sen. Obama's interview with the Chronicle editorial board, there was no
mention of either. The Chronicle did post a tape recording of the interview on its
Web site, where the explosive quotes belatedly were found.
GOP vice presidential candidate Gov. Sarah Palin played the portion of the tape with
the energy quotes at a campaign rally in Ohio Sunday. "This interview was given
many months ago," she said. "You should have known about this."
Had the information surfaced before the final weekend of the election campaign, it's
probable Sen. Obama would be having more difficulty in Pennsylvania and Ohio than he
John Diaz, who edits the Chronicle's editorial pages, vigorously denied his paper
has suppressed the information. "How can anyone suggest we hid an interview that we
did, immediately put up on the Web, and advertised to our readers?" he asked. "We
promoted it like Hell..."
Mr. Diaz has a point. The issue has more to do with Ms. Marinucci's news judgment
than it does with a deliberate effort to conceal information. Ms. Marinucci led her
article with Sen. Obama's criticism of Sen. Hillary Clinton's experience, and
discussed at length whether a controversy over the location of polling places for
the Nevada caucuses aided Sen. Clinton or Sen. Obama. She just didn't think Sen.
Obama's plans to bankrupt the coal industry and to send electricity rates
skyrocketing were newsworthy.
"Ms. Marinucci didn't just 'bury her lede,'" said lawyer and Web logger Bill Dyer.
"Rather, in metaphoric terms, she took it onto the Golden Gate bridge, shot it in
the back of the head, and pushed it off into an unmarked watery grave in the hopes
the corpse would never float to the surface."
It is more likely incompetence than bias that kept Ms. Marinucci from reporting what
Sen. Obama said about coal. But that's not exactly a ringing endorsement of the
quality of journalism in this campaign.
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JWR contributor Jack Kelly, a former Marine and Green Beret, was a
deputy assistant secretary of the Air Force in the Reagan
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