Tuesday, May 11, 2004

Easterbrook on Global Warming It pains me to endorse anything Gregg Easterbrook has written, since he once wrote a pro-ID op-ed for The Wall Street Journal. However, this essay about the miserable science in the forthcoming movie The Day After Tomorrow, is worth a read. Here's an excerpt:

Preposterous Hollywood mistreatment of global-warming science is about to return in the movie The Day After Tomorrow, a big-budget disaster flick that premieres Memorial Day weekend. Directed by the guy who did the big-budget sci-fi disaster flick Independence Day, the new film...is being promoted as based on science. Will this have the backfire effect of making the real and troubling science of artificial global warming seem like science fiction?

In The Day After Tomorrow, climate change caused by artificial greenhouse-gas accumulation initiates a preposterous instant planet-wide calamity. Enormous mega-tornadoes larger than any ever actually observed in nature appear from nowhere to level the city of Los Angeles. Hail larger than any ever actually observed in nature smashes Tokyo to ruins. The Antarctic ice sheets melt essentially instantaneously, creating a global tsunami that floods the world's coastal cities. Then, just three days after the instantaneous melting of the ice caps, an instantaneous ice age hits northern latitudes, freezing the seawater that flooded coastal cities and leaving Manhattan under an instant glacier.

Devotees of bad movie science may recall that Independence Day was the movie whose opening scene shows an especially evil spaceship flying over the moon. As it flies past, its vibrations cause the dust on the moon to obscure the footprints left by Neil Armstrong. I kid you not. I suppose that since these were evil vibrations, they were able to jump the vacuum between the ship and the moon.

The situation is this: The Bush administration denies that global warming exists. Hollywood presents a global warming scenario so ludicrous, a child should see through it. Is there anyone who gives a damn about good science?