Blog the Thinking Man’s Climate Debate TODAY

10 04 2007

Talk about real-world education without school!

(Cock of the snook to Culture Kitchen and contributor M. Loutre)

John Kerry and Newt Gingrich are debating the government’s role in dealing with global climate change this morning at 10 am EDT, and enviromentally-minded netizens will be blogging about it in real time.

The debate, hosted by New York University’s John Brademas Center for the Study of Congress, will take place in the Russell Senate Office Building and will be broadcast live by C-Span and simultaneously webcast at

As notes, this event ought to be a thinking-man’s matchup well worth watching:

“Newt’s a guy who has spent a lot of time wrestling with climate change and the environment. He reads about it, he teaches about it, he writes about it,” Kerry said Thursday. “We don’t see eye to eye about everything, obviously, but that’s what makes for a good debate.

“We need these good old-fashioned debates and forums and discussions to get everyone thinking creatively on both sides of the aisle.”

“You do what you can to build the dialogue.”

Various progressive political posters will be giving the play-by-play and commenting on what they see and hear from Kerry and Gingrich on Kerry’s blog this morning.

The more voices and the more different points of view that are represented in live-blogging discussions of this sort, the better the quality of the resulting discourse. So stop by the Kerry blog and join the debate about the debate.



3 responses

10 04 2007

The good news as JJ sees it is in the CLEAR THINKING and CIVIL DIALOGUE — comments from Rick (Otter) and another live-blogger, as the debate ended:

Moderator’s correct in his closing remarks: this well-informed, well-reasoned debate on substantive issues sets a very high standard for other political discourse to live up to.

Well done, on both sides of the fence. Am looking forward to watching the re-runs on C-Span so I can study the nuances in more detail. This was good stuff. Otter gives it two paws up.

Posted by Otter | April 10, 2007 11:57 AM


Agreed. In theory, democracy rests on an informed electorate. This debate was the the type of thing that should be done more often and covered more thoroughly precisely because it is a good exploration of the issues. Too much of public discourse is actually a demonization of opposing forces. The arguments are presumed, the points unfold according to a script and no actual information ever really gets passed on.

This was a real exchange of information and viewpoints without the poisonous comments of a cynical media that insists that nothing matters and all debates are mere shadowplay. It will be interesting to see how the media reports on this and if I recognize what I saw in what I will read.

Posted by taytay | April 10, 2007 12:06 PM

10 04 2007

“Are Our Politics Creative Classy?”

Do you demonize perceived rivals and try to shut them down, instead of listening carefully to understand why they ARE your rivals?

Are your dehumanized rivals Republicans and Christian conservatives? Democrats and California liberals? Southerners? Females? Gays? Immigrants? Non-union labor? Of what class or community do you disapprove, which communities do you disdain or downright fear enough, to demonize and demean individuals who live within it?

Seems to me political humans who protest loudest from deep inside their own evil barrels of vinegar, insisting it’s those OTHER barrels that need scrubbing out, are least able to help themselves or anyone else, much less enlighten the larger community and make progress toward any post-pickling future. Pickled political activists shamelessly manipulate arguments and ends, to justify de-means. (Pun intended.)

Some of these political barrels are so full of vinegar that after a long soak in their depths, actual assassination starts to taste justifiable as a logical extension of conspiratorial character assassination.

If enough of us can stay out of all the barrels no matter what color of bunting appeals to us most, maybe together we’ll figure out humane ways of cleaning out the worst barrels without climbing into them ourselves. (Or maybe they can be sealed up in some hazardous waste containment strategy?)

11 04 2007

UPDATE – see Rick’s almost lyrical and much appreciated account of the event here.

And he adds this help:
“FYI — video of the whole debate is available on and will be posted in a slightly time-trimmed version on Kerry’s website by the end of the day. There’s a good sampling of some of the blog posts and MSM reports on yesterday’s climate change debate on Kerry’s blog as well.”

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