Mitt Romney flip flops on global warming

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney speaks at a town hall meeting campaign stop in Manchester, New Hampshire October 28, 2011. REUTERS/Brian Snyder (UNITED STATES – Tags: POLITICS ELECTIONS)

Mitt Romney is well-known as someone who will shamelessly change his position for political expediency, and now he’s applying his famous mental gymnastics to the issue of global warming.

The details are here, but basically he’s realizing that his rational statement on climate change in the past are not doing him any good in a GOP primary dominated by voters who hate science.

Green promotional tools

We’re definitely seeing a transformation as electronic communications replace things we’ve been used to our entire lives. eBooks are becoming more and more popular, so we’re seeing fewer paper books sold. Amazon is driving the change, and it’s one of the reasons that Borders is a thing of the past.

Email has been around for a long time. Combine that with texting, Tweeting and Facebook, and most of our communications are now done electronically. The Post Office is struggling for many reasons, but one is that personal mail correspondence has been replaced by electronic correspondence.

We’re also seeing these changes with promotional materials. Go to things like car shows, and you’ll see that the handouts to the press are now done with flash drives as opposed to printed brochures. That said, printing services are still popular as having a brochure in hand with great photos and relevant information is still a very effective tool. So when the public is at a car show, you see printed brochures still used to promote the vehicles.

So things are changing, and that can be good for the environment, but that doesn’t mean old methods go away completely.

Blow to climate change deniers

This is pretty interesting, as all of the global warming skeptics will now have to face this study from a former skeptic.

Climate change deniers thought they had an ally in Richard Muller, a popular physics professor at UC Berkeley.

Muller didn’t reject climate science per se, but he was a skeptic, and a convenient one for big polluters and conservative anti-environmentalists — until Muller put their money where his mouth was, and launched the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature project, in part with a grant from the Charles G. Koch foundation.

After extensive study, he’s concluded that the existing science was right all along — that the earth’s surface is warming, at an accelerating rate. But instead of second-guessing themselves, his erstwhile allies of convenience are now abandoning him.

“When we began our study, we felt that skeptics had raised legitimate issues, and we didn’t know what we’d find,” Muller wrote in a Friday Wall Street Journal op-ed. “Our results turned out to be close to those published by prior groups. We think that means that those groups had truly been very careful in their work, despite their inability to convince some skeptics of that. They managed to avoid bias in their data selection, homogenization and other corrections. Global warming is real. Perhaps our results will help cool this portion of the climate debate.”

This does not speak to the issue of whether humans are causing the warming, but it’s another persuasive set of data on this issue of warming itself.

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