tv Democracy Now WHUT August 2, 2012 6:00pm-7:00pm EDT
08/02/12 08/02/12 [captioning made possible by democracy now!] >> from pacifica, this is "democracy now!" on the road in baltimore, maryland, the u.s. to repeat as the arms trade treaty, the first-ever global agreement regulating the $60 billion arms trade. we will speak with william hartung, author of, "prophets of war: lockheed martin and the making of the military- industrial complex." then, the conversion of a climate change skeptic. we will speak with a scientist once funded by the right wing koch brothers. >> one, recognize how bad it is.
the surprising answer is, so far it has not been very bad. >> years of denying global warming, university of california professor richard muller now says global warming is real and that humans are almost entirely responsible. bill mckibben on "global warming's terrifying new math." >> the key steps are to keep the oil and coal in the ground, not to open the arctic to drilling, not to put up that pipeline to the tar sands. >> all of that and more coming up. this is "democracy now!," democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. president obama has reportedly issued secret authorization for the u.s. to support rebels seeking to overthrow syrian president bashar al-assad.
citing unnamed u.s. officials, the reuters news agency reports obama has signed an intelligence finding directing the cia and other agencies to aid syria's armed opposition. the u.s. is said to be taking part in a nerve center backing the rebels from a secret base in turkey near the syrian border. the full extent of the u.s. role remains unclear. nbc news is reporting the opposition free syrian army has just received a weapons shipment from turkey that includes two dozen surface to air missiles for use against the syrian regime's fleet of aircraft. both sides of the syrian conflict are facing accusations of committing atrocities. opposition activists said government forces killed at least 50 people tuesday in an attack on a suburb of damascus. rebel forces released video footage of the execution of four alleged pro-regime fighters seized in the ongoing battle for aleppo. the video shows the bloodied fighters being led into a courtyard before they are mowed
down in a hail of gunfire. the violence in aleppo is intensifying with government forces using fighter jets to carry out bombings and rebel groups deploying tanks. the iraqi government has confirmed july was iraq's deadliest month in nearly two years. official figures show 325 people were killed, most of them civilians. another 697 were wounded. the monthly toll included iraq's deadliest day in every three years, when attacks in 19 cities left up to 106 people dead on july 23. defense secretary leon panetta has wrapped up a visit to israel with a renewed vow to leave open the use of force against iran. in a joint public appearance on wednesday, the israeli prime minister benjamin netanyahu appeared to criticize the u.s. role in international talks over iran's nuclear program, saying diplomacy has failed. in response, leon panetta assured benjamin netanyahu all options remain on the table.
>> a few months ago, when all else fails, america will act. but these declarations have also not yet convinced the iranians to stop their program. however forceful are statement, the have not convinced iran we're serious about stopping. >> we will not allow iran to develop a nuclear weapon. period. we will not allow a limb to develop a nuclear weapon. -- we will not allow them to develop a nuclear weapon. >> a new study is predicting republican candidate mitt romney's tax plan would boost the income of the nation's wealthiest taxpayers while reducing that of the middle- class. the non-partisan tax policy center says romney's proposals would increase net income by an average of 4.1% for those earning over $1 million a year. those making less than $200,000
would see their net income reduced by 1.2%. campaigning ion wednesday in ohio, president obama seized on the report's findings. >> according to the study, the average family with children would be hit with a tax increase of more than $2,000. [boos] and here is the thing. he is not asking you to contribute more to pay down the deficit or to pay more to invest in our children's education or rebuild our roads or put more folks back to work. he is asking you to pay more so that people like him can get a big tax cut. >> a federal appeals court has temporarily blocked arizona's harsh new anti-abortion law just before it was to take effect. the law bans abortion after 20 weeks gestation -- or 18 weeks post fertilization -- except in
medical emergencies. abortion-rights advocates have filed a court challenge, calling the measure among the most extreme of the more than six similar bans across the united states. the law will now be on hold pending the outcome of the appeal. the fast-food chain chick-fil-a is drawing controversy after its founder openly declared his opposition to equal rights for lgbt people. in recent weeks, chick-fil-a president dan cathy has acknowledged funding anti-lgbt groups and has denounced same- sex marriage. on wednesday, opponents of same- sex marriage flooded chick-fil-a locations across the country as part of a chick-fil-a appreciation day called for by former arkansas governor mike huckabee. meanwhile in los angeles, a group of lgbt rights supporters gathered in front of the chick- fil-a to denounce cathy's views. >> i think it is ridiculous. it is intolerance of the worst kind. the lgbt community is amazing
here in los angeles. to have something like that permeating the airwaves on television and radio and on the internet is just disgusting to me. >> i think he has a right to say whenever he wants to say, but when you take your profits and donate millions of your profits to taking away civil rights, i think people have a right to know that and our right to make a decision whether or not they want to spend money at your business. >> support for striking janitors in houston extended nationwide wednesday with solidarity rallies in at least 17 cities. the strike in houston began last month after workers meeting $8.35 an hour said they faced harassment and intimidation when it rejected an offer that would have raised their pay by just 50 cents an hour over five years. wednesday's rallies come one day after 5 janitors were arrested at a protest in houston. san bernadine a california has filed for bankruptcy protection
over debts surpassing $1 billion. sandra schettino is the third city in california's seek aggressive protection in recent weeks, following mammoth lakes and stockton. new claims have emerged that top fbi officials are staunchly opposed to the new york city police department's spy program targeting muslim residents in the northeast. according to a forthcoming book from investigative author, top fbi officials consider the nypd's spying "not only a waste of money by the violation of americans' rights." and 97-year-old man accused of war crimes during the nazi holocaust has been detained in his native hungary. he is accused of overseeing the deportation of around 16,000 jews to the on switch that can 1944. the simon wiesenthal center had named laszlo this lottery its most-wanted surviving war crimes suspect, not the
holocaust. he lived in canada for decades after the war, but fled in 1997 to avoid deportation. an international criminal attorney said it remains unclear if hon. authorities will issue an indictment. >> we have what is [unintelligible] had taken place and less than three weeks. his 97 years old and the prosecution should move very fast. it always depends on the international pressure. in this case, there has been substantial amounts of pressure. they are duly investigating this case. the question remains whether an indictment will be launched or not. >> the mother wikileaks founder julian assange has wrapped up a visit to ecuador in a bid to campaign persons asylum request. assange has taken refuge in the ecuadorean embassy in london as he fights extradition to sweden. after meeting with the
ecuadoran president, assange's mother said her son would enjoy living in ecuador should he received asylum. >> this is a sovereign decision, and i respect that. i respect he will make a decision in the best interest of julian, human rights, and his country. if julian for to come here, i think he would let it. this is "democracy now!," democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. arms control advocates are blaming the obama administration for last week's failed negotiations with the first-ever global agreement regulating the $60 billion arms trade. while most united nations member states favored a strong treaty, the united states and russia said there's not enough time left for them before friday's deadline to clarify and resolve issues they had with the draft treaty. the u.s. -- the world's largest manufacturer -- had demanded a number of exemptions and ultimately said it needed more time to review the proposals.
white house officials had cited the need to protect second, writes in the u.s., despite u.n. assurances the treaty text would not interfere. amnesty denied by usa said the u.s. had shown setting targets, adding -- as the talks collapsed at the nine nations, a top state department official openly bragged that u.s. government efforts had helped boost foreign military sales to record levels this year. speaking to a group of military reporters, andrew shapiro, the assistant secretary of state for political military affairs, said -- according to some pirro, sales have topped $50 billion -- according to shapiro, sales have topped $50 billion. for more we're joined by bill
hartung, author of, "prophets of war: lockheed martin and the making of the military- industrial complex." we welcome you to "democracy now!" explain what happened, how the treaty negotiations took place and what happened at the very end last week. >> one of the toughest things is the were trying to get consensus. a number of smaller countries were having procedural issues, others seem to be resolved within a day of the end of the negotiations. activists thought it would happen. not perfect, but would make it harder to sell to human rights abusers, throw guns into war zones. the u.s. then suddenly pull back and said, "we do not think the treaty is ready, let's start from scratch." essentially, that was the last straw. other countries like russia put up obstructions. it was the last nail in the coffin once the u.s. pulled out. >> explain what was the u.s. involvement all along and why is
the u.s. so important to the arms trade treaty, att? >> the u.s. is the biggest arms exporters in the world. other areas, the obama administration was pulling back, not using political muscle to support, reluctant participants. i do not think it was expected there would go so far as to torpedo the treaty. they had not supported key elements like regulating ammunition, which was central to keeping or stopping the killing. >> talk about the players who were at the united nations, the forces lobbying against the att, the arms trade treaty. talk about the power of the nra. >> they have taken an interest in the global arms trade going back about 20 years. their theory, which has been discredited, is if you regulate guns anywhere, there will be regulated everywhere. there are opposed to treaties in
the form. they loved guns and haiti's, basically. this was a chance for them to exert influence within the u.n. and against the obama administration to keep it from taking a stronger stance. >> a spokesperson for the head of the national rifle association was there? >> yes, he gave a speech or he orically said the treaty's against anyone who breves free air. they're way over the top. it really only deals with cross border transfers. not only were they an obstacle, they're completely off base in their characterization of the treaty. >> last month, larry pratt, executive director of gun owners of america, spoke to fox news about his concerns about the u.n. arms treaty. >> it would complete work against what the second
amendment is intended to do, but it does not in the constitution as much of an obstacle or problem for this demonstration. nevertheless, shall not be infringed, it is something a treaty cannot trump. the very language in the constitution and the treaty making says they have to be made under the authority of the united states. if we the people have not given a 44 gun control to the united states through the federal government, then its hands are tied. >> that is larry pratt, executive director of the gun owners of america. bill hard time, your response? >> one problem, if you agree to a treaty, it is ratified in the senate and the people have spoken. second of all, as i mentioned, the treaty had nothing to do with domestic and control. it essentially is a paranoid fantasy the nra translated into their political force around the country. >> bill, the torpedoing of the
arms trade treaty, att, took place exactly a week after the aurora massacre in colorado with 12 people killed and many injured. talk about the link between what is happening in the united states -- very quickly, president obama came out and said, we don't need new laws around gun-control, affirming the second amendment and republican candidate mitt romnen that. and then you have this global treaty at the united nations, within days, torpedoed. >> i think it sends an awful signal to the world. not only are we not willing to keep arms from killing people overseas, but also our government is willing to take strong action -- not willing to take strong action to prevent what happened in aurora within
our borders. the nra tried to kill the arms treaty, tried to prevent any gun regulation in the u.s., even though their own membership, in some cases, supports strong membership than their leadership does. to some degree, is that the grass-roots movement that was presented. the leadership on the right wing of it, also heavily funded by the gun manufacturers. it is a special interest group masquerading as a mass movement. >> explain what you mean. >> the leadership is out in front of the membership in terms of harsh opposition to any gun-control to even things like a waiting period, registration of guns, making sure you cannot walk into a gun show and i can easily as a criminal -- which is what happened in the columbine case. controls of assault rifles like the ones used in aurora. all of these are being blocked by the leaders of the nra.
the maker of the weapon that was used in the aurora massacre wahas given millions to the nra. the nra would prefer not to have that number of places like the violent policy center have exposed them in detail. >> bill hartung, a would ask how best to regulate arms don't-i want to ask you how to best regulate arms. the me ask you, for a moment, about what happened in illinois. very interesting news. the illinois governor, pat quinn, has unveiled a proposal to ban assault weapons in his state. on tuesday, he used his amendatory veto power to propose banning the manufacture and sale of assault weapons and attachments. pat quinn is the first u.s.
governor to formally put forward an assault weapons ban since the shooting massacre in aurora, colorado last month. >> we should show the nation that when something really bad happens as happened in colorado, a horrific massacre, that we don't stand idly by. we take action to deal with the source of that problem. i think we have done that today. >> that was illinois governor pat quinn. bill hard time, was this a surprise? how significant is this? could lead other governors to do the same thing? >> we have not seen the courage of other elected officials. i hope it will get the ball rolling and the emulated and other states. to some degree, the nra is a paper tiger. i mean, they do not have full support of their membership. 80% of the public supports sensible gun controls. they have pumped up their support.
even in some states, i think if he had people explaining the impact of these things, i do not think to have the majority of the people, even the nra, supporting easy access by criminals to military-style assault rifles. >> on the issue of best regulating arms, i want to go first to one of the activists who set up a mock cemetery outside the u.n. wednesday to urge negotiators to pass a strong arms treaty. david grimason has been active in calling for stringent arms regulations ever since his 2- year-old was shot and killed during a family visit to turkey nine years ago. >> to me, it would be pointless. at the moment, your of governments that are willing to sell arms to any nation, not really caring about how they're going to be used.
if we do not get a strong treaty, that will continue. the numbers we see, 2000 a day die, will continue. >> bill hartung, your response? >> he is right countries like syria, china, and the u.s. to not have clean hands. supportedia have democracy in rain, said troops, yet we have the biggest weapons still in history with the saudis. $60 billion, which there's nothing to compare that in history. it is a signal by the u.s., we will still armed dictatorships, even in the midst of the arab spring. we will not get up front about regulating some of these sales, but try to delete it. i think it sends an awful message to the world and does not represent the views of the american public. >> let me turn to president
eisenhower. in fact, part of the name of your book comes from that famous address the president eisenhower gave. president dwight d. eisenhower was famous farewell speech to the nation. it was generous 17, 1961. -- january 17, 1961. >> my fellow americans, this evening i come to you with a message of farewell and to share a few final thoughts with you, my countrymen. we have been compelled to create a permanent armaments industry of vast proportions. 3.5 million men and women are directly engaged in the defense establishment. the total influence, economic, political, even spiritual, it is
felt in every city, every state house, every office of the federal government. we recognize the imperative need for this development. yet we must not fail to comprehend its grave implications. in the councils of government, we must guard against the acquisition of unwarranted influence whether sought or unsought, by the military industrial complex, the potential for the disastrous rise for missed these power exists and will persists. >> that was president eisenhower's farewell address january 17, 1961. an excerpt from the documentary "why we fight." within 50 years after that speech, many argue the military- industrial complex is stronger than ever. bill hartung? >> i think is certainly a stronger than ever. companies like lockheed martin,
itself, is $36 billion a year from pentagon -- essentially, people are paying lockheed martin tax of $300 dollars three-year million dollars or more a year. it is also involved not only in arms exports, billing nuclear weapons, building fighter planes, building, ships, but also one of the key players in trying to roll tharolled back ad keep the -- to keep the pentagon from spending. as i said, that runs counter to the average american thinks. even in states that depend on military spending, recent polls show they're willing to cut military spending to a greater degree than the so-called sequester, the automatic cuts, that will, of congress does not get a budget deal the other to reduce the deficit. in the same sense that eisenhower talked about that military-industrial complex subverts democracy, we are
seeing the same thing today. >> earlier this year, one of the world's most petraeus arms smugglers was sentenced to 25 years in prison by new york federal court judge -- not for smuggling, but for conspiracy and terrorism charges. victor about is known as the merchant of death for one with the united nations and u.s. officials say was an intentional arms trafficking network. in april, bout maintain his innocence saying all arms suppliers in the u.s. would be in prison, too, at the same standards were applied across the board. >> i did not commit any crime rate there is no crime to sit and talk. if you're going to apply the same standards to me, then you'll jail are all those arms dealers in america. they are involved even more than me. >> that was victor bout. if you could respond to what he
is saying, respond to the power of u.s. military contractors, and also talk about whether the att, the arms trade treaty, is totally dead. >> i think starting with the treaty, there is a move by the groups that supported it to take it to the general assembly of the united nations rid their they need a majority, not a full consensus. i think that is a hard thing to do, but worth as much energy as possible. i do not think it is impossible. in terms of bout's statements, he was charming severely on, and go look, someone to the taliban. the u.s. has links to bout. they're hearing weapons into iraq. many have associations with the cia, intelligence agencies around the world, helping them to carry out deals.
the u.s. does that have clean hands in this freed without an arms trade treaty, somebody like bout can hide behind different laws in different countries, deal with the patrick regulations we have now. which is why it took them so long to get him into jail. and they only got him on a lesser charge. i think torpedoing the arms trade treaty is unconscionable because it makes a possible for victor bouts of the world to act and impeded the. president obama is not at the level of the bush administration, which had many, many lockheed martin people in the administration, but they have had people, a lobbyist from raytheon, it had advisers in the white house.
there people in the state to permit bragging about how much they have helped the industry. -- there are people in the state department bragging about how much they have helped the country. people working there that used to work with companies like boeing. that is what eisenhower is talking about, the revolving door from industry to government, the money flowing to government to help destroy arms support regulation. heritage foundation helping to block the arms trade treaty and military spending, cuts in the star wars program. unfortunately, without more public pressure, which i need is necessary and possible, the industrial complex will roll over that many people think our government should be doing in this area. >> bill hartung, thank you for being with us, author of,
>> "buy a gun for your son" by 1965. this is "democracy now!," democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. we turn now to a story making headlines in the science world. of one of the country's most prominent global warming skeptics has openly admitted he was wrong. over the weekend, richard muller, a professor of physics at the university of california, berkeley, wrote an op-ed for " the new york times" titled, "the
conversion of a climate change sceptic." he began the piece by writing -- richard mladic's and mission has gained additional attention because of his research has been founded by charles koch of the koch brothers, known for funding climate skeptic groups like the heartland institute. richard muller is the author of the new the published book, "energy for future presidents: the science behind the headlines." talk about your change. >> book, i felt there were legitimate issues that had not
been addressed. there is still the whole issue of climate change, whether increasing hurricanes and so on, but most solid evidence was the temperature data. the stations that were used were of poor quality. could that be addressed? could you use such data? prior groups had highly selective the data. the u.k. is only 5% to 7% of the data, only 20% in the u.s. there were other issues, too, about the influence of urban affects. cities get warmer, but that is not greenhouse effect. there was the day that adjustment in the huge computer programs they used to make the attribution -- all of these things are deeply concerning to me. i could not get the answers in a satisfactory way as a scientist. i felt it was my duty to be what
i would call properly skeptical. and toquid to put this was -- the only way to put this together was to put together group and analyze the data. r. rosenfeld, a hero in the energy conservation field, and another who actually last december after working on our project for over a year was awarded the nobel prize in physics. not for the work we were doing, but what he had done previously as a physicist. it began to come together about a year ago. we were able to show the poor station quality -- although it affected the temperature measure, not the temperature changes. we were able to use 100% of the data, not 20%. baida selection bias did not affect things. the urban heat, we concluded global warming was indeed a real. but about three to six months ago, thanks largely to the
effort of the brilliant young scientist who we hired to -- used the best possible statistics in order to be able to use all the data, he was able to push our record back to 1753. that is before the american revolution, back when the measurements in the u.s. were being made by benjamin franklin and thomas jefferson. with that long record, we could look for the fingerprints, could see how much was due to volcanoes, how much was due to ocean currents, the variability of the sun. we to do this much better than people had done before. i got to admit, i was shocked when i saw the results. the were short-term variability there was due to volcanoes, essentially nothing to to the solar variation. theoretically, it is not too surprising, but i was surprised
nonetheless. but the rise in the curve was dead on to him and production of carbon dioxide and greenhouse gases. at that point, the data led me to a conclusion i would not have expected a few years ago. >> what is been the response of your colleagues? those like you who have been skeptical for so long? >> i don't expect people to say, "richard muller changed his mind, therefore i do." what we have done is a level of transparency. reified detailed scientific papers the we placed on line -- we have five detailed scientific papers on line, all of our computer programs online all along a lot of supplemental information your viewers and lister's may like. berkeleyearth.org and you can look up your temperature in your
home town or state. by putting this on line, we have a transparency or people who think we did something wrong can find, well, this is your assumption on this line right here. our responses, "change it and see if it makes a difference." the wonderful thing about science is that it is that narrow realm of knowledge on which we expect to achieve universal agreement. i believe most of the skeptics -- there were some refuse to pay any attention to science -- but mainly the skeptics recognize there were valid problems with the data. we have directly addressed those. my hope is as they study our work, that they will recognize we did address these in the proper way, and now we agree on the science, what you do in the international arena is a different question. >> i want to ask about the role
of congress and the climate debate. on wednesday, the senate held its first hearing on the topic in more than two years. the republican controlled house has turned down 15 requests from democrats for a similar hearing. senator barbara boxer, democrat of california, at your state, who chairs the environment and public works committee, opened the session. >> colleagues, climate change is real. human activities are the primary cause in the warming plan it causes a significant risk to people and the environment. i believe to declare otherwise is putting the american people in direct danger. the body of evidence is overwhelming. the world's leading scientists agree of predictions of, change impacts are coming true before our eyes. the purpose of this hearing is to share with the committee the mountain of scientific evidence that has increased substantially over time. time i believe we should have used to reduce carbon pollution, the main cause of climate change.
>> most of scientists who testified said human activity has accelerated climate change, intensified a recent u.s. heat wave, and raised sea levels. but much of the hearing was dominated by senators bickering over the science. a senator from oklahoma, the ranking republican on the committee, echoed points from his recent book, "the greatest hoax: how the global warming conspiracy friends or features lamb his points were disputed by independent senator bernie sanders of vermont. >> the senator has said repeatedly, just the other day on the floor of the senate and in his book, which i am reading, he give it to be very kindly and i will read every word of it, he said that in his view, global warming is the greatest hoax ever perpetrated on the american people. my understanding is that noaa
says global average surface temperatures have increased 1.3 degree fahrenheit since 1900. nasa says the global average surface temperatures of this planet have increased by one by 5 degrees fahrenheit since 1880. dr. richard muller wrote an article in which he said the planet has warmed to 0.5 degrees fahrenheit over the last 250 years. so either nasa, noaa, and many other scientists are correct in stating the planet is warming, or perhaps senator inhofe is incorrect that global warming is a hoax. >> that was bernie sanders. professor richard muller, your response? >> i'm hoping our study on global warming will help achieve the scientific consensus. i understand why many skeptics in congress have opposed or have opposed it in the past.
i have been there and talk to them in the past. they have raised issues which were once that i considered correct, issues that now i think we have raised. just because global warming is real doesn't mean everything you attribute to it is real. hurricane katrina was not caused by global warming. polar bears are not dying because of global warming. the reason temperatures in the u.s. is not a result of global warming. if you look at the complete detail, you find it was matched by more than cooling elsewhere in the world. many people attribute every change in the weather to global warming. i can understand why people object to that. but the temperature change itself is real, and it is due to humans. i think because i now feel this is true and we could make the scientific case were solidly than the past, i think this does say we do need to take action
and do something about it. >> what is your message, particularly to republican lawmakers like senator inhofe? were you consulting with them before your conversion? >> yes, i met with both the republicans and democrats and explain things to them. i have come to washington, d.c. several times. the message is not an easy one. i find nobody really likes my message -- neither the republicans nor the democrats. my new message is there are two things that must be done if we're going to stop this. there are many things you can do. we can each to our part. we can get higher mileage automobiles and that kind of stuff, but from the world point of view, there are two big things that can be done. one of them is an extensive program and energy conservation and energy efficiency. it is essential. there are huge gains to be made.
the fact is, energy if essentially and conservation are profitable the-energy efficiency and conservation of profitable. most of the carbon dioxide is not coming from the u.s., but china. anything we do must be something that can be emulated and follow in china. a electric cars to not do any good, for example. if a chinese person switches from a gasoline car to an electric car, he would wind up producing more carbon dioxide because that electricity is coming from coal, and that is worse than gasoline. we have to do things that will have an impact. the other thing we need to do is -- and this is one where, unfortunately, a lot of my democrat friends have a knee- jerk reaction against it but i think it is essential -- we have to get the chinese to convert, to move over and away from coal into natural-gas economy. china will produce twice the
carbon dioxide of the u.s. by the end of the year. ours is going down, but theirs is shooting up. natural gas produces only one- third of the carbon dioxide that does coal. coal chokes their citizens, to breed people say fracking is bad. it is dirty, which is true, and it is a fossil fuel. china cannot afford will not be able to afford massive solar or wind for decades. in the meantime, there will soon be producing more carbon dioxide per person than we are. we have to help them expedite them, switchover to natural gas that has one-third of the emissions of carbon dioxide. anything we do in the u.s., if we ignore china, it is not really addressing the problem. >> win "democracy now!" was a the climate change conference in durban, i spoke with marc morano, publisher of, depot, a
website run by climate denier group committee for constructive tomorrow. i asked about president of in his record on climate change. >> the name is george w obama. that kept the same principles and negotiating stance as president george w. bush did for eight years. obama has carried on bush's legacy. we tip our hat to president obama in helping crush and continue to defeat the nine editions process. obama has been a great friend. he has problems for us because he is going through the epa regulatory process, which is a grave threat. in terms of this, president obama could not have turned out better when it came to his lack of interest in a congressional climate bill and in the united nations kyoto protocol. a job well done for president obama. >> that was marc morano, publisher of climate depot. richard muller, your response?
>> i think in opposing joining the kyoto agreement, president obama recognize the non- involvement of china made our participation tell-it would not have done much. at copenhagen, president obama went there to try to get the chinese involved. he insisted on having inspections because the chinese rate of growth, they have averaged 10% growth over the last 20 years they will dominate the global warming of the future. they would not even allow us to inspect. if in the u.s. we were to cut back to 0 -- ridiculous, but less of a cutback to zero emissions, within three to four years, emissions would be back where they were just because of china. i think obama is in the right thing in insisting china must be involved.
in the proposed copenhagen treaty, there were going to slow their growth to 6% per year rather than cut it to zero. even at that, they would be surpassing as. i think he has done the right thing. i believe what we need to do now is we need a presidential program, a national program, in which we will share our technology. no, we do not want 30 fracking in china any more than here, but we can make it clean. it is a matter of using the technology to ensure it will be clean and not cause earthquakes and so on as a technical problem, that is not that difficult. we need to help them switch away from coal. >> richard muller, you're known for your change of heart on climate science. your conversion, as you describe it. this came fairly recently. i want to play a comment he made during a 2009 interview. cox you have to recognize how
bad it is. the surprising answer is, so far it has not been very bad. we've had about one degree fahrenheit of global warming so far. none whatsoever in the last 10 years. you need to know that, otherwise, you'll miss understand people criticize global warming and say it is not real. they say that because there is not been any in 10 years. we do not expected to happen every year. it is gradual and builds up. >> professor richard muller, is this still your opinion? >> oh, yes. my former book goes through vice-president al gore's movie and i think it correctly shows 90% of what he presented was exaggerated or distorted or just falls but i think part of the problem is when we attribute every change in the weather to climate change, we engender a lot of skepticism. i think in the and that has done some harm.
i think science has hurt itself by exaggerating the case. so far global warming has not been very much. in the last 50 years, two-thirds of the degree celsius, one degree fahrenheit. that has not been much. one-third of the cities in the u.s. have cooled in the last 100 years. astonishing statistic, but not surprising when you realize local variations are much larger than this one degree change. the danger is not that we have done harm, but that we understand this will continue to go up. that in the future, what is now two-thirds of the decree will become one, two, three degrees. and that will be warmer than homeless sapiens have ever experienced. i believe we need to act, but in a way recognizes the problem is not with us but with the world, particularly with the six ends of -- extensive coal used in
developing countries. if we do not address that, then we're just playing games. we need to address the real problem, which is the extensive coal burning. we have to bite the bullet and recognize natural gas is the only thing that can get us there over the next 20 years, that an energy conservation. i believe the chinese will adopt that. we should help them adopt that. energy conservation is someone they can earn money in a great return, better than burning that off. it is legitimate. again, my new book discusses and details the many places where you can get a profit of 20%, 30% per year just by investing in energy conservation. the combination of energy conservation and the switch to the natural gas economy, clean fracking on the other hand, i think it can get this through to the era when the china and india
can afford solar and the upcoming technologies that will finally get us away from fossil fuels. >> finally, professor, i want your response to the director of the earth systems science center at pennsylvania state university who wrote on his facebook page -- your response to michael mann and your koch-funded research and what this means for them?
>> the koch foundation provided about 1/6 of our funding and made it clear to us the reason they funded as was we did recognize these issues were real, issues that michael mann did not think were real. i think he is wrong. there were valid questions and we expressed them. that express nothing but to light that we have reached a conclusion. i think this cartoon-like characterization of the koch foundation as been right wing, deniers, i have found that to be simply wrong. michael mann has published a lot of things that i disagree with. he has claimed there is no medieval warm period, that it is the warmest it has been 1000 years. i was part of the study that basically demonstrated his conclusions were wrong. he and i don't agree on lots of things, but i think the key
thing is a small room of knowledge on which there can be universal agreement. i am hoping we will have that universal agreement. it will not happen overnight. people will read our papers and study them. i hope the open-minded skeptics will be won over, and some of the climate is that traders who plan hurricane katrina on global warming the lash and i hope some of the climate change skeptics who blame hurricane katrina on global warming will recognize -- >> professor, your fundamental conversion is that climate change is largely human cost. >> i would not put it as climate change. i was a global warming. too many things in climate change are actually just the weather or local climate. i can go through a list of them. >> we just have 10 seconds.
thank you very much. >> global warming is human cost. >> richard muller, his op-ed piece. thank you very much for being with us. this is "democracy now!," democracynow.org, the war and peace report. i'm amy goodman. his book is called, "energy for future presidents: the science behind the headlines." we will be back with bill mckibben in a moment. ♪ [music break]
a new piece for "the rolling stone" by bill mckibben. he joins us now from vermont. welcome to "democracy now!" talk about global warming, where it stands today, what needs to be done. >> we are really seeing this summer, around the world, despite white richard muller is in a moment ago, what climate change looks like in its early stages. it is a scary summer not just in this country where receipt at but heat and drought, but in greenland -- where we see epic heat and drought, but in greenland. it is clear day by day. we see record melts, snow turning to water and soaking up more of the sun's heat. it has been a ragged summer. the point of this piece in "rolling stone" which has gone
kind of a viral, the point is, we know enough to know what the future hold unless we change fast. it points out that scientists have long told us if we want to stay below two degrees warming, which is what every government in the world, even the most conservative, have adopted as the bottom line, which can only bring 565 more gigatons of carbon. unfortunately, a new analysis by a bunch of u.k. financial analysts, show the fossil fuel industry and those countries that operate like the fossil fuel industry like venezuela or kuwait -- have in the reserves, 2795 gigatons of carbon in their coal and gas. it is still below ground, but economically, it is above ground. there are borrowing against it, share prices are based on it. unless we change things dramatically, we will overcome the climate system.
>> bill mckibben -- >> we need to stand up to that industry. that is the bottom line. >> your assessment of dr. richard muller's conversion, as he describes it, now saying global warming is human-caused? >> scientifically, it is not very interesting. most scientists figured it out 20 years ago. all he has done is confirm their work. politically, it is interesting because we're reaching the point where even the kind of industry- funded deniers cannot keep a straight face and say it is not warming. the exxon ceo rex tillerson, two weeks ago, said, forget all the things my predecessors have said about how global warming is a hoax. global warming is real. he then went on to say, but it