An ounce of doubt
Fear, uncertainty and doubt (FUD). They’re powerful agents that help us dig our heals into the ground to resist change.
- Global warming is a hoax.
- Socialized healthcare is bad for America.
- John Kerry is not a war hero.
An ounce of doubt is worth a pound of truth. In each of these lies, there was overwhelming evidence to the contrary. Yet, partisan hacks and their zealous sympathizers helped carry these messages into the American mainstream.
The truth has been bruised to the point that efforts to combat global warming have been hampered, legislation defeated, and candidates demoralized. Universal health care would save everyone (except for insurance companies and pharmaceuticals) money and possibly help us avoid outbreaks of disease. The effects of these smear campaigns can last for a generation or longer. In the case of global warming, experts say we don’t have that long.
How does one combat ignorance?
If the big guys don’t buy in, it won’t happen. Grassroots movements can win, but not on this massive of scale. We would have never made it to the moon if it wasn’t for JFK’s backing of NASA. For Gore to win at the fight against global warming, it has to including convincing the US government to look beyond short term gains for long term solutions.
By far, the biggest obstacle to forging a new accord by 2009 is the United States, analysts say. Senior Bush administration officials say the administration will not agree to a new treaty with binding limits on emissions. — Climate Talks Take on Added Urgency After Report
Great leaders can inspire people on such a massive scale so as to create the shift in thinking required to move mountains or land on moons. Or, they can delay or trip up progress indefinitely. I hope in the next elections that Americans pick a US President who understands and appreciates science and fact over FUD, and moreover has the backbone to do something about it for the sake of his or her own grandchildren.