Michael Crichton is an idiot. I listened to a podcast this morning of his participation in a debate about global warming. He stood resolved: global warming is not a crisis. Before hearing this debate I would have greed with the resolution, but not because I deny that anthropocentric warming is occurring but because the impact of said warming is not a crisis.
Crichton, however, had a different argument, one that did not prove the resolution. He argued that poverty kills millions of people a year in preventable deaths and that environmentalists were draining funds from preventing these deaths to some future possible crisis. He then reduced environmentalists to be head-in-the-sand deniers of suffering. This is a weak argument and it exposed Crichton for what I had always feared he was: a moron that can write.
His argument does nothing to the resolution. It addresses neither the impact nor the validity of the global warming debate. The true test is if his opponents, those who argued global warming is a crisis, could agree with his argument that environmental resources could be spent instead on poverty prevention. The answer is yes, and therefore is not in competition with the resolution’s negation.
Leave it to a wealthy person that is not charitable enough to stave off his sense of guilt by blaming the philanthropists of callousness. The environmentalists rallying around global warming are anything but callous moralizers. These are people that see deleterious effects, present or future, caused by our way of living. If anyone is oblivious it would be Crichton for failing to see beyond immediate impacts.
I thought Jurassic Park was an excellent book, one which not only entertained but also sparked scientific interest in non-scientific circles. However, maybe there is a time for Crichton to stop talking in scientific circles and return to what he does best: entertaining the masses.