More Questions than Answers on Climate Change

I have to admit that I’ve been thinking about the climate change issue for 25 years now, dating back to my days as a congressional staffer working on the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990. At the time, global warming was gaining momentum as an issue, but media-magnified predictions of the coming global ice age from the 1970s were still relatively fresh memories.

Even with all of the time I’ve invested in the issue, including substantial reading, I still have far more questions than answers on the issue.

  1. Why has earth been much warmer in many past periods over the billions of years of earth’s existence when man-made emissions mattered little for most of this time?
  2. How devastating are the consequences if we are contributing to a warming of the earth? I’ve seen many predictions. I’m not convinced yet of their accuracy.
  3. Are the costs of mitigating any warming (moving people) cheaper than preventing it?
  4. Are there food production benefits if earth warms and more CO2 is in the atmosphere?
  5. When we look at temperatures having risen compared to pre-industrial levels, how certain are we that most or all of this increase is not the result of natural variability in earth’s temperatures? How certain are we that we are not confusing correlation with causation? [Continue reading]

A Golden Rule View of Immigration Reform

Is the answer to today’s immigration debate changed by considering the issue from a Golden Rule perspective? The Golden Rule concepts of “doing unto others as one would have done to oneself” and its negative form of “not doing to others … [Continue reading]

Income Inequality and the Golden Rule

Considering the issue of income inequality through a “do unto others” Golden Rule filter doesn’t lead to quick, simple policy answers. We’re all equal in rights, but certainly not in capabilities. Compared to me, many if not most people … [Continue reading]

The Golden Rule and Political Reform

Money is expanding its role in national politics, thanks to two Supreme Court decisions. As part of a series of posts to test whether the Golden Rule can be used as a governing concept rather than just to guide personal behavior, I’ll take a brief … [Continue reading]

Filtering Politics Through a Golden Rule Lens

My path as a political futurist action-suspense writer would be far easier if I could tell you my tribe. If I could easily and consistently use words to describe myself like progressive, conservative, libertarian or socialist, I could quickly target … [Continue reading]

Millennials Move Toward Party Independence Offers Hope

I've half-joked for years that Washington D.C. has too many Democrats, too many Republicans and far too few Americans. It's not that our leaders aren't patriotic. Instead, strong party identification itself is more hazardous to national governance … [Continue reading]

Is U.S. on Path to Being the 2040 Ukraine?

The United States has lessons to learn to avoid being the 2040 Ukraine. Strong parallels exist between the stories in my first two books and the situation playing out in Ukraine today, so much so that a reader teased me yesterday that I had … [Continue reading]

End of an Era, Finally

By the time John Dingell and Henry Waxman leave Congress at the end of this session, they will have served just a few months shy of 100 years combined from their seats in Michigan and California. Their simultaneous parting makes sense as each … [Continue reading]

Suicide Escape Released on Amazon

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Know someone dealing with depression? In my newly released "Suicide Escape", an older hiker spots 15-year-old Clarissa on a remote mountain as she prepares to take her life. The hiker does everything he can to convince the despondent young woman to … [Continue reading]

Does Coca Cola Ad Celebrate Diversity or Segregation?

The Super Bowl failed to generate much conflict, but Coca Cola's "It's Beautiful" advertisement is stirring generous gulps of internet angst. At the heart of the controversy is this complex question: 1) Was Coca Cola celebrating diversity by having … [Continue reading]