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Grumpy James Inhofe

Grumpy James Inhofe

It’s one thing to be open-minded and educated about your political views, it’s quite another to come across like an misinformed alarmist. In this Sunday’s New York Times Magazine, there’s a Q&A with Oklahoma senator James Inhofe about his dedication to dispute global warming at the upcoming UN Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen. Fine, totally his choice and his right. But, in the interview, Inhofe doesn’t sound so much like a motivated conservative but instead sounds like a grumpy old man. For starters, he dismisses the idea that developing countries will become less stable due to the horrible imbalance of environmental impact (in short, third world countries create less pollution but suffer the worst from it), by saying this about the generals who warned Congress: “They looked around and they found, I think, five generals to testify before the committee. Well, that’s 5 generals out of 4,000 retired generals that say that. There are a lot of generals who don’t like to be out of the limelight. They’d like to get back in.”

That seems like a rather silly dismissal for whether or not our national security will be damaged in the near future. Then again, Inhofe is 75 years old, so what does he care about the environment or national security, for upcoming generations? When asked about Guantánamo Bay, Inhofe says “You know, I consider Gitmo a real resource. The people there are treated probably better than they are in the prisons in America [Me: Talk about faint praise]. They have more doctors and medical practitioners per inmate. They’re eating better than anyone has ever eaten before.”

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