An Open Letter to Senator Marco Rubio (R, Florida)

Dear Senator Rubio:

You are a climate science denier. You have repeatedly said,

“I do not believe that human activity is causing these dramatic changes to our climate the way these scientists are portraying it,” Rubio said on ABC’s “This Week.”

“I do not believe that the laws that they propose we pass will do anything about it, except it will destroy our economy,” he added.

You are also the apparent incoming Chair of the Subcommittee on Oceans, Atmosphere, Fisheries and the Coast Guard, a part of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation. As the senior Republican on the Subcommittee, you’re the likely chair.

Can WC draw your attention to this chart:


Still disbelieving? Even when 2014 had the hottest average temperature since we started keeping records? Even when we haven’t had a record low temperature in more than a century? Even Alaska had the warmest year ever. Of course, climate science predictd arctic and subarctic regions would be impacted soonest and most, but you deny all that.

All right, how about this chart:


Do you see that we have the highest concentrations of carbon dioxide – CO2 – in the past 800 millennia? As we burn still more fossil fuels, and a downside of declining crude oil prices is increased crude oil consumption, do you see that the amount of CO2 is going to increase at the same or an even higher rate? Do you understand that higher CO2 concentrations in the atmosphere necessarily means acidification of the oceans? And that means that every form of animal life dependent on the carbonate cycle is in jeopardy of no longer being able to live? That’s the base of the food chain we’re talking about, Senator.

Do you understand that warmer oceans means higher oceans, because water expands when it warms? Or that melting ice in Greenland and Antarctica mean further rises in sea level? Did you know your state, Florida, is the one that will drown first? Can you imagine the imact of a Category 5 hurricane if sea level is ten feet higher? Can you imagine – are you capable of thinking through – what will happen to Florida’s tourism industry if sea levels rise, even by as little as three feet?

WC didn’t think so.WC didn’t think you were capable of statesmanship. Even when two-thirds of American adults said last fall that they believed there was “solid evidence the Earth is warming,” according to a poll by the Pew Research Center, you self-identify as a Teabagger, and a majority of your fellow Teabaggers are even more blind than you. You’ll pander to that constituency, playing your Teabagger fiddle while the United States bakes and drowns.

In a professional career spanning 40 years, WC has found that the very hardest folks to deal with is those who are unable to recognize their own long term self-interest. You’re Exhibit A.

You’ve placed your short term self-interest – your alliance with the know-nothing, anti-science Teabaggers – ahead of your state’s interest, the national interest and your own long-term self-interest.

There will be a political accounting. But it will come too late, WC fears. It will come when the waves are washing over Florida’s infrastructure, when your state is sweltering under unrelenting heat waves, when your fishing industry has collapsed. When the harm has been done. Long after the harm could have been minimized, or prevented.


Wickersham’s Conscience



One thought on “An Open Letter to Senator Marco Rubio (R, Florida)

  1. The words of Senator Boobio are impossible to interpret if you consider the source as an individual-person. But his aural-spew is easier to understand if you think of him as a corporation-is-a-person. By extrapolation his verbal diarrhea completely understandable as a corporation-is-a-profit-machine-person demanding instant return* on investment dollars.

    When you wrap that sh!t in a Don’t Tread on Me flag and baste it in willful stupidity you have a sickening symbol. A thing ‘baggers hold aloft while they scream like Donald Sutherland at the end of Invasion of the Body Snatchers (the 1978 version).

    * i have a social-finance theory where negative impact doesn’t matter if you and yours can financially afford to deal with poor outcomes. if you equate “you and yours” with “you and the other investors” the path becomes clear. one way to mitigate negative impact is ravenously gather money and keep moving to higher and higher ground. someplace nice where you can find good help but don’t have to watch poor people drown. this model works best when powered by masses of The Great Unwashed (Tea Baggers) who don’t dilute share dividends.

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