Al Gore wins the Nobel Peace Prize

October 12, 2007 at 06:03 PM · Al Gore won the Nobel Peace Prize!


Replies (101)

October 12, 2007 at 06:15 PM · Not such a surprise.

Good for him.

October 12, 2007 at 08:57 PM · I can think of many people who are more worthy of the prize. But, seeing how politics are so involved in this "prize" I'm not surprised Gore won.

October 12, 2007 at 09:35 PM · Well, I have to say he looks more statesman than when he ran for president, having watched him on the news. Congrats!.

And ya know, if global warming is the out of control monster we say it is, we should be moving cities instead of signing treaties. And I'm 'definitely', definitely a conservative green.

October 12, 2007 at 10:11 PM · Anthropogenic global warming is a myth according to true scientists who study this topic. Once you take the politics out of the discussion and focus on solar activity, natural 1500 year temperature cycles and the fact that CO2 levels follow temperature changes, temperature changes do not follow CO2 levels, you realize what a farce this is.

The only hope coming out of a political award like this is a deleterious one for our country; the one world government crowd would love to control our economy and redistribute our assets by means of junk science and foolish treaties like Kyoto.

This is clearly a violin website, not a science or political site; however the door was opened for discussion. Any believers in the myth of anthropogenic global warming need to do their homework and stop trusting sound bites from a politician with a vested interest in the promotion of this myth. Global warming is a naturally occuring phenomenon.

October 12, 2007 at 11:45 PM · Wow!!!! I read Laurie's comment this afternoon before anyone else had posted. I almost responded but figured I'd just be blasted for my "right-wing" views. Then I come back this evening, afraid of what I would read and was pleasantly surprised. I wish Mr. Gore all the best of course and offer my congrats for the prize. I don't know why he got the prize for "peace" though. I don't see where his movie really promotes peace. It certainly doesn't promote science which is why he didn't get the prize for "chemistry" or "biology" or something like that. I wonder what he will use the prize money for. Maybe another jet to transport him to his fundraisers where he tells me not to drive my car or turn my lights on. Who knows. Maybe he and Leonardo DiCaprio will promote the sequal to "An Inconclusive Truth".

Anyway, thanks for the peace, Mr. Gore.

October 13, 2007 at 12:01 AM · "Anthropogenic global warming is a myth according to true scientists who study this topic."


Who are these "true" scientists of whom you speak? And what makes you qualified to make your grand pronouncements about what causes global warming? Are you saying that all the other scientists who do believe it aren't true scientists? Perhaps they're all in a big conspiracy to keep the media frenzy going so they can feed at the grant-making trough?

October 13, 2007 at 12:14 AM · Well, now I'm officially depressed again!

The right definitely has cornered the ability in my country to fire off their mouths. Without an apparent grasp of science!

October 13, 2007 at 12:13 AM · Isn't living harmoniously with our environment a very important kind of peace?

October 13, 2007 at 12:53 AM · Al Gore has made significant contributions to environmental awareness and he is due an honour to speak of such matters in public.

Al Gore is included in the important few that have persisted in enviromental regards that are current.

Tis shamefull that few follow his advice and probably why he won the prize--because he had the courage to speak out on a controversial issue,which even President Bush--- MORE than often, ignores [Bush has NO ideas anyway--like the war in Iraq--was wrong to even begin !! ]

When will the killing cease ??????????????????

October 13, 2007 at 12:50 AM · Oil has caused not only environmental destruction, but also war. Imagine if, instead of spending money in a war over oil, the U.S. spent the same amount on researching energy alternatives and building a new energy infrastructure. It would both reduce the dependence on oil and produce economic growth.

But an oil man stole the election, and the world sees the result.

October 13, 2007 at 12:49 AM · WONDERFUL, WONDERFUL NEWS!

It was the first thing I heard as I woke up this morning--I can't remember the last time the morning news gave me a flash of hope that we're not all going down the toilet. And how great that this wasn't just national approbation, but international.

This is such a crucial issue. I read that Gore's taking his half of the prize money and giving right back out there to the issue. Boy. I am so impressed by him. For the first time in a long while, I'm proud of the message an American politician has sent.

As for the myth business, Michael? Ah. Right. I'm sure there are websites and clubs full of people that would agree with you. There are lots and lots of neat websites and subcultures with neat theories and opinions out there. But hey, everyone entitled to their opinion.

Thanks for posting this, Laurie!

October 13, 2007 at 12:55 AM · Thomas, with all due respect, did you even bother to read the article that Laurie posted the link to? You might want to, as it answered one of your questions:

"Gore donated his share of the $1.5 million prize to the nonprofit."

That's a lot of money. That says a lot to me.

October 13, 2007 at 01:36 AM · Al Gore - Regalo - Alegro

October 13, 2007 at 01:47 AM · Michael is right.

October 13, 2007 at 02:08 AM · Michael:

What is the "One world government crowd" ?

Please explain !!

October 13, 2007 at 02:13 AM · I'm glad that Al Gore has done what he did to promote awareness of global warming, but I don't think that's what the Nobel Peace Prize should be about. Hasn't anyone made significant contributions to peace among the nations or among warring groups of people? On a practical note, I wonder whether this will have any effect on policymakers' decisions about global warming, fuel economy, etc. Unfortunately, I doubt it.

October 13, 2007 at 02:27 AM · I recall seeing an interview with attendees after Gore had made this presentation to a crowd of scientists. The math was wrong - and the results were sensationalized to produce a desired effetc.

I'm not a right-winger, but we have accept that we haven't been here long enough to think we know it all - in either direction. However, science is all we have to make educated guesses and it doesn't add up.

October 13, 2007 at 02:28 AM · I think Michael could not be more right. At best global warning is a very questionable theory, at worst it is complete nonsense. So how do you win a peace prize with that?

And Laurie, while I realize that oil has something to do with the US war in the Middle East, in fact, perhaps a lot to do with it, I nevertheless realize that it is more about a REAL war against terrorists, than anything else. They were well seated in that country, and will be well seated in many others if the US does not keep a strong presence there.

Do you really want to ignore what happened in 911 and give them a blank check to do as they want?

And as for the right wing opening their mouths: are you not the one who brought up a left wing topic (and do not tell me you did not realize it would be such--do not treat me like a fool!) on a violin web site? Typical left wing stuff! They spout off and then treat any rebuttal in adhomenium fashion!

October 13, 2007 at 02:36 AM · ^^^


Correct,Al Gore has done little for peace---only for global awareness of what we are doing to the evironment-----not comparable to peace,or is it ?

Pauline,I'll let u know when our next musical Jam is---------then we'll hash it out,musically !

October 13, 2007 at 02:45 AM · "And as for the right wing opening their mouths: are you not the one who brought up a left wing topic (and do not tell me you did not realize it would be such--do not treat me like a fool!) on a violin web site? Typical left wing stuff! They spout off and then treat any rebuttal in adhomenium fashion!"


I'm not sure why global warming and environmental destruction (they are two sides of th esame coin) is a "left wing topic" as you put it. There are already Pacific Islanders that have to be moved due to rising sea levels--I doubt they see it as a left- or right-wing issue. There are already species disappearing--it's not left or right to them. Children in urban areas suffer high rates of asthma from vehicle pollution--hardly right or left for them.

It could be argued that it doesn't matter whether Michael and you are right that man is not causing global warming. Even if the chances are low--let's say it's a 1-in-10 chance--we'd all be better off if we acted as if it were true. There's no downside to channeling investment into alternative engergy and the technology for a conservation revolution. It would mean entire new industries, technologies, and opportunities the world over.

October 13, 2007 at 02:47 AM · Congrats to Mr.Gore.

To those who beleive that Global warming is a phony... Does black smoke look healthy for the air? Does smog above cities look good for it? Or does burning trees look good for the air? And not just the air, but all the stuff we throw in our garbage can, does it look good for the land? Have any of you seen a landfill? Just at first sight its a disgusting look already. You don't have to do extreme or much science to see that these things are not good for the environment. And the water pollution, do those fish or otters look happy or healthy with the pollution in their water? and If you notice that there have been dramatic weather and air changes. even here in texas lots of weird stuff has been going on. tempratures have been changing and it used to rain tons (January to a month ago it rained a lot! during summer it rained tons, like every other day or so for several weeks then it would stop and repeat again). and i know global warming cant be tested or proved, but if it WAS true, do you want to wait the last minute and have civilazation fall once oil runs out? Even if it wasn't true, its still a great idea to treat the environment well anyways. Imagine if we did. Things would be a lot more better looking and feeling. Everything would be happier. I say we should seriously invest in solar energy, since it is free and won't be running out anytime soon.

October 13, 2007 at 11:25 AM · It was controversial until a couple years ago when the science academies of the G8, plus China, India, and I think Brazil issued a joint proclamation stating it was understood well enough to require action. That included the U.S. national academy of sciences. As for the math being wrong, they have a few mathematicians on board:) If you're concerned about the OWG crowd, look for something like legislation that gives away sovereignity, not this. How it ties into peace, I see several ways. The simplest is it's a problem of international scope, and I assume Gore has led efforts toward international cooperation. At the same time, I think Gore is a politician from Tenneessee, and I don't like Tipper at all, but hey.

October 13, 2007 at 03:00 AM · Hi Scott,

You are correct in that you know nothing about my educational background, training, experience etc. So, instead of attempting to attack my credentials, why don't you research the unequivocal facts that were included in my initial response and see if you can refute them.

A discussion based upon facts, instead of emotional hyperbole, is much more productive and enjoyable.

Good reading!

October 13, 2007 at 03:10 AM · "You are correct in that you know nothing about my educational background, training, "

Unless you're a climatologist, your educational background doesn't matter :)

October 13, 2007 at 03:03 AM · Brooke, global warming is a pretty well-established fact. The issue is whether or not human CO2 output is causing the globe to warm too quickly. A problem which the scientific community has failed as of yet to solve conclusively.

As to politics: THERE SHOULD BE NO POLITICS ABOUT GLOBAL WARMING! Scientists have lost their jobs by expressing doubts about human C02 contribution, no joke! Real science should be an objective tool we humans use to learn about our surroundings, period. The very fact that we are even arguing about it means that the topic has been over-politicized. If we were having an educated scientific discussion, however, that would be a different case entirely.

I object to right/left wing generalizations. For example, I am a conservative/libertarian, and am totally in favor of any and all reasonable measures being made to improve our environment. It's silly to believe that environmentalism is a "left-wing" idea.

About the prize: Good for Al Gore. He's put a lot of money and work into this, so good for him. While I disapprove of his politics, who am I to judge? And we must also remember that the Nobel prize is just a medal conferred by a committee of educated Swedish people. Nothing more, or less. So let's "move on", please, and talk about election '08!!

just kidding

October 13, 2007 at 03:13 AM · since al gore invented the internet,,,he must also invented global warming:)

to debate whether al gore should get the peace prize is one argue that global warming is natural deserves a nobel prize in storytelling.

so, stop playing electric violins and go back to your acoustics, shall we?:)


October 13, 2007 at 03:48 AM · "so, stop playing electric violins and go back to your acoustics, shall we?:)"

Subtle but astute!

October 13, 2007 at 03:56 AM · “Unless you're a climatologist, your educational background doesn't matter :)” Your educational background still doesn’t matter even if you are a climatologist but defines “junk science” in an idiosyncratic way.


October 13, 2007 at 03:55 AM · Disclaimer: I believe that global warming is happening, is primarily anthropogenic, and must be stopped.

That said, AL GORE?? Nobel PEACE Prize??? He made a movie. An important movie that says important things, but one movie. To that end, I nominate Emir Kusturica for the Nobel Peace Prize for making a movie where a Serb falls in love with a Gypsy, cultural restrictions on both sides notwithstanding.

I wanted Vaclav Havel to win. *grumble grumble grumble...for the fifth year in a row*

October 13, 2007 at 03:47 AM · Noone understands this issue. Those who promote it will request that all available funds be resourced. Those who don't will say nothing needs to be done. It is foolish to think that because you are not sure of the "gobal warming epidemic" that you are against conservation and protecting the environment - it might mean that you are accepting more viewpoints than the ones that a particular political party wants you to embrace. Whom among us can dictate the climatic cycle of the earth? We cannot even decide whether a shoulder rest is okay.

I do recall the an insightful comedic performance by George Carlin that states something like - "the earth will slough us off like a case of the fleas and carry on." Not as convincing as a scientist, granted, but something to think of.

October 13, 2007 at 04:48 AM · Michael,

What, pray tell, is your background in climate science?

Your phrases referring to "one world government" is telling: it refers to an extreme right-wing philosophy that includes a hatred of the public school system. A belief that the income tax is unconstitutional. A hatred of the United Nations. Hatred of environmentalists and anything else that could be termed "liberal.' And I'm guessing you have a framed photo of Ayn Rand in your breakfast nook. Am I wrong?


October 13, 2007 at 04:56 AM · Dear Mara,

My name is Al Serb. Though Ms. New York has all my luv right now, I think you are pretty alright too!.



October 13, 2007 at 04:59 AM · But Al, I'm not a Gypsy! :)

(The movie I'm referring to is of course "Black Cat, White Cat," and I highly recommend it.)

October 13, 2007 at 05:17 AM · Dang! Somehow a movie pales in comparison.

October 13, 2007 at 05:36 AM · A movie can change the world, actually. He has persisted in delivering this message in a rather heroic way, if you ask me.

October 13, 2007 at 05:55 AM · Well, thank you Laurie! ;)

October 13, 2007 at 05:56 AM · Agreed to a point, but pardon me if I think "heroic" is too strong a word. Determined yes, uncompromising yes, but heroic? He never faced any danger from delivering his message, he was not threatened by an oppressive government or targeted by unhinged extremists. Yes, he has been an admirable advocate, but not "heroic" in my opinion. "Heroic" is more like Vaclav Havel enduring years in prison for daring to publicly oppose the Communist dictatorship and working to change it, then getting out of prison and leading half of Europe to freedom. (*grumble*--still bitter!)

October 13, 2007 at 06:03 AM · Mara--hero, is like music: real, ebbing, flowing, --yes.

October 13, 2007 at 06:06 AM · sorry--what?

October 13, 2007 at 06:07 AM · Well, those people who have really made a few steps for 'everyman', have yes suffered, wrangled, survived... And within that experience is a certain angst not reproduceable.

Within music is a real expression of the moment. This moment is also not reproduceable. Joseph Campbell, of "Mythos" note, describes this moment pretty succinctly--as does Camus and others from a different angle(s).

Your passions, as part of your experience I feel? Yes. Actually, I would give a Nobel Prize to about twenty survivors I know right now in my mountains rather than 'anybody' else.

So your cynicism has gone duly noted.

October 13, 2007 at 06:13 AM · Yes, heroic. Because most of the rest of the United States is standing aside to let the current administration do its bidding, to the detriment of the U.S. and the world.

October 13, 2007 at 06:26 AM · Heroic in the sense of jumping out there in the parts of the world that seem stable and working half-way anyway, I'd agree hero.

October 13, 2007 at 06:30 AM · So you would agree that the U.S. is only working half-way, then? Definitely. ;)

October 13, 2007 at 06:38 AM · Here is a link to his acceptance speech.

And a BBC article on climate change. Actually the BBC put together a lot of information if you click around.

October 13, 2007 at 06:59 AM · Greetings,

first time I`ve agreed with Jim twice in the same thread. Can we have a joint Nobel Peace Prize?



October 13, 2007 at 07:40 AM · At the very end it does not matter whether global warning caused by humans is a myth or not. Seems, that global warming as such is really happening. Therefore world resources will not just get scarce but also geographically redistributed. Meaning: nations who are haves today will become havenots tomorrow.

It's a matter of war and peace then to prepare for such change. Just to make sure an INTERNATIONAL political structure and a corresponding process will be in place to make sure one mad president of one country will not go and occupy another president's country (under what headline ever), because the former president's country slips into a disadvantage because of global climate change, the latter president is not responsible for.

Under the current non-balance of power, morale and also intelligence on our globe, Gore's contribution is especially valuable as he is with no doubt a citizen of the USA, so the vast majority of Earth inhabitants have proof:

Civilization, culture and responsibility are alive and well in the most powerful country. Good news!


October 13, 2007 at 08:45 AM · I'm glad to know that somone else thinks on this problem in same way I do.

On the most italian important newspaper (LaRepubblica) I have read an interview to Naomi Klein, in which she criticizes "the bourgeoisement of the protest operated by Bono and Geldof".

I totally agree, we have to start a radical protest against exploitation of resources operated by some companies in poorest countries of the world and wasting of precious world resources.

I'm sick with Gore, Bono, Gedolf ,The Pope who hasn't the courage to blame Bush for the ruin of the world but just keeps going in meeting him at every chance, as Juan Paul the second did with Pinochet during a very friendly meeting arranged probably by Kissinger, Nobel prize as well as Gore.

Let's think about the value of this prize! (don't forget Gore wanted Liebermann, puah!, as vice president!)

Good luck WORLD!!

October 13, 2007 at 09:21 AM · Though I'm absolutely in fond of Al Gore and his goals, I found the result rather disappointing.

The reputation of the nobel-prize protects activists like Aung San Suu Kyi in the current Burma situation and gives their work the chance to be focussed world wide at least for a day. Al Gore really had no lack of reputation, all this prize will change is his letterhead. Especially after the Politovskaya- and Litvinenko- incidents, it would had been a great sign if the also nominated Lidia Yusupova would have make it. The site-effect would have been that the EU (btw. also nominated for this years prize) would have lost a bit of its self-righteousness to point habitually a finger at the filth over the ocean while standing kneedeep in own filth ("Putin is a flawless democrat").

Btw.: now that this junk science and myth of Climate Change is making its way into the White House, as the Cool Cities in the States show, it's not an industrial revolution, but simply an improved quality of life to act. A very valuable read in this issue is the widely known and discussed Stern-report (short summary) written for the british government.

October 13, 2007 at 12:26 PM · but what can violin people do to stay green?

1. practice only under the sunlight or by the candle light.

2. only buy scores from shops that use manual printers.

3. only buy violins from makers that do not use machine tools and those who add a green tinge in the final varnish.

4. go to concerts on horseback or buggies. or simply walk.

5. turn off all other appliances in the house while posting on yes, that includes the fridge.

October 13, 2007 at 12:13 PM · Actually, the Peace Prize was shared equally between Gore and the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), an organization comprising ~2000 scientists. It's unfortunate (but not surprising) that Gore is the only one everyone is talking about. The scientists on the IPCC have been volunteering their time and writing boring reports--even more boring than Gore's movie--since 1988.

I don't think it matters much if you think Gore is a hypocrite or not (I don't). An intelligent analysis of the message means that you are able to separate its value from your personal feelings about the messenger. Are we going to start criticizing and abandoning monogamy and marital fidelity just because (on-his-third marriage) Newt Gingrich and ("youthful indiscretion") Henry Hyde promote those values publicly? Or are we going to pontificate that *not* taking illegal drugs is a bad idea because (drug-addict) Rush Limbaugh rails publicly against illegal drugs? Many of the loudest promoters of important values are hypocrites in their personal lives. So what?

People seem to be assuming that the actions and lifestyle changes Gore and the IPCC are recommending and publicizing are obnoxious burdens that will ruin our lives, but that's not only untrue, it's sad. Living "green" can be a joyful, thoughtful, freeing choice that opens up a whole new way of looking at life.

October 13, 2007 at 12:35 PM · Oh yay, thank you, so now I'm a "cynic"?

October 13, 2007 at 03:36 PM · Hi,

I am glad that Al Gore won! Congratulations to him! I find fantastic that he is embracing a cause that has to potential to help all humanity and perhaps erase divisions among us as we unite to help oursleves.

People are right to state that periods of Global Warming are naturally occuring phenomenons that are due happen periodically, leading usually to enormous changes in landscapes and fauna (not to mention the extinction of species).

However, what is particular with this period of climate change is the fact that massive amounts of polutants which are the result of man-made machinery and operations are not only affecting the climate by damaging things like the ozone layer, etc., but also poisining the air in which we live, in a world where we are losing precious forests (through massive deforestation) much needed to filter the air around us. More so, WE can do something about it and change by modifying our behaviors and our ways of life and thinking about it. Simply conserving on ressources, not extending ourselves way beyond what we need, and many more things. And perhaps in the process we can learn to combat one of the worst things in humanity - our own arrogance. In the end, like with the violin, with issues like this we have to learn to work with nature, not against it.

My own two cents...


October 13, 2007 at 12:53 PM · Al wrote:

"but what can violin people do to stay green?

1. practice only under the sunlight or by the candle light.

2. only buy scores from shops that use manual printers.

3. only buy violins from makers that do not use machine tools and those who add a green tinge in the final varnish.

4. go to concerts on horseback or buggies. or simply walk.

5. turn off all other appliances in the house while posting on yes, that includes the fridge."


All true, but maybe we'd better all stop eating red meat as well. According to some reports, cow farts contribute massively to the ozone depletion.

October 13, 2007 at 01:59 PM · Enjoying these comments, particularly the eloquence of Mischa S, Karen A, Frank-Michael and Christian. Thanks for your thoughtful replies.

October 13, 2007 at 02:15 PM · Taking care of the planet will bring peace. Thinking globally will bring peace. More power to him for sticking his face out there. Peace prize, why not? He certainly has done more for awareness of this problem, then anyone else that comes to mind.

I agree completely that we should be doing everything possible to protect our environment. Yes we are polluting like no other species, except maybe methane from our bovine brothers. And we should be thinking globally in every aspect of our impact on this planet.

However, global warming is also taking place on Mars. I think the rover is battery powered isn't it?

October 13, 2007 at 02:43 PM ·

October 13, 2007 at 03:44 PM · Hey Terez,

I did actually read it. He is donating the money to the nonprofit alliance he chairs. In other words, he's giving the money to himself so that he can continue making movies. Really humanitarian there.

I don't think making movies about global warming contributes to world peace. In fact, since it is based upon speculative science at best I think it does more to harm the lives and peace of people on this planet. I have middle schools kids who come to strings class afraid to fart because they just got out of "science" class and think they are committing some sort of mortal sin if they do. Of course, according to Mrs. Niles we right wingers can't grasp even the basics of scientific fact so I am obviously talking with all the ignorace of a lump of charcoal. Charcoal which is not allowed to be burned anymore by the way because having a charcoal grill cookout here on the East Coast is going to kill off an entire population of dung beetles in Bangladesh or something. It is absolute craziness and fear mongering and if you don't buy into it then you are some sort of earth hating wacko. Well, count me out. Its about 60 degrees today in Virginia so I am going to go chop some wood (from a once living tree) and start a fire in my fireplace. I talk to you all later.

October 13, 2007 at 03:58 PM · I hate to tell you, but right-wingers have just as much expertise in fear-mongering as anyone else.

This is such a depressing thread. Reading posts like the ones here makes it plain why George Bush has managed to rule the free world for seven years.

Laurie, you meant well, but I like the violin-related threads better. Music makes me happy---I can play my fiddle and forget all about the depth of disagreement in the world. It lets me be an ostrich for a couple of hours a day.

October 13, 2007 at 04:00 PM · "I don't think making movies about global warming contributes to world peace", "Well, count me out". I really appreciate your contribution here, Thomas, since I was desperate for years to figure out what "right wing" actually means. Now I am getting the picture slowly: You have no idea what WOULD contribute to world peace. At least I could not extract any idea about it from your phrases.

Let's guess why ... either you think there is enough or even too much peace already or you don't think peace is worthwile to have or keep or you couldn't care less? Or you have no clue how to go about it?

Or were you suggesting Gore should donate the prize money to a charitable organization giving away free charcoal for East Coast right wingers' cookouts instead? You ARE funny, Thomas! Keep on posting, please!


October 13, 2007 at 04:27 PM · Thomas,

Could you please expound on this statement?

"at best I think it does more to harm the lives and peace of people on this planet. "

You can't, like Michael, throw grenades like this into the forum and not be expected to explain them. Hopefully you won't say something like "go look up the unassailable facts" a la Michael and accuse us of questioning your credentials.


October 13, 2007 at 04:56 PM · Yes Mara: "still bitter" feels cynical to me...

Yes Laurie-my people are hit especially hard by socio-cultural devolution. Tragically. Dramatically. Graphically.

October 14, 2007 at 03:06 AM ·

October 13, 2007 at 05:47 PM · It's not ironic, since it's something of a necessity (was a V.P., etc.)

Mara, Lech Walesa won the prize for a similar kind of thing. He was better known for some reason. It was amazing to follow that on TV as it was happening when I was a kid, along with what happened in Romania too.

P.S. I'm reminded it's sometimes it's hard to be peaceful, much less win a prize for it :)

October 13, 2007 at 05:40 PM · Nate,

Yes, Gore does appear to be hypocritical by flying around in a private jet. However, one could argue that the greater good in this instance is for him to be able to get his message out; that the spreading of the message takes priority over the immediate cost. One could look at it as an investment. That's the problem with the pro business-growth-at-all-cost philosophy: it only matters what it will cost this quarter and not over the long run.


October 13, 2007 at 06:52 PM · Did anyone notice that Rush Limbaugh was up for the prize as well? No joke...

October 13, 2007 at 06:44 PM · Thomas Gardner said: "Its about 60 degrees today in Virginia so I am going to go chop some wood (from a once living tree) and start a fire in my fireplace."

Here in Wisconsin, 60 degrees is a heat wave this time of year (even with global warming). We light our wood fire when it gets below 35 or so.

Thanks for starting this thread, Laurie, and on the whole the comments have been informative and well-informed. However, I still prefer to stick to the violin threads.

October 13, 2007 at 07:04 PM · "Did anyone notice that Rush Limbaugh was up for the prize as well? No joke..."

Well, I wouldn't say he was "up for the prize." His name was sent in unsolicited by the Landmark Legal Foundation, on which he serves as an unpaid advisor. To say on that basis that he "was up for the prize" is certainly an exaggeration. Use Google to get the details on this.

October 13, 2007 at 08:48 PM · well posted laurie!

i think the main benefit of gore getting this prize is that the focus is staying on this problem. it's good that someone who accepts the reality of global warming got the prize (rather than someone who doesn't).

one shouldn't be too surprised that there are still people who say global warming is a hoax. there are still people who argue factory farms don't exist, that child slavery isn't practiced and that the holocaust never happened.

and while the so-called 'doomdayers' (eg y2k) haven't yet had their day, yet, it does seem to make sense to support fairly obvious things that make the environment cleaner for right or left wingnuts.

October 13, 2007 at 07:53 PM · Eric,

Until you have a concerete definition for "up for" I would appreciate you not directing me "to get more info." It was simply a few second blurb on NPR that I heard. Maybe you should correct them.

October 13, 2007 at 07:50 PM · PUH-LEEEZE people. Let us not degrade this forum by turning it into a place for people to vent their political opinions. There are thousands upon thousands of websites where you can do this.

I have seen two other string player discussion forums go into decline and lose their clientèle by going this route. is the finest string players forum I have ever seen. In fact it is one of the finest discussion forums on any topic that I have ever seen. It is a precious resource for violinists all over the world.

Let's not spoil it!

My apologies, in advance, if anybody takes offense at this.

October 13, 2007 at 07:59 PM · I absolutely agree with Mr. Sonne. Let us get back to talking about people who actually have real talent (great violinists/composers) - not politicians!

October 13, 2007 at 09:13 PM · "and while the so-called 'doomdayers' (eg y2k) haven't yet had their day"

Y2K is an example of a catastrophe that was successfully headed off, I'm pretty sure. As a programmer I worked on a couple things myself to make them compliant. One common problem for example was calculating elaspsed time in programs that only used the last two digits for year (two digits common because it's quick to write and the author's going to be long gone when the problem hits, if it even occurred to him). All of a sudden, woah Nellie, you've got 1000 years of back taxes to pay. Or the thing just crashes on the negative number that results and thinks you have a couple million years of taxes to pay. Or something crashes and goes into some error mode that cuts your utilities off...Or your can't get in your cash register because your shift doesn't start until 1900 A.D. LOL.

October 13, 2007 at 11:23 PM · I remember about 10 years ago when the denial folks' song was that there wasn't any global warming. Now they're saying it's real, but that we aren't the ones causing it. I suppose the next step will to be claiming that 120 in the shade isn't really warm.

October 13, 2007 at 11:38 PM · Fixing y2k also created economic growth. Working toward fixing the problems that create global warming would also create economic growth.

October 14, 2007 at 12:21 AM · Actually, many anomalies introduced by those supposedly fixing Y2K dates will be around for years--and were...

October 14, 2007 at 03:17 AM · Yes, any time you fix something there's a possibility of breaking something else. Once you've done your little development testing, it should go through the whole validation process again.

October 14, 2007 at 12:37 AM · No doubt.

October 14, 2007 at 12:45 AM · Our validation guy was scary because he bought himself a white lab coat with his name embroidered on it. He might have had more than one actually. Don't know where he found that catalog.

October 14, 2007 at 03:11 AM · That is scary...

October 14, 2007 at 03:16 AM · Eh well, you'd have to know the guy I guess.

October 14, 2007 at 08:21 AM · We should bear in mind that mankind is the animal that adapts the environment to itself, unlike all the rest. We need to periodically remind ourselves that: (1)we have effects longer reaching than our own lifetimes, and (2) we don't always know as much as we think we do!

October 14, 2007 at 11:50 AM · "but what can violin people do to stay green?"

Play on violins made out of recycled materials (not just recyclable materials)?

October 14, 2007 at 12:34 PM · "but what can violin people do to stay green?"

Seriously, I think that supporting community music is one thing that violin people could do. International travel is great, but musicians don't have to fly or drive halfway across the globe to find an audience and audiences don't have to do that either to find a good concert.

October 14, 2007 at 01:15 PM · I just want to point out that Gore did WAY MORE than just making a movie...

October 14, 2007 at 02:30 PM · That may be. But I couldn't help feeling the prize was premature. In sciences, Nobel prizes are given after noted discoveries prove themselves of tangible contributions. Sometimes, the awards come years later. I am glad Gore brought people's attention to the problem by making the film and using his position to publicize it. But it has yet to prove itself leading to real solutions. It seems to me the Nobel committee made a political statement by choosing the film more than validated the merits of the film.


October 14, 2007 at 03:22 PM · A very good point, Ihnsouk.

October 14, 2007 at 04:02 PM · Well, it's actually NOT a good point, since he didn't win a science prize--he won the peace prize.

Furthermore, responding to a previous complaint, if you look at the peace prize winners over time you will see that many of them have indefinite connections to the concept of "peace", so the Gore award is not an unusual situation. It is, after all, their award to give as they see fit. If you disagree, you can start your own. :-)

October 14, 2007 at 04:06 PM · Michael, you just took the words out my mouth.

October 14, 2007 at 03:28 PM · Well--I see two things going on here:

1-We truly can benefit from a less toxic environment--truly truly.

2-Using global politics and scare tactics is unacceptable, even if it does serve as a good wakeup call.

Most people are acutely aware of hypocrisy, and I think rightly so. But more tellingly, when governments act without all the facts, sometimes worse outcomes result because of tendency for governments to be dysfunctional from the beginning--regardless of the party.

We should remember that it was Teddy Roosevelt who was captured in the appreciative photo with John Muir at Yellowstone. But did that early appreciation mitigate the water crisis along the Colorado, other than making vast national parks? That is an important question here as well.

The reason that is an important question, is that our nation has always been sensitive to measures that improve the quality of American's lives, fail or succeed. But also, how did our appreciation balance out the 50-75 years of industry's footprint on the rest of the nation post TR?

What happened is that we compromised and destroyed some regions as sort of sacrificial animals, preserved some as national treasures and still found need for the environmental super fund later.

All the while, urban sprawl continues.

Anytime in society there is a larger powerful force instituting change, another outcome is that opportunist normally benefit unfairly, whether it's church or government. The reformation, counter-reformation and various inquisitions for example had very much economic and political underwriting.

So polarizing our real need to green up using politics is misguided I think, especially in the free world. Can government be a good neighbor and partner in our broader conversation of cleaning up our environmental act? Of course. But the real lasting trend where there has been one, has been when society speaks, with government normally appropriating the intellectual angst as if it were their own. Remember though, and as they have already started doing: "Can we tax it"?

Here's another trend: the corporate influence on what is being turned around and expressed as environmental sensitivity as being projected all over the media is becoming obvious. From mining to car manufacturing the influence is now obvious. But more subtly, even in more intellectual expressions like on the History Channel, this influence can be sensed for those so inclined.

This retrofitting is also government's modus in projecting their effectiveness and crunching and molding their numbers and statistics. I will not approach the end results of other vast national efforts here, but very well could.

So America's green movement, and specifically America's 'own-version' of it's green movement based on American values has been in place since at least 1900, but actually a little before. The grass-roots efforts to actually apply our often ingenious R&D capacities towards a cleaner environment must not come from party politics, but from all Americans.

Rachel Carson's efforts were an expression of the things we missed as we continued to industrialize, rather than a 70's epiphany. Americans have always appreciated our nation, its vastness, its beauty and its values.

October 14, 2007 at 04:56 PM · Well said Michael!


October 14, 2007 at 05:31 PM · Ihnsouk Guim said:

Gore brought people's attention to the problem by making the film and using his position to publicize it. But it has yet to prove itself leading to real solutions.

This genre of comment has also been made by others in this thread and elsewhere. But it is not accurate (as Patrick Hu's comment above suggests): Gore has done a lot more than make a film; for example, the Climate Project (one of his various projects) is very active in pushing "real solutions" (I am not sure what counts as a "real solution," but certainly there is no lack of practical policy proposals concerning global warming). The Nobel Prize in Peace seems to be a kind of lifetime achievement award; Gore has been active on this issue for about three decades (can you think of any other prominent public figure who has?), including a 1992 best-selling book.

I am not a huge fan of the film (too much Gore for my taste), but certainly if computer models of global warming are correct, the consequences of global warming will have huge impacts on peace and well-being (for violinists, for everyone). In that sense, the jointly-shared prize seems well deserved by those most active on the issue.

October 14, 2007 at 07:43 PM · enough

October 14, 2007 at 08:22 PM · These people awarded Yasser Arafat the peace prize...something to think about.

October 14, 2007 at 08:24 PM · In response to Marty, I think Laurie said it best earlier in this thread:

From Laurie Niles

Posted on October 13, 2007 at 12:14 AM

Well, now I'm officially depressed again!

The right definitely has cornered the ability in my country to fire off their mouths. Without an apparent grasp of science!


October 14, 2007 at 08:32 PM · The worst prize was not the one to Arafat but the one to Kissinger who supported military dictatures in Latin America

Think about this, Marty

October 14, 2007 at 08:33 PM · And now good night....

October 14, 2007 at 10:12 PM · Interesting! Do you tell people if you don't like it leave it whenever anyone has an opinion differing from your own? Wouldn't you rather say Nobel people routinely give out peace and at times literature prizes for political reasons. I think they acted within their guidelines. Whether giving out weighty prizes that way to make a point is desirable in the long run may be a point needing further debates.

I believe the Nobel prize has become a public institution however it is funded and the committee has the obligation to foster broad public good. Public debates on what constitutes a good practice of awarding Nobel prizes are, therefore, legimate in my opinion and should not be silenced.


October 14, 2007 at 11:32 PM · quoting: "I believe the Nobel prize has become a public institution however it is funded and the committee has the obligation. . ."

From the Nobel Foundation site (it's handy to make facts up that support one's viewpoint, but I prefer to check them out):

"The Nobel Foundation is a private institution established in 1900 based on the will of Alfred Nobel. The Foundation manages the assets made available through the will for the awarding of the Nobel Prize in Physics, Chemistry, Physiology or Medicine, Literature and Peace."

I believe that we can discuss them, but, still, what they do with their money is essentially not my business, nor yours. As far as I can see, this is definitely one of those cases where you can live with their way, or start your own foundation, yes, and yes, I am happy to tell you that, again. Since you seem be stuck on the idea that you should have some say in what they do, surely you can see the fairness in allowing me the same option: to tell you what you should do.

Yes, people DO like to complain a lot about things which aren't their business, and no, I don't expect censorship of those discussions, and I am participating in one now, as are you, freely, so what's your complaint here, exactly?

October 15, 2007 at 12:26 PM · If it's nobody's business, why are we talking about it here, 100 entries strong?

However politically motivated past awards may have been, they were given to what had already been accomplished. I felt that it was not the case with Al Gore.

When anything gets as prominent as the Nobel prize, I don't know if there's much distiction between private and public beyond the technical level. I am sure the panel of judges is made of highly public figures in their respective fields.


October 15, 2007 at 12:59 AM · What a thread!

October 16, 2007 at 01:57 AM · Albert wrote:

"What a thread!"

It's a thread that deserves to go over 100 messages. :)

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