A Crisis We Can Live With

 Frank J Rutherford

 September 24, 2007

I had a couple of hours to kill at the Arkham Day's Inn last Thursday as I prepared to lecture the freshman journalism students at Miskatonic University, so after brewing up my my individual pot of robust java (tip: ask for an extra coffee packet when you check in), I picked up my complimentary copy of USA Today and sat down to read a fascinating piece on the effects of climate change in the United States.

It seems that most scientists now agree that the oceans are going to rise as much as a meter over the next fifty to one hundred years. Battery Park in Manhattan will be submerged, as will Fisherman's Wharf in San Francisco, and parts of New Orleans, Galveston, and Miami. Hoboken will be an island and the Everglades will be part of the ocean.

Big woof. For those of you who don't speak European, a meter is just about three feet. I think even the brain-dead denizens of New Orleans can plan around that sort of advance warning. After years of being frightened by Al Gore and his league of environment fear mongers, this is all we've got to worry about? The Everglades underwater? Hey, that is environmental change we can all live with! I was so excited by the news that I cancelled my flight home and rented a Hummer instead.

And now for a personal confession. There is a namby-pamby side to Frank J Rutherford, and though it rarely shows itself in public, I have oft-times grown misty-eyed at the thought of little Frankie Junior being unable to cast his eyes upon the submerged Statue of Liberty or gaze into the marble eyes of President Lincoln as he sits upon his might thrown, unable to swim out of his watery memorial. But now that I know the water will rise no higher than Lady Liberty's ankles, I'm thinking that as long as the kid is born sometime in the next fifteen, twenty years, he ought to be good to go.

And so it is wise and just that as world leaders gather today at the United Nations to discuss global warming, President Bush will sit it out (except for the dinner, which sounds absolutely scrumptious). He knows, as should we all, that the Rapture will have come and gone before we even need to worry about getting our feet wet. This is supposed to be what passes as a crisis these days? It's about time to sink that sort of negative thinking.

                                              Frank J Rutherford

2007, Mark Hoback