An atom bomb of political incorrectness blew up Friday night at the gala dinner of the NASA sponsored International Space Development Conference in Washington, DC. Burt Rutan, the visionary aircraft designer who built the first passenger civilian rocket to reach space, was accepting an achievement award from the hands of CNN's environment correspondent, Miles O'Brien.
Burt stunned an audience composed of scientists from NASA and civilian space enthusiasts when he stated that it was unconscionable for "a large corporation to make millions of dollars making people feel guilt about how they live, "and I'm talking about you and CNN, Miles O'Brien."
Remember, there are NASA climate scientists in the audience who have been forecasting the global warming apocalypse for their whole careers, which look like they're almost over judging by all the grey hair.
Burt went on to say that you could stick a pin anywhere in the ice core record of earth's climate and say that the planet was in a state of climate change crisis. He also said that data had been "manipulated" and that we needed to "go back to the numbers."
A shocked room listened as he went on to say, "and who are we to say that this is the right temperature for the planet? It's been warmer before, maybe it should be warmer. Who's to say that maybe humans won't be better off with a warmer climate?"
Mr. Rutan is not alone. I went to as many talks and panels as I could on Friday, and several times my ears pricked up when some speaker said something like, "whether global warming is happening or not, space based solar power has great applications for the military in remote locations." What did I just hear? Whether global warming is happening or not?
One conference attendee said to me, "You won't hear about this moment on CNN." I realized he was right. CNN won't broadcast a competing view to Miles O'Brien. And that's truly sad.
If there is unofficial debate at a NASA sponsored conference, I submit that Al Gore was very wrong when he said that there is no further need to debate global warming. We should debate. Publicly. That's how we strip down to the truth.