Couple Things

By Jennifer Parker

Jan 31, 2008 6:02pm

First, because a few of you have I asked, I have nothing to do with which comments get deleted.

ABCNews.com has certain standards for what posts they consider unacceptable — I think personal attacks and cursing do not meet those standards, for example — and people at ABCNews.com make those decisions. I have zero to do with it. I don’t delete posts.

I know some blogs have an "open comment" policy, which has its pluses and its minuses — witness Markos getting tagged unfairly by O’Reilly because of hateful posts at DailyKos.

ABCNews.com has a different policy, and that’s how it is.

Certainly, saying that I’m wrong, or taking issue with my stories or blog postings, does not constitute objectionable writing. Indeed, getting a dialogue going is what blogging is supposed to be about. If someone is deleting comments that don’t violate ABC News policy, you should object to that, and I will join you.

Now.

That said.

I’m taking some heat here and on liberal blogs for my questioning this morning of what President Clinton said about action against greenhouse gases slowing our economy.

To try to clarify — because obviously I didn’t do a good enough job explaining what I was driving at this morning — I wasn’t trying to declare that he was saying one thing or another. (Though my headline implied that, and I regret that.)

I wrote at the time that I wasn’t sure what he meant:

"I don’t really think there’s much debate that, at least initially, a full commitment to reduce greenhouse gases would slow down the economy….So was this a moment of candor?

"He went on to say that his the U.S. — and those countries that have committed to reducing greenhouse gases — could ultimately increase jobs and raise wages with a good energy plan..

"So there was something of a contradiction there.

"Or perhaps he mis-spoke.

"Or perhaps this characterization was a description of what would happen if there isn’t a worldwide effort…I’m not quite certain.

"You can watch that one clip HERE or you can watch the whole speech at the website of ABC News’ great Denver affiliate KMGH by clicking HERE."

I then provided the full context of the quote. Lots of you — and the Clinton campaign — argue that it’s obvious that Bill Clinton was spelling out that last point, he was describing what would happen if there isn’t a worldwide effort, that he was setting up a straw man, because this is a false argument.

I can certainly accept that’s what he meant. I don’t think it was clear. But I wasn’t certain.

That’s why I provided the video links, the full quote, and gave a number of options as to what he meant.

And again, I think the larger point — bigger than me, bigger than one president’s comment — is what would it cost to take action against global warming? There seems to be a consensus — a climate change, if you will — on this issue. If John McCain wins the GOP nomination, regardless of who the Democratic nominee is, the two major-party presidential candidates will agree that serious action needs to be taken.

What action? How much will it cost? What possible "slowing" could it do to the economy? Is it worth it to you?  That’s what I’d love to hear from you about below.

- jpt

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