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Citizens Climate Lobby to show “Merchants of Doubt” Aug. 16

August 6, 2018

POCATELLO - Citizens Climate Lobby will have a second showing of “Merchants of Doubt” at the SandTrap on Thursday, August, 16 at 6:30 p.m.

This entertaining documentary film examines the history of corporate financed public relations efforts to sow confusion and skepticism about scientific research. Based on a book of the same title, the film interviews scientists, activists, and whistle-blowers who have tried to expose such activities, as well as some perpetrators of misinformation. “ If you can DO TOBACCO,”one of the perpetrators is quoted as saying, “you can do just about anything in public relations.”

Climate change deniers use the same smear tactics the tobacco industry used to negate the hazardous health impacts of tobacco as find to promote the positive benefits it held for users!! Thanks to thousands of pages of documents leaked by Stanton A Glantz, a doctor and anti-tobacco crusader, this information lead to the 1998 Tobacco Master Settlement Agreement. Since the release of Merchants of Doubt, fossil fuel extractors Exxon, Shell, BP, and Total, have come out for a carbon tax that is revenue neutral This means all funds collected minus administrative costs are returned equally to each US household. Reagan era conservative thought leaders James A Baker, George Schultz, Henry Paulson, and economist Martin Feldstein support a gradually rising carbon tax (www.carbondividends.com) Twenty-three college campuses of Young Republicans recently helped form a bipartisan group called Students for Carbon Dividends.

Science can be laborious and difficult to explain and to defend, especially in the tribal oriented cable news format. One of the scientists interviewed is James E. Hansen, formerly of NASA, who in 1988 testified before that Congress he believed there was a link between carbon emissions and climate change. Public relations, in contrast, is built on buzzwords, hyperbole, and plays to the fears and paranoia we all have toward complex subjects that could effect our daily lives. This spring high school students from Logan, UT made progress with their state legislators and Governor who passed Resolution 7, recognizing the environmental and economic impacts of climate change, as well as accepting established science that humans are contributing to this change. At the same time students from Boise convinced Idaho Legislators of the need for adding climate change to the science curriculum in Idaho.

The movie, “Merchants of Doubt,” is optimistic in that it believes the cost of climate change will eventually lead to government action. Climate change should not be a liberal or conservative issue. CONSERVING our natural resources for now and for future generations is a universal concern not only for young people, but everyone.

Come see “Merchants of Doubt” to understand why some people don’t believe or are skeptical about human caused climate change. The SandTrap will provide one free beverage to anyone who takes the time to watch the movie.

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