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Thursday, March 24, 2005

Al, Roscoe, and Jed

Commenter Heading out stated the painful truth concerning the last Cricton post:
Unfortunately the impact that authors such as Crichton have on public opinion is then reflected in the ways that the government treats different subjects. I haven't read this one yet but I am aware of the problem because of the impact that "Prey" had on some research areas.
The unfortunate headline when that came out: Prey - "Nanotechnology runs wild!". Unfortunately the impacts whittle away at both ends of the spectrum: for the (1) mass-market consumer who doesn't pay attention to deep news items at the expense of pulp fiction and to the (2) politico producer of laws who acts on the deep-rooted impulses of the constituent minority who misrepresent this stuff to their own agenda.

Fortunately it can also work both ways for progress as well. For example, which of this trio may have more of a long-term effect on awareness of our current energy predicament?

Retired but still active Professor Albert Bartlett who has taught and lectured about energy depletion and unlimited growth for the past several decades. Barlett has spoken to audiences at a rate of 30-40 times a year. Sadly, still probably not enough.

Old farmer, current U.S. Representative and former scientist Roscoe Bartlett who gave a recent late-day congressional testimony on oil depletion to an apparently small crowd and maybe some C-SPAN devotees. A dKos diary entry provoked some comments.

Fictional president Jedediah Bartlett who presided over a West Wing segment called Hubbert's Peak (now and forever in reruns).

Which Bartlett do you think had the biggest audience?

Nod to ByteSmiths.


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