Sarah Palin Meets Frozen Gore

Photo courtesy of <a href="http://www.compeaus.com/frozen.html">Compeau's</a>.

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis, the election, and more, subscribe to the Mother Jones Daily newsletter.


A two-ton ice sculpture of Al Gore has been erected in front of a liquor store in Fairbanks, Alaska, as an homage to climate change skepticism. Via Treehugger, we learn that this will be the second giant frozen Gore head displayed in the state; the first, displayed last year at this time, even drew a visit from Sarah Palin.

While Palin’s public embrace of Frozen Gore and climate change denialism isn’t unexpected, it is fun to take a look at her evolution on the issue over the past few years, from tepid skeptic to full-blown denier. A brief history:

During her 2006 campaign for governor: “I will not pretend to have all the answers.” She also cautioned against “overreaction” on climate change. Later, a spokesperson told a reporter, “She’s not totally convinced one way or the other. Science will tell us. … She thinks the jury’s still out.”

August 29, 2008: “A changing environment will affect Alaska more than any other state, because of our location … I’m not one, though, who would attribute it to being man-made.”

September 11, 2008: “Show me where I have ever said that there’s absolute proof that nothing that man has ever conducted or engaged in has had any effect, or no effect, on climate change.”

October 2, 2008: “There is something to be said also for man’s activities, but also for the cyclical temperature changes on our planet.” She added, “I don’t want to argue about the causes.”

And finally, her op-ed in the Washington Post last month: The op-ed focuses on how climate change has been “politicized” – but of course, not by her. Here acknowledges “the impact of changing weather patterns” in her state, but implys that they are “natural, cyclical environmental trends” and “we can’t say with assurance that man’s activities cause weather changes.” Thus, she concludes, “any potential benefits of proposed emissions reduction policies are far outweighed by their economic costs.”

The kicker to this most recent story on Frozen Gore and Palin, though, is the final paragraph in the Associated Press piece on the sculpture:

Climate change scientists say Alaska has warmed by 3 degrees Fahrenheit during the past 50 years. The average temperature for 2009 was 27.8 degrees in Fairbanks, about one degree warmer than normal, said Rick Thoman, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

Well, guess it doesn’t matter as much now that she’s not looking to be elected in-state. The lofty goal of seeking national office as a Republican basically requires one to shed any realism on climate.

More photos of Frozen Gore here.

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate