I know this usually isn't the venue for a friendly discussion of the former vice president, but reading my new colleague Gary Rosen's cool-eyed blog post yesterday and David Brooks's emotional column today, I found myself feeling a strange sort of admiration for Al Gore. Doesn't it seem as though his 2000 loss, devastating though it must have been for Gore, was a huge liberation? As a politician, Gore never seemed comfortable in his own skin. The warmth and amused intelligence people insist he displays in private were never evident in public.
Since that concession, Gore has let himself loose in all kinds of ways. He no longer has to pretend, as all politicians most.
So far, so good. I agree that Gore has seemed much more natural and confident in the past seven years - less of a politician. And who is the real, unleashed Gore, according to Podhoretz?
He is clearly happiest and freest as an autodidact preaching populist pseudoscientist. And everything has gone his way.
I wonder, does the epithet "pseudoscientist" apply to every scientist researching climate change?