This past week, I was having lunch at a restaurant in midtown Manhattan when my colleague noticed Al and Tipper Gore dining across the room with another couple. It was a frigid day, with record-breaking temperatures keeping most people indoors, and we were the last two tables in the restaurant.
As the Gore party started walking out of the room, my colleague called out, "Hey, Al, how's all that global warming working out for you?" Gore turned around and stared at us with a completely dumbfounded look on his face. He was speechless. With a smile, my colleague repeated the question, again to a hapless look of dismay.
Finally, Gore mumbled under his breath, "Wow, you sound awfully angry." I responded with a thank you, explaining to him that we were actually extremely amused. The encounter concluded with Gore's friend mouthing a very animated "f--- you" at us, and they skulked away. My only regret is that no one at the table asked Gore, "What's the matter? The polar bear's got your tongue?"
What struck me the most about this meeting was Gore's complete inability to utter a sentence addressing his life's work. The former Vice President, Nobel Prize laureate, and Academy Award-winning producer standing before us was a moron, unable to articulate a simple comeback to address all that he has stood for since leaving office. He could have simply ignored us and kept walking, as he does with reporters, but by stopping and standing there dumbstruck, he looked like a fool.
That night, I was watching Bill O'Reilly's show, and in his Reality Check segment, he featured Rebecca Mead, a writer for The New Yorker magazine, who appeared on CBS's "Sunday Morning" talk show lambasting Bush and praising Obama as a "certified intellectual." Upon what does she base this claim?
All we know about Obama is that he graduated from Columbia University, was an Alinskyite community organizer, went to Harvard Law School, and worked as a law school lecturer before running for public office. He has received the author's credit for two books, though it is an open question how much he relied on ghostwriters. We have not seen his school transcripts, and he wrote not one single signed article while acting as president of the Harvard Law Review or as a law school instructor. We have no idea what Obama's intellectual aptitude is, and to claim that he is a "certified intellectual" is absurd.
This is a man who certainly did not deserve to be elected president of the United States, having accomplished little in his first 46 years of life, other than creating a faux persona and developing strong oratory skills. He too is unable to think on his feet and without a teleprompter; he too sounds like a buffoon as he claims to have visited all 57 of the United States and that he understands the Austrian language.
When Sarah Palin was asked to be McCain's vice president, the left went berserk and attacked her on all fronts, including her lack of an "adequate" education. A close friend e-mailed me, specifically mentioning Palin's college as one reason why she was not qualified for the job. When I pointed out that Harry Truman did not even graduate from college, there was no response.
And we could not escape the left's attacks on every Bush gaffe, the whole of which became the subject of books, late-night television humor, and even decks of cards. To this day, the left is completely incapable of appreciating the acts of the Bush years, which will go down in history as based on intellectual honesty and moral character -- two characteristics wholly lacking in any agenda emanating from the Democrats controlling our government.
There is no better example of intellectual dishonesty than Climategate. After Al Gore left the restaurant, the waiter walked over to our table laughing. But when we raised the Climategate fiasco, the waiter had no idea what we were talking about. The fraud pervasive in the scientific community is just as rampant in the mainstream media that is failing to adequately investigate and report on this extremely important story.
I went to see the Sherlock Holmes movie with my family this past weekend. As every fan of the Sherlock Holmes stories is aware, the key lesson is that you must gather all of the facts before forming a theory. An individual who first forms a theory and then gathers facts to support it will wind up ignoring the facts which run contra to it and ultimately err in her conclusion.
How is it, then, that a vast majority of the scientific community charged with investigating changes in the world's climate -- "certified intellectuals," as it were -- have done exactly that, and with the unfettered support of the Democratic Party and the left-wing media?
This simple, commonsense approach to a criminal investigation should be the basis of scientific endeavors from the beginning to the end of time. It should permeate business decisions, economic policy, and certainly a government's rules and regulations. It is otherwise known as common sense -- something completely lacking in today's politicians. Ideology has taken its place. For the Democrats, it is all about ideology.
It does not matter that universal health care has failed the world over. It will pass here and be forced upon the populace, the majority of which has no desire to suffer under its failures just to enable the Democrats to retain long-term power and control over individuals.
The war on terror? There is none. A few "man-caused disasters," perhaps, but releasing the Gitmo detainees to Yemen -- despite our knowledge that it is a breeding ground for terrorism and an al-Qaeda stronghold -- makes sense to those coming to office with left-wing ideological beliefs. And what could possibly be wrong with giving up our nuclear weapons and defense systems when the rest of the world's dictators and rogue nations are manufacturing them as quickly as possible?
The problem with all of these nonsensical ideological policies is that they do not simply have short-term effects on the country and its citizens. The Democrats are consciously and successfully altering the economy, the health care system, our national defense, and the stature of the United States at breathtaking speed, while those of us with common sense and intellectual honesty watch in dismay and horror.
A friend recently told me a wonderful story about his encounter with Albert Einstein as an eight-year-old boy. My friend's father was a brilliant and well-known author at the time, and he was asked to meet one afternoon with Einstein. As my friend walked for several hours in the woods, accompanying the two men, he struggled for just the right question to ask of the world's most brilliant man.
Finally, as the meeting was coming to an end, my friend saw a leaf floating down from a tree in a peculiar swirling pattern. He then asked, "Dr. Einstein, why is the leaf falling from the tree like that rather than straight down?" Einstein replied with a smile, "I don't know."
As my colleague asked Al Gore, "How's that global warming working out for you," it would have been nice to hear Gore respond, "I don't know." But there is no money for politicians -- or con-artists -- who admit that they just don't know. There are no earmarks and windfalls being sent to the intellectually honest people with the moral character to admit that they don't have all of the answers, but that they are going to gather all the facts first before drawing conclusions which will affect generations of individuals, vast portions of the economy, and individual rights previously safeguarded in a Constitution being usurped before our eyes.
The Einsteins of the world are too smart to venture into politics. But we can still make sure that in the future, we elect individuals of moral character who are intellectually honest with both themselves and the American citizens. Without them, our Constitution is reduced to meaningless words, and Al Gore, one of the real "fat cats," will continue to dine at our expense.