09 December 2011

Friday Fun: Tomorrow's Headline Today

survey solutions
The best case scenario for those wanting success at the Durban Climate Conference is going to be the kicking of the can way down the road. From a policy perspective the outcome is largely irrelevant to emissions of carbon dioxide for the foreseeable future. (Though a complete collapse might help;-)

But the outcome does have some interesting implications for President Obama and the 2012 presidential contest. In that light I've designed a little poll where you can prognosticate on the joint outcome of the Durban conference and how it will be spun in the US media.


  1. http://www.economist.com/blogs/newsbook/2011/12/un-summit-climate-change?fsrc=nlw%7Cnewe%7C12-9-2011%7Cnew_on_the_economist

  2. (B) Guiding principle: everything Obama does is with one and only one goal - to get re-elected. If kicking the can down the road is impossible, he will torpedo a deal.

  3. "No Durban Climate Deal - Negotiations Resume In 2012"

  4. You are, of course, making the assumption the Durban conference will even be in tomorrow's headlines. I had to dig deep in the NYTimes 'World' section to find any mention of it at all.

    Seems a shame, given all the money spent and all the carbon dioxide released into the atmosphere getting tens of thousands of misc. globalist types to South Africa. Still, I suppose it keeps them out of other mischief for a couple of weeks.

  5. B since Obama does not have the band width to defend any such policy and the House would take any move apart.

  6. I refer to today's BBC news that, to quote:

    'UN climate talks heading to a deal

    Nations at the UN climate talks appear to be edging their way to agreeing that a process towards a new carbon-cutting deal should start in the New Year.'

    The absurd conditionality of that sentence is not made up!

    O those New Year Resolutions – (how one can’t help recalling old ‘may days’ and ‘five year plans’! These seem to be the same people!) how much this absurd jamboree loves them!?

    This is what I mean by ‘bad’ poetry or ‘good’ reporting. I mean Dr Pangloss with his dark, Dr Pangloss glasses, or am I naive, a real Candide?

  7. Further:

    The move marks a success for the ad-ho alliance formed between the EU and scores of the world’s most climate-vulnerable countries.

    I kid you not. This is Pravda at it’s best! And you wonder, Keith, about British ‘journalism’? Who needs the tabloids?!

    By the way, the ‘alliance’ that the BBC is speaking of, certainly ‘ad-hoc’, last minute and meaningless, would that be the alliance between the recently defeated and the less recently defeated? Akin, in soccer, let us say, to an alliance between England and Russia? And equally as absurd?

    Sorry, this really is to wonderful to pass by:

    Not ‘would be a success’ but ‘marks’ a success, mark you! By the way, you better keep that url I gave you, they’ve already ‘disappeared’ it. Ah, history!

  8. My vote?

    Success has been declared at Durban, as all parties agree to meet again, to continue what is hoped to define action that will save the planet.

    See you in Qatar!

    Great party, COP 17!

    Sadly, the last sentence is from a Twitter tweet from Durban....

  9. 12:40 AM (Sunday) Durban time and 5:40 PM EST, and no final word from the Climate talks.

    There was an old commercial (can't remember the product) where the catch-phrase was "A-a-a-ny day now.....a-a-a-a-a-a-ny day..."

    Looks like that should be the headline.

  10. So the 'outcome' is an agreement to sign another as yet unspecified but ambiguously binding agreement at some future unspecified date, to extend the current treaty for some undecided amount of time, to set up a fund that will be filled by unknown means, and to meet again in the territory of one of the bigger carbon producers on the planet to do it all again later.

    The wonderful thing about this agreement, Roger, is it's so vague I'm not sure which of your two contingencies applies!

  11. I noticed that Durban was barely in the headlines, not in the NYT, not in the BBC, not in Germany.
    So what did the headlines of Fox and MSNBC look like (if there were any)?

  12. can't vouch for real time headlines, but this is what I found in a search just now.

    "U.N. Climate Conference Reaches Hard-Fought Agreement"

    "What U.N. climate talks agreed in Durban"

    "Delegates at climate talks agree to extend efforts of Kyoto Protocol"

    All look pretty straight, although there does seem to be concern in some circles that there's a little too much silence:


    Perhaps a hint of cheerleading here:

    "At Last, Nations Agree To Landmark Climate Deal"

    A little downbeat here, but I think the headline was different on Sunday:

    "Durban Climate Talks Produce Imperfect Deals"

    And my favorite:

    "Durban climate conference ends with deal for more deal-making"