January 29, 2008

Focus The Nation Climate Change Teach-In Coming To CU Boulder

**Update--A look at some of the Focus the Nation moonbattery taking place on campuses across the country:
At the University of Rhode Island, students placed 300-pound blocks of ice around their campus and let them melt to symbolize how global warming is affecting polar ice caps.

At Missouri State University, students will pile 20 tons of coal on campus to show how much of this air-polluting fossil fuel is needed to power their school for an hour.

At UCSD, young conservationists are preparing a performance-art show that will feature a faux polar bear in an 8-foot-tall “electric” chair. It's a creative riff on the theme of climate change harming the bears.

The activities are part of the inaugural Focus the Nation, a four-day event designed to turn the nation's college students and others into global-warming activists.


Organizers of the grass-roots campaign, which ends tomorrow, bill it as the largest teach-in in U.S. history. They said about 1,700 colleges – including San Diego State and the University of California San Diego – churches, high schools and civic groups are participating.

Focus the Nation is unadulterated political advocacy. But my campus forbids me to use my official time, paid for by taxpayers, to advocate for particular campaign issues. But global warming is so important. But my Chancellor forbids me to engage in political advocacy as part of my job. But my Chancellor is the keynote speaker for our Focus the Nation activities. But my job is to teach not indoctrinate. But I actually agree with many of the proposed policies. But it is not my job to use my platform as a professor to tell students what to think; I am supposed to teach them how to think and come to their own conclusions. But if I don't go along I'll be castigated as one of those bad guys, like a Holocaust denier or slave owner. But doing the right thing is so obvious--Roger Pielke, Jr., director of the University of Colorado's Center for Science and Technology Policy Research and an associate professor of environmental studies


Climate change moonbattery at CU

Just received this forwarded missive urging me not to forget to attend CU's Focus the Nation Climate Change Teach-In (more detailed list of events here). No less than Colorado's Governor Bill Ritter will be in attendance to kick things off:
Subject: FW: Focus The Nation: Climate Change Teach-In

Please forward this on to your departments.
**********************
January 31st, 2008, CU Focus the Nation is part of a national teach-in
engaging millions of students about climate change and its solutions. A teach-in
is a day when an entire school turns its attention to a single issue. In this
case, it is an issue that will shape the future of current students. CU
Focus the Nation has a lot of activities planned throughout the day. Planned
events include:

* The 2% Solution Focus the Nation will stream a free, live, interactive webcast with climate scientist Stephen Schneider, sustainability expert Hunter Lovins, green jobs pioneer Van Jones and youth climate leaders, for a discussion of global warming solutions. 6:00 - 7:00 p.m. (Jan 30) / Atlas Auditorium
* Polar Visions World Premier Presented by CU climate scientist Ryan Vachon, polar climate change views from scientists and polar natives. 7:30-9:00 p.m. (Jan 30) / Atlas Auditorium
* Governor Bill Ritter kicks off Focus the Nation with his vision of a new energy economy. 9:00-10:00 a.m. / Old Main Chapel
* Discovery's Planet Earth series shown all day on the ceiling of Fiske Planetarium. 9:00 a.m.-6 p.m. / Fiske Planetarium
* Climate change panel series. Experts speak on climate justice, the difficulty of communicating climate change, and the future energy technologies that will help us fight climate change. 11:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. / Old Main Chapel. Check the website for individual panel times.
* Save Our Snow movie about a fearless duo of eco-minded
snowboarders traveling cross-country in a veggie-oil-fueled Winnebago to inform and
inspire people to save our snow from climate change. Enter to win a pair of HEAD racing team skis. 10:00-10:50 a.m. / Old Main Chapel.
* Ask a Climate Expert all your burning questions about climate
change in our open Q&A forum. 2:00-3:15 p.m. / Old Main Chapel
* Get FREE energy efficient light bulbs to save you money and lower your climate change impact. 9:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. in the UMC, Old Main Chapel and Fiske Planetarium
* Latin Hip-Hop by Debajo Del Agua and spoken word by LaNiece Littleton
and Jarvis Fuller. Focusing on the loss of culture due to climate change. 5:00-
8:00 p.m. / UMC cafeteria.
* The 11th Hour movie about global warming solutions followed by a
discussion with local experts. 7:00 and 9:15 p.m. / Muenziner Auditorium
/ $5 gen/$4 w student ID
* The Devil Came on Horseback about the genocide in Darfur. Hunter
Lovins, CU Law Profesor Maxine Burkett, Representative Alice Madden, and House
Speaker Andrew Romanoff and the film's narrator speak about the origins of the crisis, its link to a changing climate and why we should care. 6:00-8:00 / Cristol Chemistry Auditorium 140.

Robert Hall
Energy Program Manager
CU Environmental Center
303-492-3229
Aside from the obvious global warmongering and climate change hysteria, this "activity" appears to breach the prohibition on activism and political advocacy that CU's Chancellor "Bud" Peterson recently outlined quite clearly:
TO: Boulder Campus Teaching & Research Faculty, Staff, Deans, Directors, Dept Chairs

FROM: Office of the Chancellor

SENDER: Chancellor G.P. "Bud" Peterson

DATE: January 18, 2008

SUBJECT: Guidelines on Campaign-Related Activities by Members of the University Community

Dear Colleagues:

In light of the many political campaigns currently, or soon to be, underway at the national, state and local levels, I would like to provide you with a set of guidelines we, as members of the University community, should keep in mind as we consider our own activities and level of involvement. The guidelines were developed by the Office of the University Counsel, and if you have questions, I urge you to contact Counsel's office at 303-492-7481.

GUIDELINES ON CAMPAIGN-RELATED ACTIVITIES BY MEMBERS OF THE UNIVERSITY
COMMUNITY

IN GENERAL, UNIVERSITY EMPLOYEES MAY NOT:

* Engage in any activity during working hours designed to urge electors to vote for or against any campaign issues, which include campaigns for public office, state-wide campaign issues or referred measures, and local campaign issues or levies.

* Employees wishing to participate in a campaign activity should take personal leave.

* Use office supplies or equipment, including computers, telephones, printers or facsimile machines to create materials urging electors to vote for or against a campaign issue.

* Use their University email accounts to urge electors to vote for or against a campaign issue, or to forward materials that urge electors to vote for or against a campaign issue.

* Use University-hosted websites to urge electors to vote for or against a campaign issue.
Focus the Nation touts their endorsements:
To date, Focus the Nation at CU has been endorsed by Chancellor Bud Peterson, the Boulder Faculty Assembly, and the UCSU student government.
How do you spell hypocrisy? Nice to see you enforcing your own prohibition, "Bud".

Perhaps we should, you know, make a few phone calls.

Roger Pielke, Jr., director of the University of Colorado's Center for Science and Technology Policy Research and an associate professor of environmental studies--a self-described "nonskeptical heretic" and no fan of skeptics like Sen. James Inhofe states, "I'm so confused":
I am so confused.

Focus the Nation is unadulterated political advocacy. But my campus forbids me to use my official time, paid for by taxpayers, to advocate for particular campaign issues. But global warming is so important. But my Chancellor forbids me to engage in political advocacy as part of my job. But my Chancellor is the keynote speaker for our Focus the Nation activities. But my job is to teach not indoctrinate. But I actually agree with many of the proposed policies. But it is not my job to use my platform as a professor to tell students what to think; I am supposed to teach them how to think and come to their own conclusions. But if I don't go along I'll be castigated as one of those bad guys, like a Holocaust denier or slave owner. But doing the right thing is so obvious.

Thank goodness I am on sabbatical.

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