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What's the point of MSNBC climate change special if it features no skeptics?

Credit: MSNBC

On MSNBC's upcoming climate change special "The Politics of Power," by Chris Hayes, Variety TV columnist Brian Lowry questions how effective it will actually be:

[W]hile the program does feature clips of the usual suspects saying goofy-sounding things — like Oklahoma Sen. James Inhofe reiterating that climate science is a “hoax,” or a Republican congressman citing the biblical flood — none of them are interviewed specifically for “The Politics of Power.”

Did MSNBC ask such officials, and nobody would participate? That’s certainly possible, given the way politicians now gravitate toward friendly media venues where they know they’ll be served up softball questions. But there’s no mention of anybody declining such a request, so the clear inference is the producers confined their contacts to those sharing Hayes’ view — people who believe “The clock is ticking,” as he says, and that it’s difficult to motivate voters around such a hard-to-grasp threat when they’re being buffeted by misinformation. ...

[S]peaking of ticking clocks, “60 Minutes” didn’t make a name for itself simply by doing happy-talk pieces, but rather by confronting subjects with hard evidence and tough questions, then watching them squirm in the hot seat.

It is true that a news program based any controversial subject would be better served to feature multiple perspectives. But as Lowry notes: cable news is more often about preaching to the choir than converting anyone.

We've requested comment from MSNBC to confirm whether or not Hayes' show, which airs Aug. 16, will feature any climate change skeptics.


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