Barack Obama

Barack Obama.

When an election is near, politicians do their best to avoid doing or saying anything unusually evil or asinine because they know that people are watching. At times like the present, though, they know that most voters are sick of the subject and aren’t paying much attention any more.

So let’s fool them and pay attention. What I am doing, for example, is writing a letter, essentially the same letter to each individual politician in an office I voted on — from President and U. S. Senator down to local councils. It goes like this:

Dear President Obama:

First, let me congratulate you on your victory in the 2012 election, and I wish you the best of luck in your task of trying to fix some of the things that are wrong with areas of our government. I know there are many important questions that must be resolved, but there is one — in many ways, the most important of all — that has fallen through the cracks. It threatens the future of our whole world. And yet in all the debate, almost everywhere in our country, it was hardly mentioned.

If we don’t find some way of lessening the violent storms, droughts, floods and other consequences of our reckless tampering with the very air we breathe we endanger everything we attempt. Nearly every legitimate scientific organization in the world has joined in the warning that the inhabitability of the Earth cannot survive our forever increasing the carbon load in the atmosphere.

May I ask, then, what new steps or plans you will offer to slow the endless burning of fossil fuels?

Yours sincerely,

Frederik Pohl


  1. Mark Brosius says:

    It’s after midnight and I just finished rereading one of you wonderful books, “The world at the end of time”. Put it down, got online to see how you are doing. Was pleased to come across this thought provoking article after just reading about the challenge of regreening of the planet Newman home.

    thank you for all the works you have done!

  2. Ken says:

    Too bad solving this problem requires action from the dysfunctional governments of the world. If it’s not the flavor of the day elected officials can’t be bothered. Guess it’s up to us to make it the flavor of the day.

    God may not play dice, but politicians most certainly do.