It’s too big to be a stocking stuffer, but Michael Crichton’s new novel ‘State of Fear’ may be a nifty gift for those who want a more balanced view of global warming.
George Will writes:
In today’s segmented America, Michael Crichton’s new novel “State of Fear” might seem to be just reading for red states. Granted, a character resembling Martin Sheen — Crichton’s character is a prototypical Hollywood liberal who plays the president in a television series — meets an appropriately grisly fate. But blue states, too — no, especially — need Crichton’s fable about the ecology of public opinion.
“’State of Fear,’ with a first printing of 1.5 million copies, resembles Ayn Rand’s ’Atlas Shrugged’ — about 6 million copies sold since 1957 — as a political broadside woven into an entertaining story. But whereas Rand had only an idea — a good one (capitalism is splendid), but only one — Crichton has information. ’State of Fear’ is the world’s first page-turner that people will want to read in one gulp (a long gulp — 600 pages, counting appendices) even though it has lots of real scientific graphs, and footnotes citing journals such as Progress in Physical Geography and Transactions — American Geophysical Union.
“Crichton’s subject is today’s fear that global warming will cause catastrophic climate change, a belief now so conventional that it seems to require no supporting data. Crichton’s subject is also how conventional wisdom is manufactured in a credulous and media-drenched society.
“Various factions have interests — monetary, political, even emotional — in cultivating fears. The fears invariably seem to require more government subservience to environmentalists, and more government supervision of our lives. …”