David Keith on Colbert discussing Geoengineering

Strawman

Active Member
David Keith was on The Colbert Report last night, promoting his new book. It was interesting in that Keith was making clear that he wants to incite debate on options, even if they are ugly, like spraying sulfuric acid into the atmosphere.
Right at the end, Colbert mentioned contrails and asked whether this was already happening without anyone being told about it. Keith considered it unlikely. The whole bit took maybe ten seconds. Naturally, Colbert had the better on him, he always does, since he is amazing at interviews. There was no debate, Keith didn't get to explain the visual difference between contrails and sulfuric acid, nor the difference in height of application. The word "chemtrails" wasn't mentioned, but Colbert obviously picked up on popular culture and conspiracy and he got a good laugh out of it. Seeing how Colbert is basically playing a role, and he's not really choosy with what he throws at people in interviews, as long as it makes for a funny interview, it was all in good spirit.

http://www.colbertnation.com/the-colbert-report-videos/431083/december-09-2013/david-keith

Extracted from the Closed Captions:
 
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Lone Bison

New Member
Keith: "It's like writing a book that's a case for leprosy."
Colbert: "Do you have one of those, is it next?"

Hahahaha. Laughter aside though, this interview is kind of scary.

I thought Keith's plan was to blanket the skies with nano-aluminum? Why is he switching to sulfuric acid?
 
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Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
I thought Keith's plan was to blanket the skies with nano-aluminum? Why is he switching to sulfuric acid?
He does not have a plan. He's one of several scientists who are considering what the options are, how they might be done, and what the effects would be.
 

Strawman

Active Member
He does not have a plan. He's one of several scientists who are considering what the options are, how they might be done, and what the effects would be.
Exactly. Which is a good idea, having an open debate.

It also goes to show how evaluating options publicly is being misread by chemtrailers as preparation and manipulation. With a mindset that sees ulterior motives at play everywhere every time, it hardly matters how oftern David Keith points out how bad the ideas actually are and that we have to consider them anyways, in order to decide what to do, where to go, and what emergency breaks we may have. It's a fine demonstration of a conspiracy theory working towards poisoning discourse, intentionally or not.
 

Bob Moore

New Member
Very much so, and he hardly ever drops it in front of a camera. He even appeared before Congress in character, much to their disapproval.
In this video, and with almost everything he does on his show, he is brilliantly using satire to make his point. The reactions from the others in this video are priceless. The occasional laughter alternating with non-attention from some was telling. The sour faces during his delivery from a few illustrated how completely out of touch, uneducated and ignorant these people are. Anyone with an IQ over 80 can sort this out. This should not be difficult to understand.
This discussion with Mr. Keith tonight, I felt, was a disservice to Mr. Keith's proposition. There was never a conversation about the science behind what Mr Keith was proposing or even a basic explanation as to why this would be something worth considering. I felt it was unfair and Mr. Colbert could have been the same satirical character and allowed Mr. Keith a chance to make his case more coherently. Maybe Mr Keith could have responded differently and made a good case for his ideas, but it seemed he was overrun by the Colbert character.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
This discussion with Mr. Keith tonight, I felt, was a disservice to Mr. Keith's proposition. There was never a conversation about the science behind what Mr Keith was proposing or even a basic explanation as to why this would be something worth considering. I felt it was unfair and Mr. Colbert could have been the same satirical character and allowed Mr. Keith a chance to make his case more coherently. Maybe Mr Keith could have responded differently and made a good case for his ideas, but it seemed he was overrun by the Colbert character.
That's the risk you take going on Colbert. People know this, yet they still go on because it's good publicity. He even had Rick Santorum on there a couple of weeks ago, and Santorum is an easy figure of fun for Colbert.

I'm sure David Keith was annoyed with the chemtrail dig, but he did at least manage to get out the "we should talk about this now, so we don't get forced into making a stupid decision" and something of the "we can't avoid talking about it just so we don't stop polluting" arguments. (The latter being the "moral hazard" argument, which is rather difficult to convey in such a setting).

There's numerous comments on the internet about how Colbert "owned" Keith over chemtrails. But that's just preaching to the choir. I think on balance Keith did a net good in raising awareness of the specific issue of being able to make an informed decision in the future.
 

George B

Extinct but not forgotten Staff Member
The LA Times covered it (basically a bouncy recap), and chemtrail enthusiasts show up in the comments:
http://www.latimes.com/entertainment/tv/showtracker/la-et-st-stephen-colbert-david-keith-sulfuric-acid-20131210,0,4265545.story#axzz2nDSNSQVW
Me thinks the real news is the small amount of Sulfur he thinks would be effective . . . 20,000 tons of sulfuric acid injected into the stratosphere in one year is a fraction of estimates previously proposed . . . This changes several things if correct . . . 1) the ability to engage in such a project becomes much more easily accomplished . . . 2) the negative side effects become theoretically less negative in some cases 3) It makes ramping up such a project many magnitudes easier and 4) If one wishes to be covert . . . it is much easier to do so . . .
 
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Steve Funk

Active Member
Me thinks the real news is the small amount of Sulfur he thinks would be effective . . . 20,000 tons of sulfuric acid injected into the stratosphere in one year is a fraction of estimates previously proposed . . . This changes several things if correct . . . 1) the ability to engage in such a project becomes much more easily accomplished . . . 2) the negative side effects become theoretically less negative in some cases 3) It makes ramping up such a project many magnitudes easier and 4) If one wishes to be covert . . . it is much easier to do so . . .
Perhaps it was a slip of the tongue. In writing, what you usually see is 20 million tons. That was the amount emitted by Pinatubo, and it didn't last long. I have seen a projection of an initial application of 10 million tons, with 1-2 million added each year for maintenance.
 

George B

Extinct but not forgotten Staff Member
Perhaps it was a slip of the tongue. In writing, what you usually see is 20 million tons. That was the amount emitted by Pinatubo, and it didn't last long. I have seen a projection of an initial application of 10 million tons, with 1-2 million added each year for maintenance.
I don't think it was a slip because he went on to say two or three converted business jets could accomplish the project in one year . . .
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
From an exceprt of his book he posted on the Geoengineering group:

With one flight per plane per day.
13 tons * 20 * 365 = about 95,000 tons per year.

This is for something that is "just barely detectable", not full scale.

3 planes is 14,000 tons, in the ballpark. He's talking about where you start, not full scale.

And you could easily do multiple flights per day
 
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Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
In his book Keith describes four phases, I have extracted the initial description of each here. What he was describing to Colbert with 2-3 jets is the start of phase 3.

Currently we are at phase 1, and poised to enter stage 2.

 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Also in his book he briefly discusses the Chemtrail theory:

 

zb89

New Member
As frequent viewer of the colbert report, I am afraid his interview epically failed, and will only fuel conspiracy theorists.

Stephen Colbert have previously stated whenever he is going to interview anyone, he tells them that he plays a stupid character on TV, who is a right wing nut job, and thinks the government is after anyone,
he was playing his character very well,

It is upon the guest to articulate his point very well, and maybe the subject was too complex for a 6 min. interview
 

Hama Neggs

Senior Member
Exactly. Which is a good idea, having an open debate.

It also goes to show how evaluating options publicly is being misread by chemtrailers as preparation and manipulation.
Yes and they also see it as getting the public used to something that is already supposedly being done.
 

JFDee

Senior Member
Addendum regarding air pollution:

http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2014/air-pollution/en/

This may be a useful quote if people suspect 'chemtrails' as the cause for their health problems.
 

WeedWhacker

Senior Member
Here is some background on Colbert's on-screen persona.
Yes. It's odd that those (usually on the "right"-leaning political persuasion) simply have no sense of humor, and ability to recognize and understand satire.

Witness the recent (minor) 'flap' over the show "Colbert Report" making a satirical jab at Dan Snyder, owner of the Washington Redskins football team. Pointing out Mr. Snyder's utter and hilarious insensitivity, with an equally absurd (as satire) example!

 
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