Photo by campuspartybrasil.

George Monbiot has a new piece in the Guardian titled “The day the world went mad,” which looks at the underwhelming reaction in the press and political sphere to the Aug. 27 announcement of record Arctic ice melt.

As Arctic sea ice faces a death spiral due to human-caused global warming, Monbiot points to the complete lack of attention: Instead of focusing on the Arctic, a British parliament committee on climate change debated building new runways for Heathrow Airport; meanwhile in the U.S., the Republicans were holding a convention celebrating fossil fuels and the party’s active denial of climate change:

I wonder whether we could be seeing a form of reactive denial at work: people proving to themselves that there cannot be a problem if they can continue to discuss the issues in these terms … When your children ask how and why it all went so wrong, point them to yesterday’s date, and explain that the world is not led by rational people.

Well, not everyone was ignoring the insanity of the situation. Speaking on Current TV’s coverage of the National Republican Convention, Al Gore had some strong words for the press:

The whole North polar ice cap is disappearing in  front of our eyes. Twelve massive million-dollar-plus climate-related disasters … and they keep comingJust as [the media] did not report the truth about the proposal to invade Iraq, we are not getting the accurate impression about this challenge that we have to face. To stop putting 90 million tons of global warming pollution up into the atmosphere every single day … They aren’t only doing nothing about it, there’s hardly any discussion about it. It drives me crazy.

Watch it:

Here’s the full transcript:

When the Senate voted to go to war in Iraq, 77 percent of the American people believed that Saddam Hussein was responsible for the 9/11 attack. And yes, the administration put that impression out there, but where was the news media? Where were the responsible members of the Republican party in the House and Senate, and why weren’t more Democrats standing up to that upright falsehood?

The underlying point I’m making is we have serious problems in our democracy and all of the blame put on George W. Bush — I’m not defending him in any way, believe me — but I think sometimes that misses the larger point that our democracy is indeed in trouble. And all of us have an obligation to try to fix it … Global warming is real. And they refuse to connect those dots … We have the whole country suffering from this massive drought. West Nile virus is directly connected to the conditions that global warming has made worse. The whole North polar ice cap is disappearing in  front of our eyes. Twelve massive million-dollar-plus climate-related disasters … and they keep coming.

Just as they did not report the truth about the proposal to invade Iraq, we are not getting the accurate impression about this challenge that we have to face. To stop putting 90 million tons of global warming pollution up into the atmosphere every single day … They aren’t only doing nothing about it, there’s hardly any discussion about it. It drives me crazy.