"Enough Of That, Let's Talk Climate Change."

More

It's entirely appropriate that President Obama and the Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh will discuss climate change in their meetings today. After all, there's substantial disagreement between the two nations about the issue going into the Copenhagen conference next month. But you do get the feeling that climate change has become the safe topic of conversation, at least publicly, when Obama is with world leaders. I'm no China hand like my colleague, James Fallows, but you couldn't help but notice when Obama did his town meeting in Shanghai, he kept returning to climate change. He deftly touched on questions of openness and transparency and freedom but climate change was the topic he kept steering back to and it makes sense. The same was true at this morning's press conference where it's harder to deal with thornier issues like nuclear double standards--the U.S.-Indian nuclear deal forged by Singh and Goerge W. Bush ended America's ban on sharing nuclear technology with India, which had been in place since it joined the nuclear club. Kashmir is thornier. Afghanistan is thornier. They'll all come up, but climate change has kind of become the safe topic of conversation at least publicly: like an awkward dinner conversation that's veered dangerously into sex or politics or child rearing, climate change is the topic everyone can agree to discuss--even when it's hard to resolve anything.

Jump to comments
Presented by

Matthew Cooper is a managing editor (White House) for National Journal.

Get Today's Top Stories in Your Inbox (preview)

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.


Elsewhere on the web

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register. blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

Adventures in Legal Weed

Colorado is now well into its first year as the first state to legalize recreational marijuana. How's it going? James Hamblin visits Aspen.

Video

What Makes a Story Great?

The storytellers behind House of CardsandThis American Life reflect on the creative process.

Video

Tracing Sriracha's Origin to Thailand

Ever wonder how the wildly popular hot sauce got its name? It all started in Si Racha.

Video

Where Confiscated Wildlife Ends Up

A government facility outside of Denver houses more than a million products of the illegal wildlife trade, from tigers and bears to bald eagles.

Video

Is Wine Healthy?

James Hamblin prepares to impress his date with knowledge about the health benefits of wine.

Video

The World's Largest Balloon Festival

Nine days, more than 700 balloons, and a whole lot of hot air

Writers

Up
Down

More in Politics

Just In