By Dan Shapley
The inability to address the "carbon crisis" is only one massive failure among many that Al Gore addresses in his new book, "The Assault on Reason" -- the former vice president's assessment of the current American political landscape. He doesn't like the look of it. He takes on both the powerful (big corporations and overly-influenced politicians) and the not-so-powerful (you and me) for the problems he perceives, and he offers some prescriptions for improvement. Notably, the hyper-democratic world of the Internet, where millions of voices choose content and often revel in debunking myths, he writes, could well be the antidote for what ails the current political system. Gore may sometimes wag his finger and point. He may come across occasionally as uncomfortably stiff, or overly demanding. But many credit him with catalyzing an unprecedented call to action on climate change, after years of muffled pleas from advocates on the one side, and misdirection from those on the other. That, more perhaps even than his years as a senator and vice president, make the substance of his latest book worth considering, according to a story in the May 22 Los Angeles Times.