Al Gore is out there somewhere – he travels a lot, don't you know, and not in coach – making his usual measured arguments on matters of the day. On the NSA affair, Mr. Gore finds the thing not merely outrageous but "obscenely outrageous." Obscenity is hard to define these days, but Gore knows it when he sees it.

And, then, on the question of the Keystone pipeline, the approval of which is still under presidential consideration (along with the question of what actions to take when a red line has been crossed), Mr. Gore is similarly strident. The project is, he says, "an atrocity."

Strong language but, then, when the survival of the Constitution and the planet are at stake ...

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