In the context of the US approach to climate science and policy, this chapter explores the cultural politics embedded in the processes of how the mass media shapes climate change discourses. These cultural politics are explored through a critical discussion of the claims-makers that get media ‘air time’, the power-laden storytelling of media reporting, a potted history of US reporting on climate change and, finally, a newer form of climate storytelling through public opinion polling. The chapter argues, amongst other things, that mass media reporting and discussions of climate change and climate change science work to inform—at various times and places paradoxically—but also obfuscate and thus complicate climate science policy and its associated cultural politics. Overall, we suggest that in the US, media reporting on climate change—which must be fully contextualised in the macro and micro power relations that co-create and inform it—has helped address, analyse and discuss climate-related issues but has not and cannot at all answer them.
This paper examines the risk perception of Filipino nurses who worked in Libya during the height of post-2011 crisis. The narratives reveal that Filipino nurses took advantage of the massive hiring campaign organized by Libya’s Ministry of Health in 2012, hoping that their migration experiences would result in economic and social rewards as they established their careers in the healthcare industry. After 2 years of adjustment to the conflict-ridden environment, they found themselves situated in another episode of civil war, once again defying the Philippine government’s mandatory repatriation program. Guided by Carretero’s (Risk-taking in unauthorised migration, 2008) thesis, we observed the mechanism of defiance that entails risk-taking as the political crisis loomed. Filipino nurses, especially those who initially refused to leave Libya, embraced an “illusion of control” that eventually reinforced an “unrealistic optimism.” These risk-minimizing strategies have successfully undermined the protective powers of the state. The paper argues that Filipino migrants in crisis zones like Libya undertake risk calculation and reduction, albeit with a tendency to commit risk denial and a false sense of empowerment and exceptionality. In the end, however, it is emphasized that these mechanisms have limitations, depending on the experiences, timing, and risk interpretation of the migrants.