climate change deniers throw a pity party in congress to talk about hurt feelings

The House’s Denialist-in-Chief Lamar Smith invites his favorite climate change denialists for an afternoon of ego stroking and kvetching.

woman covered in soot

There’s something almost pathological about the fact that a party that ran on the platform best summed up as “fuck your feelings!” and against what they said were toxic liberal identity politics, had to have a pow-wow about how it’s not easy being a climate science denier, and how researchers were giving denialists such a hard time for smearing them and their research in right wing populist tabloids. Unsurprisingly, the carnival barker in charge of this circle of crocodile tears was Lamar Smith, the man who turned the once crucial Science and Technology Committee into a pitiful farce. With his more or less permanent smirk, he’s been doing his damnest to gut the EPA, harass NOAA scientists to prove that climate change is merely a socialist hoax, and attended a denialist conference at which he was almost salivating as he way too excitedly talked about how he was going to cripple American science for the benefit of his fellow Luddites and living John Birch Society fossils. He’s the last person we need to be overseeing STEM in this country, yet, there he is, as if the committee he now heads was assembled sarcastically by a team at The Onion, who are surely ready to throw in the towel as their headlines become far too realistic with every passing day.

As concern trolls decried 314 Action group’s decision to back scientists who wanted to run for office only if they ran as Democrats, arguing that this will “inappropriately politicize science” and pretending both parties were really the same deep down, when was the last time Democrats called a hearing to corner and attack a single scientist? Let’s drop this false equivalency now. If scientists want to have their work taken seriously in government, they have pretty much no choice but to support Democrats since the Republicans have become the party of “we’ve had enough of those experts,” proudly parading candidates who will tell the public that global warming is really happening because we’re getting closer to the Sun and because humans bodies put out heat. Of course this is ridiculous. Subtle variations in Earth’s orbit will only matter over hundreds of thousand of years, versus the few decades in which we’ve seen rapid warming, and the human body only produces as much heat as a light bulb. Yes, 7.1 billion humans producing about a trillion watts does sound like a lot, but plain sunlight is 128,000 times more energetic.

Just imagine a Democrat saying that the reason why the planet is heating up is our body heat getting any significant support. Or agreeing with GOP’s new leadership that breathing smog from coal plants and factories is not a health hazard and 60 years of research into this is an EPA hoax. Could you honestly expect a scientist to choose the party of creationism and conspiracy theories, which claims that every scientific finding their donors don’t like, or that may change their existing worldview is a nefarious hoax that to be shouted down and the scientists involved verbally tarred and feathered in public? The only science the GOP likes involves new weapons, or products that will translate into more campaign contributions for their reelections. Everything else is a waste, according to their mantra. It’s not only a self-serving, myopic view of what science is and why it’s important, but it’s incredibly damaging because it slows the progress of economies in need of basic, curiosity driven research to advance. And when an expert of some sort has the temerity to point that out, Republicans lash out and throw a pity party just like they did in Smith’s inane theater of aggrieved, self-victimizing denialists…

# science // climate change / environment / global warming / government


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