Monday, August 31, 2009
Intelligent Climate Change
Eoin O'Carroll of the Bright Green Blog at the The Christian Science Monitor makes an interesting connection between climate change denialism and evolution denialism (otherwise known as "creationism"). Discussing the US Chamber of Commerce's proposal that the Environmental Protection Agency hold a public hearing, in the nature of a new “Scopes monkey trial” to defend its finding that greenhouse gases are pollutants that pose a threat to public health and welfare, O'Carroll notes:
Both groups willfully ignore mountains of firmly established scientific evidence. Both groups falsely portray the scientific community as divided over settled science. Both groups make spurious appeals to academic freedom, arguing that "both sides" of the debate should be presented as though they possess equal merit. And both groups derive most of their funding from privately funded think tanks, having scant presence in the science departments of accredited colleges and universities.Birds of a feather.
The motivations of those who deny climate change and who deny evolution are probably very different. But in some cases, it's the very same people who deny both phenomena. Here are just a few examples:
Steven Milloy, a prominent climate change denier and "junk science" contributor to Fox News, told the Cato Institute in 2007 that "[e]xplanations of human evolution are not likely to move beyond the stage of hypothesis or conjecture."
Roy Spencer, a researcher at the University of Alabama in Huntsville, author of the 2008 book "Climate Confusion: How Global Warming Hysteria Leads to Bad Science, Pandering Politicians and Misguided Policies that Hurt the Poor," and the "official climatologist" of Rush Limbaugh's EIB network, wrote in 2005 that "intelligent design, as a theory of origins, is no more religious, and no less scientific, than evolutionism."
Actor and commentator Ben Stein, whose 2008 film Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed claimed that belief in evolution led directly to the Nazi Holocaust, asserted on Fox News this year that "global warming is by no means proved."
And Arthur Robinson, the senior author of the Oregon Petition, that list of some 31,000 self-described scientists who deny the existence of convincing evidence of global warming, is also a signatory to the "Scientific Dissent from Darwinism" circulated by the Discovery Institute, the primary think tank promoting Intelligent Design theory.
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