Dec 02, 2016
Displaying a troubling disregard for science, the House Committee on Science, Space, and Technology on Thursday tweeted a misleading article from right-wing, white nationalist website Breitbart News--one written by a climate denier and debunked by actual scientists.
\u201c.@BreitbartNews: Global Temperatures Plunge. Icy Silence from Climate Alarmists https://t.co/uLUPW4o93V\u201d— Sci, Space, & Tech GOP (@Sci, Space, & Tech GOP) 1480619566
NBC Newsnotes that the author of the article, James Delingpole, "does not have a science degree and is not a scientist."
"Delingpole did not produce any original reporting," NBC points out, "but rather merged opinion with a Daily Mail article he read. He also cited a science editor of the Global Warming Policy Foundation, one of the U.K.'s most high-profile climate-change denying organizations that the Guardian reported has clear links to the coal industry."
Scientists struck back with reality-based assessments of Delingpole's claim:
\u201cI wrote a brief, public rant on Facebook about that @HouseScience tweet. h/t @hormiga @PeterGleick https://t.co/seUTKycogb\u201d— Dr. Karen James (@Dr. Karen James) 1480625462
\u201cA classic example of false news. https://t.co/ECOkzeBW9j\n\nThe truth?\u201d— Prof. Katharine Hayhoe (@Prof. Katharine Hayhoe) 1480626330
\u201cIn 2016, the hottest year on record, the misnamed @HouseScience tweets false #climate science about cooling from misnamed @BreitbartNews.\u201d— Peter Gleick \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8 (@Peter Gleick \ud83c\uddfa\ud83c\uddf8) 1480690949
And Thursday's tweet drew mockery and outrage from elected officials, including several Democrats on the committee.
\u201cThis isn't factual, it's embarrassing, and Breitbart is not a credible news source. We need to bring *science* back to the Science Committee https://t.co/oZ6GfFAlUI\u201d— Rep. Don Beyer (@Rep. Don Beyer) 1480623365
\u201cFalse news & false facts put us all in danger... https://t.co/8hy6haEPaL\u201d— Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson (@Rep. Eddie Bernice Johnson) 1480631301
\u201cWhere'd you get your PhD? Trump University? https://t.co/P5Ez5fVEwD\u201d— Bernie Sanders (@Bernie Sanders) 1480626590
As Common Dreams has reported, the committee has long waged a war on one of the very areas it is supposed to oversee--science. Indeed, committee chair Lamar Smith (R-Texas) "has used his position on the committee to spread climate skepticism and and harass [the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration]," writesThinkProgress. "He once issued a statement alleging that scientists at the government agency of manipulating the data at the behest of the Obama Administration to provide evidence for climate change."
And that was "before Trump was voted into office," astronomer and columnist Phil Plait wrote at Slate.
"These tweets, and the information they cite, are a scary reminder that climate deniers will feel emboldened by Trump's election," he continued. "Trump's team is already planning to cut global warming research at NASA. As winter approaches, we'll likely see more reality-challenged senators bring in snowballs to the floors of Congress and say, 'What global warming?' every time a cold snap arrives, even though a lot of the brutal 'polar vortex' conditions are actually tied to the effects [of] global warming."
Our work is licensed under Creative Commons (CC BY-NC-ND 3.0). Feel free to republish and share widely.
We've had enough. The 1% own and operate the corporate media. They are doing everything they can to defend the status quo, squash dissent and protect the wealthy and the powerful. The Common Dreams media model is different. We cover the news that matters to the 99%. Our mission? To inform. To inspire. To ignite change for the common good. How? Nonprofit. Independent. Reader-supported. Free to read. Free to republish. Free to share. With no advertising. No paywalls. No selling of your data. Thousands of small donations fund our newsroom and allow us to continue publishing. Can you chip in? We can't do it without you. Thank you.