01 March, 2009

Kerry to Will: "Bring it on, Bitch!"

Welcome to Science Sunday, wherein we will deconstruct denialists, pummel presuppositionalists, and cap it off with Neil deGrasse Tyson's absolute awesomeness.

First, the denialists.

George Will stands by his thoroughly-debunked column, and so does "editor" Fred Hiatt (can you really call someone an editor who refuses to edit?). In fact, Will's spewing more lies, and Hiatt's throwing down gauntlets, demanding people debate rather than decry his dear Georgie.

Be careful what you ask for, bitches:
Sen. John F. Kerry (D-MA), chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, is the first member of Congress to weigh in on George F. Will’s egregiously mendacious “global cooling” columns. In a Huffington Post column, Kerry delivers a withering critique of one of his “favorite intellectual sparring partners,” stepping up to the plate on behalf of science and scientists everywhere, including Secretary of Energy Steven Chu and White House Science Adviser John Holdren..
And if you think this column is some mealy-mouthed, polite political pablum, you've got another think coming. Kerry's breathing fire. I swear he's channeling Val Kilmer's Halliday: "I'm your Huckleberry. That's just my game." Oh, hells, yes:

Don't get me wrong. I'm happy to see Will embracing the idea of recycling, but I'm very troubled that he is recycling errors of fact to challenge the science on global warming.


Dragging up long-discredited myths about some non-existent scientific consensus about global cooling from the 1970s does no one any good. Except perhaps a bankrupt flat earth crowd. I hate to review the record and see that someone as smart as George Will has been doing exactly that as far back as 1992. And it's especially troubling when the very sources that Will cites in his February 15th column draw the exact opposite conclusions and paint very different pictures than Will provides, as the good folks at ThinkProgress and Media Matters for America have demonstrated so thoroughly.


No matter how the evidence has mounted over two decades -- the melting of the arctic ice cap, rising sea levels, extreme weather -- the flat earth caucus can't even see what is on the horizon. In the old Republican Congress they even trotted out the author of Jurassic Park as an expert witness to argue that climate change is fiction. This is Stone Age science, and now that we have the White House and the Congress real science must prevail. It is time to stop debating fiction writers, oil executives and flat-earth politicians, and actually find the way forward on climate change.


"Facts are stupid things," Ronald Reagan once said. He was, of course, paraphrasing John Adams, who could have been talking about the science on global change when he said, "Facts are stubborn things."

Stubborn or stupid -- lets have a real debate and lets have it now.

Oh, George Will, you've been served.

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