“They’ve got Nothin'”. In Congress, Deniers Dig Deeper, Double Down

March 5, 2015

Senator Sheldon Whitehouse has some good analysis of the situation congressional climate deniers, mostly Republicans, find themselves in, as staggering demonstrations of ignorance, like Senator Strom,..er..James Inhofe’s recent “snowball” speech, continue to go viral and define that party on the wrong side of yet another issue where America is rapidly re-assessing.

These demonstrations will look as horrific and dated to future generations as George Wallace’s Segregation Forever vow of 1963, and Strom Thurmond’s shrill defense of racism in 1948.

Whitehouse begins  at 1:39 if you are rushed.

Rebecca Leber in The New Republic:

Inhofe’s antics are a gift to the left. His beliefs about global warming are utterly detached from scientific reality, and yet Inhofe, who wrote a whole book calling climate change “the greatest hoax,” is the face of Republicans’ environmental leadership. So every time the environmental chairman stands on the Senate floor, armed with props and delivering wacky speeches, he damages the GOP’s reputation as a whole. Not that he’s alone in his denialism: More than 56 percent of congressional Republicans deny or question climate science. Inhofe is just another reminder to voters86 percent of whom say global warming will be a “very or somewhat serious problem” if we don’t reduce emmissionsthat the GOP values big business and small government above our planet’s viability.

“The Republican Party should be mortified by the face of their environmental leadership,” the Washington Post wrote in a weekend editorial. “The View” co-host Nicolle Wallace, a former GOP consultant to John McCain, agreed. “It’s terrible for the Republican Party to look like we can’t acknowledge reality.… [I]t is moronic to throw snow in the Capitol and say, I don’t know, I don’t think anything is changing.”

Below, Dr. Richard Alley shared the frustrations of being a climate scientist, and a registered member of a political party officially in denial.

Climate Progress:

Actually, the ridicule of Inhofe was not universal on TV — and I’m not just referring to Fox News. Chuck Todd of NBC’s Meet The Press thought it was a “fun moment.” He teased his audience at the start of the show with an Inhofe clip, commenting (transcript here), “Proof that global warming is a hoax? Or just another example of show-and-tell Capitol Hill style.” Yes, those are the only two choices.

Todd introduced the clip of Inhofe’s moronic moment, “Senator Jim Inhofe used a fun little prop to make his point, apparently, on global warming, claiming it was a hoax this week.” Then, after playing it, he said, “Now, I’m not going to use that to get into a climate change debate.”

Seriously. We wouldn’t want a discussion of the actual science behind the gravest threat facing the audience to get in the way of some levity. Especially because “we lost Leonard Nimoy this week.” Irony can be so ironic: Nimoy’s iconic character, science officer Spock, would hardly appreciate the joke of dismissing overwhelming scientific evidence with an inane and irrelevant prop.

Meet the Press, “by endorsing a display of pure ignorance about an urgent issue of public policy as a ‘fun’ prank, cedes the last shred of its credibility,” Michael Hiltzik writes in the L.A. Times. “Ridiculing or minimizing climate change as a topic only wonks care about — or conniving with our least-informed political leaders to do so — is an abandonment of every principle ‘Meet the Press’ should stand for.”



34 Responses to ““They’ve got Nothin'”. In Congress, Deniers Dig Deeper, Double Down”

  1. That the main stream media and NBC provide superficial coverage of the news? Who would have guessed? Why doesn’t Chuck Todd call Alison and find out about that thing called “climate change”?

    • You aren’t serious. The MSM has been blathering about g̶l̶o̶b̶a̶l̶ ̶w̶a̶r̶m̶i̶n̶g̶ climate change for two decades as a settled science, the PBS NewsHour mentions it that way practically twice a week in some form or another.

      • dumboldguy Says:

        I am warming up from shoveling another 10 inches of snow right now. The plow has piled it two+ feet deep in front of my driveway, and he’s not done yet. It’s the freakin’ fourth of MARCH, and the temperature is going down to SEVEN degrees tonight, and that may be a record low for the date.

        It’s all due to AGW and we don’t have time to listen to your crap. Go away, Russell.

        (And just because you didn’t give yourself a “thumbs up” this time, and instead gave everyone else a “down”, don’t think you’ve fooled us—-you are about as transparent as a window with no glass)

      • ubrew12 Says:

        Atmospheric CO2 is exponential (the same kind of function used to describe things that are exploding). Hence, temperature is exponential. The neat thing about exponentials is once you have the general shape of the curve, and you define the ‘catastrophe’ point (which in this case is around 5 C), you can zoom out on the curve and discern a ‘knee’, before which the curve was, essentially, flat, and after which the curve is, essentially, vertical. For the temperature curve, that knee occurred in 2005.

        What I’m saying is, the climate consequences follow the temperature consequences, and the temperature consequences follow the CO2 consequences, and the CO2 consequences are in the middle of blowing up. And since 2005, we’ve passed over into the ‘Age of Consequences’ on this issue. ONE of the consequences is media coverage. Hence, if you thought media coverage was high in the last two decades, you are going to be astonished at the NEXT two decades.

        More people need to understand the exponential function.

        • dumboldguy Says:

          Don’t forget to throw in water vapor, which is a more potent GHG than CO2 and the 800 pound Gorilla in the room. Nice feedback and “potentiation” going on there—-higher temps due to CO2 cause the atmosphere to hold more water etc.

          If you want to hear how potent water vapor is, read WUWT, Spencer, Russell and the other deniers. They are very busy mindlessly repeating “it’s the water, stupid” as they try to convince us that it’s not CO2—-that CO2 is “natural” and good for living things.

      • Better check your facts. The amount of time given to climate issues by MSM has been minimal. PBS is not the main stream media.


        But we all know that “facts” have a liberal bias.

  2. dumboldguy Says:

    Chuck Todd has risen way above his level of competence. He was weak as NBC’s White House correspondent, and his behavior now is incomprehensible for anyone who calls himself a “news reporter”.

    There are some on-line petitions out there asking NBC to dump him, but NBC seems to care more about Brian Williams adding some extraneous bullshit stories to his generally good reporting of the news than about Chucks’ blatant ignorance and bias. Chuck Todd is All Hat, No Cattle and belongs on Fox News.

    And remember, the dinosaurs didn’t die out overnight when the asteroid hit 65 million years ago, so it’s unrealistic to think Stromicus Inhofus Dumbus and his ilk will die soon just because the tide is turning against them. Patience all, they’re doomed.

    • As ever, you fellows seem not to get Inhofe’s joke. Your own beloved IPCC predicted “… key phenomena for which there is confidence in the direction of projected change based on the current scientific evidence … Fewer cold outbreaks; fewer, shorter, less intense cold spells / cold extremes in winter” ( http://www.ipcc.ch/publications_and_data/ar4/wg1/en/ch11s11-1-3.html ), the IPCC’s own Steve Running said “… the big trend that we’ve identified in the last 50 years is that we’re getting a bit less snow and it’s starting to melt on the order of two or three weeks earlier” ( http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/environment-july-dec08-troutdrought_10-31/ ), your own David Letterman was so convinced by these dire predictions that he commented to your own Obama Science Czar John Holdren that “my son might not have a chance to see snow” ( http://michellemalkin.com/2009/09/03/the-holdren-letterman-lovefest/ )

      What Inhofe was saying was, “How’s that less snowy, less cold prediction working out for ya?”

      No offense gents, you guys are the gift that keeps on giving, with your collective 911 Truther-/Obama birther-/ChemTrail believer-style enslavement to conspiracy theory about skeptic climate scientist being paid to lie when they know better. I’ll admit to still being baffled by commenter “dumboldguy” when he said in response to my challenge to AGW funders about whether my words really are for sale to the highest bidder (screencapture here you save y’all time http://gelbspanfiles.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/DoG-CCrocks-comment.jpg ) “You know neither Steyer nor desmogblog is going to try to buy you off…”

      Why on Earth would you fellows not want to take the gamble that either Dr Willie Soon or I know what the truth is, but are in this only for the money? Seems to me that if you truly believe in the ‘illicit industry money conspiracy’, then a paltry $2 million out of Steyer’s bank account going to Dr Soon would net your side the biggest skeptic-switch coup in history. Considering how your side is awash in money, enough to bankroll some of your One Percenter friends $130k plus for doing literally nothing ( http://web.archive.org/web/20120427091206/http://www.telofski.com/blog/2011/12/09/greenpeace-exec-paid-for-zero-hours-worked/ ), why wouldn’t you jump at this biggest-bang-for-the-relatively-littlest-buck?

      • dumboldguy Says:


      • As ever, you fellows seem not to get Inhofe’s joke. Your own beloved IPCC predicted…

        From the IPCC report,

        “Another important theme in the 21st-century projections …”

        It seems that a certain incompetent ideologue is too mathematically challenged to figure out that there are 85 years left in the 21st century.

        But then, what would you expect from someone who worships Andrew Breitbart?

        • So this global warming problem is a future event some decades away. You realize you just torpedoed the notion that ‘global warming events are happening today’? But then, what would you expect from someone who worships Naomi Oreskes?

          • Do you really think that global-warming is an “on/off” event?

            BTW, I checked out some of your on-line material, and I’m going to be blunt.

            You are an incompetent ideologue without any real scientific/technical skills.

            The exchange between you and the PBS ombudsman (at this link http://www.pbs.org/ombudsman/2012/11/the_mailbag_a_climate_change_exchange_1.html) tells me all I need to know about you.

          • dumboldguy Says:

            “BTW, I checked out some of your on-line material, and I’m going to be blunt.
            You are an incompetent ideologue without any real scientific/technical skills”.

            You have just discovered that? Russell is a graphics arts and/or business management type who can’t seem to find employment in those fields, so he spouts denier BS for a living instead.

            If you watch just the first 30 seconds of this Youtube clip of Russell in action at the July 2014 Heartland Ignorance Sharing Festival, you will find that Russell actually agrees 100% with your assessment of his “scientific/technical skills”.

            The question then remains—-what delusion drives him to comment so extensively about climate change when he has no idea what the science says? He is a close relative to blind art critics and deaf music critics in that sense.

            “The exchange between you and the PBS ombudsman tells me all I need to know about you”. Everywhere you look, you will find Russell’s arguments being shot down like that. He is actually channeling the WW 2 kamikaze pilots who never made it to their targets—-big boom, big splash, a few dead fish, oblivion.

          • Actually, I shouldn’t call it an “exchange”; it was just the PBS Ombudsman responding to (and demolishing) your silly claims.

          • dumboldguy Says:

            (ZZZZZZZzzzzzzz……snork……burp……fart…….roll over…….go back to sleep!)

        • you will find that Russell actually agrees 100% with your assessment of his “scientific/technical skills”.

          Let’s see:

          “I basically can’t believe I’m here… Heartland must really be dragging the bottom…”

          “I have nothing to do with science…”

          Cook should have quit while he was ahead (that would be no more than 20 seconds into his talk).

      • uknowispeaksense Says:

        You are very very special

      • “a paltry $2 million out of Steyer’s bank account going to Dr Soon would net your side the biggest skeptic-switch coup in history.”

        Why would Steyer pay someone whose research has been thoroughly debunked to “change his mind”? Who’d care?

        The notion of paying for research with pre-determined conclusions is vile. It’s not like we are happy about the risks associated with hammering the geological carbon cycle any more than do CO2 pollyannas.

        • Always I’m said to be ignorant, yet I’m the one who apparently has to hand-walk you fellows through your own beloved material. For the past two decades, your leaders have told you skeptic climate scientists know the truth, but caved into the dark side’s big money, and lie to keep the money flow coming in. Therefore, logic tells you they never had a preconceived conclusion.

          You WANT Steyer to outbid whatever dark money amount you believe Dr Soon to be receiving so that he will spill the beans on the “truth”. But since you apparently have no faith in the base level accusation, you tip your hand to just how worthless the accusation has been all this time. Making up this ‘preconceived conclusion’ notion now is every bit as bad as what creation scientists do when confronted with their narrative derailments.

          • dumboldguy Says:

            (ZZZZZZZzzzzzzz……snork……burp……fart (TWICE)…….roll over…….go back to sleep!)

          • anotheralionel Says:

            Russell, ‘…am not a trained speaker like the Al Gore people’.

            Weird statement right off the bat by implying that there is a recognised group of Al Gore people.

            So the media have been ‘skipping sceptic climate scientists from their media presentations’ have they? Well even though you only started into this in 2008 you should have become aware that is a patently false conclusion, a conclusion that only somebody deluding themselves could come to.

            I have been studying this topic of denial for over two decades, and on science also weather and climate for a good deal longer. Maybe it is in those latter topics that you should do more study but by concentrating more on the larger body of peer reviewed science than the dubious presentations that are common fare at Heartland love-ins.

            With the science you could do worse than start with, ‘The Warming Papers’ edited by David Archer and Ray Pierrehumbert, ‘Paleoclimates: Understanding Climate Change Past and Present’ by Thomas M Cronin (this one particularly useful for putting the ‘climate hasalways changed’ meme in its place and also the variety of climate models how they are built and how they are run as well as why), William F Ruddiman and his ‘Earth’s Climate Past and Future’; ‘Plows, Plagues and Petroleum’ and ‘Earth Transformed’. There are of course many more but I don’t hold out hope that you will follow these suggestions.

            So Gelbspan didn’t win a Pulitzer Prize. Strange that you should have said that unless Wiki is incorrect:

            “At the Globe, he conceived, directed and edited a series of articles that won a Pulitzer Prize in 1984.”

            It seems that Gelbspan has really wound you up. I wonder how you would feel were you to realise that it is those who keep the Heartland wheels turning that have been involved in the perpetration of the real hoax.

    • There are damn few talking heads in the MSM who are not stellar examples of the Peter Priniple at work

        • dumboldguy Says:

          We knew that was a typo, and you’re right. Of course it’s hard to tell with some of them, since they don’t write their own scripts. Maybe if they did, some would show more competence and intelligence than when they are just reading the party line from a teleprompter.. I think the problem with Chuck Todd is that they DO allow him to write his own scripts, and he’s not up to it.

          If MSNBC can be considered MSM, Rachel Maddow is NOT one who has risen because of the Peter Pineapple. She gets it!

  3. peterangelo Says:

    Prof Alley for all his contribution to climate science is too measured and cautious and to say it is recent thing IE: the politicization of climate science, makes me wonder if he isn’t spending a little too much time with rocks and not enough with people. Also, had he been more forceful in his appearance 12 yrs ago maybe we would have scared enough politicians into pricing carbon before they ended being bought off. I say his cautious approach has done more then good.

  4. Gingerbaker Says:

    The real problem here is not moron Republicans. The real problem is that Democrats don’t know how, or don’t care, to take political advantage of the situation.

    Example: I would bet my house that the typical Democrat’s response to Inhofe would contain some carefully worded statement about the scientific consensus blah blah blah. Snore.

    What they should be doing, however, is screaming for Inhofe to resign immediately, screaming for the Republican leadership to resign, scream about them being not just unfit for office and an international disgrace, but that they are unAmerican scoundrels, bought and paid for by Big Oil, who are ripping off good hardworking Americans every single time they put gas in their cars.

    They should be screaming that the whole AGW-is-a-hoax crowd is a conspiracy by millionaire fat cats who have rigged the political system for their own profit at the expense of Mom and Pop. That their selfish plan is to slow down the adoption of renewable energy, because renewable energy will save consumers trillions of dollars that should be going into their own pockets, but instead are stolen to buy Republicans their twelve mansions ( link to Romney, McCain real estate exposes).

    • dumboldguy Says:

      Can’t quarrel much with any of that, If anything, you’ve understated the case.

      You have to remember that the Democrats hands are not totally clean either. (read Winner Take All Politics and Death of the Liberal Cause).

      More importantly, liberals and progressives are the true Christians in this country and are therefore too prone to follow Jesus’ teachings about turning the other cheek rather than climb all over the Repugnants as they should

      Jesus is a liberal, you know, and his thinking is far more aligned with the left than with the bible-thumping fundamentalist conservative wing-nuts that have tried to steal his truth. There’s a great website devoted to that, and the “hate mail” page itself is a laugh riot.


      From the website—the second paragraph says it all:

      “Welcome to “Jesus is a Liberal”

      “We created this website because we believe the historical, Biblically documented teachings of Jesus Christ clearly show that Jesus is a Liberal. His philosophy, based in compassion, equality, inclusion, forgiveness, tolerance, peace and – most importantly – love, is 100% Liberal”.

      “For 20 years we have seen the growing domination of the radical right wing evangelicals on TV, on the radio and in the news, newspapers and magazines and in politics – claiming to own a virtual monopoly on Jesus. They have redefined what He meant and used His name to advance theirradical right wing social, business, governmental, political and military agenda – or as President
      Bush calls it their just and righteous Crusade. We strongly object and disagree”.

  5. shelama Says:

    Since Inhofe likes his posters, Sen. Whitehouse — EVERY DAY — should post the colorful graphical daily global anomalies…. http://pamola.um.maine.edu/DailySummary/frames/GFS-025deg/DailySummary/GFS-025deg_WORLD-CED_T2_anom.jpg

    If Inhofe with his snowball was was still on the floor listening to Whitehouse he would have simply smirked, shook his head and quoted Genesis 8:22. And his Republican denialist colleagues, and any denialist viewers, would scoff and ignore Whitehouse.

    The only memorable visual and message for the public that day was Inhofe and the snowball.

    It would have been harder for him to not look the fool with a snowball — and harder for viewers to buy it — if he and they at the same time also had to look at the temp anomalies for that very date.

    I couldn’t figure out how to get cci-reanalyzer to display the graphic for Feb. 26 but I think the localized anomalous U.S. cold (plus the other colds) vs. the larger scale global warms was even more impressive than it is today.

  6. redskylite Says:

    At least Professor Richard Alley is earnestly trying to get more awareness and action on climate change, he may not be so outspoken as James Hansen for instance, but he features in the “Earth, The Operator’s Manual, participates enthusiastically in free online educational programs, and gives many lectures. It is good to have such a notable republican on the side of the science. Having taken one of the free Penn State online courses I can confirm that he is a great and convincing communicator.

    In a decent world it would not be his job to have to convince the general public of the oncoming perils about to befall the planet.

    He would report his findings and write and contribute to human knowledge and the rest of the community would listen and act, instead of forming sinister profit motivated think tanks and institutes to deny suppress and confuse.

    Sometimes I feel like I am a child again at a pantomime, trying to alert the rest of the audience with those immortal words “LOOK BEHIND YOU” !! as the menace stalks up on the unwary players.

    • I agree, Richard Alley is a great communicator, a very rare skill for a scientist of his calibre. I think he is wise also to calm down on the doom-rhetoric as he is generally allowing people to draw their own conclusions from the evidence he presents which often is of a paleoclimate type.

      It’s really also not a scientists job to push politicians, if the system had resembled anything it did in the past – politicians would be listening to the scientists and taking action thereafter. If there are clear signs that politicians are bought and corrupt, I believe the responsibility lies within the court system to root out these corrupt politicians. If the people does not feel that government is acting to get rid of these obstructions it really means your voting system is completely broken or its time to take to the streets and demand change so that big corporations cannot own politics.

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