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Author Topic: Trump Administration Assaults on Science  (Read 30557 times)

Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #300 on: August 26, 2017, 03:06:55 AM »
"This is what censorship looks like."
https://twitter.com/doctorwhy/status/900897050484670465
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6roucho

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #301 on: September 04, 2017, 01:29:59 PM »
This from Forbes, by no stretch a contrarian publication:

Reject This Incompetent Trump Nominee; He's Not A Scientist

President Trump has nominated a non-scientist to be the chief scientist at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. This is an outrageous slap in the face to science. It's also a slap in the face to Congress.

As I predicted back in May, Trump has tapped Sam Clovis, a former right-wing radio talk-show host and failed Senate candidate from Iowa. ProPublica, revealing the expected pick, noted that Clovis was a vocal climate change denier. Clovis has an undergraduate degree in politics and graduate training in business, but he has no formal training in science at all.

Clovis does have one qualification, though. As ProPublica pointed out, he has been a "fiery pro-Trump advocate on television." Sounds like a good candidate for a chief scientist job to me.

Fortunately (perhaps), the Senate has to approve this appointment. The Senate itself stipulated, in a bill that Congress passed in 2008, that the USDA's chief scientist (the under secretary for research, education and economics) must be appointed from among "distinguished scientists with specialized or significant experience in agricultural research, education and economics."
The law also says, just to make it crystal clear, that the under secretary "shall hold the title of chief scientist of the department."

Why is this appointment so wrong? I'll repeat what I wrote back in May:

Overseeing the USDA's research programs requires strong expertise in biological science. A non-scientist has no basis for deciding which research is going well or which questions present the most promising avenues for research. A non-scientist is simply incompetent to choose among them – and I mean this in the literal sense of the word, i.e., not having the knowledge or training to do the job. This does not mean that I think Sam Clovis is incompetent at other things; I don't know him, and he might be very capable in other areas. A non-scientist leader of a scientific agency will be incapable of using scientific expertise to set priorities and instead can make up his own priorities.

If the Senate has any backbone at all – if Republicans are willing to show that they are capable of doing something other than rubber-stamping every action of our self-absorbed, ignorant president, no matter how damaging – then they will turn down this nomination. Sam Clovis is so obviously unqualified that this should be easy to do.

Actually, if Clovis cared about the USDA's mission, he would recognize that he's the wrong man for the job and refuse the nomination. Even Dan Glickman, a former secretary of agriculture, said, "I wouldn't be qualified for that job," referring to himself (he's a lawyer), in a recent interview about Clovis' appointment. The current and previous chief scientists at the USDA have Ph.D.s and extensive scientific publication records. Clovis does not. (Note that when I wrote to Clovis in May to ask about his potential nomination, he declined to respond on the record.)

Steven Salzberg is the Bloomberg Distinguished Professor of Biomedical Engineering, Computer Science, and Biostatistics at Johns Hopkins University.

https://www.forbes.com/sites/stevensalzberg/2017/08/15/reject-this-incompetent-trump-appointee-hes-not-a-scientist/#6e0eef9217b1

While Clovis was a tenured professor of economics at Morningside College, a private, liberal arts college [which by and large are wonderful institutions] he holds no economics qualifications either. His bachelor's degree's in political science. He has an MBA and a PhD in public policy. So, clearly no fool, but neither an economist nor a scientist.

There's no such thing as gravity. The world sucks.


Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #302 on: September 08, 2017, 11:28:47 PM »
At a moment climate change is hard to ignore, the EPA is being pointed elsewhere
...
Once Jan. 20 rolled around, though, the EPA was upended. President Trump nominated Oklahoma attorney general Scott Pruitt to run the agency, a man who had repeatedly sued the EPA in an effort to block its regulations targeting the oil and gas industry in his state. In an interview in March, Pruitt denied the scientific consensus that human activity was driving the warmer climate — a denial that suggested he would curtail the EPA's efforts to limit greenhouse gas emissions.

Once confirmed by the Senate, Pruitt got to work reshaping the agency in precisely that way. In April, the organization's page on climate change was removed; in May, a page focused on educating children was as well. Pruitt's the driver of a government-wide effort to question climate science by positioning it against the views of the business community. Even the EPA museum may be overhauled to play down climate change.
...
https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/politics/wp/2017/09/07/at-a-moment-climate-change-is-hard-to-ignore-the-epa-is-being-pointed-elsewhere/
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6roucho

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #303 on: September 11, 2017, 04:48:01 PM »
At a moment climate change is hard to ignore, the EPA is being pointed elsewhere.
Pruitt even denies CO2 is a greenhouse gas.
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The new head of the Environmental Protection Agency said on Thursday he is not convinced that carbon dioxide from human activity is the main driver of climate change and said he wants Congress to weigh in on whether CO2 is a harmful pollutant that should be regulated.
https://www.scientificamerican.com/article/epa-chief-pruitt-refuses-to-link-co2-and-global-warming/

The idea that we should open a public debate about warming is equivalent to the idea that we should open a public debate about evolution. It leads the public to believe that two sides of an argument about an established fact have equivalent merit, which provides policymakers with political cover for making expedient choices in favour or their real constituency, the corporations who fund their politics.

Pruitt's a killer, every bit as anyone on death row. Conservatives would undoubtedly paint that opinion as hysterical, but how else can we describe it? History will judge him that way, for what it's worth. I doubt he gives a goddamn.
« Last Edit: September 11, 2017, 05:03:09 PM by 6roucho »

Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #304 on: September 16, 2017, 03:52:24 PM »
Not just the current administration, but "wealthy conservatives, in particular petrochemical billionaire Charles Koch, teamed up with neoliberal academics with the objective... of undermining the functions of government in the United States."

The idea that climate scientists are in it for the cash has deep ideological roots
You’ll have heard that line of argument about cancer scientists, right?

The one where they’re just in it for the government grant money and that they don’t really want to find a cure, because if they did they’d be out of a job?

No, of course you haven’t. That’s because it’s ridiculous and a bit, well, vomit-inducing.

To make such an argument, you would need to be deeply cynical about people’s motives for consistently putting their own pay packets above the welfare of millions of people.

You would have to think that scientists were not motivated to help their fellow human beings, but instead were driven only by self-interest.

Suggesting that climate scientists are pushing a line about global warming because their salaries depend on it is a popular talking point that deniers love to throw around.

But why do so many “sceptics”, particularly those who form part of the organised machinery of climate science denial, feel comfortable in accusing climate scientists of only being in it for the money?

Duke University history professor Nancy MacLean suggests some answers in her new book Democracy in Chains: the Deep History of the Radical Right’s Stealth Plan for America.

The book documents how wealthy conservatives, in particular petrochemical billionaire Charles Koch, teamed up with neoliberal academics with the objective, MacLean says, of undermining the functions of government in the United States. ...
https://www.theguardian.com/environment/planet-oz/2017/sep/15/the-idea-that-climate-scientists-are-in-it-for-the-cash-has-deep-ideological-roots
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AbruptSLR

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #305 on: September 21, 2017, 04:40:19 PM »
The linked article makes that case members of the Trump administration are quietly unraveling a slew of policies, precedents, and regulations in ways that could make it much more difficult to plan for a low-carbon future after they’re gone.

Title: "The Paris Agreement Dispute Is a Distraction. The Real Battle Is Playing Out in the EPA."

https://theintercept.com/2017/09/20/paris-agreement-climate-change-trump-epa/
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AbruptSLR

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #306 on: September 23, 2017, 12:31:32 AM »
To me, what the EPA is doing un Pruitt is obscene:

Title: "EPA asked Heartland for experts who question climate science"

https://www.eenews.net/stories/1060061307

Extract: "The Heartland Institute has found an ally in U.S. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt as he seeks to portray climate science as a debate.

While a number of conservative think tanks employ scientists or economists to discredit mainstream climate science, the Illinois-based Heartland Institute has a stable of them. It's devoted years to crafting an alternative body of climate change research that exists outside the prevailing view of scientists. Now, President Trump's administration may give the libertarian group its greatest influence in years."
“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.”
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AbruptSLR

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #307 on: October 06, 2017, 04:28:59 PM »
Team Trump is steadily undermining US climate actions established by Obama:

Title: "EPA's climate rule withdrawal will include big changes to cost calculations"

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/10/05/epa-climate-rule-withdrawal-cost-calculations-243520

Extract: "The Trump administration will consider fundamentally limiting the way the federal government counts benefits from curbing climate change and air pollution in an upcoming proposal to rescind former President Barack Obama’s signature climate regulation, according to multiple sources familiar with recent drafts.

In nixing the Clean Power Plan, EPA will suggest changing the benefits it counts, which would bolster its arguments that the rule’s economic burdens would outweigh its gains from cleaner air, reduced illnesses and greater energy efficiency. "
“It is not the strongest or the most intelligent who will survive but those who can best manage change.”
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #308 on: October 12, 2017, 04:13:09 PM »
Nominee has a business background, not weather.  Or science.

President Trump has nominated Accuweather CEO Barry Myers to post of NOAA Administrator.
https://twitter.com/RyanMaue/status/918280904056897536


Trump taps AccuWeather CEO to head NOAA, breaking with precedent of nominating scientists
As NOAA administrator, Myers would be in charge of the Weather Service whose data are heavily used by his family business, based in State College, Pa.

AccuWeather has, in the past, supported measures to limit the extent to which the Weather Service can release information to the public, so that private companies could generate their own value-added products using this same information. In 2005, for example, Myers and his brother Joel gave money to then-Sen. Rick Santorum (R-Pa.), who introduced legislation aimed at curtailing government competition with private weather services.

“Barry Myers defines ‘conflict of interest,'” said Ciaran Clayton, who was communications director at NOAA in the Obama administration. “He actively lobbied to privatize the National Weather Service, which works day in and day out to protect the lives and livelihoods of millions of Americans, to benefit his own company’s bottom line.”

Myers’s appointment is strongly opposed by the labor union for the National Weather Service, the NWS Employees Organization, for this reason. “As NOAA administrator, he would be in a position to fundamentally alter the nature of weather services that NOAA provides the nation, to the benefit of his family-owned business,” said Richard Hirn, a spokesperson for the union. ...
https://www.washingtonpost.com/amphtml/news/capital-weather-gang/wp/2017/10/12/trump-taps-barry-myers-accuweather-ceo-to-head-noaa-choice-seen-as-controversial/
« Last Edit: October 12, 2017, 04:20:17 PM by Sigmetnow »
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Pmt111500

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #309 on: October 12, 2017, 04:58:41 PM »
It looks like there are some people tracking the deeds of this US government. In my opinion, if it's legally possible to change the government after the next elections, most, if not all of these should be undone. Of course it's possible to construct a law, by which the right to vote of certain people is excluded. It looks like this government supports such laws.
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crandles

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #310 on: October 12, 2017, 08:54:14 PM »
Nominee has a business background, not weather.  Or science.

President Trump has nominated Accuweather CEO Barry Myers to post of NOAA Administrator.

Hmm...
http://blogs.agu.org/wildwildscience/2017/10/12/roger-rabbit-no-longer-running-accuwx-now-going-run-noaa/
… and my response, (written in 2013) when Accuwx started selling snake oil 45-day weather forecasts.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #311 on: October 13, 2017, 09:01:56 PM »
Where do they find these people?  :o

Trump’s Pick For White House Environmental Post Once Said Coal Helped End Slavery
Former Texas regulator Kathleen Hartnett White, unsurprisingly, is a hard-line climate science denier.
President Donald Trump named Kathleen Hartnett White, a hard-line critic of climate change science, to the White House’s Council on Environmental Quality late Thursday night.

Hartnett White is a former Texas environmental regulator whose six-year tenure was marked by her vote to greenlight a new coal-fired plant over the objections of 24 Dallas-area cities and counties. She previously led the Armstrong Center for Energy & the Environment at the Texas Public Policy Foundation, an influential right-wing think tank with ties to Energy Secretary Rick Perry. ...
https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/kathleen-hartnett-white-coal-slavery_us_59e0c0b2e4b04d1d518125a9
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6roucho

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #312 on: October 17, 2017, 01:18:40 AM »
You have to wonder how an administration selected by the rejection of facts [climate change deniers, birthers, conspiracy theorists] can actually govern. I guess it depends on whether they’re continuous or discontinuous contrarians. If they’re discontinuous, then at least the ones who believe the truth in one field can cover for the others who choose not to, like the apocryphal monks, feeding each other with long-handled spoons. The weakness is climate science. None of them seems to believe in that.

TerryM

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #313 on: October 17, 2017, 05:17:36 AM »
You have to wonder how an administration selected by the rejection of facts [climate change deniers, birthers, conspiracy theorists] can actually govern. I guess it depends on whether they’re continuous or discontinuous contrarians. If they’re discontinuous, then at least the ones who believe the truth in one field can cover for the others who choose not to, like the apocryphal monks, feeding each other with long-handled spoons. The weakness is climate science. None of them seems to believe in that.
I think most of them agree that government is bad. And done the way they do it, it is.
Terry

6roucho

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #314 on: October 18, 2017, 06:09:20 PM »
You have to wonder how an administration selected by the rejection of facts [climate change deniers, birthers, conspiracy theorists] can actually govern. I guess it depends on whether they’re continuous or discontinuous contrarians. If they’re discontinuous, then at least the ones who believe the truth in one field can cover for the others who choose not to, like the apocryphal monks, feeding each other with long-handled spoons. The weakness is climate science. None of them seems to believe in that.
I think most of them agree that government is bad. And done the way they do it, it is.
Terry
Efficient markets also depend on real information. These people are just picking different winners. Overwhelmingly, the fossil fuel industry.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #315 on: October 18, 2017, 06:22:21 PM »
    Trump's War on Knowledge.

“The experts are terrible,” Donald Trump said during his campaign. “Look at the mess we’re in with all these experts that we have.” It is hardly surprising, then, that his administration is over-stocked with know-nothing fundamentalists. Across the board, he has appointed amateurs who are hostile to science and sport obscurantism as a badge of honor. Accordingly, the policies they have adopted are as stultifying as they are noxious. ...
   (Article link below.)

Robert Reich - Facebook Post:
Ariel Dorfman provides a useful list of ways Trump and his administration are shortening the lives of Americans:

1. An estimated 2.3 million American construction workers, miners, and road-crew laborers face life-threatening injury and illness because the Occupational Health and Safety Administration has delayed the enforcement of rules protecting them from silica dust, which is incontrovertibly linked to increases in cancer and lung disease.

2. Deaths will rise among those who toil in shipyards and on construction sites because a regulation created by the Obama administration to reduce exposure to the carcinogen beryllium has been reversed.

3. Miners are at greater risk because inspections in coal mines to identify hazards have been curtailed.

4. Families in Appalachia will be further endangered because the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine have been ordered to stop studying how pollutants produced by mountaintop-removal mining may lead to increased rates of cancer, birth defects and respiratory disease.

5. The lives of millions will be shortened because more than 30 rules safeguarding Americans from pollution have been rolled back: they will slowly die from increased heavy metal effluents in waterways; they will die if emission standards for vehicles are relaxed; they will die because chemical spills will be more frequent and our water, air, and soil less clean.

6. More children will get ill and die if parents opt out of immunization programs encouraged by the president’s reckless promotion of the completely debunked “theory” about a link between vaccination and autism, a belief seconded by Tom Price, until recently the head of Health and Human Services, who once said that “vaccines are the equivalent of human experimentation.”

7. In addition, millions more will die prematurely because Trump by executive order has cut health insurance subsidies by $7 billion – thereby forcing insurers to raise premiums or co-payments, and making insurance unaffordable. And he is allowing insurers to offer fewer benefits, which will harm people with pre-existing health problems.

8. And a large number of children will lack the health coverage they need if the Children's Health Insurance Program runs out of money, which is soon to happen.

We are the richest nation in the world, and richer than we've ever been. This is barbaric.

What do you think?
https://www.facebook.com/RBReich/posts/1734421803237075


Trump's War on Knowledge
http://www.nybooks.com/daily/2017/10/12/trumps-war-on-knowledge/
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Alexander555

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #316 on: October 18, 2017, 10:14:03 PM »
That's a lot of nonsens together. It's these democrats that want to bring in more people, and more people is more polution. And if the premiums for health care were not 4500 usd a year, these children would have had a cover. In other countries they don't even pay 1000 usd a year. And we know that mining is not healty, but than we have to stop consuming. Even solar panels and windmills, electrical cars need a lot of resources, and to build and to maintain the extra houses and infrastructure for all these globalists that are on the run for their own created disasters.

Susan Anderson

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #317 on: October 18, 2017, 10:40:14 PM »
Alexander555, actually Democrats are very big on birth control access and affordability. One of the first things Republicans in office do is cut off programs that provide access to women's health abroad if it includes family planning help and advice. Empowering women has been shown to work, and it doesn't require bullying people about their all too normal and human tendency to fall and love and have children (lots of climate scientists, among others). They're obsessed with other people's sex lives, and they like fetuses because they don't have needs until they are born so they are unimaginably "pure". Once the family needs health care and support, it's bye bye baby care. And ensuring healthy children means families don't feel they have to have a ton of children as they are acculturated to do for their survival. (And yes, I do know it's more complicated than that, there are other inputs.)

Meanwhile, Trump is busy installing some industry promoters in various posts. Here's the latest on the FDA. "Mr. Trump Outdoes Himself in Picking a Conflicted Regulator"
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/17/opinion/mr-trump-outdoes-himself-in-picking-a-conflicted-regulator.html

TerryM

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #318 on: October 18, 2017, 11:05:44 PM »
Sigmetnow
Your #6 actually affects my family. My wife's eldest son and his mate have produced 6 grandchildren who've never "had their shots". Reason bounces off like a cat in a puddle, they're not welcome here.
Terry

Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #319 on: October 19, 2017, 07:08:55 PM »
In this age of anti-science in the U.S., here's a win for science in the state of New Mexico:

Facing Public Outcry, New Mexico Restores Evolution and Global Warming to Science Standards
Students will learn the age of the Earth, too.
New Mexico’s public education agency announced late Tuesday that it would restore references to evolution, global warming, and the age of the Earth that had been stripped out of the state’s proposed science education standards. The reversal comes after an outcry by teachers, scientists, students, and others—the culmination of which was a day-long public hearing on Monday in which scores of people spoke out against the draft standards. ...
http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2017/10/new-mexico-reversal-science-education-standards-climate-change/
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AbruptSLR

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #320 on: October 23, 2017, 04:27:36 PM »
While the cats away, the mice will play:

Title: "Tar Sands Pipeline that Could Rival Keystone XL Quietly Gets Trump Approval"

https://insideclimatenews.org/news/19102017/tar-sands-oil-pipeline-approved-line-67-alberta-clipper-enbridge-keystone

Extract: "You've probably heard of the Keystone XL pipeline. But what about Line 67, also known as the Alberta Clipper?

Nine years ago, both were controversial proposals to ship oil from Canada's tar sands into the United States. But while Keystone XL is still awaiting approval and continues to draw protests, Line 67 quietly secured a federal permit last week to ship even more crude than Keystone would.

On Oct. 13, the State Department approved a long-awaited permit that allows Enbridge, which owns the pipeline, to pump up to 890,000 barrels per day across the border between Canada and North Dakota, en route to Superior, Wisconsin."
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solartim27

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FNORD

Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #322 on: October 24, 2017, 07:46:52 PM »
As The New York Times readied a story on the Environmental Protection Agency for last weekend's front page, an agency spokeswoman ignored the reporter's questions and accused him of writing "elitist clickbait."

EPA Press Office Tips Toward Hostility Under Pruitt
The Environmental Protection Agency’s press office has launched personal attacks on reporters, reflecting Trump’s campaign style.
https://insideclimatenews.org/news/24102017/trump-pruitt-epa-press-office-attacked-reporter-lipton-ap-harvey
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Shared Humanity

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #323 on: October 25, 2017, 03:39:20 PM »
Cross posted from weird weather thread and a big thank you to Sigmetnow.

http://grist.org/article/life-saving-weather-forecasts-cost-donald-trump-wants-to-slash-them/

Apparently violent weather driven by AGW is not the problem. Knowledge of such things is.

ghoti

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #324 on: October 25, 2017, 05:40:43 PM »
Apparently violent weather driven by AGW is not the problem. Knowledge of such things is.

Nothing new there. When facts get in the way of your agenda then you hide the facts. This is the standard way of conservative governments as we saw before with Reagan, Bush, and Harper.

Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #325 on: October 31, 2017, 04:51:28 PM »
"40 minutes into a Senate hearing on the lessons from a record disaster season, nobody has mentioned climate change."
https://twitter.com/cflav/status/925372345535131653

".@SenatorTester just became the first person to mention climate change, an hour into a hearing on extreme weather."
https://twitter.com/cflav/status/925377669616807938

"Good lord. FEMA is spending up to $200 million *a day* responding to Harvey, Irma, Maria and the NorCal wildfires according to @FEMA_Brock"
https://twitter.com/blkahn/status/925381699093127168
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AbruptSLR

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #326 on: October 31, 2017, 05:54:02 PM »
Personally, I find this thread depressing, but here goes a post anyway:

Title: "Trump’s Gang of Climate Deniers Has Grown Into an Army"

https://newrepublic.com/article/145547/trumps-gang-climate-deniers-grown-army

Extract: "He keeps picking deniers for top government positions: NASA might soon be run by a GOP congressman who blames global warming on the sun."
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magnamentis

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #327 on: October 31, 2017, 06:29:48 PM »
http://magnamentis.com
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Susan Anderson

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #328 on: November 01, 2017, 05:59:11 PM »
Here's more of the same; only industry reps allowed: Pruitt Bars Some Scientists From Advising E.P.A. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/31/climate/pruitt-epa-science-advisory-boards.html

Of course, moneygrubbing is fine, but expertise is not welcome.

TerryM

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #329 on: November 01, 2017, 07:17:49 PM »
Here's more of the same; only industry reps allowed: Pruitt Bars Some Scientists From Advising E.P.A. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/10/31/climate/pruitt-epa-science-advisory-boards.html

Of course, moneygrubbing is fine, but expertise is not welcome.


Further with Pruitt's EPA:


Meet dicamba, the new killer from our old friends at Monsanto.
Apparently not enough money can be made selling carcinogens, so Monsanto is pushing it's new dicamba resistant soy seeds. The upside is that it wafts in the breeze killing everyone's weeds. The downside is that it wafts in the breeze killing everyone's crops.


Pruitt's Incredible Shrinking EPA will be ruling on extending dicamba's disastrous one season trial, which ends this November. The Evidently Expendable Experts may struggle against Monsanto's Moneyed Manipulators in a pitched, (as in, not on the level), battle.


Terry


http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-11-01/meet-monsantos-other-herbicide-problem




Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #330 on: November 02, 2017, 03:12:22 PM »
Scott Pruitt Declares War on Air Pollution Science
In stacking EPA advisory boards with skeptics, he's laying the groundwork to gut regulations that protect Americans from polluted air.
Of the 17 new members expected to be appointed to the EPA’s Scientific Advisory Board (SAB), three hail from large fossil-fuel companies: Southern Company, Phillips 66, and Total. Three are from red-state governments; one is from a chemical industry trade association; the rest are from various universities and consulting groups. Five of the 17 hold views on air pollution that are outside of the scientific mainstream. Of the three new members expected to be appointed to the Clean Air Scientific Advisory Council (CASAC), one is an air pollution skeptic.
... Phalen has argued that the air is currently too clean, because children’s lungs need to breathe irritants in order to learn how to fight them. “Modern air,” he said in 2012, “is a little too clean for optimum health.”
https://newrepublic.com/article/145582/scott-pruitt-declares-war-air-pollution-science
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #331 on: November 02, 2017, 05:43:13 PM »
So this is what it takes to prevent a non-scientist from being appointed to a scientific position in this administration.

Sam Clovis withdraws his nomination for USDA’s top scientist post after being linked to Russia probe
https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/powerpost/wp/2017/11/02/sam-clovis-withdraws-nomination-for-udsas-top-scientist-post-after-being-linked-to-russia-probe/
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AbruptSLR

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #332 on: November 03, 2017, 04:36:43 PM »
The Trump administration's position on climate change is at odds with the findings of the US's Climate Science Special Report, which is part of an even larger scientific review known as the fourth National Climate Assessment.

Title: "Massive Government Report Says Climate Is Warming And Humans Are The Cause"

http://www.npr.org/sections/thetwo-way/2017/11/02/561608576/massive-government-report-says-climate-is-warming-and-humans-are-the-cause

Extract: "It is "extremely likely" that human activities are the "dominant cause" of global warming, according to the most comprehensive study ever of climate science by U.S. government researchers.

The climate report, obtained by NPR, notes that the past 115 years are "the warmest in the history of modern civilization." The global average temperature has increased by about 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit over that period. Greenhouse gases from industry and agriculture are by far the biggest contributor to warming.

The findings contradict statements by President Trump and many of his Cabinet members, who have openly questioned the role humans play in changing the climate.

"I believe that measuring with precision human activity on the climate is something very challenging to do," EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said in an interview earlier this year. "There's tremendous disagreement about the degree of impact."

That is not consistent with the conclusions of the 600-plus-page Climate Science Special Report, which is part of an even larger scientific review known as the fourth National Climate Assessment. The NCA4, as it's known, is the nation's most authoritative assessment of climate science. The report's authors include experts from leading scientific agencies, including the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, NASA and the Department of Energy, as well as academic scientists."
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #333 on: November 04, 2017, 12:58:35 AM »
Happy Friday! The Natl Climate Assessment came out today, & miraculously, the Trump admin didn't mess with it.
      https://science2017.globalchange.gov
https://twitter.com/erinmurphy1/status/926523299361968128

13 federal agencies have published a landmark climate science report, creating "an unusual situation in which government policies are in direct opposition to the science it is producing."
     https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/03/climate/us-climate-report.html
https://twitter.com/ericgeller/status/926525187046199299
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pileus

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #334 on: November 04, 2017, 02:07:42 PM »
Whether or not this report would be squashed was something that we flagged early on.  Even though it's been released, it would not be surprising to see attacks by Pruitt, Perry, right wing media, and the usual deniers focus on the scientists themselves, belittling the report by undermining the researchers and labeling them biased and corrupt, etc.  and the report itself will do nothing to stop the anti science and pro fossil fuel policy agenda by the administration.

AbruptSLR

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #335 on: November 04, 2017, 04:53:22 PM »
In the linked article Scribbler points-out that the GOP's proposed tax bill would suppress the rollout of all electric vehicles on to the roadways:

Title: "Republicans Seek to Use Tax Bill to Suppress Climate and Clean Air Saving Electrical Vehicles"

https://robertscribbler.com/2017/11/02/republicans-seek-to-use-tax-bill-to-suppress-climate-and-clean-air-saving-electrical-vehicles/
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gerontocrat

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #336 on: November 05, 2017, 03:50:57 PM »
NSIDC DATA - Nearing the end?

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2017/nov/05/donald-trump-accused-blocking-satellite-climate-change-research

It seems that NASA have decided that DMSP satellite F-19 cannot be made operational, and has been abandoned.
DMSP satellite F-20 was destroyed by order of Congress.
The current satellites are already working beyond their shelf-life and the earliest replacement date is 2023.
It is highly likely that NSIDC data will be interrupted temporarily or permanently.

“This is like throwing away the medical records of a sick patient,” said David Gallaher of the National Snow and Ice Data Center in Boulder, Colorado. “Our world is ailing and we have apparently decided to undermine, quite deliberately, the effectiveness of the records on which its recovery might be based. It is criminal.”

However, this criminal act lies not with Trump but at the door of Rep. US Senator Lamar Smith, current chairman of the U.S. House Science, Space and Technology Committee.
He is not standing for re-election next year, and the hurrahs vs eulogies have already started.

http://beta.latimes.com/business/hiltzik/la-fi-hiltzik-lamar-smith-20171103-story.html
https://www.texastribune.org/2017/11/02/lamar-smith-retiring-congress/
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TerryM

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #337 on: November 05, 2017, 11:59:17 PM »
Trump, it seems, is but following the wishes of the Republican Party. It's convenient to place the blame on him, but allows the perpetrators a free ride.
Harper, in Canada, was to a much greater extent the source of the anti-science programs that his Conservative Party enacted, and this realization on the part of the voters had an effect on his and the Conservative Party's crushing defeat.
Blaming Republicans for America's betrayal of climate science isn't just more accurate, it will lead to more votes for Democrats in coming elections.


I hope  :(
Terry

gerontocrat

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #338 on: November 07, 2017, 03:42:35 PM »
Trump, it seems, is but following the wishes of the Republican Party. It's convenient to place the blame on him, but allows the perpetrators a free ride.

Terry
I so agree, Trump is merely the enabler. The next agency to cripple is NASA -

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2017/nov/06/we-have-every-reason-to-fear-trumps-pick-to-head-nasa

Edited extracts below:-

We have every reason to fear Trump’s pick to head Nasa
"Republican climate science denial reared its ugly head at Bridenstine’s congressional hearing

Unlike past Nasa administrators, Trump nominee Jim Bridenstine doesn’t have a scientific background. He’s a Republican Congressman from Oklahoma and former Navy pilot. He also has a history of denying basic climate science. That’s concerning because Nasa does some of the world’s best climate science research, and Bridenstine previously introduced legislation that would eliminate Earth science from Nasa’s mission statement.

...the congressional hearing showed why we can expect most Republican senators to vote to confirm Bridenstine. The hearing was held by the Senate Commerce, Science, & Transportation Committee.
- Senator James ‘global warming is the greatest hoax’ Inhofe (R-OK) sits on the senate science committee. During the hearing, Inhofe proclaimed “This 97 percent [expert climate consensus] stuff has been debunked completely and everybody knows that.”
- Senator Mike Lee (R-UT) said, “It’s my understanding that it’s not even the position of Nasa at this point that there is a consensus that [climate change is primarily caused by human activity].”
- Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) had the most ant-science statement of the hearing, criticizing “the audacity to think that we are so important that we are causing that climate change.”

It is really scary that these guys are in charge.


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Shared Humanity

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #339 on: November 07, 2017, 05:52:35 PM »
Climate change does not care whether you believe in it or not. It's gonna fuck you in the end, regardless.

Susan Anderson

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #340 on: November 07, 2017, 09:28:35 PM »
Mass Shootings, Climate, Discrimination: Why Government's Fear of Data Threatens Us All
https://www.wired.com/story/mass-shootings-climate-discrimination-why-governments-fear-of-data-threatens-us-all/

Good article, here's an extract:

How about melting Arctic ice? Nope; Congress is dismantling a satellite that was supposed to update the aging monitor network. Climate change? Scott Pruitt, head of the Environmental Protection Agency, doesn’t think human beings cause it and, more importantly, doesn’t really think you can measure anything to find out. The weather? Forget it; the National Weather Service is coming apart at the seams. How many people live in the United States, data critical to determining political representation and funding priorities? Yeah, no—the 2020 Census is shaping up to be an epic disaster.

It’s hard to imagine a good argument for knowing less—about anything, really, but especially about difficult problems with profound policy implications. The government is supposed to base policy on the best data possible, along with political concerns, budget concerns, social priorities ... the usual warp and weft of running a country.

Yet the Trump administration is running in the other direction. Any data that has even the faintest whiff of potential contradiction goes right out the window. Of course, these folks aren't the first people in power to succumb to a fear of data. They do, however, seem to have found a profound expertise in the practice of eliminating it. Dataphobia chills them to the bone, I suspect because they hope to undermine not only some truths but all truth. David Roberts at Vox has written about what he calls an epistemic crisis in America, the idea that certain rulers and rich people hope to take away the basic idea of knowledge. If nobody can know anything, why bother to try to regulate anything? It’s government-by-ignorance—a shrugocracy.

Assaults on data have come before. “It’s the same reason an oil company doesn’t want research on climate change or a tobacco company doesn’t want research on the relationship between tobacco and cancer,” Vernick says. “Maybe they argue those researchers have an agenda and that’ll allow them to cook the books, but that’s an absurd argument. The worst thing you can do is cook the books. That is the way to guarantee the science is not used as part of policymaking.”

TerryM

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #341 on: November 07, 2017, 11:41:11 PM »
A decent article Susan, but the comments were very disappointing. Raced off in all directions, often straying far from what the article's author was saying. Wired once attracted a fairly astute readership, perhaps it still does with the exception of some who responded to this particular piece. :)
Has taking a shot at Putin now become a prerequisite for publication? The paragraph seemed divorced from the rest of the article, a cut and paste that had little or nothing to do with what preceded, or followed it.



A few months ago I'd come upon a chart that purported to show the difference between Republican and Democratic voters preferences. All the expected were there, plus one I'd not foreseen. The Republicans, according to this piece, are now against a university education.
They'd long been seen by some as "liberal indoctrination camps", but now, apparently the whole concept of higher learning is being viewed with a jaundiced eye.


I'll scurry around in my book marks to see if I retained the article,
Terry

Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #342 on: November 08, 2017, 08:15:49 PM »
EPA's Pruitt vows to continue rolling back rules despite alarming climate report
WASHINGTON — EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said a newly released government report that lays most of the blame for the rise of global temperatures to human activity won't deter him from continuing to roll back the Obama-era Clean Power Plan, a major rule aimed at combating climate change.

"We’re taking the very necessary step to evaluate our authority under the Clean Air Act and we’ll take steps that are required to issue a subsequent rule. That’s our focus," Pruitt said in an interview with USA TODAY Tuesday. "Does this report have any bearing on that? No it doesn’t. It doesn’t impact the withdrawal and it doesn’t impact the replacement." ...
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/11/08/pruitt-says-alarming-climate-report-not-deter-replacement-clean-power-plan/839857001/
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Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #343 on: November 08, 2017, 08:20:48 PM »
Senate panel advances Trump’s controversial NASA nominee
A Senate committee voted Wednesday to approve President Trump’s highly contentious nominee to lead NASA.  The decision to advance Rep. Jim Bridenstine's (R-Okla.) nomination came down to a party-line 14-13 vote in the Senate Commerce Committee.

Democrats strongly objected to Bridenstine, labeling him a politically polarizing figure with little scientific or technical expertise. They also objected to his skepticism of climate change science and his past statements on homosexuality and LGBT rights.

“The NASA administrator, in my judgment, ought to be a skilled executive capable of managing a portfolio of many of the most challenging technical projects undertaken by humankind, especially at this point, as we are venturing out into the cosmos,” Sen. Bill Nelson (Fla.), the top Democrat on the committee, said before senators voted on Bridenstine.

“The NASA administrator must have a strong scientific and a technical background, and the NASA administrator must not be political,” he continued. “I believe, Mr. Chairman, that the nominee falls short.”

No Republicans spoke in favor of Bridenstine at the short Wednesday committee meeting.
...

Bridenstine will now be up for a vote by the whole Senate when Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) schedules it.
http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/359356-senate-panel-advances-trumps-controversial-nasa-nominee
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AbruptSLR

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #344 on: November 08, 2017, 11:10:45 PM »
As an extreme narcissist, Trump has little (or no) compassion (for future generations) or shame (for appointing such biased advisors):

Title: "Potential Trump Adviser Suggests Climate Change Regulations Are Communist Conspiracy"

https://www.npr.org/2017/11/08/562721401/potential-trump-adviser-suggests-climate-change-regulations-are-communist-conspi

Extract: "President Trump has tapped a former Texas regulator to be his senior adviser on environmental policy. Like a string of other controversial picks, she questions the science behind climate change."
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pileus

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #345 on: November 10, 2017, 01:26:53 PM »
Read this article in front of a mirror, and watch as your head proceeds to spin.

TRUMP WILL TRY TO CONVINCE THE WORLD THAT FOSSIL FUELS PREVENT CLIMATE CHANGE

http://www.newsweek.com/trump-will-try-convince-world-fossil-fuels-prevent-climate-change-707614?utm_campaign=NewsweekTwitter&utm_source=Twitter&utm_medium=Social

Next week, the Trump administration reportedly will make this very case on the world stage. At the United Nation climate talks in Bonn, Germany, where countries will discuss next steps for implementing the Paris agreement, U.S. officials plan to argue that fossil fuels are key to fighting climate change, according to The New York Times.  Representatives of the coal, natural gas, and nuclear industries reportedly will speak  on “The Role of Cleaner and More Efficient Fossil Fuels and Nuclear Power in Climate Mitigation,” a presentation about “how American energy resources, particularly fossil fuels, can help poor countries meet electricity needs and drive down greenhouse gas emissions.”
-----
The moral case for fossil fuels, as promulgated on the right, states that fossil fuels have improved humans’ lives for more than a century—mainly through economic growth—and thus will continue to do so. The benefits of oil, gas, and coal consumption, the argument goes, far outweigh the environmental and public health costs, which have been wildly overstated by scientists anyway.

gerontocrat

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #346 on: November 10, 2017, 03:30:07 PM »
Adding to the post by Pileus, the Guardian writes about the US divided at Bonn. Extracts below:-

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/nov/09/bonn-climate-change-talks-us-two-tribes

"One nation, two tribes: opposing visions of US climate role on show in Bonn"

Donald Trump has pulled the US out of the Paris accord – but other Americans are standing with the world to help fight the ‘existential crisis’ of global warming

Tribe #1
A US Climate Action Center has been set up for delegates in Bonn, representing the climate change priorities of several thousand US cities, states, tribes and businesses. Corporate giants Mars, Walmart and Citi are expected to push for action on climate change. The center is in lieu of an official US presence – for the first time, the US government won’t have a pavilion at the annual UN climate summit.

Tribe #2
The White House has confirmed that the US will promote the “efficient” use of coal, nuclear energy and natural gas as an answer to climate change in a presentation to delegates in Bonn. Trump has vowed to revive America’s ailing coal sector but this message is likely to to provoke outrage on the global stage.

"Hope Floats" ?
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gerontocrat

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #347 on: November 10, 2017, 03:40:15 PM »
Off-topic, but what the hell. (Where else to put it).

There will be a few delegates at Bonn who will be going home to danger.

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/ng-interactive/2017/jul/13/the-defenders-tracker

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Sigmetnow

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #348 on: November 14, 2017, 02:37:02 AM »
Here’s Trump’s pick for Top Environmental Advisor answering questions about the environment in a confirmation hearing.  Or, trying to.  ::)  Unbelievable!

(Senator Whitehouse continually gives speeches on the floor of the Senate, warning about climate change.)

https://twitter.com/adamparkhomenko/status/929598544171945984
« Last Edit: November 14, 2017, 02:54:56 AM by Sigmetnow »
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TerryM

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Re: Trump Administration Assaults on Science
« Reply #349 on: November 14, 2017, 03:04:10 AM »
Here’s Trump’s pick for Top Environmental Advisor answering questions about the environment in a confirmation hearing.  Or, trying to.  ::)  Unbelievable!

(Senator Whitehouse continually gives speeches on the floor of the Senate, warning about climate change.)

https://twitter.com/adamparkhomenko/status/929598544171945984
Wow, just Wow!
Terry